Thank God The FCC is Finally Looking Into Dr. Phil's 2006 Show About Masturbation!


Now run my health care!

Aren't there a coupla wars going on? A financial crisis? Health-care debates? Oscar brouhahas? Decent weather for a change?

It's good to know that the Federal Communications Commission, among the least useful of any government agency to last into the 21st century (or the really way too long 20th century), is resolute in working through its backlog of indecency complaints like Eric Massa through his male staff after, like, "15 gin and tonics" (gins and tonic?).

After a hiatus of what numerous attorneys say is close to two years, the FCC has begun to follow up on some of the one million-plus indecency complaints it has acknowledged are in its pipeline, including one concerning a Dr. Phil episode that aired four years ago….

But the Supreme Court's remand and/or reversal of both decisions [the Nipplegate thing and swearing on Fox during awards shows], and a new FCC chairman vowing to clear out a backlog of complaints of all types, has once again inspired action on the indecency front. "They have a ton of those things, and I think they are just trying to push them out," said one of the communications attorneys.

He said that the complaint letter he was familiar with targeted a 2006 episode of Dr. Phil dealing with masturbation. He said that before this letter went out, it had been "approximately forever"-certainly more than a year-since he had seen a letter of inquiry on indecency out of the FCC.

More from Broadcasting & Cable's account here. Let's not quibble about anything here. And let's not dally in trying to banish the proximity of Dr. Phil and masturbation from our brains. If this is what the government is spending (read: wasting) its time and money doing, then it really should just give up. What the hell. Here's a link to the FCC's complaint page, which is typically being overrun by humanoid outrage-a-bots following orders from the Parents Television Council. Why not file a complaint against the agency isself?

And remember, this FCC is the same agency that will likely be given the keys to the internets if any sort of "net neutrality" legislation ever gets passed.

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  1. If the FCC wanted to get its hands on the internet, it wouldn’t need net neutrality to do it. FAIL.

    1. Is it? The CDA was an attempt to backdoor FCC regulation of the Internet for indecency purposes. It failed for the obvious reason that even the Pacifica justification wouldn’t fly on the web, given that there’s no way the scarce resources argument could work. Therefore, some other gambit is required to prevent improper content from flowing freely on the Internet, right?

      1. I can’t predict how the government will try to pry its way into censuring the internet, but net neutrality is a poor mechanism to achieve that end, and its inclusion here is for the purpose of pissing libertarians off rather than a meaningful prediction.

  2. after, like, “15 gin and tonics” (gins and tonic?)

    As a bartender, I can assure you it’s the former.

  3. after, like, “15 gin and tonics” (gins and tonic?)

    To be proper it probably should be gins and tonics. Afterall, one says sons of bitches – not son of a bitches (well not properly anyway.)

    1. But we say RBI’s, not R’sBI.

      1. Yeah, but spelled out, it’s runs batted in.

    2. More properly 15 Gins & Tonic (as in 15 gins and their tonic) Plural Gins with Tonic. You could say sons of a bitch (multiple sons of one bitch) or sons of bitches (multiple sons of multiple bitches) But One Gin and Tonics doesn’t work unless you have multiple tonics in your Gin. Think of Courts Marshal – not Court Marshals for more than one Court Marshal

      1. Of course my argument would be stronger if I had actually typed martial….

        1. Guys who get laid say “15 Gin and Tonics”… Guys who say it correctly don’t

  4. Reading the article, the story is as follows:

    1. There are laws against showing certain things on broadcast television.
    2. Lower court rulings prevented those laws from being enforced by the FCC for a couple years.
    3. Those lower court rulings were recently overturned by the Supreme Court.
    4. So, the FCC is doing it’s job again, especially since some members of Congress pressuring them to do so.

    The solution here is for Congress to pass laws banning showing those things on television. Of course, the current Congress likes these laws.

    None of this has anything to do with net neutrality whatsoever. In fact, the opposite is true-net neutrality would eliminate censorship of the internet, not cause it.

    1. Change “for Congress to pass laws banning” to for Congress to repeal the laws banning” in the above post. We need an edit function here.

    2. No, net neutrality will lead to lots and lots of censorship.

      1. Explain. The goal of net neutrality is to prevent a ISP from favoring their content over content from a non-affliated provider. So, the consumer would see more content than without it. (The main fear seems to be speed, that is, throttling back a rival video site to dial-up speed while the ISP’s own video site gets full speed.)

        Personally, I think it’s a solution in search of a problem, but it certainly won’t cause censorship.

        1. Hypothetically speaking, what would likely happen in a final net neutrality bill is that ISP’s are ordered to not block or throttle communication from any server, with the exception of servers that distribute harmful materials, whether they be malware, instructions to manufacture illegal materials, or websites run to distribute terroristic communiques. While congress may not include language saying that these latter sites must be blocked, they will surely not try to stop ISPs from blocking them, otherwise they’re soft on terrorism, and all it will take is one group making a fuss about allowing communication from bad sources for this to happen. After that, all that is required is one ambitious FCC chairman to say that the FCC has the authority to deem that certain content providers are spreading malicious information, and must be blocked (at the risk of being fined, that is).

