GOP budget would cut funding for public broadcasting

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Monday, February 14, 2011 at 9:15 am | More from The Colorado Independent

The Republican House majority put out a shocker of a budget Thursday that would slash spending by $32 billion in the next seven months. Among the glaringly ideological Republican targets are environmental protection programs and public broadcasting. The “war on Big Bird,” as some fans of PBS have called it, has a strong backer in Colorado Congressman Doug Lamborn, who this session has introduced two bills to zero out funds for public TV and radio.

Scary

Lamborn’s HR 68 would amend the Communications Act of 1934 to prohibit federal funding for public broadcasting after fiscal year 2013. His H.R. 69 separately targets National Public Radio funding.

Lamborn introduced a bill to cut NPR funding last year but it was shot down by the Democratic-controlled House.

After Fox News launched a campaign to “defund” NPR in the fall, Lamborn appeared on the network several times and ratcheted up his rhetoric around the bill.

“You may have heard about the recent firing of NPR News Analyst Juan Williams and the $1.8 million donation by liberal activist George Soros to hire 100 NPR reporters,” Lamborn wrote to supporters in an October release. “These two actions make it clear that public broadcasting is a friend and protector of liberal issues and political correctness, at the expense of free speech and balanced news reporting.”

At a time when the news media industry outside of cable TV is struggling and when aggressive partisan punditry dominates that sector, cuts to PBS seem especially short-sighted, say some industry observers.

Media reform nonprofit Free Press put out a call in wake of the news of the proposals.

Political extremists in Congress have introduced six — yes, six — bills that would cut all funding for NPR, PBS and other public media. As early as next week, they could vote to pull the plug on the news, arts and educational programming on which more than a hundred million Americans rely…

For some communities, local NPR and PBS stations are the only source of serious reporting. They also employ thousands of journalists — at a time when commercial newsrooms are shedding jobs.

In addition to Lamborn’s bills, U.S. lawmakers have introduced HR 235, the “Cut Unsustainable and Top-Heavy Spending Act,” by Rep. Kevin Brady (R-Texas); HR 408, “Spending Reduction Act,” by Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio); S 178, the Senate version of the “Spending Reduction Act,” sponsored by Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.); and S. 162, the “Cut Federal Spending Act,” by Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.).

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Comments

24 Comments

World Spinner
Trackback posted February 14, 2011 @ 6:21 pm

GOP budget would cut funding for public broadcasting | The ……

Here at World Spinner we are debating the same thing……


Media - Megan Tady: Congress: Leave NPR Alone | Free Online
Pingback posted February 16, 2011 @ 4:15 pm

[...] Broadcasting, slashing funding for NPR, PBS, and dozens of local stations across the country. A handful of bills are also working their way through Congress that would do the same. The tale is so riveting, the [...]


Megan Tady: Congress: Leave NPR Alone – ArticlesInbox
Pingback posted February 17, 2011 @ 1:03 am

[...] Broadcasting, slashing funding for NPR, PBS, and dozens of local stations across the country. A handful of bills are also working their way through Congress that would do the same. The tale is so riveting, the [...]


SCBRU
Comment posted February 19, 2011 @ 4:06 pm

Oh my…in a country of rednecks, we are.

I grew up in a conservative household so I know exactly what the attitude is about NPR among Reublicans. When I started listening to NPR, I instinctively kept my ears open for evidence of what I was TOLD was there–just under the surface. Well, I have not heard it in 10 years of listening. I’ve only heard calm and reason when so many other organizations are becoming most blatantly opinion-based. It worries me that America is losing its grown-up “calm” and being replaced by the cockiness and rage that reminds me of a teenage boy.

I pay taxes, too. I want my tax dollars to go towards the (drop-in-the-bucket) amount that goes towards public broadcasting and the really great educational programs it produces. Some of my best memories have occured while watching PBS (I’m of the Seasame Street/Mr. Rogers Gen.) And now as an adult, many of the NPR programs brighten up my work day.

If I can’t have my tax dollars go towards things that make us a calm and civilized society, I’ll make a larger private contribution. And I encourage other grown-ups who enjoy NPR to do the same.


Jack Janzen
Comment posted March 7, 2011 @ 8:18 pm

Why on earth the Federal Government should subsidze broadcase is beyond me.


Abc
Comment posted March 7, 2011 @ 8:47 pm

As the chairman of the FCC noted in 1961 TV is a “vast wasteland.” This is still true today and is also true for much of radio. The main source of quality broadcasting is NPR and PBS. If funding for these are eliminated it will be a sad day for the country.


Abc
Comment posted March 7, 2011 @ 8:47 pm

As the chairman of the FCC noted in 1961 TV is a “vast wasteland.” This is still true today and is also true for much of radio. The main source of quality broadcasting is NPR and PBS. If funding for these are eliminated it will be a sad day for the country.


Abc
Comment posted March 7, 2011 @ 8:47 pm

As the chairman of the FCC noted in 1961 TV is a “vast wasteland.” This is still true today and is also true for much of radio. The main source of quality broadcasting is NPR and PBS. If funding for these are eliminated it will be a sad day for the country.


Abc
Comment posted March 7, 2011 @ 8:47 pm

As the chairman of the FCC noted in 1961 TV is a “vast wasteland.” This is still true today and is also true for much of radio. The main source of quality broadcasting is NPR and PBS. If funding for these are eliminated it will be a sad day for the country.


