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Communications Botnet Government Republicans The Internet United States

FCC Suspends Net Neutrality Comments, As Chairman Pai Mocks 'Mean Tweets' (gizmodo.com) 184

An anonymous reader writes:Thursday the FCC stopped accepting comments as part of long-standing rules "to provide FCC decision-makers with a period of repose during which they can reflect on the upcoming items" before their May 18th meeting. Techdirt wondered if this time to reflect would mean less lobbying from FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, but on Friday Pai recorded a Jimmy Kimmel-style video mocking mean tweets, with responses Gizmodo called "appalling" and implying "that anyone who opposes his cash grab for corporations is a moron."

Meanwhile, Wednesday The Consumerist reported the FCC's sole Democrat "is deploying some scorched-earth Microsoft Word table-making to use FCC Chair Ajit Pai's own words against him." (In 2014 Pai wrote "A dispute this fundamental is not for us five, unelected individuals to decide... We should also engage computer scientists, technologists, and other technical experts to tell us how they see the Internet's infrastructure and consumers' online experience evolving.") But Pai seemed to be mostly sticking to friendlier audiences, appearing with conservative podcasters from the Taxpayer Protection Alliance, the AEI think tank and The Daily Beast.

The Verge reports the flood of fake comments opposing Net Neutrality may have used names and addresses from a breach of 1.4 billion personal information records from marketing company River City Media. Reached on Facebook Messenger, one woman whose named was used "said she hadn't submitted any comments, didn't live at that address anymore and didn't even know what net neutrality is, let alone oppose it."

Techdirt adds "If you do still feel the need to comment, the EFF is doing what the FCC itself should do and has set up its own page at DearFCC.org to hold any comments."

FCC Suspends Net Neutrality Comments, As Chairman Pai Mocks 'Mean Tweets'

Comments Filter:
  • Deaf (Score:4, Insightful)

    by thegreatbob ( 693104 ) on Sunday May 14, 2017 @11:35PM (#54416505) Journal
    First read that as DeafFCC. I'll leave it that way, because the shoe fits.
  • by PopeRatzo ( 965947 ) on Sunday May 14, 2017 @11:47PM (#54416533) Journal

    As Chairman Pai Mocks 'Mean Tweets'

    Chairman Pai knows what's best and you people need to stop being so mean to the Trump regime. He was elected by the largest margin in modern history and he's the CEO of the country, so if he doesn't want Net Neutrality, you shouldn't complain because he's got the best people around him.

    You should feel lucky that you're being allowed to comment at all.

    • Why so serious? (Score:2, Insightful)

      As Chairman Pai Mocks 'Mean Tweets'

      Chairman Pai knows what's best and you people need to stop being so mean to the Trump regime. He was elected by the largest margin in modern history and he's the CEO of the country, so if he doesn't want Net Neutrality, you shouldn't complain because he's got the best people around him.

      You should feel lucky that you're being allowed to comment at all.

      Why so serious?

      Mean tweets are clearly hate speech, and Chairman Pai is clearly onboard with the movement to suppress it.

      I mean - commenting on policy is one thing, but we can't let people make hate speech now, can we?

      Where are your priorities?

  • by rsilvergun ( 571051 ) on Sunday May 14, 2017 @11:57PM (#54416555)
    can we at least _pretend_ we're still a democracy?
    • by PopeRatzo ( 965947 ) on Sunday May 14, 2017 @11:59PM (#54416569) Journal

      can we at least _pretend_ we're still a democracy?

      It's easier to just pretend I am the Bat-Man.

      • by ls671 ( 1122017 )

        Come on PopeRatso! It is much easier to pretend to be the Pope or even god.

      • Wait... since when is Batman hyphenated !??!?!

        • Wait... since when is Batman hyphenated !??!?!

          If you knew your Batman history, you'd know that before there was a Batman, there was The Bat-Man. I like to roll old-school when it comes to my pre-Golden Age superheros.

          • Pre golden-age Bat-man was just a third rate rip-off of the Shadow. Complete with guns. Not the same character.

