The Radio Equalizer: Brian Maloney

17 December 2005

Air America Host Kennedy's Nondisclosure Angers Many

RFK JR. UNDER 'FIRE'

NYT Op-Ed Angers Liberals, Conservatives




Who now is burning
up inside the "Ring Of Fire"? After a major slip-up in yesterday's New York Times, Robert F Kennedy Jr. may be wondering why he gave that unfortunate name to his Air America Radio program.

After all, in such a forceful, high-profile denunciation of the proposed Cape Wind power project in Cape Cod, Mass., wouldn't it be proper to point out the Kennedy family's clear conflict of interest? Shouldn't readers know the proposed wind farm project would sit directly facing their Hyannisport compound, several miles out to sea?

While supporters are made up of both liberals and conservatives, especially interesting is that some of Cape Wind's most outspoken opponents are shorefront property owning-liberals. Noisiest of all have been Kennedy family members.

Right off the bat, Kennedy brings a false analogy to his NYT argument:



AS an environmentalist, I support wind power, including wind power on the high seas. I am also involved in siting wind farms in appropriate landscapes, of which there are many. But I do believe that some places should be off limits to any sort of industrial development. I wouldn't build a wind farm in Yosemite National Park. Nor would I build one on Nantucket Sound, which is exactly what the company Energy Management is trying to do with its Cape Wind project.

Environmental groups have been enticed by Cape Wind, but they should be wary of lending support to energy companies that are trying to privatize the commons - in this case 24 square miles of a heavily used waterway. And because offshore wind costs twice as much as gas-fired electricity and significantly more than onshore wind, the project is financially feasible only because the federal and state governments have promised $241 million in subsidies.


As Jack Coleman, longtime Cape Cod newspaper contributor, notes:


"But I do believe that some places should be off limits to any sort of industrial development," Kennedy writes. "I wouldn't build a wind farm in Yosemite National Park" (actually, that would be illegal, unlike what Cape Wind proposes). "Nor would I build one on Nantucket Sound, which is exactly what the company Energy Management is trying to do with its Cape Wind project."

Only two paragraphs in, how does Kennedy describe Nantucket Sound - as a "heavily used waterway." Got that? Not this "pristine jewel" or "cherished national treasure" or any of the overwrought labels routinely trotted out by opponents.

Kennedy elaborates on this - he goes on to describe Nantucket Sound as "among the most densely traveled boating corridors in the Atlantic." As such, Cape Wind's turbines would come "perilously close to the main navigation channels for cargo ships, ferries and fishing boats."

The project would also come "perilously close" to the Kennedy compound, although no mention of this is made in the column. Perhaps Kennedy, shown above in a photo I took during the Soundkeeper sail organized by the Alliance last August, assumes it is universally known and needs no elaboration. I beg to differ - that his extended family would be abutters could hardly be more relevant.


After Massachusetts residents got "wind" of RFK's disingenuous editorial, it created a real controversy in the Bay State. From Jay Fitzgerald in today's Boston Herald:



Robert F. Kennedy Jr. stirred up a storm of controversy yesterday by escalating his attacks on a proposed wind farm off of Cape Cod - without mentioning how his family’s famous vacation compound might be impacted by the facility.

Kennedy, an outspoken environmentalist on most earthy issues, wrote in an op-ed piece in the New York Times that the proposal by Cape Wind Associates to build 130 offshore wind turbines was nothing more than a government-subsidized industrial boondoggle.

Kennedy, who was confronted by Greenpeace last summer when he toured the Sound in a boat with a group opposing the project, said the windmills will cause too much noise, harm marine life and threaten fishermen’s livelihoods. Greenpeace supports the project.

Deep-water wind-turbine technology is improving - and Cape Wind should be pushed farther off shore, he added.

What he didn’t mention was how his family has long vacationed on the Cape, at the famous Kennedy Compound in Hyannis - only six miles from where the offshore wind farm would be located.

Environmental groups, who are now portraying Kennedy as a virtual traitor in the fight against global warming, took note of that omission.

“This is an unfortunate case of NIMBYism,” said Matt Palmer, executive director of Hyannis-based Clean Power Now, referring to the antidevelopment acronym for Not In My Back Yard.

In an interview with the Herald, Kennedy said he doesn’t own property on the Cape - only his relatives do. But he added he thinks “people should fight to protect their back yards,” noting he has opposed developments near his own New York home in the past.


Sure enough, Robert, but everyone knows your entire extended family uses the compound. Can you honestly say you never visit Hyannis?

Why do conservatives such as Coleman and myself support Cape Wind? Because the region has a critical need for additional power generation and there's no better way to increase capacity. Without Cape Wind, future blackouts become far more likely.

Perhaps Kennedy should stick to writing Air America fundraising letters and stay out of debates where he can so clearly be exposed as a phony.

Meanwhile, it might be time to rename that talk show "Ring Of Hypocrisy".


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Images: Cape Cod Today, Boston Herald

10 Comments:

  • Hey you fat toad:

    I don't blame you for disallowing comments on your Christmas fund raising post- charity starts at home, right chief? Just like Bill Frist, or don't you follow the news?