Janeal Krehbiel
Comment posted March 7, 2011 @ 9:46 pm

NPR and PBS are the two lifelines into our home. How can this happen? Who is allowing this atrocity to take place? Please let those of us who were teachers and low paid workers so that big bonuses could be given to the rich at least have NPR and PBS. Don’t take what little is left away from us. We built your castles and gave you your vacations. Let me have my two loves. Janeal Krehbiel, career music teacher in Kansas


DakotaDave
Comment posted March 8, 2011 @ 5:45 am

If you had studied media history, and especially lived overseas, you would see how public broadcasting is a necessity. While we may argue about PBS representing both sides of issues, we desperately need public radio and television as an intellectual counterbalance to the for-profit driven news media. Simply due to their purpose, they cannot report objectively on most issues. It’s easy to cut budgets, but it’s so very difficult to fix things like the absence non-profit public media.


Grace
Comment posted March 8, 2011 @ 9:49 pm

NPR and PBS are both wonderful. But they should be supported by contributions not by the tax payers. Go ask Michael Moore for a big check. I am sure he will put his money where his mouth is. Maybe.


Grace
Comment posted March 8, 2011 @ 9:49 pm

NPR and PBS are both wonderful. But they should be supported by contributions not by the tax payers. Go ask Michael Moore for a big check. I am sure he will put his money where his mouth is. Maybe.


Peegeejenkins
Comment posted March 8, 2011 @ 10:03 pm

If the reason for the


Peegeejenkins
Comment posted March 8, 2011 @ 10:05 pm

Argh double post
if the reason for the budget cut was to uphold libertarian ideals, then yes, I would agree. NPR and PBS should not be government services any more than health care, schools, etc.
But this is not about slashing services for things that should be privately supported. This is about a ten year war that has cost you billions (trillion?) of dollars, and now the citizens have to cut back on services because a bunch of rich white people got richer? Why are we defending this? Are you rich too?


Baronne
Comment posted March 8, 2011 @ 11:10 pm

Shame,shame,shame…the political bullies in the playground want to overpower an American way of life…NPR and PBS,that has educated generations of Americans with fair and unbiased opinions,no matter what the bully pundits say. Why don’t these politicians go after the real culprits that have wasted taxpayer dollars…like corporate subsidies( lest we forget: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MAC2xeT2yOg ), Wall Street market speculators, decreased taxes on the very rich and ,of course, the wasteful spending by the military industrial complex that President Eisenhower so gallantly warned us of in 1961…and while we’re at it,let’s continue to identify corporations as “We the people…” that will eventually erode the middle class and Main St. only to benefit Wall St. Do our Congressmen really care about Main St,when hundreds of them are beyond millionaires…and we wonder why tax breaks to the rich still continue…Oh,no,this couldn’t be a conflict of interest? Where have all the true,honest statesmen gone? All I see is a bunch of non-caring political junkies who have no desire at making America great again,because all they care about is greed,greed,greed! As a taxpayer and honorably discharged veteran, I want my taxes to continue to pay for public broadcasting!


Judy
Comment posted March 9, 2011 @ 3:34 am

We have to fund these great programs because they won’t exist otherwise. Commercial interests support shows like Three and a Half Men (formerly the #1 comedy on TV) not wildlife shows or NOVA. And the Arts get very little support, period. We can’t take away funding to the few outlets left for genuine art.


debt concolidation
Comment posted March 11, 2011 @ 7:58 am

The GOP attempts to kill funding for this is a red herring. It’s chump change and it’s evidence that the GOP – and the Dems as well – are not serious about budgeting.
There are a few things that cost a LOT of money. If we want to fund them, then we need to tax people. Among the things that cost a lot of money are Medicare and Medicaid. Also, the Defense budget is huge, especially given the ongoing wars. These things cost a lot of money because health care is expensive to provide. So, the question is: what do we do about that?
The answer is *not* cut funding to NPR. So far, I’ve heard precious little from either side about what to do.


Rlmdirect
Comment posted March 16, 2011 @ 6:40 pm

Long overdue. NPR takes money from the common man to fund the parrots of the elite liberal establishment. If these intolerant bigots even remotely represented both sides of the political spectrum, it would perhaps make some sense to maintain funding. However, the inherent bias of the organization should lead to defunding. If you support NPR, by all means, throw your money at them. But not mine.


‘Fiscal Conservative’ Richard Shelby Forces NASA To Spend $1.4 Million A Day On Program It Doesn’t Want | Video Formats & Conversion
Pingback posted March 25, 2011 @ 2:07 am

[...] of thousands of teachers, gut funding for cancer research and the National Institute of Health, and de-fund public broadcasting. It appears that Shelby is intent on cutting spending as long as it hurts Main Street Americans, [...]


Jhpetty
Comment posted April 14, 2011 @ 12:50 pm

The goverment has Sold the public airwaves – the electric signals have been sold.
Where did this money go?? For sure we should fund Public TV and Radio with this money..
Overair TV has just about disappered – Radio not far behind — all about money – not about America…………. jim petty


Jhpetty
Comment posted April 14, 2011 @ 12:56 pm

so true — the money from sale of the airwaves could and should be used to fund this….


Megan Tady: Congress: Leave NPR Alone | www.iflickle.com
Pingback posted May 2, 2011 @ 7:59 pm

[...] Broadcasting, slashing funding for NPR, PBS, and dozens of local stations across the country. A handful of bills are also working their way through Congress that would do the same. The tale is so riveting, the [...]


Caponer077
Comment posted June 21, 2011 @ 3:41 pm

I do like to watch a few programs on PBS, and the only radio I listen to is classicals on NPR;  still, in this budget crisis, something has to give. When we are broke as a nation, anything that does not have to be kept has to be tossed, including several governmental agencies: the Department of Education, the Department of Transportation; and dozens of lesser agencies. After we are out of debt. Then we can choose to reconsider funding PBS and NPR. In the meantime if they can struggle through on viewers fees and constributions, more power to them.


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