“President Obama opposes any move to bring back the so-called Fairness Doctrine, a spokesman told FOXNews.com Wednesday.
The statement is the first definitive stance the administration has taken since an aide told an industry publication last summer that Obama opposes the doctrine — a long-abolished policy that would require broadcasters to provide opposing viewpoints on controversial issues.
“As the president stated during the campaign, he does not believe the Fairness Doctrine should be reinstated,” White House spokesman Ben LaBolt told FOXNews.com….
Fueling discussion, a report in the American Spectator this week said aides to Democratic Rep. Henry Waxman, Calif., met last week with staff for the Federal Communications Commission to discuss ways to enact Fairness Doctrine policies. The report said Waxman was also interested in applying those standards to the Internet, which drew ridicule from supporters and opponents of the doctrine.
Both the FCC and Waxman’s office denied the report.”
As Fox notes, the idea that the Fairness Doctrine could somehow be applied to the Internet exposes that entire American Spectator report as nonsensical rubbish. Besides the utter impractibility — what, personal blogs would have to offer balance? — broadcast outlets could be legally bound by the Fairness Doctrine only because they were using publicly owned airwaves. The Internet is not publicly owned.
Of course, Obama’s clear statement doesn’t mean that the right will stop getting hysterical about this issue. That is what they do, that is what they will continue to do, and the rest of the country will increasingly tune them out as a result.