Government Seeks Control of Internet, Calls it “Net Neutrality”

by Jordan Spencer Cunningham on

The internet as we know it is on its way to destructionYou probably haven’t heard much about what people are calling “Net Neutrality”. It’s a catch-phrase that the FCC, Obama, and millions of their mindless minions (see: liberals/progressives) are throwing around lately.  It’s rather too late for us since the regulations have already been passed, but below are the basic details and reasons why we ought to be wary. It’s possible the regulations could be revoked or drastically changed by varying lawsuits and/or congressional action, but it’s doubtful since most of our “elected” officials, be they Democrats or Republicans, are corrupt and scheming liars.

What Is It?

Basically, the FCC, backed by Obama, has for years been trying to get their grubbies on the internet. They claim that this is mainly to keep “big [evil] corporations” from controlling the websites and content that you access. Obama says there should “be no gatekeepers” to the internet– that information should be free and accessible to everyone. This all sounds well and good on the surface, but some of us have learned not to trust a word that slyly slips out of his mouth as we know there is more than meets the eye. You can read the now-released 300+ page rules with the 80+ pages of extra bits including the dissenting opinions, but the problem is that most people don’t know or care to read that much dry regulation and will probably miss the important points about lost freedoms in the midst of legalese even if they do.

UPDATE: The FCC has admitted that these new rules give them authority over what ISPs can charge customers, and apparently some Republicans in congress have a bill drafted that would replace the FCC’s 336 pages of regulations with only six pages– supposedly without the governmental overreach.

Here are the reasons in a nutshell to oppose this action even before looking at the rules themselves (even though we, the people, really have no power against the government machine anymore– not because we can’t do anything, but because we won’t do anything):

 

Why Be Wary?

  1. This is more federal government control of free enterprise and of our daily lives. Since when has the government getting involved in what was originally none of its business been a good thing? Haven’t we had a couple of centuries of experience in this department to know that the more the Fed is involved the less freedom everyone has except for the people working the Fed?
  2. Obama wants this. Since when has something the self-worshiping communist Obama wants been a good thing? Haven’t we had six years of what Obama wants being piled up on top of a decades-long legacy of crap, crapped there by president after president? Isn’t that enough to know not to trust the liar as far as we can throw him?
  3. Remember this notorious quote regarding the equally notorious and equally hated Obamacare?: “We have to pass [it] so that you can find out what’s in it.” The same applied for the 300+ pages of regulations making up Net Neutrality– only very few people were privy to what the regulations actually do before it got passed.
  4. Tom Wheeler is currently the chairman of the FCC. He’s also the guy who headed up the imposing of these regulations. He’s also the mega-corporation (Comcast et al) lobbyist turned politician that Obama put into power at the head of the FCC. Should we really trust a corporation lobbyist who spent decades paying off politicians to pass bills in favor of giant corporations to impose regulations supposedly protecting us from the whims of giant corporations?
  5. Internet Service Providers have never censored content or instituted a s0-called internet fast-lane the way these frauds explain it. So these regulations are telling ISPs not to do naughty things that they’ve never done in the first place. The Fed is, once again, trying to fix what isn’t broken and thereby breaking it in the process. Also, even if ISPs wanted to censor content or elevate some content over others, as long as we have a competitive ISP market, they wouldn’t dare– they would lose their customers the minute they did it.
  6. The rules are based on an 81-year-old regulation called Title II (or Communications Act of 1934) that was originally designed for radio and telephone networks. And these regulations didn’t even work and stifled competition for decades.
  7. Mega-corporations such as Google, Amazon, and Netflix support this. Middle-tier businesses don’t. This is because top-tier corporations have the money to find new ways around these regulations or pay the fees the regulations impose and keep business going as usual while small and middle-tier businesses can’t afford to do the same. Though the mega-corporation will be shelling out more cash initially, the middle-tier business will eventually disappear or be absorbed. Which means less competition and more money for the megacorporations. Which means stagnant innovation and monopolistic tendencies. Which means higher prices for lesser products. See: Comcast/Time Warner Cable monopoly. 1

 

What Do the Rules Say?

“But you haven’t read the rules yet! How can you say that they’re going to be bad?”

Well, aside from the government’s track record as described above, this is all I need to be even more wary– this generalization the FCC gave before the rules were passed:

No Paid Prioritization: broadband providers may not favor some lawful Internet traffic over other lawful traffic in exchange for consideration of any kind—in other words, no “fast lanes.” This rule also bans ISPs from prioritizing content and services of their affiliates.

If you have a simple (bad) understanding of how the internet works, this sounds great: All internet traffic is treated equally– Google traffic cannot be prioritized over republicansstink.com, and republicansstink.com can’t be prioritized over republicansrule.com. However, when you understand that the internet is not as cut and dry as both liars and simpletons make it out to be, this one aspect of the 300+ pages gets a little shady– it sounds more like Communism for the Internet rather than Robin Hood for the Internet. The 2oth Century Internet was simpler– you have web servers, you have web clients, you have DNS, and you have routers. That was it aside from the one-off oddities here and there. The 21st Century Internet, however, is much more complicated– you have web servers, you have web clients, you have DNS servers, you have incredibly complex routing systems that by their very nature prioritize some traffic over other traffic in certain areas depending on numerous factors, you have VoIP which by its very nature is usually prioritized over other traffic, you have CDNs and their servers dotting the entire earth that cache and deliver some content for websites much more quickly than just a few servers in one or a few locations ever could, you have game and video streaming services that pay ISPs through the nose to host their content locally so as to deliver those much-demanded and heavily-used services much more quickly… and the list goes on, though those are the first few that I can think of that will likely be affected for the worse by Net Neutrality.

