The Radio Equalizer: Brian Maloney

09 August 2005

New Air America Defense Strategy

Liberals Shift Strategy

Left: Time To Fight Back Over Air America


(**Update Below**)


Did we really think amateur hour could last forever?

Predictably, leftists have now begun to mount a more organized campaign to fight our Air America coverage.

Elements of it have been leaked to the Radio Equalizer.

In the earlier days of Air America's controversy over its apparent acquisition of $875,000 in taxpayer funds intended for the Bronx-based Gloria Wise Boys and Girls Club, nasty potshots and slurs from liberal bloggers were common.

That hasn't ceased, but evidence now points to a more sophisticated effort to undermine our credibility, led by political insiders, as well as the usual assortment of lefty bloggers and activists.

Will their media friends also sign up?

The plan looks like this:

--- Use political operatives, from Seattle and elsewhere, to work with Air America and its PR flaks on turning the tables.

Why Seattle? It turns out there are many connections between the Emerald City and Air America Radio, some of which play a role here.

Current AAR head honcho Rob Glaser, is well-known in the Northwest, for his key role in the founding and development of RealNetworks. He's a hardcore lefty of the Seattle stealth-Canadian variety and committed Democrat donor.

The Radio Equalizer has confirmed that Andrew Villeneuve of Permanent Defense, a Washington state-based group set up to fight ballot initiatives sponsored by antitax activist Tim Eyman, has been recruited for this new effort, to fight against those of us who have been reporting on Air America's scandal.

One component includes direct pressure on other bloggers, those of a more moderate variety, to cease writing about the Air America topic. This has begun.

--- Next, the plan is to push fixed talking points about Air America's troubles, that Evil Guam Republican Evan Cohen is entirely responsible for what happened (Republican In Name Only is more accurate, or "RINO").

That is, of course, without mentioning Air America's many recent missteps that have even Department Of Investigation officials frustrated and vocal. This site has documented them in detail.

--- Spin the scandal as nothing but right-wingers bringing down liberal talk radio. Sell negative notions about bloggers, while utilizing public relations people to tell "the truth".

--- Attack specific allegations, such as yesterday's payroll issue. The new, unofficial, claim: employees were paid on time. Then why the memo (which is authentic)? Where were they yesterday and will they furnish evidence?

Because they're watching this site very closely, I'd have expected an immediate response to the story, are they a day late and a dollar short?

If they'll mislead the New York City Department of Investigation, why should the Radio Equalizer believe Air America? At this point, if they were to tell me the sky is blue, I'd run outside to check.

Ready for battle? They are.

Evening Update: this needs to be clarified- there's been no communication from Air America, after two days, to contest any portion of my payroll story. After hearing secondhand, another person was being told an element of it was being challenged, or simply not confirmed by AAR's PR firm, I decided to mention it here.

My feeling is that AAR has had ample time to dispute my story if they'd seen fit, but didn't. However, I felt it was important to indicate this here, anyway.


Part Two is next
: latest liberal blogospheric reaction. It will be on the main page when ready.

Welcome WJR/Detroit listeners! AAR Scandal/Franken graphic by
Darleen Click, Rather by Pete at IHillary. City Kid$ by George Adair.

The Radio Equalizer still needs your support for the site upgrade project. Your Amazon orders that begin here, help to defray costs. Thanks again for your assistance!



39 Comments:

  • Hm, let's see...conservatives use political operatives day in and day out. FOX news is a 24 hour parade of political operatives for the right. As far as I'm concerned, YOU are a political operative.

    Fixed talking points? And your issue with this is...what? Are you seriously going to say that you and Malkin and every right wing columnist feeding off this blog haven't been pushing fixed talking points? Give me an effin break, Bri. You say pretty much the same thing every day. And now you're going to whine that the other side uses the same strategy? May the best talking points win, I guess.

    And who needs to spin this as right wingers taking down lib talk radio? Clearly that's what this blog of yours has been ALL ABOUT as oof the moment you started getting traction on your rants about Air America ratings, if not since day one of Radio Equalizer's existence. Who are you trying to fool? You'd be ever SO pleased if somehow lib talk radio were utterly discredited forevermore. But it ain't gonna happen, chump.

