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Saturday, February 19, 2011

Repeal NPR, PBS and the Corp. for Public Broadcasting! Behold, the Democratic Party’s New Constituency: Muppets!

Behold, the Democratic Party’s New Constituency: Muppets! | NewsReal Blog
Posted By Jesse Hathaway On February 18, 2011

Facing flagging public support for their platform, Washington Democrats are now resorting to enlisting cartoon characters to help drum up support for funding public television with taxpayer money.

Yesterday, Representative Ed Markey (D-MA) held a press conference featuring the beloved public television cartoon character Arthur (from the eponymous “Arthur” show, which is in turn an adaptation of the “Arthur” series of books by children’s author Marc Brown), and the famous duo of Bert and Ernie from state-run television staple “Sesame Street. They joined together to protest House Republican leaders’ plans to reduce funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

At the presser, Bert and Ernie received a “GOPink slip,” symbolizing House Democrats’ allegations that the Republicans’ budget proposal will put token handicapable person Maria out on the cold street, force Kermit’s banker cousin Gordon Gecko to foreclose on Big Bird’s nest, and deprive kids of their daily two-minutes-of-hate against Fox News. Or something. I was too busy trying to figure out who the other Muppets in attendance were—wait a minute, those aren’t muppets, those are Democratic Representatives Earl Blumenauer, Nita Lowey, Sam Farr, Paul Tonko, and Bill Owens.

My bad. I have trouble telling muppets and House Democrats apart—unserious people look alike to my senses.

Back in 1995, 15 years before Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-People’s Republik of Kalifornia) invited another foam-headed ninny—progressive comedian Stephen Colbert—to have his derping placed in the Congressional Record for posterity, Rep. Nita Lowey invited Bert and Ernie to testify before Congress, when then-Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich led the charge to reduce public media funding.

Possibly hoping that the arithmetically-inclined sanguisuge, The Count, could teach the nation’s children what the number “14 trillion” means, Lowey called on Republicans to “focus on creating jobs, not laying off Bert and Ernie” and “silencing Cookie Monster.”

The irony and disrespect of using taxpayer money to insult and degrade entire swaths of taxpayers as “teabaggers” and “trashy,” as NPR and PBS have done in the past, is so biting that even Statler and Waldorf would cringe in shame.

In January 2010, National Public Radio featured an artist’s Flash cartoon (commissioned using taxpayer dollars), which sought to teach the viewer “how to speak Tea Bag”—a pidgin parody of conservatives’ concerns about the growth of government.

In 2009, a “Sesame Street” skit featured Oscar the Grouch deciding that the Grouch News Network (a pastiche of CNN) was “not grouchy enough,” prompting him to change the channel to “Pox News,” which he happily declared to be “a trashy news show.” The ombudsman of PBS, Michael Getler, apologized later, saying that he “didn’t know what was in the head of the producers, […] it should have been resisted. Broadcasters can tell parents whatever they think of Fox or any other network, but you shouldn’t do it through the kids.”

As Sen. Jim DeMint notes, the “Muppet Lobby” has been suckling at the government teat for years.

The “Sesame Street” character Elmo has testified before Congress about the need for government subsidization of the arts, and given lectures with Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genochowski about the need for government to subsidize people’s Internet bills.

First Lady Michelle Obama had a guest appearance on “Sesame” to promote healthier, government-approved menus for kids. In 1996, Bill Clinton made multiple appearances on the “Street,” going so far as to incorporate the show’s characters into his campaign’s paraphernalia .

National Review Online’s Jim Geraghty off-handedly wonders if the Muppet Lobby is a violation of the Hatch Act, which is a provision that prohibits federal employees from ”engaging in political activity while in official uniform”—which, one would think would cover the public employee whose “official uniform” is the “Arthur” costume.

In light of state-run media’s constant shilling for Big Government and bigger spending—even as the federal government stares down the barrel of abudget-induced shutdown—it becomes more obvious every day that public broadcasters should be cut loose and forced to participate in the marketplace of ideas, just like every other media corporation has to do.

Article printed from NewsReal Blog: http://www.newsrealblog.com

URL to article: http://www.newsrealblog.com/2011/02/18/behold-the-democratic-party%e2%80%99s-new-constituency-muppets/

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