Rarely, do I see people in chains cheering their oppressors. But that’s what NetNeutrality supporters are doing. NetNeutrality, is opposed to every American tenant; freedom, free markets, and democracy. I’ll explain;
Let’s start with how this is a brazen assault on our system of government. The FCC is an unelected body that has managed to legislate and pass laws without our consent that directly interfere with the free markets. Furthermore, the FCC fascistically voted on their own proposal without even releasing its 300+ pages to us. Do we even know what loopholes or what mechanisms exist in these 300+ pages to repress dissenting and opposing political views? Don’t think the government would do that? Remember how the IRS targeted Tea Party supporting businesses? Or how the NSA has spied on citizens? Or how the government hacked into an NBC reporter’s computer, when she was investigating the governments actions in the Benghazi scandals (http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/erik-wemple/wp/2014/10/27/sharyl-attkissons-computer-intrusions-worse-than-anything-nixon-ever-did/)?
The internet is the last bastion of free thought. For the most part, the internet allows a free flow of all information. Hence, the internet is the source of news and political dissent which the government would love to suppress. All it would take is for the FCC to threaten an ISP or company hosting politically unfavorable information with an audit or a fine, and we would magically see such websites simply not have enough bandwidth or worse yet, disappear out of search records and indexes.
Besides the potential for repression, NetNeutrality is also worrisome because it regulates the entire digital backbone: that includes, talk radio, phone, cable tv, websites, pretty much all forms of communication. Hence, the entire current media ecosystem is effectively under the heavy hand of a government bureaucracy. This is bad news.
The thought of a government intervening in the internet is just wrong. This is a government that had great difficulty even setting up a website for obamacare. And yet, the government thinks its not only capable of regulating the entire internet, but also that the internet needs the government?
It doesn’t. The greatest regulator is the free markets. Frankly, monopolies rarely exist without the collusion of government. The current state of the internet isn’t a monopoly, and if it were, why not fix it by laying down more fiber? How does regulations solve a problem of infrastructure (if there actually was one)? It doesn’t.
As a result of a previously, largely hands off approach by the FCC, the internet became one of the greatest sources of wealth and power. But under the Obama appointed FCC, we have seen even the FCC change its position against NetNeutrality, to for it. The FCC recognized that there was nothing neutral about NetNeutrality. In essence, this truly is a power grab by the democrats, and by an authoritarian president.
So, where does this leave us? We are left with the government once again, adding a layer of regulations that stifles small business and innovation. The idea that ISP’s shouldn’t prioritize data is absurd: we all prioritize every day. And likewise, without data prioritization, we will most likely see great slowdowns for users with poor infrastructure. The idea that some companies will be shown preference or that some sites would not be reachable by certain ISP’s is an interesting forecast, but it also reveals a deep misunderstanding of technology. Supposing this would have occurred, there would instantly be hundreds of sites to stream ISP blocked content from another ISP, as we see even know with pirates or illegally streamed movies.
So what would have been a fair proposal? One that invests in upgrading ISP’s infrastructure to handle exponentially higher bandwidth. Then the idea of Fast and Slow lanes is meritless and there is no need for data prioritization.
In conclusion, as major non-ISP tech giants (Intel, IBM, Qualcomm) in opposition to NetNeutrality have stated, we will see a major halt in internet backbone development as private companies realize that they will not be able to recoup the costs of investment. Furthermore, we will also see a general chill in political opposition sites and communities, as the FCC will most likely begin imposing fines or audits on ISP’s for hosting “hate speech” (opposing view) sites.