One of America's leading authorities on technology and telecom policy, Motley is a writer, television and radio commentator, political and policy strategist, lecturer, debater, activist, and policy advisor to The Heartland Institute.
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Democrat Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-CA) just penned an editorial for the San Francisco Chronicle. That has the patchouli whiff of her writing while sitting at the corner of Haight and Ashbury – in August 1968. It is warmed-over Hippie-Dippie, Flower Power, Socialist nonsense.
But Congresswoman Eshoo writes all of this is in defense of a Huge Government Internet power grab. That back in the Summer of Love would have been rightly viewed as evil Big Brother lording over us and keeping us down.
Here is a great question – posited at Yahoo! Answers:
How did the Hippies, who were so anti “Big Brother” in the 60s become Big Brother in the 2000s?
And God bless the Users – the first answer pretty much nails it.
They took over such institutions as many mainline churches, government bureaucracies and the educational system. It is hard to rail against Big Brother when you are Big Brother.
Were we to remake the flick “Dr. Strangelove,” its new alternate title would be “…or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Big Brother.”
It would require a doctoral thesis to unfetter the thinking of the entire Eshoo editorial – let’s just address some of its most egregious passages.
Far too often (from her perspective), she is accidentally correct – starting with her headline.
Net Neutrality Case is About More than (Federal Communications Commission) FCC Rules
No kidding. It’s about three unelected Democrat (polit)-bureaucrats unilaterally commandeering control of 1/6 of the entire U.S. economy.
Did Congress give them authority to impose Net Neutrality – as Congress must do? Of course not. Congress has in fact never in law written the phrase “Net Neutrality.”
What the FCC just did was super-impose landline telephone law onto the Internet – that was written in 1934. Because we all know the New Deal-era Congress when writing the 1934 Communications Act – absolutely also had in mind the World Wide Web.
By the way, that same ’34 Act renamed the FCC. When it was being written – it was the Federal RadioCommission. This is how absurd the FCC-of-today’s power grab is. More Ms. Eshoo:
What sets this policy dispute apart from others? This isn’t solely about private-sector profits or political advantage.
But that’s a huge part of it. Pro-Net Neutrality – and pro-President-Barack-Obama-and-Democrat – Big Businesses Netflix and Google use more than half of all U.S. Internet bandwidth. The Ms. Eshoo-approved Obama Administration just outlawed Internet Service Providers (ISPs) charging them more for more bandwidth.
Which means we will pay more for bandwidth – to augment the profits of Google and Netflix. So that Google and Netflix can take even more of those profits – and donate even more to Democrats. Crony Socialism, anyone?
The FCC’s power grab is a huge usurpation of Ms. Eshoo’s Congressional authority – but Ms. Eshoo doesn’t mind because she likes the dictatorial outcome. (We’re sure she also likes the Supreme Court doing the exact same thing.)
How we in government resolve the issue of access to the Internet will color how the Millennial generation of Americans views government’s ability to meet 21st century challenges.
But she then writes:
According to a 2014 Pew report, these 75 million Americans ages 18 to 34 are digital natives,“the only generation for which these new technologies are not something they’ve had to adapt to.” More numerous than Baby Boomers, these young Americans are defined by attachment to their social networks via broadband connection.
So the Millennials already have access to – and mastery of – “these new technologies.” And they had it long before the power grab Ms. Eshoo is defending. Thus is Net Neutrality a government “solution” running around in search of a non-existent problem.
Differentiating among online services through the creation of fast and slow lanes.…
This fast-and-slow-lane garbage is non-sensical. A grocery store charging Netflix more for their one hundred thousand steaks than they charge you for one isn’t a “fast lane” – it’s Economics 101. Net Neutrality is the government absurdly mandating that the grocery store charge the same for 100,000 steaks – and 1. Which means we all pay much, MUCH more for one steak.
In the 21st century, consistent access to information is critical for survival, security and mobility. In the “information age,” the Internet offers the route to learning, employment and advancement. Libraries dedicate precious space to making computers available, with designated hours and classes for young and old. Computer literacy enables one to cross over a critical divide in our society. For those not born in first class or business class, that portal to information can determine future opportunities.
Again, Ms. Eshoo, via the data you cite, this “problem” is already solved – solely by the private sector.
(And with just about every written word ever available digitally – why do we still have government libraries? “Dedicate precious space?” Why aren’t they now solely government computer labs? Heck – iPad labs?)
Thankfully, the FCC got it right.
Again, Ms. Eshoo, per your immediately preceding written words – the FCC did not. Either legally – or metaphysically.
Your alleged objective is to “help” Millennials – with this Huge Government grab?
Too late – prior to the grab the private sector had already delivered Millennials the Digital Age. The power grab you’re defending – is utilizing law written nearly a century ago.
The private sector is always forward thinking – and moving. Government is always stuck in a debilitating time warp.
The FCC getting it right – would have been the FCC doing nothing.
You and yours were right the first time (as, always, was George Orwell) – Big Brother is a very bad dude.