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What Needs to be Said

6 February 2009

Few people say it as fearlessly as Charles Krauthammer.

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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.

qb

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. ellen permalink
    6 February 2009 4:40 pm

    Hi qb–I regularly read Mike Cope’s blog & thoroughly enjoy your very thoughtful comments on so many of his entries. Regarding your comment from Jan 20 on the “Dating Jesus” entry, I noticed your reference to Robert Oglesby, Wally, & J.P. Blankenship.You must have been a teen @ Waterview in Richardson. My husband John & I were young marrieds at that time, & worked a lot with the WV teens when WV was between Y. Ministers. Just curious & wondering who you are & who your family was “way back then!!” (We’re still @ WV, & we are trying to nudge WV out of our “Jeopardy Church” status!!)Please email me @ above address or just comment back. Thanks!! ellen

  2. queueball permalink*
    6 February 2009 10:46 pm

    I wasn’t quite a teen at the time, but my sisters were, and I surely loved Wally and John Paul. We moved from Richardson to Albuquerque in ’76, and from there I ended up going to Encounter several years at LCC, where Wally and JPB were fixtures. If I recall correctly, the main mission effort supported by WV was in Taipei, Taiwan…but I don’t recall the name of the family. But we had our share of watermelon in that family’s honor out on the back parking lot.

    Glad you stopped by, ellen. It’s amazing how much water has flowed under the bridge, and yet we cross paths almost 35 years downstream!

    qb

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