    Oh, that's right, I'm sorry, I forgot who I was talking to. The internet's version of a alcohol riddled paparazzi. Searching for that one photo that will finally make you rich on google ads.

    Too bad for you it was me. Over 7,000 hits on the day you posted about me (such a sadly obvious desperate envy as yours in that post the world rarely sees), flanked by multiple days under 2000.

    God, I anger you so. And all it takes are a few flicks of my wrist. I spend more effort wiping my ass than I do completely obliterating your credentials, your credibility and your likeability. And, in moderation, it can be fun.

    Anyhoo, the point of me posting is to say that I am offended that your next post said only happy christmas and not happy holidays or chanuka seeing as how I'm the only reason why anyone reads this blog.

    Hate jews much?

    By Blogger samseder, at 18 December, 2005 23:43  

  • Something I would like to try is to widsurf the 48 miles between Cape Cod and Nantucket. I can do it in my dreams at least.

    Kudos to RFK Jr, his brother Max, and John Kerry for accomplishing this feat a few years ago. Talking about who is elitist or not is the same as talking about what "victory" encompasses.

    By Blogger WHT, at 19 December, 2005 01:25  

  • Hey Seder! Glad to see you popping your head back out of your hole..... Been busy trying to find that missing money that your bosses 'borrowed' from the kids?? You do follow the news don't you Seder? Oh that's right, you believe Al..... you keep doing that, I am sure that he wouldn't lie..... nah, not his way...though there are a few misrepresentations that he might have made in the past.... but I am sure that can all be explained.... sooner or later..... just keep spinning Seder.... no one is paying attention to you anyway by the looks of those ratings...... Here is some good reading for you; try going to http://www.frankenlies.com/ ......it may keep you up at night, but then again it may confuse you seeing how it deals with facts....

    Your tooooooo easy Seder - go have some Christmas eggnog, and then perhaps you won't be so groucy all the time.... your act does get a bit stale after a while you know...
    could be the company you keep I guess.

    By Blogger wise_n_texas, at 19 December, 2005 02:37  

  • i don't really see what kennedy's remarks have to do with the radio show though. he hasn't come out on the show to say these things. he hasn't contradicted himself on the show. nobody has been "truth-squadding" him or Papantonio, so they must be pretty close to target on their show. i just don't see why the radio show plays a factor in this, other than the fact that he hosts it. that's about it. these statements were from a different article, and do not reflect upon the views or facts presented on Ring of Fire. if you want to attack him, then go through the show and attack him for what he says on the show, if you can disprove any of it, and i highly doubt that you can.

    By Blogger liberal outlaw, at 19 December, 2005 11:57  

  • Wow. If that's really Sam Seder, then I guess Air America does have a propensity for hiring talentless hacks.

    By Blogger James, at 19 December, 2005 13:14  

  • Now that I finally know who Sam Seder is, after reading this email I find him even more distasteful that when he was just some name.

    For example -THIS clearly suggests he has some kind of a problem. I leave it to others to determine exactly what that might be. Coordination perhaps?...

    Oh - Just for fun, I looked him up on Google, just now... it turns out this guy is the director of a movie called "Who's the Caboose".
    I think we definitely have an obsession of some sort here...

    Brother, you just couldn't make this stuff up.


    " I spend more effort wiping my ass than I do completely obliterating your credentials, your credibility and your likeability"

    By Blogger Lokki, at 19 December, 2005 18:13  

  • If that really is Sam Seder, it doesn't surprise me that he loiters in this place. Obviously, he gets a better audience in this room than on Air America's nationwide chain of 500-watt daytime-only AM radio stations that barely make it across the street.

    Ok, that's a slight exaggeration. But when your New York flagship station can't even outdraw the previous Caribbean format, you got problems, mon.

    Of course, what's truly telling -- not to mention hilarious -- is that Brian actually had to explain who Sam Seder was. Then again, at least Sam doesn't have to worry about getting mobbed by admirers when he walks down the street of any average American community.

    Ironically, a liberal commentator would get more name recognition by doing the Susan Estrich thing on Fox News.

    By Blogger The4thEstate, at 22 December, 2005 09:52  

  • Whoa ... STOP THE PRESSES!

    I see that in the latest Arbitron ratings book, Air America's flagship station, WLIB, has a 1.3 share ... which means that it is now TIED with the previous Caribbean format.

    Wow, how exciting for them! Looks like WLIB is poised to make that big move to 1.4 (if only the network can sell a few thousand more of those $100 "stylin' yet functional" tote bags).

    By Blogger The4thEstate, at 22 December, 2005 09:59  

  • A conservative who supports wind power? Sure if it's the wind blowing out of your useless, off-the-air ass, Baloney!

    By Blogger Dovish, at 22 December, 2005 19:37  

  • Actually, considering the lifelong example of Senator Ted, I would think a Kennedy's first choice of alternative energy would be alcohol fuels.

    By Blogger The4thEstate, at 23 December, 2005 10:55  

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