Democrats & Liberals Archives

GOP Underestimates Stern at its Peril

It’s time to give Howard Stern his due. I have not considered myself a Howard Stern fan — until recently. And I have never lost sight of the fact that Howard Stern’s primary interest is Howard Stern — and he’s the first to admit that too. But he is also a citizen of the United States that cares deeply about what is happening to freedom of speech, the coming out of the religious right and the cowboy mentality in the White House that’s applied to important issues — from waging war to using stem cells for medical research.

Stern is outraged over what's happening at the FCC since that affects his livelihood. But he's outraged even more at the White House for its stand on issues that won't help him make another dime. By returning to five of the markets ClearChannel gave up over "indecency" standards that were not indecent before Stern criticized Bush, and adding four more to boot, Stern has declared war on the Bush Administration. For any high-minded intellectuals that don't think a radio jock famous for his potty humor will carry any weight in November, you might want to study a little radio history.

We all know timing is everything in politics. And the timing of Fahrenheit 9/11 and Stern's crusade is a potent combination. And despite what the NY Post thinks, there is no comparison to Lenny Bruce. Stern only needs to sustain his outrage for four more months -- believe me, that's a cake walk. What the GOP fails to realize is that there is a significant difference between anger and justifiable anger. Plain old anger fades away pretty quickly. Justifiable anger can last a lifetime.

So I wear my support of the supposed "Coalition of the Wild-Eyed" as a badge of honor. I'm continuously outraged over Bush's actions, reactions and lack of action. I'm currently outraged that Stern seems to stand as a lone voice in his ability to speak out. He's angry about what's happened to this country over the last three years - that doesn't make him crazy. He's the only one I've heard talking about the fact that every Democrat who voted for Senator Brownback's ridiculous amendment increasing personal fines against broadcasters should bow their heads in shame, including John Kerry. Another wasted opportunity for Democrats to stand united and say "we're not extremists; we are the party of reason; this is government intrusion that goes against the principles of the Constitution."

My only hope is that everyone figured the amendment would get thrown out during the reconciliation process. I hope Stern doesn't take this the wrong way, but when the alter ego of FartMan and the guy who brought Sphincterine to the nation's attention starts making more sense than the entire United States Senate, we've got bigger issues to worry about than a two-second breast baring.

Posted by 9thwave at July 2, 2004 6:32 PM