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State Of Tennessee Sues The FCC For Daring To Step In And Block Its Law Blocking Muni-Broadband

from the fighting-against-consumer-interests dept

Apparently the state of Tennessee really doesn’t want its citizens to have good, competitive broadband. While the FCC’s net neutrality rules keep getting all the attention, as we’ve discussed, in the long run it may be a bigger deal that the FCC (the same day it released the net neutrality rules) also started dismantling protectionist state laws that block municipal broadband. Those laws — almost all of which were written directly by big broadband players afraid of competition — make it close to impossible for local municipalities to decide that they’re going to set up true competitors. The FCC preempted two such state laws, including in Tennessee, where one super successful municipal broadband project, in Chattanooga, wanted to expand to other nearby places. However, Tennessee’s law blocked this.

We already noted that Rep. Marsha Blackburn was trying to pass legislation that would block the FCC’s efforts here, but the state of Tennessee has taken it up a notch and sued the FCC over the rules. You will notice that the arguments used by the state of Tennessee are almost verbatim identical to the lawsuits we wrote about yesterday, challenging the FCC’s net neutrality rules:

The State of Tennessee, as a sovereign and a party to the proceeding below, is aggrieved and seeks relief on the grounds that the Order: (1) is contrary to the United States Constitution; (2) is in excess of the Commission’s authority; (3) is arbitrary, capricious, and an abuse of discretion within the meaning of the Administrative Procedure Act; and (4) is otherwise contrary to law.

Yes, this is almost word-for-word identical to the claims made about the net neutrality rules and is basically the standard language to challenge any FCC ruling.

But here’s the larger question: if you’re a resident of Tennessee who likes having fast, affordable, competitive broadband, are you happy about your tax dollars being used to sue the FCC in an effort to uphold a law written by the big broadband players, focused on blocking such competition? It seems like the current Tennessee Attorney General, Herbert Slatery, has painted a giant target on his back for a challenger who actually wants to support the public in Tennessee.

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Comments on “State Of Tennessee Sues The FCC For Daring To Step In And Block Its Law Blocking Muni-Broadband”

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DannyB (profile) says:

Mike, why don’t you want the legislators of Tennessee to be able to drive expensive cars and send their children to expensive private schools? What kind of agenda do you have against them? Please consider that if they were to allow the citizens of Tennessee to have excellent municipal broadband for free or reasonable prices, then the flow of money to the legislators would stop. Doesn’t that seem unfair to you? Please consider the poor legislators’ plight.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

I enjoy a good jab at politicians, they deserve it more than most. One thing I’d like to point out, though, is the misconception that the money put into politics is simply paid to the legislators. Speaking very generally here, the money goes to two places, with a third sneaky route.

First, money is contributed to an election campaign or to a political party. Legislators know that money wins elections, so they are always desperate to have the biggest campaign fund. This usually happens through a PAC. The Citizens United decision was a disastrous event that allowed unlimited spending by special interests on elections through PACs.

The second route the money takes is through lobbyists. These firms spend gobs of money to buddy up to legislators and then flood them with a specific narrative. They carefully calculate methods to ensure their targets hold the desired beliefs. In addition to influencing the way the legislators think, the lobbyists are also known to write laws themselves to be handed to friendly legislators.

There is a third, less direct method known as the “revolving door”. In this arrangement, work in the government on behalf of a company is rewarded with a high paying job when public service ends.

The solution to all of this, of course, is to remove money from politics. The sad truth is that all of these things are legal and they are very entrenched by powerful interests. Money talks, as the saying goes, and the people walk.

Geno0wl (profile) says:

Single Issue voters

Tenn. voters, just like almost every single state voters, tend to be single issue voters. That is just how our political system works, especially in our more extreme gerrymandered ways.
And people DO NOT focus on the “day to day” things that ACTUALLY MATTER. They focus on the big scary things that Politicians sell them. Like “government taking away our guns” or “government trying to take your right to vote away”.
At the end of the day you can shout about “X party/person is screwing your whole state” but since that is the party of “X Issue” they support that is more important to them…nothing will change.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: State rights

How about this for a solgan:

The fight for the right to take away rights!

