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Senator Al Franken Accuses AT&T of "Skirting" Net Neutrality Rules

samzenpus posted about 5 months ago | from the no-sir-I-don't-like-it dept.

AT&T 81

McGruber writes In a letter to the U.S. Federal Communication Commission and the Department of Justice, Senator Al Franken warned that letting AT&T acquire Direct TV could turn AT&T into a gatekeeper to the mobile Internet. Franken also complained that AT&T took inappropriate steps to block Internet applications like Google Voice and Skype: "AT&T has a history of skirting the spirit, and perhaps the letter' of the government's rules on net neutrality, Franken wrote."

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verizon, comcast? (5, Insightful)

steak (145650) | about 5 months ago | (#47427907)

why not go after the worst offenders?

Re:verizon, comcast? (2)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47428009)

that's the problem, after the recent list released showing which politicians are receiving "campaign funding' or bribes as I call them. its going to be impossible for any of this to be enforced or any rule/law changes that block out any loopholes. after reading about ponzi schemes I just realized the entire country is nothing more then one. and these reports and other investigations into corporate monopolies, corruption at every level from local/state/federal only really bitch slaps me into that reality.

Re:verizon, comcast? (2)

Mister Liberty (769145) | about 5 months ago | (#47428263)

'Bribes' is outdated. Here's what happens:
Somebody window-dresses nicely, like Al Franken in the present case. You buy that product, and become owner of said Al. In time, dear Al performs the function that you expect from that product. It's not a conincidence that elections are won by Advertising moguls.

Re:verizon, comcast? (1)

Jawnn (445279) | about 5 months ago | (#47431555)

Outdated or not, "bribe" more accurately describes the transaction - "Here's some money. Vote the way I say. OK?"

Re:verizon, comcast? (4, Interesting)

Technician (215283) | about 5 months ago | (#47428099)

I was stuck on Comcast when I upgraded from Dialup. Due to the games with non working services, I jumped ship as soon as Qwest offered DSL. Skype, VOIP via SIP, Google Voice/Talk, etc all working fine. I feel for those without the option. Comcast has been trying to win me back, but I'll take the slower DSL speed for everything working properly anyday.

Re: verizon, comcast? (1)

James Buchanan (3571549) | about 5 months ago | (#47430303)

Just try and use it away from home. Out get used to a technical usage,of part of the product, and then the third world of you cannot do that here, because you live in the wrong neighborhood, or visiting the wrong side of the street. After all, I'm not paying the bill there, am I. But, my service says "mobile". And it's not....

because: Republicans (3, Insightful)

globaljustin (574257) | about 5 months ago | (#47428739)

"why not go after the worst offenders?"

"go after" means the Federal Government to **enforce** laws or pass new ones

Republicans block every effort to pass new Net Neutrality laws or enforce currenet ones

> enforcement: GOP excuse: "can't...no money to do it...we got us a budget crisis b/c of government spending"
> pass new laws: GOP excuse: "can't...new laws are 'regulation' and that's bad for business and jobs"

So the answer to "why not go after..." is simply BECAUSE REPUBLICANS

if you disagree...you must contradict my dual thesis...policy and laws exist and we enforce them...Republicans and Democrats control that...on both issues my thesis is that Democrats want to "go after verizon, comcast" and that Republicans oppose such actions by vote and by administrative decisions....you must show Republicans who advocate for both Net Neutrality AND increased enforcement/regulation on big teleco's specifically if you want to have a discussion

Re:because: Republicans (2, Insightful)

qeveren (318805) | about 5 months ago | (#47429347)

No fan of the Republicans here, but enforcement is the Executive Branch's bailiwick. :/

Re:because: Republicans (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47431307)

sometimes you have to grandstand to get the shills within executive to possibly instigate, maybe acknowledge, and unlikely act on an issue.

