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30% of Americans Want "Balanced" Blogging

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the why-do-you-hate-america's-children? dept.

The Media 720

Cutie Pi writes "In a recent Rasmussen poll looking at the public's attitudes toward a possible revival of the fairness doctrine by the Democrats, a surprisingly large percentage of those polled seek fairness doctrine mandates (originally intended for public airwaves) to cover the Internet as well. It is encouraging that a minority of people feel that way, but Democrats say 'hands-off the Internet ... by a far smaller margin than Republicans and unaffiliated voters. Democrats oppose government-mandated balance on the Internet by a 48% to 37% margin. Sixty-one percent (61%) of Republicans reject government involvement in Internet content along with 67% of unaffiliated voters.'"

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720 comments

republicans favoring less government involvement? (1, Informative)

moderatorrater (1095745) | more than 5 years ago | (#24605921)

But most republican politicians seem to like bigger government! I'm so confused...

Re:republicans favoring less government involvemen (5, Insightful)

Poppa (95105) | more than 5 years ago | (#24605989)

Conservative politicians want a smaller government. The previous Republican majority was not conservative.

Re:republicans favoring less government involvemen (1, Informative)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606103)

Republicans haven't been for smaller government since the 80s. Bush didn't start the current wave of neoconservatism.

Re:republicans favoring less government involvemen (2, Insightful)

sheldon (2322) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606471)

What exactly was small about massive defense spending, and trying to legislate morality?

Re:republicans favoring less government involvemen (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24606601)

All laws legislate morality. If you don't want government to legislate morality, there shouldn't be laws against murder, theft, rape or child molestation.

Re:republicans favoring less government involvemen (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24606121)

The previous Republican majority was not conservative.

That's right - they were compassionate.

Re:republicans favoring less government involvemen (1)

Eudial (590661) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606371)

The previous Republican majority was not conservative.

That's right - they were compassionate.

Compassionate like a 20 feet anaconda trying to hug you to death.

Re:republicans favoring less government involvemen (4, Insightful)

rolfwind (528248) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606187)

Go by the term Classical Liberal then:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Classical_liberalism [wikipedia.org]

Those want a limited government (which itself is a more correct term, a smaller government is the natural effect byproduct of a limited government but a smaller government isn't always more limited - i.e. outsourcing everything)

"Conservative" means nothing anymore, it's been so diluted. The biggest "conservatives" are nothing more but against taxes (passing staggering debt onto future generations while still paying for massive entitlements/porkbarrel is not more conservative than tax and spend), embrace war against drugs/crime/poverty/nations (war is the health of the state, thus anti-conservative) and lastly, wear their religion on their sleeve yet none of it in their hearts except when convenient.

Plus the term liberal drives many of the unreasonable ones on edge. People like Sean Hannity or Rush Limbaugh types that want to pidgeonhole everyone in their arguments.

Re:republicans favoring less government involvemen (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606399)

Which probably explains why I get to choose from the following "Republican" parties: Republican party, GOP party, Grand Old party and Taxcut Republican. I probably missed a few in there.

It's something which has been coming for a while, I'm more surprised that the Dems haven't fallen apart in a similar fashion in state politics.

Re:republicans favoring less government involvemen (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24606323)

That is a poor descriptor of a fairly complicated political organization. The real reason that the Republicans haven't been 'conservative' is that the current factions in charge (the neo-cons and evangelists) decided to associate with the Republican Party for its hawkishness and its acceptance of religion in government. There still are factions that fit the normal description of 'conservative,' but they have been greatly outmaneuvered in recent years (and no, I'm not talking about Ron Paul who fits into the very small libertarian faction). The neo-cons and evangelists are probably in the minority in the Republican Party, but due to election demographics, the southern states have vastly more power than their populations would represent. Thus, they are the 'base' to which the Party panders.

If the United States didn't have jigsaw puzzle elections, more moderate voices would gain prominence and the extremists would be pushed to the outskirts. Instead we have people like Michelle Malkin and Anne Coulter that are considered legitimate voices of conservatives in the US. It makes me want to vomit.

Re:republicans favoring less government involvemen (2, Insightful)

knavel (1155875) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606537)

The previous Republican majority was not conservative.

If by "previous" you mean "previous several, and current, and probably the next several". And to avoid coming off as simple flamebait, I know that just because all republican politicians are for expanding government control, that doesn't mean all republican voters are. Just like all democratic politicians are pussies, but not all democratic voters are.

Though really, if you're identifying yourself as either, you're voluntarily lumping yourself in with one crowd or the other, so don't get angry when assumptions are made. It's your own damned fault in that case.

