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The Sensitive Bigot
July 30, 2009 6:08 PM   Subscribe

Michael Savage unplugged. Behind the scenes. "This year, Savage is celebrating the fifteenth anniversary of his radio career. On the air one day, he marked the occasion in typically perverse fashion: by thinking of all the listeners who stuck around, and all the ones who didn’t. “Some were fifteen, they’re now thirty,” he said. “Some were five, they’re now twenty. They grew up on me. Their fathers are dead; the guys who had it playing in the car are gone. They’re still here, they can’t believe it. I’m their voice of freedom. I’m the last hope. I’m the beacon. I’m the Statue of Liberty. I’m Michael Savage. I’ll be back."”
posted by Xurando (94 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

 
"I’m Michael Weiner."
posted by sharksandwich at 6:12 PM on July 30, 2009


Fuck Michael Savage.
posted by natteringnabob at 6:13 PM on July 30, 2009


Motherfuck Michael Savage.
posted by item at 6:14 PM on July 30, 2009


"I'm secretly, wildly gay and hate myself."
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 6:15 PM on July 30, 2009 [13 favorites]


Nice to meet you, Mr. Savage
E A T. S H I T.
posted by porn in the woods at 6:16 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


Some were five, they’re now twenty.

If someone was listening to Michael Savage at age five I am certain they were knifed to death in prison years ago.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 6:18 PM on July 30, 2009 [34 favorites]


Sometimes, on the drive home from work, I tune into his radio show.

Dude is fucking nuts.

Used to be friends with Allen Ginsberg back in the day, though, I guess.
posted by kbanas at 6:22 PM on July 30, 2009


Someone once asked me how I think I'd handle news that I had 3 months to live. Without hesitation, and without having ever thought of it before, I said, "I think I'd go kill a whole bunch of people: Michael Savage, Fred Phelps and his whole family, Ann Coulter, Bill O'Reilly, Glenn Beck, Michelle Malkin, W, and Joel Schumacher."

My friend said, "Why Joel Schumacher."

Before I could ask, "Have you seen his movies?" my friend added, "Oh, yeah. Right."
posted by You Should See the Other Guy at 6:22 PM on July 30, 2009 [18 favorites]


Here's to a man who was banned by a country who's home to the BNP.
posted by boo_radley at 6:22 PM on July 30, 2009 [4 favorites]


On his radio show, Savage told listeners that "intelligent people, wealthy people ... are very depressed by the weakness that America is showing to these psychotics in the Muslim world. They say, 'Oh, there's a billion of them.' " Savage continued: "I said, 'So, kill 100 million of them, then there'd be 900 million of them.' I mean ... would you rather us die than them?" Savage added: "Would you rather we disappear or we die? Or would you rather they disappear and they die? Because you're going to have to make that choice sooner rather than later." Source
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 6:23 PM on July 30, 2009 [3 favorites]


Has anyone read the New Yorker profile? He really is a fascinating character. I used to listen to him every once in awhile, and my favorite thing he does is he'll go on some long soliloquy about this delicious Vietnamese meal he had the night before, and how he sailed the bay with his dog next to him, the breeze of the Pacific, what an amazing country this is, on and on, how great it is to be alive, all the things that are provided us, so much beauty in this world, and then the switch is triggered and he segues seamlessly into talking about how the gays ruined his life and liberals are destroying America because they refuse to kill all the Muslims in the world. It's fascinating. Of course, there's also his background of getting a PhD in ethnobotany from Berkeley, running around with Ginsberg and those guys back in the 60s. Apparently he tried to get a job in academia and was denied and ever since has been on a personal crusade to burn down all institutions associated with progressive ideas, affirmative action, political correctness. Anyway, I thought the article was great. I still find it absolutely improbable that he has his own show; he's essentially just a paranoid, delusional crank who hates pretty much everyone and everything, including his listeners who call in to the show.
posted by billysumday at 6:27 PM on July 30, 2009 [20 favorites]


If I know anything about dramatic irony then the next few months are going to be very interesting for Mr. Savage.
posted by The Whelk at 6:27 PM on July 30, 2009 [3 favorites]


Apparently he tried to get a job in academia and was denied and ever since has been on a personal crusade to burn down all institutions associated with progressive ideas, affirmative action, political correctness.

See, I call that boring, not fascinating.
posted by mediareport at 6:29 PM on July 30, 2009


My favorite Michael "Savage" Weiner hypocrisy is he's an investor of Rockstar energy drink that his son Russell founded, a drink heavily marketed to the gay clubs.

Fuck that guy.
posted by MiltonRandKalman at 6:32 PM on July 30, 2009 [3 favorites]


See, I call that boring, not fascinating.

