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Hillary & the net neutrality free-market litmus test

The Financial Times report on "Hillary Clinton warms up Wall St." is highly relevant to the net neutrality debate, which has become surprisingly partisan with the Democrats on the Senate Commerce Committee voting as a block in support of the hyper-regulatory approach of the Snowe Dorgan bill. Previously, Sen. Clinton sent around a "Dear Colleague" letter in support of Snowe Dorgan. 

Moreover, all the major likely Democratic Presidential candidates have joined Senator Clinton in supporting the hyper-regulatory Snowe-Dorgan NN approach: Senator Kerry (MA), former NC Senator John Edwards, and former VA Governor Mark Warner.

The FT article explains that while Senator Clinton does not face real opposition for her 2006 Senate re-election bid, she is wooing Wall Street for her expected run for the Presidency in 2008. I quote the relevant passage: "...the Wall Street meetings could pay dividends in 2008 by helping reassure bankers that she is a free-market centrist, not the tax and spend, protectionist liberal some Republicans paint her to be."

If there was ever a legitimate litmus test of whether a candidate was free market or not it is opposing the hyper-regulatory NN approach of Snowe-Dorgan and the Markey Bill, which was defeated in the House 269-152.

NN at its core is about whether the Internet continues to enjoy free and open competition that it does now or whether it the Goverment will regulate the Internet and become the de facto net-nanny of the twenty-first century?

There is nothing free market about abandoning an eleven year competition policy that is working, giving consumers increasing choices and lower prices, and that is encouraging investment in the Internet to make it capable to carry mainstream video. There is nothing free market about a govenrment command and control approach to regulating prices, terms and conditions of currently unregulated products and services. 

Given that America's economy is increasingly Internet-driven, Net neutrality is the policy litmus test of whether or not a policy maker is free-market or regulatory. 

For the Democratic candidates for President in 2008, it appears as if they have chosen the old democrat Big Government path and have abandoned the more market-friendly approach of the New Democrat wing of the Democratic Party. 

Not only is NN a good free-market litmus test issue, it also could be a precursor of how Democrats would govern if they won the White House in 2008.

The Democrats are playing with fire on net neutrality, becuase the hyper-regulatory, "Socialized-Internet" approach that the pack of Democratic Presidential candidates support, could eventually trigger a future recession -- if they were able to implement it -- in our increasingly Internet-sensitive economy.  
 
 

Q&A One Pager Debunking Net Neutrality Myths