Is public radio for squares?

Every once in a while, Republicans set their sights on public broadcasting. They aim to defund networks such as NPR, asserting that they’re ideologically biased, and that such endeavors are best left to the private sector.

It seems to me that there is a much stronger case to defund networks such as NPR. Namely, that they are irredeemably boring.

I recently listened to an episode of This American Life that dealt with the “good guy” discount. One receives this discount simply by appealing to a salesperson’s good nature, half-joking that they’re a good person, and the salesperson is a good person, and with everyone being a good person and decent and lovely, and with everyone so merry, and isn’t it a fine day, it would be appreciated if they were to receive a discount on their purchase.

Surprisingly, this works fairly well; you’ll often receive a discount, just for asking.

In typical square fashion, the producer regrets the technique as “cheesy” and “smarmy”, that it “traffics in this term of ‘good guy’ when it’s nonsense”, that it’s falsely modest, that it suggests that “as a good guy I’m going to ask you to do me a favor, and cost you money, that’s what a good guy I am”, that it’s not “the behavior of a good guy”, that a good guy “would not make another person uncomfortable on purpose”, “that asking for a good guy discount puts the salesperson on the spot”, that “you’re asking them to break the rules for you for absolutely no reason”, and again that he “hate[s] making other people feel uncomfortable”.

Oy.

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