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Profile Information

Gender: Female
Home country: USA
Current location: Oregon
Member since: 2001
Number of posts: 62,063

About Me

Female. Retired. Wife-Mom-Grandma. Approx. 30 years in broadcasting, at least 20 of those in news biz. Taurus. Loves chocolate - preferably without nuts or cocoanut. Animal lover. Rock-hound from pre-school age. Proud Democrat for life. Ardent environmentalist and pro-choicer. Hoping to use my skills set for the greater good. Still married to the same guy for 40+ years. Probably because he's a proud Democrat, too. Penmanship absolutely stinks, so I'm glad I'm a fast typist! I will always love Hillary and she will always be my President.

Journal Archives

Yeah, no kidding, sendero.

It's really discouraging. They fight like they really don't want to win all that badly. Or like they really just don't get who and what they're up against. Either way, heads in the clouds, or buried in the sand.

SO damn discouraging.

Sad but true.

I participated in a discussion in which someone made the very good point that the Catholic hierarchy, that exclusive men's club of bishops and cardinals out there making all these dictatorial political statements and decrees, is comparable to the Roman Catholic Church's 1%. They're the ones presiding over large, lavishly designed and decorated cathedrals, with their own secretaries and extensive layers of staffers and large office complexes, out making personal appearances and getting press, and hob-knobbing with other dignitaries. Many of them drive pretty nice cars (or have drivers for that) plus a retinue of assistants and spokespeople, and they wear beautiful and costly priestly garb and vestments, and, usually, at least one very nice, large, and expensive ring. Plus if you're at bishop or cardinal level, the probability is quite high that your rectory and living quarters are not exactly slums.

Besides, that's where most of the nuns operate. That's THEIR thing - the slums. They're more like the Catholic Church's 99%. They're the ones, always women-only, who tend to go out into the low-income areas and actually administer to what Some Guy once referred to as "the least of these," working with the poor, the sick, the dying, the homeless, the abandoned, even the incarcerated. They're the ones actually out there on the front lines getting their hands dirty up to their eyebrows. And it seems to me they're the ones able to speak with a galaxy's worth more credibility about the true message of Christ than do the pampered males who out-rank them, and make sure they stay classified as second-class Church citizens. And they're the ones who've lately been getting dumped on by the Vatican because - how dare they - they've been spending all their time and energy on the poor instead of speaking out against abortion and contraception and also, of course, President Obama.

And that's awfully sad but true too.

My church sure could use a complete overhaul. And, for a change - some women at the command level, since the bishops and cardinals also often lament the shortage of priests.

Oh gosh - on edit, forgot to thank Nance! Another brilliant rant, milady! I salute you!


You'd think they'd have observed closely what success looked like in 2006 and 2008 on Howard Dean's watch. We took back the House in 2006 and we took back the White House in 2008. On HIS watch. You'd think they'd see what the template for success was. And how you never concede anything, any city, any town, any state, even those that look red. You don't JUST focus on the so-called "battleground states." Screw that. You go EVERYWHERE you can! You don't "keep your powder dry" for some imaginary future date when you'll really need it - because DAMMIT, you need it NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Just so frustrating and infuriating.

DAMMIT, debbie. Sorry - you just lost your capital letters in my book. I only capitalize proper names of people and organizations that are worthy of respect. Which is why romney, santorum, gingrich, reince priebus, scott walker, donald trump, sarah palin, dubya, cheney, the republi-CON party, and all the rest of 'em will always be spelled (by me anyway) with lower case letters.

I know how you feel.

Seeing that damn Debbie Wasserman Schultz story where she's all but conceding Wisconsin and claiming it's gonna mean nothing - Man, she has her head so high up her ass it's all the way back up on top of her neck again. Just what our Dems do - hire a naif. A head-in-the-sand idiot who just assumes that because our side believes in the good among people and reason and willingness to reach out, that means the enemy does, too. AND THEY DON'T. They just aren't wired that way. They're ruthless bloodthirsty carnivores. You're not dealing with hamsters, Debbie. You're dealing with great white sharks - which view creatures like hamsters as mere snacks. And they see you as just another hamster. I think she assumes even the worst of them has better angels that can be reached somehow. And she's kidding herself. They don't HAVE any better angels on that side. Those have already been silenced and/or driven out, or eaten alive.

It means we need HOWARD DEAN back.

Somebody who actually goes OUT THERE to the far corners, PERSONALLY, and reaches out. And believes the fight is in all 50 states. Look what happened on his watch in 2006 and 2008.

