Politics, Foreign Policy, Current Events and Occasional Outbursts Lacking Couth

Sunday, March 08, 2009

The "Stealth" Fairness Doctrine

When the Senate passed a bill that would grant Washington DC legislative representation they also passed an amendment to encourage diversity in broadcast media.

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) told on Thursday that she supports an amendment to a Senate bill that would force the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to “take actions to encourage and promote diversity in communication media ownership and to ensure that broadcast station licenses are used in the public interest.”
The amendment, sponsored by Senate Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) and attached to a bill (S.160) that would grant Washington, D.C., a vote in the House of Representatives, was approved by the Senate last Thursday in a party line 57-41 vote.

When asked whether she supports Durbin’s amendment, Speaker Pelosi said, “Certainly, I support Mr. Durbin in most things.”

“Diversity in media ownership is very, very, important,” said Pelosi.
Minutes after the passage of the ‘Durbin amendment’ last Thursday a separate amendment that would ban the restoration of the Fairness Doctrine, which was proposed by Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.), was also attached to the same D.C. voting rights bill and passed by a vote of 87-11.

But Pence told that Durbin’s amendment would mandate a “stealth Fairness Doctrine.”

“Its clear to me that Democrats, having failed in their frontal assault on talk radio in America through the Fairness Doctrine, are now shifting strategy to a form of regulation that is essentially the Fairness Doctrine by stealth,” Pence said. He added that he is not surprised Pelosi has endorsed Durbin’s plan.

Further government control of media outlets under the guise of enforcing diversity is a slippery slope and a very bad idea.
Just for the record I'm an NPR listener 99% of the time so I've got no personal dog in this hunt.


flypredator said...

I have to politely disagree with one of your statements "Just for the record I'm an NPR listener 99% of the time so I've got no personal dog in this hunt".

I happen to know that you happily and willingly listened to both Howard Stern and Bubba the Love Sponge on Sirius/XM Satellite Radio while in vehicles at work. When that was not in the vehicle you and I did have a tendency to listen to VPR.

Be good Jay!


Adrian said...

Because Mike Pence something, that does not make it so. See exhibit A, Mike Pence saying that his Baghdad market visit with 100 soldiers running security is just like an Indiana market in the summertime.

This looks like an anti-monopoly law, not a "government will control your TV and radio" law. Media monopolies are generally bad IMO.

Jay@Soob said...

Touche to Herr Drew. Though if I might rejoin; I was speaking of terrestrial radio. A brief aside; Bubba's fascination with the UFC does not for good radio material make. Nod goes to Howard, with Robin's news as a particular.

Jay@Soob said...

Speaking of fencing terminology, Adrian;

I hope you're right and agree that monopoly in any given venture is piss poor for the American public (see the current banking crisis.) But the terminology and the history aren't to be ignored.

SnoopyTheGoon said...

Uhu... looks like you were outed fair and square, Jay. As for that amendment - the big question is how and by whom it will be used.