Pirate Laureate of the High Desert Outback of the American Dream


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The Barbwire's Silver Anniversary
Barbwire by Barbano moved to Nevada's Daily Sparks Tribune on Aug. 12, 1988, and has originated in them parts ever since.
Whom to blame: How a hall-of-famer's hunch birthed the Barbwire in August of 1987
Tempus fugit.

   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.

Everybody knows the scene is dead
   But there's gonna be a meter on your bed
That will disclose
   What everybody knows.

— Leonard Cohen

Can Amazon drones deliver healthy cigarettes?
Barbwire by Barbano / Expanded from the 1-9-2014 Sparks Tribune / Updated 1-9-2014

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


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Watch for show times. Help us get the word out.

Support the project at

Updated 8-30-2011
Reruns on Carson-Dayton 226

Additional programs
on Boulder City cable. Go to and then
go to the BCTV link.

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.

Your contribution will help fund the distribution as well as ongoing efforts at developing new media, including a regional, non-corporate community radio station and the return of community television to Reno-Sparks-Washoe.

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


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Last year was bad enough as we flung ourselves back to the future of driverless cars, pilotless drones and rudderless politicians.

So where do we go from here? How about—>

—>DRONE PROMOTING AND AEROBIC SMOKING: Last week came mass e-mails selling spray-on weight loss, the most outrageous diet promise this side of amputation.

Now come healthy cigarettes. (Is smoking aerobic?)

"Stay healthy while smoking," promises an ad from XOCigs. (XO, as in kiss your lungs goodbye?)

"Looks, feels and tastes like a real cigarette." It also hooks you on nicotine.

"Claim your exclusive XO cigs kit! Act now, supplies are limited!" (Beware anyone who uses lotsa exclamation points.)

Everything old is new again. John Wayne once appeared in ads for "healthy" Camel cigarettes and died of lung cancer.

XO marks the spot. Be careful. It might attract drones.

"Do you think there will be a drone hunting season alá Colorado?" wrote Tom Hudson in response to last week's Solar-powered insurance drones from hell.

"Maybe the governor had to promise a No Drone Season to get Nevada in the running" for designation as a predator guinea pig. (Submit corporate welfare applications ASAP via

The state needs money, but how far will the Sandoval administration go? Drone hunting licenses? Aerial banners? Fuselage ads, perhaps?

Unlike birds and bunnies, will drones be allowed to shoot back?

Will there be penalties for feeding drones like the laws against feeding bears?

Will honeybees sue for trademark infringement over ownership of the brand name?

What about drone proliferation? Will activists raise moral objections to drone population control?

Will protests spread to animal shelters that advocate birth control?

Do the Little Sisters of the Poor who busted Obamacare spay and neuter their pets?

Maybe we should just ice a cold one, light up, sit back and leave drone development to Utah.

They're into bees, right?

TRANSITIONS: We lost friends last year. On New Year's Day came word of the Dec. 22 passing of 30-year Circus Circus-Reno baker Roy Whoit Howard, 74. The affable union man served as Culinary Local 226 delegate to the Sparks-based Northern Nevada Central Labor Council/AFL-CIO where he sat as a trustee on the umbrella labor body's executive board.

[UPDATE: At the Jan. 8 CLC meeting, Todd Koch, Business Manager of Painters & Allied Trades Local 567/DC16 and President of the Building and Construction Trades Council of Northern Nevada/AFL-CIO, called for a moment of silence in memory of Brother Howard.]

Rock star Jello Biafra informed Nevada about the loss of Washoe Valley native Cimber Weaver, 52. The founder of a series of music shops (The Wave, The Cave, Insurrection Sound) died on Nov. 9 in Oregon following surgery.

I knew him in his younger days as manager of Straw Hat Pizza in Reno's Shoppers Square.

[UPDATE FROM A READER, a Nevada attorney: "Thanks for the shout out on Cimber Weaver. He was my boss at Straw Hat while I studied for the Bar Exam.  Later, he was my roommate and friend of over 25 years."]

DON'T FORGET: Say adiós to Vivian Freeman—>Celebration of life Saturday 18 Jan. 2014 at Washoe Democratic HQ

RENDER UNTO CESAR: Northern Nevada César Chávez Celebration XII happens on the great labor leader's birthday, March 31, 2014.

Commit for tickets and tables now at before prices increase.

I'm planning a TV special about César Chávez's days in Nevada.

Stay tuned.

ANTE INTO THE GAME: Support the new season of Barbwire.TV by putting your money where my mouth is.

PayPal monthly subscription software is now operational at the website.

A thousand thanks to those who already responded.

