FCC Shuttered, Ajit Pai Forced To Cancel CES Trip Because The US Government Is a Hot Mess

from the dumpster-fire dept

As you've probably noticed, the bickering over a dumb fence most attentive folks realize will never be fully funded or built has resulted in the government partially shutting down, leaving roughly 800,000 government employees furloughed without pay. As garbage and human waste begin to pile up at our under-staffed park system, the FCC this week also announced it would be suspending all but the most essential operations as of last Thursday, with 1,197 of the FCC’s 1,442 employees now left unpaid.

According to the FCC, all investigations into fraud (admittedly few and far between with this FCC), merger review, management of spectrum, and approval and testing of new electronics will grind to a halt. And while the agency's 911 and network outage complaint systems will remain operational, there will be nobody staffing the agency to respond to consumer or company complaints. The agency did note that things like its ongoing spectrum auction would continue, since the auction is funded by spectrum sale proceeds:

"However, work required for the protection of life and property will continue, as will any work related to spectrum auctions, which is funded by auction proceeds. In addition, the Office of the Inspector General will continue operations until further notice."

While he'll obviously be hamstrung by a lack of resources, Ajit Pai will continue to work, though the shutdown forced him to cancel a scheduled appearance at CES in Las Vegas. It's technically the second year in a row the FCC boss has had to cancel his planned CES appearance, since last year's visit was also scuttled after Pai began receiving death threats due to his historically-unpopular attacks on consumer protections like net neutrality.

Worry not though! Pai took to Twitter to joke that he'll still be around to thwart the use of naughty words on television:

While many will likely (and quite correctly) joke that a shuttered Pai FCC isn't likely to be much different from an operational Pai FCC given his apathy toward actually doing anything to help consumers or small businesses, the 1,197 FCC employees currently not getting paid over an idiotic fight over metal slats likely aren't finding this all that funny. And while a shutdown of a few days probably won't be all that big of a deal, a longer shutdown is going to spell trouble not just for Pai's unpopular agenda, but also for the oodles of notably less controversial, frequently mundane but essential tasks the FCC engage in on a daily basis.

Filed Under: ajit pai, ces, fcc, government shutdown, indecency


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  • identicon
    Baron von Robber, 4 Jan 2019 @ 2:01pm

    Maybe it's for the best. First time at "21" he says "Hit me"........

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 4 Jan 2019 @ 2:23pm

    Look on the bright side: With the FCC down, Eminem can finally be himself on MTV!

    …is that too dated a reference?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    Y Bother, 4 Jan 2019 @ 2:24pm

    So, Pai canceled an unnecessary trip and you still complain?

    Looks to me as though the dreaded "shutdown" is good, will save a bit here and there.

    This is just rambling ad hominem to your usual netwit standard, "grrr and stuff".

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    It Figures, 4 Jan 2019 @ 3:07pm

    Well thank god that ..

    "Senior political appointees chosen by the president including Cabinet officials, top administrators and the vice president will reportedly see their pay raise by around $10,000 per year on Saturday."

    https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/423899-senior-trump-officials-to-get-10k-raise -amid-shutdown-report

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Kar, 4 Jan 2019 @ 3:21pm

    work?

    What (??) - the FCC has more than 1,197 employees !

    What do they normally do all day ??

    Outrageous -- seriously, how could there be productive work for that many people all year?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 4 Jan 2019 @ 3:23pm

      Re: work?

      It's almost like you have no idea how work is done.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 4 Jan 2019 @ 3:24pm

      Re: work?

      According to Wikipedia they have 1688 employees and “The FCC works towards six goals in the areas of broadband, competition, the spectrum, the media, public safety and homeland security, and modernizing itself.[4]”

      Seems a bit small to me.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 4 Jan 2019 @ 3:27pm

        Re: Re: work?

        public safety and homeland security,

        Why does every US department and commission want to become part of the security services?

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 4 Jan 2019 @ 3:35pm

          Re: Re: Re: work?

