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Framing the "Fair & Balanced" Conspiracy Against Democracy (Equal Time for Fringe Fanatics)

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posted on Mar, 21 2005 @ 01:53 AM
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I'm surprise no one mentioned "The Gipper", "The Great Communicator", Ladies and Gentlemen, the man whom some consider the greatest President ever, Ronald Reagan and his crusading effort to stop debate! I give to you, "The Fairness Doctrine"! Oh, we hardly knew thee!




The Fairness Doctrine was a policy enforced in the United States by the Federal Communications Commission that required broadcast licensees to present controversial issues of public importance, and to present such issues in a fair and balanced manner.
Wikipedia





FAIRNESS DOCTRINE

U.S. Broadcasting Policy

The policy of the United States Federal Communications Commission that became known as the "Fairness Doctrine" is an attempt to ensure that all coverage of controversial issues by a broadcast station be balanced and fair. The FCC took the view, in 1949, that station licensees were "public trustees," and as such had an obligation to afford reasonable opportunity for discussion of contrasting points of view on controversial issues of public importance. The Commission later held that stations were also obligated to actively seek out issues of importance to their community and air programming that addressed those issues. With the deregulation sweep of the Reagan Administration during the 1980s, the Commission dissolved the fairness doctrine.

*SNIP*

However, before the Commission's action, in the spring of 1987, both houses of Congress voted to put the fairness doctrine into law--a statutory fairness doctrine which the FCC would have to enforce, like it or not. But President Reagan, in keeping with his deregulatory efforts and his long-standing favor of keeping government out of the affairs of business, vetoed the legislation. There were insufficient votes to override the veto. Congressional efforts to make the doctrine into law surfaced again during the Bush administration. As before, the legislation was vetoed, this time by Bush.

The fairness doctrine remains just beneath the surface of concerns over broadcasting and cablecasting, and some members of congress continue to threaten to pass it into legislation. Currently, however, there is no required balance of controversial issues as mandated by the fairness doctrine. The public relies instead on the judgment of broadcast journalists and its own reasoning ability to sort out one-sided or distorted coverage of an issue. Indeed, experience over the past several years since the demise of the doctrine shows that broadcasters can and do provide substantial coverage of controversial issues of public importance in their communities, including contrasting viewpoints, through news, public affairs, public service, interactive and special programming.
The Museum of Broadcast Communications


Here we have a President of the United States, ending a policy that guaranteed different points of views be heard. Wow!


I feel like I'm taking crazy pills!




posted on Mar, 21 2005 @ 02:26 PM
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Curme I posted this on another thread about the media bias.

Our major media outlets are owned by corporations, they are becoming larger and fewer because the biggest ones are buying out the littler ones.

When this happen is a tendency to have lest diversified media and the power of the ownerships are the ones pulling the strings.

How does this affect the media? Very simple as larger conglomerates keep buying out the media outlets they also hold stocks on other industries, and occurs whomever hold the highest amounts of stocks had the last say so on how things should be conducted.

It’s called conflicts of interest and it affects how the media is gathered.

Just like all corporations they are monopolists and this is a danger to our democratic society.



posted on Mar, 22 2005 @ 09:08 AM
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I need to go


I just heard one of these "beltway boys" on FOX say " it's more important to cater to the minority fanatics that the majority who maybe indifferent to a cause"



This of course was a discussion on the Schiavo case and the fact that every major poll taken showed that overwhelmingly the majority 70% were against Congress's involvement.



posted on Mar, 22 2005 @ 09:23 AM
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See worldwatcher how minorities groups get to been heard because they are the wants that raised the most noise.

And the media just fall for them


Now what happen to the views and opinions of the majority.............are they not loud enough? I wonder what is going on.

