Media

Now We Know NPR's Standards: Don't Violate Principals!

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http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2010/08/colbert-23-black-fox-viewers-juan-williams/

Viddy NPR Prez Vivian Schiller's explainer for the Juan Williams firing. Excerpt:

NPR News analysts have a distinctive role and set of responsibilities. This is 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.

Second, this isn't the first time we have had serious concerns about some of Juan's public comments. Despite many conversations and warnings over the years, Juan has continued to violate this principal. […]

Third, these specific comments (and others made in the past), are inconsistent with NPR's ethics code, which applies to all journalists (including contracted analysts):

"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." […]

Unfortunately, Juan's comments on Fox violated our standards as well as our values and offended many in doing so.

We're profoundly sorry that this happened during fundraising week.

Thanks for simplifying the Google search, NPR!

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  1. News analysts may not take personal public positions on controversial issues;

    This is covered under the NPR’s Personal Conduct Policy. And I’m sure there are no examples of this right on their stinking channel. Go!

    1. This is weak.
      Cokie Roberts and Ted Koppel are also listed as “news analysts” and it ain’t hard to google op-eds on “controversial issues” like, say, the mosque near ground zero or the wars in Iraq and Afganistan.

      And since news stories are usually “controversial”, how’s an “analyst” supposed to analyze them without taking a position.

      It seems to me that the bottom line is that Juan Williams is an independent guy who doesn’t mind hanging around with the conservative opposition. For some reason, this peeves a lot of liberals. And I bet you some people actually believe that yanking the “NPR News Analyst” tag from the screen will actually hurt the credibility of fox news. To liberal victory!

  2. Unfortunately, Juan’s comments on Fox violated our standards as well as our values and offended many in doing so finally gave us the excuse we’ve been looking for, since his failure to publicly adhere to our ideological purity makes us feel all icky.

    That’s the entire reason there. No need to explain any further.

    We’re profoundly sorry grateful that this happened during fundraising week.

    Fixed.

    1. Let’s see…. Soros gives a 7 figure check to Media Matters to go after Fox News, Beck et. al. Soros gives a 7 figure check to NPR for 100 new political reporters. NPR dumps on-air talent appearing on Fox News.

      Nah, I don’t see the connection…

  3. We’re profoundly sorry that this happened during fundraising week.

    Bingo.

    1. I’m reminded of the late David Brudnoy, who always used to refer to PBS and NPR as “the begging stations”.

  4. The correct spelling is “principles”, I’m not sure who is responsible for the mispelling.

      1. I figured it was a joke I didn’t get- something about “principal” donors to NPR’s fundraising week?

        1. NPR wholly lacks the capacity for humor, particularly the self-deprecting kind.

        2. something about “principal” donors to NPR’s fundraising week

          SKINNNNNERRRR!

    1. I’m shure it was won of there principle managers.

    2. No shit, Tulpa? What clued you in, the obviously facetious headline calling attention to the misspelling, or did you really catch it all by yourself?

  5. Just admit it NPR. You don’t like Juan’s skin color.

  6. We’re profoundly sorry that this happened during fundraising week.

    You know what would be really cool? If Schiller actually explained how Williams saying “I get worried…I get nervous” constitutes “taking a public position”. It is an observation on his part, nothing more.

    But then Schiller says “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” and we realize she is not a serious person.

  7. NPR journalists should not express views they would not air in their role as an NPR journalist.

    SO NPR thinks (or assumes, I guess) that Williams wouldn’t express these exact same views on NPR?

    Really?

    It’s a lot of fun to watch the mask slip from the liberal agenda of NPR and other supposed “neutral” sources. Absolutely NO ONE outside of NPR is even the slightest bit convinced that this is anything other than a purging of Williams because he doesn’t think the way NPR does.

    1. There are a lot of people asking that NPR lose its government funding over this.

      1. Words are many, deeds are precious.

  8. What would you say of someone who would rush to the defense of Ward Churchhill but not Juan Williams?

    Here we have his opinion of Juan Williams:


    Tony|10.21.10 @ 10:56AM|#

    Good riddance. A respected news outfit like NPR shouldn’t host people who contribute to the GOP propaganda machine. I could do without Mara Liasson too.

    And here we have his opinion of Ward Churchhill:

    If every scholar were subject to the same scrutiny Churchill was, there would be very few clean hands.

    Face it, Churchill was one of the only people willing to say America had it coming. Agree or disagree, this is why he was targeted.

