12/20/2007 11:29 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Please Give, We Need to Cover the Conventions in HD

Every once in a while, I'm reminded of the bizarre technological dance we're being forced to go through in the federally-mandated switch to digital television. First, it's interesting for federalists and libertarians to note that, while it took thirty years, and much Republican opposition, for the Congress once again to mandate a fuel efficiency target for American automakers (which has serious environmental implications), the digital switchover--which will probably cost each one of us a lot more money--was mandated by Congress with nary a whimper, and for what?

This item from TVNewswer helps answer that question:

The first HD NewsHour broadcast occured Monday evening, and, according to a press release, PBS has more in HD to come: the network plans "approximately 24 hours of live, HD primetime coverage of the 2008 Democratic National Convention (in August)...and the Republican National Convention (in September).

Newshour in HD is spectacular enough. Why shouldn't we give to our local PBS station for the privilege of seeing talking heads even more vividly? But the conventions--long-obsolete four-day political infomercials looking even more spectacularly irrelevant. Without you, we'll never have Lawrence Welk reruns upconverted to HD, either.