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NPR believes in free speech... for some

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
NPR Finally Gets Its Man

NPR Firing of Analyst Sparks Media Debate

... and they can't even spell:

Standards and Practices: Why does NPR still employ Nina Totenberg?

...and why is your tax revenue funding intolerance, bigotry, and threats?

NPR's Taxpayer-Funded Intolerance

What Won't Get You Fired From NPR

What About Totenberg?

I used to like NPR. It provided a useful counterpoint to the stodgy old news establishment. Unfortunately, it too has been hijacked by the lunatic fringe.
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post #2 of 17




無心 The idea of wilderness needs no defense, it only needs defenders., Wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit__Edward Abbey
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無心 The idea of wilderness needs no defense, it only needs defenders., Wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit__Edward Abbey
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post #3 of 17






Malo periculosam, libertatem quam quietam servitutem.

(I prefer the tumult of liberty to the quiet of servitude.)

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Malo periculosam, libertatem quam quietam servitutem.

(I prefer the tumult of liberty to the quiet of servitude.)

Reply
post #4 of 17
There's little doubt that Juan Williams was fired because he went off script. Other NPR personalities appear on pundit shows and express opinions with little fear of losing their job. NPR was ready willing and able to kowtow to CAIR when they called.


The more interesting question is if NPR took its queue from the white house by escalating the war on Fox News.
post #5 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by FloorJack View Post

There's little doubt that Juan Williams was fired because he went off script. Other NPR personalities appear on pundit shows and express opinions with little fear of losing their job. NPR was ready willing and able to kowtow to CAIR when they called.


The more interesting question is if NPR took its queue from the white house by escalating the war on Fox News.


This was a serious misjudgment by NPR---one that is already backfiring. They fired a well known LIBERAL. They have destroyed their credibility, such as was.
I can only please one person per day.  Today is not your day.  Tomorrow doesn't look good either.  
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I can only please one person per day.  Today is not your day.  Tomorrow doesn't look good either.  
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post #6 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by FloorJack View Post

There's little doubt that Juan Williams was fired because he went off script.

Lots of people 'going off script' these days: SS wannabee Nazis, EDL Nazis, Dutch Nazis, NYC anti-mosque Nazis.

Could almost be back in the good old days of the 30s where scripts weren't just deviated from they were burnt alongside the scriptwriters.

Still...there's time I guess....
What is Faith? When your good deed pleases you and your evil deed grieves you, you are a believer. What is Sin? When a thing disturbs the peace of your heart, give it up - Prophet Muhammad
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What is Faith? When your good deed pleases you and your evil deed grieves you, you are a believer. What is Sin? When a thing disturbs the peace of your heart, give it up - Prophet Muhammad
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post #7 of 17
http://www.csmonitor.com/var/ezflow_...g_full_600.jpg

Vox News
By Brad Knickerbocker, Staff writer / October 23, 2010

Quote:
NPRs firing Juan Williams comes just as controversial figures connected to NPR and Fox News philanthropist George Soros and commentator Glenn Beck are in a harsh rhetorical fight.

Quote:
NPR's firing of news analyst Juan Williams couldnt come at a worse time for public radio.

Not only did it occur in the midst of on-air fund-raising by many public radio stations, it also happened just as controversial figures connected to NPR and Fox News liberal philanthropist George Soros and conservative commentator Glenn Beck are engaged in a harsh rhetorical fight.


Fox News is Mr. Williams other employer and the place where he made his controversial statement about Muslims. Mr. Soros recently donated $1.8 million to NPR, seen by conservative critics (and certainly by Mr. Beck) as proof (a) that NPR is a liberal mouthpiece and (b) that billionaire Soros pressured NPR to get rid of Williams.

Quote:
Up until then, opinions by NPR correspondents and analysts had been expressed in abundance, but Williams' statement on Fox, because it was expressed on Fox, amounted to apostasy, editorializes Investors Business Daily. The firing sends a message that Fox is beyond the pale and must be silenced.

The fall-out from Williams dismissal has been sharp and swift, and its likely to continue.

