When money owns you
Expanded from the 10-2-2011 Daily Sparks Tribune

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Corporate Propaganda Research Archive

   Everybody knows the dice are loaded.
Everybody rolls with their fingers crossed.
   Everybody knows the war is over.
Everybody knows the good guys lost.
   Everybody knows the fight was fixed.
The poor stay poor, the rich get rich.
   That's how it goes. Everybody knows.
— Leonard Cohen

HAT TRICK: Barbwire wins 3rd straight Nevada Press Association First-Place Award

In 2011, we go for the Sombrero


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Updated 8-30-2011
Now rerunning on Carson-Dayton 226

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

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

The shows appeared on both commercial and community stations. The non-corporate entity produced the events, commercial TV greatly expanded distribution.

Thus began an ongoing series of sane public interest programs which generate both entertaining heat and more than a little light.

Please spread the word 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.

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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.


Click here for selected on-demand re-runs from the 2009, 2010 and 2011 Barbwire.TV archives

15-year overnight success

Daily Sparks Tribune 2-10-2008

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

HAT TRICK: Barbwire wins 3rd straight Nevada Press Association First-Place Award
In 2011, we go for the Sombrero

Last Friday, I spoke with a Sparks businessman named Jerry about Bank of America's intention to soon charge $5.00 a month for using debit cards.

I suggested the alternative of checks, but Jerry informed me that many enterprises won't accept them anymore. BofA would love people to make more purchases on credit cards where the potential for exorbitant fees is even worse. Jerry pays a shocking amount in credit and debit card customer service charges every month.

I promised to pay cash in the future and expressed my revulsion at a bright, shining lie spewed by the American Bankers Association: It's all the fault of costly government regulation.

Banks can still do all the crooked things they did that caused the continuing worldwide depression, but deregulation is always the remedy for these guys. The Reaganesque cure for any disease is more disease.

President Obama made the huge mistake of putting the financial foxes back in charge of the chicken coop. They treat him with contempt.

He ordered treasury secretary Timothy Geithner to draft a plan to break up Citibank. Geithner refused and by so doing basically told the president to commit an unspeakable act upon himself.

Incredibly, the despicable Wall Street shill still has his powerful job.

I recommended that the Sparks business owner see the Clive Owen-Naomi Watts film The International, a barely fictionalized version of how big banks work.

"Control of the debt is everything," says a doomed banker who wouldn't play the game and was assassinated for his honesty.

Control the debt and you control countries.

U.S. taxpayers bailed out the bitchy brewers of Too Big to Fail Ale. Adding insult to injury, BofA, Citibank, Wells Fargo and others have been getting cheap money from the Federal Reserve and loaning it back to the government by purchasing treasury bonds, thus generating huge profits at no risk with no work.

The joke's on us as (drum roll, please) they laugh all the way to the bank.

The worsening depression will force obvious remedies, but a lot of people will wither and die first.

THE QUIET MAN. The trade unionist who saved the state's largest labor organization passed away last Wednesday. All of Nevada labor mourns Jim Arnold, Jr., 68.

He led the largest union in Nevada history but it could have easily gone the other way. When he was elected leader of Culinary Local 226 in 1987, membership was down and Las Vegas casino overlords smelled blood in the water.

Arnold brought the union back from the brink and successfully led the workers on strike, including the longest walkout in U.S. history against the New Frontier Hotel. It lasted six and one-half years until the property was sold and new owner Phil Ruffin signed a union contract.

Local 226 had 23,000 members when Arnold was first elected and stands at 60,000 today. Most southern Nevada resort hotels are unionized, as well as Reno's Circus Circus and Grand Sierra Resort.

Services will be held in Las Vegas on Oct. 3.

CLARIFICATION. Assembly Bill 380, which skyrocketed financial penalties for blackguards who force children into sex slavery, passed in 2009. You will find links to AB 380 of the 2009 session in both last week's and this week's Barbwires at

COBRA IS AN ASP. In several August installments, I told the outrageous story of a huge government-subsidized solar energy project employing mostly non-Nevada workers. Worse, it's being built by Cobra Energia, a construction company from Spain. (Bullfighting in Tonopah, Aug. 7 and 11.)