I was originally pleased with Debbie Wasserman Schultz as the choice to head the DNC, but she's been a horrific disappointment. Just another Terry McAuliffe. USELESS. "Oh he's SUCH a GOOD fundraiser!" I heard over and over again from friends at my kids' school who were fairly well connected in Democratic circles. He did NOTHING. Didn't matter how much money he supposedly helped raise. It did NOTHING. You have to do a lot more than fundraise. You have to REACH OUT. You have to be forceful and focused and willing to fight. She's done NOTHING. She had no aggressive media outreach that pushed its way onto "Meet the Press" or "Face the Nation" or any of those others. Instead we've had Sunday after Sunday after Sunday after Sunday where there were entire panels of guests who were GOP or CON-slanted. NO Dems. I guess she's just another one of those naifs who believe that "the people will KNOW!" "The people will SEE what's happening and they'll get it." WELL THEY DON'T.

They simply DON'T. Especially when there's this carpet-bombing barrage of negativity in the media coming our way around-the-clock, and everyone on our side just naively thinks the American people will just somehow magically "see" or "get it. "That's over-estimating the electorate by about 5 billion lightyears. It's very disappointing.

And AGAIN she's got her head up her ass. Saying this means nothing??????? I am just amazed. With that attitude, then yeah, we're gonna lose Wisconsin. And that will be a HUGE shot in the arm for the bad guys who'll say, all over the country, with their around-the-clock media messaging - "see? We can go ahead with this agenda! The voters approve! See? We CAN screw the unions. We CAN screw the Democratic fundraising power base! We CAN screw the workers. We CAN screw the women! What do we care if they fuss and protest? They don't VOTE. They don't bother. They're apathetic. They give up really quickly. They get despondent and we can use that and exploit it! And pretty soon our beloved kkkarl rove WILL INDEED have his permanent republi-CON majority that he's been designing and working toward for more than two decades. And even the demographics - more women and minorities - won't make any difference because WE've got the money and WE've got the power, and WE've got the infrastructure in place, and they have NOTHING. AND they have no money.

And all of us wind up having no America anymore, either. Not the America we grew up believing in, that the words all tell us is true, that the words on the Statue of Liberty said were true, that the words in the Constitution and other founding documents said were true, that the reforms and advances and benefits we fought so hard for - are all rolled back, and that the American mindset of democracy and liberty and justice for all will shrivel into some sort of hybrid neo-feudalistic oligarchy where it's "of the corporations, by the corporations, and for the corporations" and the so-called "American Dream" is attainable for a few thousand of the have's and have-more's, while a few hundred million of the have-nots just get tossed by the wayside. Think I'm overstating it???? Obviously Debbie does.

Debbie does - something or other. Disappointment for one thing.

By the early 80s things had straightened out a little bit.

Women went from - "ooooh, hey, there's a lady deejay on there" to pretty much nothing in terms of adverse reaction. At first we were novelties. Our very presence got notice, press reports and features and stuff in the local newspapers and city-centered magazines. I remember when I was interning at this one station - the format of which was described back then as a "full-service" station. They had programming, they had original local and award-winning news on the hour every hour, and someone was always on staff there, they had heavy emphasis on traffic reports (which L.A. needs in the same way we need breathable air), a night-side reporter, a City Hall reporter, a reporter responsible for news in the next county over, the works! It was personality radio and people like Gary Owens and Wink Martindale and Geoff Edwards were on. And then there was Kathy Gori, the first female jock on a major station like this one. Women jocks on music radio were RARE. And she was viewed as a real ground-breaker. As she WAS! Witty, informed, involved, engaging personality, and she was the only woman on the air - in overnights. The newsroom was full of men, too. Only one woman there - the newswriter weekdays in morning drive and midday. For one summer I interned there, so I guess I served as another woman in there - for a couple of months anyway. TERRIFYING! And THRILLING!! And WONDERFUL!!! It was summer in the early '70s and I was still in school. But boy did I learn stuff!

Now that I think back on it, I think it was an evolution from the late 60's, when FM radio started awakening and people discovered how much better music sounded on FM - and the inevitable FM stereo - than it did on AM. And you didn't lose the signal under bridges or in tunnels like you did with AM. All those stations opening up, a whole second radio dial of stations, so jobs everywhere doubled. There were ownership restrictions in place back then, so the most properties any one company could own in the same market could only add up to three, which sucked for the corporations if they owned one of the local TV stations. TV stations counted as one of the three. So more likely it'd be a TV station, an AM and an FM your company would own. I'm just guessing here, but it happened just as a few of us of the female persuasion were coming out of college, or college radio, ready to work and seriously experienced in all facets of operation. 'Cause FM started happening in the late 60's and women on the air were quite the uniquity! But it also meant there were more stations needing more personnel, especially your type.

