Dec 7, 2017

FCC's Anti-Constitutional Push Under Trump To Cut Off Net Neutrality To Increase Authoritarianism

Losing Net-Neutrally may be supported right now by Trump minions but they will likely be the first ones to be affected...

TRUMPING OBAMA - THE REPEAL OF NET NEUTRALITY Jordan completely supports President Trump's move to repeal net neutrality, even if it forces himself and other alt-media types to become even fringier.

(me, being a"LiberalLibertarian antiFacism anti911terrroists antiTreason antiLies" will probably be next, or atleast will always be on the list, especially when you take into account I've figured out GOP are on ALL major corporate boards than can control and influence the nation).


Whats going on is a law rollback irrespective of whether the rollback is good or bad for the country (i.e. Trump may be doing this out of pure madness but I think its more likely he's doing it intentionally cause hes not an American/Constitutionalist at heart)

Put another way...

Net Neutrality RIP: Essential Parts of America's DNA—Independence and Privacy—Are About to Be Destroyed It's a way bigger deal than the way the internet works.

Without network neutrality—the ability of individual citizens to get and share the information they want with a modicum of privacy and anonymity—the American Revolution wouldn’t have happened. Maybe that’s why the Trump administration wants to kill net neutrality now.
The flyer from “Rusticus” appeared on trees all over the community one morning in the Boston autumn of 1773:
“Are we in like Manner to be given up to the Disposal of the East India Company, who have now the Assurance, to step forth in Aid of the Minister, to execute his Plan, of enslaving America? Their Conduct in Asia, for some Years past, has given simple Proof, how little they regard the Laws of Nations, the Rights, Liberties, or Lives of Men.
“They have levied War, excited Rebellions, dethroned lawful Princes, and sacrificed Millions for the Sake of Gain. The Revenues of Mighty Kingdoms have centered in their Coffers. And these not being sufficient to glut their Avarice, they have, by the most unparalleled Barbarities, Extortions, and Monopolies, stripped the miserable Inhabitants of their Property, and reduced whole Provinces to Indigence and Ruin.
“Fifteen hundred Thousands, it is said, perished by Famine in one Year, not because the Earth denied its Fruits; but [because] this Company and their Servants engulfed all the Necessaries of Life, and set them at so high a Rate that the poor could not purchase them.
“Resolve therefore, nobly resolve, and publish to the World your Resolutions, that no Man will receive the Tea, no Man will let his Stores, or suffer the Vessel that brings it to moor at his Wharf, and that if any Person assists at unloading, landing, or storing it, he shall ever after be deemed an Enemy to his Country, and never be employed by his Fellow Citizens.”
That flyer, in part, kicked off the first big event of what eventually came to be known as the American Revolution. Today we call the 1773 rebellion the Boston Tea Party (although for the first 50 years after it happened, it was simply known as “that incident in Boston Harbor”). But if the British of the day had been able to suppress the colonists’ free speech and anonymity, the USA might still be part of the UK.
You can arguably draw a direct line from Rusticus’ flyer to both the creation of our independing nation, and to the First Amendment, because Rusticus’ flyer was an important part of the “free and independent press” of the day.  
Today that role is filled in large part by the internet. Instead of running around in the dead of night nailing flyers to trees, people now post their political missives to blogs and Twitter feeds, and those very posts, in overwhelming numbers, led former FCC chairman Tom Wheeler to put net neutrality into law via Title II of the Telecommunications Act. Arguably, they also led to lots of political upheaval over the past few years, ranging from the Bernie Sanders phenomenon to the election (and impeachment investigations) of Donald Trump.
Consider how differently the Boston Tea Party and the American Revolution might have gone down if the East India Company owned the right to regulate and censor all pamphlets before or immediately after they were put up. Or if the EI Company were able to track with great precision who posted a notice, when and where.  

