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Thursday, December 2, 2010

They Come in the Night

The head of the FCC has recently said that there needs to be a bit more of a lock down on the media. As he puts it, the media has a "case of substance abuse." Now I don't agree with what a lot of the media says. Sure, our country would do well with the likes of Keith Olbermann, Rachel Maddow, Glenn Beck, and Joy Behar no longer populating the television. But that isn't for us to decide. The First Amendment provides for both freedom of speech and freedom of the press. These are the quintessential freedoms that are nation was founded upon. If you don't like what someone is saying, you have the right to not listen to it. Sure a lot of what they say is bluster, but who cares and where do you draw the line? Jerry Springer had his final thought on that raucous talk show of his, was his opinion too much if it strayed to politics? Whoopi Goldberg stormed off the view when Bill O'Reilly said Muslims committed 9/11, is that too far?

The problem is, the last person drawing the line should be the government. The government has the most to gain by silencing their critics. You want to see so much bipartisanship your head will spin, announce a bill that will silence the media, who despite their failings and biases, are still the vanguard of accountability in our democracy. Don't simply say I disagree therefore your argument should be silenced. Engage the argument, point out it's shortcomings, admit it's strengths, and try to have both yourself and the other party walk a way a little bit further on in the evolution of our collective conscious.

The market will always help to determine and even out the distribution of opinions that are dominating the airwaves. This is why Fox News presently has the top 7 shows and Air America was shut down, people simply did not want to hear personalities towing the line for a president they perceived, rightfully so, as out of touch, weak, and with no clear direction. The same thing will happen to these same hosts if they simply tow the line for the new GOP majority if they don't create the fiscal responsibility they were voted in for. The problem is not the media, the problem is the government saying the problem is not them but the media portraying their shortcomings. No, Mr. Obama, you don't have a PR issue, you have a shitty ideas issue and until that changes, satan (Van Jones words, not mine) over at Fox News is going to keep taking you to task and thank god they will. If it wasn't for the same treatment of Bush by left outlets, we would not have had the surge or the drubbing the republicans rightfully deserved in 2006.

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