Re:because: Republicans (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47431533)

Try enforcement with no budget.

it was in my original post (2)

globaljustin (574257) | about 5 months ago | (#47434489)

No fan of the Republicans here, but enforcement is the Executive Branch's bailiwick. :/

yeah...I addressed your point, directly...from the post you responded to:

> enforcement: GOP excuse: "can't...no money to do it...we got us a budget crisis b/c of government spending"

the GOP controls the budget...exec branch included...this is the end of the discussion

Re:because: Republicans (1)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | about 5 months ago | (#47429439)

Funny, here I was thinking that Republicans and Democrats were two sides of the same coin. Now, they're uniquely and blameably wrong? I swear, this is exactly the same "we have always been at war with Eurasia" doublethink that Orwell wrote about. One day, the first idea. The next day, the other - with no acknowledgement of the other idea ever having been uttered.

I thought it was idiotic when I read 1984 way back when, but here it is, live and right in front of my face.

Re:because: Republicans (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47430637)

Prove the opposite you stupid fucking shill.

Re:because: Republicans (1)

MachineShedFred (621896) | about 5 months ago | (#47430985)

You do know that Al Franken is VERY much a Democrat, right?

The GP post was asking why Senator Franken was only accusing ATT and not Verizon / Comcast / Time Warner.

Blaming the other guys isn't constructive, and only deepens the division without solving a damn thing. Stop it.

Re:because: Republicans (1, Insightful)

operagost (62405) | about 5 months ago | (#47431087)

Sure, let's ignore the two years when the Ds controlled both houses and the Presidency, yet nothing changed.

Sure, let's ignore the fact that the Senate is still controlled by Ds.

Sure, let's ignore the fact that the White House is still occupied by a D, who has executive power on the regulatory department capable of making some of the changes.

I'm sure it's all because of one party, and if we just eliminate that party, the Democrats will fix everything. Don't think of it as one-party rule, think of it as one fewer party.

Re:because: Republicans (0)

tomhath (637240) | about 5 months ago | (#47432497)

if you disagree...you must contradict my dual thesis

You haven't proven anything to disprove. Democrats controlled both houses of Congress and the White House and did nothing. They still control the executive branch (i.e. the FCC) and do nothing. Your thesis is nonsense.

Re:verizon, comcast? (1)

ShanghaiBill (739463) | about 5 months ago | (#47429181)

why not go after the worst offenders?

Because an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. The best way to promote network neutrality is to keep monopolies from forming in the first place.

   

No Funding for you then. (2)

SpzToid (869795) | about 5 months ago | (#47427919)

Guess who won't be receiving much, if any campaign contributions for the next election from ATT? (Or Verizon, or Comcast).

Re: No Funding for you then. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47427943)

He's from Minnesota. I think you would be surprised by how little corporate support he needs to get reelected.

Re: No Funding for you then. (4, Insightful)

Tailhook (98486) | about 5 months ago | (#47428067)

Maybe he should send all that Microsoft, Honeywell, Comcast, Time Warner, Medtronic, Bain Capital, UnitedHealth and Nextera money [opensecrets.org] back then, since candidates in podunk Mr. Rogers Minnesota don't really need it.

Didn't think so.

Re: No Funding for you then. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47431655)

I hope you realize those are the aggregate contributions from employees of those firms, not money the firms themselves contributed.

Re: No Funding for you then. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47432011)

That's the case for candidates you don't make excuses for as well.

Re: No Funding for you then. (1)

AuralityKev (1356747) | about 5 months ago | (#47431987)

I wish he would. Sincerely, A dood born, raised, and still living in podunk Mr. Rogers Minnesota.

Re: No Funding for you then. (3, Interesting)

SpzToid (869795) | about 5 months ago | (#47428077)

I have serious doubts about your statement, considering how contested Franken's election victory was, and for how long, not to mention how close.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/01... [nytimes.com]

Re: No Funding for you then. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47430261)

To be fair, I voted against him last time (mostly a devil you know thing). I doubt I will do that again, unless he really screws up.

