Sunday, 12 April 2009
RADIO INSIGHT FROM A GUY WHO KNOWS (???)
You wouldn't take marriage counselling from Elizabeth Taylor, or
elocution lessons from Barney Frank. So why would you take advice about
radio programming from an Air America executive?
Tim Graham, of www.newsbusters.org, talks about
how Vanity Fair's Michael Wolff did just that, by interviewing Jon
Sinton. It is both laughable and pathetic.
Vanity Fair Projects Limbaugh
Audience Will Crumble -- Based on Air America Exec's Expertise?
If you want to argue that Rush Limbaugh
the radio sensation will soon crumble and fail, that he's headed for a "last
hurrah," would you sign up as your expert....an Air America executive? Thats
what media critic Michael Wolff did in
a Vanity Fair article on Limbaugh, "the man who ate the GOP." Rush has power
now, but soon he wont:
Arguably no message apparatus like it exists in
the nation, except, perhaps, at the White House (or in Oprahwhose position
with American women is curiously analogous to Rushs position with American
conservatives). It is concentrated and extraordinary power.
Except that this power ought to be ending. It
ought to all be on the wane. It is not just the Obama victory and the
magnitude of his approval ratings. It is not just that the gravity of the
economic crisis, with historic unemployment rates, means its a lot harder to
get people excited about Reagan-and-Rush-esque hands-off government.
It is, rather, a crueler demographic point. The
dirty little secret of conservative talk radio is that the average age of
listeners is 67 and rising, according to [former Air America guru Jon]
Sintonthe Fox News audience, likewise, is in its mid-60s: "What sort of
continuing power do you have as your audience strokes out?"
You can begin to make plausibly
large statements about the end ofor at least a crisis inconservative media.
"There are fewer advertisers, fewer listeners, shrinking networks, shallower
penetration," says Sinton. "A lowering tide lowers all ships."
Whats more, its the Internet that is the
fast-growing and arguably more powerful political mediumand it is the
province of the young and liberal. The only sensible market view of
conservative talk is that it will contract and be reduced, in the coming
years, to a much more rarefied format.
If Sinton were such an expert, wouldn't he still
be "growing" Air America past Limbaugh's audience? Barack Obama telling
Republicans not to listen to that Rush junk put a crimp
in liberal expectations, as even Wolff admitted:
And yet, by the end of Rush Limbaughs fractious
month of calculated outrage, his audience was back up to 20
Wolff lamented how his E-mail server was downed by
a Limbaugh wave: "Shortly after the war in Iraq began, when I was reporting from
CentCom headquarters in Qatar, I asked an intemperate question of one of the
military briefers in the daily televised news conference and, dissed by Rush for
my lack of patriotism, got the full effect: more than 20,000 e-mails in 48
hours, shutting down my mail server."
But Wolff still ended on the theme of wishful
thinking, that no one under retirement age listens to Limbaugh. It sounds like a
good reason to mint new dittoheads among the young:
A kinder, gentler Republican consensus would be
much worse for the Rush brand and business model than even an F.D.R.-type era
of Democratic dominance.
Rush is so much more lively, scary,
jaw-dropping, and fabulous when hes on the attack. Add to this that he might
actually be crazythe big fear of the moderatesthat it isnt showmanship but
a train wreck that were all watching, one in which he takes everyone with
him. "How far will he go? You dont know what might come out of his mouth.
What if he truly goes to war against the leadership? He could, you know, if he
wanted to just split the party. Walk out with the hard-core conservatives. He
could and he knows it," said my moderate-Republican interlocutor.
At least he can until the demographic reality
catches up with him. "Its a last hurrah," says Sinton, "because it isnt and
has never been first and foremost about politics. Its always been about
radio. And that endgame is written."
I have a question for Mr. Sinton and Mr. Wolff: If this is true,
how do they explain the analysis from The
Project of Excellence In Journalism's latest (2008) report?
Specifically, how do they explain this part?
The talk radio audience is largely male,
relatively young and ideologically conservative, although not necessarily
Republican. Talkers magazine put the party breakdown in 2007 at 23%
Republican, 14% Democratic, and a majority, 58%, independent. Data from the
Pew Research Center for the People and the Press found a more equal spread
among regular listeners in 2006: 32% Republican, 35% Democratic and 30%
Or these data:
Talk Radio Audience
Weekly Cume (in millions)
Ind. / Moderate
Liberal / Progressive
Great insight, Jon. This certainly explains the level of success you've had with
Air America. After all, look at how well it is represented in the above
Terrific article, Michael. You sure did pick
the right guy to explain the future of radio to us.
ANOTHER BUSH-OBAMA CONNECTION
This is a blog that I am delighted to post.
