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    Default Fairness Doctrine...WTH!

    I was courious has to how many of heard of the "Fairness Doctrine". Appraently this was adopted by the FCC requiring broadcasters to present both sides of a controversial issue - this was between 1949 and 1987 when it was dropped.

    Now the Dems want to codify the doctrine in to law. Many conservative talk shows are not happy about this as staions could face heavy fines if they (the stations,not the actual talk show as I understand it)aired controversial stories and did not provide equal air time to both sides.

    This was brought up by Rep. Dennis Kucinich(D-Ohio).
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    Sounds like a good idea. Conservative talk show hosts are angry because they'll be exposed as being hypocrites and liars.

    Couldn't happen to a nicer group.
    Politics is like driving. To go forward select "D", to go backward select "R."

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    SEE, the Fairness Doctrine is alive and well right here on these forums.

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    Quote Originally Posted by scfire86 View Post
    Sounds like a good idea. Conservative talk show hosts are angry because they'll be exposed as being hypocrites and liars.

    Couldn't happen to a nicer group.
    How's that again?
    The number of liberal news networks far outweigh the number of conservative news stations.Against NBC,ABC,CBS,CNN,MSNBC and the failed Air America,we have Fox News.One who cable news network.
    Yeah,they must be doing a lot of damage to the liberal view if we need the Fairness Doctrine to level the field against all that.
    I see how it's going to be made to work:Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity will have to devote half their air time to providing a forum to an opposing view(What about Alan Colmes?) but Katie Couric won't have to give half her show to a conservative rebutal.

    You're obviously not afraid to speak your mind.Could it be that no one in the government is going to restrict what you say,no matter what Randy Rhodes says?

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    The "fairness doctrine" is an abridgment of the 1st amendment. it's good that it's gone.

    I didn't see CBS run any counterpoint during the segment where they aired the false ng documents. and during the years of the "fairness doctrine" beinng in place, counterpoints were extremely limited, or edited out. just say no to this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pfd3501 View Post
    The "fairness doctrine" is an abridgment of the 1st amendment.
    How do you figure that?
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    Quote Originally Posted by DeputyMarshal View Post
    How do you figure that?
    I could certainly see how the Fairness Doctrine, if not itself necessarily violatove of the First Amendment, could LEAD to violations of the First Amendment.

    Remember it would not all be about talk radio. Which government agency would you place in charge of determining if CBS or CNN swung too far left? Who would be in charge of censoring the Weather Channel if they started (sorry, CONTINUED) casually ascribing every weather event to global warming?

    Better just to leave the government out of it, and let people vote with their feet (or eyeballs, ears, etc.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by doughesson View Post
    How's that again?
    The number of liberal news networks far outweigh the number of conservative news stations.Against NBC,ABC,CBS,CNN,MSNBC and the failed Air America,we have Fox News.One who cable news network.
    Yeah,they must be doing a lot of damage to the liberal view if we need the Fairness Doctrine to level the field against all that.
    I see how it's going to be made to work:Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity will have to devote half their air time to providing a forum to an opposing view(What about Alan Colmes?) but Katie Couric won't have to give half her show to a conservative rebutal.

    You're obviously not afraid to speak your mind.Could it be that no one in the government is going to restrict what you say,no matter what Randy Rhodes says?
    I guess that is one way to look at it. Another might be the media isn't as liberal you might claim. Today’s conservatives scoff at the professed objectivity of network news reporters and newspaper correspondents, often brandishing a 1995 survey by the Roper Center and Freedom Forum as their smoking gun. The survey showed that 89% of the journalists polled voted for Bill Clinton in 1992, while only 7% cast a ballot for George Bush. One problem with conservative interpretations of this study is that they assume that politics trumps professionalism for liberal journalists but not for conservative ones. Far more likely is that, for both liberal and conservative journalists, politics has roughly the same priority it has for any of us regardless of profession. When there is bias, and it does exist, one can chalk it up to the personal rather than the political, or to the press’ herd instinct for ganging up as long as doing so fits the public temper at the time.

    So, how do you explain the “liberal” media’s failure to rebuke Sen. Trent Lott for the string of pro-segregationist pronouncements that came before his infamous gaffe at Sen. Strom Thurmond’s 100th birthday party? Or the media’s curious lack of interest in George W. Bush’s windfall at Harken Energy and indifference to his stonewalling a Securities and Exchange Commission report investigating the episode? Or their unwillingness to challenge Vice President Dick Cheney on his cozy relationship with the energy industry while he was drafting the country’s energy policy? Or the obsession with Clinton's sex life. If the media were as liberal as you might believe, the stories I listed would have been played much differently.

    All the agencies you listed are owned by conglomerates. And as such I stopped believing a long time ago they were ever going to report a story that is contrary to their interests. And those interests tend to be conservative.

