October 22, 2010

If NPR must now prove it is principled, what a bloodbath is coming!

NPR fired Juan Williams and justified it, via CEO Vivian Schiller, by invoking an official editorial policy:
"[A 'news analyst' has] a very different role than that of a commentator or columnist. News analysts may not take personal public positions on controversial issues; doing so undermines their credibility as analysts, and that's what’s happened in this situation. As you all well know, we offer views of all kinds on your air every day, but those views are expressed by those we interview — not our reporters and analysts....

"... NPR’s ethics code [states]: 'In appearing on TV or other media. ... NPR journalists should not express views they would not air in their role as an NPR journalist. They should not participate in shows ... that encourage punditry and speculation rather than fact-based analysis.”

"More fundamentally, 'In appearing on TV or other media including electronic Web-based forums, NPR journalists  should not express views they would not air in their role as an NPR journalist.'"
Now, NPR is in a position where it must prove that's not a pretext by applying that policy, with comparable severity, to its other on-air personalities. Lefties and righties are getting into this game. The lefties are targeting Mara Liasson. Here's Eric Boehlert at Media Matters:
[I]f you look at NPR's code of ethics, there's simply no way Liasson should be making appearances on Fox....

Liasson is part of the Fox News family. Period. For instance, Liasson appears on the Fox News website as a "Fox News contributor," not as "Fox News contributor to the sorta/kinda serious shows." The only way she'd really be able to defend her continued alliance would be to argue that Fox News in its entirely (i.e. Glenn Beck and Sean Hannity) is a serious endeavor worthy of NPR's status. But if Liasson can't defend all of Fox News, then her half-pregnant approach (i.e. she's only employed by a tiny portion of Fox News) just doesn't fly.
On the right, at the Weekly Standard, Stephen F. Hayes points at Nina Totenberg:
Over the past month, in her regular appearances on “Inside Washington,” she has: criticized a ruling of the Roberts Court as scandalous; claimed that Michelle Obama gives people “warm and fuzzy” feelings; called Bill Clinton “the most gifted politician I’ve ever seen;” and lamented that the Democratic Party is diverse enough to include moderates that want to extend all Bush tax cuts....

Her most partisan comment came when Charles Krauthammer pointed out that 31 Democrats in the House had written to Nancy Pelosi to call for extending the Bush tax cuts, Totenberg wished them out of the party. “When a party actually has a huge majority, it has a huge diversity.  And that is part of the problem that Democrats have.  But would I like it to be otherwise?  Of course.”
Hayes goes on, marshaling the evidence. You get the idea. It's open season on NPR news analysts... with 11 days to go before election day. A grisly October surprise.

113 comments:

bagoh20 said...

A conservative is a liberal who's been mugged by liberals.

Maguro said...

Pass the popcorn.

traditionalguy said...

Bagoh20...LOL. Does this remind anyone of the sudden building of the Berlin Wall 50 years ago. The Soviets had to keep their subjects from learning about freedom from rubbing shoulders with the Berliners. IMO NPR fears that the freedom experienced by analysts on Fox News will draw away their obedient subjects into thought crimes. The Wall had to be guarded and crossers from the Soviet/NPR side were shot on sight.

Drew said...

Pass the popcorn -- D'oh! Someone already said that. Okay, well, pass it over here next!

Salamandyr said...

Liasson may get gone, but Totenberg didn't say anything her bosses don't agree with, so she's okay.

The real crime for Liasson and Williams, is their very presence on Fox News is a rebuttal to the charge that Fox is biased and one sided. If they can force well meaning liberals off of Fox, then Fox really will be more vulnerable to the accusations.

Sixty Grit said...

Couldn't happen to a more deserving bunch of communists.

Lincolntf said...

Man, this battle is being fought all over. I've seen arguments on Facebook, on the cable shows, at the NPR website, everywhere. This just might lead to a long-needed overhaul of NPR. Who knew there was such a well of disgust for partisan public broadcasting?

I absolutely love the law of unintended consequences.

The Drill SGT said...

Nina, as I understand it is a "correspondent" while Juan was a News Analyst"

I would think that a correspondent should stay closer to "Just the facts Ma'am" than an analyst.

Liasson's bio at NPR is silent ob her Fox gig, while Nina's gushes about her NBC Inside Washington work.

All of the NPR animals are not equal/

Pogo said...

Doubleplusungood thoughtcrime.

Must use memory hole.
Williams is unperson.

Repeat: Blackwhite, blackwhite, blackwhite.


Lalalalalah.
Can't hear yooouuuu.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Ah... the law of unintended consequences....sometimes I love it.

NPR is like..."Wut? You mean those professional standard thingies apply to ...like ....everyone?"

