Turn on, tune in and tell a friend
Expanded from the 11-29-2009 Daily Sparks Tribune
Barbwire wins second straight Nevada Press Association first-place award
Updated 12-2, 12-3 and 12-6-2009

If Reform Fails: Health Care, Jobs and Unions —new power to the people on the public airwaves

The program will be available to every television set in the region because of a high-mileage media hybrid.

The show will appear on both commercial and community stations. The non-corporate entity will produce the event, commercial TV will greatly expand its distribution.

Thus begins what I hope will become an ongoing series of sane public interest programs which generate both entertaining heat and more than a little light.

Please spread the word, watch the show and consider contributing to the cause online at ReSurge.TV. You may also take the public option known as the U.S. Postal Service and send a check or money order to ReSurge.TV, P.O. Box 10034, Reno NV 89510.

Your contribution will help fund the distribution of this program as well as a new regional, non-corporate community radio station.

You are present at the creation of what I hope can become a new media model where the programming accurately reflects what's happening on the ground and the media impact is powerful enough to forcefully pass the message upward.


Be well. Raise hell.


Barbwire column on the depredations of Charter Communications and the Reno City Council wins 2009 Nevada Press Association first-place award

The Barbwire TV/web simulcast will return as soon as new studio construction is complete. Your contribution will be most welcome. Keep an eye on the Barbwire print edition for updates.

Past 12 months
Use the search tool you will find at page right at the above link. It will return the 19 newest. A button for older shows is being installed. You may also search by date — M-F for the past year save holidays.

Click here for on-demand re-runs
from the 2009 legislative session

15-year overnight success

Daily Sparks Tribune 2-10-2008

The Barbwire's Greatest Hits
Highlights from radio days
mp3 file

Hope for the best and prepare for the worst.

That's pretty good advice anytime save for those selling Wall Street stocks or Florida swamp land.

Which is why I'm doing a live TV show on Sunday, Dec. 6, entitled If Reform Fails: Health Care, Jobs and Unions. See right -—-->>>

As I noted last week, Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., stands as our last hope against the tide of exploitation of human misery which engulfs us.

His legislative strategy has been obvious for months: Get a bill, any bill, into conference committee reconciliation between the House and Senate. Reid only needs 51 votes to pass a bill resulting from the conforming process.

But what if the worst case scenario happens? What if the dark warnings in the December edition of Harper's Magazine come true? (See last week's column.) What if phony reform engineered by the insurance industry passes? What if Congress criminalizes those who won't or can't pay for private insurance, just as states criminalize lack of auto insurance?

In short, what if big money wins again?

That's what we will consider on the TV set in your living room on Dec. 6 at 6:00 p.m. PST (02:00 ZULU/GMT).

It will be available to every TV household in the region via telecast, cablecast and satellite. A coverage map will accompany the web edition of this column at

Basically, anyone east of Sacramento to the Lovelock city limits will be able to participate in the program. Likewise for a broad swath of Nevadans swooping south from Lyon County down to Hawthorne.

We will produce it live at the new Sierra Nevada Community Access Television (SNCAT) studio in Reno's Meadowood Mall and distribute regionally via CW network affiliate KRNS which covers a big chunk of California and Nevada via two over-air channels (digital 27.2 and analog 46That's right, any old-fashioned TV with rabbit ears can get the show, too, no pesky and expensive digital converter necessary). KRNS is also carried on cable channel 6 throughout the region. [UPDATE / schedule change: CW channels will air the show at 9:00 p.m. PDT / 05:00 ZULU/GMT. See the Dec. 6 Barbwire. Sorry for any inconvenience. — AB]

SNCAT will cablecast the show in Reno-Sparks-Washoe on Charter Communications digital channels 16, 216 and 80-295. Viewers in Susanville, Calif., can get the show on analog 29. Satellite and AT&T UVerse subscribers should check their systems for KRNS-TV and the CW Network. We will take phone calls during the show at 775-828-1211.

Click here to see the show live on your computer. [NOTE: This link will not be hot until 5:30 p.m. PST / 01:30 ZULU/GMT, a half-hour before showtime on Dec. 6.]

