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Saturday, December 29, 2007
2007 NARN Loon of the Year

Congratulations to Nick Coleman for a well-deserved award.

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Lunacy By The Numbers

Later today on the First Team of the Northern Alliance Radio Network, we will announce the 2007 NARN Loon of the Year. As people around the globe wait in breathless anticipation for the result, I thought it would be a good time to take a closer look at the people who earned the distinction of being named NARN Loons of the Week in 2007. Here's how they breakdown.

- There were a total of forty-six LOTWs in 2007.

- Thirty (roughly 65%) were men and sixteen (35%) women.

- The only person to receive more than one LOTW honor was US Senator Amy Klobuchar who won twice. Despite this, she was not in the running as a finalist for Loon of the Year.

- There were five Loons in 2007 who were also honored in 2006:

Joy Behar, Chris Matthews, Dennis Kucinich, Bill Moyers, and Nancy Pelosi.

- Speaking of Behar (but not necessarily joy), she joined Rosie O'Donnell and Sherri Shepherd as members of The View who were dubbed LOTWs.

- The only former President to be chosen as a LOTW was that notoriously loose-lipped firebrand George HW Bush.

Kidding of course. No one should be surprised to learn that it was the mild-mannered Man From Plains, the Thirty-ninth President of the United States, Jimmy Carter.

- Hollywood was well represented with Jane Fonda, Paul Newman, Charlize Theron, Richard Gere, and James Brolin all checking in as LOTWs in 2007.

- The music industry also chipped in with appearances by Zach de la Rocha from Rage Against The Machine, The Fratellis, and Bonnie Raitt et al.

- For a dose of local flavor, 2007 featured Amy Klobuchar, Al Franken, Nick Coleman, Keith Nelson, and the intrepid explorers Bancraft and Arneson, whose quest to travel to the Arctic to publicize the impact of global warming was called off because...

...you guessed it, the cold.

- Speaking of global warming, it is interesting to note that while a number of LOTWs were chosen because of their links to the issue (Bancraft & Arneson, Amy Klobuchar, The Fratellis) the man most associated with the cause was shut out in 2007. There's always next year Al.

Tune in to WWTC AM1280 today from 11am-1pm to hear our entire 2007 LOTW retrospective (and many of the clips referenced above). If you aren't fortunate enough to live in the Twin Cities, you can catch all the fun on the live internet stream. After the First Team kicks things off, be sure to stick around and listen to Mitch and Ed from 1pm-3pm and then King and Michael from 3pm-5pm as the NARN puts an exclamation point on the year that was 2007.

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Saturday, December 22, 2007
Down To This

The votes have been counted, the results certified by a representative of DHE (Diebold Haliburton Enterprises), and we can now officially announce the four finalists for the 2007 NARN Loon of the Year. In no particular order we present:

Nancy Pelosi

Jimmy Carter

Bill Moyers

and last but certainly not least, for a dose of local flavor...

...Nick Coleman

Voting to determine THE 2007 Loon of the Year from among these finalists will begin tomorrow and run through next Saturday. The winner will be announced on the December 29th broadcast of the First Team of the Northern Alliance Radio Network from 11am-1pm.

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Monday, December 17, 2007
New Loon Rising

Only five days left to vote for the finalists for the 2007 NARN Loon of the Year. The voting closes on Friday and on Saturday's NARN First Team radio broadcast we'll announce the final four. Vote early, vote often, vote looney. That's all folks.

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Tuesday, December 11, 2007
The Haunting Call Of The Loon

As we prepare for another Zodiac to roll around, it's good to look back at the year that was and recall its finest moments of pure...

...lunacy. That's right, it's time to crown the 2007 NARN Loon of the Year. Keith Olbermann was awarded the inaugural Loon of the Year title in 2006 and I'm sure that we'll have a worthy successor this year.

The process is simple. We've selected twenty of our favorite Loons of the Week from this year. We'll narrow that field down to four finalists by virtue of your votes. If you've forgotten why we named our Loons of the Week, check the links on the right side bar.

The first round of voting will end on December 21st. Then, we'll announce the four finalists on the December 22nd NARN First Team broadcast. After another week of voting, we'll officially crown the 2007 NARN Loon of the Year during the December 29th show.

Vote early. Vote often. Vote looney.

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Tuesday, November 27, 2007
Rusty! Rusty!

Don't forget about this Wednesday's Patriot Primary:

Watch The Debate - Discuss - Participate in the Straw Poll

Wednesday November 28th, 2007
6:30 PM - 9:30 PM


It's a free event where you can get together with fellow Patriot listeners, watch the GOP You Tube debate (should be a fun one) live, and then vote in a straw poll for your candidate of choice. Some of the NARN's most popular hosts (and King Banaian) will be on hand along with late-night work horse Rusty Humphries. Let's hope that he's been laying off the Beef-A-Reeno.

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Thursday, November 08, 2007
Their Exuberance, Their Raw Power - And Their Punctuality

A couple of upcoming events of note:

- Keegan's Irish Pub & Restaurant is having their annual Salute to Veterans now through Sunday. If you're a vet, stop by and share a free beer, a little SOS, and good conversation with your fellow comrades in arms. Terry Keegan served in the Marine Corps in Vietnam and I understand that general manager Marty Newton was a member of the Civil Shore Patrol while growing up in Fargo.

- AM1280 The Patriot is putting on the first Patriot Primary:

Watch The Debate - Discuss - Participate in the Straw Poll

Wednesday November 28th, 2007
6:30 PM - 9:30 PM
Minnetonka Marriott South
5801 Opus Parkway
Minnetonka, MN


It's a free event where you can get together with fellow Patriot listeners, watch the GOP You Tube debate (should be a fun one) live, and then vote in a straw poll for your candidate of choice.

I will not be able to attend as I'll be in Siberia that day, but I imagine that most of the NARN crew will be there.

Featuring guest host Rusty Humphries (heard daily from 11 PM - 2 AM on AM1280 The Patriot)

And members of the Northern Alliance Radio Network (heard Saturdays from 11AM -5PM)


Ouch. That's a little bit like the Puppet Show/Spinal Tap billing. In any event I'm sure that it's not going to affect Saint Paul's performance. Don't worry about it alright...it may disturb him, but he'll rise above it, he's a professional.

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One Doesn't Dissect Gossamer

I'm just finishing up Craig Silverman's excellent book on media mistakes, Regret The Error. He devotes a chapter to the subject of fact-checking at magazines and it's fascinating. For example, The New Yorker has long enjoyed a reputation for some of the most thorough and detailed fact-checking in the industry. But did you know that they go so far as to fact-check their cartoons? Now that's commitment to accuracy.

We interviewed Craig last Saturday on the First Team of the Northern Alliance Radio Network. You can now listen to the interview commercial-free here. You should also check out his Regret the Error site where he chronicles the most glaring and amusing media errors on a daily basis.

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Friday, November 02, 2007
Mistakes Happen

Tune in tomorrow to the First Team of the Northern Alliance Radio Network at from 11am-1pm. At noon, we'll be joined by Craig Silverman, proprietor of the web site Regret the Error and author of the recently released book of the same name. We'll discuss the increase in media errors in recent years and how they undermine the public's trust. And Craig will help us with a very special edition of "This Week In Gate Keeping."

Silverman cites Steve Berg's infamous "inadvertant plagarism" that appeared in a couple of Star Tribune editorials in his book and you better believe that we'll cover that with him tomorrow. We'll also unveil our official 2007 election endorsements and much, much more. You can join the conversation by calling us at 651-289-4488.

Tune in locally on AM1280 WWTC or listen live on the Internet stream from anywhere and everywhere. After listening to the First Team from 11am to 1pm, be sure to stick around for Mitch and Ed from 1pm-3pm and the Final Word with Michael and King from 3pm-5pm.

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Saturday, October 27, 2007
Northern Alliance Radio Network

In the midst of this beautiful October day, don't forget to spend sometime quality time indoors (ideally in your basement, in your undershorts) listening Northern Alliance Radio Network, at AM1280 The Patriot. It all begins at 11 AM and runs all the way 5PM.

The highlight of The First Team's broadcast promises to be the 12 noon appearance of auteur Even Coyne Maloney. (Dream achieved - using the word "auteur" in regard to a movie director, just like the City Pages). He is the director of Indoctrinate U, now holding an exclusive one week engagement at the Oak Street Cinema in Minneapolis. This film explores the stifling, hostile, relentlessly liberal environment of the modern American college campus. And its been getting rave reviews, at least from those not already stifling, hostile and relentlessly liberal. The education establishment may not appreciate this movie, but those paying their salaries through ever increasing tuition costs and government subsidies will.

Listen to the director LIVE at noon. Call with questons, comments, horror stories at 651-289-4488.

If you're not able to catch it on the radio, listen to the live streaming at the Patriot web site. Or the podcasts, archived on Power Line and at Town Hall (featuring all the Northern Alliance programs).

BTW, the Patriot has a terrific new web site. It's a comprehensive platform for all the national Salem Talk Network hosts and Town Hall conservative commentators. A one stop shop for links to breaking news, audio archives, columns, and blog posts.

