Beta

Slashdot: News for Nerds

×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Verizon Net Neutrality Case Rejected

Soulskill posted more than 3 years ago | from the sit-down-and-shut-up dept.

Wireless Networking 82

Back in January, we discussed news that Verizon had filed an appeal to the FCC's net neutrality rules, saying the regulatory agency did not have the legal authority to enforce the mandate. Now, reader olsmeister follows up with this quote from PC World: "An appeals court Monday dismissed Verizon's challenge of the US Federal Communications Commission's December net neutrality ruling, calling it premature. A three-judge panel of the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia noted in its decision that the FCC's net neutrality order is a rule-making document subject to judicial review once it is published in the Federal Register. The panel said that the appeal's 'prematurity is incurable.'"

cancel ×

82 comments

Super pre-mature (3, Informative)

proverbialcow (177020) | more than 3 years ago | (#35716946)

...considering that even if it were published, and passed judicial review, the House passed an amendment to a spending bill [slashdot.org] that would bar any funding to enforcement.

Re:Super pre-mature (5, Interesting)

yeshuawatso (1774190) | more than 3 years ago | (#35717028)

Amazing how Congress will avoid paying for laws that protect consumers and are more than willing to pay for ANY other law that protects the interests of the top 5%. Even more crazy, most of the voters don't care and will vote the same jagoffs back into Congress every time until they're unemployed and can't find work due to lack of education and/or skills, and want someone to blame for their incompetence for voting the very person who gave more precedent to the Fortune 100 than to our public education system.

I'm glad to see Verizon get the cold shoulder, but we know this isn't going to last long. Face it, net neutrality is a pipe dream for those who are technically competent enough to understand but are far outnumbered by the voters who don't understand it, nor do they want to.

Re:Super pre-mature (2)

sumdumass (711423) | more than 3 years ago | (#35717388)

It's amazing how a regulation change that is designed to side step a court ruling denying the right to regulate a certain thing that was made without congressional oversight is somehow now being considered a law buy people who had a lot more bitching to do.

It sort of makes you wonder if you should actually care about what they say when they confuse a regulation with a law, blame congress when the only input congress had was defending the acts of the agency, then go off on a tirade about whatever else they see is wrong.

I'm glad to see Verizon get the cold shoulder, but we know this isn't going to last long. Face it, net neutrality is a pipe dream for those who are technically competent enough to understand but are far outnumbered by the voters who don't understand it, nor do they want to.

Your right, it isn't going to last long. That's because this ruling only said that Verizon filed the challenge too soon. It's purely procedural at this point. When the FCC finishes doing it's crap, the thing will be filed again. If Verizon wins, it isn't because they pulled a fast one, it's because the law supports them and not the FCC which congress doesn't even appear to be supporting in this matter right now.

Just because you want something does not give excuse to ignore the law and do whatever. If we allow that to happen, you will find things like Habeas Corpus, fair trials, indefinite detention, free speech zones, seizures of property without warrant or compensation, and others things off limits whenever others want it to happen. And even if you don't care about that stuff, something one of these days will end up being something you care about. When a government agency acts on it's own to restructure itself in order to get around a court order saying it didn't have the authority to do something and it does impact you, you will be damn glad that others have stood up to it and there is a way out for yourself.

Re:Super pre-mature (1, Troll)

yeshuawatso (1774190) | more than 3 years ago | (#35717920)

Doesn't change the fact that ISPs are acting like assholes. I understand that they have a fiduciary duty of care to protect their ongoing business affairs and their shareholders, but that doesn't change the fact that they're granted a NATURAL MONOPOLY just to screw over the consumer. If they want their cake and eat it to, then I think Congress needs to get back in session and force the carriers to carry CLECs again at a fixed rate, but this time over copper, fiber, COAX, and any other technology that they're granted a natural monopoly over. The abolishment of the fixed rate is what led AT&T to slither itself back together and push out ALL of their competition off their copper. Now we only have a handful of useful broadband providers that want to add a meter to electrical pulses. Yes, technically electricity isn't free, but its costs are substantially lower than the cost to let's say mine out natural gas, oil, or to find, transport, and clean water.

The issue isn't that you're free to pick your provider, because that's not entirely true. The most consistent internet service will come from fixed lines and those lines are given to specific corporations that don't have their customers best interest in mind. If cable internet didn't exist, DSL would still be a slow and you'd only get it if you live within 1 mile of the CO. If DSL didn't exist, cable internet would be limited, bogged down, and never upgraded to avoid the bottleneck from the technology just being a large LAN. But what competition do these two technologies really halve? 3G? Not even close. 4G? Not even close to being implemented fully. Satellite? Not consistent. So you're stuck with two options, and those two options want to keep competing providers off their granted duopoly and add a toll booth for the consumer that doesn't have any other options. If we take away the monopolies on the poles, then prices will fall and we won't see net neutrality as an issue, the same way we saw the cost of a land line drop and long distance cost dropped. If we force net neutrality, then at least we can have internet that can be used freely without restrictions to competing products and services that the line provider is offering that may be provided somewhere else in the world.

