More on Juan WilliamsI think FOX's Sunday morning news show is the best on the air; I have given up on ABC's (which I once thought quite good) now that the embarrassing Christiane Amanpour is the host. One reason it has been so good is the balance on the panel, which features two people who have done work for NPR - Mara Liasson and Juan Williams.
Now neither of these two is a knee-jerk NPR type, and both have had flak from NPR for their appearances there, though they certainly provided a proper balance against Bill Kristol and Brit Hume. Mind you, Juan Williams was always skeptical of Obama, and has clearly been proven substantially right. I suspect this is part of why NPR has cut its ties with him (by text message - typical leftie class).
John Hinderaker has a very nice reflection on Williams.
Several years ago I was in Florida with my wife and several of my kids for a Hillsdale College event. At some point, my wife and daughters were on the beach and saw a respectable-looking guy walking along in the sand in a suit and wing-tips. As regular Fox News watchers, they recognized him immediately. My wife introduced herself and, sure enough, it was Williams. He was very gracious, living up to his reputation as a nice guy. I found the image endearing: even I am not geeky enough to walk on the beach in a suit.And John cites this from Michael Barone:
Reading between the lines of Juan's statement and those of NPR officials, it's apparent that NPR was moved to fire Juan because he irritates so many people in its audience. An interesting contrast: many NPR listeners apparently could not stomach that Williams also appeared on Fox News. But it doesn't seem that any perceptible number of Fox News viewers had any complaints that Williams also worked for NPR. The Fox audience seems to be more tolerant of diversity than the NPR audience.My guess is that FOX viewers generally appreciate disagreement and argument, while NPR listeners have a more religious attachment to their beliefs.
As John finishes:
That is very true. Conservatives don't try to silence their opponents, they just want to argue with them so that good public policy can emerge from the debate. Liberals--not every single one, but an alarming percentage--are infected by a totalitarian impulse to silence all who don't toe their line.To be honest, when I drive in the US I seek out on my radio station either some good country music station or NPR; the latter does provide interesting news coverage a lot of the time. Though I would go out of my way now not to do it if I thought I could somehow be counted as a listener.
Finally, Paul noted earlier today that NPR's audience consists mostly of leftists. That is probably true, but NPR is also remarkably popular with taxi drivers, pretty much all of them immigrants. On hundreds of occasions, I have gotten into taxis driven by African immigrants and been subjected to NPR's left-wing propaganda. Often, I've been tempted to urge the driver to change the channel to, say, Rush Limbaugh. So far I haven't done it. But maybe NPR's firing of a decent liberal like Juan Williams will push me over the edge. It's time for African cab drivers to strike a blow for freedom.