West Virginia’s governor, Jim Justice, continues his quest to either kill public broadcasting or make it another state Republican news outlet
More on Justice’s appointments to the Educational Broadcasting Authority
My previous post was about the governor's appointments to the board that oversees WV public broadcasting. With additional information, here is some follow-up to that post.
The more I read about the appointments, the more it became clear to me that fairness, objectivity and acceptance of science are not what Justice sees as requirements for the job. Greg Thomas' appointment makes that abundantly clear; he works as a Republican operative in West Virginia and Kentucky and he has previously worked for Don Blankenship and David McKinley. Thomas has made no effort to hide his partisanship. Bias is expected if you’re an operative or propagandist -- it may actually be a requirement for the job. But it seems to me, you shouldn’t have these clearly partisan connections if your job is to oversee a state’s public broadcasting network.
Today, for example, at the top of Greg Thomas’ twitter feed is a tweet from Townhall columnist Kurt Schlichter:
Just want to remind you that what they call climate change is a giant hoax designed to take money and power from you and give it to them— Kurt Schlichter (@KurtSchlichter) June 19, 2021
(Thomas obviously likes the comment – if you scroll down through his tweets, you’ll see it again. In fact, you don’t have to scroll very far to see lots of far-right Republican propaganda.)
Phil Kabler, in today’s Charleston Gazette-Mail, highlights a similar example of Thomas’ climate change denial. Kabler then asks the obvious question:
How long do you think it will be before Thomas and company intervene in Public Broadcasting’s programming and news coverage?
(To answer Kabler’s question, not very long.)
Ron Hughes, another Justice appointment to the board, has a different problem – conflict of interest. As Kabler explains:
The latest appointee, Ron Hughes, works for the Pikewood Media Group, better known by its trade name, the MetroNews radio network.
MetroNews, of course, is owned by John Raese, an outspoken and frequent (unsuccessful) Republican candidate for statewide public office, and a former state GOP chairman.
Huh? Justice appoints a broadcasting competitor to oversee public broadcasting?
My conclusion in my earlier post on the future of public broadcasting still holds: Justice wants to either kill it or make it part of the WV Republican Party.
Up is down, down is up and we've always been at war with Eastasia
How long before WV Public Broadcasting brings us “news” like this Orwellian take from the state Republican Party:
On the campaign trail, Joe Biden and Kamala Harris repeatedly spread doubt about the safety and effectiveness of the COVID vaccine. Now the Biden Admin is taking credit for President Trump’s Operation Warp Speed, the medical miracle that led to the creation of 3 COVID vaccines.— WVGOP (@WVGOP) June 20, 2021