Just because Congress keeps the interest of monopolies closer to heart doesn't mean that we should continue to create laws that are designed to limit competition, raise prices, and choke what little money the consumer has left after trying to survive. Even if the FCC was out of line, the problem is that we don't have a Congress that gives a rats ass about the consumer, and they never will as long as we continue to give corporations unlimited and unchecked power and influence over our government. Furthermore, Congress doesn't have to give an agency specific powers at every turn. Constitutionally, they have the power to regulate interstate commerce. A bit flying all over the globe is definitely in that scope, and if a law doesn't exist as a statute, the Federal regulatory agencies do have the power to create Federal regulations to be followed, and all persons, natural or not, have the right to challenge those regulations in the court of law. But non-natural persons should NOT have the right to influence the law when they don't have the right to VOTE on those laws to begin with.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

VGPowerlord (621254) | more than 3 years ago | (#35719606)

Here, here... just one tiny nitpick:

Constitutionally, they have the power to regulate interstate commerce. A bit flying all over the globe is definitely in that scope, and if a law doesn't exist as a statute, the Federal regulatory agencies do have the power to create Federal regulations to be followed, and all persons, natural or not, have the right to challenge those regulations in the court of law. But non-natural persons should NOT have the right to influence the law when they don't have the right to VOTE on those laws to begin with.

Wrong agency. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) regulates interstate commerce.

I assume you actually meant interstate telecommunications, which are regulated by the FCC.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

yeshuawatso (1774190) | more than 3 years ago | (#35725320)

No, I meant Congress has the right to regulate interstate commerce as stated by the Constitution; but, you are correct that I could have been a little more clear.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

phlinn (819946) | more than 3 years ago | (#35720372)

A bit flying around the globe is not automatically commerce. It may be speech, at which point congress explicitly doesn't have the authority to regulate it. They have the authority to regulate companies which sell bandwidth across states. It's not clear that they have actual authority (legally, wickard vs filburn gives them pretty solid cover) to regulate a company which sells a connection to a consumer and connects them to a backbone provider.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

yeshuawatso (1774190) | more than 3 years ago | (#35725994)

The second that bit crossed a State line interstate commerce has been defined. If I'm providing a backbone that spans across a state line that is sold to an ISP that connects consumers directly to my backbone, interstate commerce is still being carried out.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

cdrguru (88047) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722614)

The first go-round with the CLEC's mandated a fixed price that was below cost to the ILEC. This was a huge problem for them and put them up against a wall in a manner that they had to fight. So of course, they fought and eventually won. In the meantime, they made life as difficult as possible because anytime you put that sort of pressure on a business they are either going to fight or fold.

We can be grateful in some small way that they didn't just fold. However, this clearly led to things like the SBC takeover of the telephone system in the Midwest.

The lesson is, if the government is going to mandate access at a fixed rate, fine. Just make sure it isn't something that the ILEC/Cable Co./etc. has to fight from day one. Because that will not turn out well for us. We do not want Comcast/NBC to be the sole provider of cable and telephone service nationwide. Mandating a below-cost rate will end up doing exactly that.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

sumdumass (711423) | more than 3 years ago | (#35724496)

Doesn't change the fact that ISPs are acting like assholes. I understand that they have a fiduciary duty of care to protect their ongoing business affairs and their shareholders, but that doesn't change the fact that they're granted a NATURAL MONOPOLY just to screw over the consumer. If they want their cake and eat it to, then I think Congress needs to get back in session and force the carriers to carry CLECs again at a fixed rate, but this time over copper, fiber, COAX, and any other technology that they're granted a natural monopoly over. The abolishment of the fixed rate is what led AT&T to slither itself back together and push out ALL of their competition off their copper. Now we only have a handful of useful broadband providers that want to add a meter to electrical pulses. Yes, technically electricity isn't free, but its costs are substantially lower than the cost to let's say mine out natural gas, oil, or to find, transport, and clean water.

First, I don't disagree that some ISPs are acting like Asses. But that in and of itself doesn't make much of anything different. Wanting something done and excepting something illegally being done is not a solution.

Second, I agree that their natural monopoly is largely due to a regulatory monopoly and think they shouldn't be looked at independently as they are now. However, that change takes an act of congress, not internal rewording from an agency in some attempt to get around a court ruling saying it didn't have the authority to regulate it.

So it doesn't look like we are in disagreement on a problem, just the current solution..

The issue isn't that you're free to pick your provider, because that's not entirely true. The most consistent internet service will come from fixed lines and those lines are given to specific corporations that don't have their customers best interest in mind. If cable internet didn't exist, DSL would still be a slow and you'd only get it if you live within 1 mile of the CO. If DSL didn't exist, cable internet would be limited, bogged down, and never upgraded to avoid the bottleneck from the technology just being a large LAN. But what competition do these two technologies really halve? 3G? Not even close. 4G? Not even close to being implemented fully. Satellite? Not consistent. So you're stuck with two options, and those two options want to keep competing providers off their granted duopoly and add a toll booth for the consumer that doesn't have any other options. If we take away the monopolies on the poles, then prices will fall and we won't see net neutrality as an issue, the same way we saw the cost of a land line drop and long distance cost dropped. If we force net neutrality, then at least we can have internet that can be used freely without restrictions to competing products and services that the line provider is offering that may be provided somewhere else in the world.

