Saturday, June 20, 2009

Republicans: Fairness Doctrine Okay for their Opinions, Unfair for Democratic Opinions. GOP wants it Both Ways.

You can’t make this stuff up. The firestorm about the possible return of the fairness doctrine spread through the conservative blogosphere, threatening conservative talk radio, angering the right wing to a point of breathlessness. Now, without blinking and getting the irony, we have this call to arms from Patricia Braman at the Kansas City Conservative Examiner:

ABC will be featuring President Obama, Wednesday, June 24th in a prime time NEWS special, “Questions for the President: Prescription for America” will air without a discussion or opposing opinions from the other side. This infomercial will advertise President Obama’s health care reform. ABC will also feature special programming touting the president’s health care agenda on “Good Morning America,” “World News,” “Nightline,” and’s “Top Line”. Diane Sawyer will be interviewing President Obama exclusively on “Good Morning America.”

Does ABC now cover only the side it deems important and present that as news? Is ABC the white house’s sole PR firm? ABC has rejected the RNC’s request to buy air time for a counter-program. "It is unfortunate -- and unusual -- that ABC is refusing to accept paid advertising that would present an alternative viewpoint for the White House health care program," said Rick Scott, chairman of Conservatives for Patients Rights.

On Wednesday, June 24th, concerned KC citizens along with cities all over the country are joining together at ABC affiliates to stand up for Free Speech, Free Independent Press, and the Free Market Healthcare System.

Incredible stuff, isn’t it. Fairness that presents both points of view on ABC is free speech, fairness presenting both points of view daily in the media is an attack on free (right wing) speech. God my head is hurting again. Thankfully, the following readers comment made things right for me again, kinda:
More Double Standards from the GOP: Gosh I don't remember this huge outcry from conservatives over offering "all opinions" when Rick Scott's 30-minute Swiftboat-created "infomercial" ran on NBC at the end of May. Scott's program criticized a government run healthcare plan, and when progressives asked for their voice to be heard, NBC said no. Where were the cries for "air all opinions" then? *crickets*
Compare the above outrage with ABC, to the article below 'Hush Rush' Fairness Doctrine Being Repackaged as 'Localism' from Newsbusters:

Despite recent assurances that the Fairness Doctrine is a dead issue to the point of White House press secretary, it will probably be coming back repackaged in a more odious form as localism according to a Broadcasting & Cable article by John Eggerton: “Acting FCC Chairman Michael Copps said the doctrine was long gone and not coming back. If he had stopped there, he might have put some criticism to rest, though certainly not all of it. However, he went on to characterize critics linking the doctrine to pending localism proposals as “issue mongers” and “conspiracy theorists [who] see [the doctrine] lurking behind every corner.” As it turns out, some of those theorists are broadcast attorneys who see the localism proposals as just such a back-door effort, with perhaps even greater content-control implications than the doctrine itself. And since the speech, Copps has also been called out by both Media Research Center President Brent Bozell and Frank Wright, president of the National Religious Broadcasters.

The doctrine, which required broadcasters both to actively cover issues of public importance and to seek out opposing viewpoints on such issues, has become something of a political football in the past few years. Democrats raised the specter of its return, much to the displeasure of conservative radio talk show hosts and some Republican legislators.

So what is it? Is it hypocrisy running rampant at newsbusters? Think about what you’re saying folks, just once.

1 comment:

  1. It's a bit different when you try to pass laws to control speech. What Repubs are doing is criticizing ABC tripping over each other to worship the president. They are not trying to pass laws.