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Media Monopolies' Effect on Dissent

May 05, 2003

Re "Media Monopolies Have Muzzled Dissent," Commentary, May 1: Ian Masters is representative of why I don't like to listen to, read or watch "progressives." A little cheese with your whine, Mr. Masters?

How did Masters get his commentary published if the conservatives have hijacked the media? And has he missed the progressives on Fox News? I sure wouldn't call Mara Liasson, Juan Williams, Alan Colmes, et al, conservatives. ABC, CBS, NBC, National Public Radio and even KPFK-FM are still out there and putting forth their spin on events. Did he miss the coverage of the peace demonstrations? Of course, the big-money people and very rich Democrats in politics never use money and influence to buy the presidency.

Masters should try to be a little more honest and show things as they are and maybe he will get an audience.

Theodore Whittlinger

Torrance

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The general public will probably pay little attention as right-wing head of the Federal Communications Commission Michael Powell turns over Internet gatekeeper responsibility to broadband cable and satellite providers. Another example of right-wing exploitation. It is said that the airways belong to the citizenry, but do they really? Rupert Murdoch and his ilk have gained control and we sit idle.

In the Los Angeles area, if I choose to listen to political talk radio there is little diversity -- Clear Channel dominates. Its monopoly serves up a battering of Goebbelsesque propaganda moderated by right-wing spokespersons, presided over by their chief, Rush Limbaugh.

The real damage to our system of public diversity, however, takes place in geographical areas where there is no real opposition to a monopoly such as Clear Channel. There is little diversity of opinion at present, and it will undoubtedly get worse as the few gain more and more control of our media airways.

Isn't this just as dangerous as weapons of mass destruction?

Ray McIntosh

Redlands

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Masters informs us in his commentary that airways, and soon Internet access -- once considered to be owned by the public -- will be further monopolized by a few corporate conglomerates. They will be even more efficient as gatekeepers to what we see and hear.

It was once believed that in order to have a vital democracy, there had to be a free flow of information, ideas and discussion. Maybe that's just not American anymore. Is it just a coincidence that we haven't heard much on TV and radio about the momentous decisions [on media ownership rules] that will be made in early June by the FCC? But I'll stay tuned.

Eleanor Kirby

Hawthorne

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