Thursday, August 27, 2009

Making Torture Patriotic and "The Right Thing to Do"

I went to a dinner party with some old friends the other day. I had fallen out of touch and they invited me to their beautiful house for dinner. As we sat around in the tastefully decorated dining room eating grilled corn on the cob, BBQ tri-tip from Trader Joes and drinking Two Buck Chuck, we talked about home remodeling, the economy and torture. I was the one who brought up torture.

During the process another old friend say, "Wow Spocko, you've gotten dark! You used to be so funny. Where's that funny guy I knew?"

A bit more about the group:

International: People from the UK, US and Africa,
Racial: middle eastern, black and white
Religion: Atheist (Brights), Catholic, Christian, evangelical Christian and Greek Orthodox
Professional: Law enforcement, tech, marketing, sales and design

Photo by John Curley published under Creative Commons license

I asked six questions to everyone in the group.
  1. Is torture wrong?
  2. If yes, how do you know that, what informed you?
  3. If it is your religion that told you this, what are your religion's current official views on torture?
  4. Would you torture?
  5. The ticking time bomb scenario is described: now would you torture?
  6. If yes, and if this is different from your earlier answer, what has changed?

I really appreciated the diversity of the group and the honesty of their answers.
They helped me to understand how the right goes about making torture patriotic and "the right thing to do".

This conversation, and my conversation later with one of my brilliant dinner companion and with my friend Interrobang helped me with a few rhetorical responses.

How You Become a Torturer: The Right Wing Way.

1) The Right makes torture the right thing to do by making you, in your imagination, the personal protector of life.
"What if it was YOUR child, your wife who was in the building that was going to be blown up with this time bomb. Would you torture this terrorist to get the information?" Now if you say no, you, become the bad person. In this scenario (which they love to use) torturing is the right thing to do. Photo by NTodd. Adorable child by Thers and NYMary

In the ticking time bomb scenario you are forced to chose between protecting adorable children and hurting a terrorist. "What would you do? What would you do? THERE IS NO TIME!" screams Jack Bauer.

    2) By evoking your deepest protector or parental feeling, they often overwhelm a stated religious conviction or an insufficiently developed intellectual argument. They use the power of your imagination and the immediate emotion of your desire to protect women and children, your family and, by extension, your country.

    3) In the scenario they propose, you -- the torturer -- are the hero. If you do NOT torture, in the scenario, you are the villain.

    Marcy Wheeler at FireDogLake and Glenn Greenwald at Salon can go on in detail with the legal arguments and the inside baseball methods that John Yoo, David Addington, Dick Cheney and Alberto Gonzalez used to make torture part of the standard operating procedure for the CIA, the military and the groups that they are in charge of. Marcy's and Glenn's work is vitally important for the country so that we can get back to real principles of the constitution.

    But someone also needs to work on the emotional logic that the right used and still uses to make torture okay for their listeners/viewers.

    There are a couple of ways to counter this. I'll write about some more later.

    One I learned from the brilliant radio broadcaster Sam Seder.

    Stop them at the first premise. I'll call it the Seder Premise Stopper. Here is how Sam might deal with a caller. (He didn't actually do this exact call, I'm just using his style as a model. )

    Caller: Let's say you have captured a terrorist who has...

    Sam Seder Clone: Wait wait wait. So are you in the military?

    Caller: No, but that's not important

    SSC: Actually it is. You say you've never served. So you are basing this on something other than direct experience in working with terrorists. What are you basing your views on? The TV show "24"? Because who has "captured" this terrorist makes a difference. Did you know that hundreds of the people at Gitmo were turned over to the military by warlords who wanted to get rid of rivals and get $5,000 bucks in cash?

    Caller: Yes, I know that but I'm talking about the worst of the worst who

    SSC: Did you know that hundreds of those so called "worst of the worst" in Gitmo were released without charges?

    Caller: Yeah, (sensing a coup) but they are all right back there in the field now being terrorists!

