Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Q Tips

NPR related comments welcomed.


Mytwords said...

I'm experimenting with Twitter - check sidebar. Not sure how that will go; we'll see.

JayV said...

To show differences in reporting, on my Yahoo! webpage there's a headline "Tens of thousands converge on Cairo" for an AP story posted a little over an hour ago. (NPR uses AP wire news frequently). AJE however are stating that there are 2 million protesters in Cairo.

Anonymous said...

the title to NPR's own piece claims
"Thousands Converge In Cairo To Demand Mubarak Go"

Well, one million IS a thousand thousands, so I suppose that's not entirely incorrect.

NPR can't report ANYTHING without first making sure it will not offend the official government line.

The management at NPR are constantly trying to gauge the "temperature" (shifting stance?) of the Obama administration vis a vis Mubarak (whom VP Joe Biden claims is NOT a dictator)

With aerial photos, it's pretty easy to estimate crowd densities and knowing the area of the Tahir Square gives a direct estimate of the crowd.

But NPR is not estimating any of this themselves.

They are simply taking the "official government line" as gospel as they normally do.

Anonymous said...

"Looters included undercover Egyptian police, hospitals tell Human Rights Watch"
"Human Rights Watch confirmed several cases of undercover police loyal to Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak's regime committing acts of violence and looting in an attempt to stoke fear of instability.." -- Washington Post

Oh my.

NPR now has egg on their face for trying to paint the popular uprising in Egypt as led by a bunch of criminals.

Same as it ever was.

Viv Schiller and pals were born with egg on the faces.

informedveteran said...

Maybe NPR is feeling the heat:

"With a handful of exceptions, most U.S. cities and states have no channel that broadcasts Al-Jazeera. That's because cowardly U.S. cable providers refuse to grant the channel a distribution platform, largely for fear of being perceived as supporting or enabling a network that for years has been portrayed negatively by U.S. officials." Jeremy Scahill

Porter Melmoth said...

The situation in Egypt is of course much more conducive to TV than radio. I mean, surayasahadinelson & lourdesgarcianavarro could be standing in a parking lot in Dacron, Ohio for all that matter. That certainly feeds into the sour grapes of Al Jaz's competence in covering what to them (AlJaz) is a regional story. But the hubris and arrogance of US news operations mean that they are not in the mood to tolerate any interlopers. But they have to. They've been shown up yet again, and it bugs the hell out of them. Viv just might have to branch out into iPhone video, so as to make her dream of NPR being a 'one stop' news source a blazing reality.

The US obsession with Egypt 'going Islamacististic' continues. NPR's obsessed with it, of course. Instead of the red tide of the Commies, we've got the green tide of the Moozlummists. Domino theories will sprout: 'if Egypt goes down, then it'll be Greece, then Italy, then Belgium, then Vermont - starting with Burlington (cuz they got corrupted by their cable allowance of Al Jazeera, ya know)...' Israel's freak-out will be treated with kid gloves.

Gjelten, MeeShill, Inskreep -they all WARNED us, remember?

But, to soften the growing terror, ME had just the wackiest, most fun-filled audio cartoon of Bob Krulwich doing Stupid Science Tricks for our relief from dirty old Egypt. And now they've got Jerry Brown to kick around again, and they're doing it like they never, ever did to Arnie (even though Arnie turned out to be more 'Californian' than they all thought). Seems NPR doesn't much cotton to Jerry's ultra-pragmatic approaches, so they rounded up some spoiled kids to bitch about how the Governor's LET THEM DOWN and all. And it's no excuse that he's only been in office a few weeks. It was a classic of pandering to NPR's target audience of the Entitled and the Entitled Wannabes. Very teabaggy, very reprehensible.

They've even got Jamie Tarrabay doing 'legal' stories in Virginia, her mouth as clogged with rubber bands as ever. Boy, I bet she's super jealous of the SS Nelson & Our Lady Lourdes.

Man, this endurance of NPR's dysfunctional personalities is getting more exhausting (not to mention more preposterous) than ever!

Remember 'The Gong Show'? NPR can compete.

Patrick Lynch said...

In the "light" category there was that really stupid piece from the Radio Lab guy about how no form of technology ever dies. As the owner of perfectly functional gramophones, manual typewriters, cars with carburetors etc. I found his insistence that there are pieces of technology no longer being made exasperating. Apparently this twit doesn't know how to use Google as was repeatedly demonstrated to him by his colleagues.

I'm looking forward to how NPR handles the Human Rights Watch confirmation of who was actually doing the looting in Egypt. Another big rip in their Emperor's New Credibility Clothes. Another segment that had me yelling at the radio at the breakfast table this morning.

Anonymous said...

Last night, I watched a Frontline report where the reporter was interviewing someone in Tahrir square.

