Politics

Net Neutrality? Big Tech Is Much Bigger Than ISPs – So Big Gov Sides With Big Tech

(The opinions expressed in guest op-eds are those of the writer and do not necessarily represent the views of RedState.com.)

Yesterday we wrote this:

Revolving Door: Big Gov and Big Biz Are Terminally Entwined

In which we chronicled the long-building, long-standing relationship between Big Government and Big Business.  And one of the more ridiculous examples of Big Gov and Big Business crony-ing it up?  Big Gov’s nauseating, dangerously crony relationship with Big Tech.

Big Government is more than happy to be bribed into action on behalf of Big Tech — and against Big Tech’s relatively tiny opponents.  (And, of course, the tiniest of Big Tech’s opponents is us.  We the Data Providers.)  And Big Business is more than happy to return the favor — and provide a nominally private sector veneer to the censorship Big Government wishes to see imposed.  Quid, pro, quo.  Lather, rinse, repeat….

Democrats, Big Tech Billionaires Unite

Big Tech Employees Donate Overwhelmingly to 2020 Democrats

Top Democrats Took Massive Donations From Big Tech As They Considered Anti-Trust Legislation

Currently In Power: The Google Administration

We’re About to Pay Billions More Per Year for Big Tech’s Latest Government Cronyism

Democrats Refuse to Help Expose Big Tech’s Harms to Children

The New Cronyism: Big Tech Censors Conservatives – Democrats Deliver Crony Policies

Big Tech Employees Flood Democrats With Donations, Censor Conservatives

Democrats Push for More Big Tech Censorship

Democrats, Big Tech & the Real Misinformation Problem

Of course, this remains empirically true….

Conservatives Pretending Big Tech Isn’t Anti-Conservative Are an Embarrassment

And by Big Tech, we mean Big Tech.  The “edge providers,” as they’re called.  “FAANG.”  The enormous companies that are currently in the process of consolidating their monolithic control of US markets and speech.

Let’s check some market caps, shall we?

Apple:                           $2.8 trillion

Alphabet (Google):       $1.8 trillion

Amazon:                       $1.5 trillion

Facebook:                    $874 billion

How did these companies get so inordinately huge?  How did Facebook — a glorified Comment Section — get to be worth nearly a trillion dollars?

How Did Big Tech Get So Big? Massive Government Cronyism – Like Section 230

Section 230, you ask?:

“Speaking of unfair…behold Section 230.  Which gives Big Tech companies blanket amnesty from libel, slander, and intellectual property lawsuits resulting from third-party actions.

This is anti-Fourteenth Amendment un-equal protection before the law – that no one else in the history of the country has ever received.

“If I owned a small neighborhood bar, I would have to purchase liability insurance to protect me should one third-party patron punch another third-party patron in my place.  Or I would have to go to court and convince a judge or jury that it took place in my place – but not because of my place.

“Why do the biggest and richest companies in the history of Planet Earth get government-imposed blanket third-party-action immunity?”

And since the China Virus darkened our shores, Big Government’s crony inattentiveness allowed all things Big Tech to get even worse.  About which we in mid-2020 warned….

Trillion Dollar Big Tech Companies Will Use China Virus Scam to Take Over America

And oh look….

Big Tech Companies Snap Up Smaller Rivals at Record Pace

Big Tech’s Pandemic Power Grab

About all of which Big Government pretends to be concerned — via what I call “legislature theater.”  Big Gov officials look very earnest, issue press releases, and sometimes even file bills.  But then, you’ll note, nothing ever actually happens.

Democrats Plan to Take On Big Tech – June 9, 2021

Dems, Critical of Big Tech, Court Campaign Cash – June 6, 2019

Democrats Aren’t Backing Down on Internet Data Privacy – April 6, 2017

Senate Democrats Offer Consumer Privacy and Protection Act of 2015 – May 6, 2015

And here’s where things get really…ironic.

Tech Industry’s Legislation Talk Puts Democrats in Net Neutrality Bind

Net Neutrality is the concept that all Web data should be treated equally.  Except some Web data is more equal than others.

Big Tech continues to ramp up its non-neutral censorship of all things conservative.  While Big Government repeatedly attempts to hand Big Tech even more cronyism — via one-sided, pro-Big Tech, anti-Internet Service Provider (ISP) Net Neutrality.

Who are the ISPs against whom Big Government and Big Tech are united?  Let us check/revisit some market caps, shall we?

Big Tech:

Apple:                           $2.8 trillion

Alphabet (Google):       $1.8 trillion

Amazon:                       $1.5 trillion

Facebook:                    $874 billion

ISPs:

Comcast:                      $227.4 billion

Verizon:                         $218.7 billion

AT&T:                            $173.7 billion

T-Mobile:                       $133.9 billion

As you can see, four of the nation’s largest ISPs COMBINED are worth less than the smallest of the Big Tech companies.  So of course, Big Government sides with Big Tech against the ISPs.  Because Big Tech can and does bribe bigger.

And then you get Big Government idiocies like Net Neutrality:

“Net Neutrality is a stupidly huge government imposition in the Internet – specifically on the ISPs.  A whole host of regulations restricting just about everything ISPs do to provide us service….

“Big Tech demands government impose Net Neutrality – because it guarantees them huge government-mandated benefits.  To name but one:

“As mentioned, Big Tech consumes way more than half of all US bandwidth.  Net Neutrality – mandates they not be charged any money for any of it.  We the Little People would pay MUCH more for our service – to subsidize the likes of Apple, Amazon and Google.

“Net Neutrality is massive government regulation – to impose massive Big Tech cronyism.”

Oh: And Title II Net Neutrality will subject ISPs to even more taxes than they already pay.  Which means We the Abused will be subject even more in taxes than we already pay:

“Here’s another Big Tech crony benefit…Behold the Universal Service Fund (USF).

“What is the USF?:

“‘(A) system of telecommunications subsidies and fees managed by the United States Federal Communications Commission (FCC) intended to promote universal access to telecommunications services in the United States.’

“‘Fees’ – ???  Government never wants to call its taxes ‘taxes.’  And the USF taxes are MASSIVE….”

The current USF tax rate, you ask?  25.2%.  And it goes up automatically every quarter.  And it goes up again every time three-of-five unelected Federal Communications Commission (FCC) bureaucrats vote to raise it.

We the Abused pay the huge USF tax on our phones.  Soon, if Big Government and Big Tech get their way, we’ll also pay it on our Internet service.

But, of course, Big Tech still won’t pay it at all.  Because Big Government cronyism.  So We the Abused will get to continue to augment Big Tech’s massive profits:

“Big Tech has been enjoying a free ride on our internet infrastructure while skipping out on the billions of dollars in costs needed to maintain and build that network.

“Indeed, one study shows that the online streaming services provided by just five companies – Netflix, YouTube, Amazon Prime, Disney+ and Microsoft—account for a whopping 75 percent of all traffic on rural broadband networks.

“The same study shows that 77-94 percent of total network costs are related to adding capacity or otherwise supporting the delivery of those streaming services.

“Ordinary Americans, not Big Tech, have been footing the bill for those costs.”

None of the above seems Net Neutral, now does it?

But this is the slop we get when Big Government and Big Tech are doing the crony cooking.


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