    And of course *someone* is going to attack your allegations--if they're WORTH attacking, that is. You'd attack people who made allegations about you, right? Such as the insinuation that you've consistently lied about why you lost your last full-time talk-show host position? You could start with that one, and move right down the list....

    By Anonymous malrex, at 09 August, 2005 12:17  

  • Keep up the great work, Brian.

    Lefties, at heart, are Marxist/Socialists, and what Socialists do well is attack capitalism. They're not used to having to defend their own system and beliefs, which is why you should expect nothing but shrill hysterics, and infantile rantings from them.

    Brett

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 09 August, 2005 12:20  

  • You'd be ever SO pleased if somehow lib talk radio were utterly discredited forevermore. But it ain't gonna happen, chump.

    12:17 PM

    It already has happened. Air America trumpeted itself as the instrument that was going to bring down right-wing radio.

    Not only has that not happened, but AAR's ratings in its flagship station (WLIB in NYC) are lower than the Carribbean station it replaced.

    Like it or not, AAR has had zero impact. Not one of its "personalities" has emerged as anything close to the left-wing version of Rush.

    Throw in this latest scandal and the payroll problems, and an advertiser would have to be insane to associate with AAR. The writing is on the wall. It not a matter of "if" AAR goes down, it's a matter of when. If AAR were a sitcom, it would've already been cancelled.

    Brett

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 09 August, 2005 12:29  

  • Yeah, well malrex, can't handle the truth?

    Some of this crap I recall from the modus operendi from the governor's election contest. Sadly, it works.

    By Blogger Josef, at 09 August, 2005 12:49  

  • Like it or not, AAR has had zero impact. Not one of its "personalities" has emerged as anything close to the left-wing version of Rush.

    AAR has only been on air for two years. Even Rush wasn't "RUSH!" two years into his talk radio career. I know, I heard him back then. He was still fairly podunk, still requiring female and black callers to send in photographs before he'd let them go on the air.

    I doubt this campaign has had any negigible negative impact on AAR's ratings. If anything, the constant grousing by Malkin and Brian and their ilk is just increasing their ratings. I've gotten the impression that a wide variety of wingnuts have been listening very closely to on AAR (if not trying desperately to get on the air) for the last couple weeks now, desperately hoping to get more ammunition for their cause. Maybe they'll learn a few things along the way....

    By Anonymous malrex, at 09 August, 2005 12:52  

  • AAR has only been on air for two years. Even Rush wasn't "RUSH!" two years into his talk radio career. I know, I heard him back then. He was still fairly podunk, still requiring female and black callers to send in photographs before he'd let them go on the air.

    ______________________

    Rush was a nobody when he started out, and built his career from nothing.

    He didn't have AAR's luxury of millions of dollars worth of Lefty Sugar Daddy money.

    Your argument might hold water if AAR were gaining an audience, but they're not. Its ratings in the #1 market in the country are lower than they were a year ago.

    Does the word "Titanic" mean anything to you?

    Brett

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 09 August, 2005 13:00  

  • This is the talk coming from the 'majority'. They have nothing more to piss and moan about than misappropriated and embezzled funds. Where the hell was the uproar with Enron? Halliburton? Tyco? These were companies who lost MILLIONS of investor funds nad, in turn, screwed and bankrupted millions of people. And all you can do is dredge up something about the financial happenings of a fledgling radio corporation? What about payola? If this is TRULY a radio industry blog you migh try convering soem of the goings-ons with Sony & BMG payola but just keep riding the dead horse instead. Stick with the one thing you apparently know. One-sided conversation.

    By Blogger Brian, at 09 August, 2005 13:01  

  • If I may turn the conversation to actual facts...

    What is the relationship between Piquant and the previous ownership? Are they completely unrelated or is there significant overlap between the officers and investors of the two corporations?

    Replies supported by links would be especially welcome.

    By Anonymous Otter, at 09 August, 2005 13:07  

  • Brian said...
    This is the talk coming from the 'majority'. They have nothing more to piss and moan about than misappropriated and embezzled funds. Where the hell was the uproar with Enron? Halliburton? Tyco?

    ___________________

    Yeah, maybe we should spend the day going on and on about Gannon the gay porn star.

    This is a radio blog covering a story about a radio station. It's perfectly appropriate. In fact, if it were a conservative station in question, you'd be screaming for an investigation.