Re:republicans favoring less government involvemen (5, Insightful)

lgw (121541) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606031)

But most republican politicians seem to like bigger government! I'm so confused...

Don't worry, so are they! How I long for the days when the Repulicans were for a government that took less of your money, and the Democrats were for a government that took less of your freedoms. Now both are pro-censorship, and both are for more government spending, and both are for more government power to combat scary things.

How would a "balanced internet" work in the first place? Can you not find a blog aready to cater to any political belief no matter how bizzare? Now I'm the one confused.

Re:republicans favoring less government involvemen (1, Insightful)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606251)

Both are pro-censorship, but the Republicans aren't nearly as bad as the Democrats in that regard. Only Democrats would care about something like "fairness" in media, especially on the internet. With Republicans, they only want to censor when people say things that big corporations find offensive. Make a blog where you complain about politicians, and Republicans aren't going to bother you much, even if you spout ultra-liberal views. But make a conservative blog and the Democrats will complain you're not being "fair" or "balanced". (Of course, the Dems never complain about liberal bias.) OTOH, make a blog where you trash some corporations, and the Republicans will happily pass a law making it easy for the corporations to shut you down using barratry, trademark law, or some other legal crap.

The reasons for this aren't very complicated. Democrats are socialists who admire the old Soviet state; they want to create a huge government to make everyone equal (by hatchet, axe, and saw if necessary), and to take care of everyone, with themselves at the top of course. Republicans are fascists who want a few large corporations to take power, so they can claim people have freedom (even though they don't, because they're being oppressed by the corporations).

If you want freedom, the only party that's interested in that is the Libertarians. The other two want to oppress you and take your money, just in slightly different ways.

Re:republicans favoring less government involvemen (3, Insightful)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606331)

I think that it basically boils down to, the Republicans don't care about you because you don't have enough money and the Democrats don't care about you because you don't have enough money. The Libertarians care about you, but they have such a minority you will probably not see a Libetarian president in your lifetime.

Re:republicans favoring less government involvemen (4, Insightful)

CRCulver (715279) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606585)

Democrats are socialists who admire the old Soviet state.

What rubbish. I'd imagine that most Democrats are socialists who look towards the Nordic welfare states.

Re:republicans favoring less government involvemen (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606271)

How would a "balanced internet" work in the first place? Can you not find a blog aready to cater to any political belief no matter how bizzare? Now I'm the one confused

Exactly, what we need if anything is a balanced congress one that isn't made up of republicans and democrats.

Re:republicans favoring less government involvemen (1)

Koby77 (992785) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606391)

It would probably work by simply shutting down websites, like how the RIAA tries to do takedowns on sites that it doesn't like. Only it would have the enforcement of an actual government entity like the FEC. If you remember, back when the Fairness Doctrine was in place, there was relatively little political content. Most radio and TV shows simply couldn't afford to give some crackpot equal time, so they avoided political controversy entirely. After Fairness Doctrine was abolished, there was explosion in content.

You may disagree with the content, but that's how freedom of speech works. Also, I'm sure the incumbent politicians would like to re-enact the Fairness Doctrine, including Republicans, because there's plenty of influential conservative political pundits that don't like the Republican incumbents either. So the Fairness Doctrine would pretty much work by politicians getting the FEC to shut down all websites that they don't like.

So you could rename the Fairness Doctrine the Incumbent Political Protection Act of 20XX.

Re:republicans favoring less government involvemen (1)

everphilski (877346) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606457)

How would a "balanced internet" work in the first place? Can you not find a blog aready to cater to any political belief no matter how bizzare? Now I'm the one confused.

One opinion I've heard, and I honestly don't know how accurate it is, is that a website that caters to a specific group (Democrat, Republican, etc.) would no longer have power to moderate opposing views, which initially might not seem bad but there's a fine line between trolling and breaking the law... someone could troll hardcore and be unstoppable under the Fairness Doctrine.

Again, that's someone elses' read, not mine... but interesting.

with smaller news rooms....troll (1)

xzvf (924443) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606077)

The internet today is an off balance representation of the population as a whole. I believe it will balance out and insane sites like huffington will lose popularity. With smaller news rooms, dominated by boomers at the TV networks and likely similar environments at papers. The internet, TV, radio (mostly opinion and no news research) and papers all have one thing in mind. Eyeball hits for selling advertising. Best way to get hits? Troll. But it is better than having the government edit "balance" the news. Maybe Google can have a project to aggregate all the news stories on a subject and strip out everything but the facts. Kind of like the online translators.

Re:with smaller news rooms....troll (1)

NiceGeek (126629) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606253)

Why single out Huffington and ignore Little Green Footballs and MichelleMalkin.com?