    Whatever his faults as a scholar, in my humble opinion he is more right when he says that America has much to repent for–that we’ve been as much a force for evil as good in the world–than the hundreds of incredulous pundits who say they attacked us because they are jealous of our freedom.

    I suppose Williams dealt in fallacious and bigoted opinions and Churchhill like a good ‘liberal’ offered solid analysis of the facts.

    1. “What would you say of someone who would rush to the defense of Ward Churchhill but not Juan Williams?” That they support someone who’s 100% whoite versus someone who is mixed race?

  9. Other than the nasty bit about cyanide at the end, how did you enjoy life in the bunker Frau Schiller?

  10. If he said the same thing about Orthodox Jews or Sikhs or other funny looking people I think a lot of people especially on the right wouldn’t be jumping up to defend him now…

    1. Team Red! Team Blue!
      Team Freedom!
      How ’bout you?

    2. If he said the same thing about Orthodox Jews or Sikhs or other funny looking people I think a lot of people especially on the right wouldn’t be jumping up to defend him now…

      I can’t speak for people on the right but I would scratch my head in confusion. What have members of either of those groups done that would make Americans nervous to be on a plane with them?

      1. Plenty of stupid Americans are afraid of Sikhs because they wear turbans.

        1. I’m scared of them because of those little knives they carry.

          1. Then you must be scared sh*tless of Gurkhas.

            1. My great uncle served in India during World War II and knew some Gurkha troops. Well enough that one of them gave him a Gurkha knife that I think my mom eventually inherited.

            2. Isn’t everybody scared shitless of Gurkhas?

              1. I’ve read some stuff about them that makes me wonder how the British ever lost a battle with those badasses serving with them.

              2. But I’ve never seen one on a plane.

        2. I’m only concerned if it’s contagious.

    3. Well, we’re not the right, so we’d probably defend him regardless.

      Unless he mocked Gillespie’s jacket, then fuck him.

    4. And if he said the same thing about being nervous around cops as a black man I think a lot of people especially on the right wouldn’t be jumping up to defend him now. OTOH, a bunch of people especially on the left would be.

      After all, the problem with cops is just a few bad apples, right?

    5. He had been fired for it — but the groups you mention don’t fit your criticism — what do you think is the most common name on the DHS no-fly list? Ashok or Rachel? No, and no. Besides, read the posts. Most people aren’t defending him, they are condemning NPR. I must ask you, what is so funny about Orthodox Jews and Sikhs?

  11. 5.8% funded by the public, so 94.2% private sources. Just spin it full private already. Christ Almighty.

    1. I believe CPB and “University” are also public sources, but could be wrong?

      1. “5.8% funded by the public” is a very misleading statistic. NPR is, first and foremost, a programming supplier to its member stations. The vast majority of those member stations are licensed to state universities. Not all, but a majority. Those same state universities provide direct, public monies in the form of annual budgets to their radio stations. Those stations (or NPR “member stations”) return those public monies to NPR in the form of ‘annual member dues’.
        The public’s tax dollars flowing into NPR are far greater than the 5.8% figure, they just take a more circuitous route.

        1. The public’s tax dollars flowing into NPR are far greater than the 5.8% figure, they just take a more circuitous route launder the money.

        2. “University” is 13.6% per NPR’s pie chart and Virginia provides ~10%* of the funding for its universities (excluding the ‘grants’ category). That 5.8% then becomes 7.2% which is still only a RIF and/or salary reduction away from full private.

          This is the alternative I give my liberal friends when they argue that conservative governors and attorney generals should treat public entities as if they were not publicly funded.

          *All of my citations are gleaned from NPR or state school websites so if they rely more heavily on public financing, then they are hiding their dependency at their own peril.

          1. And 40% of NPR’s budget is “programming fees” to member stations, and 10% of member stations funds are from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, which is funded primarily by Congress.

            It’s a massive Enron-esque (or Ikea-esque) shell game.

            1. NPR and PBS stations also get substantial grants from state governments. Usually from the “arts” budget but also from the education department.

              They claim that they they get “almost no” public funding but they can only make this believable by stating the percentage they get from the federal government.

              They seem to feel fine in treating funding from state and local governments the same as that from private donors.

              1. It’s also because the Corporation for Public Broadcasting is largely public funded, but as long as the money is laundered through the CPB, the NPR and PBS stations claim that it’s somehow not really public funding.

    2. So, now they are just this close to being a successful private business, when do we get the thirty years of start up capital back?

