Free Markets, Free People
Thankfully, the US has taken the proper position on this one:
The United States said Thursday that it will not sign a United Nations telecommunications treaty that U.S. technology companies warn would disrupt governance of the Internet and open the door to online censorship.
The U.K. and Canada also said they would not ratify the treaty after negotiations ended at a conference hosted by the U.N. International Telecommunications Union (ITU) in Dubai.
Kramer, who led the U.S. delegation during the conference, told reporters on a conference call that the U.S. could not sign the treaty because there were “too many issues here that were problematic for us.”
The treaty is intended to govern how telephone calls and other communications traffic are exchanged internationally. While it is not a legally binding document, Kramer said the U.S. opposed extending the scope of the treaty to include Internet governance and online content matters.
“The U.S. will continue to uphold and advance the multi-stakeholder model of the Internet,” Kramer told reporters.
The U.S. believed the treaty should not apply to Internet providers or private and government networks. Instead, U.S. delegates argued that only traditional telecommunications operators, such as AT&T and Verizon, should be subject to the updated rules.
Another attempted power grab by the UN and more importantly, something to provide a thin veneer of legality to all the 3rd world dictators attempts to control the net. Not that they won’t do that anyway, they just wanted it to be “legal”. So they will ratify this treaty.
“What is clear from the ITU meeting in Dubai is that many governments want to increase regulation and censorship of the Internet,” a Google spokesman said in a statement. “We stand with the countries who refuse to sign this treaty and also with the millions of voices who have joined us to support a free and open Web.”
Peter Foster at the Financial Post sums up the Doha “climate change” conference best:
The UN climate conferences have descended into ritual farce, as naked money-grabbing on behalf of poor countries contrasts with finagling impossible solutions to what is likely a much-exaggerated problem. One leading question is how dubious science, shoddy economics and tried-and-failed socialist policies have come to dominate the democratic process in so many countries for so long. The answer appears to be the skill with which a radical minority — centred in and promoted by the UN, and funded by national governments and, even more bizarrely, corporations — has skilfully manipulated the political process at every level.
A fairly succinct and accurate summary of the ongoing effort.
Walter Russel Mead also has a take on it with which I agree:
Climate negotiators at the most recent conference on global warming were unable to reduce expectations fast enough to match the collapse of their agenda. The only real winners here were the bureaucrats in the diplomacy industry for whom endless rounds of carbon spewing conferences with no agreement year after year mean jobs, jobs, jobs. The inexorable decline of the climate movement from its Pickett’s Charge at the Copenhagen summit continues. The global green lobby is more flummoxed than ever. These people and these methods couldn’t make a ham sandwich, much less save Planet Earth.
And, while I agree that is so, the UN, these conferences, 3rd world nations and the so-called “green agenda” continue attempts to exert control over advanced countries and extort a chunk of their GDP as “compensation” for what no one is sure. There desires in this regard have never been more obvious than in their questionable opposition to the boom in natural gas (something, one could argue, that would be helpful to developing 3rd world countries while satisfying the “green agenda”).
It’s green, it’s cheap and it’s plentiful! So why are opponents of shale gas making such a fuss? If it were not so serious there would be something ludicrous about the reaction of the green lobby to the discovery of big shale gas reserves in this country. Here we are in the fifth year of a downturn. We have pensioners battling fuel poverty. We have energy firms jacking up their prices. We have real worries about security of energy supply – a new building like the Shard needs four times as much juice as the entire town of Colchester. In their mad denunciations of fracking, the Greens and the eco-warriors betray the mindset of people who cannot bear a piece of unadulterated good news.
Obviously, it would be even harder to sell their extortion attempts if advanced countries are able to develop a source of energy that is indeed “green, cheap and plentiful”. And, apparently, even they realize they’re not going to get too far attempting to demonize natural gas per se. So they’ve instead focused on the process used to extract it (hydraulic fracturing – “fracking”) and are in the usual mode of demonizing it instead. That, despite the fact that the process has been used in the US, at least, since 1948 on over 1,000,000 wells without negative results to ground water (the supposed threat that fracking poses). But as we’ve all learned, facts are not the currency this group uses.
