Archive for the 'KNUS' Category

Craig Silverman talks about his new talk-radio show

Saturday, July 19th, 2014

Craig Silverman returned to Denver’s radio waves a couple weeks ago, as you may know if you saw my recent blog post criticizing him for failing to challenge senatorial candidate Cory Gardner’s assertion that Sen. Mark Udall is simply “trying to distract voters” by attacking Gardner for his extreme anti-choice record, which isn’t “top of mind for people.”

I’m glad to see Silverman back on the air. He can be an entertaining and/or gutsy interviewer, whose questions have had an impact on Colorado beyond what most people realize. Plus, I appreciate almost any local voice, as we lose more and more of them to the corporate media monolith.

Silverman’s show airs on KNUS 710-AM Saturdays, from 9 to noon. He’s the latest talk-radio host to be resurrected by KNUS, which is featuring a local lineup that includes Peter Boyles, Dan Caplis, Steve Kelley, Bill Rogan, Jimmy Sengenberger, Matt Dunn, Krista Kafer, and others.

Silverman answers a few of my questions below about his new show.

Jason: Tell me what the show will focus on.

Silverman: The Craig Silverman Show will focus on current events and entertaining, thought provoking topics. We will look at the week that was, enjoy the weekend, and look forward to the week ahead. I’ll have a regular feature named CRAIG’S LAWYERS’ LOUNGE in which we create a forum for prominent attorneys to relax and tell us their war stories. My first guest was Johnny Carson’s former attorney, Henry Bushkin, who told us about the best lawyering job he ever did for Johnny, and how Johnny packed heat.

For a feature named Call of the Week, I had on famous progressive and regular talk show caller, Frank, the leftie lawyer, whose real name I know. Frank had called Dan Caplis to say how little courage he thinks Governor Hickenlooper possesses, and it bothers him such that he has decided to vote for Bob Beauprez. Wow, that was news! Bob Beauprez may really win. So I had Frank on to accept his award toward the end of the show and he was funny and grateful and it was a nice way to end a terrific debut show. Here is a link to the last hour of my show with Bushkin and Frank. Hour one is here and this is hour two.

Jason: Will you welcome progressive callers?

Silverman: Absolutely. You won’t have to say “ditto” or “you are a great American” to get on our shows. I welcome all callers and, as a lawyer, I appreciate a good argument. I like to banter. Besides, unlike some famous talk show hosts, I don’t know everything. I still have a lot to learn. My point of view is rarely too rigid to accommodate new information and good arguments.

Jason: What do you say to progressives who say there’s no significant difference, on the political spectrum, between you and Dan Caplis?

Silverman: I would say those people must get a mental health check-up. Dan and I have some areas of agreement. Neither one of us wanted Ward Churchill to continue as a Professor at CU. Dan never thought that Barack Obama would be a good President and it turns out he was correct. But I was right about Mel Gibson. Dan is pro-life and I favor a woman’s right to choose (1st trimester please). I support gay marriage. Dan doesn’t. Dan favors cannabis prohibition and I believe the war on marijuana was hypocritical and unsuccessful. I support the separation of church and state, and the separation of state and church. Live and let live. But don’t hurt people.

Jason: You mentioned that you’ll be adding some unusual segments each week, announcing a guest of the week and question of the week from KNUS shows. Are you going to listen to all KNUS shows of Boyles, Caplis, Kelley, to get these?

Silverman: My segments are creative and fun and ideally suited for the weekend. I will announce the weekly winner for Best Guest, Call of the Week, Best TV Bite of the Week, and Best Question. The winner is highly subjective and based strictly on the portions of talk radio and television that come to my attention. People can let me know their nominations and give me links to consider on my Facebook page or twitter @CraigsColorado. I listen to KNUS more than any other media right now because I find the topics interesting and appreciate the quality of its national and local hosts.

Jason: I know you’re happy to be back on the air. But can you give me a sense of just how important and gratifying it is for you to have a KNUS show? What’s driving you to do this? It can’t be the money or the audience on KNUS Saturday mornings?

