Friday, October 16, 2009

Future Posibilities: Will Obama Create An American Version of the BBC?

Recently, the Obama Administration has made quite a few comments on its relationship with the media. From complaining that the media as a whole is out to get them, to accusing Fox News of being an underling of the Republican Party. The left wing has followed its lead and continued these attacks. Could this be leading somewhere?

In the United States, we have the Public Broadcasting Network (PBS) and National Public Radio (NPR). Compare these to the United Kingdoms British Broadcasting Corporation. What are the similarities and differences in public broadcasting in the United States and the United Kingdom?

One of the largest similarities is that they both have a very leftist slant. PBS and NPR are probably the largest broadcasters of left wing viewpoints in the United States. The BBC also creates a variety of very liberal programs.

One of the largest differences is that PBS and NPR, while having some of their funding provided by the government through the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), are funded mostly by donations. The BBC however is paid entirely be an annual television license fee that any United Kingdom resident must pay if they own any equipment which can receive a broadcast, I.E. a television or a computer with an internet connection. This gives the BBC a MUCH larger budget. So much so that it is the largest broadcaster in the world, completely overpowering all other broadcasters in the UK.

The problems this can cause are obvious, but they are covered up by the UK government. They say it provides "unbiased media coverage", that it "promotes education and learning", or that it "brings the UK to the world" and as such is a vital service. But the truth is, the BBC is one of the largest instances of corruption in the UK.

With the controversy a few months back about Mark Loyd being appointed Obama's "Diversity Czar" at the FCC, there is a chain of events growing here. For those of you who don't remember, here's some of his views on public broadcasting, from his book "Prologue to a Farce: Communication and Democracy in America":

“The Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) must be reformed along democratic lines and funded on a substantial level,” Lloyd wrote in his book.

“Federal and regional broadcast operations and local stations should be funded at levels commensurate with or above those spending levels at which commercial operations are funded,” Lloyd wrote. “This funding should come from license fees charged to commercial broadcasters. Funding should not come from congressional appropriations. Sponsorship should be prohibited at all public broadcasters.”

Government controlled public broadcasting being funded at higher levels than commercial broadcasters? Where have I heard that before? Hmm... Sounds a lot like that thing they have in the UK. Oh, but he goes a step further by funding it by directly taxing the commercial broadcasters it's competing with.

He's also a big fan of Hugo Chavez and Saul Alinsky. And a Senior Fellow at the George Soros funded Center for American Progress. Great guy, right?

So with the talk coming from the White House about how the media is out to get them, could an expansion of public broadcasting in the United States be imminent? Could President Obama decide that we need a larger public broadcasting network to "promote education and learning" in the United States? To "bring the United States to the world"? To provide "unbiased" media coverage? Only time will tell, but with the chain of events that are coming together now, it seems to be a strong possibility.


1 comment:

  1. If unchecked NOw it will be FACT. If unchecked the "Fairness Doctrine" will be implemented within a year.