On today's BradCast: With Republicans in the U.S. Senate on the verge of completing their brazen and historically unprecedented theft of the U.S. Supreme Court majority for a generation --- and still grimmer news elsewhere around the world --- we're happy to cover an inspiring David v. Goliath story about a media activist who took on a major media conglomerate (and the FCC) and seems to have won! At least mostly. [Audio link to show follows below.]
Former award-winning broadcast journalist turned media reformer Sue Wilson of Media Action Center joins us today to detail an encouraging ending to what began ten years ago as an unspeakably tragic story. After the death of a listener, following a stunt contest on Entercom Communication's KDND 107.9 "The End" in Sacramento, and a trial finding the company liable for that death, Wilson decided to file a Petition to Deny renewal of the company's license with the FCC for its 50,000 watt powerhouse frequency.
The FCC has not revoked any corporate license to use our public airwaves in the federal agency's memory. What happened next, however, was detailed over the weekend by Dan Morain at the Sacramento Bee, by Wilson herself today at The BRAD BLOG, and, in person on today's BradCast, where she details the difficulties she had in finding any of the larger, more established media reform organizations or attorneys willing to join her effort.
This story is a remarkably encouraging (and timely) reminder that, yes, one person actually can make a difference by taking on both corporate giants and intransigent federal agencies --- and win! But, as importantly, it's also an important reminder that those for-profit corporations entrusted with controlling our public airwaves, still have a legal responsibility to use those airwaves in the public interest.
Also today: Breaking down the GOP lie at the center of their SCOTUS theft (and what you can still try and do about it); Steve Bannon dumped from the National Security Council; The first city council in the nation (that we know of) adopts a resolution calling for the impeachment of Donald Trump; a Republican Governor bans fracking in his state; some U.S. House special election news; and Desi Doyen joins us with the latest Green News Report...
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READER COMMENTS ON "Putting the 'Public' Back in 'Public Interest': 'BradCast' 4/5/2017" (One Response so far...)
COMMENT #1 [Permalink] ...
said on 4/6/2017 @ 8:19 pm PT...
I had to weigh in on your reference to the Cambridge City Council's vote to encourage the US House to initiate impeachment proceedings. I was there, as usual, along with a gazillion people supporting the policy order, so I can report that you didn't get the vote right. There were so many people there that the place was also swarming with police officers (I heard that city officials were worried about the possibility of trouble; there was none), who were keeping us late arrivals out of the Sullivan Chamber unless we wanted to go to the balcony. Because they still haven't gotten the AV equipment working sufficiently, I couldn't hear the TV monitor outside the chamber well enough to hear what people were saying.
I was able to get into the room before the vote, which was taken out of order so the guys with the TV cameras could pack up and leave without waiting through the usual order of business. I was quite surprised by the vote; I expected all nine to vote in favor. Instead, seven voted yes enthusiastically, one voted present and one voted no. The one who voted present is the longest serving councillor, and, although all of the councillors are elected at large, he is considered to represent my neighborhood of East Cambridge. He was also our state rep until this year, because he was defeated in the Democratic primary by a much more progressive candidate who worked like a dog to get people's votes. The one who voted against is another long-serving councillor, who is not running for reelection because he has a new job running the Cambridge Chamber of Commerce. Both of them argued that this policy order was essentially an insult to our congressional representatives Mike Capuano and Katherine Clark, while others pointedly disagreed with that position.