Radio

Reason Writers on the NPR

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Managing Editor Jesse Walker has a cameo in NPR's coverage of the NPR defunding debate:

Jesse Walker of the libertarian magazine Reason says stations pay a price when they take federal money. For one thing there's the perennial threat of government interference.

"I don't think that's good for freedom of speech," he says. "And I don't think it's good for broadcasters who want to do their best, and I don't think it serves audiences well."

Walker says public broadcasting needs to devise a new funding mechanism that will protect its independence, such as a private trust supported by an endowment. It's an idea that gets talked about during each funding crisis.

To read (or hear) the whole story, go here. For examples of officials using their power of the purse to apply pressure on broadcasters—and some suggestions for how stations can support themselves without federal funds—read Walker's article "Radio Theater."

NEXT: Remember How the FBI Pinned the Post-9/11 Anthrax Case on a Government Researcher Three Weeks After He Committed Suicide?

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  1. The Kochs engineered this, didn’t they? It hardly makes up for all those Faux News appearances by Reason staffers.

    1. The whole piece was actually pretty balanced. I am thinking there might actually be a group within NPR that would rather be cut lose of the federal government.

      That fact that NPR played it on the air at all is a fucking miracle.

  2. Well, since they fund PBS shows, it stands to reason that they control NPR.

  3. “Jesse Walker of the libertarian magazine Reason says stations pay a price when they take federal money. For one thing there’s the perennial threat of government interference.”

    But that’s the whole point!

    1. As we say at MiniFear, that’s a feature, not a bug.

  4. Set some hipster traps on your way out. You don’t want them trying to follow you home.

    1. The problem is, those traps only catch one hipster at a time, but attract hundreds.

      1. the rest will stop to make a documentary about the trapped one.

    2. Know what happens to captured hipsters? “Cool American” Doritos.

      Also, as an aside, let me note that Nostradamus’ “Hister” sounds a lot more like “hipster” than “Hitler.”

      1. Ever heard of French dressing?

        In other parts of the world they don’t call Ranch dressing ranch…they call it American dressing.

        Of course this begs the question why isn’t there any French dressing flavored Doritos?

    3. What’s the yellow chain thingy and what’s the box ?

      1. Contents: brightly-colored bike chain, American Spirit cigarettes, can of Pabst Blue Ribbon beer, and plastic glasses

        1. I see they’re mostly going after the females, which is good as it will cut down on the breeding population. The lack of a scent from a pork-pie hat will make most males wary.

  5. I think they’ll take the specter of government interference if it means the local stations can stay in existence.

    Can’t this debate wait until President Romney’s administration? Republicans sure are ambitious.

    1. Given NPR’s listener demographic, there’s planty of cash out there to fund it through voluntary contributions or advertising from high-end yuppie retail outlets.

    2. Can’t this debate wait until President Romney’s administration? Republicans sure are ambitious.

      Sure, why not. Afterall, we’ve got his healthcare plan.

    3. This is a bunch of crap. There are loads of people with money who strongly support public broadcasting and they will step up.

  6. But, but . . . why would we ever worry about government interference? The government is “the people”, right?

    (/sarcasm)

    1. Someone actually made that argument in the story’s comment thread on the NPR site.

  7. “Yeah, if you don’t like public radio, then you shouldn’t be using it to spout your capitalist corporatist propaganda then, hypocrite!”

    sigh. Someone WILL say that.

    1. And then I say “I love public radio and I still want government to stop funding it, asshole. It will be better off without it.”

  8. Well played, Jesse Walker. You confused the NPR producers by using terms like “freedom of speech” and the like.

  9. if it means the local stations can stay in existence.

    Because without NPR all of us rubes and hicks in Rural America will be completely cut off from civilization. We’ll just sit on our porches playing banjos and watching the chickens fuck.

    1. We’ll just sit on our porches playing banjos and watching the chickens fuck.

      So it would like an episode of Prarie Home Companion.

    2. But banjo music is edifying when played on NPR, just as long as it’s done by people with the proper worldview.

  10. So it would like an episode of Prarie Home Companion.

    Much more interesting.

  11. Yesterday while driving home i had a “WTF!??!” moment when i heard NPR announcing Jesse.

    What was odd was that the announcer seemed to indicate Walker/Reason was a supporter of NPR/CPB that simply thought it would be better if it did not get federal money.

    It was factual but it just surprised me that the announcer did not try to spin Jesse as some sort of Koch funded sewer dweller.

  12. The government doesn’t pay my cable bill yet they expect me to pay for their radio and TV station? That’s insane! De-fund NPR Now!

    FDA declares war on movie popcorn.
    http://libertarians4freedom.bl…..pcorn.html

    1. WTF?!?!

      OK i was defending your blog whoring before but this is bullshit.

      Either talk about NPR or talk about movie popcorn….this double talk crap needs to stop.

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