Sunday, January 26, 2003
Date set for public meeting on FCC's media ownership caps
It will be Feb. 27 in Richmond, VA. A brief story from the AP here. Public notice and press release available from the FCC here.
Tuesday, January 21, 2003
Safire on Media Consolidation
As I stated below, even larger and more powerful media corporations are on the horizon now that the FCC is moving to kill its remaining ownership limitations. This problem is not merely championed by those on the left. William Safire and Rudolf Giuliani have pointed at the problematic monsters created by media consolidation. As Safire says in this commentary, regulation in this case is pro-business in that it protects competition from monopoly. From Safire:
You won't find a movie nominated for an Oscar with the heroine — fighting to expose the dominance of media conglomerates in the distribution of entertainment — crushed by the giant corporation that controls film financing, distribution and media criticism.
Good article on bad coverage of Venezuelan situation
Brad Carlton, investigative reporter and commentator for the Baltimore Chronicle, writes this open letter to NPR:
"All Things Considered"? Not This Time.
It has just been picked up by counterpunch.org.
Carlton also has these articles last year:
Dispatch #1: Entire World Has Cause to be Concerned About What Happens in Venezuela
Dispatch #2: History of Chávez: Why He Upsets DC...also discusses coup attempts
Dispatch #3: How's Chávez Doing? Depends on Who's Talking
Teaser quotes from the last link:
--It's one thing to intellectually know that media entrusted with informing the public are misleading it. It's quite another to observe with naked eyes the truth they smother.
Tuesday, January 14, 2003
OUR MEDIA, AND THUS OUR DEMOCRACY, ARE IN CRISIS
Over the next few months, a single federal agency will begin to fundamentally alter the nation's communications and mass media landscape, rewriting a broad swath of rules that affect the choices consumers have for getting online and the variety of television and radio programming they watch and hear. If all of the changes being reviewed by the Federal Communications Commission are enacted as proposed, major telecommunications and media corporations will be less regulated and more free to grow than at any time in decades. [Johnathan Krim, “FCC plunging headlong into media ownership fracas.” Washington Post, Jan. 4, 2003.]
The consolidation of American media is about to move forward in a very big way. In 1996, national ownership limitations on radio stations were removed, allowing dramatic empires to be built such as that of Clear Channel, which now owns over 1,200 stations nationwide. Now a raft of other ownership limitations are potentially on the chopping block at the FCC, which could allow the same sort of consolidation in the television industry, and more. As the television networks gain a larger market share of stations, their power over locally owned network affiliates will be locked. (See fourth quote, below.) Check out these quotes, but realize that I am only touching upon this problem. The best places to go are the Media Access Project and the Center for Digital Democracy.
So far, only one public hearing is scheduled on this issue. It will be in Richmond, VA, sometime in February. (Date and time TBA, check FCC’s page below.)
For More Info, See these important links:
Here is the FCC’s page on the subject: Media Ownership Policy Reexamination.
Does America's dollar bubble explain its imperial designs on Iraqi oil?
I'm starting to like the little kiwi site called Scoop. This article is either crazy or genius. I like it's theory of the American empire's worrisome credit rating and dissatisfaction with the House of Saud, but I think it's military analysis is weak. A siege? Aren't we just going to kick butt? Hell, what do I know?
Monday, January 13, 2003
Weisbrot on Venezuela
In a commentary in today's Washington Post, Mark Weisbrot echoes what others in the alternative media have already said: there has not been a "general strike" in that country. It is an oil industry strike lead by the upper class. Weisbrot is co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research.
Tuesday, January 07, 2003
anthraxFrancis Boyle, a Professor of Law at the University of Illinois, has an article titled FBI Knows Who Was Behind Anthrax Attacks. From Scoop, a New Zealand based online news source.
Bush and KoreaHere is a good article about the way Bush contributed to the North Korea problem. Also from Scoop. I like this quote from the Washington Post, which explains how the Bush admin started being cold with South Korea's outgoing president, Kim Dae Jung:
Bush, as he was eager to demonstrate, was not a fan. Kim's sin? He was instituting a sunshine policy with the North, ending a half-century of estrangement. Bush, who looked upon North Korea as the most potent argument for his obsession to build a national missile defense, saw Kim, a Nobel Peace Prize winner, as nothing but trouble. He sent him home humiliated and empty-handed. [ McGrory, " Bush's Moonshine Policy,"The Washington Post,December 29, 2002 ].