Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Obscenity Fines are Retarded

Do you think that FCC obscenity fines are too high? You're right.

The FCC's language fines far exceed other governmental fines. The largest fine levied by the Nuclear Regulatory Agency in 2004 was $60,000. The largest FCC fine that year was 1.2 million dollars. It was for Fox's "Married By America" bachelor party episode, in which all the bad words were edited out, and all the exposed breasts were pixillated.

WFMU was kind enough to post a list of federal fines and came up with this list of non-FCC fines imposed by the Federal Government, so you can get some perspective on the current proposed laws to increase the fines for naughty phrases to half a million bucks each: http://blog.wfmu.org/freeform/mp3s/index.html

$10,000 for killing a Whooping Crane.
$54,500 for releasing anydrous ammonia into the environment.
$55,000 for illegally travelling to Cuba.
$70,000 for mishandling and mislabeling hazardous chemicals.
$116,000 for improper disposal of flammable material
$133,000 for exposing employees to infectious diseases
$1.2 million for broadcasting pixillated breasts

last year FCC fined Clear Channel Communications $27,500 last year for each of eighteen indecent incidents by shock jock Howard Stern. this was already outrageous. But has since become chump change.

On February 16th 2005 , The Bush Jr. administration won House approval for a bill that would raise the maximum FCC fine to $500,000 per violation. Under the new measure, Clear Channel and Stern himself would each have been fined a total of $9 million.

Under this bill when Bono says "fucking brilliant" on the air, he and the networks would garner the exact same fine as illegally testing pesticides on human subjects. For the same price as a superbowl "wardrobe malfunction" you could cause the wrongful death of an elderly patient in a nursing home and still have spare change left over to improperly store some radioactive waste.

No wonder Stern is moving to satillite radio.
I hate Bush, this is just inane.