On Friday of last week the new FCC Chief Diversity Officer stated that he intended to create a new type of fairness doctrine which would require private radio to fund public radio. Private radio stations would have to pay a fee of 100% of their operating budget to their public competitors who would pay nothing. In essence private radio would pay 2x it’s budget and hope that it makes 201% of it’s original operating budget, which probably will not happen.
An operating budget is usually set based upon estimates that are either from history or known costs that have an 85% chance of occurring. No company expects to make 100% x it’s operating budget, but at least some percentage above their costs/budget that will provide the organization a profit. This new regulation would drive businesses out of the communications/media industry, and I have to believe this is on purpose.
Net Neutrality, the Fairness Doctrine, Hate Crimes Legislation, Localization, Cass Sunstein, who believes in regulating free speech if deemed untrue (by his own opinion), and now a brand new FCC diversity panel that was created right after Obama’s inauguration, will create some type of ban on conservative views one way or another. A new type of fairness doctrine will be created, it will just be under another name. It will be one of those alternatives that tricks people through semantics as Saul Alinsky stipulates in rule 12.
Mark Lloyd, newly appointed Chief Diversity Officer of the Federal Communications Commission, has called for making private broadcasting companies pay licensing fees equal to their total operating costs to allow public broadcasting outlets to spend the same on their operations as the private companies do.
“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.”
Along with this money, Lloyd would regulate much of the programming on these stations to make sure they focused on “diverse views” and government activities.
I also wonder if many have heard of the performance tax? This is another idea coming out of Washington in connection with the record label companies that would require local radio stations to pay a tax on any and all music played. Many radio stations play a variety of music, provide local traffic updates, news, and other information, all of which could find itself on the chopping block if this tax is passed. It’s estimated that this tax would cost local radio stations anywhere from $2-7B annually. Radio stations already pay fees to purchase music, as well as use online streaming, but record labels are not satisfied because they are still seeing a decline in their sales now that everything has gone digital.
In short, the money would flow out of your community and into the pockets of the record labels – the great majority of which are foreign-owned. The record labels would like for you to think this is all about compensating the artists, but in truth the record labels would get at least 50% of the proceeds from a tax on local radio.
This is beginning to sound more like that wonderful idea; cash for clunkers. I thought we were supposed to pump money into our own economy and not into foreign ones to see a real recovery? So I was curious to see what party was looking to levy this tax on our radio stations – it comes as no surprise that the tax and spend party and the party who is backed by the liberal music industry believes this performance tax to be a good idea. But I must give credit to several Democrats and the Republicans who are attempting to stop this idea from passing:
There are currently two bills pending in Congress that would levy a performance tax on local radio – H.R. 848, sponsored by Rep. John Conyers (D-MI-14) and S. 379, sponsored by Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT). Your members of Congress need to hear that you strongly oppose these bills.
Additionally, anti-performance tax resolutions have been introduced in the House and Senate in support of local radio. In the Senate, Sens. Blanche Lincoln (D-AR) and John Barrasso (R-WY) introduced S. Con. Res. 14, and in the House, Reps. Gene Green (D-TX-29) and Mike Conaway (R-TX-11) introduced H. Con. Res. 49. Both are known as the “Local Radio Freedom Act.” Encourage your senators and representative to cosponsor these resolutions.