Tags: Bozell | Schiller | NPR

Bozell: Pull Plug on NPR's 'Left-Wing Playground'

Wednesday, 09 Mar 2011 04:15 PM

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A financially strapped government shouldn’t provide funding for a “left-wing playground,” says Media Research Center President Brent Bozell, who sent a letter to members of Congress urging them to yank $90 million in government funding from NPR.

Brent Bozell, NPR, Schiller
Brent Bozell
Bozell made the comments today in a letter to the heads and the ranking members of House and Senate committees that oversee NPR. He was reacting to the latest in a series of NPR controversies, which culminated today in the firing of NPR President and CEO Vivian Schiller.

The NPR board forced her ouster after former NPR executive Ron Schiller (no relation to Vivian) was caught on a sting videotape dissing tea partyers, Republicans, Christians, Jews, and others while discussing a potential multimillion-dollar donation from two people posing as Muslims.

NPR said Tuesday that Ron Schiller no longer worked for it, as he had moved on to a job with the nonprofit Aspen Institute. But Schiller’s foot-in-mouth experience at NPR apparently prompted him to pull his foot out of the door at Aspen.

Aspen spokesman Jim Spiegleman told The Hollywood Reporter today: "Ron Schiller has informed us that, in light of the controversy surrounding his recent statements, he does not feel that it's in the best interests of the Aspen Institute for him to come work here.”

Bozell isn’t buying any argument that NPR’s washing its hands of its executives exonerates it from blame.

Even Vivian Schiller’s ouster doesn’t erase the need to pull NPR’s funding, he says in the letter, which went to Rep. Fred Upton, chairman of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce; Rep. Henry Waxman, ranking member of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce; Sen. John D. Rockefeller IV, chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation; and Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, ranking member of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation.

The letter says, in part: “In today’s remarkably rich and varied communications environment – and today’s dire federal fiscal straits – there is simply no reason to continue government funding for a Corporation for Public Broadcasting, especially a CPB that defines its role as establishing a ‘firewall’ against taxpayer complaints about biased or inaccurate content.

“It has been 44 years since Congress established the public broadcasting system, and the dramatic revolution in information technology makes the scarcity argument of the 1967 Act utterly obsolete. Congress’s requirement for fairness in public broadcasting has been disregarded since the system’s very first days.

“The resignation of Vivian Schiller doesn’t change a thing about NPR. They are still a radical left-wing toy for the likes of George Soros and they still don’t deserve a dime of taxpayer funding. A government that is broke should not be in the business of funding a left-wing playground.”

Ron Schiller's statements also drew umbrage from religious and ethnic groups that he sullied with negative comments.

Catholic League President Bill Donohue demanded that Congress strip NPR of its taxpayer support, as Newsmax reported Tuesday.

The Anti-Defamation League issued a statement in reaction to his snide comment that Jews control the media, voicing this rebuttal: "No matter the circumstances, raising false stereotypes about Jewish control of the media is dangerous and inappropriate. Mr. Schiller’s remarks were offensive and he should acknowledge his mistake and apologize."

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