Bureau of Programming

Ajit Pai Is A Traitor

Legitimate news sources have to walk a fine line between reporting the news and providing candid assessments of current events. Good media outlets can’t always call it like they see it, because they want to stay above the fray and avoid accusations of bias.

In no recent case is that more clear than with the new FCC chairman Ajit Pai, whose behavior is so self-serving and disgusting that it deserves special attention here. In a nutshell, Pai is not just a corporate shill and a scumbag, he’s a traitor. His systematic and indifferent deference to corporate interests—like those of his former employer Verizon—above the public interest is not just disgusting, it should be criminal.

Most public servants busy themselves with things traditionally thought of in the public good: improving the environment, helping disabled persons, delivering the mail. Pai, on the other hand, accepts a paycheck from the U.S. taxpayer, and enables ISPs to sell your web-browsing history, works on dismantling network neutrality, and guts expanding broadband access.

He’s so completely absorbed with manipulating the political system to help giant telecom companies that he has no plans to strike phony anti-net neutrality comments from dead or impersonated persons. Of course, Pai will argue he’s facilitating the free market:

[By] imposing those heavy-handed economic regulations on Internet service providers big and small, we could end up disincentivizing companies from wanting to build out Internet access to a lot of parts of the country, in low-income, urban and rural areas, for example.

But just what kind of market competition exists when the majority of Americans have access to, at most, two broadband ISPs? And how does allowing Verizon and Comcast to charge tolls to access certain parts of the web fix that?

People have few ISP options not only because the network build-out itself is expensive but because existing providers bribe or manipulate government officials into creating artificial anticompetitive barriers: They outlaw municipal networks. They restrict access to electric poles. Frankly, if a company whose technical and financial resources as extraordinary as Google’s cannot compete in this industry, the system must be rigged.

I pity the mainstream media. They are all but forced to reprint Pai’s bullshit arguments about him caring about low-income people. But the truth is he’s so interested in helping his rich telecom benefactors that he’ll merrily defend his actions on the backs of impersonated dead people. He’s said so himself.

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