Archive for the ‘Net Neutrality’ Category

LOSING INTERNET FREEDOM

Saturday, October 8th, 2016

 

LOSING INTERNET FREEDOM
At the stroke of midnight on September 30, 2016, America said good-bye to its long-time oversight of the internet, and along with it, the certainty of internet freedom.

EXCERPT FROM THIS ARTICLE:  Those who understand the importance of internet oversight and believe that America should remain the stewards of internet freedom are not done fighting to keep its control out of the hands of questionable entities.  Even though the DoC and ICANN have promised not to transfer oversight authority to dictatorial regimes, ICANN has already capitulated to OIC ( Organization of Islamic Cooperation)  demands and ceded additional control to governments including authoritarian regimes.  Furthermore, once America relinquishes control, she will never get it back.  Transparency and accountability, though promised, can’t be guaranteed. And, down the road, yet another transfer could conceivably occur.  America would have no power to prevent it.

Champions of freedom[3] are exploring ways to take back internet oversight, but the possibilities look bleak.  One possibility is to appeal the Texas Court’s decision denying the motion made by the Republican Attorneys General.  The other is to proceed to court in a full-fledged trial.  Still another option is to pass legislation to try to take back control of the internet (since technically, it has already passed as of October 1, 2016).  In the meantime, ICANN is trying to implement the transfer as quickly as possible, seeking completion prior to the U.S. Presidential election in November of 2016, just in case the new President disagrees with Obama’s view regarding America’s role in internet oversight.

At the stroke of midnight on September 30, 2016, in furtherance of Obama’s anti-exceptional, post-American, global agenda, the certainty of the internet’s security, stability, and freedom has vanished into thin air, only to be replaced by one big global question mark.

(Please click on the link to read the entire article)
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OBAMA’S BUNGLED INTERNET SURRENDER

Friday, May 22nd, 2015

 

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL

Obama’s Bungled Internet Surrender

The group the White House favors for online oversight is turning into an abusive monopolist.

By

L. Gordon Crovitz

The administration last year announced its intention to abandon the contract the Commerce Department has held since the beginning of the Web with the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, or Icann. Congress used its power of the purse to block the move, which had been set for September this year.

But the prospect of escaping U.S. oversight led Icann to deny accountability even for its core duty of keeping its monopoly over Web addresses working smoothly. The House Judiciary Committee last week held a hearing titled “Stakeholder Perspectives on Icann: The .Sucks Domain and Essential Steps to Guarantee Trust and Accountability in the Internet’s Operation.”

The .sucks domain was one of hundreds of new top-level domains Icann added beyond the original .com, .org and .gov. Icann, organized as a nonprofit, collects a fee each time it approves a new top-level domain and gets a cut of the registration charge for individual domain names. The corporation’s total take so far from the new domains is more than $300 million.

The Intellectual Property Constituency, an Icann stakeholder group, calls the .sucks domain “predatory, exploitative and coercive.” Judiciary chairman Bob Goodlatte says trademark holders are “being shaken down”—compelled to buy new addresses defensively to prevent their use. (more…)

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WHAT’S WRONG WITH THE GOLDEN GOOSE?

Wednesday, April 29th, 2015

 

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL

What’s Wrong With the Golden Goose?

‘Secular stagnation’ isn’t to blame for lousy U.S. growth rates. Obama’s higher taxes and regulatory assault are.

By
Phil Gramm   Mr. Gramm, a former Republican senator from Texas, is a visiting scholar at the American Enterprise Institute
EXCERPT FROM THIS ARTICLE:   Marginal tax rates on ordinary income are up 24%, a burden that falls directly on small businesses. Tax rates on capital gains and dividends are up 59%, and the estate-tax rate is up 14%. While tax reform has languished in the U.S., other nations have cut corporate tax rates. The U.S. now has the highest corporate rate in the world and the most punitive treatment of foreign earnings.

Meanwhile, federal debt held by the public has doubled, so a return of interest rates to their postwar norms, roughly 5% on a five-year Treasury note, will send the cost of servicing the debt up by $439 billion, almost doubling the current deficit.

