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NPR Hates Autoworkers

chicago dyke's picture

Yesterday I was trapped in the car and forced to listen to NPR. They told me about how "most Americans hate American cars and won't buy them." So why bother to save the American car industry, right? Today, they've been reminding us about how union workers are overpaid and don't deserve health and retirement benefits or lifelong employment. Thanks, you corporate whores! For reminding me why I won't ever be giving you any money ever again, and will continue on my campaign to get everyone I know to do the same. You really suck, you hypocritical lying apologists. By the way, just how much does your crack team of Big Business fellators make, and what benefits do they have, and how often do they get replaced by younger, cheaper bobbleheads? Right, you can't talk about that, lest the fools listening in during Pledge Week come to realize what they're really paying for. Rancid, blatant hypocrisy. /end rant/

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goldberry's picture
Submitted by goldberry on

Maybe that doesn't make it better for you but you probably remember how it used to be on NPR, right? Before Newt Gingrich's Movement Conservatives told them to find corporate sponsors and cut their budget? Before 8 years of Bush/Cheney where journalists who stepped out of line saw their careers ruined? Remember Dan Rather? NPR is hurting right now. The Bushies are still in power for 7 more days. That's seven loooooong days in the lifetime of an NPR journalist who just wants to survive the transition.
Cut 'em a break. If they haven't shaped up 6 months from now, THEN get on their case.

Historiann's picture
Submitted by Historiann on

I was rather miffed this morning about an NPR story that rehearsed all of the reasons the rest of America must hate Detroit. After a pro-forma mention of bad leadership and bloated salaries at the top of the Big 3, it was all about hating on the workers, their supposedly outrageous sense of entitlement, and their cursed unions.

Since when did Americans hate people who showed up and did their jobs? There was almost this tone of ressentiment that I'm familiar with as a tenured faculty member. Instead of working for health care and better wages and employment conditions for everyone, let's all pile on that small percentage of workers who have (or used to have) health care, job security, and decent pay! Yay! "If I'm not winning, we all have to lose!" seems to be the motto. Wal-Mart loves this attitude and just waiting for all of our applications...

chicago dyke's picture
Submitted by chicago dyke on

64 whole village people. my god! the inhumanity. i mean, that's so much more important than the *millions of americans in the auto industry* they are currently and non-stop-edly trying to shill to be made unemploymed, right? right?

fuck them. sorry if that affects people you know, but here's what i know:

if you're a connected Village media whore, you can get another job, easy. did you hear? anna marie cox got a new job today. despite her refusal to stay with the looser-swamp that is Time's blog "swampland" and her 'unfortunate' dismissal from the failing "Radar" venture. she's good writing about ass-fucking (but not as good as i am, natch) so she "deserves" continual Village-related employment, unlike those lazy, union workers with health care and families in the flatland.

tell me how many of the 000s of autoworker/related industry people who were fired this month here in MI had the same oppo? bleh. sorry, i really hate NPR. the national gig, that is. local shops are actually often pretty cool, i grok that. but the overpaid whores who shill for big business, daily, on programs that millions of liberals listen to? fuck them, fuck them all. or what? did Coke-head Roberts lose her job, which likely pays millions? no, i didn't think so.

/continuting rant/

Sarah's picture
Submitted by Sarah on

NPR, *has* to toe the corporate line. Union = bad. Serfdom = good. I boiled over this morning about that "we welcome our new corporate ubermeisters" myself. Whatever happened to the notion that "the laborer is worthy of his hire"?
Yeah, that's a biblical principle. New Testament. Hence, no longer applicable, or something.

chicago dyke's picture
Submitted by chicago dyke on

or attempt to, pretending my head isn't splitting in two. but i will chex ur linkz soon.

meanwhile, go up the kitteh post. fuck god! if catz n ratz cin snuggl, we all can too.

nite, sleepy peeps.

gqmartinez's picture
Submitted by gqmartinez on

I don't watch much TV, but everytime I walk by while a discussion of the auto industry is on, there is a swipe at the UAW. Even in call in shows, supposedly "blue collar" folks spare not chance to attack the UAW. It would be nice if the incoming Democratic president gave some support to unions. But hey, I wouldn't be sad if much of the current union leadership gets the boot and are replaced by real pro-worker folks.

Salmo's picture
Submitted by Salmo on

I agree that the national folks are just awful. Both on radio and television, the lesson Tomlinson taught them has been internalized and they no longer deviate from the corporate line. I used to write outraged emails to NPR about this sort of thing, but I have given up. I am not their audience, the state affiliate is. That's who buys their program. And at least in my state, the principal news people are pretty good. I am not sure that it makes a difference, but relatively speaking I figure I am more likely to have an impact there.

