Net neutrality, the FCC, Wikileaks and the future of internet freedom
(NaturalNews) Regardless of what you think about the Wikileaks release of state secrets, there's no debating the astonishing fact that the internet made these leaks possible. Without the internet, no single organization such as Wikileaks would have been able to so widely propagate secret government information and make it public. In the old model of information distribution -- centralized mainstream media newspapers and news broadcasts -- such information would have been tightly controlled thanks to government pressure.
But the internet allows individual information publishers to bypass the censorship of government. In the case of Wikileaks, it allowed an Australian citizen to embarrass the U.S. government while sitting at a laptop computer in the United Kingdom.
Governments don't like to be embarrassed. They don't like their secrets aired on the internet. Sure, it's okay for governments to tap all of your secrets by monitoring your phone calls, emails and web browsing habits, but every government seeks to protect its own secrets at practically any cost. That's why the upshot of this Wikileaks release may be that governments will now start to look for new ways to censor and control the internet in order to prevent such information leaks from happening in the future.
What governments around the world are suddenly beginning to realize is that a free internet is ultimately incompatible with government secrets, and secrets are essential to any government that wants to remain in power. That's because, as even Noam Chomsky stated in this DemocracyNow video interview (http://www.democracynow.org/2010/11...), most government secrets are based on information governments wouldn't want their people to discover -- secrets that might threaten the legitimacy of government if the people found out the truth.
How the FCC plans to seize authority over the internet
As part of a long-term plan to control content on the internet, the FCC is now attempting to assert authority over the internet in the same way it has long exercised content censorship authority over broadcast television and radio.
The reason you can't say those seven dirty words on broadcast television, in other words, is because the FCC controls broadcast television content and can simply revoke the broadcast licenses of any television station that refuses to comply. This is the same tactic, in the internet world, of yanking a web site's domain name, which the Department of Homeland Security has already begun doing over the last several weeks (http://www.naturalnews.com/030542_c...).
The FCC also controls content on the radio and can yank the broadcast licenses of any radio stations that refuse to comply with its content censorship. This is why operators of "pirate radio stations" are dealt with so harshly: For the government to allow any radio station to operate outside its censorship and control is to invite dissent.
The internet, of course, has been operating freely and without any real government censorship for roughly two decades. In that time, it has grown to be what is arguably the most influential medium in the world for information distribution. Most importantly, the internet is the medium of information freedom that is not controlled by any government.
The U.S. government wants to change all that, and they've dispatched the FCC to reign in the "freedoms" of the internet.
How to crush internet Free Speech
The first step to the FCC's crushing of internet freedom is to assert authority over the internet by claiming to run the show. The FCC, of course, has no legal authority over the internet. It was only granted authority in 1934 over broadcast communications in the electromagnetic spectrum -- you know, radio waves and antennas, that kind of thing.
There is nothing in the Communications Act of 1934 that grants the FCC any authority over the internet because obviously the internet didn't exist then, and it would have been impossible for lawmakers in the 1930's to imagine the internet as it operates today.
So instead of following the law, the FCC is trying to "fake" its way into false authority over the internet by claiming authority in the current "net neutrality" debate. By asserting its authority with net neutrality, the FCC will establish a beachhead of implied authority from which it can begin to control and censor the internet.
This is why "net neutrality" is a threat to internet freedom. It's not because of anything to do with net neutrality itself, but rather with the FCC's big power grab in its assertion that it has authority over websites just like it has authority over broadcast radio.
The FCC may soon tell you what you can post on the internet
Where is this all heading? Once the FCC establishes a foothold on the 'net, it can then assert that it has the power to tell you what to post on the internet. Here's how it might unfold:
First, the FCC will simply ban what it calls "information traitors," which will include people like Julian Assange (Wikileaks) who publish state secrets. (Technically Julian Assange can't be a traitor since he's not even American in the first place, but don't expect the FCC to care about this distinction.)
Once the public is comfortable with that, the FCC will advance its agenda to include "information terrorists" which will include anything posted about Ron Paul, the federal reserve and the counterfeit money supply, G. Edward Griffin, or anything from true U.S. patriots who defend the Constitution. The anti-state website www.LewRockwell.com (where some of my own articles have appeared from time to time) would also be immediately banned because its information is so dangerous to government control.
After that censorship is in place, the FCC will likely begin to push the corporate agenda by banning websites that harm the profits of large corporations. This will include, of course, websites like NaturalNews.com which teach people about health freedom, nutritional cures, natural remedies and alternatives to Big Pharma's high-profit pharmaceuticals.
