Wednesday, October 27, 2004

Pappas Telecasting Companies

Pappas has donated 325,000 dollars worth of air time to GOP candidates and 125,000 dollars worth of air time to Democratic candidates. This they view as equality. But things are worse than this:

On October 26, Media Matters for America noted that media giant Pappas Telecasting Companies, with TV and radio stations across the nation, is donating $325,000 worth of airtime on its stations for GOP candidates in many of California's most hotly contested legislative elections. Later in the day, in a press release with the subheading "Company to give equal opportunity to opposing candidates in relevant markets as required by law," Pappas announced it would be making "in-kind contributions" of up to $25,000 in airtime to "certain" Republican and Democratic Central Committees.
But as The Sacramento Bee noted on October 27, Pappas's in-kind contributions will amount to $325,000, for thirteen Republican central committees and $125,000 for five Democratic committees. The Bee noted that "Pappas' contribution allows GOP candidates in some of the state's hottest legislative races to air commercials, at no expense to themselves, on seven TV and two radio stations owned by Pappas in the final days of campaigning," while the airtime for the Democrats is limited to a single Spanish-language TV station in the San Francisco area.

So the GOP gets free access on seven TV and two radio stations, and the Democrats in one TV station = equality of access? Well, it probably does now that we no longer have the fairness doctrine in media. Without it the people with the most money will always get the most air time.

And don't you think the title of this post is funny? It's so close to Papa's Telecasting Companies, and as the pundits always tell us that the Republicans are the strict daddies and the Democrats the overnurturing mommies it would indeed have been very unlikely that Papa would have done anything different. Not that I believe in comparing parties to family roles in some patriarchal system myself. I much prefer Bush's idea of evil and good if we need to go to such a ridiculous length in simplifying things.