As we've been documenting, the latest paranoid delusion among media purveyors on the right is that a revival of the "Fairness Doctrine" -- a mid-20th century measure which enforced a balancing of viewpoints on the then-scarce resources of terrestrial radio -- was in the offing, despite the fact that such a revival lacks any tangible support from major lawmakers, media reform advocates, or President-elect Barack Obama himself. Despite this, the phantom of a resurgent "Fairness Doctrine" has persisted.
Hopefully, then, this news will be of comfort to "Fairness Doctrine" opponents: Jon Sinton, founding President of Air America radio, has weighed in on the matter, and guess what? He's against the "Fairness Doctrine" as well! In an editorial in the Wall Street Journal, Sinton sides with an ideological opponent to stake out his position against the measure:
As the founding president of Air America Radio, I believe that for the last eight years Rush Limbaugh and his ilk have been cheerleaders for everything wrong with our economic, foreign and domestic policies. But when it comes to the Fairness Doctrine, I couldn't agree with them more. The Fairness Doctrine is an anachronistic policy that, with the abundance of choices on radio today, is entirely unnecessary.
Sinton adds, "It never occurred to me to argue for reimposing the Fairness Doctrine. Instead, I sought to capitalize on the other side of a market the right already had built." Until some major stakeholder or policymaker of influence starts advocating for the "Fairness Doctrine," I'm going to continue to wonder why it has occurred to so many people that worry needs to be expended over it.
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