The Presidential Oath of Office …
"I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."
The First Amendment of the United States’ Constitution …
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
The traditional role of the press is not defined and/or regulated by the government of the United States. The viewpoints expressed by the press are those reflective of its owners, editors and reporters. There is no requirement that those viewpoints be fair, balanced or be free from bias. That is the meaning of the free press.
An assault on the media and free speech …
It greatly disturbs me that the government is attempting to expand the role of the Federal Communications Commission beyond its traditional role of setting communications standards, allocating broadcast frequencies, licensing broadcast outlets and individuals who are responsible for the technical aspects of the broadcasts and monitoring the over-air environment to prevent undue and unnecessary interference within the frequency spectrum. Any direct or indirect control over content, beyond the standards of common decency and obscenity, is an affront to the Constitution of the United States.
And yet we continue to see that the FCC is attempting to regulate content through procedural means, asserting that their authority arises from the public’s ownership of the airwaves and that the license to transmit information over these airways must serve the best interests of the people. Overlooking, of course, that the interests of the people are served when the presentation of ideas is both widely disseminated and thought provoking. There is no mandate, nor should there be, for the government to be involved in assuring that all viewpoints are heard with equal force and clarity.
It appears that the wish of the Obama Administration is to interfere with free speech and condition the discussion by imposing “locality rules” which would place large media organizations, syndicated broadcasters and their on-air talent at great disadvantage in that they would be required to break-up their broadcast day to insert local programming which would be somewhat monitored by the government. In my opinion, a blatant attempt to curb the rising influence of those who have been able to generate mass audience appeal with their politically-oriented programming.
Obama commenting on a single media outlet known to present views divergent from the interests of President Obama and his Administration …
To my way of thinking, President Obama has, once again, challenged the unwritten rules of Presidential behavior by commenting on a single media outlet in a negative manner. Where President Obama should have tactfully side-stepped the question as is normally done by politicians when confronted with politically sensitive issues, Obama went on to answer the question in a manner which should enlighten us all.
[Laughs] Look, as president, I swore to uphold the Constitution, and part of that Constitution is a free press. We've got a tradition in this country of a press that oftentimes is opinionated. The golden age of an objective press was a pretty narrow span of time in our history. Before that, you had folks like Hearst who used their newspapers very intentionally to promote their viewpoints. I think Fox is part of that tradition — it is part of the tradition that has a very clear, undeniable point of view. It's a point of view that I disagree with. It's a point of view that I think is ultimately destructive for the long-term growth of a country that has a vibrant middle class and is competitive in the world. But as an economic enterprise, it's been wildly successful. And I suspect that if you ask Mr. Murdoch what his number-one concern is, it's that Fox is very successful.
Disregarding the nervous and obviously forced “Hillary Clinton-like” laugh …
First and foremost, the question is being posed by a biased media outlet, Rolling Stone, known for their liberal bias and viewpoint.
Had the President of the United States been a man of character, he would have defended the Constitution of the United States and the media by saying:
“The media, in whatever form, is a good and necessary part of America as it informs and enlightens the American public to a diversity of viewpoints and encourages individual thought and the discussion of wide-ranging ideas. There is no such thing as a media outlet that is not a good institution for America. Next Question.”
But Obama decided to take a negative viewpoint that only highlighted his incompetence and lack of experience in political matters -- and his apparent dislike for America’s traditions of a free press.
There has been no age when the media has been truly objective in that it did not reflect the viewpoint of its ownership or editorial leadership. Yes, there were some media outlets which appeared to be more “fair and balanced” than others and there were ones that were blatantly supportive of the government; some to the point of becoming the propaganda arm of their respective administrations.
Yes, Fox does have a clear and undeniable point of view. But the President is being both cute and disingenuous. He is conflating and confusing the Fox programs that present the news and those which present commentary using popular presenters with a discernable political viewpoint. Nothing new or exceptional here.
Yes, Fox does present a viewpoint with which the President might disagree. It is never pleasant for any politician to face the corruption, malfeasance and general dysfunction of their own behavior or that of its administration. And there is nothing new or exceptional here.
But, when the President of the United States thinks that the viewpoint of a particularly troublesome media outlet “is ultimately destructive for the long-term growth of a country that has a vibrant middle class and is competitive in the world” they have crossed the line. It is one thing to present your personal opinion, but quite another to present that opinion as a sitting President to a media outlet which is known to present their own biased (left) viewpoint.
It could be argued that the information presented by Fox, both the news and the commentary, has actually demonstrated to the American public that there is a clear and present danger from our government as both Congress and the President have combined efforts to promote legislation to which the majority of the population is opposed and whose expenses have an extremely deleterious affect on our economy. In fact, perhaps Fox should be commended for assuming the traditional role of the media, apparently abrogated by other media outlets, of telling truth to power and championing reform on behalf of the American citizen.
The fact that the President noted that Fox, as an economic enterprise, has been wildly successful is validation that they are doing something right – with an increasing audience for their coverage of political and other events. All while oppositely-biased and competing cable outlets, as well as the print media, are losing their audience. Perhaps because people can no longer stand the shrill lies that are being shouted by “don’t do as we do, do as we say” hosts that advocate policies which are destructive to the very precepts of America.
Bottom line …
President Obama is on the campaign trail – media code words for pointing out Obama’s blatant lies and the destruction being wrought by his lack of leadership. The President, by all measures, is incompetent, cynical, hypocritical and will do or say anything to advance his toxic political agenda – something that looks akin to pure Marxism.
One need only tally the discord and damage caused by the President, Congress and their fellow travelers to make another observation. The current crop of democrats are not an institution that is good for America and “we the people” should make every effort to restore Constitutional checks and balances to our government before we reach the tipping point – from which there might not be any ability to right the ship of state and turn away from the iceberg looming dead ahead.
Look around at what Obama and his corrupt Congressional democrats have brought upon our land. Look around you as they plan to do even more: more government control, more takes, more benefits for illegal aliens at the expense of legal citizens and less liberty, freedom and choice for “we the people.” Then VOTE. Vote your conscience. You do not need the government to define what is right and wrong – you know in your heart the difference. Do what is right. Vote the evildoers out of office.
“Nullius in verba.”-- take nobody's word for it!
“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw
“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”
“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS "The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius “A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell
“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS
"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius
“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell