Sunday, May 10, 2009

The Courage of Shannyn Moore

Shannyn Moore's new Saturday evening program on KBYR may be the most courageous radio happening in Alaska right now. It doesn't have to do with her views on Alaska politics nearly as much as an issue she has visited and revisited.


By Americans.

For nothing.

Actually, for worse than nothing.

Moore spent much of the last part of Saturday's program asserting that we need to fully investigate how the Bush administration's extremely misguided policies on so-called "enhanced interrogation techniques" eroded the fabric of what we are as Americans.

She brought it back up again in this week's program because new information seems to be coming out every day on how wrong this has been, how little it may or may not have gained us in intelligence information, and on how the Bush administration used their knowledge that anyone in congress who knew anything about how wrong it was all along constitutionally, could later be induced to go along with one misguided Bush program or another, because the Busheviks held something over the suborned enablers' heads.

Nobody else in Alaska media has remotely come close to Moore's sincere conviction on this subject. Other progressive blogs, including PA, have dealt with it peripherally, but Shannyn went out on Alaska talk radio Saturday, with both barrels loaded.

It made good radio, as KBYR caller after caller - almost all right-wing males - challenged her. She not only stood her ground, she demonstrated why it was such a shame to take this powerful voice off of KUDO last year.

Shannyn Moore reminds me of Diane Benson in the ways she refuses to take shit from guys who just want women to listen, rather than really listen to women.

Recently fired KUDO program director Cary Carrigan notably failed to cover Shannyn Moore's growing presence as a national media figure during the 10-month period after he fired Moore, and was covering Alaska politics and media at KUDO, 15 hours per week. He kept KUDO's web site from even listing Moore's web page in their links, once Moore started her own site. I never heard him mention Moore's numerous national appearances on MSNBC's Countdown, or other national media appearances.

Twice, calling Carrigan's program, I found myself cut off and terminated, after making a positive reference to Moore. That treatment, in retrospect reminds me of talk radio figures like Eddie and Mark.

Until Cary Carrigan makes a public statement supporting what Moore has done since he fired this dynamic personality, a big rift exists in the new media possibilities liberals are trying to now build to serve Alaskans.

Cary, I welcome you to write a column at Progressive Alaska in support of the incredible work Shannyn Moore has done since you showed her the door at KUDO.

You have my phone number. If you lost it, it's in the phone book.


Anonymous said...

I love to hear what Shannyn has to say. Even if I didn't agree with everything she has to say, her comments provide a perspective that does force me to think about the issues at hand. She makes me want to do my homework and better understand what may be going on right under my nose. Also, I repsect that fact that Shannyn does her homework as anyone with a voice so powerful as hers should do.

Anonymous said...

Shannyn is the best radio voice in Anchorage. Bar none.

Gryphen said...

Good job Phil. I could not agree with you more on this topic.

I have my own issues with Carrigan and refused to call his show or refer to him in any posts since he went out of his way to trash a school board candidate that I had supported.

Shannyn is very possibly the best radio personality that Alaska has produced in over a decade. ALL progressives should be tripping over themselves to support her in my opinion.

Annette said...

The fact more media is NOT covering torture is exactly the reason people think it is ok and the reason they think we shouldn't prosecute it.

It makes me ill.. I keep blogging away at it.. once in a while I get a right winger attack me but mostly just people who agree with me... but that's the only way we can get the word out is to keep posting it, keep talking about it and keep it in the face of people.

Thank goodness there are people like Shannyn who aren't afraid to speak out.

clark said...

i'm thinking back to the time of abu ghrib [sp?]. media was focused on lyndie england and a couple others -- but it was still obvious the practices were institutionalized and the orders were coming from near the top of the chain of command. there was enough evidence at the time. and i am thinking of the entire bush 43 administration and how there was massive deception from the beginning. on everything!
and i find myself a little hopeless. it is fine to be upset about torture, and want to prevent it from happening again. but how do we really do that? despite the unprecendented ease of exchanging information we now enjoy [as temporary and vulnerable as it may be] it proved to be easy to deceive the public on a massive scale.
lacking a will from the current congress and administration to really investigate, we will be waiting decades for the truth to gradually emerge. some of us don't have that much time!

clark said...

and in regards to carrigan and shannyn... i haven't ever met either of them, but i think i agree with phil here.
it was easy for me to dislike carrigan -- the guy who fired aaron and shannyn and whose own show was inferior. and i guess i questioned his progressive bona fides.
now, though since he has been fired from KUDO himself, there is no reason everyone shouldn't talk to each other, coordinate and acknowledge contributions. i have somewhat more respect for carrigan now that he has donated the use of his own garage and his time toward the continuation of the discussion on KWMD. it seems like he wasn't just in it for the fame and compensation, yes?
i ran into CC someplace last night and told her, it seems like y'all are still trying to find your way into the free format of the KWMD show, but hope you'll keep doing it, and know that a lot of people are listening.

