Air America Dumps Sam Seder's Morning Show

Monday, April 09, 2007 at 06:16 PM

The new owners of Air America Radio have demoted host Sam Seder to a Sunday timeslot, replacing his weekday morning show with an existing program from another syndicated network.

"This week will be the last week," Seder announced last night on his show's weblog. "Air America recently came out of Chapter 11 bankruptcy and the new management wants to go in a different direction."

Seder's being replaced on April 15 by Lionel, who airs on 92 stations syndicated by WOR Radio Networks and will be moving along with those affiliates. An attorney who worked as both a prosecutor and defense attorney in Florida before beginning his radio career in 1988, Lionel's the former host of Snap Judgment on Court TV and a drive-time morning program on WABC in New York.

The new host may be the first on Air America who does not call himself a liberal, though he takes liberal positions on many issues. His program's marketed in less political terms than the traditional fare at the network, which was founded to counter the right-wing dominance of talk radio. "Air America is about one thing: radio," he said in a network press release. "Not about ideology; but democracy."

Before the move, Lionel shared many affiliates with Air America on stations around the country that were looking for alternatives to right-wing talk. "Lionel is funny. And in talk radio these days, funny is hard to come by," a host at New York radio station WFMU wrote in 2005. "While he's not really a lefty, his opposition to the Bush agenda has made his show a good complement to Air America's programming. ... If you had to pinpoint Lionel politically, he's more or less a contrarian libertarian with a passion for individual rights."

Hosts and programs have been shuffled frequently in Air America's three-year history. Celebrity hosts Janeane Garafolo, Chuck D, Al Franken and Jerry Springer have left the network, Seder and Rachel Maddow shuffled around frequently, and others including Mike Malloy and Lizz Winstead have either quit or been fired. The only day-one host who remains in her original timeslot is talk radio vet Randi Rhodes.

In his weblog post, Seder acknowledges the tumult at the network. "We started the show as AAR was entering bankruptcy, when things around here were pretty hectic and insecure," he blogged. "While it's a bit early to judge ... our ratings were looking pretty good and we dramatically increased AAR's streaming numbers."

Air America was purchased in January for $4.25 million by real estate investor Stephen L. Green and his brother Mark Green, who lost the New York City mayoral race in 2001 to Michael Bloomberg.

Seder, a 40-year-old comedian and producer who once played Miranda's meat eating but not swallowing love interest on Sex and the City, ran a fast-moving and funny show that took particular pleasure in insane right-wing callers -- some real and some fake. He filmed some of the new documentary Revolucion: Five Visions with his wife, the filmmaker Nicole Cattell.

Though Seder describes his plans for the new Sunday afternoon show positively, other hosts relegated to the weekends have quickly disappeared from the network. Liberal blogger Duncan Black, a regular guest on Seder's show, posted a one-word entry in response to the move this afternoon: "Morons."

Comments

I like listening to Sam Seder's show. He's funny and he has frequent and well qualified guests. I will keep listening, although now it'll be less frequently, damn it to hell.

Morons

The new management is so stupid. They are getting rid of their rising stars - to many of us our heroes already. Can you imagine if they did the right thing and left our daily dose of Sam Seder be? Can you imagine if they did the right thing and gave Mark Maron his own show? Gave Mike Malloy a better time slot like he deserves - he's the exact opposite of Limbaugh he could have just soared!
But no, these new owners don't even understand what we listeners want. Did we ask for this "Lionel"? Do we want more from the middle or the right? You can get the middle or the right anywhere. You'd think that is what AAR had going for it and that the new management would run with it. They are apparently running in the other direction and running it into the ground.

Calling Seder a "rising star" is ridiculous. He's on Air America at 9am, Eastern Time and only one station in the top 25 markets carries him live or even in the daytime (WWRL in New York, where Air America pays to have him carried). Compare that with his liberal competition, Stephanie Miller, who is carried live at 9am ET or elsewhere in the daytime by almost every progressive talk station in the country, including almost all of the major market libtalkers.

Seder is carried by a total of 16 stations, while Lionel is carried by 92. Lionel has the number one rated show in his time period in New York City. Air America could not continue to lose money with its current lineup and had to shake things up.

