Thursday, October 15, 2009

Q Tips

NPR related comments are welcomed.


Anonymous said...

I am really tired of the dishonest crap coming out of NPR on the economy.

That's the only way this stuff can be characterized.

Deeply dishonest.

NPR uses the DOW's rise over 10,000 as "proof" that the economic recovery is well on its way and then goes on to say that it's only the perception of those damned (jobless) consumers who might put the brakes on an otherwise glorious recovery.

And to top it all off, NPR makes this BS comment:

"Things have evolved a lot better than the expectations or the negativity that prevailed early in 2009," he says. Bethune says the banking sector recovered more quickly than many economists had expected, and exports have posted an encouraging rebound.

That's hilarious given that NPR was one of the media outlets running around like a chieken with its head cut off yelling at the top of their lungs that the sky was falling and predicting imminent economic "collapse" and "Great Depression II" if the Paulson/Bush/geithner/Obama bank bailout plan" was not passed immediately and with no strings attached or questions asked.

And, jeez, I wonder WHY the "banking sector recovered more quickly than many economists had expected" couldn't have anything to do with the hundreds of billions in TARP money that Obama threw at it or the trillions that the FED lent it, now, could it?

gopester said...

NPR is more like a head with its chicken cut off. The disembodied talking head continues to squawk as if programmed by some invisible bankster/insurance corporation puppeteer, but the bodily portion has been made into chicken mcnuggets to be consumed by the obese and clueless formerly liberal middle class.

Anonymous said...

This interview of Savings and Loan fraud investigator William Blackis real news.

What NPR airs daily is just unmitigated crap.

That's all there is to it.

NPR should be shuttered. It's right wing management like Kevin Klose and Vivian Schiller have destroyed the news organization.

geoff said...

Saw the Black interview. Most interesting is how the delinquencies are being kept off the foreclosures list for the purpose of accounting fraud. Bubble popping frequency seems to be accelerating into a frenzied chaos of money grabbing gluttony which is best modeled by The Magic Christian scene when the banksters wade into the pool of shit.

Mytwords said...

If you get a chance watch Jon Stewart skewer CNN for fact checking an SNL skit. Then listen to NPR critique the use of the term modern on reality TV (I kid you not!) Jeebus, this from the station that can't even use the word torture correctly...ughhhh

Anonymous said...

William Black is a true American hero, one whom the NPR quacks and con artists will NEVER interview because they are undoubtedly afraid of him. People who speak truth to power are threatening to the groveling jack boot-licking class like those at NPR .

William Black has very matter of factly laid out the case for fraud, much as a good lawyer would do.

His warning over 6 months ago that Geithner was lying about the health of the big banks has already proved accurate

He also warned at the time that the whole bank bailout would eventually consume the Obama Presidency.

Unfortunately for Obama, I happen to believe he will also eventually be proved correct about that.

Black has also correctly diagnosed the central issue with all our economic woes: rather than being the servant of the real economy (the part that actually produces something of value), the financial sector has become a giant parasite that is actually a threat to the very existence of its host.

I would just LOVE to listen to Adam Davidson try to pull the same crap he did in his interview of Elizabeth warren on William Black.

Black would ream him a new one very matter of factly (and metaphorically, of course)

WarOnWarOff said...

best modeled by The Magic Christian scene when the banksters wade into the pool of shit.

Woo hoo...absolutely love that film! BTW, just recently learned on Wiki:

It was originally planned to film this climactic scene at the Statue of Liberty in New York and, remarkably, the U.S. National Park Service agreed to the request. Sellers, Southern and director Joseph McGrath then travelled to New York on the Queen Elizabeth 2 (at a reported cost of US$10,000 per person) but the studio then refused to pay for the shoot and it had to be relocated to London[3]

Anonymous said...

Here's Ken Rudin and his perception of History:

"On Oct. 12, 1492, Christopher Columbus discovered America"

From his Political Junkie blathering. I left a message and it was responded to by a defender of NPR. She thought that my comment:

ed kriner (juvenile) wrote:

On Oct. 12, 1492, Christopher Columbus discovered America.

