Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Q Tips

Q Tips is an open thread that welcomes and encourages any NPR related comments.


Anonymous said...

When I first listened to Elliot Abrams on WE I thought I had somehow tuned in to hear Guy discuss the "Three Minute Fiction" segment. It needs a joke and crying in order to qualify and I thought the joke was Abrams talking about those terrorists and the crying was for the people of Central America that died at the hands of Rayguns "freedom fighters".

Wiki-pedia states this: During the Reagan administration, Abrams gained notoriety for his involvement in controversial foreign policy decisions regarding Nicaragua and El Salvador.


Anonymous said...

On Sunday Garfield was talking to this guy:

BOB GARFIELD: You mentioned that you are neither fish nor fowl, in terms of NPR’s traditional organizational structure, and that you’re practicing a kind of journalism, which not long ago didn't exist at NPR, or anywhere else, for that matter. That said, I can't help but notice that your Twitter stream is in more or less explicit violation of the existing NPR ethics code on grounds of, you know, advocacy and sort of a celebratory tone for the revolution.

"Regarding the ethics rules, it’s complicated because, you know, I've - I've been very careful about not saying anything myself personally about how I view the situation" Andy Carvin

Situational ethics rule at NPR and to think that one of the nation's foremost ethics advocates still hasn't answered me about this obvious breach of NPR ethics. Just another day in the life of NPR.

And people still think the funding will end for this agit-prop organization.


Anonymous said...


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Don Q. Public

informedveteran said...

Talk about a day late and a dollar short. I've known this for many years and so have millions of others. I only use borosilicate (pyrex) glass to store food in (microwave to freezer because of its low coeficient of thermal expension). What exactly is NPR's angle with this story (I asked myself sarcastically)??? To appeal to hippy college kids who might protest NPR's funding being cut? Maybe, but I noticed the word "oil" isn't mentioned at all. Thats right 'Merica, plastic is made from oil.

Also this quote, "Early reaction to the study was mixed. Some scientists (who aren't named) wondered about the test's reliability. Others (who aren't named) noted that wine and many vegetables also can act like estrogen. And a few (who aren't named) observed that Bittner has a financial interest in the testing lab and in a company involved in making plastic products that don't release estrogenic chemicals.

But I'm sure those unnamed persons don't have any financial interests in this story.........uh, like oil/petrochemical interests????

And a special note to NPRcheckers, Camelbak (in picture) also has lots of military contracts. The flight deck guys I was with on the USS Enterprise always had their products, and that was in 1998.

Anonymous said...

NPR's "The Right Chord With Less Discord," sounds like an new, very boring news-like show. I can't wait for the snarky blog moderators to create content like Planet Monkey.

Anonymous said...

Just popped in to say that I am so very glad this blog is active again. It's usually one of my first reads of the day.

Anonymous said...

Steve Chapman, one of the Chicago Tribune’s stable of libertarian to conservative columnists and editors (see his ode to Milton Friedman here:, wrote in his column today against public funding for public broadcasting, but not because he doesn’t like the content:
“I have been happily addicted to the medium since 1979.… I wake up to NPR every day. I listen to it in the shower. … In short, I think Congressional Republicans are badly mistaken in denouncing public radio as a contemptible source of liberal propaganda and snooty elitism that the nation would be better off without. It’s a national treasure, in my view.”

Porter Melmoth said...

A full diaper-load on Morn Ed this morn. Forgive the onslaught, please.

OK, two US airmen were shot dead in Frankfurt, presumably, says NPR, by an Islamofabulist. An act of terrorism, certainly. Match this with the Davis affair in Lahorror, Pawkeestawn, when our ‘diplomat’ shot two creeps who were ‘trying to rob him’. Interesting how each situation is couched. Terrorism is OUR tool to use, not the other side’s. WE get to use terrorism to explain our M.O., while the Pakistanis get completely freaked out by a guy just defending himself from ruffians. National Praetorian Radio must serve the Imperium at all cost.

Personal: I myself have walked the streets and alleys of Lahore in depth. It is a sophisticated, cultured and fascinating city. And friendly, too, at least when my wife and I were there. A privilege to be there. As safe and as dangerous as New York. Any CIA/mercenary who packs heat in such a place is just looking for trouble. If Davis mucked up his ‘mission’, it’s just another example of US failure in the region. Dean Martin as secret agent Matt Helm would NEVER be so bumbling. In all seriousness, I hate Davis and his employers all the more for trashing the privilege that I once enjoyed.

Who knows, is the CIA involved in bumping off more western-sympathetic Pak officials, so as to stoke the crusade to deliver nukey-nervous Pakistan from sharia terror?

