Taxpayers Funding More Than $1B In Free Cellphones

ANCHOR: There are new questions tonight about a government program that’s given away millions of free cell phones and service to people with low incomes and those in rural areas. The cost and demand are skyrocketing. Who pays? Chances are you do.

ANCHOR: ABC7′s Ben Bradley is joining us tonight with what it’s costing you.

REPORTER: The money comes from the Federal Universal Service Charge on your phone bill. It has its roots all the way back in the 1930s. The goal was make sure people in rural areas and the poor had access to telephone service. In the 1980s and 90’s it expanded to include wireless phones. Since then the numbers have exploded. The cost of the program is now more than a billion dollars a year. The FCC, along with some democrats and republicans, are trying to rein it in.

REPORTER: On an abandoned West Side lot, a sign on a bright green tent advertises a deal too good for many to resist.

CITIZEN: My daughter told me about it.

Read More at The Washington Free Beacon.

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FCC Colluded with Left-Wing Organization to Regulate the Internet

Judicial Watch

Judicial Watch, the public interest group that investigates and prosecutes government corruption, announced today that it has uncovered documents from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) that indicate officials at the FCC colluded with the leftist Free Press organization to publicly push a new plan to regulate the Internet under the FCC’s so-called “net neutrality” program. Judicial Watch obtained the documents pursuant to a December 27, 2010, Freedom of Information Act request.

In December 2010, the FCC voted 3-2 to advance its “net neutrality program.” This decision seems to fly in the face of an April, 2010 federal appeals court ruling that the FCC had exceeded its authority in seeking to regulate the Internet and enforce “net neutrality” rules.

The supporters of “net neutrality,” including Free Press, argue that high-speed Internet access is a “civil right,” and are recommending new government regulations to provide taxpayer-funded broadband Internet access to all populations, especially those deemed “underserved.” Opponents of “net neutrality” argue the program is designed to impose greater government control over the Internet and will result in less access, not more. Moreover, opponents of “net neutrality,” also dispute the claim that Internet access is a basic civil right protected by the U.S. Constitution.

Judicial Watch uncovered internal correspondence showing unusual coordination by some officials at the FCC and Free Press in pushing the “net neutrality” agenda in the run up to the controversial FCC vote in December:

Read more.

Obama’s Homeland Security Dept. Promotes Al Jazeera

Ben Johnson,

National security has fallen so far under Barack Obama that a high-ranking official in the Department of Homeland Security is berating American cable companies for not carrying Osama bin Laden’s favorite television network.

Juliette Kayyem, the assistant secretary for intergovernmental affairs at the DHS, wrote an op-ed in the Boston Globe this week entitled, “Let US See Al-Jazeera.” (Capitalization in original.) In it, she rakes ign’ernt Americans over the coals for not appreciating Al Jazeera English (AJE), the Anglophone counterpart to Al-Jazeera. Kayyem writes that cable providers should be “promoting engagement in the Arab world” by “bringing a major player in the Arab world to American audiences.”

Typical of the Obama administration’s approach to all forms of conflict, Kayyem wants America to step aside, promote Islamic interests, and hope our enemies will reciprocate our selfless acts of goodwill. In this case, she wants a major Islamic fundamentalist propaganda outlet beamed into 300 million infidel homes. “AJE’s battle with the cable carriers is major news in the Middle East,” she writes. Not carrying the network “sends a message to the Arab world.” Although she reassures her readers, “Cable companies have no obligation to run programming,” she warns that shunning AJE is “understood by the Arab world as a value-laden decision about America’s lack of desire to hear from the Arab world about the Arab world.”

There is the little matter of the Al-Jazeera’s famously close relationship with terrorists and long history of….

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Killing the Czars: House Republicans Fight Obama’s Executive Power Grab

Ben Johnson,

Congressional Republicans have wasted no time fighting back against Barack Obama’s plan to rule by executive fiat. Only days into their new majority in the 112th Congress, conservatives have introduced measures to end the most egregious offenses: abolishing the unelected system of czars, repealing Net Neutrality regulations, and preventing the EPA from imposing job-killing carbon dioxide standards on power plants. The imperative steps will prevent an imperial overreach and minimize the damage Obama can do the American people. However, if they hope to succeed, Republicans need to move beyond these necessary defense mechanisms and present a coherent and comprehensive program of limited, constitutional government.

Nothing so perfectly encapsulates this president’s push to federalize every aspect of American life better than his team of czars. These multiple dozens of ideologues — unelected and unconfirmed, because they are unelectable and unconfirmable — exercise power in every aspect of our lives from the environment, to domestic violence, to the automobile company we collectively purchased for the UAW. On Wednesday, Rep. Steve Scalise, R-LA, introduced a bill co-sponsored by 28 others to abolish all federal czars. His proposal, which is supported by 28 other Congressmen, would eliminate anyone who….

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New Year, Old Fight

Susan Stamper Brown,

Barry Goldwater, Ronald Reagan, and William F. Buckley Jr.

At the stroke of midnight December 31, old and new acquaintances will once again join hands to sing the words to Robert Burns’ old folk song “Auld Lang Syne.” “Should auld (old) acquaintance be forgot and never brought to mind? Should auld acquaintance be forgot, and auld lang syne (for the sake of old times).”

How many times have we sung that most catchy Scottish tune having no clue what the lyrics actually mean? Burns’ seemingly harmless melody asks the sobering question – is it wrong to simply forget the past and disassociate ourselves from old ideas and acquaintances who, for better or worse, make up our past.

Sigmund Freud’s research suggests that humans repress memories to lessen anxiety and protect self-image – but sooner or later reality surfaces and past experiences must be addressed for what they are. And at that point we must choose – as the saying goes – to learn from our past mistakes or we will be doomed to repeat them.

The same is true of cherished American history that some would like to erase and replace with their own contrived version of reality that finds Conservatism irrelevant and outdated. The recent political battle during the midterm elections was in many ways a fight to reassert the significance and relevance of American Conservatism. But this fight is not new nor is it over….

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