Anatomy of a Keith Olbermann Lie

Stu's 3rd to Last Page, Fusion Magazine March 2010

By Stu Burguiere

Glenn is constantly attacked for being crazy, or apocalyptic, or fat (many/all of which I agree with) but lately the left has abandoned the "Glenn is a failure" narrative. Back in the day when we were only doubling and tripling the ratings at Headline News, we were routinely labeled "ratings failures" by the typical liberal blogs and columnists.

But as the numbers have grown, these attacks have generally dried up. One exception was our revisit of The Christmas Sweater, which aired in movie theaters nationwide this past December.

A liberal blogger reported that he had acquired ticket sales numbers for a few theaters running the show in big cities and declared the project was a flop. Any critical thinker would note that a couple of theaters couldn’t possibly give you the full story about a national theater event, but that was the least of the problems with his numbers.

Regardless, Keith Olbermann couldn’t resist. He went on the air with them anyway, using that one blog as his sole source. Think of the significance of that: A national news personality, trusting the unverified claim of one singular blogger.

I decided to pester our tour manager, Rich Bonn, for his magical spreadsheet which shows every ticket we sold and in which market. I thought it would be a fun experiment to get a statistical

measure on how badly Olbermann actually lies. Rich forbid me from printing all of the exact numbers, but I can generalize enough to make the point.

The blogger’s numbers weren’t just sourced poorly, they were wildly inaccurate.

Here is what Olbermann said:

"Remember the big Lonesome Rhodes/Beck extravaganza last week?"

Olbermann calls Glenn both Lonesome Rhodes and Father Coughlin.

One faked a hokey personality to win over an "aw shucks" audience; the other viscerally believed his wild anti-Semitic rants. They are the complete opposite of one another, yet Glenn is somehow both. Even Keith’s comparisons suck.

"[A] half live a half movie simulcast of his book The Christmas Sweater..."

Nope. Zero percent movie. Nice research Keith.

"In Washington, D.C., 30 people bought tickets to see Beck cry. In New York and Boston, it was 34 – but that was combined."

Ahhh…some actual numbers. He’s giving ticket sales for three cities here. Needless to say, they aren’t correct. The average error in his numbers was over 2,000%. Two. Thousand. Percent.

In reality, The Christmas Sweater: A Return to Redemption (mainly a rebroadcast of the previous year’s live show, something never mentioned by either source) was the most successful theater event in our history. That might not mean anything to Keith. Maybe he thinks all of our events have been failures. He knows failure well, so that would be understandable.

So, to make it more relatable, if you were to rank The Christmas Sweater event like they do movies, it would have been the number three movie in America that night. This despite appearing in 1/8th the amount of theaters as the number one movie (The Twilight Saga: New Moon) and only showing once per screen, rather than the six or seven times per screen like a normal movie.

Olbermann, still ignorantly clinging to his "Beck is a failure" thesis, continued:

"But of course you say, New York’s all socialists, fascists, communists; what about where the real people live,

like in Rockwall, TX? Ninety four tickets in Texas; 94 in a theater holding 193."

I know I’ve already explained how wrong his numbers were, so let’s investigate how stupid they are. He tries

to portray this theater as a failure, but if a movie could somehow sell tickets at the same rate that we did in this mythical example across a cinematic wide release, it would be in line for the largest opening weekend in history. Largest. In. History.

Finally, Keith caps it off with some ratings butchery:

"On top of which, Beck’s ratings among younger viewers for the first week of this month down 30% from the first week of last month."

I have no idea if this is true. Why? Because no executive at any level of any cable news network measures ratings this way. No trade publication even prints ratings for these "younger viewers" of cable news. Of course, he doesn’t define what that group is, so even if they were printed, you couldn’t check them. The cable news world runs on viewers aged 25-54, and, to a lesser extent, total viewers – but, unless you’re the Cartoon Network, not "younger viewers."

Regardless, no one in their right mind would compare the first week of a month to the first week of the next month. Unless you do this for a living, there is no way to comprehend how disingenuous this is. It’s like losing to the Cleveland Cavs by 60 two nights in a row, and then telling ESPN that Lebron James is a failure because his attempted free throws fell by 30 percent in the first quarter of game two.

The lesson here is not how wonderful our finances are, it’s that Olbermann performs the exact same mangling of facts about health care, war, taxes, etc. every single night. It’s also why we destroy him in the ratings. Every. Single. Night.

Send Stu hatemail at


<< Return to the March 2010 Index of Fusion

Ezra Levant, founder of Rebel News, joined Glenn Beck on the radio program to describe the shocking footage he and his team captured of Canadian police harassing and even arresting Rebel News reporters during a protest in Montreal.

Video clips show officers making remarks about the "Jew" reporters and calling Rebel News "Jew media." Reporters are pulled out of crowds, handcuffed, slammed against vehicles and arrested. Some have been fined "thousands and thousands" of dollars "because they had cameras pointed at the police," said Levant.

Another video clip shows Canadian police demanding entrance to a rented Airbnb houseboat without a warrant.

