How Much Is Big Bird Actually Worth?

Steven Hayward posted an article at Power Line today about President Trump’s plan to cut funding for Public Broadcasting. The article illustrates the fact that in some cases, executives of nonprofit organizations make salaries that don’t sound as if they are appropriate for an organization that is nonprofit.

The article reminds us of two conflicting statements made by NPR about their budget:

On average, less than 1% of NPR’s annual operating budget comes in the form of grants from CPB [the taxpayer-funded Corporation for Public Broadcasting]  and federal agencies and departments.

…Federal funding is essential to public radio’s service to the American public. Its continuation is critical for both stations and program producers, including NPR. . . Elimination of federal funding would result in fewer programs, less journalism—especially local journalism—and eventually the loss of public radio stations, particularly in rural and economically distressed communities.

Both of those statements cannot be true. I have no idea which one is.

The article further reports:

According to tax filings — the most recent of which covers 2014 — then-president and CEO Melvin Ming was paid more than $586,000 in salary and benefits in the nine months before retiring, which included a $37,500 bonus and $18,700 in benefits. The year before that, Ming cleared $672,391 in salary, bonuses and benefits.

That’s five times the average pay for CEOs at nonprofits, according to Charity Navigator. (It’s twice as much as the CEO of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting gets paid.)

The average compensation for the other 10 top officials at Sesame Workshop in 2014 was a very handsome $382,135 — which is about six times the median household income in the U.S.

Big Bird is big business. The article states:

Last year, Sesame Workshop had $121.6 million in revenues. Of that, $49.6 million came in distribution fees and royalties and $36.6 million in licensing of toys, games, clothing, food and such. In 2014, only 4% of its revenue came from government grants.

I suspect there are other programs on Public Broadcasting that would do quite well if they chose to market items related to their television shows. I truly think it is time to give the free market the chance to work its magic in the area of Public Broadcasting.

One Opinion On The Cause Of Ferguson

Yesterday PJ Media posted an article entitled, “The Real Villain of Ferguson.”

The article opens with the following comment:

It’s hard to have sympathy for anyone in the Ferguson affair — the cops, the demonstrators, the pontificating politicians, the exploitative media or we its pathetically loyal audience that keeps tuning in.  The whole event plays out like the umpteenth rerun of the famous quote from Marx about history repeating itself, the first time as tragedy, the second time as farce.

The events in Feguson have gone on for a number of days now. It is unfortunate that a young man died, but I just don’t understand why that justifies looting and violence. As more evidence becomes public, the story changes from the original sympathy for the innocent young man brutalized by the police to a young man, possibly high, charging a policeman. We shall see how all of this shakes out.

Meanwhile, the story at PJMedia concludes:

But, you say, this was a white-on-black crime. An o-fay cop offed a brother. (Never mind that brothers can butcher brothers like it’s going out of style, this pig had white-skin privilege.)  Well, yes, and we don’t yet know the circumstances, but even accepting the narrative of, say, the Huffington Post that the cop was the reincarnation of Bull Connor and that the “youth” was a “gentle giant” on the way to a contract with PBS as the next Mr. Rogers, the event is basically a charade.  Everyone knows we’ve seen it before and everyone knows we’ll see it again.  In fact, many parties don’t want it to go away.  The beat must go on.  It has to go on or their very personalities will disintegrate.  And I will tell you why — what caused it.

The Great Society.  There, I’ve said it.  The Great Society, which I voted for and supported from the bottom of my heart, is the villain behind Ferguson.  Ferguson is the Great Society writ large because the Great Society convinced, and then reassured, black people that they were victims, taught them that being a victim and playing a victim was the way to go always and forever.  And then it repeated the point ad infinitum from its debut in 1964 until now — a conveniently easy to compute fifty years — as it all became a self-fulfilling prophecy.

The Great Society and similar policies screwed black people to the wall. It was racist to the core without knowing it.  Nobody used the N-word.  In fact, it was forbidden, unless you were Dr. Dre or somebody.  But it did its job without the word and did it better for being in disguise.  Those misbegotten kids running around Ferguson high on reefer and wasting their lives screaming at cops are the product of all this.  Stop it already.  No one has said this better than Jason Riley, author of Please Stop Helping Us.  Listen to Jason if you want to end Fergusons.

There are people out there who represent the voice of reason. We need to start listening to them instead of those the media places in front of us.

Seeking Donations From Uninformed Voters

Yesterday John Hinderaker at Power Line posted a copy of a recent letter sent to potential Democrat donors.

This is the letter:

Subject: seriously, thanks!

John –

Last week, we asked you to help us do something big, something truly record breaking.

Well, thanks to your generous support, we had our BEST online showing for May ever!

Your contributions are already being put to use, protecting access to affordable higher education. In fact, we just launched an ad campaign on college campuses across the country, calling out House Republicans for voting to more than double student loan rates. Our campaign has been featured on PBS, CNN, and ABC News — but we’re just getting started.

Will you condemn House Republicans for attempting to make college more expensive?

Stand by President Obama’s veto threat against Republican student loan hikes: Click here to automatically add your name >>

Thanks for all that you do,

Democrats 2014

This is a very persuasive letter–unfortunately very little of it is accurate. The article at Power Line explains some of the inaccuracies:

Only interest rates on subsidized Stafford Loans will be impacted by the July change. Subsidized Stafford Loans are need-based loans for undergraduate students only.

Interest rates on subsidized Stafford Loans issued after July 1, 2013 are set to double to 6.8 percent. Loans issued before this date will come with 3.4 percent interest, which is locked in for the life of the loan.

The article concludes:

So how do the Democrats try to justify their claim that House Republicans “vot[ed] to more than double student loan rates?” They don’t try to justify it. It is an absurd lie, easily recognized as such by anyone who has the faintest acquaintance with the issue. But the Democrats’ fundraising appeals are not directed to the well-informed. They are aimed at low-information voters who turn out for the Democrats in droves because they have no idea what is really going on, and are easily fooled. No doubt the “ad campaign” of which the Democratic Party boasted today will fool thousands, maybe millions, more.

What is remarkable about this is not that party operatives are willing to lie for money, but that not a single prominent Democrat has objected to the practice. Is there a single Democratic office-holder who is willing to criticize his party’s use of blatant lies to seek political advantage? The answer, so far, is: No. Not one.

At the present time, the political left seems to have lost its moral compass. In the past there have been Democrats of principle, but right now we seem to have very few of those. Eventually this sort of activity will catch up to the Democrat party. At that time, I hope there will be some honest men who will step forward and lead the party back to its roots. I was a Democrat for much of my life. It breaks my heart to see where my party has gone.

Enhanced by Zemanta