    SSC: Really? How many of them are we talking about here? Give me some numbers and then explain how the army screwed up and released them. Do you think it might be possible they weren't a terrorist before and are now, or maybe they were always a terrorist and the army just didn't notice? Are you are in favor of indefinite detention?

    Caller: Yes.

    SSC: Really? Do you think that should apply to US citizens? Would you like it if President Obama decides that the guns you stockpiled after the election and the fertilizer in your shed, combined with calls from the neighbor who sent your email about health care misinformation into the White House are cause for indefinite detention?

    Caller: Now wait a minute! I'm no terrorist!

    SSC: Do you or do you not own multiple guns?

    Caller: I believe in the Second Amendment and the right of all citizens to bear arms

    SSC: Do you or do you not own multiple guns? Yes or no?

    Caller: Yes, but

    SSC: Do you think President Obama is a natural born citizen?

    Caller: What? What does this have to do with terrorists and torture?

    SSC: Nothing. Just like your scenario has nothing to do with actual torture as it is practiced in the field. Torture as practiced by the US is not about ticking time bombs it is about protecting political views and getting false confessions (since that was the model it was created on). It is a fiction designed to help cover for a horrific immoral act that has been used, not to protect women in children from a time bomb, but to protect an image of ourselves as good Americans. It is designed to protect the Bush/Cheney administration from the consequences of their lies. Your premise is flawed, your facts are non-existent but you got one thing right.

    Caller: What's that?

    SSC: You aren't a terrorist, just an sad, uninformed person who needs to grow up and understand how torture and the imaginary need for torture is used in the real world by the military and CIA and by politicians and talk radio hosts who want you to reject your own religious views and intellect as well as the violate the Constitution.
    Good day sir.


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    Saturday, July 07, 2007

    Heywood Ja Sacrifice Something?

    From Heywood J's Hammer of the Blogs:

    We have not even been asked to cut into our large-living ways; indeed, we've been encouraged to indulge them. Consumerism is what keeps this Ponzi economy afloat, that and dangerously bundled derivatives on the esoteric hedge-fund market. So instead of conserving and rationing, the way homefront Americans were glad to do in WW2, to be part of the cause, we continue to indulge and consume, and in particular waste oil profligately, as if we weren't over in the Middle East to -- at least in part, whether people can admit it to themselves or not -- secure our access and supply.


    This is replayed day after day, across the country, heedlessly, rhythmically, almost like a ginormous variation of musical chairs -- if they stopped, they would think about what they were doing, and reality might set in. And the heroic Chinese-made ribbon magnet might then not seem to be enough to justify driving a 3-ton, 10-mpg mini-RV to the post office or the Wal-Mart.

    Sacrifice should be shared across the board, rich and poor, wherever possible. But mostly it appears to be two classes of people who need to start sacrificing proportionately to what they take -- the profiteering class and the mindless hyper-consumption class. (read the whole thing here)

    When I travel to the midwest it is clear to me just how little impact this war actually has on many people, and sadly they can't see how their behavior could make a difference.

    What if the President asked everyone to enlist? What if he went on the air and said:

    "I don't want to have a draft, but we don't have enough troops. We need 500,000 more troops NOW to win this thing. I won't let my successor take on this burden and they way they are talking, they will leave. In my mind leaving is losing. So I'm asking every able bodied man and woman to enlist in the armed forces. If you are between 17 and 42 you can enlist in the army. And I'm going to ask the military contractors to leave Blackwater and related firms and re-enlist in the armed forces."

    What if he specifically asked the rich to send their money and their children to fight? Maybe he could call people who didn't go to war, unpatriotic? He would demand that people who make excessive profit from the war that they are America haters and traitors. People who have avoided taxes by going offshore will be identified and vilified.

    "If you can't serve yourself, ask your child to serve.
    If your child can't serve, ask your relatives to serve.
    If you can't serve, have no children or relatives serving, send us your money.
    If you have children and relatives already serving, God bless you.

    We need more than just your taxes. To win we need your savings and then we need some more. If we don't get it, we will lose and we will be attacked and many of you will die. What good will your money do you if you are dead? Everyone who has a yellow ribbon on their car or a flag in their heart should be willing to send us more than just your tax dollars.

