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Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren Want the FCC to Revoke Sinclair's Broadcast Licenses

They say it's to protect free speech.

We are going to be tired after so much winning. ||| Zach D Roberts/NurPhoto/Sipa USA/NewscomZach D Roberts/NurPhoto/Sipa USA/NewscomHow stupid is the panic over Sinclair Broadcast Group's hamfisted, "must-run" promotional video decrying "fake news"? This stupid: Yesterday 12 senators, including reported presidential aspirants Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), and Cory Booker (D-N.J.), officially requested that the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) "investigate Sinclair's news activities to determine if it conforms to the public interest." If such an inquiry were to uncover "distorted news reports," the senators reckoned, that "could disqualify Sinclair from holding its existing licenses" and put the kibosh to its proposed purchase of Tribune Co. television stations.

"Multiple news outlets report that Sinclair has been forcing local news anchors to read Sinclair-mandated scripts warning of the dangers of 'one-sided news stories plaguing our country,' over the protests from local news teams," states the letter, authored by Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.). "As strong defenders of the First Amendment guarantees of free speech and freedom of the press, we are alarmed by such practices....Must-run dictates from Sinclair harm the freedom of the press guaranteed in the First Amendment by turning local journalists into mouthpieces for a corporate and political agenda."

FCC chair Ajit Pai this afternoon responded with a curt thanks-but-no-thanks. "In light of my commitment to protecting the First Amendment and freedom of the press, I must respectfully decline," Pai wrote. "I have repeatedly made clear that the FCC does not have the authority to revoke a license of a broadcast station based on the content of a particular newscast. I understand that you disliked or disagreed with the content of particular broadcasts, but I can hardly think of an action more chilling of free speech than the federal government investigating a broadcast station because of disagreement with its news coverage or promotion of that coverage."

The full text of Pai's letter is below:

Dear Senator Cantwell:

Thank you for your letter requesting that the Commission investigate a broadcaster based on the content of its news coverage and promotion of that coverage. In light of my commitment to protecting the First Amendment and freedom of the press, I must respectfully decline.

A free media is vital to our democracy. That is why during my time at the Commission I have consistently opposed any effort to infringe upon the freedom of the press and have fought to eliminate regulations that impede the gathering and dissemination of news. Most relevant here, I have repeatedly made clear that the FCC does not have the authority to revoke a license of a broadcast station based on the content of a particular newscast.

I understand that you disliked or disagreed with the content of particular broadcasts, but I can hardly think of an action more chilling of free speech than the federal government investigating a broadcast station because of disagreement with its news coverage or promotion of that coverage. Instead, I agree with Senator Markey that "[a]ny insinuation that elected officials could use the levers of government to control or sensor [sic] the news media would represent a startling degradation of the freedom of the press." I also take this opportunity to reaffirm the commitment I made to several members of the Senate Commerce Committee last year that the Commission under my leadership would "not act in a manner that violates the First Amendment and stifles or penalizes free speech by electronic media, directly or indirectly."

Thank you for your interest, and let me know if I can be of further assistance.

Ajit V. Pai

Pai was quoting there from a letter Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) wrote to him in October, urging the chairman to pledge that the FCC would not follow up on President Donald Trump's suggestion to challenge and possibly revoke the broadcast licenses of network news providers. Pai swatted away the notion of content-related license challenges both before and after Trump's tirade. (And yes, Markey is a signatory to Cantwell's Sinclair letter.)

Pai is currently under investigation by the FCC's inspector general, who is considering whether he acted improperly when lobbying for TV ownership rule changes in advance of the Sinclair-Tribune merger. Sanders and Warren, like most of the contemporary Democratic Party, are dead set against the Supreme Court's 2010 ruling in Citizens United legalizing the political speech of corporations. In Commentary last year, I warned that the erosion of societal support for free speech might eventually trickle up to the judiciary.

Nick Gillespie interviewed Pai last November.

Photo Credit: Zach D Roberts/NurPhoto/Sipa USA/Newscom

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  • Just Say'n||

    Both sides, everybody

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    But what about the other side?

  • Marcus Aurelius||

  • Fuck you, Shikha (Nunya)||

    But you,I suggest, should lose your first amendment rights.

  • sarcasmic||

    Must-run dictates from Sinclair harm the freedom of the press guaranteed in the First Amendment by turning local journalists into mouthpieces for a corporate and political agenda.

    Good point. After all, national (cable/AP) journalists are already mouthpieces for a corporate and political agenda.

  • JSirko||

    So a McDonald's franchise is chilled by corporate mandating that they serve Big Macs and not chitlins?

  • Just Say'n||

    Both side, everybody

  • SusanM||

    Was that on purpose?

  • Just Say'n||

    No. I'm just bad at commenting. You'd realize that if you read how bad my comments are

  • Citizen X - #6||

    It's true. He's awful.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    Yes.

  • Just Say'n||

    Give me credit for admitting it. I demand credit

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Until you admit how bad they are, it's the same as not admitting anything.

  • SusanM||

    What the hell, it works ;)

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    If such an inquiry were to uncover "distorted news reports," the senators reckoned, that "could disqualify Sinclair from holding its existing licenses"

    It's been so long that I can't remember. Can somebody remind me what reaction Sanders/Booker/Warren had when Trump suggested the same thing for MSNBC?

  • Mickey Rat||

    Markey is both sides of that fence depending on whose ox is threatened with goring.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    This is different because... Because it's different.

  • FlameCCT||

    Hell, it all it took were "distorted news reports" or corporate mandated "#FakeNews" promos then ABC, CBS, CNN, NBC, MSNBC, et.al. would all lose their licenses!

  • shawn_dude||

    Or, for that matter, Trump demanding the Washington Post be forced to register as a lobbyist because it's owned by Jeff Bezos.

    It's all political theater. Doesn't even rise to a B-rating, either.

    Hypocrisy--fuels the internet.

  • Elias Fakaname||

    Hypocrisy? You're soaking in it.

  • Don't look at me.||

    I wondered why it was so slimy.

  • Fuck you, Shikha (Nunya)||

    I was going to be, but I can't get her that excited.

  • SF Pete||

    Bezos has lobbied.. there is some truth there.

  • Elias Fakaname||

    That's why he bought that worthless rag. To use a propaganda tool under the guise of real news.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    reported presidential aspirants Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), and Cory Booker (D-N.J.)

    You don't necessarily need a choice of three presidential aspirants when children are hungry in this country.

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    They're all the same choice.

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    If we eliminated hunger in this country, people would starve. Think about it.

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    If we starve people, we could eliminate hunger.

  • The Inappropriate Comedy Tree||

    If we had a year-long nonstop orgy, we'd all get HIV.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    But what a year!

  • Brett Bellmore||

    Well, sure. Who'd bother to eat if they never got hungry?

  • Elias Fakaname||

    All three of them are commie traitors.

  • SF Pete||

    fallacy repugnant..no child is hungry in America..

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Welch doesn't understand that democracy can't withstand the one-two punch of Russia's trolling and Sinclair's tainted news. Pai does understand it, of course, but considering he knowingly destroyed the internet I'm guessing he just doesn't care. The bottom line, unless we get Sinclair to toe the line or get off the air, we're never going to get a Democrat celebrity in the White House.

  • Rhywun||

    a Democrat celebrity in the White House

    President Kimmel has a... terrifying... ring to it. Thanks for putting that thought in my head.

  • ||

    I was thinking more President Streep.

  • The Inappropriate Comedy Tree||

    President Snoop Doggy Dogg laughs at all of you.

  • Christophe||

    Let's give Snoop credit, he'd end the War on Drugs. Then be too high to do much harm.

  • Sir Chips Alot||

    I would vote for Snoop Dogg. that would be awesome to have him as president

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    what's president Oprah, chopped liver?

  • Rhywun||

    The most likely of the three by far?

  • Elias Fakaname||

    Maybe a Negan/Lucille ticket.

  • Earth Skeptic||

    Oprah

  • Mark22||

  • UnrepentantCurmudgeon||

    You prefer maybe President Oprah?

  • SF Pete||

    thank you for that idiotic ( no proof) comment

  • Just Say'n||

    Remember Trump and his supporters praising Bernie Sanders and bemoaning how he was cheated by the Democrats? Never praise or defend a filthy socialist. Idiots

  • Elias Fakaname||

    Bernie......a man so worthless, even filthy hippies gave him the boot for being a lazy shit.

  • Tony||

    The problem with the Sinclair thing is that consumers of news and opinion journalism are supposed to know where an opinion is coming from. In this case, Corporate is essentially an arm of the Trump government--not that you give a shit about that kind of thing, you're libertarians! And Corporate is whoring out the credibility of local journalists to push its message in those journalists' name.

    "But the message was nothing but platitudes!" So? And you're wrong about that too. It was a series of innuendos (none backed up by examples) meant to reinforce the idea that "Any bad news about Trump is fake news." It's such basic authoritarianism it's no surprise that libertarians are the only ones who can't see it.

    I appreciate your finding all the technicalities of why this is actually a perfectly valid expression of freedom in America, but if it was a ruling Communist party dictating what local journalists say, maybe you'd see what the problem was. Maybe you'd even be able to see that there are types of assaults on freedom that are more subtle than a government goon buttstroking you in the face.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    Tony heard a dogwhistle. What does that make Tony?