The way this will come about is that the FCC may require a license to publish health information on the web, in much the same way that states currently license doctors to practice medicine. This is how conventional medicine has operated its monopoly for so long, by the way: By controlling the licensing of doctors at the state level. Any doctor who dares prescribe nutritional supplements or suggest that medication might be harmful to a patient immediately gets stripped of his license to practice medicine (and thereby put out of business). The FCC will likely do the same thing across the internet. Sites that publish health information without a license will be deemed "a threat to public health" and be seized by the government.
The first target? Anti-vaccine websites. Vaccines are so crucial to the continuation of disease and medical enslavement in America that any site questioning the current vaccine mythology will be deemed a threat to public health -- or perhaps even a "terrorism" organization.
Essentially, once the FCC has gained power and authority over the internet, it will use that power to push a Big Government / Big Business agenda that censors the truth, keeps people trapped in a system of disinformation, and silences anyone who challenges the status quo.
The FCC is poised to become the FDA of internet information, banning alternative speech and enforcing an information monopoly engineered by powerful corporations.
Think of the FCC as the new the Ministry of Truth from George Orwell's novel 1984 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minist...).
This is not about net neutrality, it's about the FCC power grab
Remember, I am not arguing here for or against the principle of net neutrality itself, but rather warning about the FCC's imposition of false authority over the internet in the first place. The idea of net neutrality has merits, but granting the FCC the power to control the internet is a disastrously bad idea that will only end in censorship and "information tyranny" -- especially now that governments around the world are witnessing the "dangers" of information freedom via the Wikileaks fiasco.
If there's one thing governments hate, it's real freedom. Sure, they all talk about freedom and publicly claim their allegiance to it, but behind the scenes what they really want is total information control. That's because freedom gives people the ability to say what they want, to whomever they want, and even to oppose the doctrine of the government.
Just look at China and how it has censored the internet to the point where you can't even log in to Facebook from that country.
Governments hate freedom because freedom threatens centralized power and control over the People. And because governments hate freedom, they also hate the internet as long as it's free. This is why bloggers and internet journalists are right now imprisoned all over the world for merely posting the truth (http://www.cpj.org/imprisoned/cpjs-...).
As Noam Chomsky said in his DemocracyNow interview (link above), what the recent Wikileaks releases really show is that the U.S. government has "a profound hatred for democracy."
It also happens to have a profound hatred for actual freedom, because people who are free to think for themselves and write whatever they want are always going to be a threat to a government that wants people to conform, obey and acquiesce.
All government agencies seek to expand their power
What do the FCC, FDA, TSA, DEA, FTC and USDA all have in common?
They all want more power. They want more authority, bigger budgets and more control over the world around them. They are like cancer tumors, growing in size and toxicity while they consume more and more by stealing resources from a healthy host. The bigger these cancer tumors become, the more dangerous they become to the health of the host body, and the more urgently they need to be held in check or excised from the body entirely.
There is no such thing as a government agency that wants to be smaller, with shrinking budgets and fewer employees on the taxpayer payroll. Government departments -- just like people -- incessantly seek more power even at the expense of freedom among those they claim to serve. And this move by the FCC to assume control over the internet is one of the most dangerous power grabs yet witnessed in the short history of the information age.
By the way, one of the reasons we created and launched www.NaturalNews.TV was because we wanted a video site that could not be turned off by YouTube. You've probably heard the horror stories of famous content producers like Alex Jones having their YouTube accounts suddenly terminated. NaturalNews.TV is a safe haven for alternative health content that cannot be turned off by a large corporation that doesn't recognize the value of health freedom.
Feel free to participate by uploading videos or viewing the many thousands of free videos available right now at www.NaturalNews.TV
By the way, I recommend reading another outstanding article on this topic written by John Naughton at The Guardian (http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentis...). Here's a taste of what he writes:
Consider, for instance, how the views of the US administration have changed in just a year. On 21 January, secretary of state Hillary Clinton made a landmark speech about internet freedom, in Washington DC, which many people welcomed and most interpreted as a rebuke to China for its alleged cyberattack on Google. "Information has never been so free," declared Clinton. "Even in authoritarian countries, information networks are helping people discover new facts and making governments more accountable."
She went on to relate how, during his visit to China in November 2009, Barack Obama had "defended the right of people to freely access information, and said that the more freely information flows the stronger societies become. He spoke about how access to information helps citizens to hold their governments accountable, generates new ideas, and encourages creativity." Given what we now know, that Clinton speech reads like a satirical masterpiece.
Read the rest here