Tuesday, March 23, 2004

The Mouth Is More Dangerous Than The Trench

Dennis Mulvihill in a letter to the Cleveland Plain Dealer (published by master-blogger Atrios) wonders
why the Republicans believe that hearing a four-letter word on the radio is more damaging than death or catastrophic injury. Consider that the Bush administration wants to increase FCC

fines for indecency up to $500,000 per violation per station, yet at the same time, it wants to restrict noneconomic damages in tort cases to $250,000 or $350,000.

So if a DJ says a four-letter word on the radio, the harm is so appalling that a fine of $500,000 per word, per station is justified. But if someone is paralyzed, killed or otherwise catastrophically injured, the most the family could get for the (noneconomic) loss would be up to $350,000.
Good point.

The same analogy could be made for OSHA citations. It's a lot cheaper to willfully kill one of your employees than to call them a "fu*kwad" on the radio.