Thursday, November 06, 2008

Bring on the Fairness!

Fairness Doctrine Talk Heats Up

November 6, 2008

With the Presidential election over, discussion of the potential fallout as it pertains to the broadcasting industry as begun. The "Fairness Doctrine" has been rumored to return into play, over two decades after the FCC rejected it as unconstitutional. President-elect Barack Obama is on the record as saying he has no plans to bring back the Fairness Doctrine, but other top Democrats could be.

In an interview yesterday with Fox News, Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) said that those who want to give the Commission more regulatory powers over "pornography" do not want them to get involved for fairness and balance in broadcasting.

The comments from Schumer caused concern in some circles, with the National Religious Broadcasters issuing a statement, according to Broadcasting & Cable. "I was stunned by Senator Schumer’s suggestion that by keeping filth off the air, the federal government has somehow become empowered to take over the control of legitimate programming content of broadcasters," said Craig Parshall, SVP and general counsel for the NRB. "That paints a very grim picture for the future of broadcasting freedoms, particularly for Christian broadcasters."

Additionally, reports that Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD) also spoke in favor of a potential return to the Fairness Doctrine at the Democratic Senatorial Committee election party on Tuesday night. "Well first of all, I think that a station should have a balanced approach. I think they are doing their listeners a service when they provide all sides to an issue, but quite frankly, there is more variety today than we’ve had in recent years," Cardin said. "We have a lot of radio stations that are providing all different types of points of view, and I think there’s a lot of self-selection here. There’s a lot of listeners who are saying, ‘Look, we are going to listen to stations that are balanced,’ so I think the market in some respects is working this out."

Another concern with a return of the doctrine could be its application online. Earlier this summer, FCC Commissioner Robert McDowell told the Business & Media Institute that the return of the Fairness Doctrine could potentially be tied in with the net neutrality battle, resulting in the government regulating content on the Web.

Obama Supporters Shocked to Find They Won't Get All Their Pay

Indianapolis - Lines were long and tempers flared Wednesday not to vote but to get paid for canvassing for Barack Obama. Several hundred people are still waiting to get their pay for last-minute campaigning. Police were called to the Obama campaign office on North Meridian Street downtown to control the crowd.

The line was long and the crowd was angry at times.

"I want my money today! It's my money. I want it right now!" yelled one former campaign worker.

Read the rest here.

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Thursday, April 10, 2008

We don't live here anymore

This is probably a little late in coming, but Ask Me Later really doesn't exist anymore.

If you're looking for Casper, you can find him here.

And if you're looking for Cantankerous, just send her an e-mail and I'm sure she'll do whatever it takes to facilitate your stalking her.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Simply No Words

There are times where no amount of words can convey the appropriate feeling.

Rest in peace, Tom.

How to Destroy Society

More Basic Instructions . . .

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Basic Instructions

Get more Basic Instructions at

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Burning Freezing Question of the Day

I really don't feel like going through all the trouble of setting up a real poll, and I truly appreciate the more subjective feedback comments offer, so I'm just going to ask our dear four or five readers to answer this question in the comments section:

Given today's weather, an ice storm warning from the National Weather Service, countless school closings and the WHITE DEATH now descending on SE Wisconsin, what do you think the appropriate response from are businesses should be? Should they send their employees home before it gets too bad? What is too bad? Should they pretend nothing is happening and hope for the best? Is the weather really all that bad? Should an employer err on the side of caution?

You tell me!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Culinary Etiquette

After discovering a particularly long, grayish-blonde hair in your food and notifying your server of this, what do you believe the appropriate reponse of the server/restaurant should be?

Thursday, December 06, 2007

More Lunch Fun

Today my office cafeteria offered up a beef and bean burrito with a side of corn and red beans and rice. The burrito is deep-fried, which I believe technically qualifies it as a chimichanga and not a burrito. I've also never thought of red beans and rice as a side for Mexican food, but what do I know, other than the fact that you'll all be happy to know that I won't be reporting on this meal's inevitable outcome.

All together now, "Thanks for sharing, Dave!"

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Forest for the Trees

If George W. Bush is capable of single-handedly destroying the United States, why is it so hard to conceive that scores of Muslim terrorists aren't destroying the religion of peace?

Why Hillary Won't Win

Put it in context here


I picked up the breaded shrimp with a side of fries special for lunch from the restaurant in my building today. Such a meal requires that I have both ketchup and cocktail sauce as my condiments. I keep finding myself dipping shrimp in the ketchup and fries in the cocktail sauce.

I tried eating the shrimp with my left hand and the fries with my right hand to keep things straight, but that just got confusing. Besides, I need my right hand free to high five all the people who come by my desk to tell me how awesome I am. But if they ever find out I'm having this condiment dilemma, my reputation will go down the drain.

A picture of the conundrum below...

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

For our friends in Sudan...

If I do it enough, I figure I'm bound to offend someone.

This is not the message you're looking for

Man, I just can't get enough of this!


Why can't everyone just get along...

...while pounding the hell out of one another on the gridiron?

If you squint, you can just barely see it spelling out that magical word. Kinda the same way when you squint at my house, it looks like a gigantic mansion and not just a refrigerator box behind the CVS.


Monday, November 26, 2007

Overblown Offense

Nick has said* what I'm sure a lot of people have been thinking. Personally, I've found that a lot of people tend to blow things way out of proportion when it comes to something as innocuous as a silly little bumpersticker. In fact, just after creating this one...

..the complaints really started rolling in:

  • The puppies are black and white. Why are no other races represented?
  • Isn't it unsafe to leave a toddler so near two dogs?
  • The baby is caucasian. Shouldn't we be kind to babies of all races?
  • The lettering is in blue. Should we assume female babies/puppies are excluded from acts of kindness?
  • Not in Spanish.
  • Use of the Latin alphabet is offensive to those whose languages use the Cyrillic, Greek, Arab, etc. alphabets.
  • Too Aryan
  • Some people are allergic to dogs.
  • Image of baby offends childless couples.
  • Is documentation available to assure that the puppies were not bred at a puppy mill?
  • What about kittens?
  • Was basket made in a free-trade nation?
  • Not enough cowbell

*Sorry...blogger won't let me link. I'm referring to what Nick said in this post ( in which he observes " be honest, that "controversy" was blown out of proportion by everybody, and has become a parody of itself."

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

From the Sidelines

Browsing through the Cheddarshpere as of late, I'm sure seeing a lot of the following:

So-and-so said this!
Oh yeah? Well he said this once!
But he said that after she said this!
That's not as bad as when they did that after he went there!
I didn't say that! But if I did, it isn't like I said what he
You're an idiot!
He's a jackass!
She's stupid!

Seriously...I think I've seen more constructive debate on an elementary school playground. Frankly, I'm not missing blogging at all.

Friday, November 09, 2007

If you were ever curious...

This post may fall on deaf ears, since posting around here has been pretty much non-existent for the last several months and we've most likely lost every reader we ever had.

But, for the curious among you, I'd just like to point out that one of the reasons posting has been so light is about to come to fruition tomorrow.

That's right! Saturday is Cantankerous's big day! She and her man are finally tying the knot, and we here at Ask Me Later truly wish them the best!

(Please note...that is not a picture of the lovely couple...I just couldn't resist!)

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Kane Watch: Redefining Slavery

What's truly amazing is that almost a quarter of all workers in America get
no paid vacation at all, according to the Center for Economic and Policy
Research. Didn't they use to call that slavery?

Tongue in cheek? Or truly delusional?

Monday, July 16, 2007

Is this the end?

Well, is it?

Your comments are appreciated.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

So long, Tookie

Several years ago a friend brought over a parrot that was no longer wanted by its owner.

Over the next several days, my roommate at the time and I tried to come up with a name for this bird.

One night, my roommate, an Israeli, kept talking to the bird and saying, "Tookie! Tookie! Tookie!"

When I asked him what he was saying, he told me that 'tookie' was Hebrew for 'parrot."

So, basically, he was sitting on the couch saying "Parrot! Parrot! Parrot!"

And so we named Tookie.

Tookie passed away a couple of months ago. Had I not 'retired' from blogging, I may have written my post in honor of him then.

But I didn't.

So I'm doing it now.

So long, Tookie. I'll miss you sleeping on my chest and leading every other animal around the house, demonstrating just which one of you was the smartest one under the roof.

Keep one leg up, and your head tucked under your wing.

Harry Potter

Saw it last night. Loved it. My overall review: it's a much slower paced film than the others and if you haven't read the books, you might find it a bit boring.

For those of us who have read the books, and can view this movie as a piece of a larger whole, you'll appreciate the character development, but mostly you'll like the wizards fight at the end. I've been waiting a few years to see that. It was pretty good.

Luna Lovegood is a scene stealer, and that was a pleasant surprise.

All in all, I liked it. My brother, who doesn't read the books had this to say: I kept waiting for Voldemort to say, "Luke, I am your father." That is, he'll take Star Wars over Harry Potter any day.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Kane Watch: Cluck, Cluck

Looks like Gene got slapped for his little stunt with the fake interview. Only Gene could get away with a wrist slap for this kind of thing. I wonder how the victim felt upon reading the interview, only to find out later that the whole thing was a sick joke.

Wonder if Kane had to explain to the editor what he meant by, "Not everyone is as clueless as Charlie Sykes who made a fuss about the group interview being fake." After all, the editor ran a letter referencing the column as legit.

Oops. Nothing quite like calling your own boss clueless.

Anyway, here's the apology. This time it's in his column, not hidden away in the blog.