Large banks, under aggressive interpretation of the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial law, are regulated as if they were public utilities. Federal bureaucrats are embedded in their executive offices like political officers in the old Soviet Union. Across the financial sector the rule of law is in tatters as tens of billions of dollars are extorted from large banks in legal settlements; insurance companies and money managers are subject to regulations set by international bodies; and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, formed in 2011, faces few checks, balances or restraints

Since the Obama recovery began in the second quarter of 2009, public and private projections of economic growth have consistently overestimated actual performance. Six years later, projections of prosperity being just around the corner have given way to a debate over whether the U.S. has fallen into “secular stagnation,” a fancy phrase for the chronic low growth seen in much of Europe.

This is just another in a long line of excuses. America’s historic ability to outperform Europe is well documented; we call it American exceptionalism. It has always been based on the fact that the U.S has had better, more market-driven economic policies and our economy therefore worked better. But, as the U.S. economy is Europeanized through higher taxes and greater regulatory burdens, American exceptionalism is fading away, taking economic growth with it. (more…)

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GOOGLE AND OBAMA

Monday, April 13th, 2015

 

THE WASHINGTON TIMES

Lifting the covers on ‘Obamoogle’

An antitrust probe went away while Google snuggled with Obama

By Tammy Bruce  Tammy Bruce is a radio talk-show host, author and Fox News contributor.

   – – Monday, March 30, 2015

EXCERPT FROM THIS ARTICLE:  Since President Obama took office, The Wall Street Journal reports, employees of Google “have visited the White House for meetings with senior officials about 230 times, or an average of roughly once a week.” Google’s top lobbyist had more than 60 meetings at the White House. That’s more meetings than most of Mr. Obama’s Cabinet members…….During the 2012 re-election campaign, Google employees were the second-largest source of campaign donations to the Obama campaign, reports the Daily Caller.

During this past week as we’ve been swamped with bad news pouring out of every corner of the globe, it wouldn’t be surprising if you missed one of the more shocking revelations about White House actions that would make even Richard Nixon blush.

The Wall Street Journal revealed that it had obtained a 2012 Federal Trade Commission report detailing the closeness of Google and the Obama administration while the FTC was engaging in an antitrust investigation of the Internet giant.

It’s usually the case that you get more interesting information when the details were supposed to remain secret, and that’s the case here. The FTC, responding to an open-records request, accidentally sent 160 pages of a private 2012 report to the The Wall Street Journal, detailing their antitrust investigation into Google.

What was disclosed paints a picture of unusual activity between the White House, Google and the FTC while the antitrust investigation was being conducted. Ultimately, the FTC staff recommended bringing a lawsuit against Google on antitrust grounds. Despite this, the commission voted 5-0 against charges.

Most of the headlines focus on the number of visits Google executives and lobbyists made to the White House during the investigation. Even the newspaper in its coverage cast the events as a “sign of the Internet giant’s reach in Washington” implying that access to the Obama White House is some sort of a byproduct of overall influence. (more…)

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NET NEUTRALITY AND WHAT IT MEANS TO YOU

Thursday, February 26th, 2015

 

Be sure to read the two  WSJ articles below that explain the ramifications of today’s  ruling.
NEWS FLASH

FCC Approves Net Neutrality Rules, Setting Stage For Legal Battle

The Federal Communications Commission voted Thursday to regulate Internet service like a public utility, expanding the U.S. government’s oversight of a once lightly regulated business at the center of the country’s commercial and social activity.

The vote was 3-2 along party lines and starts the clock ticking on an expected legal challenge from the telecom and cable industries.

From Internet to Obamanet

BlackBerry and AT&T are already making moves that could exploit new ‘utility’ regulations.

http://
By

L. Gordon Crovitz

EXCERPT FROM THIS ARTICLE:  This week Mr. Obama’s bureaucrats will give him the regulated Internet he demands. Unless Congress or the courts block Obamanet, it will be the end of the Internet as we know it…..  The permissionless Internet, which allows anyone to introduce a website, app or device without government review, ends this week. On Thursday the three Democrats among the five commissioners on the Federal Communications Commission will vote to regulate the Internet under rules written for monopoly utilities……..  Utility regulation was designed to maintain the status quo, and it succeeds. This is why the railroads, Ma Bell and the local water monopoly were never known for innovation. The Internet was different because its technologies, business models and creativity were permissionless.

