Every time conservatives voice concern over the fairness doctrine liberals pooh-pooh the idea saying that it’ll never happen. And yet Democrat members of Congress keep talking about it, and keep saying we need it back.
Last week Senator Stabenow said she wanted hearings on the fairness doctrine. Now Senator Tom Harkin is saying as much too:
BILL PRESS: …And, thanks for your leadership, thanks for your good work, it’s great to have you there Senator. And, great to have you on the show. Appreciate it.
SENATOR TOM HARKIN (D-IA): Well, anytime – just let me know Bill. I love being with you, and thanks again for all you do to get the truth and the facts out there. By the way, I read your Op-Ed in the Washington Post the other day. I ripped it out, I took it into my office and said ‘there you go, we gotta get the Fairness Doctrine back in law again.’
BILL PRESS: Alright, well good for you. You know, we gotta work on that, because they are just shutting down progressive talk from one city after another. All we want is, you know, some balance on the airwaves, that’s all. You know, we’re not going to take any of the conservative voices off the airwaves, but just make sure that there are a few progressives and liberals out there, right?
SENATOR TOM HARKIN (D-IA): Exactly, and that’s why we need the fair — that’s why we need the Fairness Doctrine back.
BILL PRESS: We’ll work on that together. Hey, thanks, Senator! Always good to talk to you.
SENATOR TOM HARKIN (D-IA): Thanks Bill, see you, bye.
BILL PRESS: There it is – you heard it here on the Bill Press Show. Senator Tom Harkin: bring back the Fairness Doctrine!
At this point I’m beginning to think that the fairness doctrine has become more than just liberals wanting to hamstring dissent from the opposition. It’s become rent-seeking for liberal talk radio hosts as well. People like Ed Schultz and Bill Press, who have marginal audience and puny ratings, need the fairness doctrine to prop up their businesses. To force them on to unwilling audiences not because those audiences want to listen to them but because the government says it must be so.
For our own good.
It’s not just a free speech issue. It’s about Democrats helping out their liberal talk radio buddies by mandating a favorable market for them.