Silverman: KNUS is the best place to be right now. They are spending more money than the competition, and it shows. Advertising and ratings are strong and growing. The management, staff, and the production teams are top notch and have great attitudes.

If people haven’t checked out 710 KNUS in a while, they should, especially for my show. Peter Boyles has the station cooking with gas and he is not a Christian and he is not a Republican. Neither am I.

As for what drives me, I’m getting paid a fair amount to do something I enjoy, and few things concentrate the mind like live broadcasting. Its stimulating to ponder the great issues of the day. Many of my old advertisers have signed up to sponsor my new show so don’t think this is a non-profit. The audience for 710 KNUS is large and I hope to make it larger. What else do you want to listen to at 9:00 on a Saturday morning? The Mutual Fund Show? An infomercial about how green tea cures cancer? A replay of NPR’s seven a.m. hour. An older than dirt Car Talk segment? Did you know those car guys retired in 2012 and the show is all repeats?

Jason: Please explain briefly how you got your start in radio, when you joined Caplis, when that ended, and anything else about your media career.

Silverman: I have been part of Colorado media for decades now. I worked for the Denver DA’s Office from 1980 to 1996 where I was a Chief Deputy District Attorney. I handled many big cases that were covered by the media and I was accordingly asked to do commentary on other cases. I was the first Colorado attorney to be a guest commentator on Court TV in their studios in New York and I commented frequently for the LA Times and numerous other media outlets about the botched prosecution of OJ Simpson. It was during that trial and while I was Chief Deputy DA that I would leave my government job at 5:00 and rush over to Channel 9 to analyze the OJ case with Ed Sardella, Adelle Arawakawa, and Scott Robinson. Then, I would run over to the radio studio of The Dan Caplis Show to add further commentary on that incredible OJ case. In 1996, I ran as an unaffiliated/independent candidate for Denver District Attorney against incumbent Democrat Bill Ritter. I lost but it was a hell of a campaign that received extensive coverage from the local media and newspapers. The Rocky Mountain News endorsed me. The Denver Post did not like me, especially because I had successfully prosecuted a death penalty case (People v. Frank Rodriguez).

My campaign theme was that Politics and Prosecution are a Poor Mix but I lost and I was pressed into private practice. I quickly partnered with my good friend and former Denver DA’s office colleague David Olivas and we have had the law firm of Silverman & Olivas, P.C. for almost 20 years now.

I lost the election in November of 1996 and in December of 1996, the tragic murder of JonBenet Ramsey happened and I was called by members of the media to comment on the case. Peter Boyles had me on regularly. I was on ABC’s Nightline which led to the people at Rivera Live seeing me and liking me and then having me on that hugely successfully CNBC show many dozens of times. I was hired in 1997 to be the legal analyst for KGMH Channel 7 and I did that for ten years until the radio show interfered.

Since Jon Benet, there have been other fascinating Colorado situations including Oklahoma City Bombing Trial, Columbine, and the Kobe Bryant case. I have appeared hundreds of times on various national television shows, and in local and national newspapers, discussing these and other legal matters.

During the Kobe Bryant case, I was up in Eagle covering the situation for Channel 7 and also as a paid legal analyst for 850 KOA. Alex Stone and I were roommates up there and Dan Caplis was hosting a Saturday morning show on KOA. I was a regular guest again with Dan and he started doing some fill in work on KOA’s evening talk shows and then, Ken Saso passed away, and Dan Caplis was the evening talk show host in his absence. I was a regular guest and Kris Olinger who was a great program director liked Caplis and Silverman and came up with the idea for us to do an afternoon drive time show on 630 KHOW. We did the show for 8 years from the summer of 2004 to the summer of 2012 and we won every available award at one point or another for our broadcast excellence. We broadcast live from the Democratic National Convention and we each penned daily columns for the late great Rocky Mountain News during that DNC week.

