The Right Frequency: The Talk Radio Giants Who Shook Up the Political and Media Establishment


History of talk radio with intereviews of several giants in the industry,
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The Right Frequency: The Story of the Talk Giants Who Shook Up the Political and Media Establishment

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History of talk radio with intereviews of several giants in the industry,
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Lucas, the White House correspondent for the conservative media outlet Cybercast News Service, details how FDR’s New Deal policies and his desire to promote them sparked the rise of talk radio, a phenomenon that continues to thrive despite the proliferation of other media. Early radio pioneers like Father Charles Coughlin and Walter Winchell brought a singular political bite to the airwaves, but what turned talk radio into a force to be reckoned with was the 1987 elimination of the Fairness Doctrine, the 1949 FCC regulation designed to allow competing points of view to get equal time on the nation’s airwaves. An opponent of the policy, the author heralds the doctrine’s demise in these pages with partisan glee. Conservative-dominated talk radio took off almost immediately afterward, influencing everything from health care policy under Bill Clinton and Barack Obama to the rise of the Tea Party. Unsurprisingly, this tribute to conservative radio talkers is dominated by the medium’s superstars, like Sean Hannity, Glenn Beck, and Rush Limbaugh: "the greatest radio talk show host of all time." While his politics may be off-putting to some, Lucas’s love and knowledge of talk radio is evident and will appeal to any fan of the medium. (Aug.)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781933909172
  • Publisher: History Publishing Company, LLC
  • Publication date: 8/1/2012
  • Pages: 344
  • Product dimensions: 8.80 (w) x 6.00 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Fred Lucas, the White House correspondent for He is also a contributing editor for Townhall Magazine and has written for The Weekly Standard, The American Spectator, Human Events, The Washington Times and the New York Post. Before going to Washington, he reported on state capitols in Kentucky and Connecticut. He earned his Master's at Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and Bachelor's at Western Kentucky University. He lives in Fredericksburg, Va. with his wife Basia.
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Table of Contents

Foreword Martha Zoller 11

Introduction 13

Chapter One 15

Leaders(s) of the Republican Party?

Chapter Two 31

Early Voices

H.V. Kaltenborn: Dean of Commentators

Boake Carter: Far and Away the Most Daring

Father Charles Coughlin: Right Wing Radio Priest?

Fulton Lewis Jr.: Combating the 'Ultra Liberal Eastern Crowd'

Walter Winchell: Inventing Infotainment

Chapter Three 65

Lonely Voices

Clarence Manion: Taking Bipartisan Aim

Dan Smoot: Fighting Invisible Government

Rev. Carl McIntyre: Crushed by the Fairness Doctrine

Rev. Billy James Hargis: Catalyst to the Red Lion Ruling

Chapter Four 81

Game Changers

Joe Pyne: 'Father of in your Face Talk'

Bob Grant: 'Perfecting Anger'

Barry Farber: 'Publicist of Ultra Conservative Outlooks'

Marlin Maddoux's Point of View

George Putnam: 'Greatest Voice in Radio'

Dr. Dobson: Changing America's Focus

Libertarian Chatter with Neal Boortz

Chapter Five 119

'Challenge and Harass'

Chapter Six 133


Chapter Seven 147

The Rise of Rush

Chapter Eight 163

The Roaring 90s

Talk Radio and the Clinton Agenda


Hate Radio?

Radio's Road to Impeachment

On the Air with the G-Man

Michael Reagan: The Great Radio Communicator

Michael Medved's Thumbs up Media Career

Dennis Prager: Speaking Objective Truth to Moral Relativism

Mike Gallagher: In the Republican Trenches

Chapter Nine 203

The Bush Years

Backing the War President

Supreme Problems

Sounding the Amnesty Alarm

Sean Hannity: 'Born to Argue'

Hugh Hewitt: Mastering the New Media

First Lady of Conservative Radio

Savage Radio

Bill Bennett: Socrates on the Air

Chapter Ten 245

Liberal Failures

The Folly of Ex-Politicians

Chaotic Rise and Horrendous Fall of Air America

Chapter Eleven 257

All Talk is Local

Congressional Pay Hike and Radio

Tennessee Tax Revolt

Tar Heel Tea Party

California Recall

Lars Larson and Citizen Gabriel

Chapter Twelve 277

Obama Tea and Talk

Mark Levin: Chief Justice of the Airwaves

Glenn Beck: Commentator and Guru

Notes 297

Index 337

Acknowlwdegments 351

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 12, 2013

    First and foremost the author, Fred Lucas, is a great story tell

    First and foremost the author, Fred Lucas, is a great story teller. The book is the story of conservative talk radio from its origins to the current day. It is the story of a society learning to tolerate differences and new voices. As conservative talk radio slowly emerges and gradually gains a larger and larger following, its progress is challenged by the established political establishment. The author catalogues the growth of the industry and the actions of the political establishment to contain the growth. Although Fred Lucas does not hide his bias he manages a balanced historical telling of the events that shaped talk radio. At each stage of development the author provides a short biography of the main talk radio broadcasters of the period. Each decade of talk radio’s growth included a struggle to survive forces that wanted to suppress the growth of the industry.
    The author describes the fascinating history, strange alliances and lengthy legal challenges about what on the surface seems like a simple application of First Amendment free speech. It is apparent nothing is that simple. From the facts presented in this book it seems powerful politicians are able to contort even free speech concepts to align with their political affiliations. Although a topic like the history of talk radio could denigrate into a one-sided attack on liberal politicians, the author avoids this bias and simply presents the history of what occurred. Both sides are clearly represented with skill and nonjudgmentally.
    This book works as a history book of the twentieth century through the microphone of talk radio. It also works as a case study of how powerful politicians use their power to shape society. But overall it is just a great story told well.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 24, 2012

    Wonderful, historical account of talk radio! Great interviews a

    Wonderful, historical account of talk radio! Great interviews and a lot
    of interesting information all in one place. I ordered the book after
    hearing about it on the Mark Levin show. If you like history or radio,
    you'll love this well researched book.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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