            Much like Silver age dark knight is a much lonelier character than golden age caped crusader.

            • Pre golden-age Bat-man was just a third rate rip-off of the Shadow. Complete with guns.

              I think pretending to be a third-rate ripoff of the Shadow with guns is kind of awesome.

              • The shadow had guns, that's why the early Bat-man did as well. It was straight knock-off of the character with literally JUST enough changed not to get sued.

    • by acrimonious howard ( 4395607 ) on Monday May 15, 2017 @12:33AM (#54416633)
      If '#thanksobama' was a thing, can we start saying #thanksrepublicans? 99% of this entire net neutrality issue debacle has been brought to you by republicans, so this isn't even really tongue-in-cheek.
      • by zifn4b ( 1040588 )

        If '#thanksobama' was a thing, can we start saying #thanksrepublicans? 99% of this entire net neutrality issue debacle has been brought to you by republicans, so this isn't even really tongue-in-cheek.

        It's funny how people are still buying partisan politics for being the root cause of these issues. What you really want is #thankscorporateamericaandyoursuperpacs

        • I wish I could be more agreeable, but if you actually consider the impact of the issues, the D's almost always have a big lead over R's. Net neutrality is a big deal, and R's are for big businesses even though it will hurt the whole industry - almost everyone. Clinton's email server, I'm sorry, was not a big deal compared to this. Poisoning Flint's water supply hurt everyone in an entire city, Bill Clinton got a BJ and "ruined" one young lady's life (granted she was able to sell her story and made $ off

    • by h33t l4x0r ( 4107715 ) on Monday May 15, 2017 @01:04AM (#54416705)
      We are still a democracy, the problem is that half of us are idiots.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        It's more than half. The majority of humans are idiots. Which ,thinking about it, could be a filter to Fermi's Paradox. As civilization advances it must reconcile higher concentrations of energy and power in larger segments of the population including the underbelly and idiots.

        You can be smart in one thing and an absolute dolt in another. Politics in democracy forces us to make decisions even though we are a laymen and a dolt for such topics. Maybe the benevolent dictator is better.

        • by silentcoder ( 1241496 ) on Monday May 15, 2017 @07:03AM (#54417533)

          There are more than a few problems with the benevolent dictators:

          1) People do, actually, have a right to govern themselves or at the very least choose who they allow to govern them - a dictator no matter how benevolent - can never be a legitimate government.
          2) The succession problem. Plato suggested the philosopher-king (another form of 'benevolent dictator') was a better choice than democracy because of democracy's vulnerability to demagogues, but the problem with both is - what happens when he or she kicks the bucket. There is no good way to ensure the next person in line will not be an evil and authoritarian dictator. In fact the lesson of history is that this seems inevitable, you go from 'one of the great kings who led his people from strengths to strength and raised standards of living for all" to "bastard king who ultimately deserved the beheading he got" in a generation, in fact you then tend to get between 5 and 10 more of the bastards before you get another smart one (usually one who had no expectation of being in the succession at all).
          3) Corrupting influence of power - the longer somebody is in charge, the less honest they tend to be come and the more likely to commit gross abuses of power. FDR is about the closest thing to a real exception there is - and even he ended up doing those Japanese Internment Camps near the end. Democracy lets you institute term limits, so the good guys who get in charge can be kicked out before they BECOME bad guys. Failure to have term limits tend to be a grave mistake. In the 1980s a people's leader led his oppressed countrymen to freedom and independence. He became president - praised and cheered the world over as a true bastion of human rights, liberties and justice - and ultimately as a peacemaker and under his rule the country became the largest food exporter on the continent. Today that EXACT SAME PERSON is known as one of the most brutal dictators on the continent, the country is constantly starving and they've been through numerous waves of hyperinflation. Robert Mugabe is the evidence of the problem: good guys become evil if you they stay in power for too long - and what's worse the dirtier their hands get the more desperate they become to cling to power, after all, losing power will likely mean spending the rest of his life in jail.