The point? This circus will continue for the foreseeable future because the majority of the UN sees an extortion opportunity that is just too good to pass up. Their initial success in scaring the world with “shoddy science” continues to motivate their efforts. They haven’t quite accepted that it is failing.
Of course, real science has never really been a part of this process. All they needed was a veneer to successfully launch the project. Al Gore and “consensus” provided that. The assembled then declared the “science” to be “settled” (Science never attains consensus and is never “settled”). After that, the participants in this extortion attempt have simply stated that further review is essentially unneeded. The argument is over, just STFU and accept it. Meanwhile that “science” continues to come apart at the seams as real data is collected and demonstrates the underlying climate “science’s” shortcomings and outright falsehoods.
Natural gas provides a new alarming problem for these folks. When it was thought to be a fairly scarce resource, enviros embraced it (the Sierra Club touted it for years before turning against it when it became plentiful and cheap). Now that it threatens to undermine their entire culture of extortion and control, they’re rabidly against it – or at least what it requires to extract it.
One can only hope that the failure in Doha signals the end game of this farce, but that’s doubtful. No dissenting word is allowed. As Lord Monckton learned when he tried to bring up the fact that there has been no warming for the past 16 years and was summarily ejected for doing so. This is no longer about science. This is no longer about an imminent threat. It’s about extortion, plain and simple. And anyone with the least bit of honesty will recognize that and should join in the call to end this farce for good.
Ignoring the fact that there’s been no rise in global temperatures for 16 years, 3rd world countries at the UN’s Doha climate conference are proceeding with their plan to make richer countries pay for their perceived (perhaps “mythical” is a better word?) damages wrought by “climate change”.
Basing their claim on the discredited “science” generated by nothing more than inaccurate climate models, they’ve decided what was promised previously just isn’t enough:
There has been a historic shift in the UN climate talks in Qatar, with the prospect of rich nations having to compensate poor nations for losses due to climate change.
The US has fiercely opposed the measure – it says the cost could be unlimited.
But after angry tussles throughout the night the principle of Loss and Damage is now in the final negotiating text.
Why is it that these countries think that what was previously promised ($100 billion by 2020 in Copenhagen) isn’t sufficient? Because President Obama just asked Congress for $60 billion for hurricane Sandy relief. Obviously, using that as a baseline, these countries want more.
And you have to love this attitude:
Saleem ul-Huq, from the think-tank IIED, told the BBC: “This is a watershed in the talks. There is no turning back from this. It will be better for the US to realise that the principle of compensation is inevitable – and negotiate a limit on Loss and Damage rather than leave the liability unlimited.
“The principle of compensation is inevitable?” Really? For what, given there’s been no evidence of damage?
It is a point of principle that is at stake here for developing countries. In the end it’s questionable how much extra money a Loss and Damage Mechanism might bring.
Already poor nations are bitter that rich nations, particularly the US are dragging their feet over a promise made at the failed Copenhagen climate summit to mobilise $100bn by 2020 to help poor nations get clean energy and adapt to climate change.
A “point of principle” my rear end. It’s UN sponsored extortion. It is based on faulty science and given hope by weak willed politicans, all supervised by the bandits in the UN.
We don’t own them anything.
Not. One. Red. Cent.
Primarily it is about attitude. And that additude translates into action. Forget the words they mumble, consider what they do.
Sometimes, though, the words tumble out and give you a real peek behind the mask. UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon did some mumbling the other day which is a prime indicator of why the UN is both a disgrace and a threat to freedom. He spoke about “freedom of speech”. And, apparently learning from Obama, he tries to have it both ways, but in the end it is clear he really doesn’t consider speech a “freedom” or a “right” so much as a privilege that he and others like him get to define and limit:
“Freedoms of expression should be and must be guaranteed and protected, when they are used for common justice, common purpose,” Ban told a news conference.
“When some people use this freedom of expression to provoke or humiliate some others’ values and beliefs, then this cannot be protected in such a way.”
“My position is that freedom of expression, while it is a fundamental right and privilege, should not be abused by such people, by such a disgraceful and shameful act,” he said.
Note all the caveats and conditions. Who gets to define “abuse”? Where did this right not to be humiliated come from? And since when does that pseudo “right” trump freedom of speech?