Then you probably don't listen to his show. Most people don't. But the thing is, a lot of people do. And I'd guess that at least 2/3rds of his listeners share no common political or cultural ground with the guy but listen to him anyway because he is such a fascinating contradiction of personal history and personal beliefs. But I also really like listening to crazy fire and brimstone preachers on local AM radio late at night so I'm probably not the best person to judge whether or not Michael Savage is a good listen.
posted by billysumday at 6:36 PM on July 30, 2009 [3 favorites]


I think the New Yorker article is a really a great read, by the way - it goes a long way towards capturing what you can really only get by listening to the guy.
posted by kbanas at 6:40 PM on July 30, 2009


Michael Savage Unplugged Unhinged.

FTFY.


In the dictionary , under 'Redundant,' it says "See 'Redundant'".
posted by zarq at 6:41 PM on July 30, 2009


Whatever. This is Glenn Beck's psychotic delusion, and Michael's just living in it.
posted by 0xdeadc0de at 6:46 PM on July 30, 2009 [3 favorites]


You Should See the Other Guy: "I said, "I think I'd go kill a whole bunch of people: Michael Savage, Fred Phelps and his whole family, Ann Coulter, Bill O'Reilly, Glenn Beck, Michelle Malkin, W, and Joel Schumacher.""

And one clown.
posted by Riki tiki at 6:54 PM on July 30, 2009 [5 favorites]


But I also really like listening to crazy fire and brimstone preachers on local AM radio late at night so I'm probably not the best person to judge whether or not Michael Savage is a good listen.

Thanks for clarifying. You'll get to a point soon enough where that stuff just becomes boring. How many ways is there to say 'gays are killing America'? Answer: a very limited number of ways.
posted by mediareport at 6:56 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


If only this guy drank PBR's in Georgtown and wore a fedora we'd have a perfect hate storm.
posted by tkchrist at 6:57 PM on July 30, 2009 [5 favorites]


Seconding billysumday. Savage is almost always completely wrong on every issue, but the fascinating bits of his history and personality make him very listenable. His show should be mandatory listening in high school sex education as an warning of what happens to a flamboyant homosexual when he doesn't regularly let the gay out. It mixes with the liver bile, growing progressively more backed up and cruddy until one day a corrosive lavender mist just explodes from his mouth into the nearest microphone.
posted by bunnytricks at 6:57 PM on July 30, 2009 [8 favorites]


Billysumday gives a pretty accurate description. I've listened to Doc Savage a decent amount while driving with a friend who loves the man. Savage will go from incredible moments of lucidity about the evils of the military-industrial complex to literally screaming about gay people. He's a thoroughly insane, and bitter, son of a bitch.
posted by Roman Graves at 6:58 PM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


He spent nearly 20 minutes sitting in a stuffed chair in front of a television set, free-associating as he channel surfed. Seeing footage of Jordan's King Abdullah, he screamed, "Kiss my ass! Shut the hell up!" To a soccer match in Spanish, he quipped, "Reminds me of my gardener." It was about as entertaining as watching a middle-aged man yelling at his living room TV. Savage eventually realized things weren't going well. "You don't like this shit," he said. "It's a bad act."
- America's laziest fascist
posted by wfrgms at 6:59 PM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


I'd guess that at least 2/3rds of his listeners share no common political or cultural ground with the guy but listen to him anyway because he is such a fascinating contradiction of personal history and personal beliefs.

Um. That is not an accurate guess. America is not a land bereft of extremists, even if you rarely meet them.
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 7:00 PM on July 30, 2009 [3 favorites]


Thanks for clarifying. You'll get to a point soon enough where that stuff just becomes boring.

Really? Is this something you used to do and finally, after ten years or so, gave up? I have a feeling that the images and feelings these stories and the storytellers evoke in me are different than for anyone else. It's not the ideas or the politics I'm interested in but the retelling of old and familiar stories, the forced conviction, the twisting of parables from something spiritual and timeless into something dark and sinister.
posted by billysumday at 7:03 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


I was at Talkers a couple of years ago where Savage was given the "Freedom of Speech" award. It's a very congenial crowd. I saw Randi Rhodes and G. Gordon Liddy having a drink and a laugh. Ann Coulter's staff and some interns from the Family Research Council were drinking and flirting after Sean Hannity's big annual ice cream party.

In the end, it's a business; none of these rabble-rousers care that much about what they say, as long as the listeners are tuning in.

Except Glenn Beck; that fucker's crazy.
posted by nicwolff at 7:03 PM on July 30, 2009 [4 favorites]


I'd guess that at least 2/3rds of his listeners share no common political or cultural ground with the guy but listen to him anyway because he is such a fascinating contradiction of personal history and personal beliefs.

Um. That is not an accurate guess. America is not a land bereft of extremists, even if you rarely meet them.


I should clarify and state that I think that most people who listen to his show are not part of the "Savage Nation" as he refers to it because there are long stretches where it seems like they can't get anyone on the line. This only happens when nobody's listening (not possible - millions of people listen) or the screeners can't find anyone who agrees enough with him to put on air. I could be wrong, though. His books do sell well.
posted by billysumday at 7:06 PM on July 30, 2009


Van Morrison and I both agree. He can fucking shut the fuck up.
posted by Benny Andajetz at 7:07 PM on July 30, 2009


...at least 2/3rds of his listeners share no common political or cultural ground with the guy but listen to him anyway because he is such a fascinating contradiction of personal history and personal beliefs.

