I had to drive in to town today (40 minutes one way) to get Ms. TK some necessities and so listened to the radio. Reception was poor, probably because of the lightning (The "storm" if you can call it that dumped all of a tenth of an inch into the WalMart parking lot. Big whoop.)
So I pushed buttons and finally found a reasonably clear station, giving me my first introduction to Stephanie Miller, a woman who is supposedly very progressive and popular in the big cities. Big whoop.
At the start of the show she spent some minutes laughing at the listeners who'd sent her mail. This sounded bitter and cranky to say the least, but may have been an attempt at pithy humor. Then she started talking about Ann Coulter, a woman I've heard of but never listened to. (I don't know much about Coulter except that Ms. TK has heard her show and says she's not worth the wasted time.)
From the tone of the rant as Miller talked about Coulter they must be much alike. I would suppose that if she really wanted to demonstrate superiority she'd have discussed her points of disagreement but all I could think of as she harped Coulter's style and form was, "Gee, she's doing exactly what she says she hates in Coulter."
I missed a bit of the show as I had to make the dreaded WalMart stop and another at a high priced chain drugstore but when I tuned back in Stephanie was reading the news.
I was genuinely shocked. She was discussing filler news from somewhere in Florida about two women who were arrested for "lewd and lascivious conduct" in a public bathroom and her take was pretty homophobic, demeaning and cruel to say the least. I'd have expected this from some of the old school Southern Democrats of the Sixties, the sort who thumped their Bibles while keeping little black children out of their churches, but from a modern Progressive? I wondered a lot about this as I made my final stop at Lowes to get a couple of pieces of treated lumber.
Back in the truck and on the way home, Stephanie was interviewing Paul Woodruff concerning the recent report The Structural Imbalance of Political Talk Radio. (Warning, this is a large PDF file - why can't PDF ever be SMALL?)
The upshot of this report is that the writers want to limit radio station licensure and create fees to support broadcasting stations operated by the "progressive" Corporation for Public Broadcasting. (The report curiously neglects the role of NPR in the scheme of things, focusing on non-government-subsidized stations.) These two points about NPR/CPB weren't mentioned during the interview (or if they were was I missed them when I replayed it from Stephanie's website), instead Stephanie and Woody focused on how stupid the conservatives were, worrying about the fairness doctrine.
The concept of limiting licenses was mentioned primarily from the viewpoint of needing more "diversity", a code word for more government subsidy to special interest groups? It is interesting what sort of stuff you hear on the radio. Luckily for me the storm passed and the radio was again able to pick up that little AM station which plays old music from the 50s!