Yep, They Said It

Free Press Co-Founder Robert McChesney

  • “Any serious effort to reform the media system would have to necessarily be part of a revolutionary program to overthrow the capitalist system itself.”

(The U.S. Media Reform Movement – Monthly Review, September 15, 2008)

  • “There is no real answer (to the U.S. economic crisis) but to remove brick by brick the capitalist system itself, rebuilding the entire society on socialist principles.”

(A New New Deal under Obama? (with John Bellamy Foster) – Monthly Review, December 21, 2008)

  • “Our job is to make media reform part of our broader struggle for democracy, social justice, and, dare we say it, socialism. It is impossible to conceive of a better world with a media system that remains under the thumb of Wall Street and Madison Avenue, under the thumb of the owning class.”

(Journalism, Democracy, … and Class Struggle – Monthly Review, November 2000)

  • “At the moment, the battle over network neutrality is not to completely eliminate the telephone and cable companies. We are not at that point yet. But the ultimate goal is to get rid of the media capitalists in the phone and cable companies and to divest them from control.”

(Media Capitalism, the State and 21st Century Media Democracy Struggles: An Interview with Robert McChesney – The Bullet Socialist Project, August 9, 2009)

  • “What we want to have in the U.S. and in every society is an Internet that is not private property, but a public utility. We want an Internet where you don’t have to have a password and that you don’t pay a penny to use. It is your right to use the Internet.”

(Media Capitalism, the State and 21st Century Media Democracy Struggles: An Interview with Robert McChesney – The Bullet Socialist Project, August 9, 2009)

  • “The last thing we want to do, however, is rebuild the old media system. We are moving ahead toward a new kind of journalism. …We want to democratize the media system so that people without property can play a much larger role in the media and in political life. The result of such democratization will, in my view, be a marked shift to the political Left.”

(Media Capitalism, the State and 21st Century Media Democracy Struggles: An Interview with Robert McChesney – The Bullet Socialist Project, August 9, 2009)

  • “Instead of waiting for the revolution to happen, we learned that unless you make significant changes in the media, it will be vastly more difficult to have a revolution. While the media is not the single most important issue in the world, it is one of the core issues that any successful Left project needs to integrate into its strategic program.”

(Media Capitalism, the State and 21st Century Media Democracy Struggles: An Interview with Robert McChesney – The Bullet Socialist Project, August 9, 2009)

  • “To the extent commercial activities are given First Amendment protection, it makes the rule of capital increasingly off-limits to political debate and government regulation. In my view, progressives need to stake out a democratic interpretation of the First Amendment and do direct battle with the Orwellian implications of the ACLU’s commercialized First Amendment.”

(The New Theology of the First Amendment: Class Privilege Over Democracy – Monthly Review, March 1998)

  • “Advertising is the voice of capital. We need to do whatever we can to limit capitalist propaganda, regulate it, minimize it, and perhaps even eliminate it. The fight against hyper-commercialism becomes especially pronounced in the era of digital communications.”

(Media Capitalism, the State, and 21st Century Media Democracy Struggles: An Interview with Robert McChesney – The Bullet Socialist Project, September 8, 2009)

  • “We need to revamp daily newspapers into independent post-corporate entities, vastly expand funding to public media and find ways to subsidize nonprofit journalism online.”

(The Death and Life of American Journalism – The Fifth Estate, October, 2009)

  • “If we want to raise funds for critical journalism, we could tax the giant news corporations; we could then re-distribute the wealth to a fund for a journalist co-operative, which would produce a competitive for-profit paper, which then created more jobs for journalists. A second not-for-profit paper, largely funded by the revenues generated by the paper produced by the journalist co-op, then provides a critical news source to the public.

(Democracy & the Problem of the Media – The Socialist Project, May/June 2006)

  • “Venezuela is a constitutional republic. Chavez has won landslide victories that would be the envy of almost any elected leader in the world, in internationally monitored elections.”

(Venezuela and the Media: Fact and Fiction – Common Dreams, June 1, 2007)

  • “Aggressive unqualified political dissent is alive and well in the Venezuelan mainstream media, in a manner few other democratic nations have ever known, including our own.”

(Venezuela and the Media: Fact and Fiction – Common Dreams, June 1, 2007)

  • “If (critical of Hugo Chavez Venezuelan station) RCTV were broadcasting in the United States, its license would have been revoked years ago. In fact its owners would likely have been tried for criminal offenses, including treason.”

(Venezuela and the Media: Fact and Fiction – Common Dreams, June 1, 2007)

Free Press Co-Founders Robert McChesney and John Nichols

  • “In nearly every major war the United States has fought over the past century, the administration in power has lied through its teeth to generate public support, because it feared the people would not approve of war were they told the truth.”

