Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Why I Read the Daily KOS Everyday, Why Bill O'Reilly is Wrong, and Why the Presidential Candidates are Even Wronger!

With the Annual KOS Convention just days away, the Daily Kos is getting lots of attention from the very envious traditional press. The Daily Kos has become powerful and influential. While the Democrat presidential candidates felt comfortable in stiffing the once powerful Democrat Leadership Committee (DLC) convention, everyone but Joe Biden will be speaking to the Daily Kos attendees.

Such is the power of the Internet and the real leadership KOS has shown in tackling key Democrat positions, especially the Iraq Invasion and Occupation.

So while
Bill O'Reilly and many, many conservative bloggers and television commentators are vilifying the Daily Kos, the reality is Kos speaks to and for a very large portion of the American public.

So, yes Bill, you are right, there are some whacko's posting and commenting there. And there is satire and dark humor and even outright hate speech mingled in with the often insightful analysis and accurate and on-the-scene reporting. But this is absolutely true of any blogging website with multiple contributors and open forums for comments.

Given a magnifying glass and history files, one can find hatred and foul language and excessive hate in almost any blog with reasonable traffic. And the Daily Kos has heavy, heavy traffic and readership.

As I write this essay, the
Alexa Rank for Daily Kos is an amazing 4,878 with an astonishing reach of .02985% of all Internet Traffic compared to Bill O'Reilly's Alexa Rank of 83,723 and reach of only .0016%.

In fairness, O'Reilly's rank is extremely high, but the Daily Kos rank is spectacular! Not that this is a contest of readership. After all there are dozens of porn sites that dwarf them both!

But, the key is that Kos is read by many people who appreciate their point of view and their insight and perspective. If you don't read the Daily Kos regularly you are missing important facts, opinions and news that, at the very least, help explain the views of millions of Americans, who generally agree with Kos' liberal, Democrat (with a capital "D") philosophy.

So why is the WIZARD attacking the presidential candidates is his lengthy, grammatically incorrect and misspelled headline?

Well, certainly not for speaking at the Kos convention. They are doing the right thing there.

The Democrat candidates mistake (and it's a HUGE mistake) is failing to appear on FOX NEWS and appear at the FOX News's sponsored debates!

Just as the Daily Kos rightfully reflects the viewpoints of perhaps as many as 25% of the American public, FOX NEWS reflects the views of nearly 50% of the American Public. And Fox News sure as hell isn't as rough, hateful and prejudiced as many of the Kos articles and photographs so gleefully pointed out by Bill O'Reilly.

And, just as any objective and intelligent student of American politics and opinion MUST read the Daily Kos, any intelligent and objective and reasonable student MUST carefully consider the views and opinions broadcast on Fox.

But even that isn't the main issue I have with the candidates! Barack Obama said just this week he wants to be a "uniter, not a divider" (I do wish he'd chosen a different phrase). That is ONLY POSSIBLE when you actually speak to and listen to the other 50% of the deeply divided American Public!!

By thumbing their noses at the Fox News sponsored debates, the Democrats (with the exception of Joe Biden and Dennis Kucinich) are saying they really only want to be President of the "Blue States of America!"

This is, by the way, exactly the same criticism I leveled at the Republicans who
failed (and failed miserably) to show up for the NAACP Convention (with the noble exception of Tom Tancredo).

I, for one, will not accept this divisive stand any longer. We must DEMAND our candidates speak to the entire United States, left and right, north and south, east and west, liberal and conservative.



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National Association of Broadcasters Backs the Internet Radio Equality Act

The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) can't quite seem to negotiate in good faith with anyone, not even the powerful National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) with represents virtually the all AM and FM over the air radio stations in the United States.

"We are disappointed by SoundExchange's continued reluctance to respond to the good-faith reasonable offer put forth by NAB nearly two months ago," said NAB Executive Vice President Dennis Wharton. "NAB will now turn our attention to aggressively advocating in support of Rep. Inslee's legislation to ensure that local radio broadcasters who stream content online are treated fairly."

The RIAA seems determined to force Congress to act. The recording organization seems pathologically incapable of negotiating in good faith.

Certainly all small Internet Radio Station operators appreciate the support of the money rich and well connected National Association of Broadcasters.


