No word yet on whether or not they were told to build a stage

This is the thanks he gets for promoting Mitt Romney:

Last week’s exit of controversial WSPD-AM 1370 talk-radio host Brian Wilson follows a yearlong pattern of dismissals, layoffs, and corporate maneuvering by Clear Channel Communications Inc. that has sent scores of people to the unemployment line.
Clear Channel, the largest radio station operator in the country, is partially owned by Bain Capital, which is the company founded and previously run by former Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney. Debt-ridden Clear Channel, headquartered in San Antonio, has been quietly pruning its corporate structure since late 2011.
On-air talent and behind-the-scenes employees have been shown the door or programming has been eliminated in markets that include Los Angeles, Boston, Tampa, San Diego, Madison, Wis., Springfield, Mo., Oklahoma City, Nashville, and, most recently, Toledo.
“Obviously they are trying to pay down their monster debt with Bain Capital,” said Tommy Butter, who was laid off from top-40 station WRVW-FM in Nashville in March. “Obviously, they are trying to fire their way to pay that debt down.”

Since last year, Clear Channel hasn’t announced widespread layoffs or cuts, despite the steady stream of departures. The company’s debt must be repaid throughout the decade and comes due as soon as 2014. The 2008 sale was the catalyst for thousands of layoffs as Clear Channel restructured.
Clear Channel has taken a different approach to letting its employees go in 2012, said Jerry Del Colliano, who closely follows Clear Channel’s movements in his blog, Inside Music Media. Mr. Del Colliano writes about radio companies and industry changes.
Clear Channel has been strategically firing employees in small numbers so it doesn’t appear that the company is undergoing large-scale layoffs, he said, adding that it would have looked bad for Mr. Romney if his former company fired Clear Channel’s workers en masse.
“They’ve been nipping and tucking a lot since last November,” Mr. Del Colliano said. “There has been a substantial number of people [let go]. I can’t estimate it, [but] a handful of people every week for 52 weeks. “It’s my belief that what they wanted to do was keep attention off of their Bain founder, Mitt Romney.”
Representatives from Clear Channel did not respond to repeated phone calls placed by The Blade. An email seeking an interview also received no response.
Mr. Wilson announced his departure via Facebook on Monday, posting this: “I am glad to have had the opportunity to preach the gospel of freedom and liberty to Northwest Ohio. Wish I had the chance on the air to say thank you and good-bye to my listeners. I will continue to make every effort to spread the message of free markets and liberty.”
Dan Stroud, former co-host of a morning show on KXXY-FM in Oklahoma City, spent 31 years at the station before he was laid off in March. He said he was one of six people let go.
“I got off the air, went to a meeting, was escorted out, and that was the last day I worked.”
Mr. Stroud, who has not found work since he was laid off, said he most likely was targeted because he was one of the longest-serving employees at the station, which had garnered him a higher salary than other workers. Mr. Stroud said the general manager who laid him off read from a highlighted script — the two had known each other since college. The general manager wasn’t allowed to deviate from the script, he said.“I just think they could have done it a lot better,” Mr. Stroud said.
“There’s no doubt in my mind if they had fired several hundred people, they would have had headlines generated,” Mr. Del Colliano said.

Brian Wilson was one of those embarrassed Republicans who call themselves libertarians.






187 replies
  1. 1
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    In the 17th century, they knew how to deal with pirates.

    Nowadays, pirates are GOP presidential nominees.

  2. 2
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    Maybe a Beach Boys reunion tour would help.

  3. 3
    LanceThruster says:

    If you lie down with dogs…

  4. 4
    dmbeaster says:

    Who needs employees to run a business when there is vulture capital debt to pay down?

    Why is Clear Channel so saddled with debt? Did it need it for some reason?

  5. 5
    MaximusNYC says:

    I think Nine Inch Nails put it best:

    “Bow down before the one you serve
    You’re going to get what you deserve…”

  6. 6
    LanceThruster says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    Arrrrgh!

  7. 7
    A concerned doctor says:

    KXXY? What’s that, the all-Kleinfelter’s Syndrome station?

  8. 8
    Tom Levenson says:

    Libertarians know the free market and liberty they want, and deserve to get it good and hard.

    (w. a h/t to the sage of Baltimore.)

  9. 9
    Kay says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    They have such nerve. He lived in Virginia and had a Right wing radio show trashing Toledo, playing in Toledo. They’re incredible.

  10. 10
    Patricia Kayden says:

    Having read the link to the DailyKos article, I’m glad that Wilson has been fired. Couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy. I’m sure he’ll find another hate-wing radio conglomerate to work for soon. Does the KKK need an unemployed host?

  11. 11
    Boots Day says:

    It couldn’t have happened to a nicer bunch of douches. There’s something poetic about Clear Channel, which made its fortune on toxic, dishonest right-wing radio, being destroyed by the unfettered capitalism it claims to endorse.

  12. 12
    Mudge says:

    Let them eat Twinkies.

  13. 13

    I never understood why Obama’s attacks on Bain Capital were considered personal or below the belt. Romney ran on his business experience and I think it was completely fair to call attention to what that business experience really was. The Bain attacks were a lot less personal than a lot of the shit thrown at Obama in 2008, attacking him for things his pastor said and the fact that he lived in the same neighborhood as a 60’s radical. Not to mention the attempts to paint him as un-American which persist to this day (granted, Romney wasn’t really directly a part of that, but he didn’t really denounce it either).

  14. 14
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @dmbeaster:

    They needed the debt so Bain could loot it and then sell off the carcass to the glue factory to settle the debt.

  15. 15
    Soonergrunt says:

    Fuck these people. This is the world they would make for the rest of us. Let them live in their world then.

  16. 16
  17. 17
    PeakVT says:

    Don’t have much sympathy for the on-air staff as almost all of them were Romney supporters, or at least Obama haters. But it’s too bad the rest of the employees are suffering for Bain’s greed.

    Is anyone in Congress pushing a solution to that kind of behavior?

  18. 18
    SatanicPanic says:

    Does this mean we can expect Rush and his $400 million contract will be shown the door?

  19. 19
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @SatanicPanic:

    Given that his ad space is all PSAs now, I’d think he’d be first on the chopping block, as his contract represents a ruptured aorta.

  20. 20
    Emma says:

    :: holds up smallest violin in the world :: Pavane Pour Une Infante Défunte, anyone?

    Better yet, The Devil Went Down to Toledo and Got the Soul He was Hunting?

  21. 21
    grandpa john says:

    What the hell are they pissing and moaning about? Shit,its just free market capitalism at its best,
    doing what it is supposed to do.
    make the 1% even richer while every one else hits the breadline.

  22. 22
    Sly says:

    Clear Channel, the largest radio station operator in the country, is partially owned by Bain Capital, which is the company founded and previously run by former Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney. Debt-ridden Clear Channel, headquartered in San Antonio, has been quietly pruning its corporate structure since late 2011.

    And the parasite needs its host only as long as the time it takes for the former to fully devour the latter.

  23. 23
    NorthLeft12 says:

    Reminds me of the Animal House initiation scene where Kevin Bacon bends over and gets paddled by a fraternity brother.

    “Please sir, may I have another.”

    Hard Impossible to feel sorry for those on air personalities who have been laid off. Karma is a bitch.

