Frequently Asked Questions – III

Why don’t you ever put liberals on your show?  We do.  Ed and I have interviewed Erik Black, Dane Smith, Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak, and my old friend, Erik “The Transit Geek” Hare.  All of them but Rybak at least once (and we may extend another invite to Hizzoner).

Beyond that?  I have standing invtations out to…:

  1. Senator Amy Klobuchar (although finding an actual media contact at her office is always a challenge))
  2. Senate candidate Al Franken
  3. Rep. Keith Ellison
  4. Rep. Betty McCollum (who, let’s be honest, doesn’t make even a token effort to be press-friendly)

While Ed and I are overt, partisan conservatives, we’ll put the level of civility and respect in our interviews up against anything you hear on MPR (and better than NPR; we’re honest about our biases – hello, Nina! – and neither Ed nor I has ever wished a death by AIDS on anyone).

And of course, our producer Tommy has standing orders to jump liberal callers to the front of the caller queue when we’re taking calls, which is pretty much always.  All you have to be is on-topic, or off-topic in a way we’re interested in discussing.

What about Michele Bachmann?  Do you think she’ll be the nominee?  Her surge in the early – let me say again, early – running is pretty impressive,  It shows that the Tea Party has gone from demonstrating to voting.  That’s a good thing.  So does Michele and her organization pack the gear to go all the way to the nomination?  I have no idea.  That’s why the nomination season is so fun to watch.  Who’s gonna end up on top?  More later…

No, I don’t mean why don’t you put liberal pols and wonks on the air.  I mean why don’t you put liberal bloggers on the air to debate with you?  Well, if there’s one that has something to say, that is something that’d interest and entertain our audience – which, remember, is national as well as regional – go ahead and pitch Ed and I.   We’re open to just about anything, provided we think it’d be good radio.

And by “good radio”, I mean entertaining and informative.  The sad fact is that general, “throw out a topic and let’s go at it” debates are really dodgy as radio entertainment.  Still, even abstruse ideological whizzing matches are kinda spotty when it comes to being entertaining radio – wonks love ‘em, audiences usually don’t, although to be fair the Patriot’s audience, especially the Northern Alliance’s, is much more receptive than most – but anything’s possible, which is why I say “throw us a pitch”.  There’s not much in radio I haven’t done (other than “get rich); I’m game – but it can’t suck.

How can you say the shutdown was a victory for the GOP?  The Republican borrowed money!  Yeah, that particular DFL chanting point is a funny one.  First – no conservative is happy about the “borrowing”.  But we’re borrowing from ourselves.  Not China.  Not our children’s future.

Second – you do know Dayton’s “education shift” was going to be a lot bigger than the GOP’s.  You do know that.  Right?

No, Merg, I mean why don’t you let me, a “progressive” blogger with a history of bellowing, browbeating and namecalling, into your studio, so you can’t turn me off?  Hm.  Intrigueing offer.

I mean, I kinda spelled it out above.  If you have a subject that’s topical, interesting and potentially entertaining, we can talk.

If, on the other hand, you’re one of those leftybloggers who’s good for about one round of factual discussion – say, until your chanting points from Media Matters and “Crooks and Liars” and Mike Malloy get debunked – and you turn straight to the browbeating and the name-calling?  Well, the only real entertainment value would be in the whole “mocking your intellectual impotence” thing, and we don’t need you in the studio to do that.

And since you, not I, said that I “couldn’t shut you off”, that kinda implies the fun would end there.  Because yes, I certainly could!  It’s called a microphone switch, and I control it!  One of the key rules of hosting a talk show is “stay in control”.  Callers and guests don’t control the show – the host does!  So if a guest (hypothetically) veers from “entertaining” to “not entertaining” for whatever reason?  It’s done!  We move on!  And while it’s a fuzzy gray line between “mockery” and “not entertaining any more”, rest assured we’ll know it when we see it.

So stick with “pitching us a story”.  You might learn something.

14 thoughts on “Frequently Asked Questions – III

  1. The problem with trying to debate libs is that they try to turn discussions about ideas and morals into discussions about FACTS. Check this example in politifact: http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2011/jul/13/tim-pawlenty/tim-pawlenty-says-scientists-are-dispute-over-whet/
    There is some interesting stuff in the article itself re exactly what the term “sexual orientation” means, but in the end the author throws all ambiguity aside and simplistically labels Pawlenty’s statement “false” — giving liberals the talking point that Pawlenty was WRONG because politifact says Pawlenty was wrong.

  2. Ever thought of having Aaron Brown on? He’s certainly left (he’s described the Strib as a center-right publication) but he’s bright and civil, has done radio, and would provide some outstate perspective of sorts.

  3. The only way Betty McCallum would come on would be if there is a 10 second delay and someone on her staff has his finger on the mute button. There is a reason this lady doesn’t do debates nor speaks in public without a script.

    Hey, how about Phyllis Kahn? You guys could talk about the benefits of Minnesota farmers going pot as a cash crop.

  4. Mitch could debunk MN Brown in mere minutes, not worth the effort for AB to make the drive from Cherry to the studio. Brown gets very conflicted when shown how DFL and union policy has killed job creation on Da Range.

  5. I like Aaron Brown, too, but I’d agree with K-Rod. It would be like the rugby match in Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life.

  6. The problem with debating lefties is they just can’t do it. The average liberal argument is “that’s bullshit”, followed by the ad hominem sniping. It’s like trying to explain faith to an atheist.

  7. I think Tim Walz might be a good guest. Better get him while he’s still a congressman

  8. Chuck, I agree with Betty. I was an intern for Collett last year and at one of the debates Betty was reading off of cue cards and Collett went up there with zero notes and wiped the floor with her. Yet Betty still got 60% of the vote…

  9. Why don’t you ever interview fiscally conservative Tibetan Buddhists who are flamingly liberal on Latin American immigration?

    Are you afraid I’d wipe the floor with you (and my meditation cushion)?

  10. Any debate with a leftyblogger very quickly devolves into uncritical and blind talking point recitation, wikipeadia references, namecalling, “factcheck”ing, and scatological humour. What’s the fun in that? Too predictable.

  11. jpa you forgot assault. If you piss a lefty off enough they are bound to hit you, literally.

  12. yep, assaulted by a hippie on campus for supporting Israel. I wish I had kept the hair I pulled out of his empty head.

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