FCC ‘Process Reform’ Should Be About Reducing FCC Power by Seton Motley 12 May 2011 post a comment Share This: Oh, and making them obey the law. ----- The Barack Obama Administration has at their dictatorial behest a LOT of rogue Agencies, Departments and Commissions. Wings of the Executive Branch Leviathan that have – under orders from the President, his Czars and his minions - spent the last two-plus years illegally imposing Big Government regulations and rules - without benefit of Congress and in direct opposition to the will of We the People. And since November’s election – in which the American populace overwhelmingly demonstrated their desire for smaller, more accountable government – these agencies have kicked their authoritarian power grabs into overdrive. The anti-energy Cap & Trade Tax doesn’t pass Congress? No problem for the Administration – they’ll just have their Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) start unlawfully enforcing it anyway. The uber pro-union, anti-free market and anti-First Amendment Card Check doesn’t pass Congress? No problem for the Administration – they’ll just have their National Labor Relations Board start unlawfully enforcing it anyway. The autocratic examples are myriad. And perhaps none of the Administration’s Big Government divisions has since the election been more illegally active than the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). The chads from the Less Government 2010 election had barely finished dimpling when the FCC - on December 21 - unlawfully voted themselves Internet Overlords so as to then impose the absurd Network Neutrality. With this vote, the FCC grabbed much more power over the wired Web than they did over wireless. So on April 7 they took their second poisonous bite at the apple - and illegally inserted themselves into the wireless Internet realm. They are nothing if not thorough. And it appears they additionally are putting the illegal cart before the legal horse. The Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) exists to force every federal agency to go through its process before a new regulation is imposed. So as to make the agency evaluate the damage said regulation will do to the free market. And provide the public an opportunity to challenge the estimates and the regulation – and thereby perhaps stop it. But the FCC is regulating first, and obeying to the law later – adhering to the PRA only after illicitly voting in their new regulations. Which they did with their December Net Neutrality power grab. Which they at the time said was SO important, they HAD to vote on it immediately. Right after the Less Government election, on the eve of Christmas and just before the new Republican-richer Congress convened. A Congress which could have written a law making what the FCC was going to do actually legal. After all, FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski admitted it wasn’t . But the Chairman said Net Neutrality was too important to let its illegality get in the way, so we were force fed the vote. But despite this pre-power grab “urgency,” five months afterwards the FCC still has not yet published the Net Neutrality order. What happened to the earnestness? Well, two companies are waiting to sue the Commission to undo the order – and they can’t until it’s filed. And the Commission’s delay is intended to help them duck the D.C. Circuit Court. Which has already once ruled that the FCC does not have the legal authority to do what they are trying to now again do. The Commission figures the incessant delay will – once they do finally file - land the lawsuits in a different court. We know the Commission can file timely when they wish – as it took them less than a month to register their April wireless Internet power grab. But wait - there’s even more. The FCC was before the election already well on their way to dragging out and abusing their merger-approval authority on the Comcast-NBCU deal. After the election, they really dropped the hammer. The Commission elicited from the parties pages and PAGES of at-the-point-of-a-gun “voluntary” capitulations. Including a seven-year Net Neutrality mandate - to which they must adhere regardless of the Net Neutrality order’s almost inevitable overturn. The FCC has forced them to obey something that is blatantly illegal, destined to again be ruled so by the courts and which the American people do not want anything to do with. And which will, by the way, precipitously stifle job-creating investment and innovation – and raise the price and diminish the Internet experience for every user. And we are about to witness a similar FCC abuse of the process on the pending AT&T/T-Mobile merger. They too will most likely be forced at gunpoint to sign a similar Net Neutrality (dis)”agreement.” ----- Friday morning the House Subcommittee on Communications and Technology will convene a hearing entitled “FCC Process Reform.” The Obama Administration FCC’s process has been a lawless, authoritarian, the-Leftist-ends-justify-any-means-necessary Big Government mess. Which is screaming out loud for reform.