Archives for posts with tag: afghanistan

As commented by our #1 fan/ my mother below:

unfortunately, this firing reinforces the false perception that NPR is ‘liberal’

I think the far worse misconception this story is promulgating is the myth of NPR as a taxpayer boondoggle.

Conservatives love pointing out that even though NPR receives no operating money directly from the Feds, there is a money chain along these lines:

Federal funding -> Corporation For Public Broadcasting -> Grants from CPB to local public radio stations -> Station dues to NPR

Nobody seems to have solid percentages on how much of NPR’s $166 million annual budget that ends up being, but it’s definitely somewhere in the single digits. For the sake of argument, let’s use the 2% in the same article I got the $166 million from.

Two percent of that budget is equivalent to a little over three million dollars— or the cost to support three US soldiers in Afghanistan for a year. If you want to use the higher numbers favored in this article, it’s eight percent, or $13 million dollars/ 13 US soldiers. We have something over 100,000 troops over there right now. So: a high-end estimate of federal funding of NPR amounts to 0.01% of the federal funding for our forces in Afghanistan.

Just sayin’.


That’s what I thought to myself when I saw the headline “Fungus hits Afghan opium poppies” on the BBC News site tonight.

I wasn’t particularly surprised, then, to have “British and US accused of poppy plague warfare” be the other result in Google News.

Today, in the Southern County, I shared a bus stop with, I think, three generations of one family. The daughter— twenty, 350 pounds, manic  and eye-darty, wearing revealing clothing (revealing, of course, tramp stamp-esque body art). Swearing about how “fine, they’ll get fucking frozen pizzas if (her Mom)’s sick of macaroni and cheese!” The mom— I thought a sister at first (I thought the daughter older and the Mom younger) but later guessed thirty-five, heavily make-uped, matching body art, matching weight, huge (twenty centimeter wide) bruises on her lower legs. Wearing sunglasses; couldn’t figure out how to get her Mom onto the bus wheelchair ramp. The grandmother— sheen of dementia, smiling at nothing, mid-sixties, wheelchair, right leg in a cast (at a twenty degree angle towards her starboard side), top inexplicably buttoned down to reveal Victoria’s Secret-style push-up bra. It was a definite Stare At The Ground kind of situation.