“That’s absolutely true, and I get many, many letters and I get many emails a week from the left and the right accusing us of bias in the opposite direction,” Schiller said. “It speaks to the popularity of media that takes a particular point of view…and we don’t do that, and that upsets some people and that’s fine. They don’t have to listen if they don’t want to.”They don't have to listen if they don't want to?
That is how she responds to criticism? Someone needs to inform Ms. Schiller she is no longer at The New York Times or the Discovery channel or any other private industry. She is in the business of public radio. That makes her accountable. How dare she? "They don't have to listen if they don't want to."
Does this woman not understand what public broadcasting is or why NPR was created in the first place? I do. I am old enough to remember NPR's creation and PBS'. These were accomplishments from President Lyndon B. Johnson's administration. I remember how they were sold to the public initially as well.
And, no, "They don't have to listen if they don't want to," was not how they were sold. They were sold as serving all of America.
Ms. Schiller needs to issue an apology. Her response would be well and good were she still working for a private business. But she is working for National Public Radio. Someone needs to explain it to her.
Now I want to address the issue of NPR tilting left.
NPR is not radical. NPR is also not conservative. It leans left and it is ridiculous for anyone to claim otherwise.
"Ruth's Report" started as a weekly -- sometimes twice weekly -- report I did at The Common Ills and back then I covered NPR.
I know full well what the programming is like. It is not left enough for me -- or for most leftists -- but it does tilt left.
That did not start after the election of Barack Obama. It has nothing to do with him.
And Ms. Schiller needs to get her damn head out of the clouds because the worst offender is Terry Gross and reading Ms. Schiller's comments you might think she is not familiar with Fresh Air. But then you come to this passage:
The draws of NPR are such shows as “Morning Edition” and “All Things Considered.” Along the way, some of its stars have taken on iconic stature in the NPR universe. One of its best known journalists is Terry Gross, who hosts the widely admired interview show “Fresh Air.”
When I mentioned that Gross had turned down my interview request not long ago, Schiller wasn’t too surprised. “She’s a bit press shy for someone who does a lot of interviews — that’s her prerogative,” Schiller said. “She does the most extraordinary interviews with everyone. I particularly love her interviews with cultural figures. She sells books like crazy.”She knows Ms. Gross' work? And with "cultural figures"? Does she really want to go there? She needs to check the November and December 2009 archives when Terry Gross and her guests engaged in non-stop attacks on Republicans.
Do not claim there is no bias. There is clearly bias. She has some little whiner from The Daily Show, a Brit just arrived in this country, and he is pontificating endlessly about this country with endless slams on Republicans. This happened over and over in the last two months of the year.
This is C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot" for today: