Newton N. Minow Way in Chicago

Walking to the train station, I photographed this street sign in Chicago:


I was reminded of Rand’s caustic remarks exactly 50 years ago about Minow and government censorship:

“And then there is Newton N. Minow [then chairman of the Federal Communications Commission] who declares: ‘There is censorship by ratings, by advertisers, by networks, by affiliates which reject programming offered to their areas.’ It is the same Mr. Minow who threatens to revoke the license of any station that does not comply with his views on programming—and who claims that that is not censorship … .”

Minow’s recent article in The Atlantic, “A Vaster Wasteland,” shows that he’s still a middle-of-the-road thinker, advocating a mixture of controls and government-granted privileges as telecommunications policy.

Related: My video lecture on “The F.C.C.’s ‘Fairness Doctrine,” part of the Business Ethics Cases series.

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