Court Rebuffs F.C.C. on Fines for IndecencyGee, would that be the Michael K. Powell, son of Colon Powell!? Yep.
If President Bush and Vice President Cheney can blurt out vulgar language, then the government cannot punish broadcast television stations for broadcasting the same words in similarly fleeting contexts.
Under President Bush, the F.C.C. has expanded its indecency rules, taking a much harder line on obscenities uttered on broadcast television and radio. While the judges sent the case back to the commission to rewrite its indecency policy, it said that it was "doubtful" that the agency would be able to "adequately respond to the constitutional and statutory challenges raised by the networks."
Mr. Martin, the chairman of the commission, attacked the panel's reasoning [...] "Hollywood will be able to say anything they want, whenever they want."
But the judges said vulgar words are just as often used out of frustration or excitement, and not to convey any broader obscene meaning. "In recent times even the top leaders of our government have used variants of these expletives in a manner that no reasonable person would believe referenced sexual or excretory organs or activities."
Mr. Bush was caught on videotape last July using a common vulgarity that the commission finds objectionable in a conversation with Prime Minister Tony Blair of Britain. Three years ago, Mr. Cheney was widely reported to have muttered an angry obscene version of "get lost" to Senator Patrick Leahy on the floor of the United States Senate.
The commission has struggled to consistently explain how it applies the rules. In the Bono case involving the Golden Globe awards, the staff initially ruled in favor of the network. After lawmakers began to complain about that decision, the commission, then led by Michael K. Powell, reversed the staff decision.
And the current Bush appointee, (Kevin Martin, who previously worked for a lawfirm that represented AT&T, CBS, Viacom, Gannett, Belo, Emmis, Gray Television, and Motorola), was aghast that "Hollywood will be able to say anything they want, whenever they want."
Dude, it's called Freedom of Speech.
And he thinks nipples are obscene. Me? I like nipples, I like them so much I have a pair. All mammals have at least a pair.
You know what's really obscene, (he asked rhetorically), 3504+ dead Americans in Iraq, a record number of American deaths and a record number of Iraqi civilian deaths since the
(Cross posted at Vidiotspeak)