Wow, I thought I had no life, but anybody who listens to Weinersavage for the "fascinating contracition"?!?

I was professionally involved in talk radio during the pre-Limbaugh era and kept connected with people involved in it since... there is not a single successful rightwing talk jock who is not playing a character other than himself. Performers. Actors. Professional liars. (although some are also pathological liars) And it so fits the Big-Lie-Based Ideology they promote. "This delicious Vietnamese meal he had the night before, and how he sailed the bay with his dog next to him," probably never happened either; it's just being in character. And nothing in the links to provides any real evidence otherwise. How hard is it to bamboozle a New Yorker writer anyway? If I want "fascinating characters", I'll watch "Lost".
posted by wendell at 7:08 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


Then you probably don't listen to his show. Most people don't. But the thing is, a lot of people do. And I'd guess that at least 2/3rds of his listeners share no common political or cultural ground with the guy but listen to him anyway because he is such a fascinating contradiction of personal history and personal beliefs.

I was forced to listen to him for a few hours recently (his show is three hours long, and it's just him babbling the whole time which is pretty brutal).

My favorite part was when he went into a twenty minute rant about how horrible cell phones were. He said that people who spent all day using a BlackBerry or iPhone were idiots, and how he refused to use one. It was clear for the rant that he barely understands what an iPhone is. Then they cut to a commercial, and it's Savage again, reading an ad saying that he just found "The best iPhone app" and urging listeners to go buy it.
posted by burnmp3s at 7:17 PM on July 30, 2009 [9 favorites]


I'd guess that at least 2/3rds of his listeners share no common political or cultural ground with the guy but listen to him anyway because he is such a fascinating contradiction of personal history and personal beliefs.
It takes a certain special kind of talent to talk, unscripted, for 3 hours and skill keep the attention of the listeners. And if you're really into radio, I can see how one could develop a certain level of respect for someone who's really good at doing that.

But the New Yorker article on him pretty much showed him to be a rather banal character. The essay sort of promised that we'd be confronted with a surprise about what Savage is "really like." There was no surprise, really: he's a guy who likes to do stuff and enjoy talking who's also a delusional, hateful crank. I guess part of it is that I already knew he had a Ph.D. and tried, in his previous life, to try marketing health remedies, so none of that surprised me. And the story that "he tried to get a job in academia and was denied and ever since has been on a personal crusade to burn down all institutions associated with progressive ideas, affirmative action, political correctness," sounds like something out of a poorly-written comic-book supervillain origin story rather than a genuine insight.
posted by deanc at 7:17 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


But I also really like listening to crazy fire and brimstone preachers on local AM radio late at night

You know what will cure you of that? Doing it on acid. I'll spare you the details but suffice to say that was one long night in a college dorm room.

But I too "get" the freakshow thing. I have never heard Michael Savage's show, personally. But when ever I'm in the Midwest you can't help but tune into all the other AM talk radio shows. And it's as entertaining as it is frustrating.

I have however kind of met Micheal Savage. I was at a bachelor party once a ways back. And we went to this strip club. Evidently Savage was holding some sort of promotion there the same night. One of the guys with me said "Hey! That's that asshole talk show guy... Savage!" I was confused becuase I thought he meant Dan Savage. Who I rally like and have met a number of times here in Seattle. But I look and it was this bloated, sweaty, tweaked-out looking old guy flanked by two strippers. His face was so red and swollen he looked he was gonna pop. "Who?" "The right wing asshole guy. There." He waves over at us. And yells something. Like "ROCK ON! USA!" Or something. And fist pumps.

Since I was pretty drunk and with a group of tough homies I was gonna walk over there and start some shit. Like call him a sexist fascist bigot. But. You know. There I was getting a lap dance at the time. Um. I felt I'd lost the high ground, so-to-speak. So I just yelled back "Howard Stern Wanna-be!" But Cherry Pie was playing so loud he couldn't hear me.
posted by tkchrist at 7:21 PM on July 30, 2009 [12 favorites]


Well, like I said, I don't really have the time to listen to him anymore. But if you need a punching bag to call a worthless no-life, wendell, then have at it. Not really up for defending my honor tonight. All I'm saying is I think Savage is a pretty interesting guy. So apparently did the editorial staff at the New Yorker.
posted by billysumday at 7:21 PM on July 30, 2009


"he tried to get a job in academia and was denied and ever since has been on a personal crusade to burn down all institutions associated with progressive ideas, affirmative action, political correctness," sounds like something out of a poorly-written comic-book supervillain origin story rather than a genuine insight.

To be fair, he does come off like a poorly-written D-list supervillian. Like even the Clockman refuses to join his capers and not even the Sinister Septuagenarian would dance with him at FOOLS! the All-Evil Supervilliany Mixer and Meetup.
posted by The Whelk at 7:29 PM on July 30, 2009 [7 favorites]


Hello. Just wanted to say how much I'm enjoying this RockStar brand Energy Drink.
posted by deliquescent at 7:36 PM on July 30, 2009


"I'm secretly, wildly gay and hate myself."