The reporter started to ask the guy she was interviewing what role the islamists were playing...

when the reporter was interrupted by another guy who said "Stop it. I know what you [the reporter] are doing. Just trying to make it look like this is all about making Egypt into an Islamist state like Iran. Well this is NOT about that -- or even about religion at all>

It was funny. The guy had the reporter's number and was not going to put up with any of the misleading questions and other BS.

If only NPR listeners were as smart as that guy!

Anonymous said...

NPR's hatchet job on Julian Assange continues, this time from Terry Gross, who lets NY Times Editor Bill Keller say pretty much anything he wants (make stuff up?) about Assange with no challenge whatsoever.

Gross is aptly named, IMHO. She IS grotesque.

Mytwords said...

I will say that Lourdes Garcia Navarro mentioned the HRW report on gov agent looters on Mon's ATC.

Anonymous said...

Apparently, the folks at Morning Edition never got the word, cuz they were STILL emphasizing the looting just this morning (and no mention of the HRW report)

NPR likes to play this game where they cover all their bases.

and one can achieve one's goal through repetition.

If you emphasize looting several days on various programs and then mantion once in passing that, "oh by the way, "some" believe the looting was carried out by government officials", what do you suppose people will remember?

I would really like to see NPR's playbook, because it's pretty clear that they follow one -- ie, that they control what gets aired VERY carefully.

Just look at the way their "tone" has evolved over the past few days to follow the "tone" of the Obama administration, who had been tacitly supporting Mubarak (by calling for "stability") until they saw that was no longer tenable.

Anonymous said...

Thank you all for the incisive comments. If I hear one more dumb American opine on NPR about radical Islam taking over Egypt....thank heaven for Democracy Now, Al Jazeera et al. Americans are fed a steady diet of junk and disinformation, and NPR is one of the chief purveyors.

Mytwords said...

Anon is absolutely correct re looters. Sarhaddi Nelson is a complete (Rendon/Pentagon Approved) US military tool and apparently doesn't even listen to her own colleagues. What a joke...

Porter Melmoth said...

A message from the head of Al Jazeera regarding its coverage:


Blob & MeeShill are still emphasizing the 'looters'.

Porter Melmoth said...


"Looting Tied to Backers of Mubarak Regime

Ahead of today’s rally in Egypt, the army arrested a number of government-backed "saboteurs and thugs" trying to infiltrate the protests. Meanwhile, the Mubarak regime is being accused of orchestrating some of the looting that has occurred in recent days in an attempt to stoke fear of instability. Human Rights Watch has revealed evidence tying undercover police officers loyal to Mubarak to acts of violence and looting. The United Nations human rights chief says she has received unconfirmed reports that up to 300 people may have been killed in Egypt over the past week."


Porter Melmoth said...

One more DN!:

"Media Blackout in Egypt and the U.S.: Al Jazeera Forced Off the Air by Mubarak, Telecommunications Companies Block Its Expansion in the United States"


Anonymous said...

Blob & MeeShill are still emphasizing the 'looters'."

"Internet? What's that?" axes Meeshill.

"What that's you say? It allows you to get up to the second news right from the horse's mouth?" axes Blob.

"Why would anyone want that when we can -- and DO -- get our own news from the White House Press secretary [aka, the donkey's ass]"

Anonymous said...

Of course, the REAL looting (and rape and torture and murder) in Egypt and other Arab countries (Saudi Arabia, Syria, etc) -- which NPR has been completely silent about over the years -- comes at the hands of members of the elite ruling class who have been robbing those countries blind for over a half century -- and with the help and support of the US. (kinda like they do here in the good ol US of A)

Just today, Obama said he called for Mubarak "not to run for re-election" [sic]

Funny, I thought the people were calling for Mubarak's ouster, not his promise not to run again.

If Obama REALLY supported the right of the people of Egypt to determine their own destiny -- and IF he had any cahones at all -- he would be with the protestors all the way.

But of course, Obama is little more than a spokesman for the real powers running this country and a "smooth transition" in a US proxy like Egypt is the name of the game.

God knows there is far too much uncertainty associated with letting the people of Egypt decide for themselves.

Hell, there might even be trials of Mubarak and others (gasp) and God only knows what might be revealed (about US complicity rendition, torture and the rest).

Besides, the US needs time to find and groom a replacement for Mubarak.

Anonymous said...

On the issues of "looting" and "extremists" (Islamists) bent on "destabilizing" (and taking over) Egypt, NPR is reading directly from the script provided by Mubarak:

"Those protests were transformed from a noble and civilised phenomenon of practising freedom of expression to unfortunate clashes, mobilised and controlled by political forces that wanted to escalate and worsen the situation. They targeted the nation's security and stability through acts of provocation theft and looting and setting fires and blocking roads and attacking vital installations and public and private properties and storming some diplomatic missions.

In other words, NPR CEO Vivian Schiller is essentially acting as Hosni Mubarak's mouth piece.

How funny is that?

Anonymous said...