On NPRs web site, ombudsman Alicia Shepard reported that thousands of comments had caused the organizations Contact Us form to crash.

Quote:
The overwhelming majority are angry, furious, outraged, she wrote. They want NPR to hire him back immediately. If NPR doesn't, they want all public funding of public radio to stop. They promise to never donate again. They are as mad as hell, and want everyone to know it. It was daunting to answer the phone and hear so much unrestrained anger.



In addition to his gift to NPR, Soros also recently gave $1 million to Media Matters to hold Fox News accountable for the false and misleading information they so often broadcast. Media Matters is the progressive media watchdog which has been pressuring advertisers to drop their business with Fox News because of Becks alleged hate speech leading to violence.

Specifically, Becks dozens of comments attacking the Tides Foundation are being linked to the attempt by a heavily-armed man to assassinate employees at the San Francisco-based foundation, which funds environmental, human rights, and other progressive projects. The attack in July was thwarted in a shoot-out with police in which two officers were wounded.

Beck and his supporters insist that he does not condone violence. On his highly-popular Fox News show, Beck has turned around the accusation of violence, charging that Soros' $1 million contribution to Media Matters is a "wanted dead or alive poster" and a "million dollar bounty" on himself.

In the midst of all this comes the Juan Williams controversy.

Williams is an accomplished journalist and an expert on the civil rights era. But his on-air comments had become more openly opinionated in recent years, and this was why in 2008 his job title was changed from news correspondent to news analyst. On Fox, however, he was expected to be a pundit, performing alongside such provocative figures as Bill OReilly. There, the format is more likely to be shoot-from-the-lip.

NPRs reaction to the current episode is likely to prolong the controversy, certainly among fans of Fox and its most successful personality, Glenn Beck.

Quote:
Writes NPR ombudsman Shephard: This latest incident with Williams centers around a collision of values: NPR's values emphasizing fact-based, objective journalism versus the tendency in some parts of the news media, notably Fox News, to promote only one side of the ideological spectrum.

http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Electio...er-media-fight







無心 The idea of wilderness needs no defense, it only needs defenders., Wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit__Edward Abbey
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無心 The idea of wilderness needs no defense, it only needs defenders., Wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit__Edward Abbey
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post #8 of 17
That Soros and others can make such large gifts to NPR shows that public funding isn't necessary.

In the challenging media environment coupled with a period of rapid technological change, just about every media network is playing an ideological game right now. None of them should be government funded.
The evil that we fight is but the shadow of the evil that we do.
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The evil that we fight is but the shadow of the evil that we do.
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post #9 of 17





無心 The idea of wilderness needs no defense, it only needs defenders., Wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit__Edward Abbey
Reply
無心 The idea of wilderness needs no defense, it only needs defenders., Wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit__Edward Abbey
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post #10 of 17
Quote:
NPR CEO Vivian Schiller sent an e-mail to employees apologizing for the way she handled the firing of Juan Williams after his comments on Fox News' Bill O'Reilly show about Muslims, but also insisted she believes the company still made the right call.

Fox News has assailed NPR for its handling of the situation, calling it an assault on free speech and stoking GOP pundits and potential presidential candidates to demand that NPR's government funding be cut.

NPR posted the e-mail on their news blog, "The Two-Way." It reads:

Quote:
"Dear Colleagues,

"I want to apologize to you for not doing a better job of handling the termination of our relationship with Juan Williams. While we stand firmly behind that decision, I regret that we did not take the time to better prepare our messaging and to provide you with the tools to cope with the fallout from this episode. As Im telling our Member stations in a separate memo today, I also regret that this happened when the staff and volunteers of many stations were deeply engaged in pledge drives.


"This was a decision of principle, made to protect NPRs integrity and values as a news organization. Juan's comments on Fox News last Monday were the latest in a series of deeply troubling incidents over several years. In each of those instances, he was contacted and the incident was discussed with him. He was explicitly and repeatedly asked to respect NPR's standards and to avoid expressing strong personal opinions on controversial subjects in public settings, as that is inconsistent with his role as an NPR news analyst. After this latest incident, we felt compelled to act. I acknowledge that reasonable people can disagree about timing: whether NPR should have ended our relationship with Juan earlier, on the occasion of other incidents; or whether this final episode warranted immediate termination of his contract.