The above can go in many different directions. Is it the fight to take away the rights of ISPs or a fight to take away the rights of consumers or is it a fight to take away the rights of states to take away rights of those who want to take away rights…

Who is right?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: State rights

This is actually a good thing.

The States have a literal Power Granted that allows them to trump the Federal Government in EVERYTHING except constitutional issues.

It just does not happen a lot because most do not know that the flow of money turns a lot of your state reps into the bigges wusses you have ever seen.

I live in Texas, even Rick Perry squeeked like the little bitch he is against ACA aka Obamacare. But he dared not do anything against it for realzies because a lot of money is involved with federal funding.

If you just take a serious look at how the money does flow, you will quickly see why all of the power resides in Washington, and the moment a state tries to flex their own muscle, shit like FEMA denying funds to global warming deniers.

How does that sit with you? Federal government saying “believe what I tell you or else”, sound familiar? Yes, Science is nothing more than another religion now. Sure just like every other church there are the true believers, fundamentalists, and then there are fucking whacko’s… and let me tell you the church of whacko science has been in full tilt for a while.

Saddly, science advances jut like everything else… one funeral at a time. Humans just will never resist trying to control one another because we are all dirt, filthy stinking prejudicial scum.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: State rights

Naw… the difference in our understanding is that Science should be the pursuit of information, knowledge, and factual findings, AND separate from the “Science and Religion” are at odds fundamentalists.

Global Warming? Yes, it looks to be the case. The True Cause? Yea that is part could be pure pseudo BS… There is just not enough information coupled with the fact that I cannot trust them.

Trust Science I do, but not THEIR science. History has proven that at the end of the day corruption just will not stay away… and now that politics are involved… it has damaged the “brand” more than anything else.

IS global warming caused by Man? Maybe, but the same problem exists here… just like back in the day when Fat was vilified. The science just is not conclusive, and if you believe it is… then you are a fundie nut bag, or you lack serious understanding of technology and the meteorological sciences. We fundamentally LACK the technology necessary, if it foolish to believe we know more than we do, that is pure hubris and leads many to failure.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 State rights

IS global warming caused by Man? Maybe, …

It’s us. You don’t have to trust me, you can look it up.
The isotope of Carbon that is rising at rates never seen before only comes from fossil fuels. Volcanoes belch a different isotope of Carbon as does our exhaling.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:3 State rights

Correlation does not equal Causation. Further more there is evidence that also supports the opposite effect as well.

Not sure if you understand that science.

Earth is too damn big to know with our technological capabilities, including the fact that just using one single chemical as a foundational proof is stupid. You forget one a famous law! For every reaction… there is…

We live in an insanely complex ecosystem. A single chemical is not enough to set the balance off by a large degree, we have a lot of processes that help counter balance shit.

We are literally screaming over small changes in temp and threatening to destroy economies. If this is all the proof you needed, no wonder idiots like you burned witches at the stakes (even though that is not real either)! It does not take much to fool you. There is NOTHING conclusive about any of it, and science has always been about having nay sayers around… and even when some of them are fucking stupid… they are still necessary because it may still cause improvements to a wholesomely correct but only slightly flawed finding.

The idea that putting them under economic strain is no different than saying minorities should be not give any assistance.

Its fucking stupid to do this to people just because you disagree with them! THAT is what makes you NO DIFFERENT than the people that enslaved other, or treat them like crap just because you “believe” differently.

Baron von Robber says:

Re: Re: Re:4 State rights

You must be a singularity of stupid. You know we are the only nation that is arguing about this. The rest of world looks at us and goes, “What the fuck is wrong with you?”

You have no clue what science is. You use the word “theory” as if it meant “guess”. I don’t berate you because you are different, I berate you because you argue from ignorance.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: State rights

“The States have a literal Power Granted that allows them to trump the Federal Government in EVERYTHING except constitutional issues.”

