"Beyond AM. Beyond FM. It's XM Satellite Radio." Those words were all a part of the sales pitch that drove XM to the top of the satellite radio food chain. The product was advertised as an all new radio experience where the old rules and standards would not apply. Commercials weren't a part of the mix because subscribers signed up directly. FCC regulations didn't apply for the same reason that HBO was allowed to have graphic sex and violence on their TV shows. As of yesterday, when XM management decided to suspend controversial talkers Opie and Anthony for 30 days, all the promises and sales pitches started to ring hollow.
How did this situation get to this point? Last week, Opie and Anthony had a homeless gentleman in the studio who was riffing semi-coherent craziness. As the jocks have done many times in the past, they really stayed out of the guest's way to let him ramble right on through to see what kind of entertaining pearls of nuttiness they could bring out of him in order to entertain numerous fans on the show that XM has proclaimed in the past is the most popular original show on the platform, excluding syndicates like ESPN and MSNBC. As the homeless man named Charlie continued to ramble, he made a comment about how he would like to have sex with Condoleezza Rice.
Now, as most of you have read, Anthony followed that up by saying something really outlandish. He wondered what it would look like to see the horror on Rice's face as Homeless Charlie was on top of her and punching her in the face. I know how that looks in print. There is no way in the world that that could possibly be funny, right? I can understand those thoughts. It makes sense to me. The thing is that people who are reading this quote in print from their newspaper or on The Drudge Report have no idea what the context truly was.
Earlier on during Homeless Charlie's ranting, Opie asked him what he did for money. Charlie said that he panhandles, or sometimes he would "punch an old bi*** in the face." Keep in mind that these are the ramblings of a homeless crazy person. Opie and Anthony were running with it and taking it to whatever limits they could find to take it in order to keep the crazy talk coming. And it worked for the most part.