I would think that the Michigan version(s) of NPR would see the corporate campaign against unionized auto workers as a problem and would be more likely to make a programming decision on that basis. If a few affiliates say the same thing, or better yet, cancel shows featuring Cokie and her ilk, that may resonate.

bringiton's picture
Submitted by bringiton on

Couple of things, one already partially accomplished. Obama will replace the Reactionaries Bush put on the finance side of the operation, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. That should help reduce the ideological bias that leads to the kind of show you're justifiably unhappy about here, so put a checkmark - in pencil, to be sure - next to that box.

Secondly, we need to keep clear in our minds that local stations operate independently from the parent NPR. They depend on a variety of sources for funding, including listener memberships, commercial funding, foundation money and a measly $400 million in government cash that comes to them from CPB. The route to true independence is local membership donations.

In my area, which I recognize is blessed, 95% of funding for the local PBS stations comes through those fundraising drives as well as bequests and some local commercial advertising. Only 5% of funding comes from the BushCo controlled CPB. As a result, we get a stream of locally produced programs and independently-produced shows purchased from other PBS stations from around the country, a variety of viewpoints that moderate the effect of the garbage being pushed by CPB.

If you want better local programming, you will have to support your local station - with cash and if you have time, as a volunteer. Tough to do in this economy, I know, but - you get what you pay for. If, on the other hand, your local station has been taken over by the Gestapo right-wingers, then you'll have to get even more active and run some progressive candidates for the Board of Directors at their next election. We had that happen at the local public TV station maybe 15 years back, some stealth right-wingers took over the Board and purged the Progressive staff. Took two years but we drove the right-wingers out and got our station back again, including most of the decent staff who had been fired or pushed out, so it can be done.

Your local station is your baby; save it, don't throw it out with the bathwater.

bringiton's picture
Submitted by bringiton on

I'm trying to stay away for now from that kind of standard setting with this guy. Not endorsing his middle-of-the-road wishy-washy style, my personal preference would be for a righteous Flaming Sword of Justice kind of thing, but that is not Obama’s way nor is it the current mood of the American public. He does seem to be serious about this big-tent listen to everyone and work out a compromise approach and so we're going to see a series of half-measures and accommodations as he feels his way in. The jockeying around this stimulus package is absolutely fascinating and he's starting to look pretty damn clever with how he's balancing the factions, playing one off against the other; so far, so semi-good on that and actual real goodness on things like SCHIP, Guantanamo, Equal Pay, and Wilderness designations.

The House of Horrors of the Bush administration is, I'm pretty sure, only partially apparent. Once Obama is in office the real nasty stuff will start to come out, as people inside government who have been afraid for their livelihood - and their lives - will feel freer to talk. [I'll have a post up after the inauguration with one example of some very brave people who have been fighting for a long time against the worst depredations on our wild lands, at great risk to their careers and - truly - their own lives. That recent Utah BLM bidding business has a considerable heroic backstory, but I won’t discuss it until the current folks at Justice are out of power.]

What Obama does then, in say six to twelve months, will tell us a lot more clearly what he's made of. I believe - I hope - that the level of revulsion both from within himself and his administration along with general public outrage will be enough to drive him to sweep clean the BushCo criminal civil service plants, and their replacement with people who are at least decent and fair. Indictments and trials would be more than welcome.

Meanwhile, trying to use "litmus" tests will I feel only lead me to frustration on just about everything. Not arguing about criticism, certainly not proscribing it from others, but for myself I'm taking a tentative approach until I see what he does once actually in office and fully aware. There will be plenty of opportunity for fights, no shortage of arguments, this guy is no Progressive, but for the immediate future I'm cutting some slack and waiting for a pattern of actual activity to emerge.

Submitted by lambert on

I don't see a problem with holding Obama accountable for getting a bill passed that he co-sponsored -- whether it leads to feeling bad (because frustrated) or no.

The Hill on Labor Day, 09-01-2008:

It also notes that Obama is a cosponsor of the so-called Employee Free Choice Act, which is also called the “card check” bill. The measure would allow workers to join a union when a majority of them sign authorization cards. Industry groups are strongly opposed to the bill, which is a top priority for unions.

As the Guardian points out:

The mathematics of the political situation is that any piece of legislation – including the Employee Free Choice Act – needs the support of at least 60 members in the Senate to be able to pass the threat of a filibuster. If the Democrats fall short of this, the act will never get to the president's desk, even though the House of Representatives has passed it.

This is where the testing of Obama's mettle comes into play. He has committed himself to supporting the Employee Free Choice Act because of his politics of instituting fairness into a very unfair society that the US has become. But the crux of the matter is what form his support will take. Will it just be a case of committing to signing the act if and when passed by the Senate?

Or, more crucially, is he prepared to use his political authority to campaign to make sure the waverers like Arkansas Democratic senator Blanche Lincoln stop wavering?

