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Even if the repeal had passed the Senate, President Obama had promised to veto it

After months of threats and debating, the Republican leadership in Congress moved forward with plans to block the U.S. Federal Communication Commission (FCC) from rolling out basic net neutrality rules, which prevent landline internet carriers from throttling the user's connection, charging on a per website basis, or engaging in other tactics designed to slow some sites' load times and speed others' up.

I. Republicans Push for Net Neutrality Ban

As Republicans control the House of Representatives, the key battleground in the repeal effort would be the Senate.   Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Texas) sponsored the repeal resolution, S.J. Res. 6.

Sen. Hutchinson took a hard stance, arguing that ISPs should be allowed to charge users on a per-site basis and throttle as they wish, without regulation.  She comments, "The internet and technology have produced more jobs in this country than just about any other sector.  It has been the cradle of innovation, it does not have a problem, and it does not need fixing."

Others in her party took a softer approach.  Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-Maine) wrote a "dear colleague" letter to her fellow Republicans.  In it she wrote that she felt that net neutrality regulation was necessary to protect consumer abuse.  But she argued the proper place for it was through the Senate, not the FCC.

But if "pro-net neutrality" Republicans senators had an alternative plan they failed to propose it in concrete form.  And it was unclear when or if a replacement to the current rules would be drafted if repeal was pass -- or for that matter whether a net neutrality bill could past muster in the House and Senate given many Republicans absolute opposition to anything standing in the way of ISPs' efforts to increase profits by cutting back and restructuring regional internet services.

The hardline Republicans like Sen. Hutchinson who flatly opposed any regulation argued that regulation would kill jobs.  Sen. Hutchinson pointed to industry studies that claimed net neutrality regulation would slow infrastructure deployment, and by proxy reduce jobs.

The Republican-controlled House had passed a net neutrality repeal measure in February 2011.

President Obama threatened to veto S.J. Res. 6

II. Democrats Warn That Repeal Would Kill Innovation, Free Speech

The repeal had Democratic President Barack Obama concerned enough that he threatened to veto the bill [PDF] if it should pass, with his office writing in a release, "If the President is presented with S.J. Res. 6, which would not safeguard the free and open Internet, his senior advisers would recommend that he veto the Resolution."

But this dramatic game of political theater end rather mundanely as the Democratic majority in the Senate rallied together in opposition of the resolution.  Sen. John "Jay" Rockefeller IV, the great-grandson of famous oil tycoon John D. Rockefeller, led the opposition commenting:
There's still 53 of us, and if we stay together we'll win.  I think we're going to prevail.  Even if they don't, they'll still have the backing of the White House, which has already threatened to veto the resolution, should it survive past the Senate floor. It would be ill-advised to threaten the very foundations of innovation in the Internet economy and the democratic spirit that has made the Internet a force for social progress around the world.

III. Wednesday's Fiery Debate

Here's some video coverage of Wednesday's debate, which preceded a vote:

Democratic Perspective (~3 min)

Republican perspective (~17 min, but starts off strong)

IV. Democrats Emerge Triumphant

Sen. Rockefeller's stand paid off.  The final vote was tallied yesterday and showed all 52 Democrats voting opposing the measure, and all 46 Republicans voting in favor of the measure.  The bill was thus defeated, clearing the way for the FCC's new net neutrality rules to go into effect next week.  

Two senators did not vote -- Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Senator Dan Inouye (D-Haw.).  It appears that Sen. Inouye was at an event in Washington, D.C. honoring a Japanese veteran of World War II.  It was unclear why John McCain -- who had previously led the charge against net neutrality -- did not vote.

V. Legal Challenges Remain

The rejection of the repeal resolution now leaves the various lawsuits against the rules as the only thing standing in their way.  Interestingly, advocacy groups have also opposed the rules claiming they do not go far enough, and unfairly exempt mobile devices from their provisions.  Several groups have pursued legal action.

The Media Access Project, who had been suing on the grounds of the lax approach to mobile regulation, dropped its legal action after it saw its case assigned to the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals.  Policy Director Andrew Jay Schwartzman explained that his organization feared a hostile atmosphere in that particular court would kill the case.  He comments, "The D.C. Circuit Court is a very hostile forum.  [It would be a] very close case."

That leaves The Free Press, who is suing on similar grounds.  Strangely The Free Press's President and CEO Craig Aaron -- leading the suit against the rules -- cheered the Democratic success in block their repeal in the Senate.  He comments, "The Senate sent a strong signal today to would-be gatekeepers that the free and open internet needs to stay that way.  The American public doesn't want phone and cable companies undercutting competition, deciding which websites will work or censoring what people can do online."

Most public advocacy groups lauded the vote, while saying the rules still should be extended farther.  Among them is the American Civil Liberties Union.  In a post entitled "It Was Close, But We Won: Viva Net Neutrality!" ACLU Washington, D.C. staffer Sandra Fulton writes:
Though the FCC’s rules are not great, they do offer some protections for net neutrality on the wired Internet and overturning them would have been a huge setback for free speech on the web. During debate on the Senate floor yesterday supporters of the resolution railed against government regulation while opponents defended the rules saying they were necessary to maintain the openness and innovation that has allowed the Internet to thrive.

On the other side of the spectrum, there's also a suit from Verizon Wireless, the joint venture between Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ) and Vodafone Group Plc. (LON:VOD).  It's hard to understand why Verizon decided to sue the FCC, given that the Commission's proposal closely mirrors that which a Verizon - Google, Inc. (GOOGpact proposed in Aug. 2010.  The rules offer virtually no regulation on mobile internet service providers -- just as Verizon requested.

Verizon's lawsuit will be heard in the Spring or Summer.  In the meantime Verizon could request in court that the rules be suspended pending the outcome of the lawsuit.  The FCC has already taken a preemptive strike, moving to dismiss Verizon's lawsuit on legal technicalities.

