Skip to comments.KRANTZ-ELLED In Fresh Turmoil, AAR (Air America) Head Abruptly Tossed
Posted on 06/24/2006 6:47:50 PM PDT by jwalburg
Throwing even the liberal radio network's most stubborn defenders for a curve, Air America Radio President Gary Krantz was abruptly shown the door yesterday.
And not only do we have exclusive details to report on his sacking, it's a great time to share with readers his recent anti-Radio Equalizer campaign.
Following a recent pattern of executive departures, including now- former CEO Danny Goldberg, his sudden removal has been shrouded in mystery. While his contract was in fact due to expire, there was no indication he would face immediate termination.
And in a departure from the past, the press announcement was not made available on Air America's website. Typically, when a company releases news late on a Friday, it does so to avoid substantial media coverage.
As with all of the other recent turmoil, each move fills in a few more of this strange corporate puzzle's missing pieces. With so much instability in the upper- management ranks, the company has been far too distracted to focus on building any hoped- for future.
As soon as the announcement was made, readers began to email the Radio Equalizer, with a few wondering if there was any connection to the newly- signed Randi Rhodes contract. To fund her outrageous new deal, was it necessary to let somebody go?
It certainly is possible. Already, Randi herself has announced that two writers were sacked in conjunction with her increased compensation level. Watch for part two of our report on Randi Rhodes, coming Monday.
With Krantz making $400,000 a year plus perks and other benefits, Air America saves some money, but not a great deal. After all, it pays Al Franken's executive producer Billy Kimball substantially more.
As part of a larger series of cuts by acting CEO / head-chopper Jim Wiggett, however, this move may be better explained as part of an ongoing survival strategy.
Meanwhile, while other Air America managers have long attempted to ignore our reporting on its sleazy corporate antics, Krantz has been a clear exception.
Particularly incensed by our FOX News Channel guest appearances on Bill O'Reilly's show, Krantz has written letters to the media and listeners, attempting to discount our reporting. In addition, using leverage as an advertiser, he has pushed to have trade publications cover Air America- related issues his way.
Recently, the situation had escalated as Krantz attempted to put pressure on Inside Radio, a weekday publication where your Radio Equalizer works as a columnist. Both in person at an industry convention in Las Vegas and via more recent phone calls and emails to my immediate supervisor, Krantz demanded to know the details of my employment, what I would be covering for Inside Radio and what connection it might have to the Radio Equalizer.
Despite the pressure, my employer made it clear to Krantz that personnel decisions are not made based on the wishes of advertisers (Air America currently has a contract with the publication to run ads for Al Franken and others). In addition, he was told that the Radio Equalizer and Inside Radio are distinct, unrelated entities.
Was Krantz working to get yours truly fired? It certainly appeared that way.
Heh. I wanna see the magazine add for Franken.
Al is actually treated seriously in a trade publication?
And LOL. Air America actuially thinks it has the weight to toss around and get people fired? This is AA, limited to maybe 3 stations with rock bottom ratings, and they think they are Clear Channel?
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