Re:with smaller news rooms....troll (1)

xzvf (924443) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606575)

Because sites like digg have been ruined because of every huffington story being driven to the top. I've actually seen the titles of some of their posts. The ones you mentioned I've never seen.

Re:with smaller news rooms....troll (1)

Devout_IPUite (1284636) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606489)

I wouldn't count on Huffington losing popularity due to it's liberal bias. I don't see Fox or CNN hurting from their conservative bias.

Don't worry... (2, Insightful)

PortHaven (242123) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606137)

So are us Republicans. We vote for these guys, and then they act like Democrats.

Then we go vote for a staunch small government man like Ron Paul and find our votes (at least in New Hampshire) did not get recorded for whatever reason.

Re:Don't worry... (1, Insightful)

Abcd1234 (188840) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606269)

We vote for these guys, and then they act like Democrats.

Oh bullshit. At least the Dems would've had the sense to tax, as well as spend, as opposed to Bush's strategy of spend and *cut* taxes.

Face it, you may not like the Dems, but the neocons are even worse.

Re:republicans favoring less government involvemen (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24606167)

But most republican politicians seem to like bigger government! I'm so confused...

Attention, poster. Your comment does not comply with the Fairness Doctrine requirements for political content. Specifically, you have posted Unbalanced Content to a website Slashdot.org, which is hosted, at least in part, in the United States. By posting commentary with wilful negligence towards the New American Requirements for Fairness, and especially by doing so in an election year, the Presidential Organization on Informational Technology has authorized me to point out that you have placed Sourceforge, Inc, the owner of Slashdot.org, at risk of legal action.

In order to rectify the situation and restore balance to Slashdot.org's content, I have been authorized by the FCC to address this imbalance by pointing out that Democratic politicians also seem to like bigger government.

(And what are we, the voters of the United States, going to do about it in November? The same thing we do every November.)

Re:republicans favoring less government involvemen (1)

Wister285 (185087) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606171)

But most republican politicians seem to like bigger government! I'm so confused...

On what grounds? If you mean in terms of defense, sure. But what about Welfare, Social Security, Medicare, and simplification of the tax code? I am not arguing one way or the other, but if you eliminated Social Security and Medicare alone, you would decrease Federal spending by at least 42%!

Source:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_federal_budget [wikipedia.org]

So does this mean? (5, Funny)

lecithin (745575) | more than 5 years ago | (#24605927)

If /. were fair and balanced would each posting as an AC be treated as +1 subscriber?????

Re:So does this mean? (5, Funny)

BeanThere (28381) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606357)

Yes, the moderation system is clearly yet another manifestation of the oppression of the underclass by the elite bourgeois ruling classes. Who gets to say what is "good" and "bad" anyway? The suppression of alternate points of view is nothing less than the suppression of alternate non-mainstream modes of knowledge. All points of view are equally valid, therefore all posts should automatically be +5, always (including this one, *cough cough*).

Re:So does this mean? (1)

lattyware (934246) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606581)

Well, I botched the funny mod on that one.

70% of Americans (4, Funny)

Qzukk (229616) | more than 5 years ago | (#24605933)

Aren't complete blithering idiots.

Hey, I'm just being "balanced"... if we're talking about 30% we have to talk about the other 70% too in order to be fair, right?

Re:70% of Americans (3, Funny)

Farmer Tim (530755) | more than 5 years ago | (#24605965)

Aren't complete blithering idiots.

Must...resist...bait...

Re:70% of Americans (1)

Target Practice (79470) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606059)

You are absolutely correct. That percentage is FAR higher than 70!

Re:70% of Americans (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24606081)

say, 102 % with a 2% margin of error.

Re:70% of Americans (1)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606213)

Aren't complete blithering idiots.

70%? That's like, half, right?

FAIL! (0)

rmadmin (532701) | more than 5 years ago | (#24605951)

s/americans/political nerds/

Not surprising (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24605953)

30% still say Bush is doing a good job. It looks like 30% is about the baseline for the uninformed, non-critical thinkers on any topic.

Re:Not surprising (1)

PortHaven (242123) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606157)

Just to note, in this case, the 30% seem to contain more Democrats.

Re:Not surprising (1)

Poltras (680608) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606329)

I would have said Liberals, not Democrats. Stop mixing political party affiliation and political goals. They're not the same, at least in my country. Sorry if yours has bias issues.

All blogs are editorials (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24605957)

Editorials are opinion, not legitimate reporting of facts.

Re:All blogs are editorials (1)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606387)

Editorials are opinion, not legitimate reporting of facts.

