I'm sure you know about this:
President Obama on Monday put the full weight of his administration behind an open and free Internet, calling for a strict policy of so-called net neutrality and formally opposing deals in which content providers like Netflix would pay huge sums to broadband companies for faster access to their customers....And I'm sure you know what Ted Cruz and his communications directory said in response:
In [a] statement, and a video on the White House website, Mr. Obama urged the Federal Communications Commission to adopt the strictest set of neutrality rules possible and to treat consumer broadband service as a public utility, similar to telephone or power companies....
"Net Neutrality" is Obamacare for the Internet; the Internet should not operate at the speed of government.— Senator Ted Cruz (@SenTedCruz) November 10, 2014
Net neutrality puts gov't in charge of determining pricing, terms of service, and what products can be delivered. Sound like Obamacare much?— Amanda Carpenter (@amandacarpenter) November 10, 2014
Kate Knibbs at Gizmodo gets it right:
Comparing net neutrality to Obamacare is basically the most insulting parallel a conservative senator can make -- half buzzword, half slur, and 100% cynical....Yes, and keep is the right word -- because net neutrality is what we've actually had as the Internet arose and became the cultural force it is now.
This is a disingenuous, chickenshit political maneuver and nothing more....
Obama is not saying the government should wrest control from private companies and start administering the Internet itself. He is trying to keep the Internet as an equalizer.
But right-wingers know that they win converts with relentless demonization of their political opponents. So they're going to hammer away at this, using imagery that they know is utterly deceitful.
Case in point:
Symbolism of Obama pushing new govt controls on Internet while in China is unsettling. Embracing his inner tyrant? pic.twitter.com/efYYga2rqA— MATT DRUDGE (@DRUDGE) November 10, 2014
A certain percentage of the public understands this issue. Average citizens who get it will cheer the president; those who have a monetary interest in unleveling the playing field will be upset, and will push back hard against what Obama's trying to do.
The GOP is on the side of the latter group, obviously, because Capitalists Can Do No Wrong. Beyond that, however, the GOP is working hard to make its millions of uncritical, unthinking followers into haters of net neutrality. If Obama's for it, they should be against it. If Obama's for it, it must be evil.
What we're going to hear is that if your Internet service goes up in price, or your connection speed is awful, or your service provider's customer service is abysmal, then surely it's the fault of totalitarian Obama and his centrally planned, command-and-control, Maoist/Stalinist/fascist Internet. That'll be true even if your Internet service already sucked in any (or all) of these ways long before today. It's all going to be his fault. It's not going to be the fault of the providers themselves. It's going to be a problem that can only be solved with MORE FREEDOM! -- as defined by the industry giants themselves.
So, yeah, I applaud what Obama has done, but I hope he hasn't poisoned the good name of net neutrality just by endorsing it. Unfortunately, that's how things work in our horrible political culture.