We don't have health care. We don't have jobs. Our civil liberties are being quashed. Income and wealth disparities in this country are immense and growing more pronounced as each hour passes, making the 1% richer and the rest of us ... dirt.
So what are our elected representatives in Congress doing to help us in our time of need?
They're actively working to hand control of the Internet over to law enforcement and the entertainment industry, to make sure the latter gets even fatter, and free speech on the Internet becomes a obsolete concept.
While Congress can't seem to act in a bipartisan manner to do anything to help the 99% that really need it, the two parties are managing to join hands to help crush freedom on the Net -- yes, they are equally culpable in this Orwellian thrust.
You probably already know about the terrible PROTECT IP Act in the U.S. Senate.
But now the House of Representatives has upped the ante, with their own "how stupid an acronym can we come up with" anti-Internet abomination as a companion piece to PROTECT IP. The House's gift to the 1% is called E-PARASITE (Enforcing and Protecting American Rights Against Sites Intent on Theft and Exploitation Act).
I won't even take space here to explain in detail how incredibly, utterly awful this legislation is, other than to note that it contemplates a vast U.S.-controlled Web site takedown regime, guts the DMCA, enforces censorship on search engines like Google, and even criminalizes attempts to work around censorship -- and much more.
An excellent write-up on this horror can be found here.
Whether all provisions of such legislation can actually become law and survive court scrutiny is almost beyond the point. The fact that Congress in a bipartisan manner is willing to even consider such abominations is a travesty that we must not, can not ignore or forget.
Congress is not only aiming their nuclear anti-freedom bombs at its own citizens, but at the entire world through the U.S.' control of large parts of the global domain name system (DNS).
Efforts in E-PARASITE to enact censorship, takedowns without due process, and to ban circumvention techniques seem more akin to the kinds of foreign government actions that the U.S. government continues to officially condemn!
Through PROTECT IP and E-PARASITE, Congress is showing us more about where their loyalties reside than all of their duplicitous speeches and position papers put together.
I'll be back on Coast to Coast AM radio late tonight with host George Noory to discuss Congress' attempts to control and censor the Net, plus other issues (around midnight to 2am PDT).
Congress chose the names for these terrible legislative efforts. But to find the real parasites these days, all Congress needs to do is look into the mirror.