Tomlinson Resigns at CPB

"Tomlinson, a Republican, quit shortly before CPB Inspector General Kenneth Konz was to publish a report after investigating his activities, including paying outside researchers to check public programing for liberal bias.

Critics, including broadcasters and congressional Democrats, accused Tomlinson of trying to advance his own conservative agenda in public broadcasting, which is supposed to be non-partisan."  Reuters

"Center for Digital Democracy Executive Director Jeff Chester, a critic of Tomlinson, said his departure was unlikely to stop what he described as behind-the-scenes programing pressure on PBS and NPR.

"Board chair Halpern and vice chair Gaines will continue Tomlinson’s legacy to reshape public broadcasting more to the liking of conservatives," Chester said in a statement.

Veteran Republican Party fund-raisers Cheryl Halpern and Gay Hart Gaines were elected in September as CPB board chairman and vice chair, respectively." Reuters


There is a certain air of "1984" about all that is presently going on in the US with regard to media.  "Big Brother" lurks in unseen but effective ways in the corporate offices that control what we are allowed to see.  It has been pathetically obvious for some time that the commercial media (with notable exceptions) are being run for the benefit of the faction currently in political power in this country.  This CPB resignation highlights the fact that the same forces are "muffling" the PBS/NPR outlets as well.

Those who claim to be conservative like to talk about "liberal bias" in the mainstream American media.  This is mainly "hokum."  In the bygone days which liberals seem to think of as a "Golden Age" there were media like CBS News and the New York Times which were quite self-indulgent in expressing the liberal inclinations of their editors and reporters.  This had some effect but was largely ignored by people who did not share the opinions of these institutions.

That was then.  This is now.  Now we have systematic exploitation of the lack of conscience which lies at the heart of much of corporate thinking.  A ruthless use of the power of the federal government to both intimidate and seduce the corporations who own much of the media has marked the last few years. 

This article makes it clear that the public media are also stained by this kind of spinelessness.

There are some signs of restlessness among the media moguls.  I presume that they are afraid of "missing the boat" if things "go south" for the Bush Administration.  In business you always have to have an eye for the "main chance" and not stick with a losing project too long.  Sunk costs are sunk costs. 

Lewis Libby is now experiencing the kind of isolation and shunning that characterize a social system ruled by fear.  The experience may spread.

Pat Lang;_ylt=AhUL2UzgHE7DCHdLSUsiUK5ZJ_wA;_ylu=X3oDMTBiMW04NW9mBHNlYwMlJVRPUCUl

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2 Responses to Tomlinson Resigns at CPB

  1. Howleyj says:

    “Conscience” is a very dangerous word, Pat. In my experience, the voice of conscience speaks below a whisper which may explain why so few listen to it. What role does conscience play within the military culture? Is it promoted or suppressed? And what’s wrong with George, Dick and Don? Don’t they have a conscience?

  2. Curious says:

    Random musing. maybe this question is a bit academic,
    but what does it take to create a mass media not owned by current big 6 corporations?
    We certainly has nascent form of public forum such as bulletine board, webpages, blog, bit torrent, etc.
    but what does it take to replace TV? (newspaper btw is declining fast. They are in ‘weekly magazine’ position 20 years ago. They can’t compete with blogs, just like weekly magazine can’t compete with low cost newspaper and TV)
    If we observe TV news. 80% of it is pretty face reading teleprompter mixed with ‘pictures from the ground’. How can we replace that 80%? I certainly don’t particularly care if the news is read by pretty face or not.

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