Fair and Balanced and … Public?

The latest chatter in cyberspace.
May 2 2005 6:02 PM

Fair and Balanced and … Public?

Bloggers are debating the moves and motives of Corporation for Public Broadcasting Chairman Kenneth Tomlinson, as well as Arnold Schwarzenegger's plummeting popularity, and Laura Bush's comedy act at the White House Correspondents' Association dinner.

Fair and balanced and … public? In the latest example of backlash against the allegedly liberal news media, CPB Chairman Kenneth Tomlinson is "pressing public television to correct what he and other conservatives consider liberal bias," reports the New York Times. Among several controversial moves, Tomlinson reportedly hired an outside consultant to keep track of guests appearing on Now With Bill Moyers and urged public broadcasting officials to air a program hosted by the editor of the Wall Street Journal's conservative editorial page.

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Needless to say, lefties are outraged. "It's funeral time for PBS," writes the feminist Echidne of the Snakes. The left-leaning Phonograph notes how people who allege bias among news organizations "tend to have a bias themselves." Linkmeister has some choice snippets from a recent New York Times Magazine interview with Ken Ferree, the interim president of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

On liberal Wills4223, the author buttresses his opinion on the state of PBS (thumbs down) with some background information on the aforementioned Corporation for Public Broadcasting: "Congress funds CPB two years in advance to 'shield it from momentary bursts of partisan anger," writes Will. "That was then. Now, the chairman of the CPB board is … a close friend of uber-strategist Karl Rove."

Conservative blogger, author, and radio host Hugh Hewitt disagrees, seeing Tomlinson's actions as simply introducing "balance back into the CBP/PBS world."

Read more about the PBS flap.

An immigrant's dilemma: It seems that California's bodybuilder governor isn't as big as he used to be. Arnold Schwarzenegger's approval rating has dropped below 50 percent for the first time since he took office, and his stance on illegal immigrants may not be helping matters.

Schwarzenegger last week praised the Minuteman Project, the 15,000 volunteers patrolling Arizona's border with Mexico—and whom even President Bush has labeled as vigilantes. The governor asked a TV station to remove a billboard saying, "Los Angeles, Mexico," because it might encourage illegal immigration. (There's a shot of the billboard—and an anti-illegal-immigrant point of view on L.A. blog Darleen's Place.)

"What could be more ironic than Governor Schwarzenegger, an Austrian-born immigrant, who at the same time, applauds the vigilante minutemen of Arizona?" points out left-leaning April Spreeman at Thought Mechanics.

Stephen Bainbridge, a blogger and law professor at UCLA, isn't on Arnold's side on this one: "Wake up and smell the coffee; California's future is Latino." On InstaPundit, Glenn Reynolds offers this insight: "I have several legal immigrants in my family, and they're pretty resentful of illegals who ignore all the rules. I suspect that Arnold feels a bit that way himself."

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