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Air America’s Randi Rhodes Suspended: We Did It! [Updated x2]

UPDATE: Let’s contact Air America Radio and tell its top brass that we want Taylor Marsh to replace Randi Rhodes. Taylor tells it like it is, but she has class and dignity. She also has a wicked sense of humor and the lively style needed for AM radio. Taylor would be perfect! Let them know!
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Do you remember the video we posted on April 1 — in which Randi Rhodes called both Geraldine Ferraro and Hillary Clinton “whores”? The YouTube that our video whiz C.S. created from an ordinarily non-transferrable source, and posted at YouTube? (It’s below the fold for those who missed it.)

C.S.’s YouTube video went “viral” (writers posted it all over the blogosphere!) — and now Randi Rhodes has been suspended from Air America Radio. Here’s Air America’s official statement:

STATEMENT OF AIR AMERICA RADIO, FROM CHAIR CHARLIE KIREKER
By air america

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 3, 2008

New York – Air America has suspended on-air host Randi Rhodes for making inappropriate statements about prominent figures, including Senator Hillary Clinton, at a recent public appearance on behalf of Air America in San Francisco which was sponsored by an Air America affiliate station.

“Air America encourages strong opinions about public affairs but does not condone such abusive, ad hominem language by our Hosts,” said chair Charlie Kireker.

UPDATE x2, from the New York Times, at the end — her suspension is “indefinite”:

Thank you, C.S. You made this happen.

(And thanks to Pacific John for sending me the official statement of Air America Radio.)

:::::::::::::

UPDATE x2:

From the New York Times‘s Caucus blog today:

Randi Rhodes, an afternoon host for the progressive Air America radio network, was suspended Thursday after repeatedly insulting Hillary Rodham Clinton at an event last month.

Ms. Rhodes used vulgar language that likened Ms. Clinton to a prostitute at an event sponsored by KKGN, the Air America affiliate in the San Francisco area, on March 22. A video of Ms. Rhodes’ remarks was published to the video-sharing Web site YouTube on Tuesday, prompting condemnations by some bloggers.

In a statement, Charlie Kireker, the chair of Air America, said the radio network “encourages strong opinions about public affairs but does not condone such abusive, ad hominem language by our hosts.”

The network called Ms. Rhodes’ suspension “indefinite” and did not elaborate on the fate of her daily three-hour radio show. “The Randi Rhodes Show” is normally broadcast from 3 to 6 p.m. weekdays. Sam Seder, another Air America host, was scheduled to fill in for Ms. Rhodes on Thursday…

(Thanks, Ron, for sending me the NYT post.)

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  • Donkey Brazziere

    Taylor Marsh?………helllll no.

  • fuck

    FUCK OFF YOU PRICKS

    • Donkey Brazziere

      lol…wah

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  • bill buckley

    Ooh, Larry, the Moe haircut pic is awesome…It makes you look thin…really.
    Once CIA, always CIA plus or minus a few anal warts.

  • MJbos

    Wow. Just stumbled here. For a long time I thought I had stumbled on a Bill Orally, Man Coulter, or Yawn Hanity site.

    I’m sorry to have to say this .. but do some of you people realize what you’re saying and how you’re saying it???

    A good many of the posts here are filled with as much hate, condescention, and arrogance as as the virulent crap posted at WorldNewsNet, FreeRepublic, Newsmax, etc.

    Randi talked trash. I don’t always agree with her – and on a few occasions she’s been flat-out wrong on her facts (still, >90% accuracy overall is pretty damn good). I think she owes some folks an apology for the school-yard namecalling. But that should have been the end of it.

    Now we have dems calling other dems obamanots, nazis, facists, etc. Great lesson on how to steal defeat from the jaws of victory.

    To EVERYONE who’s acting like a sand-kicking, lunch-money-stealing, shoolyard bully … GROW THE F*** UP. We have SERIOUS, LIFE-THREATENING, MONUMENTAL PROBLEMS going on in this country.

    We can stew in this fecal soup and whine and cry at each other until McCain takes the election .. or we can focus our energy and sharpen our attacks at the real problems – and the people who caused them.

    Anyone see Feith’s interview (CYA) on 60 minutes? The report in The Nation about Chalalabi and how our State Department funded the PR machine? What about real justice for what happened to Valerie and Joe?

    That’s where the anger needs to be. Not at each other.

    I’m getting more fed up with the whole US political landscape by the day. Both sides.

