back to article California lawmakers: We swear on our avocados we'll pass 'strongest net neutrality protections' in America

California lawmakers promised to introduce the "strongest net neutrality protections in the nation" on Thursday morning, just weeks after a key piece of the legislation was gutted at the committee stage, sparking online fury. Four lawmakers gave a joint press conference in Sacramento announcing a new plan, which sounds exactly …

  1. Bearded_Devil

    Corporate vs Partisan Politics

    "In other words, after a brief bit of ugliness as corporate influence was laid bare, it was back to partisan politics as usual."

    But, that's the greatest of ruses, isn't it? To pretend like corporate influence and partisan politics are two, distinct things? In the US, no matter which of the two terrible parties you pretend to be with, it all comes back to corporate influence.

  2. ecarlseen

    "Oops, we got caught."

    Watching legislators legislate is like watching meth-addled chimpanzees trying to fly a spacecraft.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: "Oops, we got caught."

      Watching legislators legislate is like watching meth-addled chimpanzees trying to fly a spacecraft.

      That's unfair. There is at least a remote statistical chance the drug-addled chimps might press the right buttons by chance and bring the ship home. Whereas politicians are almost always working carefully to engineer the wrong outcome. Admittedly there's still a remote^1000000 chance that the gormless and venal actions of politicians may have unintendedly positive outcomes, but that's for parallel universes.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: "Oops, we got caught."

      Watching legislators legislate is like watching meth-addled chimpanzees trying to fly a spacecraft.

      The slight problem with this comparison is that a spacecraft is capable of getting SOMEWHERE, even if it is by pure luck !!!

      Our Legislators/Politicians are NOT piloting anything, they make great efforts to be seen pushing buttons and pulling levers ...... with lots of flashing lights for the cameras BUT they know there will be no change and it is all for the voters to see 'what they wish for' before voting for the same people over and over.

      As for Corporate influence, it is too late ...... you can only hope that sometimes the fiddles/fudges are going to work in your favour by accident.

      We have the Govt that we deserve BECAUSE we did not keep an eye on the people we elected and let them be corrupted by the Corporations and their 'bags of money'.

      It is up to the people to claim back control of the Govts that so called represent us ...... at least while the ability to vote is still there.

      1. SMITCH79

        Re: "Oops, we got caught."

        "while the ability to vote is still there"

        Yep. Some American pundits, especially Bill Maher, seems to think this is Trumps endgame. After this there is only one answer - revolution baby!!

        1. Teiwaz Silver badge

          Re: "Oops, we got caught."

          After this there is only one answer

          Cleansing as they are, such answers are not the answers you want. The US one ended with Civil War eventually, the French and Russian ones didn't have good outcomes short and long-term respectively and the English civil war ended with a period under a tyrant.

          1. JohnFen Silver badge

            Re: "Oops, we got caught."

            Yep, this is how it goes 99% of the time. Same with revolutions.

          2. SMITCH79

            Re: "Oops, we got caught."

            "Cleansing as they are, such answers are not the answers you want. "

            Although my original post may seem blaze it's not the answer anyone would want.Simply put thoughit is sometimes necessary. The unfortunate nature of human beings in positions of power is that they are quite often easily corrupted. When the system becomes corrupted by those who administrate it to the detriment of the masses then it breeds discontent. This ultimately leads to the backlash of revolution. This as you point out ends in some cases civil war or a despot seizing control but until we learn how to administrate governments for the benefit of the people first and market capitalism second (at least) then it will be a cycle we will be doomed to repeat. (and China will be waiting)

            1. Charles 9 Silver badge

              Re: "Oops, we got caught."

              Then we're likely doomed to repeat it until we evolve a better human since a lot of what causes this is part of the human condition. We tend to cooperate only out of necessity; we compete otherwise.

  3. Jay Lenovo Silver badge
    Flame

    Legislation Forged in Fire

    And the makers of law, quenched their ideals in a bath of political partisanship and special money.

    Not surprisingly, the final work came out warped and full of cracks.

  4. Gene Cash Silver badge

    "The seven other committee members that voted to approve the hostile amendments seem to have escaped the same degree of public attention."

    You have to kind of focus on busting one guy's nuts. As chairman, he gets the "honor" since he's supposed to rein in this sort of stupidity.

    Not much different than beating up Ajit Pai, even though there's other folks on the FCC board.

  5. DCFusor Silver badge

    Yep

    Big money always wins over the fakery that is partisanship. The quid pro quo is big money helps pay for the divide and conquer of those who are still fooled by an utterly fake dichotomy of left vs right (or whatever dumb labels you use today).

    My entire rather long life has been spent watching this show, and watching the big money get all the regulatory moats they desire to keep any competition at bay, using D&Rs as a tool. You can pick yer poison - but it's still poison.

    Of course, it's the un-elected bureaucrats who, along with the lawyers, always win...they get to "enforce" said laws, which is a huge jobs program for them and promotions for their management. In other words, everyone wins but us. Except that with that other trend, the infinitely expanding government, the bureaucrats increasingly ARE us (thank $diety I'm not one of them).

    To bad no one's figured out how to get these guys to produce value. You can't mandate food, energy, clothing, housing, riches. Someone has to make that stuff, and it isn't the players here.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Another View

    The Wall Street Journal has an editorial on the bill that was passed. Needless to say, their take is quite different from that published on El Reg and Ars Technica. Its worth a read.

    1. Dan 55 Silver badge
      Trollface

      Re: Another View

      How a Rich Californian Hijacked the Legislature

      Threatened with a ballot initiative, lawmakers pass a ruinous data-privacy law.

