TMJ and the corporate head at Journal Communications are apparently pulling the fake outrage routine that some of their employees might be compromising the station's integrity by signing Walker recall petitions. Yes, because the station that has Charlie Sykes, Jeff Wagner, and John Mercure as hosts (and paid presenters at GOP campaign events) doesn't have a whiff of bias to their station's content. And despite Gene Mueller's pathetic wimp-out to Graeme Zielinski that "what happens on this station after 8:30 is none of [the news department's] concern", it's pretty obvious that the Bradley Foundation and MMAC call the shots at that station, especially when you realize Mueller's former co-host and station NEWS DIRECTOR (i.e, the guy who decides what gets covered in the newsroom) left his TMJ job to work for GOP Speaker Jeff Fitzgerald. That news director in question (John Jagler) will be running for State Assembly this fall in a newly-gerrymandered district. Oh, but signing recall petitions is where TMJ has an issue with maintaining integrity. Go fuck yourselves.
And this excellent article from Renee Crawford illustrates that TMJ isn't even consistent on their own staff signing recalls. In fact, Sykes didn't just support the recall of Tom Ament to get Scott Walker into power in Milwaukee County, he helped make it happen.
This all goes back to 2001-2002 when Charlie Sykes picked up a story about the County Executive Tom Ament signing onto a pension deal no one understood. Sykes ranted daily for months on his talk radio show about Ament's "irresponsibility". Then one day, he starts talking about this "new group" of "every day citizens" who have come together to use the recall system in Wisconsin to recall Tom Ament and several other County Executives. They called themselves Citizens for Responsible Government and they had an open mic for months on Charlie Sykes show pimping the recall effort until they did indeed recall Milwaukee's County Executive and several of it's County Board members. Charlie Sykes LED this effort with his radio show, his television show and he even HEADLINED Recall Tom Ament rallies with his participation very much "allowed by management of WTMJ" (see that article I just posted from January 23, 2002). Its not a far reach to think that the heavily funded by the Bradley Foundation (who by the way employs Charlie Sykes' wife as their Director of Communication)
WTMJ never once balked then. They never once questioned whether this might make their "news station", look politically motivated. A "non-profit", "non-partisan" organization was born. They have had full and free access to Charlie Sykes' radio show ever since.
The Recall of Tom Ament was immediately followed by a heavy campaign for Scott Walker for Milwaukee County Executive that was HEAVILY hyped in the Charlie Sykes machine.
By 2005, Chris Kliesmet, ED of CRG Network was stating things like "Charlie Sykes is Gold". Charlie Sykes also is kind enough to repost CRG's press releases directly on his blog.
Now known as CRG Network, they claim to be non-partisan watchdogs of government. As far as I can tell though, they have overwhelmingly supported and recalled Democrats including twice trying to recall Governor Jim Doyle again efforts heavily promoted on Charlie Sykes radio show. (note: CRG are also the ass-clowns currently trying to organize a recall of Senators Jauch and Schultz over the mining bill)
But when reality sets in a decade later, and its TMJ talkers and Journal Communications that support the guys are the ones who are corrupt and disguisting and have ignited outrage, then TMJ employees aren't allowed to speak their minds because it hurts the image of "balance" at the station. Who the hell are they kidding? It might be time for me to make a quick detour on my way into Miller Park for Opening Day Friday, and let the guys at the TMJ Road Show know that we have more than enough of their hypcoritical bullshit, and that it's time that they pay for what they are putting their employees and this state through.