Hence its long-running nickname – The Ninth Circus Court of Appeals.
Despite claims to the contrary by the Leftist “fact-checkers” – the Ninth is the most overturned federal court of appeals in the country. Because its judges so often ignore the law – and instead impose their own Leftist personal policy preferences.
Well, President Donald Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell have gone a long way towards rectifying this mess.
Trump’s consistent fealty to constitutional jurists – and McConnell’s prioritization of getting them confirmed – is paying huge dividends all across the country.
Especially in the Ninth Circus.
The Court’s entire judge population is twenty-nine. More than 1/3 of them – are now Trump judges.
Indeed it has. But it has been much more than simply preventative – it has been proactive.
Not only have horrendous rulings been halted – outstanding rulings have ensued.
We knew about all of this Trump corrective action last Wednesday – when we wrote the following:
“For those not versed in Legalese – this is the Ninth Circuit dropping a nuclear bomb upon the whole nightmare mess (Barack) Obama and (Judge Lucy) Koh had foisted upon Qualcomm, the courts and all the rest of us.”
But we couldn’t pass up the eye-catching-and-popping headline.
But that wasn’t last week’s only great news to come from the Ninth.
“The court largely denied local governments’ petitions to review FCC orders limiting their authority to regulate 5G infrastructure.”
“5G” is, of course, the Fifth Generation (hence “5G”) wireless network currently in the very early stages of deployment here and all over the world.
5G is a greater technological advancement than 1G-4G combined.
5G will deliver to each and every one of your wireless devices 1-2 GIGABITS OF DATA PER SECOND. That is insane – and orders-of-magnitude faster than current (already very rapid) speeds.
5G solves the rural connectivity problem. (Well, what little connectivity problem we actually still have – since 99+% already are connected.) Our previous wireless generations – and all Internet connectivity – were heavily dependent on heavy infrastructure. Which costs a LOT of coin.
We needed lots of hardline equipment – which meant digging lots of trenches and laying lots of cable. Which costs a LOT of coin. And wireless required massive towers to throw signals long distances. Which cost a LOT of coin.
5G relies on existing infrastructure – and adds to the equation relatively tiny pizza-box-sized (small cell) antennas. Which cost a relative pittance – and thus can be deployed any and everywhere.
Have a remote town that has been stubbornly limited in its access to the grid? Throw up three or four pizza boxes – and the whole place is instantly wired in to MASSIVE Internet connectivity and speed.
Cities, towns, suburbs, rural areas – everywhere will be tapped into this MASSIVE connectivity and speed.
That is…unless your local government(s) decide to use their permitting processes to shakedown the companies delivering everyone this MASSIVE connectivity and speed.
Many localities want to charge the exact same fees they charge for huge towers – for each tiny pizza box antenna.
This is titanically stupid – for at least two reasons.
The amount of work the locality has to do for the pizza box – is quite obviously a tiny fraction of that required for the tower.
And a mid-size city will receive hundreds of the small antennas – which makes the same-sized fees for the tiny antennas a GIANT shakedown.
On top top of all the other local government shakedowns.
“(Internet Service Providers) show up in your area – looking to spend millions or billions of dollars to build or improve their service to you.
“But before they can do that – they must first play Mother May I with the government(s) in your area.
“You know, the governments that are already taxing the living daylight out of ISPs. That now create ridiculous lists of additional demands of ISPs – for the ISPs’ ‘right’ to spend millions or billions of dollars providing you service.
“It’s like very many governments going shopping – with businesses’ credit cards….
“The number of cities and towns making these ridiculous demands is staggering. The wide variety of these ridiculous demands is mind-numbing.
“All of which are geared by government – to find new and additional ways to extract ever more money from the ISPs….
“And why do governments get so omni-directional creative in additionally fleecing ISPs?
“Because of the 5% cap on Local Franchise Authorities (LFA) fees.
“Governments want to charge the 5% in taxes – and then add on all sorts of these types of additional absurdities.
“ISPs want the absurdities – to count towards the 5% cap.”
The ISPs’ request – is certainly not unreasonable. Which is why the Trump Federal Communications Commission (FCC) issued a rule/ruling that said forced purchases imposed by the local governments – count towards the 5%.
Which only makes Constitutional sense.
The World Wide Web – is quite obviously worldwide. Which means its regulation is preeminently the purview of the federal government. The Feds establish national policy – and then negotiate terms for interconnectivity with the rest of the planet.
These very many state and local government shakedowns – violate this. And are a violation of the Constitution’s Commerce Clause:
“(P)rovision of the U.S. Constitution (Article I, Section 8) that authorizes Congress ‘to regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with Indian Tribes.’”
The purpose of said Clause – is to prevent state and local governments from imposing impediments to interstate commercial activity. Which is precisely what these shakedown artists are doing.
Well, the shakedown artists sued to protect and preserve their ability to be shakedown artists. And the Ninth Circuit just last week said….
“The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco largely upheld the three orders the FCC adopted in 2018 to speed 5G deployments, despite objections from dozens of U.S. cities….
“The 2018 FCC orders limited local governments’ ability to regulate telecommunications providers and prevented owners and operators of utility poles from discriminatorily denying or delaying 5G and broadband service providers access to poles.”
A second Constitutional ruling from the once-insane Ninth Circuit – in less than a week.
Thank you VERY much, President Trump and Senate Majority Leader McConnell.
This first appeared in Red State.