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  • Guzzlecrank
    Reconstructulator
    • Aug 2009
    • 1234

    PBS

    Hey, folks:

    A close friend of mine (who is an excellent drummer) is a producer for one of the local Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) television stations in the US. Earlier today, he sent me a link to a site run by an organization called 170 Million Americans for Public Broadcasting, who are trying to collect names to show support for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, which is a private organization created by the Federal government that provides most of the funding to PBS. CPB has been targeted for defunding in the new Congress by US Congressman Doug Lamborn, R-Colo. Springs.

    I grew up in a poor Southern state where PBS programs (particularly the science shows) were a welcome alternative to the corporate drek on the the other channels, so I've always appreciated PBS and the CPB, and if anyone else is interested in trying to help 'em out, here's the link:

    http://170millionamericans.org/

    I think there's every reason to consider the new defunding push as a serious one. If you're curious about what the 170 Mil organization is, it's explained at the foot of the web page.

    P.S., I hope this doesn't duplicate another page or link that Opa might have put up, and I apologize if it does. I had a memory that there may have been an earlier post, and did a search, but I didn't catch anything.
  • L'Etranger
    Veteran Moorcockista
    • Dec 2003
    • 4772

    #2
    Without being privy to the media landscape there I'd guess that Public Broadcasting Systems are less prone to the influence of the industry that can steer the media via ads on which so many stations depend. A series criticizing, say, the auto-mobile industry or an airline company would not result in the loss of substantial money. Or, am I totally wrong there? If not I would say that keeping PBS is in the interest of your independence.
    Google ergo sum

    Comment

    • Guzzlecrank
      Reconstructulator
      • Aug 2009
      • 1234

      #3
      L'E, you're right on the money (so to speak) about the reduced influence from private industries on PBS' programming choices.

      PBS also carries a lot of educational programs for children and local programming that focuses on state-centered topics (as opposed to national topics), including shows about local artists, craftspeople, parks, and history. In many local TV markets, there's nowhere else to turn for that kind of programming, despite the rise of international cable and satellite television with gazillions of channels provided to the viewership. So, in my opinion, it is an aid to independent thought for a variety of reasons.

      Comment

      • ThanosShadowsage
        Eternal Companion
        • Dec 2003
        • 666

        #4
        Thanks for bringing this to my attention. I try to support public broadcasting any way I can. As a child I watched a lot of PBS programming and in my adulthood I made the shift to public radio (NPR has some excellent programs if you weren't already aware). I shutter to think where we would be without these establishments.

        Comment

        • thingfish
          sairfecht
          • Sep 2007
          • 15756

          #5
          Good luck folks.
          This looks like an excellent service,wish we had something like that.
          "I hate to advocate drugs,alcohol,violence or insanity to anyone,but they've always worked for me"

          Hunter S Thompson

          Comment

          • Rothgo
            Champion of the Unbalanced
            • Aug 2006
            • 6663

            #6
            ...erm, the Beeb perhaps?

            Comment

            • thingfish
              sairfecht
              • Sep 2007
              • 15756

              #7
              Isn't that run by the government Rothgo?
              "I hate to advocate drugs,alcohol,violence or insanity to anyone,but they've always worked for me"

              Hunter S Thompson

              Comment

              • Rothgo
                Champion of the Unbalanced
                • Aug 2006
                • 6663

                #8
                No, it's a mutual society owned by the license fee holders. The gov however holds the ability to legislate the requirement for the license, so that's essentially where their power over the BBC comes. But technically at least, it ain't a government body.

                Comment

                • Wanderlust
                  Lemon Curry?
                  • Apr 2008
                  • 3627

                  #9
                  Although there's a lot of shite on it, I thank gawd for the CBC in this country, but the only thing (that I know of, anyhoo) in Canada that resembles PBS is TV Ontario (where I first started getting into the Dr. Who serials in the 80's).

                  I started watching PBS in '77, the year I moved back to Canada from Germany. I lived for Friday nights and Python. My wife and I usually send a few bucks everytime they have a funding drive, and we will again the next time it's on. Many Canadians are extremely loyal to PBS.

                  What the hades is it about Republicans and anything that's good in this world? Grrrrrrrr.
                  Any fool can make a rule, and any fool will mind it.

                  ~Henry David Thoreau

                  Comment

                  • The Cosmic Balance
                    The Final Programme
                    • Oct 2004
                    • 3679

                    #10
                    Originally posted by Wanderlust View Post
                    What the hades is it about Republicans and anything that's good in this world? Grrrrrrrr.
                    Err, isn't this just the sort of 'white heat of rhetoric' that I thought we, as a site, were trying to avoid contributing to? Or did I misunderstand Pres. Obama's comments the other day:
                    Originally posted by Barack Obama
                    But at a time when our discourse has become so sharply polarized -- at a time when we are far too eager to lay the blame for all that ails the world at the feet of those who think differently than we do -- it's important for us to pause for a moment and make sure that we are talking with each other in a way that heals, not a way that wounds.
                    Can we all try a little harder please guys?

                    Thanks.
                    The path of the righteous man is beset on all sides by the iniquities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men. Blessed is he who, in the name of charity and good will, shepherds the weak through the valley of darkness, for he is truly his brother's keeper and the finder of lost children. And I will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger those who attempt to poison and destroy my brothers. And you will know my name is The Lord when I lay my vengeance upon thee.