So by the time I was ready to go out there and try my luck, I'd graduated college and I got in straight away. BUT I was well-aware that it was a moment just after the FCC recommended that stations expand their hiring of women and minorities. The first three on-air jobs I had, I landed because they needed a female in there. Either they had the guy in morning drive and needed somebody for afternoons, or a guy in the mornings and another guy in the afternoons, but needed somebody for weekends and fill-ins. So the first several years of my career were in jobs like that, as stations slowly opened up hiring to include more women. And it wasn't out of the question that a larger news department might actually have more than one woman on staff. There was this little group of us women that started proliferating. I felt as though women like Kathy Gori, Raechel Donohue, Allison Steele back east, and a very few more, were like our older sisters. Then we trickled in at my level, and by then it was no longer viewed as so unusual that women would hold any job in the station. So more women who were younger and just listeners then were becoming inspired to go into broadcasting when their turn came.

Eventually women did everything. And it was no big deal anymore. It was no longer - "oh yeah, she's the token." One of the best - no, make that THE best - audio engineers I ever worked with was a woman. DAMN she had laser-precision reaction time! And she was so focused. She held her own performance at the mixing board to a very high standard. When I was on air with her on knobs, it was almost as though we communicated by instinct. And besides that she was smart and had a fun personality and everybody liked her just anyway. And there were women in the sales manager positions, eventually even some women general managers. I worked for a female vice president of a radio news division once. She was a cool gal.

Interesting transitionary period to have lived and worked through. We all have our stories. I once went to lunch with a young peer from a cross-town station, and as we traded stories she said "wow, I've never suffered." And I thought to myself - "suffered? Hmm... I never thought of it that way. But now that I do, she makes a good point. It certainly hasn't been easy."

Funny enough - this anecdote takes me full circle.

This women's seminar I had to put together - it was for this local news association of which I was a board member and program chair - had several panels throughout the day. Another of the major speakers? Gloria Allred.

Truly. You have to speak up. You HAVE to be loud and pushy and annoying.

You HAVE to get in their faces and make them miserable and force them to go looking for the Maalox bottle the instant your name comes up or your face and/or voice comes wafting over the airwaves. I had a friend who wound up in a discrimination lawsuit against CNN, and she determined that when it came time to go to court, she wanted the lawyer they dreaded seeing at the opposing table: "who do they LEAST want to see across the table from them? Well, that's who I want to represent me!" And indeed, she never worked again. But the size of the settlement, I'm told, made it unnecessary anyway.

Anybody remember Christine Craft? She was no gretchen carlson (actually, she had a BRAIN!) or meGYN kelly (cue the eyelashes!) and she was NOT unattractive. She just wasn't some blonde bimbo. She worked for a TV station in Kansas City MO as a news anchor and she was really good. And one day she got demoted to reporter because some focus group decided she "too old, too unattractive, and not sufficiently deferential to men." Never mind that her presence helped lift that station's evening newscast from third place to first. That was a shot heard round the country, I'll tell ya. EVERY woman I knew in the news biz was all over it. She left and went back out to Santa Barbara where she'd lived before, and soon enough, she sued for age and sex discrimination. QUITE a woman. Now there was a pioneer! She fought a big battle for the rest of us, and she's another one of my heroes.

I remember when she returned to Santa Barbara to get away from the national uproar that had arisen around her. I had to put a Saturday seminar together - about women and what we were still up against in the newsroom. Mainly newsroom. Not anything about the executive suite. This was early '80s. Collectively, we hadn't gotten that far yet. A mutual friend said Christine was exhausted and wanting to escape Kansas City, and was probably gonna hole up. I convinced her to change her mind and come to our conference as our keynote speaker. I remember telling her - "you will be surrounded by a room-ful of sisters who support you ferociously. You will get such a morale boost because we're all behind you and in total solidarity with you, so actually it might make you feel better to come and get some lunch and hang with us, and blah-blah-blah," and sure enough she came! And she was terrific! I think, at least I hope, that she felt reenergized by that whole afternoon. We were all glad she came, and when I turned around in this banquet room, I saw a few men standing against the back wall - fellow news guys some of us worked with, who wanted to hear Christine Craft's remarks. It was her first public comment since that whole "too old, too unattractive, and not sufficiently deferential to men" mess went public.

Wild times in those mid-to-late '70s and early '80s. Everybody had to make adjustments. The FCC basically declared that TV and radio stations had to start hiring more women in high-profile positions, like management and on-air. That's when you first started hearing female djs. By the time my career was kicking into gear, pretty much every rock station in town had some sort of news entity, and in there they usually had a token woman. Back when women were starting to get in, there'd be one female dj on staff. Usually she'd do nights or overnights. There might be another female part-timer on the weekends. That was what I did: news and public affairs, not jocking.

