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posted by Dopefish on Wednesday February 19 2014, @01:30PM   Printer-friendly
from the hopefully-not-paying-lip-service dept.

Fluffeh writes:

"When the D.C. U.S. Court of Appeals struck down the FCC's Open Internet Rules, a White House Petition was put up to 'direct the FCC to classify ISPs as "common carriers"'. With over 100k signatures, there is now an official response.

Absent net neutrality, the Internet could turn into a high-priced private toll road that would be inaccessible to the next generation of visionaries. The resulting decline in the development of advanced online apps and services would dampen demand for broadband and ultimately discourage investment in broadband infrastructure. An open Internet removes barriers to investment worldwide.

The petition asked that the President direct the FCC to reclassify Internet service providers as "common carriers" which, if upheld, would give the FCC a distinct set of regulatory tools to promote net neutrality. The FCC is an independent agency. Chairman Wheeler has publicly pledged to use the full authority granted by Congress to maintain a robust, free and open Internet a principle that this White House vigorously supports."

 
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  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by TrumpetPower! on Wednesday February 19 2014, @01:36PM

    by TrumpetPower! (590) <ben@trumpetpower.com> on Wednesday February 19 2014, @01:36PM (#2428) Homepage

    There's no commitment in there other than to do their best to make sure there's a chicken in every pot. They're leaving it up to the FCC's discretion to use what Congress has given them in the manner the FCC thinks best.

    Given this administration's actual actions as contrasted with campaign promises on subjects ranging from the war in Afghanistan to Guantanamo Bay to spying on civilians to immigration reform and all the rest, I fully expect more hand-wringing on this as not only nothing changes, but the slide into tyranny gets greased even more thoroughly.

    b&

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  • (Score: 5, Funny) by Sir Garlon on Wednesday February 19 2014, @01:44PM

    by Sir Garlon (1264) on Wednesday February 19 2014, @01:44PM (#2433)

    Here's a translation of the double-talk for those without the patience to read the White House's "response."

    Blah blah free speech blah blah cornerstone of our democracy.

    Blah blah isn't it great we have these petitions and aren't they good for democracy?

    Blah blah President Obama has been talking about net neutrality for a long time.

    Blah blah the former industry lobbyist we have put in charge of the FCC said he will do something and that's good enough for us.

    Blah blah you sure did ask for net neutrality.

    --
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  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by spiritfiend on Wednesday February 19 2014, @01:46PM

    by spiritfiend (964) on Wednesday February 19 2014, @01:46PM (#2437)

    Given that the Executive Branch does have oversight of the FCC, it is disheartening that the White House's response says that the FCC is "a separate entity". Sure, it's a separate entity, but it's under your oversight Mr. President! Not claiming oversight of your underlings malfeasance is a Mob-boss tactic. You can't wash your hands of what your subordinates do or don't do. He's basically saying it sure would be nice to have net neutrality enforced, but those other guys are in charge.

    • (Score: 5, Insightful) by SpallsHurgenson on Wednesday February 19 2014, @02:21PM

      by SpallsHurgenson (656) on Wednesday February 19 2014, @02:21PM (#2471)

      Even more to the point, President Obama was the one who appointed the current FCC chief. He pushed Tom Wheeler into his current position, after he worked as a lobbyist for cable and telecom companies; it's not as if Obama is disinterested in the department's direction. If anyone can be expected to give the FCC its marching orders, it is the current President.

      Of course, the fact that Obama appointed somebody who worked professionally to not only to push the telecom industries agenda (and earlier to fund them, during his stint as a venture capitalist) gives a clear indication of what Obama really feels about Net Neutrality. He is merely setting up Wheeler to do the dirty work in hope of deflecting any bad press that might otherwise be aimed at the president when any and all hope of net neutrality goes down in flames .

      • (Score: 4, Insightful) by Rune of Doom on Wednesday February 19 2014, @04:18PM

        by Rune of Doom (1392) on Wednesday February 19 2014, @04:18PM (#2556)

        Exactly. Obama s well within his rights, both on paper and based on precedent to fire Wheeler if he won't do what Obama wants. Ergo, what Obama actually wants is what Wheeler is doing. We've seen this pattern for the entire Obama campaign and administration: talk a good game, prominently hype positions and people with rational pro-freedom, pro-public agendas... and then appoint a corporate sock-puppet to any positions with real power.

