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Tags: censorship | discrimination

Does Exiling NEWSMAX Violate Anti-Discrimination Policy?

anti discrimination law and policy

By    |   Thursday, 23 February 2023 02:17 PM EST

DirecTV recently kicked Newsmax  TV off its cable distribution network.

To paraphrase Moon Unit Zappa’s Valleyspeak (from back in the day), ATT’s partial (70%-owned) subsidiary DirecTV is "grody to the (News)max."

This may well be in violation of federal anti-discrimination policy.

It leaves DirecTV’s 13 million viewers, and, more specifically, some of Newsmax’s 100,000+ regular weekly viewers, stranded, suddenly in need to switch cable providers. 

Yes, as a weekly Newsmax contributor, I’m loyal to Newsmax. That said, "By the pricking of my thumbs, something wicked this way comes," to quote William Shakespeare and Agatha Christie. 

Per Newsmax:

"DirecTV pays cable license fees to all top 75 cable channels and to all 22 liberal news and information channels it carries.

"Almost all of these channels are paid hefty license fees significantly more than Newsmax was seeking — and despite the fact that most of the channels have much lower ratings than Newsmax.

"This is a blatant act of political discrimination and censorship against Newsmax," Christopher Ruddy, founder and CEO of Newsmax said.

The ejection of Newsmax by DirecTV carries a certain aroma of microaggression.

Allegations, and possible revelations, of political collusion by some executives at pre-Musk Twitter with various federal agencies, what The New York Times chastely called "the intersecting worlds of media, politics and tech," give "freedom of the press" freaks like me pause.

There’s a name for systemic collusion by Big Government with Big Business? Per Sheldon Richman at Econlib:

"Where socialism sought totalitarian control of a society’s economic processes through direct state operation of the means of production, fascism sought that control indirectly, through domination of nominally private owners.

"Where socialism nationalized property explicitly, fascism did so implicitly, by requiring owners to use their property in the ‘national interest’— that is, as the autocratic authority conceived it."

DirecTV’s decision to exile Newsmax invites scrutiny. It has drawn sharp critiques from Donald Trump and criticisms coursing across Capitol Hill.

What’s really going on?

America is beset by a cultural revolution to which we crusaders against fascism are the counterrevolutionaries. As I wrote in The American Spectator in 2016:

"As summarized at the University of Michigan’s Nutshell Biographies #2:

"'One of [Antonio] Gramsci’s ideas was the concept of ‘hegemony,’ or ideological domination. When one ideology, or world view, dominates, it suppresses or stamps out, often cruelly, any other ways of explaining reality.…

"These consist of a culture’s way of seeing and believing, and the institutions that uphold these beliefs, like religion, education, family, and the media.

"Through these beliefs and institutions, society endorses the ethical beliefs and manners which 'the powers that be' agree are true, or right, or logical, or moral.

"The institutions and beliefs that the dominant culture support are so powerful, and get hold of people when they are so young, that alternative ways of envisioning reality are very hard to imagine. This is how hegemony is created and maintained."

Hey! Did someone say, "the media?"

ATT, of course, has the right to choose what to carry. That said, Mr. Market, so much more ruthless than federal regulators, will have the last word.

And, despite my devotion, as an ordoliberal, to free markets, those members of Congress who have raised vociferous objections to DirecTV’s exile of Newsmax have a legal and constitutional hook well worth exploring.

Federal anti-discrimination action began, in earnest, with President John F. Kennedy’s executive order 10925.

The order directed, "all government contracting agencies shall include in every government contract hereafter entered into the following provisions: 'In connection with the performance of work under this contract, the contractor agrees as follows: '(1) The contractor will not discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment because of race, creed, color, or national origin."

Uncle Sam has grown properly militant in its opposition to discrimination based on race, color, or national origin.

Yet, curiously, the federal government has turned to not-at-all-benevolent-neglect of discrimination based on creed. Let’s end that now.

Creed is defined by the Oxford American Dictionary as "a set of beliefs or aims which guide someone's actions." That obviously includes political ideology.

ATT, DirecTV’s mothership, enjoys billions of dollars of contracts with the federal government. If, following congressional investigation, ATT’s subsidiary’s exile of Newsmax turns out based on credal discrimination, smells like a violation of the spirit, at least, of federal anti-discrimination rules.

A congressional finding of credal discrimination should invite immediate remedial action by DirecTV… rather than inviting Uncle Sam to deliver a message, good and hard, by canceling a few billion dollars of ATT’s opulent government contracts.

DirecTV? As Moon Unit Zappa might have put it: "Gag me with a spoon!"

Bring back Newsmax TV — now.

Ralph Benko, co-author of "The Capitalist Manifesto" and chairman and co-founder of "The Capitalist League," is the founder of The Prosperity Caucus and is an original Kemp-era member of the Supply-Side revolution that propelled the Dow from 814 to its current heights and world GDP from $11T to $94T. Read Ralph Benko's reports — More Here.

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

DirecTV’s decision to exile Newsmax invites scrutiny. It has drawn sharp critiques from Donald Trump and criticisms coursing across Capitol Hill. What’s really going on?
censorship, discrimination
Thursday, 23 February 2023 02:17 PM
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