The fact that Obama has "urged" Mubarak not to "run" for another term and that Mubarak has apparently complied with the "request" , but has NOT agreed to step down immediately almost certainly means that Obama has already struck some kind of "deal" whereby Mubarak gets safe haven after he steps down and Obama buys some time to look for an "appropriate" successor (if not Mubarak's son, someone else who will provide "stability" and "continuity" to US/Egyptian relations.

Wikileaks has leaked cables which lay out the primary goals of that relationship. Democracy for Egypt's people does not even enter into the equation.

In fact, despite their recent words, democracy -- with all its uncertainty -- is probably the last thing our "leaders" (Obama, Clinton and others) want.

"The tangible benefits to our mil-mil relationship ["deal" with Mubarak to provide Egypt with $1.3 billion military aid per year] are clear: Egypt remains at peace with Israel, and the US military enjoys priority access to the Suez canal and Egyptian airspace."

Anonymous said...

Good blog post by history professor Tim Burke on the illusions of the American journalist as Al Jazeera and expert blogs eat their lunch on Egypt and Tunisia.


"But this is what mainstream American journalism has been doing for so long: talking to the same small circle of people as if they were the whole wide world. Now they react in dismay and confusion when the clouds of hot air briefly part and they dimly glimpse long well-lit avenues thronged with experts, commenters, and observers of whom they know nothing."

"Good journalism and strong perspectives have been happy bedfellows everywhere for the last two centuries except among a weird cult of American reporters who think of objectivity primly, as a chastity belt, a sanitary cordon, instead of thinking of their obligation being to truth, the hard facts, calling it like it is. Not the least 'objectivity' is a form of self-congratulation that prevents you from having to audit your own slants and account the many favors for insiders that you’ve paid off."

"If you’d only reported as you claim to report, if you’d only even now ask tougher questions, investigate past the story you’re spoonfed by the State Department insider you went to college with, freshen up the experts and commenters you rely upon, and take a genuine interest in the new world of information and reportage out there, you wouldn’t be one step in the grave, as unmourned as Scrooge is in his vision of Christmas Future."

"What I see [on Al Jazerra English) is a wide range of interesting interview subjects with a wide variety of perspectives and professional experiences being asked some pointed, valid questions. All of them: I have yet to see someone come on Al-Jazeera English who gets asked nothing but the softballs and love notes that are relatively common in American television journalism. I get something I can dissect critically, view skeptically and yet find useful, compelling and interesting to watch."

Anonymous said...

NPR is still emphasizing the violence in Tahrir square, even though the vast majority of the demonstrators have been peaceful.

..and no mention of documented Mubarak "plants" for the express purpose of inciting violence.

..and note the title to the article
"Mubarak Enemies, Allies Clash In Cairo"

..and Lourdes Garcia-Navarro is careful to close with this little piece of fearmongering:

"The continued chaos in Egypt has taken a toll on the country's economy, with Moody's cutting its sovereign rating to Ba2 on Wednesday, citing the unrest. The downgrading will make it harder for Egypt to borrow, which could further damage the economy and contribute to further unrest.

PS In case it is not obvious, I'm not much impressed with the "objectivity" [sic] of Garcia-Navarro.It certainly appears that she is purposely distorting things.

Why else would she FAIL to mention the Mubarak "plants" (that HRW has documented) and close with that little bit of fear-mongering?

Anonymous said...

Incidentally, Garcia-Navarro noted that
"Hundreds of pro-government supporters — some riding camels and horses — fought with protesters in the capital's central square,"

So, the obvious question is where did they get the camels and horses?

Most ordinary folks simply do not own such things and even if they did, they certainly would not risk having their animals injured or killed.

But of course, NPR NEVER asks the obvious questions because that is not their job.

Their job is to act as stenographer for whatever administration that currently holds the reigns of power in THIS country, which in this case, equates to acting as mouthpiece for Mubarak.

Anonymous said...

The other obvious question that Garcia-Navarro FAILED to ask is Who instigated the violence and How di they do it?

Riding a camel or horse through a crowd of people is hardly a peaceful way of demonstrating.

If you were standing around peacefully demonstrating and suddenly someone on a horse came out of nowhere and threatened to trample YOUR child of other loved one, what would YOU DO?

Garcia-Navaro is not a journalist. She's a hack.

Anonymous said...

If anyone needed any further evidence that the pro-Mubarak factions (plants?) are the ones instigating the violence, they have actually "promised" as much

Pro-Mubarak Protesters Pledge to 'Liberate Tahrir Square with Blood'

Anonymous said...

Democracy Now! also has a report on the recent outbreak of violence entitled
"Bloodshed in Egypt: Mubarak Supporters Riding on Horses and Camels Violently Attack Protesters in Tahrir Square, Over 100 Injured"

"Violent clashes broke out just before our broadcast when supporters of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak attacked anti-government protesters in Tahrir Square in Cairo. Reports are that more than 100 people have been injured. “The entire square is surrounded by thugs, and more are on their way,” reports Egyptian activist Nazly Hussein.

