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Balanced Fare: We Report, You Deride

Thursday, February 27, 2003

I Now Solve Big Problems In Little Time

First, school reform: require all Congressfolks, the President, and the Vice-President to send their kids to the DC public schools. Congress funds the District, but no one ever lost an election in Ohio because schools were shabby in DC. Fine, we need a SHORT phase-in, or current Congresspeople will faint. Also, future Congressional candidates will tend to be older, younger, more childless, or gayer than the current crop. So what? The DC schools will be improved, and the rest of will learn from the experience.

More Snappy Answers To Silly Questions: Can A Liberal Succeed In Talk Radio?

Rush is not competing with NPR. His competition is sports talk radio, where people indulge their tribal instincts by booing the Yankees and cheering the Mets, or whatever hapless also-rans the rest of you root for. Rush is an entertainer, politics is a team sport!

Sorry, that does not exactly tell you who will succeed. But it does suggest that policy wonks are out. Mario Cuomo may be smart and engaging, but on radio, who cares? Yay, Dems! Boo, Repubs! Or vice versa. Not brain surgery, here.

Now, if you are worried about the decline of civil discourse and the boom in shock jock political talk, a la Michael Savage, well, good point. But why are we worried now, when Jerry Springer and Howard Stern have been working their magic for years? We may be finding the political equivalent of pornography, and now what? Nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public, unfortunately.

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