The FDR administration is the closest the U.S. came to forming a socialist, Soviet-style one-party government. It was that administration that created huge tax increases to support The New Deal, and the so called Fairness Doctrine.
In 1934, the Democrat dominated U.S. Congress prompted by FDR, passed the Communications Act, which abolished the Federal Radio Commission and transferred jurisdiction over radio licensing to a new Federal Communications Commission. Thus the Fairness Doctrine was born, for radio and later TV, but never for newspapers.
The inauguration of Ronald Reagan as President of the United States in 1981 marked the beginning of a shift in the FCC towards a decidedly more permissive stance. Ownership regulations were relaxed so that radio and TV stations could follow the large corporation consolidation that newspapers had been allowed, and remaining restrictions were laxly enforced. A substantial portion of other regulations were repealed, such as guidelines for minimal amounts of non-entertainment programming in 1985. In addition, the Fairness Doctrine was removed in 1987.
This deregulation has led to the rapid rise in the channel selection and freedom to choose, offered by broadcast alternatives such as cable television. AM radio immediately became vital again with shows like Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Bill O’ Reilly, Laura Ingrahm, Michael Savage and Hugh Hewitt ranking at the top of major markets.
The left tried to compete in the free marketplace with Mario Como, Jessie Jackson, Al Sharpton and Rossie O’ Donnel. Those AM shows never gained an audience on the new level playing field.
America’s left tried to buy in with Air America, nick named “Airhead America” on the streets. Currently it remains on just a few stations and is near bankrupt.
Now we see key Democrats planning to bring back the “Fairness Doctrine” so that they can force Rush Limbaugh off the air by making stations play as many hours of Rosie O’ Donnel. This is at the same time that studies find that 9 out of 10 journalists are Democrats.
Welcome to the USSR. We will soon know how lucky we were.