"They the claimed it was an illegal gathering. It was just a B and B," Levant explained. "I told them to get a warrant. I went out there ... and they wouldn't let me back in.... It turned into a ten-hour standoff. They couldn't find a judge willing to give them a search warrant, so to punish us, they called the whole thing a crime scene. They actually wouldn't let any of my team off the boat unless they submitted to a personal search, which is illegal. And the craziest part, is that they arrested one of my guys, took him to jail, and they said this to us: We will hold him in jail until you let us search the Airbnb without a warrant."

Levant said nearly all Canadian media have ignored the insane attacks, warrantless searches and seizures, and the jailing of journalists, and warned Americans to take note and protect our First Amendment rights.

"If you do not protect your First Amendment, if you do not hold those hard-won freedoms, you will be like what we are," he said. "This is your future if you don't protect your First Amendment."

Watch the video below for more details:

Want more from Glenn Beck?

To enjoy more of Glenn's masterful storytelling, thought-provoking analysis and uncanny ability to make sense of the chaos, subscribe to BlazeTV — the largest multi-platform network of voices who love America, defend the Constitution and live the American dream.

On Monday's episode of "The Glenn Beck Radio Program," Glenn opened up about the tragic death of his brother-in-law, Vincent Colonna Jr., who passed away unexpectedly on April 5. He also shared some of the important thoughts and insights he's learned through the grieving process.

"Last Monday, I was sitting in this chair ... the two-minute warning comes and Stu said to me, 'You ready for the show?'' ... And that's when my wife [Tania] came to the door of the studio here at our house and said, 'I...' and she held the phone up. And then she collapsed on the floor in tears," Glenn began. "Tania's brother had passed. To say this was a shock, is an understatement."

Glenn described his brother-in-law as having "a servant's spirit."

"He was always the guy who lit up the room. He was always the guy helping others. He would never stop, because he was always helping others," Glenn said of Vincent. "He was on the school board. He was a little league coach. He was the soccer coach. He helped build the church. He took care of the lawn of the church. He was constantly doing things, raising money for charity, working over here, helping to organize this. But he was never the guy in the spotlight. He was just the guy doing it, and you had no idea how much he had done because he never talked about it.

"We also didn't know how much mental anguish he was in because he never talked about it. And last Monday morning, after spending Easter with the family ... he killed himself. This is now the third family member of mine that has gone through this. And I keep seeing it play out over and over and over again, in exactly the same way."

Glenn described his thoughts as he, Tania, and her family struggled to come to grips with the devastating loss.

"I learned some really important things as I was watching this wake. I'm seeing these people from all walks of life ... the people that were there, were there because [Vince] made a difference in their life. He was a true servant. As I'm watching this, all that kept going through my mind was, 'by their fruits, ye shall know them.' The fruits of his labor were on display. He was a servant all the time. All the time ... he found a way to love everybody.

"There are two great commandments: Love God with all your heart and mind and soul. And love your neighbor. So those two great commandments boil down to: Love truth. Because that's what God is," Glenn said.

"Love thy neighbor. That's where joy comes from. The opposite of joy is despair, and that is the complete absence of hope ... and how do you find joy? You find joy by rooting yourself in the truth. Even if that's a truth you don't want to accept. Accept the truth," he added. "But we have to stop saying that there's nothing we can do. What are we going to do? Well, here's the first thing: stop living a lie."

Watch the video clip below to hear more from Glenn:

Want more from Glenn Beck?

To enjoy more of Glenn's masterful storytelling, thought-provoking analysis and uncanny ability to make sense of the chaos, subscribe to BlazeTV — the largest multi-platform network of voices who love America, defend the Constitution and live the American dream.

After imprisoning a pastor for refusing to follow COVID-19 restrictions, Canadian officials barricaded his church. And when some church members retaliated by tearing down part of the fence, Canadian Mounties arrived in riot gear.

Rebel News Founder Ezra Levant joined Glenn Beck on the radio program to give his insight on the crazy situation. He described the new, armed police presence surrounding GraceLife Church in Edmonton, Alberta, and how it not only encouraged hundreds of protesters to stand with the church in support but forced congregation members underground to worship as well.

What's happening is eerily similar to what occurs everyday in China, Levant says, and it must stop. Who would have thought this type of tyranny would be so close to home?

Watch the video below to hear Ezra describe the religious persecution taking place in Canada.

Want more from Glenn Beck?

To enjoy more of Glenn's masterful storytelling, thought-provoking analysis and uncanny ability to make sense of the chaos, subscribe to BlazeTV — the largest multi-platform network of voices who love America, defend the Constitution and live the American dream.

Enough prayers? Why is supposed Catholic Joe Biden suggesting that Congress ought to stop praying for after someone commits acts of gun violence?

On Friday, Stu Burguiere and Pat Gray filled in for Glenn and discussed President Joe Biden's remarks during his speech on gun control. "Enough prayers. Time for some action," Biden said. Stu and Pat were surprised how dismissive Biden appeared to be on the idea of prayer.

Watch the clip to hear more. Can't watch? Download the podcast here.

Want more from Glenn Beck?

To enjoy more of Glenn's masterful storytelling, thought-provoking analysis and uncanny ability to make sense of the chaos, subscribe to BlazeTV — the largest multi-platform network of voices who love America, defend the Constitution and live the American dream.