Janeane Garofalo, Sam Seder, Majority Report, Air America
Acerbic Host, 'Majority Report' Saying Goodbye
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Has Janeane Garofalo's liberal talk show been declared FUBAR by Air America Radio? With one source indicating (via hard copy information) that it may leave the airwaves as soon as tonight, it appears very likely that the self- loathing and acerbic talker / actress / Hollywood political hothead may already have done her last show.
If the hate- filled Garofalo remains in any capacity at the network, it will be as an occasional political correspondent, perhaps for phone-ins during election season, for example. But she may very well be ready to walk away for good.
In addition, the "Majority Report" show appears to have been cancelled, with co-host Sam Seder possibly heading into a temporary late- evening hosting role in many Air America markets outside of New York City.
Seder has been working as a fill-in host for the Randi Rhodes Show this week, while a local personality from San Diego has taken over the "Majority Report" in Sam's absence.
If Seder's new show can find adequate financing from political groups, it may remain beyond the end of July. In addition, some program staffers may be allowed to stick around during this period to see how that works out.
Behind the scenes, Air America Radio has debated whether even to let the press know Garofalo and the show had been cancelled, or to simply claim that she had taken on an "important new role" at the network.
Air America Radio has never answered Radio Equalizer requests for confirmation and we've long since given up trying.
A casualty of low ratings, extreme revenue shortfalls, weird on-air behavior and the network's overall poor health, Garofalo's downfall is especially embarrassing considering that as a quasi- Hollywood star, she was once considered a key Air America selling point.
And unlike the wildly overpaid, pampered Al Franken and Randi Rhodes, Garofalo was only mildly overcompensated, with a $250,000 annual salary. Co-host Seder made the same amount.
For an evening show, where potential revenues are much smaller than during the day, that's still a beefy payroll, however. In addition, there was also a substantial budget for writers and other staffers connected to the show.
Not only did Garofalo not make the Franken- like outrageous demands that have plagued the liberal network, for some time, she hasn't been on the payroll at all!
If anyone has been paying her, it isn't clear, but it's a certainty that Air America has provided no compensation since some point earlier this year. Why? We don't know, but in addition to documentation provided by a source on this point, Garofalo herself recently disclosed it on the air.
One theory: by choosing to work unpaid, Garofalo may have felt less obligated to appear daily, instead taking a great deal of time off. It's also possible that her salary was directly covered by a political organization or supporter, which is very similar to the way Air America is increasingly doing business.
The head of "I Hate Myself Productions", Garofalo had shown increasingly bizarre on-air behavior in recent months, with a habit of using airtime to plug extremist causes that even supporters found strange. In particular, the former "Larry Sanders Show" co-star was frequently plugging Scientology-related projects during the program.
For that, she attracted the attention of cult expert Rick Ross, who has chronicled Garofalo's recent on- air antics. Ross reported that Garofalo may have fallen under the spell of friend and Scientologist Leah Remini, the trashy "King Of Queens" co-star.
While Garofalo's political stunts may not have attracted quite as much negative attention as those of Randi Rhodes (who managed to get the Secret Service to look into her show), they were every bit as sophomoric.
Michelle Malkin, who has closely tracked Garofolo's unhinged behavior, wrote this in November:
Janeane Garofalo, left- wing actress- turned- Air America radio host, is a miserable woman. Last week before the holidays, she turned up on cable TV. No, not to count her blessings but to rant against conservative journalist Bob Novak, author Ann Coulter, and the Fox News Channel. She didn't have anything better to do for Thanksgiving?
Accessorized by a permanent scowl (hard to believe she was once considered a comedienne), Ms. Garofalo accused conservatives of having "an anger management problem. Without a trace of irony, the frowning Garofalo griped about "right-wing partisan hacks who are always on the verge of punching somebody or always behave as if they've just been cut off in traffic."
In addition, we discussed Garofalo's weird anti- Jonah Goldberg stunt a year ago. In another odd crusade, a petition was placed online to demand a Hollywood Walk Of Fame star for her.
Where might Janeane go from here? We won't pretend to know, but with all of this baggage, another shot at talk radio seems quite unlikely.
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UPDATE: Based on posts found at the Majority Report's website, listeners seem to be under the impression Garofalo is on extended jury duty! Some aren't sure what to believe.
BREAKING: liberal Seattle talker allegedly assaults photographer in courtroom!
MONDAY UPDATE: No sign of Garofalo, while Seder seems to be settling into an ongoing fill-in role at Air America. What's left of "Majority Report", for now, is guest- hosted by a local host from KLSD-AM/ San Diego. Posters at the program's website seem to suspect that something is amiss.
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Garofalo For Dummies: David A Lunde, Janeane's Star: Pete at IHillary for the Radio Equalizer