Friday, November 19, 2010

Radio Somewhere: Bopping Thru The Big Blue...

by Scott Hall

Another Big Lie In The Works

This week Fox news exec Roger Ailes apologized to the Anti-Defamation League, a Jewish organization, for calling NPR news executives Nazis. He didn't apologize to NPR.  He said he was angry about NPR firing Juan Williams and apologized for using inappropriate language.  He said he should have called them "nasty, inflexible bigots" instead of Nazis.

Ailes gave the interview to "The Daily Beast", an on-line news service, about a month after NPR fired Williams, and just as Congress went back in session. Right on cue, House Republican whip, Eric Cantor, led an attempt to deny NPR stations, including KAXE, funding from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. It was defeated, but the attempt to cut CPB funding will probably return with the new Congress next year.

Ailes' remarks were not an impulsive mistake made in anger.  He and Fox want to keep the focus on cutting funding to NPR and other public broadcasters by portraying them as biased news services on the public dole. Saying NPR news is run by intolerant bigots doesn't get the level of attention, reaction and repetition that the Nazi label evokes.  He knows if the lie - NPR is a news organization run by "left-wing Nazis" - is repeated often enough, people will believe it and Congress might act on it. He also knows most of us don't pay much attention to the differences between journalism,  propaganda, and press releases by lobbyists and PR firms.

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