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The radio stations are now scouring the land in search of talk show hosts who are not too mentally balanced.

Derish Wolff, a radio talent agent, said, "The nuttier the host, the higher the ratings. I have a station in San Francisco that's looking for someone sicker than Mad Dog Blossom of Whoohoo in Billings, Mont.""No one is sicker than Mad Dog," I told Derish.

"Isn't he the one who told his listeners to go outside in Billings with no clothes on and scream at TV weathermen, `I'm sick and tired of snow and I'm not going to take it any more'?"

"That wasn't what got him fired. He lost his job when he announced that all household pets had termites and warned parents not to let children play with their dogs. He may have been controversial but he had the ratings.

"The station wants someone on the political right. All the radio ratings are coming from the conservatives these days. I'm looking for a right-winger who's not afraid to call the liberals weak-kneed, thumb-sucking knee-jerks who want to take assault weapons out of the school lunch program and replace them with condoms. I want someone who wouldn't hesitate to telephone Hillary Clinton and ask her if Newt Gingrich was politically correct to call her the `B' word. I'd like a commentator who believes in God and is not squeamish about shooting doctors who perform abortions."

"Do you have any candidates in mind?" I asked Derish.

"I'm talking to Jock Itch Paul from Albany this afternoon. He's known as a mudslinging big mouth audiences love to hate, and his ratings are fantastic. Last week he suggested that everyone with a private airplane fly to Washington and land on the White House lawn to protest President Clinton's choice for surgeon general. Boy, did the phones light up on that one."

"You mean from his listeners?"

"No, from the Secret Service. Two of them said that they were going to go to Albany and punch him in the nose."

"If I started to spread hate, could I have my own show?"

Derish shook his head. "You may say that you despise certain members of the human race, but you're no Pat Buchanan."