I'd say no, but I imagine we'll know soon enough. Since Obama was a co-sponsor of the bill and the party of which he is the Leader controlled Congress then and now, I'd say the six-month clock started ticking when he made the promise almost five months ago, meaning we should know by this session of Congress what Obama really meant on this one.

As far as "pattern of actual activity," I think all you have to do is look at Obama's legislative record in 2008; shredding the rule of law with FISA [cough] reform and handing $350 + $350 billion to Big Money NOW NOW NOW in the Bush + Reid + Pelosi + Obama + Paulson bill. No reason to wait 'til he's done something; he's already done plenty.

I want to know whether the only difference between Republicans and Democrats is that Democrats use lube. For obvious reasons, I want to know that sooner rather than later. And if Obama doesn't run true to form, nobody will be more pleased than I will be.

bringiton's picture
Submitted by bringiton on

Lube is the major difference. I for one am grateful.

The negotiation before us is over whether or not we get paid for getting fucked. The damn Republicans want to charge us for being the fuckee, so getting paid instead will be a big change in a positive direction.

We can argue 'till the cows come home over who was in control of the 110th, how much influence Obama actually had, etc etc and still not change each other's minds, so I won't further annoy you here and now. I'm too blissed out over the countdown of Bush's final days and the absolutely glorious fashion of his departure. He's starting to sound desperate now, certainly did in that presser. Could be maybe he's worried that the lackeys will turn on him, surely it isn't a guilty conscience. Either way I'm looking forward to the, ahem, Farewell Address, expect to be doubled over in gales of laughter.

I'm just too happy right now to fight. Soon enough, that will change.

pie's picture
Submitted by pie on

Obama commemorative stuff (nor anybody else's), but that Bush countdown key chain sure sounds intriguing. A little late though.

He'll be gone by this time next week.


JonJ's picture
Submitted by JonJ on

I remember when it started, around Watergate time as I remember. It was quite bracing in those dark ages, but who needs it now for news? The intertubes are much more informative about what's going on.

OTOH, I contribute to the Temple University station. BTW, with reference to the classical music thread awhile ago, people interested in that or jazz should check its internet streams out at Nothing avant-garde in either field, but if you're not too adventurous, the programming is good.

chicago dyke's picture
Submitted by chicago dyke on

at least in chicago, which was the last place i felt motivated to do so, one can give money to the local stations, and specify that none of that money be paid to the national organization for their bullshit shows.

chicago (WBEZ) has some fucking outstanding local programs. liberal, even. i was very happy, when i called them and asked them, to find out that this was possible. i hope it's still true/they weren't blowing smoke up my ass.

Submitted by lambert on

.. the local affiliate cut costs by shutting down antennas, so now some parts of the state don't have coverage at all.

So, the haves, and the have nots. Pretty clear. No money from me. Not that I have much.

chicago dyke's picture
Submitted by chicago dyke on

i can't say i'm really sorry that "0000s of rural americans will have to go without teevee, as a result of the lack of converter boxes and upgrade tech problems." i can only guess what they'll do with all that newfound free time.

BIO will disagree, but not having Nice Polite Pravda Republicans beamed into your home constantly, seems only a good thing to me.

bringiton's picture
Submitted by bringiton on

it'll be that or whittle.

And thanks awfully for including my POV in your comment, CD. If I can just get lambert to start including my rebuttals in his posts, my work here will be done.

Sarah's picture
Submitted by Sarah on

and I'm old-school enough to think, in the coming Depression, having home ec teachers on TV (instead of Rachael Ray and her 'celeb chef' sh*t) will be good for the country.

Damon's picture
Submitted by Damon on

Didn't hear the NPR program, but if that was bad, you'd have fainted over the coverage the local and national media given to TN Senator Bob Corker at the NAIAS (North American International Auto Show), yesterday.

I was incensed not only that this sonofabitch had the gall to come up to the auto show in the City of Detroit, which is held directly across the street from the organization he tried to destroy (the UAW headquarters), but that the little prig was treated as if his opinion even matters. He was absolutely mobbed by the media; I'm talking journalist and cameramen so deep that it wasn't even funny. He took the gall even higher when he was saying that he was 'surprised' about all of the hate mail he's received for trying to destroy the UAW, and that we, up here, have a warped view of the South. Good gods, talk about the irony in that statement.

I'd have been estatic if he'd came up here, and the media didn't ask him even one question and acted as if he didn't exist. He had the gall to come up there to media whore at our own auto show and then reiterated why Chrysler shouldn't exist.

Bob Corker, if you're still up here in Michigan, get out; get. the. hell. OUT.

Because, god forbid that there exist one organization out there looking out for laborers. Because, no one ever looks out for Big Business, right? Aye! Teh stupid,;it burns.