Giffords Tucson Shooting

3rd-Ranking Dem: Post-Loughner, Bring Back the Fairness Doctrine

|

I'm … sorry

Story:

COLUMBIA — U.S. Rep. Jim Clyburn, the third-ranking Democrat in Congress, said Sunday the deadly shooting in Arizona should get the country thinking about what's acceptable to say publicly and when people should keep their mouths shut.

Clyburn said he thinks vitriol in public discourse led to a 22-year-old suspect opening fire Saturday at an event Democratic U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords held for her constituents in Tucson, Ariz. Six people were killed and 14 others were injured, including Giffords.

The shooting is cause for the country to rethink parameters on free speech, Clyburn said from his office, just blocks from the South Carolina Statehouse. He wants standards put in place to guarantee balanced media coverage with a reinstatement of the Fairness Doctrine, in addition to calling on elected officials and media pundits to use 'better judgment.'

'Free speech is as free speech does,' he said. 'You cannot yell 'fire' in a crowded theater and call it free speech and some of what I hear, and is being called free speech, is worse than that.'

I do appreciate this sentence from the Charleston Post and Courier:

Despite Clyburn's position, law enforcement has not yet revealed any motives in the shooting.

Fortunately, this does not seem to be a majority opinion among Democrats who wield power. And, as Nick Gillespie points out below, it is not likely to resonate with public opinion. As Mother Jones put it, "by calling for a free-speech crackdown, Dems may simply be accused of playing politics with a national tragedy."

Reason on the Fairness Doctrine here. Clyburn link via the Twitter feed of press thinker Jay Rosen, who adds "Bad idea. Don't do it."

NEXT: 57% of Americans Think "Tone" of Politics Had Nothing to do with Tucson Shooting

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. it is not likely to resonate with public opinion

    Neither did Obamacare, but they went ahead and passed that anyway.

    1. actually several pieces of the insurance reg bill do have majority support when polled as separate items. >the wingnut agiprop confused folks as intended.

      1. You included, evidently.

      2. Did they pass several separate items of Obamacare? People like bread, doesn’t mean they like a shit sandwich.

      3. Applying OhioOrrin reasoning:

        People are polled to like bleach.

        People are polled to like ammonia.

        Therefore, people will like mustard gas (bleach+ammonia).

        Make sure you get plenty in your mouth and eyes, OO.

        1. majority support for insurance portability, pre-existing conditions, no lifetime cap, no arbitrary drop fm coverage…aint mustard gas.

          1. yes it is, asscunt.

            1. That’s rectovaginal fistula to you buddy.

              1. “rectovaginal fistula” sounds like a Dead Kennedys song.

          2. That’s right, OO. Keep looking at your feet while that point just whizzes right over your head.

          3. carp all u want but the majority support the separate items in the insurance reg bill.

            1. Sure it was by whatever poll you saw on facebook, but this so-called poll is irrelevant as Obamacare was not passed in parts, it was passed as a whole.

              Keep spinning those wheels.

      4. People like good things when those things are completely separated from any cost or consequence. No shit. Yes I would like a new Ferrari. That does not mean that I think getting one is a good idea given my current finances.

      5. Yet when the pollsters inform them that the unpopular items are necessary to be able to afford the popular items, the popularity drops significantly.

      6. News flash from OO. People like free stuff.

  2. I think that Jim Clyburn is one of those people who should keep his mouth shut.

    Beyond that, I have too much respect for the 1st Amendment to want to force him to stop showing his ignorance and stupidity.

    1. Stop me before I kill again!

    2. and ur a good example…

  3. As Mother Jones put it, “by calling for a free-speech crackdown, Dems may simply be accused of are playing politics with a national tragedy.”

    C’mon, MJ. No need to soft-pedal it.

    1. To be fair, only those Dems who are playing politics are playing politics, otherwise you wouldn’t be able to quote staunch lefty rag Mother Jones as your source in the first place. However, all Dems can face accusations based on the repulsive actions of some.

  4. The communists have burned the Reichstag! Time to crack down! No more political parties, no more free speech.

    Must the left always borrow from Hitler’s playbook?

