Of all the items left on the Democratic agenda, this effort to restore the "fairness doctrine" to the airwaves overseen by the FCC is probably the one that surprises me the most and gets me the most excited.
The fairness doctrine was an evenhanded approach to radio and then television broadcasting, one that had governed our airwaves almost since the dawn of those two media. Even though it had been around for fifty years and withstood challenges all the way up to the Supreme Court, President Reagan's FCC appointees killed it unceremoniously in 1987 and then Reagan vetoed a congressional effort to restore it. As a result, we've been treated to a system in which you can only get your political views aired as long as you're a giant corporation able to purchase a radio station or television network, or a like-minded individual.
Again, I think it's a terrific idea and I hope other congressmen join Rep. Hinchey and Sen. Sanders in pushing it. It would help restore sanity to our national media and, almost as sweet, make Rush Limbaugh go into convulsions he hasn't seen since the last time the maid was late with his hillbilly heroin.