Thursday, December 07, 2006

Open Thread - Thursday & Friday

NPR related comments welcomed.


Anonymous said...

It's Friday and I just had to turn off the ever-urbane-yet-folksy Robert Seigel's discussion with some supposed expert. They discussed, in that calm, dispassionate-but-yes,-concerned tone that NPR somehow enforces, the Iraq Study Group's claim that efforts toward peace in Iraq would be hastened by a resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Ugh, the presumptions here! The presumptuousness! And the blithe ignorance to what they left out of their discussion! Where to start?!

Here's just one place: Dear, dear Robert asked how the newly elected Hamas factored into the "problems," and the expert said yes, the possibility of peace between Israel and Palestine will depend crucially on which faction within Hamas will win a current power struggle. If the more extreme (apparently "terrorist") side wins, there's little hope.

NOTHING about the extreme abuses against Palestinians by a series of Israeli leaders, the Israeli establishment, and the mainstream Israeli military, and how much THAT hinders "progress in the region."

Another problem: the expert said that Bush was wrong to reject outright negotiations of any sort with Syria, then added that we should negotiate for that country's aid without preconditions, even if it means having to deal with countries whose foreign policies are less than desirable. And I thought sheesh, what do you think such countries think about dealing with the US, considering ITS history of wretched, selfish, amazingly abusive foreign policy? But such thoughts are off the grid, of course, in a discussion where it is simply assumed that US intentions "in the region" are purely benign.

The Orwellian quality of thought here, the way it simply obliterates significant-but-inconvenient facts and other perspectives, is just maddening. And NPR is supposed to be an alternative to the mainstream . . . Ai yi yi.

Porter Melmoth said...

willie, you bring up so many pertinent points in just this one segment's example, all I can say is that it is a pleasure discovering so many thoughtful and discerning listeners who are dealing with National Public Rubbish. Your points are cogent and important.

Despite the difficulty in accepting what NPR is (and has increasingly become), it is nevertheless somewhat elating to vent here, because NPR should know that it is not broadcasting into such an accepting void.

NPR style annoyance PS: One of the many trials in getting through ATC is having to listen to Seigel's cloying speech patterns and doiley-like embellishments in his pronunciations. Just like Cory Flintoff's hyper-put-on style, these guys can talk perfectly normally if they want to. I've heard them in moments when they aren't so 'on'. Whoever said that NPR personalities didn't have inflated egos? Whoever said they were any good? What crappy broadcast talent! Oh, but I guess it's their brilliant minds that matter. I forgot that NPR wasn't ever going to sell out by hiring plastic personalities (never mind about Steve Inskeep . . .) And toss in Melissa Block's ding-dong manner of speaking, and you've got a genuine emergency as far as getting through the broadcast is concerned.