So, so true. It takes an astonishing amount of willpower for him to violently suppress his inner queen like that. You can hear it seeping out when he starts railing anyway. But, he is incapable of not being disgusting. Of Limbaugh, Hannity, Beck, and Savage, I can listen to Savage the least amount of time (say 30 seconds) before my arm involuntarily jerks up towards the dashboard radio power button.
posted by Burhanistan at 7:45 PM on July 30, 2009


All right, I'll ask again - and again - I keep asking this, and never really getting any answers that feel authoritative. And this is the only question that interests me about these characters: do they believe what they are saying, or is it all an act and purely business. I've heard Ann Coulter rebut some critic with "but my books sell really well!", which implies "whatever, I don't care - I'm only in it for the money... if liberalism gave as much $ opportunity, that's what I'd spout".

So - who is a true believer, who merely a nut, and who is a cynical exploiter (overlap allowed) - here are my guesses:

1)Limbaugh - act (in reality, loves all things French etc.)

2)Hannity - act

3)Beck - ?

4)Savage - ?

5) Coulter - act

6)...

What d'yall say?
posted by VikingSword at 7:45 PM on July 30, 2009


I think the fact that there is even a question about their authenticity is enough answer for me.
posted by feloniousmonk at 7:46 PM on July 30, 2009


he's essentially just a paranoid, delusional crank who hates pretty much everyone and everything, including his listeners who call in to the show.

Yeah. When I first heard him, I was on a road trip from New Orleans to San Francisco, and I picked him up somewhere in the middle of Texas. He was so unhinged (not to mention unprofessional, what with his random digressions) that I figured he was some local nutjob who had wrangled a slot on his brother-in-law's AM radio station. Imagine my surprise when I managed to hear him during the course of the trip.

He actually went on a tirade about the idea of funerals and memorial services being "celebrations" of the deceased person's life. He said that death and dying are terrible things and we should instead wallow in sadness and horror at funerals, because that's what they're for. Home boy's got issues.
posted by brundlefly at 7:51 PM on July 30, 2009


Like I said before Beck is the emotionally disturbed fetal alcohol syndrome baby of Tammy Fay Baker.

As for Coulter and Hannity and Limbaugh. Both things can be true. It's an act AND they believe.

The characters they maintain are projected idealized constructs of their weaker selves. Hey. Just like the rest of us.
posted by tkchrist at 7:52 PM on July 30, 2009


I thought you all adored this Savage guy.
posted by itchylick at 7:54 PM on July 30, 2009


Michael Savage is really, really not funny, IMO. I mean, when you have a major media figure calling for extermination of the subhumans who threaten the foundations of Western culture (which is absolutely what he's doing- see the MediaMatters article linked earlier in the thread, or this one)- well, I'd make the "you know else" joke here, but in this case, it's not funny because it's true. As far as I can tell, the only real difference between him and the Aryan Nations crowd is which ethnic group they think should be exterminated.

The fact that he's able to get away with this- that he has a huge following instead of being a complete pariah- makes me understand certain periods of history a lot better. Seriously, with Savage we have a radio host who has, according to the Wikipedia article on him, 8 to 10 million listeners, and he uses his platform to advocate genocide, and somehow, no one is particularly concerned about this, or wonders what it says about America as a country that he finds an audience with so many Americans. I seriously doubt that most of those listeners are listening to him ironically, and even if only a quarter of them take him seriously (and I'm sure it's more than that), that's still millions of people. Savage's shtick may or may not be an act, but given that, I don't think it really matters either way. As much of a pathetic buffoon as he is, he represents something that I think is thoroughly malign and terrifying, and regarding him as no more than a ridiculous figure of fun, as it seems many liberals do, is IMO whistling past the graveyard.
posted by a louis wain cat at 8:05 PM on July 30, 2009 [14 favorites]


VikingSword
I'm inclined to say Limbaugh and Coulter are an act to some degree. But the problem is their devout followers don't think they are an act. And so therefore it makes it tough to come to a definitive conclusion they are an act since they do have influence in right wing circles.

Savage and Beck seem completely off the rails nuts. Hannity is somewhere in between. He plays to his crowd and probably believes a lot of the BS he spews. But at times he allows [or has allowed] people with differing views and their views have to sink in on occasion.

Then there is O'Reilly....
posted by Rashomon at 8:05 PM on July 30, 2009


Man what the Hell did Ginsberg DO to him?

(I want to know so that we can do the same to Coulter, Malkin, Beck, Hannity, O'Reilly and all the other unamerican radio hate-spewers out there.)
posted by Ron Thanagar at 8:15 PM on July 30, 2009


Their an act like God is a fiction.

Which is to say that regardless of what the reality of the situation may be, their followers make their message real enough.

