Bill Moyers criticized President Barack Obama on Friday for his decision to seemingly leave the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in the hands of the anti-net neutrality forces he opposed as a candidate.
“They believed he would keep his word, would see to it that when private interests set upon the Internet like sharks to blood in the water, its fate would be in the hands of honest brokers who would listen politely to the pleas of the greedy, and then show them the door,” Moyers said of the supporters Obama won when he promised to keep the internet free from corporate influence. “Unfortunately, it turned out to be the infamous revolving door.”
Moyers explained that Obama’s choice to head the commission, Tom Wheeler, not only “bundled” more than $500,000 for Obama’s successful re-election campaign, but also a “top gun” for the cable and telecommunications industries. What’s more, Wheeler has staffed the FCC’s legal team with a coterie of former telecom attorneys, some of whom had actually lobbied against net neutrality before joining its ranks.
“However we might try to imagine that [Wheeler] could quickly abandon old habits of service to his employers, that’s simply not how Washington works,” Moyers said. “Business and government are so intertwined there that public officials and corporate retainers are interchangeable parts of what Chief Justice John Roberts might call the ‘gratitude machine.’ Round and round they go, and where they stop. Actually they never stop.”
The commission has been heavily criticized for a series of new proposals that would reportedly include an option allowing Internet service providers to charge a “fast lane” rate to certain companies.
The public uproar led video streaming giant Netflix to meet with FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai’s office while the matter is still up for public comment.
“This public comment period is crucial,” Moyers told his viewers. “You have a chance to tell both Obama and Wheeler what you think, so that the will of the people and not the power of money and predatory interests, is heard.”
Watch Moyers’ commentary, as posted online on Friday, below.
Pulitzer Prize-winner reveals why the White House thinks Trump’s Ukraine scandal ‘can be spun as positive’
Despite the growing movement for impeachment, advisors to President Donald Trump believe the bombshell reports about soliciting foreign election interference from Ukraine can be "spun as a positive" for the president's 2020 re-election campaign.
Ashley Parker, a White House reporter for The Washington Post, was interviewed about the thinking of Trump's advisors by MSNBC's Steve Kornacki on Monday.
"This is a White House, a Trump White House, that is used to being under siege. There was of course the two-and-a-half-year saga with the Mueller investigation culminating in the Mueller report, Mueller’s testimony recently. There have been a million other controversies, flare-ups, moments when the White House was forced to defend a comment from the president, allegation against the president, these sorts of things," Kornacki noted.
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Maddow breaks down how Trump’s Ukraine scandal all links back to Manafort — and the mob
MSNBC anchor Rachel Maddow on Monday reported how President Donald Trump is returning to the Paul Manafort playbook as he seeks re-election in 2020.
Manafort, who is currently serving a federal prison sentence, was Trump's campaign chairman during the 2016 election.
Maddow reminded how weird of a selection the choice had been seen at the time.
"Whether or not Paul Manafort, himself, is going to spend the rest of his days in prison, personally, what happened around the time that Paul Manafort was the campaign chairman for the Donald Trump for president campaign in 2016 is that however weird it seemed that the Trump campaign was hiring a guy like Manafort to come basically from Ukraine, come back to the U.S. and work on a political campaign here, I mean, what he brought with him were contacts and business partners and secret funders and organized crime-linked Kremlin connections in Ukraine," Maddow reported.