Power Line received an email from a reader reporting on the latest antics going on at Radio Air America this morning. Here it is, with a portion of the PL response:
"I am listening to that commercial free, 100 watt blowtorch that carries Air America. Nick what's his name [Ed.: I have no idea who Nick is.] is babbling about Fascist Bullies, the unnamed anonymous cowards hiding behind cute names like Hindrocket, et al. When it comes to humor this is apparently the laugh track of the left. But never fear old Nick (a true son of the common man) is on to blog and is warning one and all (the new Paul Revere?) about the danger to the republic (and Minnesota) in the person of these PAID political operatives, such as Power Line. It is WAR! There are no standards, accountability, supervision or editing as is the case for poor humble Nick. Beware the PAID political commentators, says uncle Nick."
I think Air America exists mostly so it can be ridiculed by conservatives, so a lengthy response probably isn't necessary, but two quick points suggest themselves. First, we are about as far from being "anonymous" as you can get. Apparently Nick Whoever hasn't thought to click on the "about us" link, nor has he read the articles about us in Time and other publications, nor has he taken the trouble to Google us. Great research, Nick.
I've never heard of a 'Nick' on Air America either. But the fact that "Nick Whoever" can't be bothered to research his factual claims should have been a huge clue as to his identity.
On my commute home today, I was flipping around during a Hewitt commercial and landed on the local Air America outlet (KTNF 950 AM). They were replaying a broadcast of their morning show, normally hosted by Wendy Wilde. And who, you may ask was filling in for Wendy on her day off?
Yes - it's none other than Nick Coleman. The former host of the KSTP Sunday afternoon shift (before the marketplace decided an extra two hours of Car Talk was infinitely more listenable) and beleaguered Star Tribune lead columnist was on and talking fast and loose, and despondently, about politics. I didn't hear his specific shots at Hinderaker, but I did hear and jot down this verbatim comment (regarding conservatives in Minnesota): These people are working constantly to turn Minnesota into Alabama. I feel discouraged.
That last part should maybe be the new Wendy Wilde Show slogan. At least when Nick Coleman is substitute hosting.
Coleman also claimed to know a "high placed individual in Republican circles," someone "experienced" with a "good heart." Someone Nick said, if he could reveal the person's name, our jaws would be on the floor. And, according to Nick, this Republican says, thanks to the conservative movement in the state: "we're going down the tubes, in every category, in quality of life, health care, education, the environment. Just like the Titanic, we've seen the iceberg, the bell is ringing, and we don't have time to turn the ship around."
We can only guess who this highly placed Republican is (the only person I'm ruling out at this point is John Hinderaker). It would be interesting for Nick's professional journalist news instincts to compel him to get this person on the record. Because this is, you know, NEWS. At least it is if it's true. Which, given Coleman's record, there's no better than a 50-50 chance of.
It is valuable see Coleman's overall perspective on Minnesota revealed. One can now understand why he felt the need to take a story like Maxfield Elementary (which its Principal says has enough books for everyone and that it is working for everybody) and position it, twice, as an example of why YOUR SCHOOLS ARE BURNING.
Sometimes, in order to fit your conclusion, the facts need to be sacrificed. And apparently that's what we're seeing with Maxfield Elementary. Coleman's commentary on all issues of Minnesota politics, especially when it comes to matters of taxes and spending, need to be read in this context: Minnesota is just like the Titanic and we're going down fast. And he's going to do all he can to convince you of that too.