15/04/04 Air America! Fact-Checking the Neocons Who Took the Bait

Two weeks ago, Air America radio achieved flight with its March 31st noon debut. A national project of this kind – a talk radio network that is openly oppositional to the wartime hegemony on the airwaves – has never before been attempted, and all of us who root for the network expected turbulence. But to see Arthur Liu, the businessman and prominent GOP donor who is, essentially, the network's Los Angeles and Chicago landlord, yanking Air America off the air in its second and third largest markets just two weeks later, imposes a silence that speaks volumes.

Liu told Reuters that he snipped the wires because the network, he claims, "bounced a check." The dispute is already in the courts, and the feisty young tenant may yet get the better of the Dickensian landlord when, as occurs in lawsuits, the whole truth comes tumbling out in document form. In the mid- to long-term, the free publicity generated by the litigation is just what Air America needs. They haven't been sued yet, per my prophetic recommendation, so finding some straw dog to sue is the next best thing. Which is also why it would not surprise me to see Liu, a perfect Mrs. Teasdale foil for Air America's Grouch Marx, reconnect those wires in a hurry before it gets that far. Otherwise, Artie, baby, here come the proctologists!

The latent hostility to free speech by too many free marketers comes out at moments like this, making a lie, again, of their faux-libertarian posturing. As long as dissent remains dispersed into small, local, ethnic, and "identity politics" market niches, keeping the political opposition compartmentalized, the neo-conservatives call it "diversity," a supposed benefit bestowed upon us by the "multicultural society." They disingenuously tell us that it is "the market" that provides us with that "freedom."

But let the potential of an oppositional media front begin to form as a national radio project, and begin to suggest it can take a sledgehammer to the market niche walls imposed by the so-called "laws of capitalism," and look how quickly the free-marketers become cheerleaders for private-sector censorship. Glenn Reynolds, the Instantly-Over-Pundit, still nursing his wounds from his steep and continuing fall from the Site-meter summit, could not hide his glee yesterday, proclaiming: "Adios, muchachos! Viva Multiculturalism!"

Oooh, now the warbloggers want to learn Español. ¡Que chido! Lets help them out! Get out el diccionario, kids and let the class begin…

PARENTAL ADVISORY: Kids! Do not let your parents (or speech cops from the left or right) read the following tracts, unless your father is Dick Cheney and his pacemaker might fritz out from the shock… That would be cool…

Read and be shocked! Shocked! SHOCKED! by this Spanish language 101 lesson served up to the warbloggers, one pendejo at a time, today…

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