Liberals Against Free Speech

by Sal on February 16, 2009

in Media,Media Bias,Politics

Why is the left so against having opposing viewpoints aired in the free market of ideas?  In the last week, rhetoric surrounding the fairness doctrine has increased, including references by multiple Senators, a former President, and now by David Axelrod.  This past Sunday on Fox News Sunday, Chris Wallace asked Axelrod if Obama stood by his pledge against the fairness doctrine from last June.  When pressed, Axelrod punted, leading many to believe that this promise will soon be abandoned, like all of Obama’s other promises.

What is it that the left is afraid of?  Why is it that free speech is something that they can’t stand when it comes from Conservatives?  We on the right often claim of media bias, but that is primarily because of the hypocracy of the Drive-By Media, which claims to be objective while pushing a leftist agenda.  At the same time, I do not see anyone of importance on the right clamoring for government regulation of the Drive-By media.  Conservatives answer with the free market.  A vast gap was seen in objective media coverage, so Fox News was born.  Conservative talk radio emerged from the lack of any conservative media back in the late 1980s with Rush Limbaugh.  Conservative blogs sprung up as an alternative to Drive-By Media newspaper publications, helping to fill the void in reporting and as a watchdog of the Drive-By Media.

Yet the left feels threatened by Conservative talk radio.  Although Conventional wisdom states otherwise, the Democrats will indeed try to implement the fairness doctrine.  In a sane world, I would think that it would be overturned by the courts (the First Amendment guarunteeing a right to free speech and all), but we don’t live in a sane world.  If it came down to the Supreme Court, which way would Kennedy come down?  Would Ginsburg (a former head of the ACLU) support free speech rights or side with the political interests of the left?

We could be entering a brave new era of government-sponsored censorship of political ideas and discourse.  If the left gets the fairness doctrine, what’s to stop them from regulating blogs, shutting down Free Republic, or silencing the right in even more ways?  It may sound conspiratorial, but who would have thought that the left would try to use government to try to silence the free exchange of ideas?

Update: RedState has an article today pointing out how the left wants to expand the fairness doctrine to other medium, such as the Internet.  It’s a Brave New World.

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Ryan February 16, 2009 at 5:15 pm

This might explain why MSNBC and CNN have veered so left lately (especially MSLSD) — anticipating the unFairness Doctrine coming back and staking out a claim against Fox News.

I’ve had a few lefties at work bring up the unFairness Doctrine with glee and “gotcha” attitudes. Not to sound like one of those guys in an undercover militia out in the Midwest, I made the argument that there are some in this nation who’d take violent action if the FD became law. I hear some on the brink everyday on the radio. Ultimately, the last thing the country needs is for the Right to be as emotional as the Left. The FD would do that, and I think with violent results in some cases. It’s a liberty issue that the government is stymieing just by talking about reinitiating this.

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