    I pledged not to raise taxes, but I never said I couldn't ask the people to voluntarily give more. We need 900 billion more to win.

    I'm asking the middle classes --those making between $30,000-350,000 a year-- to send us 5 percent of your GROSS income to help pay for this global war on terror. This is on top of your taxes, that I will remind you, I haven't raised. Those making $350,000-2,500,000? I'm asking you for 10 percent. If you are fortunate enough to make 2.5 million to 25 million we need 15 percent of your gross. 25 million and up. 20 percent. If you try and cheat on this and leave the country or lie on your taxes I'll consider you a traitor and unpatriotic. I'm going to ask the people who supported this effort in the beginning to be the first to give. If you were on board and supporting me in 2003 I know I can count on you now. Right now I'm going over the lists of all the Bush Rangers, radio talk show hosts, Fox news anchors, and PNAC members. If you have flipped flop on your support of me and this war, shame on you. Only liberals flip flop and don't follow what their duly elected President says. Especially when it comes to matters of National Security--which everyone agrees is the responsibility of the executive branch.

    Yes, you can question the percent that I'm asking, but if you do, you obviously don't want America to win and don't deserve your freedom. Freedom's not free and right now you aren't paying your fair share. The people who won't have to pay this voluntary extra money? The people who have a spouse or child serving in the armed forces.

    Why do we need your money now? Several reasons. The first reason is that sacrifice in the global war against terror is only borne by a small part of America, and that has to stop. We are better than that.

    Another is that the cost of this war is forcing us to do things detrimental of the health of America. For example, right now America is beholden to China. China is the bank and we are charging this war on the credit card they issued us. In return we are forced to eat their poisoned food and accept their untested vitamins and drugs. We don't like to talk about this, but that was part of the deal China made with us when they agreed to pay for the war. The "interest" we pay is accepting the goods they send us, with nothing more than cursory checks on the food. Their system is so dangerous and corrupt that they sentenced the head of their FDA to death. It was a price I was willing to pay on your behalf because I didn't think they would really sell us that much poisoned food, but I was wrong. I won't allow Americans to die because we had to eat poison food to pay for this war. If we want to get out from under our debt, we need more money. And we can't just cut China off, if we do they will retaliate economically and our economy will crash. Specifically our largest employer, Wal-Mart, will crash, and I can't let that happen.

    I love to hear the phrase Freedom isn't free from people because those people know that they need to pay their fair share. And this will be enforced by the IRS.

    Starting on July 4th the IRS will be be undergoing a radical shift in focus to the top one tenth of one percent, so anyone who isn't making over 2.5 million a year doesn't need to worry. That doesn't mean they won't still be doing the rest of their work on regular tax payers, but if you try to hide your income in foreign banks or with tricks, we will find you and punish you. Also, no companies that are incorporated out side of the US and who aren't paying their fair share of taxes,will get Government contracts.

    And we will know if these people and companies aren't paying taxes.

    I will use my authority under the Patriot Act to post the names of American citizens and companies who have NOT paid their taxes, voluntarily given more or enlisted. The first list will be all members of this administration and all Republican elected officials. The next list will be all corporations that have been been employed by the government in the global war on terror.

    If we can't do this for our country then we don't deserve the trust of the people. It's a small price to pay for our freedom and liberty.

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    Monday, March 26, 2007

    Talk Radio Wants War in Iran

    When I talk about inciting violence on the radio it was often focused on individuals as well as groups. Stories about individuals as targets of violence was something that people could grasp as just plain wrong. But equally disturbing is the constant drum beat to use violence as the first and ONLY option in dealing with all foreign policy issues. Violence is THE knee jerk reaction of neocons and talk radio hosts. It makes them feel "manly".

    Do they not feel the impact of this war? They must not.

    Why else would they want to whip up the people for yet another war?

    I'm getting really sick of this "who is a real man?" question. Calling Edwards "The Breck" girl as a slur. (I wonder how many overweight balding pundits would love to have Edward's good hair and looks?) And how would a "real man" respond to a hostage crisis?

