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Air America R.I.P?

We absolutely exploded tonight during our middle segment on Air America. As some of you may have read, AA is on the verge of bankruptcy (again). Jerry Dagna called in from Phoenix to comment and he garnered such a strong response that we kept him around for the next 60 minutes. Our GM/VP Rich Hawkins was so drawn into the ongoing debate that he came into the booth to participate around 5:30, just as my old boss Jeff Williams was calling in to participate in the conversation. The only thing better than listening to talk radio is talking about it.

But let me repeat the question here for your response: Why is Air America failing? Why can’t the liberals compete with the Rush Limbaughs and Sean Hannitys? Can liberal talk radio be successful? I’d be interested in your comments.

I’m taking Friday off to help out with the Cuesta College Writers’ Conference. Pastor Doug and Adam Hill will take charge of the show. We’ll catch you on Monday. Have a good weekend!

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  1. Bob from San Luis
    September 15, 2006 at 5:28 am

    Dave: I think Rich Hawkins hit it on the head when he mentioned that Air America launched an entire network, 24 hours of programming, not just a couple of 3 hour shows. When Rush launched his program, it was just that, a single program, not an entire network. As I mentioned when I called in, I think they bit off more than they realized, especially when you consider that there may not have been a business plan even drawn up. I do not even begin to pretend that I have any expertise or knowledge in what is involved in radio programming or the workings of running a radio station or network; I do assert that the undertaking was much more involved than most anyone of the “talent” may have realized, and, some of the early board members may not have had much of a clue what was entailed either. All of that aside, I really don’t believe that the potential failure is based on the content of the programing, but on the business side of the venture. I have my fingers crossed in anticipation of what will be on the airwaves come Monday morning, the 18th of September.

  2. Rich from Paso
    September 15, 2006 at 4:58 pm

    Here I go again, agreeing with Bob. I don’t think that liberalism itself has been reputiated with the failure of Air America. Having said that, I think that if the on-air talent had been more interesting to the consuming public, some well-monied capitalist (liberal or conservative) would have come in on a white horse to save Air America. When you have Liz Winstedt, Jeanne Garafalo, Al Franken, Randi Rhodes, and Sam Seder (see I can name Air America “talent”), in the words of Dave, boring America and/or pissing them off, you are not going to garner a following. They were just dull, repetative and vindictive to Bush. Even the choir can take so much preaching. Rush’s success is that there is an underlying current of humor and light heartedness. Even during the Clinton Administration, when he was swinging the haymakers at him, his audience share increased and then stayed up after Bush came into office. If Air America had taken that approach instead of attack attack attack, they might have stayed independent. The only hope for AA now is that there is someone out there that will come in and restructure the platform of AA into a more easily syndicated plate of programing and get out of the “network” business.

  3. JerryDinAZ
    September 15, 2006 at 6:13 pm

    YA KNOW…FOR WHATEVER REASON THERE IS A BIT OF PARTISAN GLEE TO SEE THE LIBERAL FLAGSHIP RADIO TALK SHOW TAKE THE BIG DIVE!
    WHAT I WONDER IS, WHAT WILL THEY TRY NEXT? WHY NOT JOIN THE WINNING SIDE AND SALLY UP TO RUSH & SEAN…AND THE GREAT GOP!
    WE’LL SEE EH?
    GREAT SHOW DAVE!

  4. Eric
    September 15, 2006 at 6:15 pm

    Is Air America a commercial success? No, it isn’t. Air America is nowhere near the point where it can be supported by advertising sales. Air America has always relied on massive infusions of cash from leftist special interest groups and people like George Soros. The entire business plan for Air America is greatly different than that for Limbaugh, Hannity, Ingraham. Air America pays radio stations to run there programming.

    Eric

  5. Anonymous
    September 18, 2006 at 4:32 pm

    I have listened to both. I don’t agree with Rush on many things, and I don’t respect him as a person (based on media reports of his activities) but sometimes he makes me laugh out loud. Especially his montages of Clinton.