    1. That was way too early in the thread.

  5. You can’t yell “Fire” but you can stand up and say that the theater may burn down one day.

    1. You can yell “fire” if you have reason to believe the place is on fire. In fact, if you failed to warn and just crept out yourself, you’d be looked on as some sort of craven, selfish coward.

      1. and people aren’t gagged before going into a theater based on the threat they may yell fire.

        1. Well maybe some should be. We need to introduce legislation immediately!

          1. I wonder if anyone has ever actually shouted “fire” in a crowded theatre, legitimately or not.

            1. Nope. They yelled “Run bitch, he goin’ git you, stupid bitch….oh shit, this place is burning up, let’s get the fuck outta here. Shit.

  6. I propose that any politician who uses the phrase “You cannot yell ‘fire’ in a crowded theater” be publically flogged.

    1. Such violent rhetoric. You hatemonger.

  7. The shooting is cause for the country to rethink parameters on free speech, Clyburn said

    Yes, we should rethink the notion that a person who does nothing more than write or utter a few words aired publicly and directed at nobody in particular should be held in any way accountable for the actions of a lone, deranged actor.

    Here’s some free speech: Jim Clyburn is an assclown.

    1. I’d ask Sandi to shit in his mouth and pee on his kin.

      1. I’m not really into watersports.

  8. “U.S. Rep. Jim Clyburn, the third-ranking Democrat in Congress, said Sunday the deadly shooting in Arizona should get the country thinking about what’s acceptable to say publicly and when people should keep their mouths shut.[…]

    The shooting is cause for the country to rethink parameters on free speech, Clyburn said from his office, just blocks from the South Carolina Statehouse.”

    “Never let a good crisis go to waste.”

    Old Statist proverb.

  9. ‘Free speech is as free speech does,’ he said. ‘You cannot yell ‘fire’ in a crowded theater and call it free speech and some of what I hear, and is being called free speech, is worse than that.’

    Funny thing about this statement, philosophically:

    One can establish whether or not a theater is actually on fire. That means we can know if any particular shouter is helping the people who hear him, or maliciously causing them injury.

    We can’t know the same thing about a statement like “Jim Clyburn is a tyrant”. The application of the term “tyrant” to Jim Clyburn could never be agreed upon or determined in the same way we can determine if a theater is or is not on fire. We would first need universal agreement on a theory of moral and political judgments to do so, and we don’t have that and are not likely to have it soon.

    Therefore no “incendiary” speech against any particular elected official possibly could be “worse” than falsely shouting “Fire!” in a crowded theater.

    1. Clyburn isn’t a tyrant, but he is in favor of state tyranny.

      1. Actually being a tyrant requires a certain level of intellect….Clyburn….nope not happening. Useful idiot….. of course. Tyrant? Lacks the basic skill set.

        And hey…it will give his idiot kid something to do!

        1. The troubling questions is:
          Does Clyburn REALLY BELIEVE that the shooter was not insane, and spent his time reading and listening to rar right political philosophy, that caused the shooter to act?
          OR
          Is it done for political advantage, to make any right, Tea party, libertarian type look like they support violence?

    2. Thomas Jefferson: Just a moment, Mr. Thomson. I do not consent. The king is a tyrant whether we say so or not. We might as well say so.

      Charles Thomson: But I already scratched it out.

      Thomas Jefferson: Then scratch it back in!

      John Hancock: Put it back, Mr. Thomson. The King will remain a tyrant.

  10. All of these talking heads (that fucking clown of a Sheriff especially) that are blaming “vitriol” for what Laughner did are displaying a shamefully ignorant reductionism in regards to people suffering from mental disorders. The belief seems to be that they are empty vessels that are susceptible to being filled with other people’s thoughts to guide them, so therefore we must protect them from bad thoughts and only fill them with good thoughts. I’d like to hear Clyburn’s opinion regarding John Hinckley Jr’s motivation.

    1. Jodie Foster? Yeah, he probably didn’t know she was a lesbian, or maybe he would have picked someone else to impress.

      1. Clymer would probably want a law that would force all celebrities to declare their sexual orientation so as to avoid some nut case like Hinckley going off the deep end due to unrequited affection.

