It's That Special Season.
Fall is the trees on fire, crisp air, cider, hunting, football, and...public radio begathons. This morning, Ira Glass, host of NPR's This American Life?, declared that the average American spends over $200 a year supporting the production of TV and radio programs, "many [programs] that you despise". So, Ira suggested, why not give some money to support NPR? But, dear Ira, what if the programming we despise includes much of the NPR programming?
But wait, there is a solution: do give to your local public radio station, but insist that your contribution go only towards local programming production. As we've discussed in Dead Drifts, NPR isn't really public radio, it's a corporation that takes public money (either by direct solicitiation or by legislative lobbying) and then decides for themselves what to fund for production. I don't remember ever getting a ballot from NPR to vote for a program, nor does the NPR website feature a "what kind of program would you like to hear?" form (correction - there is a suggestion box, buried deep in the site). I know what I want - let's rebroadcast the audio from the old Firing Line programs!