On paper, yes. In reality, no. It would take nothing less than an all-out armed revolution for any state to regain its Constitutional rights.

Texas is the one and only state that, having joined the union by treaty, has the right to secede. But once again, only on paper. The last time (and only time) Texas dared to exercised that right, Washington answered with bullets and bombs — which would be not too different from the kind of answer returned today.

In short, Washington rules by force, not by Constitutional authority. And as for the issue of “consent” — it all comes down to being bribed with our own money. Do you want some of it back? Yes? Now you’ve consented!

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: State rights

Yes, sound good, but you will be the one tied to stake.

Once you are okay with it happening to the people you hate, then it starts to happen to the people you love.

It’s funny how stupid you are, despite having a wealth of history.

First they came for them… and you did not complain, even thought it was great because YOU are not one of them… fully supporting the laws and corruption because it served your purposes…. but then it came for you… and low… were you sad because your own hypocrisy has crushed you in your ignorance!


Baron von Robber says:

Re: Re: Re:2 State rights

That’s the most eloquent way of saying, “That’s what you are, so what am I?” I’ve seen.

Really? Fucking up the whole planet is just a ‘boo boo’ for ourselves? “Oops, sorry, I didn’t mean to starve millions in the future because I refused to see what science was saying and the bread baskets all dried up. And lets not go into the economies of the world having to deal with lost cities underwater.”

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:3 State rights

The Earth changes and we adapt. It was changing before industry, and it will change long after we are gone.

Civilization has endured more doomsday theories than the days you have been alive. They never stop and the fucking doomsday clock has been nothing other than threatening the “End is Nigh” all the damn time. You guys just need to chill the fuck out. There is never going to be an end to the problem that humanity faces, but using them to justify the abuse of a class of people that just “believe differently”?

We are the start and end of all of our problems… always have been, always will be. The Politics.. they love global warming because its a problem they can drum up into a big issue to get suckers like YOU to give up their liberty for it.

I would much rather deal with a rising tide than a government that has decided how I need to live my life and what my local municipality can or cannot do with their telecoms! Those guys voted in their elected officials… leave them be, the can vote them out when they are done… YOU don’t need to go stomping around on them and telling them how it should be done!

Other than myself… it looks like almost NO ONE believes in liberty anymore. You all want government to tell everybody and everything WHAT TO DO!

Remember history people… when this gets out of hand… people do die for it. If not in by insurrection, they they die at the hands of their very own oppressive governments.

Baron von Robber says:

Re: Re: Re:4 State rights

“The Earth changes and we adapt.”
I was just telling my pet dinosaur that the other day.

No, you didn’t read that part that CO2 levels are rising at levels never seen before. And that molecule traps energy.

If you think you can adapt fast enough, fine, but plants like fruits and vegetables won’t. Like the kind we have called “farms”. Have you heard of those?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:5 State rights

“No, you didn’t read that part that CO2 levels are rising at levels never seen before. And that molecule traps energy.”

Actually, they have been thousands of times higher and lower throughout the eons. In fact, plant life and oxygen wouldn’t have existed without high concentrations of Co2.

Also, 1999 called to tell you that the correlation between Co2 levels and temperature officially deviated from one another. (you know, that hockey stick graph that you guys always scream about) And expect a call from 2013 in a moment to notify you that the global temperature averages have plateaued.

“If you think you can adapt fast enough, fine, but plants like fruits and vegetables won’t. Like the kind we have called “farms”. Have you heard of those?”

Say that to the deserts and phytoplankton that are blooming almost out of control as a result of higher concentrations of Co2. (yes, the planet has natural mechanisms in place for dealing with rising Co2 concentrations)

Didn’t you take Biology 101 in high school?

Here’s how it works:


Baron von Robber says:

Re: Re: Re:6 State rights

“Actually, they have been thousands of times higher and lower throughout the eons.”

Really, thousands of times higher? Well let’s see.

