Net neutrality stifling innovation and the economy? On the contrary!

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Republicans in the House and Senate on Wednesday introduced resolutions that would vacate the Federal Communications Commission's recent Net neutrality order. According to Rep. Greg Walden (R-Ore.), who's partnered with Fred Upton (R-Mich.) in the House actions, "From the Internet's inception, we have taken a hands-off approach. The Internet did not become the explosive driver of communications and economic growth it is today until we turned it over to free enterprise. Changing direction now will only harm innovation and the economy."

I'm sorry, but the threat that Net neutrality will stifle innovation and economic progress is totally unbelievable to anyone with an ounce of intelligence. On the contrary, stifling and economic limitations are more likely to occur. Without Neutrality carriers can block innovative actions by small entrepreneurs and inventors, they can kill economic progress by denying consumers access to markets, stores, and institutions, they can favor their own content over that of others (think Comcast/NBCU vs. all the other networks and Internet channels), they can shape public opinion by preventing access to opposing points of view, they can degrade consumer confidence by offering only the lowest limbs of the Internet tree to those disadvantaged while offering higher (and juicier) fruits to others who can afford to pay.

I have nothing against charging more for higher access speeds (what's called a tiered speed plan). But at any speed, Net neutrality assures I can get to where I want to go on the Internet. Maybe not as well or as fast, but I CAN get there. Without it, you leave yourself open to the whims of what others let you see...rather than seeing anything for yourself.

Oh, one more thing...if free enterprise control of the Internet is such a good thing, they why is the United States ranked 25th in the world, even behind some third-world countries, for average Internet speed and access when we invented the technology that makes it work? Shouldn't we be #1, leading the way for others?

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