The switch from Seder to Lionel can only help AAR in its quest to finally turn a profit.

I have like Sam from day one but what is more important then what I like or dislike is that a Liberal Outpost can pay its bills, so that shows like Randy, Rachel Maddow, and Thom Hartmann have a place to be heard.

Yes I miss the old Mornings Sedition and wish that Marc had a show, I wish that Sam could be heard every day...but Thom Hartman is no Al Franklin and without the cash flow and name from a show like Al Franklin AirAmerica must do something. I think this is the right thing to do.

Lets fight the extreme right by moving towards them. Great idea.

From what I've read about Lionel, all I can say is that Stephanie Miller will kick his butt. There is no way I'll listen to Lionel. As Tom Hartman says, Libertarians are Republicans who take dope and want to get laid. That descriptions fits Lionel.

I'll miss Sam on weekday mornings. I will Sam Sedar good fortunes.

Support his advertiser, if he has one, and true to the capitalist model, he will stay on the air. Stay up in the ivory tower and "want" him to be on the air because you want him on the air and you will hear an old song from the 60's, the Sounds of Silence.

I am going to call Thom Hartman's show and tell him I don't like his friends. If I'm still pissed I'll call his advertisers that I have done business with.

I guess I have to go back to obese pedophiles.

I think that Sam Seder has brought a lot of character to AAR and I will miss him very much. I have on occasion tried to listen to Lionel and at first,I liked him. But he tends to whine too much about dumb stuff that I am not interested in. I especially, don't want to hear him talk about christianity, because he is not a christian and has no relationship with God. He went on for days talking about the bible, trying to prove or disprove a point. As a christian, I know that unless you know God for yourself, you shouldn't talk about what you don't know, understand or believe. For him to talk about christianity is like a non-Jew speaking out about what it is to be of the Jewish faith. He'll whine about a stupid unclean refrigerator for 5 to 10 minutes, or how someone didn't reset the dials correctly before they left, go to a break and come back and continue the same stupid dialogue, like I'm interested in what they have in their frig or what the dials are set to. While he is smart and articulate about most things, I want to hear about the issues of the day that are important to me, and Lionel does not fit that bill. And just so everyone knows, don't EVER call him a liberal. That alone will send him into a 10 minute dialogue about the pros and cons of being labled anything.

I hear Lionel on the drive home at night from a station in Buffalo NY, WWKB.

I turn to there in desperation, as I cannot get WWRL in southern NH and unless I want to listen to really bad local 'music' programming, BBC on the local NPR station or hate talk radio, it's about all I can get.

Lionel sounds like he whines, *all of the time*. No anger, no justice, just whining and affected schmaltz. That, and a lot of pendantic BS.

I can take it for about 10 minutes, and then I tune out. Each time I hear it, I tell myself, 'why bother with this crap?'

So .. 92 stations makes 'success'?
How many stations is Limbaugh on again?

If this is how they measure success, they can go screw themselves at ARR, they'll be getting zero of my dollars and little of my listenership - the best shows are all on the weekends now!

I'm listening right now to a repeat of Malloy on novamradio.com, thank you very much.

Sam Seder was and will always be creative, thought provoking, and I will not miss his Sunday show. The management of AAR seems to have a death wish. We had hoped that its Chapter 11 would have brought competent management dedicated to the concept that the right needs to be balanced by intelligent argument on the left.The new management seems to lack both the dedication that was AAR, but it does not lack the incompetence of its prior managemnt. Sam Seder will be sorely missed.

I love Sam, and I like Lionel but, for God's sake, why can't they go with Stephanie Miller?

I listen to Sam every day at work. I read up on Lionel last night and I don't see anything about him that is going to be better than Sam. I think the Green's have made a big mistake. I hope they will recify it soon!!!

The new management didn't get rid of Mike Malloy -- that was the old management and it was a huge mistake.

