[AMRadio] How can we rid the HF bands of AM ?

Bob Bruhns bbruhns at erols.com
Sun Aug 7 02:47:51 EDT 2005

Hi Geoff,

Oh yes, Johnston was infamous. He was Chief of the
FCC's Personal Radio Branch for years, and he was
adamantly against AM. A 1980's lawsuit from K1MAN
didn't make Johnston any nicer, either.  I think that
Johnston's lifelong ambition was fulfilled in June of
1990, when despite the strongest negative response ever
seen on any amateur issue, he reduced the permissible
power of AM in the name of progress, using every
political obfuscation available.  Yes, he was a Real
Man... (Actually, he was a Real Jerk.)

You can read about it in the AM Press/Exchange from
that era.  Almost every issue up until June 1990 had
something about the new amateur regulations, and there
were recaps in later issues.  I happened to check the
following ones, and they will get you started:


Issue #59 About new rules
Issue #79, ARRL Voted to support AM
Issue #85, Comment results

   Bacon, WA3WDR

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Geoff" <w5omr at satx.rr.com>
To: "Discussion of AM Radio" <amradio at mailman.qth.net>
Sent: Sunday, August 07, 2005 2:23 AM
Subject: Re: [AMRadio] How can we rid the HF bands of
AM ?

> Donald Chester wrote:
> >
> >
> >> I was reading though the recent freebie copy of
World Radio News
> >> today, and
> >> someone had written in asking how "we could rid
the HF bands of AM" !!!
> >> They didn't publish the call of who asked the
question.   The issue
> >> is at my
> >> office now, so I can't provide the page number,
but it's in one of
> >> the "ask
> >> your question" sections.
> >
> >
> > In WorldRadio (the west coast ham radio rag
published on newsprint),
> > John B. Johnston, W3BE, retired chief of the
Rulemaking Division of
> > the Private Radio Bureau of the FCC that used to be
in charge of ham
> > radio rulemaking matters, publishes a monthly
column on RULES & REGS.
> > The column is basically Q-A format, with Johnston
sometimes inserting
> > his own comments as a "W3BE-O-GRAM."
> >
> > Many readers of this forum will recall that Mr.
Johnston seemed to
> > pursue a consistently anti-AM policy throughout the
20+ years he was
> > involved with FCC rulemaking.  He first gained
notoriety within the AM
> > community when he advocated eliminating AM, in the
guise of
> > "deregulation," under the mid-1970's bandwidth
proposal in Docket
> > 20777 (not unlike the proposal that ARRL is
currently discussing).
> > Later, he was a strong defender of the 1990 AM
power reduction, and
> > typcially replied to objections from the amateur
community by putting
> > a spin on his response in such a manner to totally
evade whatever
> > issue was brought up.
> >
> > In the June 2005 column most of the Q-A's are about
Field Day and who
> > can and cannot operate a given licensee's station,
but here's the one
> > Mark was referring to:
> >
> > Q: How can we rid our HF bands of AM?
> >
> > A. That would require an amendment to Section
97.3(c)(5), at least.
> >
> > W3BE-O-GRAM: That would be much harder done than
> >
> So, W3BE is speaking of experience, as one who tried
himself to rid the
> bands of AM.
> Interesting.  Have to remember that call...
> W3BE      USA
> DERWOOD MD 20855
> ---
> 73
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