Scott M said...

with 11 days to go before election day. A grisly October surprise.

...and therein the delicious irony of the entire situation. Apparently the world doesn't stop turning simply because we have an important mid-term coming up.

Fred4Pres said...

NPRers hate Williams and Liasson for taking that filthy filthy filthy lucre from evil evil evil Fox.

And the fact they don't have gigs for getting some of that mooolah.

As for NPR management, money is only good for taxes, to be diverted back to NPR! And social programs.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

@ Lincoln

Ha ha ..unintended consequences.

I posted before I read your comment.

Great minds think alike LOL

Widmerpool said...

Salamandyr,

You are absolutely right and I think that's why the canny Ailes threw alot of money to Williams - it encourages Liasson to hang tight.

Godot said...

October surprise? Or October distraction?

Everyone repeat after me: "It's the economy stupid."

_

Meade said...

Shhh... pass that popcorn vewy vewy quietly, we're hunting national public wadio wabbits!

EDH said...

I'll take the liberty of bumping this comment from last night's Cafe...

"Let the word go forth from this time and place, that a new standard has been set and henceforth all NPR ["analysts"] will have to walk very quietly."

The Drill SGT said...

@Meade 0907

ROFLMAO :)

Fen said...

Update at 3:30 p.m. ET. NPR CEO Vivian Schiller just released this statement:

"I spoke hastily and I apologize to Juan and others for my thoughtless remark."


Why hasn't she been fired? She just broke the same "ethics code" that NPR claims Juan violated.

bagoh20 said...

While the economy is important, it's not really the business of government. The reason this thing is important is that: 1) It demonstrates how the agenda currently in power feels about freedom and it's own right to force adherence, 2) Spotlights a great example of government waste and politically directed spending of our money against our wishes. It's central to this election.

Fen said...

The real crime for Liasson and Williams, is their very presence on Fox News is a rebuttal to the charge that Fox is biased and one sided. If they can force well meaning liberals off of Fox, then Fox really will be more vulnerable to the accusations.

Not any more:

Libtard: "Faux News is right-wing"

Fox: "Only because you ran off our all left-wing commenters"

Lincolntf said...

"I spoke hastily and I apologize to Juan and others for my thoughtless remark."


Hahahahaha!!! That is priceless!

These gibbering idiots on the Left are so convinced of their own perfection they never realize when they are making absolute fools of themselves. The hypocritical old crone should resign immediately. Maybe some House committee can censure her or something if that's what it takes.

ricpic said...

NPR is delusional. In no way at all is NPR a player in the struggle to influence the electorate. Why? The NPR audience consists ENTIRELY of true believers. Orthodox lefties whose total world view solidifies early and is stuck in concrete. Trust me, I grew up among these people, they are totally smug and totally impervious to reality. The NPR listener's vote is a given -- Democrat.
FOX, on the other hand, draws its listeners and viewers from across the spectrum. Some of them are actually open minded and can be convinced to actually think. They are persuadable. FOX is what NPR can only fantasize about being -- a player.

Scott M said...

I absolutely love the law of unintended consequences.

And herein lies my basic problem with progressives. They can lambaste me all they want with "afraid of change" conservatism, but it's really more of a "carefully considered change" mainly due to the law of unintended consequences. Progressives seem, whether in matters legislative or in the arts, to want change for change's own sake. Then they plow headlong into it with, God forbid, the power to effect that change without really understanding the plethora ("Jose, do you know what a plethora is?") of unintended problems their desire to just DO SOMETHING...ANYTHING will cause.

rhhardin said...

NPR long ago caused the same revulsion as the mainstream networks did among most people.

NPR is for the NYT audience, call it soap opera men, rather than the MSM's exclusively soap opera women.

The Drill SGT said...

As I said yesterday, Juan's ultimate crime is that he is black.

For NPR, that was the issue. How can they continue with the meme about those redneck racist tea Party bigots who hate Muslims, when they got a black brother saying, that some level of concern/fear is an instinctive natural post 9/11 reaction.

It lets all those white racists off the hook...

oh the horror....

Pogo said...

And calling Williams a "lawn jockey" seems to me an astounding thing.

Drew said...

Nina, as I understand it is a "correspondent" while Juan was a News Analyst"

Except a "correspondent" isn't supposed to share opinions, according to NPR. And Juan Williams was downgraded from correspondent to News Analyst precisely because he was opnionating.

So, yeah, NPR is going to have to let quite a few people go. Shouldn't we make them follow their own rules?

FormerTucsonan said...

The real crime for Liasson and Williams, is their very presence on Fox News

Which they've been doing for a good 10 years or so. Guess the party bosses at NPR feel that they've gone native.

