While lunching today with some Bay Area GayPatriot readers, I commented that if Democrats want to try to reimpose the “Fairness Doctrine,” let them bring that debate on. Â It’s a debate they’re sure to lose.
Coupled with the rushed manner in which they passed the “stimulus,” it will make their party seem increasingly like one opposed to free and open debate.
The media market has so changed since last that Doctrine was originally adopted that the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) would be hard-pressed to justify it today. Â Should the FCC again reenact the doctrine, it would serve to silence certain forms of speech, shutting down fora that did not exist, indeed, were not even contemplated, when it was initially introduced sixty years ago. As such, it might not now pass constitutional muster. Â
And the debate would only remind voters that Democrats tried to silence conservative media. Â That would play well with the most extreme elements of their base, but not with the American people as a whole.
Those liberals who favor the Fairness Doctrine just don’t like having conservatives regularly challenge their policies and ideas. Â Just as congressional Democrats refused to solicit Republican opinions when they crafted the “stimulus,” those liberals seek to exclude their ideas from popular media.
It is entirely that exclusion which led to conservative success in the new medium (at least it was relatively new in 1987 when the Fairness Doctrine was repealed) of talk radio. Â Had the mainstream media not tilted as far to the left as it did then (and still does), offering excessively critical coverage of Ronald Reagan, conservatives would not have felt as frustrated as they did, longing for a forum which presented their views.
Rush Limbaugh would not have then found –and held–an audience had the MSM not so regularly distorted conservative views. Â Indeed, one could say that Rush Limbaugh is a creation of liberal media bias.
If Senator Stabenow wishes to silence Rush Limbaugh, she need not reintroduce the Fairness Doctrine as she seems eager to do rather all she need do is persuade her allies in the MSM to cover her political rivals fairly.
For many conservatives, Rush is a necessary antidote to media bias. Â Thus, the only way to silence him would be to make him unnecessary. Â The media could make him unnecessary by covering liberals with the same scrutiny they conservatives. Â And fairly reporting conservative ideas and policies Â
I daresay that Mrs. Stabenow has no intention of promoting such journalism.