Posted by: thescoundrel | June 25, 2009

PBS – Eternal Government Sponsored Bailouts

I read where the local PBS station WQPT is considering the process of separating from Black Hawk College. The public station has lost it’s funding from Black Hawk College about two years ago during State of Illinois Budget cuts. That leaves just federal funds and private donations as the station’s source of revenue. According to a Dispatch/Argus story, the station and the college have come to an agreement where the PBS station can stay on campus for up to three years, at $5000 a month rent, while they make final determination of their future. The story said there was a possibility that another college might be willing to take over the station license.

I have not watched PBS -other than a handful of Iowa amateur wrestling programs- since I switched to cable and then Direct TV. As for WQPT, I would like to see it survive since I know it has a following. Perhaps they can find alternative funding from private donors or another University. However the best answer to their financial problems is the solution offered by many people, when the split between the Black Hawk College funding and the station became evident – Sell advertising and quit relying on federal and state taxpayer money! Taxpayers should not have to pay lifetime mandated government bailouts for stations like WQPT to be on the air. If PBS/WQPT cannot survive using the same promotional systems that every other television station relies on – then maybe they should just fade away into history. PBS needs to learn to survive like every other corporation. If they need cash they need to start earning it or close up shop.



  1. It’s nice to have the option of PBS, but this sounds like it
    will be a sign of the times. At least we’ll be able to tell our
    grandkids what it like “back in the day”.

  2. Considering the leftward tilt of PBS, I always thought the perfect solution to its lack of funds was for liberal fat cats like Al Gore and George Soros to just buy the danged thing.

    They would be doing us all a favor by taking it off our hands and out of our pockets.

  3. Cruiser, I was never much of a PBS viewer. I used to watch Iowa Hawkeye wrestling on the Des Moines station – but my schedule and theirs often conflicted. Other than that when I was a kid I would watch a show where an Astronomer came on late at night (Watch the Sky?) and informed you what to look for in current celestial events. That was always cool. My brother and I would take out his telescope and check out the sky afterwards and if we got bored we checked out some of the neighbors windows afterwards. For awhile I also watched a British import sci-fi program (Red Dwarf?) – but the schedule often conflicted with my bedtime. But I have not really watched much PBS since I was a kid. If they were to close shop I would not miss anything. Still I would like to see them save the PBS stations. I just do not want the government involved in managing or financing the stations. I would rather see them turned over to a regular business team. I do not believe the government has any business running a competing business to similar public corporations.

    QCEx, like I said in my post PBS should get out of the taxpayers pockets and manage it like any other television station. As to the left wingers pumping a lot of money into it- if that is there wish let them. Just as long as it is not taxpayer money I do not care if their revenue comes from donations or advertising. Although I am not sure just how much money they would really want to sink into the station. They already have one “hate America” station to keep propped up with their donations to the station “LINK”.

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