Thursday, September 08, 2011

Q Tips

NPR related comments welcomed and encouraged.


Mytwords said...

I've put two new tweets up regarding yesterday's 9/11 propaganda piece that General Warlove appreciated and today's unintentionally ironic piece about ignorance of why the US is in Afghanistan.

gDog said...

I'm going to preserve my comment here, since it may be expunged:

Those Extremist Muslins just swallow the words NPR puts in their mouths: "We were taught there were no people on the planes." Silly Muslins: you should have been taught what we were taught: building 7 never existed! Massive skyscrapers always tear themselves apart when they have office fires. Don't they know anything?

gDog said...

Here's an amusing passtime: search for "Building 7" or "WTC 7" at NPR. Zilch. Nada = never was = fuggedabutit.

Mytwords said...

I really hope these comments won't become a venue for the 9/11 conspiracy theories. I myself don't fault NPR for not covering the collapse of WTC 7.

Anonymous said...

Video of Noam Chomsky about NPR news

Anonymous said...

Fair enough, Mytwords -- but I must say I find the labeling/dismissing of any disagreement with the official (conspiracy) theory as "conspiracy theory" as most unfortunate. For me, a most excruciating, sickening upshot of today's wall-to-wall NPR/media wallowing in 9/11 how-could-they-do-this-to-wonderful-US "patriotism" is that as a nation it seems that we neither know nor care what really happened 9/11/01 or indeed why.

Rob Pates
Charlottesville, VA

Nate Bowman said...

Welcome back myT.
I missed you.

Glenn Greenwald is especially incisive today.

He also has a lengthy quote from Orwell. My favorite part:

"The primary aim of modern warfare ,,, is to use up the products of the machine without raising the general standard of living."

Anonymous said...

yes, those damned 911 conspiracy theories. :)

Like the leaning and then disintegration (in mid-air!) of the top of the south tower soon after the 'collapse" started.

As a physicist, that alone convinced me (based on the law of momentum conservation) that the official 'story" was "questionable" (at the very least)

There are many other legitimate questions that have been raised about the PHYSICS of the collapse that do not jibe with the official story.

And whatever else may be true, it is certainly true that NPR never covered any of the arguments made by people like phsyicist Steven Jones, who has actually done quite a bit of experimentation and analysis regarding the PHYSICS involved.

When NPR and others (most of whom wouldn't know an argument from physics if it hit them in the head with a falling brick) to try to dismiss these arguments from physics with the typical "Let's not devolve into those [kooky] conspiracy theories, now", it is just the same old "propaganda by omission" that NPR has raised to an art form.

Ignorance of physics is understandable (if not excusable) , but attempting to squelch discussion about any and all legitimate scientific questions about the trade two collapses (before that discussion even starts) as a result of that ignorance is not.

Anonymous said...

"based on the law of momentum conservation"

should be "law of angular momentum conservation"

the ordinary "law of (linear) momentum conservation" arises other questions about the collapse, but when a massive object starts to rotate, it continues to rotate (unless some force disintegrates itin mid air, of course :)

Boulder Dude said...

As per Nice Polite Republican radio's SoP, Mark Memmet misquotes Krugman to put FOX news spin on it.

Mytwords said...

Rachel Martin again simply serves as a conduit for Pentagon rubbish. I loved the ironic quote from Mullen referring to the Pentagon: "Lives ended in this place. Dreams were shattered. Hopes were tragically dashed." He certainly did sum up the historical accomplishments of the Pentagon.

Boulder Dude said...

Holy cow! Memott issued a correction and gave me credit for the spot!

bdfb said...

^ Ha! Way-go, Checker.

"exaci" (!)

RomfordRob said...

NPR strikes again. Another pro-nuclear Fukushima update report on ME this morning, complete with cherry-picked "scientist" quoted as saying "those radiation levels don't frighten me".
What IS it with NPR? They always seem to be backing the wrong horse.

a.m. said...

