Shut Down Fox News

I got an interesting email yesterday asking me to sign a petition to do just that.

Dear David Hoffman,

Help us take Fox News off the air—get the FCC to revoke Rupert Murdoch’s broadcast licenses NOW!

The deplorable actions Murdoch has taken to run his News Corp. empire prove we can’t trust him to act in the public interest. Now, a study by Farleigh Dickinson University shows Fox News can’t even claim to inform its audience: its viewers are less informed than those who avoid news outlets altogether!

It’s the Federal Communications Commission’s job to consider the character of a media owner when dealing out broadcast licenses, and to label programs as news only when they actually inform viewers. The Murdoch Mafia has failed on both counts, and we have a chance to take them down for good. Save the airwaves from bigotry and corruption: tell the FCC to enforce the law NOW!

FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION: Rupert Murdoch has failed every “character” test available, and the programs under his broadcasting licenses have both been implicated in scandal and have been proven to make audiences less informed, not more. We urge you to revoke Murdoch’s broadcasting licenses immediately, and to take a stand against his corrupt media empire.

SIGN THIS PETITION

Thanks,
— The folks at Watchdog.net

Actually, I imagine that viewers of Fox News are a whole lot more informed ab0ut recent events in Benghazi than many others. It would be interesting to look up that study from Farleigh Dickinson University.

I am not sure just who is behind this petition, but I don’t think they have thought the matter through. First, there is no way that the FCC would revoke all of Rupert Murdoch’s broadcasting licenses. Just imagine the political firestorm that would follow such an act. Second, I wonder if it has occurred to these people that if the FCC did have the authority and will to shut down news networks like Fox, they could just as easily shut down CNN or MSNBC. It might be easier to move against them since no one actually watches them. The point here, that many on the Left seem to have trouble grasping is that you can’t just think of what you or your allies will do with power, you must consider what your opponents will do.

I actually think this petition is a good argument for ending the FCC altogether. I am not sure I see the need for a government commission to regulate the content of our communications media. I understand that they have been responsible for allocating transmission frequencies when radio and television were new, and the broadcast spectrum was deemed to be a scarce and public resource. I am not so sure that concept applies in our digital age. It seems to me that the powers that the FCC has to deny broadcast licenses might well be used by the government to silence dissenting opinions. In fact, Richard Nixon seriously considered threatening networks with the non-renewal of their licenses, just as these people want to do with Fox.

 

PETA Jumps the Fish

If there is any question that PETA has long ago jumped the shark, this story in the Orange County Register should dispel any doubts.

 

An Irvine resident is requesting that the city install a sign to memorialize the hundreds of soles killed in a traffic crash in early October as they were being taken to Irvine Ranch Market.

Technically, the fish were going to die anyway. And they weren’t soles. They were bass, of the saltwater variety.

The crash occurred Oct. 11 when a truck carrying 1,600 pounds of live fish and several tanks of pure oxygen crashed with two other vehicles. The oxygen was used to keep the saltwater bass alive as the fish were being taken to market.

In the letter, Dina Kourda, on behalf of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, asks the city’s street-maintenance superintendent to place the sign at the site of the crash on Walnut and Yale avenues.

The sign would read, “In memory of hundreds of fish who suffered and died at this spot,” to remind tractor-trailer drivers of their responsibility to the animals who are “hauled to their deaths every day,” according to the letter, provided by PETA.

“Although such signs are traditionally reserved for human fatalities, I hope you’ll make an exception because of the enormous suffering involved in this case,” the letter read.

“Research tells us that fish use tools, tell time, sing, and have impressive long-term memories and complex social structures, yet fish used for food are routinely crushed, impaled, cut open, and gutted, all while still conscious,” the letter continued.

 

The letter requests that the sign be placed at the edge of the right of way farthest from the road to prevent it from interfering with traffic.

Or fish.

