In yet another example of fixing something until it’s broke, the Obama administration’s Federal Communications Commission is set to vote today on new rules for the internet. The last truly free place to express yourself without having to go through some agency of the government is set to become the next messy bureaucracy.
The plan, in short, is to classify the internet as a utility under the Communications Act of 1934. Progressives are so forward-thinking, aren’t they? Who else could conceive of regulating 21st century technology under the same provisions that began regulating telephone usage more than 80 years ago? The process could give federal regulators the power to impose “net neutrality” rules, which would prevent internet access providers from favoring some content and applications over others.
The details of the plan have not been made public, and are said to outline more than 330 pages of details on how best to regulate the internet to keep it “fair and open”. It seems to be that already, and the president and FCC appear to be trying to solve a problem that doesn’t exist yet—and may never exist.
Right now, when someone gets an idea for an online business or a blog, they can just do it. There is no going to any government representative for licensing, paying taxes, etc. Imagine the possibility of there being an Internet Commission or Department of the Internet which would charge licensing fees for various internet activities. Citizen journalists sharing information and giving opinions on current events could have to go through licensing to be able to report on important topics that mainstream media refuse to cover. These are just a couple nightmare-ish possibilities that could be in our future if we don’t make our voices heard today.
Billionaire businessman Mark Cuban (who’s not known for being particularly conservative) explained in an interview with Glenn Beck this week why net neutrality needs to be defeated. (WATCH HERE).
Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) and chairman of the House Oversight Committee sent a letter to FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler asking him to temporarily postpone the vote and release the plans to the public for 30 days to give people time to look at it. However, as of this writing, his request has fallen on deaf ears.
Because of the hasty and clandestine nature of the vote that’s taking place (by 5 un-elected FCC officials), many are comparing “net neutrality” to the passage of Obamacare in 2010. Do we really want to give the government more power over something that is this big, this important for making all voices heard? Do we really want to give control over the internet to the same people who couldn’t successfully launch a website themselves? (i.e. healthcare.gov). We need more talk—not less. This should be something liberals, conservatives and everyone in between should able to agree upon.
Remember…if you like your health insurance you can keep it. If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor…if you like your blog, you can keep your blog.
***UPDATE 2/26/15 4:55 pm CENTRAL TIME: THE FCC VOTED ALONG PARTY LINES TO APPROVE NET NEUTRALITY. LAWSUITS ARE EXPECTED***
IF YOU WANT TO SIGN THE PETITION AGAINST THE FCC’S NET NEUTRALITY GO HERE.