Right wing talk radio feeds into the "self-delusion feedback loop" required to sustain views and values which are incapable of standing on their own merits. Talk radio offers a one-way, authoritarian conduit for marching orders in the form of anecdote, "just-so" stories, and home-spun wisdom (though that sounds quaint in a way these guys are not.)

I mean really, in what way can you rationally argue in favor of genocide (or any of the host of other appalling views expressed by Savage and his ilk?) The point is you can't. Which is why these types are relegated to their chosen medium, and why their followers actively dismiss counter views as just a bunch of "fancy talk" or describe a politician like Obama, whose rhetorical skills are unmatched on the Right, as an "empty suit." They know their views are indefensible, which is why they both lurk in the shadows of radio and require regular doses of "ditto-head" delusion.
posted by wfrgms at 8:26 PM on July 30, 2009 [4 favorites]


I've met some of these people. They believe it. They are all maniacally full of themselves--they have a bedrock degree of self confidence that doesn't allow for this "Do they mean it?" "Do they not mean it?" ambiguity. . . They don't question themselves at that level. I remember talking to Bernard Goldberg right after Bias was published. He was standing at a window overlooking midtown Manhattan and he said to me, "Some guy just stopped me on the street and said, 'You're the guy that wrote Bias, aren't you? Hey, that was a great book.'" Goldberg let me share the deep satisfaction of that moment before asking, "Do you know the last writer who was recognized like that in America?" He gave it a moment before triumphantly answering his own question, "Ernest Hemingway."
posted by matthewstopheles at 8:28 PM on July 30, 2009 [9 favorites]


To those who say that liberals should never listen to talk radio, let me make a counter argument. If I randomly tune into a few shows here and there to listen to the advertisers supporting these degenerates, then I'll know what products not to buy. For instance, I will never, ever, ever buy a LobsterGram.
posted by billysumday at 8:28 PM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


I thought you all adored this Savage guy.

I really liked Dan Savage until I sipped his energy drink/wine cooler SantoRum. Tasted like shit!
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 8:32 PM on July 30, 2009 [28 favorites]


Well, I guess, my - yes, yes, yes, yes, naive, naive, naive - hope is that if it's all an act, then there's the possibility that conscious of the damage they are doing, one day their conscience gets to them and they publicly renounce their act... and this way provide a wake-up call to all the millions of bozos who actually believe the act and the drivel. Which will lead to a great reassessment and awareness that it is wrong to simply believe some hate-filled voice on the radio. And can people wake up? I think they can - after all, Father Coughlin was super popular (as big in his day as Limbaugh is today) - and yet, people rejected him at last. OK, you can now make ruthless fun of me.
posted by VikingSword at 9:12 PM on July 30, 2009


For some reason I'm getting this urge to hate on Fred Savage. Is that wrong of me?
posted by MikeMc at 9:14 PM on July 30, 2009


I really liked Dan Savage until I sipped his energy drink/wine cooler SantoRum. Tasted like shit!

Duh, you're supposed to follow it with a shot of strawberry Astroglide.
posted by MikeMc at 9:16 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


"he tried to get a job in academia and was denied and ever since has been on a personal crusade to burn down all institutions associated with progressive ideas, affirmative action, political correctness,"

Do you know who else this describes to a rather shockingly accurate degree?
posted by Avenger at 9:17 PM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


I'll bite, Avenger. Who?
posted by SinisterPurpose at 9:25 PM on July 30, 2009


*cough*
posted by Avenger at 9:33 PM on July 30, 2009


I have never heard Savage, but he sounds nuts.'

That said, I love living in a country where people like this are this amazingly marginalized. Yeah some bored-ass construction workers listen to the guy on the radio because they prefer it to soft rock. Big deal. This isn't the UK, with it's BNP reps in the EU, or France with its neo-nazi party that gets up to 10 percent of the vote nationally at times.
posted by drjimmy11 at 9:46 PM on July 30, 2009


Bernard Goldberg reminds me of the kid in my elementary school class who ate paste right out of the tub.
posted by Ron Thanagar at 9:49 PM on July 30, 2009


Dude. Hitler? You don't think that's just a bit much?

Alright. This will be fun.

Certainly the ability to inform and persuade on the emotional level rather than the cerebral is a necessary talent of any artist. Certainly, Hitler was an engaging and effective public speaker, thus demonstrating his firm grip on the afformentioned concept. Certainly, Hitler used this skill set to rise to political power and commit, or cause to be committed, a legion of atrocities.

Certainly, Michael Savage has accomplished exactly none of these things.

Michael Savage may have an audience, but he has roused them to do absolutely nothing. His political orientation is so far away from fundamentalist bible belt conservative Christian AND San Francisco transgendered jew socialist values that he is politically useless to either party.

Michael Savage is a shock jock. Nothing less.

And, certainly, nothing more.

So, Avenger, go rent MAX again and satisfy this deep need to see Hitler in every hippyesque fascist that may come down the pike.
posted by SinisterPurpose at 9:57 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


Man what the Hell did Ginsberg DO to him?

