Commentary: Talk radio necessary for free thought

Cokie and Steven Roberts seem surprised that Mike Rogers would give up his seat on the House Intelligence Committee to host a radio talk show ("When facts become casualties," Bugle, April 6, 2014). In fact, Rogers's views and expertise will reach a much larger audience via talk radio than if he depends on the left-biased news media to disseminate his thoughts.

To believe that talk radio is "the functional equivalent of pro wrestling" indicates the pair rarely listens. The hosts thrive on callers that challenge their viewpoints, creating an exchange of ideas and exposing erroneous information. The reason the elitist talking heads don't like talk radio or cable networks is because they can't control content - although, via the FEC, FCC and the IRS, they are trying mightily. To say that, with talk radio and cable TV, "facts become casualties" ignores the reliably liberal national networks, NBC, CBS, ABC, PBS, which simply ignore the stories not fulfilling their agendas or which are unhelpful to their liberal friends in government, cases in point being the gun-running case, Fast and Furious, the IRS scandal and, yes, the Benghazi fiasco.

Both Mr. and Mrs. Roberts know that Benghazi is an important story that the media has tried to bury from the beginning. Facts become casualties as much by omission as by misrepresentation. The media has tried to protect the Obama administration, and, particularly, former Secretary of State Clinton, before the 2012 election and since. The Republican lead hearings have exposed the lies, misrepresentations, and attempts to silence witnesses via a transparent cover-up designed to protect Mr. Obama, until re-elected in 2012, and to cover Clinton's dishonorable abandonment of our diplomats and their protective details in Libya. The Obama campaign said al Qaeda was "on the run" and would not acknowledge the buildup and rising danger being reported by Ambassador Stevens and the CIA in Benghazi. Clinton, who refused additional security requests prior to the attack, now asks "What does it matter, now?"

To all this, the majority of the media have remained mute, with only talk radio and cable answering that "It matters that political expediency was given priority over our national security and truth to the people. It matters because a possible future president has to wonder 'What does it matter, now?'" If she doesn't know the answer to that question, then leadership becomes an issue.

Jim Barber is a resident of Camp Verde. Read is his blog "General News & Politics" at


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