Pogo said...

And from former law student:

"I'll explain by way of analogy -- hopefully JAY can comprehend:

Sundays through Fridays, Juan Williams is a faithful wife (to NPR) and mother.
Saturday Juan goes down to the cocktail lounge (Fox) and sluts it up.
NPR asks how Juan can be a whore on Saturday and a chaste matron the rest of the week, and divorces Juan.
"

Did fls just say that?
Yes, I think he did.
'Juan, you ignorant slut!'

Hagar said...

In 1999 PBS, NPR's parent company, fired Ken Bode as host of "Washington Week" for allowing too much diversity of views to be expressed on the program, so abrubtly that they had to call Paul Duke out of retirement to serve as an interim host, while they searched for a replacement. They settled on Gwen Ifill with the explicit understanding that there would be no more "diversity," and you can see the results. The "Washington Week" could appropriately be broadcast with the panel al together in a California King bed.

garage mahal said...

This country is getting dumber by the minute. I think it's probably in our best interest to just hand this country over to the Chinese and have them run it. It's pretty clear we don't know what the fuck we're doing.

Michael said...

Pogo: The "lawn jockey" comment is similar to Montaigne's easy use of racial stereotypes in what he believes is a sophisticated and ironic fashion. Liberals believe that they are immune to criticism for racial insults because they are liberals. When African Americans stray from the liberal reservation they provide an excuse for liberals to unleash their racism. Liberals expect African Americans to stay in their place. It is irresistible for them to be able to display their racism openly on Clarence Thomas, Condi Rice and now Juan Williams in the guise of solidarity with "real" African Americans. Disgusting.

GMay said...

lincolntf said: "Who knew there was such a well of disgust for partisan public broadcasting?"

This question fits in well with that sidebar article about preference cascades over at Ace's this morning (which I'm sure you've already seen.)

America's Politico said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Pogo said...

garage mahal said...
This country is getting dumber by the minute. I think it's probably in our best interest to just hand this country over to the Chinese and have them run it.
"

Tom Friedman, is that you???

America's Politico said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
GMay said...

garage said: "I think it's probably in our best interest to just hand this country over to the Chinese and have them run it."

I say we just give them California and call it even.

Fen said...

And calling Williams a "lawn jockey" seems to me an astounding thing.

Son't forget the "token" adjective, implying he's an Uncle Tom.

This is what happens to blacks who try to leave the Liberal Plantation.

Scott M said...

It's pretty clear we don't know what the fuck we're doing.

We used to with a vengeance, Garage. Then the Boomers got a vicegrip hold on the education system....

Palladian said...

Another wonderful target for this little game would be the spittle-damp, fleshy-mouthed ramblings of the late Dan Schorr. His official title was "senior news analyst", and he was certainly in violation of this "ethics code", right on NPR itself.

Fen said...

GMay:This question fits in well with that sidebar article about preference cascades over at Ace's this morning

Money quote:

"Juan Williams came too close to understanding ideas he was supposed to hate. The Left is deathly afraid of what happens when its constituents begin to understand the Right. They didn’t like the idea of millions watching an NPR contributor break the biohazard seal on strictly quarantined ideas."

former law student said...

Juan Williams was a contractor, like the cleaning service. If you don't like the job the cleaning service is doing you get another one. Nina Totenberg was an employee, so she likely has some due process rights.

former law student said...

She just broke the same "ethics code" that NPR claims Juan violated.

By stating that Juan should have kept some of his private thoughts confidential? Remember conversations with one's psychiatrist are privileged.

I suppose she could have suggested Juan reveal thoughts like that only to his father confessor.

Fen said...

Jaun was downgraded to contractor as a compromise agreement to allow him to continue appearing of FOX.

FLS, you're sqaundering whatever remaining credibility you had here.

Bob_R said...

Threads like these are the best argument for why it is in NPR/PBS/CPB/PRI best interest to drop public funding. If this were about CNN or MSNBC they would die after 45 comments.

And we damned well should do what is in their best inerests.

Fen said...

Gee FLS, how about the CEO should abide by the same ethics code she insists her employees follow?

Keep sqaundering. Next you'll be parsing the meaning of "is"

former law student said...

And Juan Williams was downgraded from correspondent to News Analyst

Not only that. Juan was terminated as n (correspondent) employee, but taken on as a (news analyst) contractor.

Fen said...

best interest to drop public funding. If this were about CNN or MSNBC they would die after 45 comments.

If it were about CNN or MSNBC, I wouldn't care enough to read the OP.

Pogo said...

She broke the ethic code by suggesting that the remarks meant Williams ought to see a psychiatrist.

