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United States Government Politics Technology

McCain vs. Obama on Tech Issues 877

Posted by timothy
from the six-v-half-a-dozen dept.
eldavojohn writes "Ars is running a brief article that looks at stances from Chuck Fish of McCain's campaign and Daniel Weitzner from Obama's in regards to technical issues that may cause us geeks to vote one way or the other. From openness vs. bandwidth in the net neutrality issue to those pesky National Security Letters, there's some key differences that just might play at least a small part in your vote. You may also remember our discussions on who is best for geeks."
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McCain vs. Obama on Tech Issues

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  • by eldavojohn (898314) * <eldavojohnNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @11:13AM (#23557477) Journal

    from the six-v-half-a-dozen dept.
    Leela: Don't let their identical DNA fool you. While they might sound the same, they differ on some key issues.
    Jack Johnson: It's time someone had the courage to stand up and say: "I'm against those things that everybody hates".
    John Jackson: Now I respect my opponent. I think he's a good man but, quite frankly, I agree with everything he just said!
    Fry: These are the candidates? They sound like clones. [He looks a little harder.] Wait a minute. They are clones!
    Leela: Don't let their identical DNA fool you. They differ on some key issues.
    Jack Johnson: I say your three cent titanium tax goes too far.
    John Jackson: And I say your three cent titanium tax doesn't go too far enough!
    Fry: If I were registered to vote, I'd send these clowns a message by staying home on election day and dressing up like a clown.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @11:58AM (#23558111)
      that joke could have been modded "interesting" if we were speaking of Italy...

      our situation is just like the upper post... sigh...
      we've even called (nation-vide) the 2 candidates "Veltrusconi" ( Veltroni + Berlusconi), since they're just the same....

      they had the same program, their parties have almost identical names (pd vs. pdl), and the "opposition" actually said that they won't oppose...

      uhm...time to change country, i guess...
    • by pha7boy (1242512) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @12:40PM (#23558867)
      Kodos: It's true, we are aliens. But what are you going to do about it? It's a two-party system; you have to vote for one of us.
      Man: He's right; this is a two-party system.
      Homer: Well, I believe I'll vote for a third-party candidate.
      Kang: Go ahead! Throw your vote away!
      • by Belial6 (794905) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @03:20PM (#23561491)
        My tin foil hat has been telling me that this is actually why there is such a push for "every one to vote". When people have no idea who the candidates are, they will randomly pick from the names they have heard of. This will result in pretty much a wash for the two primary candidates, but will push the required number of votes up to make things more difficult for third party candidates. So, they are convincing the ignorant masses that they are doing something good, and helping democracy, when all they are really doing is acting as a spoiler for third party candidates.

        This is why I try to convince people that don't have an opinion, or who are thinking of not voting out of protest, to vote third party. It doesn't matter who they are because they won't win anyway. BUT, if enough of the people who don't like either candidate where to vote 3rd party to even show up on the radar, whoever wins will behave in their interest.

        Consider this. If you were running for president, would you try to woo the people that you knew would vote for you no matter what you do, or would you try to woo the people that are not mindlessly voting the party line, who also happen to be showing disdain for your primary opponent?
    • by srobert (4099) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @01:04PM (#23559341)
      Since you bring up Futurama, am I the only one who gets a Professor Farnsworth vibe from John McCain?
    • by hey! (33014) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @01:15PM (#23559497) Homepage Journal
      Well -- identical twins have idential DNA -- or close to it. They aren't identical in their character, however.

      The thing to remember is that while we might not have as much difference between candidates as we'd like, small differences make a big difference, if they're over something that's important enough. Lots of people have been complaining for a long time that the Democrats and Republicans are too much alike. They're probably right. It doesn't mean that things wouldn't have been different, for better or worse, if Al Gore had beeng granted Florida's electoral votes in 2000.

      Many Democrats don't see much difference between McCain and Bush; many Republicans don't see much difference between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. Some don't see much differnce between McCain and Obama. None of these people are wrong, except to the degree that they think the "small" differences between those individuals won't have big practical impacts on the life of the country.
  • by ISoldat53 (977164) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @11:15AM (#23557505)
    I thought the Dems haven't selected a candidate yet.
    • by Shakrai (717556) * on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @11:18AM (#23557541) Journal

      I thought the Dems haven't selected a candidate yet.