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    A species completely unrelated to the noble canine, but with the same aural acuity.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    A chupacabra?

    You're right, though. My dog has roughly the same ability as Tony to stink up a room, but unlike Tony he also has reasonable intelligence and a good personality.

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    Have you tried Gas Busters?

  • Just Say'n||

    I'm sure Tony is pleasant in person. Your dog seems like a jerk, though

  • Brandybuck||

    Unlike Tony, he will probably slink out of the room after laying the air biscuit.

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    A harbor porpoise?

  • Just Say'n||

    The crushing irony of Tony complaining about a biased press is just too much

  • Tony||

    You mean that specter of liberal media bias that Republicans and many of you guys have been whining about literally my entire life?

  • Just Say'n||

    It takes a special kind of partisanship to deny that the major media outlets are not biased at this point.

  • sarcasmic||

    It takes a special kind of partisanship retardation to deny that the major media outlets are not biased at this point.

    ftfy

  • Tony||

    It doesn't matter if they're biased, it matters if they're doing the bidding of a corporate or government entity that doesn't identify itself while pretending to be objective journalism.

    The right has had this down to an artform for decades now, the excuse for their terrible journalistic standards being of course that real journalism was biased against them.

  • ||

    Good thing then that when a Democrat is back in the White House that Sinclair will start doing their bidding.

    Because that's actually how State run media works. You know...because it's run by the State.

    Let me just wait and see if that's what happens.

  • Earth Skeptic||

    I am your Dear Leader and I approve this message.

  • Tony||

    No, it's a good thing that we have a state that switches party control regularly.

  • ||

    And it's also a good thing that we have a Press that's free to print whatever they want, even if it just so happens to be in line with what a politician would prefer.

  • Juice||

    No, it's a good thing that we have a state that switches party control regularly.

    Luckily it switches between two parties instead of three or more. That would get confusing.

  • Tony||

    That'd be fine. We just need to completely rebuild how elections work in this country.

  • Paradigm||

    > We just need to completely rebuild how elections work in this country.

    Hmmm. Let me guess...we should abolish the electoral college so hellholes like LA and San Francisco can dictate to the rest of us and turn our nice neighborhoods into tent cities with shit literally piling up. I'm leaning toward 'no' on that one, Tony.

  • Tony||

    Of course not because Alabama dictating national policy is so much better.

  • Rebel Scum||

    ALL mainstream networks are corporate and owned by the same few corporations. And yes, they all are in bed with government at some level. That is how CNN and the like took us to war after 9/11 and are driving support for conflict with Russia now.

  • Tony||

    Can't disagree with you there, and corporate media consolidation is a problem liberals have been concerned about for decades. I think the entire American populace has already been made ignorant of much corporate malfeasance as a result of this.

  • Fuck you, Shikha (Nunya)||

    How the fuck do you combine corporate and government into the same group? One pays taxes, which last I checked, does entitle them to some rights.

  • ||

    Yes, and then all the subsequent comments that the government should crush their speech.

  • SF Pete||

    oops, I stop by CNN and MSNBC, all they do is trash trump, that's news????? unbiased ???they kissed Obama on his feet when he was in, and Hillary, never a question there.. go back to your hole.. ignorance is amazing, you never learned how to dig for truth. guess you've led a short life, they have been doing this since the 60's, just not as vociferous and obvious, now they are exposed as Socialist fools.

  • Elias Fakaname||

    When MSNBC interviewed Hillary, they rehearsed all the questions ahead of time.

  • JWatts||

    "The crushing irony of Tony complaining about a biased press is just too much"

    No, you misinterpreted him. Tony's merely concerned about the direction of the bias, not the existence of it.

  • Juice||

    Bring back the fairness doctrine?

  • James Pollock||

    Back when the Fairness Doctrine was in place, most television stations dealt with it by not taking positions on most issues, and then when they did take a position, they would usually look for someone who could legitimately be said to offer a competing viewpoint... but then all involved would pretend that there are precisely two viewpoints on any issue, and the two are of precisely equal validity.

    Then AM talk radio came along and broadcasters found that there was a definitely non-equal market for politically-biased programming. What message does this wave of overwhelmingly conservative media personalities preach to their overwhelmingly conservative audience? Why, that media is biased towards liberals, of course!

    Reinstating the Fairness Doctrine is a bit of a non-starter. It turns out that a substantial portion of the American public doesn't WANT fair media. The want one side, their side, to be represented and any opposing voices should be hooted down, ignored, belittled... all the while complaining about how the other side controls (insert media outlet).

  • colorblindkid||

    There were over a dozen people in Obama's administration who were related to or married to an executive at a media organization.
    George Stephanopolous was the Bill Clinton version of Kelly Anne Conway, yet now he anchors a major news show on ABC and even moderates presidential debates.
    Chris Cuomo's brother is a sitting Democrat governor.
    The notion that there is more Republican/conservative propaganda in the American news media than Democrat/progressive propoganda is so fucking delusional I don't even know where to start.

    How about the narrative after Orlando that the guy was a closeted gay who frequented gay clubs and was on gay dating apps. Every news organization reported this same angle and the same narrative, which was 100% false. It was literal fake news.

  • Just Say'n||

    "How about the narrative after Orlando that the guy was a closeted gay who frequented gay clubs and was on gay dating apps."

    The actual narrative was that Republican bigotry motivated the shooter, according to the NYT editorial page and Anderson Cooper's questioning of Florida's attorney general at the time, to name a few instances.

    You don't have to be a conservative to acknowledge that the bulk of the major media establishment is thoroughly wedded to progressive politics

  • Rebel Scum||

    Republican bigotry motivated the shooter

    To shout something in Arabic as he massacred homosexuals. IT ALL MAKES SENSE!. //Sarc.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    Not to mention Islam is bigoted towards homosexuals.

  • Kivlor||

    Not to mention Islam is bigoted towards homosexuals.

    You are repeating far-right propaganda that slanders the Prophet and his word! You have been reported sir, to the British authorities for your incitement of racial hatred. Just like Lauren Southern, you too will be banned from merry England and most likely from the rest of the Commonwealth.

    Soon, when we finally get the US Supreme Court to realize that hate speech is not free speech, and that it is in fact an act of violence, you'll be facing a lot worse than that paltry punishment, I promise you!

    /s

  • RAHeinlein||

    You forgot the NRA.

  • Elias Fakaname||

    The NRA is just a thrill to a joint operation of the Tril Lateral Comission, and the Girl Scouts. I thought most people knew that.

  • Wizard with a Woodchipper||

    Good points. Let's not forget that D.C. journalists overwhelmingly identify as democrats. The same pool of journalists also donates overwhelmingly to Democrats.

  • Tony||

    Maybe Republicans should apply to journalism school more often.

  • Just Say'n||

    I wonder what Kevin Williamson would have to say about your hot take

  • JWatts||

    "I wonder what Kevin Williamson would have to say about your hot take"

    Maybe we'll read about it in The Atlantic, I read he had a knew gig there.....

  • Tony||

    Probably "I shouldn't have said that thing about murdering women who get abortions."

  • Just Say'n||

    "Probably I shouldn't have said that thing about killing gun owners or insisting that they have blood on their hands, but I don't care because I still have a job"

  • Tony||

    I wouldn't have fired that guy over that. Now, if a bunch of readers threatened to toss The Atlantic into the bin over his hire, that would be a business decision and thus you couldn't object.

  • Just Say'n||

    It's cute that you think that's what happened. It totally wasn't just 'journalists' and opinion writers pushing the Atlantic to can Williamson. Everything that happens on Twitter is real life

  • Tony||

    I don't know the details or care. Atlantic got rid of comments so fuck them.

  • colorblindkid||

    Hey look, something with which everybody at Reason will agree with Tony.

  • Mickey Rat||

    Especially since that was not what he said.

  • Fuck you, Shikha (Nunya)||

    Suddenly Tony likes market principles.

  • Elias Fakaname||

    Sociopaths tend To embrace situational ethics.

  • Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland||

    Let's not forget that D.C. journalists overwhelmingly identify as democrats.

    This should surprise no one. D.C. journalists are likely to have strong educations. They tend to be accomplished professionals and to prefer the reality-based world. Most of them are not broadly intolerant or backward.

    My experience indicated that journalists tend not to contribute to political campaigns (at least, not those covering politics -- the outdoors writer or restaurant reviewer might be more likely to donate politically, but even that would be somewhat surprising).

  • Mickey Rat||

    Stop...that is too funny...you're killing me here...

  • Violent Sociopath||

    D.C. journalists are likely to have strong educations.

    J-school hardly qualifies education, never mind a strong one.

    to prefer the reality-based world

    They're stubbornly and comprehensively ignorant about virtually everything, from foreign policy to technology to firearms.

    Most of them are not broadly intolerant or backward.

    They routinely demonstrate on social media that the only thing greater than their odious cultural bigotry is their hilariously unearned self-regard.

    In this they share a great deal with sanctimonious, half-educated left-wingers who, having overdosed on sniffing their own farts, imagine themselves at the vanguard of a non-existent and ascendant "liberal-libertarian alliance".

  • VinniUSMC||

    Artie believes himself to be one of them, that's why he holds them in such high esteem. They are merely projections of his self image.

    Trump could learn a thing or two about narcissism from Artie.