 

To be honest, I am not sure what to say about this. Looking at PETA’s website, it would seem that they do indeed have trouble distinguishing between fish and human beings. Words like idiocy and madness keep coming to mind as I look over the causes they support. But maybe that is too simple. What is really striking is the impracticability of it all. PETA does not believe in any exploitation of any animals no matter how beneficial to humans, even if such exploitation is done with as little suffering as possible. They have a little

English: Cover of a comic book created by PETA...
PETA is completely rational and sane.

statement at the top of the site, “Animals are not ours to eat, wear, experiment on, use for entertainment, or abuse in any way.”

 

This is a statement which could only be made by people living relatively recently, in the most developed parts of the world. It would have made no sense at all before the industrial revolution with the slow replacement of animal and human labor with machines. Would they have insisted that humans pull coaches, wagons and plows?  Would they have insisted that people go naked rather than wear furs? This ideology trades the relief of animal suffering with increased misery for humans.

 

 

We use animals less nowadays, but the principle still holds. Obviously we still eat them. Fur is not so fashionable, but leather is still widely used. We still use animals for medical research. PETA is against all such research, no matter what pains are taken to keep the pain suffered by the lab animals to a minimum. Again, this entails greater suffering for humans, since without such experimentation, either humans must be used to determine if products are safe, or medical research will have to all but come to a halt.

 

I, like most sane people, do not believe in being cruel to animals, but again, like most sane people realize that using animals for food, clothing, experimentation, etc  is necessary and completely acceptable. I hope this sign in Irvine never goes up, but this being California, who knows?

 

 

 

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Shut Down Fox News

I got an interesting email yesterday asking me to sign a petition to do just that.

Dear David Hoffman,

Help us take Fox News off the air—get the FCC to revoke Rupert Murdoch’s broadcast licenses NOW!

The deplorable actions Murdoch has taken to run his News Corp. empire prove we can’t trust him to act in the public interest. Now, a study by Farleigh Dickinson University shows Fox News can’t even claim to inform its audience: its viewers are less informed than those who avoid news outlets altogether!

It’s the Federal Communications Commission’s job to consider the character of a media owner when dealing out broadcast licenses, and to label programs as news only when they actually inform viewers. The Murdoch Mafia has failed on both counts, and we have a chance to take them down for good. Save the airwaves from bigotry and corruption: tell the FCC to enforce the law NOW!

FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION: Rupert Murdoch has failed every “character” test available, and the programs under his broadcasting licenses have both been implicated in scandal and have been proven to make audiences less informed, not more. We urge you to revoke Murdoch’s broadcasting licenses immediately, and to take a stand against his corrupt media empire.

SIGN THIS PETITION

Thanks,
— The folks at Watchdog.net

Actually, I imagine that viewers of Fox News are a whole lot more informed ab0ut recent events in Benghazi than many others. It would be interesting to look up that study from Farleigh Dickinson University.

I am not sure just who is behind this petition, but I don’t think they have thought the matter through. First, there is no way that the FCC would revoke all of Rupert Murdoch’s broadcasting licenses. Just imagine the political firestorm that would follow such an act. Second, I wonder if it has occurred to these people that if the FCC did have the authority and will to shut down news networks like Fox, they could just as easily shut down CNN or MSNBC. It might be easier to move against them since no one actually watches them. The point here, that many on the Left seem to have trouble grasping is that you can’t just think of what you or your allies will do with power, you must consider what your opponents will do.

I actually think this petition is a good argument for ending the FCC altogether. I am not sure I see the need for a government commission to regulate the content of our communications media. I understand that they have been responsible for allocating transmission frequencies when radio and television were new, and the broadcast spectrum was deemed to be a scarce and public resource. I am not so sure that concept applies in our digital age. It seems to me that the powers that the FCC has to deny broadcast licenses might well be used by the government to silence dissenting opinions. In fact, Richard Nixon seriously considered threatening networks with the non-renewal of their licenses, just as these people want to do with Fox.