The US Federal Communications Commission website reported technical difficulties because of heavy traffic this week hours after comedian John Oliver called on viewers to share their thoughts with the agency about what he called “cable company fuckery”.

I invite you to watch John Oliver below and then express your thoughts to the FCC-- which is now under the control of a lobbyist for the cable industry-- by visiting http://www.fcc.gov/comments and commenting on Proceeding #14-28.

Tags: John, Oliver, cable, company, fuckery, net, neutrality

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Even more hilarious.....thanks Gallup, I hope the FCC and cable companies enjoy getting fucked right back.

I hope they do, but without an overwhelming public response, the fuckery will continue.

That thing about Apple putting Mein Kampf in the itunes user agreement? It's not a joke. They could actually get away with that. That's why people nee to pay more attention to "boring" politics. Because that's where the fate of your life is being decided.

That thing about Apple putting Mein Kampf in the itunes user agreement? It's not a joke. They could actually get away with that. That's why people nee to pay more attention to "boring" politics. Because that's where the fate of your life is being decided.

Absolutely. Maybe Oliver's point is that boring and interesting are simply matters of packaging.

For instance, the Benghazi incident has been in heavy rotation for months as Fox "News" strains itself to incite public outrage. Meanwhile, cable company fuckery-- which has a direct and negative impact on millions of people-- has languished in the shadows for years (until Oliver made it interesting). I often wonder how much of that is coincidence.

"The cable companies have figured out the great truth of America: if you want to do something evil, put it inside something boring." -John Oliver

Well, Oliver was the first to make it interesting to a wide audience.  There have been tons of really interesting videos on net neutrality via youtube... but youtube has an audience that isn't interested in or doesn't know how to subscribe to intelligent material.

The first video I saw on net neutrality was by Hank Green: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mc2aso6W7jQ&hd=1 which was a month ago.

A few others in no particular order: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NAxMyTwmu_M&hd=1

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wtt2aSV8wdw&hd=1

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bzUuOscaDbI&feature=youtu.be&am...

etc.

Not that I'm not glad Oliver hasn't brought the subject to light... and the way he did it was fucking hilarious.  I guess I just want to bump up the guys that got there first, and there are a lot of them.

Radical free market capitalists who express their utter love for economic anarchy seem to be utterly silent and unbothered by cable and telecom monopolies. It is a mystery of mysteries.

Perhaps because the cable monopolies are only monopolies because governments forbid competition.  And local landline phone service too.  Generally only one company in an area is even allowed to offer cable. In return for which they are supposed to consent to having their rates regulated.  They then proceed to either a) lobby the regulator (this is called "regulatory capture") or provide shoddy service.  Or both.  Because they can get away with it because no one else is even allowed to compete with them.  How is this "anarchy"?  The government is very much involved.

You might remember them howling when satellite began to be offered.  Another company trying to do an end run around their government guaranteed monopoly!  End of the Gravy Train!  Of course, the cable companies themselves started as an end run around local broadcast stations.  OMG, someone might watch channel 7 out of Denver instead of channel 13 here in Colorado Springs! 

In other words cable and telecom monopolies are hardly "economic anarchy."  A "radical free market capitalist" would be overjoyed to tell you that this is what you get when you DON'T have a free market. (In point of fact cable is one of the paradigmatic examples used to support their claims.)  But competition is illegal in those markets--and making something illegal is the last thing that could happen in "anarchy," by definition.

Unfortunately you never hear a radical free market capitalist complain about this. They complain about environmental regulation, minimum wage and social programs but are fairly silent when it comes to telecoms and cable companies. So silent it is an utter mystery.

You haven't been paying attention to the right ones then.  Nor for as long.  To be sure, they don't give nearly as much attention to this as they do to the things you have mentioned, because your list is of a bunch of items that are hot issues today.

I've actually dedicated a lot of my life to studying the discourse of free market radicals. I wish that issues that had consequences for people with low incomes came up as often as "broader" issues. There is nothing "new" about the issues that I've mentioned. They have been perennial targets and obsessive topics of conversation by free market radicals.

Perhaps because the cable monopolies are only monopolies because governments forbid competition. And local landline phone service too.  Generally only one company in an area is even allowed to offer cable.

Or perhaps not, Steve. See the Cable Communications Policy Act and the Telecommunications Act.

Government deregulated the cable industry, going so far as to allow (not mandate) local and regional monopolies and relaxing rules for mergers and acquisitions. This was done as an incentive for cable providers to invest the massive fixed cost of putting in new cable lines and related infrastructure. The cable provider approached a town and offered to build a cable network there in exchange for exclusive access: a perfectly legal monopoly.

Ever since then, the cable industry has operated as a patchwork of these little natural monopolies where massive consolidation has been the norm. Once the incumbent was established they no longer needed an exclusive access deal. It was so expensive for a competitor to enter an existing market (laying its own cable lines) that it didn't make sense to bother. It drives down profits and drives up costs as two players compete for customers.

This still holds true today. Thus, when a cable operator wants to expand, he doesn't lay new cables into the competitor's market, or lease his competitor's cable lines at cost (which is now the law). He just buys it out. Why? Because a monopoly is more valuable for buyer and seller alike if they preserve it.

The cable companies were deregulated to a degree where they faced little oversight or competition, so now high prices and miserable service have become the norm.

In contrast, countries like the U.K. passed laws which forced incumbent cable providers to lease their networks to competitors at cost, which drove down costs substantially. (Cable packages are cheap or free in many parts of Europe for this reason.) The US followed suit with the Cable Television Consumer Protection and Competition Act-- which Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Verizon, and AT&T hated-- but it was too late.

Deregulation and the free market had already created a patchwork of monopolies which the cable companies (not the government) has preserved ever since. They definitely will keep and continue to expand them unless some new form of regulation puts a stop to it.

In other words cable and telecom monopolies are hardly "economic anarchy."  A "radical free market capitalist" would be overjoyed to tell you that this is what you get when you DON'T have a free market. (In point of fact cable is one of the paradigmatic examples used to support their claims.)  But competition is illegal in those markets--and making something illegal is the last thing that could happen in "anarchy," by definition.

Competition is illegal as in criminal? I don't think so, Steve. The cable companies are robbing us like criminals because what they're doing isn't illegal. But it ought to be.

Another disappearing post.

Thanks. Fixed it.

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