A few changes brewing at WICC. Word is Ann McManus, the general manager that took some heat in the wake of morning man John LaBarca’s firing last year, will be departing the station within days to form her own advertising agency. There’s no skinny that she’s being forced out. Generally, in the radio industry, if you’re canned they don’t keep you around. They just say sayonara, and we mean now. Ann is leaving with notice.
Sounds like Ann wants to do her own thing, or has decided to do her own thing, before station owner Cumulus Media, a media monster based in Atlanta, decides to make changes. She’s developed a boatload of client contacts through the years so she has the ability to build a client base to start her own gig. Hey, Ann, throw us some business, 40,000 pageviews at OIB the past 30 days! The days after LaBarca’s firing were intense. Thousands of angry, sometimes hateful, calls flogged the station. LaBarca was battling a number of issues that ruffled management that had nothing to do with ratings. Life goes on.
LaBarca, by the way, has landed a job at WNLK, a news-talk station in Norwalk. I love LaBarca’s replacement Tony Reno because he’s an old friend, an OIB reader and he has me on his show a lot! Same for David Smith and Jim Buchanan.
Any of you digesting some of that dung Joe Lieberman’s shoveling about transcending politics, reaching across party lines, striking a civil tone? Joe, a John McCain guy, says if he’s asked to speak at the GOP convention he’ll talk glowingly about his friend and not trash Barack. Meanwhile, on the campaign trail, Joe poises a poison dart at Barack’s every move.
When I was running campaigns, Joe was the guy I wanted more than anyone else in the state to help build credibility for a Dem candidate. And usually he was accommodating. When I managed Finch’s campaign for state senate in 2000, I wanted Lieberman at Finch’s side for Birdie’s official announcement. I especially wanted Joe there because the other Joe (Ganim) and I weren’t getting along, and I wasn’t sure he’d show up. I had stopped playing ball with him, and well, you know the rest of the story.
Lieberman was always mature, respected, endearing. Somehow, he’s morphed into this whiny, sniveling, sarcastic troll. It was a mighty crash going from Dem Veep nominee in 2000, presidential candidate 2004 to losing a primary in 2006 over his stubborn war position. But Joe did an amazing job appealing to GOP and independent voters to win the general election and save face as an independent candidate. Led by Jodi Rell, the entire GOP operation in Connecticut did an enormous tank job on the party nominee Alan Schlesinger who received just 10 percent of the vote. You’d think Joe would be gracious for the redemption, but it seems like his brain cells are fixed on the betrayal of voters that had supported him.
Joe still does his diner tours in Connecticut, but now he has all the stature of a waffle house.