I have very mixed feelings about this new shift. I subscribe to AAR premium because I just can't catch shows as they air. I originally started subscribing to hear Randi Rhodes & Malloy. I damn near dropped my subscription after they canned Malloy but continued so I can hear Hartmann, Rhodes & Ring of Fire. My mixed feelings come in because I'm less than thrilled with Lionel being on AAR. By the same token, it may attract new kinds of listeners, ones that may actually learn from some of the other hosts. I'm suspending judgment on this one and will just see how it goes. I wasn't a huge Seder fan so I can't say I'll miss him. I did subscribe to his show but, with limited time to listen, his were the ones that usually ended up being deleted before I listened to them.

Bad move..Sorry Airamerica, lost another streamer.

It's not as bad as having Armstrong Williams co-hosting a show in the mornings. I have listened to this guy Lionel and he said nothing that would make me despise him. If he does have Libertarian leanings I hope they are not too extreme.

I started with Air America b/c of Al Franken, found Randi (whom I can now only take so much of), found Mike Malloy (whom I love), and the Majority Report. I fell hard for Sam and Janine (which lead me to Olbermann), but my disillusionment started with Mike's firing, continued with Al's leaving, and now I'm so done with this spineless "network."

Though I love Ring or Fire (which I can catch live on weekends), and Rachel Maddow--and Thom Hartmann is without-a-doubt the most intelligent radio host broadcasting--I'm canceling my Air America premium subscription as soon as I listen to the stream of Sam's last weekday.

Thank god for Democracy Now, Keith Olbermann, and Fair.org's "Counterspin."

I think its great that Lionel is coming to Air America. Perhaps now the truth about the 911 Conspiracy can come out. Why did Building 7 fall? Tune in to Lionel for the answer. The Greens are to be congratulated on giving us this alternative to the Right Wing.

Sam seder is the best radio talk on Air America , I don't think I will be listening to This lional or lion whatever his name is . Air America will pay the price for dumping Sam Seder show , they will not be chapter 11 company this will change to chapter 111.

Even if you like Sam Seder's politics, you have to admit the following: his screechy monotone made for a tough listen. Moreover, his show was politically monotonous as well, pretty much confined to the tired, tepid musings of centrist Kosnik types. For topical variety, sophisticated commentary, and overall listenability, Thom Hartmann walks all over Seder and anyone else on the weekday lineup.

The other dirty not-so-secret problem at Air America is Randi Rhodes. Her coarse, abrasive rants--coupled to an needy ego of cosmic proportions--is another good reason to turn the dial AWAY from Air America. Moreover, her show lacks topical variety--it consists almost entirely of the following daily spiel: Bush is dumb, Bush is evil, Cheney is evil, Republicans are corrupt, dumb, and evil, etc., etc. Well ... please tell me something I DON'T know. And on the rare occasions she invites a guest on for an interview, she harangues and lectures the guest instead of letting him/her speak. Truly appalling. Politically, she's a one-note--you'd never guess from listening to her show that the Democrats are complicit in almost every key plank of the Bush agenda, voting first to approve the war and now to fund it, and, now that they are in a majority, not pushing for repeal of the Patriot Act, the Military Commissions Act, or tax cuts for the rich. Randi Rhodes is just a braying shill for the DNC, and this gets pretty old day after day.

The BEST--and, alas, mostly undiscovered--show on AAR is Laura Flanders's RadioNation, absurdly buried on Saturday and Sunday evenings, when few are likely to listen. She's whip-smart, charming, creative, and ranges over a variety of topics and guests in a manner that stimulate the mind and engage the ear. SHE should occupy the afternoon drive slot, and AAR should give the ego-mad boor Rhodes the boot.

PLUS, the station should bring back Mike Malloy in the evenings--he was the closest thing to must-listen radio on AAR. The current evening lineup is a prolonged snore--it makes NPR sound like shock-jock radion by comparison.

I hope Mark Green is prepared to wake up to these realities at some point.

Some of these comments have me scratching my head. I can only assume that naivety is at play. AAR needs to be run as a business to be successful. There are costs and risks associated with radio that don't exist with blogs and such.

This move, without question, is a good business decision. Lionel's show, by all accounts, is successful. He is a proven ratings winner, and will bring listeners and some of "his" affiliates along with him. I like Sam, but he's not a ratings winner.