        1. “It’s been four hours now, and Tom Cruise still will not come out of the closet. Hundreds of onlookers here have gathered here in hopes that the celebrity will finally give in.”

        2. Cause that couldn’t go bad. Instead of guys like Hinkley you get some butch lesbian with a mullet and a skoal ring taking shots at people.

      2. Jodie Foster is a lesbian?
        Any links to videos, especially home made? I hope she likes chocolate, cause I LOVE interracial lesbianism…

    2. “All of these talking heads (that fucking clown of a Sheriff especially) that are blaming “vitriol” for what Laughner did”

      Guns don’t kill people. Adjectives do.

  11. Today I heard a guest on a radio program say that we should reevaluate the process for involuntarially committing someone into an mental institution so that we can lock up more people premetively. That would be a horrible violation of due process rights.

    1. Yep, no potential for abuse here.
      I’m reminded of a story of a Democrat politician in Reading, PA who had his primary opponent involuntarily committed until the day after the election when he was suddenly found to be mentally sound.

    2. Hmmm, some members of Congress might want to build a mental facility in Guantanamo Bay. That way anyone with a psychological problem caught on the battlefield could be “treated” there. For their own good of course ….

    3. u mean like invading a country pre-emptively?

      1. you clearly havent been here very long

        1. Newtroll is new. He’ll figure it out eventually.

          1. Are you sure? I don’t think Max has yet. The last time I saw him post he still seemed to think libertarian is the same thing as conservative.

            1. I always assume this type of poster is yet one more character in some very bored person’s stable.

              1. So you’re saying that OhioOrrin fucks sheep?

                1. I can picture a bored person having a stable of warm, willing sheep.

                  1. Or even unwilling ones.

            2. libtopia isnt the heaven the evangelicals enjoy.

            3. libertarians covet big govt…at the local level.

              1. So what day is your shooting spree planned for?

      2. the stupid is strong in this assclown

        1. Yeah, Im trying to figure out whether to just incif him now or see if he develops. Im pretty sure he isnt a sock puppet.

      3. Exactly. How are Haiti and Serbia, BTW, oh partisan troll?

    4. Why not simply state that as involuntary commitment amounts to depriving someone of liberty, they are entitled to full due process (including a trial by jury and habeus corpus) to prevent commitment? I mean, if due process isn’t enough to protect you, they could just imprison you for crimes instead of crazy.

    5. we should reevaluate the process for involuntarially committing someone into an mental institution so that we can lock up more people premetively

      Comrade Brezhnev approves.

  12. How the so-called “Fairness Doctrine” would have prevented some guy with a screw loose from shooting 20 people I have no idea.

    1. He would have shot them much more fairly…

    1. It’s simply depressing that ANYONE is falling for this nuttiness. I don’t care about Palin’s ‘reputation’. I do care that logic has gone out for lunch and the media hasn’t noticed. They don’t get that by even talking about this they are displaying the behavior, and in a heightened fashion (yes, folks, blood on one’s hands is worse than being called a socialist), they are complaining about. These dumbasses are an own goal in themselves.

  13. Token is trying to earn his spot as cover for the white folk to run the Minority party.

  14. Would stating that “we can’t find any pictures of Clyburn fucking goats” still be protected speech?

    1. You left off “…but that doesnt mean they dont exist.”

  15. As Mother Jones put it, “by calling for a free-speech crackdown, Dems may simply be accused of playing politics with a national tragedy.”

    Here’s a sentence I never thought I’d type: Kudos to Mother Jones! Though my kudos are tempered by their use of passive voice: “Dems may simply be accused of playing politics with a national tragedy.” Perhaps they face such accusations because that’s exactly what they’re doing???

  16. Doesn’t the Fairless Doctrine only proscribe letting one side yell vitriolic statements into a microphone without equal time for the opposing side to scream back their own vitriolic counter-statements? How does this help?

