Liberty and Licenses

Oh, no. We’re being drowned — in alternatives.

Remember the good old days, with three choices for national broadcast news, Walter Cronkite and whoever the other guys were? Plus the local paper and the New York Times? Sure, there were other avenues. But if the big boys happened to have a unitary government-approved perspective on something, you could battle uphill for years with hardly anyone noticing your particular flag.

Then cable arrived. The Internet. Zillions of webzines and blogs. If you want an alternative to whatever the Official View is, you don’t have to look very far or for very long. It’s harder for the powers that be to burble baloney unchallenged.

Big, big problem, all this competition, right?

It is according to Michigan State Senator Bruce Patterson. He wants to license journalists the way Michigan licenses plumbers and hair dressers.

From what I can tell, the state can’t be trusted with protecting us from bad hair cuts, let alone tell us who’s best suited to toot out the news. But Patterson says we’re being overwhelmed by all the media outlets. Poor us! So we need guvmint — which always puts the truth first, of course — to tell us good reporting from bad.

Think about this: The traditional job of journalism is to provide a check on lying politicians. Now politicians will vet those who get the privilege to criticize them?

Puh-leeze.

Patterson, we’ll take a pass.

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.

3 Comments so far ↓

  1. Jun
    10
    11:06
    AM
    Drik

    Deal_
    As long as we get a concurrent right to license the once elected politicians based on their actual understanding of the Constitution(supreme law of the land) and willingness to actaully really support and defend it as they swore to, and that WE get to IMMEDIATELY revoke their license and send them home if they show to be derelict in their office, like not having read or understanding the bills that they are rubberstamping, and maybe have them charged with dereliction of duty and malpractice.

  2. Jun
    10
    11:33
    AM
    Emet

    Better yet — licensing will make journalists “professionals” subject to professional standards of liability and lawsuits.

    So we will be able to sue the “journalists” for incompetence and misrepresentation and hold them accountable for failure to exercise due diligence in researching and reporting resulting in our making wrong choices and decisions.

    Imagine if journalists were held accountable for their failure to accurately report on the background of Obama!

    But even with all the potential benefits, I remain strongly opposed to the concept. Aside from the Constitutional issues, the latest economic problems have shown that licensing professionals does not protect us from their unethical behavior. If licensing meant anything, licenses would be revoked for all of the real estate agents and brokers, attorneys, accountants, stock brokers, etc. who allowed people to submit false mortgage applications and who created and marketed securities based upon these defective mortgages.

  3. Jun
    10
    2:36
    PM
    Jay

    OF COURSE WE HAVE TO LICENSE JOURNALISTS AND THOSE WHO REPORT THE NEWS.

    WE NEED FIRMS ( AND THE PEOPLE THAT THEY EMPLOY) TO GIVE US THE UNVARNISHED TRUTH. LIKE REUTERS- WHICH NOW ADMITS THAT THEY DOCTORED THE PHOTOS OF THE “PEACEFUL PEOPLE” ON THE FLOATILLA- TO HIDE THEIR WEAPONS; AND A FEW YEARS AGO-WITH PHONY PICTURES FROM THE LEBANON WAR.

    BUT, REUTERS HAS BEEN AROUND FOR YEARS, GIVING US 9 THEIR VERSION0 OF THE ENWS, SO THEY WOULD BE GRANDFATEHRED IN- AS BEING ???? ( CORRUPT, PERHAPS-AT LEAST IN MY VIEW; IF NOT INCOMPETENT AND/OR ON THE TAKE).

    But, politicians shoudl be used to bribe giving and taking. Otherwise, explain spending millions for a job that pays $225,000 or thereabouts, sometimes less.

    My 5 cents

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