Whoever told you that corporation needed to have their customer's best interest in mind was trying to scam you. Net Neutrality is an issue because no one can agree to what it means and everyone wants to add their restriction to the supposed fix. However, net neutrality should already not be an issue because of fair dealing or fair trading laws already on the books. If Comcast is going to represent part of the internet as the entire internet or represent speeds of X amount, then purposely throttle them back based on someone's business competing with theirs, then they are deceiving the consumer under existing laws. You see, they would be selling something represented as something it clearly is not, and they would be claiming speeds they are purposely not delivering. That's fraud.

I don't have a problem with comcast giving Google extra speed if Google pays. I don't have a problem with Verizon giving Skype or some VoIP application extra speed if they pay more.. As long as customers get what they already paid for and other services are not restricted to speeds below what they sold in order to do it. Net neutrality shouldn't be able helping other businesses, but making sure the consumer get's what they paid for. If you sign up for a 3 meg connection, then your ISP shouldn't be able to purposely limit that connection to below that speed. Now all the sudden, getting faster speeds is not an issue.

Just because Congress keeps the interest of monopolies closer to heart doesn't mean that we should continue to create laws that are designed to limit competition, raise prices, and choke what little money the consumer has left after trying to survive.

Don't mistake the effects of a law or lack there of with the intent of it. IF you do, more people will discard your statements thinking you are a loon. Not excessively regulating a company does not mean they want to burden consumers.

Even if the FCC was out of line, the problem is that we don't have a Congress that gives a rats ass about the consumer, and they never will as long as we continue to give corporations unlimited and unchecked power and influence over our government. Furthermore, Congress doesn't have to give an agency specific powers at every turn. Constitutionally, they have the power to regulate interstate commerce.

It gives congress the power, not agencies that operate outside of congress. That's the issue here. Congress delegated a certain portion of it's responsibilities to an agency controlled by the executive branch. If the executive or that agency wants or need more, then need to ask congress for it plain and simple. Otherwise you will eventually find agencies like the EPA making pollutants out of legal stuff and arresting people for political reasons.

A bit flying all over the globe is definitely in that scope, and if a law doesn't exist as a statute, the Federal regulatory agencies do have the power to create Federal regulations to be followed, and all persons, natural or not, have the right to challenge those regulations in the court of law.

I agree. But the regulations the federal agencies can create are specific to the powers congress gave them. In this case, a court ruled that congress did not give the FCC the power to regulate the internet. The fix is to ask congress for that power, even if it's just limited to the point where they can step in and guarantee the consumer gets what they paid for.

But non-natural persons should NOT have the right to influence the law when they don't have the right to VOTE on those laws to begin with.

I completely disagree. Corporations are collections of people. When a corporation speaks to government, it is representing those people who own it on their behalf in the interest of the ownership. This is the entire premise of how groups like Unions operate, retirement groups like the AARP and Gun Clubs and so on. It's essential that people have this ability to group together into a non-natural person and speak to government.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

yeshuawatso (1774190) | more than 3 years ago | (#35726524)

All well, thought out, responses and my participation has disallowed me to add a +1 for Insightful (no option for touché ). But we're going to have to agree to disagree in regards to a corporation having the right to shape our laws.

Collective bargaining only works when there is an equal playing field. In terms of the Fortune 100, there isn't an equal playing field for Corporation vs Consumer, as corporations have all rights of the consumer PLUS more rights for operating as a business. The ONLY right a corporation lacks is the right to vote, so they BUY their votes through campaign contributions and damn near bribes (and sometimes bribes too!) to have laws changed that provide them the most benefit. Furthermore, they don't act in the best interest of their shareholders. If they did, we wouldn't have the thousands of lawsuits for breach of fiduciary duties.

While we want society to act in a civilized and perfect manner that we've written down and declared as the be all of how the world should work, the reality is that it's every man, woman, and child for themselves, acting upon our own interests and impulses, be damned of anyone else. So why allow corporations to be a voice of political power if the only person they are representing is the managers and board members that control majority of the corporation? Why let unions force their corporate overlords in the opposite direction (wow, I'm really starting to sound like the text book definition of anti-social)? The answer is that everyone is looking out for themselves and no one else, and if they have to temporarily join a group to get their interests met, they'll do it and get out while they can. So when I say that corporations should not have the right to influence the laws that regulate consumers, then I'm just doing what everyone else is doing: looking out for my best interests, be damned the Fortune 100 interests.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

sumdumass (711423) | more than 3 years ago | (#35728206)

My point about the Unions was not whether they are needed or not. It was about the concept that makes them up, a single entity speaks for the members under them. It's inseparable from the concept of a corporation and political speech.

And Unions or collective bargaining have a better then level playing field. They are exempt from collaboration and anti trust laws.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

volpe (58112) | more than 3 years ago | (#35718204)

I'm still trying to figure out how "Habeas Corpus" and "fair trials", got lumped into the same group as "indefinite detention, free speech zones, [and] seizures of property without warrant or compensation".

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

sumdumass (711423) | more than 3 years ago | (#35724996)

I was just throwing things out there that has hit nerved over the last decade or two. There's no relation outside of with one, the others might not be possible so they might be something of the same thing. But it wasn't intentional.

Re:Super pre-mature (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35744014)

It's amazing how a regulation change that is designed to side step a court ruling denying the right to regulate a certain thing that was made without congressional oversight is somehow now being considered a law buy people who had a lot more bitching to do.