It's a typical lefty Alinsky tactic, smearing someone as mentally unstable. And not the dispassionate sort of remark that NPR claims it demands.

And even worse, here it meant that the rich white lady is on video saying, 'that black man is craaazy!'

Truly enlightening, this debacle.

Lincolntf said...

Isn't it precious how the Left always ends up implying that everyone who disagrees with them is mentally deficient or psychologically damaged?
They have no idea that they sound like the villains in a crappy dystopian novel. They are the least self-aware people on Earth.

Michael said...

FLS wrote..."Juan Williams was a contractor, like the cleaning service."

Of the thousands of independent contractor roles we note that a liberal chooses which one to illustrate a point about an African American. It is absolutely reflexive with lefties when considering off the plantation African Americans. Disgusting.

Paul Zrimsek said...

There's an interesting tangentially related story happening right there in Madison. In brief: a local feminist science-fiction convention welshed on its Guest of Honor invitation to a writer after she blogged in opposition to the Ground Zero mosque, yielding to pressure from fanatical, intolerant defenders of the faith-- and apparently a few Muslims as well.

Bruce Hayden said...

I looked up Totenberg on Wikipedia, and had forgotten how tightly she is connected into the D.C. Democratic machine. She was married by Justice Ginsburg to the late Democratic Senator Floyd Haskell of Colorado, was the one to apparently disclose the "leak" of Anita Hill to kill the Thomas nomination, as well as some Watergate stuff possibly leaked her by her good friend Potter Stewart, is apparently a very good friend of Lani Guinier, etc.

No wonder so much of her "news" sounds a bit slanted.

DaveW said...

Imagine this. I fire you and when you apply for a job elsewhere the manager calls me for a reference. I say the reason you were let go is "between him and his psychiatrist".

After I was fired I'd spend the next 5 years in court losing everything I owned and my former employer would also.

Williams is a public figure and proving a tort might be a high bar for him but this looks pretty open and shut to me. He probably won't do it, for one thing I doubt he could demonstrate he's been damaged in any significant way.

But that doesn't change the stupidity of that woman saying that about him. I knew better than to do that sort of thing when I was a mid-level manager 35 years ago.

LarsPorsena said...

"The real crime for Liasson and Williams, is their very presence on Fox News

Which they've been doing for a good 10 years or so. Guess the party bosses at NPR feel that they've gone native."

That fresh $2 million for NPR from Soros increased their awareness of previously unnoticed thought crimes.

former law student said...

She broke the ethic code by suggesting that the remarks meant Williams ought to see a psychiatrist.


And pogo, a doctor, suggesting there's something discreditable about consulting a psychiatrist!

But I suppose then she should have said priest. Nobody thinks any the less of you for consulting a priest, and things you say to your priest do not find their way to the Fox News Channel.

By the way: Daniel Schorr was a commentator. NPR, like CNN before them, paid Schorr to opine, to interpret the news for us.

former law student said...

It is absolutely reflexive with lefties when considering off the plantation African Americans.

I've only ever seen Poles or Hispanic cleaners, sorry.

LarsPorsena said...

"..But I suppose then she should have said priest. Nobody thinks any the less of you for consulting a priest, and things you say to your priest do not find their way to the Fox News Channel..."

Everything certain Imams say find their way to NPR. Carry much water for CAIR FLS?

Fen said...

FLS: And pogo, a doctor, suggesting there's something discreditable about consulting a psychiatrist

Right FLS, she was merely suggesting he consult a psychiatrist. Your spin is so feeble.

Can you say "malice" and "discovery"?

Because you'll see more of those words in the coming weeks.

Michael said...

Right, FLS, when you think of independent contractors in relationship to African Americans you think of cleaning people. Nice. Servants. I get it. We all get it.

GMay said...

FLS proving that the only shovel-ready project is the hole he currently occupies.

Shanna said...

The real crime for Liasson and Williams, is their very presence on Fox News is a rebuttal to the charge that Fox is biased and one sided. If they can force well meaning liberals off of Fox, then Fox really will be more vulnerable to the accusations.

Of course, as is happening with Juan, Fox is likely to just bring them into the family, which makes Fox more diverse, right?

Or maybe they just figure they can automatically tar anyone at fox with the same brush, since all the “fox is evil” people won’t watch. What really got them is that someone was on both NPR and Fox, so they couldn't say EVERYONE on fox is an evil conservative. And if they did, someone might actually be familiar with Juan, and not believe them. From now on out, Juan will be labeled a conservative by all the libs.

Original Mike said...

As I said the other day, I heard Totenberg, two weeks ago, describe the Robert's Court as "extreme right wing". This is not editorializing?

