Conservative Media Research Center Actually Praises NPR (Sometimes):
As many a commentator has noted, what is often called "liberal" in the media is just real journalism. Real journalists don't assume that the powerful are correct, no matter who is in power. Real journalism calls a demonstrable fact a demonstrable fact and a demonstrable lie a demonstrable lie. That's what "objectivity" is supposed to be about, not "balance." Balance is the lie that every issue has multiple sides that deserve equal consideration. People who understand media understand this. People who want the media to merely comfort their biases don't care.
Especially open to attack are those media outlets that are seen as intellectual or elitist because, apparently, long attention spans are only for fucking commies. For instance, The New Yorker magazine featured an article last year by Jane Mayer that revealed how the Koch brothers spend millions and millions of dollars funding conservative causes. If you're a liberal, that reporting demonstrated that what you believe about the monolithic right is true. However, last week, The New Yorker featured another massive article, this time on the clean-up operation of the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. This time, the article challenges many liberal assumptions about the competence of everyone involved, as well as the role of BP and the long-term impact on the environment. In other words, if the article is right, many of us on the left (and right) were wrong. But that's because journalism shouldn't make us comfortable all the time. Sometimes the facts support your opinion. Sometimes the facts force you to modify or change it. That's called using your brain.
And it's also what a thinking, informed citizen ought to be doing. Otherwise, you only get propaganda, no matter what side you're on. (This is not about false equation. The Rude Pundit will argue to the death that the liberal shows on MSNBC are more reality-based and fair than nearly the entire day of Fox "news," which is merely a fascist brainwashing outlet.)
The attacks on the perceived bias at National Public Radio have less to do with any real agenda by NPR to attack the right (even if sometimes their commentators do so) than it does with the fact that NPR actually reports on real shit and it has reporters around the world who understand the places and people where conflicts and events occur. As Media Matters showed, even many conservative commentators find NPR to be "fair," and that includes its coverage of the crazy-ass Tea Party.
One of NPR's staunchest critics has been the Media Research Center, Brent Bozell's bugfuck insane news nanny that goes berserker whenever an NPR report has five words more on the supposedly liberal side of an issue than the conservative or if it doesn't toe a particularly puritan moral line. The MRC's "research" was cited just this week by totally straight columnist Cal "Yes, My Photo Looks Like I'm Watching You Masturbate" Thomas to attack NPR.
Except, oh, shit, wait a second. Here's a list of stuff what the Rude Pundit got from the MRC that praises NPR for covering issues and events that the rest of the media ignores or gets wrong (in the MRC's estimation):
From the MRC's Business and Media Institute, October 15, 2009, in an article titled, "NPR to Stations: 'Avoid' Saying '46 Million Americans' Are Uninsured": "While many in the news media continue to inflate and exaggerate the number of uninsured Americans, National Public Radio is making a change." The article then says that NPR is clarifying an "error" in reporting the number of uninsured (by saying "people" and not "Americans"), unlike most other media outlets.
From the MRC's Business and Media Institute, November 14, 2007, in an article titled, "NPR: The Economy Is Surviving $100 Oil": "National Public Radio’s Morning Edition was one of few outlets to report that the cost of $100 oil hasn’t had the effect on the economy that many people expected." (Indeed, MRC praised the entire NPR series on the oil industry as being fair and reporting on aspects of profits and pricing that others had not. Or, in other words, the reports would not have given aid and comfort to latte-sipping tree-huggers.)
In a July 20, 2009 BiasAlert, the MRC noted that an NPR blog was one of the only media outlets to note the 40th anniversary of the Ted Kennedy/Chappaquiddick incident, even though the blog post provoked hate mail.
In other anniversary news, there's this March 2010 article where the MRC notes that NPR was one of the only outlets to mark the centennial of the Boy Scouts and it didn't get all caught up with that silly homophobia, noting that "listeners were incensed that NPR didn't mention the organization's policy on homosexuals."
Frankly, take out constant criticism of NPR reporter Nina Totenberg and the pre-heroically fired Juan Williams, and the MRC's argument that NPR has a liberal bias comes down to declaring repeatedly that NPR has a liberal bias.
But, hey, Douchbag Rape Scene Designer James O'Keefe edited a video that made an executive look bad. So who cares if the truth is pretty much exactly the opposite? De-fund that shit. Indeed, you know what would have saved us from this whole bullshit argument? If NPR or any major news outlet had done some real journalism prior to the usual insta-purge.