      1. file under ‘sunk costs’?

    3. If by “private sources”, you mean income derived from trust funds largely built out of past tax dollar subsidies, maybe.

  12. NPR should hire and fire who ever the fuck they want. Why give a shit about this asshole?

    1. Nobody suggests otherwise. But I would guess that most people on this forum don’t think they should get public funds, either.

      1. ++

    2. Also, it is quite appropriate to point out the hypocrisy of firing Juan Williams while keeping the whole fallopian brigade of Democratic fellators with there own special NPR kneepads.

  13. I don’t know what you people are upset about. As libertarians, don’t we respect a private company’s ability to hire and fire anyb…

    Oops.

    1. I think we can have an opinion about it. I don’t think they shouldn’t have the “right” to fire anyone they want, but the circumstances surrounding this are just so unbelievably hypocritical it’s worth calling out NPR for what they are.

    2. Respecting someone’s right to do something doesn’t mean you have to respect them for doing it.

      -jcr

      1. You guys missed my point entirely. I guess I need to work on how I write.

        I was knocking that they are a publicly-funded entity, yet act as a leftist echo chamber. The fact that they are not a private enterprise, yet adhere to a strictly partisan format and fire people like Juan Williams, yet allow people who wish for conservatives grandchildren to get AIDS shows that hypocrisy.

        It’s a joke they are private when they really aren’t.

        1. Yeah, I haven’t had enough coffee to get my sarcasm meter working properly. My bad.

          I should’ve picked up on the “Oops” though.

          Still, RACIST!

    3. Two regular posters missed the subtlety.

    4. Libertarians thinks private companies are above criticism? When did this happen? Oops indeed.

  14. If he had said that he gets “worried or nervous” walking into a bar in Alabama.. he’d have gotten a fucking medal.

    I listen to NPR almost every day, but I always chuckle to myself when they say they have no bias. They are as biased to the left as Fox is to the right. They are just a little better at convincing themselves otherwise.

    1. There’s no reason to be nervous in a bar in Alabama. No self-respecting southern baptist will look at other people in an establishment that serves alcohol.

      1. He’d also be a hero if he’d said he was worried or nervous about attending a Tea Party rally.

  15. Apparently, Williams has also referred to Michelle Obama as “Stokely Carmichael in a dress”. I was on the fence about him and his fear of “Muslim garb” (jeggings trump headscarves when it comes to fashion terrors), but that shit is just funny.

    1. Stokely Carmichael in a dress

      Wow. I’ll have to use that sometime (as those around me stare blankly).

    2. Even better: “Stokely Carmichael in a DESIGNER dress.” The man has a far better sense of humor than anyone on NPR.

      1. Michelle has some cruel fashion advisors.

        1. Michelle has some cruel genetic materials for those advisers to work with so let us give them a break. A Klingon is not easy to deal with especially when she insist on trying to not to look like one.

        2. The key to being well-dressed is knowing one’s limitations.

        3. No kidding. One sign of how far the media was in the tank for Obama was how the press slobbered over Michelle, as if she was the reincarnation of Jackie O. Sorry, she’s actually quite scary-looking, and often has just terrible fashion sense.

          1. ok, everyone together now….

            RACIST!!!

    3. You mis-spelled meeeshell.

  16. This must be tearing Diane Rehm in half.

    Please, someone tear Diane Rehm in half.

    1. If you want the terrorists to talk once captured, play recordings of her show non-stop for a few hours. They’ll crack and tell you anything you want to know, just to make her freakish voice stop.

      1. Listening to Diane Rehm reminds of that SNL skit about hiring the incompetent. Who else but NPR would hire someone whose speaking ability had been damaged by a stroke to do radio in order to up their cripple-hiring quota?

        1. It’s not a stroke. It’s spasmodic dysphonia. And victims of spasmodic dysphonia should speak up!

          I mean, not literally speak up, but you know, stand up for themselves the way other cripples do.

          Shit, I’m losing my NPR gig, aren’t I?

        2. The British, I believe, have laws requiring employers to hire the incompetent.

          1. So do public schools in the United States.

        3. The first time I heard her, I was like, “Damn, that woman is older than Daniel Schorr!” And my wife says no, she just has a speech impediment. So I said, “why the hell is she doing talk radio, then?” I still can’t bear to listen.

        4. Just as some people have a face made for radio, Diane has a voice made for newspapers.

        5. I actually heard her for the first time the other day, and was astonished. It was painful to listen. Indeed, what a perfect example of the insanity of politically-correct thinking about “discrimination.”

