Friday, March 20, 2009

Obama's FCC Chairman-Designate Genachowski's Conflicts-of-Interest

The Federal Communications Commission [FCC] is supposed to regulate the U.S. telecommunications/media industry in the public interest. Yet the Democratic Obama Regime's FCC Chairman-Designate Julius Genachowski has apparently worked for over 10 years on behalf of some of the same telecommunications/media industry special corporate interests that the FCC regulates. As the website of FCC Chairman-Designate Genachowski's Launchbox private media business firm notes:

"Julius Genachowski was a senior executive for eight years at IAC/InterActiveCorp (1997-2005) , serving as Chief of Business Operations, General Counsel, and a member of Barry Diller’s Office of the Chairman, and playing a key role in IAC’s growth to become a multibillion-dollar global e-commerce and new media company.

"He is cofounder & managing director of Rock Creek Ventures, and a special advisor at General Atlantic.

"He is chairman and cofounder of Thummit, and has served on the Boards of Directors or Advisors of several companies, including, Ticketmaster, The Motley Fool, Beliefnet (sold to NewsCorp), Truveo (sold to AOL), and Rapt (sold to Microsoft)."

Ironically, despite the Obama Regime's FCC Chairman-Designate Genachowski's recent ties to telecommunications/media conglomerates, the FCC's website makes the following claim:

“The FCC is directed by five Commissioners appointed by the President and confirmed by the Senate for 5-year terms, except when filling an unexpired term. The President designates one of the Commissioners to serve as Chairperson. Only three Commissioners may be members of the same political party. None of them can have a financial interest in any Commission-related business."

In his 1967 classic book of power structure research, Who Rules America?, G. William Domhoff indicated, however, why the federal government regulatory agencies generally do not represent the public interest very effectively, when he wrote the following:

"The unwieldy bureaucracy of regulatory agencies, which are often styled as a fourth branch of government, is a jungle of self-contained entities, each one beholden to the constituent group it is supposed to regulate. There are 9 such agencies, among the best known of which are the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the Federal Communications Commission (FCC),… the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), and the Federal Power Commission (FPC). The constituent groups--the industries of the American business aristocracy that the agencies supposedly regulate--control the regulatory agencies in several ways. First, through committees and associations of specific industries, the industries give advice to the agencies. Second, they are able to control key appointments to the agencies by providing as candidates for the positions corporation executives, corporation lawyers, and various other salaried specialists. Most importantly, the industries can appeal to the President to block appointments that are not acceptable to them. Indeed, appointive power is the only power which the Executive branch legally holds over the regulatory agencies, which are not responsible to it...

"Since no government report or academic study yet published contradicts our claim that those who are supposedly being regulated dominate the regulatory agencies, it is not necessary to go into laborious detail on any one agency. The reader is referred to Henry Kariel's The Decline of American Pluralism, Bernard Nossiter's The Mythmakers, and Grant McConnell's Private Power and American Democracy for relevant examples and detailed bibliography. A quote from one of the sources on regulatory agencies will suffice. It is from Judge Lee Loevinger, who was head of the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice at the time of the drug hearings in the early 1960's:

"`Unfortunately, the history of every regulatory agency in the government is that it comes to represent the industry or groups it's supposed to control. All of these agencies were fine when they were first set up, but before long they became infiltrated by the regulatees and are now more or less run by and for them. It's not a question of venality, either. More, the agency people consort with this or that representative of some special-interest group, and finally they all come to think alike. Every company that's concerned about government control and is big enough to manage it hires a man--or maybe four or five men--at anywhere from thirty to seventy thousand dollars a year [in 1960s money] to find out what we're up to. And, by God, they find out! They wine and dine the agency people and get to be great friends with them. Like a lot of people without much money, some bureaucrats are impressed by being around big shots and by the big life. Sooner or later, all of these agencies end up with constituents. And they represent them damned well, too.'"

So don't expect the Democratic Obama Regime's FCC to democratically enforce anti-trust laws within the world of the Big Media conglomerate monopolies; or work too hard to finally democratically transfer control of the radio and television airwaves in the USA from the special private corporate interests and global media barons back to the people of the United States.

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