The plan, apparently, is to turn the regulation of free speech (which by the Constitution is meant to be unregulated) over to private interests, i.e. corporations. Already people in the media who work for the corporations who would be in charge have gone silent. Imagine how bad it would be if the corporation ACTUALLY did something bad. This is what happened to kill free speech in the future shown in "The Continuum" (&, BTW, we already have the "Corporate Congress" like portrayed in that show which should scare the crap out of everyone);

Of course, corporations will first go after the ones that bother them the most. And while people on the alt-right hate groups are crazy and shouldn't be enabled by the GOP to create social problems to the party that did 9/11 AND many will be glad to have them silenced...  how many truth tellers will get caught up in the "clean-up"? They call it something or the other, I call it "synergy";

Of course, if you intend to "synergize" that's the last thing you would tell your costumers (who you are allowed to lie to as your terms of use say that the corporation/board CAN and WILL change any policy without notification to the user, i.e. a common disclaimer on ALL corporate websites). So this add is literally meaningless in the long-run (though in the short-run they can act like they are being honorable to oppose Trump the Fascist)

While Comcast is giving its corporate word that it will be transparent and honorable like a good transparent Constitutional government, that really isn't their job. That they want that power to control information is obvious and should be enough to disqualify them from having such power. Whats scary is that JUST having comcast as a corporate owner makes the media go quit. While silence may not be official, unofficially all media people are slaves to their owners as its money that dictates what they feel free to talk about (attack their corporate slave owner could risk their paycheck in an economy increasingly controlled by that corporate owner.... the conflict of interest between news and corporations couldn't be more apparent and clearly regulations with transparent oversight by the people  - not shareholders and a board - should dictate institutions of such power..

A shareholder cannot represent the people. The profit motive and the Constitution are not in line with each other. Anyone who thinks that shareholders can make good decisions for "we the people" just have to note the lesson of history. Slaveholders were shareholders too. This move at the FCC is an attempt of an oligarichal takeover which may happen immediately or may take some years but clearly the move has begun and to trust corporations with people from these parties on thier boards is the biggest folly of them all. Even Establishment Democrats don't fight corporations.

END OF NET NEUTRALITY - TIM WU 1/23/2014 "The Master Switch" author Tim Wu makes the case for net neutrality, arguing that cable companies want to impose a toll on the Internet.

The following shows that the media can't even tell the truth when they have a corportae link to a big issue. Can you imagine what else they avoid and stay silent about (or don't report enough on or completely on)?

Study: Cable and broadcast news networks largely ignore planned net neutrality repeal

In the eight days after news broke that FCC Chairman Ajit Pai wants to fully repeal net neutrality rules, cable and broadcast news networks -- aside from MSNBC -- have given the story very little coverage.

In this study:

  • The broadcast networks’ morning news programs, nightly newscasts, and Sunday political talk shows covered net neutrality for a combined 2 minutes and 26 seconds.
  • CNN devoted less than 10 minutes to net neutrality. Fox News covered the story for just over 11 minutes, and the bulk of coverage was interviews with Pai defending his proposal.
  • While MSNBC devoted the most coverage (nearly 47 minutes) to the story, NBC failed to cover net neutrality on both NBC Nightly News and the network’s flagship Sunday political talk show, Meet the Press.  

FCC chair Ajit Pai releases proposal to “fully dismantle” net neutrality regulations

Politico: “FCC plans total repeal of net neutrality rules.” From a November 20 Politico article:
Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai will reveal plans to his fellow commissioners on Tuesday to fully dismantle the agency's Obama-era net neutrality regulations, people familiar with the plans said, in a major victory for the telecom industry in the long-running policy debate.
The commission will vote on the proposal in December, some seven months after it laid the groundwork for scuttling the rules that require internet service providers like Comcast or AT&T to treat web traffic equally.
President Donald Trump-appointed Pai’s plan would jettison rules that prohibit internet service providers from blocking or slowing web traffic or creating so-called paid internet fast lanes, the people familiar with the changes said. [Politico11/20/17]
Repeal of net neutrality rules could allow ISPs to charge more or block access to certain websites.According to a New York Times article, internet service providers (ISPs) may be empowered to prioritize their own online services at the expense of their competitors by charging higher fees or controlling access to rival websites or services. Pai’s plan would also reverse the decision to treat internet access as a public utility. [The New York Times11/21/17]

News networks -- with one exception -- have largely dropped the ball on covering net neutrality

Since November 20, NBC has not covered net neutrality at all. A Media Matters review of morning news, evening news, and Sunday political talk shows on the three major broadcast news networks revealed that NBC has yet to report on this story. CBS spent just two minutes on the story while ABC gave net neutrality just 25 seconds in a single news brief on World News Tonight with David Muir.

