While speaking at the non-partisan Free State Foundation's policy forum, Republican F.C.C. Commissioner Mike O'Reilly explained some of the consequences of President Obama's "modest proposal" regarding Net Neutrality.
The internet tax would stem from moving internet services into Title II of the Federal Communications Act, which is not a smooth fit but gives the ostensibly independent regulatory agency power to implement Net Neutrality. By applying common carrier rules, Internet Service Providers would have to pay into the Universal Services Fund (USF), which would add around $7/month to a bill. The Heartland Institute shared a study from New York University which estimates that the imposition of Net Neutrality could cost consumers $55/month. President Obama's comment intimated that cellular carriers should also come into Common Carrier status, so add the USF tax to an already heavy mobile telephony charges. O'Reilly believes that the F.C.C. would go on a spending spree with USF funds to expand the federal "E-Rate" program , which currently wires
Idealistic internet activists were apoplectic about Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) observation that Net Neutrality was akin to Obamacare, insisting that the Tea Party maverick knew nothing about the subject. Senator Al Franken (D-MN) even took to CNN to amplify this Net Neutrality no-nothing meme. One wonders if these same digerati will insist that F.C.C. Commissioner O'Reilly is ignorant about Net Neutrality too, or if he holds a valid view which is opposed to their own insistence on inserting the government into the middle to regulate Common Carriers.