In today’s 30-second sound-bite world it’s so easy to pull one over on the American people.
“Net Neutrality? What’s in it for me? Oh, I will get the same high-speed broadband as the big guys for the same price? Cool. I’m for that. Hey, look at this Beyonce video!”
It’s the old tried-and-true class-envy play: Promise to take something away from the big, rich corporations and give it to the ‘little people,’ who won’t ask any questions about the details or the real motives.
This week the FCC will vote on Net Neutrality, a proposal which would authorize them to regulate the internet as a public utility. As recently as Monday FCC chairman Tom Wheeler again refused to release the details of the regulation to the general public until after the vote. Like ObamaCare, we won’t know what’s in the bill until we pass it. And like ObamaCare, when we know, we won’t like it.
Some of the dangers of Net Neutrality are obvious: whenever the government takes over a segment of the economy, competition is throttled. Prices are higher, service levels are worse, and a few well-connected pay-for-play corporate cronies are the big winners. No wonder Comcast and a few other mammoth internet players are huge supporters of Net Neutrality.
Some of the dangers are not so obvious. Here’s one: Is there any doubt that an administration which frequently tests the limits of the Constitution would use this new authority to intercept and accumulate web data for political purposes? You might want to hold back on making those online contributions to your favorite conservative candidate.
Here’s another: Big-government Democrats have long wanted to stifle conservative voices by reinstating the “Fairness Doctrine”. Having control of the internet would give them the tools to accomplish just that. Broadcast, cable, and satellite television will soon be obsolete as more consumers receive their news and entertainment digitally over the web. It’s not hard to imagine MSNBC, owned by Comcast, being ‘selected’ as the government’s official news outlet.
In a few weeks Congress will vote on a “net neutrality” bill that would turn significant control of the internet over to the federal government by allowing the FCC to regulate Internet Service Providers (ISPs) as public utilities.The bill is promoted using the same “class envy” technique that has been so politically successful over the years: “Just let us handle everything, and we will make sure internet access is ‘fair’.” The legislation would, for example, prevent ISPs from charging some customers more than others for higher speed services, and from controlling access to certain internet content. Sounds altruistic, doesn’t it?
History has proven that every time government takes a market segment away from the public sector, the product ultimately costs more, performs worse, is harder to get, and ends up profiting a select few well-connected cronies at taxpayer expense.
Point guard Frank Mason of the Kansas Jayhawks took the outlet pass and pounded the ball down the left sideline on the fast break. Out of the corner of his eye he saw teammate Perry Ellis racing for the basket behind the TCU defender. Mason lobbed a perfect pass over the rim to Ellis and BOOM! With one hand Perry caught the ball and hammered it down through the rim, even while being fouled. “That’s gonna be on Sports Center,” chuckled the TV announcer. Wide-eyed fans howled as the cameras panned their faux-shock-and-awe faces.
One of the TCU players passed behind Perry at the free throw line and gave him a pat on the butt. Even though they are mortal enemies, a great play like that has to be recognized.
This morning I have to give the Obama administration a little pat on the butt.
Don’t get me wrong, we are mortal enemies too. I am furious and frightened by almost everything this administration does. But I have to admire how well they execute their game plan. Nothing is left to chance. No player on the administration’s team makes a free-style move. Every statement is carefully coordinated. They all get the memo, and they all follow the script.
Following Obama’s claims last week that poverty is the root of terrorism, the administration sent out State Department’s Marie Harf to explain why young men become terrorists, behead Christians, and burn victims alive in cages. Harf said, “We need the media to go after the root causes that lead people to join these groups, whether it’s a lack of opportunity for jobs … ” And this: “They are using social media to get converts to their cause and to spread their hatred all over the world.”
Today Jeh Johnson, director of Homeland Security, was the administration’s point guard, running the offense from the same playbook. He, too, blamed social media – repeatedly – for ISIS’s organizational success, along with poverty and joblessness. And he threw in, for good measure, the need for Congress to fully fund Homeland Security while disregarding the president’s executive amnesty edicts.
Absurd. Blaming social media for the ISIS atrocities is like blaming Hitler’s World War II barbarity on the telephone. And, as George Will pointed out, singling out poverty as the cause of terrorism is “an insult to poor and jobless people all over the world who don’t strap bombs onto their women and children and send them into shopping centers to kill innocent strangers.” Not to mention, most ISIS terrorists are far from destitute, according to CNN’s national security analyst Peter Bergen.
But here’s why I have to give the “pat on the butt”.
This week Congress will have a hearing and likely a vote on whether to turn control of the Internet over to the FCC by classifying it as a public utility. The “Net Neutrality” issue has been misrepresented, misreported, and remains totally misunderstood by most Americans, and unfortunately by most of our legislators, who swallow the warm, fuzzy claims that we poor citizens must be protected from the money-hungry huge corporations who want to deny us fair access to the internet. Government good! Competitive free internet bad! In reality, it is yet another federal power-grab that would result in poorer internet access and performance, loss of privacy to government snooping, and huge profits for a select few crony corporations at taxpayer expense. (Is it any wonder Time Warner / ComCast is a huge supporter of net neutrality?)
Concurrently, the Obama administration is pushing for a new blowout budget with higher spending on social programs, and they want Congress to release its hold on funding Homeland Security and allow Obama’s executive amnesty edicts to continue unfettered.
The administration is using the “ISIS Crisis” to drive home their real domestic agenda: Pass Net Neutrality and give the government control of the web. Pass the budget and give the government more taxpayer money for the ‘poor and jobless’ (mainly more government jobs). Fund HHS without restrictions so we can open the borders and give full rights and benefits to illegal immigrants.
More government control. More dependence on big government. More Democrat voters.
I hate it. I hope to hell enough thoughtful people see through it. But Democrats, I have to give you a patt on the butt for executing a great play.
Tom Balek, Rockin’ On the Right Side
From Piston Pete to Doctor J,
Michael Jordan’s fadeaway,
Hip hop is the way I live
And basketball’s the game I play
March Madness is around the corner, and then the NBA playoffs!
Here is the very indiscreet, racist, misogynistic, nasty, politically incorrect and mostly funny original by Cheech and Chong – watch at your own risk, you will be offended, and I am not responsible for content! 1975 was a very different time!