Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Left laughing: Stephanie Miller moves from 'Sister Sleaze' to progressive radio queen

Here's a great article from Rochester, NY's City Newspaper about a local radio star who hit the big time, Stephanie Miller, whose syndicated talk show is currently airing in the market on WROC.

In it, she talks about her Republican father (who shared the presidential ticket with Barry Goldwater in 1964), her Catholic school upbringing, her dream of being an entertainer, her start in radio as Brother Wease's sidekick ('Sister Sleaze'), working with current sidekicks Jim Ward and Chris Lavoie, the state of progressive talk radio, death threats, her 'future husbands' and CNN's offer of her own show.

How Republicans give her so much material:

"When you've got the head of the evangelicals out with a male hooker buying crystal meth: you can't write this stuff," says Miller by telephone from Los Angeles. "A congressman who's head of the missing-and-exploited-children caucus having instant-message sex with children: you've got to be kidding me. When do you remember a vice president shooting someone in the face?"

How she drifted into political talk radio, after resisting for many years:

"It's just how mean-spirited and exclusionary I saw the Republican Party becoming," she says. "It's not my dad's party."

Her partners-in-crime:

"They are genuinely funny," says Miller. "Jim Ward says something at least once a day that literally makes me fall out of my chair. Most of it's off the cuff, so you don't see it coming."

The struggles of Air America:

"Capitalism is kind of hitting progressive talk," says Miller. "Air America is bankrupt, so I think the expectation is they're going to go away, but progressive talk isn't. Progressive talk is having some growing pains, but the good shows that get ratings will make it." The problem with the progressive format, she believes, lies more with a lack of understanding about radio than with the liberal slant of the shows. Miller bemoans the fact that people who have never done radio, like Mario Cuomo and Jim Hightower, are put in front of microphones and are expected to win over audiences.

Putting people on the air who disagree with her:

"To me, it's just better radio," she says. "What's entertaining about listening to people who just agree with me? You don't just get on, you go to the front of the line if you disagree with me."

Her personal life:

"Most people in radio are big losers with no life," she says. "Trust me. I don't know what it is about, particularly, women in the business, but look at Oprah, she's not married, doesn't have kids. Pundits like Laura Ingraham and Ann Coulter are not married...That's true. Ann Coulter --- what is it? Is it male, is it female?"

Read more in City.

1 comments:

Mathwiz said...

"Most people in radio are big losers with no life," she says. "Trust me. I don't know what it is about, particularly, women in the business, but look at Oprah, she's not married, doesn't have kids. Pundits like Laura Ingraham and Ann Coulter are not married...."

That strikes me as an odd thing for a liberal woman to say. Just because other women - liberal and conservative alike - "are not married," why should we jump to the conclusion they're "big losers with no life?" I thought that attitude went out back in the 70's!


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