Sarah Wasko / Media Matters

MSNBC covered net neutrality far more than any other cable network. A Media Matters review of all cable news programming on the three major cable news networks found that MSNBC far outpaced coverage on net neutrality compared to CNN and Fox News Channel. The network was the first to report the story on television on The Rachel Maddow Show on November 20 and since then has spent nearly 47 minutes on net neutrality. In that same time period, CNN devoted approximately 10 minutes -- the bulk of which came in a single segment on Reliable Sources -- and Fox News spent a little more than 11 minutes on Pai’s proposal. Fox’s coverage included two interviews with Pai on Fox & Friends. Pai gave no other interviews in segments included in this study.

Sarah Wasko / Media Matters

In the wake of the breaking news, MSNBC represented 90 percent of all cable coverage. On November 20 and 21, cable news spent close to 28 minutes on net neutrality; MSNBC's coverage represented more than 24 minutes of that. CNN spent only two minutes in these first days while Fox News gave the story just 29 seconds in a single news brief on Special Report with Bret Baier.
NBC and MSNBC are owned by internet service provider Comcast, which stands to benefit from the repeal. While NBC did not cover the planned repeal, MSNBC repeatedly mentioned in its coverage that it is owned by Comcast. A merger between Time Warner -- which currently owns CNN -- and internet service provider AT&T is currently pending review, which was covered during the Reliable Sources segment.

Morning news shows ignored report that Trump’s FCC plans to roll back net neutrality Only CBS This Morning reported on the FCC commissioner's plan to overturn Obama-era net neutrality protections
Cable and broadcast morning shows virtually ignored reports that the Republican-appointed chairman of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), Ajit Pai, is expected to reveal his plan to gut net neutrality regulations this week.
According to the internet advocacy organization Free Press, net neutrality is "the basic principle that prohibits internet service providers like AT&T, Comcast and Verizon from speeding up, slowing down or blocking any content, applications or websites you want to use." In 2015, the FCC enacted regulations protecting net neutrality, "reclassif[ying] high-speed Internet as a telecommunications service rather than an information one, subjecting providers to regulation under Title II of the Communications Act."
But as Politico reported on November 20, FCC Chairman Pai, an appointee of President Donald Trump, plans to share a scheme with his fellow commissioners today to dismantle the regulations. The commission is expected to vote in December on the plan, which reportedly "would jettison rules that prohibit internet service providers from blocking or slowing web traffic or creating so-called paid internet fast lanes."
On November 21, morning news shows failed to inform their audiences about the threat to a free and open internet. CBS This Morning was the only show to feature a report on the development. One guest on MSNBC's Morning Joe briefly mentioned the expected rule change, but the hosts didn't engage with the comment and never brought up the story themselves. There was no mention at all of net neutrality from CNN's New Day, Fox News' Fox & Friends, ABC's Good Morning America, or NBC's Today.
From CBS This Morning:

GAYLE KING (HOST): The New York Times says the FCC is planning a repeal of net neutrality rules created during the Obama era. The proposal is expected to be unveiled later today. Internet service providers would no longer be required to give equal access to all content. It would permit them to slow web traffic or charge more to view certain content. FCC commissioners are expected to back the proposal in December. The FCC declined to comment on this.
The move from the FCC was not unforeseeable; in April, Pai announced plans to undo open-internet rules. And, as Wired detailed, "Pai has narrowed the scope of the rules since taking over as chair in January":
In February, for example, he ended an investigation into whether AT&T and Verizon used data limits for anticompetitive purposes, effectively ruling that the two companies could exempt their own video services from customers' data caps but still charge for data used by their competitors’ services.