The Few Who Ruin It for Everybody:
Lots of readers thought last Sunday's column was a powerful statement on the troubles with disruptive young black people in Milwaukee. But some were confused about whether the column was written from an actual interview with a group of specific young people who talked about their viewpoints.

It wasn't.

The column - you can read it at - was my attempt to address the issue of young blacks who find creative ways to spoil positive events in the black community, such as the beating of an innocent motorist at Juneteenth Day. Although based on my experiences talking with young people about violence in the city, the dialogue was never meant to be taken literally as an actual interview.

I was surprised that some readers misinterpreted my writing device, which was admittedly more literary than journalistic. I apologize for any confusion.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Oh, c'mon now...

When you go to the grocery store, there's a reason apples are in one place and oranges are in another.

It's the same reason we place obvious social misfits, such as the family in Oshkosh that seems to have problems with with the Country USA festival* in a different category than dozens, if not hundreds, of random festival attendees who seem to feel the best way to cap off a block party is by random street rioting.

But so far as Eugene Kane is concerned, as well as Mike Plaisted (who I personally think gave up his right to meaningful discourse the day he made "wing-nut" an oft-used term in the points he attempts to make), comparing the annual shenanigans performed by a sub-set of party-goers to one crazed family of five is somehow apt.

They claim the lack of response regarding the 74-year-old's knuckle headed antics by the conservative, white, right-leaning, hood-wearing, Sykes-following masses is telling.

They're different. And if they can't, or are unwilling, to tell the difference, then so be it. But, quite frankly, if they're so lacking in the ability to tell the difference between the two incidents, it's no problem but their own.

I'm sick and tired of the comparisons and analogies columnists, bloggers and commenters alike try to make in defense of their positions. Most recently I watched as an Ask Me Later reader attempted to compare the plight of an illegal immigrant, someone who voluntarily snuck into this country, to that of Rosa Parks, who was obviously a legal citizen denied the rights granted to her by the Constitution. Challenged with this, the reader spun further into obscurity by comparing the illegal immigrant to a slave who attempted to escape from his master pre-bellum. Nevermind that the slave was dragged to this nation in shackles for a life of forced-servitude, for some reason the reader believed comparing the him or her to a Mexican citizen who willingly entered this nation, broke its immigration laws and brazenly volunteered his illegal status to a federal agent was somehow appropriate.

They aren't the same.

Folks, there's a sale on apples.

There's a coupon for oranges in the Sunday paper.

One special cannot be applied to the other.

*As an aside, I joked to a country music fan friend of mine that this seems exactly like the type of family who would enjoy a country music festival

Sunday, June 24, 2007

A Few Questions for Kane

So, this is what "knuckleheads" do to other people?

On Wednesday, Gene's position on the Juneteenth Day riot was that a few "knuckleheads" and "bad apples" spoiled the fun, and that mostly white people who never go to the festival over reacted about the level of danger present there.

Sounds like Gene got an interview with some of these "knuckleheads" and it appears to have left him speechless.

Q. What is it going to take to reach out to you guys in order to be hopeful about the future?

A. "Why do you want to reach us? Like you said, we're the dropouts, the ones without good parents, the ones who don't really think much about the future beyond the next day. Plus, we can get all the guns we want. What good do you think reaching out to us is going to do?"

Q. So, it's hopeless?

A. "Not as long as we're the few. When we become the many, that's when you will really have problems."

Wow, huh? Gene fails to comment on this interview. My question for Gene: Still think these guys are knuckleheads?

Sounds to me like they've got it all figured out. They have no pride, no education and basically no care for anything in the world. They live in a city that enables their lack of education, the lawlessness, the crime, the teenage pregnancy and the joblessness. What makes these kids knuckleheads?

Why get smart and work for a living when the city can foot the bill and you can rule your little corner of the universe like a king?

Sounds like these guys aren't such knuckleheads at all.

I think Gene is the knucklehead for ever defending these lazy, violent thugs and for ever calling them less than what they really are: criminals.

And if we're supposed to feel badly for them because, as Gene writes, "Usually, they are high-school dropouts with a background in the criminal justice system as juvenile or adult offenders. Many have anger management problems along with a drastic lack of self-esteem that makes them prone to be followers as opposed to leaders." well I just won't. It's because of people like Gene who write about h0w we should feel sorry for these thugs, and how we should understand how tough they have it and the lawmakers who agree that we are in the situation we are in.

The soft bigotry of low expectations has really played the inner city residents right into a corner. And they only way out is to stop making excuses for what they are or are not capable of. And that just might have to start with Eugene Kane.

But don't take it from me, take it from the kid he interviewed: "Jobs? Seriously, why would you think folks like us want jobs? Like you said, we're high school dropouts, drug addicts, gangsters. We're the troublemakers. We aren't really looking for any jobs."