Monday, June 8, 2009

Curtis Sliwa and the Radio Storm of Ugliness

I have to listen to him. At work. It's my job. And his breaks float in a ten minute space. So sometimes, I have to listen a lot.

Sometimes I can deal with it. But lately it's like fists coming out of my headphones and boxing me around the ears. When he starts going off about Obama.

Some of the ugliness is so casual and contextless that it makes my head spin. The spinning leads to nausea. Then the calls he puts on the air, the Obama-haters. Obama's only a gift to this country, you stupid people. Come ON. WAKE THE FUCK UP.

People are never going to get together, never going to figure out, until they figure out that the "other" isn't the enemy---it's the UGLINESS. THAT'S what the enemy is.

Maybe I'll write about some of these other guys. For now, he's the one who's shoved into my face if I want to make a living.

I'm just a lowly person on the totem pole of Corporate Radio. I'm just one of the voices on the air. I make 42K a year. I'm no one. Radio is full of, brimming with, people who are more important than I am. And the amazing thing is that many of these important people have never cracked a mic, never been exposed to day to day operations at a radio station. They haven't thought about the magic of radio. They are the Money People. The Business People.

As you know Public Radio is different. In Corporate Radio, Good = $$$$$$.
In public radio, Good = Good. And who decides, well, at least it is a human being deciding. At least there's some community involvement and input and membership. Ah Yes membership brings in money. But it brings in money because people love the show. It might be a show that is not commercially successful. But that doesn't mean it's not good. The best shows I've heard have been on public radio, hands down. All across the board. And its' because the values system is different.

Course at K-Krazy, they were so mortally afraid of being Uncool, that they were paralyzed by fear of what people think---to the point that creativity has been dying a slow and painful death there, in an underground hallway which is littered with the bodies of radio artists and echoing with the sounds of shows past. Most of which were severered from their basement-connection-to-the-stars, in a brutal or degrading way. The insults seem to be the constant. And only a few speak about it, because you just don't speak up against The Establishment. And they are, boy you better believe it, The Establishment. Boy and how.

But Sliwa.
He puts people on the air like a deranged “producer” who rants and screams about how Obama is a Muslim, (of course saying oh you’re crazy man you’re over the top) He puts him ON THE AIR over and over again! and you know someone out there is getting all f&%^#$ed up about it hearing those words.

He doesn’t cite history, he doesn’t reference anyone remotely resembling a thinker, he blasts his audience with hate speech and innuendo about Obama who’s the best hope this country’s had in 20 years; do ya think he’s even cracked any of Obama’s books to see who it is he’s attacking?
No education whatsoever. Sometimes he’s entertaining. There are moments I laugh. Those are the moments he gives over to dating or popular culture.
But politics? Does the man ever READ?

There are so many smart, interesting, funny people in the world. But what’s on the air these days, coming from these right-wing whackos, is like pure garbage pouring into the minds of those who dial up those frequencies. It’s like that garbage patch in the Pacific that’s the size of Texas and 30 metres deep, made up of all the foul plastic excreta of our heedless consumerism. It’s like hairballs and phlegm coughed into your mouth during a kiss forced on you by a drunken, sweating, reeking asshat who thinks you should be impressed because he’s got a nice car. It’s like a pipeline of festering ooze from a whining, bitter psyche whirling in a self-created vortex of hubris and oblivious aggression. Something is happening to this country that is very bad, and he is a part of it. He’s one of the points in the universal mind where incomprehension threatens to suck everything good, into an alternate world of finger-pointing, criticism without constructiveness, and uncontrollably spasming projection and hatred for anyone different. Fear rules in that world. And he’s such a tough guy. These days I turn down the volume when I am forced to listen, make sure no one can hear me, and softly hum the theme to All Things Considered. God help us all.

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