I talked a little bit about how upset I was about this whole thing a few days ago in this posting after reading Declan McCullagh’s article at CNet entitled Congress readies broad new digital copyright bill.

Today Specmon at Scot’s Newsletter Forum posted The Inquirer’s article entitled: Piracy worse than child pornography as another perspective on this.

Apparently, with just the changes in how Piracy (which unfortunately has also been equated with copyright infringement by those in the industry), can now get 10 years of prison time (I assume not counting any fines on top of that), if convicted.

The Inquirer article talks about the strange message being pushed by this new bill. Here’s a few examples from the article:

For example assaulting a police officer will get you five years, downloading child porn will get you seven years, assaulting without a weapon will get you ten years and aggravated assault six years.

So in other words if you copy a Disney CD and sell it you will be in the same league as a paedophile who is distributing pictures of sexual attacks on children.

And of course, this piece of crap does have the ‘blessing’ of the music and film industry and apparently the current standing federal government administration.

Cynthia Brumfield at IPDemocracy.com further expands on this by saying:

Even worse, the bill would expand section 1201 of the DMCA that bars trafficking in or distributing software capable of bypassing DRM systems to make it a crime to “make, import, export, obtain control of, or possess” such software. The legislation would also permit wiretaps in cases involving copyright infringement, boost the jail time for copyright infringement, create a new unit in the FBI for investigating copyright crimes and, most problematic of all, permit copyright holders to impound “records documenting the manufacture, sale or receipt of items involved in” infringements.

This is just an all around bad bill for any freedoms granted by our Constitution. Even the generally accepted ‘fair use’ that has been attacked viciously by the Entertainment Industry. As we’ve discussed before control and destruction of ‘fair use’ is on the top of the RIAA and MPAA agenda.

I definitely will not be voting to keep any politicians in office that vote for this destructive bill.

Between this very bad Bill, the existing bad legislation including the DMCA and copyright extensions and software patents, as well as the Eminent Domain recent rulings, it would appear that we may be heading for a ‘Dark Age’ by being FORCED by the powers that be and the lobbyists in Washington, D.C. to trade our Democratic Republic for something for worse.

What a sad time. Our founding fathers are likely spinning in their graves!

I am sure it would bring no pleasure to Benjamin Franklin to see his words be more prophetic than he may have thought at the time:

They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.
~Benjamin Franklin, Historical Review of Pennsylvania, 1759

Nor would Thomas Jefferson be excited to hear that his worst fears are coming true:

“If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around them will deprive the people of all property until their children wake up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered.”
Thomas Jefferson

Does no one in power understand anything about the origins of our Constitution, or the cost to our founding fathers and their families to secure for the Citizens (not the government or corporations) the rights and freedoms originally guaranteed by our Constitution and how important it is to maintain these freedoms?

EDIT: Guess not. Democrats lose House vote on Net neutrality:

update A hotly contested Democratic bid to enshrine extensive Net neutrality regulations in the law books failed Wednesday in the U.S. House of Representatives.

By a 34-22 vote, members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee rejected a Democratic-backed Net neutrality amendment that also enjoyed support from Internet and software companies including Microsoft, Amazon.com and Google.

“I’m concerned about e-mails being blocked from advocacy groups, of all sides,” said Jan Schakowsky, an Illinois Democrat who supported the amendment. “I’m concerned about start-ups that may be shut down.”

While efforts to rewrite telecommunications laws often languish in obscurity, advocacy groups and corporations have raised public alarms about the section of the 34-page bill pertaining to Net neutrality (also called network neutrality).

Opponents of the bill’s Net neutrality portion say it doesn’t go far enough to target possible errant behavior by AT&T, Verizon Communications and other broadband providers. A “Save the Internet” coalition has even been created and boasts members such as the left-leaning Moveon.org, the American Library Association and the libertarian-conservative group Gun Owners of America.

Thanks again Specmon for the heads up…

Big money rules again.

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