Dreadful he said-she said "reporting" on poverty by Pam Fessler on this afternoon's (9/13) ATC. NPR has indulged repeatedly in this vice in the past, but recently nearly every report is neatly wrapped up with the "he said-she said" ribbon lest NPR seem to have reported findings or evidence that appears to support one "side" of any given issue, even when such evidence is abundant. Today Fessler paired AEI stalwart Richard Burkhauser with Sheldon Danziger to provide "balanced" perspectives on possible remedies for poverty. Like politicians, Fessler tells us, economists like Danziger and Burkhauser "differ" on how to reduce poverty. One supports extending unemployment benefits; one supports cutting taxes. Fessler doesn't lift a finger to attempt to reveal which remedy has been more successful in the past or to let her audience know if one of the presented views is a decidedly minority opinion among economists or not. No. She performed the requisite journalistic bean-counting exercise, obtaining snippets from one AEI/Cato Institute person and one mildly progressive person, and--presto--she has the desired result: economists "differ." That people "differ" is about all that NPR can tell us about any major issue nowadays. It's a deliberately obfuscatory approach to journalism, and in many cases it's downright mendacious.

Anonymous said...

The same formula is employed on PBS's "NewsHour" (with Jim Lehrer often recently without Jim Lehrer resulting in zero Jim Lehrers which is about right -- "balanced" -- you might say). No matter what the issue it's National Enterprise Institute / New America Foundation versus some pompous academic sporting a rotating bow-tie.
'Mendacious' may also be applied here. The unwary may believe they are being "educated", but the upshot is misinformation -- more harm than good.


Anonymous said...

"That people "differ" is about all that NPR can tell us about any major issue nowadays."

I wish it were so.

But it's not.

In fact, just like Fox, NPR tells us lots of stuff that is quite unbalanced (and simply isn't so) in order to support their own agenda and bottom line.

Take fracking for example --supported by America's Natural Gas Alliance ("Fracking: It's a real gas"), who also happens to support NPR, who also happens to support ANGA in their reports on fracking (one big happy circle jerk)

But I would certainly agree that what NPR does IS mendacious. No disaagreement there.

a.m. said...

Oh, yes, certainly--I definitely agree that NPR is telling us many more things than simply "people differ." The official "people differ" narrative is actually a means of communicating a great deal of ideologically freighted information. One of the intents of the Fessler piece was, for instance, to tell us that the notion of not extending unemployment benefits to alleviate poverty and relying on tax cuts alone to achieve (putatively) that objective--once a fairly radical idea--is well within the spectrum of acceptable and reasonable opinion. In other words, the Fessler piece was, as so much on NPR is these days, a vehicle for normalizing radical and extreme right-wing social and economic policies. The "people differ" conclusion is one of the mechanisms through which NPR achieves that aim.

Popepepe said...

Yes, Turner's victory in NYC is an upset, but why isn't NPR reporting that the district will most likely NOT be around within a year's time, ergo the money that would've been wasted there can go to national and other meaningful elections? In other words, it wasn't a fight that rational people wanted to pick. Also, why not call Jon Ensign a "disgraced" Congressman too?

a.m. said...

Guess what the lead story on this morning's (9/15) ME was? The GOP-manufactured controversy about Solyndra, naturally. And in a deliberately unilluminating and obfuscatory report, Yuki Noguchi dutifully fit the story into the "differing perspectives" template that NPR uses for every news story. There is a Republican "version" of the story. There is a Democratic "version" of the story. Which one is more truthful? Not YN's job to say! Her and her employer's only duty, evidently, is to serve as the technicians that keep Republican narratives trundling along the conveyor belt from GOP strategy rooms to the pages and airwaves of the mainstream press.

JayV said...

'There is a Republican "version" of the story. There is a Democratic "version" of the story'

That's no better than the he said/she said "journalism," either.

It's just lazy.

Comrade Rutherford said...

"I really hope these comments won't become a venue for the 9/11 conspiracy theories."

The biggest conspiracy theory is the official US Gov't version!

The only time in US history that not one, but four airplanes flew unmolested and incommunicado for hours, against all established protocols and procedures and laws.

And everyone that was responsible for the single biggest failure in US history to follow basic procedure and protect US airspace were all promoted - for a job well done!

When I was standing there on 6th Ave watching the second plane crash into those towers I thought that someone had chartered a private flight from Newark, right across the river, took off and turned right into the towers.

Because I knew that every plane that deviates from it's flight path and doesn't respond to radio calls is immediately chased down by the Air Nat Guard, which is stationed in New Jersey.

But no, NORAD scrambled jets from Vermont and Mass, behind the errant flights, and ordered them not to use their speed to catch up. NORAD did not order up jets from that base closest to New Jersey to stand in their path.