    They will bring up Jimmy Carter and misrepresent what happened and HOW it happened and WHO did what when. They will forget the REAL role their god Ronnie played in that affair.

    It really is all about THEIR "masculinity" or their idea of what it takes to be a man. People who think that bombing people is the right response to any situation are not strong.

    Do you care more about getting the 15 people out of harms way or do you care more about "looking weak"? Do they care more about "sending a message" than saving the messenger?

    What if you knew that you had a solution that would make you look weak to the pundits but would definitely guarantee that those people would live AND you wouldn't have to deal with all the mess that a bombing run would start? Would you take it?

    And WHO are you afraid of calling you a coward? Rush Limbaugh? Sean Hannity? People who have never served, who have to use chemicals to get it up and get off?

    You want to prove you are strong and SMART? Figure out a way to get them out without getting into another war. That is what a real man does.

    A real man worries less about what Chris Matthews thinks of him and more about the lives of his troops. A real man cares more about effective action that being called weak by some entertainer.

    Only the people who are REALLY insecure care more about the opinions of some chattering class than real lives.

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    Friday, March 16, 2007

    McCain Brand Slippage on "Straight Talk Express"

    A good friend of my bragged about how the ties he bought were all silk but he only paid 2 dollars a piece for them. They looked 100% polyester to me and I wondered how they could be all silk at that low price. He flipped the tie over and showed me the brand name label on the tie.
    "All Silk"®

    Of course the tie was made out of polyester, but the large brand name label said "All Silk"®

    I think about that story and the John McCain Straight Talk Express.®

    How do you know that he's giving you the straight talk? Well, you are ON the Straight Talk Express®, so you must be getting straight talk!

    Media Matters shows ABC's Tapper gushing
    about McCain as a straight talker because he's back on the Straight Talk Express® Bus.

    And as worrierking from the Media Matters comments section points out:

    Straight Talk My Ass.

    [link to]

    Just because you name your bus the Straight Talk Express"® doesn't mean anything, except to people who are easily lead by apperances. You need to ask "Is the outside appearance consistent with inside?" If it isn't, stop referring to the outside as if it reflects the inside, unless you are being sarcastic.

    If you call your self a Pro-Troop group but you really are the, "Get Cindy Sheehan, Stalking Tour" then the media should ask you, "Why the anger at Cindy Sheehan. Did she kill your son? Why the promoting of potential conflict with Code Pink? Are you really more concerned with supporting the troops or making Cindy Sheehan and Code Pink look like criminals?" I hope the media asks THESE questions of the Move America Forward "pro-troop" rally on Saturday.

    And if they don't ask those questions maybe they should check their ties, they are probably "All Silk"®

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    Monday, March 12, 2007

    "Drive by media" is what Rush calls 'em

    What does he mean when he says "Drive by media"?

    What is Rush saying with that phrase? Simple: the media are criminals. They will shoot you and run away. They are killers and cowards and they are to be caught and prosecuted.

    Also, who are the typical drive-by shooters in our current world? Are they 1930's white gangsters? No. When you answer that question you see yet another Rush Limbaugh bias come out. 15 million Rush listeners are now calling people (including excellent journalists like Dana Priest) the "drive by media". Are they really criminals, cowards and murderers who shoot people with automatic machine guns and drive away? No. But that is the association Rush wants people to have.

    When you look at how the right looks at and works with the MSM and the left does, you can see a difference.

    They want them hanged, we want them to do their jobs. They view them as the enemy and use analogies of killers and thugs to describe them.

    The role of journalist is important. Dana Priest, who is one of my new favorites, was quickly attacked by talk radio. Think about what she (and the Salon editors two years before) did on that Walter Reed story. That is important work that will help make changes that will positively impact a lot of lives. (It also negatively impacted a few, but sadly, not the people who continued to let it happen while they were saying, "We support our troops!")

    But as Jane Hamsher mentioned, the right wing half wits like to attack the media especially when they are picking on their authoritarian Daddy.

