The United States was built upon the concept of Federalism:
“The distribution of power in an organization (such as a government) between a central authority and the constituent units.”
In the US, our Constitution delineates the certain, specific responsibilities of the federal (central) government.
Obviously, the Internet did not exist at the time of the Constitution’s ratification.
But when new issues arise – old principles apply.
Let’s get the very obvious out of the way:
The World Wide Web – is a WORLD Wide Web. So its policymaking – is very obviously the responsibility of the federal government.
The Feds determine US policies – and then go negotiate our network interactions with the many other nations and their networks.
It would be a titanic nightmare mess to have, say, fifty different state-level Net Neutrality or Privacy policies. Much less having counties and cities also imposing Internet policies of their own.
It would be a titanic nightmare mess for the private sector – and the federal government.
Internet Service Providers (ISPs) would have an interstate commerce nightmare mess with which to deal. The data they are transporting criss-crosses state, county and city lines trillions of times per second. To have thousands of different state and municipal Internet policies with which to deal – would be simply insane.
So too for The Feds. They couldn’t possibly interact coherently with the planet – with a massive patchwork quilt of policy nonsense behind them. It would be impossible to cobble together all of that insanity – into one unified federal policy.
Meanwhile, the Left’s objective, always and everywhere – is to grow government. At every level – whenever the opportunity presents itself.
And that quite often leads them to contradict themselves – often from just five seconds earlier.
During the Barack Obama Administration, Leftists were all about the federal government over-reaching – and over-regulating the Internet. Because the Barack Obama Administration was all about over-regulating the Internet.
Enter the Donald Trump Administration. Which is all about de-regulating the Internet.
The Left – in whiplash-inducing fashion – started demanding the states over-regulate the Internet in exactly the same way the Obama Feds did.
And the Left does so – while ridiculously claiming Federalism.
“Federal overreach!!!” they screech – after spending the entirety of the Obama Administration engaged in federal overreach.
“(I)nternet policy should be a welcome opportunity to use one of our country’s most valuable traditions, federalism, to identify policies and approaches that work, as well as those that fail to achieve their goals.”
First of all, “progressive federalism” – is like saying “wet dryness.” The two words are antithetical to one another.
And as we have already clearly established – Internet policy is absolutely federal policy. For Constitutional and rational reasons.
But the Left is now insisting states, counties, cities – whomever – do The Feds’ job on the Internet. Because the current Feds – aren’t in an over-regulating mood.
Of course, the Left is trying any and everything to halt our rapid progress on Fifth Generation (5G) wireless deployment. Because it’s the private sector – and the Left can’t have that.
And these alleged Progressives are impeding progress – in the name of their fake Federalism.
“Much of local government angst over 5G surrounds the FCC’s September 2018 ruling that fast-tracked 5G deployments nationwide.
“Under these new rules, municipalities have only 90 days to approve or deny the deployment of new small cell sites across their communities and 60 days if the carrier adds 5G equipment to an existing facility….
“The (Trump) FCC’s order…(mandates) municipalities can’t charge more for these fast-tracked reviews than the actual cost to review them.”
Get all that? The Left is upset that governments’ can not overcharge for their reviews – and they must actually get things done in a timely manner.
And get this….
“The Federal Communications Commission says new rules will cut red tape. Critics say they weaken municipalities’ ability to negotiate with big carriers.”
Both are true. Thank God.
In objecting to sanity, FCC Democrat Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel – played the fake Federalism card:
“Rosenworcel also called the new rules an ‘extraordinary federal overreach.’”
Prior to the Trump FCC’s assertion of sanity….
“ISPs show up in your area – looking to spend millions or billions of dollars to build or improve their service to you.
“But before they can do that – they must first play Mother May I with the government(s) in your area.
“You know, the governments that are already taxing the living daylight out of ISPs. That now create ridiculous lists of additional demands of ISPs – for the ISPs’ ‘right’ to spend millions or billions of dollars providing you service.
“It’s like very many governments going shopping – with businesses’ credit cards.”
The Trump FCC – has made building out our Internet much cheaper and easier. Which means it will be much easier for ISPs to deliver ALL of us cheaper and faster Internet.
“‘Streamlining small-cell rules will help close the digital divide by making it cost-effective for the private sector to provide coverage in more rural places,’ said (FCC Republican) Commissioner Brendan Carr, who led the effort to reform the rules.
“‘We win the race to 5G not when New York or San Francisco get 5G coverage, but when all Americans — regardless of where they live — have a fair shot at next-gen access.’”
Oh: And in the midst of our China Virus self-inflicted Great Depression – where nigh every employer everywhere is shedding employees – the Internet is hiring.
“As Trump tries to edge out Beijing in the race to 5G, the U.S. is facing a shortage of workers….
“(T)he U.S. needs to train another 20,000 tower climbers to install equipment….
“(T)he U.S. is facing a shortage of not just tower climbers, but many other workers skilled enough to roll out the infrastructure….”
All of which – is extraordinary news.
To all of which – the Left vociferously objects.
Because it’s the private sector growing – not governments.
And that’s antithetical to what the Left is all about.
This first appeared in Red State.