Jon Sinton says he might not agree with Rush Limbaugh on much but when it comes to a Fairness Doctrine, the two are in perfect accord.
The founding president of Air America Radio comments in the Wall Street Journal this week.
“The Fairness Doctrine is an anachronistic policy that, with the abundance of choices on radio today, is entirely unnecessary,” Sinton wrote.
Some observers worry that an emboldened Democratic majority in Congress might move to reinstitute such a policy, which would require broadcasters to offer time for contrary points of view.
Sinton wrote, “The conventional wisdom is that Rush’s success depended on the 1987 repeal of the Fairness Doctrine. Some say that if he had to make time for opposing opinions, Rush would have flopped. Personally, I think he is most entertaining when he is dismantling opposing arguments. He’s successful because he is a superior entertainer.”
Sinton also attempts to answer the question of why liberal talk radio hasn’t flourished.
He blames “boring hosts,” the decision by some programmers to place other talented hosts in the wrong environments, and the fact that “most broadcast owners are conservative. Programs like Rush’s have made them rich, so the last thing they want is to mess with success, particularly if it entails airing opinions they don’t share.”
Read it here.