Calling Something Net Neutrality Doesn’t Make It Neutral

The FCC’s secret development of Net Neutrality regulations should give us doubts about the label.

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Just as I was saying in regards to political labels, the labels slapped on many policies today have no relation to what the actual policy will produce.

Just as with Obamacare, you have to ask yourself: Hey, if what is being proposed is so self-evidently good for everyone… why do the rules need to be written completely in the dark of backrooms, filled with lobbyists and others with vested interests? Why is it we can only “find out what’s in it” by passing it?

This is exactly what we find going on in the case of the new “net neutrality” label attached to the FCC’s new regulations. As the Daily Signal reports,

There’s a reason the words “I’m from the government, and I’m here to help” are a punchline. Government involvement rarely helps. In many instances, in fact, it exacerbates the situation.

We’ve seen it happen in the financial sector. The Dodd-Frank legislation that was supposed to prevent another crisis is instead mandating regulations that simply make things more expensive for ordinary consumers—all while increasing the chances of a bailout. We’ve seen it happen in health care, with Obamacare saddling the economy with costly requirements that aren’t making anyone healthier.

[…]

Many people are under the mistaken impression that this change will mean a freer, fairer Internet. They take the phrase “net neutrality” at face value. While it’s alliterative and catchy, it’s also dangerous. Ironically, it sets up a situation under which the online rules are anything but free, fair or neutral.

[…]

Policymakers can have all the good intentions in the world, but it doesn’t change what can and does happen when their so-called solutions are put into practice.

[See also, “Obama Administration Making Grab for Control of Internet.”]

When someone in government or the bureaucracy hides what he’s doing, I think the wisest answer—no matter what the question—is a resounding “NO!” If the proposal cannot survive a robust, open, and fair discussion, then it’s not something we want.