  • Hank Ferrous||

    That's going to leave a mark.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Artie's a hicklib indulging in his own self-loathing again. Once you understand that he's desperately compensating for not being raised in an urbanite bughive, his posts make a lot more sense.

  • Neopergoss||

    Right, because the personal opinions of the people reading from the same corporate script are so important

  • Tony||

    I don't like the idea of people going to and fro government and media, but I maintain that there is a difference between how the parties deal with the media. Democrats get kicked in the groin on a constant basis for minor flaws, even by allegedly pro-Democratic media, and Republicans get graded on the retard curve.

    And even if you weren't wrong about the Orlando thing, it would just be a case of news being bad at their job, which happens all the time.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Exhibit 1 in the encyclopedia britannica of 'gaslighting.'

  • colorblindkid||

    Half the CBC met with Louis Farrakhan (who is just the black version of David Duke) and the President of Iran without telling anybody and the press hasn't even touched the story. A few reporters have asked them about it, and not a single one of them was willing to say a single bad thing about Farrakhan.

  • Elias Fakaname||

    Tony, that is another skewed bullshit observation you've made. It this is what we have come to expect from an individual, such as yourself.

  • Tony||

    You and loveconstitution and sevo should get together and eat glue together and leave the rest of these halfway intelligent people out of it.

  • DesigNate||

    Mmmmm, taste the double standard.

  • Neopergoss||

    The whole point of this spin was to say that he murdered them because he was an Islamic extremist when the truth is that he was clearly motivated for political reasons related to US foreign policy, just like most terrorists. They don't hate us for our freedom, they hate our foreign policy, and they often say so explicitly. The media does everything in its power to obfuscate this.

  • Jordan||

    I appreciate your finding all the technicalities of why this is actually a perfectly valid expression of freedom in America, but if it was a ruling Communist party dictating what local journalists say, maybe you'd see what the problem was.

    Yeah, we would. Good thing this is nothing like that at all. Your (and Bernie's and Liz's) preferred policy prescription is apparently much more along those lines though.

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    In this case, Corporate is essentially an arm of the Trump government--not that you give a shit about that kind of thing, you're libertarians!

    Actually, this sort of thing is exactly why libertarians have been trying to warn you about the dangers of a powerful government. Government is not some sort of guardian against Big Business; it's part of it. And yet here you and Sanders and Warren are, wanting to give the government that is doing this bad thing MORE power. The authoritarian you rightly speak of is still in control. Do you still cling to your illusion that this will somehow help the Little People?

  • sarcasmic||

    Government is not some sort of guardian against Big Business; it's part of it.

    Leftists truly do not understand the difference between voluntary action and force. They really believe that everything forced upon us by government is voluntary, and everything offered to us by businesses is force.

    It's like Bastiat said, socialists do not understand the distinction between government and society.

  • Tony||

    I've not endorsed this or any proposal. My concern is with some identifiable measure of individual freedom coming out the other end.

    I appreciate that it's difficult being a free-speech absolutist while contending with the aspects of government oppression that deal in propaganda. It's something I struggle with myself. It's hard to say any kind of speech is actually harmful. But I suggest it might pay to keep an eye on propaganda in this country, because we're people same as everyone else, and propaganda has a solid history of working.

  • The Inappropriate Comedy Tree||

    I appreciate that it's difficult being a free-speech absolutist while contending with the aspects of government oppression that deal in propaganda. It's something I struggle with myself.

    When the FUCK have you ever been an absolutist on free speech? You're on the hate speech bandwagon all the time! You want to shut up EVERYONE who opposes you!

    It's hard to say any kind of speech is actually harmful.

    And yet you do it all the time.

    But I suggest it might pay to keep an eye on propaganda in this country, because we're people same as everyone else, and propaganda has a solid history of working.

    Good idea. When are you going to push to defund NPR and the Ad Council? Because by god the Ad Council is full of shit, they're a propaganda outfit run by the government–obviously, if we really give a shit about propaganda, we're getting rid of them ASAP.

  • Tony||

    I am not on the hate speech bandwagon. I forgive you for lumping me in with all the liberal caricatures you have in your head.

    Another wrinkle in this discussion is that government funding of media doesn't necessarily make it propaganda. The BBC isn't a party outfit and neither is NPR. But the privately run FOX News is.

  • Violent Sociopath||

    The BBC isn't a party outfit and neither is NPR.

    NARRATOR: Both the BBC and NPR are party outfits.

  • Elias Fakaname||

    Tony, you ARE a living breathing caricature of progtard bias and bigotry. You're really little more than a stereotypical cartoon character. And not a very imaginative example of one.

  • Tony||

    Could you say that again but in fingerpaint? You're clearer in your native language.

  • Sir Chips Alot||

    [quote]Another wrinkle in this discussion is that government funding of media doesn't necessarily make it propaganda.[quote]

    you can't be that dumb, can you?

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    Um....individual freedom? Dude, I've lost track of the number of times that you've lectured me that individuals don't have any rights, just privileges granted by the government. So what the fuck are you talking about now?

  • Tony||

    That's really just a semantic debate.

  • The Inappropriate Comedy Tree||

    Translation: I don't want to admit I'm a hypocrite taking the other side just because my political views are inconsistent.

  • Tony||

    I am consistently in favor of individual liberty, have said so many times, and furthermore I've also explained how I'm far more in favor of it than any libertarian.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Because the only way we can all be free is if some of us work so you don't have to.

  • Tony||

    Framing this in Reagan-era hogwash about looters and producers is sure to move this conversation to fruitful places. Never has a euphemism for "people with a lot of money regardless of how it was acquired" had such legs.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Sucks to have your own arguments used against you, doesn't it?

  • Elias Fakaname||

    The only individual liberty you support is guys plowing other guys in their assholes. Outside of that, you're cool with the government deciding how everyone is going to live, and how they will not.

  • Tony||

    So are you, and you want government to force me to live as a serf working for one of a dozen gazillionaires. No thanks!

  • Sir Chips Alot||

    you can't make up this kind of stupid. Tony thinks freedom = slavery and slavery = freedom.

  • James Pollock||

    "individuals don't have any rights"

    "Rights" are an imaginary construct. Usually they relate to real-world events, but they don't have to.

    For example, if you step off the Golden Gate Bridge, you're free to lecture the Bay about your right to life, but it isn't likely to affect the outcome. As an individual, you have exactly those rights that the people around you are prepared to give you. As an example, in most places in the U.S., if you are a pedestrian in a crosswalk, you have the right-of-way. But that doesn't stop that car rolling towards you from driving right through the crosswalk. One of two things converts that right-of-way into an ability to cross the street safely... either the driver of the car recognizes and accepts your right-of-way and stops for you, or a cop sees it and enforces your right-of-way. Without one of those two things, you can TALK about your right-of-way, but it isn't real.

    Now, our government has a list of rights that, generally, it will honor. Sometimes, it doesn't, and people rightfully complain about those instances. Some people choose not to go along with the government's decisions about what rights are granted to which people. Sometimes that's fine, sometimes it's a cause for disagreement and argument, but little else, and sometimes there are real consequences for people, individually and collectively. But in no case is any right absolute. That's just hard facts.

  • Procyon Rotor||

    This is a serious misunderstanding of the entire concept of rights. A right is not something you are materially guaranteed, it's something you are morally entitled to. Just because you can be killed, doesn't mean your right to life is negated. It means that if a moral actor kills you, they have violated your right to life and can be justly punished for the violation. With this understanding, all rights are absolute. If they weren't absolute, it would be incorrect to call them rights.

  • Neopergoss||

    Right, the CFPB is just an arm of big business.

    You guys are totally delusional.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    Did a comment get deleted somehow? Because this dude here is responding to something that nobody said.

  • Neopergoss||

    "Government is not some sort of guardian against Big Business; it's part of it."

    Reading comprehension is an important skill.

  • James Pollock||

    "Reading comprehension is an important skill."

    Not on the Internet.
    An amazing number of people manage to operate without... just substitute what you wish the other guy said, and go on ahead and complain about the things they didn't actually say.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Just another enforcement wing of the corporatists. It's more fashionable to say that now instead of calling them by their true name: fascists.

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    Oh gee, I'm sorry. Of course politicians are all noble selfless public servants who wear themselves to a frazzle protecting us and being our nanny. They're not greedy or power hungry. And the fact that they get rich while in "public service" doesn't mean a darn thing. Does that about cover it?

  • Headache||

    Yup

  • Neopergoss||

    You're right. Elizabeth Warren is totally doing everything she possibly can to cash in. That's why she worked as a professor for so many years -- she wanted to make a fortune.

    You guys are living in a fantasy world.

  • sarcasmic||

    If the Communist party dictated what MSNBC or CNN had to say, the content wouldn't change a bit.

  • Tony||

    Come up with that opinion all on your own or did some fat Mar-a-Lago regular feed it into your brain?

  • sarcasmic||

    I don't need anyone to feed me my opinions. I come up with them all by myself. It's called critical thinking. I would suggest that you try it sometime, but it has already been established that your gray matter lacks the circuitry.

  • Tony||

    All right, then surely you can point to a single instance of a reporter or anchor on CNN or MSNBC endorsing communism.

