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MEMO TO THE FCC: KEEP YOUR DAMN HANDS OFF MY INTERNET, I SAW WHAT YOU DID WITH THE PHONE SYSTEM ...

Danger, the FCC is plotting against the consumer …

Politico is reporting

“Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski is putting together a net neutrality proposal and plans to take action on the controversial issue as early as next month, according to several sources with knowledge of the situation.”

There is absolutely no reason why the FCC should interfere with the Internet infrastructure or the processing of data over the Internet.

First, the Internet is self-regulating. Whereas the FCC’s mandate was to license and regulate broadcast carriers and later expanded into the regulation of electronic devices which might affect broadcasting, the technical specifications are created by the IETF (Internet Engineering Task Force) and the numbering scheme is maintained by ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assignment of Names and Numbers). Thus there is no formal requirement for regulation of the Internet by the FCC.

Second, where the FCC and the respective State Public Utility Commissions exist, they are there not to protect the consumer as popularly advertised; but to insure that the special interest profit models are preserved. The reason which telephone companies who all offer the same basic connectivity, can implement fanciful packages of features, sales, offers and other tricks to allow them to charge higher than commodity prices for exactly the same connectivity.

Now that the Internet business model has severely impacted the old communications companies, they are looking to the government to allow them to continue milking the consumer – for somewhat inferior services – at ever increasing prices.

I do not consider FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski  to be an honest broker for the consumer …

First and foremost, Genachowski is an ideologue – a political animal that is beholden to the system which grants him power, prestige and profits rather than to the ordinary consumer.

Second, Genachowski is a lawyer, coincidently working for Barack Obama when Obama was the head of the Harvard Law Review. Check out Genachowski’s political activities before turning to business and you can see he is more about law, procedure, regulation and enforcement than he is a consumer advocate.

Third, in business, Genachowski served in positions with companies which were all about Internet content creation, protection and transmission. A man who wants to grant those special interests what they want: a way to use the federal government to insure their everlasting profits; possibly at the expense of the consumers who pay for such products and services.

There is also no doubt that he is close to Barack Obama as he “advised and guided the Campaign’s innovative use of technology and the Internet for grassroots engagement and participation.”

The government and the special interests are uniting to screw the consumer …

On one hand, the special interests such as the telephone companies, the wireless companies and the cable carriers are trying to use the Federal Communications Commission to impose tariff system on the Internet that would allow them to charge consumers based on message content rather than the cost of providing the connection. Not to mention that the content providers would  like the government to implement federal controls on copyright infringement to criminalize the theft of their content; with all of the investigation and prosecution costs borne by the taxpayer.

On the other hand, the administration in power, hence the government, would like to curtail alternate information channels which are used to release “unfiltered” news or openly disparage government activities. In essence, find a way to moderate the First Amendment when it comes to the alternate news sources that do not parrot the government line or support the mainstream media.

The simple explanation of network neutrality …

All information sent over the Internet, data files, video, sound, e-mails, pictures and documents is in the form of “packets,” small packages of information. In its original conception, network neutrality would mean that all packets are transmitted over the network without any additional charges for type of content or priority of delivery.

The hidden danger in implementing a content-based charging scheme …

At the core of any network charging scheme is the Internet Service Provider’s ability to engage in “deep packet mining.” That is open each packet to determine its contents so that it can be charged appropriately. This is the very same technology used by government spy agencies who monitor the Internet. Mandating that users provide special flags to note content and copyright status will become mandatory and a further intrusion into the control mechanisms of electronic devices.

The GUID … a guide to electronic discovery and an evidence chain …

Very few people outside of law enforcement and the technological world know about the GUID (Globally Unique IDentifier) which is a number which uniquely defines each computer system, computer programs and computer users. Most software vendors embed this identification GUID in your documents, pictures and some printers also identify the exact machine that prints a image. While there are many legitimate uses for GUIDs, the most dangerous use is to allow anyone to track individual documents, files, recordings and electronic media back to the computer (and to the user) which created the file.

You are already losing your privacy one device at a time …

Each electronic device is becoming capable of identifying its purchaser, its users and any information that may be created – and linking it back to unknown servers and vendors who are not under any legal responsibility to use the information in an ethical manner. In fact, many of these systems violate the Fourth and Fifth Amendments.

“The Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution protects personal privacy, and every citizen's right to be free from unreasonable government intrusion into their persons, homes, businesses, and property -- whether through police stops of citizens on the street, arrests, or searches of homes and businesses.”

“The Fifth Amendment provides that a person  shall not be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself.” Notice it says nothing about civil cases which can be brought by the government, organizations and individuals.

Why you can’t trust what the Obama Administration may say …

According to Politico …

“The long-running net neutrality debate centers around rules that would require Internet service providers to treat all web traffic equally.”

This sounds great and is the original intent of “network neutrality.” But in granting the privilege of regulating the Internet, they are also granted the privilege to make administrative rules and regulations which favor the big-bucks lobbyists who represent the special interests, often to the detriment of the consumer.

“Internet companies like Google and Skype want net neutrality rules applied to both wireline and wireless networks, but network operators including AT&T, Verizon and Comcast say they need flexibility to manage web traffic on their lines.”

Truth-be-told, the big companies want to maximize the profits on the aging infrastructure systems before they are required to build-out a faster, more fault-tolerant network that will be demanded by both consumers and businesses. The big Internet carriers are worried that companies such as Netflix are able to use more than 20% of the Internet without paying the carriers an additional dime for the privilege.

Who is really protecting us?

Well it’s not the government who is busy pandering to the special interests to raise both campaign funds and voter support from the special interests.

However, there are freedom-loving, consumer organizations who are fighting the system and acting as consumer advocates. My favorite one is the EFF (Electronic Frontier Foundation) which I believe represents my interests against all who would deny me access to the Internet, trample my privacy rights or further control my world for political purposes. I strongly suggest that you look at www.eff.org and donate if you like what you see. They have my enthusiastic recommendation as a first rate safeguard against a government out of control.

Bottom Line …

Obama’s Orwellian and oft Marxist interpretations of government action are scary. The best warning I can provide is that of George Orwell who noted in his book, Animal Farm, the governing dictum

"All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others."

The Internet is a transformative communications tool much like the telegraph and telephone of days gone by. We cannot let the government do to the Internet what they have done to the broadcasters and the telecommunications companies that offer telephone service.

The government has already mandated through CALEA (Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act) that they be able to tap (with a court order) any of our communications devices. Now they want to use this very same capability to track and police our use of content without any warrant. It’s not about access or pricing – it is about FREEDOM.

Freedom, something which the government is rapidly trying to diminish as they tell us which light bulbs we must use, what toilets we can flush, what cars to use, which mass transit we must support – and now they are attempting to tell us which news sources to watch or listen. 

It is now time to tell them to step off – and elect “honest brokers” to serve “we the people.”

-- steve

Reference Sources …

Sources: FCC chief working on net neutrality proposal - POLITICO.com Print View

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“Nullius in verba.”-- take nobody's word for it!

“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw

“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”

“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS

"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius

“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell

“Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt." (The people gladly believe what they wish to.) ~Julius Caesar

“Describing the problem is quite different from knowing the solution. Except in politics." ~ OCS

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