//end DN quotes

Compare that to Garcia-Navarro/NPR's title "Mubarak Enemies, Allies Clash In Cairo" and article. Gives no context and makes it appear that both sides are instigating the violence.

Given the context (over a million people have been demonstrating peacefully in the square up until just now and some of the pro-Mubarak factions were riding camels and horses ), whose title and article do you suppose more accurately reflects the reality of what happened?

I gotta go with Democracy Now! version.

Garcia-Navaro's version makes no rational sense -- to say nothing of the fact that it is fundamentally dishonest.

Anonymous said...

Sarhaddi Nelson is a complete (Rendon/Pentagon Approved) US military tool

Ruth's report backs that up.

Is it my imagination or do NPR reporters really not give a rats pitooti about their "reputation" as "journalists"? (as seems to be the case)

It may be great working for NPR while the public money lasts, but what happens when (not IF, but when) the Republican-controlled Congress ends the party (ie cuts all funding to public radio) in the probably not too distant future?

Where do folks like Sarhaddi Nelson and Garcia-Navarro and of course Anne "interviewing just-tortured prisoners is my specialty" Garrels expect to get another job when that happens?

If NPR is already "where journalists go when they are put out to pasture", who is going to hire these folks?

I suspect that most real news organizations (eg, Democracy Now!) would not touch them with a ten foot pole.

Maybe they will all go to Fox News and party it up with Juan Williams?

Porter Melmoth said...

No need for NPR, no need for cable:


informedveteran said...

I'm sure there would be pro-Dick Cheney supporters here if he was our dictator for 30 years. It is stupid for the media to make a big deal of it.

Anonymous said...

NPR is changing their report with no indication that they are making such changes/additions

Originally, in a report titled "Mubarak Enemies, Allies Clash in Cairo" (which NPR has removed from their site, but which you can still read herethey reported that
"Hundreds of pro-government supporters — some riding camels and horses — fought with protesters in the capital's central square,"

Now, they have updated/changed that report to read:

Throngs of pro-government backers — some on horses and camels, some carrying machetes and sticks — took to the streets hours after Mubarak announced late Tuesday that he would step down when his term ends in September.

They even changed the title to "Violence Escalates Between Mubarak Enemies, Allies"

If you do a google search on "Hundreds of pro-government supporters — some riding camels and horses — fought with protesters in the capital's central square,", the first thing it returns is a link to the current (updated) article on the NPR site that no longer contains the original text!

You know, this kind of changing stuff around willy nilly without any indication that they are doing it is HIGHLY UN-Professional for any organization that calls it self a news organization.

If they want to change stuff, they should leave the original text intact (perhaps with a red lin ethrough it) and make it clear that they are updating the article.

Just one more example of how utterly pathetic NPR is as a news organization.

It's a complete JOKE.

informedveteran said...

The story from the nation I referenced above has been pulled off of NPR. Not sure why.

The Nation seems to have backed off too since Obama got the Al Jazeera reporters released. They changed the story (I guess).

Anonymous said...

I'm sure there would be pro-Dick Cheney supporters here if he was our dictator for 30 years. It is stupid for the media to make a big deal of it.

It's not stupid that they are making a big deal of it because these Mubarak folks are ATTACKING people (even reporter Anderson Cooper)

But it IS stupid/dishonest that NPR and others are drawing/implying a false equivalence between such a small number of Mubarak "supporters" (some of whom are almost certainly Mubarak plants) and the hundreds of thousands of ordinary people in Tahrir square who are calling for Mubarak to leave.

That NPR has drawn this equivalence is pretty bad, even by their own dicey "balance" standards.

geoff said...

Andy Seedrook did a lovely lovefest with the neotea polite republicans today. I had this image of her holding Andy Harris's head between her knees and squeezing as she undulated adoringly about the righteousness and redemption that teaers bring to the grand old party. The more excited she got about the greatness of the freshness of new House members, the harder she squeezed Mr. Harris head, climaxing with a tremendous bursting of brains.

Sorry, don't know how else to express my disgust at this fat lady's sing song praise.

Anonymous said...

NPR's Mark Memmott "The short-hand version of what's happening [in Tahrir square] is that the attackers support President Hosni Mubarak and want revenge on the anti-Mubarak protesters."

Or perhaps at least some of them -- eg, the ones on horseback and camels with whips and machettes -- were actually sent there by Mubarak to stir up trouble in order to bolster Mubarak's claims that the demonstrations are
"mobilised and controlled by political forces that wanted to escalate and worsen the situation. They targeted the nation's security and stability through acts of provocation theft and looting and setting fires and blocking roads and attacking vital installations and public and private properties and storming some diplomatic missions."

Apparently, it never occurred to Marky boy (genius that he is) that Mubarak might not just sit on the sidelines while his 30 year reign (of terror) goes down the toilet.

