The Radio Equalizer: Brian Maloney

16 October 2006

Joe Trippi, John Zogby, Sheldon Drobny, Nova M Radio


Drobnys Launch Libtalk Rival Network

*** Check Here For Other Updates ***

Less than two weeks after their last- ditch proposal to purchase Air America Radio and avert a bankruptcy was rejected by its management, Sheldon and Anita Drobny have instead decided to launch a rival, Franken- free liberal talk network.

Insert The Truth (With Jokes) here.

Backing them is Dr Mike Newcomb, a Phoenix- area talk host who has been named CEO of their company, Nova M Radio LLC.

Sheldon Drobny, the eccentric Democrat Party fundraiser, Huffington Post blogger and investor with known LaRouchian sympathies, even has his first talk hosts hired and ready to go: Deaniac frat- boy Joe Trippi, as well as pollster John Zogby. From Air America, they're bringing over former evening host Mike Malloy.

Using Nova M Radio LLC's two owned and operated stations in Phoenix and Little Rock to kick off the new network, the Drobnys are now busy looking for investors to fund an expansion to other markets, such as Milwaukee, where they've been trying to establish a foothold for over a year.

For now, their stations are still running programming from both Air America and JonesMediaAmerica, but it seems likely that will change soon, since Nova M is now a direct competitor.

Coming soon is a more substantial website, including a blog.

From Nova M's media release:

It is with great excitement and optimism that I announce today the formation of a new progressive talk radio network. Myself along with my partners, Anita and Sheldon Drobny; the original cofounders of the Air America Radio Network, want to be the first to tell all you “truth seekers” that the original truth seeker himself Mike Malloy will be born again live on the public airwaves. The planned second coming (barring any apocalypse) is scheduled for October 30, 2006.

The Mike Malloy Show will initially broadcast live, from 9PM -12 Midnight (EST) on Nova M Radio affiliate 1480-AM KPHX Phoenix.

In addition, I’m equally excited to announce our strategic partnership with Joe Trippi and associates. Joe Trippi revolutionized electoral politics in America with his instrumental role in Howard Dean’s 2004 presidential campaign, raising over $40 million in small donor contributions over the internet. Joe created a new paradigm in how campaigns locally and nationally are conducted by leveraging the scope and breadth of innovative internet-based technologies and digital tools. Joe and his team will help us reach out to millions of us who share common values and common goals.

Also joining our team will be internationally renowned pollster John Zogby, President and CEO of Zogby International. John will be co-hosting a weekly one hour show, “The Pulse of the Nation” where John polls particular hot button issues from politics and pop culture to the War in Iraq and stem cell research.

Each program will include expert guests and audience participation. At the end of each show John will reveal the secret results of the poll and each listener will then know whether or not they have their finger on “The Pulse of the Nation”!

We will continue to build upon the found- ation laid by our prede- cessors and will work tirelessly to fulfill our fiduciary responsibilities to our investors. Equally important, we will with the millions of faithful progressive listeners uphold our vision to promote freedom, social justice, economic justice and peace worldwide.

We have many more exciting announcements to make; new talent, name of new network and so on. So stay tuned and keep up to date at our web site,! And as always, from the bottom of my bleeding liberal heart, God Bless America!

In Solidarity,

Mike Newcomb, MD
CEO & Chairman, Nova M Radio, Inc.

In the past, Michelle Malkin and your Radio Equalizer have written extensively about the controversial background of the Drobnys and thanks to Nova M, it appears that the saga continues. Who said libtalk couldn't be entertaining?

FOR THE LATEST on key Massachusetts races, visit Bay State Showdown, our other site.

ELSEWHERE: The Anchoress wonders why the Harry Reid scandal isn't "sexy enough" for the mainstream media. Some may not be aware that your Radio Equalizer sparred with Reid over a very similar land deal flap in 1997.

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  • I thought there wasn't a market for progressive talk radio.

    By Blogger hashfanatic, at 16 October, 2006 09:14  

  • Hash

    They own the stations. In Phoenix and Little Rock. ( Let me spell it out, they can play whatever they want, they own the ball ).

