Our ol' pal Kevin Martin, FCC Chairman and closet Toots & The Maytals freak, promised America on bended knee last month that a merger between XM and Sirius was a no go. "America, it's a no go," he said. FCC regulations were in place when satellite radio first started up that would prohibit a merger, and there fundamentally could not be "one entity owning both of those licenses."
And now, here we are, stuffed with President's Day falafel and doffing our fedoras to a beautiful new $13 billion merger between XM and Sirius. How did this happen? Will the FCC really let this slide? Did you see Britney's new 'do???? XM shareholders will now receive 4.6 shares of Sirius stock for each share of XM as a consolation prize for no longer having any say in the direction of satellite radio. "This combination is the next logical step in the evolution of audio entertainment," Sirius CEO Mel Karmazin beamed. "Together, our best-in-class management team and programming content will create unprecedented choice for consumers, while creating long-term value for shareholders of both companies." When the number of satellite radio choices decreases to one, children, it is only then that the limitless choices will reveal themselves!
The monster company (XiriuM?) promises to increase the number of programming and content choices as well as other high-tech sorcery, yet one can't help but worry that the complete lack of competition will render such decisions needless in the future. Listeners are already concerned by a proposed schedule that replaces the all-'80s station with a 30-second repeating loop of Kevin Martin imitating Tommy Lee Jones in Batman Forever. But seriously, people. Wake up. They're takin' over, and they're doing it wielding daggers made of cash and boredom.