But you know what the Terri case has open people eyes in how politics, media and interest group works in American and how minorities take advantage to pressure the Government into taking actions they way the want and in their favor.



posted on Mar, 22 2005 @ 09:37 AM
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Originally posted by worldwatcher
I need to go


I just heard one of these "beltway boys" on FOX say " it's more important to cater to the minority fanatics that the majority who maybe indifferent to a cause"



This of course was a discussion on the Schiavo case and the fact that every major poll taken showed that overwhelmingly the majority 70% were against Congress's involvement.


That's a VERY interesting observation for them to make. Almost a "defense" for what mediatainment does. Hrm, are we getting through here? [Not us per se, but the mainstream regular people in general.]

I need to find that transcript.
Good catch WW.



posted on Mar, 22 2005 @ 08:03 PM
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This Schiavo situation is turning into a perfect example of the fanatical divide. Some people just can't seem to see that on this or any other issue.

This is a private (and tragic) matter in my opinion and it is being exploited without shame.




WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Americans broadly and strongly disapprove of the intervention by Congress in the case of Terri Schiavo and most believe lawmakers are using her case for political gain, according to an ABC News poll published on Monday.

Seventy percent deemed the congressional intervention inappropriate, while 67 percent said they believe lawmakers became involved in the Schiavo case for political advantage rather than the principles involved.

source


At least there is still a majority out there who can see clearly. Too bad we don't really hear from them. Like you said it's the fringe fanatics that we hear from.

Also, the fairness doctrine is not fool proof.

If 99% of people are of one opinion and 1% are of the oposite opinion (never happens but bear with me) then the fairness doctrine's equal time requirement will give the impression that the issue is split 50/50 which is not the case. I hate to give an argument (ammo) to the detractors of this policy but that's a reality.

Actually most issues are grey and people position themselves on a sliding scale. Nothing is black and white. Multiple viewpoints should be presented by an objective media (yeah like that is going to happen
).
.



posted on Mar, 22 2005 @ 08:41 PM
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Great posts everyone. Thank you.



Originally posted by Gools

Actually most issues are grey and people position themselves on a sliding scale. Nothing is black and white. Multiple viewpoints should be presented by an objective media (yeah like that is going to happen
).
.



PBS tries to do it and CBC used to. BBC is not bad. ...Bottom line: Most news departments don't have the staff or the budget to research news - TV news usually pulls feeds provided by corporations or government; print news just flips over press releases almost verbatim. No one has the budget any more.

..."Balanced" news requires time, energy, resources AND a budget - it involves finding and presenting an array of "special interests." Most special interests present their agendas with a "human interest" angle (the hook). ...I suspect the best we can do here is offer as many angles as we can on the same issue - else the mainstream (corporate government) will predominate.

...The danger involves feeding the fanatical divide, unwittingly or purposefully - but the alternative is supporting the mainstream corporate agenda wholesale.

...IMO - neuromarketing is a growing concern, and I suspect the science is MUCH further along than we're led to believe.

.



posted on Mar, 22 2005 @ 09:23 PM
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Originally posted by soficrow
PBS tries to do it and CBC used to. BBC is not bad. ...


My three favorite news sources after the net


CBC Newsworld still does a good job (don't watch the main network or tv in general much anymore) and have lots of great documentaries. The death of a show like "CounterSpin" are cause for concern however. Was never really the same after Avi Lewis left.



..."Balanced" news requires time, energy, resources AND a budget


Agreed, that is the main reason that investigative journalism now takes personal commitment and sacrifice. It seems to be a dying profession.
.



posted on Mar, 22 2005 @ 09:40 PM
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Originally posted by Gools

Originally posted by soficrow
PBS tries to do it and CBC used to. BBC is not bad. ...


My three favorite news sources after the net











..."Balanced" news requires time, energy, resources AND a budget


Agreed, that is the main reason that investigative journalism now takes personal commitment and sacrifice. It seems to be a dying profession.
.



