It's Not About Big Bird
The News They Can't Make Fit
- Conservationist Carl Safin's Ecosystem Wake Up Call--On Point
. . . What he’s seen is what remains of heart-breaking natural splendor – and of the groaning weight of one species – ours – on the world. Our dignity, he reminds us, is fully bound with nature’s. . . .
- United States of ALEC -- Moyers & Company
How corporations and state legislators are colluding to write laws and remake America, one statehouse at a time.
Is it More "Big Bill"?
Who would have thought that Big Bird would become an Internet meme? After Mitt Romney's comments about public broadcasting during the first Presidential debate, progressives and fans of public media took to their streams in support.
But what is it that keeps PBS and NPR in the cross-hairs of the American Right? I don't think it's about the educational programs. Sesame Street especially is an great example of the model that the right would to see public television programs rely on; I am sure that some of the money from clothes, toys, etc does go into the program.
It is also probably not the cultural programming. Though both public television and radio allow classical, jazz, and folk music, as well as theater to a much wider audience.
So that leaves the news. This may be where the ire of the right is raised. Public television and public radio provide news that is not as influenced by advertisers. One need only listen to "Morning Edition" or "All Things Considered" to hear that you have news designed to inform, not to influence.
The goal of the American Right is not to "pull the plug" on NPR or PBS. I am sure stations would be able to raise the money to fill in the gaps. But it's the second component that is what I think the right is looking for.
Programs would need to rely more on their corporate underwriters, this might mean that programs may be less likely to report on stories that may put an underwriter in a bad light. These underwriters may be the contributors to a campaign or have a lobbyist.
Romney and others may like Big Bird, Elmo, etc. It's Bill Moyers, etc that they're trying to silence.