The Democratic-majority FCC under the Obama administration has been quite busy.  It is currently in the process of finalizing a spectrum auction, an effort carriers laud but some TV broadcaster loathe.  It's also assisting the U.S. Department of Justice in its case against AT&T, Inc. (T) who is trying to engulf T-Mobile USA -- a subsidiary of Deutsche Telekom AG (ETR:DTE) -- a move which would grant it a virtual monopoly on 3G GSM technology in the U.S.

Sources: Senate, The White House, Engadget, ACLU

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By Dr of crap on 11/11/2011 10:12:25 AM , Rating: 5
more political crap
Us vs Them
Reps vs Dems

I SOOOOO hate that part of what I begrudgingly call our political system.
I hate the fighting, I hate the ads puting down the other side when it's election time.
I hate the whole process.

By Zaranthos on 11/11/11, Rating: 0
By room200 on 11/11/2011 10:26:42 AM , Rating: 1
How did they "win". You say 3 minutes of arguments about leaving the internet alone from the democrats, vs. 17 minutes of Kay Baily Hutchison selectively talking about regulations that she doesn't like. There are thousands of reulations that are in place now that keep you from walking around choking with a curved spine while eating poisoned food and drinking polluted water. Regualtions are there for a reason.

By Zaranthos on 11/11/2011 10:34:38 AM , Rating: 3
The Democrats talked about leaving the internet alone but that's not what is going on. They made new rules to not leave it along and the Republicans want to abolish those rules. The argument is a great big fail when it says one thing and does another.

By idiot77 on 11/11/11, Rating: -1
By DFSolley on 11/11/2011 11:17:22 AM , Rating: 2
The first step in controlling something is regulating it. You put the bureaucrats in place and say they are only there to make sure it stays pure and free. And then when you have some idea to control it, the bureacracy is in place and ready to exert control. Instead of the big bureacracy, why dont we just pass laws and let matters be settled in courts?

And it seems that you dont understand "the commons", as it usually resolves to the "tragedy of the commons". There are some socialists that say with the correct rules and rulers, the tragedy wont occur... but it always does in time. Public spaces have always been misused, either by overuse or restricting use (giving preference to those with power).
There are definitly places that should be public, but my computer isnt one of them.

By Dr of crap on 11/11/2011 12:40:08 PM , Rating: 2
And the above statements are why I posted what I did above them.
Go blow your politics somewhere else please.

By Nfarce on 11/11/2011 1:33:17 PM , Rating: 2
Like paying for stuff you don't use? There you go, that's how the internet will be run if the Republicans have their way.

Well, I'm taxed in my local voting district for things I don't use. That means I pay for things like public transportation access, recreational park maintenance, libraries, handicap facilities, and on and on and on. Both Democrats and Republicans are involved with that.

And then I can expand that into the federal level with just one example: by soon having to pay a higher health care premium because Obamacare mandates that health insurance providers must provide birth control free of charge (no copays). In other words, we ALL will be paying for that even if we don't use it. And that's pure Democrat legislation.

Then of course there are wonders of Democrat legislation like the Dodd/Frank bill that caused everyone's banking fees to go up. But, all that's for another rant and another post.

By shin0bi272 on 11/14/2011 10:51:52 AM , Rating: 3
hey re-re ... libertarians want maximum freedom and minimum government. Learn your political parties before you type.

Also if you think that "the commons" shouldnt be owned tell that to the city you live in who charges you for water... or even better the private company that youre buying bottled water from. You mentioned health care, fire protection, police protection, retirement(really??), and the military in your mindless argument. NONE of these are what you are describing. All of those things are other people's labors and should not be considered an entitlement...which is what you are suggesting by saying these things shouldnt be "owned". I see through your mindless leftist argument and I am not amused.

Your entire argument is not only a fail but its also advocating centralized planning and a huge federal government which is what we know as socialism or communism... and thus you are a moron. Please log off and kill yourself you mindless waste of space.

By blankslate on 11/15/2011 4:06:02 PM , Rating: 2
The idea of the commons is valid concept. Particularly when it comes to natural resources that everyone needs for survival water and air being the most obvious examples.

Does anyone on this board actually trust a corporation whose sole purpose is to turn a profit to not take short cuts which could contaminate water or air if taking the shortcut would result in higher profits?

Unfortunately, past examples have shown that we cannot. Some government regulation is necessary to ensure that reasonable precautions are taken to prevent pollution of air or water.

As far as this argument about net neutrality goes, it has become apparent again that we cannot trust companies not to slow down or speed up internet traffic in order to give their business partners an advantage or give their competitors a disadvantage.

One of the main reasons for the rapid growth of the internet was the fact its blindness as to where the bits originated and what their destination was.
The internet is not a natural resource but many have come to depend on it for information, entertainment and conducting commerce.

Now to ensure greater profits some media corporations would like to slow down traffic over their parts of the network that originate from a competitor. They might even slow down information from servers that host blogs or stories that are unfavorable to them.

So why should the government have a say in whether or not companies can do this? Everyone knows that the internet has already helped some companies enjoy great profits when they have made the internet a core of their business model.
amazon and newegg come to mind.

It might not have happened as quickly or perhaps not even have begun yet, if certain senators didn't advocate the commercialization of what started as a Defense Agency research project.

If you don't believe me then read what one of the pioneers has to say about it.

I believe that this does mean that if corporations take measures to slow down access to information from sources that they aren't partnered with or are competing with them, then someone has to step in and stop that behavior.
Despite being cast as a mindless ghoul that wants to regulate every thing to the detriment of the very things they are regulating the federal government does have a role in regulating some things because they are the only group who can.
Particularly in the case of ensuring that there is no preference given to information flowing over the network when it was government research and then advocacy by members of the government that gave rise to the internet as we know it today.

If we want to have an influence on those regulations then it is our responsibility to vote for the people who we believe will be wisest when it comes to enacting those regulations.