I’ll tell you when – when despots so decide it does, that’s when.
And the UN is a collection of despots seeking power, which, thankfully, been mostly denied over it’s history. But in this topsy-turvy world, I wouldn’t be surprised to see them gather more and more over time.
The only person in this scenario who should be disgraced and ashamed is the UN’s Secretary General after those disgusting thoughts were uttered.
The more I watch the utter nonsense that’s going on in this country and the world these days, the more I begin to think that Orwell just missed it by a few decades.
If you haven’t wondered about the morality of this or its legality, I’d be surprised.
It’s easy to overlook, after all it’s the “good guys” doing it, right?
While I usually ignore most of what the UN says, I think there’s some substance here:
The US policy of using aerial drones to carry out targeted killings presents a major challenge to the system of international law that has endured since the second world war, a United Nations investigator has said.
Christof Heyns, the UN special rapporteur on extrajudicial killings, summary or arbitrary executions, told a conference in Geneva that President Obama’s attacks in Pakistan, Yemen and elsewhere, carried out by the CIA, would encourage other states to flout long-established human rights standards.
In his strongest critique so far of drone strikes, Heyns suggested some may even constitute "war crimes". His comments come amid rising international unease over the surge in killings by remotely piloted unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).
A lot of times I apply the “what if some other country was doing this to the US” standard to things we do. Take Fast and Furious. What if Mexico had run that operation on us? We’d be “furious”. We’d condemn them roundly. We’d be seeking redress. We’d be initiating some sort of action.
Now given, in certain of the cases with UAV’s, governments of countries effected are cooperating and, in some cases, even giving permission. But that isn’t always the case as we well know. In fact, many times this country just executes an extra-judicial and/or targeted killing without the knowledge or consent of the government of the state in which it takes place.
As you might expect, there’s a lot of death of innocents that is euphemistically waved away as “collateral damage”.
Certainly the use of UAVs as a military asset that can both gather intel and be used to attack legitimate enemies makes sense. But we’re into a very gray moral area with “extra-judicial” and targeted killings in other countries.
The irony, of course, is the administration that arrogantly condemned its predecessor for secret jails and military tribunals and insisted that the judicial system be used in the war on terror instead now acts as judge, jury and executioner in these UAV killings.
I just wondered what we’d think if Pakistan began flying UAVs into the US and knocking off politicians who supported UAV strikes in Pakistan, calling them “war criminals” and all?
Think we’d find that outrageous, a violation of our sovereignty and international law and be whining to the UN about what was being done by that country (not to mention beating the war drums here at home)?
Yeah, me too.
Would we have a legal or moral leg to stand on?
As anyone who has read this blog knows, I’m not a fan of the UN. I normally call it the “Third World Debating club”. It is world redistribution headquarters and a mockery of both democracy and any united action. For the latter I’m mostly grateful because the obvious underlying desire of the professional UN types is the establishment of a world government, or at least, a world taxing authority, and the redistribution of income.
But it was supposed to be an organization of states that could combine to stop genocide, totalitarianism, etc. Instead it has become this:
The picture says even more than the conversation bubbles show. Note the copyright date. Yes, that’s how long the killing in the Sudan been going on and the picture says it all.
Instead the UN has been busy putting despots on the Human Rights Committee and making Robert Mugabe a UN “leader for tourism”. Mugabe. The octogenarian dictator who has literally destroyed Zimbabwe’s economy and reduced the country to a police state? What was Fidel too sick to take it?
People continue to argue that while it is corrupt, inept and abusive, it is a “useful forum” for the world’s leaders.
No it’s not. It’s a third world debating club where the most serious attempts made by any of its members are to syphon money from the “rich” countries to their countries.
Anyway, the picture distills the problem to a fine point.
Totally useless, waste of money and certainly not at all fulfilling its charter.
Malthusian extremism is alive and well:
Extremist green campaigning group WWF – endorsed by no less a body than the European Space Agency – has stated that economic growth should be abandoned, that citizens of the world’s wealthy nations should prepare for poverty and that all the human race’s energy should be produced as renewable electricity within 38 years from now. Most astonishingly of all, the green hardliners demand that the enormous numbers of wind farms, tidal barriers and solar power plants required under their plans should somehow be built while at the same time severely rationing supplies of concrete, steel, copper and glass.
