Rabidly Leftist FCC Board Nominee Moves To Full Senate Vote, Imperils Free Speech

P. Gardner Goldsmith | May 16, 2022
Text Audio
00:00 00:00
Font Size

 

No one is exactly sure how long the expression, “elephant in the room” has been in usage.

Some believe it to be a uniquely American phrase that came to the fore in an ironic 1952 piece published by the Charleston Gazette. Whatever the origin, the expression is widely understood to mean that people are experiencing vexation, but avoiding the obvious source: akin to folks in a room smelling the huge amounts of filth produced by the elephant in the room with them, but not acknowledging the clear source of their problem.

Such is the case with the current fight over freedom of speech in which conservatives find themselves. As many Americans know, a few weeks ago, the head of the Department of Homeland Security, Alejandro Mayorkas, sprung news that the DHS had, as if out of thin air, created a new “Disinformation Governance Board” to be headed by the singing sage of censorship, Ms. Nina Jankowicz. And while that justifiably has many Americans upset about Jankowicz and the new "Ministry of Truth," they mostly are mum on the anti-constitutional existence of the DHS and on the larger anti-speech elephant that has been in the room since 1927.

As I noted for MRCTV last week, the U.S. already has numerous "Ministries of Truth" in the form of tax-funded propaganda wings PBS, NPR, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), and the $150 million-a-year Portman-Murphy “Countering Foreign Propaganda” program approved last year as part of Biden’s ridiculous “CARES” Act.

But the biggest elephant soon will be making its stink widely known, and, as usual, most politicians and many Americans will simply bicker about the stench, and not address the source.

That problem is the existence of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) which soon will see the final stages of a big Senate battle over confirmation of a potential FCC Board member, while it sees absolutely zero discussion of the larger matter: that the FCC is wickedly, wildly, unconstitutional and has been an unethical fascist power-grab since its inception.

Related: Biden FCC Pick Says Her Past Calls to Censor Conservative Media Are OK Because They Were Made As a 'Private Citizen' | MRCTV

The current debate revolves around leftist Biden nominee Gigi Sohn, who, as Brittany Hughes reported for MRCTV in February, has openly called for censorship of conservatives, seems to be adored by her fellow collectivists, and whose approval and confirmation have been held up in the Senate since Amtrak Joe named her in October of last year.

This soon will come to a head, and the delay has not sat well with her progressive fans.

In early March, when she slid past a tied Senate Commerce Committee (which only is supposed to handle State versus State disputes on commerce, not control commercial activity going over state borders – more on that and how it pertains to the illegitimacy of the FCC in a moment, stay tuned), Sohn’s potential to join the powerful board was heralded by The Daily Dot’s Jacob Seitz, who wrote:

The Senate Commerce Committee voted 14-14 on Thursday to pass along the nomination of Gigi Sohn to the Federal Communications Committee (FCC). The party-line vote will send Sohn—a longtime net neutrality advocate and President Joe Biden’s pick to fill out the FCC—to the full Senate for approval. It comes after a lengthy, partisan battle just to get her out of committee.

Curiously, this same publication and same “reporter” again sang Sohn’s praises on May 13, with a story that kinda, sorta, tips the proverbial hand as to whether they are trying, in any way, to appear balanced:

How the Republican plot to stall Gigi Sohn’s FCC nomination is about to cripple the future of internet rights

Ahh, yes. The built-in assumptions scream like Banshees…

It’s a plot.

It will “cripple the future of internet rights.”

Really?

The policy to which Seitz refers is the oft-bandied, Orwellian-titled, “Net Neutrality” policy that Obama-era FCC-ers and leftist senators like Ted Kennedy pushed, but which never saw final implementation.

As those familiar with the concept know, “Net Neutrality” has nothing to do with internet neutrality. It has to do with the feds imposing price caps on companies that provide internet connectivity.

This already is screwed-up by things like municipalities blocking competitive net providers, and by extra federally-imposed charges on our cell phone bills to subsidize internet for “the poor” in the same way FDR and other leftists in 1936 started and have continued the insane electrification subsidy of farms called the Rural Electrification Administration, but “Net Neutrality” would make things worse.

Flipping the reality of the net, which is that the only things standing in the way of even better, cheaper net provision are political blockages (see the above note about municipalities stopping broadband competition), the “Net Neutrality” pushers literally claim that imposing arbitrary political control over competition is a move towards “neutrality”, rather than what it really is: political control.

And let’s not be hoodwinked by politicians who try to claim that, since the government places people with different “party affiliations” on the board it is, somehow, not “political.” It is of the polis, therefore, POLITICAL.

And the pushers of Net Neutrality want to prevent net providers from charging more for faster speeds – kind of like a politician wanting to make a food delivery service charge the same rate despite different customers having different needs and interests in speed of delivery.

The higher charges net providers can ask of bigger, corporate net users can incentivize investments in better net infrastructure, which see benefits for all users down the line.

But these economic realities – realities like necessarily higher charges for better service or for more of an in-demand “thing” -- are lost on Sohn and folks at the Daily Dot. Perhaps they ought to read this, from  Madhusudan Raj, for Mises India:

The price system, varied price for varied buyers with varied needs, must be allowed to work, otherwise, internet will be misused and wasted. If people will not have to pay for extra heavy usage of internet, because ISPs cannot discriminate based on usage, then they will overuse it, which means those who really need the bandwidth will be deprived of it.

And, again, arbitrary political blocks against entrance into the market must be lifted. But Net Neutrality has nothing to do with that. It is more of the same central government control over communications that the US populace has suffered since the creation of the FCC’s predecessor, the Federal Radio Commission, in the 1920s.

Not only is there no constitutional provision for political control of telecommunications, the First Amendment strictly prohibits the feds from getting involved.

Thus, we come to the elephant in the room. As both major parties soon argue over Sohn’s nomination and the issue of so-called “Net Neutrality,” they willfully overlook the titanic reality that – just like the DHS and its new Ministry of Truth, the FCC is a slap in the face of the Founders.

We cannot let these matters go unnoticed.

Related: 'Authoritative' Leftist Call For Internet Speech 'Regulation' By FCC - It's Really 'Authoritarian' | MRCTV

donate
mrc merch