From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carbon_dioxide_in_Earth%27s_atmosphere

“Carbon dioxide (CO2) is an important long-lived trace gas in Earth’s atmosphere currently constituting about 0.04% (400 parts per million) of the atmosphere. Due to human activities, the present concentration of CO2 in Earth’s atmosphere is the highest in the past 800,000 years,[1] and likely the highest in the past 20 million years.[2]”

So at the very least, as you say 1000x more would be 400,000 ppm.

Would you mind citing an article that says our Earth’s atmosphere had CO2 at 400,000ppm or greater in the past?

PS, you’re not Gish Galloping away from this one.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:7 State rights

Sorry, hundreds of times higher than they are now. Search Cambrian explosion co2 levels. During that period, Co2 levels were at 6000 ppm.

Regardless, your ‘gish gallop’ on Co2 concentrations and how plant life adapts is completely false – which I corrected.

Fyi, it’s wise to not quote anything from Wikipedia let alone anything having to do with the climate. Have ever looked at the change history? It’s a mess…

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:8 State rights

Meant to add that anything before the Cambrian explosion was hundreds of times higher and the correlation of dropping Co2 levels and the beginning of life seem to be closely related.

All in all, the deregulation of environmentally destructive industries needs to stop. They are after all the ones who are systematically destroying the natural mechanisms that are in place for regulating co2 levels. From deforestation, to dead zones ,such as the Gulf of Mexico, to GMOs that are killing the insects (honey bees) that are needed for pollination. They’re the ones that must pay.

Baron von Robber says:

Re: Re: Re:8 State rights

My bad, I thought I said fruits & vegetables, not plants.

While they are a subset, they are not all. If you want Sumac Soup for lunch, eat my guest.

Now 6000ppm during the Cambrian didn’t come about because of fossil fuel burning. But it sure is now and NEVER at rates like the way it’s shooting up now.


At at those rates, we will pass 6000ppm easily.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:9 State rights

You’re completely missing the point I was trying to make….

The Co2 levels and IPCC models ‘don’t matter’ and I highly doubt that they’ll ever exceed 6000ppm unless every last lily were pulled from its roots. It took hundreds of millions of years for Co2 concentrations to drop down to levels they are within our time period. And you honestly think that within our life span they’ll shoot right back up? Pfft!

What matters is the preservation of life that is critical to our existence which you AGW extremists seem to ALWAYS ignore.

I swear, the entire debate is mass reverse physiology much like when state lotteries were legalized since everyone believed at the time that it would go towards improving our education system when in fact the exact opposite happened.

I’m done, I’m not posting another word on this topic since I know this is one of the few sites with authors and commenters who are not completely brainwashed.

I apologize Techdirt for feeding the troll.

Baron von Robber says:

Re: Re: Re:10 State rights

“The Co2 levels and IPCC models ‘don’t matter’ and I highly doubt that they’ll ever exceed 6000ppm unless every last lily were pulled from its roots. It took hundreds of millions of years for Co2 concentrations to drop down to levels they are within our time period. And you honestly think that within our life span they’ll shoot right back up? Pfft!”

You must have ignored the graphs. They are shooting up. Look at the graphs. It’s what has been measured and there’s nothing to stop it. It’s like you’re in a car going 100mph and accelerating fast, while telling the rest of us in the same car, “No problem, the lilies will slow us down”. You are in favor of destroying the preservation of life that is critical for our existence.

AGW extremists is a hoot. I go by what those who actually know what they are talking about, climate scientists. You know, the one that actually go the ends of the Earth to take measurements, checking glacier melts, rates of retreats, temperatures. Actual science.
They almost all agree, we are the ones warming the planet and are kicking ass at it.

The only ones who don’t agree, a 3% minority at best, are mostly in the US. Why is that?

So back under the bridge for you, but be aware, the water is rising.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:11 State rights

And you must have ignored that the IPCC has been consistently wrong for over 30 years now. Weren’t we all supposed to be under water by now back in 2010? Oh yeah, lets just quietly ignore that and never speak of it again. And weren’t the polar bears going extinct because, oh, they’re raising in numbers, so lets not say anything about that. And isn’t the global average temperate rising, oh it stopped in 2013, lets just pretend it’s not happening and ignore the empirical evidence.

I double dare you to refute me on anything I’ve said.

Regardless, even if all the sea ice in the world melted, only coastal cities would be affected and it’s not the first time this happened. In fact, news flash, we’re still in a cold period meaning there were multiple periods in time when there were no ice caps and our entire planet was one giant jungle.

If the ice caps were to melt today, well then I’d advise you to run 200 miles inland but that’s about it. Life will go on.

Baron von Robber says:

Re: Re: Re:12 State rights

“And isn’t the global average temperate rising, oh it stopped in 2013, lets just pretend it’s not happening and ignore the empirical evidence. I double dare you to refute me on anything I’ve said.”

Double dare? I’m older than 13, but still OK.

Do you lie like this on everything or just this subject?

Also you need help with your understanding of geography. It’s not 200 miles inland, it’s 150ft elevation.

So a place like Orange County CA would be about 1/2 submerged. But Florida would mostly be gone.

So there you go, 2014 hottest on record. After 2013.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:16 State rights

And I guess you ignore the fact that the measurements take place at a scale that is being measured by the hundredths of a degree and that this so called warming period is nothing more than AGW extremism/promotion. Not to mention, this isn’t the first time it’s happened in the past 2000 years.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:13 State rights

Terrible examples. Ars Technica is full of brainwashed ignoramuses like yourself who post pictures of my little pony whenever they disagree with someone… And then ban them for trolling.

Here’s food for thought:

5% of the world is covered by ice.
29% is covered by land.
66% of it is covered by water.

As everyone knows, water expands when frozen. (by 9%) So show me the study that proves that water expands when turning from a solid to liquid….

Fyi, we’ve had both record cooling and record heating all across the globe throughout all of human history. (aka climate change!) However, we’ve been seeing extreme weather anomalies all across our solar system. Jupiter has gained a second eye, Venus is spinning much faster. Mars is showing seismic activity despite being a dead planet. The list goes on which proves that ‘AGW science’ is not ‘settled science’ and that you retards need to stop turning this into political/religious debate and go back to thinking like scientists.

If you want to refute me then here, I’ll help you:

Earth WindMap: http://earth.nullschool.net/#current/
Global Maps: http://www.atmos.albany.edu/student/k
NDBC Buoys: http://www.ndbc.noaa.gov/
HurricaneZone Satellite Images: http://www.hurricanezone.net/westpaci
NOAA Environmental Visualization Laboratory: http://www.nnvl.noaa.gov/Default.php
Satellite Maps: http://www.woweather.com/cgi-app/sate
Forecast Maps: http://www.woweather.com/weather/maps
TORCON: http://www.weather.com/news/tornado-t… [Tornado Forecast for the day]
HURRICANE TRACKER: http://www.weather.com/weather/hurric
GOES Satellites: http://rsd.gsfc.nasa.gov/goes/
THE US WINDMAP: http://hint.fm/wind/
Severe Weather Threats: http://www.weather.com/news/weather-s
Canada Weather Office Satellite Composites: http://www.weatheroffice.gc.ca/satell
Temperature Delta: http://www.intellicast.com/National/T
Records/Extremes: http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/extremes/rec

NOAA Spaceweather: http://www.swpc.noaa.gov
Spaceweather: http://spaceweather.com
SOHO Solar Wind: http://umtof.umd.edu/pm/
Planetary Orbital Diagram – Ceres1 JPL: http://ssd.jpl.nasa.gov/sbdb.cgi?sstr
SDO: http://sdo.gsfc.nasa.gov/data/
Helioviewer: http://www.helioviewer.org/
SOHO: http://sohodata.nascom.nasa.gov/cgi-b
Stereo: http://stereo.gsfc.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/i
SOLARIMG: http://solarimg.org/artis/
iSWA: http://iswa.gsfc.nasa.gov/iswa/iSWA.html
NASA ENLIL SPIRAL: http://iswa.gsfc.nasa.gov:8080/IswaSy
Gamma Ray Bursts: http://grb.sonoma.edu/
BARTOL Cosmic Rays: http://neutronm.bartol.udel.edu//spac
ISWA: http://iswa.ccmc.gsfc.nasa.gov:8080/I
NOAA Sunspot Classifications: http://www.swpc.noaa.gov/ftpdir/lates
GONG: http://gong2.nso.edu/dailyimages/
GONG Magnetic Maps: http://gong.nso.edu/data/magmap/ondem

MISC Links:
JAPAN Radiation Map: http://jciv.iidj.net/map/
RADIATION Network: http://radiationnetwork.com/
LISS: http://earthquake.usgs.gov/monitoring
QUAKES LIST FULL: http://www.emsc-csem.org/Earthquake/s
RSOE: http://hisz.rsoe.hu/alertmap/index2.php [That cool alert map I use]
Moon: http://www.fourmilab.ch/earthview/pac

Anything and everything that matters about climate science is contained within those links. Point to the one that proves all or any of your points.

Baron von Robber says:

Re: Re: Re:14 State rights

“The list goes on which proves that ‘AGW science’ is not ‘settled science’ and that you retards need to stop turning this into political/religious debate and “

It is a settled science. I’ve offered NOTHING as to what to do about it. I’ve only stated that the globe is warming due to increased CO2 of an isotope only found in fossil fuels.

It’s settled.

Baron von Robber says:

Re: Re: Re:16 State rights

Actually you are right. I amend that to “Settled for now until something better comes along”.

And the one who shows that climate scientists are incorrect about CO2 increase causing warming, will have a nice Nobel Prize waiting for them. And who doesn’t want that.

And I’ve not seen anything to point that out. Until then we are stuck with measurements (by a full degree, not hundredths)..


Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:13 State rights

Well you lied about everything you’ve said thus far…How can anyone take you seriously when you don’t even no basic science? I mean, you tried to claim that all the ‘plants’ would die because of your AGW claims when in fact the exact opposite is happening.

Typical extremist is typical in their ignorance.

alternatives() says:

Re: Re: Re:12 State rights

If the ice caps were to melt today, well then I’d advise you to run 200 miles inland but that’s about it. Life will go on.

Such a large change in how the Earth has its mass distributed in one day would have rotational effects and changes in the crustal dynamics that would get noticed. Even inland.

But the large number of Nuke plants suddenly underwater would not be “good”. Even a slow rise in water puts the idea of just leaving ’em in place and covering with concrete a poor choice.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:9 State rights

“My bad, I thought I said fruits & vegetables, not plants.”

1. Fruits and vegetables are plants.
2. GMOs are killing off the insects that farmers rely on for pollination.

Basically what’s happening is that most plants go through a period at certain times of the year for a short period (usually spring) when they release a natural pesticide to prevent insects from eating their buds. What GMOs do is force these plants to release these pesticides all year round which consequently kills off the insects (butterflies, Bees, etc) that are needed for pollination.

However, it is a fact that Co2 plays a critical roll in increasing plant growth rates but without pollination, it’s meaningless.

JustSomeGuy says:

Re: Re: Re:5 State rights

And humans have been around for only three-fifths of bugger-all of the time that LIFE has endured here.

It’s life that will survive any catastrophe short of dispersing the entire planet in golfball-sized pieces across the galaxy. Just as it has survived the many mass extinction events in the past.

John Fenderson (profile) says:

Re: Re: State rights

“Yes, Science is nothing more than another religion now”

If you actually believe this, then you don’t have the first clue what science actually is. Hint: it’s the exact opposite of religion. Religion is believing things on faith. Science is believing things based on evidence. Also, the “things” are different. Science tends to address the questions of “what” and “how”, religion tend to address the question of “why”.

The only similarity between the two is that neither is infallible. But science is self-correcting.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: State rights

Yes, Science should be the opposite, while also not being opposed, however… if you look at the science now, and do not see the stupid fundamentalism, then I am more worried about you and your friend named logic… its a shame, but he might not be your friend.

You just cannot trust anything when this level of political bullshit is flying around. This is an exact reason why the world if falling apart.

This is the same bullshit science scenario that went down when we vilified Fat! and started loading the fuck out of everything with sugar. Here is a hit, it all happened because of a stupid fucking politician!

And despite KNOWING that politicians are dumber than the rocks they stand on, you are okay with it? You know as well as I do they could never understand the science yet we still as them to make decisions on it. That my friend is the real stupid about all of this.

That is why someone said they would rather tend to the inconveniences of TOO MUCH freedom than that of too LITTLE!

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:3 State rights

A fundamental component of science is that “trust” is not desirable or necessary.

True in theory. In practice, trust must be extended simply because we simply don’t have time in our lives to prove everything from first principles again. That trust often gets called “established fact”.

Case in point: Vaccines. You trust the theory behind vaccines because numerous studies in the past have verified the results. You trust those studies rather than making a new one. You trust the facts those studies relied on (eg “existence of virii”) for the same reason. And so on.

And when the Cosmic Aliens whip away the curtain and say “gotcha! Those fossils were planted!”, there’ll be a lot of facts that suddenly have to be reexamined in light of new data. And a lot of people upset that the trust they placed in those facts was misplaced.

Baron von Robber says:

Re: Re: Re:4 State rights

But that’s not much of a ‘trust’. I trust the engineers did their job in constructing roads because I drive on them everyday.

At any time, a scientist can try to reproduce another scientist’s experiment/observations to see if they are the same.

The ones caught cheating, tend to lose their careers (don’t you wish the same would happen to politicians?). Some have even committed suicide, it’s so serious.

So it’s not much of a trust. Part of science is that any theory is that it’s peer reviewed and is reproducible.

John Fenderson (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:4 State rights

What Baron von Robber said. Also,

“And when the Cosmic Aliens whip away the curtain and say “gotcha! Those fossils were planted!”, there’ll be a lot of facts that suddenly have to be reexamined in light of new data. And a lot of people upset that the trust they placed in those facts was misplaced.”

We may mean different things by “trust”, I suppose. If what you said actually happened, I don’t see how anyone’s “trust” was misplaced. Trust != faith.

I think you’re misunderstanding the process of science. There have been many, many times when widely-accepted hypotheses have been found faulty even though they had been generally accepted for decades or hundreds of years.

That doesn’t mean, however, that the original hypothesis was suddenly rendered useless or that anyone’s trust in it was misplaced. It means that the understanding of reality was redefined. A classic example is with relativity theory. Before that, Newtonian theory was the king. However, that relativity became a thing didn’t suddenly mean that Newtonian physics was false. Only that it was incomplete.

By the way, these massive shifts in the understanding of reality are a feature of science, something to be celebrated. They are indicative that science is something that you can, in fact, generally trust — because omissions and errors are eventually discovered and hypotheses get refined.

The reason that happens is because science is not based on trust at all, but on the fact the opposite. No scientist trusts the results of other scientists. They actually test things for themselves.

If you have a special topic that you feel is being misunderstood by the current set of generally accepted hypotheses, you can test them for yourself. If you can demonstrate a flaw, you will not only advance mankind’s knowledge, but you will be praised by the scientific community and perhaps even get rewarded with recognition and grant money.

This, too, is a critical part of the scientific process.

Baron von Robber says:

Re: Re: Re:5 State rights

Exactly! In the case of Newton’s Laws of Gravity, it stood as was for many centuries because it described our planets motions very well.
But over time, they noticed that mercury’s orbit wasn’t exactly as Newton’s Laws predicted.

