The Glass Teat: December 5, 1968
Whole lotta nuthin' going on.
TV executives opt for warmed-over dog kibble instead of new programming.
Elections are driven by money (only $40-50 million back then!), when the airwaves do/should belong to the people of the country.
The FCC is a bunch of spineless jerks beholden to the very people they're supposed to be policing, which is A Very Bad Thing for the rest of us.
TV features too many goddamn remakes of washed-up crap, partially because they pay the writers shit wages; partially because they just don't care. Writers got paid $10-25 thousand for a pilot script for a series that would cost half a million plus to produce. I don't doubt things are much the same even now. As Ellison points out, you're surprised that so much shit get made and distributed when the script, the heart of the production, might as well be written with crayons on butcher paper by the producer's six-year-old nephew?
(And as far as scripts go - you really think the proliferation of cinematic re-makes of mostly-crappy old TV shows recently has been driven by nostalgia? More like it's been driven by the fact that anyone who's seen more than ten minutes of any of those old shows can pretty much churn out a script faithful to the original in their sleep. Most probably do. Face it - how much literary talent does it take to write a brand new script for the likes of "The Munsters" or "Andy Griffith" or "Mr. Ed"?)
Anyway, blah blah TV sucks TV producers are idiots the audience is a bunch of cretins writes get shafted yadda yadda tell us something we don't know already.