    On the other hand, Air America was booooring.

    I miss Larry King. He is a liberal, but he was a great interviewer on talk radio. And, he didn’t just deal with politics.

    Bottom line, if democrats didn’t get so hot and bothered by Rush and Sean, they both would be out of a job.

  6. Rich from Paso
    September 18, 2006 at 5:29 pm

    Larry King a great interviewer? He lobs the softest of softball question to the point of being a panderer. He comes across as a fan of the people he is interviewing.

    As for Rush and Sean going away if liberals stopped complaining about them. That assumes that only liberals listen to Rush and Sean. There is this thing out there call the “Republican Party” of which about half of the voters in the country claim to be members of. And of those people, about 20 million of them listen to Rush and (to a lesser extent) Sean Hannity. So much for your bottom line.

  7. Bob from San Luis
    September 19, 2006 at 8:12 pm

    Okay, Monday the 18th of September has come and passed, and Air America Radio is still broadcasting. The program line-up has changed with a shuffling of personal and programs, but they are still functioning.

    JerryD: You really do paint yourself as an extreme partisan when admit to “…glee to see the flagship liberal radio talk-show taking the big dive…”; um, Jerry, it is a network, not a program that is having a problem. Rush, Sean, and the rest have a program that they produce. Rush has been the most successful, and he has developed his program into a network of sorts, but we are still comparing apples and oranges here when comparing Air America Radio to any right leaning talk show commentator.
    Eric: Can you provide any proof that George Soros has actually invested into Air America? If not, don’t try to make your case by spouting “talking points” put out by the right. If George Soros has invested in Air America, what is wrong with that? I maybe wrong here, but aren’t we allowed to spend our money how we want here in America? If you have proof that Air America is paying stations to air their programs, I would like to see the proof of that also.
    Anonymous: I do listen to Rush for a few minutes now and then; his “humor” is, in my opinion, juvenile at best, and his penchant for using “cute” names for those that he wishes to demonize is truly pathetic. “Dirty Harry” for the Minority Leader of the US Senate- that’s sad. “Breck Girl/Boy” for John Edwards, a former US Senator who ran for Vice-President, just because he has nice hair? If you truly find these and Rush’s other “humor” attempts funny, you probably have a lack of respect for most people, especially if they don’t agree with you, if they don’t look like you, or if they don’t “ditto” the same inane half truths that you want to believe. Beyond sad.
    As for the measure of what constitutes “success”, why is it always about money? Is that the only “true” measure of success? How many times do right wing talkers give you “facts” that you can research yourself, provide links to prove their point? How many right wing talkers take calls from their political opposites without cutting them off or calling them names? How many of them actually have guests on their programs that disagree with them? I understand that alot of people don’t care for Al Franken’s “style” of radio; I think he is much better when he is front of a live audience or when he has a that can help him avoid pauses and help him keep focused, but Al does interview people from the right, be they authors or politicians; does Rush? I know that many complain about Randi Rhodes as being too “whiney” or what ever; listening to Randi is not easy at first. It is kind of like someone who has listened to opera or country trying to listen to John Coltrane for the first time, it doesn’t seem to make much sense, but the more you listen, the more you hear. The same goes for listening to Randi Rhodes, if you listen repeatedly, you will get past your current “listening” to her and you will be able to actually “get” what she is saying. Sure, she has some of the same juvenile distractions that Rush and Sean use, but getting past those you will begin to hear her passion and intelligence. For all of you who like to respect those who have served in the military, how many talk show hosts have actually served? Randi Rhodes is one who has, unlike Rush or Sean or Bill.

  8. NewsstandGreg
    September 20, 2006 at 1:13 am

    Well, well, well…our very own former Slo-town resident, “Jerry in AZ,” really shows he hasn’t gotten rusty!