It sort of makes you wonder if you should actually care about what they say when they confuse a regulation with a law, blame congress when the only input congress had was defending the acts of the agency, then go off on a tirade about whatever else they see is wrong.

I'm glad to see Verizon get the cold shoulder, but we know this isn't going to last long. Face it, net neutrality is a pipe dream for those who are technically competent enough to understand but are far outnumbered by the voters who don't understand it, nor do they want to.

Your right, it isn't going to last long. That's because this ruling only said that Verizon filed the challenge too soon. It's purely procedural at this point. When the FCC finishes doing it's crap, the thing will be filed again. If Verizon wins, it isn't because they pulled a fast one, it's because the law supports them and not the FCC which congress doesn't even appear to be supporting in this matter right now.

Just because you want something does not give excuse to ignore the law and do whatever. If we allow that to happen, you will find things like Habeas Corpus, fair trials, indefinite detention, free speech zones, seizures of property without warrant or compensation, and others things off limits whenever others want it to happen. And even if you don't care about that stuff, something one of these days will end up being something you care about. When a government agency acts on it's own to restructure itself in order to get around a court order saying it didn't have the authority to do something and it does impact you, you will be damn glad that others have stood up to it and there is a way out for yourself.

The fact is the FCC has the power to regulate. If Congress wants to do away with FCC then let them go ahead and do that. Until then, the issue over whether the FCC has the power to regulate THIS or THAT is one for the courts, not Congress.

In our system of checks and balances, it's the courts who decide, for any individual dispute, what the meaning of a law is. The law in question is NOT does the FCC have the power to regulate the net, because no such law was ever passed. What WAS passed and is still in effect is the power of the FCC to regulate, period.

The courts decide between disputants whether the FCC can regulate X.

The courts did that.

It's not within the power of Congress to anull individual court rulings they don't like. If it were, then we wouldn't HAVE civil rights; it was the COURTS not Congress that said THIS is how this law will be interpreted and applied to the rights of blacks to vote.

The court can also decide a law is unconstitutional, and there's nothing Congress can do about that either, except try to change the Constitution.

In your version of reality, every time a new Congress is assembled, all previous court rulings are in jeopardy. Society doesn't, and couldn't, function that way.

Let Congress try and rescind the power vested to the FCC. See how that goes for you. Other than that, the courts have ruled and Congress can STFU.

Re:Super pre-mature (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35717678)

you think its bad now? debt limit is coming up and you know what happens if they dont raise? it will make what we have been through the last few years look like a economic boom and damage the USA in unrepairable ways.

i would like a way to vote obama out, his 'net neutrality' BS along with the seizures of domains has ruined his 'hope and change' , however, to put one of these ass-hat republicans in there would be even more folly

its sad, cant get a decent president.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

jonwil (467024) | more than 3 years ago | (#35718472)

The problem is that all you really have a choice between is "jagoff A" or "jagoff B"

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

mldi (1598123) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722626)

The problem is that all you really have a choice between is "jagoff A" or "jagoff B"

False. Well, until reality slaps you in the face.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

dkleinsc (563838) | more than 3 years ago | (#35719444)

Amazing how Congress will avoid paying for laws that protect consumers and are more than willing to pay for ANY other law that protects the interests of the top 5%.

Actually, given the state of the US political system, I would be more surprised if it were the other way around.

Also interesting reading - economist Joe Stiglitz on Of the 1%, by the 1%, for the 1% [vanityfair.com] about exactly how untenable the situation really is.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

HeckRuler (1369601) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721476)

Face it, net neutrality is a pipe dream for those who are technically competent enough to understand but are far outnumbered by the voters who don't understand it

Do YOU understand that the Internet currently works on a principle of a neutral network and what's being argued over is network neutrality REGULATION?

NN is not a pipedream. It's the de facto standard that makes the foundation of the Internet. Since there's been major consolidation in the ISP industry it may be a good idea to enforce NN if the consumers don't have enough power to direct the market themselves. But anyone who says network neutrality is a bad thing isn't knowledgeable on the issue, or has succumb to the spin that telcom lobbyist have spread.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

LibRT (1966204) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722060)

I'm always surprised by the use of the term "net neutrality" as a synonym for "net regulation", which is what we're really talking about here.

I appreciate that bandwidth throttling, or the prospect of a "two-tiered" net, are disturbing propositions (or in the case of bandwidth throttling, a reality). I'm simply not convinced that governmental involvement will make things better rather than worse. Having things rest in the hands of regulators and politicians, who actively support such things as MPAA/RIAA/DMCA without generally understanding the implications and unintended consequences, and making "net neutrality" subject to the effects of lobbying, etc. doesn't seem like a superior outcome vs letting the market (ie freedom) decide things.

There are plenty of things which are objectionable or inconvenient or sub-optimal to particular groups of people. That does not necessarily mean that such things must be regulated or legislated, because regulation and legislation are utterly blunt instruments best left in the toolbox except for otherwise profoundly unsolvable problems.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

lonecrow (931585) | more than 3 years ago | (#35729338)

The greatest trick the devil ever played was convincing Joe the Plumber that he was on his side.

Re:Super pre-mature (2, Interesting)

WillyWanker (1502057) | more than 3 years ago | (#35717038)

The House has been passing a lot of batshit crazy bills that will never make it out of the Senate. It's what Republicants do instead of actually trying to get something productive done.