Some people like a certain Jason Salzman thought I should be more liberal to counteract Dan’s conservatism but that was never what we were meant to be. Besides, I could not play the part of a complete progressive because I am not. I am liberal compared to Dan Caplis but conservative compared to Jason Salzman. I defy easy categorization.

What I am is a trial lawyer who likes to put on a winning show. That is what I’ll try to do every Saturday. It will be like nothing like Colorado talk radio listeners have ever heard before and I hope everybody will enjoy it.

Radio show should air rebuttal to Gardner’s comment that Udall is “trying to distract voters” with abortion/contraception ads

Thursday, July 17th, 2014

On a Denver radio show over the weekend, GOP senatorial candidate Cory Gardner accused his Democratic opponent, Sen. Mark Udall, of “trying to distract voters” by spotlighting Gardner’s stances on abortion and contraception, which “aren’t top of mind for people.”

I would have enjoyed hearing Gardner say that to room full of women, but, alas, Gardner’s words fell on talk radio, which skews male and old. And Craig Silverman, who hosted the KNUS 710-AM show on which Gardner made the comments, didn’t offer any words of rebuttal, from himself or any critic, male or female.

A response from a Planned Parenthood representative–or anyone–from Texas, where new anti-choice laws will reduce the number of abortion clinics to eight statewide by Sept. 1, might make a particularly good radio debate on this topic.

As I reported today on RH Reality Check about Gardner’s comment that Udall is “trying to distract the voters with issues that, quite frankly, aren’t top of mind for people:”

Gardner’s statement reflects comments he made during his first congressional campaign in 2010, when he defeated Betsy Markey, a pro-choice Democrat trying to hold her seat in a Republican-leaning congressional district.

In response to Markey’s attacks on his hardline anti-abortion positions, including his support of Colorado’s failed “personhood” amendment in 2008, Gardner said at the time, “Right now the only person talking about social issues in this campaign is Betsy Markey.” He promised reporters not to pursue an anti-abortion agenda if elected to Congress.

After winning the election, however, Gardner co-sponsored bills to redefine rape, defund Planned Parenthood, and to define a “person” in the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution to include all human development, beginning at the fertilized egg (zygote) stage.

How could radio host resist asking Beauprez if he really thought Hick was drunk during pool game with Obama?

Tuesday, July 15th, 2014

Bob Beauprez suggested over the weekend that Hickenlooper was drunk when he played pool last week with President Obama.

Beauprez made the comment on Craig Silverman’s debut radio show Saturday on KNUS 710-AM. Here’s the exchange:

Silverman: Bob Beauprez, tell me this, because you could lock up a lot of votes if you give the right answer. Can you play pool better than John Hickenlooper?

Beauprez: [hearty laugh]

Silverman: I mean, it went – did you watch him play? He looked like he was sick!—like there was poison in his beer. He scratched, and he missed one of the easiest shots in the world. Tell me you can do better, because he got beat on his home tavern court by Barack Obama. That’s the first foreign victory for Obama in a long time. And –

Beauprez: [laugh]

Silverman: I mean, it looked like Obama was having a good time, but – I don’t know, how do you think that all went down?

Beauprez: John might have been at the brewery a little bit ahead of the President. He might have gotten an early start on the beers. [BigMedia emphasis]

Silverman: Yeah.

Beauprez: Yeah, that wasn’t his finest moment.

LISTEN: Beauprez Suggests Hick was drunk when playing pool with Obama

It’s possible Beauprez was joking, I admit, but if he was, it’s not clear at all. If you’re Silverman, how could you resist asking Beauprez if he was seriously suggesting that Hick was drunk.

In honor of Pride, fights anti-gay talk-radio hosts with kisses like yours!

Monday, June 23rd, 2014

The group of people most attacked on talk radio is, of course, the Muslims. Next comes gays and Hispanics, followed by women. Proof? You have to trust my judgment, based on many happy years of listening.