Re: No Funding for you then. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47431885)

To be fair, I voted against him last time (mostly a devil you know thing). I doubt I will do that again, unless he really screws up.

If "he really screws up" you'll vote *for* him?

Re: No Funding for you then. (1)

david_thornley (598059) | about 5 months ago | (#47432507)

He's stated that his ambition this election is to double, maybe even triple, his margin of victory.

Re: No Funding for you then. (1)

SpzToid (869795) | about 5 months ago | (#47432691)

So were talking something of a margin of victory like 600 - 900 votes this time around? That still ain't a whole lot. He only won by 312 votes the first time.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org]

Re: No Funding for you then. (2)

david_thornley (598059) | about 5 months ago | (#47434865)

He's got a sense of humor and makes jokes at his own expense. Rare and refreshing in a public figure.

Re:No Funding for you then. (2)

geekoid (135745) | about 5 months ago | (#47427975)

I don't think he cares.

https://www.opensecrets.org/po... [opensecrets.org]

Re:No Funding for you then. (1)

SpzToid (869795) | about 5 months ago | (#47428053)

OK, I get your point, but what about the money ATT, Verizon, Comcast, etc. will be pumping into his opponent?

Re:No Funding for you then. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47428119)

Comcast already pumped [opensecrets.org] Mr. Franken this cycle.

Stop guessing.

Re:No Funding for you then. (1)

SpzToid (869795) | about 5 months ago | (#47430421)

What does it mean that Comcast gave him money for his first election? Had Franken actually declared war on the Comcast/NBC merger while he was campaigning? GM/NBC was even his former employer at Saturday Night Live. Maybe Comcast just wanted to get on his good side at the time, like his other donors?

But the next election might be something different. And even if Comcast gave him $10k, they'll give the other guy 20k, (so 30K paid out overall) with 20K just the cost of doing business in order to pump up their real pick with a 10K advantage. Don't forget Comcast Corp has a right to Freedom of Speech and can't be sooo restricted financially.

Re:No Funding for you then. (2)

geekoid (135745) | about 5 months ago | (#47428123)

Lots?

There used to be a saying the all Jr.s Senator were told:
"If you can't take their money, drink their liquor, fuck their women and still vote against them, you don't belong in politics."

Re: No Funding for you then. (1)

tacarat (696339) | about 5 months ago | (#47428381)

"A good politician stays bought".

Re: No Funding for you then. (1)

Ol Olsoc (1175323) | about 5 months ago | (#47428407)

"A good politician stays bought".

They have to be re-bought every election cycle

Don't you know the ground rules of baksheesh?

Re:No Funding for you then. (2)

swb (14022) | about 5 months ago | (#47430051)

As a Minnesotan, I don't see unknown Mike McFadden making a lot of headway against Franken. The dedicated ideologues may vote for him but Minnesota isn't the kind of a state where hard-core ideology will win elections. And he surely won't win campaigning against Franken on a platform of letting Comcast do whatever it wants.

I think he'd be most vulnerable in his own party to someone like Betty McCollum (a current House member) if she wanted the Senate.

Franken/Warren (or Warren/Franken) 2016! (5, Insightful)

disposable60 (735022) | about 5 months ago | (#47427921)

They'd make quite a team, and the debates might finally be watchable.

Re:Franken/Warren (or Warren/Franken) 2016! (2, Interesting)

geekoid (135745) | about 5 months ago | (#47427945)

That would have my vote.
OTOH, I think they might be better in the house.

Re:Franken/Warren (or Warren/Franken) 2016! (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47428025)

Stuwart Smaley, who only barely won an electon because of a judge and Miss "I'm Cherokee because of my high cheekbones" would make a good Pres / Vice Pres?

Interesting.

Re:Franken/Warren (or Warren/Franken) 2016! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47428133)

Non-substantial character attacks instead of any kind of insightful disagreement with matters of significance?

