The wrath of self-righteous racism
Expanded from the 11-8-2009 Daily Sparks Tribune
Barbwire wins second straight Nevada Press Association first-place award

Barbwire column on the depredations of Charter Communications and the Reno City Council wins 2009 Nevada Press Association first-place award

The Barbwire TV/webcast show will return as soon as new studio construction is complete. Your contribution will be most welcome. Keep an eye on the Barbwire print edition for updates.

Past 12 months
Use the search tool you will find at page right at the above link. It will return the 19 newest. A button for older shows is being installed. You may also search by date — M-F for the past year save holidays.

Click here for on-demand re-runs
from the 2009 legislative session

(775) 882-8255

15-year overnight success

Daily Sparks Tribune 2-10-2008

The Barbwire's Greatest Hits
Highlights from radio days
mp3 file

Should you hear people murmer that President Obama's election means we are a "post-racial" country, ask if a judge approved their quickie divorce from reality here in Mississippi West.

A couple of weeks back, I uploaded an e-mail reminder about Tom Martinez's anti-klan lecture at the Atlantis Hotel. Nevadans responded with a record number of requests for mailing list deletions. Read into that what you will.

In the early 1980's, Martinez was a member of an ultra-violent neo-Nazi white supremacist organization called The Order. They killed Denver talk radio host Alan Berg for the crime of being Jewish. Martinez helped foil major terrorist activities including the murder of Southern Poverty Law Center founder Morris Dees.

Martinez told me that 200 neo-Nazi organizations currently operate in the U.S., not including the most dangerous: "two dozen lone wolves."

Martinez related how he became attracted to The Order as a broke and desperate young family man in Philadelphia. He was angered by the export of good-paying U.S. jobs which turned his neighborhood into a ruin.

"The FOX Network is talking in words I used to hear," he said, "it's all packaged cleverly."

He asserted that hate groups are infiltrating tea party rallies which "are great for recruiting."

The undereducated are easily misled. As longtime Nevada journalist Dennis Myers has often pointed out, the original Boston Tea Party was a protest against repeal of a British tax which would have made smuggling unprofitable.

I asked Martinez about my longtime feeling that if executed Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh had been able to find a decent job after being mustered out of his beloved army, perhaps he would not have gotten into the business of bomb making.

Martinez agreed.

Which brings me to the scariest part of the Martinez evening.

A distraught military wife drove almost a hundred miles round trip on a snowy night to attend, and even brought her teenagers. Her husband is due back from his latest tour of Iraq very soon and she expressed concern over the changes she sees in him, especially his exposure to racist cliques. Martinez understood.

She asked him if he had spoken before any military groups. Alas and alack, Martinez has never been asked to address any.

Perhaps the gunshot-bloody events of recent days will motivate the Pentagon to invite him.

Or perhaps not.

UNINTENDED CONSEQUENCES DEPT. Last week, I sent out an e-mail bulletin which included the following lampoon.


10. No commercials selling Trix as health food for your kid.

9. No prescription management, self-control or exercise advice from Lush Rambo.

8. No sales department pressure to go easy on some shyster advertiser —> and we'll never blow off The Dixie Chicks or Congressman Ron Paul.

7. Unlike Howard Stern, all our shows will be produced by people fully dressed.

6. On the other extreme, no one will ever do a show wearing white sheets and a hood. (Besides, the hood muffles the announcer.)

5. Speaking of announcers, unlike catatonic NPR, when we present the news, we'll be so interested that you'll actually hear it in our voices. Better yet, you'll be able to actually hear our voices.

4. Every day, we will prove that Hank Williams, Leroy Van Dyke, Jimmy Van Heusen, Van Morrison, Townes Van Zandt, Martha & the Vandellas, Van Halen and van Beethoven all belong on the same station simply because great music is great music —> if you release it from the corporate programming strait jacket. (Apologies to Van McCoy, Linus and Lucy Van Pelt.)