This includes doing the due diligence in researching a candidates political stance. This is especially true when we hear something from some talking head who has his own agenda that determines what information that he/she is telling you and as importantly what they aren't telling you.
Ironically the internet is a very good means of verifying those things if we're willing to follow the trail to the source documents.

It's a shame that people are ignoring the potential of corporations to inhibit a persons free access to information over the internet because we're afraid of the government.

The average person can vote and thereby have an influence over the government, you can't say the same about corporations unless you have stock in a company and even then you probably don't have enough shares to really have any influence on a corporation.

A knee jerk reaction against net neutrality rules is kind of ignorant when you look at the picture as a whole.

Sure point out the double standards between wired and wireless companies. Criticize the people who are writing the regulation. However, don't just discount net neutrality as something that is needed for the internet allow a free exchange of ideas and knowledge in the future as it has done up to this point.

By superPC on 11/11/2011 10:28:03 AM , Rating: 4
you know what's the difference in those past 15 years? you don't have video streaming until a few years ago. and you don't have netflix or hulu. that's a big difference. without net neutrality ISP can throttle netflix or hulu and increase speed to their own service that mimic netflix or hulu. that's unfair. that's undemocratic. we need to see the internet like we see power lines. everyone has the same rights to use it and draw power from it without limit (except the power line capability and consumer ability to pay). if new cables need to be laid down so capacity can be maintained for all it has to be done, be it power lines or fiber optic lines.

By autoboy on 11/11/11, Rating: 0
By gixser on 11/11/2011 3:53:15 PM , Rating: 2
There ARE some services that would benefit society if the ISPs could guarantee speeds such as remote medical work using robots.

Don't use a public network for such traffic. There are commercial circuits you can buy that do provide the requisite guarantees.

By MozeeToby on 11/11/2011 4:47:23 PM , Rating: 2
There ARE some services that would benefit society if the ISPs could guarantee speeds such as remote medical work using robots.
Most sane net neutrality plans allow for Quality of Service (aka some services faster than others) so long as it is by the type of service and not by the source or destination. For example, VOIP packets could be given better latency than bulk download packets, so long as all VOIP packets are treated equally. You could have an official use only, best effort, real time protocol which would have the highest priority but not be guaranteed much bandwidth. Bulk transfers can be given whatever bandwidth is left over, but they don't care about latency as much. Etc, etc, etc.

That's not a problem, and long term it's going to be all but required to manage networks as more and more people use high bandwidth (but generally low latency) services. Where problems arise is if your ISP offers it's own VOIP service (or receives kickbacks from some other service) and treats those packets better than they treat packets from Skype or Google Voice. Then Skype and Google get to choose between paying every ISP in the nation for decent service, suing (but without net neutrality they have no explicit legal standing), or throwing in the towel.

By ekv on 11/12/2011 4:33:06 AM , Rating: 3
Most sane net neutrality plans
Are you remotely implying that this congress has made a sane plan? If only that were true, then there would be pragmatic grounds for compromise. The bickering really does turn me off, but if no-one owns the Internet then really, what that boils down to is, the Gov't owns it. I'd rather a corporation own it. Somebody that CAN be vilified if necessary. As opposed to, say, another Great (fire-) Wall.

Laws currently exist giving Google and Skype plenty of room in court to operate. And I'm sure their lawyers wouldn't want to have to sue every ISP, but then again, lawyers bill by the hour, don't they?

By Reclaimer77 on 11/11/2011 6:09:22 PM , Rating: 1
Is that even being done though? So because ISP's "can" do something, you want to hand the Internet over to the FCC and create MORE bureaucracy? There has to be a better way.

By seraphim1982 on 11/11/2011 10:38:30 AM , Rating: 3
Obviously, you haven't seen the prices and quality of service in other countries....

By Zaranthos on 11/11/2011 10:40:18 AM , Rating: 1
Obviously you don't realize this country is massively larger with much more remote areas?

By yomamafor1 on 11/11/2011 12:15:13 PM , Rating: 2
I didn't know US was larger than Russia, and with more remote spaces.

By gladiatorua on 11/11/2011 1:46:33 PM , Rating: 2
Russia is not very good example. It has a lot of problems due to its size, poor management and corruption.
US on the other hand has slightly different problem. F*cking government-pushed monopolies. You already have unreasonable prices for internet and wireless communications. Do you want to be screwed even more?
This kind of regulation restricts corporations and not users. Corporations that instead of spending money to upgrade the infrastructure, limit users and rise prices. And without competition they can get away with it.
Do you really want to pay more for less?

By ekv on 11/12/2011 4:57:50 AM , Rating: 2
It has a lot of problems due to its size, poor management and corruption.
And the US doesn't have anything like that. Nothing like Solyndra or Fast-and-Furious here, or is there?

You complain about "government-pushed monopolies" -- which I disagree with you about -- but if Net Neutrality pushes the corporation(s) out of controlling the infrastructure they build and operate, then who's in charge? The gov't. Talk about straining at a gnat and swallowing a camel.
And without competition they can get away with it.
We agree on this. My solution however, is less gov't -- though strictly enforcing contractual law, of course. I want more competition. More businesses and corporations in this market will lower costs to consumers and ultimately lead to greater innovation and better products. If you take away incentive to build and operate you will get less competition.

By shin0bi272 on 11/14/2011 11:01:41 AM , Rating: 2
what they were saying what in reply to someone else who said that government run internet was great in other countries and they gave an example of a country with government run internet that wasnt working.

your argument is about our government corruption in other areas and is thus invalid. You then say that you disagree with them on government pushed monopolies but then admit that if net neutrality passes the government will basically own the internet. You contradict yourself (in very poor english) good sir.

You say you want more competition? Yet you support the government controlling the internet... hypocritesayswhat?