 

Why Do the Rules Suck?

A lot of what the internet is today– a lot of what we millenials take for granted and have no clue exists– violates what the FCC promised it would stop: paid prioritization. The internet as we know it has been thriving for years on a kind of paid prioritization. For one example out of many, in order to get those millions of bandwidth-hungry videos delivered more quickly with less lag, Netflix pays your ISP or another company extra to cache them locally on some server closer to you (CDN server), and it often pays your ISP and other people in charge of the “pipes” extra money than most everyone else to guarantee more bandwidth for all of those videos. Google, Facebook, YouTube, and thousands of other sites already do this. Most of you probably don’t understand all of this lingo in the last two paragraphs, so I recommend you read this article here that explains the problem pretty well and why Net Neutrality is so ill-suited to the 21st Century Internet.

 

What Would Make the Rules Not Suck?

The one thing with which the FCC should be involved is the one thing it’s not: encourage competition. About one third of U.S. households have no choice in an internet service provider. Another third has only two choices. And these two thirds’ “choice” often has to be either Time Warner Cable or Comcast– two of the most abhorrent and hated companies in the United States, but successful only because of lack of competition. If the FCC was going to do anything, they ought to encourage competition of service providers across the country, which would encourage innovation, which would drive the price to internet access down and the speeds by which the internet is delivered up, which would allow more people more internet access.

But the FCC is currently headed by a man who once represented a monopolistic, filthy collection of fat-cat telecom associations. Why would he do the citizens of the U.S. any favors?

RULES ARE NOT THE ANSWER TO KEEPING THE INTERNET FREE FROM CENSORING. COMPETITION IS THE ANSWER.

 

Extra Information

Here are some extra resources to read:

  • UPDATE: The FCC has admitted that these new rules give them authority over what ISPs can charge customers, and apparently some Republicans in congress have a bill drafted that would replace the FCC’s 336 pages of regulations with only six pages– supposedly without the governmental overreach.
  • Now that the rules are passed, Congress is urged to block it. “In short: The internet is not broken. And it didn’t need the FCC to fix it.” Here is my rule of thumb on this one: Concerning government entities, when there is a choice between defunding and funding, ALWAYS DEFUND!
  • As a matter of principle, I take what well known talk show radio hosts say with a grain of salt. They remind me of the late Cleon Skousen who often wrote his opinions as fact and then acted as if it was LDS Church doctrine– you’ll get a lot of good from them, but you’ll also get some embellishments and plenty of sensationalism. Still, here’s a more doomsday approach to the matter that I feel shows just how out of touch the public is to this matter, and just how easily the public believes the trash the government tells them to believe.
  • This is a very long and detailed article about the business side of Net Neutrality— how it stifles innovation and how the FCC is wasting resources and overregulating what never needed regulation in the first place while completely and utterly missing what’s important: harboring competition and innovation.
  • This author at the end of his article defends Net Neutrality and says “we’re better off with these kinds of restrictions” but actually spends the entire article explaining how worthless Net Neutrality actually is. Net Neutrality, at best, is a waste of time and resources. At worst, it will break the technology it purportedly was designed to fix and encourage monopolies while stifling competition and innovation.
  • The FCC wasn’t very transparent in how it devised and instated these regulations, as stated before regarding how nobody knew what was in the rules until after they were approved. Tom Wheeler’s statement about how he was not under direction of our Imperial President doesn’t make much of a difference– these politicians lie through their teeth constantly, and who knows what was in those missing emails.

 

Emperor Obama’s video on Net Neutrality:

 Obama says there are “no gatekeepers to the internet”. Well, actually, there are. There always have been. They’re what we call “ISPs”, or “internet service providers”. We pay them so much every month for access to a worldwide network. If we don’t pay an ISP for access to the worldwide network, then we don’t get access— we are kept out of the internet. ISPs are the most literal definition of a “gatekeeper” that network terminology can provide. You are such a slimy liar. STOP LYING.

 

Steven Crowder’s video on Net Neutrality:

One of the better videos explaining the woes of Net Neutrality. And it’s entertaining, to boot.

 

A video detailing Ajit Pai’s dissenting opinion on why the current Net Neutrality rules are awful:

 

 

Another more entertaining and less detailed video for the impatient:

  1. As for internet customers who only have one choice, which choice is usually either Comcast or Warner Cable, it’s corrupted government that has thus far allowed crony capitalists to pay them off to block competing ISPs from offering services in the area. Supposedly Obama et al “want to” finally overturn some states’ laws, imposed by crony lobbyists and their pocketed politicians, so as to allow for competing ISPs and city-sponsored internet infrastructure in areas currently dominated by Comcast or Time Warner. If that’s what really happens, that will be nice for those of us trapped into only one ISP in an area, but the Net Neutrality laws will have nothing to do with it and it still doesn’t resolve the underlying problem: the one-ISP-to-rule-them-all issue only was a problem because of government. More government is not the answer and should rather be the last resort.