          So no, the benevolent dictator is a bad idea. That said, democracy is not perfect either. Plato was correct in identifying the real risk that a demagogue could replace democracy with tyranny, the US founding fathers knew their Plato and greatly feared that - as they abandoned the monarchism Plato had inspired throughout Europe - they would risk the same in the new country they were founding. Their answer was numerous checks and balances - including one on the electoral process itself. This 'electoral college' served one key purpose: to ensure that, even if a demagogue wins the vote, he would not get to be president.
          Unfortunately the E.C. ultimately became so watered down that - when an actual demagogue ran - not only did it fail to prevent him from becoming president, it actually ENABLED him in an election he had absolutely lost. That was the exact opposite of what the founding fathers had in mind. And the ultimate argument for undoing the E.C. is that it didn't do the job it was created for (and in fact didn't just fail but actually ACHIEVED the very thing it exists to prevent). Perhaps reforming it would be better than scrapping it, I am not sold either way - but the key point stands. Checks and balances, a leader subservient to a constitution with numerous institutions empowered to prevent him doing things he isn't empowered to do - those are the things that make democracy viable.

          • I agree with you on the benevolent dictator. Who was it that said democracy is bad but it is the best we have come up with? Something like that. I think in times when there are obvious stupid people running the nation/world a benevolent dictator sounds just a little bit better even if it is not.

            However on the Electoral College I disagree with you (or at least partially). It was a no win situation this last election. The same argument of demagoguery or corruption could be applied to Clinton if she had won. I

            • by silentcoder ( 1241496 ) on Monday May 15, 2017 @10:32AM (#54418357)

              I think the flaw in your thinking is a case of false equivalency - while Clinton was a very flawed candidate ( and a terrible campaigner) she did not represent the threat of a demagogue, she did not spend her time on the campaign trail promising to frankly abolish constitutional rights for huge swaths of Americans (though she was accused of that in one instance "taking your guns" it wasn't true and there has never been any truth to that accusation - personally I wish there was but there wasn't).
              The Muslim registry idea on the other hand - that was straight out of the Nuremberg laws (as was a half dozen other things Trump said). He was practically quoting Mein Kampf on the podium over and over.

              Now it's also true that Trump has not ceased absolute power - at this stage, I am more inclined to put that down to having his authoritarianism tempered by his own incompetence than to any lack of trying. The only American institution that still seems to be somewhat functional in it's checks-and-ballances duties is the court system.

              But even within a fully functional America a bad president can cause incredible harm. It's not a surprise that Trump's professed role-model for the presidency is Andrew "Trail of Tears" Jackson. When enough people are convinced that some people are subhuman that you can get the people who think that into powerful parts of the governing apparatus - then the checks and balances fail because the people doing the checking don't want to restrain the abuses.

              You are half right in one instance - the E.C, has become very democratic - but that's the problem. The check on democracy was never meant to be democratic. Now if it had been FULLY democratic - and the winner of the vote simply won the white house, then perhaps it would be okay (Trump certainly could not muster enough Americans to vote for him to win the popular vote and probably never could - almost certainly every able bodied American who would ever WANT to vote for him DID - while a lot of presumptive Clinton voters stayed home).
              So I would be in favour of Larry Lessig's proposal for an E.C. reform - forcing the E.C. electors to follow the popular vote in their STATES - rather than on a county/by-county system as it stands now. Such a system would be far more robust against gerrymandering, would be more democratic than the way it works now - and retain much of the supposed benefits of the current system in keeping low-population rural areas from being overlooked by washington.

              I am not much of a fan of the latter, the low-pop areas complain they "shouldn't be told how to live by a bunch of liberals in San Francisco" but fail to see that, that is a two-edged sword -since they now get to tell those San Franciscans how to live, in fact about a third of America's population gets to tell the other two thirds who live in the liberal, coastal cities how to live. This isn't democracy fine but it's not a republic either, it's just a broken system at this point.