Exactly. I want less balance in the blogs I read. I want ranting, foaming, wild-eyed, screaming FANATICISM. I want blogs to make Alex Jones and the guy from timecube.com look St. Thomas Aquinas. I want blogs to cause stammering inarticulate rage, bleeding from the ears and epileptic seizures in people of opposing viewpoints. That's entertainment.

In other news... (3, Insightful)

ShadowRangerRIT (1301549) | more than 5 years ago | (#24605961)

31% of Americans have no idea how the Internet works.

Re:In other news... (2, Funny)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#24605997)

31? Last time I did any type of computer help it was more like 95%

Re:In other news... (1)

Narpak (961733) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606169)

To be fair if you are working with "computer help" you mostly get contact with people asking for help. Those that help themselves are thus not represented.

Re:In other news... (1)

JCSoRocks (1142053) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606595)

oh no, the people that "help themselves" come to you to... only instead of filling their computer with malware they've used some "tool" to remove "unnecessary" registry entries... or "optimized their computer" by stopping every system process.

Re:In other news... (0, Offtopic)

PortHaven (242123) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606173)

Neither does McCain or Ron Paul. But Ron Paul is smart enough to let people who know how it works, use it for him. And smart enough not to mess with it and just let it work how it works. ;-)

Re:In other news... (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606361)

Possibly they just aren't aware that there are other countries in the world with their own legal systems. If I, as a British citizen, set up a blog on a server somewhere here, and start blogging about how great one candidate is, then what do they expect to be able to do about it? Or do they think that US laws would be binding to me? Perhaps they just want a Great Firewall of America that will block anyone in the USA from seeing my site? 30% is an alarmingly high percentage to espouse such an obviously stupid idea.

Re:In other news... (1)

nimbius (983462) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606461)

duh, everyone knows its a series of tubes.

then again, im not certain most corporations have a good idea what a blog is. examples include my local mall having a "blog" and our vp of finance starting a blog by stating "today we are going to blog about...."

This is a great idea and very important (5, Insightful)

StreetStealth (980200) | more than 5 years ago | (#24605979)

Because with only three blogs in the blog-o-sphere, the millions of Americans these blogs serve really deserve government-mandated balance.

Oh, what's that, there's more than three? How many, then? Five?

Re:This is a great idea and very important (1)

homer_s (799572) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606557)

Because with only three blogs in the blog-o-sphere, the millions of Americans these blogs serve really deserve government-mandated balance. Oh, what's that, there's more than three? How many, then? Five?

We can fix that easily enough. Just make blogs get all the government approvals that newspapers, TV and radio stations have to get and we'll have the 5 blogs that you want.

On the other hand, you can remove all the regulations that govern newspapers and tv stations and maybe we'll have more than a handful of those.

Re:This is a great idea and very important (2, Informative)

fishbowl (7759) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606597)

>On the other hand, you can remove all the regulations that govern newspapers and tv stations and maybe we'll have more than a handful of those.

What regulations do you imagine, apply to newspapers? Or aside from broadcast spectrum, tv stations?
Do you honestly believe the US government regulates content (beyond the "compelling state interest" stuff?)

Political Banner Ads (1)

g0bshiTe (596213) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606001)

Quick someone get a patent on a technology whereby an official campaigning for election creates an electronic advertisement for posting on the internet to promote them in an upcoming election.

The truth is simple. (4, Insightful)

Kingrames (858416) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606007)

Balanced is not equal to fair.

"Balanced" in this case means that only the democratic party and the republican party will have their voices heard.

Re:The truth is simple. (4, Insightful)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606039)

Exactly, we need to stop thinking that there are only 2 of everything, 2 political ideologies, 2 OSes, 2 news stations, etc. There are more than 2 sides to everything, think of the RIAA debates, the RIAA has one side, the general public has another and the musicians have another side too.

Re:The truth is simple. (5, Insightful)

eln (21727) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606135)

We also have to stop thinking that there must be 2 sides to every issue and that both sides are equally valid. That sort of thinking is where you get things like the media treating Intelligent Design as a valid scientific theory, because they're convinced that every issue must have two equally valid sides, even when only one side is actually supported by any kind of scientific evidence.

Re:The truth is simple. (1)

danbeck (5706) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606291)

Point me to a single article where the "media" has treated Intelligent Design as a valid scientific theory. I dare you.

hint: It's a belief, not a scientific theory.

Re:The truth is simple. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24606273)

That sounds difficult. I think I prefer willing ignorance. Also, that sounds way more mature and intelligent than I care to be. If everything in the world can't be broken down into US vs. THEM, then how am I supposed to know who's right? If every issue can't isn't just Black and White I may have to actually think about it.