And as a youth I knew about Andrews AFB in DC, that has planes running 24/7 with pilots ready to take off in seconds to protect the nation's capital. Where were they that day, why were those pilots physically restrained from doing their duty?

So, yeah, the biggest conspiracy theory is the official story, proving Goering and Goebbles were right all along.


Be still my restless heart, . . .

Are Mara Liasson’s Days Numbered At Fox News? | Media Matters for America

"As for Liasson, in 2009, NPR bosses reportedly approached her and urged that she reconsider her regular Fox News appearances, given how openly partisan the cable channel had become. She declined, insisting she appeared on Fox news programs (Special Report and Fox News Sunday), and not on commentary ones, and that she had not noticed any change in Fox News’ programming since Obama had been inaugurated.

But Liasson regularly appears on Fox as part round table discussions whose entire point is punditry. And most often she appears opposite conservative pundits, such as Stephen Hayes and Bill Kristol. Meaning, on Fox News Liasson is seen as giving the ‘liberal’ perspective on the political events of the day, even though she’s paid to be a straight news reporter on NPR. Liasson’s role on the Fox shows also works to reinforce the conservative mantra that NPR is a left-leaning news organization."

I hope and pray that she makes more money from her FOX gig and Rupert offers her a job (FOX would be a perfect fit for her), then she'll no longer infect the NPR airways with her FOX talking points

Popepepe said...

Apparently, he said-she said journalism is now the norm.

Interesting read...


I want to second Popeye's comment above.

Jay Rosen, NYU Journalism professor, takes NPR to the woodshed for it's "he said, she said" brand of journalism. Excellent stuff, highly recommend his analysis, a fun read with your favorite beverage of choice.


We Have No Idea Who’s Right: Criticizing “he said, she said” journalism at NPR » Pressthink:

"The unstated message of which is: don’t complain. Your views are in there. Which is why I wrote: ”He said, she said does not serve listeners. It tries to shield NPR from another round of bias attacks.” If I’m correct, then interest groups are likely to be satisfied with this kind of treatment, but a huge portion of the audience is going to feel confused, stranded between warring camps, or poorly informed.

John McQuaid, formerly a Pulitzer-Prize winning reporter for the New Orleans Times-Picayune, picked up on this dynamic. Over Twitter he “NPR’s ombud basically says: for the truth, read between the lines.” Which is strange, he said, because it assumes “a level of subject matter or journalistic expertise most people don’t have.” Let me say it again: He said, she said is not about serving listeners. Rather it protects journalists from complaints that the most vocal interest groups are likely to raise. "

Benoit Balz said...

Dear NPR,

During pledge times your marketing department likes to push the concept of "driveway moments" where your listeners are so enthralled by your product that they must sit in their driveways listening to the remainder of an NPR story.

I propose something new: the "smash the radio moment" where listeners are so offended by your airing of blatant Pentagon PR Propaganda puff-pieces that they feel like smashing their radios.

Case in point: your idiotic, unnecessary story about some dimwit female Afghan helicopter pilot who flies around (presumably on the US Taxpayer dime) with her young daughter in the co-pilot's seat.

I mean, with all the problems here in this country (the US, not Afghanistan or Israel), a story like this really needs to be aired? Do you think any Americans care about this? Americans are sick of the US presence in Iraq and Afghanistan, but NPR sticks with its debased, pro-military, war-cheerleading editorial direction.

Who's really running the show at NPR, and why is there a consistent churn of Pentagon PR garbage? It's blatant, and it stinks.

How about running some coverage of Bob Graham's recent call for the re-opening of the 911 investigation due to new information about Saudi involvement in the attacks and possible Bush Administration cover-up? No mention of this on the NPR website. Are you fricking kidding, or what?


Benoit Balz,
New York, NY

Anonymous said...

I'm going to invest in radios cause with all the "smash your radio moments" I hear (and others) on NPR it will be a growth industry.

Do teh Palestinians have any one available to talk to the media concerning their UN activities. This morning we heard from two Israeli "diplomats" AND John Bolton and Eliot Abrams. Nary a word from the "she said" side. So iguess you could argue factually that NPR is not all about "he said, she said" journalism.

It is becoming more and more obvious that new Ombud is just a male version Of Shepard. So why even bother?


JayV said...

No coverage, of course, of the occupy wall street demos that started at the weekend.

word ident is "pheed". Rhymes with greed.

