Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Why I Listen To and Retweet Tom Leykis

Tom Leykis ridicules my faith and any faith that includes theism or anything supernatural. He thinks people like me are not smart. He dismisses many of the moral convictions I hold. He promotes abortion (and has paid for multiple elective abortions himself), even telling guys how to effectively prompt a woman to have an elective abortion if she's knocked up and he was at least one of the guys having intercourse with her. (To be fair, he encourages guys to avoid conceiving in the first place through vasectomies and condom use, although not abstinence). He sometimes bashes political figures and media personalities I respect and admire. Some of his political soapboxing frustrates me. I'm aging out of his target demographic.

And yet, I'm a regular listener.

Why? Many reasons. Here they are, in no particular order:

1) I believe in what he's doing as an entrepreneur.
2) I believe in what he's doing as a pioneer.
3) I believe in what he's doing as an entertainer.
4) I appreciate professional excellence.
5) Listening to him is often "opposition research", either from what he's saying or what his callers are saying. I am often challenged to think more about my experiences, views, and conclusions, and how to defend my positions and persuade others to them.
6) I appreciate his insights into radio as well as media and entertainment in general.
7) Much of his advice is effective and helpful, and even the advice that isn't applicable to me can be good for someone I know.

The New Normal

Leykis calls his company The New Normal, and for good reason. After a long career in commercial broadcast radio in various markets, including Los Angeles, his then-flagship Los Angeles station flipped formats and took his show off.  His employer paid him for a couple of more years, per the terms of his contract, which wouldn't allow him to keep getting those payments if he took his show elsewhere. Rather than taking his investments and retiring, or going to work, at the end of his contract, for corporate radio again but for much less salary and even less freedom than before, Leykis opted to research, plan, and pioneer online, appointment, live talk/caller audio content. He returned to performing as soon as his contract ended.

The Tom Leykis Show is NOT a podcast. It's a live call-in show that streams online. Podcasts are made of the show, however. Leykis is the owner and boss, and can say whatever he wants to say (other than things like slander, of course). With streaming on the website and through an app, his content can be accessed on smart phones or any tablet, laptop, or desktop that is connected to the Internet. More and more automobiles on the on road will be able to access the content. There's no radio transmitter. He's not stuck in some office building with a bunch of sister stations that report to a giant shareholder corporation. It is much easier for him to do his show remotely, and he has even done part of this show from a traffic jam, but he's usually either in his Burbank studio (a former laundromat) or at his second home, a ranch in Santa Barbara county, while his crew works in the Burbank studio.

This is a business venture, not a hobby. He has been open with his audience about the financial standing of the business, in part so he can contrast his modest profits with the enormous debt of the radio giants. The company is funded primarily by ad sales (with advertisers well aware of what they're getting into) and podcast subscriptions. There are various music streams as part of this venture, such as New Normal Rock and Pure Pop Hits, but the signature content is The Tom Leykis Show, which usually includes the hourly "News for Guys", presented by his staffers, Gary and Dino, who have their own subscription podcast as well.

About That Advice

He gives advice about money (Money Monday is live at 5 p.m. Pacific), education/training/career, dealing with employers and co-workers, dealing with family, and dating/relationships – hooking up, really (Leykis 101 is live Thursdays at 5 p.m. Pacific.)

Much of what he advises with money I already knew. The three big things I've done that go against his advice are that I got married, had kids, and as a result of those things, bought a house without being able to buy it outright or put a larger down payment on it. Those are some of the biggest sins, for lack of a better word, in his worldview.

His advice about figuring out who you are and what you're going to do professionally and with life in general is generally great advice, as is his advice about dealing with abusers and users and learning to say "no" in any area of your life (including to yourself).

While I disagree with him on some important things, I appreciate that he discourages men, especially young men, from getting into relationships or letting a woman take advantage of them.

