Howard's End


New at Reason: Brian Doherty says the FCC has already destroyed the Howard Stern show.

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  1. Winner in the category of most appropriate headline, as Howard’s ‘end’ is where most of his humour resides. Way to go Tim.

  2. “All these petty, stupid acts of government comprise a monster that eats all our lives and pleasures, small piece by small piece.”

    So tired, hyperbolic remarks are OK as long as they are libertarian in nature and come from Brian Doherty.

  3. blah blah blah blah blah…

  4. Last comment for a while, as probably the most intrinsically American of sporting events is about to begin: The World Series of Poker starts tomorrow.

  5. From 1 jeff to another – “big radio” won’t collapse because the government will protect the industry.

    It is a cartel after all.

  6. I used to find Howard’s show a good thing to have on in the background while trying to fall asleep after working all night, but since he’s become so important the Prez is out to get him, I’ve given his show up. I just dial up the Greaseman on the internet and listen/not listen to him instead. He may be passe but at least he’s not a self-important asshole like Stern.

  7. The only alternative to collapse would be 40 NPR stations per market. Given the constant pidgeonholing and dropping revenues, radio as-is is hitting a downward slope. The FCC denies low power FM licenses and has let over 100 stations go silent in the last three years (without reassigning the bandwidth).
    The up side is that the FCC is too busy coping with “legitimite” to crack down on pirate broadcasters.
    Let’s pray for XM prices to drop.

  8. I agree with Doherty. Stern’s show used to be one of the few things worth listening to, including his take on politics. Now you turn it on and get large, undigested glops of Democrat propaganda. That’s what they invented Air America for.

    By the way, Big Radio lives because small radio sucks. For years you had your poor, local shows talking about stuff no one cared about. Finally, a light shone through and shows like Howard Stern were brought in that you could actually enjoy. People who don’t want big radio should also want TV that only shows stuff produced by public access.

  9. Ah Howard Stern, the champion for free-speech… unless you’re work for the same company and dare to talk about him in anything but the most flattering terms… then he goes crying to Mel and Mel threatens to fire you and promptly instructs everyone on “the button” to dump any shows that mention Howard on the air.

    What a tool. The show’s become a parody of itself. One Jackie left and he started prattling on about his girlfriend / weekends in the Hamptons its pretty much become unlistenable.

  10. I think Stern has a great show and it’s an outrage the FCC is out to get him. But even if his show sucked and he hated free speech, it’d still be worth defending on principle, or have the people on this board forgot how that works?

  11. You mean Stern is STILL on the air?

    Guess that means we have to hit him with some more fines.

    As long as Stern has a show, we will fine him.

    And if people keep listening to him, I guess we’ll have to start issuing fines to them as well.

    WE control the horzontal. WE control the vertical.

    And we control the airwaves!

  12. Brian,

    Great article, hit the nail on the head IMHO.

  13. Stern has always been funniest when not focused on himself, and least funny when whining about his own life and troubles.

    That’s why the news bits at the end of the show were always the best.

    But for all that, when he used to have Sam Kinnison on regularly I thought I would die from laughing.

  14. You may or may not be right, Mr. Doherty. I can’t know for sure since I live in Florida, one of the Clear Channel markets in which Howard’s not on the air anymore. One onservation, though, and a couple of questions:

    The observation is that, according to ratings results reported on Drudge this morning, Howard is back on top in NYC, with a 10 share (!) among 25-54 year olds. That being the case, it would seem that your reaction is not typical and your analysis is, at least, somewhat off-base.

    My questions are these: If the government was trying to put you out of business and you had access to a microphone, what would you be talking about? And since many of us have, from time to time, bemoaned the compacency with which most people accept the increasing eggregious attacks on civil liberties coming from the government, shouldn’t we be applauding and supporting someone who is using a bully pulpit to sound the alarm?

    I’m glad that Howard is screaming to high heaven about the outrageous behavior of this administration and I am more than a little disappointed that, under the circumstances, an editor at Reason has so little patience for his rants. Not to be overly dramatic but, as a journalist, you might want to re-read Martin Niem?ller before you come down too hard on Howard.

  15. Howard Stern may be an arrogant and pompous a-hole, but at least he has earned the right to be such, unlike most of the arrogant and pompous a-holes I have to deal with on a daily basis, or read their pompous and arrogant screeds on blogs such as this. Howard has entertained me and made me laugh for fifteen years now.

    What does someone’s opinion about whether Howard is funny anymore have to do with government censorship. I mean that’s the whole point, isn’t it? No one is being forced to listen to him, just as I am not forced to read this blog.

    I’ve come to the conlusion that most people are arrogant and pompous a-holes, but at least howard gives something meaningful to me.

  16. Now, Stern is a lot like junk food. I don’t believe that the Gov’t should regulate it, but I can still loathe it and consider it poor taste. I’d wager that Stern’s constant bromides do more to tire the audience of the subject, than inspire indignation. Beside which, Stern was never one for consistent political philosophy. His blah, blah, blah is hardly the inspirational speech libertarians need. Sure, he has every right to do it, but he has no right to an audience. He should be railing against the concept of public airwaves. Like Rick Barton said in an earlier post about Ron Bailey’s article, “private property” solves this problem.

  17. The govt. put more restrictions on free speech? Eh boring (turns on reality tv instead).

    I mean I it’s not worth defending because it’s boring and besides we have a Republican in office and so all is right with the world … or would be if only pot were legal. Speaking of which, what was that Jefferson dude smoking, when he talked about eternal vigilance? Vigilance just leads to statism. Everyone knows a perfect libertarian society will be achieved by eternal apathy. The more you pay no attention to that uncle sam guy behind the curtain, the freer you will be.

  18. Lennie Stern, er ah, Howard Bruce, er ah,
    blah, blah,blah, blah.
    Howard Stern just draws NO sympathy from me.

    His calls for literal looks at Oprah & 60 minutes is funny.
    Howard must be surrounded by Yes, Ha Ha, Yes men.
    His girlfriend is pretty, at least.

    All he has to do is compete on level ground with other AM shows,
    and then, when the time is right, go back in his silly routine.

  19. First I will take Howard Stern off the air, and then I will yank Al Franken’s license, then I’ll detain the staff of *Reason* and the Mises Institute, AND THEN I WILL RULE THE UNIVERSE, mwahahahahaha!

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