Also - the Western mind is not comfortable with ambiguity or change - and tends to embrace judgment, without the prospect of alteration. There is a real commitment to the notion of direct cause-and-effect, rather than a 'systems' understanding (ie., complex adaptive systems, ecology). ...So balanced reporting is not appreciated and generally, seen as unnecessarily complicated. ...Requires a paradigm shift. Immediately.


.



posted on Mar, 22 2005 @ 09:53 PM
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Originally posted by RANT
This of course was a discussion on the Schiavo case and the fact that every major poll taken showed that overwhelmingly the majority 70% were against Congress's involvement.


That's a VERY interesting observation for them to make. Almost a "defense" for what mediatainment does. Hrm, are we getting through here? [Not us per se, but the mainstream regular people in general.]

I need to find that transcript.
Good catch WW.


It was on this morning, I'm pretty certain David Asman was the anchor and the beltway boy was the chubby old guy with glasses, either Mort Kondracke or Fred Barnes, i'm not sure who's who, i never really paid attention
anyways if i come across it on fox, i'll post it for you

[edit on 3-22-2005 by worldwatcher]



posted on Mar, 24 2005 @ 10:06 AM
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They've spent the last half hour on the Schiavo "Constitutional Crisis" of what they describe as "dozens" of pro-Schindler protesters outside the Governor's Mansion in Florida demanding Jeb to act outside the court's ruling.

Two back to back fringe extremists got over 5 minutes of direct camera time to "appeal" to the Governor and the world. A Reverend from the street corner and a Franciscan Monk. :shk: Both talking about Jesus being legally crucified and the "washing of hands" by the government, blah, blah, blah.

No balance whatsoever from the nearly 90% of Americans that think those people are NUTS. The media just calls it a "hotly divided topic."

NO IT'S NOT. It's a handful of nuts that rolled down to Florida versus the AMERICAN PEOPLE which have no spokesman in this farce of a debate.


[edit on 24-3-2005 by RANT]



posted on Mar, 24 2005 @ 10:20 AM
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Rant is payback to interest groups and their agendas and Terri was just the door with the help of the brothers ruling our country.

I can wait to see if Jebb is going to take the risk or ruining his presidential candidacy for his brothers.



posted on Mar, 25 2005 @ 10:06 AM
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I have spent the last two days traveling around some of the most "conservative" bread-basket areas of the country and everyone is talking about Terri. However, I have yet to hear someone make a case for prolonging her life.

And this is in so-called "red-state" America.

Even my Nixon-loving Republican-to-the-core father thinks that this is extremist and an example of how the religious right has too much power.

What I have also been hearing a lot of--especially from my moderate Republican clients is that they want the religious neo-cons out of their party. I think there is finally an opportunity for a viable third party to emerge.

Forget this "it's a big tent" crap. Perhaps it is time to leave the Republicans to the fanatics and for so-called RINOs like John McCain, Rudolf Guiliani, Christie Todd Whitman, and even Arnold Schwarzeneggar to take advantage of the fact that there are a great many people in this country who are being left behind because of a political system that caters to radicals instead of the majority.

So let Jeb Bush become a political martyr for the religious right by sending federal marshalls in to seize custody of Terri Schiavo. The only good thing about the glut of media exposure of this case is that people are really getting to know who these fanatical politicians really are.



posted on Mar, 25 2005 @ 10:45 AM
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lmgnyc,

You are right, for some reason we have allowed the fundamentalist radical religious groups to become a majority in our government business, when they are not.

Since our "born Christian again" president these groups has become greedy and pushy, and they are willing to step over all our civil and constitutional rights to get what they want.

Christian American is waking up to the danger that this groups pose to their believes.

The division is for all to see, if we allow then to step their boundaries we will be not better that the muslin countries that fight their own brand of fundamentalist.

Could we become as bloody? you never know.

I think people is waking up in America and the veil of ignorance is perhaps starting to come down.

No true American is willing to lose their rights at all.

