The Radio Equalizer: Brian Maloney

18 January 2008

Grant, Ward Stories Highlight Hypocrisy In Talk Radio


Libtalkers Get Benefit Of The Doubt, Conservatives Don't

*** NEW: Who's Standing Up For Grant? ***

The origins of this week's firestorm over the unexpected revocation of a lifetime achievement award for conservative talk radio legend Bob Grant go back years, thanks to an industry that is largely run (and often mismanaged) by our political foes.

And a shocking development on the West Coast Thursday evening is leading to a whole new talk radio outrage. In an revealing way, the stories turn out to be interrelated.

In San Francisco, former KGO host Bernie Ward, indicted on charges of possessing and distributing child porn, will be getting his job back. That's provided he can beat the federal rap, for which he is currently awaiting trial.

From KGO-7's Dan Noyes:

KGO Radio General Manager Micky Luckoff tells me the station took the action against Ward before knowing full details of the case, and that he wants him back on the air soon. Luckoff believes Ward’s explanation that he downloaded and traded child porn as research for a book: “Technically, it’s against the law. He admitted what he did. There’s no reason to believe he’s a pedophile.”

Luckoff adds that Ward’s arrest “hit us like a ton of bricks.” Luckoff says Ward and his attorneys have assured him that the talk show host’s involvement with child porn is confined to the three incidents outlined in the federal complaint.

Ward and Luckoff will meet after the next court appearance January 24th, and he may be back on the air soon very soon. Luckoff tells me would hire him back, even before a possible trial wraps up: “We really value Bernie. He’s a very capable on-air talent.”

In addition, a source inside Citadel confirmed the story to your Radio Equalizer late Thursday, using even stronger language to indicate Ward would definitely be returning almost immediately.

And Luckoff's above version of events doesn't at all jibe with what yours truly had been told at the time of Ward's arrest. This site was given strong indications that Citadel- ABC in fact had the details of the case before the story was first broken by the Radio Equalizer. That's why he was fired, rather than suspended, at that point.

By the way, no evidence has ever emerged that Ward was writing a book.

Both the Grant and Ward sagas are interrelated, thanks to a common employer: ABC Radio, recently taken over by Citadel Communications. Most of ABC's previous management team remains in place, including KGO's Luckoff.

In 1996, Grant found his career virtually destroyed after making a very unfortunate comment about the death of Clinton's Commerce Secretary Ron Brown in a plane crash. The conservative radio legend certainly made a mistake, but paid a very heavy price.

Eventually, he was hired by crosstown rival WOR, but it took a concerted, decade- long effort by mid- level managers to get him back to WABC radio. Many in New York City radio felt Grant had been punished much too harshly.

In Ward's case, the KGO libtalker was allegedly caught red-handed not only possessing, but also distributing child porn. Because it "only" involves "three incidents", ABC- Citadel suits are ready to roll out the red carpet for his return. In the sick world of San Francisco liberalism, three child porn images on one's computer is apparently not enough to worry about.

Before Luckoff and Citadel CEO Farid Suleman can rehire Ward, however, there's one little problem: the federal indictment. If Bernie goes to prison, KGO is out of luck.

But the fact that KGO even wants to associate itself with child pornography is disgusting enough. So much for the station's credibility. Why would Suleman approve this move? Does he support child porn distribution?

Even though it is conservative talk that has generated the ratings and made the big money over the past few decades, the industry's corporate leadership still generally leans to the left and is often befuddled by the medium's incredible success.

That bias extends to many of those who run radio trade industry publications and are in charge of handing out (or withdrawing) awards.

It boils down to this: Bob Grant, a conservative with 50+ years of trailblazing talk radio under his belt, cannot be given the benefit of the doubt, while a suspected child porn- distributing libtalker deserves an instant second chance, even before his trial is complete. Call it coast- to- coast hypocrisy.

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  • Brian, this is your stupidest post yet.

    Why WOULDN'T Ward get his job back??

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 18 January, 2008 03:08  

  • "Why WOULDN'T Ward get his job back??"

    Oh I don't know...maybe because he's a PERVERT! Research my ass, maybe Larry Craig was just researching sex in public facilities.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 18 January, 2008 10:13  

  • anon #1, maybe because the guy is beyond the pale? This just illustrates the double standard practiced by liberals. A conservative host in the same position as Ward would be fired immediately and permanently.

