The link near the bottom of this post is to an article on pending legislation to shut down the internet in the event of some vague, unspecified cyber attack.
Here are a few thoughts:
The recent Town Hall Protests gained considerable support and momentum from the internet. For example, I know a lot of my fellow citizens were able to "follow the action," such as it was, on YouTube. Whatever one thought of the goings on that occurred all across the country at the so called town hall meetings, they were interesting, and even, at times, riveting, thanks to all the footage submitted by individuals to various and sundry internet sites. Much of what we saw on the net could not be seen, and was not even reported, by the MSM. I somehow doubt it is a coincidence that the pending legislation to shut down the internet under prospectively parlous circumstances has arisen- like the creature from the black lagoon it would seem- at approximately the same time that a major government initiative has suffered a serious, internet chronicled, setback.
In truth, for the practitioner of endeavors that involve challenges to entrenched power, the internet has become a tremendously effective tool of "asymmetric warfare." In others words, the playing field on which the powerful have tended to systematically squash the less powerful has been considerably leveled by the information superhighway. Additionally, and perhaps equally importantly, the internet has also evolved into an entity that now creates and propagates its own memes rather than merely acting as an instrument to spread memes created elsewhere. I am inclined to believe that such developments have created genuine fear amongst the powers that be, hence the Rockefeller sponsored legislation, which, under the usual flimsy, if not outright bogus cover of national security, amounts to yet another assault by "government" on The First Amendment of The Constitution.
I, for one, am well past the point of debating the question of whether or not The Federal Government is the greatest threat to liberty about the land. Time and time again, with nothing but lurid images of planes crashing into the Twin Towers, and the word of the government to go on, "We The People" have been literally terrified into allowing basic constitutional rights to be trampled on. Many of us thought that George Bush junior and his dark, nominal subordinate, Dick Cheney, represented the nadir of contemptuous and sinister actions designed to undermine The Constitution, and bend, if not shatter, the rule of law. Now, lamentably, with the profile of the Obama Administration firmly established as resembling all too closely that of the Bush/Cheney Administration-witness this new, Democratic party sponsored and presumably Obama blessed, internet legislation- such an assessment must be seen as premature.
In the aftermath of 9/11 and all that followed, critics of the official version of events were wont to ask, "Cui Bono" (who benefits), knowing full well that answering that question did little to buttress officialdom's account of what actually happened on that fateful morning. Asking the same question again, in the wake of this initiative to regulate and/or shut down the internet on pretexts that appear vulnerable to corrupt motives, yields little assurance that "We The People" are intended to benefit.
Here is a link to the bill itself.