That was written by The Register’s Lewis Page, who continues:
It’s not just resources that are limited, in the WWF’s view: human potential itself is up against a hard limit beyond which the race cannot ever advance. Even progress thus far, as seen in the wealthy nations, has been achieved only by an unfair and wasteful over-use of precious resources: we rich Westerners are already beyond the practical limits that humans should ever aspire to achieve in terms of health, wealth – and even of education. That’s not economics – that’s religion. And not very nice religion either.
He’s dead on, of course. Humans, per groups like the WWF, are undesirable parasites. In effect, the WWF would prefer the scourge of humanity to be wiped clean from the plant. And yes, Page is correct – we are talking about a form of religion and “not a very nice” one either.
But, you say, that’s an extremist group, who would ever take seriously the nonsense they’re pushing? Ben Pile fills us in:
At Rio+20 next month, the world’s elites will meet in Brazil with the aim of holding back human progress. Forty years ago, two ideas about humanity’s relationship with the natural world caught the imagination of the richest and most influential people. The first was that the demands of a growing population were taking more from the planet than could be replaced by natural processes. The second, related idea was that there exist natural ‘limits to growth’. These two reinventions of Malthusianism became the basis of a new form of global politics, which has sought to contain human industrial and economic development ever since.
On whole, it isn’t a “new form of global politics”, it is instead the oldest form of politics with a goal just as old – rule of the elites.
Moving on, the Rio+20 is sponsored by what organization?
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today asked young people from all over the world to “make some noise” to help accelerate progress on the negotiations of the United Nations Sustainable Development Conference (Rio+20) which will take place in Brazil next month. “The truth is I am disappointed with the negotiations. They are not moving fast enough. That is why I need you,” Mr. Ban told students attending the 13th Annual Global Classrooms International High School Model UN Conference, taking place at in the General Assembly Hall at UN Headquarters in New York, on Thursday evening. “When I say make some noise, I mean raise your voices. Demand real action. Shame those governments into doing more.”
If you’ve ever wondered at the propaganda effort accompanied by the junk science used to propagate the “Global Warming” scam and tried to puzzle out the intent of all of that, well there it is. Imagine a program to hold back human progress and limit growth. Imagine the effect of such horrific ideas on real people. Think of a “great leap backward” and all that that loaded phrase may conjure in your mind.
The “world’s elite” comprise the real 1% and they’re extraordinarily dangerous. They would change life as we know it based on their religion – because their attempt at using “objective science” to support the institution of the grand design has been shredded. And don’t be fooled by the veneer of officialdom. The UN’s agenda is every bit as radical as the WWFs.
That’s what you have to realize. There is nothing benign in their intent. The only thing different about the UN and the WWF is how they’ll try to present their plan. The WWF will be blunt. The UN will flower it up. But in the end, they both want the same thing. And that would mean millions and millions of the 99%’s lives.
I’m sure by now you have heard about Eric Holder’s DoJ striking down the Texas voter ID law. His reasoning? The usual. While it isn’t too much of a burden to have to show an ID to buy liquor, cash a check, rent a hotel room, rent a car, rent an apartment, buy a house, board a plane, buy cigarettes or any of a myriad of other daily requirements, it is apparently too much of a burden when it comes to voting.
Of course most reasoning people understand that all of that is a load of nonsense. Laws very similar to the Texas law are and have been operating in states like Georgia and Indiana with no problems noted. And they’ve been upheld by the Supreme Court.
In fact a little history is in order. First, how about liberal stalwart and self-described voting expert, former President Jimmy Carter?
Requiring an ID to vote was one of the proposals in 2005 of the Commission on Federal Election Reform, chaired by Jimmy Carter and James Baker, neither of whom had previously been noted for his hostility to minorities or the poor.
Indeed. And the mentioned Supreme Court’s 6-3 OK of the Indiana voter ID law?