Then again we have a president that is in favor of people in other countries to take the reigns for their believes and go against their governments, so who knows maybe that is what the fundamentalist wants here in our own soil for them to force the government to take completely over the rights of the people and step over the law, in pursue of what the minority wants.

We are under dangerous times and is not from Terrorist from another country.



posted on Mar, 26 2005 @ 02:03 PM
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Scientific American GETS IT!!!


Actually, they're so fed up they "give up."


Scientific American April Editorial


There's no easy way to admit this. For years, helpful letter writers told us to stick to science. They pointed out that science and politics don't mix. They said we should be more balanced in our presentation of such issues as creationism, missile defense and global warming. We resisted their advice and pretended not to be stung by the accusations that the magazine should be renamed Unscientific American, or Scientific Unamerican, or even Unscientific Unamerican. But spring is in the air, and all of nature is turning over a new leaf, so there's no better time to say: you were right, and we were wrong.

In retrospect, this magazine's coverage of socalled evolution has been hideously one-sided. For decades, we published articles in every issue that endorsed the ideas of Charles Darwin and his cronies. True, the theory of common descent through natural selection has been called the unifying concept for all of biology and one of the greatest scientific ideas of all time, but that was no excuse to be fanatics about it.

(snip)

Good journalism values balance above all else. We owe it to our readers to present everybody's ideas equally and not to ignore or discredit theories simply because they lack scientifically credible arguments or facts. Nor should we succumb to the easy mistake of thinking that scientists understand their fields better than, say, U.S. senators or best-selling novelists do. Indeed, if politicians or special-interest groups say things that seem untrue or misleading, our duty as journalists is to quote them without comment or contradiction. To do otherwise would be elitist and therefore wrong. In that spirit, we will end the practice of expressing our own views in this space: an editorial page is no place for opinions.

Get ready for a new Scientific American. No more discussions of how science should inform policy. If the government commits blindly to building an anti-ICBM defense system that can't work as promised, that will waste tens of billions of taxpayers' dollars and imperil national security, you won't hear about it from us. If studies suggest that the administration's antipollution measures would actually increase the dangerous particulates that people breathe during the next two decades, that's not our concern. No more discussions of how policies affect science either -- ”so what if the budget for the National Science Foundation is slashed? This magazine will be dedicated purely to science, fair and balanced science, and not just the science that scientists say is science. And it will start on April Fools' Day.


How fuuuuuuny! The pleas for "balance" and "fair debate" and inclusion of FRINGE EXTREMISTS finally got to them over in the halls of Scientific American.


Yes, you're being made fun of FRINGE AMERICA!


Speaking of which, parents that would like to protect their children from rabid fringe extremists yelling at each other morning, noon and night may now buy a FOX BLOCKER unit for cable ready installation. It also helps one overcome the perverted "auto accident" fascination of watching FOXNEWS even if you know better. AND each purchase generates a letter in your name to FOX's top advertisers.


But PLEASE stop sending death threats to the manufacturer if you disagree that FOXNEWS is extremist.



posted on Mar, 27 2005 @ 02:33 AM
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After reading the Scientific American joke, why do I have the urge to go digging on www.whitehouse.gov for a directive entitled "Moratorium on Brains"?

Another example of the fanatical fringe setting the agenda is how television networks are being fined because some shows--some very top-rated and award-winning shows, I might add--- displease religious fanatics. According to an FCC report, the Parents Television Council is responsible for 99.8% of all complaints--against shows like The Simpsons, CSI, Friends, Will & Grace and Arrested Development.

If these shows were so offensive, why would they continue to garner such high ratings? Wouldn't the outraged "majority" change the dial to more "family friendly" programming? Or does temptation suck them in like an incurable virus?

The PTC has set up a website that allows users to bombard the FCC, the network and the shows sponsors with multiple e-mails that distort the number of outraged parents that feel that the people responsible for this show launch "campaigns" to target shows they feel are inappropriate for children. It was activity like this that resulted in a $1.2 million fine for a FOX show that was revealed by blogger Jim Jarvis of www.buzzmachine.com.