And we were there because there were requirements for a certain minimum amount of news and public affairs coverage on the air in order to satisfy your obligation to your community in return for being granted a license to broadcast in the public interest. And you had to keep a file available to the public, documenting all the programming you did that attempted to address some of the problems and issues and needs in your community. There was also an elaborate ritual dictated by FCC regulation - called "ascertainment." It was basically interviews that management people had to go out physically and do with other community leaders and city fathers and note what they said were problems or issues in the community. Your responsibility, if you wanted to get your license renewed, was to develop programming that addressed some of those concerns you were able to "ascertain" in your public outreach. We had forms to fill out and there was this big-ass binder full of this stuff. Actually I think it was several binders. Most of it was done by either the news director (me) or the public affairs director (usually another female). General managers and sales managers and the rest - all were supposed to be doing them too, but they mostly didn't and we in news and public affairs had to pick up the slack.

With reagan, all those requirements started going by the wayside. Deregulation and all, dontchaknow. Gummint BAAAAD. Regulations BAAAAD! Free market! Free market! And soon a lot of news and public affairs departments started getting cut back, in some cases, cut entirely. As did a lot of people's jobs, and sometimes careers too. And hell, it happened "on the other side of the building" where the jocks and programming and the music department were, too. Once the ownership restrictions were lifted after deregulation gained a foothold at the end of reagan, there was this feeding frenzy of buying up radio stations, including a lot of small mom-n-pop ones in small and medium markets. Hell, even in L.A. As more stations were swallowed up by these consortiums and syndicators and would-be networks, you soon had behemoths like ClearChannel and other outfits that could own as many stations in a single market as their money could buy, and often you'd have one set of management overseeing more than one station, which meant one station's management had been cleaned out and the remaining management had to double up on their workload.

Shit - this is just taking me back. Sorry to blather on. It's like with various other segments of the greater women's movement. Young people up-and-coming in this day and age don't always realize how hard it was for those of us (and hell, I was small-time compared to the biggest big-ass high-wire acts also sucking all the oxygen out of the TV Guide and Radio & Records magazines) worked and had to fight and struggle to get however far we got. And what-all we had to put up with, trying to earn our way in and just get a seat at the table. You have no idea. I saw this ad that was run in Broadcasting magazine in 1983 or something, and saw my little thumbnail photo on there with the other nine news directors in the chain. Three of us were women. All on the chain's West Coast stations, for whatever that's worth.

Those were pretty interesting times. This OP and, for that matter, the whole thread just really got me thinking back. Thanks for posting, boston bean! With lukewarm apologies to peggy noonan, this was what I saw at the revolution. Worked with some pretty crazy people.

That was such a mind-bending time.

I won't bore anybody with more details, except to say - you have not lived until you've had the boss - the guy at the top of the management pyramid - sit you down and tell you "you know, you might not be able to get another job in this city if you..."

AND the offer to buy my silence for a few thousand dollars. When my dad heard that, he said "if you can get three thousand, you can get 50 thousand." It was only my third professional (for pay!) on-air job ever, straight outta college and college radio, and I was 23 and I was intimidated to all hell. I didn't press it. Knowing the people I was dealing with, the likelihood was very real that they could say one word out on the links or in the golf cart, or on the tennis court, into the nearest well-connected pair of ears, and I could very well see my career grounded before it had even had a chance to soar. When the situation had begun looking ominous in the weeks previous, I'd found another job so I was able to jump rather than being pushed, and landed well out of range of all that. Which, back then, was really the only option you had - find another gig as quickly as you can, and get the hell outta there! I think not too much has changed, if you really wanna know.

I'm wondering if he just killed his own political career through all this.

Paul Krugman said something about that in one of his blogs.

But it just struck me that he better damn well work his ass off to help Obama win reelection, because if he doesn't, I'm sure millions of Dems will remember how he stuck a shiv in Obama's back by showing who's really buttered his bread. And then, it seems to me, he's damaged goods. Because Dems won't feel secure in trusting what he stands for, and you KNOW the GOP won't be voting for him anyway. I certainly feel betrayed.

I, too thought he was a good, straight up guy, liberalmuse. And I too am very disappointed. Besides, he's not a complete novice at this. SURELY he understands who the other side is and how rough and dirty they play. SURELY it didn't come as news to him that they'd jump on anything he said, however inadvertent or taken out of context (when has THAT ever stopped them?) and use him for their purposes. He sure wasn't born yesterday, forcryingoutloud! NO excuse whatsoever for being a naif in his position! Seems to me he's in danger of becoming a man without a party.

Did he just get so enthralled about being on "Meet The Press" that he just simply lost his head and forgot himself and blathered on - as I've heard some people do?
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