Posts Tagged ‘politics’

by @anarchyroll
9/3/2014

The war for the future of the internet is being waged now, in real-time by lobbyists of the big US Telcom companies.

If this were a court case, then apparently the people who don’t work for Comcast, Time Warner, and Verizon would be represented by Netflix.

Now of course Netflix is publicly and privately battling the nation’s broadband providers for their own personal gain as well. There is no such thing as a free lunch after all, especially when millions, upon billions of dollars are involved.

However, Netflix has now officially earned some benefit of the doubt for reasons other than how good House of Cards and Orange is the New Black are. Netflix has taken three public steps that directly help the consumers:

  1. Opposing the proposed merger between Comcast and Time Warner
  2. Lobbying to maintain Net Neutrality
  3. Campaigning for Municipal Broadband

Netflix may be looking out for its own bottom line. But each stance that they have publicly come out in favor of or against directly benefits working class people who use the internet. Coming out against the proposed merger which would create a broadband monopoly, is a good thing for consumers. Drawing attention to net neutrality is good for consumers. Encouraging the development of municipal broadband is good for consumers.

In the fight against the billion dollar companies who want complete control of the internet, the common people need someone with deep pockets in our corner. Netflix has repeatedly stepped up to the plate publicly this year alone. They’re not a non-profit or NGO. But when billion dollar corporations are doing everything they can to reduce choice and increase cost to access the information superhighway, we the consumers will take help anywhere we can get it. I for one, will take the million dollar company that brought Arrested Development back, in my corner any day of the week.

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by @anarchyroll
5/19/2014

300 earthquakes and no drinkable water for 300,000 people.

That is what the energy and chemical industries are doing to our planet and doing to us. I guess we should say thank you sirs may we have another, since we know more is coming. There will be more poisoned water, more earthquakes, more destruction of wildlife, more spills, all for…what exactly? And for whom?

Even the democratic party has embraced fracking for the sake of being elected.

At this rate all of America will become Frackishima. I sure hope I get to turn into the Toxic Avenger rather than just die from tumors and cancers thanks to all the contaminated fresh water. Fingers crossed…

 

 

by @anarchyroll
5/4/2014

I am not old enough to remember a time when Washington DC wasn’t all smoke and mirrors for the elite to create the illusion of freedom. A great example of this is the current effort by the Obama Administration seeking legal immunity for the major telecommunication companies for complying with the NSA’s bulk metadata collection programs. Why is this typical Washington BS? Because the telcomms already have immunity because they were following the law when they complied with FISA court requests. The White House feels the need to request immunity for telcomms because of the multiple NSA reforms that are currently making their way through Congress. But if the Bush Administration wasn’t prosecuted, Gitmo is still open, and no one from Wall Street went to jail after 2008; is formal immunity really needed from Verizon, Comcast, and the gang?

So a sarcastic blog paragraph, is that it? NO. The real story here is in the earmarks. Both supporters and defenders of the NSA are trying to attach hidden bills, add ons, amendments, etc to the various bills to advance their agenda through the back doors of democracy.

This is a problem not just because of how shady earmarks are in principle, but the fact that both sides are doing it threatens to undo any and all NSA reform. Both sides are saying all the right things but are doing very different things when the doors are closed and the cameras are off, what else is new? So keep an eye and an ear on the legislation that eventually makes it to a vote that reforms and repeals the NSA’s various Big Brother programs. Will they do nothing? Go too far? Not far enough? One will have to go beyond the headline and seek out whether there are earmarks and if so what they entail to know the validity and likely the fate of any changes to the NSA’s ability quest to destroy private lives as we know it.

 

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by @anarchyroll
3/22/2014

Janet Yellen chaired her first Fed meeting this past week. Afterwards she announced Fed policy going forward regarding her baby, quantitative easing. She helped construct QE at the height of the economic downturn several years ago, a topic written about repeatedly on this website. Yellen announced that QE will continue to taper down at a rate of $10 billion per month until the end of the year.

That is good, QE needs to end, the sooner the better. The problem is the economy has become somewhat dependant on it. The markets took a small but sudden dive at just the announcement about anything QE related. Yellen also said that QE coming to a total end will depend partially on unemployment numbers.

If you haven’t noticed the unemployment problem is a deeper wound in the economy and in the country not seen since the Great Depression. Not only are a huge number of people out of work, but even more are underemployed and wages have been stagnant for over a decade. When theĀ  markets react negatively to even the mention of QE ending, which it does every time there is an official announcement on the subject, employment numbers are likely to take a hit.

Why? Because the 1% who employ the other 99 have their assets all up in the casino stock market. So if/when those numbers go down unemployment goes up, underemployment goes up, wages stay stagnant or go down. So tying QE to the employment numbers is an out to keep QE going indefinitely since the unemployment crisis could be indefinite. What will the effect of a possible government mandated rise of the minimum wage? All these moving parts will affect whether QE ultimately comes to an end.

The minimum wage debate will be the subject of the next Excess and Algorithms article.