The truth at last? T.D. Mischke's firing "revealed"
It seemed unlikely when it was speculated here last week, but indeed, a minor on-air FCC violation was the reason cited by AM 1500 management in their termination of visionary broadcaster T. D. Mischke.
Since his release on December 5, Mischke and management alike have remained mum. But in his column this afternoon, MinnPost's David Brauer made public his email interview with Mischke himself, in which Mischke disclosed the cause of his firing as it was explained by AM 1500's management.
In fact it was an on-air phone call that got Mischke canned. And to increase the ignominy, it was a phone call to a Hubbard receptionist, in pursuit of the truth behind the Channel 45 corporate jingle. After his on-air producer Jason McGovern refused to call Channel 45 on his behalf, Mischke himself placed the telephone call.
From Mischke, in Brauer's MinnPost column today:
"I phoned downstairs, a receptionist answered, and I asked to speak to someone at Channel 45. She said, "Just a minute" and put me on hold. I then put the entire call on hold and asked my producer if he'd now please speak to them off the air so as to get a sense of where that jingle came from.As was reported here on December 9th, making such a phone call without the prior consent of the other party violates FCC Rule 73.1206.
That's what I was fired for. Making that call to the receptionist without getting her permission."
But is this the whole story? If the fatal phone call had been made a full two weeks prior to Mischke's firing on Friday, why had there been no action taken to secure a replacement personality for him? And was the offense so great that it warranted the denial of a farewell show for the 17 year veteran?
It's a story for certain, but it's a poor epilogue, and no one who has followed Mischke's career will likely be satisfied. At the very least, the infinite field of speculative outcomes has been now narrowed to just two-- either the 45 phone call is but a convenient excuse to cull a misfit broadcaster from a floundering line-up, or AM 1500 has shown both deplorable form and deplorable judgment by unceremoniously firing their most ingenious employee for the pettiest of reasons.
Rather like choosing between the electric chair and the firing squad, no? As always, Gimme Noise will pass on the details as soon as we unearth them.