They were so eager to get rid of Williams (or were pushed by Soros, as some have suggested) that they dd not think this through. Either that, or they thought they were invulnerable.

Bruce Hayden said...

I frankly don't think though that NPR is going to do anything here. They are going to hunker down, and run out the clock, assuming that this is just an election bruhaha.

I think that if they fired Mara, it would be obvious that the issue was Fox, and not anything that they were actually saying. And firing commentator Liasson without firing reporter Totenberg would look especially bad. But as someone above pointed out, Totenberg hasn't ever said or done anything that her management hasn't agreed with 100%, plus she appears to have been completely plugged into the Democratic Party aristocracy in Washington, D.C. for decades now. She is plugged in enough that she likely wouldn't get fired for having sex with a horse on the Mall (unlikely, as she is old enough now to be eligible for full Social Security benefits on her own, and thus is likely to have a somewhat reduced libido, and, yes, ability to perform).

former law student said...

What services do you guys contract out?

The Drill SGT said...

former law student said...
Juan Williams was a contractor, like the cleaning service. If you don't like the job the cleaning service is doing you get another one. Nina Totenberg was an employee, so she likely has some due process rights.


Fen got there firt, but only had part of it.

Juan was on the staff. NPR went to him and told him they wanted to resructure the deal and make in a consultant (e.g. 1099) rather than an employee becuase it would protect them and allow him to be more open in his other gigs.

Then instead of using that detached arrangement to distance from his remarks, they fired him when he went off the plantation.

So, yeah, Nina is an employee, therefore she must toe the NPR ethics line closer than Juan, who was an independent.

Scott M said...

In brief: a local feminist science-fiction convention welshed on its Guest of Honor invitation to a writer after she blogged in opposition to the Ground Zero mosque, yielding to pressure from fanatical, intolerant defenders of the faith-- and apparently a few Muslims as well.

Yeah...saw that yesterday. I'm not so sure this would happen if the genders were reversed. It's entirely possible, but the male sci-fi writers I read exhaustively (Stirling, Hamilton, Pournelle, Niven, Martin, Bear) have some fairly wide pragmatic, if not conservative streaks in them. They tend to be guarded with their opinions re current events, especially in Stirling's case, not at all in Pournelle's, but they do let their sentiments leak.

I don't recall anything like this happening to any of them or their like-gendered peers on a similar circumstance.

bagoh20 said...

"That fresh $2 million for NPR from Soros increased their awareness of previously unnoticed thought crimes."

Ha, and Juan get $2 million all for himself, while the communists at NPR get to share the same among all of them as is their stated belief.

Pogo said...

"And pogo, a doctor, suggesting there's something discreditable about consulting a psychiatrist!"

Discredit was NPR CEO Vivian Schiller's intent, as you well know; as everyone who heard or read her comments knows.

But you're welcome to attempt to spin it otherwise.
Good luck with that approach.

The Drill SGT said...

former law student said...
What services do you guys contract out?


- payroll to ADP
- taxes to a CPA
- legal to a lawyer
- HR benefits admin to a services firm
- Sys Admin to a 1099
- some specialist customer facing work with ERPs to 1099's

cleaning is done by the landlord.

so we dont fit your model. we outsource high end part time specialist work

bagoh20 said...

"NPR, like CNN before them, paid Schorr to opine, to interpret the news for us."

Yea, that was like getting your wife to evaluate your mistress. He never appreciated the superior charms of the truth.

former law student said...

Synova posted on the sci-fi writer yesterday. Her (the disinvitee's) blog post made it clear that Islam was to blame and all Muslims bore some responsibility for 9/11, even if not all Muslims flew planes into buildings.

edutcher said...

Do I violate Godwin's Law if I say CPB is showing it's Stalinist (rather than National Socialist) sympathies?

I mean, once the purges start, you're never done.

garage mahal said...

This country is getting dumber by the minute. I think it's probably in our best interest to just hand this country over to the Chinese and have them run it. It's pretty clear we don't know what the fuck we're doing.

The Left hasn't changed in 40 years. This is the gist of what Gracie Slick meant when she named her daughter, China, after "the most beautiful country in the world".

Which, of course, was going through the Cultural Revolution at the time.

(How many people did they murder?)

PS Notice when someone jumps the fence, how it's the Lefties who are the ones who start with the (racist/sexist/...) epithets.

PPS I don't necessarily think this should be viewed as a distraction from the economy, but another illustration why the Left can't be trusted.

former law student said...

Thanks, Drill Sgt. I fixed it, I hope:

Juan Williams was a contractor, like the IT guy. If the server keeps going down you get another IT guy. Nina Totenberg was an employee, so she likely has some due process rights.

