Friday, July 9, 2010 - The Progress & Freedom Foundation Blog

Keep the Internet Corporate-Free Says Anti-Business Free Press

I just have to chuckle at this sophomore opinion piece recently penned by the Free Press. Its main memes: Corporations are evil. Do not trust corporations, because they are evil. And, oh by the way, corporations want to control you and the FCC, because...they are evil.

Good golly, we get it.

Here're some choice lines ripped from their diatribe, and my comments in bolds:

"The Internet is the greatest communications network ever created because it allows us to speak for ourselves without first asking permission from corporate gatekeepers."
Yes, the Internet is. Thanks to corporations and all "gatekeepers" who brought it to us.
"Julius Genachowski, the chairman of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), has been holding closed-door meetings with Verizon, AT&T, Comcast, and Google that could pave the way for a corporate takeover of the Internet."
I have seen the lobbyists' wild plans - they intend on boxing up the entire Internet and moving it to Peoria, where no one in their right mind would care to live, or bother it.
"The big phone and cable companies want to kill net neutrality so they can control and manipulate the content you can access on the Internet."
I was out at target practice the other day with a couple corporate lobbyists. They are surprisingly nimble with their AK's, spraying round-upon-round on targets emblazoned with Net Neutrality. Then I drank their Kool-Aid, whereupon I was "Clockwork Oranged" into watching 10 hours of Ben Scott testimony, further amplifying their soporific manipulations. Good times, man. Good times.
"The [FCC] is under immense pressure from the lobbyists to take control of the Internet away from Internet users and turn it over to corporations."
Corporations see consumer consumption of their products as meaningless, hurtful to their bottom line and, well, passé. Thankfully, they have invented a "post-profit" world that does not depend on Internet users anymore. Corporations have always just wanted the Internet for themselves, anyway - people just get in the way of all that fun.
"What the American people want is someone to stand up and fight for them against corporate corruption--whether from BP, AIG or Comcast. It needs to protect the Internet from a corporate takeover."
Hmm...seems a couple of these are out of place. The BP oil spill happened because government didn't, and still isn't, doing its job. AIG happened because government got in the way with an open spigot monetary policy, and Fannie and Freddie, which promoted a reckless "ownership society." And Comcast...well, as Free Press admits, it brings us the wildly successful Internet, with ever-growing features and functionality, in an atmosphere not marked by government rules or regulations. Heck, I'll take the latter. If "corporate takeover" means the "consumer is king," that seems far better than "policymaker is king" - we know where that leads.

I've seen this Free Press press release before. Many times. What tiring, old riffs (they could have spiced things up a bit by kicking George Bush some - that always stirs up the troops). The article might just as well have been written by Free Press' founder, Robert McChesney - the unflagging Marxist.

They probably have a shared drive on site where they can poach from such classic McChesney lines as:

"We are at a critical juncture in the history of communication. The world economic crisis is accentuating that critical juncture because it impacts all of society. The capitalist economy dominated by corporations has failed. The entire world is struggling to come up with something that is sustainable and humane and allows for human happiness and democracy."
"What we want to have in the U.S. and in every society is an Internet that is not private property, but a public utility."
"But the ultimate goal is to get rid of the media capitalists in the phone and cable companies and to divest them from control."
The protection and promotion of private property through, among other tools, capitalism, has done more to lift the wealth and welfare of people than any other system known to man. Much to Free Press' and McChesney's chagrin - socialism failed; they have it exactly wrong.


Now, about that Free Press shared drive. I hope some capitalist can sell them on a better model - one which has the U.S. Constitution on it instead of that Little Red Book.

posted by Mike Wendy @ 8:52 AM | Broadband , Capitalism , Communications , Innovation , Internet , Net Neutrality , Regulation , The FCC