Elton and the Dixie Chicks
pkeets at hotmail.com
Mon Jul 19 22:59:40 CDT 2004
>Someone should tell Elton that the rights of the constitution apply against
>the government, not the public. The government did nothing to the Dixie
>Chicks, the public did.
As I recall, it wasn't the public, either. It was Clear Channel, who was
hoping for a change in the FCC rules to allow them to buy more media
outlets. When approached, the CC top management insisted that The Chicks
boycott was an initiative on the part of individual stations, and that it
had nothing to do with the proposed change in rules. Whatever, the rules
change went through regardless of objections and requests for hearings from
several quarters, and I believe a challenge is now progressing through the
The media (Clear Channel?) made such a flap about this that it did seem to
scare the Chicks into apologies, but their fans seemed unaffected by the cd
burnings and demonstartions. The Chicks released a new album in the midst
of the uproar and it went to Number 1 on the Country charts, if I recall
correctly. This seems to indicate that it really was only a media campaign
to make the Chicks look to be in serious trouble with the public for
criticising the president.
This raised the question of whether someone in the government suggested or
possibly even recommended to Clear Channel that in order to receive favors,
they should boycott artists that do not support the administration publicly.
I seem to recall President Bush making a statement early in his term that
the media should support the war effort with the type of films they made,
which seems to indicate he might expect them to toe some sort of line, or
which might encourage Clear Channel to think this. Whatever, since everyone
denies any hanky panky over the change in the FCC rules, it's remains
unclear who is driving the current attacks on the media. As I understand
it, the complaints are not so much about treatment of the Dixie Chicks
et.al., but more about the FCC fines, which have suddenly become excessive
and seemingly arbitrary.
This isn't the only article I've read about censorship this week. There were
some networks that complained about having to play a guessing game with the
FCC, as apparently no new guidelines have been defined. Paradoxically,
Howard Stern and Clear Channel (both high-profile supporters of the
administration) have been heavily fined. Viacom/CBS apparently means to
fight the FCC in court about Janet Jackson rather than pay.
Notice this uncertainly about "obscenity" has also affected The Who, as
their record company issued the "official" lyrics to RGLB with a fairly
obvious substitution of words.
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