Over the past several days a small group of subhuman scum held Captain Bill
Phillips hostage and, in the face of US firepower, still thought they could make
demands and exact ransom from us.
And why not? Over the past two or so years they have made a huge
fortune doing exactly that to various European countries, which have had neither
the foresight nor the guts to do a thing about it other than pay up. And
the UN? They're too busy working on new ways to condemn Israel to do
anything about piracy and terrorism on the high seas.
During this time I have questioned whether President Obama had the resolve to
do what had to be done. I wondered if Mr. Obama would go the way of Bill
Clinton and not act decisively against them, or go the way of George Bush and
show these sacks of excrement what we are made of.
I am thrilled to report yet another connection between Mr. Obama and Mr.
Bush. Here, from Fox News, are the details:
Obama Twice Approved Plan to
Rescue U.S. Sea Captain
A senior administration official told FOX News that Obama
granted the authority on Friday and Saturday to use appropriate force to rescue
Capt. Richard Phillips from a lifeboat off the Somali coast.President Obama
twice authorized the military to rescue a U.S. captain held by Somali pirates
and whose life appeared to be at risk.
A senior administration official told FOX News
that Obama granted the authority on Friday and Saturday to use appropriate force
to rescue Capt. Richard Phillips from a lifeboat off the Somali coast. The
Pentagon believed Phillips' life was at risk both times, officials
A senior administration official said the
president's order authorized force for a group of military assets that arrived
at the scene late last week. When more resources arrived, Obama added them to a
roster of military personnel allowed to engage militarily with the Somali
Obama was told Sunday of the rescue while he was
in the White House residence, administration officials said. He phoned Phillips
and Phillips' family, an official told FOX News.
"I am very pleased that Capt. Phillips has been
rescued and is safely on board the USS Boxer," the president said in a
statement. "His safety has been our principal concern, and I know this is a
welcome relief to his family and his crew."
Obama also praised the U.S. military and the other
departments and agencies for their efforts.
"We remain resolved to halt the rise of piracy in
this region," he said. "To achieve that goal, we must continue to work with our
partners to prevent future attacks, be prepared to interdict acts of piracy and
ensure that those who commit acts of piracy are held accountable for their
A law enforcement official told FOX News that if
the Justice Department determines it has enough evidence to charge the pirate
currently in custody, the prosecution will take place in New York where the
pirate would be transferred within days.
Phillips was in "imminent danger" of being killed
by his captors before U.S. Special Operations forces fatally shot them, a U.S.
military official said.
Phillips was not hurt in the several minutes of
gunfire off the Somali coast Sunday. Phillips was safely transported to a Navy
Three pirates were killed and one surrendered to
U.S. forces, said the military official who spoke on condition of anonymity
because he was not authorized to discuss the event publicly.
The Pentagon briefed reporters late Sunday
afternoon on the dramatic rescue.
"This was an incredible team effort, and I am
extremely proud of the tireless efforts of all the men and women who made this
rescue possible" Vice Adm. Bill Gortney, commander, U.S. Naval Forces Central
Command, said in a statement.
He called Phillips and his crew
The U.S. military official described a tense and
terrifying few minutes for Phillips, during which "we definitely felt there was
a life-threatening situation there."
He said the situation appeared "imminent" and that
forces shot the pirates to death.
Following the rescue, Phillips was taken aboard
the USS Bainbridge and later flown to the USS Boxer, where he called his family
and got a medical evaluation.
Full credit goes to our military, especially our Navy Seals, who pulled this
rescue off so successfully. They are heroes, and make all of us who care
about this country as proud as we can be.
But they could not have performed their heroics without the go-ahead from
As anyone who reads this blog knows, I have a
lot of negative things to say about President Obama. But not today.
Today Mr. Obama showed us a facet of his presidency that not only is great,
but should be a loud, clear warning to the next bunch of thugs or terrorists who
think they can push us around. The current occupant of the White
House will stand strong against them.
My congratulations to him!
ISRAEL PEACE PARTNER UPDATE
These two items come from Palestine Media Watch (www.pmw.org.il). Watch them and know what
Israel is supposed to make peace with (if you have trouble clicking on the
Libel: Jews drink Muslim blood
by Itamar Marcus and Barbara Crook, Apr. 5, 2009
Jews drink the blood of Muslims
and believe that God wants Jews to hate Muslims, according to a Hamas TV skit.
Performed before a live audience at the Islamic University in Gaza, the segment
features actors playing a father and son, in traditional Hasidic Jewish garb,
discussing their God mandated hatred of Muslims.
The skit opens as
the father instructs: "We Jews hate the Muslims, we want to kill the Muslims, we
Jews want to drink the blood of Muslims." It is later explained that Jews wash
their hands before prayer, not with water, but with Muslims blood: "We have to
wash our hands with the blood of Muslims."
