So We Can't Have Even One Candidate Who Truly Understands Free Speech

I stand by my no-McCain vow I made years ago after his role in campaign speech limitation.  But Obama does not look like a very promising alternative:

The Obama campaign disputes the accuracy of the advertisement, which is
fine. It has also threatened regulatory retaliation against outlets
that show it, which isn't fine. Instead of, say, crafting a response
ad, Obama's team had general counsel Robert F. Bauer send stations a
letter [pdf]
arguing that "Failure to prevent the airing of 'false and misleading
advertising may be 'probative of an underlying abdication of licensee
responsibility.'" And, more directly: "For the sake of both FCC
licensing requirements and the public interest, your station should
refuse to continue to air this advertisement."

In particular, I would love to see Obama actually say what positions that are ascribed to him on gun control are false, and what his actual, specific positions are.  A vague, gauzy support for the second amendment does not necessarily mean he has walked away from his earlier positions.  In fact, I am sure that McCain would say he supported the First Amendment but I would certainly feel comfortable pointing out how he fails to do so in the details.


  1. Jim Collins:

    You have to love the guy. Abusing power he doesn't even have yet. I'm not too thrilled with McCain, but I consider Obama a threat that needs to be stopped.

  2. EconStudent:

    This sickens me. The campaign finance reform was one thing (I don't approve of it), but this is a whole new level. Threatening TV stations for pointing out historical events? I'm sure the NRA had a team of lawyers check it for libel, as all the ad's have done I'm sure. But this response just shows how shaky of ground Obama feels he is on.

  3. John Moore:

    Err... "Obama does not look like a very promising alternative?"

    What a surprise. The Democrats have given every indication that they are far more dangerous than McCain when it comes to free speech. This year, and in 2004, they have suppressed dissenting views via threats to radio station licenses, and threatened and actual lawsuits.

    Having been involved in the Vietnam vets efforts against Kerry, I know of people who were threatened, I know people who were sued, I know someone (Carleton Sherwood) whose documentary, due to be screened on Sinclair Broadcasting, was suppressed, and then the Sherwood and a Vietnam POW who appeared in the documentary were hit with a SLAP lawsuit.

    Then remember the Dems plan to revive the "fairness" doctrine.

    McCain was and is wrong on McCain/Feingold. That is clear.

    But the alternative is much worse.

    McCain did McCain/Feingold out of a mistaken sense of honor (due to his problem with Keating). The Dems intentionally and repeatedly suppress free speech for no reason other than the pursuit of power. In other words, they have behaved, recently, in fascist behavior.

    Hold your nose and vote for the candidate who will do the least damage, in this and many other ways - McCain! Otherwise, get ready for fascism.

  4. Kelly:

    Coyote wrote, "I would love to see Obama actually say what positions that are ascribed to him on gun control are false." So, if he should say something like that, we should believe him? Nah, I don't think so.

  5. Stan:

    A little googling will show Obama's past votes and positions on gun control. The NRA ad got it right, but as with most short televised ads, specifics tend to be left out.

  6. Stan:

    A little googling will show Obama's past votes and positions on gun control. The NRA ad got it right, but as with most short televised ads, specifics tend to be left out.

  7. Stan:

    A little googling will show Obama's past votes and positions on gun control. The NRA ad got it right, but as with most short televised ads, specifics tend to be left out.

  8. Stan:

    Oh jeez. Waiting for my comment to go through more than a few minutes and it gets posted three times; sorry.