              The answer to failures of democracy though, is not to do away with democracy - it's to strengthen it, there are better systems than the American one. Every system has it's pros and cons and in many occasions your best outcome is actually a a mix-and-match. Pure party-list representation has the problem that your governing politicians don't feel accountable to the voters. Pure by-region systems like America has the problem that they ONLY care about the place that elected them - and tend to screw up things for everybody else. I think one should mix it - with about half the representatives elected by the local population and the other half appointed by the parties in accordance with their share of the national vote (in the US perhaps one could divide it up so the house is regionally elected like today but the Senate becomes a proportional representation). That would prevent the current situation where one party controls both the entire executive and the entire legislative branches from happening so easily - that's not a good thing. A lot of democrats will scowl at

              • There is a lot in your comment so I only want to respond a few points and in no particular order.

                forcing the E.C. electors to follow the popular vote in their STATES

                The States decide how electors vote and how their votes are distributed. Main and Nebraska(?) split their electors on congressional district lines as opposed to winner take all like most States. As it is now, what you and Lessig describe is exactly what we have right now. The Electors are following the popular vote in their States. That is what Trump won a majority of state elections and lost by huge margins in

                • by silentcoder ( 1241496 ) on Monday May 15, 2017 @11:43AM (#54418933)

                  > As it is now, what you and Lessig describe is exactly what we have right now
                  No. What Lessig is proposing is making the Maine and Nebraska systems applicable in all states.

                  >"or corruption"
                  Yet the winner now was far more corrupt than she could ever hope to be. She was accused, and no evidence was ever presented, of a pay-for-play scandal in her foundation. Trump used HIS foundation - and we have actual PROOF - to bribe not one but TWO state attorney generals not to prosecute him for fraud ! Lots of whispers do not a case make.
                  Now I personally don't think Clinton's hands were really clean -few career politicians are, but compared to Trump they are sparkling bloody diamonds of righteousness ! It's really quite amazing just how much grime Trump managed to get on such tiny little hands.

                  > She demonized half the electorate
                  No - she didn't. She really didn't. The "basket of deplorables" statement was idiotic- but it was also quoted completely out of context to pretend it meant something entirely different to what she actually said. She NEVER accused Trump voters of being that basket - she said SOME OF THEM were. If anything she grossly underestimated how many.

                  >She chastised the Bernie supporters
                  Mostly, actualy, that was one small subset of her supporters, she didn't do that. And frankly a small subset of Bernie's supporters DESERVED that -as evidenced by the fact that Bernie ALSO chastised them. His exact words were: "I neither need nor want your votes".

                  >She played into peoples fears and prejudices to get them to support her.
                  No - that would be Trump. Unless you count their fear of an autoritarian demagogue who sucked up to racists - in which case those are actually LEGITIMATE fears which it was the duty of EVERY politicians to warn and guard against. Still is actually.

                  > She made it clear that she would reward corruption on her behalf
                  Example please ? You do KNOW that pizzagate never happened right ?

                  >She played into the desire the same way Sanders did by promising everything they wanted
                  That's a bullshit misrepresentation of what either of them said, AND she only adopted those liberal policies because HIS success proved that a huge swath of the democrat voters WANT those policies. If anything her fault was NOT really believing in them. And the greatest misrepresentation of those positions is the claim that they would cost too much - which is a flagrant lie based on hoping you don't know how 'cost' is calculated. The cost of something is NOT equal to the price you pay for it. It's equal to the price - value. Costs come in free varieties:
                  If price = value: then the item costs nothing, and the only loss is the opportunity cost (you lose the opportunity to buy something else instead) - and it's an individual calculation if it's worth it everytime and NO answer is always right.
                  If price > value: then it's a dumbfuckish purchase and only an idiot would make it. Spending more money on what is already the most overspent military in the world would be a great example of that - Trump and the republicans love that though.
                  If price Trump did not campaign on the abolishment of constitutional rights for any American citizen
                  The proposed Muslim registry DEFINITELY would abolish a constitutional right (the 4th amendment) for American citizens based on their religion (so it ALSO violates the 1st). His current immigration proposals ALSO violate the fourth (like the idea that you can use somebody's skintone or language as probable cause to ask for proof of citizenship). That was just one of many proposals of his that did EXACTLY what you just said he didn't do.