Philip Munger said...


I agree. Carrigan's physical and, I guess, spiritual contribution to the current expansion of KWMD is great.

Moore has been careful to stay away from criticism of Carrigan since last summer. But Carrigan's lack of attention to Moore's rise as an Alaska progressive icon, especially since early September 2008, was a glaring hole in what coverage he gave to the local liberal scene.

Tom C said...

You're brave and courageous Phil! This needed to be said.

Your opening a door for Carrigan to walk through is admirable; however, I don't think he'll take your offer. Something you wrote sums up why:

"Shannyn Moore reminds me of Diane Benson in the ways she refuses to take shit from guys who just want women to listen, rather than really listen to women."

Hhmm. Pretty insightful I'd say. I understood changes needed to come to KUDO last Spring.

But how they unfolded left me unable to ever listen to a full show from Carrigan. Remember the Gold informercial that he put at the beginning of Shannyn's show, EVERYDAY-cutting her show down to 1 1/2 hours for the last several weeks of her KUDO career?

I called him up at the time to plead with him to put the ad-which was the same fake half hour talk show everyday-into another nationally syndicated program on KUDO. Cary just laughed and said that's where it had to go-at the beginning of the most important progressive show left on the station.

Shannyn easily should have had a 3 hour show! Her show was always in full throttle the last hour; she almost always left callers hanging at the end.

She subbed for Aaron when he was injured AND CC when she had to fly back east to her family all the time. Somedays, she covered both of their shows in addition to her own in the same day! I was never bored listening-she's that good!

I hope the KWMD experiment works. Initially, I thought CC should go it alone; but maybe this is the only radio format Cary has a chance to excel in-having another person to bounce off of like when he did the weather.

Roger said...

Well said and needed to be said, Thank You Phil.

Shannyn has been an inspiration to me and has put voice to thoughts and insights that no one else (That I heard) has. Her tying together the politics of assassination (JFK, RFK, MLK and Malcolm X) maybe did cause me to kind of hideout (back-out) for decades.

It is unlikely, but possible for me to temper my feeling towards Carrigan, but he still has to prove that he is worthy of respect.

I am happy that CC is being again being heard on the airwaves, I like it when she has fire in her belly. I just wish that Cary would back out some more. It is the "Cutting Edge"
isn't it?

By the way Randi Rhodes will back on Mon. KTLK-AM/LA, KKGN-AM/SF and KPOJ-AM/Portland all have streaming will be on 11am-2pm AK time.

Thank You Again Phil

The Beekeepers Channel said...

Thanks Phil. I've been waiting for someone to talk about this and it's sort of a shame that it had to wait until Cary was off the air too.

I spent some time in the KUDO studio with Shannyn several times filming things. The last time was the day of the Exxon verdict not too long before Cart fires Shannyn. He stood blocking the doorway when I came in with my camera equipment and was incredibly rude. He asked what I was filming for and asked why anyone would want to film her. He was a classic schoolyard bully, pretty obviously intimidated by a newcomer who was much better than him at something he had been doing for a career. I think it made it worse that the person much better and more popular than him didn't have a penis.

I would love to hear what Cary has to say about your post, but something tells me he will be uncharacteristically quiet on this one.

David Turnbull

Philip Munger said...


If I can get John Moller, Gov. Palin's new rural advisor to agree to come onto Progressive Alaska (upcoming interview), I see no reason why Cary Carrigan can't clear the air, and write an appreciation of Moore here.

I am hopeful.

Aussie Blue Sky said...

Phil, I'd like you to ask John Moller for some hard data from the government's recent job fair in Emmonak.

Given that Slope jobs and seasonal fishing and processing jobs contribute nothing to employment growth, can you find out if any people with *new* jobs to offer did any *actual* recruiting at the job fair?

Thanks. BTW I'm not buying the act of signing someone up to an internet search engine being considered an employment program.


Philip Munger said...


I submitted a set of questions to Mr. Moller 16 days ago. One has to do with what you're interested in. He agreed to answer them.

He's running late, but I think the flooding situation is taking a lot of his time right now.

Anonymous said...

Not one word about Profit, paying the bills etc.

If KUDO was paying for it-self the IBEW would have not pulled the plug.

Perhaps Carey's decisions were practical business choices.

A conservative blog would have many comments about how Carey's decisions impacted the survival of KUDO. ie paying ads.

Progressive talk radio has not been a real profitable venture.

Carey tried to make it work. He is a talented man. I give him credit for trying.


AlaskanLady said...

Shannyn Moore has one of the most formidable intellects in Alaska. Her determination and courage to follow the facts where ever they lead, and make relevant links that had gone unnoticed is remarkable. There is no one in talk radio in Alaska that I respect and admire more.