    Typical lefty, can dish it out, but can't take it.

    Brett

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 09 August, 2005 13:07  

  • Great work Brian.
    I see that Billboard Magazine has a story on this matter today.
    http://billboardradiomonitor.com/radiomonitor/news/business/net_syn/article_display.jsp?vnu_content_id=1001011651

    Keep up the good work!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 09 August, 2005 13:08  

  • Spitzer Eyes Air America, Gloria Wise Loans
    Aug. 09, 2005
    By Ken Tucker



    New York State Attorney General Eliot Spitzer is looking into questionable loans made by the New York-based Gloria Wise Boys and Girls Club to Air America Radio (AAR) early in the liberal talk network’s life. Spitzer’s interest in the case, which is already being investigated by the New York City Department of Investigation (DOI), was first reported by the New York Post and has been confirmed by Billboard Radio Monitor.

    At issue are government funds which were earmarked for the charitable, not-for-profit organization, but were funneled to AAR through its former CEO, Evan Cohen. At the time of the loans, Cohen was serving as a paid development director for Gloria Wise.

    Although AAR is no longer affiliated with Cohen, who sold his interest to Piquant LLC in 2004, the current owners have said they will repay the loans to the club, even though they maintain they have no legal obligation to do so.

    Meanwhile, the DOI has recommended that Piquant place $875,000 in an escrow account, pending the outcome of the investigation, according to the Post. The company, however, has reportedly deposited $50,000 into an account controlled by an attorney for the network, to the dismay of investigators.

    Cohen was forced out at the liberal network shortly after its launch when employees, affiliates and detractors learned that instead of three years' worth of funding there was actually three weeks' worth.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 09 August, 2005 13:17  

  • above is the billboard article

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 09 August, 2005 13:18  

  • Where the hell was the uproar with Enron? Halliburton? Tyco?

    Which children's charities were misappropriating funds to these companies?

    Oh, I forgot, if you're a leftist and you're completely bankrupt of ideas, simply scream "Halliburton!"

    By Blogger V the K, at 09 August, 2005 13:23  

  • This story is going to be around until AAR gives the money back and an investigation finds no laws were broken. What a delicious thought, Al Franken dressed in orange and behind bars. You shouldn't steal from children Al.

    By Anonymous RA, at 09 August, 2005 13:23  

  • Lets make no mistake here. AAR rating are in the toilet. Also somewhere between 1/3 and 1/2 of the few listeners they have are conservatives listening to laugh and to know their enemy. What if they stopped listening?! LOL

    By Anonymous RA, at 09 August, 2005 13:29  

  • All this talk of AA being out of money is simply incorrect. Why? Because it sold over $22 million worth of LLC interests in June (according to the SEC). No way it burned through that much in two months -- it would be impossible, even with $0 in revenue.
    It may have had a payroll F-up, but that doesn't mean there isn't cash on hand.

    By Anonymous Justin, at 09 August, 2005 13:41  

  • Some interesting comments on liberals and anti-capitalism from the book South Park Conservatives by Brian Anderson: "In its knee-jerk leftism, Hollywood has also long looked down on corporations and the business world in general...on occasion, South Park gleefully bucks the trend. In "Butt Out"...the tobacco company executives are models of reason and decency, in pointed contrast to Reiner's nasty anti-smoking activists. And in an earlier, even more pro-robustly pro-capitalism entry, a "Harbucks" coffee chain arrives in South Park, to initial resistance but eventual acclaim as everyone...admits its bean beats anything previously offered in town.

    "Big corporations are good," Kyle tells the town meeting deciding Harbucks' South Park fate. "Because without big corporations we wouldn't have things like cars and computers and canned soup."
    (he goes on to say that even Harbucks started as a small business but grew because it made "such great coffee".

    The book also mentions how liberals complained about "Team America: World Police" because its creators, Parker and Stone of "South Park",
    "SOLD OUT BIG TIME!". Obviously seeing Mike Moore portrayed as a suicide bomber and the likes of
    Sarandon, Robbins, and Alec Baldwin lampooned, didn't sit well with the Left--Bob Nelson

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 09 August, 2005 14:15  

  • In the hope I haven't became chop liver - HERE is my latest lunchtime rant. Be forewarned: My target is the NY Times! It's not the best piece of work, but hey - hot pictures of Maureen Dowd? Why not!