The liberal Justice John Paul Stevens wrote the majority opinion. The Court held that “there is no question about the legitimacy or importance of the State’s interest in counting only the votes of eligible voters,” and “we cannot conclude that the statute imposes ‘excessively burdensome requirements’ on any class of voters.” The decision cited the finding of a district judge that plaintiffs had “not introduced evidence of a single, individual Indiana resident who will be unable to vote as a result of the law.”
In essence the Texas law is no different than the Indiana law, but the chief law enforcement officer of the United States has decided that he will force the state of Texas to go to court, meaning, of course, that the law won’t be in effect until after the 2012 election. And it most likely will be settled in court in the state’s favor.
This is simply an administration pandering to a demographic that it wants on its side on election day, pure and simple. Holder also struck down a similar South Carolina law.
The NAACP, on the other hand, is an organization struggling for relevancy. It has decided this is the hill they want to die on. Somehow, as the NAACP and DoJ’s reasoning goes, “minorities” have more difficulty than others obtaining proper ID for voting (that has not proven to be true in GA where minority participation has been greater after the law’s passage than before). The minorities apparently manage all the other chores that require they show proper identification but somehow can’t manage voting. They can get to the voting booth, but apparently aren’t able to get to the office in Texas where the state will provide them an approved ID free.
If you’re having a hard time swallowing the “reasoning” don’t feel like the Lone Ranger. Its nonsense on a stick.
That said, the NAACP thinks it has a winner here. And to help in their struggle they’ve enlisted what body?
The UN Human Rights Council. That makes three laughing stocks (DoJ, NAACP and UNHRC) working on this “problem”.
Why is the UNHCR a laughing stock? Well take a look at this. An example of the Council’s bona fides or lack there of, one only has to look at their latest action.
A United Nations panel has adopted a report praising Qaddafi-era Libya for its human rights record, a year after the report was sidelined amid international objection.
The report initially came before the U.N. Human Rights Council in the middle of the uprising against the Muammar Qaddafi regime. At the time, the U.N. had just voted to suspend Libya from the rights council — under pressure to maintain a consistent message toward Libya, the council later postponed consideration of the report.
But the Human Rights Council on Wednesday returned to the document — and approved it.
That’s right – yesterday. This is the organization that will be “investigating” what the NAACP likes to call “voter suppression”. What other, more rational actors call ensuring the integrity of the voting system.
But the NAACP? Listen to the “reasoning” for asking the UNHRC to “investigate”:
"This really is a tactic that undercuts the growth of your democracy," said Hillary Shelton, the NAACP’s senior vice president for advocacy, about voter photo ID requirements.
In a Fox News interview prior to his trip, Shelton said the message from the NAACP delegation to the Human Rights Council is that the photo ID law "undercuts the integrity of our government, if you allow it to happen. It’s trickery, it’s a sleight-of-hand. We’re seeing it happen here and we don’t want it to happen to you, and we are utilizing the U.N. as a tool to make sure that we are able to share that with those countries all over the world."
If you’ve ever wondered what word salad looks like, feast your eyes.
Of course the UN has no jurisdiction here. Instead its an opportunity for the UN, or as I like to call it, the “Third World Debating Club” to try to embarrass the US – something it loves to do. And, of course, the NAACP will be its enabler.
Examples the NAACP plans to present to the UN to bolster its case? Well first we go to the lifeboat:
The NAACP had scheduled two American citizens to present their claims at the U.N. panel who, the group says, worry they will be disenfranchised by the requirement to present a photo ID to vote. The civil rights group says one, Kemba Smith Pradia, was convicted of a drug-related offense and is concerned that if she moves back to Virginia from the Midwest, state law will block her voting because of her record, even though she was granted clemency by President Bill Clinton.
So we have a convicted drug offender who is “concerned” that if she moves she may have problems voting. “Concerned”. She’s not been denied, but she’s “concerned”. That ought to wow them.
And number two?
A second American, Austin Alex, is a Texas Christian University student. The NAACP says he is worried that he will be barred from voting because he only holds an out-of-state driver’s license and a non-government student ID, not a Texas issued photo ID.
Of course Texas offers the ID necessary to vote for free. You just have to get off your fat ass and go apply. And again – he’s “worried”. Not denied, just “worried” he may be denied. That ought to impress ‘em in Cuba.