Bruce Hayden said...

They were so eager to get rid of Williams (or were pushed by Soros, as some have suggested) that they dd not think this through. Either that, or they thought they were invulnerable.

I am pretty sure that they didn't think it through. If they had, they would have done it a couple weeks either before or after the big gift from Soros. Preferably before. This just makes it look like a cleansing to get all that money.

The libs here, and elsewhere, have been whining about the Tea Party being funded, in small part, by some conservative billionaires. But, they ignore the elephant in the tent of George Soros, another billionaire, but who has contributed far more money, far more strategically, to extreme leftist causes. And, now, he appears to have bought himself a media outlet on the cheap, with a catchy name. (Ok, senior Democratic Congresswoman Harman's husband got a media outlet even cheaper this summer when he bought Newsweek for $1).

Of course, it could all be coincidence that Soros gave all that money to NPR the same week that Williams was fired from there, but....

Which is why I think that it was happenstance.

former law student said...

But, they ignore the elephant in the tent of George Soros, another billionaire, but who has contributed far more money, far more strategically, to extreme leftist causes.

George Soros is way down the list of billionaires. He's only worth 2/3 of a single Koch brother. And, unlike the Koch brothers, Soros does not contribute to political candidates. But he's the only whipping boy the Right can find.

Bruce Hayden said...

Do I violate Godwin's Law if I say CPB is showing it's Stalinist (rather than National Socialist) sympathies?

We could always ask Mike (Godwin), but my guess would be no. First, Communists have always been more respectable to the left than Nazis, or at least since Hitler breached his agreement with Stalin. And, secondly, what you are talking about really is Stalinist.

Bruce Hayden said...

George Soros is way down the list of billionaires. He's only worth 2/3 of a single Koch brother. And, unlike the Koch brothers, Soros does not contribute to political candidates. But he's the only whipping boy the Right can find.

So, are you saying that he isn't heavily involved in politics? Or, do you consider his front groups, like Media Matters, Moveon.org, etc. to be non-partisan?

Indeed, he may have the distinction of having paid to illegally register more (illegal) voters than anyone else in this country.

c3 said...

Juan Williams was a contractor, like the cleaning service.

FLS;
Hopefully not an intentional analogy (or a "freudian slip")

When I think of contractor I think of the tax consultant, the payroll manager etc.

Maybe Juan and "cleaning service" just go together so easily.

deborah said...

Lincolntf:
"They have no idea that they sound like the villains in a crappy dystopian novel. They are the least self-aware people on Earth."

It's maddening. They are completely unaware of the irony.

c3 said...

Unless NPR goes full "MSNBC" I'm still going to listen. There really is no other news/talk alternative that can do more than "headline news" and isn't dominated by "talk"

And as I said yesterday I'm fully aware of their reflexive bias the regularly rears its ugly head. Yes, Tottenberg is pretty obvious. I'd suggest that the "better" face for the NPR bias is the now semi-retired Susan Stamberg. Every time I listen to her I recall that famous Pauline Kael line:

"I don't know how Nixon won. No one I know voted for him."

Its this attitude that we're just smarter, more cultured and well... more enlightened; the liberal version of T Coddington Van Voorhees VII (Other good examples are Diane Rehm and Terry Gross, though Gross has a bit more of the "hip" vibe going on.)

I do think the Williams firing fit with the management's worldview AND, more important, the majority of listeners. But as I pointed out yesterday, there are significant numbers of moderate and conservative listeners to NPR. I have no idea how much these listeners contribute to NPR but it will interesting to see if this negatively impacts their pledges.

Pogo said...

"Unless NPR goes full "MSNBC" I'm still going to listen. There really is no other news/talk alternative that can do more than "headline news" and isn't dominated by "talk""

Why listen to PRAVDA radio?
You have to use the secret decoder ring all the time to understand what they're really saying anyway, and you run the risk of being like Obama, sitting in a pew every Sunday for years, never once objecting to the anti-American sermons he heard, and ultimately integrating those beliefs.

dave in boca said...

Of course, long ago Nina Totenberg was found to be practicing the fine art of plagiarizing and she danced out of that little inconvenient truth will much dexterity and a little help from her friends.

Isn't it precious how the Left always ends up implying that everyone who disagrees with them is mentally deficient or psychologically damaged?
They have no idea that they sound like the villains in a crappy dystopian novel. They are the least self-aware people on Earth.


As a student of the history of France from 1789-today, I concur and suggest that France may have been the first country where a dystopian work of poetry in Fleurs du Mal was applauded. Gogol may have preceded Baudelaire, but was hardly lionized. We've obviously caught the French fever over there on the port side of our ship of state...!

