I read with interest your article in the Dec. 10 issue, “Coping With the Meltdown.” Your last paragraph, concerning the Fairness Doctrine, got me to thinking about how talk radio was something of a contributor to the current financial meltdown.
I think as engineers it is always useful to pinpoint the events that cause us problems. Talk radio is predominantly “conservative,” many would even say extreme, right wing. Those of us who have spent some time in broadcasting know that the political slant of a program makes no difference to broadcasters. They would be just as happy to offer talk programming that is “liberal” or extreme left wing if it would get good ratings. But such is not the case.
For years, talk radio has been a bastion of deregulation, free market principles and no government interference in anything, particularly business. I would suggest to you that these basic ideas are things that, if they are not entirely responsible for the meltdown, certainly played a large part in causing it. And deregulation, the free market and minimal or no government are the main ideas that you hear over and over again on talk radio.
Even Alan Greenspan, a prime force for the deregulation that helped cause the meltdown, was forced to admit before a congressional committee that deregulation had not worked the way he thought it would.
So while talk radio certainly has been a money-maker for broadcasters, it also has been responsible for advancing some of the very same ideas that caused the meltdown.
See Guy’s reply to this letter and past Guy Wire columns atradioworld.comunder Columns/Guy Wire.