Sunday, October 08, 2006

A tale of two talkers (Creative Loafing talks to Mike Malloy)

You want to know about the sorry state of talk radio in America -- and Atlanta? Consider the fates of two homeboys, Neal Boortz and Mike Malloy.

They used to do the right-left gig when both aired on WSB radio and CNN. That was when broadcasting had balance, when Malloy and Boortz defined the limits of debate. And when there were 400 owners of stations. Now, there are a half-dozen mega-corporations.

"Malloy and I were a good example of how two people can disagree so harshly on matters, yet still get along in the real world," Boortz recalls.

Their fates since those halcyon days tell a lot about American media, as well as our disintegrating political culture. And two anecdotes illustrate how right-wing media have captured unparalleled access to power, in return for whoring themselves out as propagandists, while left radio is all but DOA.

On Sept. 15, five members of the Vast Right-Wing Radio Conspiracy were summoned for a private soiree with George Bush. The topic was hush-hush. Gee, I wonder if the quintet was being given its pre-election marching orders to ratchet up fear and defame Democrats. Or to create smoke screens to protect Republicans from criticism about the rich-win-poor-lose economy, their inattention to America's critical needs, their attacks on liberty, and that awful, bloody disaster deceitfully spun as Bush's "war on terror."

The secrecy was undone by Boortz, however. On Sept. 16, he breathlessly proclaimed on his website how he, Sean Hannity, Mike Gallagher, Michael Medved and Laura Ingraham -- a group that has amassed an incredible record of lies, distortion and bigotry -- had the day before been allowed to grovel at Fearless Leader's feet.

Keep that picture in mind.

About two weeks earlier, on Aug. 30, Malloy, who had a daily late-evening gig on the liberal Air America network, was driving to a studio to substitute for another host. En route, he got a call from Jon Sinton, an Atlanta radio veteran who had been, at Air America's birth in March 2004, the network's main man for programming. Sinton describes his current role as "very informally involved."

Despite Sinton's exile, he'd been tapped to deliver bad news to his old pal Malloy: The ax had already fallen, with money as the excuse.

Booting Malloy "was very stupid," Sinton says. "Malloy in many ways was the heart and soul of Air America."

Malloy, who was denied a goodbye broadcast, says: "Even WSB didn't dump me as unceremoniously as Air America did. They didn't notify me or the affiliates. Hell, the affiliates went berserk. 'Where's Malloy?' they demanded."

Check out more from this interesting article at Creative Loafing. In it, an industry columnist's take on the liberal talk format, a little about Evan Cohen and the whole Gloria Wise mess that Brian Baloney orgasms over, and more.

Speaking of Malloy, here's an update from his site:

Still no official radio news to report, but of the three radio opportunities we've been writing about, one is now out of the picture, one remains unchanged (but seems to be cooling off as time passes) and one has become slightly more likely. The bad news is that we do not have a concrete time frame as to when we'll be back on the air. As you know we are very eager to get back behind that mic! We do hope it will be before the end of the month.

As for media news: Here's an article in the latest issue of Creative Loafing. Mike was also recently interviewed by for an article they're writing about Air America Radio past, present, and future. Atlanta Magazine is also considering an article, or at least a blog.

We're still working on a few issues before we can openly reveal what we've come to believe is the backstory to our untimely dismissal from Air America. You better get out a flow chart because there are more twists and turns than entire seasons of "Lost" and "24" combined. It is truly bizarre.

And it's come to our attention that there are one or two Internet efforts underway to initiate some kind of independent syndication for the Mike Malloy Show. We want to thank all those folks who are working to establish a self-syndicating operation for us. As we've stated in response to your many inquiries via email, we are awaiting official word from a couple of traditional radio outlets before we delve into the world of at-home syndication or netcasting.

We do remain confident that the Mike Malloy Show will be picked up by a network very soon. If not, then we'll certainly entertain all these other opportunities and generous offers in the near future. As always, we so appreciate your support and efforts on our behalf.In fact, your email, calls, and petitions are tremendously helpful. It certainly is a big boost to our morale and is noticed by potential radio outlets as well. Thank you thank you thank you so much, we'll be in touch.

Watch your back,


Oh, and Malloy fans can catch him on MSNBC on Sunday 10/08 at 2PM ET.


  © Blogger template Columnus by 2008

Back to TOP