Wow — Kenneth Y. Tomlinson is out at the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. It already seems so long ago that Tomlinson was making major waves at PBS by hiring a zealous conservative watchdog to assess the liberalism of Bill Moyers and Big Bird, attempting to massively cut its funding, making secret payments to Republican lobbyists, and having a middle initial that defied the imagination.
Tomlinson resigned from the CPB board prior to the release of CPB Inspector General Kenneth Konz‘s report on other-Kenneth’s CPB extracurriculars. I’m guessing the report does not look too fondly on secret $15,000 payments to Republican lobbyists.
It’s small potatoes in the Weekus Horribilus for Bush, but it’s significant, because it represents a shift in the power of the administration: back in the early summer, it seemed like the Republican agenda was steamrolling everywhere, and with majorities in the House and Senate and in positions of power, it seemed like a hopelessly difficult tide to stem. Fast forward to now: DeLay, Frist, and of course you-Scooter-you-brought-‘er Libby. The timing of this Tomlinson resignation may be a coincidence, but in the larger scheme of things, I don’t think it is one.
Though everyone agreed that Tomlinson should go, the board did not blame him for his zealous attempts to protect the morals of the nation: “The board does not believe that Mr. Tomlinson acted maliciously or with any intent to harm CPB or public broadcasting.” I swear to God, this reminds me of a line at the end of “Cujo” by Stephen King, which I read as an eleven year old and made me cry; paraphrased it went something like this: “It must be remembered that Cujo never meant to kill all those people, biting and slashing at their jugulars. He always wanted to be a good dog.” Stephen King said it better than me, but it amounts to the same thing: we can’t all agree on what it means to be a good dog.
Okay, true: Cujo had rabies. But still, that line stuck with me for over 20 years. That’s a pretty scary book for an eleven-year old to be reading, actually. And I read it after “The Shining.” Point being, all work and no play makes Kenneth Y. Tomlinson a dull boy. Guess that’s not a problem anymore.
Tomlinson quits US public broadcasting board [Yahoo! News]