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Aug. 2012-Aug. 2013: the Barbwire's Silver Anniversary Year
Barbwire by Barbano moved to Nevada's Daily Sparks Tribune on Aug. 12, 1988, and has originated in them parts ever since.
Whom to blame: How a hall-of-famer's hunch birthed the Barbwire in August of 1987
Tempus fugit.

Just like old times: UN,R and Hot August Nights
Barbwire by Barbano / Expanded from the 9-26-2013 Sparks Tribune

   Everybody knows the dice are loaded.
Everybody rolls with their fingers crossed.
   Everybody knows the war is over.
Everybody knows the good guys lost.
   Everybody knows the fight was fixed.
The poor stay poor, the rich get rich.
   That's how it goes. Everybody knows.

Everybody knows the scene is dead
   But there's gonna be a meter on your bed
That will disclose
   What everybody knows.

— Leonard Cohen

HAT TRICK: Barbwire wins 3rd straight Nevada Press Association First-Place Award


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Updated 8-30-2011
Reruns on Carson-Dayton 226

Additional programs
on Boulder City cable. Go to and then
go to the BCTV link.

If Reform Fails: Health Care, Jobs and Unions — new power to the people on the public airwaves

The program premiers were available to every television set in the region because of a high-mileage media hybrid.

The shows appeared on both commercial and community stations. The non-corporate entity produced the events, commercial TV greatly expanded distribution.

Thus began an ongoing series of sane public interest programs which generate both entertaining heat and more than a little light.

Please spread the word and consider contributing to the cause online at ReSurge.TV.

You may also take the public option known as the U.S. Postal Service and send a check or money order to ReSurge.TV, P.O. Box 10034, Reno NV 89510.

Your contribution will help fund the distribution as well as ongoing efforts at developing new media, including a regional, non-corporate community radio station and the return of community television to Reno-Sparks-Washoe.

You are present at the creation of what I hope can become a new media model where the programming accurately reflects what's happening on the ground and the media impact is powerful enough to forcefully pass the message upward.


Be well. Raise hell.


Click here for selected on-demand re-runs from the 2009, 2010 and 2011 Barbwire.TV archives

15-year overnight success

Daily Sparks Tribune 2-10-2008

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

HAT TRICK: Barbwire wins 3rd straight Nevada Press Association First-Place Award


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I've neglected the U too long. The U. The University of Nevada-Reno.

That's not a typo, dammit. For almost 20 years, the ivy-tangled ivory tower has insisted that its proper name is "University of Nevada". PERIOD.

"University of Nevada-Reno" was once acceptable to distinguish the older northern school from the University of Nevada-Las Vegas when Jerry Tarkanian's Gomorrah South pro basketball team became a national powerhouse.

Predictably, purists insisted that UNLV was just that and the only University of Nevada sat by the waters of the Mucky Truckee.

But the damned liberal media kept using "University of Nevada-Reno," presenting as evidence the lettering on the foot bridge over N. Virginia Street and other little nuisances like stationery.

So the U changed the hyphen to a comma, spawning a true tempest in a teapot.

The joke's on us. We've come full circle.

A recent letter from a Reno Gazette-Journal reader (C. Pisiewski of Sparks, Sept. 22) complained that San Francisco 49er quarterback Colin Kaepernick should publicly term his alma mater as "Nevada Reno" instead of just "Nevada." At least RGJ editors didn't stick in the comma.

Indeed, folks most everywhere still think of Reno as a suburb of Sin City.

John Ascuaga has never been forgiven for running ads in the Bay Area telling potential visitors that his Nugget Hotel-Casino could be found in "East Reno."

If you get the impression that I think UN,R a pretty petty place, you're perceptive.

Of course it does a lot of good work and has a lot of good people, but its pretensions are boringly banal and sometimes excruciatingly expensive.

Over the past week, I've been publishing at the latest in a longrunning series of construction-related fiascoes. (After more than 20 years, I still won't sit in the upper east grandstands at Mackay Stadium.)

It's becoming increasingly clear that the late President Milton Glick brought a brief, shining moment of sterling integrity, a little giant in a long line of pygmies which has now regressed toward its picayune past.

Back in the mid-1980s, football coach Chris Ault permanently siphoned off a substantial portion of student health services money for the benefit of the jockocracy. Angry students picketed.

Then came the Barbwire/Tribune University Scandals of 1996-97.