The RIAA's position on Internet Radio seems so bizarre many people cannot believe there are not other issues preventing a reasonable settlement with Internet Radio.

"Why," a reasonable and intelligent person would ask, "would the RIAA want to kill an entire industry that serves millions of music lovers?"

I've been saying for the last several years, the issue isn't money and it isn't royalties and it sure as hell isn't providing payment to the artists and musicians. It's all about control. Once all competing Internet Radio Stations are gone the ONLY broadcasters left will be the big record companies themselves. The big four music labels, Sony-BMG, Warner, EMI and Universal are effectively exempt from all rules and all royalties (i.e., they pay the legally mandated royalties to themselves; their net cost is zero).

The key is that when all competition is eliminated, they will play only artists who are signed with the big recording labels. You'll hear Kelly Clarkson, but never again hear Irene Jackson (a Canadian independent who is a favorite on Wizard Radio).

Well, a new study, released last week, proves my point. Mark Lam, the CEO of
Live365 (the network that broadcasts all three Wizard Radio Stations), released the following data:

"Only 10-13% of AM/FM music is from independent artists and labels, so we spin four times as much indie music as AM/FM. Our 10,000 DJ's are opening up the diverse spectrum of musical genres and artists while AM/FM program formats narrow it. I see this statistic as a genuine reflection of what music DJ's will play when the choice is driven by what people like rather than profits."

Live 365's broadcast mix is shown on the LEFT and AM/FM Radio is shown on the right.

Both of the above stories are covered in depth in the July 26th issue of Radio and Internet News RAIN (click here).



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Thursday, July 26, 2007

Steven Spielberg Pressures Chinese Over Darfur

Unlike the disgraced Warren Buffett, Steven Spielberg isn't afraid to place principle above profits in the fight to provide aid and security to the people of Darfur.

ABC News reports this evening:

Steven Spielberg, under pressure from Darfur activists, may quit his post as artistic adviser to the 2008 Beijing Olympics, unless China takes a harder line against Sudan, a representative of the film director told ABC News.

China, Sudan's largest oil customer and perennial defender, has come under renewed scrutiny in the lead up to the Olympics, as the country juggles its need for cheap energy with its desire to host a trouble-free games.

As celebrities-cum-activists increasingly link the ongoing genocide with China's patronage, some — most notably and vocally, the actress Mia Farrow — have accused Spielberg of complicity, by not using his prominence and position to pressure the Chinese government to change course.

"Is Mr. Spielberg, who in 1994 founded the Shoah Foundation to record the testimony of survivors of the holocaust, aware that China is bankrolling Darfur's genocide?" Farrow and her son Ronan wrote in a March Wall Street Journal editorial.

In that same piece, "The Genocide Olympics," Farrow compared Spielberg to the Nazi director Leni Riefenstahl whose film "Olympia" was a paean to the 1936 Berlin Games.

"Does Mr. Spielberg really want to go down in history as the Leni Riefenstahl of the Beijing Games," Farrow wrote.

Days after Farrow's editorial, Spielberg wrote an open letter to Hu Jintao, president of China. "I am writing this letter to you, not as one of the overseas artistic advisors to the Olympic Ceremonies, but as a private citizen who has made a personal commitment to do all I can to oppose genocide. … Accordingly, I add my voice to those who ask that China change its policy toward Sudan and pressure the Sudanese government to accept the entrance of United Nations peacekeepers to protect the victims of genocide in Darfur," Spielberg wrote.

Excluding that letter, Spielberg and his representatives have, until now, been tight-lipped on what additional action the director might take.

"Steven will make a determination in the next few weeks regarding his work with the Chinese. Our main interest is ending the genocide. No one is clear on the best way to do this," Spielberg's spokesman Andy Spahn told ABCNEWS.com.

Unlike Warren Buffett, who made it crystal clear that he would look aside and not consider the plight of the people of Darfur in his stock investment decisions, Spielberg has made it known he is considering his options concerning continuing involvement with the Chinese.

No doubt Spielberg hope just the mention of his possible departure will bring some movement to the Chinese government. Virtually all Darfur activists believe the Chinese could force Sudan to accept UN peacekeepers in a matter of days.

I hope Steven Spielberg will continue his efforts on behalf of the people of Darfur.



