Net Neutrality is a Commie Conspiracy!
Yes, children--- John McCain has introduced a bill to ban Net Neutrality!
In this he has support from brave weeping patriot Glenn Beck, who has publically called net neutrality a "Marxist plot" aimed at controlling content on the Information Superhighway.
No! they tell us. We cannot have the evil Commies controlling the Internet! Instead, control must be placed in the hands of vast faceless corporations! (Who will act, as they always do, for the benefit of us all.)
In this they are following the line of the telcoms companies, who were upset that they lost control of the Internet when it was young, and who want to get their hands on its content, which they can then sell to the rest of us at a profit.
Net Neutrality, for those of you who haven't been paying attention, is pretty much what we have now. We can post anything we like, and others can view or download it (or not) as they please. No one can censor us, no one can charge money for our content (except us, if we feel like it), no one can decide that we are, say, a "premium channel" and that to download our content will cost extra.
As an Internet consumer, you can read, download, or otherwise consume anything you find on the Internet. Your local ISP charges you a fee for using their portal, but once you're on the Internet, where you go and what you look at is pretty much your business.
Net Neutrality as an FCC policy would essentially guarantee this state of affairs. This is the "government control of the Internet" that McCain and Beck oppose.
Those opposed to Net Neutrality would place all power in the hands of our ISPs. A lot of us get our Internet from, say, Comcast, or the local phone company. A lot of us don't have any choice in the matter. (If I want high-speed Internet here in rural New Mexico, Comcast is basically my only option, unless I want to shell out six hundred bucks for a satellite connection. The last time I asked Qwest whether they were going to ever provide the high-speed connection that they had illegally billed consumers $200 million for, they just laughed at me.)
Without Net Neutrality, Comcast doesn't have to let me have any part of the Internet that it doesn't like. If I want to check the ratings for Comcast's customer service (which are, by the way, wretched), I might not be able to find that web page--- or it might load very . . . very . . . slowly . . . or they might decide it's the equivalent of a "premium channel" and charge extra for it.
Or consider that Comcast is also in the business of providing television content. If I went to, say, Hulu.com to download a television program for free, Comcast could block that, because it competes with their own cable television business. Or, again, they could charge extra--- which would not go to the content creators, but directly into Comcast's pockets.
They could charge extra for videos, because that sucks up bandwidth. They could block politicians who speak in favor of Net Neutrality, or any other position they don't care for. DirecTV, which is owned by the same tycoon who owns the Fox networks, could offer Fox News for free, and decide you have to pay for other news channels. They could create their own search engine that will direct your searches to businesses who pay them a kickback, rather than to businesses that you might actually want.
This is the state of affaird which McCain and Beck, et al, find desirable.
So here's the question. Is McCain:
Because I don't see another alternative here.