The execrable Blogging Tory known as "Raphael Alexander" puts his jaw-dropping ignorance on display here:
The [U.S.] Fairness Doctrine was attempted via a front door approach in 1987, that tried to force broadcasters to grant equal airtime to opposing political viewpoints. Critics of the amendment to the bill say it’s a backdoor attempt to push through the Fairness Doctrine to undermine the popularity of conservative broadcasts: ...
Here's a suggestion, boys and girls -- let's see what the Fairness Doctrine actually represents (emphasis tail-waggingly added):
A short history of fairness
The necessity for the Fairness Doctrine, according to proponents, arises from the fact that there are many fewer broadcast licenses than people who would like to have them. Unlike publishing, where the tools of the trade are in more or less endless supply, broadcasting licenses are limited by the finite number of available frequencies. Thus, as trustees of a scarce public resource, licensees accept certain public interest obligations in exchange for the exclusive use of limited public airwaves. One such obligation was the Fairness Doctrine, which was meant to ensure that a variety of views, beyond those of the licensees and those they favored, were heard on the airwaves. (Since cable’s infrastructure is privately owned and cable channels can, in theory, be endlessly multiplied, the FCC does not put public interest requirements on that medium.)
And that is why the Fairness Doctrine -- dealing as it does with a finite, publicly-owned resource -- is actually a good thing, and why howlingly ignorant fuckwits like "Raphael Alexander" should absolutely shut the fucking fuck up.
I'm glad we could clear that up for you.
P.S. I'd suggest that Blogging Tory co-founder Stephen Taylor must be terribly, terribly proud, but he's kind of busy these days helping organize the Manning Networking Conference & Exhibition, where one can be diversely exposed to diverse viewpoints from such diverse speakers as the Manning Centre's Preston Manning, former Reform MP Deb Grey, the Fraser Institute's Tasha Kheiriddin, the National Post's Karen Selick, the Fraser Institute's Gordon Gibson, the National Post's Terence Corcoran ... I think you can see where I'm going with this, right?
AFTERSNARK: To truly appreciate Raphael's appalling ignorance, one need only consider this revealing snippet of his:
It’s a typical liberal initiative to interfere in the free speech and expression of private broadcasters, so we can’t be too surprised about that.
Raphael is, of course, utterly out to lunch when he refers to "private" broadcasters, as the Fairness Doctrine deals wholly and exclusively with the public airwaves. Such critical distinctions are, of course, lost on wanks who are as depressingly unknowledgeable as Raphael. It is, however, what makes him such a splendid Blogging Tory. It's kind of a requirement, if you hadn't noticed.