Mark Memmott: "Egyptian Army solders seem to be either unwilling to or not capable of stopping the attacks. Events on the ground are surely more complicated than that."

perhaps we are to believe that a well equppped army with machine guns, riot gear, tear gas and armored vehicles is "Not capable of stopping the attacks" by a relatively small number of folks on horses and camels with machettes and whips?

Come on Marky, boy. You don't really believe that DO you???

Mark Memmott continues: "Late yesterday, as we wrote, Mubarak said he will not run for re-election in September — but that he plans to stay in office until after a new president is elected and sworn in. Those who have been demanding that he leave now aren't satisfied."

Ah, yes. The REAL reason behind the uptick in violence. Those who oppose Mubarak are not satisfied with Mubarak's offer not to run again and because of this have decided to go violent, right, Mark?


Where in the world does NPR find geniuses like Mark Memmott.

If that guy had a brain, he'd be dangerous.

informedveteran said...

Seeing this made me remember that Barack W. Obamabush has a Nobel Peace Prize! Someone should remind HIM that he has it before his next statement about Egypt.

Of course Nationalist Propaganda Radio had to throw this in there, "Critics have said WikiLeaks' disclosures have put lives at risk — including those of American intelligence officers and the sources they cultivate." No need to mention that there isn't ANY evidence that it is true.

Patrick Lynch said...

It has been my fervent wish of late that when NPR gets its funding cut that someone does an expose of what kind of propaganda outlet it has been and just how truly shoddy their so called journalism has been.

Of course it's also a pipe dream. It may finally get its funding cut but I don't think a true expose will make it to the mainstream consciousness. The Egypt coverage on Morning Edition to my mind represents a new low for NPR among so many. It's not an original observation on my part that this sloppiness is not even hidden anymore. However the sheer cravenness of the garbage somehow continues to astound me even though it really shouldn't at this point.

The neo-con "experts" seem to be licking their chops at their new found opportunities to spread fear to the liberals via NPR. While they are trying to sound so concerned, they can barely hide the glee in their voices as ply their sick wares. Egypt is not another Iran, and for that matter why should the U.S. do anything, it's for the Egyptian people to decide for heaven's sake. That was the most enraging thing about the "interviews" on Morning Edition today.

Anonymous said...

I can't wait to hear NPR's condemnation of Wikileaks (and Assange) if they actually win a Nobel Peace Prize.

That would be worth extending NPR's funding (which will almost certainly get cut some time in the near future) a little longer just to hear.

PS Mark Memmott is a hack. Like he really has to tell us that his stupid little online survey is "not scientific". What an idiot.

Anonymous said...

NPR is STILL changing/updating their report with no indication that they are making such changes/additions

You can see the original report entitled "Mubarak Enemies, Allies Clash in Cairo" here(which NPR has removed from their site, and replaced with this report, which now includes a section entitled "Hired Thugs"!!

Go to the original report and see for yourself that there was no mention of "hired thugs" or anything even remotely related, but if you click on the original link here it actually takes you to the NEW (updated/changed) article that DOES contain those references!

In particular, the following text is in the changed article but NOT the original

"Westervelt said opposition protesters were emphatic that the pro-Mubarak forces are "hired thugs, members of the police and security forces."

"They are just trying to agitate people to get into a fight, to divert attention from the beautiful things that are being born in Tahrir Square," said Dalia Basili, a university professor.

//end NPR quote

If you search in the NPR search box on "mubarak enemies clash in cairo" which was in the original title to the article, you can see the title to the old article, but the link has been redirected to the NEW (modified/updated article)


In other words, NPR is trying to rewrite history here: the history of their own reporting!

What makes this so insidious is that if you call them out on an error or ommission in thei original article, they have set things up so that all they need to do is update the article with the information that was in error or missing and "Voila', no longer in error or missing"

This is DEEPLY dishonest and MUST violate even NPR's journalistic ethics.


Whoever is playing this dishonest game should certainly be fired.

But of course, writing to NPR is a waste of time (especially to that unethical apologist they have working as ombidsman) better just to write to Congress and urge them to shut down the whole bloody business.

And, remember: if you are contacting Republican members of Congress, be sure to use the Juan Williams firing as a reason for defunding NPR :)

Porter Melmoth said...

Major Chomsky commentary on the current situation (multi-part):


geoff said...

Add Robert Fisk on Flashpoints to the honest reporting on Egypt at about 17:45 here.

Porter Melmoth said...

More Fisk:


Anonymous said...

WHYY is 425k off their mark of 760k so in 8 days of funding they got a grand total of 335k. It is beginning to show on the talking heads as they try to remain ever up-beat and positive. And of course the last day is supposed to be tomorrow and the corporate "challenges" have not been in play as much as usual - yet.

I noted the change in tone of the Egypt coverage Saturday night into Sunday morning.


geoff said...

I noted the change in tone of the Egypt coverage Saturday night into Sunday morning.