    Still spouts the GOP-speak like a pro…uh, somebody get him a radio show of his own! Pleeeze!

    Meanwhile, this former SLO county resident is highly entertained by good ol Dave C. Must have been tough when talking about the bankruptcy rumors concerning a competing talk network. 1340am KYNS airs the Air America network locally.

    Dave has lots of practice straddling the middle of the road! Hats off to ya, DC.

  9. JerryDinAZ
    September 20, 2006 at 1:41 am

    GOSH! WHAT WOULD WE ALL DO WITHOUT BOB TO SET US ALL STRAIGHT. THANKS DAD…YOU’RE THE BEST!

  10. Anonymous
    September 20, 2006 at 2:13 am

    and what would we do without someone as misguided as you JERRY to let us know how off-track our nation has gotten

  11. Mikey Ray
    September 20, 2006 at 2:25 am

    Jerry

    Do you ever post anything constructive? When Bob posts, he gives facts, puts forth good arguments. Same with Rich and New Tone. All you do is try (badly) to knock things down, or stir up shit. Does that make you feel good, knowing that you contribute NOTHING to this forum? I thought you moved to AZ because SLO was not good enough for you. Why are you continually poking your nose in our business? That armpit of the desert that you live in not interesting enough for you?

  12. JerryDinAZ
    September 20, 2006 at 4:58 pm

    Iranian President
    Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has said:

    “Israel must be wiped off the map”
    “Israel will be annihilated in the storm”
    “Anybody who recognizes Israel will burn in the fire of the Islamic nations’ fury”
    “Remove Israel before it’s too late.”
    “They have invented a myth that Jews were massacred”
    “Hezbollah is a popular organization in Lebanon, and they are defending their land”
    “Israel is an illegitimate regime, there is no legal basis for its existence. The solution to the Middle East crisis is to destroy Israel”

    BEFORE IT’S TOO LATE…GET THE US OUT OF THE UN & GET THE UN OUT OF THE US.

  13. mikey ray
    September 21, 2006 at 3:54 am

    “The most important thing is for us to find Osama bin Laden. It is our number one priority and we will not rest until we find him.”
    – G.W. Bush, 9/13/01

    “I want justice…There’s an old poster out West, as I recall, that said, ‘Wanted: Dead or Alive,'”
    – G.W. Bush, 9/17/01

    “I don’t know where bin Laden is. I have no idea and really don’t care. It’s not that important. It’s not our priority.”
    – G.W. Bush, 3/13/02

    “I am truly not that concerned about him.”
    – G.W. Bush, repsonding to a question about bin Laden’s whereabouts,
    3/13/02

    At least Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is consistent

  14. JerryDinAZ
    September 21, 2006 at 4:36 am

    MIKEY RAY…TREASON IS A FEDERAL FELONY. TRY CANADA. THEY LOVE GUTLESS TRAITORS THERE

  15. Bob from San Luis
    September 21, 2006 at 7:27 am

    JerryD: Are you insinuating that pointing out what the President has said versus what he has done is somehow equal to treason? Really? Should you or Rush have been charged with treason when Clinton lied about his sexual encounters and the right was screaming about how bad the Commander in Chief was? Like Mikey Ray said, consistentancy. I for one don’t care for Ahmadinejad one bit, but then I don’t care for George W. Bush either. I will respect the office of the President, unlike those on the right when didn’t do when Clinton was in office.

  16. JerryDinAZ
    September 21, 2006 at 2:30 pm

    HEY BOB, FYI, CLINTON HAS BEEN OUT OF OFFICE FOIR A VERY LONG TIME. DONT YA THINK IT’S TIME TO STAY IN THE PRESENT? I KNOW A LOT OF LIBICANTS WANT THE 60’S BACK, BUT IT JUST ISN’T GOING TO HAPPEN. BOTH SIDES CAN TAKE A LOT OF QUOTES OUT OF CONTEXT BUT ORAL SEX WITH A YOUNG INNOCENT PUBLIC SERVANT IN THE OVAL OFFICE CAN’T BE SPUN OR WASHED INTO SOMETHING THAT RELATES TO ANY PRESIDENT’S ACTIONS PAST OR PRESENT. CLINTON WAS AND IS A DEGNERATE PERVERT. AS FOR ME AND ALL INTELLIGENT VOTERS, WE WILL STAY FOCUSED ON NOVEMEBER. WHY SO FRUSTRATED? BECAUSE THE REPUBLICANS AND THE PRESIDENT POLL NUMBERS ARE ROCKETING UPWARDS? I THOUGHT SO. NOVEMEBER IS COMING AND I WILL NOT NEED TO CHANGE MY PICTURE.

  17. Bob from San Luis
    September 21, 2006 at 5:11 pm

    JerryD: “Poll numbers rocketing upwards”? I guess when the numbers have been so low for so long, any movement seems like a rocket launch…. talk about a reality disconnect. On the subject of poll numbers, read this if you can, especially down at the bottom of the page. Yes, it is Media Matters, and it is about 2 pages long, but if you read it and then tell me that “it’s just the liberal media bashing Bush”, tell me how that squares with the real numbers the administration is rated with.

  18. Rich from Paso
    September 22, 2006 at 2:27 am

    It is just the liberal media pummeling Bush. Remember that Bush 41’s poll numbers were up to 93% after the Gulf War but with the constant drumbeat of the Clinton campaign with “the worst economy in 50 years” mantra and Carville’s strategy of “it’s the economy stupid”, Clinton, with the help of Perot’s worthless candidacy, managed to turn a minor correction that was resolved before Clinton’s first budget, into an election win. Bush 43 has had to suffer the “Bush lied, people died” mantra of the MSM, the failures of Ray “School Bus” Nagin and Kathleen Blanco in how the hurricane Katrina was handled. Yeah, yeah, yeah, unlike Clinton hiring the very customs agent that stopped the millenium bomber in 2000 (according to SM Bill), Bush actually let his subordinates handle the relief. In retrospect, considering that Brownie was a turd, that was a bad idea, but how can the failures of Louisiana reach Bush’s desk before the local mayor and that state’s government accept any culpability. And when is MSM going to recant the hysterical claims of murders and rapes in the Superdome that never happened!!!

    So, yes Bob, if the MSM treated Bush with the same apologetic kid gloves that they gave Clinton, Bush’s approval ratings would be in the 50’s, even after 3 and 1/2 years of the Iraq War, I promise you.

  19. Bob from San Luis
    September 22, 2006 at 4:29 am

    Rich: The main thrust of my last comment was to highlight how the Presidency of George W. Bush is constantly cheered as successful, how he is popular, even though his numbers have been lower than any president in recent history. Here is the last few paragraphs of the link I left in my last comment:

    Here then, is some much-needed historical perspective to put Bush’s standing in context:

    According to Gallup, on the eve of President John F. Kennedy’s 1963 assassination, he was suffering the worst job-approval ratings of his presidency — 58 percent.
    In 1968, when the war in Vietnam was claiming hundreds of U.S. casualties each week, President Lyndon Johnson was considered so unpopular that he didn’t even run for re-election. Johnson’s average Gallup approval rating for that year was 43 percent.
    When Reagan’s second term was rocked by the Iran-Contra scandal, his ratings plummeted, all the way down to 43 percent.
    This year, according to the Gallup numbers, Bush has averaged an approval rating of 37 percent.
    Bush’s dismal ratings put him well within range of the country’s recent failed presidencies, like the one of his father, Jimmy Carter and Richard Nixon. That’s the historical company Bush keeps, although you’d never know that from journalists who refuse to connect the dots and refuse to treat Bush’s second term as the failure that a majority of Americans say it is.

