Really Morning Edition?

WARNING: This post contains much more profanity, large fonts, and profanity in large fonts than are commonly employed here.

I like to use public radio content as a jumping off point to discuss some larger idea in journalistic practice or politics.  I never meant this blog to just be sniping about this or that story or person day to day on the air.

But today I’ll make an exception.

My question today for the producers of Morning Edition:

“What the F**K?!?”

It’s really all I can think.  Seriously, what the f**k, guys?

Three, count them, three long, ear-bleedingly bad pieces.  And I didn’t even listen to the entire show.

Crappy story 1: No surprise that Barbara Bradley Hagerty would create a staggeringly credulous puff piece on a purported Catholic miracle.  What’s shocking is that nobody at NPR listened to it and said “Uhmm, Barbara, you know this is basically Catholic propaganda that could have been released unchanged by the Vatican’s PR department right?  We can’t possibly run this.  Also, you always do this, so you’re fired.  Really, really fired, as in we are removing all of your old stories from the NPR website because we suddenly noticed they are all like this.”

It seems that Hagerty “reporting” on religion is like Sean Hannity “interviewing” Sarah Palin – only without the uncomfortable sexual undercurrent.

Crappy story 2: A super-mawkish “Storycorps” about a self congratulatory divorced dad and his self congratulatory daughter taking a break from self congratulations to congratulate each other on being such an awesome dad/daughter.  Now I know I shouldn’t complain because at least no one died in the fascinating stories they told about throwing frisbees around, but cloyed nausea is not a feeling I relish a lot more than the usual existential dread inspired by StoryCorpse.  But again, I don’t resent the daddy/daughter combo for making the recording.  What they do in that storycorps booth is none of my business.  But why was it chosen by someone at NPR to be put on the air?

Crappy Story 3: They actually interviewed the vapid author of and promoted the hideous book “Selfish Reasons to Have More Kids”. Which is enough for me to condemn them for all the reasons that will be obvious to people who aren’t douchebags.

But they ran this on Earth Day.


Now, NPR, I give you money because I listen to you, not because I agree with everything you say.  People who listen regularly  but don’t give money because they don’t agree with all of the content are straight up assholes, especially if they have Scottish accents.

But if you make it so unpleasant to listen to your programming that I have to turn you off, well, the money goes away too.

3 thoughts on “Really Morning Edition?

  1. I concur, plus can I say how much I HATE the whispering? Please, please, please remove the mics from inside these people’s mouths. I do not wish to hear every sound that happens in there. And Scott Simon? Can you please stop gasping your mouth open so loudy each and every time you open it to say something?

    OK, maybe (maybe??) I’m hyper sensitive to sounds, but sometimes I feel like I’m being assaulted when I listen to some of the voices on NPR. Meeshell Norris, “this is national public radio”. If I want someone whispering in my ear I will take a lovah!

    Otherwise, I really appreciate most of the programming.

  2. The tonality and cadence of the different hosts is an interesting subject I’ve never written about. One thing that’s pretty common is that the patented NPR delivery often sounds like a parent reading a story to a child. Unfortunately it’s often a story about radiation or genocide. And I agree that Norris can sometimes have a minxy spin, though I’m pretty sure it’s unintentional.

    Having said that, I far prefer the NPR voice style to the brassy flat style adopted by virtually all American news stations, local or national.

    1. Are those the only two options? Can’t there just be a normal tone of voice that falls somewhere closer to the middle, and slightly on the subdued side? We’re not all sitting in the lotus position as we listen to NPR.

      I don’t mean to suggest that Norris is trying to be sexy, it’s just too much. It’s like she whispering into the mic.

      Maybe it’s just me and other NPR listeners like hearing what goes on inside other people’s mouths and being whispered to. I find it distracting and unnecessary.

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