Suicide via Laborcide in Carolina
Expanded from the 8-21-2011 Daily Sparks Tribune
Updated 8-22-2011

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   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


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

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Updated 3-21-2011
Lawsuit gains support

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 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


Unions nationwide are inflamed over the Democratic National Convention scheduled next year for Charlotte, North Carolina, where setup and takedown may not be union jobs.

The Paradise (Township) Democratic Club in Clark County recently passed a sharply worded resolution demanding that the DNC insist on union labor.

GOP Light:
How the Democrats lost their way and screwed the working poor

By Dennis Myers
Reno News & Review 6-17-2010

Anatomy of a failed presidency
By Jake Highton
Daily Sparks Tribune / 8-14-2011

The movement is tired of being an ATM machine for Democrats, then, like a cuddly toy, getting "left out in the rain the day after Santa came." (Apologies to The Monkees.)

Whatever happened to the oft-promised Employee Free Choice Act? (See the Barbwire.TV program of 4-21-2009.)

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

These constitute just two of the many reasons to support the return of community radio and television to these parts. Go to ReSurge.TV to volunteer your time or treasure or both.

It's important.

SAYS THE BOSS. On last week's Wall Street Journal TV show, AFL-CIO leader Richard Trumka sounded a warning. Political support will henceforth be secondary to unions taking care of their own organizing infrastructure. Talk of forming a Labor Party abounds.

As reported only via the Barbwire, labor problems threatened the Nevada State AFL-CIO convention which starts August 21 at the increasingly anti-union Reno Grand Sierra. Matters have not yet been resolved. Watch for breaking news.

[UPDATE: The convention will recess early on Monday to demonstrate at a nearby Bank of America branch at 4:00 p.m. PDT. BofA last Friday announced cutting up to 10,000 jobs. The bank, which moved its HQ from California to — drumroll, please — North Carolina a few years back, has received billions in U.S. taxpayer bailout funds. To paraphrase Yogi Berra, if BofA founder A.P. Giannini was alive, he'd be turning over in his grave.]

SAY A PRAYER. My old friend Kate Marshall is pulling a Jill Derby who borrowed from Bill Clinton. The latter pair ran as moderate Republicans and State Treasurer Marshall is pretty much going copycat in her current congressional campaign.

When former university regent Derby competed for the almost-statewide CD-2 seat in 2006 and 2008, she made no mention of party registration. Ditto Marshall 2011. Republican advertising took care of that for her, but I doubt that Kate sent flowers.

While she started off with some very pertinent criticisms of the Obama administration, she has since apparently made the mistake of going out during a full moon and getting bit.

Former Tribune writer Dennis Myers has often quoted Harry Truman about such situations: If you give people a choice between two conservatives, they'll always vote for the real thing.

The campaigns of both Marshall and GOP yahoo Mark Amodei are painfully poll driven. All that seems to matter is scaring the bejabbers out of old people over Medicare cuts.

Judging by advertising, apparently only seniors will vote next month. Such targeted fearmongering constitutes tacit admission that neither candidate has a clue on how to motivate voters under 65. To do so would require meaningful jobs proposals which neither has been willing to advance.

Former State. Sen. Amodei has already won the Medicare issue by simply spending tons of media money saying Ms. Marshall wants to gut the program. It's not true, but hey, this is advertising and follytix. In both war and political campaigns, truth is always the first casualty.

Amodei enjoys a registration edge of more than 31,000 in a district gerrymandered to elect a Republican forever. Only GOP candidates have won since CD-2 was created after the 1980 census. So all he needed to do was confuse the Medicare issue to neutralize it and he has done so by simply repeating falsehoods.

If Kate continues to campaign solely on Medicare, she's toast before the bread is sliced.

SAY GOODBYE. Longtime DMV employee Michelle Christian passed away on June 27 at age 61. The sunny and vivacious "Blondella" served as a shop steward for American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Local 4041/AFL-CIO.

A celebration of her wonderful life will be held from 3:00 to 9:00 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 27, at the home of Jeffrey Nicholas, 17220 Big Pine Drive in Reno. For details, e-mail <>

SAY A FEW WORDS. Former northwest Reno Democratic Assemblymember Vivian Freeman's health has declined to a point that she has relocated to a care facility. Close friends and family members advise sending cards and letters, perhaps noting her 84th birthday last week.

Registered nurse Freeman was elected to the Washoe Medical Center Board of Trustees before serving eight terms in the Nevada Assembly from 1986 to 2002.

You may write her at Rosewood Rehabilitation Center, 2045 Silverada Blvd., Reno NV 89512-2051; 775-359-3161.

Vivian's daughter, Mitzi, says her mom would appreciate the attention.

SAY MAIL CALL. What's worse than snail mail? No mail.

Why does the U.S. Postal Service not have a number published in the current AT&T phone book? I know they plan to close some facilities, so is this a warning?

People who live near the fairgrounds (aka Livestock Events Center) had not been getting their mail and wanted to call and (gasp!) send letters to the postmistress.

Delivery was apparently stopped without notice for a week or so while the City of Reno poured sidewalks for the first time ever in one of the area's oldest neighborhoods.

Not that sidewalks will improve matters. Those who live near the fairgrounds and senior center often find strange cars parked in front of their homes and thus don't get their mail, sometimes for days. It seems that some postal persons don't leave their vehicles.

Perhaps the old unofficial motto needs updating: Neither rain, nor sleet, nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds —> special events and construction not included.

SAY, SHELLEY. Rep. Berkley and Sen. Harry Reid missed a bet not keeping Byron Georgiou in the U.S. Senate Democratic primary, which could have provided substantial free statewide advertising for the little-known Las Vegas congresswoman.

As legendary football coach Vince Lombardi once sagely opined, that team making the fewest mistakes wins.

I am so damned sick and tired of being sick and tired, witnessing the self-immolation of candidates, officeholders, institutions and organizations.

But hope springs eternal, even in the face of global warming.

Be well. Raise hell.

Andrew Barbano is a 42-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

Nevada Press Assn. annual award winners announced 9-18-2010.
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 42-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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