There is something sinister about turning children into consumer focus targets.
I think TV is, on the whole, a great calamity for civilization, though. So I’m biased. But since I don’t share the Standard Conservative Faith in the sanctity of the corporation (any more than I share the Standard Liberal Faith in the sanctity of the state or the Standard Libertarian Faith in the sanctity of the Individual), I come at the problem from the Catholic perspective of the Sanctity of the Person and, in particular, the family. If it helps the family, it’s good. If it harms the family, it’s evil.
Dreher’s instinct is for the family. That’s the warning in his heart, I think that he senses when Johnny is conscripted into consumer culture by the tube. It’s a healthy instinct. For my basic take on the centrality of the family in Catholic social doctrine, see my essay, “Catholic Social Teaching and the Icon of the Family.”