    -mj

    • DJ

      Oh, well, if you are new here,
      YOU HAVE GOT TO READ:

      This, you might say, is “the jewel in the crown’

      http://noquarterusa.net/blog/2008/04/06/obama-supporters-take-the-low-rhode/

      Comment by Uppity | 2008-04-06 11:11:58

      I know that humor and satire are my strength, but I do not feel very humorous this morning.

      When I saw the John McCain-is-a-whore article on Huffy, it all fell into place for me. Dissipate the meaning of things, water them down, make them fools and the world will never know we really mean the hatred we spew. I believe that the Obama underground is all planned, fully enabled by their messiah. This is sinister, well-oiled shit. They want us dead. You can almost feel their bristle. I am telling you if Obama doesn’t get the nomination, they will burn and loot and kill. Blood will run in the streets like it did in the 60s, which I remember well.. I believe Howard Dean lives in fear right at this very moment.
      They will bulldoze their way through the streets of America until people will be too afraid to say ANYTHING. That Fear has already started. Are you not choosing your words for Fear of being called racist when you have no such intent? It is the 60s again. Only worse. They are using The Children. Nothing is more horrible than that. Only one horrible man in history was able to achieve this!

      If they could kill us to keep from voting against Him, they would. Look at the faces on CNN. Look at Roland nearly swoon in cultlike rationalization of the inexcusable. Look at the pained look on Lewis’ face. He loves Hillary, he remembers what she has done for the poor and the blacks. But he Fears. You can feel it. You can see it in his face. Listen to what people are NOT saying and you learn so much. Should a mesmerized person turn the message and ask me exactly who “They” are, then I say, if you have to even ask

      …and it goes on…….

  • Oldmaninhisunderwear

    RR speaks truth. The censorship attempt only inflames an already fatal infection in the party. The dying patient, Hillary, is already being wheeled to the morgue.

  • http://www.hugemoron.com ash

    but wait… Hillary is a whore though.. i mean… ALL POLITICIANS ARE WHORES! What happened to free speech? Now her supporters are turning into nazis. That does not make her look any better to anyone else. Encouraging the suspension of Randi Rhodes only weakens the Hillary camp. How sad.

    • chris

      oh, you want to go to calling her supporters Nazis now…this is how you get Randi Rhode’s back on the air? Interesting.

      Well, contrary to your idea of “free speech”, nobody stiffled Randi Rhodes free speech. She spoke, got her mouth all out of whack, and others free speeched right back at her. Air America exercised their free speech, her critics exercised their free speech.

      Free Speech does not give you Air Time. You have no idea what you are talking about when it comes to having air time and a radio show.

      The Government cannot inhibit your freedom of political speech. A private entity can end its relationship with you over comments you make. Now if you want to retaliate against Air America, go right ahead. But running around calling Hillary Clinton names and her supporters Nazis you’ve really demonstrated the level of support Randi Rhodes can gather.

  • JohnB

    Speaking from the Right, its funny, you always accused the Right of this bullshit but for years (since Carter) we’ve seen you guys dish it out. Its’ nice to see that your smelling your own shit.

    I hope Obama wins and he and McCain drop both campaigns and just do a tour of debates like Lincoln/Dougless.

    • chris

      no, that’s still your shit you’re smelling, its pretty stanky.

      And you wouldn’t ever see a Lincoln/Douglas (not Dougless) Debate in modern America.

      You certainly won’t see them out of Obama, and McCain will pull a Strangelovian antic long before he hits the stage.

      You really think you want a Lincoln/Douglas debate? describe what that debate would look like.

  • cjcrew

    Congratulations, your war against free speech is going very well. Just remember this next time YOU have something you want to say that others disagree with.

    We cannot take rights away from any one person or group without affecting ourselves.

    Good job! Well Done! I’m sure you are very proud of yourselves.

    • chris

      You have a piss poor understanding of free speech.

      What happened here was…Randi Rhodes got her words mirrored out for the collective face of the society we live in to see. Her bosses at Air America, on their last financial legs, caved and yanked her. Where did Larry, Susan and C.S. do that? They simply reported to you their outrage at her sexist attacks.

      And before the morons speak about a “woman” saying “sexist” things…might want to understand the damages caused to women who get called “whore”. This was a self-serving rant by Randi Rhodes played for a sycophant bunch of haters in the Bay Area.