"In any event, the process that followed the decision was unfortunate including not meeting with Juan in person and I take full responsibility for that. We have already begun a thorough review of all aspects of our performance in this instance, a process that will continue in the coming days and weeks.

"The news and media world is changing swiftly and radically; traditional standards and practices are under siege. This requires us to redouble our attention to how we interpret and live up to our values and standards. We will also review and re-articulate our written ethics guidelines to make them as clear and relevant as possible for staff, Member stations and the public, and we will look for productive ways to include many of you in that endeavor.

"It was clear from Friday's all staff meeting that you have deep feelings about NPRs culture, our commitment to diversity and how we communicate. I have deep feelings about those things too. We are working to tackle them, though clearly this latest incident has given them fresh urgency.

"In the meantime, I want to express confidence in NPR's in your! integrity and dedication to the highest values in journalism, and our shared commitment to serving as a national forum for the respectful discussion of diverse ideas. They are why we will continue to earn the support of a growing audience.

"I stand by my decision to end NPR's relationship with Juan, but deeply regret the way I handled and explained it. You have my pledge that your executive team and I will reflect on all aspects of our actions, and strive to improve in the future.

"Respectfully,

"Vivian"

http://news.blogs.cnn.com/2010/10/25...firing/?hpt=T2


Post by: CNN news blog editor Mallory Simon
Filed under: Latest news
無心 The idea of wilderness needs no defense, it only needs defenders., Wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit__Edward Abbey
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無心 The idea of wilderness needs no defense, it only needs defenders., Wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit__Edward Abbey
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post #11 of 17


Malo periculosam, libertatem quam quietam servitutem.

(I prefer the tumult of liberty to the quiet of servitude.)

Reply

Malo periculosam, libertatem quam quietam servitutem.

(I prefer the tumult of liberty to the quiet of servitude.)

Reply
post #12 of 17
by Mark Green
Host, 'Both Sides Now w/ Huffington & Matalin', Columnist, the New York Observer
Posted: October 25, 2010 12:38 PM

Quote:
As Juan Williams and the far right decry "censorship" and attempt to elevate his firing a campaign issue, the public should remember several key contexts:

*First, it did seem abrupt and unfair that he was canned within a day after a decade of service, although presumably this was not the first time something like this had happened. NPR would have been far better off to acknowledge the real problem - that it was untenable for Williams to be a measured analyst on NPR by day but play along with the Fox "hate Obama" narrative at night.

So with 20/20 hindsight, it would have been preferable to give Williams notice and then give him a choice - NPR or Fox. Can we guess which venue he would have chosen?

*Second, is this "the end of the era of political correctness," as my colleague Mary Matalin remarked? Not as long as Fox is around. Talk about political correctness! If PC means not being able to describe reality because of fear or peer pressure, journalism schools could do well to study a cable network that is basically wall to wall anti-Obama, anti-Muslim, anti-Black, anti-climate change, anti-stimulus on and on. Can any regular host go on Fox and say that the CBO has shown the stimulus created/saved over 3 million jobs, or observe that three million jobs were created in George W. Bush's two terms as president as compared to 24 million in Bill Clinton's?

*Third, the real issue is not political correctness but market models. NPR is one of the most important media news firms in the country because it has a not-for-profit model of calm analysis that appeals to millions. E. J. Dionne and David Brooks. But no Limbaugh or Schultz.

Fox News Channel, too, has a very successful economic model, but it's obviously a very very different one. One human being can't really do both. Williams told the Washington Post that "I'm the same person in both venues. I don't say one thing to one outlet and another to the next." But that simply wasn't true. When I've heard him sitting in on The Factor, he was like a junior varsity version of Bill or Sean. It's easy to understand why NPR thought that his appearances on a channel that's an extension of the RNC had blown his cover and credibility.

