Representative Ed Markey delivered the following speech on the evening of April 9th at the 2011 National Conference for Media Reform in Boston. Go here to view the full video of the speech.
Thank you, Commissioner Michael Copps, for that very generous introduction. Michael Copps and I have a mutual admiration society. He is a colossus in the communications universe.
He’s a stalwart champion for the public interest.
Commissioner Copps upholds the values that the Communications Act directs the FCC to fulfill on behalf of the American people: Diversity, Localism, Universal Service, Competition, and Innovation.
He is a one-man, policy powerhouse for public media.
When his term at the FCC concludes at the end of this year, there will still be a “Copps” on the beat in the media marketplace.
Michael Copps will leave an enduring legacy of unmatched achievement touching every corner of telecommunications policy, benefitting consumers, competition, choice and our entire country. Let’s hear it for Commissioner Michael Copps.
Thank you, Josh Silver, for your incredible leadership and far-reaching vision.
Congratulations and thank you, Craig Aaron, for your new role leading FreePress. I know you’ll continue to be a phenomenal force for building the movement for better media.
It’s so great to be a part of this amazing event. There are more media mavens per square inch here tonight than anywhere else in America.
You can actually follow around the conference the same people you normally follow on Twitter. They’re all right here – it’s incredible.
We have the greatest assemblage of writers, artists, community organizers, online activists, independent journalists, and media makers ever assembled – all of you here this evening. You tweet, text, post, Skype, blog, and Facebook to make your voices heard every day.
And since they stopped that 75-year-old lady from digging in Tibilsi last week, your messages will get through – even if you’re in Armenia, Azerbaijan or Georgia. The Internet is back up!
Now, more than ever, it’s so vital that your messages do get through to the policymakers on Capitol Hill. And why do Republicans in Congress need to hear from you these days?
Well, on Wednesday, they brought to the House Floor a bill to repeal the Environmental Protection Agency’s authority to regulate greenhouse gases. Then yesterday, they passed a resolution to repeal the FCC’s ability to ensure the openness of the Internet.
So as time ticked down Friday afternoon, Republicans in Congress were trying to shut down the Internet and the federal government – simultaneously.
They didn’t shut down the government, and we’re all going to make sure they don’t shut down the Internet either!
We’re going to need to organize, mobilize and get energized to fend off all these assaults.
That’s because GOP used to stand for Grand Old Party. But now it stands for Gang of Polluters. Now it stands for Greed Over Principle. Now it stands for Gas and Oil Party.
Republican attacks against the authority of both the EPA and the FCC are designed to make both the polluters and the broadband barons the big winners at the expense of our environment, our health, our economy and American consumers.