    • (Score: 4, Insightful) by ganjadude on Wednesday February 19 2014, @02:43PM

      by ganjadude (1844) on Wednesday February 19 2014, @02:43PM (#2485)

      Disheartening, but not unexpected. Every time the people ask for something we got a non answer. Everytime the corporations ask for something, they get a waiver. Senator obama would smack the crap out of president obama if they ever were able to meet face to face

      • (Score: 2, Interesting) by SMI on Wednesday February 19 2014, @02:56PM

        by SMI (333) on Wednesday February 19 2014, @02:56PM (#2496)

        Reminds me of a cartoon [truthdig.com] from some time ago.

        At least they bothered to respond to this particular petition that exceeded 100,000, I suppose...

      • (Score: 0, Flamebait) by Muad'Dave on Wednesday February 19 2014, @03:22PM

        by Muad'Dave (1413) on Wednesday February 19 2014, @03:22PM (#2515)

        I think Senator Obama would high-five President Obama for how completely he was able to hoodwink a whole country. They're both cut from the same sleazy Chicagoland political cloth, after all.

      • (Score: 3, Insightful) by HiThere on Wednesday February 19 2014, @08:47PM

        by HiThere (866) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday February 19 2014, @08:47PM (#2839) Journal

        I think you weren't paying attention to Senator Obama. He was on the FISA committee, and he found its actions good.

        I wasn't really very much surprised by Pres. Obama. He's not a bad as I was afraid he might be, and probably has been better than McCain would have been...certainly better than Palin. This is known as faint praise.

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    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by tangomargarine on Wednesday February 19 2014, @07:51PM

      by tangomargarine (667) on Wednesday February 19 2014, @07:51PM (#2779)

      He's basically saying it sure would be nice to have net neutrality enforced, but those other guys are in charge.

      Particularly disheartening considering that the Executive Branch's ENTIRE REASON TO EXIST is enforcement!

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  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by dilbert on Wednesday February 19 2014, @01:48PM

    by dilbert (444) on Wednesday February 19 2014, @01:48PM (#2439)
    Of course it's a non-answer, that's how politicians speak!

    When have you ever known a politician to say what they mean and mean what they say?

    The best politicians are those who aren't. What I mean is that any career politician is loyal to those who financed their campaign and will only say/do what they need to in order to get re-elected...it's the non-career politicians, the people who only serve 1-2 terms (usually local government) because of an issue they care about, not because they're trying to get re-elected.

    We should have a mandatory two-term limit regardless of the office.

    • (Score: 1) by keplr on Thursday February 20 2014, @02:24AM

      by keplr (2104) on Thursday February 20 2014, @02:24AM (#3076) Journal

      Term limits sound nice to people who haven't studied political science. What actually happens is that term limits obliterate the institutional knowledge of any governing body/office and hand the real power over to the people who have been there the longest--which becomes unelected lobbyists and advisers who can make a career out of learning the system. Term limits make government more inept and less responsive to constituencies.

      Your real concern is the amount of money needed to run a political campaign, and where that money comes from. We would be better off with a short, publicly financed, campaign season focused on public debates and discussion.

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      • (Score: 1) by cykros on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:23AM

        by cykros (989) on Thursday February 20 2014, @04:23AM (#3158)

        Wish I had some mod points for this, because it's right on the money. Term limits do sound nice, but in reality solve nothing, and are more of the same doublespeak, as the elected officials aren't the ones holding the power in the first place...it's the people who got them there that pull the strings. Not to say they may not have a little wiggle room (and really what we need is a really good Houdini for prez), but they are pretty solidly beholden to their financiers, who more often than not will secure their investment by digging up some good dirt to keep them in check, which is getting a bit easier in the age of Big Data.

        This is the message that Occupy should have remained focused on, which unfortunately is not what happened. But, the people are free to choose their actions, whether or not they're ultimately wise. Hope things go better next time around.