  • sarcasmic||

    Oh yeah. I forgot. You would require someone actually using the "C" word before you would agree that they are endorsing forced collectivism, aka communism. Because you lack the brainpower to read between the lines. Just as you lack the brainpower to comprehend economic concepts like opportunity cost. You can't see it, therefore it doesn't exist.

  • Rebel Scum||

    point to a single instance of a reporter or anchor on CNN or MSNBC endorsing communism.

    Well, Van Jones is a self-described communist.

  • RAHeinlein||

    Marc Lamont Hill - self-proclaimed Marxist.

    www.nytimes.com/2016/07/24/mag.....rxist.html

  • Tony||

    See that wasn't so hard.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    But what did you learn?

  • Tony||

    That all but one commentator in the history of CNN have never even expressed a remote affection for communism?

  • Rigelsen||

    Serious question. Do you not know what logic is or do you just prefer to stay as far from it as possible?

  • Elias Fakaname||

    Tony, why don't you compare the ten pillars of communism with the democrat party's platform. Pretty much the same shit. It isn't necessary for them to outwardly self identify as Marxists to be Marxist.

    Example: Tpmy likes being fucked in his asshole by other men and disturbingly young teen boys. He also likes doing the same to them. Tony doesn't call himself a homo, but he goddamn well is one. He's also a ticking chickenhawk, even if he never uses the word himself.

    Do you understand now Tony?.

  • Tony||

    Too young to be a chickenhawk, quack quack.

  • Headache||

    They support democrats, and the difference is: The DNC's platform is indistinguishable from Marx's manifesto.

  • leninsmummy||

    Ever see communist propaganda? Ever see a Barack Obama poster? You're truly clueless; not only do Democrats admire russian propaganda they copy it.

  • Elias Fakaname||

    Jim Carney's home is certainly adorned with it.

  • Hank Ferrous||

    Bizarre how little this detail comes up.

  • Rebel Scum||

    "Any bad news about Trump is fake news." It's such basic authoritarianism it's no surprise that libertarians are the only ones who can't see it.

    Barry's admin investigates a Fox News Journalist and threatens to charge said journalist with espionage for reporting accurate, but damaging information about the admin. and Tony doesn't bat an eye.

    Trump says disparaging things about CNN because of their slanted reporting on him and his admin. and Tony loses his freaking mind.

  • Tony||

    I'm not freaking out yet because Trump is too incompetent and ridiculous to become a real strong man, and nobody's buying it except his slack-jawed neoconfederate followers. But imagine if he were smart.

  • Rebel Scum||

    slack-jawed neoconfederate followers

    Yea, I understand that SC is threatening secession again, which is ironic considering who is president, right? You keep doing you, Tony. Keep in line with your Democrat overlords and keep calling anyone who disagrees with you on taxes or guns (and what the gov't is actually allowed to do with them) deplorables. It is sure to be a winning strategy.

  • Tony||

    Well I don't seem to be hurting. Trump's ridiculousness is single-handedly making Republicans jump off ledges by the scores in anticipation of November.

  • Headache||

    Those are curbs not ledges. Get it right!

  • Elias Fakaname||

    Tony, you're a horrible person. Do something good for once and commit suicide. On some level you must understand how malignant you are.

  • Tony||

    Is this not third-cousin Thursday? You're skipping out on the one night a week you get to fuck a relative you only sorta know?

  • VinniUSMC||

    How many people can name more than 1 person that they know to be their third cousin?

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    "The problem with the Sinclair thing is that consumers of news and opinion journalism are supposed to know where an opinion is coming from."

    Pro tip, no on be consumes local news.

    Pro tip, I don't know where your opinions come from, and I'm not asking the fcc to take your license away... oh wait, I see the genius here. Licensed speech is special speech.

  • Brian||

    Tony:

    I appreciate your finding all the technicalities of why this is actually a perfectly valid expression of freedom in America, but if it was a ruling Communist party dictating what local journalists say, maybe you'd see what the problem was

    Oh, nice try framing tyrannical anti-free speech bullshit as just concerned libertarians making sure governments don't talk to much.

  • sharmota4zeb||

    Working in the entertainment or publishing industry means staying within the guidelines of what the client wants you to produce. Local reporters are free to say what they want off the clock.

  • Tony||

    Journalism is a special type of private industry, and that's why it's the only one mentioned in the constitution.

  • twist||

    Wait, he actually thinks that's what "press" means?

    AHAHAAHHAAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAAHAHAHA
    AHAHAAHHAAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAAHAHAHA
    AHAHAAHHAAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAAHAHAHA
    AHAHAAHHAAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAAHAHAHA
    AHAHAAHHAAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAAHAHAHA

  • Headache||

    I know, ha!

  • Citizen X - #6||

    You do realize that "freedom of the press" refers to the means of disseminating information generally, and not to a specific profession, right?

  • Rebel Scum||

    "freedom of the press" refers to the means of disseminating information

    Either he knows this and is being deliberately dishonest, or he is actually that stupid.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    It's impossible to tell with Tony.

  • Headache||

    No it isn't, it is both.

  • Tony||

    I am unfamiliar with whatever point you think you're making, and I always love discovering new libertarian bullshit.

  • Elias Fakaname||

    Tony, when we have a new era of McCarthism, and the HUAC is reconstituted, I look forward to your fear and misery. Marxist sbversives like you have no right to exist.

  • Tony||

    Yet you're going to bitch when you show up on the terrorist watch list.

  • Elias Fakaname||

    Tony, you amd your friends are the theorists and subversives. I'm a supporter of rule of law and the constitution. You're always the one on favor of communism and sedition.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    Yes, your unfamiliarity with basic history is exceedingly clear.

  • MarkLastname||

    What does 'press' mean? It means printing press. The primary means of disseminating information at the time.

    That's the clear meaning of the fucking clause. It has nothing to do with any industry or profession.

    Apparently your definition of the word 'libertarian' is 'anyone who can read and knows what words mean.'

  • Brian||

    God, you're stupid.

  • Seamus||

    You do know that there was no journalism "industry" at the time of the constitution, just a scattered bunch of people who happened to have printing presses.

  • Tony||

    Those people would be the journalism industry.

  • Brian||

    I get it: what you're saying is, the journalism industry is special, and has special constitutional protections, and that's why Bernie and Lizzie should go pound sand.

  • Elias Fakaname||

    Bernie and Zlizzy should be on a blacklist for being communists.

  • MarkLastname||

    Ah, that part of the 1st amendment that says "the corporate journalism industry shall enjoy this special Right denied other citizens..." Is that clause only in your copy?

  • Elias Fakaname||

    Tony's copy also mentions that it also only applies to Party members in good standing.

  • Social Justice is neither||

    So you discount the NYT because it's owned by a foreign national. Wouldn't want people thinking that was actually news and not Mexican propaganda, right?

  • Elias Fakaname||

    Tony, the entire MSM IS communist propaganda. Often coordinated by efforts like Journolist.

  • Tony||

    Seek professional mental help.

  • Elias Fakaname||

    That's all you've got? Or are you just too occupied rapping some twelve year old boy to make a decent effort at responding?

  • MarkLastname||

    I'm sure you yourself have a long list of professionals you can recommend.

  • epsilon given||

    Is Sinclair the only corporate media conglomerate?

    And where do CBS, NBC, Washington Post, et al get their opinions from? Since they are all corporations, it's safe to assume they get all their opinions from Trump. I never realized just how much Trump hates himself!

  • SF Pete||

    oops, we all knew it was Sinclair, very obvious, of course Dems think all people are idiots, why they are the party of the rich Oligarchs now.. they care nothing for the working stiff.

  • SF Pete||

    TONY, get an education, you open your mouth and remove all doubt.

    your diatribe smacked of Naiveté.

  • MarkLastname||

    What about all the left wing media outlets, are they arms of congressional Democrats and therefore fair game for suppression? Considering that Sinclair, in their follow up, included examples like Pizza gate as examples of fake news they were referring to, your dog whistle theory is just you looking for an excuse to shut down anyone you disagree with.

    But it's a good formula: declare any private entity or person who disagrees with you a de facto agent of the state (or congressional opposition if your party is in power) and then violate their rights with impunity!

    Remember when you said you were a free speech absolutist? Haha, what a laugh.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    ""The problem with the Sinclair thing is that consumers of news and opinion journalism are supposed to know where an opinion is coming from."'

    Really? Why is the knowing the origin of an opinion more important than knowing the origin of something reported as fact. Think about that the next time you hear "an unnamed source" reported X, Y or Z.

  • Wizard with a Woodchipper||

    "To Protect Free Speech, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren Think, the FCC Should Revoke Sinclair's Broadcast Licenses."

    You punctuation makes no sense--unless we're meant to read this headline in our Shatner voice.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    You're supposed to read EVERY headline in a Shatner voice. How did you not know this?

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    That sentence is perfectly fine, just like Elizabeth Warren's smile.

  • Just Say'n||

    ^ Scott Bakula 'would' Warren

  • Marcus Aurelius||

    Wood not.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    "" Scott Bakula 'would' Warren"'

    With that I can't help to think of Diane Warren and the shitty theme song she did for Enterprise.

    Thanks a lot!!

  • VinniUSMC||

    If the sentence doesn't make sense, then removing the piece between the commas would result in a sentence that made no sense.

    "To Protect Free Speech the FCC Should Revoke Sinclair's Broadcast Licenses."