When it comes to gender relations, he claims to be the ultimate feminist, citing his insistence that he expects women to be able to take care of themselves and to keep what they earn (and men should keep what they earn); men and woman should each live in their own place and see each other when and how they agree, each paying their own way through life. He advises men avoid marriage, and obviously advises against shacking up, but also advises avoiding exclusive relationships or even referring to women as girlfriends. His advice is for men to make booty calls to where women live (or some other place other than the guy's residence) and use technology to control and limit communication with those women and even prevent them from knowing a guy's real name, never mind his address. Someone who effectively follows his Leykis 101 advice will have women approaching them in places like bars, will have a slate of women he sees as booty calls, and will not be spending much time, effort, or money on any of them. As much as someone might dislike his advice in this area, due to our culture and the natures of men and women, it "works" to deliver what Leykis  promises: "more tail for less money".

Some of his repeated statements which might infuriate or offend:

"Women  get the richest man their looks can attract; men get the hottest woman their money can afford."

"The size of a diamond in an engagement ring is inversely proportional to the thickness of the finger."

"Women are the cheapest creatures on Earth." (when it comes to their own money)

"There's no benefit for a man to marry."

"Don’t date single mothers."

"Never believe what a chick says."

"Hot chicks rarely develop their brains. They don't have to."

"Men age like fine wine, women age like milk."

When told he's ugly or fat: "But I have money, power, and fame, and I'm extremely attractive when wearing my coat made of hundred dollar bills."

"There's the door!" (When a woman in a relationship complains about him/you)

"Not all women are golddiggers. Women  who aren't attractive can’t be."

"Dating equals f---ing."

"Children are line items in a budget."

Other Content on the Show

He is a refreshing voice when it comes to what's going on between the sexes; so much of media is slanted towards women. Hearing his insights and the experiences of his callers has been helpful to me in processing my own situation.

He often has a different perspective when it comes to breaking news than you'll find on the radio or television. He's not a partisan and isn't corporate-dependent or, to use an overused phrase, politically correct, so his analysis, which can include any words he wants to use, is interesting.

Every once in a while he does the "Racism Hour", inviting callers to say whatever they want about issues of race. I have no interest whatsoever in that. But then his most popular hour is 5 p.m. Pacific on Wednesdays: "Be Funny", which is kind of like a "Gong Show" (who reading this even remembers that show?!?) is something I'm not interested in, either. Nor do I care to listen when the hour's topic is going to be sports, other than when it is about the lives of the athletes or when it relates to the NFL Rams returning to Los Angeles, simply because I consider that to be more about local news than sports.

"Reports From the Front" is another sporadic feature, in which callers relate their situations when it comes to dating, relationships, marriage, etc. I think I have quite a report to file myself, although I'm unlikely to ever do it on his show (or any audio show, for that matter), so I'll probably publish it here someday.

Fridays are usually Wide Open Phones ("WOP") and there's usually time on at least one of the other days of the week for unscreened calls (which I assume is done because the screener is busy taking care of other things). On the last Wednesday of the month, I don't listen at all because I find the guest extremely annoying and somewhat destructive, especially pertaining to where I live. A not-to-miss weekly feature is the "bonus hour" at 6 p.m. Pacific on Tuesdays, with attorney Adam Sacks, who'll talk family law one week and criminal law the next, giving commentaries as well as taking calls and giving advice. That hour alone should be worth a subscription to so many listeners.

There are in-person events, some annual, that Leykis and his staff will put together, usually not as part of a live or recorded show, but advertised to listeners as a way for them to party with the gang and each other, which contributes to Leykis' deliberate effort to make what he's doing feel like a community situation, a "place" for his listeners to belong.

The Bottom Line

Leykis is an avowed and outspoken (but not an aggressive) atheist, a philosophical naturalist and/or a materialist, narcissistic/individualistic, and somewhat hedonistic (although he does advise delaying or forgoing gratification in some instances for the sake of overall personal responsibility), personally fiscally conservative, politically somewhat of a liberal libertarian who does not promote any political party. He likes to speak up on behalf of men and cultivates a limited sense of fraternity. In the "war between the sexes" there is no doubt that he's not going to kiss up to women; he's decidedly on the side of men (although, if you ever hear him counsel a female caller to protect herself from an abusive man, you'll know he's got heart for people, regardless of sex). One area where I think he is inconsistent is that he appears to believe in some standard of morality that is above the law.

