Monday, March 3, 2008

Melanie Morgan gone from KSFO


The first big name layoff came down today, when morning show cohost Melanie Morgan was let go this morning and said farewell during her 5 a.m. to 9 a.m. show. (Correction, from Melanie: She didn't get to say goodbye: my source on this was wrong.)

I'm shocked by this one. Not only is she the wife of KGO operations manager Jack Swanson, but she is a very compelling, very prolific talk host in her own right, who as she says, "leads with her chin out."

As a late convert to conservatism, Morgan has had a convert's zeal for the political right side of the dial. Yeah, she could be shrill and run on emotions more than facts.

But you have to admire the fact that she organized protests and led groups of soccer moms and political zealots whose actions were as loud as their words.

It wasn't just talk for Morgan, and for that I admire her. You could argue with her facts; not her passion for her beliefs.

I don't doubt that she is hugely marketable. If KNEW-AM had some money, she'd be a huge asset over there, where their morning team is a pair of old music radio deejays who are simulcasting in SF and Sacramento, and who, to me, are not that compelling. There is always an amateurish tinge to their show, like they know they are in way over their heads.

But add Morgan to the mix...and it could be incendiary.

Morgan hates the fact that I always allude to her husband when I am talking about her, but he is one of the most powerful men in radio and was for a time the program director of her station, as well as sister station KGO. Now, Ken Berry oversees KSFO and Swanson told me today that he didn't know his wife was laid off until 10 a.m. when she told him.

As much as I have trouble believing that, I do tend to believe Swanson. I don't think he's ever lied to me.

And I think it's scary to see someone of her caliber and notoriety go.

Can radio attract more listeners by getting rid of good talent? Answer: No.

Have you heard of any other layoffs?

More on Morgan here: A press release she sent out.

SAN FRANCISCO) – Renowned radio personality and national conservative leader, Melanie Morgan, delivered her final broadcast on talk radio powerhouse KSFO 560 AM today – Monday, March 3, 2008.

The owner of KSFO radio, Citadel Broadcasting, decided not to renew Morgan’s contract as part of the company’s announced across-the-board financial cost cutting.

Melanie Morgan has been a fixture on KSFO for the past 14 years, enjoying a run from 1994-2008 that far exceeded industry standards for longevity.

During that time, Morgan emerged as one of the nation’s most dynamic conservative activists, using the radio airwaves to motivate listeners who shared her passion to take action and fight for causes important to them.

Morgan’s on-air activism included an effort that removed the carcinogen MTBE from gasoline in California, launching of the historic Recall Gray Davis campaign that led to the election of Arnold Schwarzenegger as Governor of California, and co-founding the nation’s largest pro-troop organization, Move America Forward (website: www.MoveAmericaForward.org).

“It has truly been an honor for me to work at KSFO for the past 14 years. What I loved most about my time at KSFO was that it allowed me to connect with listeners and take action to make real changes in the world,” said Melanie Morgan.

“We never had a one-way dialogue with our listeners, and we never believed that we had to resolve ourselves to accept the status quo. We got out of our chairs, left our homes and offices, and circulated petitions, rallied for our troops and met with government leaders.

“We did all this to make sure that we left an even better world for our children than the one we had inherited from generations before us,” Morgan said.

As part of her ongoing conservative activism, Morgan has traveled to the Middle East twice to interview U.S. Troops stationed in Iraq and Kuwait. Her broadcast efforts from Iraq resulted in her winning the Associated Press’s Mark Twain Journalism Award, and The Peninsula Press Club’s award for Best Interview or Talk Show.

“Meeting our troops who are on the frontlines of the war against terrorism stands as the most powerful experience in my broadcast career,” said Morgan.

Morgan’s career with ABC began in 1981 when she was a television reporter for KGO TV. In 1984, she became an on-air personality for KGO radio where she worked for six years before switching over to ABC-San Francisco sister-station, KSFO 560 AM, co-hosting the Lee Rodgers and Melanie Morgan show. In 2006, Citadel Broadcasting acquired the ABC Radio group. She has reported on the scene from the Marine barracks bombing in Beirut, Lebanon; the Mexico City earthquake; and the Tiananmen Square massacre in China.