    That makes perfect sense. So, the commas are fine. It could have been restructured, sure. But it's fine as it is.

  • Rhywun||

    How stupid is the panic over Sinclair Broadcast Group's hamfisted, "must-run" promotional video decrying "fake news"?

    It's so stupid, I wish I had the 7 or 8 minutes back it took me to figure out WTF this was all about.

    This might be the stupidest sentence of all:

    "Must-run dictates from Sinclair harm the freedom of the press guaranteed in the First Amendment by turning local journalists into mouthpieces for a corporate and political agenda."

  • Citizen X - #6||

    They're jealous. Sinclair shouldn't be using its employees as its mouthpieces! Only government gets to do that!

  • Rhywun||

    I should tell my boss that him making me do stuff is stifling my free speech and see how far that gets me.

  • Citizen X - #6||

    Depending on your boss's sense of humor, it could get you all the way to the nearest unemployment office.

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    Interesting factoid: The unemployment office is the only place where you can't be both a worker and a customer.

  • ||

    and let me know if I can be of further assistance

    ROTFL

    Ajit truly knows how to play the game. That's exactly how one should write "now go fuck yourself" in polite terms.

  • Neopergoss||

    The folks at Reason think that a network making backroom deals with the president's son-in-law to control almost every local news station in the country is "freedom." You won't be satisfied until we're just like Singapore.

  • ||

    control almost every local news station in the country

    Yes. Exactly. Because controlling one station in a market means you control them all.

    or something...

  • Neopergoss||

    Currently Sinclair controls 193 stations. After its acquisition of Tribune Media, it will control 223 stations. This would cover 72% of homes.

    You apparently lack a basic understanding of what you're talking about. Please educate yourself before commenting next time.

  • ||

    You do happen to know the difference between access and eyeballs, right? And the difference between having a presence in each market vs. "control" of each market, right?

    Oh, no, you don't.

  • Neopergoss||

    Do you know the difference between 1 and 193? Is there any limit to the amount of media consolidation you'll defend?

  • Citizen X - #6||

    Singapore is the standard for oppression now?

  • sharmota4zeb||

    I guess it's because they are tough on vandals in Singapore. What's the invasion of Tibet to a progressive compared to caning people who vandalize stuff?

  • Kivlor||

    This is what I was wondering too... Where does Singapore fit into this?

  • Neopergoss||

    I've heard libertarians tout Singapore as a model and brag about its economic freedom, even though it's an authoritarian state under single party rule. https://www.heritage.org/index/country/singapore http://harvardpolitics.com/wor.....tarianism/

  • Jordan||

    If there's anything that the media is known for these days, it's being kind to Trump.

  • Neopergoss||

    Are you suggesting that since the rest of the media doesn't lick Trump's boots that having Sinclair control local news for 72% of the country is some kind of balance? Because that's sick. It's sick that you think anyone should be kind to Trump, for that matter.

  • Mickey Rat||

    What does that have to do with punishing that organization for content?

  • Neopergoss||

    Nothing, because that's not what this story is really about.

    You guys are really dense.

  • jm15xy||

    This is the kind of thing they do in Venezuela.

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    Oh, look, the randos are here.

    [lights giant Sevo signal into the sky]

  • The Inappropriate Comedy Tree||

    Fuck off, poser douche!

    (That a good enough Sevo impression for ya CMB?)

  • cereal_shake||

    needs more commie-kid

  • The Inappropriate Comedy Tree||

    Fuck off, commie-kid! Get your ass off my lawn and on my dick!

  • cereal_shake||

    Have news? Well, yeah.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    This is the kind of thing they do in Venezuela.

    No, in a place like that ALL media is control by one entity. Sinclair is being fishy only with the one's it owns which is not all media.

  • Ken Shultz||

    It's nice to see someone debunking the garbage. It doesn't happen often, these days.

    Rahm Emanuel famously said, "You never want to let a crisis go to waste", but nowadays everything is a crisis.

    Net neutrality is supposedly a crisis, but when a big nothing happens--somehow the nothingness never gets reported. Still, the public consciousness is in crisis mode on the issue.

    The Russians hired their own 50 Cent Army, and now the Republic is in danger unless we violate the First Amendment. It's a big nothing burger, but somehow that just proves that democracy and free speech are in free fall.

    Donald Trump tweeted something--and now trade with China is about to dry up and disrupt world trade forever.

    . . . except Emperor Xi announced that he was allowing more U.S. built cars into the country, the North Koreans confirmed that denuclearization is on the table come the summit with Trump in May, and Donald Trump just told his staff to take steps to initiate America's reentry into the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

    Wasn't free trade in total meltdown just . . . a couple of days ago?

    Yeah, so St. Bernie and "Dances with Lies" Warren found a crisis that needs our immediate attention or we can kiss the integrity of our democracy goodbye?

    Color me unsurprised. Weren't they all gonna ban "assault weapons" last week?

    You want to hear about a real crisis? They made my sub with mayo. I specifically told them, "No mayo!"

  • SusanM||

    YOU BASTARDS!!!!

  • Ken Shultz||

    It's a lazy condiment.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Assault weapons is already losing momentum.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    And I'll bet so has hogg's incoming call log.

  • cereal_shake||

    Yeah, that kid just oozes smarm and condescension. I don't know who looked at him and thought "this guy!"

    In fairness, it took a little while for it to hit everyone, but he seems to have outed himself as a vindictive little shit.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    If anything, I still think all the gun control orgs and the media have some responsibility here. They took a kid who witnessed something awful and then proceeded to recruit, massage and groom him into a leader of an anti-gun Boy Band. And like the members of most boy bands, when the teenyboppers lose interest, he'll find his contract canceled and trying to get gigs at the Emerald Queen Casino and Puyallup Fair as a nostalgia act.

  • UnrepentantCurmudgeon||

    It always does. If any issue were a certified "non-starter", this is it. That does not mean, of course, that we can sit idly by to wait while the storm passes. And so as is almost always the case leftist hysteria dominates not only the news cycle but the bulk of the political agenda -- excepting of course that part that Trump is able to hijack by doing to the left what they always do to the rest of us.

  • Kivlor||

    Emperor Xi announced that he was allowing more U.S. built cars into the country

    Great topic for a Reason article about how this is bad because it's a government bailout for the US car industry and if the Chinese don't want our cars they shouldn't have to buy them.

  • SF Pete||

    darn,...lol yep trump dealt the hand all pol's were afraid of(shows who they are), and now Chinese willing to play the hand.. amazing ?? NOT, he is not a Pol.

  • Rebel Scum||

    "investigate Sinclair's news activities to determine if it conforms to the public interest." If such an inquiry were to uncover "distorted news reports," the senators reckoned, that "could disqualify Sinclair from holding its existing licenses"

    Fuck off slaver.

    And every "news" report is distorted. Why not stay in keeping with your oath of office instead of tarnishing your fragile reputations?

  • Just Say'n||

    The most interesting part of that miniseries is that Hamilton came off as the villain. Then a stupid play came around and everyone forgot about how he was depicted in the John Adams miniseries. What a stupid country we live in

  • Mickey Rat||

    That series was done from Adams POV, and he had despised Hamilton (not without reason) so that was not an unbiased view of the man.

  • Just Say'n||

    Defending Hamilton, aye?

  • Mickey Rat||

    No, just saying it was not based on unbiased sources. Adams acknowledged that holding grudges was one of his faults.

  • General_Tso||

    Jefferson came off better in that miniseries than in the book it was based on.

  • Kivlor||

    I never watched it, but honestly, Hamilton should be viewed as a villain in our nation's creation myth.

  • Mickey Rat||

    Warren, Sanders et al actual position is that the 1st Amendment's free speech protections are supposed to protect journalist's from the owners of the organizations rather than the journalists and the organizations from government interference. They are so turning the logic of the Bill of Rights on its head to such a degree that it impossible to think of how to argue with such bullheadedness.

  • James Pollock||

    The first amendment has nothing whatsoever to do with this matter.

    When the federal government places restrictions on use of the electromagnetic spectrum, it is not doing so as sovereign. It is doing so as the owner of the resource in question.
    People who want to say things that are not allowed to be broadcast remain free to find another medium for their expression. If you want to use all 7 of George Carlin's words you can't say on TV, well, you can't say them on TV (without risking fine and loss of your broadcast license, anyway) but you can say them on your premium cable channel all you want to. Or in your driveway, to anyone who wants to listen.

  • Mickey Rat||

    The idea that the public owns the airwaves is a corrupt notion that is in direct conflict with freedom of the press. The government should have no outs from the 1st Amendment.

  • James Pollock||

    "The idea that the public owns the airwaves is a corrupt notion"
    Perhaps. But in this country, it's also a correct notion.

    "that is in direct conflict with freedom of the press"
    Presses operate just fine without use of electromagnetic spectrum. What are you huffing?

    "The government should have no outs from the 1st Amendment."
    The government has two roles, one in which it is the sovereign, and one in which it is not. When it is not sovereign, it has the same rules that everyone else has. So, for example, as an employer, it can tell people what they can say while working in the same way that any other employer can do so. As a property owner, it can allow or deny access just as any other property owner can do so.
    (Even when the government IS acting as sovereign, it can impose time, place, and manner restrictions on first amendment rights to protect other rights, though this isn't relevant to this case.)