    1. It forces “the rich people” (e.g., Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck) to give up some of their time and revenue to provide equal time for the truly altruistic and purely-motivated people (i.e., the lefties and progs) to spread the truth and light in broadcasts that Air America already has proven nobody wants to hear.

    2. The Fairness Doctrine, properly applied to this situation, would dictate that Loughner stop after he shot Gabi Giffords, wait while she recovered, and stand still while she shoots once at him.

      1. Makes me want to watch the duel from Barry Lyndon.

      2. I thought the Fairness Doctrine would require him to shoot a republican judge as well as a democratic rep. Oh wait, nevermind.

    3. The Fairness Doctrine would economically destroy talk radio, by forcing the radio stations to take righty profitable shows off the air to make room for deadweight lefty shows.

      Air America has proven that, for whatever reason, leftism doesn’t sell on the radio. This isn’t about getting lefties a platform (they already have that). Its about shutting the righties down.

      1. think its a demographic that listens to radio. Who listens to radio? People driving in their cars.

        Who drives in cars? Middle aged rural and suburban people who drive to work.

        This demographic tends to be conservative. Urban wealthy liberals, urban poor, college students and so on are simply not listening to much radio because they do not have long comutes.

      2. Lefties who want to listen to the radio already have NPR.

      3. And what would it due to cable “news” channels. By volume, the liberal ones way outnumber the conservative ones. Would MSNBC have to shut down? Be forced to hire conversative commentators?

        1. The Fairness Doctrine was an FCC regulation, not a law. FCC regs don’t apply to cable or the Internet (yet).

    4. Lefty dimwit talk radio simply doesn’t play nationwide like a Limbaugh does. Its been attempted…..Alan Colmes springs to mind….The tried with that poor old SF pedophile Bernie Ward….he augered in after about 11 months! Larry King and NPR are as close as your going to get

  17. I just pray the few sober minds on the left will keep their mouths shut. The Democrats are shitting themselves all over the place.

  18. Even if it is true; even if Loughner drove to work listening to Rush Fatbaugh every morning, foaming at the mouth and screaming invective at the radio until he did a Raggedy-Andy tumble off the rocky cliff of insanity, this makes him one out of three hundred million people thusly affected.

    This isn’t the Precautionary Principle run amok, this is Clyburn and likeminded people trying to turn a singular irrational event into a bludgeon to beat their political opponents with. If a meteor had struck that strip mall, they would be frantically hanging a political narrative on it.

    And some people wonder why I despise all politicians “indiscriminately”.

  19. As Mother Jones put it, “by calling for a free-speech crackdown, Dems may simply be accused of playing politics with a national tragedy.”

    Ya think?

  20. I beleive Clyburn was on Fox on Saturday babbling out shit…and what shit it was. He mentioned that all members were in danger, in the most danger at airports because they have to wait in lines and that this tragedy shows that TSA needed to have a fast lane for members of congress to get on flights.
    Clyburn clearly only gives a fook about his own needs. He got from bullet in the head at public event to proposing he get exempted from TSA screenings.

    Somebody smarter than me probably has a link.

    1. “We’ve had some incidents where TSA authorities think that congresspeople should be treated like everybody else,” he said. “Well, the fact of the matter is, we are held to a higher standard in so many other areas, and I think we need to take a hard look at exactly how the TSA interact with members of Congress.”

      http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-…..ent-by-tsa

    2. Yeah, Clyburn was the guy saying that “we’ve had some incidents where TSA authorities think Congresspeople should be treated like everybody else.”

      And now this… What a complete clown.

    3. Hey, you remember that time that a crazy guy shot six people to death and murder charges were immediately filed… for the two government officials only?

      But hey, maybe they’ll get around to punishing him for shooting the peasants too.

      1. Well, murder and attempted murder, for the dead and not dead official, respectively. You know what I mean.

        1. Murder and attempted murder of elected federal officials = federal crime. Murder of other people = state crime. It’s what made Prison Break possible, although I’m not sure why Sucre was in federal prison.

      2. He has been charged only with the federal offenses so far. The state is working on determining whether it must or should wait to file the state charges.

        Murdering a person is not automatically a federal offense. Murdering an elected federal official is.

