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Watch out for the EU net neutrality trap!

A great editorial in the European WSJ, "Net Loss" by analyst Alec Van Gelder, alerts us to the potential for regulatory creep to occur in the European Union (EU) and how it relates to the U.S. net neutrality movement.

  • The EU has never met an economic regulation they did not like; that's because the very nature of the EU systematically subordinates individual country's economics to the EU's over-arching imperative of the socialization politics of unity.
  • The EU is a political union that forces economic standardization through regulation.

This fine WSJ piece alerts us to some potentially troublesome developments in the EU: draft laws are due this July on the EU's "standardization policy for the information and technology sector."

  • The EU mantra of standardization, socialization, and politicization of economics is exactly why the EU is routinely hostile to U.S.-style capitalism and competition that has made our economy the envy of the world for decades.
  • In the EU, socialization politics are supreme not economics, freedom, competition or innovation.
  • This Government-solution orientation gives the EU a natural and scary bias toward net neutrality.

Now it will become more clear why I wrote the commentary "America's Unique Internet Success" in the Washington Times last month.

  • America is unique is its Internet, competition and de-regulation policy; it has been dramatically more successful than the EU. 
    • The EU promoted less deregulation...
    • ... so they have less facilities based competition...
    • ... so they are more inclined to unbundle networks and regulate prices.
      • Their bias for government intervention thus is circular, reinforcing even more government intervention. 

The monumental mistake Democrats in Congress are making is looking to the EU for guidance of what we should do here. 

  • America's pro-competition and de-regulation policies have been uniquely effective in the U.S. 
  • As my commentary explains America is the only nation in the world that has succeeded in developing robust facilities-based broadband competition.  

 If Congressional Democrats look to Europe to model their net neutrality thinking -- they will be duped into an anti-U.S trap.

  • EU policymakers are shrewd and know that a neutral net would be a great way to relatively advantage Europe over America!
    • A more regulated Internet is a slower and less innovative, which will allow the slower, more-politically and bureaucratic European companies to compete with faster U.S. companies.
    • Net neutrality is a recipe for losing America's international leadership and competitiveness.
    • Congressional Democrats should think long and hard about helping the Europeans gain a powerful advantage over U.S. on the Internet.

Bottom line: Congressional Democrats have to decide:

  • Are they "Old Democrats" like the EU socialists? or
  • Are they more like the "New Democrats" of the Clinton Adminstration where capitalism, competition and business were not bad words.

How much Congressional Democrats embrace the EU vision of Big Government, will tell us a lot about the true heart of the Democratic party in the United States going forward.