Lance Fairchok looks at the Democrats’ renewed attempts at reinstating the Fairness Doctrine to “restore balance” to the airwaves. He sees a more sinister motive at work.
If they succeed, media reform will inevitably morph from an attack on talk radio to an assault on cable, to new print “standards,” and to broadcast “guidelines.” It is all about control and the totalitarian instincts the socialist left gravitates to, they cannot help it, it is in their bones. This is not a slippery slope, it is a roller coaster ride to censorship and if the left defines the rules, the freedom of speech we enjoy now will be a thing of the past, buried in regulation, litigation and outright intimidation.
Despite all the flowery talk about balance and fairness, a single question should force us to think carefully about the real impact of imposing this rule: Who will determine whether broadcast content is “fair”? Why, faceless government bureaucrats, of course. Unelected, accountable to no one, and impossible to fight–except by whatever political power happens to be dominating government at the time. In other words, the “Fairness Doctrine” would become just another weapon of political control. The only casualty would be the marketplace of free ideas, so crucial to an open and well-informed society.