March 29, 2011
Should You Pay For News and Entertainment You Don't Want?
By James Wilson

Quote of the Day: "Frankly, it is clear that in the long run we would be better off without federal funding,” - Former National Public Radio fundraiser Ron Schiller

On March 17, House Republicans voted to cut off funding for National Public Radio. This followed a conservative "sting" operation in which the NPR's chief fundraiser was caught on video saying nasty things about the Tea Party. Republicans exploited this and grandstanded against so-called "liberal bias" at NPR.

As usual, the Republicans are behaving like hypocrites. The GOP was in charge of Congress from 1995 to 2007, including six years with a Republican President, but never eliminated NPR funding.

Behind their shameless political ploys, however, is a valid point . . .

NPR SHOULDN'T receive federal funding. The government shouldn't use tax dollars to finance news, entertainment, or high culture.

For the GOP, it's about partisan games. For DC Downsizers, it's about principle.

If you agree, please tell Congress to eliminate funding for public broadcasting and the arts using's Cut Federal Spending campaign. 

You may borrow from or copy this letter . . .

I enjoy much of what public broadcasting has to offer.

Even so . . .

* I'm glad the House passed bill H.R. 1076 which eliminates funding for NPR. The Senate should pass it.
* I also support the House's continued efforts to eliminate funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. The Senate should support these efforts.

Public radio and television will be IMPROVED by the elimination of government funding. They will have a stronger reputation for independence, and will likely attract more donors once the public is aware they aren't getting any tax money.

A more important reason is expressed by Krista Kafer in the Denver Post:

"Americans should have the freedom to choose (and pay for) the news and entertainment they want free of coercion. Pulling the plug on the $430 million in taxpayer subsidies for public television and radio is as much a moral imperative in support of freedom as it is a moral imperative in support of fiscal responsibility."

For the same reason, Congress should eliminate the National Endowments for the Arts and Humanities, and all other funding of so-called "culture." The people shouldn't be forced to support ideas, arts, and entertainment they find distasteful. It's a violation of the First and Ninth Amendments to compel people to subsidize another person's speech.

American culture should be driven by the expressions of a free people, and should NOT be directed by bureaucrats using tax money stolen from the people.

End funding for public broadcasting and for ALL government funding of cultural activities.


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James Wilson
Assistant Communications Director

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