          1. I find her voice strangely comforting.

  17. Though it is too much to expect that William’s firing will lead to the end of the taxpayer sudsidizing of media, I’d be willing to bet that it will lead to a net loss of voluntary contributions. Even some unAmerican, pinko commie, Berkenstock wearing, bearded eco-warrior, enlightened progressive vanguards have a sense of media propriety.

    1. Even some unAmerican, pinko commie, Berkenstock wearing, bearded eco-warrior, enlightened progressive vanguards have a sense of media propriety.

      [citation, as they say, needed]

    2. There are already news stories of conservatives rallying against NPR. What could possibly be a better fund-raiser than having Gingrich and Palin calling for Congress to gut their funding? Either they got lucky, or they are actually pretty crafty.

      1. Have the NPR supporters started whining about the meanies wanting to defund Big Bird yet?

  18. Juan Williams was fired for being honest about his personal feelings. Feelings he was actually somewhat ashamed of! Are we going down the road of firing people for HONESTY!!!

    1. Nah, they fired him because he’s black. Those clowns at NPR are a bunch of racists!

      -jcr

      1. They may have actually fired him because they don’t like the fact he goes on Fox at all.

        They may have been waiting for any excuse.

      1. Never did know who did that song…until now, jerk.

  19. “Call a rat fucker a rat fucker, and you’ll fall victim to some libertoid standards. Libertoid rat fuckers don’t like being called rat fuckers. I know.”–David Weigel

    1. Max|6.24.10 @ 3:29PM|#

      Go suck ron puals dick, morons. You peeple are fucking retarded. I`m done coming to this wingnut sight. this is my last post.

      1. Is that a promise?

        -jcr

        1. A promise as strong as any made by Barack Obama.

          1. Bush lied and people died!

      2. There are a lot of Max clones out there. A fixation on Ron Paul’s weenie is what they have in common.

      3. Max has made his last post|10.21.10 @ 2:58PM|#

        Max|6.24.10 @ 3:29PM|#

        Go suck ron puals dick, morons. You peeple are fucking retarded. I`m done coming to this wingnut sight. this is my last post.

        The sound of a trumpet, played with feeling, meaning and hope. It hangs on a long last note.

        A voice from H&R, softly: joe… is that you…?

    2. And liberal rat fuckers don’t like being called Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi.

      Go figure.

    3. Uh huh. As if Weigel did not talk about massaging the message thus distorting the facts to get Obamacare passed. Yeah, go ahead, Max, just try to hang that one on our heads. Double fucking dare you to look into it for the details because of my good memory I have no doubt who will come out looking bad there.

    4. You all missed the big point: Max found a guy dumber than himself to quote.

  20. Matt you are restoring a bit of the old ultra-violence to H&R

  21. To be fair, NPR did finally stop taking reports from Maureen Meehan after repeated denials that she was married to an official with the Palestinian Authority.

    … I appreciate your perseverance in communicating the information in question, because it now appears Ms. Meehan did not adequately disclose to NPR her husband’s employment and association with organizations and events she covered in connection with her work for NPR. As a result, we have informed Ms. Meehan that we will no longer take her reports.

    1. Talk about double standards! Have you ever listened to NPR during the Christmas holidays? 90% of the on-air talent (?) and producers relate sappy personal stories about Hanukkah. You’d think the HR department over at NPR didn’t understand that they should be hiring some real Americans instead of just the remnants of Hitler’s ethnic outplacing efforts.

      1. uhh.. i hope ur joking

        1. I never joke when I’m sober. Fortunately, I’m … I’m … hey! … who took my bottle opener … dammit … where’d it go? …

          1. OH fuck me I just noticed the name. Wakey wakey, Paul.

  22. 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.

    Comedy gold.

    1. Great! Now they can interview Juan Williams!

  23. Oh, I’ve been searching (in vain) for the transcript or recording of an interview that NPR did with two freshmen members (one Republican, one Democrat) of the 1994 congress. The interview was supposed to be a whats-life-like review for the newly elected, and the NPR interviewer made a nasty comment toward the republican guy in the interview.

  24. Juan’s biggest sin was appearing on Fox News.

    I liked Juan, even when I disagreed with him (a lot). He was always open about his views instead of trying to mask them as faux objectivity and he was often not afraid to call out hypocrisy on his side of the aisle (his other big sin).