                  >Clinton was very anti-gun, did you not see the primaries?
                  Nobody said otherwise, I said she was never coming to 'take your guns' - just like Obama didn't in 8 years of republicans promising he would do it next week. In fact, Obama's ONLY gun actions actually REDUCED gun control in the USA. What Clinton DID say she stood for was common sense, intelligent gun regulatio

                  • It's for the States to decide if they are like Maine and Nebraska. I don't think it should be federally mandated because I think the elections are a purely state matter that should be subject to state law.

                    > She made it clear that she would reward corruption on her behalf
                    Example please ? You do KNOW that pizzagate never happened right ?

                    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org]

                    she only adopted those liberal policies because HIS success proved that a huge swath of the democrat voters WANT those policies.

                    What's the difference if voters want stronger immigration enforcement and a politician adopting that platform?

                    Spending more money on what is already the most overspent military

                    I can agree but also recognize that between national healthcare and stronger defense, the constitution gives the federal government to do only one. You wouldn't

                    • >What's the difference if voters want stronger immigration enforcement and a politician adopting that platform?

                      By itself ? Nothing ! Obama was the most anti-immigrant president in since Eisenhower, he deported more than any other president in 80 years - very few democrats or liberals complained. When you market that platform by playing on stereotypes and prejudices about immigrants - then it becomes evil. Politicians are supposed to fight AGAINST negative stereotypes and prejudices as these harm everybod

                    • >DUTY to be responsible for the general welfare of the citizens.
                      "promote the general welfare of the united states", not the citizens... the citizens welfare is the job of the state.

                      >Healthcare is a basic human right
                      can you force a doctor at gun point to give you health care? Are you willing to die for that right?

                      >because it is something that EVERYBODY has a right to, or that would be harmful if anybody was deprived it.
                      are you going to force people to do something they don't want because you know be

                    • He never called for a registry of refugees - he called to end refugees entirely because he believed the utterly moronic idea that terrorists would sneak in using a systen that takes at least 6 years.

                      He also called for a registry of Muslims in America. These two calls had nothing to do with each other. They were completely different policies.

                      Muslims in America are citizens. NBC asked him how his registry differed from the Nuremberg Jewish registry. He had no answer.

                      Try a little more variety in your news die

                    • Again, every thing I have seen say you are being disingenuous. The position seems to have changed over time. Go figure.

                      From the first 2 links.
                      https://www.google.com/#q=trum... [google.com]

                      http://abcnews.go.com/Politics... [go.com]
                      https://www.washingtonpost.com... [washingtonpost.com]

                      Are you going to show me where he says; "I want a Muslim American database"? Also, how is that different than wanting a gun owner database?

                      >Try a little more variety in your news diet.
                      I get enough to know that CNN, NBC, FOX, WSJ, NYTIMES, MSNBC, washin

                    • Watch the movie John Q for your answer.

                      Killing to save lives is justifiable homocide. Always has been.

                    • Yes. I saw that movie. was meh and if memory serves he never intended to kill anyone.

                      Killing to save lives is justifiable homocide.

                      Who exactly are you killing and for what? Cuba and North Korea have universal healthcare... is that what you going to kill for? There are literally millions in the US that disagree with you... are they who you are going to kill? Is that what you call "justifiable homocide"?

                      You know, this thread started with a snarky comment about a "benevolent dictator" and yet you have the same rhetoric and justifications for the "greater

                    • >Yes. I saw that movie. was meh and if memory serves he never intended to kill anyone.
                      Yes, even justified violence should be the absolute last resort.

