Internet ‘kill switch’ proposed for US

The establishment, under the guise of defending cyberspace is poised to end Internet freedom.

A new US Senate Bill would grant the President far-reaching emergency powers to seize control of, or even shut down, portions of the internet.

The legislation says that companies such as broadband providers, search engines or software firms that the US Government selects “shall immediately comply with any emergency measure or action developed” by the Department of Homeland Security. Anyone failing to comply would be fined.

That emergency authority would allow the Federal Government to “preserve those networks and assets and our country and protect our people,” Joe Lieberman, the primary sponsor of the measure and the chairman of the Homeland Security committee, told reporters on Thursday. Lieberman is an independent senator from Connecticut who meets with the Democrats.

Due to there being few limits on the US President’s emergency power, which can be renewed indefinitely, the densely worded 197-page Bill (PDF) is likely to encounter stiff opposition.

TechAmerica, probably the largest US technology lobby group, said it was concerned about “unintended consequences that would result from the legislation’s regulatory approach” and “the potential for absolute power”. And the Center for Democracy and Technology publicly worried that the Lieberman Bill’s emergency powers “include authority to shut down or limit internet traffic on private systems.”

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With ubiquitous video and audio devices on every phone these days it doesn’t take much to embarrass the establishment.  Whether it is a video of a Congressman assaulting a student attempting to ask him questions or police officers caught in lies about their brutality, many in the halls of government look at a citizens right to know and to become activist as a nuisance.  Currently there is a multi-pronged approach to limiting your access to the Internet.  Other proposals include “Net Neutrality” which would give centralized bureaucrats the ability to prioritize traffic based potentially on political criteria, Cyberbulling laws which are broadly defined and could retroactively punish with criminal offenses people who do not use the accepted “Newspeak” in blogs or social networking sites and finally the recently proposed FTC “Drudge Tax” which would tax out of existence independent citizen activist and journalist in order to support the failing mainstream media.

The establishment of 2010 is taking a page out of the Dark Ages.  The Internet is the modern day equivalent to the Gutenberg printing press and movable type.  The peasant serfs must not get wind of this new technology and the knowledge it holds lest they threaten the landed gentry.  Nothing has changed in over 500 years, information is still power and those who seek to consolidate power understand this and will seek to limit your access to knowledge.

I wear many hats but history, economics and political observance have always been a passion. I am a graduate of the University of Cincinnati College of Business with a degree in Information Systems and Digital Business with a minor in European History. I work for a small mom-and-pop IT consulting and software design company. We deal in servicing mostly government funded non-profit mental and behavioral health care agencies in the state of Ohio. In this I deal with Medicaid and Medicare funds and have a little insight on the boondoggles of government there. Thankfully the undemanding nature of my daily profession gives me ample time to read and stay aware of our current state of affairs which I find stranger than fiction in many instances. In addition to being in the IT field, I have also been self employed with a small contracting company so I might know a thing or two about the plight of small business that employs 71% of the American workforce. I however don't draw my knowledge from my day jobs, which I have had a few; I draw it from an intense obsession with facts and observation about the world in which I live. I do have formal education in things such as history, economics and finance particularly as it pertains to global issues, but I have come to find much of what I thought I knew from the formalities of a state university I had to unlearn through much time and independent research. I hope you enjoy what I bring you which is not often heard in the mainstream news outlets. I would like to think my own personal editorializing is not only edifying but thought provoking while not at all obnoxious. That last one may be a hard to achieve.

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