The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) describes itself thus: “An independent U.S. government agency overseen by Congress.” Under the Barack Obama Administration, it has been none of these things.
Regulating the Internet: How the White House Bowled Over FCC Independence
FCC Chairman (Tom Wheeler) Denies Receiving ‘Secret Instructions from the White House’ About Internet Rules
Sure – the instructions were actually quite overt.
White House Calls On FCC To Reclassify Broadband Under Title II, Protect Net Neutrality
White House Calls on the FCC to Shake Up the Cable Box Business
White House Calls For More Municipal (Government) Broadband Networks, Urges FCC To Override State Laws Blocking Them
And Chairman Wheeler has been a dutiful waiter – taking orders like a pro, and delivering them exactly as asked.
Net Neutrality: FCC Reclassifies Broadband Internet
FCC Approves Rules Process for Set-Top-Boxes
FCC Overturns State Laws Limiting Municipal Broadband
Authoritarian? Again, the FCC page describes itself as: “an independent U.S. government agency overseen by Congress.” The FCC is in fact a creation and a creature of Congress – and thus can not do anything unless and until Congress first writes a law that says “Yo, FCC – do this.”
Congress never passed anything telling the FCC to do any of this. (And the President calling for it carries zero legislative weight – as we know from so many other of hisunilateral, illegal executive branch actions.)
So as the power grabs pile up, the private sector is forced to grab whips and chairs to fend off the government – i.e., they call the lawyers.
(Add A)nother Lawsuit to the Net Neutrality Pile-On
Cue the Lawsuits: FCC Moving to Block State Broadband Laws
And you know there will have to be even more lawsuits filed when the FCC finishes cramming through its set-top-box power grab.
Dishonest? FCC Chairman Wheeler said many of these power grabs would never happen. Then he made them happen.
FCC ‘Net Neutrality’ Plan Calls for More Power Over Broadband: “The main advantage of (Chairman Wheeler’s) hybrid proposal, as opposed to full reclassification, is that it wouldn’t require the FCC to reverse earlier decisions to deregulate broadband providers, which were made in the hopes of encouraging the adoption and deployment of high-speed broadband.”
But that plan wasn’t good enough for the White House: “In response to news of Mr. Wheeler’s plan, a senior White House official said Thursday that ‘the president has made it abundantly clear that any outcome must protect net neutrality and ban paid prioritization—and has called for all necessary steps to safeguard an open Internet.'”
So Chairman Wheeler began the bow to his master’s call for full-on power grab reclassification.
FCC Chairman Wheeler: Broadband Reclassification ‘Very Much on the Table’
FCC Boss Now Making The Case For Reclassification, Rather Than Against It
Care for some more dishonesty? There’s plenty, you know.
FCC Kept ‘Obamaphone’ Fraud Under Wraps Until After It Expanded Program
FCC Chairman Wheeler Flip-Flops on Rate Regulation
FCC Chairman Wheeler: There’s the Internet, Then There’s Interconnection: “Wheeler added, ‘I think one of the things that I have said along the way is that peering (interconnection) is not a net neutrality issue. We haven’t seen peering as a net neutrality issue. There is a matter of the ‘open Internet,’ and then there is a matter of interconnection among the various, disparate pathways that become the Internet.'”
Wheeler Steps in on Verizon/Netflix Dispute over Internet Interconnection
AT&T-DirecTV Deal Gets Nod from Wheeler, with Conditions to Expand…Interconnection
Wheeler: No Going Back on FCC Internet Interconnection Oversight
The FCC is supposed to be an independent, expert agency – delivering decisions devoid of politics, based solely on the facts.
THIS FCC is none of this. It is just another partisan, hack member of this partisan, hack administration.
Congress should stop pretending its the former – and start seriously reining in the latter.