    I am sure that Obama is to blame somehow.

  24. 24
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Kay: Appalling, but not surprising. Right?

  25. 25
    Scott S. says:

    As a former radio news guy and DJ, let me say good riddance to Clear Channel. Watching these hacks die a slow death is going to be grand fun.

  26. 26
    Xecky Gilchrist says:

    This really is the big new development on the Right, isn’t it – they’ve now started grifting and pirating from their own, instead of just everybody else.

  27. 27
    BGinCHI says:

    Wish I had the chance on the air to say thank you and good-bye to my listeners. I will continue to make every effort to spread the message of free markets and liberty.

    But so what because God hates you and the free market doesn’t want you.

    What is the unemployed AM DJ to do now? What’s his skill set?

  28. 28
    Eric U. says:

    maybe they should start selling off stations? I never really understood their business model in the first place. They bought a batch of stations and robotized them so they were un-listenable. I’m surprised they had any “talent” to fire.

  29. 29
    quannlace says:

    Sounds like Wilson will now have plenty of time to purse that ‘liberty’ thing.

    Wonder if Michael Medved or Dennis Prager will be next?

  30. 30
    Violet says:

    Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!

    I feel bad for the people who have lost their jobs, but mostly wingnut radio being punished by the vulture capitalists their talk radio hosts strongly support on-air is hilarious. Reap what you sow.

  31. 31
  32. 32
    Waldo says:

    @Boots Day: Indeed.

    The free market: You’ll know it’s working when you’re no longer working.

  33. 33
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Eric U.:

    Selling off the stations is the last stage of the looting.

  34. 34
    srv says:

    Does anyone have Brian’s home phone number, so we can all call him and do a Nelson?

  35. 35
    PeakVT says:

    @quannlace: Those guys are syndicated by someone other than ClearChannel.

  36. 36
    Soonergrunt says:

    @BGinCHI: “What is the unemployed AM DJ to do now? What’s his skill set?”
    Simple–run for office as a Teabagger. The 2014 election is right around the corner, and if there’s anything we’ve learned from watching the Teabaggers, it’s that they are eminently griftable for at least a couple of years.
    So after a couple of years of schlepping around the district on somebody else’s dime, then they either become a Congressman, or they have a shot at the wingnut welfare circuit.

  37. 37
    LanceThruster says:

    Broadcast microphones are for closers.

  38. 38
    Sly says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    Selling off the stations is the last stage of the looting.

    If CCA stations aren’t unionized, management better get on that. They’ll need to find some scapegoat with which to distract their listeners as they glide to the ground in their golden parachutes.

  39. 39
    El Cid says:

    The job creators giveth, and the job creators taketh away, and we are not privy to their rhyme or reason, but must abide in our faith in their correctness, come what may, and suffer as we will.

  40. 40
    wrb says:

    Damn this is delicious.

    Maybe Soros will buy them out.

  41. 41
    Kay says:

    @Soonergrunt:

    Simple—run for office as a Teabagger.

    That grift is getting serious attention in Toledo, too. Joe the Plumber ran a fake campaign against Marcy Kaptur (he did nothing but collect donations) and “real” Republicans in Ohio are upset and expressing doubts about whether it’s wise to run fake candidates.

    Frum was right. The grifters are using and abusing the base. The con has come full circle, and they’re feeding off each other.

  42. 42
    scav says:

    hee hee hee heee hee hee hee hee hee . . . .

    ’bout covers it. maybe a few guffaws to beak the tedium.

  43. 43
    aimai says:

    Can’t. Stop. Laughing. Can’t.Catch.My.Breath.

    aimai

  44. 44
    comrade scott's agenda of rage says:

    Karma really is a bitch to these assholes.

    No sympathy from me. They’ve been spouting this propaganda for years so it’s time some of it circled around to bite em in the ass.

    And the fact that these right wing blowhards can’t find a new job is shocking, I say SHOCKING! How many job opportunities are there for right wing radio hacks? Not many with Clear Channel clearly going tits up.

  45. 45
    different-church-lady says:

    Ah, so I see radio stations are now going to follow the lead of newspapers: get rid of all their local and original content in the name of cost-savings, and then wonder why their audience keeps dwindling.

  46. 46
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Soonergrunt: @Kay: Someone tried that in my hometown. Got beaten by a schoolteacher who did real GOTV door to door stuff. Her name is Mandy Wright and, if the way she campaigned is any indication, she has a bright future in WI politics.

  47. 47
    Xecky Gilchrist says:

    @Soonergrunt: then they either become a Congressman, or they have a shot at the wingnut welfare circuit.

    That’s true, but if AM radio is collapsing that hurts their chances – that IS the wingnut welfare circuit, or a chunk of it. The vulture capitalists are really shitting in their own bowls.

  48. 48
    Violet says:

    @Kay:

    “real” Republicans in Ohio are upset and expressing doubts about whether it’s wise to run fake candidates.

    I hope the rubes don’t catch on for awhile yet. We need at least another four years of crazier and crazier GOP candidates so the party can fully purge itself and something saner might have a hope of emerging. Eight years would be better. If they catch on too quick and nominate someone slightly more moderate the crazy will still be strong with them.

  49. 49
    BGinCHI says:

    @Soonergrunt: He might be overqualified.

  50. 50
    Hawes says:

    I’m lying in bed the press
    Just like Brian Wilson did

  51. 51
    BGinCHI says:

    @Kay: Soylent Green Republican vanity candidates is people!

  52. 52
    Mark S. says:

    @SatanicPanic:

    Does this mean we can expect Rush and his $400 million contract will be shown the door?

    I remember reading a couple years ago that Clear Channel was forced to fire a bunch of people because of Rush’s outrageous contract. Maybe that’s what got Bain involved in the first place?

  53. 53
    different-church-lady says:

    @dmbeaster:

    Why is Clear Channel so saddled with debt?

    Based on what I can decode from wikipedia, it looks like the geniuses at Bain overpaid shareholders when they took the company private, and then couldn’t find buyers for the parts (stations) they were trying to sell off at inflated prices.

  54. 54
    MattF says:

    All of a sudden, I’m feeling unclear about something. Is Bain Capital a Maker or a Taker?

  55. 55
    dr. bloor says:

    @BGinCHI:

    What is the unemployed AM DJ to do now? What’s his skill set?

    Attention, K-Mart shoppers…

  56. 56
    Kay says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Marcy Kaptur is so serious and earnest and she’s a real force to be reckoned with. She’s tough. The contrast w/Joe the Plumber was just not good for Republicans. At some point this becomes insulting to voters and embarrassing to people who actually care about this stuff, and they have reached that point. I get that they have to run someone in every race, but allowing John McCain’s desperate campaign stunt to continue to make a living off his 15 minutes four years ago is just disgusting.

  57. 57
    aimai says:

    How soon before Murdoch sells Fox news in a fire sale? A real one, we hope. I mean–selling off wingnut radio stations is almost the definition of eating your seed corn. Sure, Bain Capital makes money directly out of mulching voters/workers into soylent green but how is the message going to get out next time Romney light needs to dominate the airwaves during the 2014 election cycle? Romney must really be pissed off. This is the national equivalent of the same impulse (its called: so long, suckers, and thanks for all the fish) that led him to cut off his own campaign people’s credit cards before they had left the building after cleaning up from the campaign.

    aimai

  58. 58
    different-church-lady says:

    @Xecky Gilchrist:

    The vulture predator capitalists are really shitting in their own bowls.

