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‘Gatekeeper’ Hillary Is For Open Internet

From the Agence France-Presse:

Clinton renews push for open Internet access

by Lachlan Carmichael Tue Feb 15, 2011

WASHINGTON (AFP) – US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton renews her push Tuesday for the free and open use of the Internet, which protesters from Egypt to Iran have used to demand political freedoms.

In excerpts of a speech to be delivered in Washington, the chief US diplomat said the question of what people do online and what principles they follow is one that "becomes more urgent every day."

The United States supports the "freedoms of expression, assembly, and association online" — what she calls the "freedom to connect" — and urges other nations to embrace those freedoms.

Washington is also committed to protecting civil liberties and human rights in cyberspace and is "determined to track and stop terrorism and criminal activity online and offline," Clinton says in her speech on "Internet rights and wrongs."

"We are convinced that an open Internet fosters long-term peace, progress and prosperity," she continued.

Isn’t this the same Hillary Clinton that used to say that the internet needed "a gatekeeper"? That is was too out of hand? And isn’t this the same Hillary Clinton who wants to shut down WikiLeaks and prosecute Julian Assange?

Isn’t this the same Hillary Clinton who recently claimed that Jared Loughner was an "extremist" and who implied that he had been whipped up by right wing talk radio and internet sites? Thereby suggesting the need for more control of the internet and the radio?

But her prepared remarks warned that governments that block, censor or punish Internet activity can "cut off opportunities for peace and progress and discourage innovation and entrepreneurship."

"History has shown us that repression often sows the seeds for revolution down the road," she said.

Actually, history shows us that the most repressive regimes, like China and Cuba and North Korea and Iran and Syria — have lasted so long because they aren’t shy about repressing their citizens, even to the point of killing them.

"Those who clamp down on Internet freedom may be able to hold back the full impact of their people’s yearnings for a while, but not forever."

Tell that to Iran.

She said leaders worldwide can open up to the Internet and perhaps see its content increase the demand for political rights or they can block it and risk losing all the economic and social benefits that come with it.

"The United States will continue to promote an Internet where people’s rights are protected and that is open to innovation, is interoperable all over the world, secure enough to hold people’s trust and reliable enough to support their work," Clinton added.

US diplomats and development experts now work daily to monitor and respond to threats to Internet freedom.

A State Department official said Clinton’s speech at George Washington University will tackle the role of 21st century communication technologies in recent events in the Middle East and efforts by some countries to curtail their "people?s freedom to connect." …

Did she mention any of this to Hu Jintao during the recent State Dinner for him in Washington? Of course not.

In a speech on Internet freedoms in January 2010, Clinton urged China to conduct a thorough probe into cyberattacks on Google and other US companies, pressing technology firms to resist Internet censorship.

And we can see all the good that speech did.

For the record, here is just one example of Mrs. Clinton’s past pronouncements about how the internet ‘needs a gatekeeper,’ as noted on the Drudge Report back in September 2005:

Hillary Rodham Clinton said in 1998 during a meeting with reporters said that "we are all going to have to rethink how we deal with" the Internet because of the handling of White House sex scandal stories on Web sites.

Clinton was asked whether she favored curbs on the Internet, after the Drudge Report made headlines with coverage of her husband’s affair with a White House intern. "We are all going to have to rethink how we deal with this, because there are all these competing values … Without any kind of editing function or gatekeeping function, what does it mean to have the right to defend your reputation?" she said.

"I don’t have any clue about what we’re going to do legally, regulatorily, technologically — I don’t have a clue. But I do think we always have to keep competing interests in balance. I’m a big pro-balance person. That’s why I love the founders — checks and balances; accountable power. Anytime an individual or an institution or an invention leaps so far out ahead of that balance and throws a system, whatever it might be — political, economic, technological — out of balance, you’ve got a problem, because then it can lead to the oppression people’s rights, it can lead to the manipulation of information, it can lead to all kinds of bad outcomes which we have seen historically. So we’re going to have to deal with that. And I hope a lot of smart people are going to –"

REPORTER: Sounds like you favor regulation.

MRS. CLINTON: Bill, I don’t know what — that’s why I said I don’t know what I’m in favor of. And I don’t know enough to know what to be in favor of, because I think it’s one of those new issues we’ve got to address. We’ve got to see whether our existing laws protect people’s right of privacy, protect them against defamation. And if they can, how do you do that when you can press a button and you can’t take it back. So I think we have to tread carefully.

But that was then and this is now — when she needs to make a self-serving, self-righteous speech.

This article was posted by Steve on Tuesday, February 15th, 2011. Comments are currently closed.

6 Responses to “‘Gatekeeper’ Hillary Is For Open Internet”

  1. River0 says:

    Hillary is utterly unprincipled, ambitious, craven, manipulative; and a master at expediency. She will say ANYTHING to get what she wants.

  2. Rusty Shackleford says:

    She was against it before she was for it. Like Kerry, she’s a social butterfly who adopts the most politically practical position, regardless of what she actually thinks or not. It’s about being in power and staying there. It’s nothing new, politicians and other reprobates have been doing this for thousands of years. What disgusts me is they do so randomly and without any logical argument, as well as completely ‘forgetting’ (pronounced: ‘ignoring’) the words they said not just a few months, or even days ago. In my little corner of the world, I still give a person a lot of credit for saying something to the effect: “I used to be adamantly opposed to it, but after reconsidering the issue, discussing it with experienced people and realizing that it involves ‘X’ and some ‘Y’ I realized I was incorrect and after much consideration, I have changed my position on that.”

    There’s no shame in changing one’s mind and can often be a testament to exposing good character and thoughtful debate. I see none of this from the obtuse and criminally neglectful people in our government. I have no respect for democrats and only a very small offering of same for republicans. The whole thing has become a show and a springboard for power-brokering and staying popular in a select group of elites. The freshmen have their work cut out for them but I hear little from their corner. I think they have been told “what’s what” and “how the game is played” and if they want to sit at the cool table, they’d better watch their step.

    It sickens me.

  3. tranquil.night says:

    In her flim-flammery, Hillary has demonstrated a clear lack of understanding of some basic facts, like that Egypt and Iran were only responding to uncivil rhetoric and domestic anti-government radical terrorists within the context of their national laws. What happened to not dictating to other sovereigns? Rhetorical of course..

  4. proreason says:

    Hildabeast has gone a long ways on the coattails of her husband.

    Could she have been elected to the PTA if it wasn’t for Bubba?

  5. JohnMG says:

    Hillary who??!!

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