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Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Death By a Thousand Cuts

The ongoing battle between the fledgling Internet Radio industry and the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA)continues at a snail's pace. I try to keep those of you who stop by this journal updated on the most recent developments.

But the RIAA is incredibly clever. They realize, correctly I fear, that if they drag this out long enough, the public will simply lose interest. The pressure on Congress will decrease and bigger issues will eclipse the plight of a few thousand broadcasters and a few million listeners.

Congress has twice been ready to act. House Bill 2060 has over 130 co-sponsors. And the Senate Bill has powerful backers. As each of the two previous deadlines approached Sound Exchange, the royalty collection arm of the RIAA, promised huge concessions in front of Congressional Committees only to pull them back and attach bizarre conditions to any settlement.

Many Members of Congress are aware of this bate and switch. But the process drags on into the fall and Internet Radio may finally breath its last, to be replaced by an RIAA controlled pay-per-listen model limited to the comparatively few artists and musicians signed with RCA, Columbia, Sony and the other big players. And even these artists will receive nothing for their performances.

Today I ask you follow these links and read two excellent and impartial articles about the current battle. First is
Sounds of silence: Internet radio hangs on from The Seattle Times and the second is Webcasting Royalties: A Modest Proposal from WIRED Magazine.

Please drop a note, letter email or phone call to your Congressperson and your two Senators. Otherwise Internet Radio will die a slow and agonizing death.



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Friday, July 20, 2007


There is a real depression settling over those of us who have long worked to help the beleaguered people of Darfur. Senator Barack Obama was viewed by many of us as the hope for a new America. An America that cared. An America that helped those in need. An America that would put principle above politics. An America that would stand strong against oppression at home and abroad.

I've receive a dozen emails in the last few hours from my friends and allies in the Save Darfur movement. We all hope and pray Barack Obama misspoke. We all hope and pray Barack was misquoted.

Alas, it seems the news reports are correct. His words did speak intelligently about diplomacy and international cooperation.

But those effort by the French and, much more recently the Americans have failed the people of Darfur. The SAVE DARFUR Coalition is now correctly DEMANDING UN INTERVENTION.

Obama certainly didn't help.

So below I'm reprinting the impassioned attack on Obama by (of all people)
Scott Malensek over at Flopping Aces. Obama deserves these harsh words and a lot worse.

Wow, say goodbye to the Greatest Generation, and hello to the weakest generation.

Senator Obama (D) has echoed the Democrats' view on war: genocide isn't worth fighting against. It's why American troops don't get sent to Sudan. It's why American soldiers don't go to Congo, and it's why Americans should leave Iraq. Apparently President Clinton was right to ignore the machete massacre of millions in Rwanda, and President Roosevelt (D) was wrong to wage war against an enemy that never attacked the US, and had no operational or cooperational ties with the Japanese who did. Genocide is permitted and accepted by Democrats. Yep. That's the face of the new Democratic Party.

"Well, look, if that's the criteria by which we are making decisions on the deployment of U.S. forces, then by that argument you would have 300,000 troops in the Congo right now — where millions have been slaughtered as a consequence of ethnic strife — which we haven't done," Obama said in an interview with The Associated Press.

"We would be deploying unilaterally and occupying the Sudan, which we haven't done. Those of us who care about Darfur don't think it would be a good idea," he said.

Perhaps the "Progressives" (often in love with nuanced reasoning) would only support action against a genocide if it the action were supported and called for by the UN? Nope. Sorry, but that rules out Rwanda, Sudan, Congo, and Iraq. All four had UN resolutions calling for intervention to prevent genocide. Even the Iraq War (referring to the post-Saddam occupation here) is authorized-even compelled-by a series of UN resolutions that essentially demand that the US and others who invaded must stay in Iraq until it is secure and stable enough to stand on its own. Senator Obama either is ignorant of the myriad of UN resolutions that have called for intervention against genocide, or he's taken the same position often accused of President Bush: he's ignoring the will of the international community; thumbing his nose at the UN.

Perhaps Senator Obama and others believe that problems which are far away-like genocides in Rwanda, Sudan, Congo, Iraq-are not American problems. They're so far away as to be irrelevant. It's not like they're happening in Mexico or Canada where our completely undefended, unprotected, and ill guarded borders would protect us. History bears them correct, right?

