It's those damn communists. They're on the march again. Quick, man the 

Wait, I'm wrong. It's AT&T and Verizon. They're on the march again. 
Quick, open the gates to the City.

Jeff Broadwick wrote:
> Broadband Trojan Horse
> The FCC has a new plan but doesn't want a vote.
> Health care isn't the only policy arena in which the Obama Administration
> aims to ram through controversial new rules. The Federal Communications
> Commission is set to unveil a "national broadband plan" opposed by industry
> and without any of the five commissioners voting on it.
> Last year, Congress directed the FCC to develop a plan to make high-speed
> Internet available to more people. But given that 95% of Americans already
> have access to some form of broadband-and 94% can choose from at least four
> wireless carriers-rapid broadband deployment is already occurring without
> new government mandates.
> Since 1998, the FCC has classified broadband as an "information service"
> subject to less regulation than traditional telecom services. The Supreme
> Court's Brand X decision in 2005 validated that classification, and the
> upshot has been more investment, innovation and competition among Internet
> service providers, all to the benefit of consumers.
> In 2009 alone, broadband providers spent nearly $60 billion on their
> networks. Absent any evidence of market failure, the best course for the FCC
> is to report back to Congress that a broadband industrial policy is
> unnecessary. Instead, FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski is moving to increase
> the reach of his agency and expand government control of the Web.
> Among other things, he wants broadband services reclassified so the FCC can
> more heavily regulate them. The national broadband plan, to be unveiled
> tomorrow, will call for using the federal Universal Service Fund to
> subsidize broadband deployment. The USF currently subsidizes phone service
> in rural areas, and Mr. Genachowski knows that current law prevents it from
> being used to subsidize broadband unless broadband is reclassified as a
> telecom service. Congress ought to be wary of letting the FCC expand its
> jurisdiction through back doors like this.
> Mr. Genachowski wants more control over broadband providers so that he can
> implement "net neutrality" rules that would dictate how AT&T, Verizon and
> other Internet service providers manage their networks. To date, Congress
> has given the FCC no such authority. Nor has the agency had success in
> court. Based on oral arguments last month, the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals
> is almost certain to rule against the FCC in a case involving Comcast's
> network management.
> At the urging of liberal advocacy groups like Free Press and Public
> Knowledge, Mr. Genachowski also wants to use the national broadband plan as
> a vehicle for returning to the bad old 1990s era of "open access"
> regulations. He recommends forcing major broadband providers like Time
> Warner Cable and Qwest to share their high-speed networks with smaller
> competitors at federally set rates. We can't think of a better way to reduce
> capital investment and slow the build-out of high-speed networks.
> Mr. Genachowski's proposals are meeting resistance from telecom companies
> and fellow commissioners, which is reason enough to put his broadband plan
> to an agency vote. Instead, the chairman is urging his colleagues to sign a
> general statement that endorses the goals of the plan and ignores the
> details.
> "Instead of risking a split vote among the five regulators on approving the
> plan," reports National Journal, "Genachowski is seeking consensus on a
> joint statement, which sources said would provide him with some political
> cover for the controversies that are certain to be triggered by some of the
> plan's recommendations."
> The FCC chairman and his staff have spent the better part of a year
> preparing a major report while keeping his colleagues largely in the dark.
> What happened to the Obama Administration's promise to be open and
> transparent?
> Copyright 2009 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved
> Regards,
> Jeff
> Jeff Broadwick
> Sales Manager, ImageStream
> 800-813-5123 x106     (US/Can)
> +1 574-935-8484 x106  (Int'l)
> +1 574-935-8488       (Fax) 
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