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Save a free press by restricting voices of dissent


Just as scams are more prevalent today than ever and more sophisticated because of the Internet and technology, so too are schemes disguised as something they are not.

Look at the Free Press Action Fund, for instance. This is one very slick operation disguised as fighting for “diversity” of the airwaves. In reality, however, what they would like to do is limit what is voiced over the airwaves to opinions that agree with their particular political philosophy. Most people would recognize that you do not achieve real diversity of speech by limiting.

Specifically, the Free Press folks are out to get Rush Limbaugh because he is the voice that most intensely disagrees with the liberal point of view espoused by its backers. The nonprofit “unbiased” Free Press Action Fund is billed as a national organization working to reform the media in this country.

With this kind of reform, only one voice would be heard, as all others would be silenced as “hate speech,” or whatever names it is called. It’s as if we are living the predictions set forth in George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four.

Two of the founders of Free Press are Robert W. McChesney and Josh Silver. They are still smarting from the fact that “Air America,” the former American radio network which specialized in liberal talk programming, was unsuccessful in competing against conservative talk shows such as Limbaugh’s.

They don’t understand the free market, or, more likely, they do understand but do not believe in the concept. Instead, they would force everyone to hear only what they wanted them to hear. This is not the kind of diversity that is healthy for the future of a democratic republic.

McChesney and Silver began to advocate against media consolidation, blaming the massive corporations and huge profits, and big money and political power for their lack of success in the free market.

If Rush were not popular, the free market would take care of eliminating his voice, just as happened with Air America. Businesses do not spend advertising dollars on programs that no one listens to, as that is not the way to sell products. Advertisers support programs that give them the greatest audience. That’s how they sell their products.

Everyone knows that the media play a large part in the lives of Americans via newspapers, television, radio, the Internet, and Hollywood entertainment. Within these sources are plenty of opportunities for people to focus on information to their liking, but Free Press wants to change how we get our information. They would restrict it.

If the Free Press organization gets its way, however, we will go back to what we used to have. For news, there would be only ABC, NBC, and CBS or the equivalent of these three. To achieve their purported media improvement, they would have government control instead of the free market.

They say they want better policies by engaging more people in policy debates. How can you engage more people by limiting what they have access to? We must be sure this is the change we really want before we support this kind of “free press.”

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