    By Blogger Josef, at 09 August, 2005 14:29  

  • By Blogger Josef, at 09 August, 2005 14:37  

  • From Josef's link:

    "Liberal yakker Al Franken blasted the man who founded his Air America radio network as "a crook" on Monday - even as he laughed off the financial scandal that continues to dog his broadcast."

    So, stealing from children's charities is funny?

    By Blogger V the K, at 09 August, 2005 14:49  

  • All this talk of AA being out of money is simply incorrect. Why? Because it sold over $22 million worth of LLC interests in June (according to the SEC). No way it burned through that much in two months -- it would be impossible, even with $0 in revenue.
    It may have had a payroll F-up, but that doesn't mean there isn't cash on hand.

    By Justin, at 1:41 PM

    If what you say is true, your argument still relies on the assumption that the 22 million wasn't burnt paying debts already incurred by AAR.

    AAR is the corporate version of Paris Hilton shopping in Tiffany's.

    Brett

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 09 August, 2005 14:56  

  • Brett,

    your analogy makes no sense since Paris hilton can afford to shop at Tiffany's. One of those blog comments that sounds good until you actually give it a moment of thought.

    As for South Park: Brian Anderson got it wrong. Both South Park cretors are acknowledged libertarians (Parker is registered as such), and today's conservatives -- at least those affiliated with the GOP -- have little in common with libertarians. Libertarianism is not nation building (Iraq), giant federal subsidies (energy bill, Medicare), increased federal education oversight (No Child Left Behind), etc.

    By Anonymous Justin, at 09 August, 2005 15:12  

  • Al Franken just doesn't know any better, obviously. He's an outgrown child, just as much as Rush Limbaugh.

    By Blogger Josef, at 09 August, 2005 15:18  

  • Oh how it must be fun to be a lefty and make such silly assertions as:
    FOX news is a 24 hour parade of political operatives for the right

    Really? When I saw Bob Beckel on there the other day, was he a political operative of the "right"?
    Is Alan Colmes? Fox makes it a regular practice to invite people from both sides of an issue to discuss things. Its not the exception, its the rule.

    Anyway, not to get off the point.
    What is most funny about all the responses from the left that come in here, is that NOT ONE OF THEM has said its in any way wrong or even questionable that money from a charity was used to fund AAR.
    They call names, say the story is fake, change topics, but have never once said taking money from a non-profit like this is wrong.
    Very telling.

    By Blogger Ace, at 09 August, 2005 15:20  

  • What is most funny about all the responses from the left that come in here, is that NOT ONE OF THEM has said its in any way wrong or even questionable that money from a charity was used to fund AAR.
    They call names, say the story is fake, change topics, but have never once said taking money from a non-profit like this is wrong.
    Very telling.

    By The Ace, at 3:20 PM

    Your on-the-money point illustrates what Brian Anderson states in the aforementioned book, South Park Conservatives.

    Liberals aren't used to defending their silly positions, which is why you see so much shrillness and subject-changing from the left when pressed on an issue.

    In addition, their arrogance and self-righteousness prevents them from conceding a well-made point.

    Brett

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 09 August, 2005 15:34  

  • Sorry Justin,

    but Franken already admitted on his show yesterday that AAR simply "don't have $875,000 just lying around".

    By Anonymous SaveFarris, at 09 August, 2005 15:48  

  • Sorry Justin,

    but Franken already admitted on his show yesterday that AAR simply "don't have $875,000 just lying around".

    By SaveFarris, at 3:48 PM

    Ironically, "lying around" is one of the few things lefties do well.

    Brett

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 09 August, 2005 16:01  

  • Air America can EASILY burn through 22 million, especially if it's numbers are tanking in places like Philadelphia, New York, and Los Angeles.

    Hell, Minneapolis is talking about dropping AAR for local lib programming (ala KSTP from 9-noon, 3-6, and 8-10).

    By Blogger Sailor Republica, at 09 August, 2005 16:12  

  • "Cohen was forced out at the liberal network shortly after its launch when employees, affiliates and detractors learned that instead of three years' worth of funding there was actually three weeks' worth."

    Hmmm... Some have concluded - based on what scant info we have about AA's real finances - that they are burning through about half a million a week.

    This seems to make sense in that context.