Is this a true statement or is this simply your personal "world-view" that everything in the Caribbean is America? Your sense of the world is that America is everything north of South America.

That's one reason you and NPR have no credibility with me.
Wednesday, October 14, 2009 12:49:22 PM

proved i was a Fox News watcher/listener.

That's my problem with the listeners of this drivel. She actually thinks the above statement is pro Fox News. That to me is incredible and also shows a serious lack of critical thinking skills.

I have responded and I guess she also believes that Colombus "discovered America". I also suspect that 1/2 to 3/4 of Americans "believe" this.

Dig deep folks so that this kind of BS can continue to go out to the American management class.


geoff said...

I think Marketplace and Planet Monkey are all over this story:

Pay No Attention to the 140 Behind the Curtain!

Rich Hartmann - Miss America | Oct 15, 2009

Yes Folks, It’s time to dust off those party hats… It’s DOW 10,000 time!

Pay no attention to anything else folks. Especially not the S&P 500 P/E ratio…

As of Oct 7, The S&P P/E Ratio is 140.82

Yep, 140!!! This isn’t my data; this is directly from the New York Fed. Here’s the link:

p.s. To me, I’ve lost so much interest in economics and finance in the last year. When the financial world started to resemble something as comical as the “professional wrestling” it gets hard to take yourself serious as an analyst of that venue. For me, (or the pros like Nouriel, Krugman, Schiff) or anyone else to sit here and make realistic prognostications on what will or should happen is as ridiculous as talking about whether Hulk Hogan was really better then Andre the Giant. It’s all fake people. Whether we are fundamentally right, momentum can irrationally go another way. Even if we are wrong, governments can intervene, “manipulate/correct” or “save” the economy for whatever reason.

Anonymous said...

Whether we [economists] are fundamentally right, momentum can irrationally go another way. Even if we are wrong, governments can intervene"

The problem is that, as a social science, economics is fundamentally irrational and unpredictable.

"Right" and "wrong" really have no meaning in such a context because economic theories are not like physical theories where there is a right answer (and many wrong ones).

The really absurd thing is that anyone EVER took economic predictions seriously.

Over the past year, what has been revealed to everyone is that the economic gurus have no clothes.

It is now clear that economic decisions at the highest levels are made based on personal benefit, ideology and who your friends are (eg, Goldman Sachs in the case of Treasury).

Anonymous said...

What a moronic article by Ron Elving.

It never ceases to amaze me that people actually get paid six figure salaries to write this crap.

"Does Biden Have The Answer On Afghanistan?"

What was the question, again?

geoff said...

And this is not a joke about hot air.

au contraire

RepubLiecan said...

What is the probability that NPR will allow mention of this or similar opinions?

By way of Juan Cole at Informed Comment Gareth Porter reports on another option different from General McChrystal's plan to Go Big in Afghanistan. Lt. Colonel Davis must be close to retiring or figures his career is over anyway for him to speak out so boldly in opposition.

Or is something like this from Glenn Greenwald highlighting the revolving door between Goldman Sachs and government posts worth a little investigation by NPR Nooze?

It's hard to believe I once turned to NPR for information I wouldn't get from the mainstream media.

Anonymous said...

Ken Rudin spoke about me (not to me of course) and claimed that I just didn't seem capable of having any "fun".

I told him he and I both know he is in the business of propagandizing the American public and that what I was doing at his rather boring blog was actually my version of "FUN"!!!!


Anonymous said...

"It's hard to believe I once turned to NPR for information I wouldn't get from the mainstream media."

The thing that really woke me up about NPR was NPR's reporting on Saddam's WMD (Not!)

While the REAL alternatives (eg, Democracy Now, Pacifica news, and websites like Common Dreams,,, (Justin Raimondo), FAIR etc) were challenging/eviscerating the official rationale given by Bush and the MSM (ie, that Saddam had tons of WMD, including anthrax, etc), NPR was simply towing the official line.

Worse still, even after it was becoming increasingly clear that Saddam had no WMD, NPR continued to jump on any and all stories that seemed to indicate otherwise. In fact, NPR was even responsible for STARTING one such story, which turned out to be totally bogus!

