Friday, October 07, 2005

''ron sims, liberal beer suckers, carolyn edmonds, john carlson, pecker toads...''

Michael Hood rants about King County politics, talk radio and drinking: "BlatherWatch talked to County Executive Ron Sims Tuesday night at Linking Driberally, a weekly beer suck attended by politicos and bloggers at the Montlake Alehouse.

We were impressed at Sims' candor, loquaciousness, (no surprise, the loquacious part--he's a politician and a preacher) and his willingness to passionately defend his side of the issues in a setting where he didn't have to.

Sims told us he's a BlatherWatch regular who inflicts our posts on his staffers when we're making sense and they're not; or when he needs to buttress his own arguments or change the subject with our uncommon and distracting sense of proportion. In local politics, this is known a "simbiosis."

We've been listening to talk radio for too long. For years and years we've been hearing what an arch member of the Seattle liberal power elite is Ron Sims. To the rightie talkers, he's tax-to-the-max, he's King Ron, he's the guy who loves salmon more than Christmas; wants to steal your votes, take away your birthday, highjack your grandpa's farm or marry your daughter off to a gal with a crew cut.

Even a good liberal builds up a residue of negativity after all that repetitious spin--that's the power of the medium we keep harping about.

But who we met Tuesday night was a real liberal, a passionate liberal, a great politician and a mensch to boot. He didn't parachute in with an entourage, he drove his own car over and hung out until the last dog was hung with this beer-swilling crowd of bloggers, and philosophical fedbellows bent on interrupting him and each other.

We couldn't help ourselves; we stepped up onto our beat-up old soapbox; lecturing, as always, about the disproportionate power of right-wing talk radio. We strongly urged (a euphemism for nagging and ranting) Sims to make himself more available to right wing talk hosts whose suburban and exurban listeners are his main detractors. In his absence, talk hosts like Siegel, Carlson, and Wilbur have their way with him, calling him chickenshit or elitist, and accuse him of not caring about the people. Everything is his fault --by default. He needs to get down there.

I hope he heard us. We had, perhaps, one too many big orange drinks, and the sugar made us a little more eager and obnoxious than usual.

As you probably know, the neocon Republican Carlson's choice for the Democratic nominee for the 1st District Co. Council was elected. Maybe he's just pounding sand up our ass, but we have a feeling he isn't. If this ain't puffery, Carlson heavily influenced the outcome of that local election, sitting in a chair with a microphone in his face.

That sucks and it's not the first time.

We think this screams out what we're always saying: liberals and Democrats need liberal and Democratic local talk radio--the kind that creates and maintains community and can make people do what they say. And they should spend money and energy to achieve that worthy goal.

We hope Sims and his staffers heard us Tuesday, and that the Democrats will come to about the new media. They need to help progressive talk radio get established locally and give blogs like BlatherWatch a lot of money or, if nothing else, the time of day.

Ron Sims gave more than the time of day the other night; and we, for one, appreciate it."-from BlatherWatch.

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