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Road to Air America: Breaking the Right Wing Stranglehold on Our Nation's Airwaves Hardcover – January 1, 2010


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Editorial Reviews

Review

"(The Drobnys) want to do something good for our country by working to restore a sense of balance..." -- Bill Clinton, Chicago magazine, December 2003

From the Publisher

This very timely book gives an eye-opening perspective on what it is like to be a mover and shaker in liberal politics.

Provides first-hand, behind-the-scenes accounts of Air America Radio’s origins-and how it almost didn’t make it off the ground.

And, perhaps most important, it explains media bias, i.e. how the media serves the agenda of its corporate ownership–and why this "corporatocracy poses a danger to having an informed public.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 144 pages
  • Publisher: SelectBooks; 1 edition (January 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1590790650
  • ISBN-13: 978-1590790656
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,065,450 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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3.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

36 of 41 people found the following review helpful By Carolina Summer on November 6, 2004
Format: Hardcover
I long suspected it, but my suspicions were confirmed that the "liberal media" in America was vanishing after reading this book. A handful of major corporations with strong ties to Republican conservatives now owns the bulk of radio and TV stations, as well as strings of newspapers. Trying to overcome this stranglehold of corporate-owned media is a major part of the Air America story. It's an inspiring story about how one person -- admittedly one with a lot of financial means and people in high places -- can change a landscape if he or she doesn't give up. I listen to Air America from time to time, and while it's clearly a fledling network that's still got a ways to go, it's a refreshing change from the other right-wing AM stations who repeat the same misinformations all over the place. By the way, if you're interested in this title, you should really check out "Outfoxed," a documentary about Fox News and Rupert Murdoch. I watched it after finishing this book, and it echoes what is said in this book.
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful By audrey TOP 500 REVIEWER on January 4, 2005
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I would give this book 3 stars for writing quality and 3.5 stars for content, but I was extremely interested in the story, so I'm rounding it up to 4 stars anyway. The author and his wife are venture capitalists who were convinced that corporate-owned media were unwilling to cover stories such as Prescott Bush's (W's grandfather) collaboration with the Nazis, and they were inspired to respond to the stranglehold of right-wing radio after Al Gore's "defeat" in the 2000 fiasco.

The story of the beginning of Air America Radio is quite compelling, though the book suffers from repetitiveness and a lack of detail. This is definitely the story from Drobny's point-of-view, and it lacks interesting information that he was either not privy to or chose not to share. For instance, I was interested to know how and why the station started, but when it came to learning about how they found and negotiated with on-air talent, we get only a little information about Al Franken and nothing about anybody else! Also, there was a bit of a fiasco with early financial dealing, but we get only sketchy details from Drobny.

As for content, while Mr. Drobny seems like a very nice fellow and an angel for the left, the book was unintentionally revealing regarding some of his weaknesses. On several occasions, we learn, the Drobnys were asked to give interviews to various networks about the new station, but they declined to do so, fearing that the story would get negative spin!! No wonder they had troube getting initial investors, when they were perpetually declining free publicity! Drobny spends a lot of time lamenting the difficulty in finding finanial backers, but it never seems to have occurred to him to have the station be a non-profit organization funded by contributors.
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14 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Patrick on April 4, 2005
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I've been listening to Air America since day one. I tuned in for Al Franken but kept coming back for Randi Rhodes. She is the true star of Air America and probably the most brilliant commentator in the country. I listen in Los Angeles on KTLK AM-1150 every single day. If you want to know how this whole thing started pick up the book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Enigma on February 5, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I was introduced to Air America while driving cross country. The sun had set and I was station surfing when I came upon a female talk show host. My first thought after listening for about 30 seconds was this could not be real. This had to be a parody done by some ultra-right winger trying to show how idiotic and hate-filled the extreme left was. I listened on for about 5 minutes and was convinced of my answer.

This parody though, had gone off the deep-end and was becoming unbelievable. The talk show host was rambling and making incoherent statements. The facts were obviously made up and the intense anger that spewed forth was getting on my nerves. This parody had gotten so unrealistic that I was about to change stations when she went to a station break. It was then that I learned that I had been listening to Randi Rhodes on Air America.

Wow, I was thunderstruck. I had been throughout college a classic liberal. But I had watched the Democratic Party get taken over by radical extremists. For some reason they were pushing us moderates out and we eventually became the Reagan Democrats. Today I am no longer a registered Democrat - since it is truly a foreign party to me and many middle of the road individuals.

It was a major disappointment to hear that what could have been a great radio station is degraded by a bunch of personalities who epitomize the radical hate-filled extremism that has caused the Democratic Party to lose the populist vote. With rare exception most of the stars of Air America will be considered to virulent and anti-American to garner anybody but the 10% of hard-core leftists.

With that in mind the book is little more of a cheerleading fest.
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