      It's basically all over but the crying and reconciliation at this point. Look for news around this time next week -- until then it's just the media rehashing old stories over and over or inventing issues (Assassination-gate) to sell copy.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Z00L00K (682162)
      It's starting to get embarrassing for Hillary Clinton now. Time to call it a day, but maybe she knows something that we don't know since the candidate isn't selected yet.

      Anyway - most policy regarding the internet will be handled by subordinates with their own agenda, so I don't think that whoever holds the office will make much difference.

      • Not unnecessarily. We can assume that a candidate will chose subordinates who are in tune with his or her ideals. They might not understand the specifics of tech policy, but a democrat is likely to choose someone who is pro civil-liberties, while a republican is likely to go more pragmatic. They won't drive the policy, but the tone of their administration will show through in technology issues.
        • by EastCoastSurfer (310758) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @12:35PM (#23558777)
          They might not understand the specifics of tech policy, but a democrat is likely to choose someone who is pro civil-liberties

          I'm pretty sure pro civil-liberties and Obama went opposite directions when he started talking about mandating what temperature I keep my house, how much food I can eat, or how much gas I can buy.
          • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @01:06PM (#23559357)
            civil-liberties and Obama went opposite directions when he started talking about mandating what temperature I keep my house, how much food I can eat

            Source? That sounds like some ridiculous shit you'd read on a blog.
        • by scipiodog (1265802) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @12:50PM (#23559067)

          Not unnecessarily. We can assume that a candidate will chose subordinates who are in tune with his or her ideals. They might not understand the specifics of tech policy, but a democrat is likely to choose someone who is pro civil-liberties, while a republican is likely to go more pragmatic. They won't drive the policy, but the tone of their administration will show through in technology issues.

          Not true!

          The Bush Administration != Republicans. The democratic party has been more in favour of big government, and therefore anti-civil liberties.

          It is only the current crop of Republican "yes men" (and let's face it, the Democrats have been no better in recent years when it's their team in charge) who've been determined to turn the USA into a fascist state.

          IMHO there is only one solution, and it doesn't lie in either Obama or McCain. We need to cure this country's dangerous addicition to Executive Power.

          If the checks and balances written into the US constitution were observed again, and the dictatorial power of the executive branch (gained more by precedent than legitimate legislation) civil liberties would not be an issue.

      • by jeffasselin (566598) <cormacolinde@@@gmail...com> on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @12:57PM (#23559195) Journal
        That's something a lot of people don't understand and never figured out; something which I figured out before I could even vote. For most elections and high-profile posts, you should obviously look at the character of the person who you are voting for, but we should understand people in such positions don't make most decisions or even implement the decisions they take themselves, their subordinates do.

        Which is why one of the most important qualities in a leader is to be a good judge of character and be able to select good, skilled, and honest subordinates to whom they can delegate important tasks. So look at the people they have working for them right now in their campaign, look at the people they associate with now, or have worked for them in the past as well as at the people they are likely to nominate once they are elected/chosen. This applies to presidents, prime ministers, as well as CEOs in fact.
    • by fm6 (162816) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @11:36AM (#23557817) Homepage Journal
      Technically, neither party has an official candidate, and won't until they nominate one at their respective conventions. But when it comes to counting up the delegate votes, the fat lady has sung. Hillary Clinton still thinks she can scrounge up a majority, but she'd have to get all those delegates from the unsanctioned primaries in Michigan and Florida admitted and convince most of the uncommitted superdelegates to ignore the primary vote. Almost everybody who doesn't actually work for her agrees that's pretty unlikely.
      • by zerocool^ (112121) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @01:42PM (#23559895) Homepage Journal

        Fish is McCain's guy.

        On the question of retroactive immunity for telecoms that participated in warrantless surveillance by the National Security Agency, Fish sought to reassure the civil libertarian-leaning audience that McCain did not support "indulgences" (an allusion to the medieval church's practice of selling absolution for sins) and surprised many by saying that hearings should be conducted to determine the scope and extent of NSA acquisitions. (The campaign later walked back from that position, leaving it unclear just where Fish was coming from.)

        Fish was substantially vaguer on the question of what sort of checks and oversight should be imposed on future surveillance, and reiterated McCain's condemnation of Democrats in the House for "fail[ing] to address" the problem of reforming the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. (The House has, in fact, twice passed bills reforming FISA, both of which have been deemed unacceptable by the White House.) He did, however, articulate a more general philosophy of "privacy as security." This, he explained, meant that "just as liberty is not licentiousness [sic]," privacy should not be conceived as absolute control over personal information, but rather as protection from harms accruing from the use or disclosure of information.


