December 1, 2005

Congressman Bernie Sanders on the Prospect of a Sopranos-Free World

Wednesday June 08th 2005, 11:26 am
Filed under: Cable/Satellite

Our favorite speak-out-against-cable-regulation Congressman (who’s also the only speak-out-against-cable-regulation Congressman, but that’s another story) has published an op-ed in the Village Voice about what will happen if the cable prudes get their way.

Says Congressman Bernie Sanders:

Fast forward to January 2006. It’s a Sunday night and 9 p.m. is fast approaching. You have a few friends over and the speculation is rampant about which characters won’t survive this, the last season of The Sopranos. Your screen lights up as you hit the “on” button on the remote. The trumpeting sounds of the HBO original production theme music strikes up. And then . . . then . . . something must be wrong. There’s no Tony, there’s no Carmella, no Paulie Walnuts. No Sopranos at all.

Then it dawns on you: President Bush and “concerned” congressional leaders must have followed through on their threat to extend the FCC’s “indecency standard” to cable and satellite.

And it won’t just be the Sopranos getting the boot from primetime. There’ll be no more Chris Rock specials. No more Howard Stern on the E Channel. No more R-rated films.

Note to Congress: Don’t even try to take my Paulie Walnuts away from me!

In a broader sense, this push to censor demonstrates that the extreme right-wing Republicans who now control the White House and Congress believe that the federal government should tell every American what they may or may not consume on cable or satellite TV, or the Web—even though consumers are paying for those services. At a time when we hear the president and other Republicans talking about the need to spread “freedom” throughout the world, these same politicians apparently believe that Americans should not have the freedom to watch TV programs of their choice. What hypocrisy! And, remember, these are the same folks who told us year after year (before they got power) how dangerous the federal government was and how we had to get government “off the backs” of the people.

We love you, Bernie.

From the Village Voice.

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