This element has been missing from most of the discussion surrounding the Phil Robertson "Duck Dynasty" controversy; the fact that A&E likely knew what his belief systems were but had no problem employing him as long as they made millions. According to the LA Times, we now know this is true. If the network warned Robertson not to speak out, that means they knew of his belief system. So they had no problem profiting from Robertson as long as his beliefs were kept from the public eye.
It's only when Robertson spoke up that A&E acted. What complete and total hypocrisy. Imagine if we learned the Milwaukee Brewers knew outfielder Ryan Braun was using performing enhancing substances and then feigned outrage when the story broke. In fact, it's likely MLB suspected that Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa were both using during the 1997 home run battle that reignited interest in the sport. But they didn't care. Shortly after Commissioner Bud Selig decided it was time to "clean up baseball."
A&E can pretend to be as disappointed as they want in Robertson. What they're disappointed in is the fact their hypocrisy has been exposed.