Blood libels were a tragic part of
Jewish history, as Jews were accused of using the blood of non-Jews for ritual
purposes, especially the baking of Matzah for Passover. Blood libels created
deep hatred and were an effective trigger for numerous pogroms and the murder of
thousands. The Hamas accusation that Jews drink Muslim blood comes the week
before Passover, the anniversary of many horrific blood libels.
Following is the full
Father: "We Jews
hate the Muslims, we love killing the Muslims. We Jews love to drink the blood
of Muslims and Arabs.
[Turns to the audience:] Are you Arabs? Are you
I hate you! Yes, I hate you, to please the Lord.
To please the
Father: "Shimon, look, my son, I want to teach you a few
things. You have to hate the Muslims."
Son: "I don't like them, I hate
Father: "You have to drink the Muslims' blood.
I repeat: You
have to hate the Muslims."
Son: "I hate the
Father: "You have to
drink the Muslims' blood."
Father: "You have to stand next to me and
pray, my son."
Son: "One moment and I'm coming."
Father: "Where are you
going, my son?"
Son: "To wash [with water]."
Father: "To do
Son: "To wash before prayer."
Father: "Muslims do this, not
We have to wash our hands with the blood of Muslims."
Hamas to kids:
Death is honor and victory
by Itamar Marcus and
Barbara Crook, Apr. 3, 2009
Hamas continues its compelling
message to children that death, not life, is the prime value. The following
lyrics have been appearing regularly in a song on the children's program
Tomorrow's Pioneers on Hamas TV: "Teach the children that death is honor and
victory. Through death, we seek to bring the dawn and the day." [Al-Aqsa TV
(Hamas), March 20, 2009]
While the words are being sung, a
young girl throws darts shaped like missiles at a target shaped like the Star of
David, promoting another repeating Hamas message - violence against Israel. When
the target is hit and the Star of David falls, the young girl raises her hands
Click here to view the song celebrating death as honor.
Still think there is any realistic chance of making peace with these
"FREE SPEECH" IN TODAY'S CANADA
Last year I blogged a number of times about the kangaroo-court justice
perpetrated on writer Ezra Levant and others, for their crime of acting as
though there was still free speech in Canada.
Levant learned what other Canadians have learned in recent years - that if
you dare to say what you think in Canada you can be subjected to a fraudulent,
disgraceful "Human Rights" tribunal in which you are arbitrarily told what you
can and can't say - after being punished severely for your crime of exercising
the free speech you thought was your right as a Canadian.
Salim Mansur of the Toronto Sun has written an excellent account of what was
done to Mr. Levant. Here it is:
Levant defends us all
Last Updated: 11th April 2009,
11:41amEzra Levant's book Shakedown released last month might be the most
important publication of the year. It documents the state of free speech in
Canadians, well informed about current news and
public affairs, have heard of Levant and his experience with the Alberta Human
Rights and Citizenship Commission (AHRCC).
Levant's troubles began when he was publisher of
the now defunct newsmagazine, the Western Standard, publishing in February 2006
the hugely controversial Danish cartoons of Muhammad, the prophet of Islam.
These cartoons, first published in Denmark in September 2005, unleashed an orgy
of Muslim demonstrations and violence across the Arab-Muslim world, and
apprehension in Europe.
The fear of inflaming further violence brought the
western media to decide against publishing or showing on television these
cartoons. Levant saw the cartoons, however, as news and that the news story
could not be told without them.
He published them explaining, "I'm publishing the
centre of a controversy. That's what newsmagazines do." But Levant's explanation
in an age of "human rights commissions" as watchdogs of how Canadians speak
without offending, or likely to offend anyone, was politically incorrect. The
AHRCC routinely accepted the complaint brought by one Syed Soharwardy against
the Western Standard, and Levant was faced with the choice of accepting a
negotiated settlement or fighting the complaint.
In making his stand for free speech on the basis
of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedom, plus common law, reaching back to
the principles set forth in the 800-year-old Magna Carta, Levant entered into
the labyrinth of the human rights commissions from where no Canadian sued for
"hate speech" has come out free and untarnished.
Levant did win despite such commissions' records
of ruling unfailingly in favour of complainants. After more than a year of
inquiry into the "Levant affair," the AHRCC dismissed Soharwardy's complaint.
Yet the complaint's dismissal was not quite a win as Levant explains in his
The basis of the complaint -- the hate speech
section of the human rights code -- remains and Canadians without Levant's
abilities must speak warily or face likely prosecution knowing free speech is
not free in their country.
Canada is one of the oldest democracies,
rightfully proud of its traditions among which is the hard won and
constitutionally guaranteed freedom of speech. But social engineering of the
1960s gave Canadians the human rights commissions, with legislatively provided
power to monitor free speech and punish those who run afoul of their codes. This
is a stain on Canadian democracy.
