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Rick Boucher To Chair House Internet Committee 55

Posted by kdawson
from the friend-in-a-high-place dept.
Misch writes "Representative Rick Boucher (D-VA) will be taking the chair of the House Subcommittee on Telecommunications and the Internet. Rep. Boucher has been an advocate for consumers rights, is a co-founder of the Congressional Internet Caucus, and has participated in a Slashdot Interview. He was instrumental in defeating key escrow, back in the day."
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Rick Boucher To Chair House Internet Committee

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  • by Urger (817972) on Friday January 09, 2009 @10:45AM (#26386201) Homepage
    A piece of advice to him, before calling anyone wearing a black hat before the committee make sure to check the sub basements for bouncy balls.
  • Hopefully (Score:5, Funny)

    by MikeRT (947531) on Friday January 09, 2009 @10:52AM (#26386287) Homepage
    He will not support net neutrality, but rather will support federalizing and then heavily deregulating franchising laws so that cable, telephone and wireless companies don't have to really pay any taxes or face any regulatory burdens when they decide to set up shop in a new market. In addition, hopefully he will support the first half of Lessig's suggestion that the FCC be abolished, but will stop short of creating the "iEPA" (innovation Environmental Protection Agency) replacement. These laws and agencies only serve to enrich the well-connected at the expense of competition.
    • by eln (21727) on Friday January 09, 2009 @10:57AM (#26386371) Homepage

      See, and here I thought the CEOs of the major cable companies would be too busy to post on Slashdot...looks like I was wrong.

      • Re:Hopefully (Score:5, Insightful)

        by JesseMcDonald (536341) on Friday January 09, 2009 @11:43AM (#26387031) Homepage

        The entrenched cable and telco companies wouldn't argue in favor of reducing regulatory barriers. On the contrary, they willingly accept such minor restrictions as they can't work around in exchange for effective protection from competition. An invasive regulatory environment best serves the incumbent providers.

        • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

          by GaratNW (978516)

          And it's clear deregulation has worked so well for us so far! Look at our financial sector!

        • Tell me about it. (Score:5, Insightful)

          by Balinares (316703) on Friday January 09, 2009 @01:02PM (#26388249)

          Over here, they created telco regulations at the turn of the century, at a time the incumbent providers were already very few and very entrenched.

          It was horrible.

          The regulations got used. When the entrenched telcos tried to stifle the growth of up-and-coming providers with underhanded tactics, they got punished -- I kid you not! The mind boggles. Those guys were only trying to keep making money!

          So now we got up to 20Mbps (in the countryside, don't know about cities) with no cap, with such things as custom reverse DNS and IPv6 as free options, installation on Linux officially supported, TV-over-DSL with hundreds of channels, and, oh, free phone to half the planet, too, all for a fixed monthly rate of about $22. The horror! The former entrenched telcos weeped a lot as they lost the marketshare they were rightfully entitled to.

          Some silly liberals are probably going to bring forth some silly theory about the point of regulation being to prevent attempts by private interests to stifle competition, but that's a silly notion, of course. And probably a little subversive.

          • by Moryath (553296) on Friday January 09, 2009 @01:16PM (#26388503)

            Indeed!

            I hope the FIRST thing he does is start working on eliminating all these local-municipality "time warner/cox cable/comcrap/etc paid the city council a bag of money and sent them some whores in exchange for a local monopoly right" practices, and require equal-infrastructure access so that 'net service works the same way that power and phone service now do.

          • It's a good thing our finance industry has stayed so heavily regul.. oh. wait.

            It's a good thing regulations protected the people who got screwed by Enr... oh wait.

            It's a good thing regulations protected the town that the movie Erin Brockovicth was based on.. oh, wait.

            You, sir, got lucky, and think that because things went a certain way for you, they go that way for everyone. They don't. The world is a larger sample set than the town you lived in.

            • by Moryath (553296)

              It's a good thing our finance industry has stayed so heavily regul.. oh. wait.

              It's most of the deregulation effects (things like repealing Glass-Steagal and entering into "free trade" with GATT/NAFTA/WTO from the Carter age onwards) that caused our problems there, actually. Just like how Radio has been effectively fucked to smithereens with the removal of mass-market ownership limits; we dropped from having over 5,000 radio station owners, most of who were comfortably making a profit (if not insanely rich),

              • by ClintJCL (264898)
                I think I agree with you actually. I think you thought I didn't understand that the bank industry was caused by deregulation. I do. But the existing regulations not being enforced means that deregulation is simply that much stupider, and the point about the regulations that were there not working is still true, regardless of if the reason is that they are stupid, or not being enforced.

                Erin Brockovitch is based on a true story, by the way. To raise awareness that yes, things like this happen, and good luck

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by DustoneGT (969310)
        Federalizing...good rarely comes from federalization. The road to hell is paved with good intentions.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Qzukk (229616)

      heavily deregulating franchising laws

      This would go farther towards real network neutrality than any misguided law. Comcast wants to cut off google and iTunes? That's ok, a half-dozen more companies will show up and advertise the "real internet" to Comcast's customers.

      Bonus points if it leads to the installation of empty conduit, the real infrastructure solution to "wah I don't want everyone and their dog to be ripping up the road every other day!"

  • by verbalcontract (909922) on Friday January 09, 2009 @10:53AM (#26386305)
    Let me be the first to say that I, for one, welcome our new sane, Slashdot-answering, fair-use-aware internet overlord.
    • by Shakrai (717556)

      Let me be the first to say that I, for one, welcome our new sane, Slashdot-answering, fair-use-aware internet overlord.