    FTFY. Vultures are scavengers, they can’t create their own prey. Bain orchestrates the deaths of their victims.

  59. 59
    Soonergrunt says:

    @Kay: Which is wonderful news, and I hope it lasts a couple more election cycles.
    The more money the baggers are wasting on NotJoe the NotPlumber, the better.

  60. 60
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Kay: The local Assembly race I mentioned above was interesting because the Rush Jr who ran against Wright – it was an open seat – consistently found himself stating that his on air schtick was just that – schtick. Wright sent personalized letters to people she had spoken with as she went door to door. Truly a sharp contrast.

  61. 61
    GregB says:

    Bill Bennet must be beside himself, first the demise of Twinkies and now talk radio is on the ropes.

  62. 62
    Pongo says:

    Wonder where he got the idea that Bain tries to ‘pay down debt?’ They have no interest in that. They strip all possible assets, add to the burden of debt by taking out more loans and then file bankruptcy. Actually honoring your debt obligation is for the little people.

  63. 63
    different-church-lady says:

    Wait…

    which is the company founded and previously run by former Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney.

    Oh… I think I had a little climax seeing that word…

  64. 64
    WereBear says:

    @Kay: Joe the Plumber ran a fake campaign against Marcy Kaptur (he did nothing but collect donations) and “real” Republicans in Ohio are upset and expressing doubts about whether it’s wise to run fake candidates.

    Um, these “real” Republicans are NOW expressing doubts about whether it’s wise to run fake candidates?

    LOLwut? Is there a time this is a good thing? Or is this the wingnut version of Ouroboros, where you get your head so far up your own behind you can actually do it again and again?

  65. 65
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Kay: I met Kaptur years ago when I was volunteering for the Clinton 96 campaign in Columbus. She was rather impressive. No Rich Cordray, but a good populist, labor Democrat.

  66. 66
    BGinCHI says:

    @aimai: This is the problem with having so many media outlets that lie and poorly educate their viewers/listeners. After a while you just don’t have anyone to talk to.

    The conservative media is in the process of turning from a white dwarf into a red giant before exploding into a supernova of stupid.

  67. 67
    Jay in Oregon says:

    I wonder if this has anything to do with Clear Channel’s decision to shut down AM 620 KPOJ, the progressive talk radio station based in Portland, and replace it with sports talk. I’m kind of surprised that it lasted as long as it did.

    I get the impression that its ratings were not fantastic—though it did survive the demise of Air America—but it was nice having some different voices and opinions on the AM dial. (Yes, I know that there are blogs and the internet but it’s kinda hard to read BJ while driving.)

    I clicked around to find some other talk radio and ran across some tool claiming that a union negotiating a contract with Hostess was “extortion” and turned it off. Bleh.

  68. 68
    ThatLeftTurnInABQ says:

    I am glad to have had the opportunity to preach the gospel of freedom and liberty to Northwest Ohio the Paris Commune. Wish I had the chance on the air to say thank you and good-bye to my listeners. I will continue to make every effort to spread the message of free markets and liberty.

    Always the tone of surprise, when the time comes for the Revolution to eat its children. I’m pretty sure that quote above is more or less verbatim what the Hebertists said just before Robespierre had them guillotined. Of course it sounded better in the original French.

  69. 69
    bemused says:

    An ad on msnbc just caught my attention. A couple who said they worked hard and depend on their dividends..tell congress not to raises tax on dividends. Paid for my Protect My Dividends.

  70. 70
    Kay says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Wright sent personalized letters to people she had spoken with as she went door to door.

    I hope they don’t get it, I really do. One would think that with all the consultants and all the executives they would GET that you can’t really trash and abuse voters. It’s bizarre to me. It’s a War On Voters, waged by people who have to get elected! Voters aren’t in on the big joke.

  71. 71
    BGinCHI says:

    @ThatLeftTurnInABQ: Apres moi, le white noise.

  72. 72
    the Conster says:

    Anyone using the words “freedom” and “liberty” unironically deserves to be kicked in the nuts on their way out the door. What a pathetic clown.

  73. 73
    different-church-lady says:

    @bemused:

    A couple who said they worked hard and depend on their dividends

    Hmmm. I worked hard and I depend on… continuing to work hard.

    It’s gonna take years more for the 1% to figure out how real life works for the 80%.

  74. 74
    scav says:

    @BGinCHI: after? I

  75. 75
    CW in LA says:

    @GregB: As long as there’s gambling, Mr. Moral Compass will be fine.

  76. 76
    Kristine says:

    @Jay in Oregon:

    I wonder if this has anything to do with Clear Channel’s decision to shut down AM 620 KPOJ, the progressive talk radio station based in Portland, and replace it with sports talk. I’m kind of surprised that it lasted as long as it did.

    I was surprised when I heard that, because I thought that if any city could support a progressive AM station, it would be Portland. Is the desired audience just not that interested in radio?

  77. 77
    LanceThruster says:

    “Told to build a stage” is the new “digging your own shallow grave.”

    It’s creepy to no end.

  78. 78
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    Neither Wilson nor the Republican/Libertarian supporters of the free market con ever believe that the fuckover machine will be aimed that them. They refuse to accept the certainty that once the least powerful among us are free marketed the next-least will be fucked, and so on until there’s just one fucker and everyone else is a fuckee.

  79. 79
    different-church-lady says:

    @Kay:

    One would think that with all the consultants and all the executives they would GET that you can’t really trash and abuse voters.

    Hitting the bullseye on the wingnut g-spot with the red meat has become so much more important than actually winning elections. Truly the behavior of substance abusers at this point — they’re so addicted to their hatred and resentment that nothing other than getting their fix matters anymore.

  80. 80
    different-church-lady says:

    @Kristine:

    Is the desired audience just not that interested in radio?

    The desired audience is not that interested in polemics. Nor in being a desired audience for such.

  81. 81
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    The local ClearChannel station let go of its sole local right-wing talker last year — again, with the assumption that it was easier and cheaper just to syndicate a national wingnut in his place. Used to be that a relatively decent-sized metro area could support its own hosts, but unless they syndicate themselves, there’s absolutely no reason now for ClearChannel to support studio infrastructure when all they want is engineers punching in the right syndicated content, and ad people selling the local spots.

  82. 82
    Cervantes says:

    The Toledo Blade is a good newspaper — better than most.

  83. 83
    PeakVT says:

    @Kristine: No, the desired audience isn’t that interested in political talk radio. Political talk radio’s basic MO is gin up new outrage over the same basic issues again and again and again. Conservatives love that. Liberals tend to get bored by it and want to hear about something new. Interesting new content is a lot more expensive to make, unfortunately.

  84. 84
    Kristine says:

    @different-church-lady:

    The desired audience is not that interested in polemics. Nor in being a desired audience for such.

    True in my case, for good or ill. I sometimes listen to WCPT, the Chicago-area progressive station, but I greatly prefer the interviews to the screeding/listener call-in. Too much preaching to the converted–we’re not the ones that need convincing.

