Time to End Public Broadcasting

2010 October 21
by bc3b

Like most conservatives, I don’t have a great deal of use for Juan Williams (particularly since Obama became President), but. compared to most liberals, he’s not that bad. But, hopefully something good will come from his firing: it will focus a spotlight on NPR and encourage everyone to think about whether we even need public broadcasting.

NPR and PBS are dominated by liberals. They serve an affluent audience of elitests who believe they should not be subjected to Midol and Sierra Club commercials the way Rush Limbaugh’s listeners are subjected to Beta Prostate, Carbonite and Lifelock commercials. Neverwasses, like Nina Tottenberg, and washed up former network newscasters are paid are paid huge salaries, which are at least partially taxpayer-funded.

There are two important questions:

  1. Does the government belong in broadcasting?
  2. Are NPR and PBS even needed?
National Public Radio, a taxpayer funded network with a decidedly leftward tilt, has fired longtime commentator Juan Williams.  Ed Driscoll reported on this last night, and it’s all over the blogs today.  The story arc here is that Williams said something the left and CAIR didn’t like, the left and CAIR raised a stink, and NPR immediately capitulated to them.  Juan Williams’ decades of dedicated service at NPR as one of its few credible, mainstream voices ended in a flash.

Three points should be front and center.  One, Williams made the comments for which NPR fired him not on their air, but on the Fox News Channel.  Two, Williams’ actual comments weren’t all that incendiary and were factually accurate, yet the Muslim Brotherhood mouthpieces at CAIR made an issue of them and so NPR, ever the dutiful dhimmi, fired him.  Hey, it’s either that or face whatever maumauing CAIR was cooking up as a next step.  And three, this is the second time this week that a public broadcaster said or did something controversial and politically charged, yet only one of the two has faced any disciplinary action.


Just a day before, public broadcaster Gwen Ifill got herself into some trouble on Twitter for siding with Markos “screw them” Moulitsas, aka Kos, against Sarah Palin.  Palin, in a speech, rallied her Tea Party supporters not to “party like it’s 1773 yet,” and Kos slammed her for the date, which, BIG HINT, is the year of the Boston Tea Party.  And Ifill joined in the mockery on Twitter, only to dishonestly backtrack once Kos’ gaffe got called out.

There are a couple of things at work in all that.  One, Ifill assumed that Palin was ignorant while assuming that Kos wasn’t.  That’s bias, and Ifill is supposed to be an objective reporter.  And two, Ifill dishonestly dealt with the issue and, evidently from her subsequent silence, hoped it all would just go away.

It might have, but thanks to NPR’s firing of Juan Williams, it won’t.  Or it shouldn’t.  (It will, and that’s among the problems with public broadcasting.)

We live in a world now in which hundreds of channels are available 24/7, radio and television.  The Internet brings information from all over the world to us in real time, all the time.  There is no shortage of the kind of liberal comment and editorial judgment that public broadcasting delivers.  There is no shortage of the kind of nature documentaries or children’s programming that public broadcasting offers.  There is no shortage of smug elitist commentary of the kind that public broadcasting offers.  We live in an age of media plenty, but exploding public debt.  It’s time to cut public expenses, and public broadcasting ought to be the first to go.


Neither Gwen Ifill nor Juan Williams should be fired for what they did this week, though, if either deserves discipline, it’s Ifill.  If it wasn’t clear when she wrote a paean to Barack Obama before his election to the presidency and then moderated a debate that could have impacted that campaign, it’s clear now that she’s a biased liberal who is incapable of judging facts and public figures fairly.  She isn’t objective, but in posing as such, she is dishonest.

The fact is, we don’t need public broadcasting anymore.  At all.  Public radio and TV should be abolished.  Taxpayers shouldn’t be forced to support them anymore.  Neither Williams nor Ifill deserve individual firing, but the networks that have unfairly handled these incidents both deserve the ax.

Hat tip: Bryan Preston – Pajamas Media

64 Responses leave one →
  1. 2010 October 21 11:02 am
    mpthompson permalink

    Funding of NPR should be the poster child of waste in the government. Once the GOP takes over the House, whether it is targeted for immediate cuts and defunding will tell us whether the GOP will really be taking the conservative base serious or whether it’s just back to business as usual. Anyone willing to take bets on whether NPR still receives funding by the federal government a year from now? I’m certainly not confident NPR will even see modest cuts let-alone complete defunding.