Yes the play book seems to have moved on from the failed, "don't make so much chaos and mayhem", to "we're the only ones who can save you from those horrible Mubarak thugs." Was is Tom Brokaw's red-glared face I saw alternately turning from/toward the camera from his perch over Tahrir Square? What brave souls are these Americans to perch above liberty like birds of prey?

larry, dfh said...

Well, its not npr, but pbs. Apparently (I haven't watched it), their new show in the old Moyers timeslot is drawing lots of
In the article is a letter from the president of WNET, whcih produces the show 'Need to Know', as in "you DON'T need to know that there were no WMDs in Iraq (so we didn't tell you)." The sickening letter tries to tie the show to the coat tail of the disgraced poseur Tim Russert (exposed by Moyers on PBS!). It seems these folks want nothing more than residence in the echo-chamber. That is what management at npr and pbs is all about.

bgpkfzbn said...

Gag, 'Knead to Blow' is pathetic, especially in light of the programs it superseded. I started calling it NPRtv from the git-go.

Anonymous said...

If it looks like NPR is thrashing around -- and drowning -- in the whole Egypt thing, that's because they have no clue HOW they are "expected" to "cover" it.

As noted by Chomsky, Obama has been very careful not to say anything so that he will keep all options open:

If Mubarak survives, he can become his buddy again, just like before this happened.

ONTH, if Mubarak is forced out, Obama can claim he was with the people all along.

But because Obama has not said anything and because NPR gets their cue from Obama (or whoever happens to b ein the White House), they are currently lost at sea without a life vest.

It's actually kin dof humorous watching them change their stories around from one hour to the next (noted above) to fit what they guess to be the tone of the Obama administration.

doesn't really know how to come

Anonymous said...


even though Obama has not said much, people around him have said lots of stuff:

Hillary has talked about the importance of "stability" (code for "dictatorship") in the region.

And Biden said "I don't think Mubarak is really a dictator".

IE: NPR has no monopoly on circus acts. It's a comedy of clowns all around.

Anonymous said...

Sometimes silence can say as much as speech...

Following is from Obama, Mubarak: We Love Pro-democracy Protesters!

"Nicholas Kristof, blogging from Cairo, can't get over the giddiness of the Egyptians he is interviewing on the streets. They are disappointed in the United States' focus on what could go wrong, on the repercussions for oil prices, for Israel, for U.S. influence in the region.

"These pro-democracy protesters say overwhelmingly that America is on the side of President Mubarak and not with them. They feel that way partly because American policy statements seem so nervous, so carefully calculated - and partly because these protesters were attacked with tear gas shells marked "made in U.S.A." -- Nicholas Kristof, blogging from Cairo

Anonymous said...

The Middle East is seeing popular uprisings the likes of which it has never seen before (in Tunisia, Egypt, and now Yemen)

...and our illustrious "leader" Obama is acting like Chance Gardner in "Being There"

"I like to watch" was his favorite line.

Once again, Obama is handed the opportunity that happens once in a lifetime (if that) to effect REAL, lasting POSITIVE change for the lives of millions of people in that region and he is sitting on the sidelines:

"I like to watch".


Anonymous said...

Just when you thought NPR could not go any lower, you get this report entitled

"Mubarak Warns Of 'Chaos' If He Leaves Office Early" with a picture of what NPR describes as "An Egyptian anti-government demonstrator battles pro-government opponents in Cairo's Tahrir Square on Thursday."

NPR also makes sure to quote an "interview with ABC's Christiane Amanpour, Mubarek said his government was not responsible for the violent clashes in Cairo that continued into the night Thursday."

Well, I guess that proves Mubarak had no hand in the marauding camels and horsemen, doesn't it?
Nothing to see here.
Move along.

For some odd reason, NPR also includes a quote from Egypt's VP twice:

"When there are demonstrations of this size, there will be foreigners who come and take advantage and they have an agenda to raise the energy of the protesters," he said.

You know what they say. If you repeat something enough times...

Anonymous said...


NPR has now changed the report I commented about immediately above so that it NO LONGER contains the following quote TWICE:

"When there are demonstrations of this size, there will be foreigners who come and take advantage and they have an agenda to raise the energy of the protesters," he said.

Too funny!

If I were not sure that the folks at NPR can't read, I might think there is someone at NPR following this blog! (and madly making corrections as they are pointed out so they don't look like complete idiots)

Anonymous said...

By the way, if you want to see the original article above BEFORE NPR took out the repeat of the quote (after my note?), click here

Isn't the internet great?

Nothing is ever lost no matter how many times the hacks/quacks at NPR delete it!

What a bunch of morons.

Porter Melmoth said...

Congrats, Anon, if you have indeed made a difference with NPR's control freaks, but I know I haven't. NPR is the Mubarak of news organizations, as it were. That is, the more we point out their flaws, offences, etc., the more stonewalled they become. Why else would NPR be getting worse in just about every way?

