If Williams wants to serve as a well-paid prop brought in to manufacture entertaining conflict in front of the Fox News Sunday cameras for un-persuadable viewers who vote overwhelmingly Republican, that's his choice. What changed last week was that Williams inserted himself into the news and cast himself as the great Fox News defender. And he did it on The O'Reilly Factor, a program no serious NPR journalist should ever appear on.
Williams' appearance on The O'Reilly Factor almost certainly violated NPR's employee standards. They prohibit staffers from appearing on programs that "encourage punditry and speculation rather than fact-based analysis" and are "harmful to the reputation of NPR."
Read the full Media Matters column here.