Thursday, February 26, 2015

Democrats Reducing Freedom: Net Neutrality . . .

Today the Federal Communications Commission is set to pass on a partisan 3-2 vote (Democrats vs Republicans)  a comprehensive set of rules to control the Internet, commonly called the "Net Neutrality" rules.

Although the FCC Commissioners are public servants, they have permitted very few members of the public to actually see what these rules are.  That should be a red flag for everyone. Another red flag is the fact that the FCC Chairman has refused to testify before Congress when invited to do so.

If the FCC is hiding what they are doing until after they make a decision, you can be sure that what they are doing is contrary to the interests of the public,  otherwise, "Why the secrecy?"

A former FCC Associate General Counsel raises the question "Is the FCC lawless?" suggesting the specter that "administrative law" is being used in a way to avoid the balance of powers crafted in the US Constitution. Longtime readers of this blog will remember the warning of the threat to our freedoms posed by administrative agencies, "The Ominous 4th Branch of Government."

An alleged "need" for these rules is the practice of certain Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to charge a premium to certain content providers that ensures a "fast lane" on their networks -- e.g. certain streaming services that use a lot of bandwidth.  The new rules would supposedly (assuming no waivers are given to the politically connected) prohibit the practice.

But why should the companies who paid for and constructed their very expensive networks not be able to control how their networks are used? If they cannot control their own property to ensure a return on investment, then private investment in networks will be discouraged.

Lack of investment in networks will result in deterioration of service as traffic increases unless the taxpayers are made to pay for same via the government.  But why should the taxpayers do this when the private sector has, to date,  met everyone's needs?

So far the internet works just fine, as suggested by a Republican FCC Commissioner, Agit Pai, who calls Net Neutrality "a solution that won't work to a problem that doesn't exist."

If there is a threat to the Internet that requires government intervention, it is the mergers of ISPs that reduce competition in the marketplace... But the government has been approving mergers left and right, perhaps because it is easier to control one or two big players than a multitude of lesser players.

It is the lack of internet regulation that makes the internet so useful -- it is freedom --  giving a voice to even the most minor of minority viewpoints.  

The Internet is not broken.  It does not need fixing.

Undoubtedly, with these rules, all that we have come to appreciate about the Internet will ultimately become undone.  Voices will be silenced . . . And the public will be left hearing only "government approved" viewpoints.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Republicans Reducing Freedom: Student Success Act

The warnings are out: H. R. 5, the "Student Success Act,"  is about to be taken up by the House of Representatives in Congress, co-sponsored by only Republicans.  Although this very lengthy bill (610 pages in PDF) has an official Summary that gives an impression that the legs will be cut out from under Common Core, it is an Un-Official Summary by "Three Moms Against Common Core"  that people should be talking about:

“Student Success Act” to Crush Religious Freedom, Private School Autonomy, Parental Rights: #NO on HR5 ... Per the article ...
It ends private schools’ religious freedom from government control. It harms funding freedom in private schools. It puts into question parental rights and control over education. It pushes sameness of testing. Those are just a few things. There are more. 
We have conscious deceivers in D.C. pushing this bill: its damages are so painfully ironic. The bill is touted specifically to “reduce the federal footprint and restore local control while empowering parents“. What a poignant lie. 
If H.R. 5 passes this week, in exchange for billions in federal funding, we will be crushed in the following ways. The federal Department of Education aims to take over: 
One has to be suspicious of what is in any bill as big as this one. Here, the Moms did their homework and back up their claims with explanations that cite specific sections of the bill (which you can check out yourself using the links provided above).

Education in this country is only gotten worse since the Federal Government became involved. Control over education needs to be brought closer to the people directly affected, and the Federal Government (with no constitutional authority in this field)  needs to get out of it entirely.  But it is too easy to take the money (our money) so the expansion of Federal power and mediocrity has continued.

Our Congressional Reps. need to vote NO on this act.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Nano Sleight of Hand. . . .

The OD headline blares: NANO IS HERE. Believe it . . .

But please forgive me for feeling sceptical.  

The problem with SUNY Poly having one name but two campuses is that unless the Utica or Albany campuses are specifically identified, you never know which campus they are talking about.

Therefore, should anyone take comfort in knowing that
"SUNY Poly has 215 researchers and faculty members and about 350 more people already are working for some of the existing tenants who will occupy the Computer Chip Commercialization Center in Marcy . . ." 
when the article fails to state that these people are assigned to work at the UTICA Campus?  Given the lack of transparency on this project, one must assume that the people Kayoleros is referencing are stationed in Albany until we are told otherwise.

Monday, February 16, 2015


It has been the view of the administration for years that the Muslim Brotherhood is, essentially, a bunch of 'good guys' that has "eschewed violence."  But if you remember months back, while a Muslim Brotherhood member, Mohammed Morsi, ruled Egypt, Christians there lived in fear.

The Egyptian people, not liking Mr. Morsi's Islamist agenda, ultimately overthrew him,  and the Egyptian military moved to take over the government to create stability. However, our administration refused to assist the Egyptian military.

Now, from the Washington Free Beacon comes this report: Muslim Brotherhood: White House Official Met Us at State Department.
News of the meeting between the Brotherhood allies and the Obama administration caused anger among many in the Egyptian government, which is fighting furiously to crackdown on the Islamist group and its supporters.

“These statements are incomprehensible to me, we do not understand that there will be such a communication with the elements involved in terrorist acts to intimidate the Egyptians,” Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shukri was quoted as saying in the regional press following the Free Beacon’s initial report.

“The Brotherhood is not a political party,” but “a terrorist organization,” Shukri said.
Almost three years ago then-representative Michelle Bachmann questioned how a certain highly placed US official with familial connections to the Muslim Brotherhood could have received a security clearance.  Please see a series of correspondence on this issue. She was immediately called out on this by several members of her own party, including being branded an "extremist" by our own congressional representative

You really have to wonder what is up with our foreign policy?  We seem to involve ourselves with destabilizing stable situations in Libya (backing the take down of Qadaffi) and Iraq (with the American pullout), yet stay uninvolved when it comes to backing those who would try to maintain safety for all religious minorities, such as current Egyptian President el-Sisi.

Now we have this story: ISIS Beheads Coptic Christians, El-Sisi Vows to ‘Avenge’ Murders, with a terrorist seeming to echo views expressed by our President at a recent prayer breakfast:
All of the killers wore black except the spokesman, who, wearing camouflage, talks in English and sounds American . . .  “Safety for you crusaders is something you can only wish for,” he says. . . . “And we will conquer Rome, by Allah’s permission,” the American-accented narrator says, pointing his dagger at the sea.
The White House responds by calling for a "political solution" in Libya. . . . a solution to a crisis that WE helped to create.

One could wonder what has informed our foreign policy . . . but some of our "extremists" already know.