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Friday, October 19, 2007
Taking It To The Streets

Be sure to tune in tomorrow on the First Team of the Northern Alliance Radio Network as we seek to confirm the rumors that John Hinderaker missed last week's show because he was attacked by a group of left-wing thugs seeking to silence and intimidate him. It seems to be the only plausible explanation for his absence.

We'll also be joined by David Bellevia at noon to discuss his book, House to House:

"Like St. Mihiel, Normandy, Inchon, and Khe Sanh before it, Fallujah is one of the most horrific and hard-fought battles in U.S. history. SSG David Bellavia's riveting, poignant, and at times even humorous firsthand account vividly emphasizes why this battle must never be forgotten. And why, because of the breathtaking courage of Bellavia and his fellow troops, it was won." - Andrew Carroll, editor of War Letters and Behind the Lines

The real story of the battle Fallujah and many other topics will be explored tomorrow. Tune in locally on AM1280 WWTC or listen live on the Internet stream from anywhere and everywhere. After listening to the First Team from 11am to 1pm, be sure to stick around for Mitch and Ed from 1pm-3pm and the Final Word with Michael and King from 3pm-5pm.

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Friday, October 12, 2007
Isn't It Ironic?

Be sure to listen in tomorrow on the First Team of the Northern Alliance Radio Network as we celebrate the news that Al Gore has been awarded a Nobel Peace Prize. It's about time the publicity-shy VP got a little recognition.

We'll also be joined by Dr. Anthony Esolen (who blogs at Touchstone Magazine's Mere Comments) at noon to discuss his book, Ironies of Faith: The Laughter at the Heart of Christian Literature:

Widely regarded as the exclusive property of sophisticated skeptics, irony yields surprising treasures to a devout Christian. And in reclaiming irony as a mode of divine revelation, Esolen rehabilitates a body of Christian literature often reduced to deceptive illusions by modernist critics. In Shakespearean plays-for instance-in which au courant theorists see only the corrosive ironies of power politics, Esolen discovers a joyfully ironic perspective on how the rhythms of mere time resound with the harmonies of eternity.

I know that Saint Paul is dying to find out if rain on your wedding day is indeed ironic and that probing question along with many others will be explored tomorrow. Tune in locally on AM1280 WWTC or listen live on the internet stream from anywhere and everywhere. After listening to the First Team from 11am to 1pm, be sure to stick around for Mitch and Ed from 1pm-3pm and the Final Word with Michael and King from 3pm-5pm.

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Friday, October 05, 2007
Big Mother

With this week's imposition of a statewide smoking ban in bars and restaurants in Minnesota, we couldn't have picked a better time to welcome David Harsanyi to the First Team of the Northern Alliance Radio Network to discuss his new book Nanny State: How Food Fascists, Teetotaling Do-Gooders, Priggish Moralists, and other Boneheaded Bureaucrats are Turning America into a Nation of Children. Harsanyi devotes a full chapter in "Nanny State" to smoking bans and the rather dubious health risks that proponents use to argue for them. He's also a fan of Frank Kelly Rich a.k.a. The Modern Drunkard and his in your face approach to today's neo-prohibitionists. It should be a fun interview tomorrow and you're welcome to join in by giving us a ring at 651-289-4488.

Tune in locally on AM1280 WWTC or listen live on the internet stream from anywhere and everywhere. After listening to the First Team from 11am to 1pm, be sure to stick around for Mitch and Ed from 1pm-3pm and the Final Word with Michael and King from 3pm-5pm.

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Saturday, September 29, 2007
People Power

Today, the First Team of the Northern Alliance Radio Network will be joined by Laura Ingraham. Laura is an extremely popular nationally-syndicated talk radio hostess as well as author of "Power To The People," which has been skyrocketing up the best seller lists.

Previous committments prevent me from participating in today's show, but I look forward to listening to Saint Paul ask the Dartmouth educated Ingraham--who clerked for Clarence Thomas on the Supreme Court--what it's like to represent the Joe Six Packs and Sally Housecoats of America in the struggle against the elites.

Tune in locally on AM1280 WWTC or listen live on the internet stream from anywhere and everywhere. After listening to the First Team from 11am to 1pm, be sure to stick around for Mitch and Ed from 1pm-3pm and the Final Word with Michael and King from 3pm-5pm.

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Friday, September 21, 2007
COIN Of The Realm

Tomorrow at noon on the NARN First Team broadcast (11am-1pm) we will once again be joined by Lt. Col. John A. Nagl. Lt. Col, Nagl has literally written the book on counterinsurgency strategies, his latest contribution being part of the team that produced the US Army/Marine Corps Counterinsurgency Manual.



This will be the third time that Lt. Col. Nagl has appeared on the show and if past experience is any indication, it should be another great discussion. If you want to really know what the US military is hoping to accomplish in Iraq and how, you won't want to miss this interview. If you want to join the conversation, give us a ring at 651-289-4488.

Tune in locally on AM1280 WWTC or listen live on the internet stream from anywhere and everywhere. After listening to the First Team, be sure to stick around for Mitch and Ed from 1pm-3pm and the Final Word with Michael and King from 3pm-5pm.

Once again, Saint Paul is not going to be around to enjoy the fun. A week in Tijuana would be more than enough for most people, but Saint Paul and his bride are having such a good time there that they've decided to extend the honeymoon for a couple of more days south of the border at the Happiest Place on Earth.

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Friday, September 07, 2007
It's A Bird, It's A Plane, It's...

...Sewer Man! Yes folks, the State Fair interview that all the kids are talking about, the one that has been decribed as "compelling, groundbreaking radio" is now available for your listening pleasure. While the original recording reels have been sent to the Pavek Museum of Broadcasting for the sake of posterity, the entire sixteen-plus minutes of pure radio gold can be heard here.

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Friday, August 10, 2007
$100,000 High Bar

JunkScience.com is sponsoring the Ultimate Global Warming Challenge:

$100,000 will be awarded to the first person to prove, in a scientific manner, that humans are causing harmful global warming. The winning entry will specifically reject both of the following two hypotheses:

UGWC Hypothesis 1
Manmade emissions of greenhouse gases do not discernibly, significantly and predictably cause increases in global surface and tropospheric temperatures along with associated stratospheric cooling.

UGWC Hypothesis 2
The benefits equal or exceed the costs of any increases in global temperature caused by manmade greenhouse gas emissions between the present time and the year 2100, when all global social, economic and environmental effects are considered.


Sounds like easy money. I mean, ALL the scientific consensus supports the position that humans are causing global warming and that we only have nine years and two-hundred odd some days to act to prevent catastrophe, right? You would think that the leading global warming preachers would jump at this opportunity to cash in. Could be a good chance for Brian Lambert to supplement what I'm sure is a very lucrative gig at The Rake.

If you want to find out more about the UGWC, tune in to the First Team of the Northern Alliance Radio Network tomorrow at noon when we'll be joined by Junk Science founder and publisher, Steven Milloy. From 11am-1pm we'll also feature our usual witty banter, Loon of the Week, and a very special edition of This Week In Gatekeeping. Tune in locally on AM1280 WWTC or listen live on the internet stream from anywhere and everywhere. Don't you dare miss it.

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Thursday, August 09, 2007
Get It Together

Don't look now, but we're only two weeks away from the opening of the 2007 Minnesota State Fair. As usual, the Northern Alliance Radio Network will be broadcasting live from the Great Minnesota Git Together, although our schedule has been pared back to just the regular Saturday show-times on August 25th and September 1st (at least for the First Team). We will have a full slate of our usual Fair fare of great guests, food, contests, feats of strength, freaks, and live animals. Be sure to make a stop at the Patriot booth near the International Bazaar (and beer garden) part of your State Fair agenda.

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Friday, July 27, 2007
The Alarmist, Misleading, Drama Queen Neighbor

The great man, Thomas PM Barnett, makes the mistake of appearing on one of the B-List talk radio stations in town:

The Jack Rice Show appearance went okay.

Frankly, he came in a bit sensational and so I felt like I spent a lot of my time dialing down his implied statements, such as "America is building two dozen bases in Africa right now." I hate to let things like that pass on-air, because they're so misleading. So you do your best to not get trapped in answers that misinform more than they inform.

So I'd give myself a B- maybe, but I don't think I could have done any better given Rice's initial tone of alarmism. I realize he has to make everything sound quite dramatic, but I pride myself on providing strategic perspective, so there's a natural tension there.


I once got trapped in the back seat of a car traveling to Iowa with WCCO on the radio during the Jack Rice Show. It was so bad, I was actually hoping someone would turn the channel to Mark Larson substitute hosting for Hugh Hewitt.

Barnett is a brilliant guy who doesn't suffer fools gladly. All I know is that when Barnett was interviewed on the Northern Alliance Radio Network, our performance was reviewed positively on his web site. I hope his experience on WCCO doesn't sour him on making an appearance on all Twin Cities airwaves, we should get him back soon.

BTW, tomorrow on NARN Vol.1, interview with Stephen Hayes, author of the terrific new biography of Dick Cheney.

I will be absent, meaning the alarmism, sensationalism and misleading will be at a bare minimum. Chad and John will be masterfully running the show, starting at 11AM Central, locally on AM1280 the Patriot, and streaming on the web here. Don't you dare miss it!