                      >Who exactly are you killing and for what? Cuba and North Korea have universal healthcare..
                      Cuba's is great, we have no idea what NRK has - let alone if it's any good. Canada is better than either. And I'm not killing anybody. You asked if the right was worth killing for, I said it could be justifiable homocide. That doesn't mean I intend to kill anybody,

                    • It's no strawman. It's no dishonest "debate tactic". There is no leading question. It's an honest and hard question because other rights have had and continue to have a cost in blood. If you think it is a right then that means it is worth dying for. It means it is worth going to war for. Ask the same question for a different right and see the difference. Is the right of free speech, free assembly worth dying/killing for? Is the right of arms worth dying/killing for? Is Habeas Corpus worth dying for? For man

                    • Now you're lying about what I said was a dishonest debate tactic.

                      It is a human right. It is worth dying for. It is worth fighting for. It is worth killing for.

                      But all those things, for ALL rights are the LAST resort.

                      You don't kill people while you have a chance to defend your rights without spilling blood. You do it, only when you have no other options.

                      But then - your arguments are filled with fallacies so I don't expect honest debate from you anymore. Like "millions of people dissagree with you" (appeal to

                    • >Now you're lying about what I said was a dishonest debate tactic.
                      no, you're just an idiot.

                      >You do it, only when you have no other options.
                      when is that for healthcare? if a doctor refuses to give you healthcare and you think it is a right, then what? other rights do not force others to do something.

                      >your arguments are filled with fallacies so I don't expect honest debate from you anymore. Like "millions of people dissagree with you" (appeal to popularity fallacy, and what's worse - it's complete bu

                    • >no, you're just an idiot.
                      No. You flat-out lied about what I said. As if I couldn't remember what I said, or just scroll up and read it.

                      >when is that for healthcare?
                      I won't pretend to know. But I won't pretend it's 'never' either. Contrary to your fevered imaginings, this is not a simple issue- NONE of these issues are EVER simple.

                      >if a doctor refuses to give you healthcare and you think it is a right, then what?
                      If it's a case of you're going to die if you don't get it- the law already requires hi

                    • >You flat-out lied about what I said.
                      no, i didn't.

                      >I won't pretend to know. But I won't pretend it's 'never' either. Contrary to your fevered imaginings, this is not a simple issue- NONE of these issues are EVER simple.
                      I can accept that and respect it too. It is a lot better than using hollywood. I never pretended to think this is an easy thing. If 2 people can't agree or have this much trouble on just defining it then it is exponentially harder for 535 people.

                      >the law already requires him to give

                    • Can't watch, cuz don't have facebook login. What state does he live in? Why can't his state legislature do what he is asking?

                    • Because he is not asking for anything to be done..he is asking for something the feds did to be undone - and explaining how that action harms him and his family.

                      Removing anybody's access to healthcare is murder: and that my friend justifies homocide in defense of self. Repealing Obamacare is an act of genocide. As is, coincidentally, not accepting every refugee the world is sending your way - doubly so since American policy more than any other factor caused the existence of those refugees.

                      I can never side w

                    • >he is asking for something the feds did to be undone - and explaining how that action harms him and his family.
                      What did the feds do that he wants undone?

                      >Removing anybody's access to healthcare is murder:
                      As I have mentioned in the other post, we have access to universal healthcare via Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act since 1985. It is now an issue of cost and that has always been the issue. It doesn't help that the federal government was 20 trillion debt.

                      I also disagree that removing

                    • The government repealed the ACA's pre-existing condition protextions. Directly endangering the lives of his family.

                      Failure to save a life is murder. You will not convince me otherwise.

                      Its not a debate what the cheapest way to provide the best quality healthcare is. There is absolutely overwhelming evidence.

                      What the US did before Obamacare absolutely was genocide. I have zero doubt on this. With Obamacare its better. Nothing short of medicare for all will end it though.

                      And get rid of profit seeking healthcar

                    • >The government repealed the ACA's pre-existing condition protextions. Directly endangering the lives of his family.
                      Can the state change that? Which is easier for him to change to help him?

                      >Failure to save a life is murder. You will not convince me otherwise.
                      Not trying to convince but semantics and acknowledging assisted suicide.