If you dont like the crap your ISP is doing MOVE TO ANOTHER ONE! No it wont be another cable company but there's dsl, satellite, dialup, and even 3g/4g cellphone internet (with an unlimited data plan you have no complaints since 4g is faster than even my cable internet).

By ekv on 11/14/2011 4:03:52 PM , Rating: 2
your argument is about our government corruption in other areas and is thus invalid.
Thank you for your reply. No, my comment about government corruption is more about the tendency for Men to be corrupt. Larger gov't means more Men, or more people if you prefer, and hence the greater likelihood of corruption. That of course does not take into account the kind of people working for the gov't. It could be that a miracle could occur and we would have totally righteous people working for the gov't and thus no corruption. That would be nice. Not likely though and certainly is not the case today.
You then say that you disagree with them on government pushed monopolies but then admit that if net neutrality passes the government will basically own the internet.
I disagree that we have gov't pushed monopolies. It is an arguable point which is why I only mentioned it in passing. So I think you're missing the main thrust of my argument. The gov't ought not be in the business of picking winners and losers. Hence a gov't pushed monopoly, whether it exists or not, ought not be in the first place. Again, I want more competition.

I am aware that a large corp can dominate to the point of knocking out the competition completely. Case in point, Microsoft. Of course, market forces and bureaucratic inertia seemed to have caught up with Microsoft to the extent that Apple and Google, while not direct rivals per se, offer an ecosystem (as it were) that competes more than effectively with Microsoft. So, in this case, where's the monopoly. Yes, a monopoly may have existed for some time, but again, market forces seem to have made the correction for us. If there were gov't force behind Microsoft, then market forces would have been squashed and/or disallowed. That is what I argue against.
You contradict yourself (in very poor english) good sir.
I disagree and would point out that "what they were saying what in reply to someone else who said that" is absolutely no better English than anything I've put down, ever. Please lead by example. If you have a specific criticism point it out.
Yet you support the government controlling the internet
Where did I say this? I don't think I've said anything like that. For starters, it would be against my principles as one who leans towards a small gov't (arch) conservative philosophy. I believe that Net Neutrality, as espoused by the current administration, is bent on ultimately taking over control of the Internet. No that is not tin-foil-hat thinking. It is consistent with how Obama has treated the auto industry, the health-care industry, etc.
If you dont like the crap your ISP is doing MOVE TO ANOTHER ONE!
We agree!

By Jeffk464 on 11/11/2011 11:17:14 AM , Rating: 2
"I watched both arguments and the Republicans won the argument in my opinion"

If the Republicans win on this one, we the consumer loose.

By n0ebert on 11/11/2011 10:27:46 AM , Rating: 3

They should make slandering your opponent illegal in campaigns. You're allowed to promote yourself and that's it.

Of course, the media is also to blame in this matter as the news organization owners generally try to preach their beliefs on their stations instead of being unbiased as they should be. Fox News for Republicans, MSNBC for Democrats, etc..

But, it doesn't pay the bills because the 3rd reason our system is screwed up are the people themselves. We're a bunch of gossip junkies that eat up any drama that unfolds. The Media plays on that to get better ratings and the politicians play on that in their campaign ads.

The whole system needs to be overhauled and nothing short of a complete change will have any effect from the circus it currently is.

By Zaranthos on 11/11/2011 10:38:33 AM , Rating: 2
I think they should just have duels like they used to. Then if you're not willing to die shooting your mouth off you'll keep it shut. :P
A lot less blah, blah, blah, and maybe a few less politicians. ;-)

By idiot77 on 11/11/2011 11:16:18 AM , Rating: 2
Yes because denying others the right to live because you disagree with them is an attribute we should all strive for.

By Etsp on 11/11/2011 12:29:57 PM , Rating: 3
Perhaps you should think of it from the opposite direction: Having politicians that are willing to die to stand by their political positions and beliefs.

By twhittet on 11/11/2011 5:16:34 PM , Rating: 2
I was going to +1 you, but then I thought again. There are plenty of whackos and extremists that would be willing to die to stand by their "beliefs" - but that just makes them even more of a whacko extremist.

By Dr of crap on 11/11/2011 12:45:33 PM , Rating: 3
Did any of you read my first post?

Stop with the Us vs Them mentality, it shows you stupidity!

Once elected the a$$holes in office should vote what the ones who voted him in want, not what HIS F**ing party tells him to!

It's suppose to be solving the problems that come up ruling this country, not fighting with the other side over every freaking little detail!

By gladiatorua on 11/11/2011 1:51:12 PM , Rating: 2
That's the fun with two party system. Duopoly is not that different from monopoly and it's easy to divide into us and them. And no third(fourth, fifth or sixth) party to raise another question or choose different answer to existing one.

By Dr of crap on 11/11/2011 2:58:30 PM , Rating: 2
There's no FUN in it.
It all crap and we need MORE "sides",
and way LESS finger pointing and name calling.

By geddarkstorm on 11/11/2011 3:35:03 PM , Rating: 1
Without this yin-yang we would never have balance or preservation of freedom. Of course, without this yin-yang we'd also have far more progress and efficiency. But hey, fascism is a highly efficient form of government, and republics/democracy are the least so. It's just the trade off for liberty and personal freedoms.

And frankly, I'm glad for it! They can bicker all they want, as long as they finally get their act together to take care of the important details. This keeps power from ever getting too consolidated--for that is the greatest threat against any populous.

On the other hand, one could claim both parties are actually just different sides of the same coin at times, and their bickering can all just end in a farce.

By Iaiken on 11/11/2011 3:46:27 PM , Rating: 2
Without this yin-yang we would never have balance or preservation of freedom.

Bull. It is positively absurd to assert that the myriad views of over 300 million Americans can be represented by just two parties.

By geddarkstorm on 11/11/2011 5:50:37 PM , Rating: 2
No, I didn't mean just TWO parties. What I'm arguing against is NO parties or just ONE party. That's the fast track to totalitarianism.

