By Tom Quiner


I am writing this as I watch the 25th anniversary concert of Les Miserables.  I’m a huge fan of this musical. I am enthralled by the magnitude of the production. I am grateful to PBS for broadcasting this magnificent concert.

They are running this show as the centerpiece of their fund drive. I hope they raise a ton of money to keep this kind of programming coming.

PBS broadcasts a number of shows I love and regularly watch, like Masterpiece Theater and M1-5.

In light of this endorsement of PBS, do I advocate taxpayer support? No, I don’t for two reasons.

For one, by my understanding of the Constitution, it is not a proper role for the federal government.

Even more, some programming on PBS has a political slant I don’t like.

PBS has used a slogan in years past that says: “if we don’t do it, who will?”  The answer is: the private sector would. I like the idea of fans of PBS donating money to support the wonderful artistic programming carried on PBS. Let’s keep tax dollars out of the picture.

Now, sit back and enjoy the classic song from Les Miz: Bring Him Home.

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  1. Lori on March 7, 2011 at 7:15 am

    As a mom of young kids, we have watched our share of PBS KIDS, and I have to say I have quietly wondered about the taxpayer support of this channel for several years. For one thing, many of the programs are just not that good. Somehow government support implies that the shows have some sort of importance for children, which is simply not true. While a few are quite good, many are no less obnoxious and unnecessary than shows found on commercial channels.
    I strongly oppose advertising aimed at children, and while PBS KIDS does have a limited amount of advertising on the channel, it is always between, not during shows. Commercial free children’s programming does seem like something that should be available to families. Is there another way to make this possible? Perhaps the private sector would be willing to entirely support a network which had a high value for families. Maybe PBS KIDS as a separate network is unnecessary, and the few really good shows could remain on a donation supported PBS. I’m not a frequent viewer of PBS, but I bet there are a few programs that could go in order to make room for a handful of good shows for children.
    At any rate, I am willing to lose my favorite kid’s shows if it means saving taxpayer dollars. Turning off the TV won’t damage any children.

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