Panelists will include Paul McKenzie, executive secretary-treasurer of the Building & Construction Trades Council of Northern Nevada/AFL-CIO; Rudy Viola, president of United Auto Workers Local 2162/AFL-CIO; and Larry Matheis, executive director of the Nevada State Medical Association. Additional participants and content will be announced as air date approaches. Watch and ReSurge.TV.

This will not be a partisan rant but a thoughtful discussion. I have heard Mr. Matheis address this issue and he brings the most reasoned voice I have heard on the local, state or national levels. That's doubly surprising, given that he represents the doctors' lobby which has fought fang and claw against reforming the system for six decades, but no more.

Health care costs were a principal contributing factor to the fall of head-in-the sand General Motors. Mr. Viola will enlighten viewers. Mr. McKenzie is on the front line of unemployment. Two of three northern Nevada construction workers are now idle.

We will take questions from the live audience and also from phone callers. I urge readers to immediately start e-mailing questions to me

Admission to limited seating will be by tickets available only through the Truckee Meadows Democratic Alliance with priority given to its members. E-mail or call me for additional information at 775-882-TALK (882-8255.)

All of this underscores the importance of non-corporate community media. I was on the founding board of SNCAT 20 years ago. We saved it from extinction at the hands of some elements on the Reno City Council and saw it grow into a nationally honored enterprise.

Please consider donating what you can afford to the community radio-TV project at ReSurge.TV. You may contribute online or send a check or money order to ReSurge.TV, P.O. Box 10034, Reno NV 89510.

Your contribution will help fund the distribution of this program on health care and jobs as well as a new community radio station.

The alternatives are dwindling. Hardworking Christiane Brown has retired her talk show on KJFK radio, northwestern Nevada's Air America affiliate. She got no support from management, which suicidally moved longtime Reno Gazette-Journal columnist Cory Farley against her on a sister station. They had a better and much more lucrative alternative.

Imagine this dream team lineup: Former Tribunite Willie Albright anchoring the news in the morning. The Barbwire vs. Lush Rambo 9:00 till noon, again beating the racist bigot just as I did in 1990-91. The best that ever was, Travus T. Hipp, along with Farley and Brown through the afternoon.

What would happen? Exactly what the Travus 'n' Andy shows did two decades ago: Northern Nevada hate station KKKOH loses about half its audience within four months. But commercial radio will hear of nonesuch. With non-corporate broadcast, it's another story.

So ante up if you can. I am moving heaven and earth to get a non-commercial fm radio station launched at the same time I have other TV shows in the pipeline. The alternative is more Lush Rambo, Bill Slanders and Lord Rupert Murdoch.

You pick.

BRING COAT HANGERS. Planned Parenthood activists make their own statement this Tuesday. They will host a rally from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. in front of the federal building at Liberty and S. Virginia in Reno.

"Dozens of volunteers wearing hot pink 'Protect Women’s Health' t-shirts are expected at the rally to encourage both Nevada’s senators to protect women’s health care in the Senate health bill," the organization notes.

THE BOTTOM LINE. Without meaningful health care reform, the American economy will not recover and job growth will not begin.

The choice is yours.

I suggest that you turn on and tune in this coming Sunday, and be sure to tell a friend.

Be well. Raise hell.


Andrew Barbano is a 40-year Nevadan, second vice-president of the Reno-Sparks NAACP, labor/consumer/civil rights advocate, producer of Nevada's annual César Chávez Day celebration, member of Communications Workers of America Local 9413/AFL-CIO and editor of As always, his opinions are strictly his own. Check local listings for other Nevada cable systems. E-mail Barbwire by Barbano has originated in the Daily Sparks Tribune since 1988.

Smoking Guns...

Nevada Press Assn. annual award winners announced 9-19-2009

The campaign against forcibly-paid newspaper obituaries
And they wonder why the newspaper business is dying?


