Book burners

Book burners
: I’m glad to see that there’s a bit of a backlash to the backlash to the boob starting.

For two mornings running, Howard Stern has been playing the over-the-top performance of Republican Rep. Heather Wilson of New Mexico at the hearings on the boob. She is one scary lady.

heather.bmpCharles Taylor at Salon recognizes just how scary she — and this posse of prudes — is:

Nobody was as ready for her close-up as Rep. Heather Wilson, R-N.M., her voice quaking with outrage as she said, “You knew what you were doing. You wanted us all to be abuzz. It improves your ratings. It improves your market share, and it lines your pockets.” (If Wilson is going to pontificate on what’s aesthetically offensive, then someone should tell her that green plaid suits look terrible on everybody but OutKast.)

No one, though, has yet commented on the contradiction inherent in Wilson’s statement. If this kind of entertainment improves ratings, market share and profits, then it suggests that the people who want it dwarf the 200,000 who lodged complaints about it. If it’s the government’s job to listen to the voice of the people, then we have to acknowledge that the number of people who buy, download or listen to Justin Timberlake, Janet Jackson, Nelly, P. Diddy and Kid Rock far exceed those who’d prefer the halftime show go back to Carol Channing and marching bands.

While the rage over Tittygate has, like the rage over many other social issues, been driven by an extremely vocal minority, it would be dishonest to imply that the allies of those people exist solely in the Bush administration and on the Republican side of the congressional aisle. Rep. Edward Markey, a Massachusetts Democrat who has done as much to bring the specter of government censorship over media as anyone (he’s the man who wanted to mandate the V chip), spoke up for increasing the fines against broadcasters who violate FCC rules….

All of this would be laughable if it weren’t so scary. One of the most persistent refrains in Wednesday’s hearings was the threat to regulate the content of cable networks as well as their broadcast counterparts. What that means is that the government is now proposing to control the content of channels that private citizens choose to come into their homes.

: The Santa Cruz Sentinal is also getting frightened:

Government should not decide what adults can or cannot see on TV.

The biggest danger to the American way of life in not Janet Jackson