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What may well be the first marriage of talk radio, talk TV and webcast webchat
Melting down just in time for summer
Expanded from the 5-24-2009 Daily Sparks Tribune
Save northwestern Nevada community television
The math behind the move
Charter Communications plans to illegally move four channels of analog to the digital tier.
One channel of analog bandwidth accommodates two to 10 channels of digital programming, depending on the complexity of the streams. High-definition movies eat up a lot of bandwidth.
A Charter statement quoted on TV-4's Aug. 4, 2008, 11:00 p.m. newscast said that Charter is doing this to "free up more bandwidth for high definition channels."
Charter thus gains bandwidth for between 8 and 40 digital channels by banishing community TV to the digital tier, a net gain of 4 and as many as 36, depending on content.
Charter VP Marsha Berkbigler, in her first speech to the City of Reno's Citizens Cable Compliance Committee in Dec. 2002, said each additional channel is worth $1 million a year to Charter and that's at 2002 prices.
So Charter stands to make between $4 million and $36 million by doing this, unadjusted for inflation.
Carson City gets the facts
Barbwire / Daily Sparks Tribune / 10-19-2008
Talks with Charter fruitless
Barbwire / Daily Sparks Tribune / 9-7-2008
Sparks, Washoe, Carson and Douglas consumers urged to contact their local governments to join the fight against Charter
ReSurge.TV 8-25-2008, Updated 8-28-2008
Evil empire eats its appetite
Barbwire / Daily Sparks Tribune / 8-24-2008
Bandwidth bandidos admit their greed
Barbwire / Daily Sparks Tribune / 8-17-2008
Sue the bastards
Barbwire / Daily Sparks Tribune / 8-10-2008
Deregulation means never having to say you're sorry
Barbwire / Daily Sparks Tribune / 8-3-2008
MORE: Smoking Guns
So sue us: Charter tells Sen. Reid and Reno
Ratepayers group may sue Reno as well as Charter
Daily Sparks Tribune online 11-11-2008
+ Barbwire Special Edition 11-12-2008
FCC investigates cable TV pricing
Associated Press 11-4-2008
FCC investigates complaints about moving cable channels and pricing
Orlando Sentinel 11-7-2008
Charter Communications hires bankruptcy lawyers
MultiChannel News 2-8-2009
Charter misses $74 million payment
Website predicts 2009 Charter Communications bankruptcy
Moody's downgrades Charter on reorganization talk
It appears that the biennial petting zoo better known as the Nevada State Legislature has succeeded in once again placing a leaky Band-Aid on a gushing gunshot wound.
As always, they have balanced the books on the backs of the weakest, some of whom have been given a death sentence by their own government.
Because of the insistence of Washoe County Republican senators Bill Raggio and Randolph Townsend, new taxes expire in 2011.
Senate Taxation Committee Chair Bob Coffin, D-Las Vegas, predicts that this shortsightedness leaves the 2011 ledge with a deficit of more than $1 billion.
Lawmakers have funded K-12 education at pretty much current levels, which means "Were racing to the bottom" Sen. Mike Schneider, D-Las Vegas, told the Las Vegas Sun.
"He introduces a bill every session to bring Nevadas funding of public schools to equal or surpass the national average, but the bill never gets approval," veteran Sun reporter Cy Ryan wrote.
"'Good high-quality companies turn their back on Nevada because our education funding is so low,' Schneider said.
"'Sen. Mark Amodei, R-Carson City, complained that state employees are not being treated equally. 'There are winners and losers and K-12 folks are winners,'" he told the Sun.
"He said state workers are going to get hit with a double-digit drop in salary and benefits. Amodei was the lone dissenting vote."
THE TARNISHED SILVER LINING. As soon as lawmakers override Gov. Jim the Dim's veto of the tax and budget plan, the door will open wide for a lawsuit to force Nevada to raise taxes to properly fund education.
Mental health advocates should review right-to-treatment litigation.
University Chancellor Jim Rogers' legal research will be linked to the web edition of this column.
It notes that 27 other jurisdictions have been successfully sued for failing their legal mandate to pay for schools.
Nevada has lots of experience with federal judges running large parts of our government. Federal Watermaster Garry Stone, who manages the waters of the Truckee, Carson and Walker rivers, works for the U.S. District Court, which has administered the regional watershed since 1944.
A federal judge can do no worse than lawmakers and governors over the past 30-something years.
SOGGY BLACKMAIL. The Truckee Meadows Water Authority raises rates by $1.10 a month for metered users as of June 1.
Non-metered homes get hit for more than nine dollars a month.
Full conversion to metering was in the pipeline very soon anyway.
Odds are your house already has one installed even if you're not being billed at the metered rate.
It's all done in the name of saving water, which is an oxymoron.
Much of the water serving this valley exists only on paper.
Nevadans know how to conserve in dry years and have always done so.
Water meters are merely a pretext for providing paper permissions for pasting over our paucity of proper planning.
DRINKING TO YOUR UNHEALTH. Looks like we're going to get royally screwed on health care once again. First, read Paul Krugman's Blue Double Cross in Friday's New York Times.
Then go to PBS.org for the transcript of the May 22 edition of Bill Moyers' Journal.
The only national health care plan that will work is government as single-payer and that's the only plan not being considered by top congressional leaders or their corporate controllers.