Isn't it clear that Ginsberg rejected his advances, Weiner went mad, and became Savage?
posted by interrobang at 9:58 PM on July 30, 2009 [3 favorites]


a country where people like this are amazingly marginalized the third most popular radio host
posted by lukemeister at 10:16 PM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


They grew up on me.

if they'd done that, mr savage, they'd have turned off the radio
posted by pyramid termite at 10:32 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


The one thing that keeps me from going completely animal crackers on Michael Savage - the one, sole thing - is his "alter ego" as Michael Weiner, Nutritionist.

See, Michael Savage might be able to call out anyone, ANYONE on complete and utter bullshit right-wing talking points, full of bluster and hypocrisy, even hate - but there's a Michael Weiner under there to attack and to call on who Savage can't ignore.

Savage is a personality funded by Weiner, Weiner's an author and nutritionist almost wholly supported by vegetarian, organic types - the type of folks who tend to vote liberal - out of a Marin county-based publisher. In other words, Michael's either got to admit to his dependence on this liberal cash cow that's funded his career and enabled his (ill-advised) rise to national syndication, or he has to shit all over it.

That's when we bring up his book on "Getting Off Cocaine," and discuss the effects drug withdrawal can have on a person.
posted by Graygorey at 10:41 PM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


I like Michael Savage. If I knew so many liberals were members of Metafilter, I never would have wasted 5 bucks.
posted by kapu at 10:44 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


So, Avenger, go rent MAX again and satisfy this deep need to see Hitler in every hippyesque fascist that may come down the pike.

You are a commu-nazi-muslim for disagreeing with me.
posted by Avenger at 10:52 PM on July 30, 2009


If I knew so many liberals were members of Metafilter, I never would have wasted 5 bucks.

Well, if I had balls, I'd be my aunt.

Uncle.

I think I have balls, actually.
posted by dirigibleman at 10:58 PM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


It takes an astonishing amount of willpower for him to violently suppress his inner queen like that.

hah. I've heard a little bit of his show, mostly the really hateful stuff that gets blogged about. But the other time I heard he was going on and on about the beauty and class of these actresses in old Hollywood, not the really well-known ones either!, how they were true stars, and all the ones today are so awful, it's just not the same.. Then, I think, he free-associated to something that made him really angry and it went back to the hate speech. He's hypersensitive to criticism, self-pitying, paranoid, and weird. Weirder than I thought. Great article.
posted by citron at 11:41 PM on July 30, 2009


If I knew so many liberals were members of Metafilter, I never would have wasted 5 bucks.

Welcome to the Internet.

And to the world, for that matter. Reality has a liberal bias, after all.
posted by dopamine at 11:49 PM on July 30, 2009


If I knew so many liberals were members of Metafilter, I never would have wasted 5 bucks.

"If I'd know that I'd be exposed to so many women not wearing their tops, I never would have paid the cover to get into that titty bar..."

I suspect, if you are actually making that comment in earnest, that your dismay is more a product of the fact that you're not used to being asked to do your homework from your usual sources of information.
posted by Cyrano at 11:54 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


I live in Kansas, and drive around a lot. I prefer talk radio to music nine times out of ten, and I usually have to mine the AM dial for it. But unless someone else is in the car with me, I can't stand listening to that Weiner. Hilarious and saddening at the same time, he's the only personality in my years of radio use that invokes both rage and belly laughs at the same time- he's like the anti-Keillor.

That said, if I have a passenger, and Savage Nation is on, it is time to crank it. Intentional or not, he may be one of the country's greatest political comedians. I just can't stomach it without someone else to bounce "f'real?"s off of.
posted by maus at 12:22 AM on July 31, 2009


As a New Zealander, I find it amusing that his chosen stage name is the same as the guy who introduced the welfare state to my country.

drjimmy11: given that even most of us who live outside the US have heard of him, and he has a national radio show, I'm not sure how you can claim he's marginalised.
posted by Infinite Jest at 12:28 AM on July 31, 2009


105.9 in Fresno was KKDJ in the 80s and quite a radio station. Recently it was Jack-FM, which played a lively mix of classic rock, most of which made for good drivin' music.

Imagine my shock when, a couple of months ago, coming over the pass I tuned in to hear Michael Savage on the fucking radio. Station changed owners or something and made it into an FM talk radio. WTF2.
posted by @troy at 1:00 AM on July 31, 2009


"If I knew so many liberals were members of Metafilter, I never would have wasted 5 bucks."