The new administration of President Marc Johnson has just announced intentions to burden students with the costs of new debt for things sweaty.

Throw in a few no-bid construction contracts, mix in an unqualified bureaucracy that can't tell a straight story to a fawning press and it's beginning to look like 1996 all over again.

Stay tuned, trusting taxpayers.

ADIOS, WING KING. The bombastic Willie Davison died on Sept. 15 at age 64.

A memorial was held in Sparks last Saturday.

A principal founder of Hot August Nights in 1986, he over-reached in 1987 and his greatest achievement was taken from him.

Without over-reachers, big things don't get off the ground.

My first regular column for this newspaper was "The Chilling of Hot August Nights" on 12 August 1988. It chronicled the stormy birth, near-death and resurrection of what is now a mega-event. I printed an update on July 11, 2010.

Of course, Willie bounced back and became the chicken wing king.

I'm glad that I saw him a couple of times before he left for the permanent prom night in the sky.

Rock 'n' roll forever, big boy. You done good.

Be well. Raise hell. / Esté bien. Haga infierno.


HONOR YOUR DON. Keep sending comments supporting legendary Nevada photographer Don Dondero (1920-2003) for the Nevada Press Association Hall of Fame.

His life's work appeared worldwide, including the Tribune and most probably every one in Nevada.

Enlist in the campaign to install Big Don.

Please send me your memories and endorsements via e-mail or to P.O. Box 10034, Reno NV 89510.

The Barbwire got the late Reno Gazette-Journal columnist Guy Richardson elected last year.

Let's go for a repeat.

"Media is the plural of mediocre."
                              — Jimmy Breslin


BARBWIRE.TV. Support the return of community TV to these parts.

If last year's elections didn't convince you of the need, the 2013 legislature certainly should have.

Join up. You may donate at ReSurge.TV or contact me.

This is important.

Thank you.

Be well. Raise hell. / Esté bien. Haga infierno. (Pardon my Spanglish.)






Andrew Barbano is a 45-year Nevadan, chair of the Nevada César Chávez Committee, producer of Nevada's annual César Chávez Day celebration, first vice-president and political action chair of the Reno-Sparks NAACP, labor/consumer/civil rights advocate, member of Communications Workers of America Local 9413/AFL-CIO and editor of and 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 K-12 rankings: See how your school did

We Don't Need No Education
The continuing Barbwire series

...and more ammo...

The Post-Dated Recession: Pay me now or pay me later
Barbwire by Barbano / Expanded from the 9-6-2012 Daily Sparks Tribune

The Post-dated Recession
By Joshua H. Silavent / Daily Sparks Tribune / 5-3-2011

Union decline and rising inequality in two charts
by Colin Gordon
Economic Policy Institute / 6-5-2012

Used in
journalist Mark Robison's extensive Hard Labor: Nevada unions tout role in helping workers, firms, economy (Sunday 2 Sept. 2012 Reno Gazette-Journal, page one, Reno Rebirth section of the print edition). Union men Jim Burrell, Paul McKenzie and Guy Louis Rocha did the movement proud. Not included in the RGJ online edition.

The Barbwire Labor Day column
Reno Gazette-Journal / 9-3-2012

Nevada Press Assn. Better Newspaper Contest
HAT TRICK: Barbwire takes first place three years in a row.

The winning entries
Suing for Schools: The 20-year shuck

Expanded from the 2-21-2010 Daily Sparks Tribune

Click here to view the show on your desktop

RED flags flying low over Sparks
Expanded from the 1-10-2010 Daily Sparks Tribune

The wrath of self-righteous racism
Expanded from the 11-8-2009 Daily Sparks Tribune

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 yet | 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/cabellyup, Cable TV, Cancer Kids/Mining, Energy, Food, Health Care, Resurge.TV/consumers, Starbucks, Wal-Mart
Search this site | In Search Of...


Copyright © 1982-2013 Andrew Barbano

Andrew Barbano is a 45-year Nevadan, editor of and; and former chair of the City of Reno's Citizens Cable Compliance Committee, He is producer of Nevada's annual César Chávez Day celebration and serves as first 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 moved to Nevada's Daily Sparks Tribune on Aug. 12, 1988, and has originated in them parts ever since.
Whom to blame: How a hall-of-famer's hunch birthed the Barbwire in August of 1987
Tempus fugit.

Site composed and maintained by Deciding Factors, CWA 9413 signatory

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