    Not a fan of bubbles, me.

  85. 85
    bemused says:

    @different-church-lady:

    Chutzpah. I wonder if that ad is playing on Fox and how it go over with all those faithful, non-dividend viewers

  86. 86
    Uncle Cosmo says:

    I had the morning talk show
    On W-G-O-P,
    Riling up the base each day
    With fake conspiracies:
    That snide sarcastic voice
    Who peddled Far Right memes
    Trying to take my country back
    To old white guys’ wet dreams…

    (WTF is it with WordRePress that it kicks your text out of a block quote after a blank line? C’mon JC, get this place some marginally competent software why doncha…)

  87. 87
    quannlace says:

    Hitting the bullseye on the wingnut g-spot with the red meat has become so much more important than actually winning elections.

    And since ‘doubling-down’ is now the MO of the Tea-partier’s , nothing much will change.

  88. 88
    jibeaux says:

    I don’t even think I can remember the last time I turned on the radio. Podcasts are a godsend to me, even with the 24/7 stamps dot com and audible dot com pitches. Am I missing anything?

  89. 89
    rlrr says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    Nowadays, pirates are GOP presidential nominees.

    No, pirates were far more (small d) democratic than the GOP…

  90. 90
    hueyplong says:

    With this news of the Invisible Hand fisting right wing radio yackers, it’s clearer and clearer that this is The Great Month of Schadenfreude.

  91. 91

    It goes without saying that Bain is directly responsible for this — after all, how are they going to afford to pay El Rushbo his $50m/year salary?

    But the real problem here kinda belongs to Bill Clinton and that Telecommunications Act turd he dropped in the punchbowl. That’s what gave rise to Clear Channel’s strangle-hold on radio, since it virtually removed restrictions on how many stations a single owner could control.

    Cumulus out of Atalanta has been cutting through SF Bay Area radio stations like Jack the Ripper in a whorehouse. They’ve nearly killed off KGO which was one of the top AM talk stations in the nation and a perennial top 3 or 5 locally. They’ve fired all the top talent and behind-the-mic folks and now the ratings are gruesome. And the same is ongoing with their other radio properties around the country. It’s all going to cheaper nationally syndicated right-leaning crap.

    The whole concept of radio as a locally-oriented medium with community ties has been obliterated by that fucking Telecom act. It may be Clinton’s greatest shame.

  92. 92
    MattR says:

    @Uncle Cosmo: two underscores between paragraphs does the trick

  93. 93
    Kristine says:

    jibeaux:

    I don’t even think I can remember the last time I turned on the radio. Podcasts are a godsend to me, even with the 24/7 stamps dot com and audible dot com pitches. Am I missing anything?

    ********

    I still listen to local classical and adult alternative stations, mostly while driving. But I have an older car–no built-in satellite radio, and no desire to retrofit.

    Sometimes I listen to sports when the network broadcasters get on my nerves.

    I’ve tried podcasts, and just never warmed to them. I may give them a second chance because some of them look really interesting. But there are so damned many that it’s hard to get a grip on what’s out there, and which are the best.

    Inserted the asterisks b/c blockquote didn’t work

  94. 94
    Tonybrown74 says:

    Video Bain Capital killed the Radio Star!!

    Oh Wah Oh!!

  95. 95
    Bulworth says:

    On-air talent

    Talent?

    But who now will preach the gospel of Liberty and Freedom?

  96. 96

    […] This is rich. Clear Channel Communications, associated with such programming wonders as Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity and Rush Limbaugh, was taken over by Bain Capital in 2008 had apparently has been disintegrating ever since. Clear Channel is having to lay off staff wholesale to stay afloat. However, last year they were careful to lay people off in small numbers at a time so as not to make Bain Capital look bad. […]

  97. 97
    SenyorDave says:

    @Higgs Boson’s Mate: I think its pretty obvious to anyone with half a brain that Obama personally scans talk radio to find out who could possibly be a threat to him. He must have heard Brian Wilson and realized that this was voice that MUST be silenced.

    Just another case of the the far left screwing over the country.

  98. 98
    jibeaux says:

    @Kristine: Try Stuff You Should Know with Josh and Chuck. They’re informative, funny, and they have their banter down. I’m only exaggerating slightly when I say if I were suicidal I would want Josh Clark to talk me down. He has this great sort of lazy, drawling, completely reassuring “it’s all going to be ok” vibe.

  99. 99
    GregB says:

    AM talk radio is as relevant to the up and coming generations as bloomers, phone booths and horse whips.

  100. 100
    KS in MA says:

    @Jay in Oregon: Yes, and what a coincidence that Hostess’ troubles have something to do with private equity! From the NY Times’ story on Friday (11th paragraph):

    “But the new private equity backers loaded the company with debt, making it difficult to invest in new equipment. Earlier this year, Hostess had more than $860 million of debt.”

  101. 101
  102. 102
    Mark S. says:

    Marco Rubio is not a scientist, man. The earth could be anywhere from 6,000 to 10,000 years old, according to which theologian you read. It’s one of the great mysteries.

  103. 103

    @rlrr:

    You know I was doing some research on pirates for a book I was considering writing once and I was surprised at how democratic their society was. They would dole out the spoils on a sliding scale according to rank and leadership and they had a very healthy “workers comp” type program where pirates would be compensated for various injuries, so much for losing a finger etc., up to compensation to the families for the death of a pirate. It really was eye-opening.

  104. 104
    Sister Machine Gun of Quiet Harmony says:

    Wilson was a boil on the body politic, but he wasn’t a Romney supporter. He was all in for Ron Paul.

  105. 105
    nellcote says:

    @PeakVT:

    Those guys are syndicated by someone other than ClearChannel

    They’re syndicated by Premier Networks, which is owned by…Clear Channel.

    About Premiere NetworksPremiere Networks, Inc., a subsidiary of Clear Channel Communications, syndicates 90 radio programs and services to more than 5,000 radio affiliations and reaches over 190 million listeners weekly. Premiere is the number one audio content provider in the country and features the following personalities: Rush Limbaugh, Jim Rome, Ryan Seacrest, Glenn Beck, Bob & Tom, Delilah, Steve Harvey, Blair Garner, George Noory, John Boy and Billy, Big Tigger, Sean Hannity, Elvis Duran, Jason Lewis, Randi Rhodes, Nikki Sixx, Kane and others.

  106. 106
    Punchy says:

    Joe the Plumber ran a fake campaign against Marcy Kaptur (he did nothing but collect donations) and “real” Republicans in Ohio are upset and expressing doubts about whether it’s wise to run fake candidates.

    Fo’ shiz? I’m not sure what I’m more amazed by….that JTP didn’t actually campaign, or that peeps actually gave him their money. Hooooooooooooooolllllllleeeeeee crap.

  107. 107
    Yutsano says:

    @Sister Machine Gun of Quiet Harmony: That somehow…doesn’t make it better.

    @Ben Cisco: Blessed Day of Birth to thee Emissary. May the Prophets continue to guide you.

  108. 108
    Schlemizel says:

    @dr. bloor:

    Currently boarding at door 4, the bus to Altoona, Poughkeepsie, Hooverville . . .

