Welcome back to the war for the Internet. Have you chosen a side? Not yet? Alright, well strap in because we are going to hit hyperspace, where things can get blurry, and long-held opinions may be obliterated during the journey. Much is on the line as we endeavor to secure more than just our freedoms in cyberspace, and none of us may be the same when we step off this ship.
In a galaxy not so far, far away…
A disturbing trend has been developing recently, regarding the abandonment of programs designed to protect American free market competition and the consumers of their products and services.
There are any number of motivations to explain this active demolition and especially deserving of close consideration is the glory in undermining any and every accomplishment achieved by former President, Barack Obama, which, these actions indicate more and more, is the single continuous theme and directive of the Trump administration and his cabinet of appointed Fanboys (and girls).
President Trump had made it clear from day one of his campaign; he would do everything in his power to undermine and repeal all the Obama Era executive orders, rules, regulations, or laws enacted to help people acquire things like affordable healthcare coverage.
It seems that ‘The Donald’ has been true to his word and with all the apparent blinding drive of a religious zealot, has begun a demoralizing campaign of dismantling every Obama initiated directive with executive orders and any other tool at his disposal.
“Radical” agenda, Dude!
The clear agenda of the Trump Administration to move forward with the tactics applied by what some have dubbed a “radical” Republican ideology, has left many of the appointed directors of massive government departments with a desire to act in a manner more befitting the patronage of an employer to whom one was greatly indebted, rather than a leader whose responsibility it is to defend the department they have been charged with running.
With cabinet picks seemingly designed by divine satire, the irony of those chosen to represent departments, which have a crucial impact on America’s social, economic, financial and legislative structure, is profoundly apparent. Education Secretaries with almost no experience
Education Secretaries with almost no experience in public education, and no apparent wish to acquire such experience. Treasury Secretaries with a history of personally hoarding treasure while systematically removing elderly loan recipients from their homes, due to clerical errors. EPA directors, known for personally suing the EPA; and more.
The list goes on; but perhaps the most cringeworthy of all these oxymoronic appointees, is newly minted Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman, Ajit Pai. While raised up by Trump from an earlier Obama era appointment, (due to traditional considerations for the minority party) his layover nature seems to not be prohibitive to his ascension as it has been for most Obama holdovers.
Delivered with particularly irksome mannerisms, like a giant oversized novelty coffee mug, the devastatingly innocent sounding directives of Chairman Pai are on track to cause potentially limitless damage to this country’s economy and the ability to conduct our lives as free and democratic peoples.
On the surface of seemingly impromptu videos, set in relatable places like at a totally average workplace lunch table, Pai and his fellow Neutrality opponents have been coordinating announcements to clearly define how unnecessary the regulations regarding Net Neutrality laws are, and reminding us not to be concerned because he, like his administration, is only looking out for the best interest and welfare of the American people.
That, my friends, is a bold face lie if ever there were one. Allow me to demonstrate why this innocuous-seeming individual and his misguided loyalties, are so potentially dangerous to our very way of life.
The Internet remembers
Before we go on; one fun fact about our subject’s recent history regarding his crusade against Net Neutrality. A massive campaign was launched against Chairman Pai online, and Twitter was an especially brutal battlefield. Pai was mercilessly trolled, but he’s past that now, or maybe not. You decide; his response is embarrassingly epic in its lack of irony. Please enjoy the video before we move on.
Pai was mercilessly trolled, but he’s past that now, or maybe not. You decide; his response is embarrassingly epic in its lack of irony. Please enjoy the video before we move on.
Vision of a past future
Ajit Pai was a corporate lawyer before he decided to work in the ethical monastery of government. One of his previous employers was Verizon, with whom he had a long relationship that would seem to offer conditions to provide conflicts of interest, if not simply a directional perspective which could color his actions.
As chairman of a federal body charged with regulating and protecting the nation’s telecom industry and the consumers to whom they provide services, Pai is now at odds with two very critical elements of his new job and the dualistic nature of his position and his beliefs are of legitimate concern. Although to be fair, he does seem to authentically care about his Verizon, oh I’m sorry I meant version, of our collective online future.
Pai demonstrates a willingness to affect the foundation on which providing cyber equality for all is based. Pai suggests we do so in a manner that would roll back time and apply tax code, originally constructed in the ‘30s to give telecom company’s rights and protections, equally to a structure on which we now base our relatively advanced technological age.
Without the ability to provide equal means to all, in a market required for all, we have lost the capacity for a level playing field, which is capitalism’s core.
An equal and free market capable of regulating itself; which Pai has repeatedly said he bases his economic principles and philosophy on, is required for a democracy to conduct itself. Eliminating
A free and open web space that is required to exist in a democracy that founds itself on a capitalist economy of free and equal markets is crucial to our American way of life and, as you begin to see here, an antithetical position to be in if one finds themselves supporting the rollback on Net Neutrality.
The Force of Fanboy leadership
Chairman Pai displays a fervor in his belief and interpretation of responsible practices and the passion, while theoretically a desirable quality in a department head, is ill placed for a people faced with a time in which the nation’s leaders are calling out for tighter restrictions on the press, the open condemnation of national media markets as proprietors of fake news, and slander of government figures, all becoming commonplace.
Now more than ever the need for citizens to have equal access to information is critical to the future of the country. Denying the people of this very basic, quintessentially American, capitalist principle, and fundamental right, given the requirements of our current era, is an act that would be cheered deep within the bowels of the Death Star.
The Empire strikes back, at America
The Empire is reaching out its hand and is going to force choke the Internet and leave only the strongest, largest, most well-connected companies in the country in a position to supply consumers with information, products, services and basic current essentials like phone service and multi-media entertainment.
These companies will gain tremendous power over the way you live every day. The idea that limited government and state’s rights are driving this regulatory rollback is laughable. Depriving the federal government the ability to ensure consumers and companies are protected from mega-conglomerates with political clout, is like saying you wouldn’t give Luke Skywalker his lightsaber in a fight with Darth Vader.
Stripping away protections against manipulation of the Net’s data distribution, in the name of a more limited federal government, only serves to ensure that the telecom conglomerates consolidate power and dominate the market now and for the future.
If these few companies were allowed to monopolize web service, the entire potential of the Net as a force for good could be undermined and within a short span of time, cause the ever-pursuant greed of American capitalism to become the sole motivation for telecom monopolies’ behavior and leave Americans to suffer the effects of unchecked plundering on a national economy in the death grip of one sector.
We must not let this Fanboy, menace us any more than he already has. We must unite our voices and defend our country, our way of life, and the web itself.
Stay Tuned to Sanvada for the next chapter of Internet Wars – The Series – Episode II – Attack or be Cloned