Re:The truth is simple. (1)

Narpak (961733) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606285)

Oh noes don't break my bubble! I prefer it when all my choices are boiled down to a few easy options; thus reducing the energy I have to waste on making "informed choices". Everything in life can be broken down into categories and genres. Just like if you want Universal Healthcare you are a dirty communist, and if you don't want Universal Healthcare you are a freedom loving capitalist. There are no options in-between and anyone that says so are obviously insane, rambling, sausage eating crazy people!

I don't like it when people pretend issues are "complex" and have "more than one side"; they obviously aren't trying hard enough not to understand.

Re:The truth is simple. (1)

gad_zuki! (70830) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606403)

Worse it means that when a professional scientist is quoted about global warming then a GOP hack gets equal airtime.

When a church has a bake sale then an atheist gets to rant about the crusades.

When a cat photo is posted, then a fail dog [faildogs.com] photo must be posted.

etc

Perhaps it made sense when information came only from radio and tv, and a handful of companies owned all the mass media, but on the internet things are a little different.

I would say... (4, Insightful)

XanC (644172) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606015)

...that there's no way something this asinine could possibly pass 1st Amendment muster. Especially since political speech is exactly the epicenter of that amendment. I would say that, but I also witnessed all three branches of the federal government fail us spectacularly on McCain-Feingold campaign finance reform.

Already was the law from 1949-1984ish (4, Insightful)

xzvf (924443) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606193)

If I remember right the fairness doctrine was the law from 1949 until sometime into Reagan's second term. Its repeal lead to the rise of talk radio and helped cable news. Probably indirectly led to the lack of regulation by the FCC of the internet.

Re:I would say... (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606475)

And not to mention that the government thinks that you are a terrorist or communist if you say something that isn't what America is today.

Will this include issues such as (4, Interesting)

rolfwind (528248) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606017)

Holocaust denial? Must both sides be given a equal voice by mandate? How about flat-earth theory? Or moon hoax hypothesis? Or is this where the government suddenly decides what is "mainstream" and what is kooky. If they decide that, where will the boundary be for other, much more legitimate ideas that Government may not like. Will it be that they suddenly decide what the bounds of fair discourse is by controlling the parameters?

Why is it that so many people think that the government, a large force with its own agenda, will do a much better job than many individuals not geared around a singular goal/entity? The Patriot Act was not patriotic, and the Fairness doctrine will not be fair.

Re:Will this include issues such as (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24606181)

The Patriot Act was not patriotic, and the Fairness doctrine will not be fair.

Sure it will. Once they give it a cutsey acronym, that is. That is the standard as to whether a law is good or not. How about the Fair And Inclusive Reporting Act? See? How more FAIR can it be?

Re:Will this include issues such as (2, Insightful)

corsec67 (627446) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606211)

Must both sides be given a equal voice by mandate?

I think you make a false assumption there:

Why does the number of sides to an issue have to be 2?

"Which party is the best?" Are you saying that you have to take a Democrat and a Republican? What about the other parties?

You mention the Earth's shape. You would talk to the flat-earth people, and then whom? The people who believe that the Earth is a sphere? What about the scientists who think it is an oblate spheroid [wikipedia.org] . What about people who think it is a more complex 4-dimensional shape?

Any meaningful question/issue is going to have more than 2 sides, and trying to squeeze a meaningful discussion into a binary decision is pretty harmful. Just look at our parties. They have migrated to be slightly away from each other, but both actually quite close together.

Re:Will this include issues such as (1)

rolfwind (528248) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606287)

I think you make a false assumption there:

Why does the number of sides to an issue have to be 2?

Too much indoctrination by the media, especially Fox News which I had to listen to at work lately:) You are correct.

Oh goody... (3, Interesting)

PieSquared (867490) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606033)

This is why education is a prerequisite for democracy. Or at least for democracy to work.

Crap like this combined with the evidence from the republicans that people have finally realized they can vote themselves infinite money either has to end now (hey, lets lower taxes and not increase spending, that's a *great* idea, just like a credit card! What could possibly go wrong!), or things are going to get really bad really quick.

It's a horrible, horrible idea and would certainly end up being racist as well, but you really have to wonder if voting shouldn't be a little more... restricted. Like, requiring that you have a history of not failing personal economics in order to have any influence on national economics? Or basic understanding of science to be able to influence science policy? Maybe it's not possible to do this, but you have to wonder if anything else can work in the long run.

Re:Oh goody... (1)

EmbeddedJanitor (597831) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606179)

Just so long as you don't confuse education with the crap they serve at schools.