  109. 109
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    Wingnut radio talker Brian Wilson — it must be the same one! — was an afternoon drive host years ago on Atlanta’s WGST. He was fired by them too, can’t remember why. I used to listen to GST because they carried the Braves games back in the day, and they also had the best traffic reporter on the air anywhere (Keith Kalland, if any fellow Atlantans remember him). But I haven’t tuned to that station (Rush etc.) for probably a decade. Too wacky for me, even for laughs.

  110. 110
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    @Xecky Gilchrist:

    if AM radio is collapsing that hurts their chances – that IS the wingnut welfare circuit, or a chunk of it.

    Up to a point — but the big hosts with syndication deals are semi-detached from that, and it’s the Z-list local gobshites and their guests who are fully on the wingnut welfare roll. (Read David Foster Wallace’s ‘Host’ for a sense of that life; John Ziegler, the wingnut who’s profiled in it, went on to make the Citizens United film that ended up at SCOTUS.)

  111. 111
    catclub says:

    @PeakVT: “Interesting new content is a lot more expensive to make, unfortunately.”

    I am not sure that Terry Gross would agree. Maybe she is bathed in lucre, but still sounds normal (and interesting).

  112. 112
    Grumpy Code Monkey says:

    @different-church-lady:

    Ah, yes, kind of like when Bob I. The Admiral Man torpedoed Tracor; thanks to being heavily leveraged and giving the shareholders a honey of a deal (I dimly remember someone claiming that Westmark paid triple what the stock was really worth), the good Admiral sailed us right into Chapter 11. The first thing these people did when it all started going to shit was liquidate the profitable divisions for some quick cash to keep the non-moneymaking divisions alive.

    When I interviewed in January of 1990, one of the people I talked to said that Tracor could be tits up by February, but nobody else was even offering me an interview (wound up staying there until late ’97). Fortunately the new team led by Jim Skaggs stanched the bleeding and got us back out of Chapter 11 within a year. Then he and the senior VPs all bought themselves new Buicks, as opposed to, say, replacing the 15-, 20-, 30-year old electronics equipment that we relied on to do our jobs.

    plus ça change.

  113. 113
    catclub says:

    @nellcote: “Rush Limbaugh, Jim Rome, Ryan Seacrest, Glenn Beck, Bob & Tom, Delilah, Steve Harvey, Blair Garner, George Noory, John Boy and Billy, Big Tigger, Sean Hannity, Elvis Duran, Jason Lewis, Randi Rhodes, Nikki Sixx, Kane and others. ”

    Lotta great pornstar names there. NTTIAWWT

    Kane is Able.
    Nikki Sixx – you gotta be kiddin me.
    Delilah
    Big Tigger

  114. 114
    Ash Can says:

    I definitely feel sorry for the poor shmoes who were working at stations that later were acquired by Clear Channel, and who are now getting the axe. Otherwise, hey assholes, you reap what you sow, and all that.

  115. 115
    Svensker says:

    @Polish the Guillotines:

    The whole concept of radio as a locally-oriented medium with community ties has been obliterated by that fucking Telecom act. It may be Clinton’s greatest shame.

    It just adds to the list. Can we have a do-over of the 80s and 90s? Well, shoot, let’s add the 2000s, too.

  116. 116
    nellcote says:

    http://www.thepeoplesview.net/.....style.html

    Bain and Thomas H. Lee paid $17.9 billion to buy media-and-entertainment company Clear Channel Communications just before the economy headed south and radio advertising deteriorated. Today, Clear Channel’s actively traded debt is rated at the lower end of the “junk”-bond universe, even though revenue and operating income rose last year. The company has more than $12 billion in debt due in 2016 and default is a “real possibility,” said Melissa Link, an analyst at Fitch Ratings, in an interview. Clear Channel declined to comment on Ms. Link’s analysis. WSJ

    Whoops! However, Clear Channel Communications owns controlling interest in some subsidiaries with money. One of these is Clear Channel Outdoors which is the billboard renting company. So Clear Channel Outdoors is borrowing $2.2 billion and using the money to pay a dividend. About 40% of that dividend goes to Clear Channel Communications and about 60% goes directly to – T.H. Lee and Bain! But wait, that’s not all.

    Clear Channel Outdoors is also paying hefty management fees to Clear Channel Communications and is lending it money unsecured – just based on promise to pay back with no collateral. Not just a little money, but hundreds of millions of dollars – and at about 1/2 the interest rate Clear Channel Communications would have to pay on the open market.

  117. 117

    Gosh, Mom, schadenfreude again? We’ve been eating schadenfreude for 2 weeks now, I couldn’t eat another bite…..

  118. 118
    different-church-lady says:

    @Mark S.:

    It’s one of the great mysteries.

    Private equity comes in, employees go out. You can’t explain that.

  119. 119
    LanceThruster says:

    @Mark S.:

    It’s one of the great mysteries.

    “That’s like asking the square root of a million. No one will ever know.”
    ~ Nelson Muntz, The Simpsons

  120. 120
    PeakVT says:

    @nellcote: Medved and Prager are both produced and syndicated by Salem. Premier does not list those two hosts on it’s website.

  121. 121
    JCJ says:

    @A concerned doctor:

    “KXXY? What’s that, the all-Kleinfelter’s Syndrome station?”

    LOL. Well played!

  122. 122
    PeakVT says:

    @catclub: Fresh Air produces about 4 new shows a week and needs at least 14 employees to do it. Most talk radio shows produce 15 hours of broadcast per week, and I’m fairly sure they do it with less staff than Fresh Air (not counting sales and marketing staff).

  123. 123
    Jay C says:

    @KS in MA:

    The really weird part about Hostess’ troubles – which most of the media “analyses” tend to gloss over or ignore for some reason* – is that they somehow managed to emerge from their 2004 BK (in 2009: an unusually long time) with more debt than they had had going in. Though not too much, apparently, to not give their short-lived next-to-last “management team” nice golden parachutes….

    *this is snark

  124. 124
  125. 125
  126. 126
    foo says:

    @BGinCHI: The conservative media is in the process of turning from a white dwarf into a red giant before exploding into a supernova of stupid.

    Sorry, I’m gonna have to be that pedantic astrophysics guy: you’ve got your stellar evolution sequence all buggered up: a (low-mass) star goes *first* to a red giant *then* to a white dwarf, and only 1 in a million (or less) of those ever become supernovae (because they are in a binary system with mass transfer, blah, blah, blah). (you are probably actually thinking of a high-mass star which will naturally(ish) go supernova, but will never be either a red giant or a white dwarf first.)

    Like I said, sorry, but I can’t help myself…

  127. 127
    sherparick says:

    @Polish the Guillotines: I blame a lot of things on the Clinton Administration, but his particular “Fix” got started with Reagan’s administration’s FCC repealing the Fairness Doctrine and then the G.H.W. Bush Administration allowing multiple ownership of radio stations in teh same market. http://www.nytimes.com/1992/03.....tions.html

    Clear Channel was a force for evil even before private equity got their Vampire Squid hooks into them, but of course this makes it worse. The fact is a “Leveraged Buyout” appears to be a legalized form of a “control fraud” where the private equity firm (in this case Bain) pays itself and its officers a huge fee, slowly begins liquidating the company to pay the debt, and when the cow is milked, takes the carcass to bankruptcy court to divide the meat and hide. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leveraged_buyout

  128. 128
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @foo: Sure, that may be how it works in liberal astrophysics, but we are talking wingnuts here.

