Sunday, October 08, 2006

Melanie Morgan on Chronicle Magazine Cover

So Melanie Morgan was on the cover of the SF Chronicle Magazine today. I'm busy on other projects but I figured two people would want my take on this article.

Why did Joe Garofoli, of the San Francisco Chronicle not give us some real quotes that reflect WHY people see Melanie Morgan, Lee Rogers, Brian Sussman and Tom Brenner ("Officer Vic") as "hate radio wingnuts"? Maybe he didn't read this article by Joe Conason because he didn't subscribe to Salon. Perhaps he couldn't find my blog using that new fangled Google searchy thing.

Atrios always points out how reporters are afraid of being called liberal so they downplay the actual attitudes and comments of the person they are profiling. I understand profile pieces aren't hard hitting news stories, but even the EDITOR of the San Francisco Chronicle Magazine, Alison Biggar, said that "Joe Garofoli captures this defiant right-wing shouter graciously."

Biggar thinks that her own father who was a "card-carrying member of the Socialist Party but ended up to the right of Ronald Reagan," "was rational and centric compared to KSFO radio host Melanie Morgan." Why did Biggar approve this story and not send Garofoli back to get the actual content that Morgan is shouting that Bigger considered irrational? Was she afraid that Morgan would yell at her like she yelled at Todd Milbourn, the Sacramento Bee writer who wrote about Morgan and Move America Forward, the group that Morgan is a Chairwoman of?

I believe that in the business this is called a PUFF PIECE. The publishers of Morgan's book and the KSFO PR team are giving each other high-fives today. Of course Morgan will be complaining about her photo on the cover and probably about the text as well because it still wasn't puffy enough. (I'll bet you 300 quatloos that she'll be bitching about your article Monday morning, Joe. Drop me a line at spockosemail atsign so I can collect Monday night.)

The article doesn't even have the obligatory "she lied, he said" full comparisons that are standard in political reporting these days. With the exception of a Dr. who described her as an "action-seeking gambler" (which sounds so much better than a woman who "dumped her baby with her baby-beating stepson to go gambling") Garofoli doesn't really bother to talk to people who would make it clear WHY she would be controversial at all. He makes her sound rational and those mean liberals at Media Matters are just over reacting.

Maybe Biggar is just trying to avoid Morgan calling for Garofoli to be hanged or doesn't want Morgan to disagree about the various means of execution of newspaper editors as she did with her gal pal Anne Coulter (link). Maybe Biggar was trying to stop followers of Morgan and Coulter from mailing her anthrax. I guess I should forgive them both for fearing for their lives. If so, good luck.

I've been defending editors from these people for months, but from my responses management at the AP and the WSJ seem to be fine with people like Morgan and Rogers calling for the death of their reporters. The AP doesn't see to care and the WSJ continues to be sponsored on the show. Maybe Biggar cares more about her editors than the management at the AP. Nancy Abramson at the WSJ didn't bother to respond to my email where I pointed out Morgan considered Glen Simpson worthy of death too. I would think that after Daniel Pearl was beheaded that the Wall Street Journal would take seriously people calling for their editors to be hanged. Frankly, I hope the reason Biggar didn't tell Garofoli to dig too deep was because she was afraid of Morgan and her followers. These people ARE dangerous. And remember, they will never be happy with any story that reveals the truth about them. So please, please, please be careful with the snail mail you receive. I'm not kidding.

When the Bee did a balanced piece on Move America Forward Morgan flipped out thinking that by feature they meant this kind of Puff Piece. She called the Bee story an attempt to "smear our good name." Why? It pointed out how their political group, Move America Forward, classifies itself as a charity so that contributions are tax- deductible, which should constrain their speech.

