The FCC's recently approved "net neutrality" regulation was known by its voting members to truly be outside its jurisdiction, probably unconstitutional and could be easily overturned by Congress yet they were unrelenting in pursuing control over people and businesses. This arrogant and tyrannical attitude is suffused through the Obama Administration with its myriad socialists and communists and other "radicals".
A Massive, Strong and Controlling Central Government is at the core of their ideologies. This new regulation is just one step...
Obama, his Administration and czars must be stopped cold in their attempts to seize further control of our country from us.
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The FCC is a supererogatory federal agency that is a constant threat to our rights including as a dangerous political weapon of the left, an impediment to a free market place and innovations, and a waste of taxpayer money. It wantonly issues regulations such as the recently approved net neutrality law even though it doesn’t truly have the legal authority, a problem made worse by the fact that the commissioners are political appointees and not elected officials. In fact, the “president” has used this agency as a way to bypass Congress and attempt to implement ideologically radical policies.
We can protect our rights, save billions of dollars, reduce the size of the government and its debt by terminating this agency run amok.
Kill Off The FCC
Investor’s Business Daily 12/23/2010
Regulatory State: Two days after the FCC voted to take over the Internet, it stands in the way of an agreement between private companies. This is an agency that should be targeted for elimination.
On Tuesday, the Federal Communications Commission approved net neutrality, a regulatory framework that has been sold as a means of keeping the Web fair and open. In truth, the rules give government the authority to tell Internet service providers how to organize the traffic that flows over their infrastructure.
That's enough meddling in private affairs for one week for any federal agency. But the FCC wasn't finished.
Chairman Julius Genachowski, who pushed net neutrality despite a court ruling and bipartisan opposition in Congress, set conditions Thursday on Comcast's acquisition of NBC Universal. He wants Comcast to distribute content in a way that he approves of and lets competitors access Comcast's platform.
It's almost amusing that these conditions are being applied in the name of the "public interest."
Genachowski's proposal isn't binding. He still has to present his ideas to the other four commissioners and a vote must be taken. But neither one man nor one group should have the power to marshal private companies' business operations.
Private media companies are not government-owned utilities.
Regulators such as Genachowski say they are merely trying to keep competition healthy and protect consumers.
But their efforts inhibit competition and obstruct innovation.
Cell phones, for instance, were delayed by the FCC for a decade. The cost of this hang-up to the economy, according to the National Economic Research Associates, was $85 billion.
Like generals fighting the last war, regulators make rules based on the way businesses operated yesterday. As they try to keep up with market dynamics, they inflict uncertainty into business decisions and put a boot on the neck of progress. When not held back by regulators, though, companies freely create new technologies and business models that increase competition.
What role, then, is there for regulators, especially those at the FCC, which oversees one of the most dynamic industries in the world? With the intense competition in telecommunications that has benefited consumers and led to wide commercial successes, there's no need for a government referee in this sector.
There's nothing the FCC does that can't be eliminated, streamlined or handed over to another agency or department that has a legitimate function. (Ed Morrissey of hotair.com suggests broadcast licenses "could be handled by the Commerce Department, or by a greatly reduced FCC with binding limitations on jurisdiction." The point is, the FCC as now constituted doesn't have to do it.)
The FCC has been around for a while — it was established by the Communications Act of 1934. So it won't be abolished overnight. But its elimination is a worthy goal.
Republicans, who at one time had a shutdown agenda, will control the House beginning in January. They should make the call and get the process started.
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We briefly covered the FCC’s “Net Neutrality” legislation, an unwarranted and ill advised and probably illegal maneuver that won’t stand up to Congressional scrutiny (or legal challenges).
Michelle Malkin, in her editorial below, discusses what would be a predictable and anticipated sequela if this legislation is allowed to remain in force.
A claim by the Left that internet access is an entitlement; that it is another civil right.
