Rush to judgment

I swear that the next time I hear the Backstreet Boys, Creed or Faith Hill on the radio I’m going to run my car into a tree. Traditional advertiser-supported FM radio only plays about one-tenth of the music released each year, so I’m boycotting. It’s AM radio for me.

That means talk mostly, and once you get past knuckle-dragging sports chat and the mean-spirited Dr. Laura, in Sacramento that leaves liberal-bashing conservative talk (see “All Right, All the Time” by R.V. Scheide, page 18).

A lefty friend of mine dismissively describes talk radio as nothing more than organized lying campaigns fed to the unwashed masses. But it’s one of the most popular kinds of entertainment available today, and if you tune out Rush Limbaugh, it’s at your own expense. The Republicans have claimed this vast propaganda territory to themselves.

Conservative talk radio is a listener magnet in markets across the country. Callers line up to take turns tearing down the left. It reflects the desire of an audience to be put on stage and listened to. Their private reality with the show (another reason to dislike cell phones!) unfortunately replaces reasoned discussion that should take place in the community at large. But at least it’s political discourse and it’s local.

And if you don’t listen, how else will you find out about those black helicopters of the new World Order?