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Discounted broadband and computers for participants of school lunch program

Is access to the Internet with broadband speed now a right? There is no information provided in the story to let us know if this is a program fully funded by Internet service providers or if the federal government is subsidizing the program.

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FCC approves a new fee to be added to your phone bill

If you pay any attention to your phone bill you know that buried within the “other charges” section is something called the Universal Service Fund Fee. Of course, there are lots of such “other charges”, so much so that for me, at least, they amount to 39% of my phone bill, excluding any long distance charges. Read more

Stimulus to create 5000 jobs

Great news!   The President is announcing today the “winners” of his “we need to expand broadband in America” program.  Remember, this plan was part of the Stimulus Package passed last year.  And, the winners are…

You’ll have to go to this link to find out, but I will tell you that should you live in Connecticut, Rhode Island or Florida, for that matter, you’re out of luck.  You’ll just have to make do with what you have.  However, should you live in Massachusetts, you will receive $45.4 million to install 1300 miles of fiber optic cables in the western part of the state.  This is most certainly a bargain…it will only cost you about $3500 per mile.

The total amount the President will spend for these projects is only $795 million.  Of course, that’s $795 million we don’t have and will need to borrow from China, or any other country that might still be willing to loan us money. 

But, look at the bright side…Obama claims this spending will create 5000 jobs.  And that translates into… $160,000 per job, most of which are temporary.

Gee, couldn’t we find some cheaper, more long lasting jobs to create?

Rev. Jesse Jackson’s free Internet for all dream pure fantasy

I’m never surprised about left-wing ideas. Just last week I wrote about the entitlement culture, pointing out true rights must exist simultaneously between people, and now Rev. Jesse Jackson Sr. thinks broadband wireless access should be free. And of course, he uses the race card.

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Justice Department demands list of Web site visitors – or visitor?

Well this is somewhat interesting. The United States District Court in southern Indiana demanded information on all IP traffic to and from indymedia.us on June 25, 2008. They want subscriber data including personal identification details.

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Now broadband internet access a human right?

No, you’re not reading an Onion story. In Finland, the government has deemed a fast Internet connection is a right and will mandate service providers offer broadband service to everyone. Not only do some countries think Internet access is a right, but the United Nations thinks Internet access is a human right.

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Kentucky Lawmaker Wants to Make Anonymous Internet Posting Illegal

Representative Tim Couch, a Republican from Kentucky wants to make it illegal for people to post anonymously on Internet Web sites. Sorry Tim, you’re way off base here.

His idea is to have the site operator fined $500 for the first time they allow someone to post anonymously, then $1,000 each time after. He wants to cut down on online bullying. Has that feel-good legislation feel to it ya know? Read more

Castro’s Cuba and Complete Opression

I’m quite sick of seeing celebrities cozy up to the likes of Castro and Chavez. Last week, I was wondering what Internet access was like in Cuba. We frequently here about China limiting access to the Net and blocking sites; and even just a week or so ago Pakistan made some DNS changes to block access to YouTube due to an objectionable video that busted the world’s access to YouTube.

It looks like Cuban’s access to the Internet may just be the most oppressive in the world.

Cyber-Rebels in Cuba Defy State’s Limits (Read the full article)
By JAMES C. McKINLEY Jr.
HAVANA — A growing underground network of young people armed with computer memory sticks, digital cameras and clandestine Internet hookups has been mounting some challenges to the Cuban government in recent months, spreading news that the official state media try to suppress.

Last month, students at a prestigious computer science university videotaped an ugly confrontation they had with Ricardo Alarcón, the president of the National Assembly.

Mr. Alarcón seemed flummoxed when students grilled him on why they could not travel abroad, stay at hotels, earn better wages or use search engines like Google. The video spread like wildfire through Havana, passed from person to person, and seriously damaged Mr. Alarcón’s reputation in some circles.

Something similar happened in late January when officials tried to impose a tax on the tips and wages of employees of foreign companies. Workers erupted in jeers and shouts when told about the new tax, a moment caught on a cellphone camera and passed along by memory sticks.

“It passes from flash drive to flash drive,” said Ariel, 33, a computer programmer, who, like almost everyone else interviewed for this article, asked that his last name not be used for fear of political persecution. “This is going to get out of the government’s hands because the technology is moving so rapidly.”

Cuban officials have long limited the public’s access to the Internet and digital videos, tearing down unauthorized satellite dishes and keeping down the number of Internet cafes open to Cubans. Only one Internet cafe remains open in Old Havana, down from three a few years ago.

Hidden in a small room in the depths of the Capitol building, the state-owned cafe charges a third of the average Cuban’s monthly salary — about $5 — to use a computer for an hour. The other two former Internet cafes in central Havana have been converted into “postal services” that let Cubans send e-mail messages over a closed network on the island with no links to the Internet.

“It’s a sort of telegraph service,” said one young man, shrugging as he waited in line to use the computers at a former Internet cafe on O’Reilly Street.