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'Niceguy' Eddie

Political Talk Show Host and Internet Radio Personality. My show, In My Humble Opinion, aired on RainbowRadio from 2015-2017.

Feel free to contact me at niceguy9418@usa.com. You can also friend me on Facebook, follow me on Twitter, and Tumblr, and support my Patreon. Also, if you don't mind the stench, you can find my unofficial "fan club" over HERE. ;)


Sunday, April 18, 2010

Conservatives have an interesting interpretation of censorship...


In a fairly recent discussion about Net Neutrality, I was presented with the absolutely absurd point by RW poster Seahawks123, that Net Neutrality was somehow tantamount to censorship.  He likened it to the fairness doctrine, another vastly overated "threat" to "free speech" that the Right loves to fear monger about. 

Now, first of all, regarding the fairness doctrine:

1) The Democrats are NOT trying to reinstate it.  I don't know why not.  It could only help civil discourse and foster more open and honest political debate at this point.  (And the fact that the Right isn't advocating for a required rebutal, sort of puts a stake, once and for all, in the idea that the media leans to the left, no?)  But, for better or worse, there are no serious proposal pending to re-instate it.

2) In arguing against it, as is par for the course, the Right can't help but distort what it represents.  All it requires is that the opposition be allowed to say their piece.  WHAT'S SO WRONG WITH THAT?!  It does not (and never did) require equal time.  After three hours of Rush Limbaugh, Clear Channel would have been in perfect compliance just to give some token liberal 10 seconds to quote Joe Peschi from My Cousin Vinny and say, "Everything that guy just said was bullshit."

3) They always say that it impinges on free speech, and thus that's it tantamount to censorship.  But for the life of me, I'll just never understand how making sure someone has the chance to speak somehow constitutes a LIMIT on free speech!  Seems to me that only a coward who KNOWS HE'S WRONG or KNOWS HE'S LYING would fear hearing (or having people hear) what his opponent might say.  Personally, I wouldn't dream of editing out (or moderating) a conseravtive's resonse to anything I've posted here.  If it were thoughtful, I'd just deal with it, and if it were absurd and abusive I'd simply say, "Look at what I have to deal with!"  But, if you're as intellectualy bankrupt as Rush Limbaugh / Glenn Beck / Sean Hannity / Mike Savage / Ann Coulter / etc... I can see why being forced to give even 10 seconds to an opposition voice would cause you to wake up in the middle of the night in a cold sweat.

ANYWAY, the really goofy thing here is that Net Neutrality doesn't work at all like the fairness doctrine.  And it doesn't stop anyone from saying anything or force anyone to give time or space to let anyone else say something.  What it DOES DO is guarentee everyone an equal opportunity to speak.  It says that NO ONE can be cut out.  Well, that's pretty much EXACTLY what free speech is all about, isn't it?!  But the bulk of the Right (as usual) can't wrap their tiny little brains aorund even so simple a concept as this.  This becuase:

1) The Democrats support it.  Therefore they MUST oppose it.  Doesn't matter what it is.  Which is just fucking stupid.

2) The Right Wing Talking heads (who are all paid by the corporations who would lose power and influence under Net Neutrality) oppose it.  Therefore the MUST oppose it.  Doesn't matter what the implications are for US, the prviate citizens. Which is, again, just fucking stupid.

3) Per their talking points, ANYTHING a private, for-profit corporation does is GOOD, and ANYTHING and EVERYTHING the Government does is BAD.  (Which might just be the MOST fucking stupid mentality of all!)

And the sad thing is that I honestly do not believe I am distorting their position here!  As far as I can tell, and I would LOVE for someone to explain to me how I'm wrong, letting private, for profit corporations decide which messages get priority and which messeges get to be access at dial-up speeds is NOT censorship, but a law saying that ALL SITES, regardless of their message, get the same bandwith somehow IS.

IOW: Making censorship illegal, is censorship. 

I'll say it one more time: That is just fucking stupid.  There is simply no other conclusion that can be reached. by a sentient, free-thinking life form.

So let me make this crystal clear: I'm an 100%, unequivocably in favor of Net Neutrality.  And that means that Matt Drudge and Fox Nation and Conservapedia and all the other RW propaganda sites will all have the same opportunity to put their ideas out their as I do. And I'm fine with that.  A-OK, in fact. Because THAT is what free speech, no... that is what AMERICA is all about, and that is what makes America great.  To oppose Net Neutrality is to oppose free speech itself.  So... it's really no surprise that the Right opposes it: If they can't silence thier opposition, and dominate ever corner of a debate, they can't WIN.  And they KNOW this.  So of course they want the power to stick the opposition sites on dial-up speed! 

But we, as liberals, know that (1) We have nothing to fear from these clowns in a open and honest debate and (2) that if we were put on EQUAL footing, that we'd actually have MORE of a say than we do now.  We know what a rude awakening it will be for the bulk of the Right to discover just how much in their favor even the parts of the media that are relativly critcial of them really are.  So yeah: To me it's no suprise that they find the idea of REAL free speech terrifying.  It would only make them look like stupid, uneducated hypocrites - something their complicit corporate media has thus far been unwilling to do, even though it's about as difficult as putting on a hat.

(There's a PART TWO to this, but it's late, and I've got sh...tuff to do.  So I'll do that part tomorrow.)


  1. Niceguy;

    Like I posted in the “ENERGY! (Yay!) topic:

    “I find it helpful when trying to 'cure' ignorance, 'education' is more readily accepted when presented with comfortable subjects. I.e.; when trying to explain Net Neutrality, the typical wingnut couldn't care less that AT&T censored Eddie Vedder, or that Verizon denied pro-choice messages - but, tell them that Comcast blocked the BIBLE from being distributed, and cite FOX: http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,303623,00.html , and you might get their attention. Unfortunately, you just can't 'cure' stupid.”

    Although the bought-and-paid-for shills, Limbaugh, Beck, et al, have a vested interest in protecting their sponsors, the average wingnut doesn't. Usually their gullibility that allows them to be manipulated by the shills also makes them easy targets for deprogramming, if you can only find the strength that you can turn against them. Using my example from above – why should the evil Comcast block the Bible from being distributed? There aught to be a law!

    Choose well, and you can be an expert in the art of mental judo.

    It doesn't work well in a mob situation – Agent Kay (Tommy Lee Jones) said it best: “A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky dangerous animals and you know it.” Once you successfully vaccinate a wingnut with truth don't expect them to go out and alienate themselves from the rest of the herd by repeating it, but at least you have made a difference.

    You (and by extension anyone else reading this) are free to use the Comcast/Bible 'vaccine' as much as you wish – we really need free speech on 'teh innertubes.'


  2. Okie,

    Thanks again for the Comcast/Bible example. And you're absolutely right - that's pretty much the perfect example for them, isn't it? And as reported by Fox no less!

    Thanks for your comment.

  3. I wasn't to familiar with the fairness doctrine until my brother had mentioned something about it. Same goes for net neutrality. Before, I had heard them mentioned, but only from the right wing media.

    I believe your explanation is the simplest and best.

    Conservatives don't want government to regulate anything, even when such regulation will protect our constitutional freedoms, because such regulation will chisel away at a corporations "rights." Where does it grant those entities protections in the constitution?

    By siding with corporate America, Republicans seem to forget that they represent people, yet somehow, they have effectively convinced their voters that these two concepts are bad...