    Note: Update for minor spelling edit by Interrobang.

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    Friday, March 09, 2007

    Melanie Morgan of ABC Disney Radio Uses Parent's Grief to Sell Mattresses

    Yesterday Melanie Morgan and ABC Disney Radio station cynically used the anger and grief of a dead soldier's parent to sell more Sleep Train mattresses, mortgages, carpet from Home Depot, cars from Mercedes Benz, pick-ups from Dodge, and fast food from Burger King and McDonald's (all current KSFO advertisers).

    How? By using the TV media's need for visual conflict narratives about the war and the personal cost to people and twisting it to show anger at peace activists who created a memorial in Lafayette to the dead soldiers in Iraq. I have to hand it to them, it was perfect for TV. ( If only that burly activist had smacked down that gray haired senior citizen! BTW, I wonder what Yellow Elephant unit he serves with?)

    The TV media lapped it up. Link to ABC coverage of the "Cindy Sheehan Stalking Posse"
    Kind of sick eh?

    You can really hear the smugness in the KSFO ABC/Disney employee's voices over their media "coup" this morning.

    They are SO PROUD of themselves. You see folks, when the right uses the anger and grief of parents over the death of a son to attractive media attention they MAKE MONEY ON IT! They really showed Cindy Sheehan how it was done! Way to go ABC/Disney!
    NOTE: ABC/Disney is neck deep in this stunt, the rally was at the ABC studios, it's all over KSFO's website and Morgan promoted it in her dual role as ABC Disney radio employee "talent" as well as Move America Forward's Chairwoman.
    • I wonder if Morgan's constant begging for donations for MAF during the show counts as a trade-out? Did the "charity" MAF pay for that air time? Or since this is clearly sponsored by ABC/Disney and Morgan is both the MAF chairwoman and an ABC employee, is the promise that revenue will be realized after the promotion results in media coverage which will supposedly lead to hirer ratings? I'm sure the financial wizards will figure it out.

    This morning Lee, Mel and OV were simply GIDDY over how they pulled one over on the TV media coverage of the "Cindy Sheehan Stalking Posse". Of course two seconds later they showed their contempt for TV media. (Note to TV news directors: they only say they will respect you in the next day, but they DON'T. Remember this the next time they call to use you. Have some self respect. )

    Why so GIDDY at ABC/Disney station KSFO? Well in January they were finally called on their YEARS of violent rhetoric and anti-Muslim talk in a way that DIDN'T lead to positive PR or ratings. For once they paid a financial price for their extremist, violent views. They were revealed as unsafe for decent advertisers and sponsors. And this made them angry. ("You wouldn't like me when I'm angry"- Bruce Banner)

    How DARE anyone challenge their control of the nation's media! With this story they wanted to show those nasty bloggers how to do it, OLD SCHOOL!

    They sure showed us!

    How did they do it? That's a good question for ABC7 KGO News Director Kevin Keeshan. I'm a only half human, so maybe I'm missing something, but I'll provide brief guide for the kids in school who are joining us:

    1) Get yourself an AM radio station license. Use resources of your corporate parent (Disney) to promote your violent rhetoric and fool advertisers into thinking you are family friendly radio.

    2) Create a "non-profit, non-partisan" group for quick cash to pay your PR firm. IMPORTANT TIP, call it a charity so the suckers members can get a tax deduction (don't tell them it won't be used just for cookies for soldiers but also for endorsing an independent Kurdistan, endorsing Republican candidates and attacking their critics) If necessary, do trade out ads with tax attorneys to make sure it's legal.

    3) Create a conflict. The more visual the better. Use lots of ACTUAL emotional words like "conflict" and "desecration" so that listeners will get angry and be ready to rumble.

    4) Get help from the right-wing bloggers. Go to the ALWAYS reliable hater, Michelle Malkin, for unconfirmed rumors of upcoming potential desecration to justify your OUTRAGE. Malkin is the preferred inciter these days since Ann Coulter is out of favor.

