Joe Carter of the Evangelical Outpost lists six reasons why NPR is better than talk radio, while the Elder takes great exception. It makes for entertaining reading; this is a debate in which I can’t really take part since I’m far more inclined to listen to KFAN, Disturbed or Haydn than either.
While I enjoy my occasional visits with the Northern Alliance, I tend to find radio rather boring on a daily basis. I simply don’t like to obtain my information aurally; my dad is always trying to give me tapes that I will not accept because I know I’ll never listen to them. I need to read information to digest it properly, which is one reason I love the Blogosphere and am far happier with a blog than I’d ever be with a radio show.
That being said, the one thing that NPR has over talk radio (and that liberals have over conservatives) is in the area of culture and entertainment. Conservatives are simply terrible about giving any credence to this area; the very same people who will lament that there are no Christian or conservative alternatives to the atheist secular hit of the moment will assiduously ignore such alternatives even when they are brought directly to their attention. (And yes, I’m speaking from personal experience here.)
I think this happens for the same reason that local media seldom pays much attention to homegrown talent until it hits the big leagues. Conservatives in the media instinctively feel that “their” entertainment is inherently inferior, so they won’t pay attention to it until the secular mainstream does so, at which point they’ll constantly and annoyingly claim it as their own. I always thought it was amusing that Psykosonik got national and international coverage before being mentioned in either of the free local rags… despite very successful shows at First Avenue and Glam Slam, neither major newspaper saw fit to even mention our existence until we already had our music in a Details magazine CD, a Nintendo game (X-Caliber 2097) and a movie (Mortal Kombat) and beaten out Prince for a Minnesota Music Award (best dance record).
The punchline is that by that time, half of our “Minneapolis-based” band had already moved to San Francisco.