The Corruption In Air America, Update IX

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Been awhile since I’ve checked in on the leftards at Air America. It appears Brian Maloney and Michelle Malkin have been doing a great job keeping the fire under their asses.

One of their great finds is the lie they caught Al Franken in:

Take a close look at this signature.

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It belongs to Air America host and crusader for truth Al Franken. It is contained in a legal document we have obtained that exposes the Grand Canyon-sized chasm between what Al Franken says and what Al Franken does.

On July 27, our blogs first reported on a shady loan scheme between Air America Radio and the Gloria Wise Boys & Girls Club (which is now under investigation by both NYC’s Department of Investigation and NYS Attorney General Eliot Spitzer). National mainstream media outlets have failed to give the deal–and Air America’s continued money-flow crisis–the scrutiny they deserve.

Air America has yet to formally offer to pay back the loan in full, and knowledgeable sources tell us the liberal radio network is contemplating how to stem the lingering bad publicity. Anticipating further negative press, the company is apparently poised to “settle” the matter very soon.

Along with the network’s current management and shell-game-playing owners, Al Franken has gotten a pass, even from some conservative commentators who have claimed that it’s unfair to blame the liberal radio network’s financial and legal entanglements on its on-air talent.

Those claims are wrong.

According to a November 2004 settlement agreement between former Air American head honchos Evan Cohen and Rex Sorensen and Air America’s current owners and investors at Piquant LLC, Al Franken was smack dab in the middle of negotiations over the debts owed by the liberal radio network–including the Gloria Wise loan. The agreement was signed to clear the decks in advance of the questionable asset transfer from Air America’s old owners, Progress Media and Radio Free America, to Piquant. (This is the transfer being challenged by Multicultural Radio Broadcasting Inc. as a “fraudulent conveyance,” which we first reported exclusively in the first installment in our investigative blog series, “A Trail of Debts.”)

Far from being an innocent party with no knowledge of Air America’s money woes, Franken was a signatory to the agreement. The document, published here for the first time, exposes how Franken misled his listeners and the press about his knowledge of the charity loan.

Now the Washington Times is getting into the act, if you can believe it:

Al Franken appears to be caught in a fib — a “lying lie,” he might call it — about Air America’s loans-from-children scandal. To his employers’ credit, Air America is seeking to put the scandal behind it: On Thursday, the network wired the remaining $825,000 it “borrowed” from the Gloria Wise Boys and Girls Club in the Bronx to the club’s lawyers. Air America’s parent company, Piquant LLC, had initially denied responsibility for the total of $875,000 in questionable transfers, claiming a previous owner was liable. But the negative publicity from nearly wrecking a taxpayer-subsidized center for children and the elderly appears to have shamed it into paying the money back.

A month ago Al Franken claimed ignorance of the transfers. “I didn’t know anything about this until late last week,” he told Air America listeners on Aug. 8. The network’s brass echoed this: Air America CEO Danny Goldberg told the New York Sun this week that the “on-air talent” has “never had any responsibility for this loan.” This seemed plausible at the time, since no one expects the talent to be arranging finances, so in our Aug. 3 editorial on the subject we gave Mr. Franken a pass.

Regrettably, it appears we shouldn’t have. In light of documents that surfaced last week, it looks to be the case that as of November 2004, and possibly earlier, Mr. Franken knew the amount of money, the money’s origins and the dates the transfers occurred. This came to light after a settlement agreement between former and current owners of Air America — a document which details the Gloria Wise transfers — was leaked to Michelle Malkin and Brian Maloney, who promptly posted the document on their Web sites. The document shows that Mr. Franken signed off on the settlement, and did so in the presence of a notary public, no less.

As any reader of this document can figure out, the Gloria Wise Club gave Air America a large sum of money. In a section titled “AAR Liabilities,” the document notes “$875,000, claimed by the Gloria Wise Boys & Girls Club,” of which $167,000 was transferred in late 2003 and another $708,000 was transferred in March 2004.

Mr. Franken’s signature appears on a page stamped by State of New York Notary Public Wallis Northworth in which Mr. Northworth attests that Mr. Franken signed the document in his presence.

Claims that Mr. Franken was unaware of the particulars fly in the face of a clause in the document that states each signatory “has read this Agreement and understands its terms.” Mr. Franken has made a career playing gotcha. The scandal involves the funnelling of tax dollars intended for children to fund a failing partisan radio venture. His prevarications look much like what he criticizes in others.

So the club got their money back plus the station, their owners, and their hosts were all outed as lying sacks of llama dung. Nice!

Previous:

The Corruption In Air America
The Corruption In Air America, Update
The Corruption In Air America, Update II
The Corruption In Air America, Update III
The Corruption In Air America, Update IV
The Corruption In Air America, Update V
The Corruption In Air America, Update VI
The Corruption In Air America, Update VII
The Corruption In Air America, Update VIII
Air America At It’s Finest

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