  2. 2010 October 21 11:36 am

    Three things to defund come 1/2011:

    1. Planned Parenthood
    2. NPR
    3. PBS

  3. 2010 October 21 11:36 am

    …and of course HusseinCare

  4. 2010 October 21 11:37 am
    mulletover permalink

    Williams could anchor the left side of a Fox show similar to the Hannity & Colmes show. I did not like Colmes much, but I thought the format worked well. Actually better than Hannity and his great American panel.

    Maybe Mary Katherine Hamm. I see them paired a lot.

    The Juan and Hamm Show.


    The Hamm it up, Juan Show.

  5. 2010 October 21 11:43 am
    bc3b permalink

    In the not-so-distant future Mary Katherine Hamm may have to change her name because Muslims find it offensive.

  6. 2010 October 21 11:44 am
    bc3b permalink

    The GOP might as well work to defund public broadcasting. No conservatives watch/listen any way.

  7. 2010 October 21 11:45 am
    mpthompson permalink

    Eph, add to your list the NEA, Department of Education, Department of Energy and clipping the wings and putting a muzzle on the EPA.

  8. 2010 October 21 11:51 am
    MI Conservative permalink

    Will I be banned if I mention that Juan is a Latino name?

  9. 2010 October 21 11:51 am
    MI Conservative permalink

    Maybe the folks at NPR are racists and thought he was an illegal Mexican.

  10. 2010 October 21 11:53 am

    6. BC,

    I used to watch nova and Nature on PBS a while back. But Nova got on the “evolution only” stupidity and Nature got on the “blame the animals disappearing on global warming” garbage.

  11. 2010 October 21 11:53 am

    “Will I be banned if I mention that Juan is a Latino name?”

    Only at the HHR

  12. 2010 October 21 11:54 am
    bc3b permalink

    Sarah Palin Facebook on Juan Williams:

    At a time when our country is dangerously in debt and looking for areas of federal spending to cut, I think we’ve found a good candidate for defunding. National Public Radio is a public institution that directly or indirectly exists because the taxpayers fund it. And what do we, the taxpayers, get for this? We get to witness Juan Williams being fired from NPR for merely speaking frankly about the very real threat this country faces from radical Islam.

    We have to have an honest discussion about the jihadist threat. Are we not allowed to say that Muslim terrorists have killed thousands of Americans and continue to plot the deaths of thousands more? Are we not allowed to say that there are Muslim states that aid and abet these fanatics? Are we not allowed to even debate the role that radical Islam plays in inciting this violence?

    I don’t expect Juan Williams to support me (he’s said some tough things about me in the past) – but I will always support his right and the right of all Americans to speak honestly about the threats this country faces. And for Juan, speaking honestly about these issues isn’t just his right, it’s his job. Up until yesterday, he was doing that job at NPR. Firing him is their loss.

    If NPR is unable to tolerate an honest debate about an issue as important as Islamic terrorism, then it’s time for “National Public Radio” to become “National Private Radio.” It’s time for Congress to defund this organization.

    NPR says its mission is “to create a more informed public,” but by stifling debate on these issues, NPR is doing exactly the opposite. President Obama should make clear his commitment to free and honest discussion of the jihadist threat in our public debates – and Congress should make clear that unless NPR provides that public service, not one more dime.

    Mr. President, what say you?

    – Sarah Palin

    Mitt Romney is unavailable forcomment, having suffered a mild concussion ducking under his desk for cover.

  13. 2010 October 21 11:56 am

    12 ? ON SUICIDE WATCH !!!!!

  14. 2010 October 21 12:14 pm
    mpthompson permalink

    But Nova got on the “evolution only” stupidity

    Come on Eph, it’s a science program. Yeah, it makes sense that evolution would be the mechanism discussed when it comes to explaining biodiversity of Earth. Regardless, any remaining funding PBS gets from the government should be terminated. I thought PBS was largely independent of government funding, but I could be wrong.

  15. 2010 October 21 12:27 pm
    bc3b permalink

    If NPR and PBS can survive without government funding, more power to them. There is no reason taxpayers should fund broadcasting.

  16. 2010 October 21 1:21 pm
    brucefdb permalink

    mpt, I like your list, 7, but I would abolish the EPA too….all that stuff should be handled at the state level…..EPA is just a viper’s nest of eco-fascists, bureaucrats and commies, kind of like most government agencies these days come to think of it.

