Concerned that “we know little or nothing” of President Obama’s nominee to head the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), Media Research Center President (MRC) Brent Bozell sent an open letter on June 15 to the Senate Commerce Committee urging the members to thoroughly query Julius Genachowski.
The panel, headed by Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.) , will hold hearings today on Genachowski’s nomination for the chairmanship of the FCC and for Commissioner Robert McDowell’s reconfirmation.
Commissioner McDowell “has been and remains a bulwark against a return of the Censorship Doctrine – also mis-known as the “Fairness” Doctrine. We know where he stands,” Bozell noted, adding that Genachowski’s views on “critical issues” like censorship, “localism” and “diversity” requirements are unknown.
“Mr. Genachowski must be asked about all of these issues. It is imperative that you - and the American people - get answers to these questions,” Bozell urged the senators on the Commerce Committee. Listed below are a few of the questions the MRC president would like asked:
He quoted FCC Commissioner Robert McDowell who said the following:
“I think the fear is that somehow large corporations will censor their content, their points of view, right. I think the bigger concern for them should be if you have government dictating content policy, which by the way would have a big First Amendment problem.”
“Then, whoever is in charge of government is going to determine what is fair, under a so-called ‘Fairness Doctrine,’ which won’t be called that – it’ll be called something else. So, will Web sites, will bloggers have to give equal time or equal space on their Web site to opposing views rather than letting the marketplace of ideas determine that?”
Lest you think McDowell is being alarmist, consider, for a moment, the Seattle Times's pushback efforts against the erosion of MSM control and the future institution of "Net Neutrality."
If the idea of the Fairness Doctrine bringing government control of broadcasted speech wasn't bad enough, there's also a possibility that its oversight powers could spill over onto the Internet and control Web content.