Thursday, February 08, 2007

Save public broadcasting

...from the good folks at Please click on the link below and do your part to rescue public broadcasting in the United States.
George W. Bush is trying—yet again—to slash funding for NPR and PBS. This week, Bush proposed a new budget with devastating cuts to public broadcasting. Sesame Street and other ad-free kids' shows are under the knife. So is the independent journalism our country needs.

Enough is enough. We've fought this fight before and won—but we can't afford the risk anymore. With the new Congress, we can make sure this never happens again. We need Congress to insulate NPR and PBS from the political winds.

We can make it happen if enough of us sign this petition: "Congress must save NPR and PBS once and for all. Congress should guarantee permanent funding and independence from partisan meddling." Clicking here will add your name to the petition:

After you sign, please forward this email to your friends, family, and co-workers to keep this campaign going. We'll deliver the petition to members of Congress as they consider Bush's budget—offering a public counterpoint to this dangerous attack.

Congress can protect NPR and PBS from future cuts. The long-term solution to save public radio and TV is to:

  • fully restore this year's funding

  • guarantee a permanent funding stream free from political pressure

  • reform how the money is spent and keep partisan appointees from pushing a political bias

  • Bush's budget would cut federal funds for public broadcasting by nearly 25%. According to PBS, the cuts "could mean the end of our ability to support some of the most treasured educational children's series" like Sesame Street, Reading Rainbow, and Arthur."

    As telecommunications chair Rep. Ed Markey said, "In a 24-7 television world with content often inappropriate for young children, the public broadcasting system represents an oasis of quality, child-oriented educational programming. We owe America's children and their parents this free, over-the-air resource."

    The cuts could also decimate one of the last remaining sources of watchdog reporting on TV—continuing the partisan war on journalism led by the ex-chair of public broadcasting, Ken Tomlinson. More people trust public broadcasting than any corporate news media. President Bush would rather undermine our free press than face reporters who are asking tough questions.

    Let's put an end to the constant threats to NPR and PBS. Let's ask Congress to guarantee funding and stop partisan meddling. Clicking here will add your name to the petition:

    Thank you for all you do.

    –Noah, Marika, Eli, Adam G. and the Civic Action Team
    Thursday, February 8th, 2007

    P.S. Our friends at Free Press have more on how to save NPR and PBS once and for all:


    Rick said...

    Thanks for the heads up on this.

    Another issue to be aware of, by the way, is the current push for media reform laws. With the way that the FCC regulations are structured at the moment, the reforms that are being considered could jeopardize local media stations the same way. A lot of these local stations rely on the companies that own them to stay on the air in markets where they aren't making a large enough profit to operate independently, and without these companies, they could go out of business and off the air.

    It's something I've been following closely during my time consulting for the NAB, and it's a major concern. The FCC needs to update it's regulations to something more suitable to the current day--their rules are outdated by decades!

    Ted Striphas said...

    ...thanks very much, Rick, for widening the frame. And please feel free to share any websites or other information with D&R readers that might help us to keep more up to date on these larger issues. Indeed, the FCC's relationship to local media is becoming increasingly fraught, to say the least.