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Tag Archive: Political Speech


FCC Commissioner: Feds Could ‘Start Tamping Down’ On Websites

 

 

 

 

” Federal Communications Commission member Ajit Pai, one of two Republicans on the five-member commission, says he’s concerned that the government will try to control websites like the Drudge Report based on their political content, CNS News reports.

  Pai, speaking Saturday at the annual Right Online conference in Washington, D.C., said he envisions net neutrality regulations passed by the agency could  result in crackdowns on websites in “the direction of content… What you’re seeing now is an impulse not just to regulate the roads over which traffic goes, but the traffic itself,” he said.

” It is conceivable to me to see the government saying, ‘We think the Drudge Report is having a disproportionate effect on our political discourse. He doesn’t have to file anything with the FEC. The FCC doesn’t have the ability to regulate anything he says, and we want to start tamping down on websites like that,'” Pai said, according to CNS.”

 

 

Video at the link

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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IRS May Broaden Rule To Police Political Nonprofits

 

IRS Commissioner John Koskinen testifies before the Financial Services and General Government Subcommittee on February 26, 2014 in Washington, D.C. John Shinkle/POLITICO

This is the picture of arrogance.

 

 

 

” The IRS may broaden a looming controversial rule to police political nonprofits to include political parties and political action committees, the IRS chief said Wednesday.

   IRS Commissioner John Koskinen said the agency may expand a yet-to-be-released rule governing 501(c)(4), “social welfare” groups, to include political groups known as 527s, which focus on elections. It could require them both — as well as other types of tax-exempt groups — to operate under the same definition of “political activity.” “

 

Politico

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

61% Oppose Federal Regulation Of The Internet

 

 

 

 

” Americans really like the online service they currently have and strongly oppose so-called “net neutrality” efforts that would allow the federal government to regulate the Internet.

  The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that just 26% of American Adults agree the Federal Communications Commission should regulate the Internet like it does radio and television. Sixty-one percent (61%) disagree and think the Internet should remain open without regulation and censorship. Thirteen percent (13%) are not sure.  (To see survey question wording, click here.)

  Only 19% believe more government regulation is the best way to protect those who use the Internet. Fifty-six percent (56%) feel more free market competition is the best protection. Twenty-five percent (25%) are undecided.

  Most Americans have opposed increased government regulation of the Internet since December 2010 when some members of the FCC began pushing “net neutrality” efforts to stop some companies from offering higher downloading speeds to preferred customers.

  Seventy-six percent (76%) of Americans who regularly go online rate the quality of their Internet service as good or excellent. Only five percent (5%) consider their service poor.

  Americans remain suspicious of the motives of those who want government regulation of the Internet. Sixty-eight percent (68%) are concerned that if the FCC does gain regulatory control over the Internet, it will lead to government efforts to control online content or promote a political agenda, with 44% who are Very Concerned. Twenty-seven percent (27%) don’t share this concern about possible government abuse, but that includes only eight percent (8%) who are Not At All Concerned. “

 

 

   With over three quarters of customers being perfectly happy with their internet service is it any wonder that the people are suspicious of the State’s motives in attempting to fix something that is not broken ?

   Along with the potential State boot on the neck of political speech and corporate cronyism that “net neutrality” represents there is the issue of taxation to consider as well .

 

Read it all at Rasmussen Reports

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

House Committee Demands Answers On Truthy Project

 

 

 

 

 

 

” The House Science, Space, and Technology Committee sent a letter to the head of the National Science Foundation (NSF) on Monday, demanding answers about the origins of the nearly $1 million taxpayer-funded project to track “misinformation” on Twitter.

  The Truthy project, being conducted by researchers at Indiana University, is under investigation for targeting political commentary on Twitter. The project monitors “suspicious memes,” “false and misleading ideas,” and “hate speech,” with a goal of one day being able to automatically detect false rumors on the social media platform.

  The web service has been used to track tweets using hashtags such as #tcot (Top Conservatives on Twitter), and was successful in getting accounts associated with conservatives suspended, according to a 2012 book co-authored by the project’s lead researcher, Filippo Menczer, a professor of Informatics and Computer Science at Indiana University.

  Menczer has also said that Truthy monitored tweets using #p2 (Progressive 2.0), but did not discuss any examples of getting liberal accounts suspended in his book.

“ The Committee and taxpayers deserve to know how NSF decided to award a large grant for a project that proposed to develop standards for online political speech and to apply those standards through development of a website that targeted conservative political comments,” wrote Chairman Lamar Smith (R., Texas) in a letter to NSF Director France Cordova. 

“ While some have argued that Truthy could be used to better understand things like disaster communication or to assist law enforcement, instead it appears Truthy focused on examples of ‘false and misleading ideas, hate speech, and subversive propaganda’ communicated by conservative groups,” he said.”

 

    Latecomers can find out more on the “Truthy Project” here and read more about the Congressional investigation here .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

FEC Democrat Pushes For Controls On Internet Political Speech

 

 

 

 

 

 

” The FEC deadlocked in a crucial Internet campaign speech vote announced Friday, leaving online political blogging and videos free of many of the reporting requirements attached to broadcast ads — for now.

  While all three GOP-backed members voted against restrictions, they were opposed by the three Democratic-backed members, including FEC Vice Chair Ann M. Ravel, who said she will lead a push next year to try to come up with new rules government political speech on the Internet.

  It would mark a major reversal for the commission, which for nearly a decade has protected the ability of individuals and interest groups to take to engage in a robust political conversation on the Internet without having to worry about registering with the government or keeping and reporting records of their expenses.

  Ms. Ravel said she fears that in trying to keep the Internet open for bloggers, they’ve instead created a loophole for major political players to escape some scrutiny.

“ Some of my colleagues seem to believe that the same political message that would require disclosure if run on television should be categorically exempt from the same requirements when placed in the Internet alone,” said FEC Vice Chair Ann M. Ravel in a statement. “As a matter of policy, this simply does not make sense.”

  She said the FEC should no longer “turn a blind eye to the Internet’s growing force in the political arena,” and she vowed to force a conversation next year on what changes to make.

  The three Republican-backed commissioners, though, said in a joint statement that Ms. Ravel’s plans would stifle what’s become the “virtual free marketplace of political ideas and democratic debate.”

 

Washington Times reports on the latest Statist move from our most Statist administration ever 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Obama Quietly Gives IRS “License To Kill” Tea Party Groups

 

 

” As Obama continues to deceive from behind the curtain of every day laws, it’s hard to tell whether ordinary laws are just that, or a cover for something a little more devious.  Obama’s latest law claims to redefine political organizations in a way that would allow for the government to tax contributions—but is that all?  It turns out that this new law may just put an end to over 100,000 small, grass-roots, Tea Party organizations.

  As Obama unleashes his, “IRS army of 90,000 workers, with 4,300 investigators, 13,000 revenue agents, 2,600 special agents, 9,500 tax examiners and 1,500 attorneys’ on-staff,” it hardly seems like a worthwhile effort to only target these minimally marginal groups.   That being said, it appears that despite yet another transparent passing of a “protective” law, this is exactly what Obama is setting out to do.

  The law will effectively place a gag order on all Tea Party organizations that will be financially bled dry and no longer able to afford operating expenses after being taxed.  Along with this, Obama’s administration set out a few “traps” to catch even more that do comply.

The law lines out:

“Anything that mentions or has any connection to a candidate or public official is deemed restricted speech (CRPA), even when it otherwise meets the organization’s goals. Details of all communications must be reported to the IRS whenever it occurs within 60 days of a general election or within 30 days of primaries.” “

 

Read on at Mr Conservative