By keeping the FCC from being populated with commissioners who favor consumer protection over irresponsible corporate deregulation, the Democrats have allowed the Republicans to not only repeal the Obama administration’s 2015 net neutrality regulations, but regulations which have existed since the age of dial-up as well.
I actually followed that link and read the arguments, as well as following many of its supporting links. Sorry, I don’t buy it.
Wired is one of those leftist/socialist advocates that ignore the realities of technological advance, and publish articles so agenda-driven as to be nonsense.
The reality of the Internet is that technology has been and is improving so fast that any prediction/projection made in terms of today’s technology is certainly wrong. “Wrong” in what way we often can’t predict, but the economic realities even just a few years from now cannot be predicted.
Leftists like you have much greater faith in the use of government bureaucracy and regulation than those on the right. (This despite your constant screeds on how the “establishment” controls the government.) The right (or parts of it) may have too much faith in “competition”, with “deregulation” and “privatization” often getting uncritical support when more critical evaluations might suggest mixing a “light touch” of regulation with it.
But “regulation” cannot be understood based on a single linear scale or dimension. The FCC (as I’ve said before) :
[… W]as probably one of the best, or anyway least bad, of regulatory bureaucracies. They have (for at least a few decades) taken seriously their mandate to foster competition, and use regulations primarily to create a common infrastructure for that competition.
They applied the “light touch” approach to fostering the growth of the Internet, with income (real and anticipated) driving investment in new technology that improved service. This was highly successful.
The Obama imposition of “net neutrality” was opposed by his own FCC chairman, and only happened because Obama overruled him. It was an example of the sort of heavy-handed regulation favored by socialists and other technophobes who refuse to actually think about the impact of their preferred “solutions” to problems that often exist only in their imaginations.
This is not to say that the non-regulatory environment left by removing “net neutrality” will be ideal. It may become necessary for the FCC to impose some prohibitions to blocking or “punitive” throttling based on content. But, for instance, throttling one household’s four simultaneous Netflix movies so everybody else’s email can load seems perfectly reasonable.
Let me take it further. AFAIK “net neutrality” (as just repealed) would prohibit a private investor creating a specialized high-bandwidth line between two cities and charging a high premium for its use to companies such as Netflix. Never mind that it would be a win-win-win situation: the investor would make a profit, Netflix would be able to provide its customers better and more reliable service, and everybody else would get faster loading due to removed competition on the regular service.
As John C. Dvorak put it (in PC Mag):
What happened exactly to trigger the recent madness was Netflix paying to get a better peering arrangement with Comcast to speed its movies along to the demanding consumer. It seems that Netflix would rather use the private high-speed backbones owned by Comcast and Verizon rather than use the public Internet that flows through the exchange points such as Mae-East or Mae-West.
The FCC as a good track record, for a regulatory bureaucracy, in “light touch” regulation to foster competition in an environment of massive technological growth. Removing the heavy-handed anti-tech Obama-era regulations such as “net neutrality” is an excellent idea.
And don’t think that Mr. Trump’s choice of chairman is totally anti-regulation. He has repeatedly pointed to the issues of real content-driven censorship by effective social media monopolies (e.g. Facebook, Twitter, Google/Youtube) as issues that probably require regulation (or legislation).
The “Two Party System”
That head is not the Democratic party, and it is not the Republican party. The head of the boxer you are fighting (and you are indeed already in a fight for your life whether you like it or not) is the unelected power establishment which owns both parties. The plutocratic donor class, the intelligence community, the military-industrial complex and the mainstream media have been loosely collaborating to throw the one-two punch combination we’ve been discussing here at your face your entire life. [my bold]
This statement well illustrates your poor thinking, failing to make critical distinctions and thus misrepresenting the situation in the US. Perhaps that’s because, having grown up in Australia, you don’t really understand our system.
Your “unelected power establishment” doesn’t “own” both parties. It “owns” major factions in both parties, although even there the majority of elected representatives are more interested in getting re-elected than anything else. (Except, perhaps, whatever “kompromat” the “deep state” has on them.)
But in each party there are other factions, both among voters and even (to some extent) among elected officials. Your “unelected power establishment” fought all-out against Mr. Trump’s candidacy, and while Democrat officials (both elected and party) were totally anti-Trump, a number of Republicans sided with him.
Looking at how Republican officials behaved during the last election is a good indicator how close they are to that establishment, and the number of incumbents who have said they won’t run for re-election suggests that the Republican Party is being pried away from it.
I’d say the actual chance of a “revolution” such as you want, that would “overthrow” your “unelected power establishment”, is effectively zero, and a good thing. Most Americans understand that the result would be total violent chaos, not to mention that the vast majority of armed Americans (military, police, and private) are far to the “right” of the positions you espouse.
That establishment, in total, represents the major continuity in US politics which is all that prevents chaotic, multi-sided civil war in the streets. Change must be gradual, taking advantage of the fact that your “unelected power establishment” is actually made up of many factions itself, most of them with some type (and level) of ideology, varying widely.
A globalist American Imperium of some sort has been effectively inevitable since the end of World War II. There are, however, many different visions of what that Imperium should be.
Like Rome, the US has gone from being one among many “nation-states” to “first among equals”. Rome during this period, experienced several severe civil wars leading to Octavian’s “Principate”. So far, our “civil wars” have been fought out as proxy wars, dishonest political maneuvering and propaganda wars. The anti-Trump actions you often criticize would be examples of the latter.
There are several (as far as I can tell) different visions of American Imperium among the various factions of your “unelected power establishment”, however the differences would seem to be subtle. All would appear to involve fusing the US with the EU and the rest of the world into a sort of “bureaucratic” state along the lines of the EU, using the UN as a starting framework.
In the process, the US public is drained of its former wealth, as jobs (primarily manufacturing) are off-shored to cheaper labor markets. In ways, this approach is self-defeating as the US public is losing the income needed to pay for the product. But they’re the primary market for this manufacturing.
Our president’s vision is different: he wants to counteract the loss of good jobs, bringing home the massive amounts of production that has been off-shored. If in the process other major nation-states such as China, Russia, and Britain end up with more self-control than the “unelected power establishment” would like, that’s fine with him, and most of his base.
He also wants to defend US sovereignty, against the unelected UN bureaucrats of the bureaucratic world government your “unelected power establishment” favors. (Note that these bureaucrats are even more unelected than the FCC commissioners you complain about: unlike the latter, who are appointed by an elected president and confirmed by an elected Senate, most of these UN bureaucrats are appointed by commissions selected by ambassadors or other representatives of a variety of world governments, many with human rights records that would curl your toes.)
I have my doubts how well Mr. Trump’s plans will work out, given the completely underhanded opposition of your “unelected power establishment” along with the need to compromise with their elected puppets (e.g. in the Middle East, but note that even there, Daesh/”ISIS” has been more-or-less defeated, with Russia gaining most of the benefit).
The new tax regime, with its lower corporate rates, will likely (IMO) bring home a great deal of business. But I doubt most of the “good” jobs that went overseas will come home with it. Low-paying human labor overseas will be replaced with low-paying robot labor here. The “good jobs” will go to those qualified to oversee robots.
Which means that some sort of income redistribution will become essential. Not just for the sake of people without the money to pay for the goodies all those robots will be making, but for the sake of the companies making them.
Then you’ll see some action. (Note that Mr. Trump isn’t much of an ideologue, and if some sort of “negative income tax” is necessary to keep the economy moving, he’ll probably override the purists for the sake of his base.)