        Yeah, no thanks. I'd take pretty much any other option than this guy.

        Privacy IS actually privacy. It's not privacy (most of the time, sometimes it's ok if the government knows what you're doing, they won't abuse it I promise, and no you can't know what they're doing).

        ~Wx
  • by unassimilatible (225662) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @11:17AM (#23557519) Journal
    I doubt either one of these guys has the background or passion for tech to really have well thought out, firm ideas on any tech issues. They likely had aides poll and give them pat answers on tech. In other words, don't expect them to stick to any positions they might articulate now. Then again, that probably applies to all issues, not just tech.
    • by Shakrai (717556) * on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @11:23AM (#23557605) Journal

      doubt either one of these guys has the background or passion for tech to really have well thought out, firm ideas on any tech issues

      I can't speak for McCain, but go watch Obama at Google [youtube.com] and tell me that he has no passion for tech issues. Half of his broader economic plan boils down to putting our faith in science and technology again -- we'll never be competitive with China at building toys out of injection-molded plastic -- we can be competitive in the technological arena.

      Half the reason I started following him back before it was popular was because he was one of the few candidates that I heard that even acknowledges the war on science and all the ill effects that we've suffered as a result.

      • by LWATCDR (28044) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @12:11PM (#23558367) Homepage Journal
        Obama wants to stop the manned space program for five years and give the money to education.
        Well stopping it for five years will effectivly kill it. Anybody that is any good will leave for a new job. The total amount for education if any of it gets to education will be something like .01% of the each of our tax bill. Yes I will pay that much more in taxes for the manned space program. Any money saved will be spent on the back side when they try and restart the program.
        All in all a REALLY BAD PLAN.

        It will put thousands of people out of work in Florida, Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas, and California and provide little to no help with education. The whole thing reminds me of a town near where I lived. They had a huge problem with drugs and prostitution. There solution was to close the strip clubs. Well that solved.... nothing but sure sounded good.

        At this point I am hoping Clinton does get the nomination.

        • Yes I will pay that much more in taxes for the manned space program.

          Wouldn't that be a neat option on your tax forms? It would be cool if you could designate x% of your tax dollars to go to some government program (education, military, NASA, CDC, etc). Whatever you are most concerned with would get a boost come tax time. The dollars would go to where we as a nation really want them to go.

          I know that there are a lot of problems with distributed government plans, but the reason we have elected representatives as we do is because 200 years ago it was the only feasible way for everyone to have a semblance of a voice. With tech growing as it has (wikis, dBs), the possibility of getting everyone who cares to chime in is no longer an impossibility.

          Wikilaws.gov? Congressional budgets via W-4s? I know it would be a disaster, but maybe some hybrid of our current system with a distributed system could work.

    • by drcagn (715012) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @11:26AM (#23557631) Homepage
      I don't know about McCain but I suggest you investigate Obama further on this, because he definitely seems to know what he is talking about in general. There's an excellent interview with him at Google on YouTube. He even answers a jokingly-asked programming question semi-right ("what's the best way to sort an array of random 32-bit integers?" to which Obama laughingly answered "well, I wouldn't go with the bubblesort.")
    • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @11:28AM (#23557677)
      http://geekwitha45.blogspot.com/2008_04_01_archive.html#2325648293318667127 [blogspot.com]

      Wednesday, April 23, 2008

      Why Bother With An Election?

      by Egregious Charles

      Firehand of Irons in the Fire, one of my regular reads, got this great
      email from a friend.

      We in Denmark cannot figure out why you are even bothering to hold
      an election.

            On one side, you have a bitch who is a lawyer, married to a
      lawyer, and a lawyer who is married to a bitch who is a lawyer.

            On the other side, you have a true war hero married to a woman
      with a huge chest who owns a beer distributorship.

            Is there a contest here?


      Sometimes, the Danes seem to have more sense than we.
    • by hey! (33014) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @11:31AM (#23557731) Homepage Journal
      Well, good.

      It's true that technology changes some things, like the economics of using copyright to provide economic support to creators. But a lot of the time technology is used as an excuse to reopen issues happily settled long ago, on things like the first sale doctrine, or the intrusion of the government into the private lives of citizens.