3. If you don't like what we do or think you can do it better, you can actually get the chance to produce your own show.

2. Commercials will never be louder than the programming because there will be no commercials.

1. No annoying telethonizing constantly begging for public support..., that last one may take a little time to fully implement.

Please consider joining the club and donating what you can afford. You will find much more information about the KJIV project at ReSurge.TV, where you may contribute online or send a check or money order to ReSurge.TV, P.O. Box 10034, Reno NV 89510.

The above rather gentle satire brought an icy request for mailing list deletion from a Sparks woman because "I believe in freedom of speech!"


I think the translation may be that anyone who criticizes St. Lush Rambo is anathema in her house, even if his rants whip up the winds of bigotry and prejudice against her own Latino children.

Right wing moonhowlers always crawl under the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution whenever criticized for their blatant lies and racism. They have taught their fans to kneejerk in tandem. In this case, it's someone whose family I have known for 30 years.

In 1775, Samuel Johnson said that "patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel."

Nothing's changed but perhaps there's hope.

One guy e-mailed the following: "I've seen one or two of the Rambo movies, I saw no indication that he was a lush. Can you clarify that point for me?"

As the great comedian Milton Berle once advised, if you gotta explain a joke, it's not funny.

Assuming that the gentleman was not putting me on, I responded that my Sparks Tribune colleague in columny Travus T. Hipp coined the lampoon of radio hatemonger Rush Limbaugh's name in 1988. In our first 1989 rating period, the Travus 'n' Andy shows removed about four in 10 listeners from Lush Rambo's local lair, KKKOH.

I beat Limbaugh head-to-head the following year.

Regarding Sly Stallone as Rambo: He drives his audience to drink.

ANOTHER PATRIOTIC PERVERSION. The Industrial Workers of the World, aka the Wobblies, warn that the UNR student union will play host to the racist Minutemen organization on Nov. 19. The IWW is organizing a protest. Stay tuned.

PARTIES WITHOUT TEA. This Tuesday, Dr. Byllie D'Amato Andrews kicks off her campaign to replace term-limited Assemblymember Sheila Leslie, D-Reno. The event happens from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. at Zozo's, 3446 Lakeside Drive in Reno. For more info, call (775) 327-4856.

This Friday the 13th from 3:00 to 7:00 p.m., Musicians Union Local 368 is hosting a party in celebration of its centennial. The local was chartered on November 13, 1909. The location is very harmonically correct, the second floor of Maytan Music at 777 South Center St. in Reno. Everyone's invited. For more info, call (775) 329-7995.

WISH I'D SAID THAT. "(Republicans') idea of health care reform would be to allow you to take your gun to the doctor's office." — Rep. Alan Grayson, D-Florida.

Be well. Raise hell.


Andrew Barbano is a 40-year Nevadan, second vice-president of the Reno-Sparks NAACP, labor/consumer/civil rights advocate, producer of Nevada's annual César Chávez Day celebration, member of Communications Workers of America Local 9413/AFL-CIO and editor of As always, his opinions are strictly his own. Check local listings for other Nevada cable systems. E-mail Barbwire by Barbano has originated in the Daily Sparks Tribune since 1988.

Smoking Guns...

Nevada Press Assn. annual award winners announced 9-19-2009

The campaign against forcibly-paid newspaper obituaries
And they wonder why the newspaper business is dying?


The Dean's List

   The Dean of Reno Bloggers could very well be Andrew Barbano, self-described "fighter of public demons," who started putting his "Barbwire" columns online in 1996 and now runs 10 sites.
RENO NEWS & REVIEW, 11-9-2006

The 2009 first-place Nevada Press Association award winners
Tony the Tiger & the flaky NFL
Barbwire / 11-30-2008
Deregulation is never having to say you're sorry
Barbwire / 8-3-2008
Nevada: A good place to visit, but do you want to live here?
Barbwire / 6-15-2008

...and more ammo

BARBWIRE Nevada Corporate Welfare Archive

Propaganda fuels gasoline price fixing
Barbwire 8-14-2005

Donate to the cable ratepayer legal defense fund at our PayPal-enabled ReSurge.TV Consumer War Room

Phillips, Kevin; Numbers Racket: Why the economy is worse than we know

Harper's Magazine; May 2008; page 43
Phillips has authored numerous books on history and politics over the past 40 years. His most recent, Bad Money: Reckless Finance, Failed Politics and the Global Crisis of American Capitalism, was published by Viking on April 15, 2008.

