Macomb, IL – The panelists talk about NPR's latest snafu -- this one involving "World of Opera" host Lisa Simeone.
The network tried to have Simeone fired for taking a leading role in the Freedom Plaza occupation in Washington DC. NPR has told employees they should not participate in political rallies.
However, Simeone is a freelancer who contracts with WDAV in Davidson, North Carolina, and the station said it would not fire her. The AP reports that as a result, NPR "will no longer distribute the member station-produced program "World of Opera" to about 60 stations across the country." WDAV will be left to distribute the program itself.
Simeone has questioned NPR's stance, pointing out the network's Scott Simon writes Op-Ed pieces, Cokie Roberts is paid to talk to business groups, and Mara Liasson continues to express her opinions on Fox TV (even after the Juan Williams debacle).
The Shop Talk panelists generally feel NPR overreacted and is perhaps a little too concerned about what might be said by critics in the blogosphere.