What concerns me this morning is free speech. Two nights ago, as I wrote yesterday, Milt Rosenberg, a highly respected radio host for WGN-AM Chicago, had the audacity to invite Stanley Kurtz, who writes articles for The National Review and The Weekly Standard to appear on his show. Kurtz was booked so he could discuss what he's found so far while digging through the voluminous records of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge.
Kurtz hasn't discovered any smoking bombs on Obama, at least yet, but it's clear that the Challenge was more interested in pushing racial identity over actually improving education. What does Candidate Obama have to say about that?
And based on what Kurtz said on the show, it's very clear Obama lied when he dismissed his relationship with unrepentant Weather Underground terrorist Bill Ayers as "just a guy who lives in my neighborhood."
Rosenberg, who has hosted his Extension 720 show since 1973, was bemused by the e-mail and telephone assaults on him, his show, and his station. He had to repeatedly explain to the Obama-robots that the campaign was asked to have a representative appear with Kurtz. They declined. Some callers, with hints of conspiracy in their voices, remarked on the "coincidence" that Kurtz was on the air on the same night that Obama was officially chosen as the Democratic nominee for president. Rosenberg had to mention, at least twice, that the Obama campaign's national office was just a quarter-mile from the Tribune Tower, where WGN's studios are. "They've got lots of people in there," Rosenberg added.
Finally, Rosenberg told one caller that Ben LeBolt, a top Obama spokesperson, was in Chicago. LeBolt, as I wrote yesterday, responded to the invitation from Rosenberg's producer by first asking who the station manager was, and then hanging up.
In response to the deranged brouhaha, Kurtz asked Rosenberg. "Are they saying I can't go on radio as long as the Democratic convention is on."
"Perhaps something like that, yeah," Rosenberg replied.
"Hilda from Chicago" told Rosenberg that Kurtz "was being dishonest and attempting to play the terrorism card with the audience."
Rosenberg asked Hilda to go into detail about Kurtz' "dishonesty" and she responded, "I'm not going into specifics because you know it already."
Perhaps Hilda didn't know it, because she did not go into specifics--other than reading from campaign talking points emitted from this e-mail message:
In the next few hours, we have a crucial opportunity to fight one of the most cynical and offensive smears ever launched against Barack.
Tonight, WGN radio is giving right-wing hatchet man Stanley Kurtz a forum to air his baseless, fear-mongering terrorist smears. He's currently scheduled to spend a solid two-hour block from 9:00 to 11:00 p.m. pushing lies, distortions, and manipulations about Barack and University of Illinois professor William Ayers.
Tell WGN that by providing Kurtz with airtime, they are legitimizing baseless attacks from a smear-merchant and lowering the standards of political discourse.
Call into the "Extension 720" show with Milt Rosenberg at (312) 591-XXXX. (I edited the number.)
(Show airs from 9:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. tonight)
Then report back on your call at http://my.barackobama.com/WGNstandards
It's the Obama campaign and their thug-zombies who are "lowering the standards of political discourse." And I have to repeat--the Obama campaign was invited to send a member of their staff to appear on the show. They said no, and instead they chose a more intimidating way to respond.
Listen to the podcast here--it's perhaps the most important radio show you will listen to this year.
Kurtz and Rosenberg were great--and deserve medals for keeping their composure and remaining calm in last night's sea of insanity--a.k.a. Hurricane Barack.
And finally, Barack Obama is on record of opposing the the return of the ludicrously named "Fairness Doctrine" which would limit free speech and would have made Wednesday night's Extensiion 720 show an impossibility. However, Speaker of The House Nancy Pelosi favors bringing the Fairness Doctrine back, and a President Obama could flip-flop (He does that, you know) and sign it into law.
First they came for the talk radio hosts, but I said nothing because I was not one. Then they came for the for the cable TV hosts, but I said nothing because I was not one.
Then they came for the bloggers.
This whole disgraceful episode is yet another item Obama will remain silent on.
But one of Obama's constituents, me, is very angry this morning, and he demands an apology.
It's said that living well is the best revenge. Voting for the right candidate--make that The Right Candidate--is too.
There is some good news. A lot of people of now know about Milt Rosenberg, and since WGN-AM is a 50,000 clear-channel giant that at night can be heard almost everywhere between the Rockies and the Appalachians, he'll gain a lot of new listeners.