    Just because you say something loud and long enough doesn't necessarily make it true.
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    Quote Originally Posted by randsc View Post
    I could certainly see how the Fairness Doctrine, if not itself necessarily violatove of the First Amendment, could LEAD to violations of the First Amendment.
    I disagree as, coincidentally, did the Supreme Court in 1969.

    If anything, Fairness Doctrine protects the 1st Amendment by requiring broadcasters to provide multiple sides of complex issues on the publically owned airwaves.

    Quote Originally Posted by randsc View Post
    Remember it would not all be about talk radio. Which government agency would you place in charge of determining if CBS or CNN swung too far left?
    It's not so much about determining if a network swings too far left (or right) as it is about a guarantee that opposing viewpoints will be not be totally excluded from coverage. The FCC seems to have handled that task rather well from the earliest inception of Fairness Doctrine in 1928 until its demise under a series of Reagan appointees in the mid 80's.

    Quote Originally Posted by randsc View Post
    Who would be in charge of censoring the Weather Channel if they started (sorry, CONTINUED) casually ascribing every weather event to global warming?
    (Let's ignore for now the difference between cable and broadcast.)

    The way Fairness Doctrine worked was that someone would contact the broadcaster and request opposition coverage. The broadcaster would either provide it or not. If the petitioner wasn't satisfied that they'd been given fair coverage, they'd appeal to the FCC. Usually broadcasters provided sufficient coverage for the FCC not to get directly involved.

    Quote Originally Posted by randsc View Post
    Better just to leave the government out of it, and let people vote with their feet (or eyeballs, ears, etc.)
    That might work with newspapers and magazines but it doesn't work with broadcast media. There are only a limited number of broadcast licenses out there for a potentially unlimited number of broadcasters. Unchecked a broadcaster can systematically reduce coverage of issues and opinions that the owners disagree with to next to nothing. That's a blatant misuse of the public airwaves, IMHO.
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    Default Some points

    I disagree as, coincidentally, did the Supreme Court in 1969.

    -What the supreme court allows now and what it would allow in 1969 are entirely different things. This is the weakness inherent in the political Left's ongoing attempts to move public policy by judicial fiat.

    If anything, Fairness Doctrine protects the 1st Amendment by requiring broadcasters to provide multiple sides of complex issues on the publically owned airwaves.

    -That's the theory. As the FCC pointed out in repealing the Fairness Doctrine, in practice it had become a tool for restricting competing viewpoints.

    It's not so much about determining if a network swings too far left (or right) as it is about a guarantee that opposing viewpoints will be not be totally excluded from coverage. The FCC seems to have handled that task rather well from the earliest inception of Fairness Doctrine in 1928 until its demise under a series of Reagan appointees in the mid 80's.

    -You might want to take a look at how the members of the FCC are appointed. While it is true that the repeal occurred during the Reagan Administration, the vote of the FCC was unanimous, which means Democratic members voted for the repeal.

    (Let's ignore for now the difference between cable and broadcast.)

    -Good, let's. Because the weather coverage of one of my local BROADCAST television stations is provided by the Weather Channel, in a segment they call "The Weather Minute". And the casual editorializing I referred to above happens routinely.

    The way Fairness Doctrine worked was that someone would contact the broadcaster and request opposition coverage. The broadcaster would either provide it or not. If the petitioner wasn't satisfied that they'd been given fair coverage, they'd appeal to the FCC. Usually broadcasters provided sufficient coverage for the FCC not to get directly involved.

    -Its a different world, Conservatives are not so compliant now. I can guarantee there would be challenges and appeals to the FCC weekly. And that means the government, in the form of the FCC and ultimately the courts, would have to get involved in determining the content of broadcasts.

    That might work with newspapers and magazines but it doesn't work with broadcast media. There are only a limited number of broadcast licenses out there for a potentially unlimited number of broadcasters. Unchecked a broadcaster can systematically reduce coverage of issues and opinions that the owners disagree with to next to nothing. That's a blatant misuse of the public airwaves, IMHO.

    -There are a limited number of licenses. But they are sold at auction. If the ideas cannot compete, the businesses that own the licenses will lose their shirts and the licenses will end up being transferred (just ask many of the stations that used to air Air America). The only thing preventing this free movement is the sort of long-standing institutional advantage enjoyed by, for example, the original three broadcast networks. Which contra to scfire, are not conservative or even neutral, but any stretch of the imagination.
    Last edited by randsc; 01-23-2007 at 12:04 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by randsc View Post
    WHich contra to scfire, are not conservative or even neutral, but any stretch of the imagination.
    Oh Really?? Are you going to tell us the media has ignored the potentially embarassing stories about the president that I detailed? Are you going to tell us the broadcast networks ignored the Lewinsky scandal? Going back further, than Monica. The first news agency to break Paula Jones and Troopergate was CNN. The second was the LA Times. Most conservatives consider these outlets to liberal. Yet they were first in line bashing a liberal.

