Thursday, 13 July, 2006

My God, it’s Full of … TUBES

Posted in Net Neutrality, Politics at 10:11 am by glpease

Senator Ted Stevens (R – Alaska) Turns Techno

“The internet is not something you just dump something on, it’s not a big truck, it’s, it’s a series of TUBES […] tangled up TUBES.”

In his speech arguing against, or for net-neutrality – it’s really hard to figure out which from his remarkably confused diatribe, though he does appear to be against the Net Neutrality Ammendment, bless his apparently addled little mind – Stevens demnonstrates an almost frightening ignorance of what the internet is and how it works.

“Now, we have consumers who use this internet, and we have commercial users who use this internet. Unfortunately, your comments bring them together.” Wait. They’re not together?

He then proceeds to ramble like Peter Falk’s Columbo character, including a reference to something his wife pointed out to him, for what seems like hours, including such gems as, “We demand that the internet not discriminate against consumers.” He then goes on to say that the people streaming movies and books over the internet are not the consumers, “They’re not you and me. They’re the providers.” But, Ted, if the providers fill all those enormous TUBES, who’s going to empty them out?

I get it. The “providers” should have their own internet, and we, the consumers, should have our own internet, and then, he’d get the internet that his staff sends him on a more timely basis. (You’ll have to listen to the speech to get the reference.)
“They ought to just build something themselves.” Fascinating notion. I sort of thought this is what “they” did.

Yet, despite what appears to be a complete misapprehension of the issues, there he is, debating policy. Just another day in da House.

I don’t have a problem with anyone failing to understand the complexities of the technical nature of the internet, but there’s something horribly wrong when policy is being argued with no comprehension of the implications and technical issues related to and effected by that policy. I guess this is just the way things are done, now. This is really not all that different from many other issues that are “debated” by people without even a rudimentary comprehension of what’s behind the veils of their rhetoric.

That aside, spinmaster Stevens did provide inspiration for Paul Holcomb of Boldheaded to create the DJ Ted Stevens Techno Remix, “A Series of Tubes.” Great stuff, though I’m not sure it’s really that much funnier than the speech itself. Joe Bob sez, “Check it out.” In the meanwhile, pay no attention to the man behind the curtain.

For now, we have this wonderful series of enormous TUBES through which this sort of stuff can be streamed. Maybe some day I can order a new car, and have it delivered over the series of TUBES. Oh, wait. It’s not a big truck…



  1. Here’s a guy for whom everything is an oil pipeline.

  2. glpease said,

    He probably won’t get the “internets” his staff is sending him any sooner, with all the ENORMOUS stuff, like mp3 files, being stuffed into his TUBES.

    I wonder if he’s got the remix on his TUBE-fed iPod yet.

  3. a11en said,

    Actually, perhaps he’s read Neil Stephenson’s “Diamond Age”- in which the ability to produce products in the Matter Compilers comes from raw materials pushed through tubes- a sort of raw-material internet which supplies those living to create various items required in their daily life using nano-technology.

    Either way, it worries me a bit. 😉


  4. […] making other people’s on-line experience miserable; hacking websites, clogging the “Tangled-up Tubes” of the internet with SPAM, or flooding BLOG driven content, like this one, with nonsense […]

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