      I don't look to tech geeks political leadership. I want somebody smart (which most geeks are) with their head screwed on straight (and geeks are as all over the map on this). If he's a tech geek, well that's nice, but not necessary. If he's got the right aims, and is smart enough to cut through the mumbo jumbo, that's enough.

      In particular, I'd be wary of amateur tech geeks -- people who are computer enthusisasts, but not for anything that counts. I wouldn't rule them out, but I'd look extra close at their tech policies, which may exhibit a "knows enough to be dangerous" character.
    • by Quadraginta (902985) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @11:32AM (#23557749)
      And what you've said, that they aren't tech fanboys, is a good thing. Or do you imagine that, amazingly enough, they'd be fans of exactly the same tech you are, and see all the Correct Solutions exactly the way you do? Ha ha, huh? Do you really want a President who not only has the power of the Chief Executive but also the arrogance to think he knows what's best for your industry?

      What you want from these guys is the wisdom to see that letting folks alone to work out stuff for themselves is the best default option, and government should step in only as the utter last resort. You want them to know their own limits, to realize they're not only not experts in tech stuff, but also not experts in farming, or energy exploration and transportation, or medicine, or housing, or education, or any of the other million and a half things people do to keep the wheels humming. They're just lawyers, and if they confine themselves to drafting (or if President promoting the drafting of) well-written, focussed, modest laws that address the relatively few issues that actually can be helped with a good law...well, they'll do a lot more good than any number of demagogues and wannabe Caesars.
    • by fm6 (162816) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @11:44AM (#23557923) Homepage Journal
      Politics can get pretty shallow, but there's more to it than being a bitch for the polls. I think this little Q&A is a case in point. Not the answers themselves, but the people chosen to deliver them. McCain chose a lawyer with strong connections to a major media conglomerate that many of us have reason to loathe. Obama chose a computer scientist with connections to a university that played a big role in creating the Internet. That, by itself, should tell you where there respective priorities are.
    • by internic (453511) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @11:45AM (#23557941)

      In a country with over 300 million people, a more than $13 trillion dollar economy, worlds largest military, and many global interests and programs, there are simply too many important issues for the candidates to have a nuanced knowledge of all of them. Realistically, they must all rely on advisors, so I would take the views of their advisers fairly seriously. You can also get at least a sense of a candidate's general leanings, which suggests which advisors they are likely to listen to. It's also useful to look at the opinions of people who you respect on these issues that have actually talked to the candidates, e.g., Lessig's endorsement of Obama [lessig.org].

      Now, let me add that, while a candidate must rely on advisors for detailed positions, he must know something about the issues himself, otherwise he cannot reasonably assess whose advice to take. We have in recent years seen a stark object lesson in the disastrous consequences when the decision maker really doesn't know anything at all and is simply led by whichever advisors are the loudest, most persistent, or the most clever at politicking.

      The last point worth making is that the biggest problem on tech issues is that money talks. Lobbist access, fundraising, and political ads by large corporations have a tendency to drown out the public interest. I do think that on at least one of these points Obama has a clear advantage: His fundraising is based much more in small donations from ordinary people, so he is less beholden to these corporate interests and has less obligation to spend time listening to their lobbyists at fundraisers. I think this may make a bigger difference in the end than people realize.

    • by Yvanhoe (564877) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @11:59AM (#23558139) Journal
      Like other posters said, the candidates don't really have to know about tech, neither they need to know about agriculture or naval construction but they have to listen from knowledgeable people. And McCain chose a guy from Warner Bros as his tech consultant, Obama, a guy from MIT.
      This alone should make McCain sound like a very bad choice.
  • One candidate has a lawyer/media executive as technical adviser, the other has a MIT computer scientist. Guess which is which
  • All I need to know (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Nursie (632944) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @11:21AM (#23557583)
    "Chuck Fish, an attorney for the McCain campaign and former Time Warner executive"

    "Daniel Weitzner, an MIT computer scientist"

    Who are you going to place more faith in there?
    As usual republicans == corporate interests over technical or popular interests.