  • Mickey Rat||

    I really hope you are joking and do not actually think the Bill of Rights only applies to 18th century tech.

  • Mickey Rat||

    Though you are oroviding a great example of how a lack of private property undermines other liberties.

  • James Pollock||

    What are you huffing?

  • Brett Bellmore||

    "When the federal government places restrictions on use of the electromagnetic spectrum, it is not doing so as sovereign. It is doing so as the owner of the resource in question."

    Which it confiscated well after public broadcasting began, without compensating anybody.

    Your reasoning makes no more sense than saying that the government could circumvent the 1st amendment by seizing ownership of all ink and paper.;

  • James Pollock||

    Right. The government could circumvent the first amendment by seizing ownership of ink and paper. That's not a first amendment issue. That's a FIFTH amendment issue.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Says the guy who thinks a press works without the electromagnetic spectrum. Trust me, you do not want to try to out-pedant this crowd.

  • James Pollock||

    "Says the guy who thinks a press works without the electromagnetic spectrum."

    Newsflash for you: Gutenberg invented movable type for printing press a couple of years before electricity became commercially available.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    Would not congress have to pass a law that abridges the freedom of the press in order to seize the press?

  • MarkLastname||

    By this logic, even audible speech isn't a first amendment issue since it too pertains to competition for airwaves as a means of conveying information. Only so many people can speak at the same time in a given room without preventing each other from being heard. Better start handing out licenses for that too.

  • James Pollock||

    (audible) speech is directly listed in the first amendment, so, yeah, regulation of speech IS a first amendment issue.
    The rest of your comment is covered by "time, place, and manner" restrictions.

  • SF Pete||

    were does the Constitution say Government owns spectrum?

  • MarkLastname||

    You didn't read the 1.5th amendment?

  • SusanM||

    Does bias even matter? Hell, do even facts matter to anyone? Did they ever? The more I look into politics and American culture the more it becomes apparent that only teams matter, the Good Guys or Bad, with no real reflection. We are just each the other's Other and that's all that seems to matter. Take a progressive that sneers that a conservative can't tell the difference between Marxism, Democratic Socialism and Communism and ask them if they can define the differences between Libertarianism, Objectivism or Paleoconservatism and you'll usually get the same ignorance.

  • Mickey Rat||

    The only one who seems to understand the 1st Amendment between these clowns and Trump is Pai, and he is considered a bad guy by most if the press.

  • Rhywun||

    Could say the same about a lot of Trump's picks and their various foci.

  • Ken Shultz||

    The trend that I find disturbing is the assumption that the facts are whatever they need to be to support their favorite position.

    I had an amazing discussion the other week about whether AR-15s are better than purpose built rifles--to do the things those purpose built rifles were designed to do.

    It didn't matter that I'm defending their right to own and use their AR-15--simply because they want one. That's not enough. I also must believe that AR-15s are better for deer hunting than a deer hunting rifle. I didn't ask about their use as a can opener, but am I supposed to believe they're superior to a purpose built can opener, too?

    That's just one example, but there are "facts" like that you have to believe on the only sides of any issue anymore--and it didn't used to be that way . . . or it didn't used to be so bad anyway.

    No, because I don't want the government to nationalize the oil industry and wean us off of it by force doesn't mean I can't have a different understanding of climate change risks.

    No, because I believe in free trade doesn't mean I have to believe that the displaced, older, unskilled workers are better off for being relegated to the unemployment line.

    Yes, I can feel sorry for Syrian refugees even if I don't want them resettled here by the millions.

    It goes on and on. It's like you can't even acknowledge the facts of the opposition to respond to them without being a traitor to all that's good and holy anymore.

  • Ken Shultz||

    We live in a world of noble lies--but it isn't the elitists trying to make us believe something for our own good anymore.

    The kids in the street are out there insisting that the facts are whatever they need to be to support their favorite position intuitively.

    The facts are an ego war.

  • SusanM||

    "The facts are an ego war."

    There's something to that, I think. It's become more about identity than anything else. I don't necessarily mean "identity politics" but just that people increasingly define themselves by their passions and pastimes. It's not enough to like Star Trek, for example. You have to a Trekker, with rules and hierarchies about who is and who can be a "real" Trekker. Or, anything else, be it comic books, games, movies, sex, celebrities or politics.

    If it sounds like I haven't fleshed out this though thoroughly it's because I haven't. Just a notion that I've been thinking about lately.

  • James Pollock||

    "It goes on and on. It's like you can't even acknowledge the facts of the opposition to respond to them without being a traitor to all that's good and holy anymore.."

    If you aren't in agreement with US on every single detail, it's because you're one of THEM and deserve what you get, filthy heathen. This has been common amongst some religious types for a very long time, and it's why the religions that are closest to each other have the most bitter conflicts.

  • Elias Fakaname||

    And most de orate don't just disagree a little. They also are engaged in seditious and even some treasonous activities.

  • sharmota4zeb||

    It goes on and on. It's like you can't even acknowledge the facts of the opposition to respond to them without being a traitor to all that's good and holy anymore.

    This is what happens when you debate someone who cares more about asserting tribal loyalty than about finding the truth.

  • Ken Shultz||

    "This is what happens when you debate someone who cares more about asserting tribal loyalty than about finding the truth."

    There are certain arguments where the statistics aren't the pertinent issue.

    For instance, I have a qualitative preference for freedom. Even IF IF IF banning guns meant there would be fewer murders, I'd oppose banning them anyway--because I have a qualitative preference for freedom.

    I wouldn't chuck the Fifth Amendment just to cut down on the rate of arson or other crimes either--assuming those two things were related.

    If getting rid of the Fourth Amendment meant a lower risk of terrorist attacks, I'd oppose getting rid of it anyway, and if getting rid of the First Amendment meant less racism, I'd still support the freedom to say what you please so long as you aren't using your speech to violate someone's rights.

    The truth is that my qualitative preference for freedom isn't necessarily subject to quantitative considerations on every issue, and it's perfectly appropriate to point out that truth. It isn't necessary to insist that the relationships other people are pointing to are bogus--especially if what you're talking about are your own qualitative preference for things like liberty, justice, etc.

  • James Pollock||

    "For instance, I have a qualitative preference for freedom. Even IF IF IF banning guns meant there would be fewer murders, I'd oppose banning them anyway--because I have a qualitative preference for freedom."

    You're making a value judgment, and pretending that you're not.
    Both sides of that debate can be expressed in terms of "freedom"...
    Freedom to carry the weapon of your choice on one side, freedom from being injured by your crazy and/or reckless co-citizens, on the other.
    Most arguments about freedom can be phrased in terms of "more freedom" on both sides, and what you're doing is picking which of the two freedoms you'd prefer to exercise.

    For example, American politics features one party that wants to regulate the heck out of your business and financial dealings, and leave your personal sex life alone, and on the other side is a party that wants to leave your business and financial dealings alone, and regulate the heck out of your personal sex life. People pick which one aligns with their preferences (though, of course, people with sufficient power routinely expect to be be exempted from "their" side's regulations.

  • The Inappropriate Comedy Tree||

    Facts don't matter until they become reality. Therefore, 90% of politics is bullshit. The 10% that isn't gives us stuff like FOSTA.

  • James Pollock||

    FOSTA is part of the 90%. Politicians of a certain stripe have been regretting the passage of section 230 of the Communications Decency Act ever since it became law, and have been looking for a chance to nibble away at it. Now they have one ("Look! Look! We're fighting sex-trafficking here!")

  • James Pollock||

    Should Sinclair Broadcasting's actions lead to them being forcibly divested of their broadcast licenses? Not unless somebody can show that they've violated current law.

    But it IS perhaps a sign that Congress should revisit the FCC regulation that limits how many broadcast licenses a single entity can own or control. And Perhaps that limit should be hard-coded into statute instead of coming from the Commission, which has turned, shall we say, somewhat less bipartisan over the past several Presidential administrations.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    And limitations on network affiliates too? Didn't think so.

  • James Pollock||

    "And limitations on network affiliates too?"
    Uh, yeah. Networks are "entities" and aren't allowed to own or control any more stations than anyone else is.

    Do you know why there is an "ABC"? It's because back in the early days of broadcasting, NBC had two networks, and the FCC made them divest. The limit back then was ownership of 7 TV stations, so that's how many stations the networks actually own.

    I actually think the present crisis could have been averted, if the local newscasters forced to read Sinclair's "secret" advocacy had started out with "The Sinclair Broadcasting company, which owns this station, is requiring me to read this statement..." before reading the required statement.

    The dishonesty here isn't that Sinclair is highly politically biased. It's that they made the people who aren't pretend that they are, to keep their jobs.

  • cereal_shake||

    Those people could have quit, but that requires some spine.

    Just as telling people to quit instead of regulating businesses who they disagree with politically requires some spine.

  • James Pollock||

    "Those people could have quit, but that requires some spine."

    They're bound by contract. Some people take those seriously.

  • cereal_shake||

    More seriously than their political beliefs apparently. It seems they decided what was more important to them and it seems to moot your complaint.

  • James Pollock||

    Anybody can resolve their differences of opinion over how the US government works by simply leaving the United States.
    The fact that Americans are still here doesn't indicate that they don't have disagreements with their government, it means that the disagreements weren't severe enough to make them choose to be expatriated.
    Same thing here. The fact that (AFAIK) none of the Sinclair employees declined to read the statement doesn't mean they didn't disagree with it, they just decided that that was the lesser of two problems.

