Insight pres & CEO Michael Willner picked up this year’s Grand TAM Award, joining the ranks of past winners like Ted Turner and John Hendricks. The honorific is given each year to the industry player whose leadership has most helped propel the cable biz forward. Willner sat down with CTAM capo Char Beales yesterday and, in his own inimitably straightforward manner, gave his assessment about where cable stands and where it’s going. The MSO chief shrugged off the perennial telco FTTH threat, saying that the cyclical announcements of a robust fiber/video offering are so much hot air. "I don’t know if this is the ’94, the ’98 or the 2001 announcement," Willner said. "It’s just more talk to manipulate Wall St into thinking the end is right around the corner." Willner heads to the Hill today to testify about Berlin’s digital transition and while he doesn’t expect any surprises, his ongoing efforts to level the playing field between cable and "the squatters" (broadcasters) aren’t likely to end soon. Also on the Willner radar: quashing a la carte, which he says actually inhibits choice, and fighting to equalize regulations that allow DBS unfettered programming exclusives (as is the case with Sunday Ticket).