What hope does a kid have of thinking critically and rationally about US military/foreign policy when (s)he's been quoting the pledge of allegiance since his diaper-years?

A Good Democracy Requires: (1)

PortHaven (242123) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606201)

An educated moral and armed society.

Re:A Good Democracy Requires: (1)

uhlume (597871) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606517)

Educated, moral, armed: pick two.

Re:Oh goody... (1)

danbeck (5706) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606227)

Your post made no sense. Let's take a break and sit back and see if we couldn't remove a few of those run-on sentences. Try completing a few of those thoughts you had and maybe throw in some decent punctuation here and there. I'm not asking you to pass muster for English 301. Just sort of make it legible for the "rest of us".

Re:Oh goody... (3, Funny)

moderatorrater (1095745) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606263)

hey, lets lower taxes and not increase spending, that's a *great* idea,

That's one of the best fucking ideas I've ever heard. However, from your criticism, I'm guessing the word "not" wasn't supposed to be in there.

Re:Oh goody... (1)

Narpak (961733) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606417)

I reckon you are right in many ways. For a Democracy to work the citizens have to be informed about the issues they are voting on. Also they have to be clear about their own duties as citizens; voting isn't just a right; it's a duty. At least in my view. When the government no longer ensures that every vote is counted, and that it counts, it is the right of the people to remove said government from office (unfortunately this usually just replaces it with something worse or just as bad).

People do not use enough time to take care of their democracy, instead they just sign away their vote and influence to candidates. Not a bad system. But if you as a citizen do not ensure that your candidate is honest you are failing your end of the democratic pact.

Re:Oh goody... (1)

tjstork (137384) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606567)

but you really have to wonder if voting shouldn't be a little more... restricted

Democrats are the ones that got rid of poll taxes and voting tests with a constitutional amendment.

That same 30% then asked... (3, Funny)

Sfing_ter (99478) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606063)

That same 30% then asked...
wtf is a blog?

Equal Time? (1)

ThePromenader (878501) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606075)

Oh yes - and we must leave 50% of the air time to creationists, only because they have a 'differing opinion' that (somehow) merits air time that equals that of scientists. Never mind that only a wee percentage of the public actually follow their (blithering) doctrine, nor that nothing of their 'views' is based on real observation or fact...

In short, the net will regulate itself without regulation. In fact, for the time being, it is our only chance at objectively observing what people really think.

Slashdotters... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24606095)

Have more in common with Republicans than they are aware of.

Re:Slashdotters... (1)

PortHaven (242123) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606225)

Heck, there might even be some them there Re-puh-blee-kans on Slashdot as we speak...I mean type.

Democrats trying to turn us into a nanny state (1)

the computer guy nex (916959) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606107)

Telling business owners they don't have the choice to allow smoking, telling consumers what video games we should be able to play, and now telling Internet users what they can and can't say.

Democrats are upset that most political talk and political blogs lean conservative. They still have the drive-by media locked up, they should be happy.

Re:Democrats trying to turn us into a nanny state (3, Insightful)

MozeeToby (1163751) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606189)

I agree with you on everything but the smoking issue. Your right to smoke does not over rule my right to not breath in your smoke. And before you say "then you can leave", no, that's not the way the world works. I don't have to quit my job because you want to smoke.

Re:Democrats trying to turn us into a nanny state (2, Informative)

pin0chet (963774) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606493)

You might want to read up on a concept we've got called Private Property. Bans on smoking in buildings owned by government? Fine by me. But dictating to an owner of private property that emitting certain types of smoke is illegal goes against the concept of autonomy and ownership. And don't even try the "But employees have a right to a smoke-free workplace!" line. It's simply not a justification for using the coercive power of the state. Should cops have a right to not worry about being shot? Should garbage collectors not have to deal with stinky decaying waste all day? If you choose to work in a bar, or a restaurant that allows smoking, then you are knowingly assuming some level of risk.

Easy to circumvent (5, Insightful)

Rayeth (1335201) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606123)

Given the multi-national congregation that is the net, I can't really see how this could be enforced anyhow. It could be easily circumvented by simply hosting your blog in Britain, or Congo, or anywhere else in the world without this rule. There's no law saying you can't blog about American politcs from abroad (and many people already do).

Re:Easy to circumvent (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606429)

The only way to fully implement this kind of law is to install a Great Firewall of America and filter out any sites that are not government approved. The fact that 30% of the population of the USA is in favour of this is something I find quite alarming.

No. Artificially limiting discourse... (2, Insightful)

analogkid76 (1224880) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606145)

.. is not conducive to social evolution.

We need new ideas, new ways of thinking about issues, each other, and ourselves in order to evolve as a society and as a species.