Some conservative shows are respectful of all people, because, contrary to popular belief among progressives, not all conservative radio shows are the same.

But some get ugly, as they did when Michael Sam was drafted into the NFL.

In honor of Pride, discovered how much NFL draftees like to kiss! Like Michael Sam does! And it’s not just the athletes who do the kissing at sporting events.

In the video below,  set to obnoxious comments by KNUS 710-AM talker Bill Rogan and guest host Krista Kafer, see else is kissing each other. It might be YOU.

After Cantor’s fall, who’s the tea-partiest of them all? Talk radio tries to find the answer

Friday, June 13th, 2014

After House Majority Leader Eric Cantor’s crash, you naturally wonder which Republicans in Colorado’s gubernatorial primary are out-of-the-closet tea partiers. Arguably, they’re all closeted tea party types, at a minimum, but who lets his tea-party flag fly?

Colorado’s gubernatorial race has been spotlighted nationally as the next big test of tea-party strength, post Eric Cantor. So Republican voters may want to know which of the leading candidates self-identify as tea party.

Local talk-radio hosts have been out in front on this story.

In the past, despite his tea-party record, Bob Beauprez has ducked the question in different ways. In one instance, on KOA’s Mike Rosen show, he said:

Caller Doug: My question for Rep Beauprez: Is he more aligned with the traditional Republican Party or more aligned with the tea p?

Beauprez: I’m more aligned with, some people would call them, conservative values, traditional values. I think both of the groups that you highlight, in general, adhere to the same.

On the other hand, Tom Tancredo told KNUS’ Steve Kelley Wednesday:

Tancredo: I love the tea party. I believe they have been a very healthy force inside this body politic, especially for Republicans. I believe it has helped move the party to the right, although it’s been done begrudgingly on the part the party itself. A lot of people resent it and resist it. No, I think they’ve been helpful.

Listen to Tancredo discusses the tea party on KNUS Kelley and Company 06-11-14

Dump ice water on Boyles, please

Thursday, June 12th, 2014

Tom Tancredo is best known for being a rattlesnake on immigration issues, but he’s hard right on social issues too (e.g., he supports an abortion ban.).

In this conversation with KNUS’ Peter Boyles last week, Tancredo says it’s not what gay people do that bothers him. He says he doesn’t care. But he does have a problem with gay people forcing hetero people, like him, to break their religious convictions in order to respect, include, or accommodate gays.

TANCREDO: Now, on the one hand, you know, Peter, our whole thing in this campaign and in my life is, essentially, “Look, I want to control just my own life. I don’t want to control yours.” Okay? That’s really and truly the bottom line for me. So, I don’t want to control the lives of people who have a different opinion about their sexuality and that sort of thing.
BOYLES: Pshhh! Who cares!
TANCREDO: I just don’t want them to try to control the lives of people –
BOYLES: Of others.
TANCREDO: –who have deeply held religious beliefs and are trying to, you know, adhere to them. And, so, that’s the only sticking point, here. And if it weren’t for that, I mean, I got no problems with this.

Listen to Boyles and Tancredo discuss why they want gays on an island 6.5.14

So Tancredo is saying, in a circular fashion, that he really doesn’t tolerate gays at all, unless they could be on a planet-within-our-planet by themselves, where they wouldn’t ruffle anyone’s bogus religious convictions.

Would Tancredo say we should defend the right of a bully to punch someone in the nose?  That’s not an exact analogy, but discrimination and bigotry are actually pretty close to violence, especially in the big picture. Just ask a gay person who’s been denied same-sex benefits, a lease, a job, opportunities for advancement, or a cake for their wedding, dear God.

Religion is Tancredo’s recycled strategy to justify discrimination, with Boyles lap dogging it up and throwing fuel on Tancredo’s fire.

Someone in the KNUS studio needs to dump ice water on Boyles.

On radio, Tancredo thrilled with Cantor loss

Wednesday, June 11th, 2014

“We love this guy,” said KNUS radio host Peter Boyles, as he introduced gubernatorial candidate Tom Tancredo and asked him about the demise of House Majority Leader Eric Cantor.

