JOHN DERBYSHIRE: Katherine Maher—The Nice White NPR Lady From The Globalist Ruling Class
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[Adapted from the latest Radio Derb, now available exclusively on]

Last month—March 31st—I alerted readers to the menace of the Nice White Lady.

My particular target there was Nice White Lady MacKenzie Scott, Jeff Bezos’ ex-wife. She came out of their divorce with boxcar loads of money, which she is now showering around on groups and causes dear to the hearts of Nice White Ladies.

It goes without saying that we are not one of those causes. has not received a nickel from Ms. Scott to assist us in our lawfare struggle against Letitia James. No: all that lovely Bezos boodle is going to Disabled Black Transgender Palestinians Against Climate Change and similar outfits. It’s a tragedy.

And on St. Patrick’s Day—March 17th—I covered the Irish referendum on amending Ireland’s Constitution. The idea of the amendments was to make that document more woke in matters relating to marriage and the family.

I took the opportunity to air once again the opinion of a friend from Southeast Europe who currently lives in Ireland, an opinion I formed myself when I lived there, that ”Women are far less charming and far more bossy around here.”

So could it be that, nestled within the Nice White Lady menace, there is a cadre even more menacing made up of Nice White Irish Ladies? I frame no hypotheses, I only pose the question.

This came to mind while I was reading about Katherine Maher, the CEO of National Public Radio. Our Steve Sailer did a good ethnicity check on the lady and yes, she’s Catholic Irish, on both her father’s and mother’s sides.

And whatever her ancestors may have been doing in the cabins of Connemara, Ms. Maher is today American ruling class. More precisely, to state it in the language of George Orwell’s masterpiece: If not Inner Party, Katherine Maher is very well placed high up in the Outer Party.


Katherine Maher has a golden résumé, with stints and affiliations at UNICEF, the Atlantic Council, the World Economic Forum, the State Department, Stanford University, and the Council on Foreign Relations. She was chief executive officer and executive director of the Wikimedia Foundation. And, as of last month, she is CEO of National Public Radio.

Ruling class, or what? I took that quote from an April 17th article by Chris Rufo in City Journal: Quotations from Chairman Maher—NPR’s new CEO exemplifies the ideological capture of America’s institutions.

It is actually the opening paragraph of that article. Rufo goes on to give a very detailed account of the lady’s outlook on human affairs, based on a survey he’s done of her very prolific output on social media in recent years—nearly thirty thousand tweets.

It’s a very good article, one of Rufo’s best. I’d read you the whole thing, but this is not the place. Just allow me one more quote, from near the end.


The new CEO of NPR, then, is a left-wing ideologue who supports wide-scale censorship and considers the First Amendment an impediment to her campaign to sanitize the world of wrong opinions.

Maher is no aberration. She is part of a rising cohort of affluent, left-wing, female managers who dominate the departments of university administration, human resources, and DEI. They are the matriarchs of the American Longhouse: they value safety over liberty, censorship over debate, and relativism over truth.

Each social gambit is designed for smothering the institution in ideology.

Don’t take it from me taking it from Rufo; listen to the lady herself. Here she is in one of the video clips Rufo captured in his exploration.

Recall that before taking over NPR, Ms. Maher ran Wikipedia.

For all my love of Wikipedia, I’m not here to sell you on its perfection.

I do view it as pretty flawed. It is mostly accurate, yes; but it can also be inaccurate and incomplete at times. More importantly, though, it’s as biased as we all are.

As a source built on other sources, it reflects the world that we have built. And its omissions reflect the world we could have lived. Its policies of sourcing are for preference to European models of reference to the written word—excluding, for example, oral traditions.

It is famously written by men—about eighty percent of its contributors—which means that there is so much missing from the other half of the human experience … Not just the other half; the inclusivity, the entirety of the human experience. It’s not just that women and other nonbinary and non-gender-conforming individuals are missing from who writes Wikipedia, it also means that they’re missing from the history and the experience of how society has been shaped and formed.

And of course it has been written by the victors—all of the people and the countries and the cultures that have historically not dominated our understanding of world history are also missing, in many ways, from the written word.

Notice how her ideological orthodoxy slipped there for a moment. ”The other half of the human experience …” So there are just two halves, men and … women? Only two sexes? [Scream.]

That is totally against the Party Line. Ms. Maher quickly corrected herself, though: ”the entirety of the human experience … women and other nonbinary and non-gender-conforming individuals …” That’s better. You can keep your Party card, Comrade.

Why is Katherine Maher in the news? Well, because of an article posted at The Free Pess April 9th by Uri Berliner.

Who he? Berliner was a senior editor at National Public Radio, a 25-year veteran of that organization. While himself an old-line left-liberal and Trump-hater, he deplores the total loss of objectivity at NPR this past few years, the complete slide into ideological orthodoxy.

That phrase ”this past few years” bears examining. Berliner gives audience-survey numbers for the years 2011 and 2023. Respondents were asked to identify themselves as very or somewhat conservative, middle of the road, very, or somewhat liberal. Across those thirteen years self-identified conservative NPR listeners dropped from 26 percent to eleven; liberals soared up from 37 percent to 67.

Making fun of NPR’s knee-jerk Leftism has of course been a national sport for decades. Here, though, is a 25-year professional at the institution—which, please recall, gets funding from the federal government—here is Berliner lamenting that ideology has now totally taken over there.

Quote from him:

An open-minded spirit no longer exists within NPR, and now, predictably, we don’t have an audience that reflects America.

I’ve Been at NPR for 25 Years. Here’s How We Lost America’s Trust,  April 9, 2024

And what was it about that thirteen-year span, 2011 to 2023, that completed the ideological takeover? Another quote:

The rise of advocacy took off with Donald Trump. As in many newsrooms, his election in 2016 was greeted at NPR with a mixture of disbelief, anger, and despair.
  • Disbelief: How can it be that our progress toward social perfection has been stopped in its tracks by such an awful human being?
  • Anger: How dare they—these unwashed, loathsome, white-supremacist hillbillies—how dare they vote in such numbers against all that is fair, wise, and true?
  • Despair: How much longer shall we now have to wait? When shall we at last attain universal justice and harmony, equity, and inclusion? Shall we ever?

Whether Donald Trump gets a second term or not, you can already make a case that where our national culture is concerned, he is perhaps the most consequential person of our time.

Well, recall that Katherine Maher became CEO of NPR last month. Uri Berliner posted his article at the beginning of this month. The new chief was not happy. She suspended Berliner from work for five days. On April 17th he resigned. That’s the end of the story.

This piece has been much longer than usual—1500 words Have I made too much out of a trivial controversy?

I don’t think so. Aside from highlighting what a seismic shift took place in The U.S.A.’s political culture when Donald Trump was elected president in 2016, there is also enough material here for a Ph.D. thesis on the differences between women and men: between the sex that leans more towards feelings, wo wo wo feelings, and the one—the only other one: you got it right first time, Katherine—that prefers facts, wo wo wo facts.


John Derbyshire [email him] writes an incredible amount on all sorts of subjects for all kinds of outlets. (This no longer includes National Review, whose editors had some kind of tantrum and fired him.) He is the author of We Are Doomed: Reclaiming Conservative Pessimism and several other books. He has had two books published by com: FROM THE DISSIDENT RIGHT (also available in Kindle) and FROM THE DISSIDENT RIGHT II: ESSAYS 2013.

For years he’s been podcasting at Radio Derb, now available at for no charge. His writings are archived at

Readers who wish to donate (tax deductible) funds specifically earmarked for John Derbyshire’s writings at can do so here.

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