Keep sending show suggestions.

Current frontrunners include (pardon the pun) wild mustangs as canned goods, educationi-Guns and gay Olympics with César Chávez in Nevada recently surging.

"Media is the plural of mediocre."
                              — Jimmy Breslin

  Please forward additional ideas or vote on the above.

  I encourage you to donate to the cause at Barbwire.TV/

The medium that shapes public opinion needs at least one refuge where it is not filtered through the distorted green eye shades of prissy corporate accountants for whom profit is the only priority; where self-censorship is the journalist's normal work environment and where all sins of omission are tacitly encouraged and forgiven with the wave of a balance sheet.

This is important.

We've got work to do.

Be well. Raise hell. / Esté bien. Haga infierno. (Pardon my Spanglish.)


HONOR YOUR DON. Keep sending comments supporting legendary Nevada photographer Don Dondero (1920-2003) for the Nevada Press Association Hall of Fame.

His life's work appeared worldwide, including the Tribune and most probably every newspaper in Nevada.

Enlist in the campaign to install Big Don.

Please send me your memories and endorsements via e-mail or to P.O. Box 10034, Reno NV 89510.

The Barbwire got the late Reno Gazette-Journal columnist Guy Richardson elected in 2012.

Let's double down.

Be well. Raise hell. / Esté bien. Haga infierno. (Pardon my Spanglish.)



Andrew Barbano is a 45-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 and 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...

Liberal reasons to oppose liberal positions and policies
Guaranteed to irritate all points of the political spectrum


Let's persuade Apple to start making i-Guns here
Barbwire by Barbano / Expanded from the 10-24-2013 Sparks Tribune

Enron II: Nevada's Battle-Born Toxic Event
Indigence and indigestion from ingestion of Warren Buffett's buffet
Barbwire by Barbano / Expanded from the 6-6-2013 Sparks Tribune
Updated 6-7 and 6-17-2013

...and more ammo..

Nevada Day Required Reading
The Lady in the Red Dress
The Barbwire's classic Nevada Day column written in 1983
The compleat history of the Silver State in 500 words

Sparks Tribune 10-31-2013 and previously

Barbano on the Barbwire plots new TV season
Barbwire Special Web Edition / 10-21-2013

Barbwire: Nevada not really a state
No, we were not Battle Born in Kenya
Top 10 reasons Nevada lives in the 19th Century

Barbwire by Barbano / Expanded from the 10-17-2013 Sparks Tribune

Low-income penalty: Nevada socks it to the working poor
BARBANO: Nevada is one big company town
Dennis Myers / Reno News & Review 10-10-2013

State of Health
National health care comes up against a very sick state. WHAT'S IN IT FOR US?
Dennis Myers / Reno News & Review 10-10-2013

USA at crossroads: New Deal or new Confederacy?
Barbwire by Barbano / Expanded from the 10-10-2013 Sparks Tribune
UPDATE—>Bill Moyers: Shutdown is simply secession by other means

We Don't Need No Education
The continuing Barbwire series

...and more ammo yet

The Post-Dated Recession: Pay me now or pay me later
Barbwire by Barbano / Expanded from the 9-6-2012 Daily Sparks Tribune

The Post-dated Recession
By Joshua H. Silavent / Daily Sparks Tribune / 5-3-2011

Union decline and rising inequality in two charts
by Colin Gordon
Economic Policy Institute / 6-5-2012

Used in
journalist Mark Robison's extensive Hard Labor: Nevada unions tout role in helping workers, firms, economy (Sunday 2 Sept. 2012 Reno Gazette-Journal, page one, Reno Rebirth section of the print edition). Union men Jim Burrell, Paul McKenzie and Guy Louis Rocha did the movement proud. Not included in the RGJ online edition.

The Barbwire Labor Day column
Reno Gazette-Journal / 9-3-2012

Nevada Press Assn. Better Newspaper Contest
HAT TRICK: Barbwire takes first place three years in a row.

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 | 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
War Rooms:
Banks, Cabbies, Cabela's/cabellyup, Cable TV, Cancer Kids/Mining, Energy, Food, Health Care, Resurge.TV/consumers, Starbucks, Wal-Mart
We Don't Need No Education
Search this site | In Search Of...


Copyright © 1982-2014 Andrew Barbano

Andrew Barbano is a 45-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 moved to Nevada's Daily Sparks Tribune on Aug. 12, 1988, and has originated in them parts ever since.
Whom to blame: How a hall-of-famer's hunch birthed the Barbwire in August of 1987
Tempus fugit.

Site composed and maintained by Deciding Factors, CWA 9413 signatory

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