Mar 05

FCC Dissenters: So-Called Net Neutrality is a Solution That Won’t Work to a Problem that Does Not Exist


Last week, 3 of 5 Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Commissioners voted—without the slightest enabling legislation by Congress and in the face of substantial case law against their position—for the government to take over control of the internet and to treat the internet as a “public utility.” The two dissenting commissioners offered the following observations:

Commissioner Ajit Pai: net neutrality regulatory regime is a solution that won’t work in search of a problem that doesn’t exist.”

Commissioner Mike O’Rielly: “Rates are going to go up because of this.”

Commissioner Pai: “This issue has been largely fact-free for the better part of a decade, and I think it’s frankly shocking that decision-making on something as important as this has been thrown by the wayside in favor of what I consider to be an ideological agenda.”

Pai: the majority of the FCC commissioners are ideologically committed to trust in expansive government, and their decision was largely focused on the ends of Internet regulation rather than the means. Despite these government trusters’ promises of regulatory restraint, “a lot of these promises of regulatory restraint are pretty ephemeral.”

Just as with other government agencies, the FCC is seeking to expand government power for its own sake. The FCC’s new regulations are ideological, wide-ranging, costly and baseless. The FCC is an agency whose central role is of very questionable constitutionality. Is it time to abolish the Commission?