      The arguments so far:

      1. Bu bu…this was a Private event

      answer: yeah, thats why it was posted on BarackObama.com, invited as Barack Obama.com and Air America event…very private..bullshit

      2. But she was using whore like in the…sell out meaning

      answer: bullshit..she used the word in a safe audience that already hated the two women she attacked. And this would be no different than a bunch of hate mongers laughing to a black comedian attacking other black folks with the more socially acceptable pariah. Imagine the outrage if a comedian came in, who was black, and a radio show host or TV personality, and they attacked Barack Obama and Michelle Obama as…(insert patently offensive racist names, over and over)

      3. Randi Rhodes wasn’t on the air

      answer: sorry, this especially is irritating because it doesn’t matter, she was representing Air America as was clearly mentioned in the introductions, the advertising.

      4. Barack doesn’t have to answer for this, he didn’t do anything

      answer: Clinton didn’t make the comments Ferraro made, but you hear over and over that she was responsible. You hear it was her campaign, her people, her supporters…double standards!

      5. Hillary and Ferraro just need to toughen up:

      answer: this is particularly gauling…it condones bully behavior by blaming the recipient for the abuse they received

      6. But I hate Clinton and Ferraro, fuck off, Rhodes was right

      answer: I’d hate to be running a campaign (I’m talking to you Barack O) and have my base filled with this justification. It is part of the Politics of Destruction that Messiah Obama claimed he wasn’t into.

      7. This was a “hit piece” on Randi Rhodes by people who hate Obama

      answer: funny how little responsibility Obama, Rhodes, his surrogates and supporters are able to handle…and they are ready for the WH? This was called, ACCOUNTABILITY

      8. Randi Rhodes is a Progressive, the real voice of the Democrats

      answer: (choking on my own laughter) BWAAA HAHAHAHA..this is arrogance and elitism groupthink by those who believe they are the real Democrats

      9. This was a “War against free speech”

      answer: no, this was an exercise in free speech. FUCK YOU (<—free speech)

      10. We cannot take rights away from any one person or group without affecting ourselves

      answer: did you applaud the attacks on Geraldine Ferraro, Bill Clinton, or James Carville, there was a piling on by the Obama campaign…their supporters and surrogates. Want to dish it out, then you gotta take it.

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  • pvz

    …can anyone tell me what actually happened to her a few months ago when she was attacked in front of her building…..I do not like her at all (of course no one deserves to be assalted) but it seems she has lots of enemies…I dont ever want to see her in AAR, thats for sure…let her find a job in the obama camp

  • pvz

    randy sucks…..can anyone tell me what actually happened to her a few months ago when she was attacked in front of her building…..I do not like her at all (of course no one deserves to be assalted) but it seems she has lots of enemies…I dont ever want to see her in AAR, thats for sure…let her find a job in the obama camp

  • Retired

    To paraphrase and old saying, “Vulgarity, thy name is Randi.”

  • compos_mentis

    During Bill Clinton’s second term, I worked under his deputy chief of staff–and current Hillary strategist–Harold Ickes, at an international event. I can attest that the Clinton lieutenants and staff that I worked with were mostly surly, mean-spirited, and vulgar, with a peremptory, “my way or the highway” leadership style. I hope the country thinks twice about restoring these folks back to power.

    • sajo

      I can attest that the Clinton lieutenants and staff that I worked with were mostly surly, mean-spirited, and vulgar, with a peremptory, “my way or the highway” leadership style. I hope the country thinks twice about restoring these folks back to power

      .

      Compos,
      this is a comment made by a lot of the former Clinton staff, who found inspiration in working for the Obama campaign.

  • candymarl

    I haven’t listened to AAR in months. At first I just dismissed the anti-Hillary stuff as the excitement of campaigning. Then the attacks got more personal and mean. I stopped listening then. I’d do the same if this kind of meanness was directed toward Barack.
    We try, but don’t always succeed, to leave the vicious name-calling to the extreme right.
    I don’t understand the hatred of Hillary from her own party. If the party leadership felt this way why did they support her during her Senate run?

    I would give the Democratic leadership the benefit of the doubt but they’ve been wrong for years. They were wrong when they didn’t support Clinton during the impeachment debacle. They were wrong when they didn’t fight for Gore in 2000. They were wrong when they chose Kerry over Dean in 2004. They were wrong in touting Kerry’s Vietnam heroics as the one area where the Republicans couldn’t touch him.
    As for Randi, maybe she just needed a break.

  • joe

    Your right Militarytracy it is not a game. And anyone who would vote for McCain because their candidate does not get the nomination is playing it like a game. You won’t vote for Obama because he is not progressive enough for you? But you will vote for McCain? Give me a break. The difference between Obabma and Clinton from a policy standpoint is minuscule and you cannot consider one progressive and not the other (truth is neither are really true progressives).

