What Fresh Hell Is This?

December 23, 2010

The Trib's Orwellian Take On Net Neutrality

From today's op-ed page:
There's no doubt that the Federal Communications Commission's adoption of "net neutrality" rules to govern the Internet is another one of those proverbial "solutions" in search of a problem that will only fetter technological advancement and investment therein.

But there's a far more troubling aspect to this latest foray into what's effectively the government's nationalization of the Internet. It's the intellectual underpinnings of the philosophy that led to this moment. And use of the word "intellectual" is being charitable.

As The Wall Street Journal's John Fund notes, "net neutrality" is the brainchild of University of Illinois communications professor Robert McChesney, a self-proclaimed socialist who told Mr. Fund he's "hesitant to say I'm not a Marxist."

Mr. McChesney's overriding goal is to "get rid of the media capitalists in the phone and cable companies and divest them from any control." How? Through "a revolutionary program to overthrow the capitalist system itself."
Funny thing, if you'll notice, is that they never get around to discuss Net Neutrality or why it's such (to them at least) a bad thing.

Here's the Congressional Research Service:
As congressional policymakers continue to debate telecommunications reform a major point of contention is the question of whether action is needed to ensure unfettered access to the Internet. The move to place restrictions on the owners of the networks that compose and provide access to the Internet, to ensure equal access and non-discriminatory treatment, is referred to as “net neutrality.” There is no single accepted definition of “net neutrality.” However, most agree that any such definition should include the general principles that owners of the networks that compose and provide access to the Internet should not control how consumers lawfully use that network; and should not be able to discriminate against content provider access to that network.
So you can see why a conservative pro-business page would think "net neutrality" is bad: its a "move to place restrictions on the owners" or ISPs, making sure everyone has "equal access" to the internet.

Let's see, restrictions on business protecting equal access to consumers:


Hahahaha! Silly ninnies.

Note to my fellow progressives: The Guvment takeover of Amurikan society is nearly complete. Now that The Messiah has asserted his rightful control over the auto industry, the health care industry, the banking industry, the Internet and made sure every foxhole and barrack's shower is simply fabulous, all we need do is sit back and wait for the whole corrupt capitalist conspiracy to collapse.

Note to Soros: I'm still waiting on my check. If you could make it out in Renminbi, that would be great. After the damage you're (well, we're) doing to the dollar, I'd like my payoff in a more reliable currency. THANKS!


rich10e said...

why fix something that's not broke

EdHeath said...

rich, Internet companies are already "regulating" traffic, at least according to this: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21376597/

Now, a real argument can be made that the at least sometime illegal file sharing or such (in the form of pirated music and movies) could slow the network down for many or all. So Comcast's (or any other ISP) putting limits on data moved around by users in a set time period can make sense.

But that's just the point, the argument needs to be made and whatever decision reached needs to be adhered to in a transparent fashion. Otherwise Comcast could cut a deal with Netflix where Netflix pays for better access and Comcast slows Amazon movie downloads way down, for example.

Internet access is (at least) halfway between a consumer service and a utility. We can certainly acknowledge difficulties in laying cable to remote areas, and even in keeping the signal strength adequate to those areas. But we need to remain vigilant that ISP's do not charge extra or reduce bandwidth in neighborhoods where the residents typically do not buy more than basic service. Or engage in the practices I listed above.