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Memo to the FEC and BHO – Fuck off!

According to Reason.com, the Obama regime wants to regulate the last great unregulated bastion of free speech – the internet. Apparently, the regime feels that there is, paraphrasing Ernest Hollings, “too much bloggin’ goin’ on ou’dair.”

The Obama administration has announced plans to regulate the Internet through the Federal Communications Commission, extending its authority over broadband providers to police web traffic, enforcing “net neutrality.”

Last week, a congressional hearing exposed an effort to give another agency—the Federal Election Commission—unprecedented power to regulate political speech online. At a House Administration Committee hearing last Tuesday, Patton Boggs attorney William McGinley explained that the sloppy statutory language in the “DISCLOSE Act” would extend the FEC’s control over broadcast communications to all “covered communications,” including the blogosphere.

This would seem to fly in the face of McIntyre v. Ohio Elections Commission (93-986), 514 U.S. 334 (1995). The usually moronic John Paul Stevens, writing for the majority, actually got this one right. The case involved a woman from Ohio who created some pamphlets on her PC in opposition to a tax levy sought by a local school board, and then distributed them herself. A levy supporter reported her to the Ohio Elections Commission, which fined her $100 for not signing the pamphlets with her own name. The scary part of this case is not merely that it was filed, but that the Supreme Court of the US had to overturn the Ohio Supreme Court.

Under our Constitution, anonymous pamphleteering is not a pernicious, fraudulent practice, but an honorable tradition of advocacy and of dissent. Anonymity is a shield from the tyranny of the majority.

The Supreme Court essentially found that the greatest debate in America’s history, Publius versus The Federal Farmer, Cato, and Brutus, would be acceptable conduct under the constitution (see below).

My little blog, with a readership that occasionally breaks into double digits, and thousands like it, are seen as a threat by the current regime. The only conclusion that I can reach from the regime’s behavior is that patriotic political dissent is the realm of noble community organizers and ACORN activists, and is protected free speech. But the modern equivalent of the time honored political pamphlet, blogs on the web, must be regulated.

During oral arguments in Citizens United v. Federal Elections Commission then Solicitor General Elana Kagan argued that the FEC had the authority to ban political pamphlets. This line of reasoning flies in the face of precedent and the Bill of Rights. And BHO has nominated this woman to the Supreme Court. Apparently, “Congress shall make no law abridging…freedom of speech” is beyond her understanding. The CJ concurs:

Chief Justice John Roberts didn’t find Kagan’s argument convincing: “We don’t put our First Amendment rights in the hands of FEC bureaucrats; and if you say that you are not going to apply it to a book, what about a pamphlet?” Kagan responded that political pamphlets could be banned. (Reason)

This is the decision that BHO trashed during his State of the Union show. I can see why he disliked it so much:

Rapid changes in technology—and the creative dynamic inherent in the concept of free expression—counsel against upholding a law that re-stricts political speech in certain media or by certain speakers.(558 U.S.____ (2010))

The applicability of the case to regulating the web should be obvious to both the FEC and BHO. Yet the regime marches boldly into that glorious Marxist future. In an earlier post, And speaking of morons, I worried about BHO’s replacement for John Paul Stevens:

With Stevens’ retirement, the court will be rid of a man whose utter indifference to the Constitution was evident in virtually all his opinions. While this is a good thing, I fear his indifference will be replaced with outright hostility, assuming that BHO selects another individual that reflects his own attitude toward the Constitution.

Apparently, Kagan represents Obama’s view of the Constitution, and these proposed changes to the regulating authority of the FEC will give her a chance to shine once they are challenged and argued before the Supreme Court. She is openly hostile to free political speech, which is why she was appointed. Can November arrive soon enough?

fiat lux!

post script:

Publius (Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay) argued anonymously in favor of ratification of the Constitution, while the Federal Farmer (Richard Henry Lee, one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence), Cato (George Clinton, first governor of New York, and later VP under both Jefferson and Madison), and Brutus (Robert Yates, an agitator against the Stamp Act, he would later become an Associate Justice, then Chief Justice of the New York Supreme Court), argued anonymously against it. These arguments were disseminated through both newspaper editorials and pamphlets. It is hardly a stretch to think that these founders would be bloggers today.

And, while their response would be more elegant than mine, it would boil down to the same two words.

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