Sexy Paranoia

I’ve been listening to talk radio over the last two hours of my drive and have finally come to a conclusion.

Talk radio makes you paranoid.

Of course it is their job to get listeners…and guess this shouldn’t surprise me on how they do it…I’ve been listening long enough.

My morning usually starts on Toronto AM 640 listening to John Oakley…a guy with big intellect and big wit.

Then, depending on mood, I either flip to Colin Cowherd from ESPN sports or Stephanie Miller with her comedy/left wing slant…and though she calls herself Liberal, I don’t agree with that at all.

Then, comes lunch. Depending on my level of self loathing, I will flip between Jim Rome’s Jungle and sports, Ed Schultz’s America Talks, Charles Adler again on AM640 and/or Darth Rightwing himself…Rush Limbaugh.

Every time I hear him, Rush reminds me how happy I am to be Canadian. Going back to pre-lunch, Cowherd will occasionally mention how Rush is not quite as right wing as he lets on…but it is his job to raise the ire.

There is a common thread, though. Upset people so they will listen. Make them worry about the shadowy left/right wing hand sitting on your shoulder…the eyes peering into your bedroom to make sure you’re not enjoying yourself too much. Even the sports shows, but to a much lesser degree.

No wonder we are slowly chipping away at civil liberties and freedom with the fears these people instill.

Take this morning, for example…Oakley has been on about airport security, the right to protest Remembrance Day ceremonies in London last week and how some want to restrict transgender rights for fear of them being child predators.

Everyone phones in to discuss their opinion on the problem. Yet there is really no discussion of a solution.

Problem is, solutions are not interesting. Problems are sexy.

“I know what you’re doin’. I see it all too clear…”
– Duncan Sheik, Barely Breathing

Then we have Darth Rush. He will say something controversial…knowing full well what he is saying…and wrap himself in the free speech flag. Yesterday, he played an hour of tape…snippets of conversations of left wing discussions about something he had said.

Free speech is one of our most valuable rights. Free speech with intelligence and responsibility is one of our most important skills. Free speech in order to push people’s buttons…that’s talk radio.

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