Clinton, Media Companies, and Regulators

Many Bernie Sanders supporters feel that mainstream media coverage of his campaign has been particularly negative and that his achievements in the primary season have been ignored or minimized. This has been especially acute in the aftermath of his landslide win yesterday in the Hawaii Democratic caucus, which received little media coverage.

In that context, an article in Politico from 2015 that was widely retweeted today noted that many large media corporations, including Reuters, Bloomberg, and Fox, had donated substantial amounts of money to the Clinton Foundation. An infographic, apparently from 2015, (posted below) also notes the connections between Comcast officials, senators, and regulators from the Clinton and Obama administrations.

Comcast and regulators

Political Updates

Although my medical recovery has not been going as smoothly as I had hoped, I wanted to post some updates about the US political situation.

First, the Brookings Institution has issued a new report analyzing the views of major US presidential candidates about the Internet. As expected, Senator Ted Cruz still actively opposes consumer protection rules such as Title II classification for ISP’s, preferring that the high-speed Internet duopoly essentially self-regulate. Senator Rubio holds similar views.

While Senator Sanders advocates net neutrality and consumer protection, he also calls for adding a new Internet sales tax! This surprised me, because consumption taxes are regressive, meaning they most negatively affect lower income people. Further, this tax would hurt e-commerce companies and consumers who live far from physical shopping locations. One might also speculate that high taxes on Internet purchases would encourage consumers to drive to stores rather than buying online, amplifying urban problems such as pollution, noise, and traffic congestion.

Based on the Brookings report, Secretary Clinton actually seems to be the least horrible candidate in terms of Internet policy and consumer rights. (My previously preferred candidate, John McAfee, has disappointed by deleting his health care policy position statements from his website after declaring his intent to run with the Libertarian Party, causing me to reconsider my endorsement.)

Related to the above, DSL Reports notes that the unexpectedly pro-consumer “FCC Boss Hints He May Not Resign Under New President

Unrelated, but important:

story category
(Completely rewritten 2016/03/06 to expand and clarify.)