Obama's Federal Communications Commission is redefining what the Internet is in order to control what's on it. Conservatives are the primary target.
President Obama's lust for power and control is now extending to the Internet â€“ an amazing phenomenon that permits the free flow of information around the world â€“ without federal government control of content. This is going to change if the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has its way.
The FCC is currently run by Chairman Julius Genachowski, an old college mate of Barack Obama. Genachowski has been trying to gain control of the Internet under the guise of implementing something called "net neutrality."
In April, a federal appeals court rejected Genachowski's attempt to regulate the Internet and to tell Internet providers how to manage traffic on their networks. The court stated that the FCC has no authority to regulate the Internet. In this case, the FCC had cited Comcast in 2008 for slowing down some customer's Internet traffic â€“ specifically a software pirating service known as BitTorrent.
This court decision isn't stopping Genachoswki. He's decided to ignore the court ruling and simply redefine what the Internet is so he can control it.
According to Genachowski, for years the Internet has been classified as an "information service." He wants to redefine the Net as a "common carrier" â€“ like the telephone company â€“ so the FCC can control it.
Senator John Kerry (D-MA) supports the FCC takeover of the Internet. According to Kerry: "I have argued that under existing law the commission can and should find that it has the authority to write and enforce rules protecting consumers, the open Internet, and competition in the transmission of Internet communications through the wires and over the air. This change of classification is a moderate, pragmatic step necessary to ensure that the FCC can keep faith with its core mission." Kerry is head of the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation subcommittee on communications, technology and the Internet.
Clearly, Genachowski is prepared to use incrementalism in his goal of controlling Internet content.
House Republican Leader John Boehner (OH) has issued a rebuke to the FCC for its attempt to redefine and takeover control of the Internet. Boehner notes:
[The] FCC announcement amounts to a government takeover of the Internet, and yet another government takeover of a large portion of the private sector by the Obama administration. Under this job-killing big government scheme, the Obama administration is seeking to expand the power of the federal government.
The success of the Internet is a perfect example of what happens when entrepreneurship and innovation are allowed to flourish, but today's decision will undermine its success and hurt our economy. The American people are asking 'Where are the jobs?' They aren't asking for yet another government takeover that imposes new job-killing federal regulations and puts bureaucrats in charge of the Internet. Congress should listen to the American people and act to reverse this unnecessary federal government power grab.
What's 'Net Neutrality' & Who Is Behind This Power Grab?"Net Neutrality" is supposedly a policy designed to make sure that Internet Service Providers (ISPs) provide equal access to any information that is transmitted over the Net. This sounds like a good idea, but it isn't. The FCC will use any power it can assert to suppress the free spread of ideas and information over the Internet. The people behind this plan are Marxists and far left liberals.
Controlling the policies, pricing, and content distributed by ISPs will suppress free speech and undermine innovation.
Randolf J. May, president of the Free State Foundation is an opponent of so-called net neutrality. He explained his position in testimony before the New York City Committee on Technology in Government on a proposed net-neutrality resolution:
If broadband providers are not allowed to differentiate their services because of regulatory straightjackets, their ability to compete in the marketplace will be compromised. Lacking the flexibility to find innovative new ways to respond to customer demand, they will lack incentives to invest in new network facilities and improve applications. This lack of new investment, in turn, will have the perverse effect of dampening competition among existing and potential broadband operators.
Currently, the Communications Act gives no authority to the FCC to redefine the Internet. Congress would have to pass a law to redefine the Net. The FCC can't legally do this â€“ but it's going to anyway â€“ unless challenged in court or by Congress.
Larry Downes, a fellow at the Stanford Law School Center for Internet & Society has noted: "Any effort to 'reclassify' broadband without Congressional action would be met with vigorous legal challenges every step of the way."
The term "Net Neutrality" was first coined by Columbia Law School Professor Tim Wu in his 2002 paper, "Network Neutrality, Broadband Discrimination." Wu wants to promote a "network anti-discrimination regime" on the Internet.
Wu is on the advisory board of Public Knowledge, a George Soros-funded leftwing activist organization. He is also chairman of the "media reform organization" Free Press, a leftist organization. (The founder of Free Press is Robert W. McChesney, a University of Illinois professor and former editor of the Marxist journal Monthly Review. In February 2009, McChesney argued that capitalism should be dismantled in America.
A member of the board of Public Knowledge is Susan Crawford, who was picked by Obama to head up the FCC transition review team before the election. Crawford is now a special assistant to the president for science, technology, and innovation policy â€“ an Internet Czar. (Former Obama Marxist "Green Jobs" Czar Van Jones is on this board as well.)
Wired magazine refers to Crawford as "the most powerful geek close to the president" and that she has been a prolific writer in favor of "Net Neutrality."
Another character in the attempted FCC takeover of the Internet is the FCC "diversity czar" Mark Lloyd, who is a disciple of radical Saul Alinsky and admirer of Venezuelan tyrant Hugo Chavez.
Lloyd, one of the newest members of the FCC, thinks that Chavez's control of the media in Venezuela is a good model for the United States. According to Lloyd:
In Venezuela, with Chavez, is really an incredible revolution - a democratic revolution. To begin to put in place things that are going to have an impact on the people of Venezuela.
The property owners and the folks who then controlled the media in Venezuela rebelled - worked, frankly, with folks here in the U.S. government - worked to oust him. But he came back with another revolution, and then Chavez began to take very seriously the media in his country. And we've had complaints about this ever since.
And, here's what Lloyd thinks of freedom of speech in America:
It should be clear by now that my focus here is not freedom of speech or the press. This freedom is all too often an exaggeration. At the very least, blind references to freedom of speech or the press serve as a distraction from the critical examination of other communications policies. [T]he purpose of free speech is warped to protect global corporations and block rules that would promote democratic governance.
It clear from the list of characters above that "Net Neutrality" is a Marxist-inspired attempt to control the free flow of ideas on the Internet. The targets of suppression will be conservative and Christian web sites that are critical of Obama's socialist policies.
"Net Neutrality" is the tyrannical liberal "Fairness Doctrine" for the Internet. This fight for free speech has only begun.