Internet Access Is Not a 'Civil Right'
Michelle Malkin 12/22/2010
When bureaucrats talk about increasing our "access" to x, y or z, what they're really talking about is increasing exponentially their control over our lives. As it is with the government health care takeover, so it is with the newly approved government plan to "increase" Internet "access." Call it Webcare.
By a vote of 3-2, the Federal Communications Commission on Tuesday adopted a controversial scheme to ensure "net neutrality" by turning unaccountable Democratic appointees into meddling online traffic cops. The panel will devise convoluted rules governing Internet service providers, bandwidth use, content, prices and even disclosure details on Internet speeds. The "neutrality" is brazenly undermined by preferential treatment toward wireless broadband networks. Moreover, the FCC's scheme is widely opposed by Congress -- and has already been rejected once in the courts. Demonized industry critics have warned that the regulations will stifle innovation and result in less access, not more.
Sound familiar? The parallels with health care are striking. The architects of Obamacare promised to provide Americans more access to health insurance -- and cast their agenda as a fundamental universal entitlement.
In fact, it was a pretext for creating a gargantuan federal bureaucracy with the power to tax, redistribute and regulate the private health insurance market to death -- and replace it with a centrally planned government system overseen by politically driven code enforcers dictating everything from annual coverage limits to administrative expenditures to the makeup of the medical workforce. The costly, onerous and selectively applied law has resulted in less access, not more.
Undaunted promoters of Obama FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski's "open Internet" plan to expand regulatory authority over the Internet have couched their online power grab in the rhetoric of civil rights. On Monday, FCC Commissioner Michael Copps proclaimed: "Universal access to broadband needs to be seen as a civil right ... (though) not many people have talked about it that way." Opposing the government Internet takeover blueprint, in other words, is tantamount to supporting segregation. Cunning propaganda, that.
"Broadband is becoming a basic necessity," civil rights activist Benjamin Hooks added. And earlier this month, fellow FCC panelist Mignon Clyburn, daughter of Congressional Black Caucus leader and Number Three House Democrat James Clyburn of South Carolina, declared that free (read: taxpayer-subsidized) access to the Internet is not only a civil right for every "nappy-headed child" in America, but is essential to their self-esteem. Every minority child, she said, "deserves to be not only connected, but to be proud of who he or she is."
Calling them "nappy-headed" is a rather questionable way of boosting their pride, but never mind that.
Face it: A high-speed connection is no more an essential civil right than 3G cell phone service or a Netflix account. Increasing competition and restoring academic excellence in abysmal public schools is far more of an imperative to minority children than handing them iPads. Once again, Democrats are using children as human shields to provide useful cover for not so noble political goals.
The "net neutrality" mob -- funded by billionaire George Soros and other left-wing think tanks and nonprofits -- has openly advertised its radical, speech-squelching agenda in its crusade for "media justice." Social justice is the redistribution of wealth and economic "rights." Media justice is the redistribution of free speech and other First Amendment rights.
The meetings of the universal broadband set are littered with Marxist-tinged rants about "disenfranchisement" and "empowerment."
They've targeted conservative opponents on talk radio, cable TV and the Internet as purveyors of "hate" who need to be managed or censored. Democratic FCC panelists have dutifully echoed their concerns about concentration of corporate media power.
As the Ford Foundation-funded Media Justice Fund, which lobbied for universal broadband, put it: This is a movement "grounded in the belief that social and economic justice will not be realized without the equitable redistribution and control of media and communication technologies."
For progressives who cloak their ambitions in the mantle of "fairness," it's all about control. It's always about control.
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The federal government just can't resist imposing its might and regulation on virtually anything that exists in the private sector or our private lives. It's most recent victim is the internet.
Though the FCC's Net Neutrality legislation has not been fully divulged, we know by countless past examples that government meddling or control IS NOT a good thing. With it will ultimately come an infringement of our rights and freedoms or at least the threats of it.
And then there is that well known phenomenon of the law of unintended consequences where the ultimate outcome is always worse with unanticipated results than is nothing were done at all.
