top of page

NPR's New CEO is Bad News

Updated: May 17

Eroding trust in the media

The new hard-left CEO of National Public Radio (NPR) is setting off a barrage of alarm bells for respecters of a free press.

Katherine Maher, who took over the helm of NPR last month, is already steeped in controversy over her biased views, and the fact that she's now leading the charge in taking the taxpayer-funded network in an increasingly leftward direction is giving many Americans pause.

Maher is former head of the Wikimedia Foundation (WMF). She (her pronouns are she/her, which she makes sure to point out on social media) made censoring speech a key part of her WMF work — under the guise of fighting so-called disinformation.

At the Atlantic Council Summit in 2021, Maher explained that as leader of the WMF, she “took a very active approach to disinformation” and coordinated censorship efforts “through conversations with government.” These conversations included the suppression of dissenting opinions related to the 2020 election and the pandemic.

'The number one challenge is, of course, the First Amendment.'

Maher added that, in relation to the fight against disinformation, the “the number one challenge ... is, of course, the First Amendment in the United States.”

The speech protections the First Amendment affords, Maher continued, make it “really tricky” to suppress “bad information” — a euphemism for anything with which the Left disagrees.

Judicial Watch, a foundation fighting double standards in law, politics and government, points out that Maher has powerful globalist connections. For instance, she serves on the board of leftwing activist group the Center for Democracy and Technology, which pushes for digital censorship and receives funding from George Soros’ Open Society Foundations. 

Judicial Watch calls Maher's NPR appointment "a grim indicator of how news will be covered on taxpayer dime [sic]."

All Things Considered?

Just days after Maher assumed the helm of National Public Radio, Uri Berliner, a 25-year veteran editor at NPR published an essay in The Free Press explaining how the public network lost its way when it started telling listeners "how to think."

Berliner admits that NPR's audience has always tilted leftward, but "a wide swath of America" still tuned in. "An open-minded spirit no longer exists within NPR, and now, predictably, we don’t have an audience that reflects America," he said.

"That wouldn’t be a problem for an openly polemical news outlet serving a niche audience," Berliner conceded. "But for NPR, which purports to consider all things, it’s devastating both for its journalism and its business model." 

To back up his contention, Berliner cited news stories that NPR ran with that were subsequently disproven, as well as others it failed to cover altogether.

One is the "Russia Collusion" hoax, which NPR helped peddle by interviewing Trump-hater Adam Schiff scores of times. Even after the Mueller Report found no evidence of collusion, NPR offered no apology or retraction; instead, it let the story surreptitiously fade from the spotlight.

Of NPR's failure to admit it got the story wrong, Berliner said, "It is one thing to swing and miss on a major story. Unfortunately, it happens. ... What’s worse is to pretend it never happened, to move on with no mea culpas, no self-reflection."

The Peabody award-winning journalist slammed NPR's double standard, "[Y]ou expect high standards of transparency from public figures and institutions, but don’t practice those standards yourself."

Another case in point: NPR's failure to cover the Hunter Biden laptop story in 2020. Even after the New York Post published an explosive report — replete with incriminating emails — about Hunter's laptop being abandoned at a computer shop in Delaware, NPR elected to keep mum.

Berliner, who admits he "eagerly voted against Trump twice," lamented how during a meeting with colleagues at the time, one of "NPR’s best and most fair-minded journalists" said it was good we weren’t following the laptop story because it could help Trump. 

These examples show "what shatters trust and engenders cynicism about the media,"  he wrote.

Maher suspended Berliner without pay for penning the article. He then resigned, saying he was being "disparaged by a new CEO whose divisive views confirm the very problems at NPR I cite in my Free Press essay."

Maher responded to Berliner’s essay in the Wall Street Journal, claiming that he was being “profoundly disrespectful, hurtful, and demeaning” to his colleagues. She accused him of “questioning whether our people are serving our mission with integrity … based on little more than the recognition of their identity,” referring to his counting 87 Democrats and zero Republicans on staff.

