So that brings us to the current incarnation of the FCC. This FCC is not going to do anything that gives a handful of huge radio companies (and they're the ones who own all the 50K AMs) the ability to reach more people. The primary interest of the government, and you heard it again last week from Michael Copps, is built around stations better serving their licensed markets, not blanketing the continent. If anyone is going to have a station that operates in a national way, it will be owned by the government, not some private profit-making company. And that decision was made back in the 1950s, when civil defense plans were begun, and later in the 1960s, when NOAA's weather radio service replaced local radio weather forecasting. If you turn off the physics rules for a minute, and study the HISTORY of the federal government in the 20th century, and the fundmental change that occured in the 1930s, you'll begin to understand why the concept of privately owned radio stations reaching large areas of the country are not in the best interests of the federal government. Rather than take advantage of the "benefits" of AM skywaves, the government would prefer to see AM radio die, and as a result, has done nothing to help AM in over 30 years.
If the FCC is now promoting smaller local stations over the big boys who cover a lot of land why do they allow 50KW stations like WBZ and WINS to hash all over their adjacents? Those are hardly small local stations. They use the skywaves to obliterate local stations hundreds of miles away at night. That is not in the best interests of small local stations.