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Friday, July 20, 2007
Northern Alliance Radio Network

In the midst of your beautiful July Saturday tomorrow, don't forget to spend sometime quality time indoors (ideally in your basement, in your undershorts) listening Northern Alliance Radio Network, at AM1280 The Patriot. It all begins at 11 AM and continues in various iterations until 5PM. As you may be aware, we are delightful and amazing. If you don't believe me, take the word of Anne, who writes in from a city slightly outside the Patriot broadcast area (no, not Stillwater).

I just wanted to send some fan mail your way. I really enjoy listening to your podcasts on the Northern Alliance Radio show. I don't know what kind of audience you usually get for those podcasts (editor's conception)- but lest you think it's mainly midwesterners or minnesotans, today I listened to your podcast while relaxing at the swimming pool of the King David Hotel in Jerusalem . (editor's conception).

I'm a first-year rabbinical student (oops, sorry), and while my program is based in the United States (I'm from Texas), we study for the first year in Israel. We get Friday afternoons off from our week of pretty intense study, so I took great delight in getting some time to chill out and catch up on the podasts from the past few weekends. One of my all-time favorite podcasts was the one with Father Neuhaus. I started reading First Things after that one. And I am so glad I got to hear that amazing interview with Marcus Luttrell. Keep up the great work!

And so we will. If you're not able to catch it on the Patriot, listen to the live streaming here. Or the podcasts, archived on Power Line and at Town Hall (featuring all the Northern Alliance programs).

Don't you dare miss it! Acutally, I think it's fair to say it would be impossible for you to miss them.

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Saturday, July 14, 2007
NARN Postscript

Besides the great Michael Barone, we were lucky enough to have Lt. Pete Hegseth call in. He's involved with a group called Vets For Freedom. As you might expect from a former officer with the 101st Airborne, he's not willing to just stand by and let political support for winning the war in Iraq go gently into the night. He's organizing veterans from the Iraqi and Afghani theaters to blanket Capitol Hill in Washington on Tuesday to directly lobby members of the House and Senate for continuing support of our efforts to achieve victory over there. Obviously they're working on short time, with limited financial resources. Any vets able to join this initiative and any citizens able to support the cause financially can check out their web site.

Today we also discussed Keith Ellison's latest bizarre remarks, this time regarding 9/11 conspiracy theories. We got a call from Nancy at Freedom Dogs who said she would be attending Rep. Ellison's "town hall" meeting today. She did and her report is here.

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Northern Alliance Radio Network

Join us beginning at 11AM today for another episode of the Norhtern Alliance Radio Network. Chad the Elder is somewhere in the Phillipines, at this hour no doubt stinking of cheap saki and cellophane noodles, and will not be appearing. But never fear, the show must go on, with me and John Hinderaker at the helm.

The highlight of today's broadcast promises to be our guest scheduled for 11:15. The great Michael Barone joins us to discuss his new book, Our First Revolution: The Remarkable British Upheaval That Inspired America's Founding Fathers. He's also one of the best political analysts in the business, so we'll be sure to query him on the cloudy atmosphere in Washington regarding the war in Iraq.

For those of you tuning up for MOB party tonight at Keegan's, we'll try to throw in a couple of extra awkward silences.

Plus Loon of the Week, This Week in Gatekeeping, and much, much more.

It all begins at 11 AM central. Listen locally at AM1280 the Patriot, and streaming world-wide here. Calls encouraged at 651-289-4488. Don't you dare miss it!

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Tuesday, July 03, 2007
NARN This Saturday

[Since we have the Fourth of July holiday coming up, I thought I'd provide a preview of this Saturday's Northern Alliance Radio Network show a bit earlier than usual.]

Seven-seven-aught seven promises to be an auspicious day in many respects. Numerology types consider it a lucky day and many weddings and other celebrations have been planned because of that. And of course, we have Al Gore's Climatechangepalooza, with concerts taking place on all seven continents (yes, even that obscure one called "Europe") to raise awareness of the impending doom that will result if the earth's average temperature gets 1.8 degrees warmer in the next fifty years. Advisories have already been issued predicting dangerous levels of smug over the cities hosting these concerts.

If you can break away from "partying for the planet" for a moment (I racked up a lot of planet partying offsets back in college and therefore can sit this one out) be sure to tune in to the Northern Alliance Radio Network from 11am-5pm. During the first hour of the action-packed "Power Libertas" show, we'll be talking about the over-heated rhetoric, hysteria, and hypocrisy of the climate change crowd. We may even have our own helpful tips on what you can do to save the planet.

At noon we'll be joined by Marcus Luttrell, author of "Lone Survivor: The Eyewitness Account Of Operation Redwing And The Lost Heroes Of Seal Team 10"



Luttrell's story--growing up a on a ranch in Texas, he and his twin brother BOTH becoming Navy SEALS, the moral quandary that he faced in Afghanistan, and his escape and survival--is an incredible one and it would make for a great movie. With studios green lighting crap like Talladega Nights and Hostel II, you would hope that someone would recognize the appeal of bringing the real life tale of a true American hero to the big screen. No, I'm not holding my breath.

One topic that Luttrell is quite passionate about is the Rules of Engagement (ROE) that the military operates under. He doesn't believe that the current ROE reflect the reality of fighting the type of enemy we're facing in Afghanistan and Iraq.

In today's Wall Street Journal, Lt. Col. David Bolgiano opines on that same topic in a piece called Deadly Double Standards (sub req):

Soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines in the middle of a deadly firefight, however, often have only a split second to make similar decisions against a determined, civilian-dressed enemy. And the immediate consequence of making the wrong decision can mean getting yourself or someone in your unit killed. It therefore is unconscionable to apply higher standards and expectations to a younger, less-experienced Marine than to a commander in an operations center far from the battlefield. This isn't to say commanders should face tighter legal standards, but rather a call for the same deference for a rifleman who learns only in hindsight that he may have killed civilians.

In civilian law-enforcement settings, the U.S. Supreme Court has consistently held that cops who exercise the use of deadly force in the line of duty can't be sued, still less prosecuted, for their actions so long as they acted reasonably under the circumstances. Bad results do not mean bad decisions. Police officers, unlike soldiers, are not forced to raise an affirmative defense of self-defense; rather, the government has the initial burden of proving that the police officer's actions were unreasonable. We should provide at least the same level of deference to our warriors making decisions in a combat zone that we do to cops patrolling the streets of America.

We should also protect our warriors from the caterwauling of those such as the Washington Post reporters who "broke" the Haditha story and from those in the military who are more concerned about maintaining an "appearance of propriety" than in killing our determined enemies. Neither the law nor decency allows for the willful killing of innocent civilians. There need to be, however, allowances for unintended and unfortunate consequences.

When it comes to applying the correct legal standard, those judging the actions of warriors in combat should recognize the tactical realities of an engagement. It may be legally and morally appropriate under certain circumstances to kill "unarmed" individuals, such as those actively acting as lookouts for the emplacement of improvised explosive devices (IEDs) or participating in the network of conspirators building such devices. In a recent Time magazine article a jihadist named Abdallah is quoted saying: "They are not going to defeat me with technology. If they want to get rid of IEDs, they have to kill me and everyone like me." Our young Marines are able and willing to make that happen, if only our leaders will display the moral courage to allow them to do so without fear of prosecution.


A sentiment that Marcus Luttrell would no doubt echo. We'll learn much more about his views on ROE and his amazing story this Saturday on the NARN.

The fun starts at 11am and doesn't end until 5pm after Michael and King have the Final Word. Tune in locally on AM1280 WWTC or listen live on the internet stream from anywhere and everywhere. Don't you dare miss it.

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Saturday, June 16, 2007
Northern Alliance Radio Network

Join us beginning at 11AM central for another episode of the award winning Northern Alliance Radio Network. Since we've actually never won an award, we're compelled by the National False Advertising Council to feature at least someone who has. And today that is the de facto film critic of NARN, Stephen Hunter. Apparenlty he's got some other side employment as well, something called the Washington Post where a few years back he won something called the Pulitzer Prize for Film Criticism. Stephen joins us at 12 noon.

Plus Loon of the Week, this Week in Gatekeeping, sophisticated and urban commentary on politics (belch!), and much, much more.

It all begins at 11 AM central. Listen locally at AM1280 the Patriot, and streaming world-wide here. Calls encouraged at 651-289-4488. Don't you dare miss it!

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Monday, June 11, 2007
No Shortcuts

Last Saturday on the NARN, we interviewed Lt. Col. John A. Nagl, author of Learning to Eat Soup with a Knife: Counterinsurgency Lessons from Malaya and Vietnam. This was our second interview with Lt. Col. Nagl and his comments were once again honest, insightful, and thought provoking.

He literally has helped write the book on counterinsurgency and his message on Iraq is that while progress is being made, he fears it won't be enough to keep the political clock in Washington from running out. Successful counterinsurgencies have typically taken about nine years and he believes that because of the circumstances in Iraq and Afghanistan, the efforts in those countries will require an even longer time commitment.

It remains an open question whether America has the will and fortitude to see them through. The answer will be a determining factor in whether we have a safer or more dangerous world in the next thirty years.

You can listen to (or download) the whole interview here.

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Sunday, June 10, 2007
World War Two Memorial Dedication

Pictures from yesterday's event at the State Capitol in St. Paul (click to enlarge):













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Saturday, June 09, 2007
The Right Call

It's a beautiful morning in Minnesota. A perfect day for an outdoor event. Which makes me doubly glad that I elected to take part in the NARN live broadcast from the State Capitol grounds as the WWII Veterans Memorial is dedicated. My other option would have been to attend the MN GOP state central meeting in Oakdale.