    (BTW, before you accuse me of being a shill or a partisan or an idiot democrat, I'm not even USian and don't get to vote on this. I'm just calling it like I see it)
    • by Notquitecajun (1073646) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @11:30AM (#23557711)
      Dems, despite all their bluster, are beholden to big businesses as well. Both parties, particularly at the top, are heavily influenced by both competing and non-competing corporate interests more and more.
  • by antifoidulus (807088) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @11:21AM (#23557587) Homepage Journal
    vociferous critics, and one of the Iraq wars biggest cheerleaders...nuff said.
  • Barack Obama's Plan (Score:5, Informative)

    by dalmiroy2k (768278) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @11:22AM (#23557597)
    If you have time there are some interesting points here:

    http://www.barackobama.com/issues/technology/ [barackobama.com]
  • by m0llusk (789903) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @11:24AM (#23557627) Journal

    Barak Obama consistently evaluates situations and sets goals in a dynamic and networked way. This is how his campaign has generated such a huge response from mostly small donors. John McCain has been labeled a maverick, but has closely associated himself with conservative players and the mindset that an authoritative leader can best set goals for others.

    Virginia Postrel explores the differences between these approaches in detail in The Future and Its Enemies. Al Gore, for example, appears to be future oriented because of the many apparently progressive stands he takes on issues, but Al Gore uses a top-down evaluation strategy that locks in a particular view with little input before or after. As such the future is at odds with Al Gore, and will tend always to surprise him and chafe at the positions he takes which are based on a mostly static model of the world and the options for progress it presents us.

    • by Wister285 (185087) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @12:24PM (#23558579) Homepage
      I think people need to be careful about falling in love with politicians. To his credit, Obama is an excellent orator, but this can be dangerous as well. Just because he says things you want to here in such a way that makes you feel hopeful don't really mean much. You have to look at what people have done. Quite frankly, it worries me that he is running for the presidency at such a young age with such little experience on both a national and executive level. Ambition can be a good trait when kept in check, but dangerous when it is not.

      That was my primary worry about Clinton since it appeared that she thought she deserved the nomination. I thought that Obama wouldn't be as bad, but at this point, I think that you can't afford to let your guard down.
  • by Shivetya (243324) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @11:26AM (#23557645) Homepage Journal
    not their campaign promises or who is working for them currently.

    Granted Obama doesn't have as much time in the Senate as McCain, and Clinton doesn't compare favorably for time either but still beats out Obaman, but what does their voting record say?

    Considering the fact we can look at how these people voted on many issues why would you believe their promises without comparing the two? Turning over a new leaf is more fairy tale than anything
  • by LaughingCoder (914424) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @11:40AM (#23557877)
    Technical skill is not even close to being on my radar of what I want in a president, nor necessarily even in his/her closest advisers. In fact, I worry when the ones at the top, be it a corporation or a government, think they know more than the underlings and specialists as regards any subject, including technology. In my mind, vision, scruples and the ability to see through BS are the leadership skills I look for in candidates. And as it happens, these are actually pretty easy to discern by simply examining their track records. The hardest way to determine these things is to listen to what they say.
    • by weston (16146) * <westonsd AT canncentral DOT org> on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @01:00PM (#23559253) Homepage
      Look, a candidate who can write code obviously may not have an edge over one who can't -- in fact, given the aptness of Philip Greenspun's comparison of pilots vs programmers (see here: http://philip.greenspun.com/materialism/early-retirement/aviation [greenspun.com] ), it's entirely possible programming skill isn't a great test of broad intellectual ability. :)

      But tech issues absolutely underly quite a few other issues of economics and liberty, and those are certainly have a weight equal to other big issues like foreign policy.

      But I think there's an even bigger reason why tech workers *definitely* should be looking at how candidates understand and address issues they understand. Because this is the arena where *you* may actually know enough, as a professional, to really gauge a candidates policy acumen. I doubt most slashdotters are experts in military tactics or nation building. Most of us have a shallow grasp of economics -- yes, even most of you Austrian school autodidacts. Same goes for health care, education, criminology, etc -- Slashdot readers may be smart laymen, but that's all most of us are in those fields.

      But lots of us are IT pros. And if a candidate seems to really get it in the area where you can tell buzzspeak and platitudes from real knowledge, that tells you quite a bit about their ability to reach into an issue, understand it, and formulate a plan to do something about it.

      It's worth paying attention to.
  • by randall_burns (108052) <randall_burns.hotmail@com> on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @11:48AM (#23557983)
    Both Obama [betterimmigration.com] and McCain [betterimmigration.com] favor expansion of the H-1b program.