    As for the “kid gloves” that you assert that the media treated Clinton with, you don’t remember how explicit the media was in reporting on Clinton’s private sexual affair? I think what you are trying to assert is that you, along with many on the right still persist on labeling the media as having a liberal bias. Here is a link that explores the perception of the liberal bias in the media, which should give everyone something to think about.

  20. Rich from Paso
    September 22, 2006 at 5:19 am

    Well, here from the Media Research Center (don’t give a shit, Bob. If I have to read Media(doesn’t)Matter then you have to read stuff from the Media Research Center). It backs up the assertion that the media is biased by their overwhelming voting record for Democrats. Does that translate directly to media bias? I think it does. You support the people you like and don’t support the people you don’t. Here is another analysis of how liberal editorialization enters into “normal” news reporting. And here is a study done by UCLA and Missouri students. Their research states that there is a media bias and that according to Americans for Democratic Action scores. Their student compared news outlets with a comparable politician with the same score. The NYTs and the CBS Evening News were as liberal as Joe Liberman (yes, Bob, he really is a liberal) while Special Report with Brit Hume was as conservative as Susan Collins of Maine.

    This is a university study, not mediamatters or media research center.

  21. Anonymous
    September 23, 2006 at 3:37 am

    bob from san luis: I officially invite you to my Aikido dojo. If you turn east at the corner of S. Higuera and Prado then take the next right you’ll see it at the end of the street (“corner” of Empressa and Bonetti sp?). YOu missed Doran sensei about two weeks ago.
    I’d prefer to remain anonymous, but you’re more than welcome to come, classes are 6-8 p.m. Monday through Thursday and Saturday 9:30 to 11 a.m.
    Ona gaishe mas.

  22. Bob from San Luis
    September 23, 2006 at 8:13 am

    anonymous: Thank you for the invite, I have been aware of the dojo there, my past instructor started going there after he retired from teaching. I’m not quite ready to start again, but I will seek out guidance and instruction when I am ready. Again, thank you.

  23. JerryDinAZ
    September 24, 2006 at 7:40 pm

    HEY RICH,
    I FORMALLY INVITE YOU TO JOIN ME AT THE SLO SPORTSMAN’S SHOOTING RANGE ON HIGHWAY 1. MASTER GUNSMITH AND MARKSMAN JOE LIBERMAN WILL BE TEACHING CLASSES EVERY WEEKEND. BEER AND BBQ’D RED MEAT IS FREE! BRING YOUR OWN INTERN!
    HOPE TO SEE YOU THERE!
    “KILL THOSE ISLAMIC NAZIS!”
    I PREFER PEOPLE KNOW MY NAMES…AS I HAVE ADOPTED THE POLICY OF NOT DIALING 9-1-1. I NOW DIAL “357 MAG”

  24. the voice of reason
    September 25, 2006 at 1:07 am

    wow jerry
    you’re so tough with a gun in your hands. Are you shooting liberals?

  25. JerryDinAZ
    September 25, 2006 at 3:50 am

    HECK YEA! SHOOTING DEMOCANTS IS A BLAST! THEY SCREAM LIKE 12 YR OLD GIRLS BEFORE THEY ROLL OVER AND WAIT TO BE REICARNATED INTO A TREE!