True, Lionel's show will likely only be heard on a handful of stations live...he'll remain on at night in many markets, including most of his "existing" markets. But, if you've ever listened to his show, you'd know that it doesn't really matter. All he needs is a few major live markets to generate a few calls per show, and he'll be fine. And he'll get that by being on in New YOrk live.

As for the countless inaccuracies in various postings here, I won't even bother getting into them.

Thanks.

Insanity is doing the same thing over and expecting the results to be different. It's obvious that Air America's old format was a flop and resulted in the company going bankrupt. The new management would be foolish to stick with the same failed programming. If they want to survive economically, they have to have programs that get ratings and generate advertising revenue. Bringing in a proven success like Lionel is a move in the right direction.

Someone says, in sarcasm, "Lets fight the extreme right by moving towards them. Great idea."

Who needs to fight the "extreme right?" Weren't they wiped out, and along with their future generations, at Waco?

Oh, sorry, those were religious quasi-Christian fanatics, not the "extreme right." You must mean the whole tribe of them that were sniped at Ruby Ridge, then ...

Just who is this "extreme right" you all are talking about that you must fight? Is it anyone who engages our military in a civil war, like Bosnia, and using genocide as an excuse? How about bombing a country for WMD? Are they the ones who invaded Somalia to murder a warlord causing them trouble? Or wanted to assassinate bin Laden from the air with a cruise missile?

Are they the ones protecting criminals who sell their votes for cash, like Jefferson and Reid ... direct billions in construction contracts to their husband's companies, like Feinstein? Are they the ones ignoring their own corruption while they witchhunt (fish) for crimes by demanding records be produced?

I'll bet they are the ones who kept two pedophiles in office, uninvestigated, unresigned and unpunished for their crimes -- while flattering emails caused the resignation of a member of the other party???

What scum they are, then!

I am extremely disappointed Air America has decided to relegate Sam Seder to a few hours on Sunday instead of either keeping him in the daily time slot he is in currently or give him another time slot on a daily basis. I think his show is terrific. He presents things so well and has a wonderful sense of humor. I certinaly hope the new owners will reconsider there decision, or a least give him a regualr show as he now has.

Don't screw up a good thing!!!!!

Yes, air America has to watch the bottom line, so that may make it necessary to hire someone like Lionel. I just hope that in the future Air America sets up redlines against people like Armstrong Williams, a man bought and paid for by the Bush/Rove Propaganda Wing, or the late and unlamented Satellite Sisters, who once spent an evening talking about the latest ruttings on Desperate Housewives.

Sam Seder is the best thing on Air America and on air period. This wasn't true 18 months ago, but it is now. He has become the perfect progressive radio host. It's a shame that Air America hasn't chosen to nurture this great talent further.

For the post calling Seder "screechy", just wait for Lionel! Talk about fingernails on a chalk board. He's god awful.

But that same post got it right on Laura Flanders - I've loved her since her days on San Fran. public radio (she should have never left). And Randi Rhodes is a horrible, fact averse idiot.

Thom Hartmann is excellent, but his show will never get the ratings to build a network around. A person can only take so many James Madison quotes. His tag line, "the no boring zone" seems to be protesting too much.

I hope that Seder won't be content with the Sunday slot and pursue better air time elsewhere. I'll be looking for him.

The comment(s) about Lionel helping Air America turn a profit, is perhaps half-right.
HOWEVER, this is the key point......
Replacing Sam Seder with Rush Limbaugh or Bill O'Reilly would accomplish turning a profit.
AND ?????
At what price to the regular listeners of Air America and to what price to America?
Conclusion: Air America, SHAME ON YOU.
And, moreover, shame on you for also getting rid of Marc Maron, Mike Malloy and Liz Winstead, while adding the WORST show on Air America.... The Young Turks (yuck).
(Adding insult to injury, the only good member of The Young Turks, Jill Pike hardly is on.)