Allies of shutting down citizen access to free speech;

Fox & Friends gave Trump's FCC chairman a free pass to spin his assault on net neutrality Ajit Pai knows he has an ally at Fox News

Ajit Pai, the Republican-appointed chairman of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), enjoyed a lighthearted interview on President Donald Trump’s favorite news program this morning in which he was allowed to spin the reasons he is rescinding Obama-era consumer protections guaranteeing fair and open access to the internet.
During a November 22 interview with Fox & Friends, co-host Steve Doocy allowed Pai to dubiously defend his plan to repeal net neutrality standards that were implemented in 2015 as a win for “the internet economy in America” and for nearly 300 million internet users in the United States. Doocy presented his guest with easy questions, which Pai quickly deflected with talking points claiming that his move to gut net neutrality was merely a return to the same “free and open internet” expected by consumers “before these regulations started.

But Pai’s move to end net neutrality, which classified high speed internet as a public utility, is widely viewed as a win for the telecommunications giants. It is also a big win for conservative media, including Fox News, which vilified net neutrality during the Obama administration.
Internet advocates warn that service providers may soon charge extra to unlock faster access to popular websites and online content, as is already the case in some countries, but Pai brushed off those concerns as “a false fear” while passing responsibility for regulating these predatory business practices to the Federal Trade Commission. At no point during the show did Doocy ask Pai about an investigation spearheaded by New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, which uncovered what Schneiderman called “a massive scheme” to flood the FCC with anti-regulatory comments supportive of dismantling net neutrality using personal information stolen from thousands of American citizens.
Pai’s move to gut net neutrality, which TV morning shows barely covered as the news broke, is not the first time the chairman has used the FCC to fulfill the demands of media outlets that have a direct line to the White House. In February, Pai imposed unnecessary cuts to an extension of the Lifeline program (which Fox News and host Sean Hannity assailed for years as so-called “Obamaphones”) that provided internet subsidies to qualifying low-income Americans. In April, he moved to ease merger restrictions that could materially benefitTrump-aligned Fox News and Sinclair Broadcast Group, and in the months since, the commission has made several additional changes to FCC rules that directly aid Sinclair’s conservative local news takeover

Articles explaining how dangerous - and anti Constitutional - this move is;

Is Net Neutrality All That Separates the U.S. from Authoritarianism?The FCC is debating rolling back an Obama-era regulation, and the stakes could not be higher.

Victor Pickard, associate professor of communication at the University Pennsylvania’s Annenberg School, talked with Jacobin's Meagan Day recently about the threat to the internet posed by the Federal Communication Commission's looming decision to do away with net neutrality and the open internet. It's a great interview in full, but it's this part that is perhaps most frightening and most dangerous as the authoritarian bent of popular vote loser Donald Trump continues to be almost completely unchecked by Congress.
If we were to lose net neutrality protections, which by all appearances we will, that would suddenly create all kinds of vulnerabilities for independent media. There are clear dangers associated with vertical integration, where the company that owns the pipes is able to control the dissemination of information, and able to set the terms by which we access that information. When we think about, for instance, dissenting political news sources that don’t have the resources to compete in a pay-to-play media environment, we see that there are obvious political hazards.
And more than that, we could start to see scenarios where ISPs don't like the political views that are being disseminated from a particular news outlet. Without net neutrality they would be free to block or slow down content from those sites. There have been cases like this already. In 2005, the company Telus, which is the second largest telecommunications company in Canada, began blocking access to a server that hosted a website that supported a labor strike against Telus. Anyone involved in journalism or activism should be concerned about this kind of retaliation and censorship.
It's likely not going to be just independent media that becomes vulnerable. Consider Trump's jihad against CNN, and how he appears to be using his Department of Justiceto block AT&T from acquiring Time Warner in retribution for CNN's coverage of him. We don't know how this particular story is going to play out yet (and yes, there are reasons to cheer this merger not going through) but it's clear that Trump and his administration will retaliate against the media.
The open internet has been essential for the resistance and for new civil rights movements. It has "decentralized the media and allowed black activists in a modern movement against police and state violence to bypass discriminatory media gatekeepers and reveal the extent of the state’s abuse." The ability to record police abuses in real time and to disseminate that footage quickly—or even in real time—and cheaply makes the open internet the primary tool for fighting for social justice.
It makes its potential loss at the point in time, with the Trump administration in power, so much more dangerous for this nation's future.