The NAACP plans on presenting this little dog and pony show to the UNHRC which is composed of countries very familiar with voting rights, most members having rock solid credentials in enabling free and open elections:
The U.N. Human Rights Council members include communist China and Cuba. In addition, several Arab nations are on the council that have only granted the right to vote to women in recent years, such as Kuwait in 2005 and Qatar in 2003. Women in the Republic of Moldova have had the right to vote for less than 20 years.
Council member Saudi Arabia announced six months ago that women will be granted the right to vote, but that change does not go into effect until 2015.
And, until recently, it also included Libya.
This would be a joke if it wasn’t so serious. If you can’t be assured of the integrity of your voting system, then you’re likely not to hold its results in high regard and you may feel that those who are “elected” may not be legitimate. The integrity of the system is both critical and in question. Common sense reforms are being obstructed by organizations which should be working for them. Actions like those of the DoJ and NAACP work counter to ensuring the voting system’s integrity despite their tortured rhetoric to the contrary.
The fact that DoJ, the NAACP and the UNHRC are involved in this farce should be all that’s necessary to determine this is all about politics and not at all concerned with the integrity of our voting system. The Democrats need votes, and they really don’t care from whence they get them. Graveyards or across the border, it’s all the same to them if the numbers come out to their advantage.
Watch this … it’s stunning (or it should be):
One is domestic and the other is international. On the domestic front we’re again confronted with “good intentions” being horribly and oppressively executed via a bad law.
Wending its way through Congress right now is legislation called the “Stop Online Piracy Act” or SOPA. The intention is obviously laudable. As “piracy” is usually defined, i.e. the theft of copyrighted material, it is certainly a function of government to attempt stop and or prosecute theft.
The problem isn’t found in the intent of the law, as I said. It’s in how it would be executed – the regulations it must spawn to meet the law’s requirements.
Stephen DeMaura and David Segal write about the effect it would have on political campaigns (their particular focus), but it certainly doesn’t take much to translate that effect onto blogs and many other types of websites. Read through the scenario they outline that demonstrates a possible effect on a political campaign and then think blogs:
Here’s a plausible campaign scenario under SOPA. Imagine you are running for Congress in a competitive House district. You give a strong interview to a local morning news show and your campaign posts the clip on your website. When your opponent’s campaign sees the video, it decides to play hardball and sends a notice to your Internet service provider alerting them to what it deems “infringing content.” It doesn’t matter if the content is actually pirated. The ISP has five days to pull down your website and the offending clip or be sued. If you don’t take the video down, even if you believe that the content is protected under fair use, your website goes dark.
The ability of any entity to file an infringement notice is one of SOPA’s biggest problems. It creates an unprecedented “private right of action” that would allow a private party, without any involvement by a court, to effectively shut down a website. For a campaign, this would mean shouldering legal responsibility for all user-generated posts. As more issue-based and political campaigns utilize social media to spread their message and engage supporters, a site could be targeted not only for the campaign’s own posts but also for well-meaning comments from supporters.
It doesn’t take a particularly bright person to see how this sort of a law could be used in a broader sense to kill freedom of speech via frivolous attacks on a site’s content. If QandO embarks on a campaign against a particular politician, for instance, and uses content that it deems to be “fair use” (and may indeed be fair use in a legal sense as well), all it takes is one person anywhere, whether they have a real interest or standing in the case, to file a complaint about “infringing content” and we’re gone unless we remove it. Whether justified or not, the ISP is left in a position of having to enforce removal or face the cost of a lawsuit (whether a lawsuit is ever intended over the claim or not). They will obviously move to protect their interests and that means dropping the so-called offender like a hot rock.
It would effectively chill free speech.
As DeMaura and Segal note, there’s an alternative bill sponsored by Rep. Darrell Issa:
The Online Protection & Enforcement of Digital Trade Act would create a process for rights holders to protect their property that wouldn’t shut down entire sites over a small amount of copyrighted material. This legislation helps to solve copyright infringement while protecting the vitality of the U.S.-based Internet sector — an industry that has contributed 23 percent of the growth in world gross domestic product and has revolutionized the way we live.