                    Comment

                    • L'Etranger
                      Veteran Moorcockista
                      • Dec 2003
                      • 4772

                      #11
                      Originally posted by Wanderlust View Post
                      Although there's a lot of shite on it, I thank gawd for the CBC in this country, but the only thing (that I know of, anyhoo) in Canada that resembles PBS is TV Ontario (where I first started getting into the Dr. Who serials in the 80's).

                      I started watching PBS in '77, the year I moved back to Canada from Germany. I lived for Friday nights and Python. My wife and I usually send a few bucks everytime they have a funding drive, and we will again the next time it's on. Many Canadians are extremely loyal to PBS.

                      What (...) is it about (...) Republicans and anything that's good in this world?(...)
                      It is currently more apparent than in previous times that some political groups fear independent media and wish to control it more. In the case of Italy the chieftain there has nearly achieved it by owning most of the media.
                      Independent, public broadcasting - based on a model similar to the BBC with a board of governors selected from most groups and factions of society - is also a pillar and guardian of democracy in my country.
                      In addition there are commercial channels.
                      Google ergo sum

                      Comment

                      • ThanosShadowsage
                        Eternal Companion
                        • Dec 2003
                        • 666

                        #12
                        I think the Obama quote about politics being polarized is very appropriate for this topic. In America (I can't speak for elsewhere as I can not afford to travel abroad) the political lines have been clearly drawn and anyone that attempts to cross them is labeled a traitor or an idiot. Extremism is encouraged rather than avoided. It seems to me that the two most powerful political parties (Democrats and Republicans) have gotten used to the pendulum swing that typically occurs. They want to force their issues through when they can and, if successful, they attempt to push as far to the right or left as possible so their opposition must push harder to get back across the middle ground.

                        In any nation the media is an important resource. Clearly it is on the agenda for both sides and the waves of convolution will wash over it just as surely as they will wash over other issues.

                        On a side note about the media, I recently enjoyed a documentary about Noam Chomsky called Manufacturing Consent. The documentary can be watched for free on the internet in several ways (Hulu, Google Vids, Youtube). You'll note right away that the video is very dated... but I find the points raised to still be applicable today. The video is almost 3 hours long but it is divided into parts. Part 1 is titled "Thought Control in a Democratic Society" and is very interesting.

                        Here is the google vids link: http://video.google.com/videoplay?do...2395226827730#

                        Comment

                        • ThanosShadowsage
                          Eternal Companion
                          • Dec 2003
                          • 666

                          #13
                          Pardon the double post but I just got home from my writing class to find my wife watching a clip of Jon Stewart (from The Daily Show) exposing a perfect example of media manipulation. For those of you who don't know, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart is a political comedy news show which airs on Comedy Central. Jon Stewart is a comedian but he gets much of his material from actual current events. Events which, often times, raise very serious issues.

                          Here is a link to a brief blog about it on NPR's website which contains the video clip. I'll copy the blog's contents below but if you want to see the clip you'll have to click the link.

                          http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/...ean_hanni.html

                          Jon Stewart and his Daily Show crew happened to notice something a little strange about video Fox News' Sean Hannity used to illustrate an interview with Rep. Michele Bachmann about last week's Capitol Hill health-care protest by conservatives. As Stewart points out, some of the video Hannity used appears not to have been recorded at last week's event but in September when a far larger crowd of Tea Partiers converged on the nation's capital. Glenn Beck used the same video two months ago to illustrate just how large the crowds of protesters were. Interesting...
                          Jon makes this issue into a joke but I don't think we should be laughing when our news organizations manipulate footage to deceive viewers. This is apparently not the first time Sean Hannity has been caught doctoring footage.

                          Here's ANOTHER video example: http://crooksandliars.com/david-neiw...y-his-deceptiv

                          Yes we should protect our freedom of speech and freedom of the press but we need take a look at what is being done in the news. There are many people in America which only get their news from one source. If that source is FOX News... well I shouldn't speculate about that.
                          Last edited by ThanosShadowsage; 01-18-2011, 06:06 PM. Reason: edited grammar

                          Comment

                          • Wanderlust
                            Lemon Curry?
                            • Apr 2008
                            • 3627

                            #14
                            Originally posted by The Cosmic Balance View Post
                            Originally posted by Wanderlust View Post
                            What the hades is it about Republicans and anything that's good in this world? Grrrrrrrr.
                            Err, isn't this just the sort of 'white heat of rhetoric' that I thought we, as a site, were trying to avoid contributing to? Or did I misunderstand Pres. Obama's comments the other day:
                            Can we all try a little harder please guys?

                            Thanks.
                            Well, it was a 'pub that instituted the thing, but yep, I get your drift. My apologies.
                            Any fool can make a rule, and any fool will mind it.

                            ~Henry David Thoreau

                            Comment

                            • Lucid Sirius
                              Jester, ret.
                              • Mar 2009
                              • 465

                              #15
                              This attempt to defund PBS seems to be part of a regular action item in the playbook of the Republican Party. It comes up every few years, stations and supporters issue warnings and it gets voted down again and again. I don't know of any politicians who are truly passionate about trying to quash PBS but it does make for headlines.

                              I like a lot of the things on PBS and hope this latest round of fire-up-the-base stuff fails as it has before.

                              "When we remember we are all mad, the mysteries disappear and life stands explained."
                              - Mark Twain, notebook entry, 1898.

                              Comment

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