(Our Media, Not Theirs: The Democratic Struggle Against Corporate Media – Third World Traveler, 2002)

  • “Only government can implement policies and subsidies to provide an institutional framework for quality journalism.”

(The Death and Life of Great American Newspapers – Nation, March 18, 2009)

  • “Fortunately, the rude calculus that says government intervention equals government control is inaccurate and does not reflect our past or present, or what enlightened policies and subsidies could entail.”

(The Death and Life of Great American Newspapers – Nation, March 18, 2009)

  • “All totaled, the suggestions we make here for subscription subsidies, postal reforms, youth media and investment in public broadcasting have a price tag in the range of $60 billion over the next three years.  This is a substantial amount of money.  In normal times it might be too much to ask.  But in a time of national crisis, when an informed and engaged citizenry is America’s best hope, $20 billion a year is chicken feed…”

(The Death and Life of Great American Newspapers – Nation, April 6, 2009)

  • “We need our members of Congress and our leading scholars to approach this matter with the same urgency with which they would approach the threat of terrorism, pandemic, financial collapse or climate change. … Only then can we, like our founders, build a free press.”

(The Death and Life of Great American Newspapers – Nation, April 6, 2009)

  • “Decommercialize local TV news with regulations that require stations to grant journalists an hour daily of commercial-free news time, and set budget guidelines for those newscasts based on a percentage of the station’s revenues.”

(The Making of a Movement – Nation, January 7, 2002)

  • “Just as there came a moment when policy-makers recognized the necessity of investing tax dollars to create a public education system to teach our children, so a moment has arrived at which we must recognize the need to invest tax dollars to create and maintain news gathering, reporting and writing with the purpose of informing all our citizens.”

(The Making of a Movement – Nation, January 7, 2002)

  • “Walter Isaacson has proposed that newspapers come up with a plan to charge readers ‘micropayments’ for online content. Even if such a system were practically possible, the last thing we should do is erect walls that block the openness and democratic genius of the Internet.”

(The Death and Life of Great American Newspapers – Nation, March 18, 2009)

Free Press Co-Founder, President and C.E.O. Josh Silver

  • “[W]ithout bold structural reform, our current media, owned by a handful of profit-crazed conglomerates, will continue to fail us and our democracy.”

(After Imus: 6 Steps Toward Fixing the Media Problem – Huffington Post, April 15, 2007)

  • “Those who could misconstrue the Comcast-NBCU deal as good for the public would be the same people who say we should deregulate the banks and the oil industry.”

(Showdown in Chicago Over the Comcast-NBCU Deal – Philadelphia Inquirer, July 12, 2010)

Free Press Managing Director Craig Aaron

  • “There’s going to be a second stimulus package at some point. And when it comes, we need to make sure it’s not just an economic stimulus. … [W]e also need to put people to work running community organizations, and writing plays, and making art.”

(Want to Change the Media? Be a Lobbyist – Huffington Post, September 4, 2009)

  • “We need a law that says, no matter what kind of network you’re on—wired, wireless, I forget, there’s some other network coming in the future—that net neutrality applies.”

(Interview with Robert McChesney – Media Matters Public Radio show, March 22, 2009)

Former Free Press Policy Director Ben Scott

  • “Increasingly the Internet is no longer a commercial service, it’s an infrastructure…What we’re witnessing at the FCC now is the logical next step which is we are going to create a regulatory framework for the Internet which recognizes it is an infrastructure now and not a commercial service.”

(C-SPAN: The Communicators – C-Span, September 25, 2009)

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Justin December 15, 2010 at 11:05 pm

Your vulgar libertarianism is as harmful as it is childish. What is free about a market in which 4 companies own over 90% of the market? Free enterprise you say? Not for the consumers, citizens, or smaller companies – meaning, every relevant actor but the 4 big corporations. Markets must be forced to be free, and that is where democratic regulation comes in.

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Dave December 21, 2010 at 11:51 pm

Justin, your douche-bag communist approach is typical of people who hate the freedom of others and who would force said others to do your “enlightened” bidding. Sir, you are an enemy of the American way of life. It would do free people a great service if you and people like you would croak. If it comes down to it and you persist in trying to enslave us, we will see to it that you do croak. Count on it.

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FreedomFan June 23, 2011 at 6:12 pm

“Free Press” and “Net Neutrality” are Orwellian-named Trojan horses designed to crush America’s free speech rights, because fetid Marxist ideas can never withstand the withering sunlight of open debate.

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