Thursday, January 19, 2012

SOPA/PIPA: Throw The Bastards Out!

As anyone who has been online the past 24 hours is probably aware, there are two bills making their way through Congress right now. SOPA (House) and PIPA (Senate) both have the overall goal of curbing copyright infringement by holding website owners criminally liable, up to and including jail time, fines, and shutting down the entire web site. In the case of web sites that are hosted outside of the United States, the Attorney General is able to force search engines to filter the site out and would get other methods at his or her disposal to prevent people from visiting the site.

Let's be clear: The movie and music industry have discovered that it isn't profitable to sue individuals and organizations. So they're essentially getting the government to do it for them.

This has caused an odd coalition of political conservatives, Internet entrepreneurship, and liberal groups to organize against the bills. And while there are a lot of ideas floating about, I think Erick Erickson over at Red State has the best idea.

It doesn't matter if it's a freshman TEA Party member or a former Presidential nominee or a senior member of the Senate.

Every single one of these people, many of whom have no CLUE how to operate a computer and rely on staff to manage Twitter and Facebook, needs to have a primary challenger and be defeated.

This is a clear assault on our free speech rights and must be defeated. Especially because President Barack Obama has only spoken mild criticism of the bills. Since Obama signed the National Defense Authorization Act, which gave the US military the ability to indefinitely detain American citizens, I have no reason to believe he'd actually veto SOPA if it reached his desk.

I'm pleased to report that none of Indiana's Congressional delegation are sponsors at this time. But they still need to be informed and pressured to vote against these horrendous pieces of legislation.

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