8.21.2004

I'm Terence and I'm addicted to talk radio...

To use a metaphor appropriate to the season, Talk radio is like sand in my shorts, and it is beginning to give me a rash. I must confess though that this is a self-inflicted wound. I need simply to stop listening and all would be well. But it’s difficult. I’m addicted, I can’t stop listening. I’m not sure what the exact cause of my fixation might be, maybe its self-loathing.

I mean really what do I have in common with the target demographics of "El Rushbo" or "Dr. Savage" (aka Dr. Wiener). I’m a mid-thirties vegetarian atheist with liberal leanings. It is the rare exception that I agree with anything that anyone of these right-WINGNUTS says. Michael Savage says that all liberals are sick in the head, and Sean Hannity says that liberals hate America so maybe that’s it. I’m so busy hating America and being sick in the head that I’ve decided to torture myself by listening to this mob of Bushie sycophants spout their vapid shit. No, self loathing can’t explain it, perhaps the cause lies elsewhere.

Maybe I’m secretly a conservative and I’m trying to shake off my liberal ideas like an old worn out suit. Maybe its like the protagonist of Fight Club, I’m really two people and the conservative persona keeps changing the radio station away from the soothing string section sounds of NPR to the Gongs and snare drums of AM blabbery. I can’t listen for long without switching away to something else. Something that isn’t so hollow.

Hollow seems to me to be the principal problem with talk radio today, and perhaps forever. The ideas and notions expressed by the these hosts always seems empty to me. You can imagine the idea in your head as your trapped in bumper to bumper screaming at the idiot in the car in front of you while drinking your dunk’n donuts frappe. It seems like a good idea at the time (like rolling the house of that snotty third period English teacher who won't shut up about baby seals) but when you think about it for a second anyone with enough imagination can see themselves sitting in the police station waiting to make their one call and wondering how much time one gets for rolling a teachers house. That then is the issue, these hosts are like the class clown, the instigator, always there with a clever idea, on paper at least, but seemingly never around when their lame ass scheme lands you in trouble.

So maybe if I’m not self-loathing, or a split personality; maybe I listen to see if they will ever learn. If they will ever acknowledge that for all their bluster and thunder they have no workable ideas. Just hollow plans that fail to consider the most important question in any plan. "And then what?" It’s easy to have a simple answer something that sounds great, its much more challenging to a plan that has a reasonable chance of success. Whether it’s Iraq or the economy we need sound ideas with a hope of success, not more bumble and bluster.