 Critics of President Obama’s “net neutrality” plan call it ObamaCare for the Internet.

That’s unfair to ObamaCare.

Both ObamaCare and “Obamanet” submit huge industries to complex regulations. Their supporters say the new rules had to be passed before anyone could read them. But at least ObamaCare claimed it would solve long-standing problems. Obamanet promises to fix an Internet that isn’t broken.

The permissionless Internet, which allows anyone to introduce a website, app or device without government review, ends this week. On Thursday the three Democrats among the five commissioners on the Federal Communications Commission will vote to regulate the Internet under rules written for monopoly utilities.

No one, including the bullied FCC chairman, Tom Wheeler, thought the agency would go this far. The big politicization came when President Obama in November demanded that the supposedly independent FCC apply the agency’s most extreme regulation to the Internet. A recent page-one Wall Street Journal story headlined “Net Neutrality: How White House Thwarted FCC Chief” documented “an unusual, secretive effort inside the White House . . . acting as a parallel version of the FCC itself.”

Congress is demanding details of this interference. In the early 1980s, a congressional investigation blasted President Reagan for telling his FCC chairman his view of regulations about television reruns. “I believe it is imperative for the integrity of all regulatory processes that the president unequivocally declare that he will express no view in the matter and that he will do nothing to intervene in the work of the FCC,” said Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan, a New York Democrat.

Mr. Obama’s role raises legal as well as political questions. Those harmed by the new rules could argue in court that political pressure made the agency’s actions “arbitrary and capricious.”

The more than 300 pages of new regulations are secret, but Mr. Wheeler says they will subject the Internet to the key provisions of Title II of the Communications Act of 1934, under which the FCC oversaw Ma Bell.

Title II authorizes the commission to decide what “charges” and “practices” are “just and reasonable”—an enormous amount of discretion. Former FCC Commissioner Robert McDowell has found 290 federal appeals court opinions on this section and more than 1,700 FCC administrative interpretations.

Defenders of the Obama plan claim that there will be regulatory “forbearance,” though not from the just-and-reasonable test. They also promise not to regulate prices, a pledge that Republican FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai has called “flat-out false.” He added: “The only limit on the FCC’s discretion to regulate rates is its own determination of whether rates are ‘just and reasonable,’ which isn’t much of a restriction at all.” (more…)

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THE GREAT INTERNET POWER GRAB

Tuesday, February 10th, 2015

 

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
THE GREAT INTERNET POWER GRAB
by L. Gordon Crovitz  February 9, 2015

The era of open innovation can be dated to 1971, when teenager Steve Jobs and his engineer friend Steve Wozniak became “phone phreaks.” They sold kits to create routing tones spoofing government-regulated phones into making free long-distance calls. Evading the absurdly high prices that federal regulators set for AT&T calls felt like civil disobedience. The same spirit of disruptive innovation led them to found Apple.

Last week Washington abandoned open innovation when the chairman of the Federal Communications Commission yielded to President Obama ’s demands and moved to regulate the freewheeling Internet under the same laws that applied to the Ma Bell monopoly. Unless these reactionary regulations are stopped, they spell the end of the permissionless innovation that built today’s Internet.

Until now, anyone could launch new websites, apps and mobile devices without having to lobby a regulator for permission. That was thanks to a Clinton-era bipartisan consensus that the Internet shouldn’t be treated as a public utility. Congress and the White House under both parties kept the FCC from applying the hoary regulations that micromanaged the phone system, which would have frozen innovation online.

Last week’s announcement from FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler rejects 20 years of open innovation by submitting the Internet to Title II of the Communications Act of 1934. Once Mr. Wheeler and the commission’s Democratic majority vote this month to apply Title II, the regulations will give them staggering control. Any Internet “charges” and “practices” that the bureaucrats find “unjust or unreasonable is declared to be unlawful.”