Inside vs outside?

Politics vs history?

Yeah, I definitely made the right choice.

The NARN will be broadcasting live from 11am-5pm while the WWII Memorial Dedication takes place from 10am-4:30pm. In addition to covering the dedication events as they unfold, we'll be providing our usual poignant and pithy political commentary. At noon, we hope to be joined by Lt. Col John A. Nagl, author of Learning To Eat Soup With A Knife: Counterinsurgency Lessons From Malaya and Vietnam. Lt. Col. Nagl helped put together the new counterinsurgency manual being used by the military and we'd like to get his evaluation of the impact of the "surge" in Iraq.

The rest of the NARN crew will also be on hand for six full hours of radio gold. We understand that Mitch Berg will be providing a live demonstration of ten ways you can kill a man with Lefse as a tribute to the Norwegian resistance.

If you can make it out to the Capitol, be sure to stop by and say hi. If not, you can listen to the show as always on AM1280 WWTC locally or from anywhere on the internet stream.

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Saturday, April 28, 2007
Northern Alliance Radio Network

Join us beginning at 11AM today for another award winning episode of the Northern Alliance Radio Network. Never fear, the beautiful weather in the Twin Cities will not sideline more than 1 or 2 or your regular hosts and somehow, some way the show will go on.

The highlight of today's broadcast promises to be our guest in the noon hour when investigative journalist Steven Emerson joins us. He is the foremost expert in the fields of national security, terrorism, and Islamic extremism. His work has appeared in such outlets as The New Republic Magazine, US News and World Report, CNN, PBS, and the Counter Terrorism Blog.

Mr. Emerson has been consulted by the White House, National Security Council, FBI, Justice Department, Congress and intelligence agencies. No less an authority than Richard Clarke said of him: "I think of Steve as the Paul Revere of terrorism ... We'd always learn things [from him] we weren?t hearing from the FBI or CIA, things which almost always proved to be true."

Steven Emerson is currently the Executive Director of The Investigative Project on Terrorism, a data-gathering center on Islamist groups. And he's the author of six books, including his latest Jihad Incorporated: A Guide to Militant Islam in the US. We'll be talking about this book and focusing on the many Minneapolis connections identified.

Plus Loon of the Week, This Week in Gatekeeping, and much, much more.

It all begins at 11 AM central. Listen locally at AM1280 the Patriot, and streaming world-wide here. Calls encouraged at 651-289-4488. Don't you dare miss it!

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Wednesday, April 25, 2007
Not Fit To Wash Your Feet

If you missed last week's Northern Alliance Radio Network Volume One, you can now listen to the first hour in its entirety, commercial-free here. My special guest co-host (who really is the John Hinderaker of NIGP) and I discussed the slippery slope towards Sharia that the Twin Cities seems to sliding down and picked a Loon of the Week from a very crowded field.

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Saturday, April 07, 2007
Listening Comprehension

If you tuned in to the NARN Volume One today, you heard a "best of" broadcast featuring interviews with noted Catholic intellectual Father Richard John Neuhaus and Dennis Avery, co-author of "Unstoppable Global Warming: Every 1500 Years." Despite the difficulties I have in hearing my own voice on the radio and the hyper self-criticism that I usually indulge in (way too many "it seems" and "you knows"), I listened to both interviews in their entirety. Why?

In addition to learning that it's much easier to be a host than a caller, one of the unexpected things that I've come to realize while being part of a radio show is that you pick up far more from listening to an interview than conducting one yourself. It's not that you don't listen while doing the interview--good listening is critical to asking relevant follow-ups--but your mind is occupied with so many other things (how much time 'til the break? do we have any calls? where do we go next?) that you just can't listen with the same level of attention.

While I thoroughly enjoyed interviewing Father Neuhaus and Dennis Avery at the time, I wasn't fully able to appreciate the depth and substance of their responses until listening to the replays today.

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Saturday, March 31, 2007
You Can't Stop The Warming, Nobody Can Stop The Warming

If you missed last Saturday's interview with Dennis Avery, co-author of Unstoppable Global Warming: Every 1,500 Years, you can now listen to it here.

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Saturday, March 17, 2007
The Warming Is Unstoppable But The Guests Aren't

We apologize to those of you who tuned in to today's NARN Volume One show hoping to hear Dennis Avery discuss global warming. He had some car trouble and was unable to reach a phone. Apparently his Prius was swept into the ocean by a tidal wave and he was then attacked by a polar bear who floated by on a chunk of melting Arctic ice. We hope to reschedule him soon.

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Friday, March 02, 2007
A Lot Of Chutzpah For A Gentile

Very few talk radio hosts would even dare attempt to describe airing a "best of" show as a "service to our listeners." Hats off to Hugh Hewitt for having the stones to do just that tonight. Please remember that the next time we roll out one of our "best of NARN" shows. We're doing it for you.

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Wednesday, February 28, 2007
In Like A Lion

March is shaping up to be a big month for guests on the Northern Alliance Radio Network Volume One. The fun starts this Saturday, when we'll be joined in studio by Adnan Al-Kaissy, a.k.a. The Sheik of Baghdad.

You may recall that I wrote about The Sheik last October after he was featured in a front page article in the Wall Street Journal (sub req).

We'll discuss his fascinating life story (documented in The Sheik of Baghdad: Tales of Celebrity and Terror from Pro Wrestling's General Adnan), what he thinks about the future of Iraq, and see if he'll perform a gutwrench suplex on John Hinderaker. Live, on the air! You won't want to miss that one.

On Saturday, March 10th, the incomparable Father Richard John Neuhaus will be our guest. Father Neuhaus is the founder and editor of First Things and the author of Catholic Matters: Confusion, Controversy, And the Splendor of Truth, which I just finished reading while in Mexico. It is absolutely a must-read for Catholics or anyone interested in truly understanding the Church. Another sample to whet your appetite:

The delusion was also sustained because it was echoed through the general media. The media's dominate story line regarding the Church--sometimes, or so it seems, the only story line--is that of progressive dissidents challenging an authoritarian and ossified Church leadership. It is always David versus Goliath. Never mind that David is now a septuagenarian.

The Church is ever so much older and bigger, and thus can forever be depicted as Goliath. When one gets weary and is afflicted by doubts about playing David, it no doubt helps to be assured by the "New York Times" that one is on the cutting edge of inevitable change. It is no little thing to be depicted as the champion of such great goods as intellectual inquiry and academic freedom. The anointed paladins of change have, it seems, little occasion or inclination to reflect on their unoriginality.


Then, on Saturday, March 17th, we will welcome Dennis T. Avery to the show. He is co-author of Unstoppable Global Warming: Every 1,500 Years and although he likely will not be receiving an honorary doctorate from the University of Minnesota anytime soon (or an Oscar), he does bring some much needed light to the increasingly heated rhetoric of the climate change scaremongers.

Each of this guests will be appearing at noon central time and, as always, you can hear them on AM1280 The Patriot here in the Twin Cities or live on the internet stream anywhere in the world. Feel free to join the fun by calling us 651-289-4488. Don't you dare miss any of it!

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Saturday, February 24, 2007
Northern Alliance Radio Network

Join us beginning at 11AM today for another episode of the continuing saga of the Northern Alliance Radio Network. Never fear, the blizzard of the century will not affect the broadcast. We scoff at the great wall of white death descending on our fair cities and will recognize it only for evidence that Al Gore is not qualified for any Academy Award aside from perhaps best fictional screenplay.

The highlight of today's show promises to be our guest in the noon hour. We'll be talking about the movies with the eminent film critic Stephen Hunter. He is the Pulitzer Prize winning Washington Post movie reviewer. Also a fine novelist and author of books such as Point of Impact and one of my favorites from a few years ago, American Gunfight: the Plot to Kill Harry Truman.

Plus Loon of the Week, this Week in Gatekeeping, near constant weather reports, and much, much more.

It all begins at 11 AM central. Listen locally at AM1280 the Patriot, and streaming world-wide here. Calls encouraged at 651-289-4488. Don't you dare miss it!

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Friday, February 09, 2007
So Lazy And Surly

Since it appears likely that the Democrats in Congress will soon try to reimpose the "Fairness Doctrine" on us, the hosts of the Northern Alliance Radio Network Volume One (a.k.a. NARNVI) have elected to try to get ahead of the game by allowing equal time on our talk radio show.

In the past, we've had Summit Brewing founder and owner Mark Stutrud on the show a couple of times. Now, in the interests of fairness and sharing of the public airwaves, we are pleased to announce that Omar Ansari, founder and owner of Surly Brewing Company in beautiful Brooklyn Center (the real Brooklyn), Minnesota, will join us this Saturday at noon to discuss the wonderful world of beer. If there is anything about beer making that you've also wanted to know, but been afraid to ask, feel free to call in at 651-289-4488. As always you can catch the NARN on AM1280 The Patriot or on the internet stream.

If you like beer, good beer, I suggest you go out and grab yourself a four pack or two of Surly cans (yes, cans!). It's not sold everywhere but the list of stores carrying Surly covers the metro area and is growing. If you like a well-hopped beer, you've got to try the Surly Furious. It's a taste sensation.

