News Item: NPR Chief Addresses Possible Defunding

Speaking at St. John’s Episcopal Church in Washington Sunday on the “Future of Journalism,” National Public Radio President and CEO Vivian Schiller said she takes calls for defunding NPR “very seriously,” while stressing how important government funding is for public broadcasting, especially for NPR’s member stations. She also recognized there’s a …

  1. Trace

    This reads like an Onion parody. “Our listeners are smarter — look at the comments section of our Web page for proof!” In fact her listeners may be smarter than she thinks for while she is technically correct that the government funding goes to local stations, it comes right back around again to NPR for program fees. Ms. Schiller is an embarrassment to her organization.

  2. Rob Long
    C

    I agree, Trace. This is like a parody. And it’s meretricious, as you point out, because the local stations are required to pay NPR for the right to broadcast its programs.

    And of course there’s the weird non-logic: NPR really doesn’t get much from taxpayers at all, but if funding is cut off, it’ll be the end of NPR. Hard to square that.

  3. Matthew Gilley
    Rob Long: NPR is only safe as long as conservatives don’t listen to it or pay attention to it.

    Of course, we conservatives must consider the bigger picture. If NPR and its member stations fail, the hair shirt industry will be in mortal danger. Have we prepared our consciences for the potentially devastating ripple effects?

  4. flownover
    Matthew Gilley

    Rob Long: NPR is only safe as long as conservatives don’t listen to it or pay attention to it.

    Of course, we conservatives must consider the bigger picture. If NPR and its member stations fail, the hair shirt industry will be in mortal danger. Have we prepared our consciences for the potentially devastating ripple effects? · Nov 9 at 1:19pm

    At your side, axe in hand.

    (on another matter- Oakland ? in overtime !! I’m getting worried)

  5. JM Hanes

    In case I’m not the only one who wasn’t aware just how plugged in Schiller is:

    “Schiller, a former New York Times executive, is one of a few dozen power players working with the Federal Communications Commission, the Federal Trade Commission and a leftist group called Free Press to “reinvent journalism.” That’s how the FTC describes it. The FCC calls what they are doing the “Future of Journalism.” Free Press, a think tank funded by leftist billionaire George Soros, among others, calls it “the new public media.”

    “It’s all the same thing, a plan to take over local news coverage from for-profit television, radio and print media, which Schiller and her friends claim is in danger of extinction. These “friends” get together regularly with the heads of the FCC and FTC to brainstorm the details in government and congressional meetings…..

    “Schiller imagines a national public print, television and radio news leviathan that would compete with the top five news companies in the news industry…..

    “Schiller calls her creation the Public Media Platform, and the left is very excited about it.”

    There’s more in the Townhall piece.

    [Can anyone tell me how to format blockquotes?]

  6. Paul DeRocco

    Rather than salivate to the bell, and defund NPR, why not promise them a generous increase in their government funding, and use it as a cudgel to beat them into submission to a more mainstream American cultural attitude? What’s wrong with “fair and balanced”? Would they rather take the money, or keep their ideological playground intact?

  7. Matthew Gilley
    flownover (on another matter- Oakland ? in overtime !! I’m getting worried) · Nov 9 at 1:56pm

    Edited on Nov 09 at 01:58 pm

    I’m with you. But then I think back to the beginning of the year, when I decided that 5-6 wins would be a good year. We’re now 5-3 so I think we’re moving the franchise in the right direction.

  8. Walrus

    Every time I listen to NPR I now think, they can have this nut on but not Juan Williams. Yesterday in the first hour of All Things Considered they had some journalist taking the liberal establishment to task for not being left enough. He was yearning for the days of the Wobblies and journalists like I.F. Stone.

    I like to listen to NPR to see what the smarter lefties are thinking and talking about but I don’t think it should be funded by the government. The left truly believes that “free” speech means that their speech should be subsidized.

  9. Matthew Gilley

    Maybe she should have considered this before sacking a good man for no good reason.

  10. mark simon
    Rob Long: I agree, Trace. This is like a parody. And it’s meretricious, as you point out, because the local stations are required to pay NPR for the right to broadcast its programs.

    And of course there’s the weird non-logic: NPR really doesn’t get much from taxpayers at all, but if funding is cut off, it’ll be the end of NPR. Hard to square that. · Nov 9 at 8:15am

    Rob, yes, NPR loses goverment funding and yes it does go down in flames. It all has to do with donations. Federal money is what gives NPR it’s legitimacy in the eyes of large donors. By getting federal money NPR can make the case they are not Air America and they are performing a task that is in line with good citizenship. The money knocks back the critics of NPR, as afterall if so partisan why would a Republican congress fund.

    Most of the corporate money in america and of course the foundation money is not up for a political fight, and if there was no federal money in NPR then the right would turn them into Plannned Parenthood.

  11. Rob Long
    C

    Exactly, Matthew. NPR is only safe as long as conservatives don’t listen to it or pay attention to it. The moment we notice it, we start asking difficult questions, like “Why am I paying for this? Will they pay for Rush?”

  12. Pseudodionysius

    I’m surprised that Ernie, Bert and Big Bird haven’t issued a press release accusing Oscar the Grouch of being a stooge for Fox News.

  13. Jimmy Carter

    *whoops*

  14. Kennedy Smith

    Y’know, you can get Jeeves and Wooster on Netflix. But what is this pablum? First, they tell us they only get 2% of their money from gummint. Then they tell us they die if they lose public funding. Hobgoblin of little minds, I suppose. But would a private company die if they made a 2% loss one year?

  15. flownover

    Anybody hear whether Dan Schorr left them any money when he died ? Has anyone asked Morgan Spurlock how he feels about NPR, seeing that Kroc gave them $250 million of hamburger and french fries profits ?

  16. Sisyphus

    This has not been a defensible use of tax dollars for decades, the Williams incident just shone a light on these cockroaches.  Let’s just complete the transition to National Soros Radio and the Corporation for Soros Broadcasting and return attention to the needed entitlement reforms.

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