Porter Melmoth said...

Bill Ford of FoMoCo was interviewed by a typically casual Renaay M. He sounds like a Whole Earth Catalog nerd. I hope he is. He seems like he would be an enemy of the oil companies, but Renaay conveniently forgot to ask Bill if maybe the oil companies were having a problem with Ford’s uppityness in tilting away from fossil fueling. Amy Goodman would of course have asked that question. But she’s Amy Goodman and not mundane. NPR, in all its civilized behavior, does not make CEOs tapdance.

Porter Melmoth said...

Incredibly, today Renaay referred to Zimbabwe’s Bob Mugabe as ‘somewhat of a despot’. SOMEwhat? I mean, where has she BEEN? Mugabe is more universally despised than Gaddafi. (Muammar has oil. Bob doesn’t. Oil-less despots are more convenient to despise.)

Anyway, Renaay is final proof that NPR must have airheaded brains hosting their shows, as they are impervious to reality. Propaganda-ready mouthpieces cannot be moved to humanity, even though they’ve witnessed, firsthand, all sorts of hot spots. (Chris Hedges, hardline reporter, always has been a humanitarian.) Their job is to serve the specific sectors that their employers have defined, not to go off on some humanitarian bleeding heart lovefest.

But Renaay, honey, it’s official: MUGABE IS A DESPOT. Inflict your dumbass personality elsewhere, STARTING TONIGHT. Even Mattel’s PR dept. couldn’t use you.

Porter Melmoth said...

Morn Ed saves their cheerful crap for the end of the show, so as not to appear too disrespectful to the dark side of US imperialism. And in their ongoing service to America, they’re still helping us know what is really stupid in American pop culture, as opposed to what ISN’T really stupid in American pop culture.

For example: Barbie (and Ken)=good. Anna Nicole Smith=bad.

In London, Philip Reeves profiled the new opera, ‘Anna Nicole Smith’, and he didn’t apply any mockery to the story, just straightforward reporting. NPR HQ obviously disapproves of Anna Nicole, so they can smirk around Reeves’ story all they want. I daresay, Anna Nicole’s life is just as operatic as Lucia di Lammermoor’s. What’s wrong with giving it the Donizetti treatment?

Renaay: What’s a Don A. Zetti, Steve?
Inskreep: A pizza sold by an insurance agent! Har har!
(See? I kin doo kulturul eleet all by myself now!)
Inskreep’s own contribution involved him saying that Anna Nicole Smith being discussed in a British accent was so much better. Or something like that. (See why I get sarcastic?)

Even though Reeves has been sidelined on stories like this, he and Quist-Arcton still warm my heart. (Hey you two, they could use you both over at Al Jaz…)

We’re all little NPR-influenced pop culture critics now, aren’t we?

Porter Melmoth said...

One more NPR pop culture nightmare.

More examples: Justin Bieber=stupid/childish. Scott Simon=not stupid/not childish – but funny!
Our Morn Ed team was making gentle fun about a lock of Justin Bieber’s hair being auctioned off. Scott Simon wasn’t mentioned, but his spirit was there.

At any rate, they made it clear that the Bieber hair thang was sort of, you know, silly. They even implied that the charity the auction money would go to was sort of - silly.

My local morning hostess always likes to join in on the NPR HQ fun. She’s skillfully adopted the Inskreep Punchline Pause ™ wholesale, and today she expanded on the Justin Bieber mockery by deliberately calling him ‘Justin Timberlake’. Really funny stuff for the new listeners who are just discovering NPR!

It’s also funny how Bieber, a virtual Michael Jackson knockoff, gets the National Public Ridicule, while Jackson himself always seemed to get uncertain but ‘respectable’ treatment. Yeah, he’s dead and all, but is this because of some below-the-radar racial policy confusion, or just the fact that Michael was one sick puppy and Justin (Bieber) is jes’ plain wholesome and fun, so he can take a bit of harmless joshing?

Bieber=good, safe influence (so far). Jackson=dangerous influence, but so damn popular (proceed with caution).

White boys who just wanna be black will always be treated better on NPR than black boys who wanna be white.

Let NPR become just as stupid as they think they need to be. Because, to paraphrase architect Ralph Adams Cram, ‘the sooner we accomplish the destiny it so perfectly shadows, the sooner we shall be able to clear the ground and begin again.’

Wow, what a humungous burden it is to be America’s Storyteller. So much to decide on! So much to dictate! To paraphrase Harold on the ‘Red Green Show’, NPR is the ‘smartest person in the whole wide room’, as it were.