Fortunately, this all may be moot as this federal agency does not appear to have the authority to impose such legislation. The Republican controlled House of Representatives is gearing up to quash this edict.
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The FCC’s naked power grab with its “Net Neutrality” legislation is reflective of the arrogance, disdain for legalities and the ideology of a Big Brother government that Obama and many liberal/Progressive Congressional Democrats have. There was little practical need for government intervention here.
If it is allowed to remain in effect the probability of which is close to zero, the consequences will likely be the stifling and politicizing of an industry which will hurt most parties in the end.
DeMint vows to reverse FCC's 'Internet takeover'
Mark Tapscott Dec 21 2010
Sen. Jim DeMint, R-SC, says Federal Communications Commission should be renamed the "Fabricating a Crisis Commission," following a vote by the panel's three Democrats to approve proposed rules that amount to a hostile takeover of the Internet by a government agency acting illegally.
The proposal - misleadingly described by proponents as an attempt to insure "net neutrality" by guaranteeing equal access to the Internet - was introduced a year ago by Julius Genachowski, President Obama's appointee as FCC chairman.
A federal court has ruled that the commission has no authority to regulate the Internet, and a bipartisan group of senators and representives warned Genechowski not to attempt to impose a regulatory regime on the Internet earlier this year.
The move's legality was even questioned by FCC Commissioner Michael Copp, one of the Democrats who voted today with Genachowski, saying he considered voting against the proposal because it lacks a sufficiently defensible legal basis to survive a court challenge promised by major Internet Service Providers like Verizon, Microsoft, and AT & T.
But legal challenges by industry are likely to be much less of a problem for the Genachowski-led takeover than efforts in Congress to stop the FCC in its tracks.
That's clearly what DeMint has in mind, as he said in his statement released today following the FCC action:
“The Obama Administration has ignored evidence that this federal takeover will hang a millstone of regulatory and legal uncertainty around the neck of a vibrant sector of our economy.
"Proceeding on its own liberal whims rather than facts, this FCC has chosen to grant itself broad authority to limit how businesses can bring the internet to consumers in faster and more innovative ways.
“Americans loudly demanded a more limited federal government this November, but the Obama Administration has dedicated itself to expanding centralized government planning. Today, unelected bureaucrats rammed through an internet takeover, even after Congress and courts warned them not to.
“To keep the internet economy thriving, this decision must be reversed. Regulatory reform will be a top priority for Republicans in the next Congress, and I intend to prevent the FCC or any government agency from unilaterally burdening our recovering economy with baseless regulation.
"In order to provide the stability businesses need to grow, I will work with my fellow senators to see passage of my FCC Act, which would ensure that the FCC can only use its rulemaking powers where there is clear evidence of a harmful market failure, as well as the REINS Act, which would add the accountability of a Congressional vote before any government agency’s proposed major regulations may be finalized.”
If the FCC plan somehow manages to survive, it will almost certainly do for First Amendment liberties and the Internet what it did for them in regulating broadcast television and radio. Former CBS News president Fred Friendly's landmark book, "The Good Guys, the Bad Guys and the First Amendment," describes in great detail how the Kennedy and Johnson administrations used the FCC to silence conservative critics.
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It appears that the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) with the blessings of the Obama Administration will seek to impose “net neutrality” policies using the Thanksgiving and Christmas recesses when Congress is out of session to facilitate this. Encouraged by the far left and aided with financial assistance from George Soros, this change will provide the federal government with much greater control of various aspects of the internet as opposed to the companies that spent billions of dollars constructing and operating the networks and fiberoptic lines.
“Net neutrality” is a euphemism for legislated government control of internet communications with the pernicious ability to affect free speech. This legislation has been fervently supported by progressives in order to have the ability to silence conservatives and the opposition who use this avenue such as Fox New, Rush Limbaugh, etc.
This is another attack on our rights and freedoms that is supported by the Obama Administration, progressives and communists and funded in part by Soros.