Re:Super pre-mature (3, Insightful)

Barrinmw (1791848) | more than 3 years ago | (#35717050)

^this. it is posturing at its best...err worst...my main fear is that they attach it to a bill that declares babies not fit for human consumption forcing democrats to have to pass it otherwise be seen as baby cannibals.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

dkleinsc (563838) | more than 3 years ago | (#35719668)

Ah yes, the good old "poison pill" tactic, used most commonly against one of those naive representatives who thinks their job is to protect the public and represent their views in government.

Here's how it works:
1. Create a bill or resolution that is obviously a positive thing, we'll say "Resolution to Support Motherhood and Apple Pie".
2. Sneak in an amendment in that is obviously horrible, say "let's kill puppies for fun".
3. Whichever way the representative votes, he loses: if he votes Aye, then the ads will blare "Smith voted to kill puppies". If he votes Nay, then the ads will blare "Smith hates motherhood and apple pie".

You can also do this the other way around: create a bill with horrible stuff in it, and try to force its passage by adding a motherhood and apple pie amendment.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

TheSpoom (715771) | more than 3 years ago | (#35719962)

It's weird; if I were a Congressperson, I would be worried about supporting my constituency's interests, not playing stupid political games. I wouldn't run a single negative ad, either.

But then, that's why I'm not a Congressperson.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

dkleinsc (563838) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722040)

Right, that makes you (as a hypothetical congresscritter) somebody likely to be targeted by this tactic.

Of course, the other problem you'd have is that by quoting Eugene Debs you've declared yourself to be too left-wing to be considered "electable" in the US. (Which is another way of saying that you might have a dangerous and subversive tendency to serve the 99% of Americans who don't run the government.)

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

cdrguru (88047) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722776)

The problem is that "supporting your constituents interests" means getting money for them. Money that other representatives want as well, so you have to deal with them. You support their getting money in their district for some new sewage distribution plant to spew sewage into some other district and create 50 new jobs and they support your getting money to feed junk food to mothers with small children.

If you don't go along with the sewage spewer, the mothers won't have enough junk food and they will scream they are starving and your opponent will be elected next time.

See, after all it is really better that everyone either does nothing in government and just pretends to go through the motions. The alternative is spewed sewage and obese mothers with fat little children.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

sorak (246725) | more than 3 years ago | (#35723308)

^this. it is posturing at its best...err worst...my main fear is that they attach it to a bill that declares babies not fit for human consumption forcing democrats to have to pass it otherwise be seen as baby cannibals.

You just made me sad...

H.R. 666, The Repeal of the Baby-Killing Health Care Bill
This bill repeals the Baby-Killing Health Care Bill and makes it illegal to kill babies for human consumption.
Amendment 1a: The phrase "Baby killing health care bill" shall be defined as any bill passed by the job-killing Kenyan Barack Hussein Obama.
Amendment 1b: Anyone caught downloading copyrighted material will be sentenced to no less than 5 years imprisonment, ground into a fine paste, and used to season Newt Gingrich's breakfast.
Amendment 1c: Free tummy rubs for John Boehner.
Amendment 1d: Anyone who votes against this bill will be acussed of being a pedophile....

Re:Super pre-mature (-1, Troll)

DigiShaman (671371) | more than 3 years ago | (#35717130)

Stopping the Democrats from destroying this nation from the inside-out *IS* being productive.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

Oxford_Comma_Lover (1679530) | more than 3 years ago | (#35717160)

> Stopping the Democrats from destroying this nation from the inside-out *IS* being productive.

Democrats say the same thing about Republicans. The virtue of divided government. :)

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

Mattcelt (454751) | more than 3 years ago | (#35717196)

I think the best part of a multi-party system is that the inter-party squabbling limits the government's interference with our lives. I think if there were more viable parties, we'd all be better off.

Re:Super pre-mature (2)

Barrinmw (1791848) | more than 3 years ago | (#35717222)

the best part of having multiple parties would be actually having a choice in voting, i would love an actual major liberal party.

Re:Super pre-mature (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35717256)

Well, you do actually have a choice in voting, and there is an actual liberal party: http://gp.org/ [gp.org]

Of course, they may not have a snowball's chance in hell of being elected, but you can still vote for them.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

Barrinmw (1791848) | more than 3 years ago | (#35717274)

the green party is a bunch of hippies, i am more of a progressive if anything...why can't we have teddy roosevelt be reincarnated?

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

sorak (246725) | more than 3 years ago | (#35723420)

That's why we need to get rid of the "first past the post" election system we currently have. Right now, our election system is some convoluted game where one third the country tries to agree on one candidate that they think will be more palatable to the undecided voters than the one decided upon by the remaining one third. It's like two competing people yelling "here boy" in hopes of getting a puppy to wander in their direction. Let's face it, all the decisions are made by people just smart enough to pull the lever, but still dumb enough to be swayed by a bumper sticker.

If we had preferential voting, then we wouldn't be stuck with either a false dichotomy, or an attempt to hammer a third party into a two party system.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

H0D_G (894033) | more than 3 years ago | (#35717468)

In Australia, we have a Liberal Party. It's terrible.

