I love Victor Davis Hanson! Week after week he elegantly articulates my feelings and presents a devastating look at the insanities of our world. Today I read:
The New York Times talks about standards and "journalistic integrity," but given its recent public record no one was surprised by the existence of a Jayson Blair, or by the fact that under Howell Raines a once-grand paper became a caricature of 19th-century yellow journalism, with possibly fewer daily readers than Matt Drudge. Elites may lament that someone who did not go to the Columbia School of Journalism can affect more readers than the Times, but instead of the usual aristocratic snarls they should ask themselves how and why that came about — and why, for example, watching a PBS documentary by Bill Moyers or listening to Garrison Keillor on NPR is now to endure a publicly subsidized extension of their silly rants at lectures and in op-eds. (Italics mine)
I used to love Garrison Keillor. In the late 70's and 80's it was a family ritual to tune into Prairie Home Companion on the local NPR affiliate. Not anymore. I used to enjoy Bill Moyers. Both of these linchpins of Public Radio have gone off the deep end, with their relentless and high-pitched anti-Bush diatribes. I have talked about Keillor elsewhere. His smug superiority in all matters political has become more than annoying and something I could overlook for the sake of his genuine talent. It has become pathological and indicative of a severe disconnect with the real world. It is painful to listen to.
I don't listen to Prairie Home Companion anymore at all. I can barely stand NPR and hope that my tax dollars will soon stop funding it. I don't think in a competitive market it would survive.
Read VDH's entire piece. It will be worth your time.
I stopped donating to public radio when they shafted Louis Rukheyser. He gave his life to building their viewership, and then I believe they stabbed him in the back. People with an ethic like that do not deserve support.
I too was a big fan of Moyers and Keillor until their bias become too much for me. I still can't live without many of NPR's programs, but I have stopped supporting them because I think their pre-9/11 mentality endangers America. In effect, I consider myself a "liberal refusnik." Let me share with you a letter I sent to NPR's "ombusdman" six months ago:
Dear Mr. Dvorkin,
In 1998, you defended NPR from charges of bias by CAMERA with regards to NPR’s coverage of the Middle East. You also denied that Steven Emerson had been "blacklisted" from NPR. However, now almost 3 years post-9/11, NPR has yet to invite this terrorism expert, whose prophetic PBS special "Jihad in America" (aired in 1994) called attention to many of the weaknesses that led to the tragedy of 9/11.
Even more disturbing is NPR’s biased coverage of Islam and Muslim culture. Based on your NPR’s website, I have compiled the following list of guests invited to share their expertise on Islam post-9/11:
Karen Armstrong (3/8/04, 10/17/01)*
John Esposito (8/15/02, 6/01/02, 3/30/02)
Ibrahim Hooper (04/06/04, 10/28/03)
Edward Said (7/31/02)*
*For sake of fairness, I am restricting this list to appearances by these guests only when they were discussing Islam or Muslim culture.
To NPR’s credit, I would like to acknowledge four appearances by Middle East expert Bernard Lewis (5/11/03, 1/3/02, 1/3/02, and 12/18/01), one by Nobel laureate V.S. Naipaul (10/16/01), and one brief commentary on Irshad Manji’s controversial book "The Trouble With Islam" (1/14/04). However, not once have you presented other courageous scholars like Paul Samuel Huntington, David Pryce-Jones, Robert Spencer, Stephen Schwartz, and Bat Yeor who have so much to contribute to the discussion.
I will not waste our time describing Armstrong’s mealy-mouthed apologia for all things Islamic, Esposito’s notorious downplaying of the dangers of radical Islam pre-9/11, and the late Edward Said’s nauseating rants against the country that gave him such a productive life. However, your granting an audience to CAIR’s president Ibrahim Hooper is nothing short of scandalous. Note the following press release:
"Prominent members of the council’s current leadership – people who were invited to the hearings today but declined to testify – also have intimate connections with Hamas – a group that receives substantial funding from Saudi Arabia and subscribes to Wahhabist teachings."
This is testimony delivered by Charles Schumer at a judicial hearing titled "Terrorism: Two Years After 9/11, Connecting the Dots" (http://www.senate.gov/~schumer/). The Democratic senator was referring to the Council of American Islamic Relations. I’ll leave it up to you to do your homework on the recent indictment of two officials from CAIR on terrorism-related charges (Randall Todd Royer and Bassem K. Khafagi) and CAIR’s ties with the Global Relief Foundation.
Perhaps I am naïve in believing that NPR can overcome pressure from its current sponsorship to present a more even-handed understanding of Islam. Nevertheless, many of the liberals you are cultivating with apologists like Armstrong and traitors like Hooper will turn on you the minute they realize how this feel-good charade threatens America.
Make no mistake, sooner of later, NPR will find itself on the wrong side of history, and it would behoove NPR to address this problem before thoughtful liberals begin to suspect that they are being duped.
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