This is an open invitation to entrenched companies challenged by new technologies. The Internet has been a source of creative destruction, upending industries from music, movies and newspapers to retail, travel and banking. History teaches that companies threatened by competition will hire as many lawyers as necessary to get regulators to protect them. (more…)

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OBAMA’S NEW WEB TAX

Monday, December 29th, 2014

 

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL

Obama’s New Web Tax

A Democratic think tank pegs the consumer hit at $17 billion.

It’s now almost unanimous: President Obama ’s new plan to regulate the Internet would cost consumers billions. On Monday a leading Democratic think tank warned about the looming tax hike on America’s Internet users.

Harold Furchtgott-Roth, a former commissioner at the Federal Communications Commission, has been saying for months that if the Internet is reclassified as a telephone service—as Mr. Obama is urging—Internet users could be forced to pay federal “universal service” fees of up to 16.1%. These fees were initiated decades ago to provide basic phone service, but the services and the number of potential beneficiaries have grown with time.

Now the Progressive Policy Institute reports that state and local regulators would join with the feds in gouging Internet consumers. That’s because states and localities have their own levies that would kick in if the Internet is officially deemed a monopoly telephone network. Authors Robert Litan of the Brookings Institution and PPI’s Hal Singer optimistically expect regulators to reduce the federal levy from the current 16.1%. But the analysts still forecast significant pain for Internet users.

“We have calculated that the average annual increase in state and local fees levied on U.S. wireline and wireless broadband subscribers will be $67 and $72, respectively. And the annual increase in federal fees per household will be roughly $17. When you add it all up, reclassification could add a whopping $17 billion in new user fees,” report Messrs. Litan and Singer.

That’s in addition to “the planned $1.5 billion extra to fund the E-Rate program,” which subsidizes schools and libraries. The authors add that the “higher fees would come on top of the adverse impact on consumers of less investment and slower innovation that would result from reclassification.”

These taxing consequences haven’t received as much attention as they deserve amid the debate over President Obama’s demand that FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler regulate the Internet like a public utility. But if Mr. Wheeler obliges, the new Congress should make clear who’s responsible

.

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THE BEST POLITICAL CARTOONS !

Thursday, November 20th, 2014

 

   Please share with all your liberal friends (if you have any) as there is nothing more fun  than irritating a liberal !!!   Please keep clicking on the next arrow for some really great political cartoons.     Nancy
http://townhall.com/political-cartoons/2014/11/20/125083

By Gary Varvel – November 20, 2014
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NET NEUTRALITY

Thursday, January 16th, 2014

 

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
A VICTORY FOR AN UNFETTERED INTERNET
Jan. 15, 2014
 A federal appeals court in Washington slapped the Federal Communications Commission on Tuesday for overstepping its legal authority by trying to regulate Internet access. The FCC is now a two-time loser in court in its net-neutrality efforts. Has the government learned its lesson, or will the agency take a third stab at regulating the Internet? The answer to that question will affect the Internet’s growth in the 21st century.

The FCC’s quest to regulate the Internet began in 2010, when the commission first promulgated rules for net neutrality. The rules, proponents argue, are needed to police Internet “on-ramps” (Internet service providers) ostensibly to ensure that they stay “open.” To accomplish this, some want the FCC to subject the Internet to ancient communications laws designed for extinct phone and railroad monopolies.

But the trouble is, nothing needs fixing. The Internet has remained open and accessible without FCC micromanagement since it entered public life in the 1990s. And more regulation could produce harmful results, such as reduced infrastructure investment, stunted innovation, slower speeds and higher prices for consumers. The FCC never bothered to study the impact that such intervention might have on the broadband market before leaping to regulate. Nor did it consider the ample consumer-protection laws that already exist. The government’s meddling has been driven more by ideology and a 2008 campaign promise by then-Sen. Barack Obama than by reality.