Regardless of what you think of the content of his show or his opinions, as far skill in hosting, there’s no better talk show host. His experience and dedication are evident, and he's clearly chosen his staff carefully – Gary, Dino, and Mike.

"The Tom Leykis Show" usually streams live roughly 3 p.m.– 6p.m. Pacific, Monday through Friday (with the "bonus hour" at 6p.m. on Tuesday). Every day's show repeats until 3 p.m. or slightly later the following day. At 3 p.m. on Saturday, Monday’s show repeats, followed by the rest of the week in-order, repeating until about 3 p.m. on Monday.* That is free. However, if someone subscribes to Premium Tom or commercial-free Super Premium Tom, they can listen to any hour of the show whenever they want to. It is important to note that his show usually does NOT fit cleanly into three (or four) hours, for many reasons, including him taking advantage of the freedom he has to keep taking calls, so if you want to listen to the replays you’ll find that you usually can’t predict when a given hour of the show still start. For example, don’t expect that that you can catch the "bonus hour" with Adam Sacks at 6 a.m. sharp on Wednesday. Follow his Twitter account and subscribe to his e-mail list if you really want to know his show will be starting late, moved to a different time for the day (rare, but it happens), or if you want to be privy to the rare instances he'll do a bit of a show or a test at an odd hour.

*UPDATE May 16, 2017: He's been starting his show 15-20 minutes late a lot recently, and if the show ends around  6 p.m. (or, on Tuesday, 7 p.m.), that means there will be more replays because the show is less than three hours. He might also be playing around with the weekend repeats on the stream (perhaps because the show's anniversary has meant some lapsed subscriptions). For example, anyone who missed part of this past Friday's show and figured they'd catch it on the free repeating stream will first have found  Gary and Dino's free streaming of their anniversary show, then Tom's other show, "The Tasting Room" on Saturday morning, and, I suspect, some of the week's hours were pulled, at least on some of the repeats, because calculating when a certain Friday hour would repeat wasn't working. The stream was  past that point if you tried starting to listen again during the weekend.

Last night was another reminder that if you're not that interested in "News For Guys" or what is supposed to be the following hour, you should listen to "News For Guys" anyway (I personally find it interesting and informative, but I can understand not everyone will). At about 5 p.m. Pacific yesterday, I stayed listening to the stream during "News For Guys" even though I was not going to listen to Money Monday, the hour scheduled to follow. As happens once in a while, Tom chimed in during the news update and the guys ended up talking for something like two hours. This is like sitting around listening to the guys chat over a few beers and it can be very entertaining, depending on the topics. Monday Monday was canceled  for the day, but since Tom had  spent the first two hours talking about his frustration with, and departure from, Wells Fargo, it was kind of a Money Monday anyway.

1 comment:

  1. DarthW5:44 AM

    Good article on The Tom Leykis Show.

    I'm a regular Leykis listener, and even Super Premium member. Like you I don't agree with all Tom Leykis's opinions, but overall his show is great.

    I found his show about three years ago after hitting what was a bit of a "midlife crisis", me thinking after another relationship I was in (with a single mom - ugh) was AGAIN showing the signs that no modern Western committed relationship has any ROI for any man. In my search for answers, I came across some of Tom's old shows, and then his current show. Very early on I could tell he was presenting a very realistic view on modern relationships and Westernized women, and much of what he exposes represents my own experiences with dating (thankfully never marriage). I'd bet his show also represents the experience of most every man - even the white knights and betas that make excuses for modern women.

    I, too, prefer the Adam Sacks hour over a lot of the other show content. I do think "Leykis101" is a realistic perspective for dating and "neorelationships" with today's entitled, narcissistic modern women...and it actually works. I'm also not a big listener when his topics for the hour are about sports....and, man, I can't stand listening that last Wednesday of the month because it's a real bore more than anything :).

    I would encourage both men and women to listen to his show. Give it some time, even if offended, as it can be a bit rough. However, there are tons of gems of information there. Men can learn how to be better men, and that other men are and have been there. Women can "learn how men think."


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