At any rate, I've been so busy at Al Jazeera, BBC, DN!, Link TV, Grit TV, etc, I thought, boy, I've neglected NPR. So I checked in with the Blob and MeeShill. Now that the western media superstars are being treated with equality 'on the scene' in Cairo, let the indignant responses rage.

Anyway, in hearing Lourdes' run-in and Suraya's (boring) train trip to Alexandria, there's still that TONE in Blob/M-Shill's voices that has a bit of the 'oh ick' to it. In Tucson a nut shoots a crowd, but it isn't 'icky', while in crude, boorish Cairo, HOW DARE a reporter get hassled?

Don't get me wrong, I'm not in favor of reporters being roughed up or worse, but in dictator lands, rustling up a gang of thugs is one of the easiest things a thuggish Pharaoh can do. Casualness or fostering expectations that merely being a reporter is one's passport to a safe passage is out the window. There's no 'embedding' in this case.

Mubarak may have a point when he said that Obama didn't understand Egyptian society. Yeah, a society he molded, influenced, and coerced.

Bottom line though, NPR? I don't need no NPR.

Porter Melmoth said...

Sorry for this shallow yak at such a time, but NPR's other great communicators abroad sound like they're competing for roles in the cheesiest soap opera ever.

I mean, Eleanor de Beardsley's STILL in Tunisia and she sounds more conceited and snotty than ever. Why? Just WHY?

And Miss Julie McCarthy's in LaHORRR, talking about an important legal case, but her ersatz blue-blood drawl is so contorted and distracting that - OK, OK, I'm going back to where I belong: NOT near NPR.

(And Julie, honey, if you insist on saying 'Pawk-ees-stawn', try saying 'Pun-jabb' instead of 'Poon-jawwb', and with no emphasis on either syllable. Actually it's a subtle grey area between 'pun' and 'pan' in 'Punjab', that is, if she wants to ape the locals. The inconsistency of these vain, bush-league people is most tiresome.)

I know they're doing all this just to torture me.

Anonymous said...

"the more we point out their flaws, offences, etc., the more stonewalled they become."

That's just it, though.

the change I mentioned above (removing the double quote) might just have been done coincidentally shortly after I pointed it out (or someone else may have pointed it out as well), but the fact that they change stuff like this willy nilly all the time (I pointed out several instances just above) without even acknowledging or annotating the changes means they are trying to HIDE their mistakes -- not own up to them.

Hiding your mistakes and acting as if they never existed to begin with IS a form of stonewalling.

It's kind of entertaining to play these games but at the same time it just shows how truly pathetic NPR has become.

Not only do they not have editors who catch the errors, but they also don't have ethical journalistic standards in place in order to prevent "leave no trace behind" rewrites to their articles.

The latter is exceedingly bad journalistic practice -- to say nothing of exceedingly dishonest.

The perfect example is the artcile that reported that Congresswoman Giffords had died.

Instead of leaving the article up with a red line through it and a prominent correction (perhaps in BOLD above the part that was in error) -- which would have been the honest thing to do -- NPR "disappeared it" entirely and replaced it with an entirely new one an then buried the correction way down in the article.

I have been monitoring these articles on their website fairly regularly and these "changes without traces" are a regular pattern, not an anomaly.

Whoever is writing the articles on the website (some of which come from NPR programs) seems to be under the impression that they can rewrite them as many times as they want and make corrections and changes at will and not even acknowledge the changes.

beepeeeffbee said...

Ha! Scrubby McNews. All the news that's fit to misprint (and then revise without citation).

And it's during this fundraising time, I am especially reflexive in gripping my billfold and defensively jerking it back (like the protagonist of Kurosawa's 'Ikiru' grabbing protectively for his new fedora from the barmaid after the grief of having his old one already stolen).

Not that I'm really listening in much, mind you.

Anonymous said...

So, now that Lourdes Garcia-Navarro is a victim of the attacks by Mubarak government thugs, she's changing her tune.

When it's just ordinary Egyptians who are getting attacked, by all means, if you mention who is behind them at all, present the claims as he-said/she-said "balanced" with official denials from the Mubarak government.

But now that she is the victim, she magically gains some certainty about just who is behind these attacks -- on journalists at least: It remains to be seen whether she will change her tune when it comes to attacks on ordinary folks.

"It is clear that the Hosni Mubarak regime does not want what is happening here to be broadcast to the world."

No s*** Lourdes?

How did you come to that brilliant conclusion?

How pathetic is Garcia-Navarro?

She should be fired, IMHO.

But, I'll settle for complete defunding of NPR and all member stations.

Porter Melmoth said...

Ashbrook had a classic Neocon approach to Egypt on On Point this Fri.

That is, David Sanger and - get ready - Tom Gjelten. Uh-huh. And yesterday he had Nick Burns on, whose lullaby-voiced BS has caused a lot of trouble in the world. (One caller-in astutely labeled Burns 'part of the problem' of Mubarakism (my term).)