That’s our NPR – always doing their part to enforce a cultural elite (of dubious, dubious quality) on we the living.

NPR is so monumentally ‘stimulating’, it makes me digress within digressions. Shameful, I know.

Again, apologies for the yakkery. I would be happy to confine it over on my Web’s Most Visited Blog, if requested.

bpfb said...

No gripes here, Port. To regurgitate one of my fondest slogans toward all you fine folks in our small-but-steadfast support group...

"NPR Check: I'd rather hear it from you than from .... them...."

Porter Melmoth said...

You are never a waskally wabbit, big pink. Much obliged.

Indeed, the cumulative effects of NPRadiation are to be monitored closely.

Porter Melmoth said...

Bradley manning (admittedly erroneously labeled 'a marine' on NPR) is getting slammed further.

Get it from here, not NPR:

geoff said...

Mundane didn't ask FoMoCo about the giant recall? I'm amazed! What do you suppose led to such an oversight? Lack of oversight?

Anonymous said...

This morning in NPR Land (where the socially anxious meet) featured a discussion of St. Runny Rayguns and his actions concerning Libya. To me this is another reason why NPR won't get defunded and may even get an increase in funding. If you google Paul Wolfowitz/Libya and Richard Perle/Libya you'll find these stalwarts of integrity and ethics have had much, much more timely dealings with Libya. I keep asking them on posts why I am the one that has to find this stuff out.

I'm guessing that IUCU is on the job. Maybe I'll drop by my facebook "friends" and see what I can see.

Frenkel is a complete mystery in this day and age when even ed kriner is "on-line". I did see that in her early career she wrote puff n fluff pieces. Maybe the right combination of google terms will come up with something.


informedveteran said...

This could be a new low, US Army ads are appearing on while at the same time they are beating the drum for military intervention in Libya.

gDog said...

What gets me are those ads for the US Army/air force on Comedy Central that feature a smartly uniformed guy remotely bombing Afghan children and then driving his SUV to his McMansion in suburban New Mexico. WTF?

Porter Melmoth said...

Hillary speaks the overwhelmingly obvious (from DN!):

"Hillary Clinton Praises Al Jazeera as "Real News"

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has surprised many after she praised the news programming on Al Jazeera, while she criticized the over-commercialization of news programs in the United States. Speaking before the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Clinton said the United States is losing the "information war."

Hillary Clinton: "Viewership of Al Jazeera is going up in the United States because it’s real news. You may not agree with it, but you feel like you’re getting real news around the clock instead of a million commercials and, you know, arguments between talking heads and the kind of stuff that we do on our news, which, you know, is not particularly informative to us, let alone foreigners."

While Al Jazeera English is broadcast to more than 200 million homes around the world, it is hardly available in the United States due to what critics have described as a media blackout by U.S. cable and satellite providers.
(end quote)

We all know about NPR's contributions to commercial on-air clutter, so subliminally ushered into our brains by Frank Tavares' supposedly 'neutral' but extremely nasal pestering. However, I'd just like to mention the hours of wasted filler time that NPR (and the US MSM, natch) spends MAKING SURE we know who's speaking/reciting/acting/performing for your show biz pleasure at any one time, in their terribly important roles as America's Storytellers.

I mean, a perfect example is news reciter Craig Wyndham's crusade to 'personalize' his news slot by being chummy with his fellow creative writers. This morning, in the few seconds allotted to her segment, Craig said 'Tamara' four times: introducing Tamara Keith, exiting Tamara Keith, and 'communing' with Tamara Keith twice in the brief soundbyte 'report'. He of course is most famous for doing this with his inseparable workhorse buddy, Paul Brown. (e.g. 'Thanks Paul. That's NPR's Paul Brown'). I know, it's meant to imply collegiality, but to me it's the collegiality of Wall Street CEOs. Plus it makes for extremely tedious listening. I mean, who ARE these people?

OK, this is getting a little neurotic in the hair-splitting department, but the accumulated CLUTTER is in itself neuroses-inducing. Of course, with a passive public, they just absorb it all, then blow out down the line, I suppose.

BBC and Al Jaz hardly bother to be control freaks about making SURE that you know precisely at every second who the star personality of the moment is who's delivering the news. Their business isn't to keep you distracted into hopefully buying something. US media hates this reasonable neutrality, cuz they're convinced that 'personality-izing' the news brings in audiences, which naturally bring in money. You might say they're horribly addicted to this (Planet) monkey on their backs: win ratings or die.

This is not only a failed policy, it has made for some of the most worthless broadcasting ever to be conceived, and it's getting worse.

