Howie Carr, has been a legend in Boston media for longer than I have been alive. Depending on your cultural tolerance or political views, you love him or you wished Whitey Bulger’s accomplices got the right house address in Somerville with that basketball with some “See Fouahh” that should’ve gone four houses up not down. Kidding aside, Howie has really past his prime. Men in media tend to have a shelf life. If you watch men for looks and alleged credibility, they’ll age like fine wine, but sometimes their brains do not age well. Anger ensues, and they become a turnoff. If you want some fairness, Dan Kennedy from WGBH has really fallen off the rails in terms of intellectual stability where he’s been so bitter and on the Beat The Press’ “Rants and Raves” tends to be on the former more and more. And he’s a liberal.
Back to Howard Carr. His radio show has been celebrating this year the 25th anniversary. I don’t think he assumed PM drive on WRKO till about the late 1990s. His show despite the right of center bias, and a political encyclopedia of the Massachusetts Hackerama, known as the large amount of seat warmers who work for the Commonwealth brought some entertaining talk for the early 2000s. The show was and is built on featured segments ranging from the celeberity Death Pool, to the voicemail line to make fun of Howie or mock him known as the Chump Line or some other sillyass contests like Dead or Alive (similar to the Deathpool, as callers would win a prize if they got the correct answer), to the Wizard of Ehs, in honor of the now late Ted Kennedy’s notorious use of “ehs” in public speaking. When he passed away this contest would be discontinued as winning callers would have to guess the “ehs” in a soundbite.
This made great radio for anyone who again had the cultural tolerance or political acceptance. By the end of 2008, Howie Carr’s program changed as more conservatives were using the Net to find other like minded people to build their echo chamber. Because out of town conservatives do not understand the local political scene, or any local political scene, Howie’s show changed to bend over backwards to these conservative carpetbaggers. The election of Barrack Obama also turned the show to a different direction as the country’s policy changed.
If anyone knows Howie, he was literally a center of the Most Wanted Man on the FBI’s watchlist for a number of years. If you have ever followed the Whitey Bulger saga, you know his brother Billy, the “Corrupt Midget” had not liked Howie’s different reporting approach. And he was the target like how I began this post. After a quarter of a century of Whitey being M.I.A. not to long after Osama bin Laden got taken down (allegedly), Whitey was next on the list and became #1 on the Most Wanted List. Failures in the FBI caused them to get a lead in 2011 when the FBI placed some ads for Mr. Bulger in major DMAs in the country, again to get eyeballs. CNN International ran b-roll of the commercial campaign, that caught attention across the pond and Howie Carr had the “infamous heart of an alligator” in mid June of that year. As any New England news geek would do best, they would rush to the radio at 3:00 in the afternoon and go rush to get the Boston Herald the following day to collect a moment of Boston history.
The trial would come into fruition in 2013 and it became entertaining radio because how scummy Whitey was on trial.
A part of me inside tells me that the CCTV camera at the Federal court in Boston had some recording ability. I cannot believe that CCTV was just for live viewing for overflow rooms. Perhaps some of my older friends may never see the Trial of the Century while I may be old enough for those tapes to leak. I mean really, just because there is a law prohibiting cameras in the court, doesn’t mean the US Government can’t break their own rules right? 😉
In between 2008 to 2014, Howie was at this point on and off because of the Internet bandwagon types and the many out of towners not understanding Whitey, to the point one caller asked why he didn’t write a book on Obama thinking he was some gangster.
By 2015, Howie Carr became a sellout to Donald Trump. That’s a story for another day.