Confirmation, that they are great candidates.

Re:Franken/Warren (or Warren/Franken) 2016! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47428183)

Confirmation, that they are great candidates.

Wow. That's terrible logic.

Re:Franken/Warren (or Warren/Franken) 2016! (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47428211)

Video [youtube.com] in her own words.

Claiming to be an ethnic minority to get college advantages for minorities by lying should ban her from politics, period.

But, if she run for the DNC being corrupt is a bonus.

Re:Franken/Warren (or Warren/Franken) 2016! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47428787)

I'm not seeing any insightful disagreement on a matter of substance.

If you want to subject all political candidates to a thorough and extensive life audit, great, go for it. Let's see all their tax returns made public, their birth certificates, their diaries, their permanent records, their immunization accounts, and video rentals.

Re:Franken/Warren (or Warren/Franken) 2016! (1, Insightful)

phantomfive (622387) | about 5 months ago | (#47429233)

I think the point is, if you want someone who will be a good leader, don't choose the one who lied on her resume. That probably would have been a good idea around when Bush was running, too

Re:Franken/Warren (or Warren/Franken) 2016! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47430767)

And you should realize that my point is that I'd rather discuss matters of substance and actual disagreement.

Except that's not going to happen, because people are going to nitpick and needle over bullshit.

A good leader isn't half as important as a good electorate.

Re:Franken/Warren (or Warren/Franken) 2016! (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about 5 months ago | (#47431253)

A good leader isn't half as important as a good electorate.

So true, I still don't want a liar for president, I don't care how good her ideas are. If her ideas are good, find someone else to implement them. Otherwise you get someone like Obama, "most transparent government of all time." Right.

Re:Franken/Warren (or Warren/Franken) 2016! (2, Interesting)

Bill, Shooter of Bul (629286) | about 5 months ago | (#47428071)

I don't know. I definitly respect Franken's views and politics since he became a senator, but oh my god is he a terrible entertainer. Can not stand his comedy.

Re:Franken/Warren (or Warren/Franken) 2016! (2)

cold fjord (826450) | about 5 months ago | (#47429157)

My view is pretty much the reverse - ok entertainer (long, long ago, in a TV show far, far away), but Senator? Ugh.

Re:Franken/Warren (or Warren/Franken) 2016! (1)

Bill, Shooter of Bul (629286) | about 5 months ago | (#47434961)

I'm afraid I can not respect anyone who respects him as an entertainer. We can have diametrically opposed views on politics, thats all cool. But, appreciating talent-less hacks, is not something I can support in good conscious.

Re:Franken/Warren (or Warren/Franken) 2016! (1)

cold fjord (826450) | about 5 months ago | (#47435323)

I understand your perspective. Nonetheless I thought he was OK as Baggage Handler #1 in Trading Places, although maybe that is the "halo effect" of being such a brilliant movie.

Re:Franken/Warren (or Warren/Franken) 2016! (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47428101)

I would maybe considering voting democrat for the first time in a long time...

Not a chance (1, Interesting)

rsilvergun (571051) | about 5 months ago | (#47428335)

they'd never make it out of the Sheldon Primary [google.com]

For those of you that don't know, any serious candidate for office in America gets approved by the top 1% here before they're allowed to run because without the support of the very rich they can't win.

Re:Not a chance (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about 5 months ago | (#47429239)

Uh, everyone Sheldon Adelson gave money to LOST. Doesn't that kind of go against your point?

Re:Not a chance (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47431941)

Uh, everyone Sheldon Adelson gave money to LOST. Doesn't that kind of go against your point?

He's a Republican and not the only 1%er. Approval by the 1% is a necessary requirement, not a sufficient requirement.

Re:Franken/Warren (or Warren/Franken) 2016! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47428707)

Franken voted for the 2012 NDAA, which allows for indefinite military detention of US citizens on American soil. He's no better than anyone else in Senate.