  17. 2010 October 21 1:22 pm

    #2 – All three should have been on the list before this lame move by npr.
    #15 – Exactly, course we’ve been saying that for what, over a decade now and yet it continues.

  18. 2010 October 21 1:25 pm

    You know this NPR story is getting so good that I might have to end my boycott of BOR and watch him tonight!

  19. 2010 October 21 1:27 pm
    RepublicanPundit permalink

    B3, they are heavily financed by left wing org.’s Remove their funding from the government and make them rename their network, remove their free liscence to broadcast on airwaves and make them pay cable rates.

  20. 2010 October 21 1:27 pm

    EPA should be about 1/4th the size it is and be grouped into the Dept of Interior.

  21. 2010 October 21 1:28 pm
    RepublicanPundit permalink

    KN, EPA should be defunded first.

  22. 2010 October 21 1:28 pm

    18 – Why all cause the llama will now be against NPR public funding cause his butt buddy Juan got ax’d. Where was bill on the issue prior to today – that’s the question?

  23. 2010 October 21 1:29 pm

    I find it halarious that the left (and RINOs) have decided to jump all over Juan Williams today when the election is 12 days and counting.

    What happened to the non-stop bashing of COD ???


  24. 2010 October 21 1:34 pm

    22 – RP it’s just not going to happen like that. 99% of those in congress aint going to vote to just kill off this 10Billion a year agency, hell I bet only about 15% would even vote to give it the hair cut and new boss that I suggested.

    We desperately need to “right size” so many of these agencies (if not removing them entirely), many can be literally cut in half and combined with others. FCC is another that needs itself cut – at least in half.

  25. 2010 October 21 1:35 pm

    24 – It continues unabated, you’ve just not noticed, doesn’t matter if she was correct – fake but accurate meme wins the day.

  26. 2010 October 21 1:36 pm

    Let’s not leave OSHA out of the mix.

  27. 2010 October 21 1:37 pm
    brucefdb permalink

    Come on Eph, it’s a science program.

    Science???? Not sure it retains what credibility it had anymore.

  28. 2010 October 21 1:37 pm

    26. This NPR story has grabbed the headlines everywhere.

  29. 2010 October 21 1:39 pm

    “Science???? Not sure it retains what credibility it had anymore.”

    Exactly, when you run a three part series on “The Evolution of Man” it makes you wonder. Where’s the counter point????? There was none

  30. 2010 October 21 1:46 pm
    Colorado KnightOwl permalink

    So many RINOs are spineless that I doubt we could even talk them into cutting off all funding for Nobama’s Czars…No more Czars or gov’t made cars

  31. 2010 October 21 1:48 pm

    Science requires emperical evidence. Evolution, there ain’t any, just conjecture.

  32. 2010 October 21 1:48 pm
    bc3b permalink

    You can bet this will be the lead story on every FNC show tonight.

  33. 2010 October 21 1:50 pm

    31 – Yeah I’m already bracing myself for the disappointment that is coming, ehh we had to give’em one last shot.

  34. 2010 October 21 1:52 pm

    Honestly I couldn’t care less about this Juan crap, clearly he didn’t write himself a good contract. NPR fires liberal hack for comments about Muslims…. par for the course. The only bad thing is now Juan will be on fox more. 🙁

  35. 2010 October 21 1:54 pm

    35. KH,

    You know who Michael Medved is dont you?

  36. 2010 October 21 1:55 pm

    31. That’s why dumping Castle is DE was of the importance.

    At least we know exactly what to expect from Coons-Loons

  37. 2010 October 21 1:55 pm

    Under the Labor Department’s requested budget, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) would receive $564 million, an increase of $51 million (10 percent) over the previous year. While this renewed focus on worker safety and regulatory enforcement is great for the agency, it means businesses better be prepared to meet higher compliance demands.

    In fact, some of OSHA’s 2010 goals are to:

    * Hire 160 new enforcement staff, many of whom would be bilingual, allowing the agency to effectively communicate with the nation’s changing workplace demographic
    * Continue targeting and providing outreach for establishments and industries that have above average injury, illness and fatality rates
    * Continue developing and revising regulations and standards, as part of the agency’s regulatory agenda

    Just thought I’d share that; 10% increase requested when we have no money, and what for, of course more regulation enforcement.

