Ya know what BossJock1947, I am a huge fan of Rush, but I could never imagine being able to hang with him. It's on a different level and yes, millions hang with him. Maybe you shouldn't try to read between the lines so much and make something out of nothing. I could never imagine hanging with anyone on that level at a bar or restaurant talking about my kids, my job, whatever. That's what I meant about hanging with. Rush, Sean Hannity, Howard Stern, Ryan Seacrest, Tom Leykis, whatever are in a different league. I used Rush as the example because he is one of the top most known on that level. I think having people you can relate to who shop in your own area and their kids go to school in your own area is very important. Unfortunately, radio companies feel that syndication is more important and that has taken jobs away from the local people. I don't believe in the all syndication route the industry has taken. If that bothers you, too bad.
Sally: if you can find local people who can garner as large an audience as a Rush...or whomever, by all means, a station would be crazy to replace local with syndicated. And, there are markets where this is being done.
The unfortunate fact is: in a lot of markets the "local" talent proves to be second-rate, ratings-wise, to the syndicated talent, which is why they are eventually replaced.
Not in every market...and not at every station. But a station with a solid line-up of syndicated, proven talent can often do better than the local yokels they can find who spend 3-4 hours talking about property taxes. The ratings don't lie...and therein lies the proof of the argument.
There is room for local talk...but there is not room for local talk, necessarily, at every talk station.