  • Rhywun||

    I hate to break it to you but the people who read the news on TV are getting paid to read whatever's in front of them. It's no different than any other job. If they don't like the bias they can join any one of the vast majority of other stations that have a left-wing bias and parrot their words.

  • James Pollock||

    "I hate to break it to you but the people who read the news on TV are getting paid to read whatever's in front of them. It's no different than any other job"

    Actually, it's quite a bit different. For one thing, very close to 100% of on-air talent have employment contracts, whereas most Americans do not.
    Secondly, the one thing that TV on-air newscasters have to sell is gravitas,the sensation among the general public that they are serious people who are to be taken seriously. Once people start imagining that you are biased, it's hard to shake that notion. (For example, look at just how many people imagine a wide swath of "left-wing bias" in broadcast news. You can point out to them that there isn't any widespread "left-wing bias" in broadcast news, but they refuse to believe it, because that's a matter of faith, not facts, to them.
    Third, but really part of the first one, is that they have non-compete clauses in their contracts. So, no, they can't just pack up and move across town to a different station, even if there were an opening there, which there is not. On-air newscasting is ruthlessly cutthroat competitive, because so many people think they can do it, and many of them are right about that, though few can do it well, consistently.

  • cereal_shake||

    That's a very long winded way to say "they chose togt paid"

  • cereal_shake||

    * to get

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    So all you've got is special pleading. Other professions have non-compete clauses. Generally if you're let go without a good cause they're not enforceable.

  • James Pollock||

    "That's a very long winded way to say 'they chose togt paid'"
    Yes, that's a short-term decision. Lots of people make bad short-term decisions that end up costing them more in the long run. It's too soon to see this will be one of those.

    ---

    "Other professions have non-compete clauses."
    Most do not. Most people do not have employment contracts at all, and most of the people who do have union contracts, not individual.

    "Generally if you're let go without a good cause they're not enforceable."
    Depends (highly) on which state you happen to be standing in.

    And the freedom to walk out of a job is really only meaningful if there's another job someplace to walk into.

  • twist||

    "Yes, "

    but for some reason you didn't stop there.

  • James Pollock||

    "for some reason you didn't stop there."

    That reason being that the "there" in question wasn't a stopping place.

  • cereal_shake||

    That's a very long winded way to say 'they chose togt paid'"
    Yes,

    Great, now that we've put that to bed, could we stop pretending we have anything like knowledge of the inside circumstances of that many individual contracts?

    Because we do not have that. So let's stop acting like we have that. Thanks.

  • James Pollock||

    I'm sorry that you do not have that. However, I was a broadcast media major back in my first trip through higher education, and then guess what I chose to study when, a couple of decades later, I decided to go to law school?

    The question of the employment contracts is very much a side issue. Yes, Sinclair made a bunch of their employees potentially damage their own future employability. That's their (the employees') problem.
    The REAL issue is the fact that they (this time meaning Sinclair) acted deceptively. You're OK with that, for whatever reason. I'm less so.

  • cereal_shake||

    I would respect you more if you simply admitted you were engaging is informed speculation rather than throwing your credentials at me.

    You do not have the information. You have an informed guess.

  • James Pollock||

    "I would respect you more if..."

    I would respect you more if you would recognize the fact that you ran into someone who knows what they are talking about (I know that IS rare on the Internet, but here it is) and when you called my "bluff" and learned that it isn't a bluff, you didn't turn around and make excuses.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    You think you've demonstrated that by claiming the newsreaders had no choice?

  • James Pollock||

    "You think you've demonstrated that by claiming the newsreaders had no choice?"

    Well, since that's not a claim I made, no, not really.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    And the freedom to walk out of a job is really only meaningful if there's another job someplace to walk into.

    So you DIDN'T write that?

  • James Pollock||

    I sure did write that. What I didn't write was "The newsreaders had no choice". See how the only word that over laps in those two sentences is "the"?

  • Nardz||

    "However, I was a broadcast media major..."

    Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha

    Go fuck yourself, slaver.

  • James Pollock||

    "Go fuck yourself, slaver."

    What a stunningly cogent argument.
    Assuming you were arguing that you have nothing to add.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Most is not all. It's incumbent on you to show it's relevant here since you are making the claim.

    No freesom to walk is not meaningful if you have another job. That is a separate choice which you make. No one is forced to work there.

  • SF Pete||

    any doubts about Bias?? watch Rachel Maddow froth at the mouth...

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    Her opinions are impeachable. Just ask her.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    So no then. You seem to think the the divestiture of direct ownership of stations is more significant than the afiliate network. In reality it isn't.

    What crisis? Should every local affilitate put a disclaimer in front of their nightly national news feed? Why not?

  • James Pollock||

    " You seem to think the the divestiture of direct ownership of stations is more significant than the afiliate network. In reality it isn't."

    That's an odd view. Are you suggesting that leasing a house and owning a house are the same thing, too? How about the difference between being an employee and being a slave?

    Owners get to decide what goes on their station's programming, within a few broad mandates from the law. Networks don't. You can see this occasionally, when a network affiliate declines to run specified network programs or even when (rarely) a station leaves a network. This all played out in the Portland, OR market, when a formerly independent station joined the fledgling Fox network, back when the network was only providing programming two nights a week. The station decided it could do better programming one of the nights itself, so they only showed one night of the network programming. Eventually, they left the network for a couple of decades until they came under new ownership and rejoined the network.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Are you claiming that afffiliates are not bound by contracts? Odd since that is what you're hanging your hat on when it comes to the freedom of individual newsreaders. And to continue your logic above, are the affiliates really free if there is no other network to join?

    Oh dear, seems like you've got a choice of which argument to abandon.

  • James Pollock||

    "Are you claiming that afffiliates are not bound by contracts?"

    Uh, no. Would you mind confining yourself to arguing points that I DID actually make?

    " are the affiliates really free if there is no other network to join?"
    Yes, Are you under the impression that broadcasters have to be part of a network? That is not the case. And, even if it was, there is no shortage of networks to join. Remember a while back, when we all switched from NTSC television to HDTV? One of the things given to broadcasters to compensate them for having to replace all their transmission gear was that each broadcast licensee was given TWO channels of HDTV for every ONE channel of NTSC they were broadcasting on. Given this sudden creation of empty channels, new networks sprang up to fill all that empty air.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Will you actually make self-consistent arguments?

    So now those contracts can be conveniently ignored, unlike those employment contracts above which you somehow interpret to br indentured servitude. Are you under the impression that newsreaders have to be employed by a station? And they are even more stations than there are networks, so I'm glad that you now finally admit that the newsreaders were perfectly free all along.

    Oh, and it's ASTC not HDTV. Stick with lay terms or standards. Don't mix them. And given the coding efficiency gains it wasn't really giving them much at all. Incidentally ASTC3.0 is due soon, so get ready for the fun again.

  • James Pollock||

    "Will you actually make self-consistent arguments?

    So now those contracts can be conveniently ignored,"

    I asked, relatively nicely, if you would mind limiting yourself to arguments I actually made.
    Since you've decided not to, I'll leave you to make both sides of the argument all by yourself.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    So your answer is "no."

  • Migrant Log Chipper||

    So this JP character is artie poo with a Thesaurus and a more tightly stated set of clichés? Same echo chamber circular logic. Must be a different paymaster than Soros.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    I asked, relatively nicely, if you would mind limiting yourself to arguments I actually made

    Sure, let's quote you verbatim.

    They're bound by contract. Some people take those seriously


    Are you suggesting that leasing a house and owning a house are the same thing, too? How about the difference between being an employee and being a slave?

    So they either are slaves/indentured servants, or principled devotees to the sacred "contract". Skippy's right, if you're going to make an argument, at least try and be consistent.

  • James Pollock||

    "Skippy's right, if you're going to make an argument, at least try and be consistent."

    You cut pieces out of two different arguments, and then you're offended that they're two different arguments?
    Life must be very confusing for you.

  • Rhywun||

    Sinclair also owns [...] one cable network (Tennis Channel).

    Ha! I was wondering why I keep seeing FOX Business updates during the tennis matches I watch. Sneaky alt-right bastards.

  • DajjaI||

    Censoring 'fake news' only makes it more appealing. Dems like Sanders, Warren and Booker aren't idiots. They know this. So why are they doing it? Because it provides a convenient pretext to grow government to control the media and 'protect' us from it (like the CFPB). Thank you Ajit Pai - great American. A little scary he's the only bulwark against their agenda.

  • Jerryskids||

    Has somebody explained to these assholes that freedom of the press means Sinclair is free to broadcast whatever they want and if they want to hire people to speak their words for them, that's fine, too? "The press" in this case isn't the talking heads on the TV screen, it's Sinclair. You don't have a fucking right to sit in somebody else's chair in front of their cameras at their broadcast studio while they're signing your paycheck and say whatever the hell you want, any more than I have a right to come into your house and make you listen to me bitch and then complain about my freedom of speech when you tell me to get the hell out of your house.

  • sarcasmic||

    Dude, freedom of the press means your betters deciding what's good for you. You are too stupid to make decisions on your own, or to judge content on your own. Only government can do that for you. For your own good.

