Last week, the FCC voted to move into the formal comment phase of its Restoring Internet Freedom proposal, which seeks to alter / overturn the previous Commission’s specious Open Internet / Title II / Net Neutrality rules imposed on ISPs. At the same time as the vote was occurring, professional protesters filled the vacant lot next to the FCC to demonstrate about the “end of the Internet as we know it,” which they believe will somehow result should the new FCC pass its proposal.

Former FCC Commissioner turned Soros lobbyist, Michael Copps, urging the professional protesters to stay strong for Net Neutrality, last week at the FCC.

In the picture above you may notice a number of empty file boxes stacked up in a pyramid to the speaker’s right.  For the protesters, they represent “votes,” comments and petitions, which supposedly show just how popular and important utility regulation of the Internet is to “real people.”

A who’s-who of Soros-paid groups, all seeking “media reform” (a.k.a., content control) of the U.S. communications landscape.

Of course, they’re more than that, too.  They reveal the organization behind the show’s curtain.  That is, Soros and his “media reform” agenda.  If you look closely, the boxes with all their logos show a who’s-who of Soros grantees who take his money and then professionally protest for “fairness,” “free speech,” “diversity,” etc., etc., etc.

Most all of those people in the picture are in attendance on Soros’ dime. They’re real professionals, not “real people.”

Atop the pyramid of boxes is the activist front-group, Free Press – one of the main organizers of the FCC event. It’s potentially the biggest loser in the new rule proposed by the FCC. You see, the group – along with the White House and Google – practically wrote the Open Internet Order.

They’re there for a reason; they are the embodiment of the “media reform” movement – one which seeks to use government-imposed mandates like Title II Net Neutrality to limit and control “undesirable” speech.

The group’s founder and former leadership says that that agenda looks like this (Spoiler alert: They favor broad censorship of free speech for the “greater good”).

When FCC Chairman Ajit Pai first introduced the agency’s Restoring Internet Freedom proposal last month, he went out of his way to point this agenda out, giving a special shout-out to Free Press, exclaiming:

Consider, for example, the leading special interest in favor of Title II: a spectacularly misnamed Beltway lobbying group called Free Press. Its co- founder and current board member makes no effort to hide the group’s true agenda. While he says “we’re not at th[e] point yet” where we can “completely eliminate the telephone and cable companies,” he admits that “the ultimate goal is to get rid of the media capitalists in the phone and cable companies and to divest them from control.” And who would assume control of the Internet? The government, of course. The overall goal is to “remove brick by brick the capitalist system itself, rebuilding the entire society on socialist principles.”

And what would the government do once it is in control? Certainly not protect free speech as we know it here in the United States. For example, he has said that “[w]e need to do whatever we can to limit capitalist propaganda, regulate it, minimize it, and perhaps even eliminate it.” And this “Free Press” founder takes his inspiration from Venezuela. No, really! Back in 2007, he said that “aggressive unqualified political dissent is alive and well in the Venezuelan mainstream media, in a manner few other democratic nations have ever known, including our own.” And he and another co-founder of this special interest argued during the Obama Administration that “[o]nly government can implement policies and subsidies to provide an institutional framework for quality journalism.”

To be sure, it is tempting to dismiss these statements as isolated rants. But unfortunately, it is all too typical of a larger movement in our country today that is fundamentally hostile to free speech. We see it in efforts to banish those who express unpopular views online. We see it when speakers are barred from college campuses, violently of late. We see it when university bureaucrats use Orwellian phrases like wanting “to continue empowering a culture of controversy prevention.” And we see it when members of the Federal Election Commission seek to restrict political speech and regulate online platforms like the Drudge Report.

And where do the people who are driving this closing of the American mind stand on greater government regulation of the Internet? They don’t just favor it; they strongly demand it. They raise money off of it. And we are somehow supposed to believe that their true motive is to protect free speech on the Internet? Please.

Free Press is not an outlier.  It is the poster child for Left’s “normal.” It is its “free speech” brand.

Think about that for a moment.  Its brand is built on limiting “unapproved” voice, hoping to box it up and lock it in some dark closet so that “progress” may continue unfettered by dissenting points of view.  That sounds like something which was done in the Cold War, behind the Iron Curtain. And the Left wants that here, now.

That ain’t right, man.

“Media reform” represents enslavement of individual expression and free thought to the government-controlled “collective.” We must not abide George Soros’ hostile takeover of free speech. That agenda stands against all Americans. It deserves full-throated rejection.

Repealing the Open Internet / Net Neutrality Order via the FCC’s Restoring Internet Freedom proposal would be an important first step toward tearing down that pyramid of empty boxes.

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Washington, DC, May 18, 2017 – MediaFreedom hails the FCC’s new Restore Internet Freedom NPRM. We hope it leads to the elimination of the last FCC’s regulatory overreach, especially as it pertains to the re-classification of ISPs as common carriers. We hope also that the resulting rules axe in their entirety, or greatly relax, the agency’s present Net Neutrality regulations on blocking, throttling and paid priority. We have long-argued that agency-mandated Net Neutrality rules were never needed. Not only are they inapt for today’s converged marketplace, they unconstitutionally abridge the speech and association rights of all players in the Internet ecosystem.  The FCC would do well to rid innovation and free speech of these needless proscriptions.

Of course, this good and necessary work can only be temporary. Ultimately, Congress must step in and stop the regulatory ping-pong game for good. We urge their intensified focus – and action – on this matter. Americans deserve no less.

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What’s an agency to do when it wants to prove – er, find out – if “consumers” are concerned about 0-rating / Net Neutrality policy?

Well, if you’re like Canada’s CRTC, you get some of your proof – er, “evidenced-based facts” – from an activist group called OpenMedia, and reddit users.

Though market-based parties presented studies which voiced support for the practice of o-rating, they were roundly discounted because “…nearly all the consumers who participated in this proceeding, either as individual parties, through OpenMedia, or through the reddit forum, were opposed to such practices because of their long-term consequences.”

“Nearly all the consumers”?  That would include OpenMedia’s 30,000 “signatures” on a joint, online form letter submitted to the CRTC.  And reddit’s 1,200 online comments scooped up by the agency.

Inclusion of reddit’s comments is particularly interesting.  The agency actively solicited the online forum because, according to a spokesperson, it was “a great opportunity to get comments from interested individuals who might not otherwise participate in this proceeding to share their points of view.”

I’ll say.

The outcome of this and other unquantified “consumer” input in the proceeding?

A near-total ban on 0-rating practices.

Nice forum shopping.

Getting “evidence-based” material from OpenMedia and reddit to justify a seemingly large piece of its “consumer” analysis is, well, amateur hour.  OpenMedia is an open advocate of Net Neutrality regulations. And reddit?  A Pew report reveals its users tend to be:

“…young, male, and to self-identify as liberal at higher rates than the overall public.”

It would be hard to imagine any input emerging from OpenMedia and reddit which would be contrary to CRTC’s pro-regulatory script (which is exactly the point).

I contacted the CRTC about this and asked them if they verified that real people were making these comments; why they chose reddit, knowing that its base strongly favors Net Neutrality regulation; and whether any other online conservative outlets were considered to arrive at their conclusions.

Its answers? Though its spokespeople expressed confidence that the agency reached “an evidenced-based decision that is in the public interest,” they chose not to answer on verification.  They chose not answer on reddit’s liberal, Net Neutrality bias.  And, they chose not to answer about going out to other conservative online fora to support the record.

What’s the upshot?

The CRTC’s “search” for “evidence-based” facts shows that real facts matter little in the struggle to impose Net Neutrality on the masses.

Hmmm, where have we seen that before?

This is yet more proof that Net Neutrality policy – whatever that means at any given moment – cannot survive but for rigged deck tactics and willful blindness to other points of view.

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On Sunday night, HBO’s John Oliver urged the Internet’s trolls to flood the FCC with pro-Net Neutrality comments in the agency’s pending Restore Internet Freedom docket.  On Tuesday night it was reported numerous of those “filings” were hate-filled, racist barbs specifically directed at FCC Chairman Ajit Pai (shown here in this story).

This ugliness should have been met with full-throated condemnation, with particular apologies from the Net Neutie leadership, which incites this hatred – such as “activist groups” Public Knowledge, Free Press, Fight for the Future, and Demand Progress; the Senators partnering with them, including Al Franken, Ed Markey, Ron Wyden, and Elizabeth Warren; and the media, trafficking in their propaganda, like The Verge, Ars Technica, Wired, The New York Times, and The Washington Post.

But it wasn’t to be.

Net Neutrality’s angry mobsters, spewing forth outside of AEI, where Chairman Ajit Pai was speaking last Friday.

Instead – and seemingly on-cue to displace the contra-narrative racist-hate story – the Soros-funded “activist groups,” the Senators, and the press, all pretty much in lock-step, chose to focus on a “more important” controversy: A supposed bot of unknown origin, filing imposter anti-Net Neutrality comments on the FCC’s website.

The subtext was this: The big, evil telecom companies aren’t playing fair and are working nefariously to rig the comment process at the FCC so it favors them (concluded as such, even though no one could pin down the source of the fake filings). Not to let facts interfere with a good story, however, the “Damn, those bastards, they’re at it again” meme had its intended effect and pushed aside the ugly affront to Chairman Pai.

Let’s cut to the chase.

Racism, hate, death threats – these are the tools that the Left’s Net Neutrality troops employ in the field of battle. They belie the certainty of their Net Neutrality policy “solution.” Of course, if Tea Partiers did this, we’d hear good and well about it from those mentioned above. Heads would roll. But, if the Progs do it, brandishing their digital pitchforks and other implements of terror, well, as Emily Litella might say, “Never mind.”

You won’t find the press releases decrying the ugly statements of the zealots because the end justifies the means. And, in their eyes, Chairman Ajit Pai, and the open process he has unleashed to wrest control of the Internet from government control, is the devil.

As John Oliver implored the last time he ranted on Net Neutrality three years ago:

“We need you to get out there, and for once in your lives focus your indiscriminate rage in a useful direction. Seize your moment, my lovely trolls! Turn on CAPS LOCK, and fly, my pretties! Fly!!!! Fly!!!! Fly!!!!”

Anything goes. The Left’s Net Neutrality elitist leadership gives its thumbs-up.

But, that ain’t right.

Make no mistake about it, the pro-Net Neutrality movement owns this ugliness. It’s a bad, hateful, hypocritical brand – a blight, one which stands firmly against the individual, free speech, and America.

Call the groups, the Senators, the press – the enablers – noted above, and give them a good earful why you think they should act like humans, not haters. Their tactics have no place in this policy debate.

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Too Late, “Media Reformers,” the Last FCC Closed the Open Internet in 2015

May 9, 2017

This shot – of a Free Press “media reform” staff activist – reveals the clear disconnect between those who want the FCC to regulate the Internet via utility regulation (as in her Soros-funded group, and numerous others), and those who don’t. She and her group support a “diverse media landscape,” which in their view must […]

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Democrat Leader Confirms His Party Is Immune to Economics, Facts in Net Neutrality Debate

May 4, 2017

I went to an event at the New America Foundation yesterday entitled, “The Fight for Net Neutrality Begins Again.” During the Q&A, the event’s headline speaker – Ranking Member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Representative Frank Pallone (D-NJ) – provided an interesting response to an audience question (transcribed below). It was, to say […]

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Restore Internet Freedom – Heck Yes!

April 28, 2017

MediaFreedom hails Chairman Ajit Pai and Commissioner Mike O’Rielly’s proposal to (in their words) “end the utility-style regulatory approach that gives government control of the Internet and to restore the market-based policies necessary to preserve the future of Internet Freedom, and to reverse the decline in infrastructure investment, innovation, and options for consumers put into […]

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Net Neutrality – The (Fundraising) Gift That Keeps on Giving

April 25, 2017

It’s that time of year again. As non-profits ready their tax returns due next month, activist “c3’s” like Public Knowledge and Free Press are looking woefully at their anemic, post-Trump-win bank accounts and are desperately searching for their next fundraising opportunity. In the telecom world, they’ve turned to their old reliable cash cow – Net […]

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Study: Millennials Demand Netflix at a Five-Finger Discount

April 24, 2017

Shocker alert: A new study has found that a majority of millennials don’t pay to use Netflix. According to the survey: 54 percent of respondents said they use a friend’s or family member’s account. Additionally, 5 percent said they used their current or ex-girlfriend’s or boyfriend’s account. Meanwhile, only 34 percent said they have their […]

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Techies Urge FCC to Arrest Open Internet Order’s Regulatory Overreach

April 21, 2017

The following letter – urging the rollback of Title II and the Open Internet Order – was submitted to the FCC on April 19, 2017: Via ECFS Ms. Marlene H. Dortch Secretary Federal Communications Commission 445 12th Street, S.W. Washington, DC 20554 April 19, 2017 Re: Letter on GN Docket No. 14-28, urging the “rollback” […]

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