Ostensibly, Colbert and Stewart are exposing the glaring loopholes in federal (under) regulation of campaign ads. These Comedy Central hacks think there should be a government crackdown on negative political speech. In a skit on "The Daily Show," Colbert mocked the "no coordination with candidates" rules: "Nation, I am calling on the super PAC not to run vicious character assassination ads that impugn and borderline slander any candidate -- if in any way those ads can be traced back to me."
How rich. Colbert should be granted an exception for his own PAC, since he works for a media company by the name of Viacom -- a corporation that despises the very notion of federal regulation of anything (SET ITAL) it (END ITAL) wants aired on TV. Comedy Central very much reserves the right to engage in vicious character assassination and borderline slander, and it does so virtually daily, regularly mocking God, Jesus, the Virgin Mary and Santa Claus, as they write laugh lines about the Devil ordering up "unbaptized baby-arm soup."
Colbert, the critic of political viciousness himself, declared on his show, "Sarah Palin is a (bleeping) retard." But he has spent the last week being honored by ABC, CBS and NBC with glowing interviews that present their opinion that he's both very funny and very correct about the flaws in our under-regulated, under-civilized campaign-finance system. "That's a debate that is worth having, and Stephen Colbert is having it," declared Dean Reynolds on CBS. "He's a great American," oozed NBC weatherman Al Roker.
The media conglomerates have a glaring double standard when it comes to freedom of speech. Regulating political dissent from the super PACs of the super rich is the finest defense of democracy. But any imposition of content regulation on media companies is capricious tyranny.
L. Brent Bozell III is the president of the Media Research Center. To find out more about Brent Bozell III, and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.
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