    Tom C.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 09 August, 2005 16:16  

  • I wonder if there's any chance of seeing Al Franken, Jeanene Garofalo, and/or Randi Rhodes "frog-marched" out in cuffs? I'd pay hard cash to see it in real time.

    JorgXMcKie

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 09 August, 2005 16:26  

  • Air America's ratings are in the toilet, huh? A-HA! You fascist neocon chickenhawks forgot to take into account how many homes in America have toilets! Air America is EVERYWHERE! Deal with it, wingnuts.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 09 August, 2005 17:41  

  • Air America's ratings are in the toilet, huh? A-HA! You fascist neocon chickenhawks forgot to take into account how many homes in America have toilets! Air America is EVERYWHERE! Deal with it, wingnuts.

    Hmmm...A stark raving mad moonbat. Not only does he/she have the name calling down to a T, but he/she doesn't know the definition of a common idiom.

    The thing that's missing is an articulate message WITH FACTS about AAR.

    Because he/she doesn't know how to form an articulate message using facts.....or.....because on this issue facts don't help prove the point?

    By Anonymous lynn, at 09 August, 2005 20:12  

  • Brian,

    Keep an eye on Goldstein at HorsesAss.org. I'm sure he will play in heavily in any Seattle based attempts to defend AAR. As you know, his blog is widely read in the Puget Sound area by the lefties.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 09 August, 2005 20:16  

  • Not only is HorseAss.org a popular site. I have made conservative comments on the site and they are banned, deleted or smoked. IT is a leftwing only website. If you try to bring up facts they just delete it. Facts dont exist if they dont match their thinking.
    Fact Who had better College scores Bush or Gore? Bush. so why is Gore so smart and Bush so Dumb.
    I know I could not get Bush's score I am not that smart but I can think for myself. I wonder what the liberal excuse will be. Maybe they can talk about it on Air America. They know all the answers. OR so they think.

    By Anonymous David Anfinrud, at 09 August, 2005 21:47  

  • "Fox makes it a regular practice to invite people from both sides of an issue to discuss things. Its not the exception, its the rule."

    Of COURSE they do Ace, because the hosts are almost all conservatives, thus making the ratio 2-1 when they invite one conservative and one liberal guest. Examples? Fox & Friends hosts, Neil Cavuto, John Gibson, Britt Hume, Bill O'Reilly. As for Colmes, he is a total walkover compasred to Hannity, and despised by many liberals for it.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 09 August, 2005 22:40  

  • You know you're over the target when you start receiving flak.

    Keep up the good work, Brian.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10 August, 2005 03:26  

  • Wonderful site and great work, sir. A FRiend pointed me to it just the other day and now I'm hooked. I particularly enjoy your detailed coverage of the Air scAmerica scandal. Reading about the way liberals squirm when they literally get caught stealing candy from babies only confirms why Americans can no longer take them seriously. Your coverage and the lack of it from "failed" institutions such as the NYT proves why concerned Americans may no longer rely upon "the old media" for truth and current events. Your efforts are part of a greater future for an informed America.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10 August, 2005 05:52  

  • Fact Who had better College scores Bush or Gore? Bush. so why is Gore so smart and Bush so Dumb.

    Well, that's not really a fair comparison, is it? I mean, Gore flunked out of both law and divinity school, so we only know what his actual "Grades" were. And, as every leftist knows, grades are an inexact measure of liberal genius. To the left, a person who can't perform basic algebra but who feels very strongly that Global Warming is the fault of Halliburton and Evil SUV's is much "smarter" than someone with worthless "knowledge" of math, science, history, economics and other pursuits that rely on "facts."

    Besides, who needs math anyway, when you're a leftie. Let the accountants who manage the trust fund worry about math. Just make sure the checks come on time. Soy lattes and Volvos don't grow on trees. (Or do they? Must check with Greenpeace).

    By Blogger V the K, at 10 August, 2005 06:58  

  • some one said: "Lets make no mistake here. AAR rating are in the toilet. Also somewhere between 1/3 and 1/2 of the few listeners they have are conservatives listening to laugh and to know their enemy. What if they stopped listening?! LOL"

    And you don't think the left listens to right wing radio to call in/and or LAUGH?
    wow..are you delusional.

    By Anonymous libmom, at 10 August, 2005 08:37  

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