I filed a Freedom of Information Act request on Oct. 12 asking to see all of the 159 complaints the FCC cited in its complaint against Fox.

I just received the FCC's reply with a copy of all the complaints -- and a letter explaining that, well, there weren't 159 after all. William H. Davenport, chief of the FCC's Investigations and Hearings Divison, admits in his letter that because the complaints were sent to multiple individuals at the FCC, it turns out there actually were only 90 complaints. It gets better: The FCC confesses that they come from only 23 individuals.

It is shocking enough that what tens of millions of us are permitted to see by our government can be determined by 159 ... or 90 ... or 23.

But it gets even better: I examined the complaints and found that all but two of them were virtually identical. In other words, one person took the time to write a letter and 20 other people then photocopied or merely emailed it to the FCC many times. They all came from an automated complaint factory like the one I write about here. Only two letters were not the form letter.

So in the end, that means that a grand total of three citizens bothered to take the time to sit down and actually write a letter of complaint to the FCC. Millions of people watched the show. Three wrote letters of complaint.

And on the basis of that, the FCC decided to bring down the heavy hammer of government censorship and fine Fox an incredible $1.2 million for suggesting -- not depicting but merely suggesting -- sex on a show that had already been canceled because the marketplace didn't like it anyway.

www.buzzmachine.com...


Tyranny of the few indeed....

Even more curious is how the PTC website catalogs almost every television show and spells out the nastiness in explicit detail, sometimes even including video. My favorite features are the "worst clip of the week" (Warning: graphic content!) and a weekly log of the week's worst shows (with FCC, network & sponsor auto-email links, of course!) which outlines every smutty detail. Pity the poor Christians that have to sift through thousands of hours of TV each week to catalog this stuff--I can only imagine how it tempts and corrupts their fragile minds.

But it does help concerned parents quickly get to the nitty-gritty of what their kids shouldn't be watching--and this also serves as a useful guide to all the pg-13 and dirtier material on tv.

I can't help but wonder why the PTC doesn't censor their own site--I mean, it is kind of the equivalent of a porn-compilation tape, but with mainly pg-13 material. Kids can easily stumble across this site--I smell letter writing campaign!

But couch potatoes now have an easy way of striking back without having to leave the sofa to find stamps. After passively listening to years of daily ranting by Howard Stern and reading the diatribes of outraged bloggers, the majority can finally spam the FCC with their own show-specific pro-first amendment letters in response to PTC campaigns, courtesy of www.speakspeak.org.

And finally Congress--albeit an Independent, has realized that it is going too far. Representative Bernie Sanders has introduced legislation that would prevent censorship from extending to cable and the Internet.

www.parentstv.org...
www.eonline.com...
www.washingtonpost.com...
www.speakspeak.org...
www.wcax.com...



posted on Mar, 29 2005 @ 10:09 PM
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Perhaps one could view all of this as reflecting the "man behind the curtain," the "Great OZ," who ruled by putting emphasis into his ghastly image.

I reflect a few matters of importance, and whether politics has lost its grip on realities regarding "freedom verses tyranny." It seems the roots of our national identity are placed in that perspective above all other matters. Is one group shouting down the other, then is it abusing its "freedom of speech?" Is one form of speech hate speech from one group of individuals, but the same form from another group of individuals given a free pass?

Is one kind of violence approved, and another condemned? Does it depend again on this polarization in the field of human consciousness generated vis a vis the latest "winning of the debates?" Basic Morality is at issue.

How is being against abortion so highly rated an issue that it gets you votes, even though the rest of your agenda is basically all the trappings of a kleptocracy? Just being against something, but doing nothing about it does not appear to really earn those votes. Is being "against gay marriage," so important, that you won't even listen because the other polarity favoring "gay marriage," is also talking about real issues of war and peace?

