This evening at 6PM, they will pull the plug on "progressive talk" in South Florida. I know I just dealt with this topic on Wednesday, but I'm feeling a bit nostalgic today. I've been the victim of format changes a couple of times before, and it always hurts.
The difference is, this time I'm not working at the station that's changing format. But, interestingly enough, it still hurts!
It hurts because, even though the Democrats control both houses of Congress and the White House, the giant corporation and conglomerates that own and operate the majority of the radio stations in the country continue to push the fallacy that liberal talk radio can't work.
The fact is that it can. In cities where the signals of the "liberal" and the "conservative" stations are on par with each other, and where the stations are also on an equal footing when it comes to resources, they are quite competitive.
But let's look at it another way... Most radio stations are operated by BIG business. As much as the right likes to label the media as liberal, the fact is that most media outlets are owned by BIG corporations, whose interests are best served by the Republican agenda. Deregulation, tax breaks for the wealthiest Americans, tax loopholes for those same BIG businesses... you get the idea.
It's no wonder that 90% of the stations that air political talk opt to promote their conservative/Republican ideology.
Do they have an audience? Yes. Is there an audience for an opposing viewpoint? YES!
We're seeing the growth of the opposing viewpoint on MSNBC. They just hired Ed Schultz to host a new show at 6pm weeknights. On the other hand, MSNBC has the right-wing ideologue Joe Scarborough on in the morning, and just renewed Chris Matthews for another four years (I really don't get him at all...).
They're straddling a fence, but at least giving "our side" a voice. That's more than I can say for radio where, since the election of President Obama, we've seen the number of "progressive talk" stations dwindle! It doesn't make sense, unless you realize who controls the purse strings at these stations!
So, on today's Radio or Not Podcast, I take a walk down memory lane, and lament the loss of South Florida's Progressive Talk (even though they stopped using that phrase last year). And I ask you a couple of questions:
- With the loss of South Florida's only progressive radio voice, would you like to see Radio or Not deal with local issues at least once a week?
-What do you want from Radio or Not? More politics or more lifestyle/fun/pop culture? Something else?
-How do you listen to Radio or Not? Do you subscribe to the podcast via iTunes or download it from the website? Do you put it on your iPod and listen in the car, or do you listen from your computer?
-Your comments, suggestions, thoughts, feedback about Radio or Not.
You can email me here, post your responses below in the comments section of the blog, or post on our message board. Any or all of the above.
I do appreciate the extra effort it takes to listen to the Radio or Not Podcast. I know that the day will come, in the not-too-distant future, when listening to a podcast in your car will be as easy as pushing a button. Unfortunately, timing is not on our side in South Florida today, where at 6:00 this evening, the option of pushing a button and hearing someone who is politically in line with the people who run our country will be lost. Somehow, that seems very un-American!