(Say it three times fast with a mouthfulla ice cubes and win a set of plans for your very own fallout shelter!)
Tam links to a story about a bill that'd left the Feds officially pull the plug on this here Innernet. In one sense, it's silly to think this power doesn't already exist; The Phone Company has been deeply, madly in bed with the Feds for years, since before the tax on long distance to fund the Spanish-American War, even, and if Uncle Sugar were t'ring 'em up and say, "Internet. Off. Now," screens would go blank while the last syllable was still echoing.
It is nevertheless troubling when they wanna make it Official. Sort of sets it out of reach of serious censure in any public forum; like the hideously-misnamed USA PATRIOT Act, there might be plenty of whining 'round the edges but, "Hey, it's the Law," still commands inherent respect, same way my "The Revolution Will Not Be Telegraphed" T-shirt* gets narrow and suspicious looks at gun shows.
...And I can't help but remember that one of the things Claire Wolfe was blogging about (or was it in the old BBS?) before she decided to drop off the grid even more was how to get around a big ol' net.shutdown, by cranking the clock back to FidoNet or havin' a go at amateur packet radio (license required. Batteries not included).
The 'net is fine for fun but please remember, the blame thing is not all that reliable or trustworthy unless your name ends in .mil or .gov, and it never was; and I would not get too comfy with anything dial-up based, either.
* Maybe they misremember the Gil Scott Heron tune?
6 months ago