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Saving the Internet

Alright! Let’s hear it for Rep. Rick Boucher (D-Va.)! A politician that understands with the telcos are doing. Earlier I posted "Large Telcos Want To Kill The Internet". Rep. Rick Boucher explains:

Essentially, what these executives are proposing is the creation of a two-lane Internet where larger, more established websites with financial resources could squeeze out smaller, emerging websites. …

Internet2, a nonprofit partnership of universities, companies and affiliate organizations, including federal agencies and laboratories, has been studying this matter and has demonstrated that a multitrack Internet model is unnecessary to assure quality of service. Internet2 has for the past seven years deployed an advanced broadband network to more than 5 million users and has learned that in a network with enough bandwidth there is no congestion and no bits need preferential treatment because all of them arrive quickly enough to assure excellent quality, even if intermingled.

I find it somewhat sad that our speed over the last mile, that is from the switch to the house, is so slow.

In countries such as Japan and Korea, network speeds over the last mile of 100 megabits per second (mbps) are common. In the United States, our typical speed is less than 1 mbps.

Special thanks to Tom Maszerowski of My Likes and Dislikes for pointing out Rep. Rick Boucher!

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House of Reps Banned from Wikipedia

Looks like the House overstepped its bounds.

The staff of U.S. Rep Marty Meehan wiped out references to his broken term-limits pledge as well as information about his huge campaign war chest in an independent biography of the Lowell Democrat on [Wikipedia]…

Matt Vogel, Meehan’s chief of staff, said he authorized an intern in July to replace existing Wikipedia content with a staff-written biography of the lawmaker.

Looks like it becomes a question of ethics particularly considering that the logs show vandalic changes to other political profiles coming from the House ip addresses.

the sheer breadth of changes emanating from the House reflects an abuse of public time and equipment, said Stephen Potts, former director of the federal Office of Government Ethics, now chairman of the Ethics Resource Center.

When will integrity return to politics?

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Like freedom? It’s going away.

Here’s a must read article by Tennessee Guerilla Women discussing Bush’s censorship of NASA’s leading climate scientist.

In several interviews with The New York Times in recent days, Dr. Hansen said it would be irresponsible not to speak out, particularly because NASA’s mission statement includes the phrase “to understand and protect our home planet.”

After speaking that significant cuts in emissions, particulars motor vehicles must be made or “climate change would eventually leave the earth ‘a different planet.'” Dr. Hansen received phone calls warning that there would be “dire consequences” if such statements continued. So this is what it was like under McCarthy!

UPDATE: MSNBC reports “Some scientist worry it’s too late to reverse climate change.

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What does the Google subpoena mean?

Here is a fantastic summation of the Google subpoena. In short, the government is once again trying to pass a law with vague terms in the name of protecting our children.

The Child Online Protection Act makes it a crime for a commercial Web site to post material that some jurors might find “harmful” if a minor stumbled across it.

The problem comes in deciding just what is harmful.

even portions of a “collection of Renaissance artwork” could be viewed as harmful to minors if a prosecutor was sufficiently zealous.

So, people that believe in abstinance teaching may find medical information about the male and female bodies offense while people trying to teach their children about sex may find that same information very important.

We should not be creating laws to make up for bad parenting! Parents should be talking to their children. The Internet is a reflection of the real world and while we can keep our children from seeing adult magazines and movies in our own houses that does not prevent them from going to a friend’s house, cracking open a beer, sitting down with a Playboy magazine (since it makes you go blind, nice of them to publish in Braille), and watching a hardcore sex dvd. Only through talking to our children and teaching them can we give them the tools to make the right choices and police themselves.

If we let our government become too involved in dictating morals to the people, the generation that grows up under such government will know nothing different and when that generation steps up to run our country they will see no problem in further limiting rights and civil liberties in the name of “protecting the people” and it will dominoe us right out of democracy!

see also: White House: DOJ Request for Google Data Is ‘Narrow’ “You know… “Narrow” like a wedge is narrow on one end.”

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White House: DOJ Request For Google Data Is ‘Narrow’

Today’s headline regarding Bush’s realization of Orwell’s world:
White House: DOJ Request For Google Data Is ‘Narrow’

You know… “Narrow” like a wedge is narrow on one end. Remember, the goal here is to censor the Internet on the premise that we are fighting child pornography. So far the government’s approach online has been to scare people in the pornography industry (or anything that might have to do with nudity) into self-policing but that would be like scaring Borders into not selling any books that show a baby’s butt (most parenting books and magazines) for fear of prosecution.

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Bush Throws Out The First Ammendment – Again

“Annoying someone via the Internet is now a federal crime”

Last Thursday, President Bush signed into law a prohibition on posting annoying Web messages or sending annoying e-mail messages without disclosing your true identity.

I like this exerpt from the article giving some real life scenerios that now could have legal problems:

Think about it: A woman fired by a manager who demanded sexual favors wants to blog about it without divulging her full name. An aspiring pundit hopes to set up the next Suck.com. A frustrated citizen wants to send e-mail describing corruption in local government without worrying about reprisals.

What I find funny is that our government in their lack of understanding keeps trying to create laws for an entity (the Internet) that spans the world and operates within and without our political boundaries and that is in addition to taking away our freedoms as outlined in the Constitution.

If President Bush truly believed in the principle of limited government (it is in his official bio), he’d realize that the law he signed cannot be squared with the Constitution he swore to uphold.

The full law from The Library of Congress. Be sure to read the complete C|Net article.