Tactics and Substance in the 2004 Elections GoogleNews: Howard Dean

February 3, 2004

by J

Howie The Grown-Up

I really do just love Howard Dean's 'tude. While the media and even the FCC are in complete paroxysms of hysteria because Janet Jackson's breast was flashed on national television, Dean tells people to grow the hell up and get serious.
Howard Dean, a physician and a Democratic presidential candidate, on Monday dismissed as "silly" a government inquiry into whether indecency rules were broken during the broadcast of the Super Bowl halftime show when pop diva Janet Jackson's bodice was ripped to expose her right breast.

"I find that to be a bit of a flap about nothing," the former Vermont governor said. "I'm probably affected in some ways by the fact that I'm a doctor, so it's not exactly an unusual phenomenon for me."

[...] "I don't find it terribly shocking relative to some of the things you can find on standard cable television," he added. "I think the FCC probably has a lot of other things they should be pursuing."
This is a quintessential, pragmatic, New England-style "get the hell over yourself, you think you've got problems?" attitude. I can hear my grandmother now, shaking her head at what's got everyone in a tizzy and declaring: "I wish the road crews would plow my road earlier in the mornings; can't believe people have time for this nonsense!" And she'd go make a few phone calls too, and give people what for!

More seriously, from what I hear -- haven't watched it yet, although I do have it Tivo'd -- more offensive than a glimpse of a boob was the simulated sexual violence. Wonder if that bothered Michael Powell?
Posted by J at February 3, 2004 07:16 PM

I think Dean actually called a spade a spade there. His comment about cable television underscores the fact that the FCC doesn't have the kind of control over cable that they have over broadcast TV.

The fact of the matter is that even if one starts from the premise that what Janet Jackson did was intollerable..., cracking down just on broadcast TV as a response is stupid because it doesn't address the issue. The same kids that saw that on broadcast TV could see comparable stuff on cable and a crackdown on broadcast TV wouldn't do diddly squat to deter it.

Posted by: Kevin at February 4, 2004 09:42 AM

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