UPDATE: Derek concurs on the Surly cans.

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Saturday, February 03, 2007
Northern Alliance Radio Network

Join us beginning at 11AM today for another episode of the continuing saga of the Northern Alliance Radio Network. Never fear, the subzero Twin Cities temperatures will not affect the broadcast. We scoff at the bitterly cold weather and will recognize it only for evidence that perhaps Al Gore is not qualified for the Nobel Peace Prize.

The highlight of today's show promises to be our guest in the noon hour. The eminent historian Max Boot joins us. He is foreign affairs columnist for the Los Angeles Times, a contributing editor to the Weekly Standard, occasional verbal sparring partner with VDH, and the author of a fascinating new book: War Made New - Technology, Warfare and the Course of History 1500 to Today. (Insightful book review here.) We'll discuss the effect of revolutions in warfare on world history and what that may mean for us in the future as we progress further into and beyond the Information Age.

Plus Loon of the Week, this Week in Gatekeeping, and much, much more.

It all begins at 11 AM central. Listen locally at AM1280 the Patriot, and streaming world-wide here. Calls encouraged at 651-289-4488. Don't you dare miss it!

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Friday, January 12, 2007
The Vox And The Grapes

Be sure to tune in to Volume Uno (11am-1pm) of the Northern Alliance Radio Network tomorrow when we'll welcome Christian libertarian and honorary member of the He Man Woman Haters Club, Vox Day, back to the show. He'll join us in the second hour for another exclusive radio appearance.

Listen locally on WWTC AM1280 The Patriot or live on the internet stream.

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Saturday, December 16, 2006
Timing Is Everything

Yesterday, the Pentagon released a new Counterinsurgency Manual. Today at noon on the Northern Alliance Radio Network, we'll be interviewing Lt. Col. John A. Nagl, who has written a book on the subject.

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Thursday, December 14, 2006
The Long War

One thing that proponents of a quick pullout of US forces from Iraq seem to fail to recognize is that no matter how unpleasant the prospect may be, the reality is that unless we want to pull up the drawbridge and hunker down in Fortress America, we're likely going to be engaged in similar counterinsurgency struggles in the foreseeable future. We can leave Iraq if we choose, but at some point we're going to have to figure out how to defeat enemies who recognize that while they can never beat the US on the battlefield, they can wear down our will to fight through asymmetrical warfare.

In the October 2006 edition of Armed Forces Journal, Lt. Col. John A. Nagl and Lt. Col Paul L Yingling propose some new rules for new enemies in The Long War:

Critics may object that the proposals outlined above--language training, higher education and force-structure redesign--are enormously expensive. These critics are correct. Counterinsurgency is an intensely human activity and requires significant investment in human capital. Providing continuous security to civilian populations and encouraging political and economic development cannot be done by machines at standoff ranges. There are many opportunities for material solutions to aid soldiers in COIN operations. However, there is no substitute for adaptive, intelligent and disciplined soldiers and leaders operating in close contact with host-nation security forces and the civilian populations they secure. The Long War can be fought only at close range.

Furthermore, the costs of transforming the Army for the Long War pale in comparison to the risks of failing to do so. The U.S. is already fighting active insurgencies in Iraq and Afghanistan. If we fail to bring stability to these states, their territories and populations will soon become instruments for spreading instability throughout the greater Middle East. Fragile governments such as those in Saudi Arabia and Pakistan may fall, endangering global oil supplies and nuclear nonproliferation controls. If we fail to dominate this conflict at the lower end of the spectrum, we may indeed find the need to fight a major theater war to impose stability on a region too vital to ignore. The costs of doing so will be exponentially greater than our current operations.

We have responsibility.


Lt. Col Nagl is also the author of the highly-touted Learning to Eat Soup with a Knife: Counterinsurgency Lessons from Malaya and Vietnam, which compares the British military's ability to adapt and learn in Malaya with the corresponding failure of the US to do so in Vietnam. This Saturday, he will be our guest on the Northern Alliance Radio Network at noon central time. Lt. Col. Nagl has served in Iraq as well and we'll be discussing both the theory and actual practice of successful counterinsurgency operations.

Listen live locally to all six hours of the NARN on WWTC AM1280 The Patriot (and stock up on last minute stocking stuffers at the Patriot Holiday Christmas Store--I've got tickets to "50 Ways To Leave Your Clutter" coming for the whole Fraters crew) or on the internet stream. Don't you dare miss it. You have responsibility.

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Sunday, December 10, 2006
Who's The Looniest Of All?

The voting has once again begun to determine who will walk away with the coveted title of 2006 Northern Alliance Radio Network Loon Of The Year. All previous Loon of the Week winners were eligible for the yearly distinction. A select panel narrowed the field down to twenty finalists and now your votes will decide who deserves LOTY recognition.

The original poll that was posted on Friday was missing a prominent name in looniness and two-time Loon of the Week winner, so we're going to start the voting over again.

The winner will be announced on the December 30th NARN broadcast. Vote early, vote often, vote looney.

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Friday, December 01, 2006
The Real Happy Warrior

Be sure to tune in to the Northern Alliance Radio Network tomorrow when we'll be joined by one of the most lucid, erudite, and entertaining commentators on politics, world events, and culture on the scene today. No, Atomizer will not be making his much-anticipated return to the airwaves. Instead, the one and only Mark Steyn--who can put on a smile on your face even as he describes the possible end of Western Civilization--will be on at noon to discuss his best selling book America Alone: The End of the World as We Know It and much, much more.

That plus the much anticipated Loon of the Week and a very special This Week In Gatekeeping (way ahead of you Foot).

Listen live locally on AM1280 The Patriot WWTC or from anywhere in the world on the 'net stream. Don't you dare miss it.

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Saturday, November 18, 2006
Northern Alliance Radio Network

Join us beginning at 11AM today for another episode of the fresh, young, exciting, and highly relevant Northern Alliance Radio Network.

The post election realities are just settling in and we'll have all the latest on the back biting among the back benchers now emerging as our national leaders. Plus Tim Pawlenty's unmoored drift to the left, Keith Ellison's first week in Washington, Loon of the Week, this Week in Gatekeeping, and much, much more.

We'll be sans Chad the Elder who I beleive is finally cashing in that "Day of Beauty" gift certificate I gave him last christmas at Mr. Jose's Tan and Wash in Hopkins. But, as usual, John Hinderaker will be on hand.

It all begins at 11 AM central. Listen locally at AM1280 the Patriot, and streaming world-wide here. Calls encouraged at 651-289-4488. Don't you dare miss it!

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Tuesday, November 07, 2006
Loose Talk

Remember to tune in to AM1280 The Patriot WWTC tonight for the best local election coverage and commentary provided courtesy of the Northern Alliance Radio Network. We're going to be hitting the airwaves at 8pm hoping that our lead-in doesn't crater the ratings. The broadcast will continue until the results are final or Saint Paul starts complaining about his parking ticket again.

The set-up is simple. John Hinderaker, Saint Paul, and I will be providing commentary from the Republican victory party in Bloomington and serving as the public face of the NARN, while Mitch Berg and King Banaian will be reporting results from the dimly lit depths of the subterranean studio in Eagan. Michael Brodkorb will also be making the rounds at the GOP gala, providing exclusive interviews and trying to smuggle free drinks back to us at the broadcast table. If you attend tonight's Republican party, stop by and say hi. We'll be the guys with the headphones wearing the "Republican Whore" nametags.

If you can't listen to the show on The Patriot, you can always catch us on the live internet stream. If you insist on watching the election coverage on television, just turn down the sound and crank up the NARN.

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Saturday, November 04, 2006
Northern Alliance Radio Network

Join us beginning at 11AM today for another episode of the fresh, young, exciting, and highly relevant Northern Alliance Radio Network.

It is the last show before the election, therefore we're considering talking about politics (pre-show preparation starts at 10:50 and we'll nail it down for sure about then). The great Mark Kennedy is on the road for his statewide blitz and he promises to give us a call. Also calls from the terrific Michele Bachmann and more of our favorite candidates are in the works.

Plus John Hinderaker and Chad the Elder back in the studio. To welcome their return we're attempting to get Mike Hatch in the studio to call them both "whores."

It all begins at 11 AM central. Listen locally at AM1280 the Patriot, and streaming world-wide here. Calls encouraged at 651-289-4488. Don't you dare miss it!

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Saturday, October 28, 2006
Northern Alliance Radio Network

Join us beginning at 11AM today for another episode of the fresh, young, exciting, and highly relevant Northern Alliance Radio Network.

Today's show includes an appearance by one of the great conservatives in state history, Sen. Rod Grams. He's now running for US Congress up in the 8th District of MN (which dips its toe into the metro area around Isanti and Chisago counties).

Also scheduled to appear, a great in the making, state Representative Jeff Johnson, now running for Minnesota Attorney General.

Stragic appearances by John Hinderaker, the Nihilist in Golfpants, and much, much more.

It all begins at 11 AM central. Listen locally at AM1280 the Patriot, and streaming world-wide here. Calls encouraged at 651-289-4488. Don't you dare miss it!

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Friday, October 20, 2006
Casting The Net Wide

If you missed last week's Northern Alliance Radio Network Volume I, you can now download the first hour here.