  129. 129
    MaximusNYC says:

    @different-church-lady:

    Hitting the bullseye on the wingnut g-spot with the red meat

    Block that metaphor!

  130. 130
    Another Halocene Human says:

    I had a dream that Romney was still shuttling around the country, meeting smaller and increasingly uninterested groups of supporters, giving his running for president spiel out of the side of his mouth because it allowed him to continue living off that shweet, shweet corporate cash.

  131. 131
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @Kay: And as long as he wasn’t bashing their sports teams I’m sure he had plenty of angry white male Toledoans going, “YAHHH! HURRRR! ME HATE TOLEDO TOOOO!”

  132. 132
    Woodrowfan says:

    Brain Wilson turned into a RW talker. Damn, and I liked the Beach Boys. what? oh, different guy? never mind..

  133. 133
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @different-church-lady: Ah, so I see radio stations are now going to follow the lead of newspapers: get rid of all their local and original content in the name of cost-savings, and then wonder why their audience keeps dwindling.

    MBA mentality. Quality isn’t assigned a number, so out it goes.

  134. 134
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Someone tried that in my hometown. Got beaten by a schoolteacher who did real GOTV door to door stuff. Her name is Mandy Wright and, if the way she campaigned is any indication, she has a bright future in WI politics.

    Fuck, our local candidate for state rep went door to door like a BAMF, is very likeable and the other guy was a worthless asshole hated by all who knew him well, and he STILL LOST because something is not right up here in North Central Florida.

    Also, too, I can’t understand the districting. I’m told 750000 ppl per district in Cali but we have on order of 150000 votes collected in the Northern (Southron) part of Florida. How the fuck is that possible? Maybe I don’t have the final, final vote totals. But this shit ain’t right. Yes, there are a lot of children here [living in poverty] and a lot of prisons [full of non-voting felons] but not on that order of magnitude, I think!

  135. 135
    MikeJ says:

    @PeakVT:

    Most talk radio shows produce 15 hours of broadcast per week, and I’m fairly sure they do it with less staff than Fresh Air (not counting sales and marketing staff).

    Local talk radio shows range from one on the board, one on the phones, a producer to handle guests (on the phone or studio) and a chimptalent in the booth. That’s for a high rated money making show. A more typical show will have the person on the board handling everything on that side of the glass. Throw in the wx, too.

  136. 136
    Woodrowfan says:

    some years back I remember discovering the local traffic guy was at some corporate HQs and not in DC when he accidentally gave the traffic report for Atlanta. oops..

  137. 137
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @Another Halocene Human: Okay, so it’s more like 300000. And much of the state is that way. What a crappy participation rate.

    Oh well, maybe we can make a run at Dist 2 next time. I don’t even know where we found that many voters in Dist 3. Cows and sheep can’t vote…right?

  138. 138
    Ruckus says:

    Traveling east to west on small back roads in 2003 I ran across a sign in someone’s front yard in MO.
    Very simple message, one I agree with.

    Fuck Clear Channel.

    Sorry that lots of people are losing their jobs, even more sorry that upper management is likely going to make out OK.

  139. 139
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @MikeJ: Works good for classical music. Plus a fundraiser or an ad account “executive” (sales rep).

    WTF happened to all the classical stations, anyway? They’re cheap stations to run and there’s gotta be enough ears for one per market… you’d think. I don’t want to fuss with cds or an mp3 player when driving and I’m too lazy to upload my cd collection anyway. God only knows I get enough of pop music everywhere I go. The saddest tale ever told is me switching to the hip hop station because they sometimes play pop or what I call new york sound instead of that lameass Southern crunk (although, okay, when they played a rap about FSU girls I laughed and turned it up) because NPR SUCKS.

    I wonder if NYC still has the best radio ever. I never liked driving through NYC because the pollution was of a special calibre of massive Kopfschmerz-inducing (it’s a bit better now? but I am 80s reminiscing) but I loooooved the radio, could always find something FUNKY playing, 24/7. Hells yes.

  140. 140
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @Xecky Gilchrist: That’s true, but if AM radio is collapsing that hurts their chances – that IS the wingnut welfare circuit, or a chunk of it. The vulture capitalists are really shitting in their own bowls.

    Genius of capitalism.

  141. 141
    aimai says:

    @different-church-lady:

    Private equity comes in, employees go out. You can’t explain that.

    I LOL’d.

    aimai

  142. 142
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @bemused: Wow, that is some slippery shit right there.

    Dividends don’t have a special low tax rate. Dividends aren’t even the point any more, it’s capital gains. Which are taxed low.

    I guess they’re hoping the 90% of people who don’t own stock don’t know such things.

  143. 143
    andy says:

    @different-church-lady: Sounds like the newspaper business, except in our cases management bought overvalued properties and waited and waited for those magic 30% margins to somehow come back again.

  144. 144
    patrick II says:

    @Punchy:

    Joe the Plumber made a profit, so according to the ethos of his Libertarian fans, what he did was good for society. They should thank him. I know I do.

  145. 145
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Another Halocene Human: I am in WI; of course cows can vote.

  146. 146
    Herbal Infusion Bagger says:

    Cumulus out of Atalanta has been cutting through SF Bay Area radio stations like Jack the Ripper in a whorehouse. They’ve nearly killed off KGO which was one of the top AM talk stations in the nation and a perennial top 3 or 5 locally. They’ve fired all the top talent and behind-the-mic folks and now the ratings are gruesome. And the same is ongoing with their other radio properties around the country. It’s all going to cheaper nationally syndicated right-leaning crap.

    Yep, they’re crapping on their audience. I wonder if the long-term plan is to hold onto the spectrum for later telecoms use.

    NPR, for all its flaws, seems to be strengthening, especially online. It’s interesting that non-profit media (NPR, PBS, the BBC) thrived with growth of the interwebs and for-profit media has struggled.

  147. 147
    Lurker says:

    @Another Halocene Human:

    Dividends don’t have a special low tax rate. Dividends aren’t even the point any more, it’s capital gains. Which are taxed low.

    Under the Bush tax cuts, “qualified” dividends (ex: stock dividends) got taxed at a top marginal rate of 15%. It was not just long-term capital gains getting special treatment.

    ETA: taxes on capital gains and dividends don’t matter to Americans who hold their stock and bond mutual funds in tax shelters like 401(k)s and IRAs.

  148. 148
    ruemara says:

    @Jay in Oregon: I loved having KPOJ as a fall back for when I missed Randi Rhodes. They seem to do that after any losing (for RNC) cycle. Suddenly, stations that were decent progressive ones turn into sports channels. A lot of times, the ratings were not the issue, based on the resultant ratings for the new format.

  149. 149
    LanceThruster says:

    @foo:

    Not to get all pedantic myself but Mark Rubio says the universe is only 6000-10,000 years old. Hardly enough time for these stellar fireworks to go all esplodin’ and stuff.

  150. 150
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @Lurker: My bad, I thought divvies got taxed at a top rate of 37.5%. But your point about IRAs is well taken. Most people who own stock hold it in retirement plans, so who gives a fuck?

    What stock pays dividends you can live on today? Er, what public company, that is?

