Thursday, November 30, 2017

Net-Neutrality Versus the Internet Toy.

Americans have a wholly different opinion of the Internet and its uses than the remainder of the world. To the vast majority of account holders, the "internet" synonymous with that expensive hand-held device that constantly needs to be updated and recharged. It displays static and moving pictures and makes addictive sounds to keep their attention on the glowing screen even to the exclusion of their imminent collision with motor vehicles and fixed objects in their walking path. So highly integrated is the services available on a wireless device that few account holders can identity what part is Telecommunications (phone), which is message-push and what part is the actual Internet. To them they pay a monthly subscription fee and the content is magically there for the consumption.

For this demographic of Internet users the Information Pipe is mostly one-way to them. Content providers pump Intellectual Property into the pipe and it comes out the other end and the subscriber is happy. While they play their addictive games, a small bit of data is sucked back to the provider through a smaller pipe and the provider learns incrementally more about who likes their IP and what else they might like.

Gaming is huge. Video is huge. Both are highly competitive and lucrative. Photo-sharing is also huge as evidenced by recent platform acquisitions where one company buy the other for several billons of dollars. But all this technical and financial stuff is of zero concern to the subscriber who only wants his Pokemon GO app to not freeze.

Americans are slowly adopting internet-based services such as banking, finding a bar or a parking spot in the city, paying for parking in the city, hailing an UBER or Lyft or reserving a city bike. None of these services are controversial enough for an ISP to internally regulate customer access. Few transactions would even raise the virtual eyebrows of the NSA or DHS.

In other parts of the world, internet users are highly connected in massive numbers and they are more of a business customer rather than a player.

The internet is many thing to many people. Even in their most outrageous email message only a percentage or so of users have ever sent content that the NSA would even be remotely interested in. Few have visited controversial websites and fewer still have ever created one. Yet there are internet users who have expressions to make which are beneficial to the world at large. Clean water causes, climate protections, anti-fascist and social justice for everyone are just some of the causes for which people post to the Internet and others search it.

Yes there are those people who have nefarious purposes and with equal ease spread their negative messages. They seek to use the Internet to spread their brand of free speech.

It is not the place of the owners of the physical communications lines to decide who can say what, when and at what price. That is the purview of society itself and law enforcement agencies when the free speech turns into violence.

In the present struggle between the Net-neutrality versus monopoly telecomm industry there are factions which have great stakes in the outcome. The telecomm industry peddles great monetary influence to obtain direct results from the decision makers and the ancillary levels of support which can hand them the ultimate control over the public channels of communication.

On the consumer side of the issue, millions of Americans have no opinion either way since they are the Internet-toy players who will play at whatever price and with whichever toy manufacturer makes the toys.

Then there remains the socially conscious and controversial users who will be the ones who are stifled and subjugated to the will of the ISPs which will have their hands on the valves of the pipes. We have already seen the impacts of the consolidation of power wrought by the corporate media powerhouses. Allowing even the hint of bias in the flow of information is a detriment to America as a democracy and  an extension of monetized control of everything. 

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Corporate Tax Cuts Never Equals Jobs

A primary tenant of corporate philosophy is to obtain as much productivity out of as few human workers as possible. They love cutting wages, benefits and relocating to a less expensive labor market. So the question is: why would a corporation invest a tax cut in the creation of jobs? The answer: they wouldn't.

They know how much they are willing to pay, how many people are required to meet production quotas. If they truly needed more labor to expand production, they would borrow the money, as they always have. Higher wages is a perpetual cost. Therefore the corporate managers seek to lower the wages as far as possible regardless of the detriment to their labor force.

Businesses paid off legislators to vote on "right to work" laws that circumvent collective bargaining. They support elimination of overtime pay rates. They support lowering or eliminating minimum wage rates. All of this financial dickering shifts the cost of living to people who are not part of the corporate shareholder family.

Along with laws to facilitate the reductions of compensation for employees, the corporate culture is working hard to lower or eliminate corporate taxes. In short they don't want to pay the cost of living for their workers by any means.

If a tax cut did not exacerbate deficit spending and an increase in the National Debt it would be far more palatable. In the past, make-a-believe Economists claimed the debt could expand as long as it was less than the growth of the GDP. The double trouble is the growth of debt far exceeds the growth of the GDP. And most of the actions taken by Congress slashes the spending which does contribute to the GDP. A trillion dollar reduction in tax funded spending is a trillion dollars lost by the large corporate entities. Why aren't they complaining?

All corporate entities are aligned together against all Labor. Labor loses when they cannot use collective bargaining like the corporation do. The only hope is to vote out the perpetrators who take from the working class and give to the wealthy class.