Friday, August 07, 2009

Emboldened or Increasingly Marginal?

A few weeks ago, I added The New Majority to my feedreader. It was founded by former loyal Bushie David Frum, who has become a major pariah on the Right for telling the truth about the political perils of right wing extremism. His efforts advocating for the "modernization" of the GOP is, I think, a great service to our discourse.

At first, I thought his critiques of the right were just going to last the length of the post-election honeymoon, but he is committed to walking the GOP and the conservative movement back from the brink of crazy.

There are a number of conservatives who are frustrated with the ignorant extremism dominating discourse on the right that read this blog. I especially recommend The New Majority to them.

That's a lengthy way of introducing this interesting piece by TNM's Tim Mak that makes the case that the increasing craziness of right wing talk radio is fueled by rapidly declining revenues.

Conservative talk radio has never been more angry and extreme than today. You might think that’s a response to the Obama presidency. But even more, conservative talkers are responding to a collapse in advertising revenues.

According to Scott Fybush, the proprietor of North East Radio Watch, talk radio has lost 30-40% of its ad revenues over the past two years.

Further, in an interview with a talk radio trade publication, Talkers Magazine, late last year, Talk Radio Networks CEO Mark Masters said: “2008 will be known as the year that weak syndicated programs began dying off in droves,” adding that “it has only just begun.”

In this environment, radio hosts believe that anger is their only path to survival. “If you’re not the most extreme person on the radio or making the most outrageous headlines,” says Fybush, “there is going to be some portion of the base that is going to ignore you and move onto someone who is more extreme.”


Anonymous said...

Nice link, I will check it out.

There have and always will be the crazies in every media outlet (print, tv, blogging and radio). Last term we had Olberman asking for Bush to resign as if he was searching for inner peace. The talk radio hosts are hurting more due to the economy and less because of some new found corporate moral. I think the writer did a disservice by not comparing drops in advertising in other segments of radio, satellite radio and print. Everyone is hurting regardless of their schtick.


mominem said...

Now if we can only get a former lefty to do the same thing for the Democrazies.

E said...

What "Democrazies" are you talking about?

Editilla said...

I'm sorry, but at my age I have had to endure the past 29 years of this heinous shit on the the face of our Body Politic by the Republican party. I'm not talking about savvy political maneuvering, but stiletto market nationalism and drive-by attack media.

Hence, I'm not at all prepared to dance with some conservative who is finally coming around to this any more than I would dance on the graves of those slaughtered in concentration camps amidst the scalding ignorance of the German people.
Come on, I really don't understand this, when will these conservatives take action against the more ill-bread of their prol'progeny???
They didn't mind sucking a little Handmaiden's Tail over the years when it worked to get the war on, or before that, kept the public blind to Central America while the whole time Cheney/Rumesfield/Bush/Baker et al were building the anti-campaign for Boy George.
God I'm losing it, this is insane.

Can you ax your conservative friends to get their friends to stop bringing Guns to these town hall meetings?

This is not the time to hold their hands unless we are dragging them through a phalanx of absolute heathens, their brethren who would destroy our Democracy at the town hall. This is bullshit. Very Clear and Present Bullshit, the most dangerous kind.

I apologize for my tude here but I am sick and tired of this Walmart-shirted thuggery. I just don't want to hear about poor whining frustrated conservatives (and btw There Is No Crying In Politics!:) --until they step out in front of us and face down their dain'bramaged acolytes, at least take the first bullets.
If they don't this Limbaudian Boo'rah is going to get worse because I believe what we are witnessing is the tactical trial runs.

Thanks, E.

Damian said...

I think that's exactly right. As radio shows compete for scarcer and scarcer ad dollars, it makes sense that they'll push their hosts to say more and more extreme things in a (probably futile) quest to get attention. It's sad, but it should remind everyone that the vast majority of corporate "news and news analysis" is really just branded entertainment, and is no more useful for understanding the world or making intelligent policy decisions than American Idol is.