Melanie Morgan says her focus in the days ahead remains unchanged: She will remain a conservative activist leader.

“My commitment and dedication to serve as a leader in the movement to support our military men and women continues to grow, and I am very proud to serve as Chairman of the pro-troop non-profit group, Move America Forward,” Morgan said.

Melanie Morgan is not compensated for her work with Move America Forward, a fact since the group was first launched in 2004.

Morgan will also continue her weekly column for the news website www.WorldNetDaily.com and will continue to serve as a television analyst on news programs on cable and broadcast television stations and networks.

“My passion and commitment to the troops who are fighting in Iraq, Afghanistan and around the world are foremost in my heart.
While I will miss my good friends Lee Rodgers and Officer Vic, and our great producer Sheri Yee, I am excited to stay close to the conservative grassroots. And I’ll always lead with my chin out,” Morgan concluded.

18 comments:

Bob said...

You could argue with her facts; not her passion for her beliefs.

Isn't that just a roundabout way of calling someone a passionate liar? Not that I disagree with that assessment.

Anonymous said...

"she could be shrill and run on emotions more than facts."

"You could argue with her facts; not her passion for her beliefs."

So you've twice said she's a liar on the air. Why would anyone mourn the airwaves losing a proven liar?

Brad S said...

ClearChannel will find the money to give Melanie Morgan a KNEW slot, and then some. Don't be surprised if their Premiere Radio syndicator signs her up for a national deal.

You just can't let talent like that go to Satellite Radio.

Brad Kava said...

I didn't call her a liar; I just said I disagree with her. We have different opinions, different views of what we think are the facts. I think radio should reflect a wide range of opinion, as the public's airwaves.

Anonymous said...

Ignoring facts is the same as lying; giving opinions on the air based on false facts is the same as lying. I'm all for the airwaves carrying different opinions, but that's a different thing that pushing lies as truth, whether you're left or right. I hate it when Randi Rhodes does it as well.

Bob said...

There is a quote attributed to the late Senator Pat Moynihan: "You are entitled to your own opinion, but you are not entitled to your own facts."

The conflation of opinion and fact has been in large part responsible for turning talk radio into the crapfest that it is today. As one of the leading practitioners of "say it three times and it's true" polemics, Melanie Morgan gets absolutely no sympathy from me. But, given the nature of the industry, I'm sure she'll resume shouting nonsense into a microphone in no time.

Gary Williams said...

Bob said... "Isn't that just a roundabout way of calling someone a passionate liar?"

Dang! I knew I shouldn't have waited to finish the article before making that very same assessment. But that stuff about her winning an award for going to Iraq; that couldn't possibly be the same trip where she used donor money to tour the peaceful Iraqi streets, using photo's of said streets to prove how much progress was actually being made despite what was being said in the "librul" media, could it? Because I would have thought that little fiasco of posting pics of Turkish streets, not realizing that shop windows entirely devoid of Arabic script would reveal MAF's attempt to deceive it's donors...and that this would count as a large tick in the "Nay" box when it came time to vote on who should win the award. Please tell me I'm wrong......

Gary Williams said...

Bob said... "Isn't that just a roundabout way of calling someone a passionate liar?"

Dang! I knew I shouldn't have waited to finish the article before making that very same assessment. But that stuff about her winning an award for going to Iraq; that couldn't possibly be the same trip where she used donor money to tour the peaceful Iraqi streets, using photo's of said streets to prove how much progress was actually being made despite what was being said in the "librul" media, could it? Because I would have thought that little fiasco of posting pics of Turkish streets, not realizing that shop windows entirely devoid of Arabic script would reveal MAF's attempt to deceive it's donors...and that this would count as a large tick in the "Nay" box when it came time to vote on who should win the award. Please tell me I'm wrong......

Bay Area Blogger said...

Hmmmmmm, it was my understanding that Melanie DID have the opportunity to say good-bye to the audience. I missed the show that morning but my husband told me that she announced it herself. I would think that constitutes a good-bye. Do I have my facts wrong here?

As for her veracity. While Melanie certainly had a way of letting her emotions run a little too rampant at times, I have never known her to knowingly play fast and loose with facts. There were times when she was just misinformed (after all, she IS blonde) but Rodgers was able to rein her in. I don't think she's ready to handle a show on her own because she is often light on the facts. Her gig is activism where she can vent and let the emotions out. She's not an intellectual or an academic.

