March 03, 2005

Yet More CFR Foolishness (tip to MM)

The craze to regulate and restrict political speech has far from died out. The insane BCRA put all sorts of immoral and unconstitutional restrictions on free speech if it even mentions a candidate's name. When a loophole to this was discovered last year - namely advertising for Fahrenheit 9/11 - we started hearing about restricting non-PAC ads (in a fit of intellectual consistency).

Now it looks like blogs are next on the block, a sacrifice to insane, uneducated, idiotic notions of 'reform.' What's so ironic is that blogs are free to register and use, so any fool can start one (and many fools have, e.g. this blog). The point of BCRA was supposed to be that average people should have more of a say in politics and that special interests should be kept out. Personally, I think that special interests are nothing more than 'average people' clustered together behind one or a few common goals. However, my perspective aside, it's obvious that limiting the ability of blogs to comment on politics or to link to candidate sites is ludicrous.

As individual voters, blogs are the absolutely closest one can get to an average person. Even when a paper or magazine does Man On The Street you still get editorial bias and selection of comments - some viewpoints are underrepresented. A blog is the opinions of one person (or a few people) and that's supposed to be what the BCRA business was all about. Obviously it's not if blogs are going to lose their free speech.

Personally, I don't expect it to work. I am incredibly hostile to the idea of limiting my free speech on this venue. If someone can say that putting a link on this blog is a campaign contribution then one might as well say that a widely-circulated e-mail is as well - or even just writing down the address for some friends to check out. Free speech is free speech. If they tried to take down blogs it would be insanely ill-advised, legally inapprorpiate and constitutionally scandalous. Still, even the idea that it could happen is pretty creepy. It's way past time we got rid of BCRA and the rest of the unconstitutional mumbo jumbo limiting free speech.


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