The US had no business trying to stabilize a civil war in Lebanon in the 1980's, so US Marines left, and the only effect was to turn Osama Bin Laden from rich playboy to Jihadi bent on holy war with the west-including the US.

The US was right in ending support for Afghanistan after the Russians left, and the ensuing anarchy which brought about the Taliban and Al Queda was their-fault not America's, and people in Afghanistan as well as Holy Warriors everywhere understand that.

The US was right in running from anarchy in Somalia as the only effect was to prove Osama and other holy warriors' idea that the US is a paper tiger that will run rather than fight.

The US was right not to respond to the USS Cole attack as the only effect was to create an Al Queda recruiting video.

Really, one wonders if regressive "progressives" learned anything from World War II, Pearl Harbor, and 911? If genocide isn't worth fighting to end, then is anything, and if deliberately, purposefully letting millions of people be slaughtered in genocides isn't the greatest human sin of omission, then what is greater?

Malensek may be a tad too bombastic and a little too partisan. He wrongly claims Obama is the face of all Democrats. But Obama is dead wrong in his comments and, much worse, he is wrong in his principles.



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We Ain't Staying

The Wizard predicts (once again) that our nearly unilateral and virtually complete withdrawal from Iraq is inevitable. In the words of Senator Joe Biden, speaking yesterday to our Ambassador to Iraq, "We ain't staying. We're not staying. We're not staying. Not much time."

I continue to believe this withdrawal is a horrific mistake. It's needless. It's stupid. It's terribly short sighted. It is a betrayal of our allies and a gift to al Qaeda.

Kill 3,000 Americans in the heart of New York City and receive an entire country as your reward.

It took a series of incredibly short sighted and poorly thought out moves by President Bush and the neo-cons to start this tragedy.

And it's taking another series of incredibly short sighted and poorly thought out moves by the Democrats to complete this tragedy.

But only some sort of massive change in the American public opinion polls could possibly stave off the inevitable.

We will have finally taught our enemies that we can easily be beaten in any war. Time and manipulation of American public opinion trumps military might.

And we have certainly taught any potential ally that we cannot be trusted. The word of our President means less than nothing.

Harsh? I think not.

Just ask the brave Iraqi's who actually were stupid enough to believe the United States would protect them and shepherd them into an era of democracy and stability. That is if you are able find any alive after our troops are gone.

After all, would be President Barack Obama has made the position of his vision of the United States perfectly clear, "...genocide in Iraq isn't a good enough reason to keep U.S. forces there."



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Thursday, July 19, 2007

Looking Forward.... Looking Back

A block from my office here in rural Mississippi is a wonderful little local restaurant where, as the old song goes; "everybody knows your name." Real home cooking and great conversation. It's open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and I've been known to eat all three meals there.

There are a few of us who occasionally discuss politics. Frankly it's a lot like the blogosphere where folks from the left, the center and the right gather and discuss sports one day, movies the next and politics the next. One of our group is running for sheriff and that occupies a lot of our time.

But, from time to time, we get back to the discussion of the invasion and occupation of Iraq. I've noticed one commonality at the restaurant, here in the blogosphere and on the U.S. Senate floor the other night. The folks who think we should stay in Iraq are looking forward in time. The folks who think we should leave are focused on today and Bush's sins in the past.

I don't mean to oversimplify and I certainly don't want to put words in any one's mouth. But as I listened over coffee, as I listened overnight to our Senators debate and as I read on-line the general argument for leaving is that Iraq is a mess (very true), that we are "losing American blood and treasure" on a daily basis (also very true) and that the Iraqi's are not pulling their share of the weight (also very true).

Those who think we need to stay in Iraq tend to look past the problems we face today and concentrate on the future. Their argument for staying is that, if we leave, Iraq will fall into the hands of al Qaeda or Islamic fundamentalists (true), thousands or tens of thousands will die and/or be tortured or displaced (extremely likely), the middle east will be destabilized (also possible, although less likely), our enemies will be emboldened (that's a guarantee) and terrorists will have an important and resources rich country from which to operate (that, of course, is a given).

When a conservative or a "stay the course" person is faced with the very real situation on the ground today, their answer is that it's the "price we must pay." The goal is worthy of our sacrifice.

When a liberal or a "bring the troops home" person is faced with the question of Iraq's future, they tend to look inward or backward.

"At least no more Americans will die."

"Our boys will be home safe."

"Are your children serving in Iraq?"

"It's Iraq's problem. Who cares what they do?"

"Bush made this mess. He should have never invaded a sovereign country."

"The Iraqi's are incapable of self government, let alone democracy."

"Bush lied to get us into war."

Now I have to agree that Bush should NEVER have invaded Iraq. And I agree that Bush has made this mess.

But the question now is how do we clean up Bush's mess? Unfortunately, Harry Reid and the Democrats leading the movement to exit Iraq are all looking backward. They admit they have made absolutely no plans, no contingencies for any of the scenarios predicted by those who believe we must stay. They haven't discussed exit strategies with the military. They haven't discussed exit strategies with he Iraqi government. And they haven't discussed exit strategies with any of our allies. Of course, constitutionally, that's not their job.

The current "bring the troops home now" crowd has no plan beyond an April 30th deadline. There is no strategy. There are no contingencies.

I'm ready and willing to join the "bring the troops home now" crowd as soon as they start looking forward and plan for the future of Iraq and the middle east.

Please take a few minutes and listen to Guy Raz's excellent report on NPR this morning: US exit from Iraq full of unknowns Don't just read the abbreviated copy. Listen to the complete report. It's only 5 or 6 minutes long.




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Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Up All Night

Reuters reports:

"With cots, pillows and pleas for change, the Democratic-led U.S. Senate began a rare around-the-clock session on Tuesday to push President George W. Bush and fellow Republicans to end the Iraq war."

This is likely to keep me up all night, too. The alternative is nightmares.

Rarely (thank God) has the majority in the United States Senate been so wrong on such a critical issue. And even more rarely have we had a leader so shallow and so ignorant as Majority Leader Harry Reid.

Still, we face a determined majority in the Democrat Party who, for political reasons, seek to ignore reality, ignore the world, ignore our enemies and ignore our military leaders and pull our troops from Iraq.

History will no doubt tell us that there was virtually no practical reason for abandoning Iraq. Compared to every war in the entire history of the United States (and of the entire world) casualties are infinitesimal. Not to minimize the value of any life, we must realize the loss of life will be significantly higher if we abandon Iraq.

Of course, Harry Reid will point out that even though tens of thousands or hundreds of thousands lives will be lost, those lives will be Iraqi lives. No more of the valuable Americans will be lost (for a while). And, of course, it's all George Bush's fault anyway.

That last part will be true. This is Bush's folly. Bush should never have invaded Iraq. But he did. And the solution to this mess isn't to abandon our very real responsibility to the Iraqi people. And it certainly isn't to surrender an entire country to Islamic extremists.

So tonight I'll pray for the bravery of the Republicans. You know those guys... the ones who
afraid to show up for a debate at the NAACP convention.

But, in the game of politics, they will be bolstered by Bush's rising poll numbers and the real intelligence of real leaders like John McCain and Joe Lieberman. And somehow forty four (44) or so of them along with the principled Joe Lieberman will stand up against Reid and his politically popular opposition to the current occupation of Iraq.

But, make no mistake. Reid might lose tonight's battle. But soon enough Bush will be gone. And Clinton or Obama or Edwards will be the President. And we will pull out our troops. And al Qaeda will have the victory they have long sought. And 4,000 American lives will have been wasted.

And our enemies will learn that time is the one enemy that America can never defeat.



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Friday, July 13, 2007

A Tip of the Wizard's Pointy Cap to Tom Tancredo

Tom Tancredo, the Republican Candidate for President did the right thing. He did the obvious thing. But, curiously enough, he was the lone Republican to have the intelligence, the honor and moral courage to appear before the NAACP National Convention in Detroit yesterday.

Tom Tancredo stood alone surrounded by nine (9) empty podiums. That image says more about the moral bankruptcy of the Republican Party than any issue or policy or statement the party or candidates might make.

Nine people who claim to want to be President of the United States, arguably the world's greatest democracy couldn't muster the decency to face the flagship organization of a group of citizens that represents almost one fifth of the voting electorate.

Scheduling conflicts was the reason most cited. Lack of courage and moral conflicts were the real reasons.