“If I were a drinking man, I’d have been drunk last night,” Tancredo told Boyles. “I’d have been celebrating like crazy. I still went to bed about 10. It was a wonderful evening. The next domino is when Boehner resigns. And that may come.”

“Who knows how it will play out?” Tancredo told Boyles, amplifying on a statement distributed to reporters. “Who would have guessed that this would have happened? Who would have guessed that the recalls would have gone the way they did? Who would have guessed that Amendment 66 would have gone down in absolute flames? Oh man! I’m telling you, there are so many things happening. And who knows? Maybe after the vote on June 24, people will say, ‘Who would have thought Tancredo could win the Republican primary and then maybe the general election!’ And they’ll say, ‘Can you imagine this guy beat an incumbent Democrat.’ Who knows what’s in the cards?”

“We are extremely excited that this is the silver stake through the heart of amnesty,” said Tancredo on KNUS. “… The battleground for this issue will now devolve, if you will, to the states. We’ve got to do things that will make it uncomfortable for people who are here illegally to be here. You gotta be able to pass things like e-verify…. States can do this, if they have the guts.”

Tancredo agreed with Boyles’ lie that Obama himself could not pass e-verify and get a job due to his phony Social Security number.

Tea-party radio host celebrates Cantor loss

Wednesday, June 11th, 2014

As news spread last night that Tea-Party Republicans in Virginia ejected House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, Arapahoe Country Tea Party activists–here in Colorado–at their monthly meeting were hearing from gubernatorial candidate Tom Tancredo. And Bob Beuprtez was a no-show.

Celebrating Cantor’s victory with theme music (“We Are the Champions“) and bravado on the air this morning, KLZ radio-host Randy Corporon talked about last night’s Arapahoe County Tea Party meeting:

“Bob Beauprez didn’t show up. But Tom Tancredo did. He was an unannounced visitor. He’s been hitting a lot of Tea-Party and Liberty groups as the meetings pop up. And so…with Bob Beauprez not showing up at the Arapahoe Tea Party meeting, Tom Tancredo had some extra time to get his message out there.”

Corporon, who’s Chairman of the Arapahoe County Tea Party group, said on air that people at the meeting discussed “how to take advantage of the monumental event” of the Cantor defeat, and they decided that they need to get the message out to Republican candidates that “what happened to Eric Cantor can happen to you.”

Bob Beauprez wasn’t there to hear the message, but Tancredo was.

Listen to Randy Corporon celebrates Cantor defeat on KLZ 6.11.14


Radio host at least had his history correct in denouncing attack on Tancredo

Wednesday, June 4th, 2014

Republican gubernatorial candidate Scott Gessler launched an ad yesterday attacking his rival Tom Tancredo as a loser because Tanc lost his 2010 campaign for governor.

The conservative radio world isn’t buying Gessler’s attack.

In a conversation with Tancredo a couple weeks ago, here’s what KNUS’ Dan Caplis had to say on the topic:

CAPLIS: I like Scott, but I thought his shot on you was very unfair…And here’s why. I agree with you. I think it was the best race you ever ran—-that race for governor. I think you did something very noble in trying to bail out, you know, a terrible situation, created by the Scott McGinnis / Dan Maes mess.

TANCREDO: Yeah. Yeah.

CAPLIS: And it’s so interesting. People forget. I mean, you ran a very good race, and, full disclosure, I think I contributed to your campaign. If I didn’t, I meant to. But I know that I publicly supported you.

TANCREDO: There’s going to be another chance. You’ve got another chance.

CAPLIS: [laughs] That’s good! I like that! But here’s my point. You jumped into this mess. And I remember, there were national political experts on Election Day predicting you were going to win that race! …And honestly, Tom, I think in that race, if it had been under normal circumstances, and you had just been the nominee of the GOP, and you’d have had the infrastructure in tact from day one, etc., I think there’s a real good chance you win that race.

