As featured on p. 218 of "Bloggers on the Bus," under the name "a MyDD blogger."

Wednesday, April 28, 2004

Air America... I mean Air New York and some of Maine

Bad news for Air America Radio. They're still nowhere closer to restoring their signal in LA, and they lose Chicago on Friday:


Before they were taken off in LA, I had my problems with the station. I remember hearing a lot of inadvertent dead air, duplicated station promos back-to-back, and week-old news reports. Plus, the whole simulcasting from East Coast time bugged me. When Condi Rice testified for the 9/11 commission, AAR carried it live. But instead of carrying it live in LA too, they ran their same morning show during the hearing, and played it "live" at noon, after it was all over. I chalked this up to working out the kinks. But I didn't think it'd take this long to handle this carriage situation. And their weird name-calling letter to Arthur Liu of Multicultural Radio the day he pulled the Chicago and LA feeds seemed only to prolong the situation and burn bridges. I hate to side with the right-wingers who mocked the stupidity of that press release (which was taken down within minutes and is now nowhere to be found in full online), but they're right.

Here's a long quote from it:

SLUDGE REPORT: This Liu-ser [i.e., Arthur Liu, the guy who owns Multicultural Radio Broadcasting, and who earlier today said that Air America bounced a check and owes him more than $1 million] was ripping off our boss Evan Cohen big time (he can’t do that, that’s our job). Evan found out about it and he stopped payment on a check to keep Liu-cifer from ripping him off even more. You can touch Evan for the occasional meal or drinks but a million bucks is crossing the line. And if we ever get low on cash, we can always call Barbra Streisand. Or any of the Baldwins. Except Stephen.

So we got screwed, Liu’d, and tattooed. How Liu can you get? In Liu of payment. Liu’d and lascivious behavior. These write themselves. What we’re getting at is that we hate him.

So now everyone’s saying we’re going down the dumper in Chicago and Los Angeles, but what they don’t tell you is that we’re still on in Portland. And we OWN Portland. And let’s not forget Riverside and Plattsburgh. And New
York. And streaming on the internet. And XM. And Sirius. Actually we’re fine.

So cool your jets. Air America Radio isn’t dead, we’re in court and we’re going to slam Liu’s head in a car door. Another metaphor. We hope to be back on the air tomorrow or the next day in those markets.

Doesn't exactly bolster a liberal's case that we're the adults. At least the Web streaming works (even on my dialup at home).

postscript: I actually interviewed Dave Logan, one of the AAR execs that quit today, when he was working at XM. I found him to be a bit smarmy and Herb Tarlek-like (any WKRP fans out there?), all he talked about were how many great partnerships and sponsorships they had. Not sure if his leaving Air America is a bad thing.