Control of the internet is the power to regulate speech; Obama wants that power for the FEC, FCC, and the United Nations.
SAN ANTONIO, Texas, January 12, 2015 — On Wednesday, President Obama will lay out his plans for the internet in a speech in Iowa. Using platitudes like “net neutrality,” he will explain that internet service providers are treating customers unfairly. He will argue that government intervention is the only way to put a halt to their discriminatory business behavior. He will try to create a perception of crisis in order to get Americans to accede to the massive new internet regulations that he will decree.
What he won’t do is tell a well-documented truth: He plans to nationalize, tax, regulate, and cede control of, the internet.
Nationalizing the internet: “Net Neutrality”
Since Al Gore invented the internet, it has been fully open and accessible to anyone with a computer and a phone line. However, six days after the 2014 midterm elections, Obama announced his support for a Federal Communications Commission (FCC) plan to assert full control of the internet. He intends to use a statute from the 1930s to reclassify the internet as a “public utility,” meaning that internet content would be subject to the same rules and restrictions as telephone companies.
The five FCC commissioners are appointed by the President for five year terms. Although only three commissioners may be from the same political party, all five commissioners have been appointed by President Obama and confirmed by a Democratic Senate.
In November of 2014, the Wall Street Journal wrote of Obama’s policy:
“When the FCC floated this idea in May, we called it ‘ObamaCare for the Web,’ but that was too kind. The Obama Internet plan would treat cable, telephone and wireless broadband networks as common carriers subject to federal price controls and myriad other regulatory restrictions.
“Like the telephone companies of old, broadband providers would be required to ‘file a tariff’ at the commission, meaning they would submit mountains of paperwork and ask the government to approve the prices they intend to charge for services. The bureaucrats would then consider whether the prices are fair. FCC bureaucrats would also hold sway over plans to expand or build digital networks. Under such conditions, who would invest to build the next generation of broadband technologies?”
Internet Service Providers have created this wonderful product for Americans with billions of dollars of investment, and what they deserve from us is praise, not the demand that government control the prices they sell their product for, which would undoubtedly lead to restricting some people’s access to the internet.
Net Neutrality would effectively provide the government with the ability to make every important decision for the internet service providers, though allowing the companies to keep the titles to their businesses. When prices inevitably rise and services inevitably worsen, Obama will blame the problems on the companies.
Tax the internet: Internet sales tax
Before the midterm elections, the Democrats brought a bill to the floor of the Senate that would have required every single company selling goods on the internet to collect sales tax for every transaction. There are over 9,600 different rates of sales tax throughout the country. Municipalities, cities, and states are constantly changing the rates, and every mom-and-pop business would be required to keep track of every single one, or risk suffering a severe penalty.
Keeping track of all of those different tax rates would be close to impossible for most small businesses, and would discourage, if not outright eliminate, competition with bigger companies, like Amazon. The lack of competition would make the big companies effective monopolies, making them complacent in providing newer, better and cheaper products for the public. For these reasons, all of the big companies support the internet sales tax, including Amazon.
Regulate the internet, FEC to regulate political speech
The commissioners on the Federal Election Commission (FEC) were deadlocked in late October, 2014 about whether the FEC should regulate political speech on the internet the same way they do on television and radio. The vote was split 3-3 along party lines, with every Democrat voting in favor.
Obama and the Democrats know that in order to continue successfully manipulating the public, they must control speech on the internet. Democrat and FEC Vice Chair Ann M. Ravel said, “Some of my colleagues seem to believe that the same political message that would require disclosure if run on television should be categorically exempt from the same requirements when placed in the Internet alone. As a matter of policy, this simply does not make sense.”
Ravel says the FEC should no longer “turn a blind eye to the Internet’s growing force in the political arena,” and she vowed to force a conversation next year on what changes to make.
However, the Democrats’ proposal would require that a huge bureaucracy review all internet activity for potential violations, as is done in China, Iran and North Korea. This monitoring might start with only political speech, but would inevitably grow to searching out “hate speech,” or whatever else the government deems inappropriate or offensive.
FEC Chairman Lee E. Goodman said what Ravel is proposing “would put government censors on the Internet daily, culling YouTube video posts for violations of law — nothing short of a Chinese censorship board.”
Ceding control of the internet: ICANN to the UN
This issue is extremely nuanced and complex, but very important. In fact, Breitbart News called the decision to turn over ICANN to the UN the worst foreign policy mistake Obama has ever made, and that is saying a great deal.
Whenever the Obama Administration faces opposition from the international community, they surrender and sacrifice something in an attempt to make amends, which is exactly opposite of how Obama treats Americans who disagree with his statist policies.
To make up for the NSA scandal, the Obama Administration is determined to hand over control of ICANN (the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) to an international entity, most likely the International Telecommunication Union, the United Nations group that regulates the internet.
Breitbart News explains the importance of this decision. “Like almost everything at the UN, the ITU is controlled by authoritarian regimes such as Russia and China, who marshal voting blocs of unfree countries to drown out free ones. These are countries that want to be able to shut down their citizens’ access to the Internet, and to prevent online activism of various kinds. U.S-controlled Icann is the last defense against the kind of censorship and repression that would entrench their power indefinitely.”
Other technology experts have compared this decision to the decision to ceding control of the high seas in the early 20th century.
These four policies, in combination, give Obama and his statist allies everything they want: power, control, a new way to tax people, regulation of speech on the internet, and, the ability to shirk responsibility. They can say that the massive censorship, problems with access, extremely high prices, and more are due to the international community’s regulation of ICANN.
These policies are scary, and Republicans will do nothing to stop him. Obama is following Marx’s advice completely; the first two critical institutions for any statist government to control are healthcare and the media.
Enjoy the internet while you still can, and remember: When Obama blames any problems that crop up on the U.N. or the nominal owners of the firms that provide internet service, that was his plan from the very beginning.
After he succeeds in destroying freedom on the internet, he will come for our guns and further control over the education system. Any good Marxist would.Click here for reuse options!
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