"Reuters on an NPR report of medium range missiles equipped with chemical warheads:

U.S. forces near Baghdad found a weapons cache of around 20 medium-range missiles equipped with potent chemical weapons, the U.S. news station National Public Radio reported on Monday.

NPR, which attributed the report to a top official with the 1st Marine Division, said the rockets, BM-21 missiles, were equipped with sarin and mustard gas and were "ready to fire." It quoted the source as saying new U.S. intelligence data showed the chemicals were "not just trace elements."

//end quote

And NPR continued to tell people to 'keep the faith', "Iraqi WMD Will Be Found"(by Liane Hansen)

And in the end, when it became clear to EVERYONE that saddam had no WMD, NPR seemlessly switched to blaming it all on an "intelligence failure" (ie, how could they have known when even the CIA did not?),as Bush et were then doing.

The pattern is clear: on important stories, NPR simply reports the "official story" (to be safe and/or propitiate the powers that be and the corporate donors) and when it turns out that story is actually bogus, they simply say "No one could have known" or even worse, continue to deny that they got it completely wrong, as former NPR ombudsman Jeffery Dvorkin does here with regard to the "Intelligence sexed up" allegation that BBC made, and which was later proven accurate (to Dvorkin's chagrin, I'm sure) and did on the issue of challenging Cheney's bogus claims as well:
"By failing to challenge Cheney's dubious claims, Williams may have been practicing the kind of journalism that he thought NPR expected. After NPR host Terry Gross interviewed Fox News Channel's Bill O'Reilly on the Fresh Air program (10/9/03), she was reprimanded in NPR ombudsman Jeffrey Dvorkin's online column (10/15/03): "I agree with the listeners who complained about the tone of the interview: Her questions were pointed from the beginning." Perhaps Williams took from that the lesson that asking "pointed" questions is something NPR's journalists should avoid."

//end FAIR quote

PS I could never figure out whether Dvorkin was dishonest or simply stupid (or perhaps both). he is a disgrace to journalism, at any rate.

Though the following example from Media matters would seem to indicate dishonest (and deeply so)

"NPR ombudsman contradicted his own data about NPR guests

"In his December 14 column, NPR ombudsman Jeffrey Dvorkin tabulated the number of NPR guests this year from various think-tanks, which he identified as either "liberal" or conservative," finding a total of 239 guests from conservative think tanks and only 141 from liberal think tanks.

Dvorkin's conclusion? "NPR does not lean on the so-called conservative think tanks as many in the audience seem to think."

//end quote

larry, dfh said...

Gopinator: I have to disagree about the prowrestling. The athleticism is not fake. The torture and the outcome is totally fake. But the difference with the stock market is that there isn't any betting, 'cept among 4th graders. THe stock market has fake outcomes WITH betting, and the stockholders are the 'suckers'. Me...I've been cooking with come close friends all rainy day, listening to
soul/r&b on
and haven't been bothered by npr propaganda.

geoff said...


The stock market has fake outcomes WITH betting, and the stockholders are the 'suckers'.

People don't bet on pro wrestling? Who knew? WWE's been in the news quite a bit lately, what with Chris Dodd's Republican opponent owning it, or whatever.

First, I should have been more clear that the entire body of that post was lifted from Rich Hartman's seeking alpha blog.

Second, I don't pretend to know what's going on with the stock market and economy, so I read what people who do pretend to know what's going on say. Like tea leaves. Hartman (Miss America) seems to have a front row seat.

Another source of novel perspective is Deep Capture, who is reporting that some journalists serve the needs of market miscreants. I'm sure none of that is going on at NPR.

geoff said...

ATC of 10/17: McChrystal is the best man for the job but he lied to congress, so the best man is disqualified. To my way of thinking then there is no best man and the wedding should be called off.

Also, (could have been general) Ret. Colonel Macgregor would have obviated the need for war by using heavy armor to crush Iraqi Republican Guard and bring the Shiites to power in '91. No mention of why this would lead to a different result than the Shiites being in power now...or why the war was on in the first place: Iraqis being egged on by Ambassador April Glapie's communication to Saddam:

"We have no opinion on your Arab-Arab conflicts, such as your dispute with Kuwait. Secretary Baker has directed me to emphasize the instruction, first given to Iraq in the 1960s, that the Kuwait issue is not associated with America."

i.e., go for it, Sadie, baby. Have fun ransacking the incubators.

