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Heard the Word of Blog?

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

First off, thank you, Uncle Steven. We couldn't have replaced the car without you. We pick it up tonight...if this was LiveJournal I'd say that "Goin' Mobile" by The Who would be the background music for this post.

However, the rest of the post is not about anything of the's about how Big Media is dividing, diluting and conquering Left-leaning Talk Radio.

First, Howard Stern announces that he's leaving broadcast radio and jumping to Sirius Satellite Network. He does this in response to mounting FCC fines, and perhaps because his biggest ally at the Viacom media octopus, Mel Karmazin, is now CEO of Sirius. There is now rumor that Stern's exit from his and Karmazin's former employer, Viacom's Infinity Radio division, might be bumped up a bit from the 1/1/2006 date he initially set.

Next, XM Satellite Network announces that Air America Radio, the progressive talk network, will go from being carried on both XM and Sirius to an exclusive deal with XM.

"Hmmm....Divide and conquer strategy?" mused my husband as we both heard the news. I wouldn't doubt that this was the case. Firstly, the Clear Channel media octopus was an "original investor" in XM Satellite Network and a major content provider for the network. Next, Clear Channel is providing a home for Air America Radio in several markets, including KTLK 1150AM in Los Angeles and KQKE 960AM in San Francisco.

As Marvin Gaye asked about 33 years ago...what's goin' on? Both Howard Stern and the hosts on Air America are critics of George W. Bush and his administration's policies. Those who want to listen to both on satellite radio will have to buy into both networks and get receivers for both systems. Air America is indeed available online (where I listen to it most) and in most of the big radio markets now. Howard Stern, however, will be unavailable everywhere but on Sirius.

I'm a feminist...why the hell should I care about Howard Stern, whose Farewell Tour of the US will include, in his words "The hottest chicks in the country," and whose show consistently degrades and slobbers over silicon-enhanced strippers? Because when Howard Stern isn't drooling over his dork, he's commenting on the stupidity of the Bush Administration. Although Stern was unable to deliver his mobs of testosterone-crazed fandom in sufficient numbers to unseat Bush in 2004, he's still a strong voice against the nut job Theocrat wing of the GOP.

Again, what's going on here? Are XM and Sirius dividing progressive talk audiences up intentionally, through some sort of collusion, or is this just a big fat coincidence? I'm just decide...