Fen said...

Unless NPR goes full "MSNBC" I'm still going to listen.

Well, you are free to use whatever Information Broker you want.

Though I doubt you would continue using a Stock Broker who withheld information from you re Enron.

GMay said...

fls said: "George Soros is way down the list of billionaires."

Was there a point here?

"He's only worth 2/3 of a single Koch brother."

Or here?

"And, unlike the Koch brothers, Soros does not contribute to political candidates."

Funniest thing I've read all day. Wewps!

"But he's the only whipping boy the Right can find."

Again, point?

Seriously, you fuck up here on a daily basis. Have you no shame?

Randy said...

From Reason Hit & Run:

Check out this clip, from way back in 1995, of NPR's Nina Totenberg telling the host of PBS's Inside Washington that if there was "retributive justice" in the world the (admittedly loathsome) Jesse Helms would "get AIDS from a transfusion, or one of his grandchildren will get it."

NPR had no problem with that, of course.

BTW, one of the Balloon Juice editors saw nothing wrong with calling Williams a "lawn jockey" until so many others called him on it.

Revenant said...

Just stop giving radio stations public funds and they can hire and fire whomever they want, so far as I'm concerned.

Revenant said...

I say we just give them California and call it even.

Yes, please give us to China. My taxes will go down dramatically.

MadisonMan said...

A marvelous way to save money. Axe all these old people and bring in some new at lower salaries.

It surprises me when a "News Celebrity" on one network appears on another. I never saw Uncle Walter on NBC.

PatCA said...

You know, this is approaching Friday Night Massacre status.

The dominance of the Left in the American haute monde is being ripped open and torn apart. In politics, IMHO, Obama is not introducing socialism--he is ending it. He is the crest of the wave, and pretty soon it's going to be a little puddle on the shore.

bearing said...

"The NPR audience consists ENTIRELY of true believers."

I want to join with c3 and reiterate that this isn't true. My husband and I are pretty reliable conservative voters, mainly because we vote pro-life. But we listen to NPR constantly, and (because I feel I should help support a service I use) we are Minnesota Public Radio members.

I am aware of the left-leaning bias of NPR coverage, but I believe everyone has bias, and frankly I find the style of coverage on NPR to be high-quality even if biased. I can deal with bias by getting information from other sources to balance it.

I'm hoping -- not very hopeful, but hoping -- that this episode forces NPR to confront its bias problem and that it emerges better for it. On the plus side, it's pledge week around here. They know we're donors. I will enjoy calling them up and letting them know that this little event is going to affect our donation decisions.

Scott M said...

Just as a personal preference and speaking as a veteran broadcaster myself (radio), two things always grated like nails on a chalkboard with the NPR style. First, they put sound effects into their stories in an attempt to paint a picture. Every once and a while, it can work. More often than not, though, it's like listening to a stand-up comedian's CD while he's doing physical comedy like a facial expression. Second, the "diverse" music bumps. As grating as chorus jingles. There's no right or wrong here. It's purely subjective.

Bob Ellison said...

This morning, my local NPR station broke from the national show ten minutes before the top of the hour. In the roughly sixty seconds following that, where they'd normally list all of the sponsors of the show ("Here and Now", in this case), they clumsily played an instrumental musical interlude. Then they went to the pledge drive, in which they announced that as of 51 minutes past the hour, their goal of 100 pledges for that hour was a little short: they had nine so far.

Schiller has cost NPR millions of dollars and should probably be fired.

former law student said...

Again, point?

GMay's straining out gnats and swallowing camels again. Which billionaires are spending their money to influence elections? Poor bogeyman Soros is well down the list.

Youngblood said...

FLS,

You went quiet all of a sudden!

GMay demonstrated that George Soros does contribute money, and a lot of it, to political candidates.

Were you lying, or just stupid?

Marshal said...

" Revenant said...
Just stop giving radio stations public funds and they can hire and fire whomever they want, so far as I'm concerned."

While it is true we would then have no basis for telling them what to do, we still have a strong basis for criticism.

I constantly see the left trying to fit "epistemic closure" into every discussion, describing the right of course. But this far better describes the left, and this is a fine example.

former law student said...

Sorry, Soros does not show up on OpenSecrets.org

Koch Industries: Individual Contributors
Party Split Summary, 1990-2010
The following individuals contributed at least $50,000 to federal candidates and parties during one or more election cycles while affiliated with the organization.

Donor Name Total Soft Money Dems Repubs % to Dems % to Repubs
Koch, Charles G. & Elizabeth Buzzi $526,300 $0 $1,500 $324,800 0% 62%
Koch, David H. & Julia F. $2,091,295 $1,222,500 $0 $1,983,295 0% 95%

Based on data released by the FEC on October 03, 2010.

jr565 said...