    What that means in practice is that tech jobs [vdare.com] in the US will be largely filled by foreigners because is is cheaper for companies to pay employees with green cards [vdare.com] than with cash.

    • by p0tat03 (985078) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @01:20PM (#23559595)

      Right, because the best way to remain a world leader is to cower on your turf, so worried about your job that you turn away tens of thousands of talented foreigners who are just dying for the chance to become Americans and contribute to making your country great.

      I'll admit, my stance may be biased. I'm a Canadian working in the USA, and I work with a huge number of people who are on H-1b's, and just as many who are now naturalized citizens, but first came on work visas. Not a single one is considered "cheap labor"; they are paid as much as their local, home-bred American counterparts. The job crunch is not due to people like us "stealing" your jobs, it's due to your flaccid economy to begin with... but from what I can see tech is booming in spite of the American economy's current weakness, and there's really no excuse for complaint in this regard.

      Might I remind you that America's initial ascent to world superpower was largely powered by foreign immigration? After WW2 we moved a great many scientists and engineers out from Europe, and they in turn have paid their dues to America. It's a win-win for everyone, except the locals who refuse to compete with the inbound immigrants. No offense, but I've seen some truly lazy people (in both Canada and the USA) who would rather sit and bitch about how the immigrant dude is willing to work harder than he is, and it's TOTALLY not fair. Guess what? Hard work is what put this country at the top, and hard work is the ONLY thing that will keep it there.

  • by Eravnrekaree (467752) on Tuesday May 27, 2008 @12:00PM (#23558143)
    Net Neutrality is very important and critical to preserving a free and open internet and we do badly need to make this a part of law. Barack Obama is more likely to do this. I am definitely a Obama supporter not only due to this but due to a wide spectrum of other issues as well.

    The claims made by telcos are mostly lies and deception. The telcos always have been able to tier service based on overall speed, what they have not been allowed to do is effectively censor content by slowing down some sites or blocking access to them. They dont need any capability to censor content or to discriminate against certain content. The corporations agenda is simply a vieled attempt to control information flow over the internet and to block access to things they dont like and dont agree with.

    Measures lesser than Net Nuetrality wont be enough to address this. Blocking access or making access more difficult to certain content is innately bad and has no place on what should be an open and democratic form of communication where everyone has equal opportunity to be heard, where things are not biased towards corporations and their content. There is no way to make discriminating against content an acceptable practice or tilting it in favour of powerful corporate interests.

    It is little different from what is being done in china, It is different in name only, here we have corporations do the censorship, In china it is government, The US has a composite government consisting of corporations and the republican government which they elect and which represents their interests. The corporations are the republican constituents. When you here a republican talk about their constituents, they are usually referring to the wealthy corporate donors who got them elected and paid for their campaigns. Democrats while not always perfect are certainly have a greater propensity to represent the people and do what is in the best interests of the general population rather than of big corporations.

    We complain about what China has done in censoring the internet however we would have the same situation here unless we do something to bolster the internet as a free and open medium where everyone which is open to everyone with no discrimination. The same sort of mentality and insidious objective behinds Chinas censorship and the desire of corporations to censor the internet springs from the same mindset. The corporations have been able to control the flow of information for so long, they have had a monopoly on the media and were the gatekeepers, they could control what people could see and hear and it was very difficult to reach a large number of people, very expensive, though traditional mediums, so it excluded many from being able to express their views. the internet is a democratic form of communication, it is the first time we have had anything approaching true positive free speech where anyone could broadcast their views to anyone else and everyone is on an equal footing, no matter if you are poor or are a millionaire. And if a you re a rich megalomaniac you just cant have a situation where the little people can express themselves and actually make their voice heard to millions, and where there is nothing you can do to stop this and where they basically are on an equally footing, yhou no longer have your built in advantage of traditional media which allows you to more effectively distribute your views. Thje rich hate this because they have been so long accustomed to setting the agenda and manipulating society for their own benefit. So the openness and democracy of the net scared them because they are losing power and the internet has moved us more in the direction of a democratic society, so they are now trying to find a way to desperately shut it down and turn it into some sort of corporate controlled outlet one way sort of medium just like television is, where only the corporations have any rights to express themselves and everyone else is a mindless consumer who pays their monthly satellite subscription bill to be brainwashed by c

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