    The liberal media boogeyman is nothing more than a canard pulled out of a bag by conservative blowhards looking for a quick buck. And from the looks of it, they are taking candy from a baby.
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    Quote Originally Posted by scfire86 View Post
    Oh Really?? Are you going to tell us the media has ignored the potentially embarassing stories about the president that I detailed? Are you going to tell us the broadcast networks ignored the Lewinsky scandal? Going back further, than Monica. The first news agency to break Paula Jones and Troopergate was CNN. The second was the LA Times. Most conservatives consider these outlets to liberal. Yet they were first in line bashing a liberal.

    The liberal media boogeyman is nothing more than a canard pulled out of a bag by conservative blowhards looking for a quick buck. And from the looks of it, they are taking candy from a baby.
    What I am going to tell you is that the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press at Harvard University, not exactly a conservative bastion, has
    published research indicating that FIVE TIMES more journalists self-identify as liberal than as conservative. I am going to tell you that the American Journalism Review has conducted surveys indicating that a majority of DEMOCRATS feel that the major media display liberal bias. I am going to tell you that admitted liberal Evan Thomas of Newsweek stated on CNN that favorable media coverage would likely lift John Kerry's vote by 15 points. I am going to tell you that Bill Keller, Editor-in-Chief of the New York Times, has admitted that his own paper's coverage has too often been slanted by the political views of his staff, especially on social issues.

    Providing an example or two of instances where the news media actually reported news that was unfavorable to liberals hardly counterbalances the fact that the majority of coverage is slanted a particular way. If conservative views got a full airing in the major television and print media outlets, talk radio would never have found a market. Talk radio became successful by filling an UNMET demand. And if you recall, it took STAR to break the taboo on reporting Clinton's zipper problems, although Gennifer Flowers and her story were well known to every political reporter in Washington.

    The liberal bias of the major media is a fact obvious to any thinking person over the age of 12.

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    That the press gets called evil from both the left (when you can find them on the radio...) and the right probably means they do an OK job overall. The left-wingers rant about the corporate controlled media just as much as the right-wingers rant about the liberal reporters and editors.

    I do believe there tends to be a liberal bias in the press on a broad scale -- and I subscribe to Dan Rather's view of it. His theory (paraphrased) "News people are interested in, news. Liberals tend to want to change things, and that usually means new things. Conservatives tend to want the status quo, and that means no news, or going back to stuff already done. So the news tends to find the "new" stories, not the old ones."

    In today's media environment, the relevance of traditional broadcast media is very questionable.

    We have the internet (I'm listening to a nearby AM station via the internet right now because it's easier then going and tuning my radio to them...).

    We have broadcast, paid radio systems like XM and Sirrius. Many people subscribe to cable television or satellite TV systems.

    We now lease / sell "public" radio spectrum regularly -- there's no "Fair Use Doctrine" for your mobile phone...you're under no obligation to let someone else use it, even though it's very function depends on use of publicly controlled radio spectrum.

    I actually suspect if "Fair Use" was re-implemented, it would probably backfire on the liberals with the new technologies being deployed. A broadcaster carrying popular conservative programs would just have more incentive to push forward with converting to digital radio systems that allow you to broadcast more stuff in the same radio spectrum "Yep, we now offer 2 channels...Channel "A" is conservative, Channel "B" is the liberals. No one listens to them, no one advertises on them so their quality really sucks and really make themselves sound like idiots by putting Wayne's World quality programs up against professionally produced ones, but they're getting equal air time, at the same time, in the same markets."

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    Quote Originally Posted by randsc View Post
    -That's the theory. As the FCC pointed out in repealing the Fairness Doctrine, in practice it had become a tool for restricting competing viewpoints.
    A pretty odd statement considering that the whole purpose of the doctrine was to insure competing viewpoints could be heard...

    Quote Originally Posted by randsc View Post
    -Good, let's. Because the weather coverage of one of my local BROADCAST television stations is provided by the Weather Channel, in a segment they call "The Weather Minute". And the casual editorializing I referred to above happens routinely.
    You do realize that's a good argument in favor of the Fairness Doctrine, not against it, right? If it was still in effect you would be able to insist that your local TV station also broadcast the opposing viewpoint. Without it you can't.

    Quote Originally Posted by randsc View Post
    And that means the government, in the form of the FCC and ultimately the courts, would have to get involved in determining the content of broadcasts.
    That's their job. It's what the FCC has always done. The airwaves are public property policed by government agencies. Isn't it better to have rules in place that help insure that they can't be monopolized by the highest bidder?