Further FCC attempts to regulate the Internet could trigger global regulation of the Internet by the International Telecommunication Union, a treaty-based organization under the U.N.’s control. Russian President Vladimir Putin and his allies have been working for a decade to upend a 1988 agreement—forged by delegates from 114 countries—to leave the Internet unfettered. The U.S. has so far been opposed to applying new international rules for the Internet. In October, 193 countries will gather again for talks to conclude a new treaty that will decide the Internet’s fate. Proponents hope to build off victories won last year at International Telecommunication Union talks in Dubai that gave the agency narrow authority to regulate. The goal is to achieve what Mr. Putin summarized in 2011 as “international control of the Internet.” (more…)

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THE DIGITAL COLD WAR – CLOSING OF THE INTERNET

Sunday, December 30th, 2012

 

The Wall Street Journal

  • December 17, 2012

America’s First Big Digital Defeat

A majority of the 193 U.N. member countries have approved a treaty giving governments new powers to close off access to the Internet in their countries.

  • By L. GORDON CROVITZ

  • EXCERPT FROM THIS ARTICLE:  The U.S. delegation never understood this conference was fundamentally a battle in what might be called the Digital Cold War. Russia and China had long been lobbying for votes, but U.S. opposition got serious only at the conference itself. Even then, Mr. Touré claimed he thought the U.S. would support the ITU treaty: “I couldn’t imagine that at the end they wouldn’t sign.”

    The treaty document extends control over Internet companies, not just telecoms. It declares: “All governments should have an equal role and responsibility for international Internet governance.” This is a complete reversal of the privately managed Internet. Authoritarian governments will invoke U.N. authority to take control over access to the Internet, making it harder for their citizens to get around national firewalls. They now have the U.N.’s blessing to censor, monitor traffic, and prosecute troublemakers.

The open Internet, available to people around the world without the permission of any government, was a great liberation. It was also too good to last. Authoritarian governments this month won the first battle to close off parts of the Internet.At the just-concluded conference of the International Telecommunications Union in Dubai, the U.S. and its allies got outmaneuvered. The ITU conference was highly technical, which may be why the media outside of tech blogs paid little attention, but the result is noteworthy: A majority of the 193 United Nations member countries approved a treaty giving governments new powers to close off access to the Internet in their countries.

U.S. diplomats were shocked by the result, but they shouldn’t have been surprised. Authoritarian regimes, led by Russia and China, have long schemed to use the U.N. to claim control over today’s borderless Internet, whose open, decentralized architecture makes it hard for these countries to close their people off entirely. In the run-up to the conference, dozens of secret proposals by authoritarian governments were leaked online.

ITU head Hamadoun Touré, a Mali native trained in the Soviet Union, had assured that his agency operates by consensus, not by majority vote. He also pledged that the ITU had no interest beyond telecommunications to include the Internet. He kept neither promise.

A vote was called late one night last week in Dubai—at first described as a nonbinding “feel of the room on who will accept”—on a draft giving countries new power over the Internet.

The result was 89 countries in favor, with 55 against. The authoritarian majority included Russia, China, Arab countries, Iran and much of Africa. Under the rules of the ITU, the treaty takes effect in 2015 for these countries. Countries that opposed it are not bound by it, but Internet users in free countries will also suffer as global networks split into two camps—one open, one closed.

The U.S. delegation never understood this conference was fundamentally a battle in what might be called the Digital Cold War. Russia and China had long been lobbying for votes, but U.S. opposition got serious only at the conference itself. Even then, Mr. Touré claimed he thought the U.S. would support the ITU treaty: “I couldn’t imagine that at the end they wouldn’t sign.”

The treaty document extends control over Internet companies, not just telecoms. It declares: “All governments should have an equal role and responsibility for international Internet governance.” This is a complete reversal of the privately managed Internet. Authoritarian governments will invoke U.N. authority to take control over access to the Internet, making it harder for their citizens to get around national firewalls. They now have the U.N.’s blessing to censor, monitor traffic, and prosecute troublemakers.

Internet users in still-open countries will be harmed, too. Today’s smoothly functioning system includes 40,000 privately managed networks among 425,000 global routes that ignore national boundaries. Expect these networks to be split by a digital Iron Curtain. The Internet will become less resilient. Websites will no longer be global. (more…)

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