    Which also means they will replace Airhead America with their own programming. Not an increase in lib programming but a fragmentation and one more blow to Airhead.

    BTW in Dallas the station that was carrying Airhead has now changed its format to Catholic religious programming. Since no one was listening, they did not have to chase away any listeners to change. Watch and see if the dismal ratings dont uptick a bit with this fairly bland programming. Then process that in your market analysis.

    By Blogger Seriouslyunserious, at 16 October, 2006 09:52  

  • Are you saying that there is no market for "liberal media", then?

    Maybe we'll have to wait and see how progressive radio that is actually run by progressive businessmen (rather than Glaser-type crypto-operatives) will do.

    I wonder who's gonna update Auntie T. on this nasty little development?

    By Blogger hashfanatic, at 16 October, 2006 09:58  

  • >>Joe Trippi revolutionized electoral politics in America with his instrumental role in Howard Dean’s 2004 presidential campaign

    yes, the "yearrrrrrgh!!" at the end of President Dean's inaugural speeck was one to remember :)

    Talk about this on a radio board said that the Drobny's network is a public "FU" to Rob Glaser. Actually AAR is doing a public "FU" to Glaser by not repaying his $10 million loan (see bankruptcy statement). Cue Mojo Nixon's song "Where The Hell's My Money?" here

    By Blogger raccoonradio, at 16 October, 2006 11:55  

  • >>Are you saying that there is no market for "liberal media", then?

    There is--TV, movies, music, newspapers, the Net, magazines, etc.
    Radio too could be part of the liberal media, if run right (though there is a liberal presence on non-comm radio, be it NPR, Democracy now!, etc., but we're talking non-profit with them).

    The funniest part of the AAR mess is that many people felt AAR wasn't worth listening to because the hosts weren't entertaining--this despite the fact that ENTERTAINERS were hired to be on!

    Don't be too surprised if you see prog-talk stations downplaying the whole AAR thing...taking the logo off their sites or shrinking it, accenting NON-
    AAR shows like Shultz and Miller, etc. Prog. talk could succeed but the talent and management of AAR
    has not.

    By Blogger raccoonradio, at 16 October, 2006 12:00  

  • It neither proves or disproves anything. But show me three markets that had AA thriving. I will grant that Seattle had good ratings, who else? How if you dont get viewers do you get sponsors to pay for advertising? And if no ads, you run out of money and go bankrupt. Its kinda simple really, and since ratings were falling not rising in every market I saw, it not even close to the truth that it was initial losses that burdened an otherwise viable product.

    I think the business model you are looking for is NPR. Government funded radio which is usually quite liberal in its content.

    By Blogger Seriouslyunserious, at 16 October, 2006 13:07  

  • NPR is hardly liberal-it wouldn't DARE be. Rather, I'd define it as centrist, and the type of people who listen to it tend to like it that way.

    I've long felt that, since AAR was the first and only liberal media radio outlet permitted (for a time) to operate, a government grant in its first few years was in order.

    But, there would be about as much of a chance of that as an ice cube thriving in hell, so, better to concentrate on reinstitution of the Fairness Doctrine...

    By Blogger hashfanatic, at 16 October, 2006 14:53  

  • If you would describe NPR as centrist that likely says more about you than it does about NPR.

    There wont be any Fairness Doctrine if I have anything to say about it...

    By Blogger Seriouslyunserious, at 16 October, 2006 19:03  

  • You won't.

    By Blogger hashfanatic, at 16 October, 2006 20:21  

  • You know, This whole thing is pretty interesting. Didn't Save Air America Phoenix raise cash to keep Air America Radio? And now for those of you who contributed, we're going to keep it and run our own stuff instead.

    Thanks for your donation and a big FU to you.

    Gotta love it.

    By Blogger Clouseau, at 16 October, 2006 23:54  

  • Well, that's the way Glaser and Co. operate.