The Republicans are actually a 'liberal' party, in terms of classical liberalism.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

Cimexus (1355033) | more than 3 years ago | (#35717842)

Trying to explain to Americans why the more conservative of the two main parties in Australia is called the Liberal Party is one of my favourite hair-pulling activities. You have to explain the semantics and history of the word, how the meaning of the word got twisted/altered over time so it ended up meaning somewhat different things in different places etc. On top of that you have to do it in the context of explaining how the entire political spectrum in the two countries differs quite a bit.

As an Australian married to an American (and hence having half his family being American now), it makes me avoid bringing politics up over there whenever possible (not because I don't enjoy political debate, but because explaining semantic differences is annoying). It always starts with "who do you vote for in Australia?" "well usually Liberal Party, though not every election..." "Liberal?" "Um yeah, that's more conservative than Labor" "Uh what?" ... etc :P

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

Mattcelt (454751) | more than 3 years ago | (#35718716)

I find it's good practice to avoid bringing up politics no matter who I'm talking to... Plus, as a strict political Centrist, I find that I'm equally despised by everyone: too 'liberal' for the 'conservatives' and vice-versa. :-P

Re:Super pre-mature (1, Insightful)

bmo (77928) | more than 3 years ago | (#35717344)

>I came out of the closet: I'm a Dittohead!!!

This is nothing to be proud of.

--
BMO

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

clang_jangle (975789) | more than 3 years ago | (#35718590)

Indeed, why is it always the morons who are so forceful about "sharing" their ideas? Just like when the warm weather comes, the first men to ditch their shirts are always the last people you'd ever want to see shirtless (put that shirt back on, fatso!).

Re:Super pre-mature (3, Informative)

fnj (64210) | more than 3 years ago | (#35717202)

Don't you get it? For bills of a funding nature, the Senate has no say whatsoever. Funding legislation must originate in the House (unless our Masters in Washington just continue to ignore the Constitution, which makes all bets off). The House has the power of the purse. Say the House does not fund something. The Senate can't up and originate a bill funding it, and even if they try, it would still have to pass the House (AND the President) before it becomes law. It's a C language compound-or statement. The first term that evaluates false terminates the evaluation with false.

The House has been passing a lot of batshit crazy bills that will never make it out of the Senate.

Re:Super pre-mature (2)

Barrinmw (1791848) | more than 3 years ago | (#35717260)

a common workaround is the senate taking a bill that has passed the house, completely gut it and work from there, it still has to be reconciled with a house version though. The constitution just says "All Bills for raising Revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives; but the Senate may propose or concur with Amendments as on other Bills." so as long as the bill originated in the house its all good.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

Aeternitas827 (1256210) | more than 3 years ago | (#35717298)

An aside, I really don't get the point, then, of appropriation bills having to start in the house. It's a bicameral legislature, both chambers ultimately have to sign off on whatever the finished product is (and have Executive support or sufficient support in both chambers to override veto), so why does it really matter which chamber starts the ball rolling?

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

fnj (64210) | more than 3 years ago | (#35717368)

Only that there is this little thing called a Constitution which everyone in both chambers swears an oath to "support and defend."