                      >What the US did before Obamacare absolutely was genocide.
                      Rubbish. You are seriously devaluing the word 'genocide' by using that word which is used to describe the holocaus

                    • And you are just going to ignore the difference in survival rates ? A measure of price without consideration for quality is meaningless.
                      Sure the for profit ones are cheaper: bevause they cut corners that kill more than half their patients !
                      That is not an acceptable outcome.

                      And millions of people dying for no good reason (cost is a terrible reason) is genocide. Do you think their families care if the discrimination that killed them was on class rather than race ?
                      I promise you they do not. Instead America is

                    • And in case it's unclear why it's related. Consider this: why is it not legal for me to take out fire insurance on your home ?
                      Well obviously - because if people could do that, they would have a huge incentive to burn your house down - and some of them would act on it.

                      Of course corporations don't want to stop poor people dying young - when we allow them to profit from those deaths. When we allow them to take out life insurance on their poorest worker's lives that pay out to the company - and make millions

                    • Does quality mean anything if after a few years that service is no longer provided? The whole point was that those non-profit centers were having trouble staying solvent and NY changed the rules to allow for-profit to reduce cost to keep that service going! If they continued down that path they would no longer be able to offer that service... It's a balancing act... It's economics.

                      Yes, cost is a terrible reason for why people die and that is called economics. It is a depressing school of thought. You have t

                    • >Of course corporations don't want to stop poor people dying young - when we allow them to profit from those deaths. When we allow them to take out life insurance on their poorest worker's lives that pay out to the company
                      I agree with you! Let's change that. Which do you think will be easier and faster to change, state or federal law?

                      >then of course they will lobby like mad to stop
                      I am sure their lobby efforts will be more effective by a lawmaker that is disconnected from the affected voters. IOW, con

                    • Increase the damn funding then - you can take it from reducing the excessive funding for the military.

                      A drop of over 50% in survival rates -is not an acceptable outcome here, how can you argue it is ? Those people aren't dying because of economics - they are being murdered for profit.

          • Lest we forget the truth of Democracies...

            Eventually we elect a dictator. See Hitler.

          • it was created by wealthy land owners to prevent the working class from electing a popularist who would redistribute land. Whoever's been feeding that line about the EC being a part of checks and balances is full of it. Well, it's a check alright, a check on democracy...

            The correct solution is a representative parliament. Like the UK but without the house of Lords. Anyone who can get a reasonable percentage of votes gets in.
      • by hey! ( 33014 )

        Less than half, but the idiots aren't uniformly geographically distributed.

    • by Plus1Entropy ( 4481723 ) on Monday May 15, 2017 @01:44AM (#54416775)

      We still are, believe it or not. There have been many checks against Trump's power in the short time he's been President, mostly from the judiciary, but also some from Congress as well. The new FBI director will require Congressional approval, and there are at least a few Republican Senators who are wary enough not to put some toady in... I hope.

      The areas where Trump has far more latitude are things like the Department of Justice, immigration enforcement, regulatory agencies, etc. So it's not surprising to see him have the most effect there.

      Of course the final check on him is impeachment, potentially. But (I didn't know this because I didn't live through it) apparently Watergate took 2 years to unfold before Nixon resigned... So no matter what, even if the Russia thing turns out to be the worst it could be, we're in for the long haul.

      • by Ol Olsoc ( 1175323 ) on Monday May 15, 2017 @10:38AM (#54418397)

        We still are, believe it or not. There have been many checks against Trump's power in the short time he's been President, mostly from the judiciary, but also some from Congress as well. The new FBI director will require Congressional approval, and there are at least a few Republican Senators who are wary enough not to put some toady in... I hope.

        You are correct. From what I have been told, the word is out that there will be no new director until a special prosecutor is appointed.

        Which is odd that the party of investigations would even oppose a special prosecutor. The sooner they can get their man declared completely innocent the better for them.

        When you are happy to have a special prosecutor extend his investigation so far that it ended up the horrors of a blowjob between two consenting adults, you would think that treason would be something they want their chosen one to be cleared of in short order.

