What Fresh Hell Is This?

July 31, 2008

Melissa Hart on KDKA

Looks like they'll be discussing this bill. It's called the "Broadcaster Freedom Act of 2007. Here's the text:
`Notwithstanding section 303 or any other provision of this Act or any other Act authorizing the Commission to prescribe rules, regulations, policies, doctrines, standards, or other requirements, the Commission shall not have the authority to prescribe any rule, regulation, policy, doctrine, standard, or other requirement that has the purpose or effect of reinstating or repromulgating (in whole or in part) the requirement that broadcasters present opposing viewpoints on controversial issues of public importance, commonly referred to as the `Fairness Doctrine', as repealed in General Fairness Doctrine Obligations of Broadcast Licensees, 50 Fed. Reg. 35418 (1985).'.
9:11: The conversation begins (all these are paraphrased - I'm doing this live).

Steigerwald: If Obama wins, do we get the Fairness Doctrine again?
Hart: I think we do.

Hart: Altmire is trying to have it both ways. He supports the bill but won't sign a discharge petition forcing the bill to the floor.

9:14: Steigerwald Nancy Pelosi and Steny Hoyer both say we need the fairness doctrine.

This whole argument seems to be based on this:

Conservative critics have been very concerned that Congress had supported a one-year moratorium on the return of the Fairness Doctrine, but has not supported the Broadcaster Freedom Act (BFA), which would permanently prevent these regulations from returning.

Representative Mike Pence (R-Ind.) introduced the BFA last June, where it is still awaiting a vote. As of June 25, 200 Members have signed a discharge petition which would force the House to make an up or down vote on the legislation, but an additional 18 signatures are needed.

“And so far, not one single House Democrat has signed our petition for an up-or-down vote on broadcast freedom...and now we know why,” announced Pence in response to Pelosi’s comments. “I say to Speaker Pelosi with respect: Defending freedom is the paramount interest of every Member of the American Congress.”

9:20: Now they're talking about off-shore drilling.

9:23: The drilling is stopped because the Democrats are dependent on radical environmental groups, like Moveon.org.

9:25: Steigerwald: What about Conservatives' criticism of Bush on spending?
Hart: Bush should have vetoed more than he did.

Steigerwald: Was that about Bush "getting along" and going a little too far?
Hart: I think he should have been stronger.

9:27: Steigerwald: McCain has gained 5 points in the recent Quinnipiac poll. From 12 points down to 7 points down in Pennsylvania, so that should be good news to Republicans in the state.

9:29 Steigerwald: Biggest differences between Altmire and Hart?
Hart: I say what I believe in and act on it. He does a lot of flip-flopping. He says he's pro-live but he's voted pro-abortion.

Submitted for your approval.

My Commentary:

I'm always amazed at the "fairness doctrine" argument. It seems that everyone and his uncle on the right is screaming about how liberals are looking to bring the fairness doctrine back. Their panic is palpable. It'll be the end of the republic if those lib'ruls get their way and reinstitute the fairness doctrine, they rant. Then they complain about how the mainstream media is silent about the issue - thus proving the conspiracy to reinstate it.

Hart's and Steigerwald's argument seems to be that Pelosi and Altmire want to reinstate the Fairness Doctrine because they're not fighting tooth and nail to bring the "Broadcaster Freedom Act of 2007" to the floor. Altmire in particular because while he cosponsers the bill, he won't sign the discharge petition to force a vote.

So that proves he's in favor of reinstatement.

Can someone explain the logic to me?

The thing is, if nothing happens, then the Fairness Doctrine is still inert, right? So explain to me how keeping something inert actually supports reinstating it?

Especially when Senator Obama is NOT in support of reinstatement?

Conservative logic - an oxymoron if ever there was one.

But, of course to the wingnuts, since Bill Clinton cheated on his wife and then lied about it, that invalidates "Democrat Logic."


m dachshund said...

For one, Melissa Hart has Iraqi blood all over her Catholic school girl hands. The nuns must have skipped over the doctrine of just war in little Missy's training.

Almost as egregiously, She did NOTHING in terms of legislative checks on an executive branch that essentially turned our country to a military dictorarship for some 5 odd years.

She voted with along with Bush appr. 95% of the time and saw no scruples in taking Abramoff monies through Tom Delay.

John K. said...

John K: Bring back the fairness doctrine and political talk radio is dead. That is fine with me because the folks I listen to are all powerful enough to make the jump to satellite radio. But Cullen is finished if that doctrine goes into effect. You left wingers think that this only applies to conservative radio. Oh no.

Whampa said...

I don't think this election will have anything to do with the "fairness doctrine". It is a subject that right-wing radio likes to bring up. It is the ultimate boogey man for their fans. This is an issue that Hart is manufacturing to rile up her base and they were going to vote for her anyway.

This election will be about whether the district has forgotton why they were so mad at Hart. Her ties to Bush, Santorum and Delay are very strong. However, I do not think the hard-right neo-con philosophy is selling in W. PA this cycle.

cathcatz said...

once again dave, thanks for taking one for the team. i'd rather sit with a great beer and good company, on the patio of my family's restaurant than put myself through the pain of listening to missy hart do her little dance with steigie. blech.

if not for the elimination of the fairness doctrine, we'd never have the likes of hannity, rush, savage, o'reilly, hell even faux news. and so many sheeple would not have been brainwashed into believing this bullshit over the past how many years. it explains why we've only had one democratic president since the end of the doctrine in 1987. the right is much better at getting the talking points out there, at repeating lies so much that they are believed to be true, and so accomplished at steering controversy away from themselves.

liberal media, my ass.

John K. said...

John K: Yep Democrats acting true to form. Couldn't get C-Span from the House and figured it was the signal. NO, Pelosi turned off the camera and then turned out the lights on the Republicans who were still speaking. Like I said, this fairness doctrine is the lefty idea of free speech. The left speaks and everyone else listens whether they want to or not. And when the conservatives speak, turn off the mic.

macyapper@blogspot.com said...

Obama opposes bringing back the Fairness Doctrine. So it ain't gonna happen.

Just another talking point right wing nuts beat to death.

John K. said...

JohnK: No faith in Obama being opposed to the Fairness Doctrine. He has lied before and will do so on this issue again. But like I said, put it into place. The conservatives carry a large enough audience to make the jump to satellite. The left does not. Remember McIntire got replaced on a liberal radio station by ultra conservative Laura Ingraham. Who does such a good job they also replay her in the AM hour. Plus she is a guest on *gasp* FOX news. LOL LOL LOL Conservatives rule!

m dachshund said...
This comment has been removed by the author.