Bay Area Blogger said...

Gary, just what are you talking about with regard to Morgan's trip to Iraq? Do you have a problem with donors to her organization contributing to that trip? Part of it came from her own pocket.

As for your scurrilous attacks on the pictures that were brought back, it is apparent that you are just another crazed lib who doesn't think we should be in Iraq and will vehemently deny any progress being made there.

Just who is it who is playing fast and loose with facts here? It's one thing to dislike Morgan and disagree with what she stands for. It is another thing entirely to prevaricate and make things up from whole cloth for the mere reason of demonization.

Shame on you and the horse on which you rode in.

Anonymous said...

Brad,

Any truth to the rumour that CC SF honcho Kim Bryant has left the cluster? And under what circumstances?

Sideliner

Anonymous said...

ksfo also fired their local sales manager last friday. their general sales manager, who had been at kgo and ksfo for almost 10 years, quit on tuesday after getting recruited by cbs.

Mike said...

Apparently Gary Williams thought posting twice would give more credibility to his "hate Melanie" blurb.

Hey, Gary, if you are going to attack MM's facts, why don't you document your story about the Iraqi signs?? I'm sure we would all just love to support your rabidly anti-American crap with any 'facts' you can provide. Better yet, why don't YOU go to Iraq and let us know what's really up?

Geez, at least she went over there. According to Harry Reid, the place is getting more dangerous day by day. Not even to mention her trip to Lebanon.

Must make you feel very macho to slam a woman reporter who actually travels to cover a war. Bet you are MUCH more brave than MM.

Whatever...

Anonymous said...

So Many Liberals and not enough of us on the air or in the newsprint that disagree with them....too bad...so sad....the more opinions the better..
Janice

Bob said...

Yes, Janice, there's a real dearth of right wingers in radio, TV, and the press. I mean, not in this space-time continuum, but somewhere.

Anonymous said...

i have several friends at ksfo who told me the following: ksfo fired their local sales manager a week ago friday and their general sales manger quit the following tuesday to join cbs as their digital sales manager.

Mycos said...

The way conservatives are able to convince themselves that facts are basically just opinions that are no better or worse than the truth, is something that astounds me to no end. If the truth about something isn't patriotic enough sounding, just say something that is! Wat's the dif? Wat's the problem? Lots!!! But when someone can convince themselves that the entire media, the entire faculty of universities worldwide, and liberals are all colluding to say things that make conservatives look bad...then there's simply no hope for conversation ever getting through to you. How many liberal creationists do you know? None. Conservative all! Shouldn't that tell you something?

Anyhow. MAF was founded with Howard Kaloogian as a device to get him elected to political office using the Saddam Hussein evil as his chariot into office. When both the war effort and his election suffered from a series of lies told in Washington, they continued on, asking for donations to go to Iraq and show they weren't just "sunny day sailors" but really did 'love dem troops!', not the war turned out to be being fought for reasons not exactly as billed. So off to the peaceful streets of Iraq they went. You can read the full story, see the photos here:
http://www.talkingpointsmemo.com/archives/008026.php

here:http://blog.case.edu/singham/2006/03/30/internet_sleuthing

Or just start opening your eyes instead of hanging in your little echo-chamber worlds where none of those liberal conspiracies can get at your happy, patriotic, "We're number one!" world.

Anonymous said...

I have listened to the morning show on KSFO since the first broadcast. But then KSFO & I go way back, I used to listen to it in the days of the late, great Don Sherwood.

Citadel needs to FIRE their CEO for this and other boneheaded decisions. They pay their CEO $17 million and yet are bleeding money while their stock price makes Bear Stearns look like a rock-solid buy.

I had heard about this on another site, but I thought it was a joke.

Melanie will turn up somewhere else, but talk radio across the country is in trouble. People are being laid off at other companies too.

I wonder if the net has had something to do with this just as it has for lowering ad revenues at both newspapers and magazines.

I commend Melanie for her passion, her support for causes like being against smog chek 2, mtbe and other issues and for fighting the despicable code pink radicals in Berserkeley.

She will be missed.

http://falkie2008.blogspot.com