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Old 12-28-2006, 05:13 PM   #1
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Default He's The Real Malloy: SBS Interviews Progressive Sirius Host Mike Malloy

Mike Malloy is a Progressive Talk Radio Host on Nova M Networks and Sirius Left Channel 146. He has been on and off Sirius twice due to 1) IE America Radio going out of business in 2004, and 2) Air America Radio going exclusive to XM in July 2005. He returned to Sirius on December 18th, 2006 broadcasting live on Sirius Left weeknights from 9p-midnite. You can call the show and voice your thoughts on air at 1-800-989-1480, or find out more at I interviewed him over the phone earlier today to find out more about him and his show on Sirius, his thoughts on Air America, and his political views.

Tell us more about yourself and going through the various networks and being on and off Sirius.

I started in radio accidentally in Atlanta. I was working at CNN, and was told of a weekend radio spot at an Atlanta radio station, so I went. I moved to WSB and started doing a talk show. I then went to WLS. Came back to Atlanta and worked for IE America Radio until they lost their funding from the United Auto Workers. I worked with Air America from August 2004 until August 2006.

What went wrong with Air America Radio?

It was a great idea to begin with, but a sad story. The founders were pushed out by new investors who didn’t know anything about radio but wanted to play radio executive. There was a huge disparity in pay: Al Franken was making 2.6 million per year, but Mike Malloy was making 88k. I think Al Franken contributed to the demise of the network. At one time he had a staff of 20 or 30 people, writers and workers and all this other bullshit. There were many factors that caused Air America to go into bankruptcy: The executives didn’t know what they were doing, and when they hired radio people who knew what to do, the executives weren’t listening, and the radio people left. They couldn’t get investors because they didn’t have a viable structure as it is now. It would have been easy to be a success. Everybody jumped on the bandwagon to snipe at Air America, from Hannity and Limbaugh to all the others in between. It built an instant brand overnight. I still have friends who work there, they were talented people like Rachel Maddow, Randi Rhodes, Sam Seder, and many others. As far as the company itself, I’m really pissed.

Will does Air America ever be a success?

No, not unless the management changes to radio. The people there now have no experience whatsoever.

How did you find Nova M Radio?

They kind of found me. I’ve known the founders Shelly and Anita Drobny for 3-4 years. They found me and said they wanted to start a liberal network. [Producer and Wife Kathy and I] listened to their idea, and I liked it and said what do you want from me? They replied “I want you to be the CEO”. I knew I couldn’t do it, but I did start my show with them.

How much of your audience listens through Sirius?

I don’t know. With AAR I was on 45 stations and the internet. I get calls from China, Japan, Malta, Norway, Australia, England, Italy, and they aren’t listening through Sirius. When you compare terrestrial broadcasting, the internet, and Sirius, the vast majority is not on Sirius. I hope that can change, and we pick up lots of listeners. When I was on Sirius before there were lots of listernees with AAR, and when it went to XM, there were lots of emails and phone calls complaining. I hope it changes, and Sirius generates lots of listeners over time.

Is the satellite deal with Sirius exclusive or non-exclusive?

I don’t know what agreement Sirius worked out with Nova M, but currently I am only on Sirius. After Air America, I talked with Dave Gorab at Sirius, and talked about being exclusively on Sirius. But the decision took too long to make, and Nova M came together before Sirius’ offer did.

How do you define your political beliefs?

I define myself as a traditional Democrat. I am pro-union, only 13% of the workforce is now unionized compared to 35% 50 years ago. The power of the unions is the power of the middle class. If it wasn’t for the unions in the 30s 40s and 60s, there wouldn’t be a middle class. I believe in the equality of the law. Gays have the same rights as everyone else, and that all these constitiuional amendments to ban gay marriage are bullshit and bigoted. I believe in racial equality as well, at least in the workplace. When you have one race that was enslaved for 350 years, one that wasn’t at all, you can’t say ‘oh, we’re now equal’. I also believe in affirmative action. There should be reparations, there should be affirmative action. [Affirmative Action] is the way Bush got into Yale. His father was there, so Bush got in. I also believe there should be regulatory agencies to watch the federal government. That’s what I mean by traditional Democrat.

Do you notice any regional differences in caller’s concerns and interests being on satellite?

There really isn’t. People who are not republicans, not right wingers, not followers of Limbuagh or Hannity or the rest of these thugs, no matter where they come from whether it is Maine or Nevada. They realize they are being raped by the Bush crime family. It really doesn’t matter, black or white, gay or straight but the unifying thread is the disgust between them and the Bush administration.

Will Lieberman hurt the Democrats through the threats to jump parties?

He has already hurt the Democrats, even when he was a Democrat. He’s a suck up, a liar, he’s like Zell Miller. They are right wingers. I don’t know if that makes them republicans, independents, or whatever. I think Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid should have worked harder to get Lamont elected. Lieberman should have cut the crap and called himself a Republican. Democrats should have worked harder, and Lieberman is a snake. He will turn on the Democratic Party. He couldn’t accept defeat. No he didn’t do that. He told the voters to go fuck themselves, and went independent, which means Republican

Liberal talk radio in general seems to get a lot of its ammo in its ‘bash-bush’ mantra that most of the newer hosts seem to go to over and over again. Do you think some of the liberal talkers will get cancelled because they will have a tough time talking about something else other than Bush?