RomfordRob said...

Kudos, Benoit Balz:
Your letter to NPR is a beautiful thing indeed.
I echo your condemnation of NPR reports that fiddle while Rome is burning. Maybe while the 'P' stands for Pentagon, the 'N' stands for Nero?
And your "smash the radio" moment innovation is brilliant.
A deserved broadside for NPR -- Thank You --

Anonymous said...

Listening to NPR this am and their incomplete coverage/comment on the protests going on for "convicted copkiller Troy Davis" being executed today and NO COMMENT on the fact that 7 of the 9 witnesses had recanted their testimony of 20 years ago...terrible enough to kill this man and NPR calls this reporting!

Anonymous said...

another none news-"worthy" story NOT followed on NPR (i wonder why? lol)

And just because irony is dead today we heard from a member of the French Resistance. I believe that all people have a "right to resistance" so the French Resistance has a commonality with the resistance in Iraq. But all we hear about is the ongoing "war". I think that's because there is some glory and honor (however perverted) associated with war but there is nothing glorious or honorable about occupation so we are at "war" with Iraq. The other reason is an "insurgency" arises from a revolt by people within a country against an indigenous regime (think syria, libya, and nepal) where a resistance arises against an occupier or their puppets (think Iraq,poland and France). So by terming it an "insurgency" MSM tries to present Iraqi government as legitimate. You can imagine the intellectual problem that would be presented if it were termed a "resistance". I myself did not begin to call it a resistance until 2004 but that is what it is. I think.

And does tossing softballs to an hereditary ruler make one some sort of royalty? Steve Inskeep seems to think so.


Anonymous said...

How nice that NPR has chosen to produce such in depth coverage o f the ongoing protests on Wall Street (IE, they have opted to reprint a single AP article that gives the impression the protestors thmeleves don't even know why they are there)

I tell ya, there is one (only one) positive I can see in Republicans regaining control of both the White House and the Congress: they are certain to cut off all funding to NPR member stations, which will effectively shut down NPR.

Once NPR is gone, it ain't comin back -- and that would ALMOST be worth another 8 years of the republicans.

It ain't lookin too good what with all the bad news on jobs and the economy and everything, so if I were at NPR, I'd be prayin pretty hard -- and even putting in a good word (balanced of course) -- on a daily basis that Obama somehow manages to get re-elected.

Cuz if the Democrats go down, NPR goes down with them.

JayV said...

What's interesting is... on Anonymous' comment about the AP story as NPR's coverage of Occupy Wall Street.. you go to the link and realise that it's 3 days old. Here's my comment on at NPR: "The NPR decider for news reporting has missed the boat, as it were. Unless the higher ups have vetoed the coverage. Who knows? It's pathetic really. All we get is an AP story. Democracy Now! covered it. The Guardian covered it. Citizen journalists are covering it. But because it doesn't match up the MSM idea of a story, NPR fails. Vermont (as have a lot of cities, towns and states) will be standing in solidarity with Occupy Wall St. tomorrow - there will be a gathering in Burlington... let's just see if "Vermont's NPR Station" covers it."

Anonymous said...

Regarding he said she said reporting:

I have no problem when it's opinion journalism.

where I have a problem with he said/ she said is on subjects where not every claim deserves equal weight: eg, science.

for whatever reason, NPR has chosen to present scientific issues like climate change as he said she said.

And this is one of the primary reasons I have grown disgusted with the entire organization.

As Rosen says, they are simply trying to avoid criticism -- and keep the donations coming in.

It's not even clear to me what "service" NPR tginks they are providing with their think tank wanker op eds.

If I really wanted such crap, I could go to the think tank web sites and just read what the wankers say. Why do I need NPR as an intermediary between these idiots?

Anonymous said...

The ones I am really not going to miss when the Republicans shut down NPR after retaking the White House and Congress are the folks at Planet Monkey like Adumb Davidson and David Kestenbaum.

Those clowns are about as far from real journalists as one could ever get and are prefect examples of the Dunning kruger effect in action: thinking you are an expert when you actually have no clue.

Anonymous said...

there was a mention on hourly newscast this morning at 6am concerning occupy wall street. I asked Planet Money and MarketPlace if they would cover the story when the banksters and fraudsters need to conduct thier business behind barbed wire and sniffing tear gas.


disco? The verification? I thought disco was dead!

Anonymous said...