    By Blogger hashfanatic, at 16 October, 2006 23:57  

  • Their is only one reason AAR Failed. AAR sucks. So they made some changes they still Suck.

    It will take an act of congress to keep them on the air thats how bad they suck.

    I am sure Hash does not think they should have to make a profit let someone else pay the bills.

    By Blogger PF1, at 17 October, 2006 00:31  

  • No, that's how Glaser and his $200,000-a-month shyster lawyer think-Drobny didn't want AAR to declare bankruptcy. He wanted to SAVE the brand, so it wouldn't be destroyed by neocons like everything else in this country has been.

    PitifulFool1, have you ever considered shock treatment therapy?

    By Blogger hashfanatic, at 17 October, 2006 01:53  

  • He can want in one hand shit in the other see which one fills first. AAR still sucks brand and all.

    By Blogger PF1, at 17 October, 2006 03:14  

  • It says a lot about AAR that its two Boston affiliates combined were lucky to get a 0.6 (in liberal Boston!)
    while conservatalkers like WRKO or
    WTKK got ratings as big as seven times as much. The AAR stations got half the number that a 250 watt
    Cambridge "standards" station was getting. (And for those who complain about signal strength, I thought
    WXKS and WKOX did fairly well in the
    Boston metro area...)

    By Blogger raccoonradio, at 17 October, 2006 04:57  

  • I see Hashhead had no answer to the three successful affiliates question. So much better to blame neocons ( ie code lib speak for Jews who have left the progressive reservation ) for AA demise. What did they keep pulling the plug on the 50K watt stations? Most of Hash's butt buddies seem to have left him alone on his ramblings.

    Hey Hash, maybe you can talk Lyndon Laroouche into giving it another go in 08. He wont win, but no Democrat will anyway so why not a candidate that thinks like you? You deserve some respect from a party that regularly ignors your wisdom.

    By Blogger Seriouslyunserious, at 17 October, 2006 13:13  

  • coon, it does NOT say a lot...unless you live and die by distorted ratings numbers, skewed polls, rigged you not understand that you are in a tiny minority of people who actually takes such "quantitative" measures seriously? How CAN you, with no oversight in place?

    Seriouslyunwell, I didn't address the ridiculous "three markets" question, because it is irrelevant. Firstly, (and hopefully for the last time), most liberals and progressive truthseekers tend to be more computer-savvy, listening to streaming and broadcasts, which your little measures don't cover. Secondly, if AAR (or any other nonfascist outlet) were to have become the number-one game in town, in any of those three markets, what would be the first thing you would attack? The "mainstream" methodology! Ha!

    As for the LaRouche rantings, please go light a candle for your blessed Reb Kahane, and don't pretend to pigeonhole me into yet another of your political-piggy categories.

    Eight million of us tune into terrestrial radio daily, looking for something that reflects our values. We are intelligent, forward-looking, progressive consumers who work long and hard for our dollar, and are secure enough in our abilities and strengths to part with a dollar once in a while. We are this nation's future, and we will regain power.

    AAR management? Of course it's problematic. Dark forces meant for it to be, all along. I've already instructed you as to how.

    A properly-run progressive talk radio network will have purveyors of the most amazing, technologically advanced products and services banging down their door. For example, advertisers already anticipating the scuttling of Phil Boice's tired format on WABC in New York are already sniffling around.

    Who do you think they struggling to retool their campaigns to? The Salem Broadcasting Network?

    Conservatives at least had business savvy in the 1980's. They fudged numbers when they wanted to, to enhance their profits. The failed conservatives in 21st-century business are forced to use failed METHODS to cover up the irrelevant product they can no longer sell.

    Payback's a bitch, what can I tell you?

    By Blogger hashfanatic, at 17 October, 2006 14:02  

  • 4 markets that Err America is doing well in:

    1. Seattle, WA
    2. Portland, OR
    3. Boulder, CO
    4. Eugene, OR

    By Blogger OregonMuse, at 17 October, 2006 17:28  

  • According to that set of figures, that is.