      I've never heard the Chairman of a Subcommittee referred to as an overlord before ;) At least know I'll know who to blame when my friends send me an internet and it gets tangled up in enormous amounts of material.

  • by plasmacutter (901737) on Friday January 09, 2009 @11:12AM (#26386549)

    Legislation related to the copyright into the committees of the judiciary and courts, the internet, and intellectual property.

    Occasionally copies of bill go to the commerce and energy committee, but mostly its just a gesture rather than actual authority, as any approved bills usually get passed back to the afore mentioned committees for another pass.

    If he's leaving either of the others, it's actually a reduction in the influence of reformists. Either way i'm at least glad he's still there.

    • Very true. Markey wasn't that great an advocate as the former chair of this subcommittee, but it's not the coup we were all hoping for. Howard Berman did head over to chair Foreign Affairs after Tom Lantos died, but it's apparently not clear yet whether he's ever going to relinquish the Judiciary IP subcommittee chairmanship that the Content Cabal pay him to cling to. [opensecrets.org]

    • by Slothy (17409) on Friday January 09, 2009 @12:27PM (#26387661) Homepage

      Legislation related to the copyright into the committees of the judiciary and courts, the internet, and intellectual property.

      I read this sentence a number of times, and I tried really hard to parse it. First, it has no verb at all. I tried concatenating it to the title of your post, and it still has no verb.

      How did this get +4 Interesting? "Occasionally copies of bill go"? Your first sentence does not parse. The second sentence says, "Occassionally bills go to the committee, but approved bills go back to the committee for another pass". Again, this is not a logical statement. You're also talking about commerce and energy committee, where this story is about the Internet committee.

      Third paragraph is talking about him leaving, and him being still there. The article is about him gaining a chairmanship of a commitee.

      So, first sentence makes no sense. Second sentence also makes no sense and is off topic. Third sentence makes no sense.

      In conclusion, please posts on the slashdot.org webpage and onto the internet, the universe, and the grand unification.

      • I made some typos and left a couple words out of my sentences while i was distracted, Whoopdy-freakin-doo.

        The third paragraph is SPECULATING about him leaving other committees he was seating last I checked, if you'll notice the "If" at the front of the sentence.

        I'm not proud of the mistakes, but the message is still quite clear.

        I'd be happy to have one of the /. editors or admins correct the typos, but attacking the idea expressed based on typing mistakes is beyond nitpicking.

        • by Slothy (17409)

          I think you misunderstand me. I REALLY, TRULY can't understand your post. I have no idea what you're trying to say. It SOUNDS like you have something to say, but I can't follow AT ALL.

          Something about copies of bills not being distributed? Something about copyright law and the internet?

          I'm totally up for a better explanation of what you're saying - I suspect you're far more informed on these issues than I am these days.

          • Then I submit to you a corrected copy.

            Legislation related to copyright generally goes into the committee of the judiciary and from there to the subcommittee on courts, the internet, and intellectual property.

            Occasionally copies of bill go to the commerce and energy committee, but mostly its just a gesture rather than actual authority, as any bills which are approved by said committee usually get passed back to the judiciary anyway (or a copy is sent to the judiciary at the same time), just to show they're the top dogs.

            If he's leaving either of his other committees (IIRC he was seated on the one on courts, the internet, and intellectual property), it's actually a reduction in the influence of reformists. Either way i'm at least glad he was re-elected.

            I hope this clears up any problems.

      • by bnenning (58349)
  • by stomv (80392) on Friday January 09, 2009 @11:15AM (#26386601) Homepage

    Boucher is great for this post, and I'm thrilled that he'll be there. I'm also thrilled that he'll be giving up leadership of the Subcommittee on Energy and Environment. Boucher is a coal guy from a coal region of southwestern Virginia. He was weak on energy and environmental standards relative to the Democratic caucus.

    So, this is good for Net Neutrality and other Internet issues.
    It's also good for climate change and other environmental issues.

    P.S. Like Boucher? Click on my sig link and send him some bucks!

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by EvilBudMan (588716)

      I live in his district and still don't have high speed access at home, but I guess he is trying. Yeah if he went against coal here he would loose that battle and the next election.

    • by stalky14 (574130)
      Is he the same Richard Boucher that was the State Department spokesman for so many years?
  • by rlp (11898) on Friday January 09, 2009 @11:30AM (#26386843)

    He's honest, smart, knowledgeable. Yet despite those handicaps he's served in Congress for many years.

    • by moxley (895517)

      We know that while it is difficult to survive with that sort of integrity on the hill, it isn't impossible...Look at Ron Paul, and there are a few others...It looks like Franken will be one.

    • And he serves for Virginia. As a resident of that great Commonwealth, I can't figure it out. :) Fortunately the Representative from my district looks to be more the typical reactionary obstructionist we expect.
  • "He was instrumental in defeating key escrow, back in the day."

    Another way to say that is that RIck is never going to give you up, never going to let you down.
  • ... of the Congressional Internet Circus?

    It's that big tent full of tubes...
  • Heh. Apparently even Congress gets Rickrolled. (Yeah, yeah, wrong Rick -- but still. Maybe he can sing?)
  • by Foolicious (895952) on Friday January 09, 2009 @12:45PM (#26387953)
    His brother is Bobby Boucher -- who was a standout linebacker and special teams player at South Central Louisiana State University.
  • I'm grateful to the politicians who kept that from going into law, but let's be realistic: key escrow never had a serious chance. If it were the law, everyone who needed/wanted security would just have broken the law. And the only time anyone would have been charged for breaking that law is when they were already being charged with breaking a bunch of other stuff too -- it would be one of those "let's add a bunch of extra counts to this" thing, sort of like a "robbery with a gun" charge.

    Nobody knows if

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