... in my opinion - which I would surely demand the continuing freedom to express.

Now, for any organization that claims to be journalistic in nature *of course* balance is essential. That includes online news sites, which should not be trying to swaying opinion but rather about conveying facts in the most objective way possible in order to keep the public informed.

But bloggers are not news agencies. They are simply a measure of the attitudes and opinions of people at large, so I can think of no good reason to impose some kind of balance on that. Doing so would only stifle our evolution toward a better humanity.

Imposing balance on a blogger online is no different than imposing balance on someone standing on a soap box at the street corner. It's optional, not required.

At least that's the way I see it.

*steps off soap box*

Re:No. Artificially limiting discourse... (1)

thedistrict (1327685) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606203)

It's definitely limiting free speech and I agree. There need to be people voicing their opinions in any medium possible. The medium of choice for younger generations is the internet, so these speakers need to be there and they need to be heard; everything they have to say.

Just do away with it altogether. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24606163)

I'm tired of being confronted with American politics on the web at all. Yeah, sure, you're pretty much the top dog in the global community, but even the non-American news sites are chattering about Obama versus McCain, when I'm really trying to just find more info on something completely unrelated to politics.

Re:Just do away with it altogether. (1)

jay-be-em (664602) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606295)

Uh. Use a search engine? Or something like news.google.com ?

Typical (2, Interesting)

EdIII (1114411) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606183)

I don't mean typical of Democrats or Republicans either. Typical of people that want to tell you what you think, act, feel, and say through government policy. The Fairness Doctrine was essentially bullshit from the beginning. Regardless of what the proponents of the Fairness Doctrine were trying to accomplish a half century ago, it cannot apply to the Internet.

This policy was originally meant to control content on the PUBLIC airwaves. It required broadcasters to act as "mediators" and notify all parties when an "attack" was made and offer equal time for a response. It was 100% political.

The Internet is not owned by the public. It is a privately owned infrastructure, that interestingly enough, has only a portion of it residing in the US. Any arguments that are based on the fundamental premise of a public owned medium to communicate fall flat.

"Blogging" is an incredibly vague term. It can represent entities from the average citizen with something to say, to corporate sponsored journalists. Some entities could own their own domain and pay for hosting services, while others could merely obtain free hosting through other companies. It is not possible to make the owners of the websites police all of their own content, track down any affected parties, and then donate web space and bandwidth for an opposing view. Attempting to create an infrastructure of control over the medium is laughable at best.

Government controlling content on the Internet is a slippery slope to be sure and is not even practical. In every instance the US government has attempted to exert control, the offending content has merely moved outside of the US.

This is about politically motivated people that want to control speech offensive to them and their position. Hiding their true motivations in an idealogical appeal for fair representation of all viewpoints is just covering the desire for censorship.

If there is an honest desire for fairness here, it should not be accomplished through controlling content on the Internet, but rather by the creation of public resources on the Internet. The government can have it's own resources and policies that govern those resources. Let all the political people go there and demand their 15 minutes each to slam each other.

Let me be the first to say... (1)

rastoboy29 (807168) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606223)

This is an idiotic desire.  Anything I write on the internet can be called a "blog", and the idea that I should try to be fair toward the stupid, the evil, or even the opposing political party or football team is insipid.

Foxnews has apparently brainwashed a lot of people into thinking that "fair and balanced" is even a desireable thing.  How about objectivity and truth, instead?  Giving airtime to insane/wicked opposing viewpoints does no one any good.  And the idea that this should be forced on individuals would only result in people not being allowed to have any actual opinion, at all.

Re:Let me be the first to say... (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606405)

Giving airtime to insane/wicked opposing viewpoints does no one any good.

But who decides if it is wicked or insane? A religion would be quick to dismiss any talk about evolution because it contradicts the doctrine they believe in, the government would be quick to call someone wicked for having a viewpoint that is different than the majority, a corporation is quick to call someone wicked because they don't like the corporation.

Balanced? (2, Insightful)

flajann (658201) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606247)

Until I see other political parties other than the Democrats and Republicans get "balanced" coverage on the airwaves, I consider both party's plea for any kind of balance to be disingenuous.

Or perhaps the word I am looking for is "hypocritical".

'Fairness' doctrine is simply state censorship (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24606301)

It is imperative for the freedom and development of the internet that any attempts to impose the so called 'fairness doctrine' on blogs, newsgroups, forums, etc, be smacked down viciously.

Who decides what is and isn't a valid viewpoint? Do we have to give equal time to creationists whenever a scientist talks about the earth being more than a few thousand years old?

Every time some one mentions the moon landing, do we have to give time to some conspiracy theorist saying that the moon landing never happened?