      Damn the rich global elite wanting privacy. Why can't they be like the rest of us, and the big telecos and internet companies who are on our side, who don't want any of that fancy privacy stuff?

      1. Justicesays

        Re: Another View

        "Threatened with a ballot initiative democracy, lawmakers pass a ruinous data-privacy law. act to minimize the damage to their corporate masters while covering their own asses"

        FTFY, but pretty sure this is an entirely different story around net neutrality , not privacy.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Another View

        Yep, that is the article. When you see two such disparate views, you have to wonder: where is the common ground?

    2. JohnFen Silver badge

      Re: Another View

      I'd read it if I could, but the paywall screams that I'm not welcome.

      1. Dan 55 Silver badge

        Re: Another View

        Go through Google News.

      2. Alphebatical
        Meh

        Re: Another View

        > I'd read it if I could, but the paywall screams that I'm not welcome.

        Here's your golden ticket:

        http://archive.is/Xl146

        His assessment of the bill is questionable, but my (limited) understanding of the Californian process is that he's not entirely wrong when it comes to rich people being able to misuse the initiative to threaten the legislature.

  7. Crazy Operations Guy Silver badge

    When will they just make the internet a public utility already?

    I've been wondering what it would take for states to finally just sell internet services as a public utility already. The local government here seem to not be terrible at providing fresh water, sewer, electrical service, trash services, and their municipal internet services for the local libraries / schools / hospitals / public buildings. At the very least, I don't think they could possibly any worse than Comcast and CenturyLink (The only two providers we have here).

    1. Charles 9 Silver badge

      Re: When will they just make the internet a public utility already?

      You should've seen fire companies before the governments took them over. They basically became extortion rackets...

      1. Kane Silver badge

        Re: When will they just make the internet a public utility already?

        "You should've seen fire companies before the governments took them over. They basically became extortion rackets..."

        Yeah, the penny really dropped after "Charcoal Wednesday".

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        Pterry Icon, El Reg, c'mon!

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: When will they just make the internet a public utility already?

      It has been done in some cities, and a fine brouhaha ensues each time it is attempted. There is a small rural town here in Tennessee with gigabit service - wonder when I'll see that available from ATT?

  8. Mark 85 Silver badge

    reminder that lobbyists control much of what happens in Sacramento.

    Only in Sacramento and not the other states or the federal government? I'm shocked at this bit of news. Just shocked.

    reminder that lobbyists control much of what happens in Sacramento.

    Only in Sacramento and not the other states or the federal government? I'm shocked at this bit of news. Just shocked.

    Despite enjoying their moment of victory, however, the lawmakers warned that the fight was far from over. "We are not out of the woods," Wiener noted. "This is going to be a fight. The telecoms and cable companies fight hard and they are effective. We have our work cut out for us."

    This reminds us all who the legislators actually work for. Obviously not the voters.

    1. Justicesays

      "This is going to be a fight. The telecoms and cable companies fight hard and they are effective. We have our work cut out for us."

      Well, lacking any law to the contrary , the telcos and cable companies can block access to pro-net neutrality websites, redirect customers to websites promoting negative stories about network neutrality supporting politicians, replace all your adverts with adverts for how much better things would be without net-neutrality.

      Also bin any emails to your representatives that support net-neutrality of course.

    2. 2Nick3 Bronze badge

      In California, the bastion of all that is progressive and good? A Dem controlled state had a Dem controlled committee cave to the telco/cable companies. Could it be that this isn't really a partisan issue, but a problem with most all of our elected officials?

      On the positive side is the public outcry was at a level that made them flinch. They do still hear the voters if we yell loudly enough. Which should inspire the public to be that much more vocal on issues.

      1. Remy Redert

        It was more an issue of California having a way to force a thing into law if you can get enough support for it, by forcing it into the ballot at the next vote and if it gets a majority, the law is passed, bypassing the usual legislative process.

        They were working on exactly that process and at the last moment the legislative branch gave in and passed something similar enough, to stop it going on the ballot.

  9. Youngone Silver badge

    What a stupid way to run a state.

    1. Charles 9 Silver badge

      Got any alternatives not prone to similar corruption? Even benevolent dictators can be turned.

  10. onefang Silver badge

    'Asked what will actually be the difference following the revisions, Weiner said only that if would have "a different physical look to it."'

    So they'll change the font to Comic Sans then, maybe add some cartoons.

    1. yoganmahew

      Wingdings!

  11. jmch Silver badge
    Happy

    Hold on a minute....

    So, quick summary, a politician was opposed to a new law. Then his constituents got in touch with him to express their disappointment in his actions and their support for the law. The politician actually listened to his constituents and is now supporting the law.

    Isn't that how democracy is supposed to work?

    1. NBCanuck

      Re: Hold on a minute....

      @ jmch

      "Isn't that how democracy is supposed to work?"

      Yes, but wouldn't it be nice if the politician did it because it was his job and for the benefit of the people instead of motivated by his career ambitions?

      1. DougS Silver badge

        Re: Hold on a minute....

        A politician listening to his constituents even if it is motivated by career ambitions is still a nice change. One of the things the overly partisan and gerrymandered congress we have in the US has caused is politicians that only listen to their own party's constituents. They have safe seats so they don't have to give damn what most their constituents want or what benefits them, only what their most hardline supporters want, to protect them from a primary challenge from the far left or far right.

  12. StuntMisanthrope Bronze badge

    Ding, ding. Time at the bar...

    You still here? Gone are the days of lock-ins and back-handers. You're unqualified, incompetent and trying to legislate for issues you don't understand, and I hope the gold, assuages, your conscience and hypocracycrisy. We all can tell, as can your children. #thinkofthekids #sleeptight

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