Could it be we are struggling against reason, where all of this polarization is making it impossible for people to generate a clear and present favorable choice on a larger spectrum of important debates? Currently the balkanization of internal politics sets issues of life and death on the right and the left; you detest abortion but favor the death penalty. Why politicians get you coming or going, but now one wants to leave you alone and let life take its course, regardless. There are no total pro life politicians out there because the divide makes it impossible for these people to make their arguments clear. "Oh no I favor life everywhere but I am a Democrat, or I am a Republican, so no one listens."

In short one cannot make the clear choice of life because of a background noise of Malthusian dogma. Yes people want an abortion, why, because the kid cost too much and we have an oppressive system economically. "I cannot talk about that because of pressures," so you just keep taking the bad choices all around in some form of cognitive dissonance.

I think this entire process we are facing here has a great deal to do with the breakdown of civilizations. Where Julian Jaynes talks about the worn "coin of language," he is quite well on the right track in our discussions here. You see words exert a force, but only for so long when things are polarized.

In my thoughts it is all a matter of where dominant-submissive relationships are based upon so much nonsense and unreality, that the "freedom verses tyranny," argument is the one that simply matters the most. People want basically to be left alone, especially when they are acting prudently from their educated state and social parameters. People wish to live without interference and intervention from the hubris of Hegelian subterfuge, where we must boldly decide anew upon what is best left to common law and common sense. Usually the new terms are far too draconian and convenient for almost no one, even for those who adapted those "latest news events," ultimately.

[edit on 29-3-2005 by SkipShipman]



posted on Apr, 16 2005 @ 07:59 AM
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Talking about just this subject.

I'm buying his book next: www.independentnation.org...

Avalon spoke eloquently and with passion on denying the fringe fanatics, the fake divide, the fake news...

And Jon suggested taking to the streets and screaming: Be Reasonable!!!


It was classic.



posted on Apr, 16 2005 @ 02:27 PM
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Jon Stewart is the only truthful TV News Anchor

he gives a truely balanced view of everything
the stupider he makes people look; the more realistic the perception becomes

RANT i must say; you rock!!!!

your 100% correct in all of your statements

im all with you guys on this!!!

may i ask a favor tho

can you make us a cartoon about another issue or two


you may make someone mad but who cares thats life huh

hehe
Rant for President of USA!!!!

im going to start the Rant fanclub too
lol

well Rant whenever your ready;
we will get the
Rant for 2008 campaign underway asap

after we get you in office then perhaps we will have a truely democratic america

but as long as these Rich Greedy Liar Scumbag Lawyer/Banker devils stay in power
the world will be but a Corporate Fascism
designed to Screw Everyone Except the Elite

Rant in 2008!!!



posted on Jun, 25 2005 @ 11:02 AM
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Even though this thread is a bit old... it ROCKS!
Very interesting material everyone!


Originally posted by soficrow
Also - the Western mind is not comfortable with ambiguity or change - and tends to embrace judgment, without the prospect of alteration. There is a real commitment to the notion of direct cause-and-effect, rather than a 'systems' understanding (ie., complex adaptive systems, ecology). ...So balanced reporting is not appreciated and generally, seen as unnecessarily complicated. ...Requires a paradigm shift. Immediately.


One aspect of what I call "opinion-building" that mustn't be forgotten is that a good number of people don't demand balanced reporting because it's boring. When watching the news, we're not only citizens, we're also consumers of entertainment... and the news outlets like CNN and Fox know this. I would bet that a lot of people watch Bill O'Reilly or Tucker Carlson not because they want to get an informed opinion on a topic, but because they want to see a good show - a bit like Conan O'Brien's dog Triumph. So in the end, information on cable news networks tends to be not about who can give the best information... but who can put on the best show.

Which leads us back to Baudrillard's conclusion that the operating principle of the media is seduction.



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