NAOMI WOLF: Fascist America in 10 Easy Steps
There are some things common to every state that's made the transition to fascism. Author Naomi Wolf argues that all of them are present in America today.
Alternet 5-20-2007

Johnson, Chalmers; REPUBLIC OR EMPIRE? A National Intelligence Estimate on the United States; Harper's magazine; January, 2007. I love it when heavy hitters validate what I've been saying for years in the tiny Sparks Tribune.

Barlett, Donald L. and Steele, James B.; America: What Went Wrong? (1992); America: Who Really Pays the Taxes? (1994); America: Who Stole the Dream? (1996) ; Andrews & McMeel/Universal Press Syndicate.

Review of Alex Carey's Taking the Risk Out of Democracy:
Propaganda in the US and Australia

The Orwell Diversion by Alex Carey
Excerpted from the book available below

ORDER Taking the Risk Out of Democracy
Corporate Propaganda versus Freedom and Liberty
By Alex Carey
Edited by Andrew Lohrey
Foreword by Noam Chomsky
University of Illinois Press

     SEE ALSO: Lapham, Lewis H.; Tentacles of Rage: The Republican Propaganda Mill, A Brief History; Harper's Magazine cover article; September, 2004, page 32.

     By one conservative estimate, the corporate right has spent about $3 billion over the past three decades manufacturing public opinion to suit big business goals. Lapham's number covered the early 1970's to the present day. Alex Carey noted that by 1948, anti- New Deal corporate propaganda expenditures had already reached $100 million per year, not adjusted for inflation, for advertising alone. (Carey, ibid; page 79)

     Adjusted for inflation, that 1948 $100 million becomes $801,659,751.04 in 2005 dollars.

Conservatives Help Wal-Mart, and Vice Versa
As Wal-Mart struggles to rebut growing criticism, it has discovered a reliable ally: conservative research groups.
New York Times 9-8-2006; Free registration may be required.

      BARBWIRE: Labor Day '94: People vs. corporate con job, 9-4-94
Chilling forecasts from Alex Carey

      BARBWIRE: The Nevada Republican Party Becomes Communist, 3-30-97
A prescient Plato on the dangers of oligarchy

The sands of time do not cloud the long memories of the sheiks of Araby
Barbwire 9-10-2006

      Rinfret, Pierre A.; Peace is Bullish; Look magazine, 5-31-1966 | U-News | Bulletins + Almanac
Casinos Out of Politics (COP) | Sen. Joe Neal
Guinn Watch | Deciding Factors
| BallotBoxing.US | Barbwire Oilogopoly Archive
Barbwire Nevada Corporate Welfare Archive
Annual César Chávez Celebration
War Rooms:
Banks, Cabbies, Cabela's, Cable TV, Cancer Kids/Mining, Energy, Health Care, Resurge.TV/consumers, Starbucks, Wal-Mart
Search this site | In Search Of...


Copyright © 1982-2009 Andrew Barbano

Andrew Barbano is a 40-year Nevadan, editor of and, former chair of the City of Reno's Citizens Cable Compliance Committee and serves as second vice-president, political action chair and webmaster of the Reno-Sparks NAACP. As always, his opinions are strictly his own. E-mail

Barbwire by Barbano premiered in the Daily Sparks (Nev.) Tribune on Aug. 12, 1988, and has originated in those parts ever since. Tempus fugit.

Site composed and maintained by Deciding Factors, CWA 9413 signatory

Comments and suggestions appreciated. Sign up for news and bulletins