Consider what Jarvis calls 'the iPad tax' -- a 5% fee on all consumer electronics -- which is intended to raise $4 billion a year. That money would be spent on government-funded news.
The Implications of Government-Funded News......are well nigh horrifying. Not only does the FTC propose "circling the wagons" around old media -- The New York Times, The Washington Post and the like -- the financial lifeline supplied by the federal government would also serve as a leash. If you thought old media was aligned with the mission of the Democrat Party before, just wait until it's dependent upon the feds for salaries and benefits.
The FTC Suggests Killing Blogs to Bolster Newspapers......through a series of bizarre policy recommendations that are predicated upon the following conclusion:
[N]ewspapers have not yet found a new, sustainable business model, and there is reason for concern that such a business model may not emerge. Therefore, it is not too soon to start considering policies that might encourage innovations to help support journalism into the future..
By "journalism", the FTC means "newspapers" and by "encourage innovations" the FTC means stifle competition. Among the FTC's suggestions:
• Tightly limit what search engines and news aggregators (like Drudge Report) are allowed to report;
• Potentially define certain kinds of news reports as "proprietary facts" rather than events in the public domain;
• Rather than protect consumers against price-fixing (one of its missions), the FTC rallies around antitrust exemptions for newspapers that could help them monopolize news distribution;
• Redistributing wealth from individual taxpayers to old media, which would serve to bolster the coffers of newspapers while simultaneously reducing journalistic independence and truly creating a "state-run media".
SinisterJarvis concludes that the real problem with the FTC's position "is the alignment of the legacy institutions of media and government. Here, the internet is not the salvation of news, journalism, and democracy. It’s the other side."
I think Jarvis is naive: this is nothing less than a sinister, diabolical effort to shred the First Amendment and create a state-run media complex designed to report only what the government wants reported.
This is an utterly ominous development and one that should remind readers why this President embraces dictators like Hugo Chavez. He seems to envy the control that dictators exercise over their subjects.
And he seeks to emulate them.
Linked by: Maggie's Farm. Thanks!