The Right Coast
April 03, 2005
Shut Up, They Explained
By Maimon Schwarzschild
San Francisco may soon have an ordinance aimed at regulating blogs -- in practice, aimed to strangle politically-minded blogs in red tape. This ordinance is a plausible model of the sort of thing the (once-mainstream) media might dream of, as might the political party the old media are now mostly an organ of.
But I really don't think it will work. Assume that our infinitely-estimable "living Constitution" judges approve of this: which no doubt they might. Even so. If the Chinese Communist Party can't keep a lid on the internet, the axis of Democrats and their old media spokespeople won't be able to either. For one thing, there are leftist blogs who might not care to roll over in a vain effort to restore the old media monopoly. And in general, American bloggers are, well, Americans: this sort of thing would provoke civil disobedience on a big scale.
It's gratifying, though, to see that these people are spooked. The sincerest form of flattery? Not imitation, perhaps, but forlorn legal-bureaucratic efforts at suppression.