Internet Doomsday Creeps Closer


Richard Moore

Original source URL:

Internet Doomsday Creeps Closer

Big government pushes for total taxation and restriction on the last 
great outpost of free speech

The Infowars Network | June 6, 2007
Steve Watson

Recent proposals in the U.S. Congress are taking a huge swipe at 
freedom in America once again by aiming to impose multiple different 
forms of crippling taxation and restriction on users of the internet.

State and local governments this week resumed a push to lobby 
Congress for far-reaching changes on two different fronts: gaining 
the ability to impose sales taxes on Net shopping, and being able to 
levy new monthly taxes on DSL and other Internet-service connections. 
One senator is even predicting taxes on e-mail, reports CNet .

Several bills were introduced last week that could see all manner of 
new forms of internet taxation become a reality before the end of the 

Sen. Michael Enzi, a Wyoming Republican, introduced a bill (PDF link) 
for mandatory sales tax collection for Internet purchases, meaning 
that if you buy items through online sites like eBay or, 
you might have to start paying additional sales taxes on your 

The Libertarian party has warned that the bill represents more big 
government intervention and that while Enzi insists the bill "would 
not increase taxes," the Sales Tax Fairness and Simplification Act 
would open the door for states to charge sales tax on Internet sales. 
In contrast to his statement, the C-Net article states that Enzi 
warned that other taxes may zoom upward if his "mandatory sales tax 
collection" bill isn't passed.

In a second and separate proposal during a House of Representatives 
hearing last week, politicians weighed whether to let a temporary ban 
on internet access taxes lapse when it expires on November 1.

Such a move would leave open the possibility that simply using the 
internet would require a tax to be paid which critics suggest could 
sound a death knell for broadband, DSL and "always on" high speed 

Rep. Hank Johnson, a Democrat from Georgia compared the move to 
taxing people for simply entering shopping malls or libraries. With 
the U.S. economy already under considerable strain, taking a huge 
swipe at e-commerce, one of its cornerstones, seems like the worst 
possible thing Congress could do.

Furthermore, allowing taxation on internet access represents a 
slippery slope towards opening up the possibilities of taxing all 
kinds of internet based services.

"They might say, 'We have no interest in having taxes on e-mail,' but 
if we allow the prohibition on Internet taxes to expire, then you 
open the door on cities and towns and states to tax e-mail or other 
aspects of Internet access," said Sen. John Sununu, a New Hampshire 

An email tax would certainly suit both the government and internet 
providers who would likely get a cut. Last year it was revealed that 
AOL is planning to charge mass-emailers a fee to avoid the ISP's spam 
filters and guarantee that their marketing emails arrive straight in 
AOL subscribers' inboxes. Yahoo! is also endorsing the scheme.

Under such a system email considered "uncertified" would risk running 
through AOL and Yahoo!'s discrimination process. And as this 
potential profit center for the two net giants takes off, there's no 
incentive for either company to deliver the "free email" - and every 
incentive for them to get the world conditioned to paying for 
guaranteed delivery.

A United Nations agency also proposed in 1999 the idea of a 
1-cent-per-100-message tax, indicating that the idea has been 
floating around for almost a decade.

In recent months, a chorus of propaganda intended to demonize the 
Internet and further lead it down a path of strict control has spewed 
forth from numerous establishment organs:

   * Time magazine reported last month that researchers funded by the 
federal government want to shut down the internet and start over, 
citing the fact that at the moment there are loopholes in the system 
whereby users cannot be tracked and traced all the time.

   * The projects echo moves we have previously reported on to clamp 
down on internet neutrality and even to designate a new form of the 
internet known as Internet 2 .


   * In a display of bi-partisanship, there have recently been calls 
for all out mandatory ISP snooping on all US citizens by both 
Democrats and Republicans alike.

   * Republican Senator John McCain recently tabled a proposal to 
introduce legislation that would fine blogs up to $300,000 for 
offensive statements, photos and videos posted by visitors on comment 
boards. It is well known that McCain has a distaste for his 
blogosphere critics, causing a definite conflict of interest where 
any proposal to restrict blogs on his part is concerned.

   * During an appearance with his wife Barbara on Fox News last 
November, George Bush senior slammed Internet bloggers for creating 
an "adversarial and ugly climate."

   * The White House's own recently de-classified strategy for 
"winning the war on terror" targets Internet conspiracy theories as a 
recruiting ground for terrorists and threatens to "diminish" their 

   * The Pentagon recently announced its effort to infiltrate the 
Internet and propagandize for the war on terror.

   * In a speech last October, Homeland Security director Michael 
Chertoff identified the web as a "terror training camp," through 
which "disaffected people living in the United States" are developing 
"radical ideologies and potentially violent skills." His solution is 
"intelligence fusion centers," staffed by Homeland Security personnel 
which will go into operation next year.

   * The U.S. Government wants to force bloggers and online grassroots 
activists to register and regularly report their activities to 
Congress. Criminal charges including a possible jail term of up to 
one year could be the punishment for non-compliance.

   * A landmark legal case on behalf of the Recording Industry 
Association of America and other global trade organizations seeks to 
criminalize all Internet file sharing of any kind as copyright 
infringement, effectively shutting down the world wide web - and 
their argument is supported by the U.S. government.

   * A landmark legal ruling in Sydney goes further than ever before 
in setting the trap door for the destruction of the Internet as we 
know it and the end of alternative news websites and blogs by 
creating the precedent that simply linking to other websites is 
breach of copyright and piracy.

   * The European Union, led by former Stalinist and potential future 
British Prime Minister John Reid, has also vowed to shut down 
"terrorists" who use the Internet to spread propaganda.

   * The EU data retention bill, passed last year after much 
controversy and with implementation tabled for late 2007, obliges 
telephone operators and internet service providers to store 
information on who called who and who emailed who for at least six 
months. Under this law, investigators in any EU country, and most 
bizarrely even in the US , can access EU citizens' data on phone 
calls, sms', emails and instant messaging services.

   * The EU also recently proposed legislation that would prevent 
users from uploading any form of video without a license.

   * The US government is also funding research into social networking 
sites and how to gather and store personal data published on them, 
according to the New Scientist magazine . "At the same time, US 
lawmakers are attempting to force the social networking sites 
themselves to control the amount and kind of information that people, 
particularly children, can put on the sites."

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