At root, though, you are absolutely correct. All bills, funding or not, have to pass both chambers and the President[*]. Lack of funding literally doesn't have to pass any one of the three. The side which wants the absence of something has the upper hand over the side which wants something.

~~~~~~~~~~

[*] Or have a Presidential veto overruled by a super-majority in both chambers.

Re:Super pre-mature (3, Informative)

sumdumass (711423) | more than 3 years ago | (#35717470)

It's a hold over from the original intent of the senate. The senate was originally supposed to represent the state, not half the people of the state. So even with the legislature being bicameral, the balance between them was between the people who had representatives and states who had senators.

The concept was about the representatives of the people being the only ones to initiate taxing the people. That's sort of lost now with the senate being voted directly by the people and not appointed by the state legislatures.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

mangu (126918) | more than 3 years ago | (#35719198)

The original intent still holds in that every state has the same number of senators, independent of the population.

If the Senate could create taxes, there would be the risk of low-population states getting together to tax the majority of the people.

Of course, since both chambers must approve every legislation, that still happens to some extent. That's one of the reasons why there is so much military spending in the states of the west, I suppose.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

sumdumass (711423) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722346)

The senate originally was supposed to represent the state in our federal government- not the people. That distinction has moved and been changed but that's the reason why originally, the senators were appointed by the state in whatever way the state thought good at the time. Generally, one person was appointed by the governor and the other was appointed by the legislature of the state and likely was one of them who got elected within the state legislature.

The risk had nothing to so with large states verses small states. It had to do with which body of politics the senate was supposed to represent.

Re:Super pre-mature (2)

fnj (64210) | more than 3 years ago | (#35717386)

If such a transparent "workaround" (actually a conspiratorial ruse) changes the entire nature of the bill, it is patently a violation of the Constitution and should get the perpetrators removed from office. I.e., if a bill titled "Bill to require all citizens to pay their taxes twice," and with content do accomplish same as its sole content, were completely erased and rewritten from scratch to make possession of gummi bears punishable by a year in prison as its sole content, such a change is patently unconstitutional, whether or not the bill's title is changed.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

Dhalka226 (559740) | more than 3 years ago | (#35718300)

Can you provide any proof for your conjecture, or is this just one of those things where Slashdotters think they know the constitution better than anybody else (even when they don't agree amongst themselves or with established judicial authorities)?

Amendments that have nothing whatsoever to do with a bill have been allowed for... entirely too long, so I fail to see what ground you're standing on. They wouldn't change a tax bill into a gummi bear bill because if you're making that many changes it would be simpler to just let the original die and start fresh. The only way I see for it to be unconstitutional is if they change a gummi bear bill into a tax bill in the Senate, because the tax issue still needs to originate in the House.

In context, there's nothing whatsoever from stopping the Senate from offering an amendment stripping the no-funding amendment the House offered or simply killing the bill entirely if the no-funding is the bill.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

kenh (9056) | more than 3 years ago | (#35718474)

Last year, in August, shortly before a highly charged election the House & Senate took a bill originally written for other purposes and rewrote it to take money from the food stamp program and closed a few tax loopholes to provide $10BN in emergency aid for teachers, fire, police,and other first responders an $16BN to fund the "working just great" Medicare system... They re-worked the bill so fast, they didn't even have time to name it, let alone read it, HR 1586 [loc.gov] ...

My point is it is NOT easier to start over with a new bill.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

Qzukk (229616) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721462)

And a few years before that, they did the same thing to pass the Paul Wellstone Memorial Bank Bailout Bill. It's not something that's just a "one off" "it was an emergency" thing, it's becoming a regular occurrence and needs to be put down.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

Rysc (136391) | more than 3 years ago | (#35718456)

It's not unconstitutional. It's grade A dickery, but sure as hell it is constitutional. The constitution likely didn't intend for this sort of thing to happen but it was written in what we today would consider a very lax style that allows for a lot of wiggle room.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

EndlessNameless (673105) | more than 3 years ago | (#35723644)

It is not patently unconstitutional; it is common practice.

While the changes generally tend to remain on-topic (e.g., one net neutrality clause is stricken and replaced with another), the Senate can legislate in a way that completely opposes the House bill. This is a long-standing practice.

Technically, the revised bill must go through a reconciliation process, although this usually consists of the House signing off on the Senate version. Still, they can reject it or insist on further modifications.

Re:Super pre-mature (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35717264)

It's a C language compound-or statement. The first term that evaluates false terminates the evaluation with false.

I don't do much programming in C, but please tell me that their approach to boolean logic isn't that fucked up.

Re:Super pre-mature (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35717346)

What's wrong with it? Why evaluate subexpressions that can't possibly have an effect?

Maybe you're confusing logical AND (which early-outs as the GP post says) with bitwise AND (which does not).

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

shentino (1139071) | more than 3 years ago | (#35717782)

More like GP did worse and got AND and OR mixed up.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

zeroshade (1801584) | more than 3 years ago | (#35723076)

or just got true and false mixed up. C language logical or will terminate early if the first term evaluates to true.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

fnj (64210) | more than 3 years ago | (#35717394)

It's not fucked up at all; it's well documented, accomplishes an optimization, and provably cannot change the statement's primary result. C is not the only language with that optimization, though the ability to have expressional terms with dramatic side effects in C does make it vital that it is well understood by anyone who uses C.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

macshit (157376) | more than 3 years ago | (#35717552)

It's a C language compound-or statement. The first term that evaluates false terminates the evaluation with false.

I don't do much programming in C, but please tell me that their approach to boolean logic isn't that fucked up.

C has both short-circuiting and non-short-circuiting and/or operators; the same is true of most major programming languages [wikipedia.org] .

In C, the non-short-circuiting and/or operators are bit-wise whereas the short-circuiting operators are boolean, which may sometime cause confusion (but note that some programming languages simply lack the non-short-circuiting operators altogether, e.g., python).

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

mangu (126918) | more than 3 years ago | (#35719058)

(but note that some programming languages simply lack the non-short-circuiting operators altogether, e.g., python).


>>> def istrue(): print 'true'; return True
...
>>> def isfalse(): print 'false'; return False
...
>>> if isfalse() or istrue(): print 'yes'
...
false
true
yes