    Quote Originally Posted by randsc View Post
    There are a limited number of licenses. But they are sold at auction. If the ideas cannot compete, the businesses that own the licenses will lose their shirts and the licenses will end up being transferred
    So as long as you're rich your ideas are the only ones given use of the airwaves? Sorry, everybody owns the airwaves -- not just the people with the most money.
    Last edited by DeputyMarshal; 01-23-2007 at 12:37 PM.
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    Default Try to pay attention

    My objection to the Fairness Doctrine is its tendancy to involve government in the process of determining the ideological balance of broadcasting, something that it is impossible to do without a chilling effect on free speech.

    A pretty odd statement considering that the whole purpose of the doctrine was to insure competing viewpoints could be heard...
    I think the correct word is IRONIC, not ODD.

    It's not my statement, it was the finding of the FCC in 1985 and 1987 when they repealed the doctrine. That's a fact; you can look it up.

    In practice, what happens is that the process for gaining equal time is burdensome, and the possibility of creating a station that offers the competitive viewpoint is illegal. Leading to the existence of fewer competing viewpoints.

    You do realize that's a good argument in favor of the Fairness Doctrine, not against it, right?
    No, it sure as hell is not a good argument for the Fairness Doctrine. It is a good argument for having competing alternative outlets. Under the fairness doctrine, the government would have to first determine whether or not the Weather Channel's statements were biased. If you can't see how that leads to viewpoint censorship...

    If it was still in effect you would be able to insist that your local TV station also broadcast the opposing viewpoint. Without it you can't.
    Without it, I can turn the station to one with a different point of view.


    That's their job. It's what the FCC has always done. The airwaves are public property policed by government agencies. Isn't it better to have rules in place that help insure that they can't be monopolized by the highest bidder?
    No. Let's see a practical application of the Cose theorem.

    So as long as you're rich your ideas are the only ones given use of the airwaves? Sorry, everybody owns the airwaves -- not just the people with the most money.
    As long as someone is interested in what you have to say, your political viewpoint included, it will be in someone's best interest to provide a forum. If you can't compete in the marketplace of ideas, you should not be provided with either a government subsidy of them or a governmental mandate that people consume them.

    Everybody owns the airwaves, sure. And the market is the best mechanism we have for determining what "everybody" wants to hear.

    What is it about the fact that people have the option to get information from alternative sources that is so threatening to you?

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    This is a good idea considering we only get the negative attention vof how it took too long for us to respond and how we were inefficient. Heavy fines would be nice too. Can I ask that these fines be presented to the fire districts though.

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    Default Huh?

    Quote Originally Posted by fabricatediem View Post
    This is a good idea considering we only get the negative attention vof how it took too long for us to respond and how we were inefficient. Heavy fines would be nice too. Can I ask that these fines be presented to the fire districts though.
    Please explain.

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    Default The whole question is moot anyway

    Even leaving aside the issues Dal brings up about the decreasing relevence of the established media, it is moot for practical political reasons:

    1. It will never pass Congress;
    2. If it did, it would be vetoed;
    3. If it were vetoed, the veto would not be overturned;
    4. The Supreme Court with it's current makeup would never re-affirm Red Lion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by scfire86 View Post
    If the media were as liberal as you might believe, the stories I listed would have been played much differently.


    Just because you say something loud and long enough doesn't necessarily make it true.
    If they were as conservative as you think,they wouldn't be siding with the Democrats as often.For example,when the economy is going badly,it's the Bush Economy.When it is going well,it's due to market influences instead of any government program.

    As to your second comment,it seems to work for the newsies.Remember the hysteria about how Rodney King was treated?If you saw the video as aired by the news,you'd quite willingly want to bust a cop in the chops for it.If you saw the tape from its beginning,you'd see the story was different than it was being presented to the public.
    It's not that the news station doesn't have enough time or caption space.They use plenty of time to explain things that they benefit from,why can't they do that with all stories?
    Or better,just report the who,what,when where and leave the why it happened to the readers or viewers?The world's complicated enough without someone trying to influence the opinion on events because they want to win an award.

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    So let me get this straight.....

    The government (whom we all know that I completely and totally distrust regardless of the party in "power") wants to tell me where and how to get my information?

    I cannot be trusted to research poitns of view on gun control, abortion, affirmative action, tax increases, federalization of health care, blah....blah....blah....


    Such is the limitation of free speech. That is all this is. A government removing individually guaranteed rights to free speech - regardless of who is saying what, or in whatever format.

    I'll be taking the no side on this one.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dalmatian190 View Post
    That the press gets called evil from both the left (when you can find them on the radio...) and the right probably means they do an OK job overall. The left-wingers rant about the corporate controlled media just as much as the right-wingers rant about the liberal reporters and editors.
    Perfectly stated.

    Thank you.
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