The Daily Caller

The Daily Caller
Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Thomas Wheeler speaks during a Town Hall meeting in Oakland, California January 9, 2014 REUTERS/Stephen Lam Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Thomas Wheeler speaks during a Town Hall meeting in Oakland, California January 9, 2014 REUTERS/Stephen Lam  

Government-imposed net neutrality: Twice-bitten, not shy about a third try

Photo of Seton Motley
Seton Motley
President, Less Government

Why does the federal government appear so adamant to again blatantly ignore the law, extend its power over the Internet, and re-impose network neutrality?

After all, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has already tried it — twice. And been unanimously rebuked by the D.C. Circuit Court — twice.

Each time, the attempted power grab grew in size and scope.

The first involved a single Internet Service Provider (ISP) after an alleged single violation. (Which of course would have opened the door for greater grabs to follow.) How’d that go for the government?

Court: FCC Has No Power to Regulate Net Neutrality

Indeed it does not. So why then — just seven months later — did this happen?

Divided FCC OKs Net Neutrality Rules

The three Democrats voted Yes. The two Republicans — No. How very Obamacare of them.

If the FCC can’t impose net neutrality in an individual instance, what made these Democrats think they can preemptively enshroud the entire World Wide Web? Of course, they can’t.

U.S. Appeals Court Strikes Down FCC Net Neutrality Rules

So that’s it, right? The federal government — twice chided for overreaching — will finally leave the free speech-free market Xanadu that is the Internet alone, right?  Not so much.

President Obama Confident FCC Will Use Authority to Save Net Neutrality 

Wait a second — what authority? Six different judges on two different occasions have unanimously said the FCC doesn’t have any such authority.

But since when has the clear intent of the laws and the Constitution — and the rulings of the courts charged with upholding them — stopped President Barack Obama?  After all, he has a pen and a phone.

Could the President mean this “authority?”

The FCC’s Nuclear Option on Net Neutrality

Make ISPs Into “Common Carriers,” Says Former FCC Commissioner

Reclassification Is Not a Dirty Word

It certainly should be. What does it mean?

Go back in time to 1934 (and even before) – and illegally impose landline telephone (Common Carrier) regulations on the Web.  The government regulates the daylights out of landlines – so Progressives want the government to jam the Web in there too. Which would allegedly allow them to reimpose Net Neutrality – and tax the Net, and….

That’s not existing authority — it’s an even more ginormous new power grab. I’m sure pens and phones would be involved.

What says Tom Wheeler – the president’s new FCC Chairman?

FCC Chair Tom Wheeler Says He’ll ‘Fight to Preserve’ Open Internet, Doesn’t Say How

How about by leaving it alone? We had three years with illegally-imposed net neutrality — and three decades without it. And the Internet has all along been doing — well, best-in-human-history-levels of extraordinary.

Wheeler: “The Court Invited the FCC to Act, and I Accept That Invitation.”

Why? To address…what? The Internet is amazing — without these uber-regulations.