Attack real on-line piracy? Yes. Do it with terrible law? No. SOPA should not see the legislative light of day.
Problem two? The UN and other countries around the world want to have the ability to more directly control more of the internet. Robert McDowell of the FCC lays it out:
The 193-member International Telecommunications Union (ITU), a U.N.agency, will meet in Dubai next December to renegotiate the 24-year-old treaty that deals with international oversight of the Internet. A growing number of countries are pushing greater governmental control and management of the Web’s availability, financial model and infrastructure.
They believe the current model is “dominated” by the U.S., and want to “take that control and power away,” Mr. McDowell said. China and Russia support the effort, but so do non-Western U.S. allies such as Brazil, South Africa and India.
“Thus far, those who are pushing for new intergovernmental powers over the Internet are far more energized and organized than those who favor the Internet freedom and prosperity,” he said.
The reason, of course, is fairly straight forward – cash and control:
While growth of the Internet has exploded under a minimal regulatory model over the past two decades, “significant government and civil society support is developing for a different policy outlook,” according to an analysis by lawyers David Gross and M. Ethan Lucarelli on the legal intelligence website www.lexology.com.
“Driven largely by the global financial troubles of recent years, together with persistent concerns about the implications of the growth of the Internet for national economies, social structures and cultures, some governments and others are now actively reconsidering the continuing viability of liberalization and competition-based policies,” they wrote.
So the plan, apparently, is to wrest control from the US via this treaty:
A bad treaty – which would need the support of only a bare majority of U.N.members to pass and which the United States could not veto – could bring “a whole parade of problems,” Mr. McDowell said.
The U.S. and other Western democracies would likely “opt out” of the treaty, he predicted, leading to a “Balkanization” of the global information network. Governments under the treaty would have greater authority to regulate rates and local access, and such critical emerging issues as cybersecurity and data privacy standards would be subject to international control.
Mr. McDowell said the treaty could open the door to allowing revenue-hungry national governments to charge Internet giants such as Google, Facebook and Amazon for their data traffic on a “per click” basis. The more website visitors those companies get, the more they pay.
And, as we’ve watched so many times, a vital and growing market would suffer government intrusion and probable decline:
In 1988, when the treaty was signed, fewer than 100,000 people used the Internet, Mr. McDowell said. Shortly after it was privatized in 1995, that number jumped to 16 million users. As of this year, it is up to 2 billion users, with another 500,000 joining every day.
“This phenomenal growth was the direct result of governments keeping their hands off the Internet sphere and relying instead on a private-sector, multi-stakeholder Internet governance model to keep it thriving,” he said.
Mr. McDowell attributed the massive growth of the Internet to freedom.
“So the whole point is, the more it migrated away from government control, the more it blossomed,” he said.
Freedom? Blossoming? Growth? Can’t have that. It must have government control and, by the way, contribute much more in revenue than it is now. Massive growth without significant contributions to government is just unacceptable in this day and time. And freedom? Anathema to the cult of government.
The servant has become the master and masters instinctively try to gather more and more power to themselves.
This is just another in a long line of examples. The result, of course, will be to cripple something that has been one of the few growth sectors in the global economy. Government greed and the belief of elites that they must control everything via government will eventually kill this proverbial golden goose. Instead of trying to enable more growth, they’re embarked on a campaign to limit and control any growth such that it provides increased revenue for government. Whether it is best for the citizens or economy of the countries so inclined is apparently irrelevant to the quest for more control and cash.
Freedom should be on the march, but instead, we continually see examples of it on the decline. The UN is one of the main culprits in that decline. It is a global organization in search of more power. Under the guise of global democracy, it is involved in killing freedom as it attempts to gather more and more power to itself. It is as obvious as the nose on your face that global governance is its ultimate goal. It can’t do that without exercising more control through willing members and generating more income from which it can demand a share.
To the control freaks and authoritarians out there, the internet is a horrifically dangerous thing. It provides much too much freedom for those they would control. Consequently they seek to wrest that control away. The UN is the perfect vehicle to provide the cover of legitimacy for such a power grab.
Again, here’s a treaty that has no business seeing the light of day. However, if I had to guess, it will pass. And freedom will take another giant step backward.