        But (I didn't know this because I didn't live through it) apparently Watergate took 2 years to unfold before Nixon resigned... So no matter what, even if the Russia thing turns out to be the worst it could be, we're in for the long haul.

        The impeachment process is designed to be slow and deliberate, so yes, it does take a long time.

        The wild card in this whole thing is that we are no longer talking about an consenting adult female giving oral sex to an adult male philanderer. We're talking about what amounts to espionage. It's easy to make a stage show about old Slick Willie, one hella lot harder to be shown supporting what may have transpired.

        Which in itself makes the firing of Comey very interesting. What happens if these investigations show some clear criminal activity that is a danger to the United States?

        Clinton's blowjob wasn't even a crime, Nixon's shenannigans were just a stupid cover-up that could have easily been avoided (think about how Reagan managed to deflect that the Republicans were actually selling weapons to an avowed enemy of the US through an elaborate scheme - Wikipedia has a fascinating outline of that sordid affair.

        This long winded BS on my part is just to note that unless the Republican Party is willing to be tarred and feathered with the responsibility of defending what might come out, the 25th amendment might be invoked. That one is a lot quicker to go down.

    • by zifn4b ( 1040588 )

      can we at least _pretend_ we're still a democracy?

      If we pretend we're a democracy we're the enablers for the growing Plutocracy. We must deal with reality. Corporate America wants you to bury your head in the sand and be conflict avoidant. That's what allows them to thrive. If you care about Democracy, stand up for it.

  • by Dunbal ( 464142 ) * on Monday May 15, 2017 @12:01AM (#54416577)
    Stopped accepting comments or the server crashed again?
  • What I wanted to say (Score:5, Interesting)

    by HeckRuler ( 1369601 ) on Monday May 15, 2017 @07:56AM (#54417697)

    I support keeping telcoms regulated as common carriers under Title II.

    A lot of people confuse Network Neutrality with legislation or regulation enforcing Network Neutrality. The Internet has always been, or at least strived to be, neutral. Everyone passing along everyone else's packets without regard of content, destination, owner, religion, nation, or creed. It was more or less neutral, as anyone who wasn't would be laughed out of the industry as customers chose to buy the whole Internet rather than some censored, stumpy, Internet.

    And competition assured that. When there were dozens of ISPs in cities and they were all hungry for customers, the thought of breaking the fundamental underpinning of the Internet was unthinkable.

    But times have changed. The wild-west frontier markets have consolidated into a handful of companies that have drawn maps dividing up the nation into non-competing territories. Mostly. Google tried competing with them. And wherever Google fiber showed up, the telcoms competed and prices dropped. Yay! But it means Google isn't making money at it and they've stopped expanding. Telcoms have even legally fought municipal wifi multiple times. You know a situation is bad when people think government could do a better job selling a service than a company.

    Without competition, there is no free market. Without some alternative choice of which ISP to go to, the company has no incentive to provide good service. And so they can get away with tearing down network neutrality just to squeeze another buck out of the system. And they've been caught doing it before. I'm still royally pissed at being forced to buy access to EPSN360.com against my wishes. This bundling of internet channels is vile. An example of how they want the Internet to be structured like cable TV with the good old Internet being renamed to exclusive platinum access Internet at 500% the cost.

    Without the common carrier regulation, the only think keeping them from tearing down a fundamental principle of how the Internet functions is bad PR and political backlash. If the FCC sanctions the death of Network Neutrality, that will disappear.

    There are a bunch of ways to screw up regulation. Especially with something like the Internet which a lot of people don't understand. I was hesitant of trusting such a task to the FCC, and really didn't trust a telcom lobbyist like Tom Wheeler, but he did a surprisingly good job. Classifying the Telcoms as common carriers, with the nuance and details of what that means being left to the FCC with the intent of protecting consumers and encouraging innovation and a level playing field for business, seems like the best way forward.

    At least that's what I wanted to say. I didn't have any time until the weekend and thought I could push it off till then. Lesson kiddos, strike while the iron is hot. Leonard Nimoy said that. Don't forget it.

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