America’s long national nightmare of caring about the FCC is finally over

All the ridiculous Internet politics news you missed this week.


Aaron Sankin


Published Feb 27, 2015   Updated May 29, 2021, 10:39 am CDT

We are living in the future, that much is undeniable. We’re not just saying that because BMW recently unveiled actual, functional x-ray goggles to help you park your car—a Jetsons-level combination of mind-bogglingly advanced technology and everyday mundanity. We’re also not just saying that because people in Japan are holding deeply emotional funerals for their robot dogs. We’re saying that because this poster was recently spotted in Washington, D.C.

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Yes, that’s a propaganda poster slamming FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler for being “Obama’s bitch” over his decision to reclassify broadband Internet service in a way that would moves into the government’s regulatory purview the rates different Internet companies are allowed to charge each other for transferring online data. We know it’s the future because that type of nerdy, hyper-technical obscura is something that people care deeply enough about to make highly stylized propaganda posters, which is something that could only happen in some kind of terrible, sci-fi dystopia set hundreds of years from now.

Net neutrality wins in historic 3-2 FCC vote. In a party-line vote, because of course it was, the FCC decided to reclassify broadband service under Title II of the Communications Act of 1934, leaving the net so neutral that someone could jump up on down on one side of it and not spill the glass of red wine sitting on the other.

After this vote, the net is so neutral that no one was ever again able to decide what to watch on Netflix because all the shows would stream so fast that we became paralyzed by the limitless options and collectively fell asleep while scrolling through the category “Because you watched Cool Runnings” every night for the rest of our lives.

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After this vote, the net is so neutral that Comcast’s stock actually went up a little because, despite the best efforts of you foolish mortals, Comcast cares little for your Earthly dealings.

After this vote, the net is so neutral that your taxes are going to increase because this is just a government takeover of the Internet and government takeovers of things always result in higher taxes. Actually, that one probably isn’t true.

Here’s where top 2016 presidential hopefuls stand on net neutrality.

Hillary Clinton: In favor of net neutrality since before it was cool to be in favor of net neutrality. Now that it’s a popular issue, she’s still into it, but prefers its early stuff, you know, before it got all mainstream.

Other Democratic candidates: There are no other Democratic candidates.

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Ted Cruz: Once called net neutrality “Obamacare for the Internet. To be fair, he once yelled at a waiter that avocados were “Obamacare for my hamburger” when she got his order wrong. Ted Cruz hates avocados.

Rand Paul: Opposes everything that’s not freedom or weed. He’s pretty sure net neutrality is neither freedom nor weed.

Jeb Bush: Given the track record of Bush’s campaign so far—accidentally releasing the personal information of thousands of his former constituents and employing a cartoonishly obnoxious brogrammer as his campaign’s Chief Technical Officer—maybe we shouldn’t give this particular Bush too much credibility on tech issues.

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Time Warner Cable would like to remind you that their customer service is just one example of the many forms of torture that exist in the world. The CIA tortured a bunch of people too by making terrorism suspects listen to Matchbox Twenty. The more important question is, why is Time Warner Cable posting clickbait articles about the CIA’s torture program? That’s our job.

Al Jazeera error puts North Korean spy’s life on the line. Over the past week, Al Jazeera has posted a stunning series of blockbuster stories based on a trove of leaked spy cables representing the largest single insight into the global intelligence community since Edward Snowden decided to quit his job at the NSA and help his favorite documentary filmmaker win an Academy Award. Revelations from the Al Jazeera series include stories about how the Chinese government have broken into a South African nuclear facility to steal secrets as well as allegations that Israeli Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu intentionally misled world leaders about the severity of Iran’s nuclear bomb threat.

Great stuff, right? Totally. But also there was one story that was a bit more problematic.

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In a story about how British Secret Intelligence Service agents worked to recruit a North Korean spy, the reporters included the original document. While the name of the North Korean citizen was redacted, a bunch of other information was left in that could easily let North Korean authorities identify the person. Luckily, the North Korean government has a reputation for letting stuff like that slide.

(Note: We were going to make some joke-y references to scenes from The Interview, but we decided it we best for everyone involved if we all just pretended like we didn’t actually see that movie.)

Praising ISIS online could land you in jail. A DOJ official says the government may prosecute people who spread ISIS propaganda on social media. It gives new meaning to “RTs =/= endorsements”

#Brands: Always awkwardly trying to jump on the latest trends, amirite?

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Why old white Republicans keep mansplaining women’s vaginas. From the Daily Dot’s Matt Rozsa:

“The reason so many old white men are capable of making asinine or even bafflingly inaccurate remarks about women’s bodies isn’t simply that they aren’t women but that they don’t feel any strong imperative to empathize with a woman’s point of view. As such, when they approach issues like abortion and contraception coverage with a pre-existing conservative perspective, they view the inevitable discussions of female biology as obstacles to be overcome en route to making their argument. Playing fast and loose with the basic facts on such a subject—as Barberi tried to do with his attempt at a ‘gotcha’ question at the expense of a qualified doctor, his subsequent denials to the contrary notwithstanding—is easy when you’ve already disregard the potential relevance of the women’s experiences in these matters.”

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Harry Reid has cool new sunglasses due to his recent eye injury. If you imagine he was wearing those cool new sunglasses when he said that he had heard—from a very reliable source, mind you—that Mitt Romney was so rich he didn’t pay any income taxes for a full decade, but then refused give any more evidence on the subject, the entire incident starts to make perfect sense. HE WAS JUST BEING A TOTALLY BADASS-COOL-GUY.

Scott Walker needs our help, you guys. According to a Quinnipiac poll, 25 percent of Iowa Republicans said they favored Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker for the GOP nomination in 2016, making him the current leader in the Republican field. This is huge news for Walker because all of those people could have said the words “Donald Trump” and yet for some reason chose not to—even though Trump is currently pretending to run for president as hard as he possibly can.

Even since Bill Clinton capitalized on Baby Boomer nostalgia to turn Fleetwood Mac’s “Don’t Stop (Thinking About Tomorrow)” into an iconic campaign anthem, political candidates are always looking for the one song that perfectly encapsulates their message of hope, change, and being iffy on the whether the President of the United States “loves America” or not. We figured the best source for Scott Walker campaign songs would be the half century-long career of British Invasion teeniebopper-turned-avant garde icon Scott Walker. While Walker’s 1969 hit “30th Century Man” is an obvious choice, we’re quite partial to Walker’s 9-minute, painfully dissonant 2014 collaboration with noise rock band Sunn O)))) entitled “Fetish

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(Warning: The song is NSFW. Not because of explicit content, but because it will terrify all of your coworkers into shredding the social safety net.)

If you have a favorite Scott Walker song that would be perfect for Scott Walker to play every time he walks onto a stage for the next 20 months, tweet it to @DotPolitics.

‘Inspector Gadget’ and ‘DuckTales’ get the reboots they deserve. Netflix is bringing back Inspector Gadget and Disney is bringing back DuckTales. Gadget will just be a dude in a trenchcoat wearing Google Glass and an Apple Watch. Uncle Scrooge will have converted his whole fortune into Bitcoin and swimming through it will mainly involve upvoting misogynistic comments on Reddit.

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Never meet your heroes, 90s kids. Never meet your heroes.


Aaron Sankin & The Daily Dot Politics Team

Illustration by J. Longo

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*First Published: Feb 27, 2015, 8:54 am CST