  38. 2010 October 21 1:56 pm

    37 – Yes I’ve heard his show from time to time while traveling in these automobile things.

  39. 2010 October 21 1:58 pm

    In wake of NPR controversy, Fox News gives Juan Williams an expanded role

    The cable news network signs the analyst to a new three-year contract for nearly $2 million. Meanwhile, conservative figures blast the public radio network for its response to Williams’ comments about Muslims.


    — (HT: HD\Artist)

  40. 2010 October 21 1:59 pm

    40. Then you know he used to be a leftist hack …just like Juan Willaims is now ?????

    Get my point ????

  41. 2010 October 21 2:00 pm

    Fun to watch the enemy eat it’s own.

  42. 2010 October 21 2:01 pm

    41 – Juan ain’t never going to convert, he may not defend the indefensible all the time like other dems but he’s a true believer and will forever be stuck on the plantation mindset.

  43. 2010 October 21 2:01 pm

    Crist needs to retire to key west and join his butt pirate buddies on the beach.

  44. 2010 October 21 2:02 pm

    44. Read the book “Right Turns” by Michael Medved.

  45. 2010 October 21 2:03 pm


  46. 2010 October 21 2:04 pm

    46 – Are there boobies in the book? If not it may not hold my attention long enough. Just started new Flynn book though.

  47. 2010 October 21 2:07 pm
    drdog09 permalink

    with the nation’s changing workplace demographic.

    Boy you got that right! Sure is a bilingual situation — Unemployed and out of money.

    These folks have to be out of their figgin’ minds.

  48. 2010 October 21 2:08 pm

    48. LOL! My point is that Medved used to be “on the plantation” too.

  49. 2010 October 21 2:10 pm
    drdog09 permalink

    42, Owwww, no more ritzy tanning salons for Crist. Orange boy going to go pale again.

  50. 2010 October 21 2:16 pm
    Wylie E. Coyote permalink


    “Re: New study shows ObamaCare subsidies potentially five times higher in first year than predicted

    We keep on finding out what’s in it and the news keeps getting worse:

    In passing ObamaCare, Democrats argued that it would provide a net relief to the budget deficit in its balance of new taxes and fees, drastic cuts to Medicare Advantage, and the subsidies it would provide to Americans making $88,000 a year or less. A new study commissioned by Families USA, a group that supports ObamaCare, shows that the Democrats and the CBO badly miscalculated the level of subsidies provided. In the first year (2014), 28 million Americans would have eligibility for more than $110 billion, outstripping the Congressional/CBO estimate by almost 600%:
    More here …

    Only in Democratic fairy land could 30 million more people be insured for free, and we haven’t even gotten to the other Obamacare problems like cuts in Medicare and Medicare Advantage, rationed care, and loss of personal freedom – not to mention all those lies.”


  51. 2010 October 21 2:21 pm
    drdog09 permalink

    Moment of silence if you please, It is not Happy Days — Mr. C, Tom Bosley dies, 83.

  52. 2010 October 21 2:24 pm

    50 – I know lol, I did read S.Parkers book though so I know what you mean

  53. 2010 October 21 2:27 pm

    54. Juan might turn out to be a useful idiot after all !

  54. 2010 October 21 2:27 pm

    52 – CBO…right on the nose as usual. /sarc 😉

  55. 2010 October 21 2:28 pm

    53 – He died yesterday actually.

  56. 2010 October 21 2:28 pm


    Plus this story just brings everyone’s attention to the topic of wasteful gov’t spending. Who does that benefit???

    12 days!!!

    tick tock tick tock ….

  57. 2010 October 21 2:28 pm

    PBS will need another token AA lib.

  58. 2010 October 21 2:30 pm

    59. Chekote?

  59. 2010 October 21 2:31 pm

    Plus this story just brings everyone’s attention to the topic of wasteful gov’t spending. Who does that benefit???

    12 days!!!

    tick tock tick tock ….EPH

    The people who should be paying attention, are to busy chasing poontang and bowling to give a crap, as long as they get theirs.

  60. 2010 October 21 3:13 pm

    Who bowls anymore?

  61. 2010 October 21 3:25 pm
    drdog09 permalink

    Well I do. Bowling that is.

  62. 2010 October 21 4:10 pm

    I’ve not seen a bowling alley around here in a decade, maybe they are hidden.

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