        1. Murdering people in the course of committing a federal offense is not?

          1. But at any rate, point taken.

        2. None of the federal officials murdered were elected, but your main point is correct.

  21. Dear U.S. Rep. Jim Clyburn,

    DIAF.

    1. Just think, after Gabi’s Law passes, you’ll get a visit from the Feds!

      1. For sayng “Dancing Is Always Fun”?

        That’s crazy talk.

    2. I hope you’re not typing that in a crowded theater.

  22. Having limited public airwaves dominated by right-wing demagoguery is hardly a triumph of free speech.

    That said, some Dems’ anti-speech reaction to this have been quite misguided.

    1. Having limited public airwaves dominated by right-wing demagoguery is hardly a triumph of free speech.

      Actually, that’s exactly what it is. Without government interference, the market has determined what people want to hear.

      If you want people to hear something different, go organize your own radio station and talk show and try to sell it in the market place.

      1. If the market for speech leads to domination by right-wing demagoguery, then the market is flawed. The pragmatic usefulness of free speech is contrary to the aims of right-wing demagoguery.

        1. The familiar Tony definition of market failure – the market doesn’t give him what he wants, when he wants it, at the price he wants to pay.

          1. First of all, talk radio is hardly a robust, open marketplace. Rather, it’s become more and more monopolistic a situation over the years.

            Second, if the market in, say, fish, provided only mercury-poisoned variety, would you say there’s a problem, or would you say “that must be what people want!”?

            1. There is one conservative cable news channel and there are more than one liberal/progressive cable news channels. Since they are heavier in opinion than actual news, should the market be manipulated to even that up? Would you support that, Tony? If not, why not? After all, you want Fairness.

              1. No I don’t, especially not on means of communication not owned by the public.

            2. if the market in, say, fish, provided only mercury-poisoned variety, would you say there’s a problem, or would you say “that must be what people want!”?

              That has to be about the most stupid, absurd, idiotic and inapt analogy you could make.

              If the fish were poisoned and people knew it, they would stop buying it, and that market would go out of business.

              In your example, therefore, Air America is the poisoned fish.

              The reason Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck and Sean Hannity are multi-multi millionaires is not because they’re the only thing offered; it’s because millions of people want to hear what they’re going to say, which causes their air time to be valuable property, which they can sell to advertisers.

              The reverse proved to be true for Air America. It was not becuase they couldn’t get their own time on their own radio stations – it just turned out that their air time wasn’t worth that much, because so few people were interested in listening to what they had to say. Which I can understand. Who can take all that moaning and whining?

              1. You will get no argument from me that right-wing demagoguery sells, and sells a hell of a lot better than liberal nuance. Liberals simply don’t like being lectured at, and prefer to come to their own conclusions rather than sit like expectant dogs waiting for the received wisdom of a morbidly obese millionaire. In this country, unfortunately, there is a large appetite for that kind of thing.

                  1. Agreed. If you mean for most atrociously arrogant and bullshit piece of tripe I’ve read so far.

                1. Yeah, yeah – standard meme. Everyone on the right gets their marching orders from Rush Limbaugh. Yawn.

                2. “Liberal nuance”?

                  There’s a basis for leading the most powerful and economically successful nation this planet has ever known. “Liberal nuance.”

            3. Second, if the market in, say, fish, provided only mercury-poisoned variety, would you say there’s a problem, or would you say “that must be what people want!”?

              Eat moar chikin.

          2. The familiar Tony definition of market failure – the market doesn’t give him what he wants, when he wants it, at the price he wants to pay.

            Except the market does give him what he wants. He has for his listening, viewing and reading pleasure:

            NPR
            PBS
            The New York Times
            Mother Jones
            Catie Couric
            The View
            CNN
            The Stranger
            The Village Voice
            Noam Chomsky
            Air America
            Politically Incorrect
            The Daily Show
            Jim HIghtower
            Canada

            The list goes on… and on… and on…

            So the argument then must be nuanced. Maybe the market doesn’t give him enough of what he wants. Maybe the market is too dominated by Jews, maybe not dominated enough. Who knows what lurks in the heart of Tony. The fact that he uses his range-of-the-moment whim to determine that yes, Virginia, we do have a market failure, is the creepiest notion of all.