(I am the one who posted just above this, regarding The Young Turks being the worst Air America show, except for Jill Pike.)
By-the-way, I am an Air America Premium paid subscriber and listen to at least three shows per day (usually Rachel, Thom, Sam, & Ring Of Fire)

I misspelled Liz Winstead.... it's Lizz.
I concur with the person who posted that Thom Hartmann is the best talk-radio host.
Absolutely.
Back when there was a Lizz Winstead & Rachel Maddow, they were the best Air America Show. With the firing Of Lizz, Rachel by herself (with Kent Jones) was still very good, but noticeably not AS good. The combination of Rachel's studiousness with Lizz's lightness was PERFECT.

Then we have the case of Marc Maron & Mark Riley.... they were the second best show. But, of course, the idiots running Air America had to screw that one up too. Mark Riley by himself is considerably less good than with Marc Maron.

And we used to have Jerry Springer, who was the NICEST person imaginable and intelligent and a nice calm show. (which those of us who listen for HOURS EVERY DAY tend to like)

That's something that the "suits" at Air America don't realize.... that the SOLID, REGULAR, SERIOUS listeners want the more calm, adult-like, studious talk-show hosts; who can listen to hours and hours of "hyper"??

NOW, we are left with Thom Hartmann, Rachel Maddow and Mike Papantonio. Everyone else is mediocre. The others are better than a Rush or a Bill O'Reilly, but that isn't saying much (since the Right-Wingers are scum).

I stopped listening to Lionel YEARS AGO. Not exactly a breath of fresh air, just a dumbed-down, whiney, diluted version of what Progressive radio was SUPPOSED to sound like. His show is nothing like what us AAR listeners imagined when we bought satellite radios, signed up for AAR Premium subscriptions to podcast the best shows and listen all day. You know, like Sam Seder's show(s). Like Morning Sedition. Like the Marc Maron show. Like Unfiltered. Like Mike Malloy. Like the Al Franken show. Gee, if only the new management at AAR could've signed THEM. Morons, indeed. I'm off to NovaM.

Today's my last listen to AAR. After Jerry Springer left, I had planned to leave AAR as well but Sam Seder quickly replaced him as my morning office compatriot. Pulling Sam (and his wonderful Sammy Cam) from my morning is the last straw for me. I've no desire to put on another set of training wheels where another radio host is concerned. There's comfort in routine and Air America's jostling of morning radio hosts doesn't give me that comfort. Maybe Alex Bennet over at Sirius will fill the hole that ARR has left in my day. If not, I'll guess I'll just double my caffeine consumption.

They dump Sam Seder and keep Armstrong Williams??? What are they thinking?
The perfect line-up would be Mike Malloy, Sam Seder, Tom Hartman, Joe Papantonio, Marc Maron,
and of course Randi Rhodes. I do not care in which order. I liked Al Franken's political views,
but found him to be hard on the ears (talk about whiney). I did not find his humor at all funny either.
I'm sure that he will make a fine Congressman or Senator and I wish him luck. Marc and Sam make
for a much better duo than "Sammy and Army". I love Mike Malloy's passionate way
of speaking and I was so disappointed to wake up and find him gone. AAR does disappear too many
great people. They don't seem to understand how insecure they have made their listeners. Randi is
brilliant and I was so shocked to read that really negative post about her. I am grateful every day that
she is so devoted to the truth. I can take or leave Rachel Maddow, she is a bit too sing songy for me. As for
Jerry Springer, I just did not respect his TV show and that kind of turned me off to him and was not sorry
to see him go. Wow, this was longer than I intended, but one more thing...I'm not homicidal, but I
contemplated strangling "The Satellite Sisters".

I've been listening to AAR fromt he beginning, and my favorite shows are unfortunately gone (Chuck D, Winstead, Malloy, Maron and Reilly, now Seder), or in bad time slots (Flanders, Kennedy, Maddow, now Seder) or not on satellite radio (Hartmann--Schultz is in his place and he's a democratic version of a neocon). Lionel is a bore--he was ok in the drive-time slot a few years ago when he was countering a far right, very creepy co-host, but he doesn't have much political insight. AAR should have put Flanders or Maddow on in the morning if they had to move Seder, or bring back Malloy or Maron and Reilly. But Seder should have far more time, perhaps with another co-host. To relegate him to Sunday is a real waste of talent.

