Born Again Backwards Bob

(Author Unknown)

Hi. This is Bob here at Cable.

I'd like to take this opportunity to talk to you about something of importance to you - our financial needs here at Cable.

You know, this past year has been especially difficult and draining financially here at Cable. And I think at this time you might want to consider some of our past successes and whether or not you'd like to help keep us on the wire with your continued support.

Well, I'd be the first to admit it hasn't all been roses in the last couple of years; what with massive increases to your monthly Cable bills, rude and indifferent service that ranges from poor to non- existent and mindless "lowest common denominator" programming that insults your intelligence.

I'd like to encourage you to look on the bright side and think about some of the victories you and I have had the privelege to share. For example: I'm sure that in times past you have shared Cable's concern about the possibility of a rampant proliferation of alternate points of view being heard over the public airwaves. And by that I don't mean an honest, well-reasoned difference of opinion between the president and the news anchor of an important network, or the fascinating insights of the rich and famous as they speak out on various high- profile issues. No. I'm talking about the ill-considered and often dangerous views of average people; masses of functional illiterates, their minds numbed by glossy news tabloids, their senses shocked into inertia by a lifetime of televised violence.

Under the terms of an archaic law called "The Fairness Doctrine" such individuals have the right of editorial reply to any news story or commentary broadcast on the public airwaves which was, in their opinion, inaccurate, unfair or to which they had an opposing view.

With your help as a Cable subscriber, we killed The Fairness Doctrine. This underscores our philosophy here at Cable: that if no one is willing to pay you to have a point of view, your opinion has no value.

The elimination of this regressive statute by a forward looking, cable- friendly Federal Communications Commission in a de-regulatory mode, has enabled broadcasters and Cable to ensure that the opinions your family hears will always be the best that money can buy.

And then there's C-SPAN, the Cable-Satellite Public Affairs Network. In C-SPAN we have created a most effective means of communicating the cable philosophy to the general public. This marriage of public affairs and corporate self-interest has served and will serve to make government and Cable television virtually synonymous in the minds of many of our viewers and their children: the future of our country.

This implies a great social responsibility and Cable has embraced this challange enthusiastically. Not since the heady days of early commercial televsion has a sponsor's product been so intimately meshed with the program content. Whether a president's inaugural address or a hard-hitting look at Cable's First Ammendant rights, live coverage of the opening of the hundred and first congress, or a celebration of National Cable Month; C-SPAN's programming flows into your life with a symphony of corporate values.

Government: flickering images on the screen manipulated by a handful of large corporations? Certainly! But much more than that - an integral part of the Cable philosophy.

We encourage you to call C-SPAN and participate in the democratic process during our viewer call-in shows where our authority figures discuss pre-selected topics saving you the trouble of deciding what's important to you.

But the Cable-ization of news, entertainment and politics was just the beginning. We're branching out into other exciting fields: public broadcasting, Armed Forces programming and, just recently, religion.

No more dragging your family to churches, mosques and synagogues to search for answers. You can find them on the Cable Religion Channel in programs like Time-Life's Ace Award winning series "Life's Great Mysteries and Home Appliance Repair Explained".

Of course I'm being facetious. I wouldn't want you to think soulless corporations have no sense of humor. But I'm dead serious when I tell you - they want your money!

The Cable philosophy is under attack as never before. Our right to be an unregulated monopoly is being questioned. In courts we face charges of anti-trust and restraint of trade. Proposed legislation in Congress threatens to open the marketplace to new technologies offering cost- effective alternatives to Cable.

Avenues of communication not yet Cable-controlled are being exploited by our enemies who incite public awareness of our activities. These dogs want you to take a bite out of Cable by holding back your money from us in April. Some even think you could disconnect and endure a whole summer without cable.

We can meet these challanges, but only with your continued monthly support. So make out that check today. In fact, why not pay us for the year in advance? Just multiply your monthly donation by twelve, and add ten percent to cover our annual rate hike.

And while you sit back and enjoy a year of great network reruns on Cable, your money will be out working hard for you, paying our army of lawyers to grind down our victims with endless litigation forcing them to settle out of court or just give up and take the easy way out.

Your money will travel to Washington and gain Cable access to your elected and non-elected officials.

Your money will find independent cable operators all over the country, that still offer good service and reasonable rates, and buy them out.

It will buy more newspapers, more television stations and help big business reach into the nation's classrooms for fresh, receptive minds.

Yes, when you take the time to get to know us, it's not hard to understand why so many people feel so strongly about Cable.

If you'd like to reach us, please address all correspondence to "Cable". That's "Cable": K, dash, B, U, double L. And send it to school with your children. We'll pick it up.

Well, thank you for your time and have a nice day.