Re:Franken/Warren (or Warren/Franken) 2016! (1)

david_thornley (598059) | about 5 months ago | (#47432535)

The NDAA is the appropriation act for the entire military, and at times in the process a legislator must vote yes or no on an entire bill without chances for amendment. A lot of crap gets through that way. I'd like to see strict limits about germaneness of amendments in both Houses, but we don't have that.

I wasn't following that. How did the detention get into the bill? Was it ever voted on or discussed in the Senate? (For all I know, it could have come entirely from the House of Representatives, and left in by the conference committee.) What's Franken's record on that issue itself?

Re:Franken/Warren (or Warren/Franken) 2016! (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about 5 months ago | (#47429247)

They'd make quite a team, and the debates might finally be watchable.

Yeah, then add the matching pair Paul/Cruz on the other side, and the debates will be as good as this one [cc.com] .

Do what every other politician does... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47428029)

Make a lot of noise but not actually do anything.

The committment was only for three years (5, Interesting)

Meshach (578918) | about 5 months ago | (#47428063)

From the article:

Those rules were written in 2010 — and AT&T has pledged to abide by them for three years if its DirecTV purchase goes through — but were knocked down by a federal court in January.

Even if AT&T did abide by these rules in three years their commitment is over and they can do what they want.

Naive. Skirting the rules is not breaking them (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47428065)

Everyone skirts rules - no matter what the venue, no matter what the political affiliation. If you're up in arms about this, how do you feel about Obama "skirting" the rules that govern the IRS or Obamacare or immigration?

I choose Frankenberrry (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47428461)

It's the best of the franken-foods!

Yup (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47428493)

Al Franken and net neutrality bullshit are hopefully going the way of the dodo. People who think the FCC has any business controlling the internet are obnoxious, autocratic idiots (ie "progressives").

Al Franken? (-1, Troll)

blindseer (891256) | about 5 months ago | (#47428617)

When I hear his name what first comes to mind is the skit I saw of him playing as a inept news reporter with a fake satellite dish on his head. I find it hard to take anything this guy says seriously regardless of the topic.

How do clowns like this get into office? In this case "clown" can be taken literally.

Re:Al Franken? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47428669)

"I find it hard to take anything this guy says seriously"
Because you are too stupid to realize that people can be funny and serious? Or have multiple careers in one life time?

But more likely, because you are resorting to an Ad Hominem attack, where you attack the person instead of the message because you can't really make a reasonable logical argument against his point.

Re:Al Franken? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47429163)

No, Franken really is a clown. The "multiple careers in one life time" you refer to is him being a clown in multiple settings. The "Al Franken decade" is so over.

Re:Al Franken? (2)

GoodNicksAreTaken (1140859) | about 5 months ago | (#47428693)

Humor takes intelligence. I think he's done a far better job representing the people and their interests than Jesse Ventura, Arnold Schwarzenegger, or Ronald Reagan.

Re:Al Franken? (0, Troll)

blindseer (891256) | about 5 months ago | (#47428947)

Agreed. Not so sure about Ronald Reagan not being a good representative of the people, he's highly respected. I recall a recent poll on how people felt about the Presidents we've had in the last 50 years and Reagan ranked highly if not on top.

While making a good joke takes intelligence I doubt that is what people were thinking when they voted for him. I think they voted on name recognition. The guy was a clown before his political career. He played complete idiots on TV. Reagan had his time as a clown in the movies (Bedtime for Bonzo!) but he also did serious roles.

I just don't recall Franken ever acting seriously even when not in character. I only saw him being a goofball. Steve Martin is another clown that has shown himself to be very talented and intelligent. I just cannot see him running for elected office because when I hear his name I think of the line, "I was born a poor black child."

I'm just baffled on how this guy got into office.

