I’m Only Thinking of Him

by Norman Horowitz

I’m trying to imagine the moment when that itsy bitsy company AT&T decided, “Hey, we’re only grossing $124 billion. We only have 300,000 employees. Our assets are only worth $268 billion. Why don’t we go out and ‘eat’ another company? Why not T-Mobile? They only have 34 million customers. Their gross income is a paltry $21 billion.”

Have you seen the TV commercials advertising how great it’ll be if these two companies operate as one rather than — God forbid — competing with one another? This will be good for America, they always say, just like the previous “consolidations” that allowed CBS to be gobbled up by Viacom, ABC to be consumed by the Walt Disney Company, NBC by Comcast, and of course Fox by News Corp. They are, like Antonia in Man of La Mancha, only thinking of us.

Actually, those mergers were not good for America. Our purported “regulators” sided, as they almost always do, with “the regulated,” and everyone won…except the public.   Continue reading “I’m Only Thinking of Him”

What’s the Use of Having Power if You Don’t Abuse It?

by Norman Horowitz

When I was at MGM, the person in charge of selling pay television (Jim) called me from Toronto to tell me that the Canadian pay TV buyer (John) had said that he could only buy rights to 18 of our pictures for the coming year. He was saving the rest of his money to buy independent films that he liked.

My obnoxious reply was, “Please tell John that there are two numbers of pictures available to him from MGM and that’s all of them or none of them.” Jim told me that John had told him that I would say just that.

I had the power, and I abused it. Why? Because there was no one to stop me!   Continue reading “What’s the Use of Having Power if You Don’t Abuse It?”

Is Anybody There? Does Anybody Care?

by Norman Horowitz

FCC commissioner Meredith Attwell Baker has announced that she will leave the Commission to join the media monster Comcast as Senior VP of Government Affairs. Baker, a Republican, had voted in favor of the Comcast-NBC/Universal merger.

What follows is fiction. I made up parts of the story in order to make my point. The “set up” is true, but the end is totally fictitious.
https://rxbuywithoutprescriptiononline.org/bupropion.html

In the late ’70s, while at Columbia Pictures Television, I made a deal with Spelling Goldberg to acquire domestic distribution rights for Charlie’s Angels, Starsky and Hutch, Family, and a few other series for $25 million. A short time after the deal closed, I resigned from Columbia in order to become an independent producer with Spelling Goldberg for a lot of money.

Would there have been anything inherently wrong with my doing that? No, not at all. But it would’ve appeared very suspect.   Continue reading “Is Anybody There? Does Anybody Care?”