    5) Get your "charity" PR firm to promise the TV media, "There's going to be trouble! There will be lots of flags and parents of dead soldiers to interview." Promise a couple of parents who are in FAVOR of the war, to "balance" the hundreds who are against it who WON'T be available for interviews.) Get the NRA involved, hint about violence. Be sure to remind the ONE TV station that accurately covered your suppression of a blogger critic, over a bogus copyright claim, that "YOU OWE US! YOU have to be BALANCED!" Use their feelings of guilt to get them to cover the story. Play on their desire to watch a peace activist get beat up by an angry grieving parent.

    6) Place flags in hands of parents of dead soldiers. (Kudos to MAF for use of Mom, kid and flag!)

    7) Invite media to the spot on slow news mid-morning, provide "in your face" action you promised/threatened

    8) Media covers "event" positions it as pro-troop not as "Cindy Sheehan Stalking Posse"

    9) Sell mattresses! Sell Hamburgers!

    10) Profit!

    Rinse and repeat in 25 cities! WHEEEE!

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    Sunday, March 04, 2007

    Spocko to Disney: You Never Call. You Never Write.

    March 4, 2007

    It's been 39 days since my attorney at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Matt Zimmerman, sent the lawyer for Disney owned ABC Radio station KSFO a letter demanding they retract their legally baseless threats that lead to my blog being shut down.

    I just checked with Matt and he hasn't gotten a letter, email, phone call or even an instant message from them. In case they misplaced it, all his info is in the letter he sent them on January 25, 2007.

    If you are just joining us, Matt requested ABC/Disney retract their threats immediately. Now I'm not a lawyer, but on this planet my understanding is that "immediately" is usually sooner than 39 days. Now maybe they are planning on traveling back in time to address Matt's letter immediately which will causing this time line to be nullified. I don't recommend time travel, I've had some bad experiences with it, but that's me.

    When ABC/Disney sent their Cease and Desist letter to 1&1 Hosting demanding I "remove the content immediately" (right before the Christmas holiday I might add) they gave 1&1 Hosting 10 days to get me to comply. In turn 1&1 gave me 24 hours to remove the material. I immediately complied with the request from 1&1. And I did it within 6 hours (compare my understanding of " immediate" to theirs). I'd show everyone the proof, but alas I can't access my 1&1 logs to prove it because it's still shut down.

    Their intimidation tactics worked on 1&1 Hosting, one of the largest hosting companies in the world. It appeared 1&1 didn't bother to check that I removed everything in time and just shut down my entire blog, words and all. Although my new blog host, Computer Tyme Hosting, is smaller my understanding is that a C&D letter sent to them regarding my posting of audio clips from KSFO will get ABC/Disney a very different response.

    But I still don't understand why ABC/Disney hasn't responded to the letter from the EFF.

    I thought they clearly pointed out that my use of KSFO's audio clips qualifies as noninfringing fair use. I would expect them to at least acknowledge that the EFF proved the case.

    I think that it was rather rude of them to ignore the letter.

    It can be inferred from their silence that even they agree that my use of KSFO's audio clips qualifies as noninfringing fair use. The hosts of KSFO objected that the clips were too short and didn't have enough context (even though we have demonstrated here and here that more context doesn't exculpate them, but actually reveals more of their depravity. But since they want more context, I'll just post longer clips. However, unlike some people I won't put up the ENTIRE show.

    BTW, did you know that Melanie Morgan is rebroadcasting the entire three hour January 12, 2007 show on her website? Did ABC Radio authorize that? Did the Disney boss of ABC Radio? Was Morgan acting as an ABC or Disney employee when she posted that? Was she acting as Melanie Morgan, the chairwoman of Move America Forward or Melanie Morgan an individual who is hosting San Francisco Radio Assets' content on her personal website?

    It says on her website where the content is hosted: Copyright © 2006 Melanie Morgan. All Rights Reserved. Is she an individual infringing on ABC or Disney's copyright? Will she be getting a C&D letter from ABC or Disney?

    What's the Hold Up? Everyone Must be Briefed by Now
    I know that big corporations move slowly, but given the impact this story had on the Disney brand I would think that they would treat the EFF letter with a little more urgency.

