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Corporate Propaganda Research Archive

Aug. 2012-Aug. 2013: the Barbwire's Silver Anniversary Year
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.

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
Updated 10-19-2013

   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

Here are the top 10 reasons Nevadans wax phlegmatic about getting their pockets vacuumed by tax inequity and workplace exploitation. You can probably think of more.

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


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

Additional programs
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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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10. THE COWBOY MYTH. Lonely cowpoke detachment is one of our hallowed character traits and is the underlying flaw that renders Silver State citizens consummately exploitable.Too many aspire to be islands unto themselves.

Cowboys out on the range with their critters can't be bothered with mundane nuances of government such as tax equity —> unless "Tax Equity" happens to be the name of a world-class-brutal rodeo bucking bronc.

9. NEVADA IS NOT REALLY A STATE. Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia would have worked as one country. As three, they have long suffered.

The same thing happened with the Utah Territory. In 1850, the future states of Utah, Colorado and Nevada (minus Clark County) comprised one entity that made political and economic sense.

Separately, Nevada became Bolivia, which likewise depends on extractive industries.

We just added one: gambling.

8. NEVADA IS A BOOMTOWN MINING CAMP pretending to be something she is not.

We have never overcome the hangover of our heredity. By our actions and inactions, we perpetuate the boom-and-bust, bonanza/borrasca cycle of our state's history. Levi's were invented here and boom/bust is in our genes.

The Nevada cowboy mentality is one of fend-for-yourself prospecting. We refuse to admit that we are being exploited by the same "straight-talking" (watch your wallet) political leaders we admire largely because they wear western boots, drink beer at parades, attend pancake breakfasts and seem "just like us."

Paul Laxalt got a lot of mileage by wearing cowboy boots on the floor of the U.S.Senate, bullet-proofing himself from legitimate criticism that he did little for his constituents in 12 years other than push for nuclear waste.

7. BOOMTOWNS BECOME COMPANY TOWNS. Nevadans have a bad case of political co-dependency. We enjoy being hurt by the ones who say they love us, like the casino owner who gladly cashes miners' paychecks, then buys them a few drinks on Friday night.

Over time, migrants to the High Desert Outback of the American Dream try to emulate actual states by establishing schools and other civic infrastructure.

But company town rules always dominate their lives whether they realize it or not.

When the biennial University of Nevada-Reno Alan Bible Center poll consistently showed two-to-one statewide support for a gross gaming tax increase, gambling lobbyists got the legislature to gut funding for the research.

The Nevada Retail Association's (aka Wal-Mart) number one defense against the Nevada State Education Assn. gross receipts tax initiative is that we need more study of the issue. (It's never a good time to raise taxes.)

The NSEA proposal apparently exempts the gambling industry, as did the smoke-free initiative before it.

In the mid-1980s, future UN,R journalism dean Bourne Morris got slapped down for publicly stating (unforgivable! —> and in the Reno Gazette-Journal, no less) that she found casinos against economic diversification (and thus education) because they didn't want competition for the low-wage labor pool. (Barbwire 12-14-1997)

6. WE ARE ASHAMED OF WHO WE ARE, living off the earnings of all vices known to mankind.

Our worst offenders, shills for the gambling-industrial complex, become quite self-righteous.

How often have we heard "Las Vegas has more churches!"

More than where?

Or the chamber-of-commercy "Off the Strip, we are like any other community."

While she was Las Vegas Mayor, Jan Jones uttered exactly the churchy quote on the NBC Today Show live from the floor of the Luxor pyramid.

5. CORPORATE WELFARE ALLERGIES. Nevadans have seen their governments pass out corporate welfare like candy and condoms. Why consider a tax increase, or a shift toward tax equity, or any tax-tinkering, if you know that the money will likely go to some billionaire or corporate predator that doesn't need it?

4. THE HIGH DESERT PLANTATION MENTALITY. Family-owned casinos in the north remain bastions of paternalism. Mafia-family-owned hotel-casinos in Gomorrah South, laundered into corporate quasi-legitimacy by Howard Hughes, still foster subservience among their employees, especially those on the casino floor.

3. GHOST CITIZENS. The gambling industry has spawned a permanent, co-dependent, detached and exploited underclass, often casino floor workers who are too frequently possessed of addictive personalities.

Such workers are detached from their communities, not politically involved and some are prone to gamble their paychecks back to the company on payday.

These good souls are hard to organize into unions or into a voting bloc.

The bedrock of the Nevada gambling industry is the local addict, which is why government funding of addiction programs has historically been cosmetic at best, ignored at worst.

Nevada plays to addiction.

That's the reason non-smoking areas of casinos have taken so long to gain a toehold and why totally smoke-free casinos (like Reno's first, the Ponderosa) often failed.

The Ponderosa proprietors found that if you're in the business of selling vice, you must cater to all of them, not just one, or the addict/customer will go elsewhere for a gambling/booze/nicotine fix.

2. TAXATION IS BORING. Wild horses, gun control, potholes and abortion are easy, either-or issues, suitable for television. Taxes mean talking heads often speaking unintelligibly. Flip over to Wheel of Fortune.

1. SIR GALAHAD NEVER SHOWED —> How long have we looked for that one charismatic and credible citizen?

There are no virgins at the highest levels of politics. To get there, to quote Bob Dylan, "you must serve somebody."

I once thought that an independently wealthy and liberal white knight could take on the system as an advocate for the weak and the small.

I have been disappointed for more than 40 years because, to paraphrase Jefferson Airplane, the White Knight somehow always ends up talking backwards.

BACK TO THE FUTURE —> Unless you dwell in the higher-income classes, you should move elsewhere to educate your children.

They can't prosper in the past.

FIGHT BACK. Support the new season of Barbwire.TV and the return of a community television channel to these parts.

If last year's elections didn't convince you of the need, the 2013 legislature certainly should have.

Join up. You may donate at ReSurge.TV or contact me.

This is important.

Thank you.

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


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



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 last year.

Let's go for a repeat.

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...

Bill Moyers: Shutdown is simply secession by other means

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

We Don't Need No Education
The continuing Barbwire series

...and more ammo...

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

...and more ammo yet | 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 © 1982-2013 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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