>>> if istrue() or isfalse(): print 'yes'
...
true
yes
>>> if istrue() | isfalse(): print 'yes'
...
true
false
yes
>>>

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

macshit (157376) | more than 3 years ago | (#35740060)

Thanks for the correction; I don't actually use Python, I was just going by the wikipedia table and bit of random googling...

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

shentino (1139071) | more than 3 years ago | (#35717776)

That's AND you moron.

Seriously, that sort of mistake is simply unforgivable on an news for nerds site.

Please hand in your geek card at the door.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

bmo (77928) | more than 3 years ago | (#35719930)

>moron
>hand in your geek card
>simply unforgivable on an news for nerds site.
>an news

Really?

--
BMO

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

fnj (64210) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722004)

Thank you. You're correct.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

hajus (990255) | more than 3 years ago | (#35718738)

That would not be a c language compound-or statement that would evaluate false with the first false term to evaluate false. That would be a compound-and statement.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

fnj (64210) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722084)

Correctimundo. Thank you. In general, both logical OR and logical AND can short circuit. In OR, the first true guarantees the whole expression is true, and short circuits further evaluation. In AND, the first false guarantees the whole expression is false, and short circuits further evaluation. The problem is not that I read K&R in 1979; it's that I tend to go too fast putting concepts into words.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

cdrguru (88047) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722728)

Come on, tell me honestly that you would like an efficient government that was churning out new laws at a high rate?

Or would you rather have utter and complete gridlock with the government doing absolutely nothing but talking and wasting a lot of time?

Do you believe the government is going to put people to work? Might it look like a chain gang, or do you think everyone will sit in classrooms being retrained for some new highly technical jobs? I'd say neither is likely - so far the government has managed to create a few thousand jobs at a cost of about a million dollars each. These people would be better off sitting at home watching TV and getting $50,000 a year to sit there, shut up and stop being counted as "unemployed". That sound like a jobs program to you?

There is no alternative between lots of new laws, more and more every day or gridlock and UN-style endless useless talking. You get to choose one or the other.

Re:Super pre-mature (1)

WillyWanker (1502057) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722972)

But what they are doing is the latter -- they are wasting time and money on bills that they know full well will never make it out of the Senate, let alone past the President's desk.

Why not instead accept that in order to get something actually passed will require some kind of compromise? But no, it's all about "we're gonna do it our way and only our way even if that means absolutely nothing gets done". And that's unacceptable. The Republicants have been called the party of "No" for a reason. They are not interested in creating jobs or reducing the deficit. They are only interested in making the wealthy richer and the rest of us poorer. Power, money, and control. If you stop listening to what they say and watch what they do it becomes all too clear what their real agenda is.

Appeal Until They Buy the Legislators (1)

mpapet (761907) | more than 3 years ago | (#35716964)

They need time to draft the bill to make this pesky regulation a shadow of its current form. Don't worry, AT&T is helping!

Re: AT&T is helping (1)

TaoPhoenix (980487) | more than 3 years ago | (#35719764)

Actually you're not so far off from a point under the radar.

https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/Bell_System_divestiture [wikimedia.org]
Take a look at what became of the Regional Bell Operating Companies.

Most of the former split companies are now rolled up into AT&T and Verizon.

Premature, really? (0)

mysidia (191772) | more than 3 years ago | (#35716966)

The dismissal is essentially saying "it hasn't been published yet", therefore Verizon cannot seek preemptive relief? They have to actually wait until it's published in the register and harming them.... Meaning to protect their rights now, they will have to file again, after it is published.... possibly with a different outcome.

So they say Verizon is "gaming the system".... but it sounds like in this case, the government's gaming the system.

Not that I disagree with net neutrality. I just disagree with the court's reason for "changing its mind". Net neutrality should ultimately be left up to the people (preferably _not_ paid lobbyists for either side)

Re:Premature, really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35716992)

The decision WAS ultimately left up to people('s elected officials). So whats the problem?

Re:Premature, really? (1)

mysidia (191772) | more than 3 years ago | (#35727288)

The decision WAS ultimately left up to people('s elected officials). So whats the problem?

The problem is it was not left up to the people.

Judges are appointed officials, not elected officials. And Verizon is one entity bringing the matter to the court. That is as far from being left up to the people as it gets.

The people are represented by the government regulatory bodies and the elected personnell such as the president, but more specifically, the FCC on behalf of congress on behalf of the people.

The courts do not really represent the people -- they interpret the law, and utilize the law to settle disputes between parties.

Who would have ever dreamed that a lower court would deem itself so arrogant as to "override" a governmental entity granted a regulatory power by congress, on behalf of an organization subject to the regulation, merely because the regulation is considered inconvenient for the corporation so regulated.

I understand (1)

WillyWanker (1502057) | more than 3 years ago | (#35717024)

I know how they must feel. My doctor told me I suffer from premature appeal, and that it's also incurable. It sucks, let me tell ya.

Rejected on standing, not on the merits (and why) (4, Informative)

Wrath0fb0b (302444) | more than 3 years ago | (#35717058)

The US Courts have a very strong tendency to take matters of standing seriously -- nearly every opinion will start with the question "Does this court have the jurisdiction (either by the Constitution or by statute) to take up this case?". In most cases, this is a good thing since it grounds the scope of the courts to their intended purpose. (BTW, the notion of limited scope is distinct from curtailing the power of the courts, which is quite wide provided that the matter is within their purview at all -- many seem to forget the distinction).

Since the case is statutory under the APA [wikipedia.org] and the APA provides for judicial review of "final actions" (which makes some sense - Congress wanted the court to have oversight over agency policy not agency procedure), Verizon cannot appeal the decision to adopt net neutrality rules until they become final.

Since the FCC is very likely to go through with publishing the rules, Verizon will get a chance to challenege them on the merits as not being within the power granted to the FCC by Congress. Eventually, anyway.

Re:Rejected on standing, not on the merits (and wh (1)

kenh (9056) | more than 3 years ago | (#35718482)

Exactly - Verizon was 'incurably premature' - and as any woman will tell you, premature is never good!

Incurable (1)

FreakyGreenLeaky (1536953) | more than 3 years ago | (#35719446)

Pure buggers, their prematurity is incurable.

Prematurity is Incurable? (1)

TheSpoom (715771) | more than 3 years ago | (#35719890)

I thought they had pills for that sort of thing.

Well, Duh! There's no rule to object to. (1)

mschaffer (97223) | more than 3 years ago | (#35720818)

Of course it's premature. What rule are they objecting to? It doesn't exist yet.
Sheesh! Verizon should have been penalized for filing a frivolous suit.

Jew did it (2)

Dainsanefh (2009638) | more than 3 years ago | (#35749182)

No contest.
Check for New Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...