  26. JerryDinAZ
    September 25, 2006 at 4:25 pm

    YOU MIGHT BE A DEMOCRAT IF
    1.YOU THINK “ETHICS” IS AN EASTERN EUROPEAN COUNTRY.
    2.YOU’VE NAMED YOUR KIDS WITH HYPHENATED FIRST AND LAST NAMES.
    3.YOU’VE TRIED TO ARGUE THAT POVERTY COULD BE ABOLISHED IF PEOPLE WERE ONLY WILLING TO REDISTRIBUTE THEIR WEALTH.
    4.YOU’VE EVER REFERRED TO SOMEONE AS A “BIGOT OR NAZI”.
    5.YOU’VE EVER TRIED TO PROVE JESUS WAS A MARRIED MAN.
    6.YOU OPPOSE THE DEATH PENALTY, BUT SUPPORT ABORTION.
    7.YOU DON’T SUPPORT SCHOOL CHOICE FOR OTHERS, ONLY FOR YOURSELF.
    8.YOU THINK YOU MIGHT REMEMBER LAUGHING ONCE AS AN ADULT AND FEELING GUILTY ABOUT IT.
    9.YOU ONCE BROKE LOOSE AT A PARTY AND INHALED, BUT DON’T ADMIT IT.
    10.YOU SUPPORT DIVERSITY, AS LONG AS OTHERS AGREE WITH YOU.
    11.YOU’VE REFERRED TO MORAL FIBER THINKING IT WAS A NEW MAN MADE TEXTILE.
    12.YOU’VE EVER UTTERED THE PHRASE, “YOU HYPOCRITE”.
    13.YOU’VE EVER SAID, “THE BILL OF RIGHTS IS OUTDATED”.
    14.YOU ANSWER TO “NO ONE”.
    15.YOU SUPPORT PETA AND GREEN PEACE, BUT STILL EAT BEEF, FISH, LAMB, AND WEAR LEATHER GARMENTS.
    16.YOU PROTEST YOUR NEIGHBOR CLEARING THEIR YARD OF WEEDS.
    17.YOU ONLY LET YOUR KIDS WATCH PBS AND LISTEN TO NPR.
    18.YOU SCREAM AT THE THOUGHT OF AGREEING WITH A REPUBLICAN.
    19.YOU’VE ARGUED THAT WESTERN VALUES ARE NO VALUES.
    20.YOU AGREE THAT ALL THE WORLD’S PROBLEMS CAN BE TRACED BACK TO WHITE ANGLO-SAXON MEN TAKING ADVANTAGE OF OTHERS.
    21.WHEN PEOPLE SAY “MARX,” YOU THINK, “TO BAD HIS IDEA DIDN’T WORK”.
    22.YOU’VE EVER YELLED, “CAPITALIST”.
    23.YOU STILL WEAR THE BIRKENSTOCKS YOU PURCHASED IN 1969.
    24.YOU ARGUE THAT YOU NEED 300 LAWS TO CONTROL GUNS.
    25.YOU REALLY THINK THAT GUNS KILL PEOPLE. NOT PEOPLE KILL PEOPLE.
    26.YOU WANT TO PROTEST SOMETHING BUT DON’T KNOW WHAT.
    27.YOU’VE EVER SAID “I SUPPORT CIVIL LIBERTIES, BUT NOT PERSONAL LIBERTIES.”
    28.YOU WILL NOT ADMIT THAT TREES ARE A RENEWABLE RESOURCE.
    29.YOU’VE EVER SAID “REDUCE PAPER, SAVE A TREE”.
    30.YOU DONATE MONEY BECAUSE IT MAKES YOU “FEEL GOOD”.
    31.YOU CAME OF AGE IN THE ’60S AND DON’T UNDERSTAND WHAT WENT WRONG.
    32.YOU JUSTIFY LYING CHEATING DEMOCRATS BECAUSE REPUBLICANS LIE AND CHEAT.
    33.YOU EVER START OR END AN ARGUMENT ON THE PHRASE, “YOU ARE CLOSED MINDED”.
    34.YOU NEVER TOLD A CHILD THAT OSCAR THE GROUCH “LIVES IN A TRASH CAN” BECAUSE HE CHOOSES TO DO SO.
    35.YOU THINK DENIAL IS A VIRTUE.
    36.YOU DON’T MIND CONTRIBUTING 4 MONTHS OF YOUR SALARY TO THE GOVERNMENT. YOU’RE ONLY SORRY IT CAN’T BE MORE.
    37.YOU BELIEVE THAT EVERYONE ELSE IS RESPONSIBLE FOR YOU BUT YOU

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