Wednesday, March 31, 2004

The spectacular flop that will be "the liberal talk network" (known officially as Air America Radio) launched moments ago, in case you hadn't heard. And you probably hadn't heard, because this network has been breathlessly anticipated by the media--and exactly nobody else.

Tellingly, while Rush Limbaugh is carried on 600 stations nationwide, the new liberal network is currently on five radio stations--and it had to buy the airtime on them first. According to the a story in today's New York Times (registration required), the network's plan is to buy all the airtime on numerous other stations this year as well. You know you have a great product when you have to pay people to use it. This sort of desperation almost makes me feel sorry for them. Almost.

The Times' article describes a rehearsal show last week which featured "progressive" co-hosts Janeane Garofalo and Sam Seder interviewing a dominatrix. Garofalo then stepped away from the whips and chains to answer a few questions for an interviewer:
"It's not like we're here to say we're going to be as nasty as right-wingers," Ms. Garofalo said in an interview. "On the left, traditionally, you've got a nicer type of person. You've got a person who is more willing to engage in conversations that have context and nuance, who tend to have more educable minds."
The article gives us a little taste of that context and nuance we could look forward to from Professor Garofalo and her co-host Sam Seder if we were actually listening:
Among others, Ms. Garofalo and Mr. Seder poked fun at Mr. Bush's former spokesman Ari Fleischer ("Is he not shoveling coal in hell now?" Mr. Seder asked); Karl Rove, the president's senior adviser and political strategist (said by Ms. Garofalo to be pursuing "the elusive 18-25 Klan demo"); and Vice President Dick Cheney. (Mr. Seder said he felt sure that he could see Mr. Cheney's hand moving Mr. Bush's mouth on "Meet the Press" earlier this year.)
As Johnny Carson used to say, that is funny, funny shtuff. Bush being controlled by Cheney--that's cutting edge satire! Or at least it was in early 2000 or so....

Who knows? Maybe there will be some avant garde material about Gerald Ford's clumsiness. Maybe a couple of lacerating verbal barbs about Checkers the dog!

It your appetite has been whetted (as mine has), you'll want to tune in quickly (if, that is, you happen to live near one of the five enlightened radio stations carrying this insightful commentary). Something tells me it might not be around for long.

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