Stop the political hate radio insanity!

| October 16, 2010 | 5 Replies

Ok, I’ve had it! I can’t stand it anymore! The foulmouthed fruitcakes have truly taken over the airwaves and it’s time for sanity’s sake to put a stop to it, one step at a time.

STEP 1:

Every time one of the loonies says something obscene, profane, or indecent on the public airwaves report it to the FCC! I entered “FCC complaint” in the search portion of my internet page and got the FCC home page. I also found helpful the folks at the Parents Television Council (PTC) for how to make a FCC complaint of obscenity.

Let’s take our fruitcake buddy Rush Limbaugh for example. Rush hasn’t met an insane hate filled statement he is unafraid to make about the Democratic Party, President Obama or anything democratic. On March 22, 2010, at or about 1 p.m. after the historic passage of healthcare reform, Rush said on his radio program and on the television feed of his program that;

“We need to defeat these bastards…we need to wipe them out!”

I know, some might say that “bastards” isn’t profanity or obscene or indecent. I sought out an arbiter of taste. I wanted to be supported in my efforts to ban these…people. I went to the PTC website. Yes, I have been there in the past to look up what they say about some kids’ movies and shows, so there! Sure enough, “bastards” is a PTC no-no. Stop the Insanity!

I live in St. Louis. I don’t think that 50,000 watt KMOX-AM radio at 1120 on the am dial should be broadcasting such words in the middle of the day. So I called the FCC and made a complaint that the language used by Mr. Limbaugh was obscene or profane or indecent. My Complaint Number is WB-14499013. Here’s what Limbaugh said. This same language was also broadcast on television, and to the degree any such TV or station put it on the airwaves, they broadcast obscenity/profanity/indecency. You may call the FCC at 1-888-CALLFCC or make a complaint.

So to be consistent, I Googled “Glenn Beck + ‘bastards’” and got a result: On May 11, 2006 at or about 6 p.m. on his nationally syndicated talk show Glenn Beck, while responding to a question about Iran, made the following statement: “I say we nuke the bastards.” Beck continued. “In fact it doesn’t have to be Iran. It can be anywhere, anyplace that disagrees with me.”

I don’t think that nationally syndicated talk show hosts should be yapping along about nuking “the bastards” on my airwaves. So I called the FCC and made a complaint that the language used by Mr. Beck was obscene or profane or indecent. There was a glitch, I didn’t know the time of the broadcast. It seems that the FCC’s computer system requires a specific time entry or else a complaint won’t be entered. I said I didn’t know the time, so we were at an impasse.

I then suggested that the actual date and content of the broadcast should be sufficient as the stations are required to keep tapes of their broadcasts by FCC regulations (I have used this requirement to research claims in my law practice where some local TV stations have been very co-operative in allowing me to view tapes. No, the FCC needed a time. Being scrupulously anal about integrity, I told the FCC person I didn’t know the time but that I had the above URL for reference. It wasn’t enough.

I suggested that the Code of Federal Regulations didn’t require me to give the exact time of the occurrence and that the information would be provided should the agency contact the broadcaster indicated in the URL I provided.

The FCC person said that I needed to give the time. I suggested it was likely between 6 a. m. and 10 p.m.

“Not good enough,” said FCC.

I said; “I guess about 6 p.m.”

My complaint number is 10-WB-14499041. Perhaps the FCC would be better served to include the “unknown” field in its computer complaint program when the date and content are known so they can DO THEIR JOB!

STEP 2:

Fox News is a controlled by the Republican Party in the United States. I have suspected this for years and now there’s proof.

In an abundance of my own insanity, I had watched Hannity on one morning and he went on and on about his being a host for a Republican Congressional Campaign Committee fundraiser. On the air, our Fox friend urged listeners to give to the RCCC.

Someone should file complaints with the Federal Election Commission to point out that the GOP fund-raising and advocacy efforts of Fox and its personalities are in-kind contributions that are required to be reported by law. Some others may be independent expenditures. Since the GOP controls Fox, it is actually engaging in electioneering communications if done within the time frame outlined in federal law and regulations.

I think these complaints should receive attention now that the Supreme Court has allowed for unlimited corporate contributions to candidates. One of the few benefits of Citizens United is that the FEC may now entertain complaints about corporate media contributions as they relate to both classes of expenditures. There is legal precedent to support the new reporting requirements for media corporations. It can be found in the general aspects of reporting to the FEC mentioned in this memo, which applies to 501 (c) corporations but has some general applicability to for profit corporations.

It may be that the new law of the land is for unfettered giving by corporations but, the insanity that is Fox News may now find itself reigned in by the old laws relating to campaign finance reporting. This may prove particularly salient now that the GOP storm troopers Karl Rove and Dick Armey may be blitzkrieging the airwaves with ads from their own 501(c)4 organizations, which would be in violation of federal tax laws if these groups are not disclosing their contributors. So, too is the case with the US Chamber of Commerce, which may be in trouble due to its acceptance of some $885,000.00 in foreign donations to air ads against Democratic Senatorial candidates such as Missouri’s Robin Carnahan.

I strongly urge anyone who stands for sanity to watch for these activities and ads, to report them to the appropriate authorities and hope that the rule of law still means something in these United States of America.

Thank You and Good Night!

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Category: Media, Politics

About the Author ()

imothy E. Hogan is a trial attorney, a husband, a father of two awesome children and a practicing Roman Catholic in St. Louis, Missouri. Mr. Hogan has done legal and political work in Jefferson City, Missouri for partisan and non-partisan social change, environmental and consumer protection groups. Mr. Hogan has also worked for consumer advocate Ralph Nader in Washington, DC and the members of the trial bar in the State of New York. Mr. Hogan’s current interests involve remaining a full time solo practitioner pioneer on the frontiers of justice in America, a good husband and a good father to his awesome children.

Comments (5)

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  1. Erich Vieth says:

    Tim: You're being a Pollyanna when you think about enforcement of campaign finance violations. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/10/18/lawbreak

  2. John says:

    Free speech was not meant to be pretty, but it must be free if America is to remain free. The nation would never have been founded under the restrictions you propose and what you propose should be flushed.

  3. Niklaus Pfirsig says:

    John

    The radio spectrum (the range of electro-magnetic frequencies that are usable for communications) is a limited public resource.

    After WWII, the FCC put forth the broadcast rules known as "The Fairness Doctrine". Conceived partly as a protection against the type of propaganda radio used by Hitler,required broadcasters to provide reasonable opportunity for discussion of all viewpoints on controversial topics.

    In the 1980's with the advent of cable tv, which did not use the public airwaves, the fairness doctrine was dropped, but many broadcasters continued to abide by the fair use doctrine as they felt it promoted an image of professionalism in their journalistic endeavors.

    Talk radio in general and the Fox network affiliates in particular regularly claim that the fair use concept violates their freedom of speech. When freedom of speech is only made available to a select few based on their political leanings and agendas, it is most certainly NOT free speech.

  4. Tim Hogan says:

    I filed my third complaint this week, hate speech by el Blimpo about Chinese-Americans!

  5. Tim Hogan says:

    I filed a complaint that Glenn Beck had falsely and deceptively reported that a Democratic official had attempted to censor a local Republican in Southwest Missouri when it fact it was done by a fellow Republican.

    The FCC said that "commentary" was "protected by the First Amendment to the US Constitution." So, we are apparently all free to make deliberately false reports of alleged facts on the US airwaves under the rubric of "commentary" and the real facts be damned!

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