"How did it come to pass that an opposition's measure of a president's foreign policy was all or nothing, success or "failure"? The answer is that the political absolutism now normal in Washington arrived at the moment--Nov. 7, 2000--that our politics subordinated even a war against terror to seizing the office of the presidency." - Daniel Henninger - WSJ 11/18/05
"the slovenliness of our language makes it easier for us to have foolish thoughts." - George Orwell

Thursday, June 21, 2007

The Fairness Doctrine Isn't Fair Enough

The Fairness Doctrine is receiving new life these days even from the likes of a Trent Lott who recently said that Talk Radio needs to be looked into.

The Fairness Doctrine is a political doctrine with the usual emotional name that implies something in the realm of Talk Radio is not fair. Emotion does not belong in the debate but makes its way into it when one needs to fight logic.

Laura Ingraham, Sean Hannity and others are railing against the “doctrine” as a tool to silence debate and the free marketplace, which it is when one stops to think about it and one does not have to stop and think about it long to come to that conclusion. Radio stations are in the business for money and it falls that if something doesn’t make money through ad revenue that something won’t remain on the air long.

Yesterday Hannity made remarks about being called a “shill for the Republican party,” and pointed out that when he doesn’t agree or think something is bad for Conservatism he speaks out; true.

Liberal radio doesn’t do so well and it has been said that is because in general the media tilts leftward; agreed. But it can also be said that Liberal radio tends to be a shill for the Democrat party. Ever listen to Air America? I have during commercial breaks while listening to Hannity or others and it’s nothing but a propaganda machine that blames Bush for everything, including a hurricane.

The listeners have choices; tune into this station or that one. I personally don’t want to hear some will Leftist ideas on the program I am listening to especially if in rebuttal like the media used to have to do. Oftentimes some Leftist will be interviewed and they often don’t have a leg to stand on; might this be reason Liberal radio doesn’t do well too.

In the interest of “fairness” and in this time that immigration “reform” is all the rage I would like to suggest this:

Rebut Conservative ideas with Liberal ones on radio; then be sure to rebut either or both with anything else that exists regardless of how unpopular or small. Then ensure that each of these views is repeated from a black, Latino, Chinese, Japanese etc. perspective. Follow this with or include as it is rebuts in the appropriate language of the slice of the population it represents. Let’s not forget the transgender and all the rest either. If Talk Radio follows through with this “doctrine” as just elaborated on a three hour slice of the day can then cover just one topic (if that much) rather than many. The effect will be to make Talk Radio as effective as our politicians in Washington.

I think folks like Lott enjoyed the boost gained from radio that spoke from a point of view with which he agreed. However, like most politicians he believes it should have its limits; those limits are reached when the American people begin to speak too loudly; those limits are reached when the political elite begin to lose some of their rule because the obvious rabble doesn’t really know the issue(s) or what it takes to rule lead.

To the politicians Talk Radio loses its luster when it becomes apparent the American people are catching on to their game of doing something that is actually nothing.

Maggie's Notebook has a great post on the "doctrine," with some good links and a mention by Michelle Malkin (that's not nothing!) this morning about how she's been "keeping tabs" on its movement - Give it a read and follow the links.

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