  9. williamgeorge:

    Among the biggest differences between the Republican and the Democratic presidential candidates is their judgments of what began on September 11, 2001, and why. In last Saturday’s ABC News debates, according to Investor’s Business Daily, the Republican candidates “referred to terrorists and terrorism as ‘Islamic,’ while also citing radical ‘Islam’ as the problem, no less than 22 times.”
    Search Engine Optimization

  10. Liberty Lover:

    What debate? Last night all we got were televised stump speeches for the two major political parties. It wasn't a real debate. The United States citizens haven't had a real political debate for president since 1992 when Ross Perot was allowed to debate. That was the last year that the League of Women Voters were allowed to host the national debate. It was taken over in classic conflict of interest way by the newly created government agency which always magically finds a way to bar any outside valid Presidential Candidates from participating. The task of battling 50 different state's ballot access laws and managing to get on the ballot in enough states to in theory win the office should be the only requirement for participation. That bar to entry leaves the USA 4 candidates to include in a debate. So if Obama was for real change and McCain was for reform both should have agreed to include Nader and Barr if they wanted a real debate. Which brings us back to why the League of Women Voters who were stripped of their major service to this country and debates were put into the hands of partisan hacks. Neither party is for real change or reform and these dog and pony show debates are just there to lull the voting public into thinking there is more than a dimes bit of difference between the actual actions of either of these two candidates.

  11. Steve:

    Great site!

    Would you like to have a Link Exchange with our new blog COMMON CENTS where we blog about the issues of the day??

  12. Clint:

    Check out Missouri:

    Still think that free speech is a "pox on both their houses" issue?

    Can't believe the Dems managed to find a candidate this much worse than McCain on the 1st Amendment, but they did.

  13. WWS:

    If Obama gets in, one of the first things he will do is implement the "fairness doctrine" which will knock talk radio off the air. (that's the only goal of that doctrine) It hardly makes sense to go off on McCain for not supporting free speech enough, when his opponent is going to shut down free speech altogether. Don't be fooled - once radio is taken care of, the blogs are next. This blog, all blogs will be subject to political censors. That's what an Obama presidency will bring us.

    Sitting this one out is supporting Obama - that's all he needs, his vote manufacturing machine can do the rest.

  14. JAG:

    And the Prosecuting attorneys of St. Louis, St. Louis county, and Kansas City went on TV to say they'd prosecute any one spreading what they deem to be falsehoods about Obama. Sheriff's departments have been notified as well. So where is the ACLU? Where are all the groups that decried foreign cell phone tapping as an affront to civil liberties, Where, where, where?

  15. bobby b:

    Don't think of it as "voting for McCain."

    Think of it as "voting for a non-Democrat presidential candidate, because if we elect Barack Obama as president at the same time we elect a Democrat-majority House and Senate, it's gonna be like Santa Claus got stoned and lost his good-little-girls-and-boys list, and so he skipped the kids this year and spent his whole elf-wad on that wacky team that thinks he's really god, the Pelosi-Kennedy-Waters-Boxer-Kerry-Whitehouse-Biden-Sanders-Leahy-Reid-Feingold Crew."

    Seriously, you think the country that (I hope) you love can survive four years of that? I don't.

  16. Dennis:

    I was with you on the no-McCain vow for several years, but I must ask you to please reconsider. One thing McCain does is talk to us fairly straight. He's not always up front, but mostly. In contrast, OBiden both blatantly and consistently lie on everything. Combine their deceitful agendas with a Democrat controlled Congress and Senate, and we are screwed! We need the check and balance of a president who isn't a Democrat. McCain isn't Bush, and despite some bad, he's done lots of good.
    Not ideal, but clearly the lesser of two evils.

  17. Rob:

    Let's see if I understand correctly:
    McCain = ruin the country slow
    Obama = ruin the country fast

    If one would really want to fix the country, then maybe it's better to take a fastest approach. If we reach total disarray quicker, then we can start fixing it sooner. A slow, continued, descent won't wake up the sheeple. A fast, shocking, descent should turn some heads, no?

  18. WWS:

    "A fast, shocking, descent should turn some heads, no?"

    Tell that to the Russians of 1917, who allowed their system to collapse.
    Or the Germans of 1933, who didn't like Hitler but allowed him to take over anyways.

    Once evil takes hold it doesn't let go.