Then there was the small matter of the highway of death which Macgregor is too busy chasing Peter Rabbit to mention. That was thanks to great American war hero, General Norman Schwarzkopf.

Porter Melmoth said...

Just for the record, I happen to be in Iceland right now. Not only is this not NPR territory, everybody I've talked to doesn't even know about it, so it isn't necessary.

There's a lesbian prime minister here, but NO ONE IS FREAKED OUT ABOUT that fact. Iceland has recently sowed severe results from free-booting capitalism,but they're still going ahead with geothermal energy. I just visited such a plant today, and it is TOTALLY COOL.

Also, Iceland DOESN'T HAVE a military. Such a notion is viewed as an absurdity. They are a NATO member in name only. No military entanglements.

Yeah, I know, the US isn't Iceland. But Iceland has had a democracy for over a 1000 years. It's a matter of choice, really.

Just a few thoughts about a non-NPR world. And it's a very big world.

Anonymous said...

a few thoughts about a non-NPR world.

with some luck, maybe we'll have that here in the US some day too!

"An NPR-free Zone" and perhaps a Fox-free Zone as well.

Now, there's a noble (and Nobel) cause whose accomplishment (not just promise!) would be worthy of a Nobel Peace Prize!

Think of the future wars that would be prevented without those two incessantly beating the drums of war.

Benoit Balz said...

Loads of propaganda from Guy Raz today, with a little help from Julie McCarthy.

Guy Raz, oh, Guy! Who's your editor? Oh do tell, from where do your wonderful propagandistic story ideas come?

Is the main raison d'etre of Weekend All Things Considered to distribute Pentagon Propaganda? Sometimes it seems like it, like today:

1.Pakistan Launches Major Anti-Taliban Operation

2.One Battle Ensured U.S. Return To Iraq, Author Say

3. High-Tech Medical Tools On The Front Lines

Military issues, battle, "victory", tanks, killing, generals, colonels, troops, more deaths, guns - oh wow!

This insulting stuff hurts your ears and your brain.

The last piece was worked on by somebody named David Hambling. Check out all his wonderful "stories" of military hardware and talking points garbage, blah blah, etc., here:

What a great source, this Hambling.

These people (NPR) are begging for our money right now? What a joke!

Anonymous said...

Is the main raison d'etre of Weekend All Things Considered to distribute Pentagon Propaganda? Sometimes it seems like it, like today:"


That's raison d'etre for NPR.

National Pentagon Radio, as Normon Solomon has dubbed it.

Is it a mere accident that so many of the influential people in the NPR organization seem to have literally come out of nowhere -- with no background in journalism (case in point: CEO Vivian Schiller, a Russian studies major) to move into the influential positions they have?

Some of these people seem to have materialized from nothingness to move seamlessly into the top positions.

How DOES that happen, anyway?

geoff said...

I guess NPR knows war rhetoric and resents it when Obama uses it too:

Liane Hansen: President Obama all but declared war on the health insurance industry yesterday in his weekly radio address.

BHO: The insurance industry is rolling out the big guns and breaking out their massive war chest to marshal one last fight to maintain the status quo.

LH: Besides using military analogies, Mr. Obama lobbed a few verbal bombs of his own. He used every word short of 'liar' to accuse the insurance industry of lying.

BHO: They're filling the airwaves with deceptive and dishonest ads. They're flooding capital hill with lobbyists and campaign contributions. And they're funding studies designed to mislead the American people.

LH: And the president had a not-so-veiled criticism about cable television. Mr. Obama did not officially name a network, but his target wouldn't be too hard to guess.

BHO: Of course, like clockwork, we've seen people on cable television who know better, waiving these industry-funded studies in the air. We've seen industry insiders and their apologists citing studies as proof of claims that just aren't true.