(If this isn't a lame joke) You could always consider this your chance to state an intelligent opposing opinion and make this a well rounded thread (no one requires you to respond to anyone shouting you down). Also, may I point out that this is one of three or four parts of the site where contributions are valued. AskMefi, for example, rarely involves political discussions but requires many different POVs. It's a shame you feel that way, and a shame you consider "liberal" to be something alienating.
posted by saturnine at 1:34 AM on July 31, 2009 [7 favorites]


For those struggling to understand Weiner boy, I'd like to draw attention to one of his predecessors, Father Coughlin.
posted by telstar at 3:36 AM on July 31, 2009


saturnine, great comment. I also wish more of our conservative members would post meaningful comments here, but I understand why they don't. I mean, nobody gets angry when someone posts "FUCK Michael Savage," including me, because I mostly agree with the sentiment, but you've got to admit it's not a very well reasoned or written argument. Metafilter often suffers from a bad case of groupthink, same as anywhere.
posted by billysumday at 4:10 AM on July 31, 2009 [1 favorite]


Even W didn't want to kill all Muslims. This guy isn't as dangerous as some make him out to be. He's just a radio personality. Until the U.S. government starts taking foreign policy tips from radio personalities I don't think it's a big worry. I'd rather err on the side of caution when it comes to free speech. (In a first they came for right-wing nutjobs but I didn't say anything because I wasn't a right-wing nutjob kind of way) Even if he has ten million listeners it doesn't matter, every country has extremists in one way or another, this is one of the few where those types can say what they want without fear of reprisal or incarceration by the government. Until he actually starts killing people he should be left alone. I just won't listen to him or others of his ilk, for entertainment or any other reason. I'll let Media Matters do the reasearch to expose him and watch Lost for entertainment.
posted by IvoShandor at 4:13 AM on July 31, 2009


I mean, nobody gets angry when someone posts "FUCK Michael Savage," including me, because I mostly agree with the sentiment, but you've got to admit it's not a very well reasoned or written argument. Metafilter often suffers from a bad case of groupthink, same as anywhere.

the MetaBorg commands me to tell you that Michael Savage isn't worth a well reasoned or written argument
posted by jammy at 5:25 AM on July 31, 2009


For some reason I'm getting this urge to hate on Fred Savage. Is that wrong of me?

I came here to hate Randy Savage. SNAP INTO A SLIM JIM! OOOOOOOH YEAH!
posted by DecemberBoy at 6:29 AM on July 31, 2009 [3 favorites]


ART THOU BORED?
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 7:34 AM on July 31, 2009 [1 favorite]


I came here to hate Randy Savage. SNAP INTO A SLIM JIM! OOOOOOOH YEAH!

I always wonder if outrageous personalities like that are the same way in their personal life. Like if we were friends, I'd be all like "Duude. Chill." He'd be all like "I'LL CHILL YOU OUT WITH THIS HEADLOCK!! OOOH YEAHHH!!!!!" And I would sigh and shake my head and wonder where it all went wrong for this guy...

posted by LordSludge at 8:25 AM on July 31, 2009 [1 favorite]


VikingSword,

Having worked in the industry for a few years now, I've either met or booked or indirectly had contact with most of the folks you mention..so I'll take a stab.

1. Limbaugh..true red conservative. In the 80's and 90's most of his stuff was over the top contrived. These days though for the most part he's lost his ability to be any sort of humorous so now he goes for the "I hope obama fails" shock value. But he believes what he says and is probably more influential with the conservative "inner circle" then most of us realize.

2. Hannity- Former construction worker who stumbled into talk radio by being a caller. He's real and in my opinion an idiot, even for a conservative. In reality not a lot of substance to his show beyond the daily GOP talking points..listen to him for a half an hour that' why he hangs up on anyone trying to make a point with substance.

3. Beck-LDS apologist/humorist for 2009. Real. More entertaining then say your local missionary but he's still preaching LDS doctrine repackaged. Nice guy in person though..and VERY talented.

4. Savage. Goes for shock value. Real life former hippy who has found a way to make a buck on his political beliefs. Real..but exaggerated greatly in order to keep his audience. He knows your listening to have him shock you.

5. Coulter. See above.

6.O'reily..um current affair host turns into a conservative that thinks your "factoring" his opinion into your life. His shows all demographically/ driven designed by the marketing department a fox news to fit the format. Asshat in real life.

7. Lou Dobbs See Rush with out the ratings. Probably the most threatening to the populist on this list in that he's at the end of his career and he has the freedom to spout what he really believes CNN or anyone else be damned. He does not however have the pull that Rush does with people like Bill krystol/Palin etc.

Conservatives continue to dominate talk radio because they get the humorist/shock/emotional end of the spectrum. When progressives deliver someone like John Stewart for the radio..we'll have our guy.
posted by wyldeboi at 9:04 AM on July 31, 2009 [5 favorites]


Thank you wyldeboi - that was very comprehensive and plausible. I admit, I'm somewhat surprised, especially by Limbaugh - I read a long article on him somewhere, can't remember where (New Yorker? Slate? NYTimes?), and the reporter actually interacted with Lim over an extended period of time. From that article, I got the impression, that Lim really is in it for the money, and prestige/power, but doesn't actually believe the nuttery... collects French antique furniture, and generally has pretty sophisticated tastes - from which I gathered - apparently incorrectly - that it's all a giant pose for him, what with the "fuck the cheese eating surrender monkeys". Thanks for the inside dope. How disappointing that these characters actually believe such idiocy.
posted by VikingSword at 9:49 AM on July 31, 2009


If I knew so many liberals were members of Metafilter, I never would have wasted 5 bucks.

