> The relevant section is this:
> “(a) Public Interest Obligation to Cover Publicly Important Issues- A broadcast licensee shall afford reasonable opportunity for the discussion of conflicting views on issues of public importance....
Thanks. I wonder if the the Dems don’t realize that this could backfire. I mean PBS, for example, would have to afford reasonable opportunity for the discussion of conflicting views on issues of public importance. Or are they exempt from presenting any opinion but thier own? :)
It could indeed backfire, but there is a fairly easy, albeit intellectually dishonest (but when has that stopped a Leftist?), way of finessing that requirement:
Suppose that I am a presenter on a PBS "current affairs" program. Suppose further that I wish to propagate some nonsensical thesis (that human activity is causing the Global climate to heat up, for example). What I do is to arrange a discussion between two advocates of positions respectively for, and against, my thesis. However, the person I choose to represent the case I support will be articulate, well-informed and charismatic, while his/her opponent will be some half-baked conspiracy-theorist dredged from the nether reaches of some group widely seen as ridiculous. (I will, of course, make sure that this person's affiliation is clearly stated; it would also help if English is not this person's first language). I will pretend to be a neutral, disinterested arbiter who, during the course of this "debate", will come to be persuaded of the view that I already held.
This is a technique for which the BBC has been notorious for at least the past 40-odd years.
Now suppose that you are the popular, well-known host of a radio talk show. Absent the Fairness Doctrine, you can, at your leisure, refute my entire program point-by-point, revealing my bias and dishonesty in the process. (This is why such techniques are not as successful as they might otherwise be at present).
However, under the Fairness Doctrine, you would be required to grant me "equal time" to rebut your refutation, thus at the very least diluting its effect.
All-in-all, I think it is best that the abomination known as the Fairness Doctrine remain an historical curiosity, never to be re-enacted.