Nutbar Puritanism alive and well at the FCC, Stephen Harper’s cabinet table
“The issue of vulgar speech on the nation’s regulated airwaves, a flash point for decades, reached the Supreme Court again on Monday,” reported yesterday morning’s New York Times.
The justices agreed to give the Federal Communications Commission a chance to defend its decision to start punishing broadcasters for the isolated and fleeting on-air use of expletives, an abrupt change in the commission policy that a federal appeals court last year found procedurally improper.
This FCC initiative dovetails nicely with the Tories’ recent effort (Bill C-10) to restrict funding for proposed Canadian films that exhibit overt vulgarity—or whatever the hell it is they object to. It’s all a bad idea born of nutbar Puritanism and, if successful, is certain to foment the sort of Rube Goldberg censoring mechanisms that have plagued film and television in the past.
At any rate, I thought the whole sordid tale was a good opportunity to replay the following now-infamous fuck scene from HBO’s The Wire—the best show ever to appear on television. Pray to God that now that it’s off cable, it will go into broadcast syndication.
• Justices Take Up On-Air Vulgarity Again [New York Times]