          1. And of course one must not forget content providers that facilitate copyright infringement. There’s little doubt in my mind that the RIAA and MPAA wont ensure that some DMCA-type language gets inserted into a final net neutrality bill.

  5. If that Dr. Phil episode was so offensive, why wouldn’t the offended party just boycott or organize a boycott of the show? It’s sort of a rhetorical question. I’m willing to bet that whoever was offended by that episode sucks at life.

    1. Because boycotts aren’t statist enough.

  6. “Gin and tonic” is a discrete unit. Multiples of that unit would be “gin and tonics.”

    “Gins and tonics” indicates multiple types of gins and of tonics, but makes no note of the amount consumed (the point of noting 15.)

    “Gins and tonic” is probably technically correct in that the bar/restaurant that they were in had many kinds of gin but probably only one brand of tonic water, but the amount consumed ambiguity problem reappears.

    1. Pedantry run amok

      1. Keep in mind, this guy’s a librarian so he can probably even properly research this stuff.

      2. Sometimes I just need some amok, yo.

    2. Awesome.

  7. I consider any appearance by Dr. Phil on TV to be indecent, regardless of the topic.

  8. And remember, this FCC is the same agency that will likely be given the keys to the internets if any sort of “net neutrality” legislation ever gets passed.

    For the reading impaired.

    1. Reading impaired? How did their eyes get so bad, anyway? Hmm…

      1. Eyes? I think the problem starts in the brain.

        1. I’m waiting with ‘bated breath for the resolution of this debate.

          1. Eye! Brain! Eye! Brain!

            Can’t we all agree that the FCC sucks and go on our way?

            1. Yes, but thinking about the FCC sucking (genitals) makes me want to ‘bate.

              1. Only if they are gentle… my huevos are as fragile as eggs.

                1. LOL…that is a really weird comment, even for you.

                  1. HA!

                    I AM funny!

  9. If the FCC’s actions actually resulted in the ending of that douche bag’s run on TV, all of the billions of dollars and wasted time associated with the FCC, might actually have been worth while after all.

  10. But but but I thought Democrats were so much better on social issues like indecency laws!

    1. Well, no ruling on this has been made yet. I don’t think any new FCC fines have been issued since Obama became President, but that’s probably due to the lower court rulings more than anything else.

  11. Why do we need a Federal Communications Communist Commission when we can let the lawsuits over the blindness and hairy palms caused by that Dr. Phil show serve as the deterrent?

    1. True ’nuff. Some poor individual probably didn’t know masturbation existed until they watched that episode. After which they couldn’t stop ‘batin. I hope that episode was rated TV-14, if not TV-MA. OK, at least TV-PG.

      1. Did you know the Kristen Bell is getting married to the “Go’Way! Batin’!” guy?


        1. That guy looks like Steve Smith before they shaved him down.

        2. Oh, wow. Veronica Mars is really slummin’! But seriously, congrats to the happy couple. Dax really will end up ‘batin a lot because once they get married, she’ll probably lose her sex drive entirely.

          1. She probably never wants to have her date compete with her. There is a certain type of really hot woman that intentionally goes for the plainest more unimpressive guy possible because they never want to be with anyone that might take the attention away from them.

            1. I could get behind that concept.

              1. Yeah…or even if she dates guys for their personalities instead of just their looks. Either way.

            2. True, or maybe she already banged enough b-movie stud-types and just wants to be with somebody who isn’t an asshole all the time. Or maybe I just restated what you said.

              1. Maybe he is a great guy and that is why she is marrying him. But when there is such an imbalance in looks in a couple, you have to wonder what is up. I mean everyone is a little bit shallow.

                1. Whenever I see that imbalance in looks, I always assume the guy rocks in bed. One of the many requirements to “having a great personality”!
                  And yea…I know it’s shallow.

                  1. Being known as “Tripod” is another common reason for such an imbalance.

        3. Unfortunately for Bell, Dax’s head exploded only moments after the last photo of them together was taken.

          Please everyone. Know the warning signs of over-pressurizing your head. Don’t force your loved ones to go through the pain and agony, and the picking out bits of brain from their hair, that Kristin Bell is going through right now.

    2. commissioners weren’t sitting on their hands

      Oh, John Eggerton, so clever.

  12. See, that’s what I’m taking about. “I’m offended by this episode of Dr. Phil…” It’s your own fault for watching daytime TV. Daytime TV sucks!

  13. There has to be a Warty joke in here somewhere.

    1. Cuz I mean, when I saw the word masturbation, the first word that came (pun intended) my mind was Warty.

      1. You think about helping Warty masturbate way, way too much.

      2. I don’t know if that means that you think Warty beats off a lot or if the thought of Warty’s bedroom eyes makes you want to masturbate.

