contents and discontents

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March 8, 2003

the media controls information, and is a mouthpiece for the corporate interests which own it. mussolini defined fascism as merging of corporations and state, and that's what we have, so it's no wonder people are in the dark about the world around them. and it's about to get worse. FCC is pushing for deregulation, meaning eventual media monopoly, serving guess whose interests.

i went to a public hearing here in seattle yesterday with FCC commissioners Adelstein and Copps. They are both good guys who believe in upholding the constitution, which calls for free and diverse press. sadly, they represent a 2/5ths minority. i made adelstein's day with a sign that said "WE [HEART] ADELSTEIN." nothing makes a person feel more wanted than a little rockstar treatment, and he and Copps deserve it for taking a stand against the fascist (no other word for it at this point) establishment.

it's VERY important that you and anyone you forward this to visit and write a note urging NO DEREGULATION and supporting DIVERSITY, LOCALISM, and COMPETITION in media. The media is not like other "industries"--it is a public service which is supposed to act as a check on government power. send a tangible letter or call them if you have time, too.

the public comment period will soon close. so far, they have received about 15,000 comments saying no to deregulation. that is a slim share of the 250,000,000 pop of the USA. 75% of USA doesn't even know this is an issue. why not? because corporate media will not report on it. very nefarious. these are dark days and it will only get darker if people don't wake up now and start practicing a little grassroots democracy instead of waving flags and reciting "we are free..."

~Joe Citizen
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sample letter:

To the Commissioners of the FCC:

My name is Robert Zverina. That is not a very American-sounding name, but then, what is? I am an American citizen by birth, born in Liberty, New York in 1969. My parents were political refugees from then-Czechoslovakia, a formerly democratic nation which fell under the Soviet sphere of influence after WWII.

After the infamous Soviet crackdown of August 1968, the Soviet regime allowed malcontents like my parents to leave the country, but with the understanding that if they did so they may never return, under pain of imprisonment. My parents sacrificed their careers, possessions, Czech citizenship, and ties with friends and family in favor of a chance at life in a democracy.

What is happening in the United States today--the USA PATRIOT Act, the veiled Domestic Security Enhancement Act, and proposed media deregulation--is a betrayal of the ideals for which they sacrificed everything they knew and held dear. I am only glad that they are not alive to see this ongoing perversion of the Constitution, as I am sure it would have broken their hearts.

As a concerned citizen with an ingrained respect for the United States Constitution and democratic ideals, I urge the FCC to preserve diversity, localism, and competition in media by saying NO to deregulation.

Thank you for your attention and for taking seriously your obligation to preserving democracy in the United States of America.

Yours truly,
Robert Zverina

"Nobody made a greater mistake
than he who did nothing because
he could only do a little." ~Edmund Burke