Anyway, just an observation about Gjelten (who deserves sustained criticism for the foreseeable future): on this show, he said absolutely NOTHING. Not only nothing of value (naturally), but nothing but filler words parroting what's already known. And he got paid for it.

My point: when he's got a CIA-approved script in front of him, he's Mr. Gravitas, but when he's semi-off the cuff (he couldn't survive without a 'cuff' of some kind), he's as vacuous as Sarah Palin.

Thus, as we know, Gjelten is the perfect vessel to fill by others then pour out onto Neocon Public's airwaves.

Prediction: these overpaid blab-heads in their comfort zones will really start to lose their audiences, because their audiences have already figured out this stuff and have advanced past it. They will get their info from other sources, making things like NPR irrelevant, unnecessary, and prohibitively costly.

Gjelten's most profound statement in the show: 'Ronald Reagan's genius was his sense of timing. He sensed that the Berlin Wall was about to fall...' etc. Spoken by a true believer.

And not bad for an Alzheimers' dude! They can have epiphanies we can't even guess at - I guess. Viz: Ron Reagan's insights on his dad's illness; Gjelten & Co. will no doubt deny Ron's 'skewed' outlook. It's like The Don (Rumsfeld) blaming the rush into Iraq on his son's drug abuse. If you were The Don's son, you'd do drugs, too. And there’s no one better to blame a war on than a druggie.

Job opportunities for otherwise disenfranchised sociopaths are always available in top leadership positions in this world.

Porter Melmoth said...

What I meant to say was: believing that Reagan 'sensed' that the Berlin Wall was coming down is like Rumsfeld going along with BushCo's Iraq war desires because he was 'distracted' at the moment by his son's drug problems.

Psychotic reasoning is always a criminal's best defense.

informedveteran said...

Now on NPR.org's mainpage "Egyption Turmoil Could Be Trouble For Investors". Typical American-centric BS coverage. I guess a story called "Could Egypt Be a Blueprint For American Protest?" would ruffle too many white house feathers.

geoff said...

I'd love to see a people's revolt in the US that started with, say, an occupation of Wall St.

The viral contagion of uprising may well come to our shores. Freedom is contagious - the trouble is, outfits like NPR keep telling us how free we are. This morning the Simonizer waxed revolting with "Americans are comfortable in their own environment." He says,

Americans can ski snowy peaks and salute Saguaro cacti in stark deserts without ever needing a passport.

And without ever being able to afford a lift ticket, huh?

How about this closer for disgusting propaganda:

As astronaut Mark Kelly told the National Prayer Breakfast this week, he has been able to see our planet as he goes around the world—and around and around—from space, and now sees our earth, "as God created it, in the context of God's vast universe, with the heavens as its ceiling."

In this world view, "God", is a benevolent autocrat, like Mubarak.

As to more secular matters, Sciman introduces a garbage story by saying,

Politicians are often heard to say that teachers make less than garbage men. But how many teachers would work as a sanitation worker?

There are so many things wrong with this attitude that I'll have to break the space limit to comment further.

geoff said...

Was it Tom Brokaw's red-glared face I saw alternately turning from/toward the camera from his perch over Tahrir Square?

No, it was Brian Williams. I can't tell these guys apart. To be sure, here they are together. Brokaw is the one who says "coalesce" as if he's having his tonsils removed in the process.

Anonymous said...

Like Obama and Clinton ("Hillary Clinton Signals US Backing for Omar Suleiman"), NPR is selling Egyptian "Intelligence" Chief for the past 20 years, Omar Suleiman (using Jimmy Carter as the salesman):

"He's an intelligent man whom I like very much," Carter said.

Carter has maintained a relationship with Suleiman over the years.
"In the last four or five years when I go to Egypt, I don't go to talk to Mubarak, who talks like a politician," Carter said. "If I want to know what is going on in the Middle East, I talk to Suleiman. And as far as I know, he has always told me the truth"

Then again, Jimmy Carter was never a prisoner "rendered" to Suleiman, either. I wonder if the latter got "truth" from Suleiman, or something else?

The Torture Career of Egypt's New Vice President: Omar Suleiman and the Rendition to Torture Program

It now looks like the author of that article on Suleiman may have been a little too optimistic about Obama when he said that

There are some signs, however, that the Obama administration may not accept Suleiman's appointment. Today they criticized the rearrangement of the chairs in Egypt's government. If so, that will be a welcome sign that the Obama administration may have some limits beyond which it is hesitant to go in aligning with our most brutal "friends

Limits? Limits are for wimps.

Patrick Lynch said...

NPR took time out from its Egypt/Wikileaks propagandising to have a remarkably hostile interview about the AOL/Huffington Post merger. God forbid that any media outlet self identify as liberal for that matter, oh, my God! AOL might turn liberal!!

Anonymous said...

Of course, EVERY organization has biases.

NPR just tries to pretend they don't which uis what makes their self-righteous criticism of others so disgusting and so dishonest.

Then again, dishonesty seems to be a prerequisite for working at NPR.