Yes, yes. It's all part of the giant conspiracy that forced you to not read the site and lurk around the various posts before ripping that $5 from your hand and making you sign up. I thought that "personal responsibility" was one those awesome conservative things that liberals hate and don't believe in? So what's your excuse?
posted by rtha at 9:56 AM on July 31, 2009 [5 favorites]


This isn't the UK, with it's BNP reps in the EU, or France with its neo-nazi party that gets up to 10 percent of the vote nationally at times.

I guess there is a benefit to the two party system? Cause I've no doubt if we where more of a parliamentarian orientated system and there was a national Neo-nazi political party it'd garner similar number of votes. Right now, they mainly go towards the more extreme members of the republican party.
posted by edgeways at 10:25 AM on July 31, 2009 [1 favorite]


And can people wake up? I think they can - after all, Father Coughlin was super popular (as big in his day as Limbaugh is today) - and yet, people rejected him at last.
Great, so all we have to do is go to war with a country that Savage claims is a good country, and we can be rid of him?

What countries does Savage claim are good?

I'm guessing there's only one.
posted by Flunkie at 10:25 AM on July 31, 2009


Oh, don't get me wrong, Limbaugh's in it for the money, but then he's a pure Laissez-faire. I think I read that same article, and for me I walked away thinking he's a man who knows the publication's audience. (If that makes sense.) Watch his failed NFL stuff as opposed to say his CPAC speech. He knows how to work aka "push the right buttons" of a crowd no matter what crowd it is. First think I learned when I started in the industry: Know thy audience.
posted by wyldeboi at 10:43 AM on July 31, 2009


I always wonder if outrageous personalities like that are the same way in their personal life.

I like to imagine them in the checkout line at a grocery store.
posted by brundlefly at 10:47 AM on July 31, 2009 [2 favorites]


In the end, it's a business; none of these rabble-rousers care that much about what they say, as long as the listeners are tuning in.

That's very true, especially with people like Coulter. I think she just likes being the provocateur, and she found the right audience for it.

I used to occasionally listen to Savage when I lived in the Bay. He used to piss me off until I listened to his digressions more and more, which are fascinating, as many people have mentioned. I think he's either putting on an act or he's just like that all the time and found a way to capitalize on it. He doesn't really go to those press junkets like the rest and hang out with his contemporaries.
posted by krinklyfig at 10:51 AM on July 31, 2009


DTMFA
posted by jeoc at 11:16 AM on July 31, 2009


Any Radio Talker who isn't doing an "Act" (and a rather extreme one) will never be syndicated, let alone successful. The audience numbers are misleading (radio ad sales people have been masters of inflating numbers since I was in radio 30 years ago). Sarah Palin was rejected by the top syndicator last week because she can't do three straight hours of ad-libbing. Real talk show hosts know they'll never be elected to anything and they're okay with it, because the don't care about politics or what affect their schtick will have on America. They only care about their shows. Just like the producers of Fat Guy/Hot Wife sitcoms don't care what influence they have on marriage in America. So this discussion is as meaningful as one about Kevin James' sex life.
posted by wendell at 1:08 PM on July 31, 2009 [1 favorite]


drjimmy11: "I have never heard Savage, but he sounds nuts.'

That said, I love living in a country where people like this are this amazingly marginalized. Yeah some bored-ass construction workers listen to the guy on the radio because they prefer it to soft rock. Big deal. This isn't the UK, with it's BNP reps in the EU, or France with its neo-nazi party that gets up to 10 percent of the vote nationally at times.
"

Nah, they just get elected president for two terms. The entire reason Michael Savage is FPP material isn't that he's marginalized, is that he's so not so. People who spout these things do get positions of power, and often, and they're working in a concerted effort to gain more power, and they're being helped by people like Karl "Darkseid" Rove.

Really, where were you during the last eight years?
posted by JHarris at 1:34 PM on July 31, 2009 [1 favorite]


wendell: "Sarah Palin was rejected by the top syndicator last week because she can't do three straight hours of ad-libbing."

I'm intrigued. Do you have a link to more news of Palin's failing in talk radio? It's beginning to make more sense why she quit; she's pulling a reverse Franklin perhaps, getting out of government so she can legally become a media voice.
posted by JHarris at 1:37 PM on July 31, 2009


"In the end, it's a business; none of these rabble-rousers care that much about what they say, as long as the listeners are tuning in."

Well, at least Phil Hendrie is for real.
posted by Smedleyman at 4:38 PM on July 31, 2009


wendell: "Sarah Palin was rejected by the top syndicator last week because she can't do three straight hours of ad-libbing."

Three hours? She can't string together three *sentences" that make sense. I bet she'd get stuck after "See spot run! Run, Spot, run!"
posted by notsnot at 6:35 PM on July 31, 2009


Jon Stewart Earns the Wrath of Rush Limbaugh
posted by homunculus at 6:43 PM on August 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


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