EAG Challenges NPR: We’ll Show You Ours If You Show Us Yours

Posted: Nov 11, 2011 10:09 AM

On Wednesday, National Public Radio Education Correspondent Larry Abramson phoned Education Action Group to ask about our activities related to Issue 2 in Ohio, the referendum on the collective bargaining reform that was defeated at the polls Tuesday. Specifically, he inquired about our “canvassing and mobilization” efforts.

As a 501(c)(3) non-profit, EAG is prohibited from engaging in such activity. I told him as such. I did acknowledge that last year EAG published an analysis of collective bargaining agreements in southwest Ohio, prior to knowing anything about Senate Bill 5.

Additionally, we recently issued an analysis of how the mere threat of SB 5 had a positive impact on finances in several Ohio school districts.

We never recommended that Ohio voters support or oppose SB 5 or the ensuing ballot referendum on the bill.

Abramson, whose tone was clearly adversarial and one-sided, then asked me if EAG posts a donor list on its website – which oddly is the same question our union antagonists frequently ask. He was told EAG does not make that information public. Abramson then made a reference to having “ways of finding out” and ended the conversation.

So much for impartial journalism. This so-called reporter was clearly on the attack. If I didn’t know better, I would have thought the Huffington Post or Media Matters was on the line.

The implication, of course, was that our analysis of the situation in Ohio should somehow be discounted due to our policy of maintaining donor anonymity.

So we took the opportunity to surf around the NPR website, and guess what? We couldn’t find its donor list, either. That’s strange.

Education Action Group issues the following challenge to National Public Radio: We will post our donor list if NPR does the same.

In the meantime, it’s useful to note some of the entities that openly support NPR.

We know NPR receives federal tax dollars. It has described that money as “essential” to its existence. Since NPR takes operating money from the government, that naturally raises the suspicion of NPR news and commentary being under the control of the federal government.

Does NPR send its raw copy to the White House and supportive Congressional leaders for approval before airing it?

EAG doesn’t receive a single dime of taxpayer money. We survive because of the generosity of our voluntary supporters, not federal taxpayers. In fact, you make a contribution here.

Additionally, in true NPR fashion, anyone making a donation of $50 or more by Sunday night at midnight will get an autographed copy of my upcoming book, "Indoctrination: How 'Useful Idiots' Are Using Our Schools to Subvert American Exceptionalism," before it is officially released November 29.

We also know NPR recently received $1.8 million from billionaire financier George Soros, a well-known leftist with pro-union sympathies. Should that call NPR’s coverage of labor issues, including the situation in Ohio, into question? Do NPR editors send their copy to Soros for inspection before airing it?

Of course the Soros connection wasn’t disclosed on NPR’s site. And now NPR is hounding groups like EAG? Is this probe being conducted under orders from Soros or his deputies?

Education Action Group will not fall prey to NPR’s double standard.

I have been interviewed on NPR twice and EAG's sources of funding were never an issue during those conversations. Now Abramson acts as if they are. Regardless of who supports the cause, the fact of the matter is EAG is producing indisputable facts when it comes to public school spending and the influence teachers unions have on policy and finances.

The elitist, government-sponsored media can look down its nose all it wants. We’re going to keep doing what we’re doing – working for reform in public schools – because Americans believe in our cause.