Re:Al Franken? (3, Insightful)

SuiteSisterMary (123932) | about 5 months ago | (#47430707)

Don't forget, he was a noted political pundit/analyst as well. He just decided to put his money where his mouth was. Tell Ann Coulter to run for congress or the senate, and see what happens.

Re:Al Franken? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47437631)

Agreed. Not so sure about Ronald Reagan not being a good representative of the people, he's highly respected. I recall a recent poll on how people felt about the Presidents we've had in the last 50 years and Reagan ranked highly if not on top.

Which alone should tell you that those polls are a joke. Especially if you look into the analysis of the vote, and notice how heavily weighted that is on a partisan basis.

Re:Al Franken? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47429321)

To think, if not for a stash of ballets found in the back of a car, the joker would not be representing anyone. But in Franken case, it was stupid humor not humor from being intelligent.

I doubt any Democrat could ever do better then Ronald Reagon.

Re:Al Franken? (1)

Grow Old Timber (1071718) | about 5 months ago | (#47428771)

Not worth responding too...Blind baby

Re:Al Franken? (1)

Gavagai80 (1275204) | about 5 months ago | (#47429469)

He's senator for a state that elected a professional wrestler as governor. After Jesse Ventura, it's easy to taken Franken seriously.

Re:Al Franken? (1)

david_thornley (598059) | about 5 months ago | (#47432589)

Minnesota does tend to elect kooks and one-of-a-kinds.

I'd also like to nominate Rudy Perpich (governor, kook), Keith Ellison (IIRC the only Muslim in Congress), and possibly Michelle Bachman (representative) and Paul Wellstone (senator). It can get pretty colorful on the lower levels, also.

In defense of Jesse "the governor" Ventura, he did a pretty good job at running the state, although I never thought he had a real vision for where it should go. The guy hired competent advisers and listened to them, always a good thing in a politician.

Margin of victory (1, Troll)

amightywind (691887) | about 5 months ago | (#47428629)

Good old weird Al whose margin of victory in the last election was serial voters bused in from Sconi. He really picks the tough issues. Get your cock out of your mouth Al!

Re:Margin of victory (-1, Troll)

Grow Old Timber (1071718) | about 5 months ago | (#47428759)

Stuff it in your ass you allmightywind or BLOW it out yer ass.

Thanks Al The bravest Senator of them all. (3, Insightful)

Grow Old Timber (1071718) | about 5 months ago | (#47428753)

I have to appreciate the Senator going off on what could be a win for us. Although huge corporations have the lobbyists behind them Al Franken only has us. And I sure love the guy, crying out loud for the little consumer getting raked over the coals. Thanks Al Franken Go get 'em!. I wish you all the support you'll need.

Re:Thanks Al The bravest Senator of them all. (1)

Virtucon (127420) | about 5 months ago | (#47430771)

You know in his early days on SNL he wasn't all that funny. I never thought he'd be a Senator but you know he actually makes a lot of sense.

Re:Thanks Al The bravest Senator of them all. (1)

operagost (62405) | about 5 months ago | (#47431265)

He's a senator because the Democrats learned from the mistakes of the 2000 Presidential election and this time, made sure the ballots were counted "properly".

Re:Thanks Al The bravest Senator of them all. (2)

david_thornley (598059) | about 5 months ago | (#47432621)

He's a senator because he got very slightly more votes than his opponent, as determined in a painstaking recount that took months. This recount was overseen by a three-judge panel, and then examined at length by the Minnesota Supreme Court. Half of those judges were Republican appointees, and only two were DFL appointees. The Republican governor then signed the election certificate without any demur.

There were some problems found in the voting (most notably that the absentee ballot instructions didn't conform to absentee ballot law), and these were largely corrected later on.

Karma Fodder (1)

ButchDeLoria (2772751) | about 5 months ago | (#47428775)

I am Vinz, Vinz Clortho, Keymaster of Gozer...Volguus Zildrohoar, Lord of the Seboullia. Are you the Gatekeeper?
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