From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mercury_%28planet%29
“Advance of perihelion
Main article: Perihelion precession of Mercury
In 1859, the French mathematician and astronomer Urbain Le Verrier reported that the slow precession of Mercury’s orbit around the Sun could not be completely explained by Newtonian mechanics and perturbations by the known planets. He suggested, among possible explanations, that another planet (or perhaps instead a series of smaller ‘corpuscules’) might exist in an orbit even closer to the Sun than that of Mercury, to account for this perturbation.[86] (Other explanations considered included a slight oblateness of the Sun.) The success of the search for Neptune based on its perturbations of the orbit of Uranus led astronomers to place faith in this possible explanation, and the hypothetical planet was named Vulcan, but no such planet was ever found.[87]

The perihelion precession of Mercury is 5600 arcseconds (1.5556°) per century relative to Earth, or 574.10±0.65 arcseconds per century[88] relative to the inertial ICFR. Newtonian mechanics, taking into account all the effects from the other planets, predicts a precession of 5557 arcseconds (1.5436°) per century.[88] In the early 20th century, Albert Einstein’s general theory of relativity provided the explanation for the observed precession. The effect is small: just 42.98 arcseconds per century for Mercury; it therefore requires a little over twelve million orbits for a full excess turn. Similar, but much smaller, effects exist for other Solar System bodies: 8.62 arcseconds per century for Venus, 3.84 for Earth, 1.35 for Mars, and 10.05 for 1566 Icarus.[89][90]”

I’ve seen and used one Einstein’s equation. It’s Newton’s but with an additional formula that comes into play when one of the masses is large.
Basically Newton is still useful, but when large masses, long distances or long times are involved, Einstein is more needed.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:3 State rights

A fundamental component of science is that “trust” is not desirable or necessary.

So, do you support the science that says certain minorities are not human?

You know… back in the day… they used science to classify all sorts of things… and it was ahem just accepted.

Luckily the science later revealed that science just exactly the kind of bullshit it was. However… they type of science just keeps coming around.

And just like here… as terrible as it may be for the Muni-Broadband blocking laws… the FCC does not have an explicit right to step on it. Sure they can say they do not agree, but States-Rights do in fact trump the power of the FCC and just about every other Federal Agency to boot. The ONLY thing a state cannot trump is a constitutional issue that the Feds are required to enforce even against the states. Not sure telecom rises to that level.

Robert (profile) says:

2 years @ Boom

These are the very reason our Republican Voters will finally be able to she everything true about them. Once Obama is gone, and he did a great job, what will Voters in these red States do?
It’s been a great 6 years for Republicans to say that the black is evil and stupid stuff like that, and I hope that they see that Congress don’t care about God or abortion, they rather spend our tax money on killing people, and I am quite sure Jesus didn’t preach hare, kill, so I would want to be as far away as possible from a Republican congressman come judgment day.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Article 1, section 8.

… interstate commerce…

You’re off-topic.

This discussion is about global warming, or science, or Newton, or something… maybe underwater nuke plants…

( Ars Technica, in its story, at least linked to a copy of Tennessee’s complaint which attached Exhibit A: The FCC Memorandum Opinion and Order which is at issue. Perhaps that’s why the discussion over there is not about… underwater nuke plants. )

artcat742 says:

As a Chattanooga resident....

I feel this is absurd. We are proud to be nicknamed “Gig City” with our local city-owned broadband/fiber optic network (offering 100 gigabits of internet). I refuse to live in an area that isn’t serviced by EPB. Shame on the State of Tennessee for opening the doors to Comcast and AT&T furthering their power, and trying to close the door on local, beneficial commerce. The money that we pay EPB goes right back into the community. And, the service is so outstanding that there was a collective cheer from surrounding communities after the “net neutrality” ruling, because so many people no longer have to look at their neighbor’s broadband connection to EPB, and they can finally get it at their own homes.

BK says:

TN Gov hates its citizens

I live in TN. Im mad as hell at our gov. They are insisting that I continue to pay more for less when there are better services available but just not in my area. In fact its only about 5 miles from 1 gig internet yet Im stuck with 60 meg and I pay more for it. Im disabled and only have so much money to spend. I am voting against every one of these idiots next election. I also hate that tax money that is forced to be paid every damn year is going to fight against something I actually want to be legal.

I wish every idiot in the gov would take a flying leap so we can start over with younger more informed people. Maybe get some that aren’t in it simply for the money. Im thinking of finding a lawyer who wants some attention and suing my own TN Gov for suing the FCC.

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