Krugman notes that the vampires are ramping up the usual red-scare campaign which has been used to kill universal health care since the 1940's when Republicans destroyed President Truman's proposal.
It looks like the states will have to do it themselves.
Nevada once had effective hospital cost controls which the industry wiped out 20 years ago.
You may access a brief summary of the results with the web edition of this column.
Call (775) 882-8255
15-year overnight success
Daily Sparks Tribune 2-10-2008
The Barbwire's Greatest Hits
Highlights from radio days
ON THE AIR: One of the major sponsors of that health care cost containment, former State Sen. Joe Neal, D-N. Las Vegas, spent an hour with me last Thursday.
You may access it on demand via Barbwire.TV.
It's the best insight you will get on our current fiasco of a legislative session.
Retired state archivist and noted historian Guy Louis Rocha will be my guest this Tuesday.
The ledge should hire him and Mr. Neal to provide institutional memory for the 2011 legislature when we will have a huge influx of virgin lawmakers.
MEMORIAL DAY OF THE DEAD. Local peace activists will commemorate America's war dead on Monday with a name-reading and flag-planting ceremony, 1:00 to 6:00 p.m. at Reno's Bruce R. Thompson Federal Building, 400 S. Virginia St.
Names of soldiers who have died in Iraq and Afghanistan will be read aloud.
The ceremony will also give special tribute to the more than 50 Nevadans who lost their lives in the recent Bush-Cheney wars.
For more info, go to sierrainterfaith.org or call 775-784-1945.
NADER'S RAIDERS REDUX. This just in from one of my long-ago talk radio kids who is now all grown up and kicking ass: "Ralph Nader has launched two new public interest groups , november5.org and singlepayeraction.org.
"Both are committed to end the current 'pay or die' healthcare system and replace it with single-payer, not-for-profit, universal healthcare. Everyone in and no one left out.
"Join the Northern Nevada Chapter every Sunday at 2:00 p.m. as we rally for universal healthcare on the sidewalk in front of Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield's offices, S. Virginia and McCarran Blvd.,across from Best Buy.
"Help us raise funds by giving us your used aluminum cans for recycling.
For more info, contact Earl Ammerman IV, 775-843-9099 or firstname.lastname@example.org."
Nicely done, young man.
Be well. Raise hell.
From: Chrystal Main
Sent: Thursday, May 07, 2009 8:07 AM
To: DCFS - ALL.DCFS (Restricted)
The Governor's Office has asked that the following information be shared with all DHHS agencies:
It has come to the attention of the Governor's Office that some agencies may have concerns with the budget bills proposed by the Department of Administration. These bills were drafted to support Governor Gibbons' executive budget and have the full support of his office.
Please do not testify against Administration bills in committee as those bills support
the Governor's agenda.
If you wish to testify on other bills that you have a personal interest in, please insure that you are either at the Legislature during your regularly scheduled time off or have taken annual leave.
Please do not identify yourself as an employee of DCFS, rather you may identify
yourself as a state employee if the Committee asks you where you work.
Chrystal C. Main, Social Services Chief
Division of Child and Family Services
4126 Technology Way, 3rd Floor
Carson City, NV 89706
From: Office of the Governor [mailto:nvg@GOV.NV.GOV]
Sent: Wednesday, May 13, 2009 11:19 AM
Subject: Press Release - Governor Calls on Citizens to Demand Openness From the Legislature
For Immediate Release: May 13, 2009
GOVERNOR CALLS ON CITIZENS TO DEMAND OPENNESS FROM THE LEGISLATURE
Legislators need to hear from Nevadans immediately
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 campaign against forcibly-paid newspaper obituaries
And they wonder why the newspaper business is dying?
Not even 30 pieces of silver
Reno City Council Signs Community TV Death Warrant
Contact Sen. Harry Reid for help
Sparks Tribune / 11-23-2008
Rise of the machines
Barbwire / Daily Sparks Tribune 11-16-2008
The devil and the deep blue sea
Charter cable deal and Reno "settlement" offers are all death warrants for community television. Court battle looms closer.
Sparks Tribune / 11-11-2008 + Barbwire special web edition, 11-12-2008
Wisconsin statewide franchise law has not dropped cable prices as promised
Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel 11-8-2008
Falling all over ourselves
When will Sparks, Carson City, Washoe and Douglas counties get mad over Charter cable's ripoff?
Barbwire / Daily Sparks Tribune 10-5-2008
Michigan Judge rules for cable ratepayers
Decision holds great importance for Nevada
Barbwire / Daily Sparks Tribune 10-5-2008
Charter in serious financial trouble
Barbwire / Daily Sparks Tribune 10-12-2008
Charter offer deficient
Barbwire / Daily Sparks Tribune 9-28-2008
Charter negotiates Russian-style: Will accept 100% of everything
Daily Sparks Tribune 9-5-2008
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.
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.
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
Rinfret, Pierre A.; Peace is Bullish; Look magazine, 5-31-1966
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Copyright © 1982-2009 Andrew Barbano
Andrew Barbano is a 40-year Nevadan, editor of NevadaLabor.com and JoeNeal.org, 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 email@example.com.
He hosts news and talk Monday through Friday, 2-4:00 p.m., at Barbwire.TV and Reno-Sparks-Washoe Charter digital cable channels 16 and 216, high-definition channel 80-295. 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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