Few people say it as fearlessly as Charles Krauthammer.
By the way, rumor has it that Senator Debbie Stabenow wants hearings on talk radio “balance,” with a new Fairness Doctrine – so called – not far behind. Leaving aside the utility of a “hearing” process whose conclusions are foregone, qb just has to ask: what part of “Congress shall make no law…abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press” does she not understand?
Senator Stabenow, you need a lesson in elementary civics. The First Amendment protects political speech first and foremost; and the freedoms of speech and press were held to be so self-evidently essential to the preservation of all other liberties that Hamilton rejected the need for a Bill of Rights enumerating them:
On the subject of the liberty of the press, as much has been said, I cannot forbear adding a remark or two: In the first place, I observe that there is not a syllable concerning it in the constitution of this state, and in the next, I contend that whatever has been said about it in that of any other state, amounts to nothing. What signifies a declaration that “the liberty of the press shall be inviolably preserved?” What is the liberty of the press? Who can give it any definition which would not leave the utmost latitude for evasion? (Federalist 84)
Senator Stabenow wishes that talk radio might be “accountable.” To whom? If to its audience, that accountability is already in place, and the market ensures it; not a week goes by that radio shows do not give way to one another as listeners vote with their tuners and their pocketbooks. But if to “the people,” cynically construed by Ms. Stabenow as the federal government itself, I can hardly think of any political wish that might be more illiberal than that one. The Fairness Doctrine is the fruit of idiots doing what they were born to do.