But do you realize just how many political parties are actually in America? Maybe there's a reason why 300 million Americans (of which a fraction can actually vote, and a fraction of that do) predominately elect just from those two parties.

By sleepeeg3 on 11/11/2011 11:14:31 PM , Rating: 2
It's funny how Mick spins it. Legitimate news sites phrase it as, "GOP efforts to stop FCC's 'net neutrality' push fails"

Any form of regulation costs the consumer money and only serves to increase the power of government.

It just goes to show....
By room200 on 11/11/2011 10:21:01 AM , Rating: 2
I'm glad the democrats triumphed here. With some trying to throttle the internet, charge taxes on internet purchases, and other such nonsense, it threatens the very nature of what the internet is all about.

RE: It just goes to show....
By Zaranthos on 11/11/11, Rating: 0
RE: It just goes to show....
By superPC on 11/11/2011 10:39:04 AM , Rating: 5
do you know how that problem fixed itself? because your government has REGULATION forbidding any anticompetitive and monopolistic tactics. that makes it possible for smaller company to compete fairly with larger company, and that's how you got your cheaper price.

without that regulation your one ISP would use their money and pressure the smaller competitor unfairly and you will be paying a lot more.

RE: It just goes to show....
By Zaranthos on 11/11/2011 10:54:42 AM , Rating: 2
No because they broke up the big company that would have had internet here years earlier otherwise. My friends dad worked for that monopoly which shelved all it's internet plans when they were busted up. It took years for the little companies to get to the point where they could upgrade the infrastructure needed for decent internet. There are pros and cons obviously.

RE: It just goes to show....
By idiot77 on 11/11/2011 11:14:00 AM , Rating: 2
Great inductive thinking there, most of us grew up and stopped doing that at about age 5.

RE: It just goes to show....
By Rob Noxious on 11/11/2011 12:49:56 PM , Rating: 2

RE: It just goes to show....
By gladiatorua on 11/11/2011 1:54:10 PM , Rating: 2
In a lot of cases you DON'T have a free market. It's not a free market where there is a government-pushed monopoly or duopoly. Especially in case of telecoms.

RE: It just goes to show....
By alphadogg on 11/14/2011 10:44:07 AM , Rating: 2
"in a free market without a bunch of rules problems tend to fix themselves"

LOL. I laugh at how such people call communism "idealistic" and then spew this crap. Yeah, everything magically fixes itself in Laissez-Fairy Land! Right.

RE: It just goes to show....
By Kurz on 11/15/2011 10:30:26 AM , Rating: 2
Its funny they often do just fix themselves.
The issue is there has to be a demand for the percieved fault to be fixed.

RE: It just goes to show....
By autoboy on 11/11/2011 2:43:42 PM , Rating: 2
LOL. You have no idea what you are talking about. It's the government that wants to levy taxes on internet activity and they want to be able to regulate the internet. This regulation doesn't outlaw throttling. It puts the FCC in charge of deciding who gets throttled and who doesn't.

What you really want is for things to stay the same as they have been. A free and open internet. Well, even though this bill is nicely named, it does exactly the opposite of what you want. It applies FCC regulations on the once free and open internet that you so love. Free speech my ass. Is TV a bastian of free speech? You can't even say fuck on TV. The internet has been the only truly free market in our lifetime and that is because it was a brand new market that lawmakers hadn't figured out how to regulate yet. It was a true free market and that's why it's been able to grow so quickly.

RE: It just goes to show....
By room200 on 11/11/2011 10:48:48 PM , Rating: 2
You just pulled all of that crap out of your arse.

RE: It just goes to show....
By Reclaimer77 on 11/12/2011 2:35:03 AM , Rating: 2
Thank you man. You get it. I do not understand how people can still be so clueless as to why the Government is getting involved in this. I don't get it! How can people still be this gullible and ignorant?

The Government is NOT a bunch of fluffy bunnies that care about you. If they want Net Neutrality, it's because it will give them power and control. Look at EVERY GODDAMN THING they've ever got involved in.

The Internet is the last bastion of free speech and artistic expression on the planet. And it evolved into that without ANY Government regulations or controls placed on it. Think about it people.

By Rob Noxious on 11/11/2011 10:43:56 AM , Rating: 1
Sen. Hutchinson, R-TX, sounds as if even she herself loses interest in the text she's reading, no doubt written by lobbyists from AT&T and Verizon.

There are few clearer lines of delineation between who fights for big business rights and who does not than this debate. Big business rights to take an ever larger chunk of your income, that is.

Republican drone voters bitch incessantly about taxes when they need to look closer at what businesses are legally carving larger holes in their budgets. They can't expect Hannity and Limbaugh to point this out for them, because that will never happen.

By Jeffk464 on 11/11/2011 11:24:49 AM , Rating: 2
thumbs up, if you are wealthy and benefiting from these neo-con policies I get it. If you are working class and believe in this stuff you are a brainwashed moron.

By Dorkyman on 11/11/2011 11:37:57 AM , Rating: 2
Geez, I am so tired of this "Workers of the world, unite!" bullcrap mentality. The US is slowly sliding backwards into the ooze of socialist mediocracy. The irony here is that this is happening just as a number of countries in Europe are awakening from their welfare-state stupor.

By Zaranthos on 11/11/2011 12:12:26 PM , Rating: 2
I just hope you work hard enough to make it to the 1% so you can support the rest of us. ;-)

On a more serious note some people actually do figure it out. Usually about the time they have to work in the real world, in a real job, paying real taxes, and supporting a family.

By Rob Noxious on 11/11/2011 12:40:59 PM , Rating: 2
As usual, no substantive retorts from your side, just ad hom attacks on what you perceive as the enemy (those, me perhaps, you perceive as your enemy, of the "workers of the world, unite" -- and really, what's wrong with that anyway?). I'm tired of baseless attacks.

