What Did the "Lib" in "Liberal" Mean Again?


John Nichols over at The Nation blasts House Democrats for selling out free speech by rallying behind the Broadcast Decency Enforcement Act. Only a handful of Dems opposed the measure in the House, joined from across the aisle (as nobody here will be surprised to learn) only by Rep. Ron Paul.

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  1. As often as I hear about Ron Paul being the sole voice of reason in congress, I find myself very curious the makeup of his congressional district. People who’d repeatedly vote for someone like him I wanna meet, if only to confirm that they exist.

    Anyone on here live there, or know someone that lives there?

  2. Yeah, good one, Nichols, but you’re just about a month early… How could anyone honestly be that shocked by the “progressive” embrace of censorship and censorious moral intimidation in our society?

  3. Give ’em hell Ronnie!

    Hey b-psycho, sounds like a road trip…if only Texas wasn’t so dull.

  4. Paul’s district is close to (and I believe contains part of) the metropolitan area of Austin. Austin is hardly dull. I lived there when R. Paul was first elected (but did not have the proper addrerss to vote for him). We supported him of course. One big reason he was elected: his opponent publicized the fact that Ron Paul had (at one time) supported repealing all federal drug enforcement laws. The Democrats thought this would erode Paul’s support. He won huge.

  5. B psycho, I think there are marketers’ web sites (damned if I can remember their names) where you can get demographics (plural) by zip code.

  6. “The Democrats thought this would erode Paul’s support. He won huge.”

    Tommy, Glad to hear it. For some reason I thought Ron Paul was from the other 99% of Texas which really is dull.

  7. I believe that redistricting has reduced the 14th Congressional district to the Gulf coast now. I’m also not so sure that the district ever included a part of Austin. I think it used to have most of the land between Houston, Austin, San Antonio, and Corpus Christi, without actually going into any of those cities.

  8. San Marcos is or was part of the district, and it’s about half an hour from Austin.

  9. “I’m also not so sure that the district ever included a part of Austin.”

    That’s why I said Austin metro area, not Austin. The drug law ads were on Austin local TV & radio and in the Austin papers (back in 1996).

  10. I wrote earlier something about the meaning of “liberalism” in my blog.

  11. If you think this law is bad, Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) wants to have it apply to satelite radio, cable TV and subscription TV (HBO, showtime, etc.) One question – do we still have a bill of rights?


  12. I live in Ron Paul’s district. This was surprising to me, as I thought I lived in Tom Delay’s district, but apparently, during the last redistricting in Texas, they took my little sliver of Ft. Bend County, Texas, near Katy, and added it to Paul’s district. This is a pretty conservative, surburban area, where often the Democrat candidate is weak, unknown, or non-existent. I can say that for once, I had no qualms about pulling the lever (ok, punching the chad) for a Republican. However, as a registered Dem who voted for Bush, I can’t say that I’m the typical voter out here.

  13. Where exactly do people come by the quaint idea that Democrats believe in “free speech”?

    I disagree that this legislation “sells out” free speech. The principle was already thrown out long ago when the FCC was first given the power to impose fines for violations of content standards of any sort. The current legislation is just about the details about how that power is to be exercised, not whether it exists.

  14. Combustible noted:
    “If you think this law is bad, Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) wants to have it apply to satellite radio, cable TV and subscription TV (HBO, showtime, etc.)”

    Well, this would be intellectually consistent. If decency regs allow the FCC to monitor the FINAL leg of program delivery, why not ANY leg that uses the “public’s spectrum”? While we are at it, the FCC *MUST* monitor cell phone conversations. Actually, many land-lines use microwave links, so they should be monitored too. Then there’s wireless internet, so that must be monitored too.

    Let’s get serious about this abuse of the “public’s spectrum”. No indecency shall be permitted. Fines for anyone, any time. Stamp out the corruption of pristine spectrum!

    (If such broad-based decency fines occur, I want to rent a search light and use it flash Morse Code “FUCK YOU” messages until someone prosecutes me on indecent use of spectrum.)

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