Two Cheers for Michael Powell

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The Federal Communications Commission chief says there's nothing he can or should do to stop the Sinclair Broadcast Group from showing an anti-Kerry documentary Stolen Honor: Wounds That Never Heal. From a Variety report:

"There is no FCC rule of prior restraint of a program being aired on television," [Powell] told reporters following an FCC meeting. "I think that would be an absolute disservice to the First Amendment and I think it would be unconstitutional if we attempted to do so. So don't look to us to block the airing of a program."

The comments were Powell's first public response to queries from 18 Democratic senators and two prominent Democratic House members who called on Powell to step in and stop Sinclair from running the docu on all 62 of its stations, many of which are in battleground swing states.

Be sure to check out the wide-ranging interview with Mr. Powell conducted by Nick Gillespie, Jesse Walker, and Drew Clark, forthcoming in the December issue of Reason. And you'd see it that much faster if you were a subscriber.

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  1. Brian Doherty,

    I don’t come here for the articles. 🙂

  2. Two cheers? This is no reason to cheer the man. Powell’s passing the buck to the FEC because he knows that whoever initiated the request in the first place had their head up their ass.

    I’ll settle for “one less boot to the head for Michael Powell.”

  3. Hurray for abuse of office!

  4. Two cheers? This is no reason to cheer the man. Powell’s passing the buck to the FEC because he knows that whoever initiated the request in the first place had their head up their ass.

    I’ll settle for “one less boot to the head for Michael Powell.”

  5. ‘splain me this:

    if moore can’t show F911 on TV because it’s within 30 days of an election and thus violates McCain/Feingold, how in hell does this slip under that radar?

  6. rich,

    Moore doesn’t own any TV stations.

  7. Rich, when did the FCC become responsible for enforcing McCain-Feingold?

  8. Apparently the blog is totally fucked up again.

  9. “Apparently the blog is totally fucked up again.”

    For a magazine which supposedly supports the benefits of technology and scientific progress, why does it feel like the blog comments are hosted on a ‘486 running Windows 95?

    C’mon Reason, both hardware and software for this kind of stuff is cheaper than dirt.

  10. “Apparently the blog is totally fucked up again.”

    Yep, what is up with the O’Reilly thing to. I can’t even see the comments on that one. And I am very curious what people have to say about it, as I am very entertained by Oreilly’s show.

  11. It doesn’t exactly instill hope in me about that forthcoming interview when you blog a headline like “Two Cheers for Michael Powell.”

  12. “Apparently the blog is totally fucked up again.”

    Is this the official thread for posting complaints about not being able to see the comments on half the posts because all you see is a big blank white window, causing frustration and rage to swell in my bosum like sponges in a boa constrictor?

    I’m relatively new here. Does this sort of thing happen a lot, then?

    As a long-time subscriber (10+ years) to the print version of REASON, I feel entitled to something better. Maybe there should be a place where print subscribers can enter a number from their mailing label, and get access to the un-fucked-up version of the blog?

    (Somewhere, right now, a REASON I.T. person is thinking I’m a great big dick.)

  13. Problem is, nobody really asked Powell to block the program. http://www.talkingpointsmemo.com/archives/week_2004_10_10.php#003689

    They asked him to investigate whether Sinclair was fulfilling it’s obligation under the lease of public property. Proudly saying you won’t beat your wife when what people asked was that you look into maybe buying her some flowers is a way to divert attention, not take any sort of principled stand.

    Man, facts just get in the way sometimes, no?

  14. 24 hours later and we’re waiting for a clarification, Brian.

    Did Powell answer a question that wasn’t asked?

  15. Now it’s two days.

    Still a ways to go before the post drops off the page, too.

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