Kay Hutchinson reads text obviously not written by her, since she can barely articulate it without her mind and voice wandering. Whether it was her aides or lobbyists who wrote it is irrelevant. Saying that Net Neutrality will prevent job creation is mindless psychobabble with no basis in business reality. Net Neurtrality prevents, as Franken said, your ISP from shoving Domino's, Pizza Hut and Papa John's down your Google search for "nearby pizza" before the result for the small business that's also in the same area.

Net Neutrality needs to be expanded, not eliminated. Prioritizing the Net based on the amount spent to influence it instead of the fair playing field of information is what this is about. It's mostly what we have now. Yet reactionaries LIKE YOU want to allow big business to change the system, a system that will not benefit you at all and will in fact cost you more money.

And, Zaranthos, piss off. I've had a real world job, a career in fact, paid taxes, supported a large family, and done it all by myself for 35 years. Your smug condescension is noted, and frankly, makes you look small-minded.

By Zaranthos on 11/11/2011 1:12:23 PM , Rating: 2
No I'm arguing that a myriad of new regulation is not inherently a good thing. Did you even listen to what the woman said? Apparently not. But I'm sure having some unelected group make up rules as they see fit instead of the people we elect is guaranteed the best possible outcome? Seriously? I'm also arguing that leaving it to the free market might not be a bad thing because when Sucky Company A starts pricing and restricting your internet New Company B will see an opportunity to offer you a better choice and competition will force Sucky Company A to change, compete, or lose to the rules of the free market. Free market rules could hash out most problems better than regulations that often just inhibit the market. If you think more and more rules, regulations, and bureaucracy work so well read the tax code and explain it all to me in detail in your next post.

By yomamafor1 on 11/11/2011 2:56:38 PM , Rating: 2
Does "collusion" ring any bell?

By Iaiken on 11/11/2011 2:57:26 PM , Rating: 2
I'm sure having some unelected group make up rules as they see fit instead of the people we elect is guaranteed the best possible outcome

Technically, the people you that the people elected just approved those rules by blocking their prohibition.

As for your pathetic attempt at explaining how the free-market can fix segments with massive barriers to entry, it simply demonstrates that you have zero knowledge of how an ISP even operates. Outside of major urban centers, there is no competition whatsoever because the cost of entering these remote markets makes a ROI almost impossible unless you have an absolutely gargantuan advantage over the competition. If you're a small start up going against a national ISP, they can just subsidize a local loss until you go out of business.

You also have absolutely zero idea of what anti-competitive behavior is even likely to occur. The Canadian internet is largely unregulated an I've already provided the government with documented cases where Rogers Communication shaped my Netflix traffic to the point where it was almost unwatchable. What's more, I documented how Rogers did not count their own video on demand service internet service against my monthly data allowance.

If the absence of rules creates an environment where such corporations can engage in anti-competitive abuses to achieve competitive advantage or financial gain, abuses will occur. Hence the rules...

By Reclaimer77 on 11/12/2011 2:45:15 AM , Rating: 2
The Canadian internet is largely unregulated an I've already provided the government with documented cases where Rogers Communication shaped my Netflix traffic to the point where it was almost unwatchable. What's more, I documented how Rogers did not count their own video on demand service internet service against my monthly data allowance.

That sounds like a personal problem. I've never had that happen and neither have the VAST majority of Internet users.

And to the OP, anyone supporting Franken and Kerry is a quantifiable and provable idiot. That's really not an opinion, it's a fact. Franken is Stewart Smiley, a hack actor who stole an election, who knows nothing of what he speaks of. And Kerry, well what could I possibly point out about him that everyone doesn't already know?

If the absence of rules creates an environment where such corporations can engage in anti-competitive abuses to achieve competitive advantage or financial gain, abuses will occur. Hence the rules...

I'm not accepting this premise, but if that's the case why can't we simply make laws to prevent this? Do we really NEED to hand over control of the Internet to the FCC? We keep burying things behind layers of bureaucracies when they could be handled in far better ways.

But typical Iaiken, blindly support regulation no matter what the issue. Does it make you feel warm and fuzzy at night or something?

By alphadogg on 11/14/2011 10:39:51 AM , Rating: 2
Reagan was an actor too. So, if being an actor means you have no political potential, are you prepared to summarily dismiss both Francken and Reagan?

By ekv on 11/17/2011 4:18:03 AM , Rating: 2
I think I missed the Governor Franken part.... Perhaps Stu was the head of SAG? no?

By room200 on 11/11/2011 10:51:05 PM , Rating: 2
I know what you mean; those horrible, terrible, workers. I swear, how one station can get people to turn against the very fabric of what makes America agreat country. You sir, are an idiot.

By bigdawg1988 on 11/14/2011 10:44:57 AM , Rating: 2
After watching 60 minutes yesterday I think they both cave to business interests to line their own pockets. I wonder if Pelosi and some of the democrats are out buying stocks now based on the votes?
Crooked, crooked system we have here. The foxes and weasels guarding the hen house and telling the farmers how good a job their doing.
Make all politicians put their investments in blind trusts while they are in office. Then we'll see how many want to stay in office.

How the GOP Became the Party of the Rich
By KingofL337 on 11/11/2011 10:47:09 AM , Rating: 3
RE: How the GOP Became the Party of the Rich
By Zaranthos on 11/11/11, Rating: 0
RE: How the GOP Became the Party of the Rich
By idiot77 on 11/11/2011 11:10:44 AM , Rating: 2
Actually Rolling Stone is probably one of the best well written magazines out there.

You of course are an ideologue that is too stupid realize truth when it smacks you up the side of the head.

RE: How the GOP Became the Party of the Rich
By Zaranthos on 11/11/2011 11:51:00 AM , Rating: 2
Rolling Stone is a liberal left leaning magazine and you call me an ideologue?