  25. “I like NPR, I send money to them and I support them philosophically…”
    – Patton Oswalt

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Re-OdWBCRs

    Watch the video, even he concedes they’re liberal (and it’s somewhat funny).

  26. Thanks for simplifying the Google search, NPR!

    All the assorted Nina Cokieheimers on NPR slant the news coverage based on the questions they ask, the questions they don’t ask, and the topics they choose to cover. I have no problem with that. I do have a problem with NPR’s quasi-governmental nature and their funding through taxation.

  27. If our little expedition through Google bears fruit, then Juan will have a gold-pated employment discrimination case against NPR.

    When you are a member of a protected class (and Juan is in two that I know of), if you can show the asserted reason for your firing is a mere pretext, you are about 90% of the way home.

    1. gold-pated is a winner of a malapropism.

  28. Juan was fired because he appears regularly on Fox. End of story.

  29. “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.”
    Nina Totenberg not only wanted Jesse Helms to die, but appears every freakin’ week on the “Inside Washington” pundit/talking-head show to reliably spout the Democratic Party line. Juan is fired, and she gets to keep her taxpayer-supported job? Unbelievable.

    1. But she also had that great gig as Jerry Seinfeld’s mother.

  30. Juan was lazier than a rug on Valium. He wasn’t stupid enough to speak without thinking and but he wasn’t intelligent enough to say anything insightful or original.

    1. So he was a typical journalist then.

    2. And he wasn’t ignorant enough to use two consecutive conjunctions in a sentence.

  31. I sure hope that Juan Williams doesn’t want to violate me!

    1. Eddie said it was ok if Juan Juants to violate me.

  32. “But when I get on the plane, I got to tell you, if I see people who are in Muslim garb and I think, you know, they are identifying themselves first and foremost as Muslims, I get worried. I get nervous.”

    I get nervous when I see a mother with a kid who I think may cry during the entire flight… does that mean I’m bigoted against infants?

    1. Yes – but there is nothing wrong with that…

      I get nervous with chatty salesmen sitting next to me who have a persistent cough

      1. I once sat next to one of the lawyers who worked on the infamous “McDonald’s coffee is so outrageously hot it burned my client’s crotch” personal injury lawsuit. During the flight, I began to get nervous that I might commit an act of violence as he insisted on trying his legal arguments out on me. What’s a stronger word for sleeze bag?

  33. As it is indeed fund-scrounging week(s) at all the little satellite NPR colonies, I’d recommend that anyone with a little extra time and a mean streak call in and explain (nicely) to the phone drones why you will not be donating any cash to their station–nothing personal, mind you!–until NPR rehires Williams with a full and public apology.

  34. On my libertarian hit list of government programs and funding to cut NPR would be about 176th on my list – sure cut it but do people really get worked up about NPR? I mean they are slanted but mainly toward straight forward milquetoast liberalism – very little of the left – for that turn to Pacifica type stations.

    Disclosure: I listen regularly to Fresh Air and Cliq and Claque…

    1. And on occasion This American Life…

    2. Stealing my money to propogandize against my viewpoint really ticks me off. And it’s such an easy call ….. thats just not one the things government should be doing, period. So they’d be pretty high on my chopping-block list.

    3. Cut it not for the purpose of budget trimming but to make the right people cry. I’m not in it just for the sweet looking green eye shades.

  35. I do listen to NPR with some frequency. When they carry a BBC report I always affect a British accent and intone, “The BBC…biased reporting, with a British accent!” Drives my wife nuts.

  36. “I listen regularly to Fresh Air ”

    well there’s your problem

  37. I also love that NPR’s no 1 political commentator is the daughter of a notoriously corrupt southern politician who signed both the Southern Manifesto condemning desegregation in the 1950s and opposed the 1964 Civil Rights Act.

    1. Apparently, her daughter also works for NPR. Turned this up in a Google search:
      http://www.dailykos.com/story/…..oliticians

  38. http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetw…..ychiatrist

    read the comments too.

  39. NPR and its staff appear to be conducting a lesson in how to get your ass handed to you by saying stupid shit.

    1. Or how to get your ass handed to you for saying reasonable shit.

      1. very good point. It’s a dual lesson.

  40. It’s a lovely thing. Even Democrats have noticed and condemned it.

  41. [sigh] Hey, did y’all know that neither Ira Glass nor Terry (Terri?) Gross is gay?

    Oops! There went some wasted mental energy made possible in part by money forcibly extracted from my self-employed income. Now, about this whole “military-industrial complex” thing…

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