You'll want to be sure to tune in to the NARN tomorrow to hear Saint Paul unveil his new Helen Thomas impersonation when White House Press Secretary Tony Snow joins us at 11:30am. We'll also have Mark Kennedy on in the second hour. Listen to all six hours of the NARN from 11am-1pm on AM1280 The Patriot WWTC or live on the 'net.

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Monday, October 16, 2006
Be The Change!

If you missed last Saturday's Northern Alliance Radio Network, you missed the debut of a little ditty currently climbing the progressive-folk-alternative-college charts called "Be The Change!" sung by local artist JB Doubtless. Don't be the last one in your co-operative to hear this heart-felt call to action. This is the one that all the kids at the protests will be humming along to.

It's now available free for a limited time only at Fraters Libertas. Download it here and share it with all those interested in a better tomorrow for the children.

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Friday, September 15, 2006
Classic 'Za

What are you doing for lunch next Tuesday? If you happen to be anywhere near the University of Minnesota, you may want to drop by the Law School and catch a free speech by Victor Davis Hanson on "Why We Must Stay the Course in Iraq":

Featuring one of America's most renowned historians, Victor Davis Hanson. University of Minnesota Law School, Room 25. Free and open to the public, made possible by Tocqueville Center for the Study of Liberty and Free Institutions, Federalist Society, Students for a Conservative Voice, and AM1280 The Patriot.

That's next Tuesday, September 19th from 12:15pm-1:30pm. I also understand that there pizza available for all attendees. Free VDH and free pizza, does it get any better?

Professor Hanson will also be appearing tomorrow at 2pm on NARN Volume II a.k.a. "Mitch & Ed In the Middle" on AM-1280 The Patriot.

On NARN Volume 1, we're trying to line up Tony Snow to come on and discuss the battle over the administration's request for Congressional approval of powers to interrogate and try suspected terrorists, including Tony's personal desire for the extraordinary rendition of Helen Thomas (I jest of course).

You can listen to all six, yes SIX, hours of the Northern Alliance Radio Network tomorrow from 11am-5pm live on AM1280 WWTC on the internet as Steven from Brooklyn does:

Just a little shout out from deep within the Democrat Numb Zone (the DNZ). your blog is great, as is your voice (perspective) on The Patriot, which I listen to streamed (the DNZ seems to be allowing it to come through, at least for the moment...), and on those Podcasts (that haven't been posted since the Fair--what's up with that)?

The thing I don't get is, I don't hear any views from you, or the Powerline guys, etc., that strike me as particularly "Right Wing." Did the Center, as I understood it, move to the right, or did the Right move to the center?


John has been slacking on getting the podcasts up at Power Line, but you can listen to the first hour of last Saturday's show, when we interviewed Michele Bachmann and Congressman Pete Hoekstra (Chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and Detroit Tigers fan) here.

The second hour, when we interviewed Thomas P.M. Barnett, has already been posted and is available for downloading here.

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Friday, September 08, 2006
Blueprint For Good Radio

Tomorrow at noon, the elite pathfinders of the Northern Alliance Radio Network Volume I will welcome Thomas P. M. Barnett to the show. Barnett is the author Blueprint for Action: A Future Worth Creating:

Barnett maps out a sweeping new vision for the U.S. military in Blueprint for Action, the sequel to his influential previous book The Pentagon's New Map. He says the U.S. military has a massive doctrinal flaw. It has an unrivalled power to win wars. But it has little ability to win the peace. Witness Iraq, where virtually no thought was given to postwar stabilization and reconstruction. He advocates creating a new Department of Global Security in the U.S. government, tasked with putting countries back on their feet after an armed intervention by U.S. forces. He says the new department would also work to reduce economic and social instability in "disconnected" regions of the developing world. "It all starts with America and yes, it all starts with security," he writes. Barnett's vision is highly U.S.-centric and recalls the "white man's burden" philosophy of British colonial authorities. He advocates "regime change" in North Korea and Venezuela. And his solutions for the problems of the Third World are straight out of a banker's mouth: privatization, deregulation, globalization. But Blueprint for Action is an important account of the current thinking and debates at the highest levels of the Pentagon.

If you ever get a chance to catch his presentation on C-Span (Saint Paul first pointed me to it) be sure not to miss it. He's an engaging speaker and has put together one of the most effective, informative, and entertaining PowerPoint presentations of all time, which is perhaps not all that surprising considering his background:

Thomas P. M. Barnett is a senior adviser to the Office of the Secretary of Defense, Central Command, Special Operations Command, the Joint Staff and the Joint Forces Command. He formerly served as a senior strategic researcher and professor at the U.S. Naval War College and as Assistant for Strategic Futures in the OSD's Office of Force Transformation. He is a founding partner of the New Rule Sets Project LLC, and his work has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Christian Science Monitor, and Esquire, where he is now a contributing editor.

And he has a blog. Talk about a man of letters.

In the first hour we'll be discussing the upcoming primaries and providing our predictions and endorsements. I understand that Saint Paul is agonizing over who to support on the DFL side in the 5th District. Knowing him, he'll probably end up going with the Favorite.

NARN Volume I kicks off at 11am and is followed by Volume II at 1pm and Volume III: The Last Word at 3pm. Listen to all six hours of the NARN here in the Twin Cities on AM-1280 The Patriot or anywhere in the world on the internet.

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Friday, August 04, 2006
Talkin' Scribblin'

We have confirmed that we will be joined by Eric Burns at noon on tomorrow's Northern Alliance Radio Network show. Last week, he had some difficulties with his phone, but assures that this week there will not be a communications breakdown.

Mr. Burns (excellent) is the host of Fox News Watch (which can be seen locally on Saturdays at 5:30pm on Fox News) and the author of the recently released Infamous Scribblers: The Founding Fathers and the Rowdy Beginnings of American Journalism:

Infamous Scribblers is a perceptive and witty exploration of the most volatile period in the history of the American press. News correspondent and renowned media historian Eric Burns tells of Ben Franklin, Alexander Hamilton and Sam Adams--the leading journalists among the Founding Fathers; of George Washington and John Adams, the leading disdainers of journalists; and Thomas Jefferson, the leading manipulator of journalists. These men and the writers who abused and praised them in print (there was, at the time, no job description of "journalist") included the incendiary James Franklin, Ben's brother and one of the first muckrakers; the high minded Thomas Paine; the hatchet man James Callender, and a rebellious crowd of propagandists, pamphleteers, and publishers.

He also has penned a book called, The Spirits of America: A Social History of Alcohol. And there is a rumor that he started his media career right here in the Twin Cities many years ago.

Tune in on Saturday to catch Eric Burns and the new NARN schedule. Ed, Mitch, and King will now kick things off at 9am and we'll carry it home from 11am to 1pm.

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Monday, July 31, 2006
Are You Saying "Boo" Or "Boo-urns"?

On Saturday, after we were stiffed by Eric Burns on the Northern Alliance Radio Network show, we were most definitely saying "Boo!" with gusto. We had scheduled the host of Fox News Watch and author of Infamous Scribblers: The Founding Fathers and the Rowdy Beginnings of American Journalism to appear at noon, but when the appointed hour rolled around, he was nowhere to be found (in other words, he wasn't picking up his phone). That left John and me with three segments to fill. Three segments that we hadn't prepped for. Can you say "tap dancing"?

Of course, we don't harbor any hard feelings and hope to reschedule Eric Burns for an upcoming show. In the meantime, I will enjoy finishing off the rest of "Infamous Scribblers." It's quite an enjoyable read and I look forward to discussing it on the air with Mr. Burns at a future date.

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Friday, July 28, 2006
My Brother's Keeper

A selection from Infamous Scribblers: The Founding Fathers and the Rowdy Beginnings of American Journalism by Eric Burns on the brothers Franklin:

The apprenticeship, which was supposed to have brought the two Franklins closer together, had begun five years earlier, when Benjamin signed a document called an indenture, swearing to "readily obey" his brother. The indenture also required that the apprentice "shall not commit Fornication, nor contract Matrimony within the said term: At Cards, Dice or any other unlawful game he shall not play....He shall not...haunt Alehouses, Taverns, or Play-houses." Benjamin was, at the time he agreed to these terms, twelve years old.

In hindsight, such a document should have been drawn up with JB Doubtless upon the beginning of his apprenticeship here. Or perhaps I should have beaten him more when we were youths. I suppose it's all water under the bridge now.

A reminder that Eric Burns will join us tomorrow on the Northern Alliance Radio Network at noon to discuss Infamous Scribblers and, time permitting, perhaps also his earlier book, The Spirits of America: A Social History of Alcohol.

And, speaking of the invisible airwaves, rumor has it that JB Doubtless will be joining the notorious NIGP (Nihilist in Golf Pants) as a co-host tomorrow on The Patriot Insider, the lead-in for the NARN, heard from 9am-11am on AM-1280 The Patriot and on the internet. There is nothing wrong with your radio. Do not attempt to adjust the dial. We are controlling transmission.

Well, at least for four hours on Saturday we are. Tune in, turn on, and call in. 651-289-4488.

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Thursday, July 27, 2006
The Perfect Guest?

Moving has become one of those much-talked about "jobs that Americans won't do." Unless that is, you happen to be a thrifty American of Irish descent.