7 Things to Know About Ajit Pai, the Man Trump Tasked With Killing Net NeutralityTrump’s FCC commissioner is waging an under-the-radar attack on the World Wide Web.

President Trump appointed Pai to serve as chairman in January and Pai has quickly moved to advance the interests of big broadcasting companies and internet service providers at the expense of the public. Next month, the five-member FCC will vote on Pai’s proposal to roll back FCC rules limiting cable and internet service providers from charging more for their services.
Even Trump supporters should be appalled, says the reliably conservative Forbes magazine.
Tim Berners-Lee, the man who invented the protocols of the World Wide Web, is blunt: “The FCC under Ajit Pai has consistently chosen to sell out Americans for the profit of corporations."
4. Pai wants to take a 'weedwhacker' to net neutrality.
Sometimes, Pai couches his arguments in terms of “innovation” and “investment,” which are largely bogus. The telephone and cable companies are not going to stop investing in internet broadband technology under the current rules. They make good money off the present system. They just want to make more.
Other times, Pai speaks of taking a “weedwhacker” to internet regulations.
In this Personal Democracy Forum video, Timothy Wu explains why this is such a bad idea.
“Net neutrality,” of course, is a sleeping pill of a phrase. The subject is technical and can be boring. So it is worth hearing Wu explain key terms like “Title II” and “fast lanes,” without losing the big point. Net neutrality protects the internet we have today, “as an experiment in free speech."
Ajit Pai wants to end the experiment to help boost the quarterly profits of Verizon and Comcast.
5. All of the big tech companies oppose Pai on net neutrality.
Last July, the leading companies and websites that grew up with the internet—Google, Apple, Wikipedia, Reddit and the like—came together for a day of action to educate users about the danger of the FCC’s plans.
Cynthia Hogan, head of public policy for Apple in the United States, laid it all out in a letter sent to the FCC. "Providers of online goods and services need assurance that they will be able to reliably reach their customers without interference from the underlying broadband provider," she wrote.
6. The FCC received millions of public comments on net neutrality rules—and Pai ignored virtually all of them.
The FCC received 22 million comments on net neturality rules, of which 1.3 millionwere probably fake. If you remove the bot-generated comments, 95 to 98 percent of the real living commenters favored keeping the current rules that regulate ISPs like public utilities. 
“We are so used to these systems being manipulated that people just think that’s how the internet works,” Berners-Lee recent told the Guardian. “We need to think about what it should be like....If they're not serving humanity, they can and should be changed."
“Gas is a utility, so is clean water, and connectivity should be too,” Berners-Lee continued. “It’s part of life and shouldn’t have an attitude about what you use it for—just like water.”
7. Pai has transformed net neutrality into a political cause.
The open internet nonprofit Fight for the Future is orchestrating nationwide protests ahead of the FCC's expected hearing to vote on removing the rules. Protests are already being planned for December 7 at Verizon locations in New York City, Denver, San Francisco, and Phoenix. Similar public protests will be coordinated in cities and towns across the country by grassroots volunteers using tech-friendly methods like email, texts and social media. 
Last week, Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) became the first congressional Republican to publicly break with the FCC chairman. “Senator Collins does not support the FCC‘s decision to abolish net neutrality,” a spokeswoman said.
Let Verizon know your opinion of its former employee and current flunky Ajit Pai, by attending a demonstration near you.


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