From The Hill:
Federal Communications Commissioner Michael Copps made a case for a government hand in media policy in a speech to the FCBA on Tuesday.
"The commission can act now. It should have acted on the media before now. I am disappointed that it has not," he said.
The decline of "real journalism" justifies federal involvement, according to Copps. "The news is suffering from a bad case of substance abuse," he said.
The Democratic commissioner pointed to Fox News' Bernie Goldberg and Bill O'Reilly as examples of the problem with today's media landscape, saying the pair has taken his own words out of context.
"What you and I are getting these days is too much opinion based on opinion and too little news based on fact," Copps said.
The key going forward, according to Copps, is "making sure there is media about, and originating from, the local communities a station serves." […]
The commissioner also reiterated his call for a "Public Value Test" as part of the broadcasting license renewal, a process controlled by the FCC.
We have, as a country, tolerated the multiple infringements on "Congress shall pass no law" for far too long. No government official should ever be in the business of enforcing quality of journalism, and when one tries, he–and the agency he represents–should be run out of Washington on a rail. This is appalling on every level, and the fact that there's a journalistic constituency for it–read this awful commencement speech last year by Columbia Journalism School Dean and New Yorker essayist Nicholas Lemann for a taste–makes me deeply ashamed of my chosen profession.