    By Blogger hashfanatic, at 17 October, 2006 17:40  

  • I love these, so there is no room for progressive radio comments.

    Listen very carefully...

    There is no room for non-entertaining hateful pregoressive radio, no.

    Welcome varrying views, make it entertaining and you will have something.

    In their present form there is room, there is no market.

    By Blogger realdebate, at 17 October, 2006 19:19  

  • Define non-entertaining hateful progressive radio, by your definition.

    You know, I resent that liberal voices are expected to "entertain" their audiences, while our society disintegrates around us. Only a complete psychopath would consider extremist hate blogs like moonbattery and half of something to be entertaining...why are they so seemingly popular with neocons? Similarly, how does Mark Levin fare on your merry old laff-o-meter?

    You HAVE truth with humor, if you want it already....Colbert, The Daily Show, and the like. What gives your side the right to tell our side what sells, when you don't even adhere to your own formula?

    By Blogger hashfanatic, at 17 October, 2006 19:54  

  • Well, if most progressives and liberals get their content through other channels, why bother with radio in the first place? Pretty evident no one's actually listening...

    By Blogger Guitanguran, at 18 October, 2006 11:29  

  • What about the Zogby part of the program they are offering? A show that will regularly test the Moonbat quoteint of its listeners with multiple choice questions?
    Basically a 2nd grade form of Brainwashing mallaiable Liberals.

    By Blogger Czarmangis, at 18 October, 2006 16:01  

  • OregonMuse,

    Re Boulder(Denver): KKZN bolted out of the gates with a 2.1 in Summer 2005. Though they have yet to report their final Summer 2006 numbers yet, the first 2 months measured a 1.1 and 1.2.

    And they're supposed to be an example of a successful market?!?

    Based on the ratings, here are the only AAR stations that pull higher than a 3.0:

    1. WJNO (Ft. Lauderdale) - 3.6 (Summer 06 Part II): Rush is pulling in the ratings, not Rhodes. Not a "true" AAR station.
    2. KPOJ (Portland) - 3.5 (Spring 06): #24 market
    3. WXXM (Madison, WI) - 3.1 (Sp 06): #96 Market
    4. KOPT (Eugene, OR) - 3.4 (Sp 06): #150 Market
    5. KIST (Santa Barbara) - 3.8 (Sp 06): #207 Market

    4 Markets. None in Top 20. Only 1 in the Top 90. Yeah, AAR is a real success story...

    By Blogger BF, at 18 October, 2006 16:48  

  • Hashfanatic said:

    "AAR management? Of course it's problematic. Dark forces meant for it to be, all along. I've already instructed you as to how."

    Dark forces ?

    Look out! Behind you! They're everywhere!

    Seriously.... Dark forces made Air America spend all their money paying Al Franken stupid money? THAT was clever. Rove, you Magnificent Bastard!

    By Blogger Lokki, at 19 October, 2006 08:49  

  • There is so much talent in the Liberal talk world, wouldn't it be great If we could get all of them under one roof? I realize that getting Liberals to agree on anything is like herding cats. But thank goodness we're not followers like Repugs!
    I once sent an email to AirAmerica and I told them that I thought a listener supported station wouldlwork. their response? FU!!!!!!!! I think that was about the fourth or fifth owner that said that. That's when joined NovaM radio at the urging of Mike Malloy.
    Sick 'em NovaM.
    Robinhood in Memphis, TN

    By Blogger Benny Robinson, at 08 June, 2008 22:05  

  • There is so much talent in the Liberal world. Wouldn't it be great If we could get it all under one roof? Or maybe that should be one radio station company?
    I realize that getting Dems to agree on anything is like herding cats but thank goodness we're not followers like the Repugs.
    I once sent an email to AirAmerica and I told them I thought a listener supported Liberal radio station would work. Their response? FU!!!!!!That's when I joined NovaM radio at the urging of Mike Malloy. Sick 'em NovaM
    Robinhood in Memphis,TN

    By Blogger Benny Robinson, at 08 June, 2008 22:06  

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