It’s interesting to hear all the chatter in recent days about the influence, or lack thereof, of talk radio. Most of it comes from corners that are sympathetic to John McCain, for whom talk radio is a bane of his political existence. It’s also interesting that McCain’s people are working very hard behind-the-scenes, with emails and telephone calls from surrogates big and small, to mollify major talk radio hosts, while, at the same time, other surrogates — many of whom write for small circulation print publications or from liberal media outlets — are writing about the death of talk radio’s influence. This is a strategy hatched by the McCain campaign, and it won’t work. Whatever talk radio’s influence (and I dare say it is more influential than most who question it), the major hosts whom I know are not easily persuaded by ego massaging meet-and-greets and tactical efforts that appear like naked gestures of manipulation. Tom Sowell referred to McCain’s career-long record as one of betrayal of conservative principles. That’s the problem.
As an aside, publicists for five different authors have contacted my office in the last week to request that their clients appear on my program to help promote (i.e., sell) their books. I’ll be sure to remove those from the list of perspective guests who, in my view, demean talk radio.