Chairman Maher

Another controversy swirling around the Connecticut-bred CEO is her archive of 29,400 tweets, recently scrubbed, but now resurfaced by investigative journalist Christopher Rufo.

In an essay titled "Quotations from Chairman Maher," Rufo describes the archive as "a window into the soul of a uniquely American archetype: the affluent, white, female liberal — many of whom now sit atop our elite institutions."

In a 2018 tweet, she blasted Trump as a "racist" and a "deranged racist sociopath." In 2020, she took to Twitter to declare: "White silence is complicity. If you are white, today is the day to start a conversation in your community."

Again in 2020, she posted: "I mean sure looting is counterproductive. But it's hard to be mad about protests not prioritizing the private property of a system of oppression founded on treating people's ancestors as private property."

Around the same time, Maher tweeted a definition of "whiteness" that fails to take into account all the millions of white people who are not privileged, as she is, to have a father who worked as an operations specialist at Goldman Sachs and a mother who was a buyer at Lord and Taylor before becoming a member of the Connecticut State Senate.

"I know that hysteric white woman voice," Maher said on Twitter. "I was taught to do it. I’ve done it. It’s a disturbing recognition. While I don’t recall ever using it to deliberately expose another person to immediate physical harm on my own cognizance, it’s not impossible. That is whiteness."

Maher's truth

One of Maher's more controversial exhibits of post-modern, leftist oratory now making the rounds is her 2022 TED Talk.

In it, she faults Wikipedia (the child company of Wikimedia) for "being a Eurocentric written reference that fails to take into account the oral histories of other peoples." 

She explains that what once passed as truth is an outdated concept and that today, “there are many different truths.”

“Perhaps for our most tricky disagreements, seeking the truth and seeking to convince others of the truth might not be the right place to start,” Maher suggested. “In fact, our reverence for the truth might be a distraction that’s getting in the way of finding common ground and getting things done.”

During her talk, she also introduced the concept of “minimum viable truth," which calls for us to set aside our belief systems and “not be quite so fussy about perfection." She says this idea is “tremendously forgiving."

Many are wondering how Maher's "truths" will stack up at NPR. "Should news outlets strive for 'minimum viable truths'?" one online observer asked. "How does one decide what gets added or what gets omitted? Who dictates what's viable and what isn't?"

Defund NPR

In his resignation statement, Berliner said that he does not support calls to defund his former employer.

But not so with GOP Congressman Bob Good (VA-05) who introduced the Defund NPR Act last month to ensure that taxpayer dollars cease funding the network's leftist messaging.

“It is bad enough that so many media outlets push their slanted views instead of reporting the news, but it is even more egregious for hardworking taxpayers to be forced to pay for it. National Public Radio has a track record of promoting anti-American narratives on the taxpayer dime,” said Good. 

The bill would ban federal funding of NPR and prevent local public radio stations from using federal grant money to purchase content from or pay dues to NPR.

Maher continues to claim that her personal political opinions do not affect the way she does her job.

“There are many professions in which you set aside your own personal perspectives in order to lead in public service, and that is exactly how I have always led organizations and will continue to lead NPR,” she insists

Dr. Barbara Toth has a doctorate in rhetoric and composition from Bowling Green State University. She has taught at universities in the US, China and Saudi Arabia. Her work in setting up a writing center at Princess Nourah bint Abdulrahmen University, an all-women's university in Riyadh, has been cited in American journals. Toth has published academic and non-academic articles and poems internationally.

To support articles like this, please consider a donation to Souls and Liberty.

584 views1 comment

Recent Posts

See All

1 Comment

----Maher suggested. “In fact, our reverence for the truth might be a distraction that’s getting in the way of finding common ground and getting things done.”----

Here she establishes herself as a mouthpiece for Satan.

----Maher continues to claim that her personal political opinions do not affect the way she does her job.----

Any "claims" she makes are nulified by her previous denunciation of, "....our reverence for the truth....".

bottom of page