Charlie Sherman, the guy who runs a morning talk show here in New Hampshire, has a bit of a colorful past. He spent years as THE sports guy in New Hampshire, anchoring for the biggest TV station (the only network affiliate here in Cow Hampshire), until one day he threw a hissy fit over a parking space at a college sports game and quit in a fit of pique. A few months later, he came back as a talk-show host (ending the show of a couple of far better hosts), and it’s been pretty painful. A lot of the time it seems as if Sherman’s fulfilling a “community service” sentence listening to his show; it’s almost all “public service” material — health issues, informational guests, and lots of goody two-shoes material. It’s decidedly lacking in entertainment and anything that could be considered controversial.
This morning, though, Sherman decided to discuss the buyout of Gillette by Procter and Gamble. Sherman expressed his displeasure with the deal, decrying all the lost jobs and traditions that come with big mergers and buyouts.
I immediately picked up my phone to discuss the matters. “Is Charlie taking calls about the Gillette deal?”
“No, he’s not.”
I guess SOMEONE got the message. You see, Charlie’s show is aired on what they call the “New Hampshire Action Network” or some such silly thing. It’s a chain of four stations around the state. When he goes on the air, it represents three other talk-show hosts (and supporting staff) that don’t have jobs any more. Further, this network is owned by Clear Channel, a company that owns well over a thousand radio stations around the country and has single-handedly put countless radio professionals out of work.
It’s just too bad someone forgot to tell The Sherm that criticizing corporate mergers and buyouts is strictly verboten, and one shouldn’t bite the hand that signs his paycheck. But Sherm has never been too bright about that.