TANCREDO: I do too.

In his 2010 gubernatorial run, Tancredo lost by 14 points in three-way race. If he’d gotten Maes’ 10 points, he’d have been within about 4 points of Hick. Still a loser, but still.

For a variety of reasons, I don’t think Tancredo would have beaten Hick, even if Maes dropped out, but Caplis has his historical facts correct here, for a change.

And if you’re going to get into a spitting match about who’s the bigger loser, Tancredo or Beauprez, Beauprez wins for once. (The Gessler ad also calls Beauprez a loser.)

In 2006, Beauprez lost by 17 points in a head-to-head race against Bill Ritter, with no Dan-Maes distraction.

Don’t get me wrong. Anybody who calls Obama a “radical,” as Tancredo does in his own political ad below, is an intellectual loser in my book, so I personally agree with Gessler, who’s a radical himself.

But Caplis had it mostly right in his analysis of Gessler’s attack of Tanc, if you look at the numbers and the historical facts.

Here’s more of the conversation on KNUS May 16:

TANCREDO: So, [the 2010 gubernatorial race] was a lot of fun, and I enjoyed it. And I do not regret a single minute of it. So, I’ll tell you, this is what happens. This is what we’ve tried to avoid. It’s why I tell them all the time, “Let’s not debate.” And I’ll tell you another thing. Scott, listen to me carefully, here, because I told this to [CO State Senator Greg] Brophy, too. And this is the truest thing I can tell you about politics. In a multi-candidate race, when one person attacks another, goes negative on another, both those candidates go down in polls. Because the votes go to another one of the people that are out there.

CAPLIS: Hmm. Hmm. Interesting. Because there’s that other option.

TANCREDO: That’s right, another option. You get mad at the people who are attacking, and then you think–. But you also get mad at the guy that is being attacked, and so it goes to number three or four.

CAPLIS: [laughs] You know, you –.

TANCREDO: You’ve got to remember, this will not help you, Scott! I guarantee you!

PETER BOYLES: In our lives, we’ve all seen this, where there is a husband or a wife who is cheating in a relationship. The third person goes to one or the other and tells, “Joe, Mary’s cheating,” [or] “Mary, Joe’s cheating.” At the end of the day, both of them hate the guy [inaudible]. And that’s what this is about.


CAPLIS: And what is so interesting to me, is Scott has so many positives things to talk about.

Tancredo threatens not to debate Hick, unless reporters are kept on a short leash

Friday, May 23rd, 2014

Unbiased observers, like ColoradoPols and Mike Littwin of the Colorado Independent, have concluded that Tom Tancredo has been winning the GOP gubernatorial debates by not showing up.

But Tancredo is apparently willing to put his winning streak on the line by debating Hick, if Tanc wins the GOP primary.

That is, if the topics are okay with him and if journalists asking questions are screened and kept on a short leash.

Tancredo: I saw the other day that [national GOP Party Chair] Reince Priebus is saying, “You know what? We’re not going to do that anymore. We’re going to change—either we’re going to have fewer, change the format.” And I intend to do exactly the same thing if I am the nominee. We will establish what we believe to be the most effective way of, quote, “debating”, even with Hickenlooper. And it will be on a single topic. We will have, what—two or three debates on individual topics. We will help determine who are the people going to be that are asking questions. Or else, we won’t do those debates either. Because, when you give the media the free rein in this sort of thing, it does not work good—it does not work well for Republicans.

Another way of saying what Tancredo said: When Republicans have to answer questions from reporters, it doesn’t work out well for them. But it works out well for Democrats?

Obviously, it can work out either way for either party, as you know if you follow political debates. It depends mostly on the abilities of the candidates, and showcasing those abilities (or lack thereof) is the point of a debate.

Republicans like Tancredo like to think professional journalists are out to get them, but a guy like Sengenberger–or any reporter who happens to see Tancredo–should correct him.