Text of Letter from MRC's Brent Bozell to House and Senate Leaders Urging an End to Taxpayer Funding of NPR

The following letter was sent March 9, 2011 by Media Research Center President Brent Bozell to the leaders of the House and Senate committees with oversight over National Public Radio: House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton and Ranking Member Henry Waxman; and Senate Commerce Committee Chairman Jay Rockefeller and Ranking Member Kay Bailey Hutchison.

Normal 0 false false false MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 When Congress passed the Public Broadcasting Act of 1967, it began with an idealistic notion of serving all Americans and presenting fair and balanced news and information. It would be nonpartisan and all-inclusive. But NPR and PBS have never lived up to that ideal. For decades, they have been a liberal sandbox, often run by executives with Democratic political and family backgrounds. Rather than serving all Americans, public broadcasting has been, in a sense, a large ideological pork barrel.

The utter insularity of this "public" broadcasting system was dramatically exposed in a March 7 posting on The Daily Caller website, in which NPR's then-top fundraiser, Mr. Ronald Schiller, unleashed a barrage of anti-conservative rhetoric in a hidden-camera exposé at a business lunch in Washington.

"The current Republican Party, particularly the Tea Party, is fanatically involved in people's personal lives and very fundamental Christian - I wouldn't even call it Christian. It's this weird evangelical kind of move," Schiller said. He later added that the grassroots Tea Party movement isn't "just Islamaphobic, but really xenophobic, I mean basically they are, they believe in sort of white, middle-America gun-toting. I mean, it's scary. They're seriously racist, racist people."

The original idea of public broadcasting cannot be reconciled with this display of contempt for the so-called fanaticism, xenophobia, and racism of the taxpayers who subsidize the present system.

NPR (and to a lesser extent PBS) frequently boast of serving large and loyal audiences, which sounds a little odd for a non-commercial system. But that loyalty is not simply to classical music or to Sesame Street. It is a fidelity to liberal attitudes like Schiller's, that liberalism coincides with education, sophistication, and wisdom.

In today's remarkably rich and varied communications environment - and today's dire federal fiscal straits - there is simply no reason to continue government funding for a Corporation for Public Broadcasting, especially a CPB that defines its role as establishing a "firewall" against taxpayer complaints about biased or inaccurate content.

It has been 44 years since Congress established the public broadcasting system, and the dramatic revolution in information technology makes the scarcity argument of the 1967 Act utterly obsolete. Congress's requirement for fairness in public broadcasting has been disregarded since the system's very first days.

The resignation of Vivian Schiller doesn't change a thing about NPR. They are still a radical left-wing toy for the likes of George Soros and they still don't deserve a dime of taxpayer funding. A government that is broke should not be in the business of funding a left-wing playground.


L. Brent Bozell III
President and Founder