          They are responcible for rules and regs regarding 911 communications. And also, I believe, provides a framework of guidelines for inter branch wireless communications between various federal, state, and local law enforcement organisations.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Kar, 4 Jan 2019 @ 4:06pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: work?

            ohh, so they write rules/regulations/guidelines every day ?

            It takes 1600 people to do that every day, decade after decade? Nonsense

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 4 Jan 2019 @ 7:28pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: work?

              How many people does it take to come up with these embarrassing straw men which show that you've spent about five seconds considering the issue?

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 5 Jan 2019 @ 11:48am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: work?

              Yeah, just like it takes millions of cops to write laws every day.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonomous Coward and Security Services, 4 Jan 2019 @ 4:10pm

          Re: Re: Re: work?

          "Why does every US department and commission want to become part of the security services?"

          I have no idea.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          stderric (profile), 4 Jan 2019 @ 6:02pm

          Re: Re: Re: work?

          Why does every US department and commission want to become part of the security services?

          They don't have to tell us, as it's a matter of national security.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 6 Jan 2019 @ 6:21am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: work?

            More like national security is such a convenient excuse when you want to keep skeletons in the closet.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Kar, 4 Jan 2019 @ 4:00pm

        Re: Re: work?

        ...so “The FCC works towards six goals" -- that explains exactly nothing!

        What do those 1600+ FCC people do each day when they go to their government job location.

        How did you surmise that the FCC is likely understaffed ?

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Gorshkov (profile), 4 Jan 2019 @ 4:23pm

          Re: Re: Re: work?

          How did you surmise that the FCC is likely understaffed ?

          Because it would take at least 1,600 employees just to handle the complaints about Comcast

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            Coyne Tibbets (profile), 5 Jan 2019 @ 1:14am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: work?

            Wrong word. Let me fix that for you:

            Because it would take at least 1,600 employees just to ignore the complaints about Comcast.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 4 Jan 2019 @ 8:32pm

          Re: Re: Re: work?

          It’s clear you are in dire need of information. If only there was some form of electronic medium the the FCC was nominally in charge of that could help you find it the answers to your questions. If only...

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 5 Jan 2019 @ 11:49am

          Re: Re: Re: work?

          What the fuck do you do every day?

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Anonymous Anonymous Coward (profile), 4 Jan 2019 @ 4:05pm

        Re: Re: work?

        Do you mean they laid off the staff that works on competition?

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      jupiterkansas (profile), 8 Jan 2019 @ 9:54am

      Re: work?

      Here's the FCC organization chart:

      https://www.fcc.gov/sites/default/files/fccorg-12102018.pdf

      They do more than you ever imagined.

      Just testing all new electronic devices to ensure they meet FCC regulations and don't disrupt radio communications sounds like enough to employ 1,000 people.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 4 Jan 2019 @ 3:24pm

    Excuses

    What excuse will he come up with next year?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    icon
    SaltyRev (profile), 4 Jan 2019 @ 6:29pm

    Border Security - Stop The Invasion

    Build the wall.
    Israel-Egypt, Israeli West Bank, Hungarian Border, Pakistani-Afghan border, Uzbek fence at the Afghan border, barrier between Turkey and Iran, Macedonian fence along the Greek border, Bangladesh border, Kenya’s fence at the Somalian border, Berlin, China, etc., etc., etc...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 4 Jan 2019 @ 7:29pm

      Re: Border Security - Stop The Invasion

      lol

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 4 Jan 2019 @ 8:37pm

      Re: Self Identified Shitheel

      I love how you idiots go through all the bother of making a profile before vomiting your ignorance all over the page.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 4 Jan 2019 @ 9:57pm

      Red flag ahoy

      Nice link in the account name there, a great time-saver for anyone who might have otherwise taken you seriously.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 5 Jan 2019 @ 6:16am

      Re: Border Security - Stop The Invasion

      I am interested in your rational for the rather blatant and obvious omission of the wall that used to separate east and west Germany, you know ... that one that they tore down?

