Is this Childhood's End come to life? Liberals took a run at the Second Amendment, and failed. Now it seems, they want to go after the big prize: the First Amendment. Phrase by phrase if need be. This may be the biggest scandal of the Obama era - government overreach on the part of the FCC that if followed through on, will be the single biggest blow to liberty in the republic, ever.
The First Amendment, in case you forget, goes something like this:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances
The FCC perhaps, hasn't read it. If they did, they would probably want to tell the media how to report on it.
...But everyone should agree on this: The government has no place pressuring media organizations into covering certain stories.Unfortunately, the Federal Communications Commission, where I am a commissioner, does not agree. Last May the FCC proposed an initiative to thrust the federal government into newsrooms across the country. With its "Multi-Market Study of Critical Information Needs," or CIN, the agency plans to send researchers to grill reporters, editors and station owners about how they decide which stories to run. A field test in Columbia, S.C., is scheduled to begin this spring.The purpose of the CIN, according to the FCC, is to ferret out information from television and radio broadcasters about "the process by which stories are selected" and how often stations cover "critical information needs," along with "perceived station bias" and "perceived responsiveness to underserved populations."How does the FCC plan to dig up all that information? First, the agency selected eight categories of "critical information" such as the "environment" and "economic opportunities," that it believes local newscasters should cover.
Piling on the IRS singling out Tea Party groups for special attention, this administration is not only not stopping government bureaucracies from exceeding their mandates, it is actively encouraging them to do so. Even if by omission, this is a terrible indictment of a government that is putting politics well ahead of the rights of citizens.
If ever an American government needed to be stopped in its tracks, now is the time. It will be interesting to see if journalists and news media step up to this and tell it like it is or if they too will place political agendas ahead of their own interests.