As far as liberals are concerned, liberals in radio are marginalized, and that’s why it’s so difficult to find them. The marketplace isn’t saying “we want conservative talk”, it’s utter bullshit. Take a look at the recent elections, take a look at polls, and see if the country wants conservative talk. Those decisions to make shows come from the top, and it is done by one of the five radio companies who control over 90% of the airwaves. The right winger will tell you that the marketplace determines what brand of butter you buy, what radio show people want, and its not true. If 70% of the nation hates George Bush and 80% of talk radio hosts support George Bush, there’s something fucked about that. I don’t know how to counteract that other than the talk radio I do is decisive, its hard hitting, and when the managers don’t screw with what I say, I have come up pretty big with a 6, 7, 8, 10 share in markets like Chicago and Salt Lake City. Another problem is advertisers. If advertisers don’t like what I say about the Bush crime family, there is nothing I can do about that. Again, if all things are equal, if you have a talented liberal and an average conservative, you will see the conservative picked up by the radio company. If you look at these no talent hacks like Sean Hannity, or Limbaugh who is a drug addict, they’re on 300 stations, why is that? Because he has a phony ass Christianity belief, supports the war. It’s a real shitty situation out there. It is not an equal field.

Liberal talk show hosts are not necessarily democrat. I’m not a Democrat. Liberals are often libertarian. It doesn’t make any difference which party comes to power in 2008; both parties are corrupt, just the Republicans moreso than the Democrats. The Democratic party, in lots of ways, is corrupt as well. It doesn’t make any difference in 2008. It’s made a joke by right wing media, but liberals do want to save the world. We just want justice, fair play, a decent life, a decent future for our kids.

Who SHOULD the democrats nominate for 2008?

Dennis Kucinich, I know that won’t happen, because there aren't as many traditional democrats as traditional republicans. If Dennis Kucinich made it through the primary, I would do everything I could to get him elected.

Who will be a disaster for them?

Barack Obama would be a disaster for many reasons not the last of which is he has no experience. He made a great speech at the Democratic convention, he is intelligent, he is multiracial, and the television people love him. Television people have as much business in politics as I do in television. I think if he gets the nomination, which he won’t, America is still a racist country, and no matter what happens, there is still a slight racist note in the heart of every white person in the country, and seeing the face of Barack Obaba would not be positive. I don’t think the country is ready for a black president, or a woman president for that matter. I think the right wingers are licking their lips and saying ‘oh boy, if we can get a woman or a negro to run, we will win’. If it’s Hillary vs. McCain, Hillary will get elected. John Edwards announced his candidacy yesterday as well. The problem with Edwards is he will have the appearance of being a loser after 2004. I don’t know, I think he might be qualified, but he’s like Barack Obama: Attractve, intelligent, articulate, but has no experience.

Do the Democrats need to reach out to the religious more and how can they do it?

The Democrats need to point out that the Republicans are lying sons of bitches. There’s a new book out now about how the Bush administration laughs at these religious fundamentalists, they call them assholes, freaks, etc. The Democratic party has always been religious, they just don’t make a big deal about it, they don’t get all phony about it. The biggest mistake the Democratic party could make is to be like these phony republicans. I can’t think of a single democrat who isn’t religious… Carter was an evangelical Christian, taught Sunday School, Kennedy went to mass every week, same with Kerry. What they need to do is show people that the republicans are phony in their religious beliefs, and use it as a wedge for issues like gay marriage.

Last edited by BenDee; 12-28-2006 at 06:26 PM..
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Old 12-28-2006, 08:54 PM   #2
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Great interview!!! Thanks for that!
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Old 01-03-2007, 10:23 AM   #3
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Default Excellent interview of Mike, Thanks

best I have seen
I really think if he had been exclusive to Sirius, he would have brought in about 200,000 to 400,000 new subscribers and we would have heard a completely unleashed Mike Malloy. Loved him on Sirius pre-Air America, loved him on Sirius-Air America, got XM for him on Air America. Now he's back where he belongs, and I hate Air America and Franken especially.
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Old 01-03-2007, 10:52 AM   #4
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Yeah, I didn't know some of those things about AAR, specificly Franken, until after I interviewed him.

BTW: Do you still have a Jensen SRP2002?
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Old 01-03-2007, 01:21 PM   #5
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I've heard of Mike Malloy but never listened to the show. Now I'll definately give him a shot. Seems very cool. Good job with the interview, BemDee!
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Old 01-04-2007, 12:06 AM   #6
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He's The Real Malloy: SBS Interviews Progressive Sirius Host Mike Malloy
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congrats on getting that interview for this forum!

just to point out a few problems i had with his answers

as far as al franken being the big cheese at air america .. him making 2 million and malloy making 88 thousand.. can you imagine the disparity with howard sterns channels? not that al franken is anywhere near a howard stern .. but i sure can't imagine that farell or bubba the love sponge are making much more than 88k compared to howards 100 mil ..

he says the democrats should nominate dennis kucinich? what's he smoking??

and in one sentence he says he's a traditional democrat then he says he's not a democrat ... in once sentence he says america isn't ready for a woman president then in the next he says hillary will win..

that said.. i will be listening .. he sounds interesting .. if conflicted
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Old 01-04-2007, 06:59 AM   #7
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-Franken has 2.6 million PLUS the writer's salaries as well. But still, if Mike pulls in similar ratings to Franken, AFAIK, he was, why is Al getting paid 30 times as much?

-He says America isn't ready for a woman president, but if it's Clinton vs. McCain, Hillary will win.
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