“Net neutrality” laws and regulations must be stopped or reversed if implemented!
Seizing the Internet
The Prowler 11/24/10
Staffers at the Federal Communications Commission with ties to the commission's chairman, Julius Genachowski, coordinated media and strategy planning with senior Free Press and MoveOn.org officials in the run up to Genachowski's announcement that he would be seeking an FCC vote on imposing so-called "net neutrality" rules on broadband and the Internet, and doing so when Congress is out of session during the Thanksgiving and Christmas recesses.
"Net neutrality" is a policy proposal that would essentially strip the control and traffic management of broadband networks from those companies that deployed them and make them run properly, and transfer much of that oversight to the federal government. Under the proposal rumored to be under consideration by the FCC, network operators such as AT&T and Comcast would not be allowed to offer consumers prioritized service or quality of service guarantees for such things as movie downloads and video streaming.
"It essentially turns the networks into dumb pipes, so you have billions of people going online and no one is really managing the traffic in a way so that consumers have a good experience," says an FCC staffer for a Republican commission member. "People don't realize how much video and communications comes over their broadband lines. This is the left's attempt to rein in things like Fox News, Pajamas Media, Internet radio broadcasts for Limbaugh and Levin -- anything that is data-related or video-related that requires some high-tech network management would be degraded or limited by the imposition of net neutrality."
Congressional Republicans (and even some Democrats) have stated that they do not believe the FCC has the statutory standing to impose such rules -- which would reclassify broadband and Internet services as "telecommunications services" and bring them under rules that were developed for the rotary phone back in the 1930s -- without guidance from Congress. More than 100 members from both parties formally requested that the FCC take no action until the House and Senate had had a chance to weigh in on the matter.
But with the Obama Administration quickly losing its own standing with its radical base as it prepares to surrender to Republicans on the Bush tax cut renewals and possible budget cuts, "We need to give our people a win, and right now, [net neutrality] is the only win we will probably be able to give them for at least the next six to eight months," says a White House official.
About a week ago it appeared that nothing would be done at the FCC, and Free Press, the leftist group founded by Marxist Robert McChesney and financed by George Soros, was due to host a media call to demand FCC action. But that call was canceled without explanation and rescheduled for Monday, November 22, at which point Free Press was able to tout news to its membership that the FCC appeared prepared to act on the neutrality policy.
"We were told [last week] to hold our fire and reschedule our call," says a Free Press media aide, who requested anonymity for fear of reprisals. "We have friends inside the FCC and they told us that if we just waited a few days, there would be good news for us to announce to our membership. More senior people knew what was happening over there and even had the dates for the ruling circulation and the FCC meeting schedule so we could plan events to support Genachowski and the Democratic commissioners."
Speaking with outside public interest groups or industry officials is not forbidden at the FCC, though in the case of an issue like "net neutrality," FCC staff involved at any level with the decision making process are required to publicly file an ex parte notice about any discussions related to the policy issue they have with outside groups. To date, no ex parte filings have been filed related to any contact a senior FCC official might have had with senior officials at Free Press. A number of current FCC officials have ties to Free Press, including Jen Howard, currently spokesperson for Genachowski, who formerly was a spokesperson for Free Press.
In the past year, Free Press has been caught in several ethics missteps related to its claims of not lobbying Democrats on Capitol Hill or at the FCC. In one instance, the group was caught drafting letters to be published under the names of liberal Democrats addressed to the FCC and intended to influence that decision-making body. Republicans on Capitol Hill have already made it clear that oversight of the FCC will be a priority for the House Energy and Commerce Committee.
As it stands, the FCC will release the planned rulemaking for net neutrality while Congress is out of town on Thanksgiving recess, and would vote on the rules on December 21, when Congress is on Christmas recess. "In short, they are doing this in such a way that it is rubbing our noses in it," says a Republican staffer on House Energy and Commerce. "Unless folks just rise up and make noise about this, there isn't much we can do until after the new year when we get back and have control of the committee."
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