    Maybe this is private owners trying to avoid a tax increase?

    With all this crap about “incentivizing savings”, a) why the fuck would you do that and b) IRAs, etc provide this incentive so c) shouldn’t UNEARNED INCOME be taxed at a higher rate, incentivizing, you know, work? Because that enhances our productive capacity?

    How does blah blah blah indebtedness blah blah blah factor in? Because debt seems to be working for us right now? And tightening up that unsecured consumer credit bullshit seems to be fixing that problem also too.

  151. 151
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @ruemara: Why don’t we have more community owned stations?

  152. 152
    Ben Cisco says:

    @Yutsano: Thank you very much.

  153. 153
    MikeJ says:

    @Another Halocene Human: Sure, one person can handle all the production for a classical (or any music format) show easily. Classical easier than most since the tracks are longer. Doing top 40 means it’s hard to get into the production room during a song and get all your commercials cut while you’re on the air.

    Talk shows usually have more outside things you have to deal with. Network news comes at an absolute time, so everything has to be back timed, traffic people have a limited window, teaching the talent when they need to do a live spot, getting guests on the phone, getting callers on the air while keeping the obviously crazy ones off…Talk is a pain in the ass with two people in the control room and will drive you nuts with one person. Three people gets it down to a manageable workload, which is why you hardly ever see it.

    Oh, the worst part of talk: you actually have to listen to it, either to cue the talent or be ready on the delay button. At least with music you can just turn the monitors down.

  154. 154
    Svensker says:

    @Another Halocene Human:

    I wonder if NYC still has the best radio ever. I never liked driving through NYC because the pollution was of a special calibre of massive Kopfschmerz-inducing (it’s a bit better now? but I am 80s reminiscing) but I loooooved the radio, could always find something FUNKY playing, 24/7. Hells yes.

    The regular stations are very meh, but the college stations in the area are really good. I especially like Fairleigh Dickenson (WFDU at 89.1) — they do a Blues Roots show every day that is really good, and since different DJs do it, you get a really wide range of styles, from harmonica heavy stuff, to 40s Delta Blues, to honking ass guitar, etc. They stream, too. Since I’ve moved to Toronto I haven’t listened to them nearly as much as I used to, so maybe stuff is different, but they also had a 50s doo-wop show (with a female DJ with the most amazing Joisey accent), a great bluegrass show, and a blue-eyed gospel show. All really good authentic stuff with DJs who were really into it. I loved me some FDU, where “blues are the roots, all else are the fruits.”

    /commercial

  155. 155
    sempronia says:

    @A concerned doctor:
    roflmao! that was quite unexpected.

  156. 156
    Rathskeller says:

    I was feeling a bit of sympathy for this guy, since that’s a reflexive liberal thing to do, whether you want to or not.

    Then I read this:

    Mr. Wilson was a controversial figure during his tenure at WSPD. He came under fire in January, 2011, for remarks made during his show that were considered insensitive to African-American students in the Toledo Public Schools. While expressing his opinion that the school system doesn’t teach students to think or be entrepreneurs, Mr. Wilson said, “but certainly, teaching little monkeys to peel bananas and so on and them learning to do it correctly on cue does not mean that they’ve learned everything except a funny parlor trick.”

    Fuck him. He can eat fishheads for all I care.

  157. 157
    trollhattan says:

    @Herbal Infusion Bagger:
    My suspicion is the bestest way to make shittons of money from commercial radio is to accumulate a crapload of stations in major metro areas, centralize the “talent” (talent being a server farm in some right-to-work-state), and only have sales offices, outside corporate.

    Why hire a morning zoo gang in every city when “The Scrotum, Farmer Bob and Li’l Slutty Show” can be piped to them all?

    I really, really hate what radio devolved into.

  158. 158
    kc says:

    I hope Mr. Wilson lands on his feet. I would hate for him to have to compromise his freedom and liberty by applying for unemployment benefits.

  159. 159
    phil says:

    @Rathskeller:

    ” teaching little monkeys to peel bananas and so on and them learning to do it correctly on cue does not mean that they’ve learned everything except a funny parlor trick.”

    Mr Wilson is a one trick monkey, and his benefactors are bored with the trick.

  160. 160
    Cermet says:

    @foo: You got the white dwarf going Supernova wrong. White dwarf’s that collect hydrogen from a companion star (not a dwarf) can only go novae. Only super massive stars (a few) really go Supernovae (core collapse and out shine a few 100 billion stars for a while.

  161. 161
    PurpleGirl says:

    @kc: I’d like him to get unemployment. He’d get the maximum because he had a high salary, but as he’d soon learn that maximum was only a few hundred a week. It will be no where near his previous salary. If he’s lucky, it might be like NYS’s maximum of $400 a week or $1,600 a month and some $15,000 a year. And he’s still have to pay income tax on that. Would it make an impression on him about what everybody goes through; of course not, but I want revenge on his class.

  162. 162
    Citizen_X says:

    it would have looked bad for Mr. Romney if his former company fired Clear Channel’s workers en masse.

    “I can’t be firing everybody, I’m running for President, for Pete’s sake!”

    “I am glad to have had the opportunity to preach the gospel of freedom and liberty to Northwest Ohio. Wish I had the chance on the air to say thank you and good-bye to my listeners. I will continue to make every effort to spread the message of free markets and liberty.”

    “That’s nice, pally. Wrap it up, wouldja? Management wants you out of the building by five after.”

  163. 163
    collaborotter says:

    @Litlebritdifrnt:

    Also, iirc from researching a paper in grad skool a few years back, pirates were pretty open minded about sexuality in general, and accepting of gay relationships specifically. It wasn’t a perfect society, and I’m not sure I’m ready to vote Pirate Party, but they’d certainly be an improvement over the GOP*.

    ETA: A low bar if ever there was one, I know. Let’s say a vast improvement.

  164. 164
    NonyNony says:

    @Rathskeller:

    I was feeling a bit of sympathy for this guy, since that’s a reflexive liberal thing to do, whether you want to or not.

    Maybe it’s just that I was raised in a Republican family, there are actually some people that I don’t feel reflexive sympathy for.

    One group that fits that bill? Conservative talk radio idiots. Especially conservative radio idiots who find themselves molested by the Invisible Hand of the Free Market.

  165. 165
    Mr Stagger Lee says:

    @ruemara: KPTK in Seattle is also going sports talk in a town with two sports talk stations and two conservative stations, but they are owned by CBS radio. Bill Clinton is the man who allowed the FCC to deregulate the airwaves, allowing Clear Channel to become the cartel. The Sherman Anti-Trust not only needs to come back, but it also needs to be force of Tecumseh Sherman ravaging the South IMHO.

  166. 166
    AA+ Bonds says:

    @Eric U.:

    I never really understood their business model in the first place. They bought a batch of stations and robotized them so they were un-listenable.

    “Grow” the business into debt, leap out on a golden parachute, sell the company to a vulture firm who would pump the company for everything it’s worth and pocket fees, and then, well, whatever happens to Bain’s Clear Channel afterwards, that’s just the market at work . . .

  167. 167
    Unsympathetic says:

    @different-church-lady:

    Clear Channel isn’t in it to win elections.. they’re in it to get paid nationwide while running operations out of a studio apartment in Pittsburgh.

