Broadcasting Board of Governors executives plan an attack piece on Helle Dale's criticism


BBG Watch has learned from a reliable source that Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) executives in the International Broadcasting Bureau (IBB) have been working on a response attacking a recent criticism of their strategic and management decisions posted on The Heritage Foundation blog by Dr. Helle Dale. She is the Heritage Foundation’s Senior Fellow in Public Diplomacy studies.
In her article, “BBG Budget: Voice of America Slashed, Fewer Broadcasters, More Bureaucrats,” Dr. Dale wrote: “The Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) recently released its 2013 budget request, which slashes Voice of America (VOA) funding by more than $17 million while increasing funding for major bureaucratic offices inside the International Broadcasting Bureau. A reprioritization is clearly necessary.”
She has also included this chart:

In analyzing this chart, Dr. Dale made the following points:
1. Actual broadcasting services are being cut, resulting in lost viewers and listeners who, since they often have no Internet access, are deprived of trustworthy and important news sources.
2. We should not be spending more than eight times as much per capita on public diplomacy broadcasting in Tajikistan than in China.
3. An added emphasis on broadcasting in China will let the U.S. respond to China’s messaging blitz.
4. Instead of increasing funding to bureaucratic offices and cutting back on VOA, the opposite should be done.



  1. Avatar
    Quo Vadis 14 April, 2012 at 21:46 Reply

    Of course they will attack the respected and knowledgeable Dr. Helle Dale. No one, neither in the Cohen Building nor the outside press nor human rights organizations nor think tanks, not even the U.S. Congress should ever dare to challenge the omnipotent, all-knowing, BBG Executive Staff whose every decision, even when disastrously wrong, is applauded by their coterie of supporters within the bloated bureaucracy. Brings to mind the Hans Christian Andersen story “The Emperor’s New Clothes” where from the crowd during a parade in which the Emperor marched in his birthday suit, a child’s voice was heard from the crowd: “He hasn’t got anything on!” And the crowd echoed the truth. But the Emperor said to himself: “The parade must go on, and I must keep going too.” So, too, with the BBG and its Executive Staff… the foolish parade must go on as piece by piece they destroy U.S. international broadcasting.

  2. Avatar
    Edite Lynch 15 April, 2012 at 02:34 Reply

    Quo Vadis couldn’t have expressed the startling and incomprehensible actions of the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) more expertly, notwithstanding the arguments put forth by the eminent Dr. Helle Dale on the blog of The Heritage Foundation. With one exception……this parade cannot be allowed to go on.
    The role of the U.S. Congress must take precedence over any self-serving machinations by the executives of the BBG.The elected representatives, not Presidential appointees being repaid for favours, should take serious hold of the reins and issue a directive that they will decide how America’s Public Diplomacy will be presented to the world, especially to the countries who need America’s voice the most, that being China and Tibet,as well as many others who rely on uncensored news from the Voice of America (VOA).
    Given the bonuses, the international and domestic travel and substantial increases in positions and spending self-granted to executives of the Broadcasting Board of Governors and its International Broadcasting Bureau (IBB), Congress needs to seriously question the strategic vision that seem decidedly lacking with this bunch of wonks.
    How do they justify the ill-advised and ill-considered notions of truncating VOA broadcasting to the above mentioned countries, paying Gallup — another favor — $50,000,000 to do a polling exercise that will neither be correct, or received from truthful people for fear of being severely dealt with by their repressive regimes.
    It is well known that China will block all Internet service from any American websites that talk about freedoms, human rights or individual liberties. Shortwave radio broadcasts are for now the only reliable and safe method of communication that will reach the Chinese people and give them some sort of hope for the future. This does not mean that Internet, other new media and satellite television efforts should not also be pursued, but the radio audience must not be abandoned and this safe method of communication that serves the most oppressed and the poorest must be used. And the Voice of America brand-name in radio and television in China must not be discarded.
    These executives, who have been operating without any clear and substantial oversight from Congress that could end this ongoing silliness should be hauled up to the Capitol and their mandate should be unequivocally determined with a precise Mission Statement that leaves no room for inordinate activity which seriously harms the work of many dedicated and knowledgable broadcasters and journalists that have operated honorably for seventy years to bring uncensored news and hope of freedom to millions around the world.

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