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December 21, 2008

Jon Sinton argues against Fairness Doctrine without admitting that FD will come back in disguise

Air America Radio founding president Jon Sinton takes to the pages of the Wall Street Journal to reassure Rush Limbaugh and other talkers with "Limbaugh Is Right on the Fairness Doctrine/Liberals don't need equal-time rules to compete" (link).

Unfortunately, what he fails to note is that only a few people are pushing for the Fairness Doctrine; in fact, Obama opposes it. However, what Obama does support are things that would have a similar effect: "localism" and an end to "media consolidation". In other words, the WSJ has enabled Sinton to build a gigantic strawman, arguing against something that few are pushing to bring back. What they should have done is told him to address what BHO actually supports instead of things that he doesn't.

And, in fact, Sinton hints at what the "liberals" intend to do; in his discussion of why "liberal" talk has so far failed, he says:

...most broadcast owners are conservative. Programs like Rush's have made them rich, so the last thing they want is to mess with success, particularly if it entails airing opinions they don't share.

"Localism" to the rescue! And, it's pathetic of the WSJ not to make him address that topic before accepting the editorial.

More on these issues here and here. The last link discusses a report from the Center for American Progress, a source of both ideas and people for the Obama administration.

And, on a humorous note, Sinton also says:

So why didn't liberal talk radio flourish as well? There are several reasons, none of which has to do with a lack of talent. Bill Maher, Al Franken, Stephanie Miller, David Bender, Janeane Garofalo, Jon Stewart and Rachel Maddow all have the chops.

Oddly enough, he left Randi Rhodes (and Jerry Springer) off that list.



Posted in Meta at December 21, 2008 11:43 PM


Monitoring Air America Radio [TM] so you don't have to.








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