Of course the eight leading Democrat candidates all showed up and they all wowed the crowd with their charisma, targeted speeches and their genuine concern for the issues facing black America.

Tom Tancredo also got the lavish praise he so rightly deserved. Not because he walks lock step on the issues, but because he cared enough to come to the convention and share his vision and his causes with the politically active and concerned citizens in attendance.

Will blacks give the Democrat nominee for President 91% of their votes? Probably. Would an appearance by Fred Thompson or Rudolph Guilani or Mitt Romney have changed that outcome? Perhaps not. We will, sadly, never know.

But their callous absence assures the vast majority of blacks will give their candidacy little or no serious consideration. And that's because these guys are just not serious candidates.

Tom Tancredo is the real hero in this year's Republican Party.



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Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Independent Artists To Go Down With The Ship

"Right now, independent artists make up less than 10 percent of what's played on broadcast radio, but on Internet radio, we make up about 37 percent."

"The reality is if our representatives in Congress allow these new royalty rates to go into effect -- and it's within Congress' power to decide -- it'll make it far harder for independent artists like us to make it."
"Worse for those of us who are also music fans, online radio will start to sound a whole lot more like broadcast radio. Millions of people whose musical tastes aren't served by broadcast radio will be left without an alternative."
Kenneth Rainey, a member of Tangleweed, an acoustic Americana band, writing on the op-ed page of today's Chicago Tribune

Monday, July 09, 2007

Imagine If Every Independent Blog Were Censored

Imagine if only the big corporations were allowed to post their thoughts on line. If you were one of the very lucky few who where hired by The Washington Post or MSNBC your opinions might be on-line (edited by your bosses, of course). But if you were just a private citizen then you would be eliminated from the blogosphere.

That is EXACTLY the situation facing Internet Radio tonight. Today there are, worldwide, about 10,000 independent broadcasters. While you might be able to hear some of them next week if you live in Europe or Asia, they will be unavailable in the United States. And 95% of them will be gone period.

Think this can only happen in China? Or Iran? Think again. This is happening today, in the United States!

It doesn't matter if they broadcast classical music, political talk shows, or the ambient sounds of wind and surf, the RIAA wants them off the air and off the air they will be.

Now, even the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) can't pass a CENSORSHIP law (as much as they obviously want to), so they are eliminating all competition by demanding gigantic royalties exclusively of Internet Radio. Nobody else has to pay to play. Just the little guys.

They (the RIAA) claim they just want the poor performers to get a fair shake.
But the reality is that the performers will never see a dime. See Kurt Hanson's analysis in today's Radio and Internet News (RAIN).

Are you going to sit there and watch 10,000 voices be silenced? Or will you follow this link and call your Senators and Congress persons every day. EVERY DAY.
Save Net Radio

P.S. A tip 'o the Wizard's pointy cap to Senator John Kerry who just added his name to the sponsorship of the Internet Radio Equality Act. When your calling Senators, call John Kerry and thank him. I just did.



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Sunday, July 08, 2007

A Question About the Future of Talk Radio

A reader and contributor here at the WIZARD, fkap posted a question this morning about TALK RADIO on the Internet and I thought I would enlarge my answer and post it here for all to read. When the RIAA and it's royalty collection arm, SOUND EXCHANGE, kills 99% of Internet Radio later this week, Talk Radio will be an indirect casualty. Here's what's happening:

vigilante asked

I'm curious, Wizard: just how much public affairs (news & Opinion) can one find on Internet Radio? Where can you find it? How much bandwidth does it suck up?

And, is it free?

I replied

vigilante, There is a lot of talk and political radio and that arena of Internet Broadcasting is the fastest growing segment.

Here's the good news: In theory talk radio is unaffected by the recent Copyright Royalty Board (CRB) rulings PROVIDED they carefully avoid the use of any music what-so-ever (not even the bumper music leading in and out of segments!!!!)

Just one note of music, one time, and they fall into the nightmare of the RIAA royalty battle we now face.

But even talk radio will be dealt a severe blow next Saturday. Although carefully programmed talk and religious radio (remember they couldn't use any music) can be broadcast for only the cost of bandwidth and computer server support,
the network that hosts several hundred of the political, religious and talk stations will go into bankruptcy under the weight of a ten million dollar retroactive bill from SOUND EXCHANGE.

