Last updated: August 10, 2008 - 10:30pm
A trio of former Federal Communications Commission chairmen, including the most iconic critic of TV content and a symbol of deregulation, joined to ask the Supreme Court to strip the FCC of its power to regulate indecency entirely, saying that it is on a "Victorian crusade" that hurts broadcasters, viewers and the Constitution. Former Democratic chairman Newton Minow may have famously dubbed TV a "vast wasteland" back in the 1960s, but he is ready to let TV programmers in this century have more say over content if the alternative is the current FCC. Seconding that opinion was former Republican chairman Mark Fowler, who once likened TV to a toaster with pictures and became a symbol of the deregulatory 1980s. Also weighing in on a brief to the court Friday was James Quello, former broadcaster and longest-serving Democratic commissioner. The trio were joined by other former FCC commissioners and staffers including Henry Geller, former general counsel at the FCC; Glen O. Robinson, a former commissioner and said to be principal author of the brief; Kenneth G. Robinson, a former FCC legal adviser; and .Jerald Fritz, senior VP and general counsel for Allbritton Communications.
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