TheDC Morning: TSA not above committing petty acts of vengeance
1.) Unethical Google alumnus leaves White House one day after FCC passes net neutrality — Andrew McLaughlin should have left the White House in March, when he was found to be using his personal gmail account while at work, or even in May, when internal memos revealed McLaughlin was coordinating PR with Google’s U.S. public policy director. Instead, the nation’s deputy CTO waited until the FCC passed its net neutrality bill to bid adieu to government life. According to WaPo, “McLaughlin, who previously worked as a Google executive, oversaw many of the White House’s Internet policy initiatives including Internet access regulations, the expansion of broadband connections and global cybersecurity.” Not mentioned in WaPo’s writeup is Google’s ardent support for net neutrality regulations. McLaughlin will dive back into the startup world, creating products for state and local governments. He “also said he will return to teaching law, which he did at Harvard University’s Berkman Center seven years ago.” Interesting factoid: The Berkman center is the far-left think thank that the FCC commissioned to produce objective reports on the apparent need for net neutrality regulations.
2.) FCC still has not released a copy of the net neutrality rules it passed — On Tuesday, the FCC’s three Democratic commissioners voted in favor of ‘net neutrality’ rules to keep the Internet ‘open.’ Ironically, what these rules actually say is still something of a mystery: Two days after voting for them, FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski still has not released an official copy of the Internet’s unholy constitution. At Tech Liberation Front, Berin Szoka writes, “Anyone interested in net neutrality regulation or the coming political, legal and constitutional fights over it must read the scathing dissents by Commissioners Rob McDowell and Meredith Baker.” McDowell’s points in bullets: “Nothing is broken in the Internet access market that needs fixing; the FCC does not have the legal authority to issue these rules; [and] the proposed rules are likely to cause irreparable harm.” Baker’s were equally on point: “There is no factual basis to support government intervention; Consumers will not benefit from net neutrality; The order may inhibit the development of tomorrow’s internet; The Commission acts improperly as a quasi-legislative body.” This requires the creation of a new title for Genachowski et al.: Activist commissioner.
3.) Organized labor is going to drag Obama back to the 20th Century kicking and screaming — “One of the president’s most ambitious job-creating programs is to double our exports,” writes the Fiscal Times. “In the face of mounting global competition, this requires expanding our bilateral trade agreements, such as the one just renegotiated with South Korea. When that treaty was first signed in 2007, labor unions balked, arguing that Korean automakers made out like bandits. The tweaked agreement has won over the UAW, but the AFL-CIO has now entered the fray, opposing the measure and making passage in Congress that much more difficult.” What else is Big Labor holding up? Trade deals in Colombia and Panama, education reform, and entitlement reform. But all of that is totally cool because without Dick Trumka we would all be working 43 hours a day, 10 days a week!
4.) Pat Robertson says, ‘Legalize it!’ — During a recent episode of the 700 Club, Pat Robertson upended everything you know about everything: “I’m … I’m not exactly for the use of drugs, don’t get me wrong, but I just believe that criminalizing marijuana, criminalizing the possession of a few ounces of pot, that kinda thing it’s just, it’s costing us a fortune and it’s ruining young people. Young people go into prisons, they go in as youths and come out as hardened criminals. That’s not a good thing.” Amen.
5.) TSA punishes critical pilot — “An airline pilot is being disciplined by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) for posting video on YouTube pointing out what he believes are serious flaws in airport security,” reports an ABC affiliate in Sacramento. The pilot, who is a veteran and has been deputized by TSA to keep a gun in the cockpit, filmed a series of encounters at TSA checkpoints and posted them online with criticism appended. According to ABC, “three days after [the pilot] posted a series of six videoclips recorded with a cell phone camera at San Francisco International Airport, four federal air marshals and two sheriff’s deputies arrived at his house to confiscate his federally-issued firearm.” Because the TSA will not tolerate dissent.
6.) Michael Steele likely to be a no-show at public debate — “Every declared candidate for Republican National Committee chairman has confirmed his or her attendance at a Jan. 3 debate co-hosted by The Daily Caller and Americans for Tax Reform except the incumbent, embattled Michael Steele,” writes The Daily Caller’s Jonathan Strong. Robert Kabel, chairman of the District of Columbia Republican Committee, said Steele will show at the “real debate” – a closed door session with the 168 members of the RNC. “He could spend two hours explaining himself, and he could easily do that, but he’s already going to spend several hours of explaining himself at the members only meeting.” Kabel added that Steele has “had some missteps,” and that “he admits that.” He just won’t do it in a public forum.