By alphadogg on 11/14/2011 10:48:59 AM , Rating: 2
When you are on the far, far Right, everything is Leftist crap to be ignored unfortunately. Leaves little room for conversation, doesn't it?

RE: How the GOP Became the Party of the Rich
By Rob Noxious on 11/11/2011 12:45:44 PM , Rating: 2
You can't argue with a drone who lives to spew mindless crap. Just move on and ignore trolls like Zaranthos who add nothing to the debate.

It must be what passes for meaningful activity in his life.

Thanks for the RS link.

RE: How the GOP Became the Party of the Rich
By Zaranthos on 11/11/2011 1:21:30 PM , Rating: 2
So far I've been called a 5 year old, a drone, a moron, a troll, and probably many more insults because my opinions are not the typical left leaning political views commonly expressed on the internet. The problem is my views aren't that uncommon in the real world. You just happen to disagree with them. I hope insulting me makes you feel superior to me in every way as you pat yourself on the back.

RE: How the GOP Became the Party of the Rich
By autoboy on 11/11/2011 3:00:19 PM , Rating: 2
It's more insulting for Rolling Stone to completely ignore that all incomes and buying power in the US have increased. The rich are getting richer and so are the poor. Wealth is not a zero sum game.

Rich is relative guys. I bet most of you are all in the top 1%. It only takes a 45K salary to be the richest 1% in the world.

This is an ignorant piece that doesn't understand the GOP viewpoint at all.

By room200 on 11/11/2011 10:54:14 PM , Rating: 2
We aren't talking about the richest 1% in the world, and once again pulling numbers from your arse won't make you any less of a lying pig.

By weskurtz0081 on 11/11/2011 4:24:25 PM , Rating: 2
It actually IS pretty funny, I thought liberals were supposed to be compassionate, understanding, etc, but I guess that's only the case as long as you agree with them. Disagree with them and they come after you calling you stupid, a moron, a drone, etc..... NICE!

By Cerin218 on 11/13/2011 2:57:20 PM , Rating: 2
You are SO RIGHT!! I mean, I feel bad for the Democrat leadership because they are all the working poor. They employ their workers and pay them better benefits and pay then their Republican counterparts.

We should raise taxes on the rich, I mean if the Democrat majority keeps making investments on things like Solyndra, they aren't going to have any money soon. We all need to pony up more cash because we all know that the government is an OUTSTANDING investor, I mean look how well Fannie and Freddie have done the last five years.

So keep blindly blaming the Republicans. Great idea.

Have the Democrats spent us into prosperity yet?

that's not democratic
By superPC on 11/11/2011 10:34:10 AM , Rating: 5
Sen. Hutchinson took a hard stance, arguing that ISPs should be allowed to charge users on a per-site basis and throttle as they wish, without regulation

that's like saying any company can do price fixing, use anti competitive tactic, all without being regulated.

that's not democracy in my eyes.

RE: that's not democratic
By TSS on 11/11/2011 1:16:07 PM , Rating: 2
Actually democracy is just majority rule. If the majority wants it, it's democracy.

If the rich are in a position to count for more and thus get a majority faster, well that's your problem.

Probably the reason why the USA has always been a republic. Or atleast, is supposed to be one.

RE: that's not democratic
By superPC on 11/11/2011 5:51:36 PM , Rating: 2
electoral systems and democracy
By Larry Jay Diamond, Marc F. Plattner:

Democracy is generally defined as a form of government in which all adult citizens have an equal say in the decisions that affect their lives.[1] Ideally, this includes equal (and more or less direct) participation in the proposal, development and passage of legislation into law

It says equal say, not richer can get majority, not some has a say and others don't. it's equal say, that's democracy. it's about equality, fairness.

RE: that's not democratic
By Cerin218 on 11/13/2011 3:01:58 PM , Rating: 2
Man, I REALLY wish people that live in this country actually understand the country and what it was founded as and WHY.

Do some reading people, educate yourselves.

RE: that's not democratic
By alphadogg on 11/14/2011 11:48:33 AM , Rating: 2
Or, try also, for a more balanced, less blinders-and-worship article.

RE: that's not democratic
By Nfarce on 11/11/2011 1:16:37 PM , Rating: 1
We aren't a "Democracy." We are a Constitutional Republic, sometimes called a Democratic Republic. A "democracy" is majority rule, or mob rule.

Did you know the word "democracy" doesn't exist in the US Constitution?

RE: that's not democratic
By autoboy on 11/11/2011 3:08:08 PM , Rating: 2
We are a democratically elected Republic. Sorta. The electoral college kinda wipes out the concept of actual democracy but we're close.

RE: that's not democratic
By alphadogg on 11/14/2011 11:53:58 AM , Rating: 2
Note to kids: If you see someone equating "democracy" to "mob rule" or "lynch mobs", or other hyperbolic exaggerated analogies to kill discussion, please note you are talking to a fearful, brainwashed Libertarian.

some points to look at
By shin0bi272 on 11/14/2011 10:41:53 AM , Rating: 2
A) olympia snowe is NOT a republican. Shes a right wing democrat who votes with the democrats more than she votes with the republicans because in Maine the republicans let independents and democrats vote in their primary. So you end up getting the most wishy washy republican EVER.

B) Sen. Hutchinson was right. If you think that the internet needs the government to step in why dont you move to china and google for anything involving the words freedom or tibet

C) if you think that the government will make the internet BETTER you're sadly mistaken... the government never makes any private sector endeavor better when it regulates it into the ground.

and lastly

D) if you think they will stop with this "ensuring all traffic is treated the same way" you're fooling yourself. I'd like to know what color the sky is in your world because you obviously think that centralized planned (though its never worked best in any other country) is the bees knees and we need to have more of it here... and thus you are a retard.