            1. Perhaps you didn’t notice me saying I’m not for a FD.

              I may have been decades ago when there were limited options, but as you ably demonstrate, there are plenty of options today.

              The FD is more useful to Republicans as yet another bogeyman than it is to Democrats as a policy goal.

        2. Why do you only focus on radio? In my opinion, print, broadcast and cable news and dominated by liberals. Fairness doctrine would apply there too.

          1. Oh, and wouldn’t libertarians get a full 1/3 share of that fairness?

            1. NEVER…because they’re haters.

          2. Your opinion is wrong, but a FD would only apply to publicly-owned means of communication. Not that I’m in favor of a FD.

            1. What is a “publicly-owned” means of communication, comrade?

                1. Barely Suppressed Rage|1.11.11 @ 1:04PM|#
                  What is a “publicly-owned” means of communication, comrade?

                  Tony|1.11.11 @ 1:17PM|#
                  Airwaves.

                  And the internet, Tony. Don’t forget the internet. Or have we so suddenly forgotten the liberal diatribe about how we libertarians treat the internet as a wild-west free-for-all when if it weren’t for government…

            2. …publicly-owned?

              The government owns the air?

              1. Being able to broadcast on public airwaves is a privilege, not a right, and a very, very lucrative privilege at that.

                1. Being able to broadcast on public airwaves is a privilege, not a right, and a very, very lucrative privilege at that.

                  It is only a “privilege” because of legality, not valid reasoning. Just as “gays can’t marry” is a legality, not based on valid reasoning.

                  1. So how do you divide up the air for private purchase?

                    1. The FCC allocates frequencies and issues broadcasting licenses. This is done out of a need to assure orderliness – i.e., so you don’t have 50,000 watt stations stepping all over each other in the same market.

                      Once you purchase that license, however, you in effect “own” the right to broadcast on that assigned frequency. The FCC does not have and should not have the power to then tell you what you have to broadcast.

                      Whether it’s a “privilege” or a “right” to broadcast does not answer the question of the legitimacy of the federal government telling broadcasters what content they must broadcast.

                    2. Also, if the FCC was not in the business of assigning stations, you would establish a property right when you build or buy the equipment necessary to broadcast and start broadcasting on an unclaimed signal then register it. The FCC would not distribute property but recognize it. A radio frequency is a meaningless abstraction without the equipment to broadcast a signal.

                    3. The doctrine of the “public airwaves” is a relic of the time when radio was the only means of mass communication, and the technology was such that only a few radio stations could operate in the same geographical area. To ensure that some evil tycoon couldn’t buy up all the available spectrum regions in an area and use them to further his tycoonery, the feds invented the “public airwaves” doctrine, which allowed them to limit the number of stations owned, and force the broadcasters to perform useful services for the community in return for getting a slice of spectrum.

                      Of course, this doctrine was complete and utter BS, and now that those limits on mass communication really no longer exist with sat radio, cable, and the Internet, its implications are truly dangerous. After all, nearly all of these other means of communication use wireless EM transmissions at some point in their delivery, so by the “public airwaves” doctrine, they should fall under the same FCC regs.

        3. If the market for speech leads to domination by right-wing demagoguery, then the market is flawed.

          Jesus Christ, are you truly that stupid?

          I have this hunch you would not reach that conclusion if the market led to domination by left-wing demagoguery.

          Sorry if most AM radio listeners don’t want to hear the stupidity spouted by Al Franken and the rest of the Air America gang, but that’s the way it worked out.

          Just like the left dominate cable news channels. I mean, you’ve got CNN, and you’ve sure as hell got MSNBC, and you’ve got that paragon of political intellect, Jon Stewart. Is that a failure of the free market system, because cable news is dominated by the left?

          The pragmatic usefulness of free speech is contrary to the aims of right-wing demagoguery.

          That is quite possible the most fucked-up thing I’ve seen you write.

