National Public Radio fights for life

Don't judge the value of National Public Radio by its current "A Star Wars On Radio." It is good but questionable material to demand public funding. Judge NPR more by "Morning Edition" and "All Things Considered," two of radio's best public affairs programs.

Coming up soon in the midst of its battle for survival because of the proposed cuts in CPB (Corporation for Public Broadcasting) funding is National Public Radio's most unusual bit of programming. Perhaps only the historic Orson Welles Martian "invasion" program can compete with "Father Cases: The Last of Jonestown" for chilling effectiveness. To be aired April 23 at 9 P.m., the 90 -minute NPR documentary is based on tapes recorded by cult leader Jim Jones and his followers in the 18 months before their deaths in November 1978. The tapes have never before been broadcast and offer instructive evidence of how a tragic suicide-murders were actually accomplish by long periods of conditioning.

Bill Moyers will host a one-hour panel discussion and national call-in program immediately following the broadcast .

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