Americans for Tax Reform (ATR), headed by anti-government activist Grover
Norquist, has created a Web site, www.stopmediaregulation.org, to
counter the anti-dereg sites -- moveon.org,
mediareform.org -- that helped
generate anti-deregulation input to the Federal Communications Commission and
The group blames a 'liberal onslaught' for attempts to roll back the FCC's
June 2 reg rewrite.
Somewhat lost in the rhetorical harangue is that the un-liberal NRA also
helped mobilize reregulation, or that, in addition to heading up ATR, Norquist
is a board member of that selfsame NRA.
'I know that NRA has staked out a position,' says Norquist, 'but that is
their position and not mine. As a board member, I am not required to agree with
everything the NRA does.'
Norquist says NRA's beef is that networks have been hostile to some kinds of
issue ads -- a complaint he shares -- but that ATR's media agenda is broader.
That would include letting owners buy as many stations and newspapers as they
But in the 'with friends like these' department, Norquist also says
broadcasters should have to pay for their spectrum.
'They can't whine about regulation when they're getting
the spectrum for free,' he says.