I am going to look around for other rational talk radio shows, or just listen to music on my Ipod while I read a good book on political matters. AAR is becoming a waste of time.

John

Like many progressives, i did what I could to support AAR.......but they blew it with Sirius, Mike Malloy, Mark Maron, Liz Winstead, and Jeaneane.
Sam -nice/manic/unfocused, never could hold a candle to Garafalo.
Al Franken was ALWAYS unlistenable. I like Randi, but I listened more when I streamed her online from FL.
I hope Randi is sending out resumes because AAR is irrelevent.

I just listened to the first 3 minutes of Lionel's show from today. Lame! I'll give him Monday to try and win me over from Sam, which means make me laugh and think at the same time. If he can't do it in one day, as Sam did, I'll call AAR headquarters at 212-871-8290 to tell them that I won't listen to Lionel. Then, I'll call Lionel's national sponsors to tell them that I'll never listen to him, but that Sam Seder is on Sundays and I listen to him. They should really think about moving their advertisements to Sam Seder's time slot. As soon as Sam's show begins, I will call every advertiser he has on to send them my support for his show. If I need their products, I will buy them, if I don't need their products, I will keep them in mind and tell my friends and family about them.

Bad move AA. I listen on XM. Won't be listening now. All that is left for me is Racheal Maddow.
AA was supposed to be about progressives having a place to speak. You people blew it.

"Lionel" is the Left's Dennis Miller ... and we all know how well that worked out.

http://www.bloggerradio.com/2007/04/air_america_rad.html

First off, I like Sam Seder. I think he does a pretty decent job on the radio. However, you cannot put him against Stephanie Miller. Her show is fast-paced, perfect for the morning drive. It's a well-produced show and extremely hilarious with Jim (the voice guy) and along with producer Chris Lavoie they have the best chemistry in radio.

Sam Seder Show cannot compete with The Stephanie Miller Show in progressive stations and cannot expand into new markets so it was dead in the water (25 stations?). Bringing in Lionel could potentially open up new markets. And I have listened to Lionel. I don't hate him and sometimes he does get pretty entertaining and funny. And I got used to his voice fairly quickly.

As a 20 year old college student, I loved listening to Marc Maron when he was on in the middle of the night. He was simply awesome on the radio. (Jones Radio Network, can you hear me?)

And lastly, Rachel Maddow is a must for me. She does extensive research on news stories that aren't reported in mainstream media and always keep things entertaining and funny. And Kent Jones is hilarious.

Now finally, the others: Al Franken's show was at most tolerable. It was too NPRish for me and he was stuck between being funny and being serious (he will make a great Senator). I'm sure he must be good for others but not for me. And I feel like Thom Hartmann is much the same. Not saying he's bad, he's just not for me.

Randi Rhodes gets on my nerves a lot. She does harp on Bush way too much. I like it when she does other topics and show her charm and sense of humor, but she sounds like an angry old hag (no offense) when she's on the radio. That can't be good radio.

Mike Malloy is too crazy for me. When I notice similarities with Michael Savage, that's when I know it's not my show.

I love Lionel and I'm glad to see that the new team is committed to mkaing it work.

The only major mistake AA made was repeatedly screwing Marc Maron. Morning sedition was maybe the best talk radio show ever.

Hartmann is an empty suite. He doesn't take the opposition to task, he passively disagrees with them, that would be fine if we were dealing with people, but Neo-cons are animals. I like Lionel, he is smart, he is funny, he is an excellent addition AAR. Anyone who has heard him would be glad he is on board. Now what about Sam Seder, personally I think he is a GENIOUS. He is smart, witty, sarcastic and does not take a backseat to anyone. He is the opposite of Hartmann in that he gets in your face. I feel that he best represents me. They should figure out how to take their best talents and build a stronger programming schedule.

I will miss Sam. And his Anouncer guy too......

As far as I am concerned, Air America Radio was getting the truth out to too many people and, just like AARP and the National Organization of Women (NOW) were once great advocacy groups of the people, the Republicans moved in, took them over, gutted them to off any opposition to the Right-Wing takeover of this country, and this is just more of the same. And I agree with Thom Hartmann. Libertarians are just a bunch of sick Neo-Con Republicans.

