Listen to this episode: {play} {/play}

Podcast: Play in new window

Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert are back from their latest vacations, but they weren’t on my TV last night.  That’s because Viacom (who owns Comedy Central along with, apparently 387 other channels) and DirecTV are in a pissing contest.  I honestly don’t care that MTV, VH1, CMT and the other 383 Viacom channels are also blacked out.  But I want need my daily fix of The Daily Show and Colbert Report.

I don’t care that I’m usually asleep by the time 11pm ET rolls around or that I can get both shows the next morning at Hulu.  The fact of the matter is that we pay good money for DirecTV’s service, and I want to know that Stewart and Colbert are on my television while I’m sleeping.

This morning, interspersed between their opening monologues on Mitt Romney’s Bain and tax return troubles, I called both DirecTV and Viacom, respectively.  Although it was a naive young guy at DirecTV who assured me that “they” had made both of my shows available (he directed me to, which I assured him was NOT a service provided by DirecTV), at least he was here in the US and did speak with me, human to human, I was not so lucky at Viacom.  Alas, I had to leave my comments on voicemail.  Hopefully whomever is charged with listening will get some joy out of my long-winded rant.

As to which party is more at fault for we long-suffering DirecTV subscribers not having our CCTV, I think it’s a draw.  We pay a pretty penny (or several thousand) every month for the right to have the signal go out with every hint of a raindrop here in South Florida, and the constant outages due to the contract dispute du jour.  I’m frankly sick and tired of having to pay the price every time they can’t come to terms with one of their program suppliers.  Can you imagine any other service industry in which the customer loses the service for which they pay handsomely just because a supplier raises its rates?

And then there’s Viacom.  Apparently, they want DirecTV to pony up an additional $1 billion each year for the right to re-transmit their offerings. The last time I checked, Viacom sells advertising on all of its channels.  They’re getting paid by the advertisers and getting paid by those of us watching.  Local television is free to the viewer because we watch the damned commercials.  Radio is free to the listeners because we listen to the damned commercials.  Viacom is getting it from both ends.  And they’d lose both subscriber fees and commercial revenue if, all of a sudden, they lost the multitudes of viewing households that DirecTV customers represent.

So to the two parties: FIX THIS NOW!

In the meantime… here’s how Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert brought us up to speed on Mitt’s RMoney problems..


Also on the show today, as we do every Tuesday morning, I visited with GottaLaff of The Political Carnival. Today, we talked about these stories and more:

 Oops! Team Romney campaign ad “no longer available due to copyright claim”

VIDEO- Defense by Fla GOP Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll implicated in sex scandal: I don’t look like a lesbian.

Woman claims Trayvon Martin killer Zimmerman molested her for more than a decade, his family members “proud racists”

Video- Mike Huckabee ’08: Money in offshore bank accounts could take US out of recession if it wasn’t “parked offshore.”

Plus 2 more (all short): Cayman Island bank accounts are “sheltered” because his 2008 GOP primary opponents “don’t want to pay taxes on that.”

Cayman Islands bank accounts are “tax free income. HERE:

VIDEO: 35 Questions Mitt Romney Must Answer About Bain Capital Before The Issue Can Go Away

PhotOH! Mitt Romney-themed “narcissistic” Salt Lake City Olympics pins

PhotOH! Mitt Romney broke a Facebook rule. Do we sense a pattern?

Dave Johnson’s post: If Bain was claiming Romney was still there in SEC docs, I think this was fraud, it was about reassuring partners & co-investors”