LH: As for the Republicans, they either taped their response before they heard the president's speech, or simply decided to ignore him. Texas congressman Kevin Brady, who delivered the address, stuck to the generic theme that the democratic party's policies on economic recovery, health care reform and the federal deficit are failing.

Hansen (or her writers) obviously resents it that the uppity negro isn't using "veiled" criticism and is coming right out and calling a spade a spade. Her buddies at FOX are, no doubt, busting a gasket and have taken the opportunity to have Liane slap him down for it.

For his part, Kevin Brady was in the news recently for protesting the service of DC Metro to Tea Baggers - the same service he voted against funding.

Brady's "response" would have been easier to lampoon, but no such attempt was made.

Brady: The [] myth that government-run health care will make it more affordable [is wrong because] government interference drives costs up, not down. The massive health care plans being crafted behind closed doors in Washington will ultimately allow the government to decide what doctors we can see, what treatments the government thinks you deserve and what medicines you can receive.

That would be a nice example of "claims that just aren't true."

Anonymous said...

Obama is putting on a good show for the folks who voted for him (for his "progressive base" -- you know ,the ones whom he dis-invites from all the important meetings on health care, financial reform, foreign policy and the rest.)

But the "fix' is already in.

It was in long ago when he made back room deals with insurance CEO's and big pharma.

Everything we are seeing now is simply Obama doing what he does best: work the crowd.

JayV said...

"Vermont's NPR Station" is in the midst of its fall fund drive. I swear to God last week, there was a pre-recorded spot by whingy, know-it-all Ira Glass urging people to donate to the station (I paraphrase) so it could continue to provide programs to its "middle class" listeners. No joke, he actually said middle class.

geoff said...


Yes, well, I didn't mean to be too naive about BHO: it's just NPR playing bad cop to his good cop I was pointing out above. What we need is a public voice pressuring our so-called elected reps to do the people's business instead of Schillering for FOX.

geoff said...

So, Port, what do the Icelanders think about the British banks forcing them into indentured servitude? It's all over NPR. I think Jaded Beauvien and Agent Ferrari are taking time off from Honduras (pretty quiet there) to be on the ground in Rekjavic to sample public opinion.

miranda said...


I'm betting Ira actually said "middul-cwass."

Anonymous said...

Based on the large number of references on NPR to the "Balloon Boy "story", I'd have to say that their new motto "Always on" means "Always on nonsense".

Anonymous said...

I realize that this is not at the same level as other NPR issues, but does anyone find Steve Inskeep incredibly annoying? There is the smarmy delivery, the forced laugh, the self-regarding puns—or maybe I just need more coffee before I turn on NPR.

Anonymous said...

If you follow this link, you may be lucky enough to see the NatGas ad pop up while you are reading NPR's ombudsbot defend their 3-part NatGas commercial.

Anonymous said...

Here's some quotes from an AP story that NPR ran on the election in Afghanistan.

See if you can pick out the I mean "balance":

"Karzai may refuse to go along with a runoff even after the figures are announced — further delaying formation of a government that the U.S. believes is needed to help combat the growing Taliban insurgency.

A protracted crisis could also lead to political unrest..."

"protesters believed the August vote was fair and that foreigners were delaying the results to unseat Karzai."

"The White House says President Obama will not send more U.S. troops until a credible government is in place."

"As the debate rages, deadly fighting continues...[followed by examples]"

///end quotes

By the way, while it seems on its face that the recent statement from the Obama administration is an indication of a reasoned response "No more troops without legitimate partner", it's clear that they have no other choice but to take this stance.

If they do not and they continue to work with Karzai, they will be rightfully criticized.

Given the stakes (Obama wants to send more troops, Karzai is the clear favorite of the White House and the US bankrolls the UN) it's rather remarkable that the UN elections team has refused to certify the election so far.

That's what I would call "heroic".

Why can't WE get leaders with that kind of integrity here at home?

Anonymous said...

On Fox News, Juan Williams suggested Obama administration was "involved in this." NPR's Juan Williams said while guest-hosting for Bill O'Reilly on the October 16 O'Reilly Factor, "Now everybody knows that Rush is a huge critic of the Obama administration. But here is something that you probably did not know. Smith worked on President Obama's transition team. And he also used to work with Attorney General Eric Holder. Did you know that?" He later added: "What we've seen here is so much information coming out about how the Obama administration and their friends were all involved with this."