RE: some points to look at
By alphadogg on 11/14/2011 10:52:59 AM , Rating: 2
If the government creates a law that says: "you cannot control freedom and equality of speech on the Internet", I think some of you die-hard far-Rightists would still think this is "bad guvrnmint reguhlasions". There's no winning.

RE: some points to look at
By ekv on 11/15/2011 5:24:02 AM , Rating: 2
If the government creates a law that says: "you cannot control freedom and equality of speech on the Internet"
Why would the gov't do that? Doesn't the Constitution spell out what the gov't can do, and if the gov't does more then it is over-stepping its authority? You already have freedom. Why create a law? I mean, what you said kind of belongs with the Redundant Dept. of Redundancy.

RE: some points to look at
By alphadogg on 11/15/2011 9:42:42 AM , Rating: 2
The Constitution is second-order law. It's law about how the the constituent parts of a State is setup and how it (should) operate.

It is not first-order law, for example the United States Code. We have lots of laws there, created by the Government. Do you think we should dispense with it all then, and simply live happy happy under the Constitution alone?

RE: some points to look at
By ekv on 11/23/2011 4:41:12 AM , Rating: 2
I don't see how you get from 'we have lots of first-order laws' to 'do you think we should dispense with them?'

You seem to imply that it is ok to have "first-order laws" that violate the Constitution. Are you really implying that? What is more important? i.e. doesn't the Constitution take precedence?

Why would I not live happily under the Constitution alone? put another way, why would I have to go outside (the bounds of) the Constitution?

If you sign a contract with an ISP, then you ought to live up to that contract (and the ISP is bound too as well). If you don't like the contract, then don't sign it. Find another ISP more to your liking. I would like fewer barriers to enter the ISP business, thus leading to more competition, and hence more freedom.

More Government Control
By NeverLeft on 11/11/2011 1:22:24 PM , Rating: 1
The Internet needs more government control. So it will continue to innovate and advance like the post office, DMV and public school system.

RE: More Government Control
By darckhart on 11/11/2011 2:45:57 PM , Rating: 2
I guess that's why in most metropolitan areas you get the choice of 2 broadband wired internet providers, both of whom are giant telecoms that offer services at approximately the same HIGH prices. But that's good! competition hey! or perhaps you like being capped at low speeds, throttled during peak hours, having certain types of internet traffic hindered intentionally, or having data transfer caps because they've done such a great job at upgrading their networks and no, they haven't oversold the service.

the government, in this case, isn't going to fix those things. but by golly they're going to make sure these telecoms provide the links WITHOUT tampering with what travels on those links because THAT'S NOT THE TELECOMS DAMN JOB. in any case, rest assured, your precious private telecoms will figure out some way to nickel and dime you with or without regulations.

RE: More Government Control
By Aragonphx on 11/11/2011 2:48:44 PM , Rating: 2
Maybe you should move to a state that doesn't suck then. My DMV lets me do almost everything online. I have only had to step foot in a DMV once in the last 15 years to get my picture updated. I have never had any issues with the post office. Anything I have ever sent was delivered when they said it would be. On top of it they will transport a letter of mine anywhere in the country for less than 50 cents. They also get zero government assistance. Wonder how much Fedex or UPS would charge for that. My children's public schools are highly rated and are doing a very good job. My oldest son is on track for medical school.

RE: More Government Control
By alphadogg on 11/14/2011 10:41:08 AM , Rating: 2
You would rather have Comcast tell you which sites you can see?

I am an AT&T customer.
By FastEddieLB on 11/12/2011 12:54:45 AM , Rating: 2
I pay $40/mo to get a specific download rate. During peak hours my bandwidth is throttled to 1/6th of what it is normally. As a capitalist republican I am offended that I'm paying for a service that I'm not receiving during the time that I actually have need of it. What can I do about it? Not a lot. ISP selection is extremely limited in my area. Comcast is more expensive, Cox is a likely alternative, and there's also the option of just directly downgrading my service from AT&T so that I'm only paying for what they're giving me.

I support the face concept of net neutrality: Stop the bandwidth throttling, give the customers what they're paying for.

What I do not support is what was slipped into the depths of Net Neutrality when I heard about it months ago: a little something that violates my 4th amendment rights to not having my data seized without a warrant.

What I want to know: Is that little bit demanding that ISPs surrender all their data upon request without a warrant still there? If not, I support net neutrality as it helps the consumer receive the service they are paying for. If it is still there, however, I'd rather keep my throttled bandwidth than have more of my constitutional rights tossed out the window.

RE: I am an AT&T customer.
By Dr of crap on 11/14/2011 8:54:03 AM , Rating: 2
Net neutrality and your speed being cut down at certain times are not the same thing.

You have an issue with your ISP and them having TOO many customers on the net at the same time and not being able to handle the traffic.

And that is not the same as cutting back on your speed becuase of the site your visiting!

RE: I am an AT&T customer.
By FastEddieLB on 11/15/2011 12:06:49 AM , Rating: 2
Apparently I was grossly misinformed about what Net Neutrality actually is, then. Thank you for the information.

You guys don't realize.
By MarioJP on 11/11/2011 5:29:12 PM , Rating: 2
You guys have no idea how much we take the internet for granted. Going to make it clear that this bill is going to change the way we use the internet. This country is going backwards with this ban and I can already imagine what this ban can do.

Control the media,see what you are allowed to see, Its bad enough that Television has more control than what you can watch online. like tv shows aired first before netfiix/hulu gets it.

Now this?. what's next categorize the internet like the real world??. Local internet tailored to where you live/stay just like AM/FM radio stations?. So if I go to San Diego and use the internet I am forced to use "San Diego world wide web? except its no longer "world wide" web anymore??

Veto that sh|t!
By quiksilvr on 11/11/11, Rating: 0
"I'd be pissed too, but you didn't have to go all Minority Report on his ass!" -- Jon Stewart on police raiding Gizmodo editor Jason Chen's home

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