Whenever we mention 9/11 do we have to give time to some nutjob who claims Bush personally engineered the whole thing?

The 'fairness doctrine' should be anathema to anyone who even pretends to support free speech, as it rests completely on the government dictating which viewpoints are and are not 'valid'. Valid opposing viewpoints have to be represented. Invalid opposing viewpoints do not.

It's tyranny and fascism, nothing less.

OTOH (4, Insightful)

ProteusQ (665382) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606305)

a) Less than 1/3 of all Americans support the censorship of political blogs.

b) 70% of Americans do not support regulation of political blogging.

Same data, different spin.

Re:OTOH (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24606587)

Exactly. How this story is presented is a perfect example. Why even bother with asking about political blogs? The internet is not a finite *public* resource.

But the airways are -- and that gets lost in the obfuscation.

Most people live in the cities, and that includes liberals and conservatives.

I think many city dwelling conservatives are unaware of some of things that are broadcast on public airways out here in the sticks.

It's pure hate speech directed at liberals.

'Thy Word Network' in my area spends lots of time detailing how we are at war with Islam.

One sermon's theme was: what divides us is greater than what unites us -- and that was about other *Americans* -- not even the supposed Islamic threat.

This is not what the public airways are charged with. It is not an open mic to incite hate to the highest bidder.

It's just not. And now we don't have to address that while we flame over how stupid Democrats are that want to 'censor' the internet.

The Republic is dying.

This is ridiculous (1)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606313)

If you want balance in blogs, just read biased blogs on both sides of a particular issue. Problem solved. No need to force someone who simply wants to vent his opinions to be "balanced".

Illiberal liberals (4, Insightful)

rumblin'rabbit (711865) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606337)

but Democrats say 'hands-off the Internet ... by a far smaller margin than Republicans and unaffiliated voters.

Why are so many supposedly liberal-minded people so ... illiberal? Is it because they think a fairness doctrine would only be used against Republicans?

It's like they want to attack their enemies by removing the oxygen out of the air, without considering how they themselves will breath.

A Pox on Both Parties! (2, Insightful)

RudyHartmann (1032120) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606363)

A pox on all their houses! Any idiot that thinks either the Democrats or Republicans is going improve their way of life is deluded. Anything run by a commitee is sure to F up just about anything they set out to do. Government is a big commitee. I tend to be more Libertarian and just want to be left alone by all those busy bodies. Let them start to control speech on the Internet and were all doomed. Heck, we're probably doomed already. Yes we need them to regulate road traffic and national defense. But don't give them anymore power. Ugh!

There exists a 27% crazification factor (1)

peacefinder (469349) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606401)

As outlined here [blogspot.com] , "[...] you have to assume a 27% Crazification Factor in any population." The margin of error of the poll surely accounts for the relatively high crazification on this issue.

DIDO: A new(-ish) concept in computing... (1)

j_f_chamblee (253315) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606447)

*****begin rant******

DIDO: Dumbasses in, Dumbasses out. Anyone who suggests that the internet needs to be regulated, or even could be regulated, in the same way that way that airwaves are regulated does not really understand what the internet is. Television and radio were/are regulated using the fairness doctrine because they are public resources that are only available in limited quantity. You can only have on station broadcasting on the frequency that represents, for instance, channel 9, in any given geographical area.

The internet, on the other hand, is a scale free network (see the nice book by Albert-László Barabási on the topic), meaning that it is not limited in the same way that the airwaves are. Balancing the internet would be like balancing printed media (there are as many newspapers as printing presses) or telephone conversations. There's no need to regulate because we aren't talking about finite public resources. The whole concept is ridiculous --- so ridiculous that I can't even believe I'm writing about it to a bunch of geeks. Even semi-geeks like me *know* this about the internet.

And yet, the first twenty postings were almost entirely about how bad the fairness doctrine could be if applied to the internet on political grounds. While it is true that that this could be bad politically, the more salieent issue is that "balancing" the internet would be bad because it is a stupid, pointless, unworkable idea put forward by bureaucrats and pollsters who probably have regular difficulties checking their email and go whining to their relatives when their "internet breaks!!!!"

GACK!!!!!!

****end rant****

This just in (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24606501)

31% of Americans barely able to maintain body functions necessary to live...

They just want their opinion heard... so BLOG! (1)

Jackie_Chan_Fan (730745) | more than 5 years ago | (#24606551)

Blog away. There is no "fair and balanced" world. If someone feels their opinions aren't represented, shouldn't they get off their ass and represent themselves? We're all a bunch of lazy babies. We deserve this mess we call a country.

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