Fox has a right - and displays business acumen - to run a network that's relentlessly one-sided and partisan. And having an occasional Democrat on, who's outshouted by everyone else, is not evidence to the contrary. So just as Roger Ailes would laugh if someone suggested that he hire Rachel Maddow because she's a brilliant talent, Fox can't object when NPR hires based on its own model.

*William's wrote in the New York Post after his firing that the events were "a chilling assault on free speech." This is a Christine O'Donnell-level misunderstanding of the First Amendment, which prohibits Congress from enacting any law limiting speech. So everyone has a right to free speech but everyone does not have a right to an on-air job at NPR. That's up to them and them alone.

*Last, it's neither surprising nor plausible that some conservative pols are trying to make this molehill into a mountain. The three most prominently attempting this maneuver are Palin, Gingrich and Huckabee - what a coincidence, all are on the Fox payroll.

There's nothing new when conservative partisans try to play up a perceived liberal stumble into a Watergate for political advantage. Fox succeeded with Van Jones and ACORN (even though attacks were later shown to be largely smears without substance) but they flopped with Shirley Sherrod and Journolist. Nor is it likely that a Fox viewer already hot to vote against socialism and Pelosi will now be convinced to show up at the polls because of Juan Williams.

How can adherents of capitalism fail to understand that NPR management has as much a contractual right to decide how to produce its shows as Fox does? That NPR receives a fraction of its budget from taxpayers' funds in the interest of diverse views doesn't change that equation. No one believes that tax subsidies means that government therefore has a right to hire and fire commentators. Talk about socialism!

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mark-g..._b_773495.html







無心 The idea of wilderness needs no defense, it only needs defenders., Wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit__Edward Abbey
Reply
無心 The idea of wilderness needs no defense, it only needs defenders., Wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit__Edward Abbey
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post #13 of 17

Malo periculosam, libertatem quam quietam servitutem.

(I prefer the tumult of liberty to the quiet of servitude.)

Reply

Malo periculosam, libertatem quam quietam servitutem.

(I prefer the tumult of liberty to the quiet of servitude.)

Reply
post #14 of 17

Malo periculosam, libertatem quam quietam servitutem.

(I prefer the tumult of liberty to the quiet of servitude.)

Reply

Malo periculosam, libertatem quam quietam servitutem.

(I prefer the tumult of liberty to the quiet of servitude.)

Reply
post #15 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzguru View Post

NPR Was Wrong -- But Don't Cut Their Funding

Sadly this commentary offers fairly poor reasoning. Basically saying that cutting funding for NPR is tantamount to restricting free speech. This quite wrong and fallacious thinking. In this country we have a right to freely express ourselves on our own time at our own expense. If you can convince people to voluntarily fund your while you engage in this free expression, then bully for you.

However...tax payer funded speech is a different animal altogether. This thing begins with removing or limiting the right of the tax payers the choice of what to do with money they have earned themselves...including spending to fund speech/expression of their own choosing...by taking this money by force to give to some politically favored or well-connected entity to fund their speech. If anything continuing to fund NPR (or PBS in general) using tax money is a violation of the freedoms of tax payers.

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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post #16 of 17
I agree with you on this one, MJ1970. I thought his opinion was interesting, though - especially coming from a Libertarian think-tank website (Cato). One would think the Libertarian position would be similar to what you just posted.

Malo periculosam, libertatem quam quietam servitutem.

(I prefer the tumult of liberty to the quiet of servitude.)

Reply

Malo periculosam, libertatem quam quietam servitutem.

(I prefer the tumult of liberty to the quiet of servitude.)

Reply
post #17 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzguru View Post

I agree with you on this one, MJ1970. I thought his opinion was interesting, though - especially coming from a Libertarian think-tank website (Cato). One would think the Libertarian position would be similar to what you just posted.

It is odd coming from Cato. Furthermore, I'd expect right(correct)-thinking liberals to support de-(tax)-funding of NPS/PBS. I'll let you know if I find any.

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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