A huge chunk of the real independent talk radio will die, leaving mainly the big network talk you already hear on AM/FM.

In other words Rush Limbaugh will survive but the dozens of independent "vigilante's" will go silent because the infrastructure that allowed them to broadcast for a few hundred dollars a year will be gone.

Be sure to go to
http://www.savenetradio.org/ You can get the full background on the crisis and learn how you can help. The only solution today is to put massive pressure on Congress.

Here is a listing of 320 talk stations you can listen to for free (today and for another 6 sixs). Some are weird (UFO's etc) some are religious and some a excellent liberal/progressive outlets.

You can start your own station on LIVE365. The first week is free (HA!!) and then the whole thing will likely be dead...

It's not really that funny, but the irony is thick......

Remember these three key facts:

  • AM and FM Radio PAYS NO ROYALTIES AT ALL TO THE RIAA or to the LABELS or to the ARTISTS. Satellite Radio does pay royalties, but they pay a whole lot less.
  • THE RIAA IS ONLY DEMANDING THE GIGANTIC INCREASE IN ROYALTIES FROM INTERNET RADIO!! They are not requesting a penny from AM and FM radio. THE ENTIRE GOAL OF THE RIAA IS TO KILL THE INDEPENDENT BROADCASTER who play independent artists and new, emerging talent.
  • The RIAA clearly isn't interested in seeing artists get paid. If they were they wouldn't kill the one medium paying them handsomely already.



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        Saturday, July 07, 2007

        Live Earth 7-7-07

        Just a personal note to express my support of the LIVE EARTH Concerts being held around the world today. If you haven't already checked out their website go to http://liveearth.msn.com/. It's loaded with performances, news, live feeds, and tips for improving the ecology.

        I HATE THE FACT this has become some sort of bizarre political football. Yesterday as I drove to work I had to listen to G. Gordon Liddy lecture me on all of Al Gore's failings and the myths of Global Warming. I like Liddy, but this is just plain stupid!! He's no scientist, he's a talk radio host and political operative. This shouldn't be a left versus right issue.

        There are, in fact, genuine political and economic issues that deserve discussion. There are real costs and real dangers in implementing any massive societal changes. But there are also small changes we can all make in our lifestyles that will only help the environment.

        So enjoy the concerts. And do what you can to make the world a better, cleaner, safer place to live.


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        Thursday, July 05, 2007

        Save Internet Radio, It's the Patriotic Thing To Do

        Peter Rothberg wrote a great patriotic piece for the Fourth of July in the blog he writes for "The Nation" Magazine. The article is titled "Five for the Fouth" Here is a short, but important, excerpt:

        "As my boss and Nation editor and publisher Katrina vanden Heuvel wrote,... The Nation's 'definition of patriotism is fighting to make sure your country lives up to its highest ideals.' In that spirit, here are five measures worth supporting on this Fourth of July. All would help us form a more perfect union.
          1. Health Care for All
          2. End Torture, not Habeas Corpus
          3. Voting Representation for DC
          4. The Right to Organize
          5. Save Internet Radio

        "Internet radio has become a tremendously popular source of news and views plus music. In just the last year the online radio audience increased from 45 million to 72 million listeners each month.

        The founding fathers couldn't have anticipated the wonders of the electronic world. But I think it's safe to say that the democratic free-for-all of Internet radio would have met with their approval as a crucial part of the fourth estate that Jefferson held was critical to a functioning democracy.

        "Unfortunately, the future of Internet radio is in doubt as royalty rates for webcasters have been drastically increased by a recent ruling by the Copyright Royalty Board. The only hope is that sufficient grassroots pressure can be applied in support of the Internet Radio Equality Act...

        "Please implore your senators and reps to co-sponsor and vote in favor of the Internet Radio Equality Act (HR 2060) and ask your friends to join the coalition to save Internet radio."

        Read the entire blog post at The Nation.


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        Wednesday, July 04, 2007

        The 4th of July

        I hope you all enjoy the many blessings we have received from those who conceived, built and protected this great country.

        And take a few moments to remember and thank those who protect it today.

        Those fighting hard to protect our country include our political opponents. Please remember to thank them, too.


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