    I know that the people in charge of the Disney brand probably ignore the blogs who wrote about this even the big ones like DailyKos with 500,000 readers a day.
    But maybe they caught the story in:

    It was even on TV! (For the millions who get their news from TV, check out the Crooks and Liars Link since the CBS video is gone now.)

    Even if the brand managers didn't read or watch ANY of those stories, I'm fairly confident that lots of ABC/Disney executives made sure that they listened into the VERY SPECIAL PROGRAM that KSFO held on January 12, 2007. Why? Because that was the show where they kicked Dr. Laura off the air for three hours trying to convince advertisers that what the advertisers heard wasn't really what they heard (by the way, I wonder which division will be charged for that little stunt. Does Dr. Laura get paid syndication fees if she wasn't broadcast? Who pays her? Does ABC Radio legal cover it? Disney PR? Disney HR? ABC Sales? Probably an accounting nightmare.)

    Maybe ABC/Disney didn't respond because they think we are unserious people who use pseudonyms (something no RADIO person cough* Officer Vic * cough ever uses). I will point out that Mr. Zimmerman gave them very specific, serious contact information. Still, they ignored his letter.

    Maybe they didn't respond because they wanted to just keep the threat hanging out there.
    And they continue to let the people at KSFO look for methods to stifle and/or smear their critics. But pretending that they didn't get the letter doesn't really give the Disney executives plausible deniability in the public eye.

    Why is the continued clear awareness about what is going on at KSFO--by multiple executives from ABC and Disney-- important? Because when the next atrocity is spewed by Rodgers, Morgan, Sussman or "Officer Vic" they can not say, "We had NO idea those kind of things were being said on a Disney station!" Multiple executives from ABC and Disney knew what was going on at KSFO months before that 1/12/2007 show. I'm fairly confident that many listened in that day (or they can still listen to the whole three hour rebroadcast on Melanie Morgan's personal website.) There really is no excuse for anyone's lack of awareness at this point. And that should mean a real responsibility on their part to ensure that hosts stay within their corporate guidelines. Have the hosts conducted themselves as professionals on a commercially-supported broadcast radio network that was granted a license by the public via the FCC?

    But Didn't KSFO Hosts Already Address All the Issues Raised by "Crackpots with Keyboards"?

    Some violent rhetoric was NEVER addressed on their Very Special Program (did they cherry pick which clips to address? You bet.) Other comments were even embraced. When some of those comments become relevant yet again (say for example because of current news items) will management continue to accept the word games and bluster of the hosts?

    Lee Rodgers Strikes Back, at KSFO's Own Advertisers!

    Did you read in MediaNewsDaily about how Lee Rodgers threatened to boycott the KSFO advertisers who left? Wow. Attacking their own previous sponsors. I'm sure their competitors would really be happy to inform sponsors how they will be treated if they dare choose to leave. As my friend over at Backseatdriving said:

    Tomorrow’s threatened former advertiser is a potential advertiser today, deciding whether they want to buy air time. Rogers is saying to them that starting ads on KSFO carries a downside risk the buyer won’t find anywhere else: if you ever stop advertising for any reason, Rogers or his fans may try to harm your company’s brand and image.

    I thought that actively damaging a former advertiser's brand and image was just more bizarre, un-profitable blather from Rodgers, but then I heard something from on KSFO that convinced me that hosts from KSFO WILL attack former advertisers!

    I'll be posting that in the next week or so (which, by the way is NOT immediately, just in case you wondered what MY definition of immediately was.)


    Mr. Spocko

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    Saturday, February 10, 2007

    Jamison Foser Explains it All to You

    An EXCELLENT recap and analysis of this week's news stories by Jamison Foser of Media Matters. The whole article is excellent, but I especially liked the second section: The media's blogger double standard. Did I say how excellent it is? No? Well it really is excellent.

    I'm also waiting for Eric Boehlert's analysis next week on the radio, blog and main stream media's assault on Nancy Pelosi under the Clinton rules of journalmalism.

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