Friday, October 22, 2010

Juan Williams: Al Campanis* 2010 [Update below]

Juan Williams was sacrificed to the gods of political correctness and it should backfire on NPR.

1. Bill O'Reilly was right (did I really just say that?) when he pointed out that Juan did not give an opinion, he was just describing his emotional state. If he had said we "should" feel nervous... that would be another issue.

2. What "Muslim garb" was worn by the 9-11 terrorists? Or Richard Reid? Or the Xmas Eve bomber? The problem with Williams' statement is that nervousness is a stupid emotion to have.

3. Mara Liasson has the highest job security in the world today.

4. Joan Walsh nailed it in her column today.

*Obscure Reference Alert: Al Campanis (below) iced his career as a baseball executive in 1987 when he implied in an interview with Ted Koppel that African-Americans were not smart enough to be Major League managers.

Update 10-23:

A commenter (who has subsequently deleted his/her own comment) made the valid point that Al Campanis is not the proper analogy to Juan Williams' firing because Campanis was a true bigot who viewed racial differences as reasons to discriminate on hiring. Granted, it's not the perfect analogy and the commenter is correct. To his credit, Campanis came out days later and stated that his remarks about race were misinterpreted since he only meant that there were no blacks with the proper Minor League management experience to warrant hiring into the Major League positions. He also said that he was tired and chose his words poorly in the Koppel interview. Of course, he was likely only trying to preserve his own high-paying job, but that is the story.


G in Berlin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Christopher said...

I'm taking a screen shot. You said Bill O'reilly was right about something. You know those printed word and sound bites always will come back to bite you.

Do you think NPR will lose its public funds over this mess? Do you think they should? I guess it doesn't matter if they do because I sure Soros will just pony up some extra cash.

Tony said...

I'm a very reasonable critic and I agree with BillO more often than makes me comfortable. It's just that when he's wrong, man, is he ever wrong.

NPR funding isn't all that egregious-- the vast majority is from private donors now-- and I think the listeners would be fine if a few commercial interruptions were necessary.

I'll assume the slam on Soros is some sort of RW inside joke, but remember that Fox lost money for years and they had a rich white benefactor themselves-- Rupert Murdoch-- who dug deep into his own wealth to actually pay cable outlets to carry his channel. Only by his wealth was he able to get that model to work.