Freedom of speech is the foundation of liberal
democracy and the ground on which rests all other freedoms. Of this Elias
Canetti, Bulgarian-born writer and winner of the 1981 Nobel Prize for
literature, noted bitingly, "The origin of freedom lies in breathing."
The lamest excuse for constraining free speech is
preventing people from being offended.
Imagine if human rights commission-type commissars
had prevailed at the beginning of the Renaissance and Reformation. The modern
world would have been aborted at its conception.
In Shakedown Levant has compellingly demonstrated
why it is not "normal" for a mature democracy to place any constraint -- apart
from the criminal code provisions -- on free speech.
Levant deserves to be read widely and Canadians
should be asking, in increasing numbers, why politicians are not moving fast
enough to remove this stain from their democracy.
As mentioned in Mr. Mansur's piece, Mr. Levant has just published a book
about what he endured, for his crime of speaking freely. The book,
appropriately enough, is called "Shakedown".
It is sure to blow the cover off of what passes for justice in Canada
WHAT TO DO ABOUT THE SOMALI TERRORIST THREAT
Under Clinton we did nothing about terrorism. It got an 8 year free
pass to grow in size and scope; enough so that it was able to successfully
attack us on 9/1//2001.
Under Bush we attacked terrorism at its source - in al qaeda's case,
Afghanistan. We removed the taliban's al qaeda-friendly government and
took out their training camps. We've been untouched by terrorist attacks
Under Obama? Here is the beginning of an
article in today's Washington Post about the new terror threat. See
which of Mr. Obama's two predecessors he seems more like - at least so
Obama Team Mulls Aims Of Somali
Seeing Potential Terror Threat, Officials Debate
Washington Post Staff Writers
Saturday, April 11, 2009;
Senior Obama administration officials are debating
how to address a potential terrorist threat to U.S. interests from a Somali
extremist group, with some in the military advocating strikes against its
training camps. But many officials maintain that uncertainty about the
intentions of the al-Shabab organization dictates a more patient, nonmilitary
Al-Shabab, whose fighters have battled Ethiopian
occupiers and the tenuous Somali government, poses a dilemma for the
administration, according to several senior national security officials who
outlined the debate only on the condition of anonymity.
The organization's rapid expansion, ties between
its leaders and al-Qaeda, and the presence of Americans and Europeans in its
camps have raised the question of whether a preemptive strike is warranted. Yet
the group's objectives have thus far been domestic, and officials say that U.S.
intelligence has no evidence it is planning attacks outside Somalia.
Does that tell you which way Mr. Obama is heading? Frankly no.
The question is, which way do you want him to head?
Would it be ok with you if he acted to end this threat before it comes to our shores (resulting in the USA being condemned
as imperialists and aggressors by much of the world and Obama
being reviled by much of his own political base)? Or should he let it
slide until we are attacked, and then angrily denounced the terrorist (resulting
in the USA being sympathized with by some of the world, while the rest
of it applauds the terrorists)?
In short, do you want Barack Obama to act like Mr. Clinton or Mr. Bush?
Think about it.
P.S.: The folks at www.powerlineblog.com have been blogging
for weeks about the large Somali population which has settled in
Minnesota. They are talking about the numbers of young Somali men
being sent back home to train as jihadists and then re-entering the USA. I
urge you to read their material. It will give you insight about what we're
facing that mainstream media refuse to talk about.
ISRAEL PEACE-PARTNER UPDATE
From Charles Johnson at www.littlegreenfootballs.com, we
see what "peace" means to bashar al-assad of Syria:
East | Sun, Apr 12, 2009 at 10:48:28 am PDT
You mean there are people who actually believe
that chinless Syrian dictator Bashar Assad has suddenly become a peacemaker?
Bashar Assad the peacemaker?
In the last two or three years, a number of old
arguments regarding Syria have again become fashionable. One of them is that
peace with Syria is not only there to be had, but that it may lead to
drastic changes in Syrian behavior, in turn altering regional dynamics for the
better. However, in several recent interviews, Syrian President Bashar
al-Assad has made statements that paint a very different picture.
In his comments, Assad clarified exactly what he
meant by peace with Israel, and it bore no resemblance to the rosy scenarios
painted by the peace processors. In fact, the president raised serious
questions about the value of any such deal altogether.
In a recent interview with the Emirati newspaper
Al-Khaleej, Assad made a remarkable and indeed unprecedented comment about
what his concept of peace with Israel was. A peace agreement, he said, is
a piece of paper you sign. This does not mean trade and normal relations, or
borders, or otherwise.
There, folks, is what is supposed to define "peace" with Israel.
Would it be peace to you? Would you consider the source of such an offer a
That is what Israel contends with every day of its