        1. Dammit, SugarFree, you stole my thunder!

          1. “Excuse me, do these effectively hide my thunder?”

            1. Perfect quote from a comic masterpiece.

          2. Nah, your joke was way better. Actually you can get a Bachelor of Science in masturbation from Warty.

        2. I don’t know what Warty’s bedroom looks like. He always made me wear a hood.

          1. It almost sounds like you’re describing an encounter with Steve Smith.

            1. Steve Smith doesn’t have a bedroom. He just uses yours.

              1. That’s pretty sinister. After he’s through with you, you can never sleep in your own bedroom again.

                1. Steve Smith’s penis is an area denial device.

  14. Screw the FCC. It pisses me off to no end that they can cause a fuckwad like Dr. Phil to be in the right. BTW, never underestimate what a complete idiotic moron that man is. He actually claims that looking at pornography is committing adultery. He is no better than the worst fundie.

    1. John, what you say here is true, and is why I get mad when liberals claim to be better on social issues than conservatives. Sure liberals don’t dress up oppression in a 6000 year old sun god, but instead their cover is pop psychology and political correctness.

      Fuckin’ prudes.

      1. “Our atheists are very pious people!” — The Ego and His Own, Byington xltion

    2. ‘He actually claims that looking at pornography is committing adultery.’

      His criticism is oppressive!

      Just like libertarians are oppressing him by denouncing him.

      1. Weak. Try again.

  15. Hands off our masturbation?

      1. If I can be president, treasurer or at least secretary general.

        1. You can be the special master.

          1. Thanks for your support, John.

    1. All your ‘bates are belong to us.

  16. I mean keep the government’s hands off our masturbation.

  17. the one million-plus indecency complaints it has acknowledged are in its pipeline

    The FCC is a series of tubes!

    Complainers were blocking up the tubes with all their complaints. It’s not like the FCC’s a big truck.

    1. Then we can’t really blame the FCC for all of this. When you get backed up, you have to clear the pipes. Ask Warty.

  18. FCC’s requested $325M in Obama’s FY 2011 budget
    50 radar and comm technicians and two secretaries could do all of the necessary functions of the FCC. I volunteer to head the whole thing up with a budget of only $30 million.

    The Anerican public will, by and large, not notice any difference.

    1. Seriously, other than DOD and the law enforcement departments that are statutorily required to be performed by the government, every cabinet department could be bid out in four year contracts.

      1. I really like this idea, John. But then they might have trouble “making work” eh, you know, patronage.

      2. Seriously, other than DOD and the law enforcement departments that are statutorily Constitutionally required to be performed by the federal government, every cabinet department could be bid out in four year contracts burned to the ground, and sown with salt, with a memorial consisting of small vase with plastic flowers.

        1. Flowers? Why, when radioactive dust is available?

    2. J sub D, you are forgetting about the millions of traumatized children. It is scientifically proven that if a child sees a titty on tv they will be irrevocably damaged. If people could stop thinking of yourself and think of the children this country might not be so messed up.

      If you want to see titties move to Russia, commie.

      1. The secretaries will have form letters to send to the whiners assuring them that we are looking into their complaints.

        Only forty four cents.

        1. 0.44 x millions of complaints means hundreds of thousands if not millions of dollars.

  19. Grandpa Al Lewis had it right about the FCC.

  20. Why are you getting mad at the FCC? The FCC has no choice but to uphold the laws that Congress passes.

    1. The FCC is an executive branch agency and has great leeway on how to enforce the laws.

      1. That’s right. If the FCC decided to go all literal and narrow in its interpretation of its enabling act, Congress’ only real option would be to pass laws that are overt in their unconstitutionality. That usually doesn’t work out so well.

  21. gin-and-tonics

  22. If the FCC chair will only “tousle” Dr. Phil’s hair, Eric Massa style, I won’t even care if he doesn’t frack the good doctor’s fat ass.

    Way back in the seventies I had a girlfriend whose mother would watch all the TV showings of R-rated films to make sure that all the “bad” parts were cut out. It’s good to know that the biddy patrol is still in operation.

  23. I’ll have 15 Gin please…?

  24. Damn you, Dr. Phil!

    My eyesight has gotten so bad, I can barely read the instructions on the bottle of “Compound W” wart remover ? Let alone get it open? As the hair on my palms is growing so fast I can’t seem to get a good grip? On anything! You never told us this might happen? Does anybody know if “The Nair? People” make a hand lotion??

  25. The reason it’s runs batted in is that they are runs, that you’ve batted in. A gin-and-tonic is a beverage. Two gin-and-tonics are two beverages. You aren’t getting gin, with tonic, and then getting two gins, each with tonic. You’re getting two gin-and-tonics.

  26. It’s nice to see I’m not the only person who can’t stand Mr. Phil.

  27. So what is Dr. Phil’s? Some sort of cough syrup?

    1. It’s more like ipecac, actually.

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