The Dean's List

   The Dean of Reno Bloggers could very well be Andrew Barbano, self-described "fighter of public demons," who started putting his "Barbwire" columns online in 1996 and now runs 10 sites.
RENO NEWS & REVIEW, 11-9-2006

The 2009 first-place Nevada Press Association award winners
Tony the Tiger & the flaky NFL
Barbwire / 11-30-2008
Deregulation is never having to say you're sorry
Barbwire / 8-3-2008
Nevada: A good place to visit, but do you want to live here?
Barbwire / 6-15-2008

...and more ammo

BARBWIRE Nevada Corporate Welfare Archive

Propaganda fuels gasoline price fixing
Barbwire 8-14-2005

Donate to the cable ratepayer legal defense fund at our PayPal-enabled ReSurge.TV Consumer War Room

Phillips, Kevin; Numbers Racket: Why the economy is worse than we know

Harper's Magazine; May 2008; page 43
Phillips has authored numerous books on history and politics over the past 40 years. His most recent, Bad Money: Reckless Finance, Failed Politics and the Global Crisis of American Capitalism, was published by Viking on April 15, 2008.

NAOMI WOLF: Fascist America in 10 Easy Steps
There are some things common to every state that's made the transition to fascism. Author Naomi Wolf argues that all of them are present in America today.
Alternet 5-20-2007

Johnson, Chalmers; REPUBLIC OR EMPIRE? A National Intelligence Estimate on the United States; Harper's magazine; January, 2007. I love it when heavy hitters validate what I've been saying for years in the tiny Sparks Tribune.

Barlett, Donald L. and Steele, James B.; America: What Went Wrong? (1992); America: Who Really Pays the Taxes? (1994); America: Who Stole the Dream? (1996) ; Andrews & McMeel/Universal Press Syndicate.

Review of Alex Carey's Taking the Risk Out of Democracy:
Propaganda in the US and Australia

The Orwell Diversion by Alex Carey
Excerpted from the book available below

ORDER Taking the Risk Out of Democracy
Corporate Propaganda versus Freedom and Liberty
By Alex Carey
Edited by Andrew Lohrey
Foreword by Noam Chomsky
University of Illinois Press

     SEE ALSO: Lapham, Lewis H.; Tentacles of Rage: The Republican Propaganda Mill, A Brief History; Harper's Magazine cover article; September, 2004, page 32.

     By one conservative estimate, the corporate right has spent about $3 billion over the past three decades manufacturing public opinion to suit big business goals. Lapham's number covered the early 1970's to the present day. Alex Carey noted that by 1948, anti- New Deal corporate propaganda expenditures had already reached $100 million per year, not adjusted for inflation, for advertising alone. (Carey, ibid; page 79)

     Adjusted for inflation, that 1948 $100 million becomes $801,659,751.04 in 2005 dollars.

Conservatives Help Wal-Mart, and Vice Versa
As Wal-Mart struggles to rebut growing criticism, it has discovered a reliable ally: conservative research groups.
New York Times 9-8-2006; Free registration may be required.

      BARBWIRE: Labor Day '94: People vs. corporate con job, 9-4-94
Chilling forecasts from Alex Carey

      BARBWIRE: The Nevada Republican Party Becomes Communist, 3-30-97
A prescient Plato on the dangers of oligarchy

The sands of time do not cloud the long memories of the sheiks of Araby
Barbwire 9-10-2006

      Rinfret, Pierre A.; Peace is Bullish; Look magazine, 5-31-1966 | U-News | Bulletins + Almanac
Casinos Out of Politics (COP) | Sen. Joe Neal
Guinn Watch | Deciding Factors
| BallotBoxing.US | Barbwire Oilogopoly Archive
Barbwire Nevada Corporate Welfare Archive
Annual César Chávez Celebration
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Copyright © 1982-2009 Andrew Barbano

Andrew Barbano is a 40-year Nevadan, editor of and, former chair of the City of Reno's Citizens Cable Compliance Committee and serves as second vice-president, political action chair and webmaster of the Reno-Sparks NAACP. As always, his opinions are strictly his own. E-mail

Barbwire by Barbano premiered in the Daily Sparks (Nev.) Tribune on Aug. 12, 1988, and has originated in those parts ever since. Tempus fugit.

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