    Tell me what Clinton supports that is so progressive that sets her apart from Obama.

    Don’t buy into the media BS about the ‘Straight Talk Express’ and how McCain is such a maverick. Anything he has said or done in the past that separates him from any other Republican he has basically renounced in order to get the nomination

    • militarytracy

      His past voting record is a much better indicator of what to expect out of McCain. Obama doesn’t have much of one of those but he has lots and lots stories about how he would have voted when he couldn’t have voted. Clinton is more progressive on many issues than Obama. Obama has some progressive issues that his voting and his friends all reveal inspite of his flowery oration of ambiguity. Who is Krugman behind on healthcare? And Krugman is no idiot. I’d lay off the koolaid though and if I vote in the general election I’ll vote for the candidate who I think is going to handle Iraq best and I don’t give a damn whether you like that or not.

      • joe

        Why would I lay off the koolaid, I’d rather ask for another cup. Obama is the most exciting candidate to come on the national stage in more than a generation. I am still yet to figure out why Clinton supporters like to point to Obama’s oratory skills as a bad thing. I again state, policy wise they are not all that different, health care included. Clinton likes to talk about how the detailed specifics of her plan are so much better the Obama’s. If you agree that is great (personally I think both plans leave something to be desired and Edwards had the only really good plan), but we are talking small differences in a policy that is yet to even be proposed, not trying to work the fine details of an existing program.

        You are welcome to vote for whomever you want. But if you believe in Clinton policy wise than there is no place you can show McCain being closer to those policies than is Obama. What I hear from Clinton supporters is if my candidate does not win, I am taking my ball and going home.

        (Just to be clear, it bothers me equally if an Obama supporter says they will not vote for Clinton if she were the candidate.)

        I am still open to having anyone point out all the places that Clinton is so much more progressive than Obama.

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  • joe

    Randy Rhodes has always spoke to the lowest common denominator of the liberal movement/democratic party. Her being suspended means I actually may leave my radio on when her time slot comes up.

    But her comments while certainly over the top speak to the frustration that many BO supporters feel about the Clinton campaign. At every point in this campaign when things are not going the Clinton’s way they try to change the rules to fit their needs. The idea of using the electoral map to decide the candidate being the most absurd attempt yet.

    The harsh words on both sides of this blog speak of the damage to the democratic party that Clinton’s approach to this campaign has fostered. The idea that people actually even utter the words that they would vote for the evil McCain if their candidate does not get elected is terrifying to say the least. At this point Obama has already won the nomination and only Clinton and her most fervent supporters do not recognized that. However, if some unthinkable thing happened and Clinton won the nomination I would vote for her in an instant over McCain. I may not work on her campaign and instead put my efforts to a local campaign, but I would NEVER NEVER vote for McCain, and anyone who does because their Democrat did not win the nomination is sending this country down the toilet because of the own ego.

    • Militarytracy

      Please, John McCain is not satan and Obama has done his fair share to fight the rules when they don’t work well for him….lawsuits and all! Obama won’t vote for no more mercs in a U.S. warzone after January 2009. He gets no vote from me and he is so ambiguous on progressive issues I have not one shred of proof he is going to do or be anything that I really want in the end. I don’t cheerlead anymore and this is not a game.

  • Militarytracy

    I hadn’t seen that clip. I hadn’t seen that clip because I have had to cut back on consumption of this primary race or I start using a Randi Rhodes vocabulary and that tneds to makes you less hireable, less desireable, less credible, and just less ;)

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  • Stefanie

    I watched the Randi Rhodes clip and didn’t find it funny or humorous at all, and don’t agree with her statements or references to them as whores and frankly anyone who mentions the “f” word constantly come across as uneducated and ignorant. That said, I don’t take issue with her or anyone stating their mind and especially if it is off hours in a nightclub atmosphere. People can disagree with her and get up and walk out if they want. But suspending her? And Larry Johnson, I have respected you a long time since I first started reading your blog and seeing interviews with you, in particular related to Joe Wilson and Valerie Plame, but for you of all people, a man I consider to be a Patriot to be calling for the removal of someone for what they say? I thought you fight and would die for this country and people’s rights? Or is it because your a Hillary supporter and you disagree with anyone who doesn’t agree with your view? Very disappointing that you have made it such an effort against someone like Randi Rhodes. Like I said before, I didn’t agree with anything she said, but it scares me that people here on this blog and led by you would call for such action to silence someone for speaking their opinion, regardless of how vulgar it was. Honestly, I’m more worried about the vitriol and demands on this blog for her head than I am about what she said. I think I’ll defend Randi Rhodes’ right to state her opinion no matter how much I disagree or find it offensive before I would ever demand to censor and remove people. How are any of you different from the far right or fascists that would like to censor us all if you take such effort to remove her?