"The conquistadores have applied for all the usual charity: 20-year sales, use and property tax breaks of 75 percent, corporate welfare that drains funds from schools, roads, parks, police and fire protection," I reported.

"Earlier this year, Gov. Brian Sandoval appointed a member of his transition team to the Nevada Commission on Economic Development," I noted.

"Steve Hill is founder and senior vice-president of Silver State Materials, a Gomorrah South outfit which will supply concrete to the Tonopah solar project. One of the state agencies that will review the subsidy applications: The Nevada Commission on Economic Development. Mr. Hill is rumored to be Gov. El Bruté Obtusé's frontrunner to head an expanded state economic development apparatus which will give him even more clout over corporate welfare goodies."

As predicted, Sandoval appointed Hill in late September, about the same time the governor publicly wet himself in accepting $13.8 million in small business federal stimulus money. It can be multiplied 10 times with lending help from those same cash-rich banks screwing thee, me and the abovenoted Sparks small business.

Las Vegas Sun columnist Jon Ralston hung El Bruté by his short and curlies over budget-cutter Sandoval glorying in Democratic deficit spending.

Ralston pointed out that fellow Republicans John Boehner, Dean Heller and John Ensign reviled the enabling legislation pushed through while Harry Reid still had 60 senate votes.

Sandoval refused to endorse the bill that provided the sorely needed windfall.

After all, it was sponsored by Democrat Rep. Barney Frank of (aargh) Taxachusetts.

Perhaps Mr. Ralston should get a comment from Mr. Hill since he will have dibs on the cash.


U-TUBE. Check the expanded web edition of this column at for the latest statewide Barbwire.TV schedule, viewable 24/7 online.

Support the return of community radio and television in these parts. Go to ReSurge.TV to volunteer your time or treasure or both.

It's now more important than ever — > unless you think corporate-controlled media is all you need. Stay tuned for updates.

Be well. Raise hell.

Andrew Barbano is a 43-year Nevadan, chair of the Nevada César Chávez Committee, producer of Nevada's annual César Chávez Day celebration, first vice-president and political action chair of the Reno-Sparks NAACP, labor/consumer/civil rights advocate, 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

POWERFUL PUNDITORY PANJANDRUMS: Compelling guest commentary

Nevada Press Assn. annual award winners announced.
HAT TRICK: Barbwire takes first place for third year in a row.
This year, we go for the sombrero.

The winning entries:

Suing for Schools: The 20-year shuck
Expanded from the 2-21-2010 Daily Sparks Tribune

Click here to view the show on your desktop

RED flags flying low over Sparks
Expanded from the 1-10-2010 Daily Sparks Tribune

The wrath of self-righteous racism
Expanded from the 11-8-2009 Daily Sparks Tribune

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

Fact-free nation: Inside the lie machine
Mother Jones Magazine May-June 2011 / Cover story and in-depth analysis

Bill Moyers: Welcome to the Plutocracy
Money fights hard and it fights dirty
Speech delivered at Boston University on 29 Oct. 2010
Part of the Howard Zinn Lecture Series

Barbwire Corporate Welfare Archive

From clear-cut forests to dirty Gulfstream waters, this land belongs to old BP

BP/ARCO: The greasy root of our evils

Barbwire / Daily Sparks Tribune 9-10-2006

The awful truth — Read it and weep, fellow suckers

Labor Day 2009: Rise of the Vampire Corpobots
Expanded from the 9-6-2009 Daily Sparks Tribune

Angry Americans and Freudian fraud
Using war to market cigarettes
from the 8-23-2009 Daily Sparks Tribune

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 © 1982-2011 Andrew Barbano

Andrew Barbano is a 43-year Nevadan, editor of and; and former chair of the City of Reno's Citizens Cable Compliance Committee, He is producer of Nevada's annual César Chávez Day celebration and serves as first 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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