This Saturday, with temps forecast to be in the upper 90s, our own Saint Paul will pack up his earthly belongings (sans his extensive collection of "Swank" magazines) from his hip bachelor pad in Saint Paul (the city) and relocate to a palatial estate on the outskirts of Stillwater (the quaint river town where wives drag their husbands on the weekend).

Rather than loosening up his purse strings a bit and paying someone to perform this most menial of labor, he has instead recruited a crew of friends and blogging colleagues with the lure of food and beer. I imagine that this involves a twelve-pack of Milwaukee's Best, a 12" sub sliced into very small pieces, and a grab bag of Cheetos. You got ten minutes to eat and wash up and then it's back to work, understand?

"Taking it off, Boss?"

"Take it off, Atomizer."

The awesome responsibility involved in overseeing this operation (imagine Saint Paul in a straw hat with shades on, chewing a toothpick and stroking a shotgun) means that he will miss this week's edition of the award winning Northern Alliance Radio Network show. He will miss the collegial banter, he will miss the Loon of the Week, and most of all, he will miss This Week In Gatekeeping (can you hear the music?).

He will also miss an opportunity to chat with Eric Burns during the show's second hour. Mr. Burns (excellent) is the host of Fox News Watch (which can be seen locally on Saturdays at 5:30pm on Fox News) and the author of the recently released Infamous Scribblers: The Founding Fathers and the Rowdy Beginnings of American Journalism:

Infamous Scribblers is a perceptive and witty exploration of the most volatile period in the history of the American press. News correspondent and renowned media historian Eric Burns tells of Ben Franklin, Alexander Hamilton and Sam Adams?the leading journalists among the Founding Fathers; of George Washington and John Adams, the leading disdainers of journalists; and Thomas Jefferson, the leading manipulator of journalists. These men and the writers who abused and praised them in print (there was, at the time, no job description of "journalist") included the incendiary James Franklin, Ben's brother and one of the first muckrakers; the high minded Thomas Paine; the hatchet man James Callender, and a rebellious crowd of propagandists, pamphleteers, and publishers.

He also has penned a book called, The Spirits of America: A Social History of Alcohol. A guest well-versed in the media, the history of journalism, and alcohol? Yeah, I think we might be able to come up with an insightful question or two for him.

Such as, is Neal Gabler really as humorless as he comes across on the show?

Tune in Saturday at 11am to AM-1280 The Patriot if you live in the Twin Cities or listen live on the 'net.

Oh and if you're not busy on Saturday, Saint Paul could always use another strong back. Just don't go talkin' any of that union nonsense around him.

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Wednesday, July 12, 2006
Hot Town, Summer In The City

This Saturday's Second Annual AM-1280 The Patriot Listener's Picnic at Boom Island in Minneapolis promises to be a scorcher (especially with temps forecast to be in the upper 90s). The event, which runs from 11am-3pm, includes:

- Live broadcast of the Northern Alliance Radio Network including an on-air audience participation trivia contest with fabulous prizes

- Inflatable play devices (for the kids--get your mind out of the gutter Atomizer)

- FREE food (good catered stuff too, not like the nasty burnt brats your dad used to make at family picnics)



Captain Ed is hoping for the same potato salad that he enjoyed at last year's Patriot picnic. "Hey Ed, Idaho called. They're running outta potatoes."

- FREE Frisbees

- FREE WILLY! Sorry, got a little carried away there. But rest assured, there will be plenty of fun. And it is all free.

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Saturday, July 01, 2006
They Say You Better Listen To The Voice Of Reason

Those of you listening to The Patriot Insider on AM1280 this morning you were no doubt questioning whose dulcet tones were emanating from your radio in place of regular host with the most Mark Yost. Those tones were, in fact, coming from the mouth of the Nihilist in Golf Pants who did a very fine job, taking into account he has absolutely no experience in broadcasting.

During the course of the show my name came up several times and, after a while, I felt quite guilty that I wasn't calling in to give my buddy a little helping hand. Filling two hours of radio time by ones self can be a very daunting task and that fact was evident a couple times this morning. I should have been on the horn with a witty comment or scathing insult to help him fill some time but I just simply couldn't bring myself to punch that number in because, and I cannot state this any more clearly people, Atomizer doesn't do radio. I may have a penchant for referring to myself in the third person once in a while but, again, never on the radio.

Why, you may ask, do I have this irrational fear of talking on the air given my familiarity with the boys from NARN? Well, in honor of The Nihilist's burgeoning career in radio, allow me tell you in list form:

The Top Two Reasons Atomizer Doesn't Do Radio

2. Hugh Hewitt
I have been a caller and a live guest of Hugh's a couple times in the past and every single second of my time on air has been spent worrying that Hugh is setting me up to be humiliated. I must focus so hard on not saying anything that will make him lead me down the path of self destruction that what I do say is meaningless babble...and that ain't good radio.
1. Mitch Berg
During the first ever broadcast of the Northern Alliance radio show, I was actually one of the hosts. I was in the studio with headphones on...excited and ready to begin my new career in radio. The banter was lively and I had some notes in my hand so I would be prepared when my turn to speak came around. Mitch tossed me a question and I began to regale the listening audience with my brilliant observations on the topic at hand when, in mid sentence, Mitch cuts me off and says "Atomizer, you gotta move the mic closer to your mouth if you want to speak." Completely embarrassed I quickly finished my remarks and then proceeded to clam up like, well..like a clam, for the rest of the broadcast. Since that day, I have vowed to never again speak on the radio.
There you have it, folks. So, the next time you're listening to the Northern Alliance and find yourself wondering "Hmmm...I wonder what Atomizer thinks about this", blame Hugh Hewitt and Mitch Berg for depriving you of my unequalled brilliance.

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Tuesday, June 27, 2006
Democracy, Whisky, Sexy!

What are three things that you'll find in abundance during the July 7th Scotch tasting with the Northern Alliance Radio Network at Keegan's Irish Pub & Restaurant in Northeast Minneapolis?

Well, we might need to work on the last one a bit, but I understand that Atomizer's going to unveil his kicky new 'do that night and the ladies will tell you that there's nothing sexier than a well-coiffed architect.

Those of you with an appreciation for the joys of Scotch will be able to savor samples of some of the finest whisky around for a mere twenty-five bones. And you may get a chance to pair your Scotch with a fine stogie from St. Croix Cigar if you are wise in the ways of tobacco.

If your tastes don't run to the malted delicacies from Scotland, fear not. Keegan's offers a wide selection of wine, beer, and other spirits sure to please even those with the most discriminating taste. Yes JB, they do have Apple Pucker.

Come on down to Keegan's on July 7th for a taste of the good life.

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Friday, June 16, 2006
What's In A Name?

Tomorrow on the first half of the Northern Alliance Radio Network, we'll be breaking down the week's news as well as the World Cup (Brian's a big Togo guy). We will also be joined at 12:30pm by Dr. Charles Kupchella, President of the University of North Dakota, and author of this blistering letter to the NCAA in response to their attempts to ban the use of the Sioux nickname and logo.

The matter appears to be headed to court and we'll get the inside scoop from Dr. Kupchella on why he felt that UND had no other recourse.

Listen locally on AM-1280 The Patriot or live on the 'net here.

UPDATE: King has more on some of the possible consequences of the lawsuit.

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Saturday, June 10, 2006
Today on the Northern Alliance Radio Network

Join us today on the NARN, starting at 11 AM with me from this fine Internet site and John Hinderaker from Power Line discussing all the news that's fit to rehash. But with the fresh perspective of hindsight and relentless second guessing. Ah yes, the advantages of end of the week broadcasting.

The war in Iraq will no doubt be prominently featured with the recent elimination of murdering thug Zarqawi and recent allegations of Marine misconduct in Hadditha. Lending his highly qualified perspective to this will be Michael Yon, who's joining us at 11:30. He's a former Green Beret and occasional blogger imbed with the United States Army. Perhaps most famous for Gates of Fire, his account of a firefight in Mosul, and this photograph capturing the spirit of US military service and sacrifice on the battlefields of Iraq, Michael continues his journalistic work at his web site.

At noon we'll turn to the world of cinema and be joined by Washington Post film critic Stephen Hunter. He'll give his erudite thoughts on all the summer blockblusters and busts and tell us what we have to look forward to in the months to come.

Following that Mitch Berg, King Banaian, Captain Ed Morrisey from 1 - 3 PM.

It all starts at 11 AM central on AM1280 the Patriot, streaming on the web here. And this is a listener friendly format, anyone wanting to sound off can call 651-289-4488. Don't you dare miss it!

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Friday, June 02, 2006
Goin' Downtown

Today is Day Two of the 2006 Minnesota GOP State Convention at the Minneapolis Convention Center (with 6000 hotel rooms within walking distance in case anyone is wondering). The elite Northern Alliance Radio Network team will once again be there to cover the action.

We'll have two blocks of broadcasting. From 1pm-3pm, I'll join the festivities along with Mitch and King. We'll take a break from 3pm-6pm (happy hour anyone?) and be back from 6pm-9pm, joined by Captain Ed. Friday's shows will again be found exclusively on AM-1570. You can listen to a live internet stream here.

Guests today will include Jeff Johnson, Jim Ramstad, Norm Coleman, Alan Fine, Mark Kennedy, and Obi Sium, among others.