      Why did they tear it down and why was it put in place to begin with? Why should we waste money, time, hot air on something that will just be torn down?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Toom1275 (profile), 5 Jan 2019 @ 6:45am

        Re: Re: Border Security - Stop The Invasion

        Wasting money on a stupid game that will have fuckall effect on illegal immigration, smuggled contraband, or national security.

        (but sticks it to those filthy brown people, which is the true purpose behind the wall and this administration's related policies)

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 5 Jan 2019 @ 7:59am

          Re: Re: Re: Border Security - Stop The Invasion

          "sticks it to those filthy brown people"

          .. and all those who do not worship Donald.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 7 Jan 2019 @ 12:32pm

        Re: Re: Border Security - Stop The Invasion

        Why did they tear it down and why was it put in place to begin with? Why should we waste money, time, hot air on something that will just be torn down?

        Looks at who contractors and suppliers who will make billions on this project support, and where they will send their 'lobbying'... Looks like the cheeto in charge.

        When looking for the reason to spend huge amounts of money on stupid projects, look at who will get richer from the project itself (regardless of if it works or not)...

        That 'billion' dollar computer system that the government threw out after it was delivered 3 years late may have had ZERO success as a project, but it made several millionaire consulting companies.

        So is the wall really a wall, or just a way to funnel millions from the government to the cronies who supported the current regime? The project could just as easily be a 50 story tall TRUMP bobble-head standing at the southern border, but it's a lot harder to explain that to the citizens...

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 4 Jan 2019 @ 8:45pm

    What's stopping an army of new world order from invading Mexico a 100 miles into their country and setting up 100 mile wide border frrom Mexico's side? Then build the wall with Mexican labor eager to do the job!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Pixelation, 4 Jan 2019 @ 10:19pm

    What we're all hoping for...

    a little humble Pai.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 5 Jan 2019 @ 3:16am

    No new news here.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 5 Jan 2019 @ 1:22pm

    I understand that it’s illegal for federal employees to work during sequestration/furlough. Did Pai just admit to breaking federal statutes?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Thad (profile), 6 Jan 2019 @ 8:51am

      Re:

      Essential services are still required to operate (and furloughed workers will receive back pay once the shutdown is over). As the article notes, the FCC is mostly shut down but its essential services are still running.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 7 Jan 2019 @ 7:47am

        Re: Re:

        There is no guarantee they will get back pay, the government has stiffed people in the past.

        If this continues it will not be long till the unpaid seek income elsewhere. I guess that might cause problems for the TSA and therefore anyone attempting to travel but I'm sure the mental midgets in DC have this possibility well under control - LOL, not.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    John85851 (profile), 7 Jan 2019 @ 10:32am

    I thought Mexico was paying for the wall

    Maybe a better economist or political-scientist can explain it, but I thought Trump said Mexico is going to pay for the wall. Why is he fighting for funding for the wall in the US' budget? Or have people not realized that one action (asking Congress for money) completely negates his previous action (Mexico pays!).
    And, yes, I know this issue all about political grand-standing and how Trump can't go back on his work(um, Mexico pays, remember) and how he has to keep fighting those evil Democrats ("better to be a Communist than a Democrat t-shirts, remember).

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 7 Jan 2019 @ 6:11pm

      Re: I thought Mexico was paying for the wall

      Quite right, and you'd think more politicians would use that tactic, for easy political points if nothing else.

      'Why Mister President, you said, on multiple occasions, that mexico, not the US, would be paying for the wall. As such we see no reason to include so much as a single cent for it from the US budget, since by your own words mexico will be footing the bill, and if they haven't yet done so it would seem it's up to you to go talk to them about it, not us.'

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 9 Jan 2019 @ 4:05pm

    Wait, the FCC does something? Aside from ignore FOIA Requests and panders to ISPs/Telecom? SHOCK!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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