    By Blogger PCD, at 18 January, 2008 11:59  

  • Big difference Baloney, Grant acted like a bigot on the radio, Ward, has a possibly perverted private life of collecting child porn, it sounds obvious that if they are planning on hiring Ward again, he will probably be innocent of all charges. Did Ward sing the praises of child porn on the radio, the same way Grant tossed around his hate? NOPE
    he conservative radio legend certainly made a mistake, but paid a very heavy price.
    Eventually, he was hired by crosstown rival WOR

    so what? fired by one station, hired by another station. Both stations have similiar ratings, demographics and signal. He was not punished, WOR is just as powerful a stationas WABC, you act as if he wound up podcasting (like the Greaseman or buying his own airtime)

    Stoip whinining, the entire media is one big business, dominated by free market laizze faire principles, hence the fear of having socialists and lefties on the radio. conservaitve ideology dominates the media, stop whining and moping, your not the victim. WE THE PEOPLE ARE THE VICTIMS OF A FAILED LAIZZE FAIRE IDEOLOGY AND A BOUGHT AND SOLD CONSERVATIVE MEDIA

    By Blogger Minister of Propaganda, at 18 January, 2008 14:54  

  • Okay, Brian, it's getting pathetically old...

    Acknowledge Grant's history of racist comments, or shut up about this story entirely.

    by not bringing up what is obviously an issue in this story, you imply acceptance of his behavior - which I would wager you are doing deliberately.

    If you're a racist, don't be ashamed and hide it - come right out, say it, and be proud.

    You can't be "fired" from this website, after all.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 18 January, 2008 15:36  

  • PCD and others, I am "anonymous number one", and I have no idea why my handle did not come up.

    "anon #1, maybe because the guy is beyond the pale?"

    Fudgie, he was not fired because people like you have concluded he is "beyond the pale", he was fired because certain ALLEGATIONS were made, and there was an appearance of possible impropriety.

    The station bended to politically correct rhetoric and neocon pressure, has come to recognize the allegations were peppered with falsehoods and irregularities, and have chosen to reverse their position, which is their right.

    They cannot very well offer any sort of apology, because the government has not finished with the case yet, and they probably will not afterward anyway, based on legal counsel.

    "A conservative host in the same position as Ward would be fired immediately and permanently."

    This is an asinine statement, because, firstly, a conservative radio host would never have been targeted for persecution the way Ward was in the first place, and, secondly, because these radio stations are not ideologically driven but corporate entities with no loyalties to their talent in the first place.

    They will do what they have to do in order to alienate the fewest sponsors and the fewest listeners, and that is why the crafty neocons chose wisely when they selected a Catholic ex-priest to smear with charges that most onlookers would associate with sexual deviance and childhood sexual abuse.

    "Acknowledge Grant's history of racist comments, or shut up about this story entirely."

    I would not say Grant has a "history" of "racist comments".

    You've never known an honest, solid person who is the furthest thing from racist who hasn't, out of anger or frustration over racial politics, a horrible crime by a black perpetrator, or rhetoric by a race-based politician or agents provocateur, lost their temper and made very angry or hateful comments that could be considered racially insensitive, in private life or in your presence?

    I would not call that a "history", particularly if your job or the market you are working in is a flashpoint for the above mentioned conditions.

    MANY right-wing hosts, particularly Rush Limbaugh, who has virtually built a career on it, do it on an almost daily basis. They are typically and characteristically devious about it, however, and, because, it is premeditated and carefully planned and weighed in advance, rather than Grant's spontaneous outbursts, that are borne out of legitimate frustration.

    Savage is another one who turns this trick on an almost daily basis, but all is forgiven, because they say (or, rather, recite) the slurs in such careful fashion, and, like Limbaugh, after prior consultation with the handlers to ensure damage control is in effect, to boost ratings and create media buzz at opportune times.

    THAT, to me, is totally racist, because catchphrases used by truly hateful and dangerous individuals are coined and disseminated in the wake of legitimate racial issues and outrages to maximize PROFIT.

    Grant's frustrations reflected the frustrations of his listeners across all racial, religious, and ethnic lines.

    Grant was conservative when conservative wasn't "cool", and Ward is in much the same situation today.

    By Anonymous hashfanatic, at 18 January, 2008 16:28  

  • I don't listen to Grant or Savage, because they are both extremist, and espouse racist views (or in Grant's case, has - no one has refuted the evidence against it short of merely saying it isn't true - and Grant has never recanted any of the things attributed to him).

    Don't listen to Limbaugh with regularity either, but the verbatim quotes I read (and some reposts of his very own radio show transcripts) show a deliberate increase in racist rhetoric - he's always been a whore who will toe the line to keep negative attention on himself.

    So, Bob Grant didn't say the things that are quoted and attributed to him? Prove it.

    It's okay to say racist things (not misinterpreted, not "racist-like" - clearly deliberately racist) because of anger? That's the most pathetic argument ever.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 18 January, 2008 22:41  

  • Hash why would anyone believe anything you say about racisms. You are the most racist person on this blog. So shut up until you get your own self in check. I guess you think hating Jews is alright.

    By Blogger pf1, at 20 January, 2008 01:34  

  • Hating Jews?

    Pf1 , is your name David Horowitz? criticising Isreal is not "hating Jews", attacking William Kristol is not hating jews, it is hatred of neo-cons.

    Brian must be an anti-semite, he has an issue with Al Franken (Jewwwwwishhhh). Brian, why do you hate the Jews?

    By Blogger Minister of Propaganda, at 21 January, 2008 09:55  

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