If you're down at the convention, drop by and say hi. And if you're a delegate, be sure to vote for Newt in the presidential straw poll.

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Thursday, June 01, 2006
Conventional Wisdom

Later today, the 2006 Minnesota GOP State Convention will kick off at the Minneapolis Convention Center (with 6000 hotel rooms within walking distance in case anyone is wondering). The crack Northern Alliance Radio Network team will be there to cover the action with three days of live broadcasts from the event.

The fun begins tonight at 5pm when King and Mitch hit the airwaves on AM1570 The Patriot Too. You can listen to a live internet stream here. They'll be on until 9pm and will cover Mark Kennedy's speech at 7pm.

On Friday, we'll have two blocks of broadcasting. From 1pm-3pm, I'll join the festivities along with Mitch and King. We'll take a break from 3pm-6pm (happy hour anyone?) and be back from 6pm-9pm, joined by Captain Ed (hopefully). Friday's shows will again be found exclusively on AM-1570.

Saturday's lineup will feature the long-awaited return of Mark Yost as host of the Patriot Insider, live from the convention from 9am-11am on AM1280 The Patriot (live internet stream).

Then at 11am, it's NARN Volume One with the usual cast of characters again on AM1280. We'll carry Governor Pawlenty's speech live at 11:30am and a entertain a cavalcade of guests. The convention will be finished up by the time we leave the airwaves at 1pm and the NARN Vol II crew will be back in the sewer studio in Eagan put a final wrap on things.

If you're down at the convention, drop by and say hi. Word has it that we'll be broadcasting from a booth somewhere above the main entrance to the auditorium, although the rumors that we'll be encased in a tank of water a la David Blaine are highly exaggerated.

I would have been attending the convention as a delegate anyway, but I'm excited about getting a chance to do a little radio too.

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Tuesday, May 30, 2006
A Dingo Ate Your Baby

Last Saturday, we were honored to have Major Steven A. Givler join us on the Northern Alliance Radio Network to talk about Memorial Day and his experiences in Iraq. Major Givler has a book coming out in June called, Notes of Joy And Sadness: Letters And Paintings from Operation Iraqi Freedom. You can listen to the interview with Major Givler here.

After learning of our fondness for all things trivial, he e-mailed a true tale of multi-national (as well as multi-lingual?) trivia that appears in his forthcoming book:

Happy Australia Day 26 January, 05

In one stroke on 26 January, 1788, Captain Arthur Phillips claimed Australia as a British colony, and established a thriving industry (a penal colony) on its shores. Not bad for a day's work.

So impressive, in fact, that Australians have been celebrating the day ever since. Unaware of this, I was making my appointed rounds at work tonight, when I was collared by a couple Aussie colleagues (they refer to me as a "mate.") and dragged to a party in a tent adjacent to where I work. Along the way, in order to compensate for the shocking gaps in my knowledge of History, I was apprised of the significance of this important date, said apprisings arriving on high-volume beer-scented blasts delivered directly into my ear, the loudness the result not so much inebriation, as of a myth that has arisen about my being slightly deaf.

My hearing is perfectly fine, but I seem to have great difficulty with the Australian language. Some claim it's similar enough to our language that a native English speaker should be able to understand it, but this, of course, is completely silly. They are separate and distinct languages, and while they may share some curse words, they have little else in common. I know this to be true, but I seem to be in the minority. Because of this, I frequently find myself asking Australians to repeat themselves. As a result, my "mates" have formed the opinion that I am somewhat hard of hearing.

Far from causing them to shun me, this mythical handicap of mine seems to endear me to these kindhearted people, and they go out of their way to talk to me, asking, "How're ya goin' mate?" and - well I don't know what else they say, because I can't understand a word of it. I nod and smile and make what I hope are appropriate remarks from time to time, and I seem to be doing pretty well, because I'm often rewarded with a bone-crushing slap on the back, broad smiles and a stream of throaty vowels that sound as if I'm listening from under water.

Times like these make me miss (even more than usual) my wife. They remind me of my first year or so in South Carolina, where her ability to translate Gullah, or whatever people were speaking to me, saved me from several beatings, and impressed on me the certainty that my life would never again be complete without her in it.

She is not here though, so I get by as well as I can, which means I have become a master of reading body language, facial expression, and contextual elements of conversation too subtle even to be named. These clues provide me insights into the inscrutable utterings of my friends here, and allow me to "participate" in discussions that are completely beyond my understanding. An aside: How is it I can appreciate these modes of nonverbal communication when I cannot abide a mime?

My skills of interpretation failed me tonight in the tent though, when my hosts were playing an enthusiastic game of Australian trivia. Not only did I not know any answers, I could not ascertain the meaning of a single question. At one point in the heated competition, it was the turn of my "mates" to answer a question. Whether in the spirit of inclusiveness, or because they themselves were unsure of the answer, I'll never know, all I can say for certain is that, after the question was posed, they all turned to me, and beerily shouted things like, "Gowedan givatraymate!"

Well, there I was. A close-packed throng of inebriated amateur rugby players blocked the path to the door ahead of me, while all the men stood behind me. No way out. A quick survey of all my body language skills told me only that every ear in the bar was inclined in my direction, and that the fate of my team rested on my shoulders. A hush fell over the mob. Of such situations, international incidents are made. I raised my beer and shouted, "To Australia!" and, in the pandemonium that ensued, bought a brief respite, but it was over all too soon. Once again, the place fell silent, and I felt myself being crushed under the burden of the prestige of the United States. I ran through my small vocabulary of authentic Australian words and flung one out in desperation. "Dingo," I gasped. My team erupted in cheers, joined after a slight delay by our rivals, who were unhappy to lose a point, but glad to know that an American was so well informed about their country.

Later, when things died down, I happened to see the list of questions lying on the bar. Apparently the one they had put to me was, "What was the first non-native species introduced to Australia?"

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Thursday, May 25, 2006
Joe Hanson, Rest in Peace

Mitch Berg brings us the sad news of the far too early demise of Joe Hanson. Joe was the original producer of the Northern Alliance Radio Network and held that job until about a year ago. Before that, of course, he was a fixture at KSTP-AM , working with local legends like Jason Lewis, Mischke, and the others. Back then, that was the only conservative radio outlet in town and a whole generation of young Republicans grew up listening to shows produced and enhanced by the genial Smokin' Joe Hanson.

As anyone who ever got the chance to talk to him knows, he was a great guy. Friendly to all, except perhaps to a few callers whom he accurately determined as not air worthy. Believe it or not, conservative talk radio draws a few cranks calling in, and nobody was better than Joe in assessing, halting in their tracks, then terminating those conversations in an efficient manner. His barking "what do you want! No, they're not talking about that now!" then his laughter afterwards over clean dispatch are sounds I can still hear in my memory. Joe was a pro yet he was always patient and supportive to a bunch of radio amateurs trying to learn on the job what they were supposed to be doing.

Joe left in a rather abrupt fashion from the Patriot and we never got a chance to say goodbye to him. That is a regret now. He was such a youthful looking and energetic guy, I never would have conceived of his death so soon. And I fully expected him to surface again somewhere. With the return of Jason Lewis, coincidentally just announced yesterday, I figured he'd be back on the air in short order. Alas, that was not meant to be.

Our prayers are with Joe Hanson in the next world and with his friends and family here today.

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TALK O' THE TOWN
We are the wind beneath the right wing.

Listen to the Northern Alliance Radio Network on Saturdays from 11am 'til 3pm on AM 1280-The Patriot:

* The First Team 11am-1pm
* The Headliners 1pm-3pm

Podcast Archives

This week on The First Team:

Brian and John continue to voice their heated rhetoric and troublesome vitriol.



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INTERVIEW ARCHIVE


2009-10 NARN LOON O' THE WEEK

3/20--Rick Perriello
3/13--Nancy Pelosi
3/6--Harry Reid
2/20--Keith Olbermann
2/13--Larry O'Donnell
2/6--Barack Obama
1/30--Carol Shea Porter
1/16--Martha Coakley
1/9--Mike Malloy
12/19--Al Gore
12/12--Harry Reid
11/21--Al Gore
11/14--Nancy Synderman
11/7--Roland Burris
10/31--Levi Johnston
10/24--Alan Grayson
10/17--Rick Sanchez
10/10--Barbara Boxer
9/26--Ed Schultz
9/19--Jimmy Carter
9/5--Chris Matthews
8/29--Dan Savage
8/22--Brad Pitt
8/15--Chris Matthews
8/8--Barbara Boxer
8/1--Bill Maher
7/11--Maddow/Klobuchar
7/4--Al Franken
6/13--David Letterman
6/6--Harry Reid
5/30--Drew Barrymore
5/23--Jesse Ventura
5/16--Wanda Sykes
5/9--Alren Specter
5/2--Nancy Pelosi
4/25--Janeane Garofalo
4/4--Damon Greene
3/28--Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva
3/21--Charles Grassley
3/14--Seymour Hersh
3/7--DL Hughley
2/28--Sean Penn
2/21--James Clyburn
2/14--Chuck Schumer
2/7--Nancy Pelosi
1/31--Nancy Pelosi
1/24--Richard Lugar
1/10--PETA
1/3--Caroline Kennedy


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