I have been listening to Sam Seder for almost a year now. I like him better than Randi Rhodes (she has become so mean to the callers these days and always cuts them off, up, and down such that I can't stand to listen to her any more). Instead, I used to get up in the morning and look forward to turning on the Sammy Cam and listening to his show. Then they brought on Lionel. He's boring; all he does is fill air. Sam is much better. The difference is like listening to a blowhard like Limbaugh or spending time with a cherished family member.

Will I continue to listen to Lionel? Nope. (But don't be surprised if destroying the listening base at AAR is EXACTLY what the goal is here.)

Instead, I'm going to try and follow wherever Sam goes and hope that I can get a link. So, Sam, if you're reading this, love, let us know where you are and keep the Sammy Cam burning cuz the troops are sure to follow. :D

Lionel was one of my favorite hosts before they took liberal talk off the air here. Now I listen to AAR on XM. I like Sam Seder, and am sorry to see him go. I do think that there is a value to keeping the same programming. They need to decide on programming and stick with it. I looked forward to hearing Seder every morning. I wish XM carried Hartmann, as I think he is the most intelligent host, but I also like Ed Schultz. Randi is often hard to listen to, even when I agree with her. She makes some interesting insights, but often over-reaches and is caustic.

Mostly, I just wish they still had a liberal talk station on the air here.

I think one of the earlier posters came close to identifying the main problem with the way AAR is going. They seem to want every show to attract the same middle-of-the-road demographic, whoever that is. AAR is never going to find that mythical perfect show that appeals to everybody. Instead, they need to produce a lineup of shows that complement each other so that their core audience is satisfied, and from that build up additional followers for individual programs.
For a while there, AAR was enjoyable to listen to. I especially liked listening to Marc, Sam, Thom and Rachel. Each show was different, but I listened to all of them. And I could even handle about an hour of Randi (ok, not EVERY day). Now Marc and Sam are gone, and I hear Thom isn't carried by XM and half the AAR affiliates. I can only assume that Rachel's show will be dropped soon because she is really good at digging up stories that are overlooked by everyone else. The trend at AAR and it's affiliates seems to be to get rid of anybody who encourages truely liberal thinking and who asks the hard questions. Maybe those conspiracy people are right...

Sam Seder is one of the pillars of Air America along with Randi and Rachel... Al Franken was one too... but with his departure that left only 3... now Sam's near death means this house shall not stand... Lionel is like O'Reilly... he gets himself in front of the story... this is a foolish move... sure a network's got to pay the bills ... but how about following a PBS model... subscription...? that way we aren't at the complete whims of people justifying a bottom line at the expense of intellectual freedom.

I knew AA was lost when they dropped Morning Sedition, which was like the daily show of radio, and replace them with the Young Turks (yawn).

I know nothing about the radio business. All I know is that I was a big listener of AAR until november. Thats when I realized I was a listener because I wanted to keep tabs on how the 06 election was going. Now that the dems have congress I can only take it in small doses. I like to get my progressive news on demand. If I just read the latest on Raw Story or Buzzflash, I do not need it repeated to me by Ed Schultz or Randi Rhodes. Only Rachael Maddow brings some originality that I can enjoy. Most of the shows just preach to the choir alot of times and it gets old. Morning Sedition was funny and entertaining. Dropping that one let me know just what dolts they were.

Now I mostly listen to Opie and Anthony.

... I just stumbled across this thread. Air America is solidly in the hands of the DLC... I rarely listen to it anymore. I've followed Mike Malloy over to NovaM and the hosts on there are true liberals, not mushy moderates. I do find Stephanie Miller entertaining but she's not on in this market (Boston)--there's no more prog talk in one of the most liberal areas in the country. In any case, thank (insert deity) for the web and for NovaM. Seder's going to end up there.

I am SO SICK OF LIONEL. He is a person who will drive away liberal listeners not engage them. Couldn't someone get him onto a conservative talk station instead. Would be a perfect fit. And Air America: WE WANT SAM BACK IN HIS OLD TIME SLOT -- PLEASE