Compare and contrast the real coverage of the Wall Street protests with the faux(Fox?) coverage by NPR (all they are doing is posting he said she said AP tripe:

"At Manhattan's Union Square, police tried to corral the demonstrators using orange plastic netting. Some of the arrests were filmed and activists posted the videos online. One video APPEARS TO SHOW officers using pepper spray on women who already were cordoned off; another shows officers handcuffing a man after pulling him up off the ground, blood trickling down his face. -- from AP

Got that "tried to corral" and "appears to show".

Here's what the NY Daily News says:
in Wall Street Protesters Cuffed, Pepper-Sprayed
by Matt Deluca and Christina Boyle

Witnesses said they saw three stunned women collapse on the ground screaming after they were sprayed in the face.

"A video posted on YouTube and shows uniformed officers had corralled the women using orange nets when two supervisors made a beeline for the women, and at least one suddenly sprayed the women before turning and quickly walking away." -- from NY daily news

Watch the videos. What you see is what you get.

The way NPR has "avoided" this issue completely disgusts me.

And that they would post AP tripe that they KNOW is misleading at best is just grotesque.

Anonymous said...

i forgot. Remember the three terrorists planning an attack on 9/11? IMO that was just a false flag operation. Can't let Americans ever ever forget that they must remain scared to death.


RepubLiecan said...

To the two Anonymous commenters looking at the glass half full scenario of NPR going down if we retake the White House and Senate, are you kidding me? NPR is such a useful tool in getting out our version the story, why would we want to see it go away? All we have to do is keep beating them up about being biased against us poor conservatives and we will get more favorable dissemination of our message than we could buy. They will be funded via CPB, a few corporate cronies and all those devoted liberal listeners who actually think NPR news is providing them with a service. All this is at no cost to the RNC! It's a win-win.

Anonymous said...


While your observation about NPR is correct, you assume the Republicans are smart enough to realize the good thing they have going (along with a lot of other stuff that makes perfect logical sense)

They're not.

Rest assured, if the Republicans regain control of Congress and the White House, they will pull the plug on NPR.

You can count on it.

I know I am. :)

Anonymous said...

More assdribble from Tom Assbrook. I only caught about five minutes of it. I heard Betsy Stevenson going on about how "both sides" are to blame.

Burkey said...

haha, you said the C word. Well, guess what. Conspiracy theories aren't just for nutjobs anymore.

41 U.S. Counter-Terrorism and Intelligence Agency Veterans Challenge the Official Account of 9/11 – Official Account of 9/11: “Terribly Flawed,” “Laced with Contradictions,” “a Joke,” “a Cover-up”

Example of expert demanding investigation into 9/11:

Major General Albert Stubblebine, U.S. Army (ret) – Former Commanding General of U.S. Army Intelligence and Security Command, 1981 - 1984, commanding 15,000 intelligence and security personnel. Also commanded the U.S. Army’s Electronic Research and Development Command and the U.S. Army’s Intelligence School and Center. Former head of Imagery Interpretation for Scientific and Technical Intelligence. 32-year Army career.


Or look up
Veterans for 911 Truth
Military Officers for 911 Truth
Firefighters for 911 Truth

Or go to the "Remember Building 7" website...the membership of Architects and Engineers for 911 Truth has grown by hundreds in recent years..1500 professionals are now saying there's no way those towers came down without help.

My point is that these are credible experts DEMANDING an investigation. The news is censored and you will not hear that their claims are credible. I know bc I am in that biz (media, news) & have been for most of my adult life. You will hear people ridiculed for asking questions and you too will ridicule those who ask. Like you just did.

This thread is to talk about what NPR isn't reporting. This is definitely important to our country--we need answers.

If you can't deal with the discomfort of 9/11 questions---NPR is just right for you. Put your money where your mouth is and pledge now, says the ghost of Ruth Seymour. Oh wait---she's not dead yet. She may as well be, because she gave up the fight against NPR idiocy.


RepubLiecan said...

To Anonymous at 9/27/11 11:57 AM

I do indeed hope you are right! Maybe with the demise of NPR, I can at least go back to supporting the classical music I enjoy so much, without funding NPR's version of the news.

The Republicans must have some level of intelligence and vague awareness of reality, how else could they have tarred the media as liberal and gotten so many people to vote against their own interests?

Here's hoping you are right about NPR going away.