Friday, April 09, 2004

Howard Stern and the Swing Vote

We all knew that Michael Moore and Al Franken were Democrats but now the Bush camp is gaining a new enemy combatant to deal with, shock jock radio host Howard Stern. On April Fool's Day, he pretended to be kicked off the air by his parent company Viacom. This hoax was followed by yesterday's announcement that the FCC will fine Clear Channel up to $495,000 USD because of Stern's online antics. He is also out of work for now.

Stern's response to the fine (and of course getting fired) is both impassioned and vitriolic, typical of his brash individualist attitude. Bush has taken on the wrong guy. Stern won't go down without a fight. He had this to say.

"This is not a surprise. This is a follow up to the McCarthy type 'witch hunt' of the administration and the activities of this group of presidential appointees in the FCC, led by
'Colin Powell Jr.' and his band of players. They and others (a senator from Kansas City to a congresswoman from New Mexico) are expressing and imposing their opinions and rights to tell us all who and what we may listen to and watch and how we should think about our lives. So this is not a surprise. It is pretty shocking that governmental interference into our rights and free speech takes place in the U.S. It's hard to reconcile this with the 'land of the free' and the 'home of the brave'. I'm sure what's next is the removal of "dirty pictures" like the 20th century German exhibit in a New York City Museum and the erotic literature in our libraries; they too will fall into their category of 'evil' as well."
A quick glance at Stern's official site gives away even further details of his ire. One of the links in the navigation bar of his page is called "Bush Facts" and lists a whole host of links to Anti-Bush or Pro-Democratic sites. Keep in mind that the majority of his listeners are males--Republicans poll better with men than with women--and many of them live in crucial swing states. Perhaps the action by the FCC is a Bush Administration tactic to limit his reach, thereby reducing his chance of swinging enough votes to the Democratic side to tip the scales in the Fall election.

One of the links I found on Howard Stern's page was about the "historical record" of the Bush family's involvement with the Nazi German state, ending in 1942 when the U.S. government seized some of the Bush family assets due to "dealing with the enemy." George H. W. Bush joined the military soon after to absolve his lineage from their previous history. I can't attest to the accuracy of their information but I will follow up on this in the future when I have the facts straight. Judge for yourself.

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