TREASURE ISLAND - COINS AND PRECIOUS METALS
In this era of iPads and smart phones, radio is still popular. Turn it on; check it out.
Radio stations are in business and without a revenue stream they would be forced to close down. Whereas National Public Radio receives about 35% of its funding from the federal government, private broadcasting must raise its own revenue. Typically that is done through advertising. Various entities, especially businesses desiring exposure, pay good money for 5, 10, 15, or 30 second commercial spots.
Another huge client buying air time is the federal government. With substantial federal dollars purchasing air time in a tough economy, private broadcasting companies become dependent on the federal purchases of air time. To ensure regulatory compliance the FCC has a major say in what is broadcast and what is not -- especially when the feds are large consumers of air time.
One would think that government funding of commercial spots would come from the federal budget. But there is no federal budget. The Democrat controlled Senate hasn’t passed a budget in three years. Ergo, there is little public accountability in government agency spending. Departments are accountable only to the policies of a strong, powerful executive branch headed by the president ruling by executive order.
Federal advertising funds come from the $787 billion stimulus package passed in 2009. As an example, $230 million has been doled out for government ads on the war against obesity.
Public health care is a convenient justification to foist behavioral change on an unwilling public. Government advertising in the war on obesity has been used to target legitimate products and services when policy dictates against their use. Products such as Coke and Pepsi have been greatly undermined.
There is a real danger that government advertising becomes a form of propaganda funded by money confiscated from the “wealthy” (86% of all federal income taxes are paid by the top 25% of income earners) in order to condition the greater public.
Here are a few federal agencies whose commercials are heard locally: Peace Corps, US Army, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Education, Department of Justice, FBI, Department of Agriculture.
Government advertising is designed to reach the lowest common denominator among listeners to insure the widest possible reception. The commercials tend to blend in with the rest of the medium creating an ongoing sense of entertainment.
There is an objective. Government advertising promotes support for administration policies. On the dark side it also promotes a docile, compliant public substituting individual thinking for centralized, uniform dogma.
It also undermines resistance to government policies which move away from traditional values. In a Housing and Urban Development ad, listeners are urged to report discrimination. What once was illegal behavior is now codified as acceptable. For example, Christians who object to cohabitation and homosexuality may now be violating the law if they deny rental housing to these groups as a matter of conscience. The Department of Housing and Urban Development pays for radio spots urging citizens to report each other based on new criteria for discrimination. I recall only a few decades ago this was the practice of communist regimes.
The federal anti-tobacco crusade has long been entrenched as government policy. Does tobacco use harm? Yes. So does driving a car, eating food and walking across the street. Living entails risks. If tobacco is so harmful, ban it. Don’t advertise against it.
Government propaganda is the byproduct of an expansive, centralized government. Government advertising / propaganda becomes the soma of our brave new world. It fosters compliance, complaisance, docility, acquiescence and submissiveness toward bigger and bigger government. It softens opposition as government expands.