Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Net Neutrality: The White house, Congress, the Public and the Media!

Republican FCC Member Warns Net Neutrality Is Not Neutral - by Chriss W. Street 9 Feb 2015

Ajit Pai, one of two Republican Commissioners on the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), inferred in a tweet that President Barack Obama’s secret, 332-page “Net Neutrality” document is a scheme for federal micro-managing of the Internet to extract billions in new taxes from consumers and again enforce progressives’ idea of honest, equitable, and balanced content fairness.

FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler recently acknowledged that the three Democrats on the commission had decided to avoid Congressional input regarding the Internet by adopting President Franklin Roosevelt’s 1934 Communications Act to regulate the Internet with the same federal control as the old AT&T customer monopoly. To make sure that libertarian advocates would remain in the dark, Wheeler “embargoed” release of any of the specifics in the new administrative “policy” that will act as law.

The FCC legislation that was passed eighty-one years ago by the most leftist Congress in American history to ban companies from participating in“unjust or unreasonable discrimination” when providing phone services to customers.

But in 1949, the Democrat-dominated Commission implemented the “Fairness Doctrine” that required holders of media broadcast licenses to present “issues of public importance” in a manner that is “honest, equitable, and balanced” in the “Commission’s view. It would take 39 years before a conservative Congress could overturn a policy that hijacked the mainstream media to kowtow to liberals or face loss of their licenses…..To Read More…..

Congress probing White House role in FCC chief's net-neutrality plan - By Jim Puzzanghera February 9, 2015,

Two congressional committees have launched investigations into whether the White House improperly influenced the net-neutrality proposal released last week by the head of the Federal Communications Commission.

On Monday, Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) asked FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler in a letter to explain his decision and produce documents related to communications and meetings involving the White House and agency officials concerning the issue. Johnson……. concerned that there was “apparent pressure exerted on you and your agency by the White House.”

Last week, Wheeler proposed strict new federal oversight of online traffic to ensure Internet providers don't give preference to video and other content from some websites over others.

Wheeler's plan, circulated to his fellow commissioners ahead of a Feb. 26 vote, is much tougher than what he initially outlined early last year and closely follows the approach President Obama publicly called for in November.

“The FCC’s new position on net neutrality is not only a monumental shift from Chairman Wheeler’s original net-neutrality proposal but also a large deviation from the light regulatory touch applied to broadband services since the Clinton administration,……..the process raises serious questions about the president's inappropriate influence over what is supposed to be an independent agency that derives its authority from Congress and not the White House,” Johnson said……Johnson asked Wheeler if the FCC was “aware of the 'unusual, secretive effort inside the White House' relating to net neutrality.”.To Read More….

Nets Barely Cover Obama’s Internet Regulations - By Joseph Rossell | February 9, 2015

It has been nearly three months since President Barack Obama spoke out in favor of Internet regulation, calling for “net neutrality” and a “free and open Internet.” In spite of the massive impact such regulations could have on Americans, the broadcast networks have given the issue short shrift.…..Phil Kerpen, President of American Commitment, told MRC Business, "There has been almost no coverage of the president strong-arming what is supposed to be an independent agency, or the highly questionable policy he has proposed that would reverse the past two decades of Internet policy and install a heavy-handed regulate-and-tax alternative."

When they did cover the issue, the networks were almost entirely uncritical in their reporting. On November 11, CBS's "This Morning" co-host Gayle King echoed the White House’s talking points, saying that Obama wanted the FCC "to adopt tough rules to protect a free and open internet.……..To Read More…..

Republican FCC Commissioner Slams ‘Obama’s 332-Page Plan To Regulate The Internet’ - Giuseppe Macri 2/6/15

Republican FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai on Friday raised the first of many criticisms to come about FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler’s aggressive net neutrality plan distributed to commissioners Thursday, which Pai described as “President Obama’s 332-page plan to regulate the Internet.”

In a statement released Friday, Pai lamented the fact that the 332-page plan, which he tweeted a picture of himself holding next to a picture of Obama, won’t be released to the public until after the commission votes on its implementation later this month. …….“President Obama’s plan marks a monumental shift toward government control of the Internet. It gives the FCC the power to micromanage virtually every aspect of how the Internet works,” Pai said. “The plan explicitly opens the door to billions of dollars in new taxes on broadband… ……..To Read More…..

Republican FCC Commissioner: Public Is Being Misled About Net-Neutrality Plan - By Brendan Sasso

“I have studied the 322 page plan in detail, and it is worse than I had Imagined.”

The Federal Communications Commission is misleading the public about its 332-page plan to regulate the Internet, a Republican member of the commission said Tuesday.

The net-neutrality plan could in fact open the door to new fees and taxes, as well as government control over the prices that Internet providers charge their customers, Commissioner Ajit Pai told reporters.

The claims echo attacks from Republicans on Capitol Hill, who are also scrambling to thwart the new regulations. Committees in the House and Senate have launched investigations into whether President Obama inappropriately influenced the FCC's decision, and Republican lawmakers are working on their own alternative net-neutrality legislation to override FCC action.

FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler, who unveiled his plan last week, has denied that it would impose new fees or regulate prices. But it's difficult to determine who is right, because the commission won't release the actual text of the regulations until after it approves them on Feb. 26.

"I believe the public has a right to know what its government is doing, particularly when it comes to something as important as Internet regulation," Pai, one of two Republicans on the five-member commission, said. "I have studied the 332-page plan in detail, and it is worse than I had imagined." ……..To Read More…..

Editor’s Note:  Below is the FCC Press Release of Commissioner Ajit Pai ’s complete comments. 

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