Aw, so sad. This happened right during NPR's pledge week. That NPR staff looks even whiter than the tea party and the republicans. Didn't they get the diversity memo?
I guess the next black they hire will be their next token negro. THey need to have one you know.
And now they're asking for money. Hmmm, let me think...

jr565 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
jr565 said...

PatCA wrote:
"The dominance of the Left in the American haute monde is being ripped open and torn apart. In politics, IMHO, Obama is not introducing socialism--he is ending it. He is the crest of the wave, and pretty soon it's going to be a little puddle on the shore."




Maybe those conservatives who voted for Obama were actually right (though for the wrong reasons). I thought it was insane to vote in some neophyte allinsyite marxist who never ran an economy and was was ideologically against capitalism. Because I knew that if he was elected he would try to lead as a far left liberal and we'd have to then deal with the consequences which would suck.
But maybe having to deal with the consequences is the best way to learn from mistakes. Maybe the electorate has to go through with electing an Obama type, suffer the consequences to realize what a mistake it was to vote him into office and never again bring someone like him back to within a hairs breath of govt and/or the economy. But if he hadn't won, we wouldn't have learned the lesson.
If you tell your kid not to put their hand on a lit stove because it will burn them may not as adequately teach the lesson that burning your hand on the stove would. Hearing about how flame burns is no where near as immediate as feeling your flesh singe.
Still, what parent would knowingly let their kid put their hand on a stove.
So Buckley and Parker and you yokels, in a weird way thanks for being so stupid. And here's your lesson. Sorry that, beause of your stupidity we have to live through four years of hell. But by the same token, thanks also for giving us a perfect example of what not to do in the future. I guess we owe you a debt of gratitude. (not really)

Amartel said...

Vivian "Genius" Schiller:
“Juan feels the way he feels. That is not for me to pass judgment on. His feelings that he expressed on Fox News are really between him and his psychiatrist or his publicist or take your pick. But it is not compatible with the role of a news analyst on NPR.”

It is not for Vivian to pass judgment on Juan's feelings, BUT
1. His feelings are psycho; and
2 His feelings are incompatible with continuing to work for NPR.

That's a lot of judgment from someone who says it's not for her to pass judgment. I guess she wants to insult him and fire him but not be responsible for doing so. Good luck with that. Wonder how old the fundraising drive is going?

GMay said...

FLS said: "GMay's straining out gnats...

Glad to see you recognize that some of the points you made were insignificant.

(Hint: it's not straining for me to point that out in less than 10 words.)

"...and swallowing camels again."

As for correcting you on your Soros knowledge...well, I know you thank me deep down.

Paul Zrimsek said...

If FLS posts any more brazen, easily checked lies, Garbage is likely to sue him for copyright infringement.

Lincolntf said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Methadras said...

What is the october surprise, these leftards tripped over their own dicks to make this happen. Their own ideology is their undoing. I've said as much.

Anglelyne said...

Amartel: It is not for Vivian to pass judgment on Juan's feelings, BUT
1. His feelings are psycho; and
2 His feelings are incompatible with continuing to work for NPR.


Maybe that passive-aggressive shit is such an ingrained part of NPR corporate culture that Schiller had become deaf to how dumb-ass and malicious all that "not for me to judge" shinola sounds to normal people.

I always kind of assumed that's how NPR nyooooze people went around thinking and talking.

PatCA said...

"Sorry that, beause of your stupidity we have to live through four years of hell."

Yes, but human beings always have to live through hellish governments--we are human and imperfect in our governance--and at least have a chance to right this ship of state.

Rt1Rebel said...

Juan hosted for Bill O'Reilly tonight and opened a large can of Whoop-ass on NPR and liberalism. I'm thinking that a slight miscalculation was made here...

AST said...

I feel vindicated. I stopped listening quite a while ago. I just got fed up with constantly being told I should give them money so that they could keep their hands pure of filthy commerce. I decided they were a bunch of hypocritical Marxists.

former law student said...

If FLS posts any more brazen, easily checked lies, Garbage is likely to sue him for copyright infringement.

Son of a gun. How did you get there from the main page?

Anyways, Soros is not listed as a Heavy Hitter, like the Kochs, and one of the Waltons and Duane ADM. He's down with the little pishers.

former law student said...

I just got fed up with constantly being told I should give them money so that they could keep their hands pure of filthy commerce.

That's funny. Back when I tried to listen to right-wing-radio, I got tired of constantly hearing ads for Focus Factor and "male enhancement" products.

I deduced that right-wing radio was meant for forgetful limpdicks.

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