    • PMS

      Stefanie,

      It was an Obama Campaign Event. A fund-raiser. You do understand that, right? The Uniter, the One, the Hope.

      And you were OK with Don Imus, too. Right?

      • Steven

        I’ve enjoyed the debate here, but calling Randi’s appearance an “Obama Campaign Event” is totally laughable! Where did you hear that? Is that the way that conservative talk radio is spinning it?

      • Stefanie

        Dear PMS – You understand, right, that this was the local radio station Green 960 in San Francisco hosting a party with Randi Rhodes as the headliner? It was not an Obama Campaign Event/Fundraiser, unofficially or officially. It wasn’t a campaign event for anyone.

        And no, I wasn’t okay with what Don Imus said. (Where did I say that in my post???) But since you bring Don Imus up, I will say this – A) I did not agree with what he said and found it offensive; B) I did support him being suspended, not fired, but not because I somehow thought what he did was worse or that there should be censorship, but rather because unlike Randi Rhodes, IMUS said what he said on the public airwaves, not in a private setting. C) Imus was making offensive comments (including racially implicating with the comment “nappy headed” as opposed to calling them “whores” by themselves) and he was making it in reference to women athletes who are not politicians. As even Bill Clinton himself recently pointed out, Politicians who are out there, deserve to be criticized and dissected and if they can’t take the heat, they need to get out of the kitchen. You are comparing Apples to Oranges there with the Don Imus analogy and wrongly assuming I was “okay” with it. I am against censorship. period. Even of the Ann Coulter’s and Hannity’s of the world. Censorship is wrong.

    • chris

      sorry, nobody has the constitutional right to have a drive time show…that is a privilege.

      She can go out on the street and speak her freedom of speech. And even then calling people “fucking whore” would probably be considered “fighting words” under Chaplinsky rulings.

      And as for freedom of speech, you have a lot of nerve smearing the freedom of speech here while lecturing Larry or anyone about Randi Rhodes.

      Randi can go launch a blog now and fire away at Larry J and others.

      And your real ire should be with Randi…she was who said what she said, should take responsibility and with the Air America bosses…they were the ones who made the decisions.

      But will you? Nope…because you have selective will about accountability.

      I don’t want her head, and I don’t believe anyone here wants her head. Many seem offended that she can go off calling two women this…but do you really care? nah….

      And I really get sick of the “I use to respect you” stuff towards Larry Johnson. It is getting boring to read this selective respect.

      • Stefanie

        Dear Chris – Where did I say that I “used to respect” Larry Johnson? I did not put it in past tense, but I definitely disagree with the pursuit here by Larry or any of those who want to see Randi Rhodes pay for her comments through censorship and removal. Where did I indicate in anyway that I agreed with what Randi Rhodes said or supported what she said? Rather I support and wish to protect her right to speak. And while you may think that Freedom of Speech is merely a privilege, I disagree, it is last I checked a Constitutionally protected right. The word “whore” may be offensive to some or most people, but it actually is a word that has meaning, particularly in reference to someone who would sell themselves for money, which while there are those that would disagree, there are many who feel that about the Clintons as well as most Politicians. I personally feel that way about many in the media as being “Media Whores”. And while you might not like the word “whore”, its not illegal to use it and in fact you could call a cop a “fucking whore” and it wouldn’t be illegal, just stupid because a pissed off cop might find something that they can get you on with a little probable cause. I actually for grins asked one of our local police officers today if it was illegal to call them that and they laughed and said it wasn’t, just what I said in the previous line about the consequences. So, I guess Randi found out consequences, but ones I don’t agree with because I don’t believe in censorship and I believe that is what we are seeing here and being called for many on this blog. I still believe that as repulsive and ignorant sounding and vulgar Randi was, she was not “on the FCC controlled and public airwaves” she was in a private nightclub after hours and she had a right to say what she said, no matter how much any of us disagree. Air America management at the urging of many on this board to remove her is censorship and I find that reprehensible and wrong and against what I believe the Constitution stands for and needs to be protected and possibly in particular because she is a member of the “media”. Everyone here too has the right to their freedom of speech and I don’t question that right, I question why people are for censorship if they say they are for freedom. I think that is a really important question for everyone to ask themselves.