Her numerous appearances on national broadcast news programs, including MSNBC - Countdown with Keith Olbermann, show that the top echelons of progressive broadcast media respect her, as well.

IBEW Anon said...

Anonymous 6:08pm:

As an IBEW member I have some inside info. The union would be fine to break even as their goal in buying a radio station was to counter all of the right wing anti-union spin and get their voice out there.

If KUDO WAS in fact paying for itself, the IBEW still would have pulled the plug because Cary fired their Golden Girl.

Shannyn Moore was pretty much the voice of the union. When Cary and Mike fired her, it caught union management off guard and pissed them off. They bided their time until the contract was up. The IBEW honors their contracts. PERIOD.

There's no accounting for taste. Cary was a terrible talk show host.

As far as giving him credit for trying to make it work...why would he let go of the most talented voice on KUDO who was making the least money? That's just great business acumen Robert, and demonstrates that Cary was not only over his head as a radio host, he wasn't much of a sharp business mind.

Anonymous said...

bwahahaha, that last IBEW anonymous post is a hoot.

Actually, SM cutting her teeth at the rightwing cesspool that is KBYR is probably a good idea, it'll make her tougher for when she goes national.

listening to the same point of view from the same people all of the time is boring radio, and I have to admit that it was painful listening to Cary and CC on KWMD.

Shannyn is an excellent advocate for her point of view, and is certainly more listenable than CC and CC.

Did you catch the blurble in the ear, Elizabeth Arnold is going to teach over at UAA.

Now there is someone who is a REAL radio reporter.

clark said...

robert at 6:08
cheap shot. thom hartmann, randi rhodes, ed shultz, stephanie miller, ron reagan and several others are doing just fine, even if the networks who distribute their programs come and go.
i hope things will evolve, as rhodes has suggested, where right- and left-wing talk will happen back to back on the same radio station. KBYR has started dipping its toes but hasn't plunged into the deep end on this... yet. that would be a much better business strategy than propping up a bunch of mediocre right wing shows. the country is over 50 percent democratic and yet talk radio is 90 percent right-wing. you'd think they'd want to get after that audience they are ignoring.

Anonymous said...

It is important as well to remember that for those of us in the Lower 48, it is Shannyn Moore who is identified with liberal talk Alaska and no one has heard of Cary Carrigan...nor will they.

Moore is the vehicle for conveying the perspectives of liberal Alaskans outside state lines. This is not new "news,
and the fact that Carrigan ignored the potential in Moore clearly indicates a short-sighted personal agenda that got in the way of his OWN success.

..and Shannyn Moore goes on...with tenacity and national recognition.

Tom Slaney said...

Talk about courage...

I remember when Trig was born, everyone was all about congratulating and praying for Sarah and her family-Shannyn was too. Except-Shannyn questioned the governor for being "pro-life" and putting Trig at risk as well as potentially inconveniencing everyone else on the flights from Dallas back to Anchorage for a potential medical emergency! The governor boarded her Alaska Airlines flight AFTER her water broke hours earlier! SHE WAS IN LABOR!

I remember thinking how incredibly courageous it was that someone was actually asking legitimate questions on the radio! Remember, this was when the governor's popularity was hovering around 90% AND there was an outpouring of sympathy due to Trig's Down Syndrome, NO ONE was saying anything except Congrats to the governor.

No one...except Shannyn Moore. Shannyn called Alaska Airlines and asked what their policy was on allowing women in labor to board their aircraft-AK AIR would NOT allow someone in labor to board! Shannyn eloquently pointed out how you never know why people are flying. Passengers could have been going to a wedding, a funeral, rushing to see a hospitalized relative who might have hours to live. Shannyn called Sarah out on her absolute selfish act to board an aircraft and concealing the fact she was in labor and potentially setting up a situation where that flight might have had a medical emergency on board.

As for the conspiracies, Shannyn pointed out the "official story" is bizarre and demonstrated a complete lack of judgment on the part of our governor.

I remember this because I was thinking these unspeakable thoughts...and then Shannyn articulated what no one else would. That's courage. Thanks for this great piece Phil!

Anonymous said...

Great post! I think Shannyn Moore is really exceptional and she definitely is the voice for progressives, not only in Alaska, but also for the rest of us.

Anonymous said...

And those eyes, why they alone are her most 'enhanced interrogation' tools... because they are backed by a razor sharp and lightening quick mind... and reflect her heavenly level of genuine social concern, i.e. a person of depth and sincerity unmatched by any other talk show 'personality'. Thanks Phil for putting her flag on top, and we think some Denali climber should phone in from the summit to make the point that Alaska loves high thinkers like Shannyn. Let her do the questioning of Rumsfield and Cheney on C-SPAN. - so sayeth the Groundswell.