Morgan claims that her group is "hyper-vigilant about staying within the confines of the rules and regulations governing 501 (c) 3's" yet for four hours a day five days a week the co-founder and chairwoman of MAF is on KSFO supporting candidates on the radio from her Bully pulpit. I suppose it is easy to separate the co-founder of the group from the person on the radio who talks about the group and what it does and which candidates she supports, and I'm sure that the IRS will let it slide, just like the management, her husband, does. (Hey btw, KSFO, nice trick with the various companies paying Morgan and Swanson to avoid any conflict, I'm sure that works great and is totally legal. )

The fiction in this article is she is just a "Conservative shouter". This is what the sales people at KSFO want you to believe. By not describing what she, Rogers, Sussman and Brenner really talk about Garofoli continues to support the fiction. These people are radical haters who call for the death of newspaper editors, Muslims, and everyone in the Middle East who they think shouldn't exist. Maybe this is the new definition of conservative. Maybe you could at least call them killer conservatives.

Remember, this all takes place on commercially supported broadcast radio. Inciting violence toward others is NOT fine on broadcast radio. As you can hear I have audio clips to help educate people on just how violent and hateful these people are toward others.

Maybe if Garofoli had LISTENED to a few more programs of Morgan, Rogers or Sussman to understand what I'm saying the article would be different. I've got plenty of info on my website if he had bothered to Google it and spent more than a few days listening to their show. Garofoli was looking at what transformed Morgan into who she is today, but he failed to describe the kind of comments that lead Olbermann to call her the "Worst Person in the World" or comments that made her own mother oppose her.

For example, Garofoli characterized MAFs upcoming ad in production as urging "less political correctness in airport screening" -- and how they aren't " shy about reinforcing cultural stereotypes". I love the way that the right uses the line "I'm not being political correct" right before they say some bigoted thing. Morgan's ad is calling for racial profiling at the airport. They have said so several times on their show.

Morgan wants to ratchet up the hate in a totally disingenuous way to make us "safer"in the air (of course Lee Rogers wants all the pilots to have guns). Never mind that multiple experts have talked about the ineffectiveness of racial profiling in airports (vs. something effective like behavioral profiling). When the facts don't back up Morgan she simply says she knows something, "In her heart." I have to wonder what kind of black heart she has. (Oops, that was an opinion on my part. I have never seen Morgan's heart and I can not comment on how black it is or is not.)

I'm sorry you were played Mr. Garofoli. I'm glad that Biggar is trying to protect you and the paper, but believe me when I say they won't appreciate how gentle you were in your story. As Paul Krugman has said many times about the Bush Administration, these people really are radicals, and you gave them cover by not understanding that.

Now in the article Garofoli said "others called for advertiser boycotts.", if I wanted to go after Morgan's and Roger's advertisers you would know about it. Two other readers of this blog have contacted Sussman's advertisers and they have pulled their ads. Aetna is just the latest to yank their ads on his show. Good for you Aetna!

As a matter of fact that gives me an idea. I think I'll start letting the advertisers know what they are getting when they advertise on the Morgan, Rogers and "Officer Vic" program. Maybe if they actually heard what these people are saying they wouldn't be so quick to associate themselves with these hate merchants.

So, a note to everyone who might find this tiny N-tier blog and is interesting in helping contact advertisers so that they know what they are supporting, drop me a note. Or if you have already sent advertisers a letter copy me on your email. If you don't like what Morgan and her c0horts are saying, don't bother to write them, they don't care what you think, but advertisers, well that's another story.

I'm at spockosemail AT


Interrobang said...

Lee Rogers is an idiot. I bet my dad would have a good time arguing with him about the pilots with guns thing, since my dad is a pilot and has some really interesting ideas on the subject. He's completely opposed to the idea, incidentally, not least because it's really easy for several people to get a gun away from one person, and that just puts a weapon right there for any putative bad guys to get. Yeah, that's clever.

2:05 AM  
Anonymous said...

Shrill.. Shrill.. All you libuhruhls are so shrill! ;)

5:10 AM  
kelley b. said...

It's amazing how not only fascists, but Nazis have become mainstream Republicans.


6:55 AM  
Interrobang said...

There's really not much difference, for all practical purposes, between Nazis and Fascists. Remember that Auschwitz-Birkenau and Bergen-Belsen and Sobibor-Treblinka were money-making ventures.

6:46 PM  
spocko said...

Of course in America as long as you make money and are popular, you're fine.

6:59 PM  

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