        4. If the market for speech leads to domination by right-wing demagoguery, then the market is flawed. The pragmatic usefulness of free speech is contrary to the aims of right-wing demagoguery.

          Your conclusion is simply your projection of your valuation on that of the millions of others who disagree with you. There is no “market failure”, just a disagreement of ends.

        5. The market for free speech hasn’t led to domination by right-wing demagoguery. Talk radio is only a small fraction all the speech going on.

      2. so clear-channel is “the market”?

        1. Nice try Orrin, but while I despise clear-channel, they aren’t the only game in town.

    2. Hardly the downfall of free speech, as well.

    3. Go suck a cock, Tony.

    4. Re: Tony,

      Having limited public airwaves dominated by right-wing demagoguery is hardly a triumph of free speech.

      Yes, it is. Otherwise, you would only have NPR. And Lawrence Welk. Only.

      If the market for speech leads to domination by right-wing demagoguery, then the market is flawed.

      Right, and if evolution did not give us unicorns, then evolution is flawed. And if people cannot fly, then gravity is at fault. Go on, please….

      The pragmatic usefulness of free speech is contrary to the aims of right-wing demagoguery.

      But saying “pragmatic usefulness of free speech” is NOT demagoguery; right, Tony?????

      First of all, talk radio is hardly a robust, open marketplace.

      Meaning: “I don’t like the product, so it can’t be open.”

      Opinions and tastes are not arguments, Tony.

      Rather, it’s become more and more monopolistic a situation over the years.

      Au contraire, mon ami – it is hardly monopolistic, as the talk radio hosts have to compete with others for the audience; it is so competitive, the rivalry is quite cut-throat, by the way Savage savages O’Reilly, for instance.

    5. You might want to at least consider the possibility that the FCC won’t always be run by people who think the way you do, and their idea of “fairness” might not line up with yours. I don’t know why you statists never learn: you put power in the hands of politicians and then when they turn on you, you have the nerve to act shocked.

    6. “public airwaves”

      *snicker*

  23. If the market for speech leads to domination by right-wing demagoguery, then the market is flawed.

    Something is flawed, that much is certain.

  24. The Fairness Doctrine would economically destroy talk radio, by forcing the radio stations to take righty profitable shows off the air to make room for deadweight lefty shows.

    That’s what subsidies are for!

    1. Tax popular shows to subsidize Terri Gross and Alan Colmes.

  25. I wonder if these democrats realize what a weapon they’d be putting into the hands of their opponents, considering the overwhelming preponderance of liberal opinion on TV.

    1. They wouldn’t see it that way – after all, their liberal commissioners at the FCC would get to decide what’s “fair” and who needs to have some more air time.

  26. Never let a tragedy go to waste is a famous principle of the DNC.

    The fairness doctrine is ridiculous, in the fashion world we don’t apply a fairness doctrine to labels nobody likes. In consumer goods there’s no fairness doctrine just because Coke is more popular than Dr. Pepper. The fact is that this is a center right nation, even libertarians like me feel more comfortable with Fox News and conservative radio than I do with the whackjobs at NPR and MSNBC.

    http://libertarians4freedom.bl…..rrect.html

  27. ‘Free speech is as free speech does,’ he said. ‘You cannot yell ‘fire’ in a crowded theater and call it free speech and some of what I hear, and is being called free speech, is worse than that.’

    I may be just making this up in my mind, but didn’t we have a drinking game where every time a liberal used the “fire in a crowded theater” reference we were supposed to… you know, drink?

    Maybe it was just my game.

  28. Clyburn is a truly an intellectual midget.

    1. And sadly it appears his daughter, who sits on the FCC, inherited that intellect.

  29. The image of Rush’s fat ass is violence. Violence to my eyes. I will now go on a rampage.

  30. “Liberals simply don’t like being lectured at”… they simply prefer to be the ones DOING the lecturing.

    FIFY’d for ya, Tony. No charge.

  31. discourse led to a 22-year-old suspect opening fire Saturday at an event Democratic U.S. Rep.

  32. parameters on free speech, Clyburn said from his office, just blocks from the South

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.