From Media Matters Daily Summary


Steve B said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Steve B said...

Alicia Shepard defending Tom Gjelten's "NPR's Useful, But Flawed, Series on Natural Gas"on NPR:

krameroneill said...

So Part Two of This American Life's health care reform two-parter was, if anything, even worse than Part One. Seriously, this baffles and confuses me, because I really think that show is head and shoulders above almost anything else broadcast on NPR.

In a strangely dishonest "debunking" of Wendell Potter's assertions [the last segment in the podcast], the "expert" who gets interviewed (and speaks about the foolishness of a public option) is Ewe Reinhardt...who serves on the board of Amerigroup, a managed-care company(!).

Nowhere was this conflict of interest stated. That is some seriously shoddy reporting right there. Intensely disappointing.

[And credit to my also-outraged brother, who sent me the Amerigroup link.]

geoff said...


That isn't so much shoddy journalism as it is outright criminal fraud. That it comes in the TAL wrapper is especially galling because of Ira Glass's disarming nasal and patina of innocent schoolboy charm. F^%$īŋĢ a$$h0lê.

bg!pnk!fzzy!bnny! (iiuu) said...

"but does anyone find Steve Inskeep incredibly annoying?"

Bwah-ha-ha-HA!!! Need you ask? But then I have not allowed for that pair of parakeets (rudely) awaken me for a good couple years now.

Ey, Port - I'd not seen much of the Icelandic terrain outside of some lovely Sigur Ros viddies, so allow me to express my proud envy.

bunny out~

Kevan Smith said...

This just in from the ombudsman on the Irene Morningstar thing:

"Hi there. We looked into what you brought to my attention and I'm going to ask for a correction. Ms. Morningstar says she was a lifelong Democrat who changed

"Here's what we found. She is now a registered Republican but was a life-long Democrat. But yes, it should have mentioned that she is
currently a Republican. Wills see what we can do to correct this.

"Thanks for bringing it to my attention. Also started receiving emails on
it. " said...

"So, Port, what do the Icelanders think about the British banks forcing them into indentured servitude? "

Well, I think the buzz it that Iceland wanted to play the same game as the London/NYC big boys, but they're easy to pillory as 'careless', so as to deflect the attention from the big boys' sins. Thing is, Iceland doesn't want to be taken advantage of like most 'small' countries. They're feisty, and many think the MSM coverage of their plight is unfair in many respects. We can see where this is going, can't we? Push the little guys around while the big boys continue to invent ways to advance their causes.

Speaking of London, I'm there right now, having just hit town. NPR contrib here, Larry Miller, seems pretty innocuous for the most part. Maybe I'll run into him in a pub and I'll ask, 'You must be feeding NPR for the money, right??' Rob Gifford's a hack, though.

(If you happen to be in Iceland, i recommend the Blue Lagoon spa. A different planet. As in, 'what's an NPR?' To them, a fox is the only indigenous wildlife. Kinda nice.
Natural geothermal water/steam, which is returned to the earth after its heat it utilized. Novel idea.)

geoff said...

Since ombot Shepard is so bound up in the Reagan revolution's suppression of Gary Webb's work, anything developing that angle is fair game here, yes?

Reading Gary Webb's book (Dark Alliance) is a great way to get links to search for interesting forgotten histories. He writes how the CIA produced a comic book style guide to how to terrorize the Sandinistas. Couldn't find that online, but I did find this from the same error (era):

Unbelievable. Do they teach Grenada in US history classes, I wonder? Panama? Honduras? In Texas, in particular, do you imagine US history teachers cover the Iran/Contra side of the Reagan Revolution?

"History repeats the old conceits
The glib replies the same defeats
Keep your finger on important issues
With crocodile tears and a pocketful of tissues

- Beyond Belief, E. Costello

Random Passerby said...

Here's NPR's recent piece on medical marijuana dispensaries. Tell me that's not insanely pro-drug warrior.