    I’d like to interview these clowns from Toledo in 2 months [during which time the only job they’ll find is folding men’s clothes over the holiday season at Lazarus] to see what they actually think about the policies they trumpeted so loudly.

  168. 168
    trollhattan says:

    @Unsympathetic:
    They sacrificed so that others may livemaximize gross sales and net profits and totally spike their yearly bonuses.

  169. 169
    Eric U. says:

    I feel sorry for Limbaugh occasionally. He has to drug himself to get over the pain of the evil he is spreading. If you are going to get rich being evil, you should at least be able to enjoy it.

  170. 170
    The Very Reverend Battleaxe of Knowledge says:

    @Cermet: @Cermet:

    @foo: You got the white dwarf going Supernova wrong. White dwarf’s that collect hydrogen from a companion star (not a dwarf) can only go novae. Only super massive stars (a few) really go Supernovae (core collapse and out shine a few 100 billion stars for a while.

    No, what you describe are Type II supernovae. A white dwarf in a close binary system can go through repeated nova outbursts as it accretes matter from a red giant companion, but once it reaches the Chandrasekhar limit (a little over 1.4 solar masses), electron degeneracy pressure can no longer prevent a collapse into a neutron star, releasing a shitton of gravitational potential energy. This is a Type I supernova, the ones that were used as standard candles to determine that the expansion of the universe is accelerating, because they should all be pretty much the same luminosity.

  171. 171
    NonyNony says:

    @Eric U.:

    I feel sorry for Limbaugh occasionally. He has to drug himself to get over the pain of the evil he is spreading. If you are going to get rich being evil, you should at least be able to enjoy it.

    I doubt that’s it. I suspect that the drugs give him the closest feeling to an actual emotion that he can get, rather than something he uses to deaden the pain of being a conservative jackass.

  172. 172
    different-church-lady says:

    @MaximusNYC:

    Block that metaphor!

    Block that mixed metaphor, thank you very much!

  173. 173
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @MikeJ:

    Sure, one person can handle all the production for a classical (or any music format) show easily

    Can, and legendarily did, and not a show, but an entire station’s broadcast day, in the case of Simon Geller at WVCA (Voice of Cape Ann, in Marblehead, MA) for 24 years.

  174. 174
    BruceJ says:

    There’s only one rational response

  175. 175
    NonyNony says:

    @AA+ Bonds:

    “Grow” the business into debt, leap out on a golden parachute, sell the company to a vulture firm who would pump the company for everything it’s worth and pocket fees, and then, well, whatever happens to Bain’s Clear Channel afterwards, that’s just the market at work . . .

    The pieces get sold for scrap, extracting as much money as possible while doing it. The company ends up dead, but the management team responsible collects a paycheck the entire time. Then they move onto another company to do the same thing. If they’re really good at it the name of the company is still valuable enough to someone that it gets bought and re-used, so it looks like the company is still alive and nobody realizes that it was sucked dry by a bunch of vampires.

    They’re basically parasites. Predatory capitalism at its finest.

    Although to be honest – the original business model of ClearChannel wasn’t actually that much better BEFORE Bain got involved. It mostly involved buying up stations, firing most of the staff and replacing them with automated systems where possible and one person doing things remotely where it wasn’t possible to automate it. Then fooling investors into thinking that they were going to be able to turn insane profits by making that “jump” in profits from layoffs look like long-term growth opportunity instead of the one-time hit it was from reducing payroll. Bain only attacks wounded companies, and there’s a reason that ClearChannel presented a tasty target to the vampires.

  176. 176
    Not Sure says:

    Ooooooooo! ClearChannel! Omnomnomnomnomnomnom!

  177. 177
    Mike G says:

    @NonyNony:

    Being high is probably the only sensation of a positive emotion Hindenburg ever feels, given that he marinates in hatred, contempt and humiliation of the weak every day.

  178. 178
    WereBear says:

    @Mike G: One thing is for certain; he is a miserable man in every sense of the word.

  179. 179
    Lurker says:

    @Another Halocene Human:

    My bad, I thought divvies got taxed at a top rate of 37.5%. But your point about IRAs is well taken. Most people who own stock hold it in retirement plans, so who gives a fuck?

    If/when the Bush tax cuts expire at the end of this year, the formerly qualified dividends will get taxed at a top marginal tax rate of 39.6%. This will more than double the tax rate that stockholders were paying on qualified dividends from 2003-2012.

    This won’t bother me too much, since I hold a relatively piddling amount of a stock index fund in a taxable account. Most of my retirement savings are parked in the aforementioned tax shelters — Roth IRA, SEP-IRA and tax-deferred Series I Savings Bonds.

    I figure it will annoy corporate executives who hold substantial amounts of stock options, though.

  180. 180
    Howard Beale IV says:

    ClearChannel is engaging in Body Smurfing to avoid triggering WARN act notifications; much like currecny smurfing happens.

  181. 181
    Cmm says:

    @SiubhanDuinne:

    I remember Keith Kalland! Atlanta radio is the pits, Clear Channel and Cumulus have been having their way with it for years. WGST is only good for the flying saucer/weird phenomena guy who is on in the middle of the night. At least Neal Boortz is retiring. Good riddance.

  182. 182
    Steeplejack says:

    @SiubhanDuinne, @Cmm:

    Was Keith Kalland the one who had the funny names for people from the various suburbs, e.g., “Villa Ricardos” and “Snellvillains”?

    This thread motivated me to fire up WCLK, a very fine jazz station.

  183. 183
    Cmm says:

    @Steeplejack:

    Yes! Forgot about that. I still think of people from Gwinnett County as Gwinetians, but had forgotten where I had picked that up.

  184. 184
    Steeplejack says:

    @Cmm:

    Gwinetians! That’s the one I couldn’t remember. I was blocking, and all I could think of was one of my friend’s self-description as a lesbitian (or, alternately, lesbyterian).

  185. 185
    Cermet says:

    @The Very Reverend Battleaxe of Knowledge: No, I got it correct; the collaspe of a white dwarf is another matter (when it gets too massive; however, it will novae before collasping) and most certainly if a white dwarf collaspes to a neutron star (if ever) it is not a super novae event. A type I event is only due to a sudden burn off of fuel that has reached the white dwarf (see the wiki.)

  186. 186
    Cermet says:

    @Cermet: For some reason my edit did not take: A type II super novae is, as I correctly stated, a collaspe of a core of a super massive star, not a white dwarf. See the wiki.

  187. 187
    The Very Reverend Battleaxe of Knowledge says:

    @Cermet:

    Exactly, just as I said, the collapse of a supermassive star is a type II supernova. A type I supernova is the collapse of a white dwarf into a neutron star after accreting enough mass from a red giant-stage companion to exceed the Chadrasekhar limit. This may have been preceded by any number of nova outbursts as the fresh fusion fuel deposited on its surface becomes hot enough an dense enough to suddenly burn off.

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] This is rich. Clear Channel Communications, associated with such programming wonders as Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity and Rush Limbaugh, was taken over by Bain Capital in 2008 had apparently has been disintegrating ever since. Clear Channel is having to lay off staff wholesale to stay afloat. However, last year they were careful to lay people off in small numbers at a time so as not to make Bain Capital look bad. […]

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