UK Elections on the Horizon

Written by Birmingham UK Com

With elections onrepparttar horizon and Blair looking tired and increasingly defensive, just what is likely outcome ofrepparttar 125862 next election? The New Labour adoption of Tory plans and policies has created an almost parallel party in terms ofrepparttar 125863 Conservatives and Labour. Many people are confused and find it hard to tell them apart. The Labour Party will struggle to retainrepparttar 125864 loyalties ofrepparttar 125865 staunch labour support it has enjoyed overrepparttar 125866 decades.

The wind of change is inrepparttar 125867 air. Does this mean thatrepparttar 125868 defeat of labour is a foregone conclusion inrepparttar 125869 next election? Far from it Ėrepparttar 125870 Labour Party, whilst certainly experiencing a rapid decline in popularity is far from defeated. They are still likely to winrepparttar 125871 next election - but a week is a long time in politics.

Labour candidates will admit that Blairís popularity is well down on previous levels prior torepparttar 125872 Iraqi war. The recent doubts overrepparttar 125873 proposed new terror laws allowing suspects to be detained without trial has not helped. The accusations and continued exchanges between Tory and Labour overrepparttar 125874 NHS have not helped matters, any more than Blairís attempts to win overrepparttar 125875 people with his misguided Television fiasco.

The Labour party have acted like true blue Tories in many respects. The very rich have got much richer under Labour. The gap between rich and poor, normally associated with a Tory government is very obvious under New Labour. People have noticed this. Old long term Labour supporters and their loyalty towardsrepparttar 125876 Labour Party is starting to crumble.

Doorstops and Paperweights

Written by Terry Mitchell

Ted Stevens (R-Alaska), chairman ofrepparttar Senate Commerce Committee, has come up with what he believes is a brilliant idea. He thinksrepparttar 125861 FCC should have torepparttar 125862 power to hold cable and satellite channels torepparttar 125863 same decency standards as over-the-air broadcasters. Rep. Joe Barton (R-Texas), Stevens' counterpart inrepparttar 125864 House, agrees. Each plans to propose bills to that end in his respective house ofrepparttar 125865 U.S. Congress. Many of their colleagues, eager to always be viewed as tough on indecency, are ready to sign on to their proposed legislation. Never mindrepparttar 125866 fact thatrepparttar 125867 courts have struck down similar legislation inrepparttar 125868 past. Stevens, doesn't see this as a problem. If he got his wish, Congress would just pass it and then, according to Stevens, "take [the cable and satellite industry] on and letrepparttar 125869 courts decide." Atrepparttar 125870 core of Senator Stevens' rationale isrepparttar 125871 fact that cable and satellite have become almost as ubiquitous as broadcast TV. Over 80% of all U.S. homes now subscribe to cable or satellite TV. In those homes, Stevens and his cohorts would argue, viewers make little or no distinction between subscription channels and broadcast channels, which are right along side each other onrepparttar 125872 cable or satellite box. Therefore, he feels that they should all be held torepparttar 125873 same standard of decency. Onrepparttar 125874 surface, that sounds like a sensible argument. However, there are three major problems with his proposed legislation. First, unlike broadcast television, people choose to bring cable and satellite TV channels into their homes. This choice is a private contract betweenrepparttar 125875 company andrepparttar 125876 subscriber, delivered over that company's equipment. No one is forced to subscribe to cable or satellite TV. In fact, subscribers pay an ever-increasing subscription price for such a privilege. Most people, except those who live in mountainous and/or rural areas, can receive broadcast channels overrepparttar 125877 air with a strong antenna. Even those who live in areas where over-the-air channels cannot be accessed with an antenna can subscribe to a very basic package that includes only their local channels and basic cable channels like The Weather Channel, some home-shopping channels, and one or two religious channels. Decency would never be an issue with any ofrepparttar 125878 aforementioned cable channels, so where is their argument? The argument against regulating premium channels like HBO, which Stevens wants to include in his legislation, should be a no-brainer. These channels do not come with any basic package and are selected and paid for individually by their subscribers. But what aboutrepparttar 125879 basic channels that come along as part of a "classic cable" and/or "extended tier" package? So far, cable and satellite companies have refused to offer them on an a-la-carte basis andrepparttar 125880 FCC has ruled in their favor on this matter. Therefore, people are paying for channels like MTV, for example, that many find objectionable. Shouldn't these channels have to abide by broadcast decency standards? No, because people choose to bring these packages of channels into their homes. Now, granted, many of them subscribe to these packages solely because they want access to channels like ESPN, CNN, and Fox News, which are generally not included withrepparttar 125881 most basic tiers. They couldn't care less about any ofrepparttar 125882 other channels inrepparttar 125883 package. In a perfect world, subscribers could select these channels individually without having to pay for a lot of channels they don't want. However,repparttar 125884 world is not perfect and life is not fair. To softenrepparttar 125885 blow, cable and satellite operators have provided a way for parents to block their children's access to channels they deem inappropriate. Regulating indecency on these channels wouldn't accomplish anything thatrepparttar 125886 parental lockouts couldn't.

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