Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Neutral? Hardly.

The lame duck (with heavy emphasis on the "lame") Congress is trying to force through all manner of ill-conceived legislation.  Gays in the military.  The DREAM act.  The START treaty.

But that stuff is merely a distraction.  There's something more sinister afoot than any of that.  Matt Drudge is posting one, after another, after another, after another, link to stories that identify a threat far more dangerous to our freedoms than anything else in the news right now.
The Federal Communications Commission will vote on Dec. 21 on whether to adopt regulations that ban the blocking of lawful traffic but allow Internet service providers to ration Web traffic on their networks.
So? What's the big deal? This is.
The fixers here are pursuing something called "net neutrality," which will change the way certain Internet providers pay for privileged rights to the Web and charge their customers accordingly. "Net neutrality" sounds good to anyone not paying attention, but it must be accomplished by a seizure of authority to do so, a seizure not by Congress (which would be scary enough), but by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).
Here's the skinny. The Internet is currently the last bastion of freedom. It exists, for the most part, free from interference from government or regulators. It is the one place where an American citizen can still speak his or her mind unfiltered.

While the Internet is pooh-poohed as being frivolous and "experts" insist that it is not subject to the protections in place for Big Media (the BM for short), the fact is that a number of extremely important news stories, including Matt Drudge's breaking of the Monica Lewinsky story, have had as their mode of conveyance the "frivolous" Internet.

An authoritarian government seeks to restrict freedom of the press at all costs.  Ours is becoming increasingly authoritarian.  The BM is already working under the thumb of government regulation.  They are also tied to corporate masters whose survival hinges on government's selective picking of winners and losers.  The BM is no threat to the government.  The Internet is.

If you understand government, you'll understand that the FCC won't be content with setting "fairness" rules.  They'll also want to regulate content.  Politically charged speech would most surely be restricted ("We have to stamp out hate speech!").  The writings of this particular blogger, fond of referring to the past two Presidents as King George the Dim and Il Duce, would most certainly fall under their definition of hate speech.

But, hey.  You go right on sweating gays in the military, the DREAM act, and the START treaty.  Nothing to see here.  Move along now.