Custom Search

Friday, June 22, 2007

On The Fairness Doctrine

Thank you, once again, to Spree for allowing me to post on her blog. I, too, have guest authors at my blog and I have chosen to place an editorial piece from Ben, here. It is short, sweet, blunt and to the point...punches not withheld.

With the Lott Syndrome spreading through the Infamous and Defamed Halls of our CONgress, this piece should be read by one and all and shouted from the rooftops. Here, I present to Spree's readers, Ben.

Shibboleth: ‘Public Air Waves’

Radio communications are transmitted by means of electromagnetic radiation whose wavelength is considerably longer than that of light. We can neither see nor hear that radiation; we use electronic equipment to make it audible.

No air is necessary for the radio communication process, between the microphone and the loudspeaker. The electromagnetic radiation is not public; it is generated, modulated, amplified and transmitted privately. Specific frequencies are allocated by the FCC to prevent signals from jamming each other. There is no special magic involved. If broadcasters agreed on frequency allocation and power levels, no government intervention would be required.

Newspapers are printed privately, transported on public streets and highways, delivered to and read by consumers. Those consumers use sunlight to read their newspapers. Who owns the sunlight? Is it public?

Now explain some rational basis why government coercion should be used to determine the content of broadcast speech; why broadcasters should be told that they can’t air Rush Limbaugh’s show, or how many hours of it they can air or what he can or can not talk about.

Now explain why the government should not also control the news and opinions printed in the New York Times & USA Today. After all, they are transported on the public roads.

If they can regulate Rush, they can also regulate what you say and hear on your cell phone. Then they can also control the content which passes through your wireless computer network.

Do not be deceived: the ‘fairness doctrine’ is an attempt to violate the first amendment; to censor politically sensitive speech. Tell its proponents to go to Hell and burn forever!