Al Jazeera, like the Jasmine Revolution movement (a current label of convenience), is a big threat to the US MSM, and you can bet there will be some pathetic attempts to 'Al Jaz-ize' their outfits, while others in the shadows will be plotting Al Jaz' demise (consultants: Wolfowitz, Perle, Xe & Partners, etc.).

Al Jaz chief Wadah Khanfar made an outstanding statement at TED, which makes meatloaf out of Hillary's obviousness:

PS: Patty Culhane, Al Jaz's WH correspondent, makes anybody from NPR seem like a sick joke. Yes, I know her name, but she's cogent, serious, non-distracting, and plays no games.

That's all this child wants and needs in his news-gathering.

Anonymous said...

Morning Edition

February Jobs Report Shows Robust Payroll Growth

Steve Inkseep and John Ydstie feeling the news at me...

INSKEEP: I don't want to get too lost in the numbers, John, but I want to focus on the number that everybody can get their brain about this. Unemployment percentage, is it fair to say this could be a politically significant change, even though it's so, so tiny. Nine percent unemployment sounds really, really bad; 8.9 percent still very bad but it feels a little better to me.

YDSTIE: Well, certainly, when you get into the eights from the nines, it's better. It was good to get out of the tens, into the nines, now we're into the eights. And I'm sure people at the Whitehouse are quite happy. I'm sure they're quite happy about the 192,000 new jobs, because again, shows stronger job growth and some momentum. But I think there are still many challenges here.

Stephen Colbert would be proud!

Don Q. Public

Anonymous said...

Morning Edition

And, from NPR's Reagan Desk...

For Reagan, Gadhafi Was A Frustrating 'Mad Dog'

Don Q. Public

larry, dfh said...

So I suffered through listening to the m.e. segment of raygun vs ka-daffy, and there were a couple of factual problems. First of all, despite raygun assertion that ka-daffy is the 'madman of the middle east', Libya is in North Africa, and not the middle east. I would barely consider Egypt as middle eastern, either. And I don't think Kennedy was obsessed with Castro, he was obsessed with the c.i.a. who wanted him to be more interested in Castro, at the behest of their mobster clients. But never mind my hair-splitting.
I have yet to hear any mention of

the Italian Airliner
which ended up in the Mediterranean. This was a big black eye for the U.S. in their battles with ka-daffy, but it has been successfully scrubbed from U.S. media over the last 30 years. Naturally, S-4-0; wouldn't want to go where the other mainstream outhouses wouldn't venture.


This afternoon wanted to post a comment in response to Scott "The Bloody Quaker" Simon's weakly sermon:

Shorter Simon Says:

"Freedom of speech good, I'll ignore torture, war crimes, and criminal conduct. (FYI, I'm still an insufferable pretension ass.)"

Couldn't post anything, then Inoticed under the comment box:

"Community features and content, including commenting and recommending stories, are unavailable at this time. We apologize for the inconvenience. Please try this page later."

Wonder if the Canadians or who ever NPR's out-sourced comments to work's on weekends?

informedveteran said...

Following the rolling rebellions all over a certain part of the world and the rulers' response to their disgruntled serfs -oops I mean citizens, I had a thought. I know its un'merican these days to think for youself, but I wondered how many thousands of tons of rubber bullets and tear gas are stockpiled HERE, courtesy of the bloated multibillion dollar "Homeland Security" budget.

But I'm sure NPR will answer this question, just as soon as there is a Domestic Uprising Barbie and Ken.

Anonymous said...


I do research for government contracts, and I saw an RFQ awhile back for arming Social Security offices.


Patrick Lynch said...


RE: Inskreep and British accents. Inskreep must really get off on British accents particularly when Tina Brown and Nigella Lawson are on. I imagine that Renee MonFeign has to turn away while Inskreep pleasures himself. He's particularly disgusting to listen to whenever Brown or Lawson is on.

To add what Hillary Clinton said about Al-Jazeera I would say that what passes for news programming is really drug infomercials with little "news" breaks in between. It's a toss up who is doing the most fear mongering: the "news" or the drug adverts.

Doonesbury Sunday before last completely nailed the NBC Nightly News because it was so perfectly true.

Patrick Lynch said...

Uh, that's when Brown and Larson ARE on, not is. (dopeslaps self)

Anonymous said...


I have been told by the GM of a large public radio network that the CPB is shoveling money out the door as fast as they can, just in case they are closed -- finally and for good.


!!!!bpfb said...

^ I do admit I'd miss Rick Steves, McLaughlin and the Saturday block of carpentry/cooking/gardening shows.

The radio counterparts, however, can pretty well stuff it.