  • James Pollock||

    "Has somebody explained to these assholes that freedom of the press means Sinclair is free to broadcast whatever they want and if they want to hire people to speak their words for them, that's fine, too?"

    No, because freedom of the press means that Sinclair can print whatever they want. Freedom of speech means that they can say whatever they want.

  • The Inappropriate Comedy Tree||

    ...I'm confused. Are you saying freedom of the press applies exclusively to newspapers?

    Because if so, CNN is gonna take it like Ramon the prison bitch.

  • James Pollock||

    "Are you saying freedom of the press applies exclusively to newspapers?"

    No. Presses can be used to create all sorts of printed materials. Books, magazines, broadsheets, handbills...

  • Kivlor||

    In other words, CNN is gonna take it like Ramon the prison bitch...

  • MarkLastname||

    Those are finite resources just like the radio spectrum, so we'd better get those regulated fast before we run out of trees.

  • ||

    The point is that Sinclair's employees do not have unlimited "rights" while performing their work duties. They are beholden to perform in whatever manner Sinclair dictates. They remain free from Government persecution, but they aren't free from Sinclair's rules.

    And that's OK.

  • Tony||

    Constitutional freedom of the press is a separate issue from propaganda. You will probably run into tensions with the 1st amendment when trying to deal with propaganda, but that doesn't make it a nonexistent or harmless thing.

  • ||

    It's certainly harmful to entrust politics to create a fair, unbiased press.

  • MarkLastname||

    A disclaimer against spurious news is propaganda, haha.

    No Tony, it's not a matter of 'tension.' People should be free to publish whatever propaganda they please, as whatvis or is t propaganda is entirely subjective.

  • sharmota4zeb||

    I'm getting the sense that long term cultural trends depend more on the relative size of each age group and the natural changes that the human brain undergoes over the years. Baby boomers are entering their dotage, but things will get better when they get old enough to retire and forget to vote. Meanwhile, Millennials are getting old enough to want to buy homes and discovering the unintended consequences of those environmental policies their teachers convinced them to support.

  • esteve7||

    have you ever been to california? It's a one party state and all problems are still the fault of those danged right wingers / prop 13 / etc. It's never the predictable outcome of their policies. So they move out of the state to a better (Red) state, and keep their shitty politics.

    When they say they want to turn texas blue, you have to ask them why. I mean, seriously? Texas is such an attractive place and California isn't to you, but you think Texas politics should be more like California???

  • James Pollock||

    I hate to break it to you, but Californians are annoying when they move to blue states, too.

    (Of course, with few exceptions, states aren't red OR blue. The big cities are blue, and the parts of the state that aren't cities are red.)

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    NY State is a good example.

  • shawn_dude||

    Lots of red counties in California, but yeah, the legislature is dominated by the Democrats because the majority of the voters elect them that way. But remember, that hasn't always been the case; the Governator is a good example.

    Prop 13 did both good and evil in the state. Most people seem to support it given how high property taxes would be without it. It did gut school funding, though, and killed the former free college tuition programs from the 1970s.

    They move out because of the cost of housing not because they don't like the government services their taxes pay for.

    The red states are "better?" You mean like the Texas governor who believed Obama was going to "invade" the state and take it over and had a public tantrum? Or Florida, which elected to the governorship the CEO of a health insurance company that had been fined by the Feds for the largest fraud case ever seen? That kind of "better?" Where both states are a "one party state" as well? Once former Californians get there they realize just how crazy things can get in the South.

  • shawn_dude||

    1. The elderly vote in higher numbers. They don't "forget to vote."
    2. You can't live in homes that are flooded or polluted. Maybe Millennials and their teachers get that.
    3. In states like Texas and Tennessee (in the news today for a massive ICE raid on a meat-packing plant), the high school kids impacted by anti-immigration policies watching friends and relatives never return home from work or be seen again will be voting in the 2020 elections.

    And also...

    4. Bernie Sanders is a populist. No populist should ever be elected. Dem, GOP, or Independent, doesn't matter. Just say no.

  • Tony||

    Millennials are the first generation in anyone's lifetime in which an actual majority of males support the Democratic party. It's like +50 for females.

  • James Pollock||

    "Millennials are the first generation in anyone's lifetime in which an actual majority of males support the Democratic party."

    Really? The party that controlled Congress from the 30's to the 80's was the minority that whole time?

  • Tony||

    Sorry I meant white males and white females.

  • MarkLastname||

    That doesn't explain it any better. Southern whites were overwhelmingly Democratic in the 30s.

  • MarkLastname||

    Given that males are an oppressor group, isn't this something they should be ashamed of?

  • gormadoc||

    Of course they do. It's hard to convince everybody that you're right when some people are still allowed to tell other people that you aren't.

  • Tionico||

    HEY if I am smart and wealthy enough to own a broadcasing network, I jolly well WILL tell my employees what they are to read or not read on air. It is MY network, MY voice, MY outfit. You doan wanna read what I send you, go find a soupline somewhere.

    As to senatrix Can't Won't, she can go pound sand. She's NOT done well representing her state. Nor the rest of us.

  • Tony||

    What's with "pound sand"? Is this the Christian version of "fuck off"? Just been seeing it a lot lately.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    And hear we were told that you were educated.

  • mchughjj||

    I agree with Pai's position on this.

    I do have a however though. In the world of Trump and his obsession with controlling media, it is a little disturbing when a significant percentage of local TV stations are broadcasting the exact same message against the will of those speaking.

    It's not like we're on the precipice of a conservative-controlled media (when has that ever happened?), but I am concerned that our sources of information are becoming so polarized and untrustworthy. This is way deeper than a First Amendment issue.

  • James Pollock||

    "against the will of those speaking."
    This part is an assumption on your part. It's almost definitely true for some of them, and almost definitely flat out false for some of them, and I'd bet fairly heavy on a third group, who doesn't have any particularly strong feeling about the matter, being the largest of the three.

    "It's not like we're on the precipice of a conservative-controlled media (when has that ever happened?)"
    Most "media" are controlled by large corporations. Large corporations are generally known for being conservative, although this usually surfaces as a reluctance to publicly take any political positions.

  • damikesc||

    So, they are FOR fake news and lies?

  • Mickey Rat||

    It was a marketing campaign. It is no more or less disturbing than ESPN having their on air personalities do those comedy skits in their network promos.

  • Inigo Montoya||

    Tainted news, eh?

    I'm picturing Bernie, Booker, and Stands with a Fist Warren singing in harmony:

    Tainted news, oh oh oh oh ohhh
    Tainted news!
    I gave you all a pol could give you,
    (You) took my handouts and then didn't vote —oh ohh
    . . .
    Just vote for me pleeease! I cannot stand the way you tease!

  • Cy||

    Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.). "Must-run dictates from Sinclair harm the freedom of the press guaranteed in the First Amendment by turning local journalists into mouthpieces for a corporate and political agenda."

    Someone should tell CNN!

  • James Pollock||

    Does CNN have local journalists?
    They don't have local affiliates to tap, do they?

  • cwon1||

    It's right out of "1984", "protect free speech" means imposing a fascist repression system on private interests.

    Warren and Sanders are communist satanic. GOP looking to mitigate House loss? Here are issues that play well but they'll back shelve it.

    Meanwhile our government funds PBS/NPR propaganda directly. Your money to sponsor lies.

  • gormadoc||

    They're communist and Satanic? You certainly hit 1984's buzzwords for leftists there.

  • gormadoc||

    They're communist and Satanic? You certainly hit 1984's buzzwords for leftists there.

  • Raoul Duke||

    I'm old enough to remember these clowns telling us that the 1st amendment was under attack and the press was in danger of being silenced. What ever happened with that?

  • TxJack 112||

    They only object to one sided media that is conservative because I would love them to argue that CNN and MSNBC are not one-sided although they are cable networks. The fact Senators are targeting a specific broadcaster is what should ring alarm bells because these are the most "progressive" in the Democratic party and clearly also the most authoritarian and dangerous.

  • jerryg1018||

    The Democrats are concerned because Sinclair owns a large block of TV stations and is poised to acquire even more to become a large voice for conservative politics. The Democrats shaky control of the narrative is slipping through their fingers.

  • James Pollock||

    "They only object to one sided media that is conservative because I would love them to argue that CNN and MSNBC are not one-sided although they are cable networks"

    Neither CNN nor MSNBC have any broadcast licenses. Are you SURE that you want parity there? Sinclair certainly doesn't...

  • Robert||

    Aw. I was hoping the chair would say, "You're funny."

  • BrianB||

    Radio and TV broadcasting has become a joke since the deregulation of the 1980s and 1990s.

  • jerryg1018||

    The objections of Sanders, Warren and the Democrat party to the Citizens United decision legalizing the political speech of corporations isn't directed at corporations like General Motors, General Electric, Boeing etc, it's directed at the political groups like Citizens that incorporate to protect it's members from lawsuits like any other corporation and which enjoy 501(c)(4) tax exempt status because they do not contribute to political candidates but can and do advocate for or against political candidates and other subjects of public interest.
    What really annoys Sanders and Warren et al is that 501(c)(4) corporations can advocate for or against a political candidate and because they don't contribute to political candidates or their PACs they do not have to reveal their donors. Sanders and Warren are frustrated because they are unable to learn the identities of who is paying for these
    messages.

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