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October 14, 2009


Gucci Shoes

I love blog, because any person can blog in their own feelings and to share things with. But i suppose the blog could only be improved if you posted more often.


The Second Amendment to the Constitution was written exactly for situations like the citizens of the United States are currently enjoying. When the governing bodies take away too many of our civil liberties, become too heavy handed, over tax us with no concern for the citizens, it is necessary that the people take back the control of the government by whatever means is necessary.

EP Heart Rhythms

Well, this was comforting... I was just looking for a translator, but you all heard the same language I did.

Common Sense

As Glenn Reynolds (roughly) put it, you don't have any reason to worry about our vague, all-encompassing and invasive regulations, because we'll use SELECTIVE ENFORCEMENT.

That's almost worse than the regulation itself. "trust us with absolute power, because we'll use it arbitrarily"

Libertarian Advocate

Try this for fun...

In pre-compliance with new FTC rules effective December 1, 2009,

I, [Insert Your Name], hereby certify that I have received no compensation of any kind, tangible or intangible, in exchange for my endorsement of the product herein-before referenced. /sarc off

Fat Man

What the government really thinks:

I Kgs 12:10-11

"Thus shall you speak to those people who said to you, `Your father made our yoke heavy, please lighten it for us'; `My little finger is thicker than my father's loins. My father laid upon you a heavy yoke, I will add to your yoke. My father chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scorpions.'"

Wacky Hermit

Yeah, the FTC has us bloggers all lined up, pants down, and the paddle's out, and they're tapping the paddle on their hand... why on earth would we think they were wanting to spank us? Especially with the FTC saying they're not going to spank us!

I agree with many of the previous commenters that the FTC retains the power. It is still the Stalinist doctrine that we are all criminals unless the government likes us for the time being. They are friendly now but wait till you are on their radar for the wrong reasons; you will soon be shown as a definite black or white in their system. It is not the rule of law; it is the rule of man. It is tyranny.

Hal Crawford

First they came for the bloggers who wrote reviews on free products they received, and I didn't complain because I didn't receive free products....


It sounds as though Ms. Engle is admitting that she and her bureaucratic minions are not smart enough to write rules without "gray areas", so they throw the guidelines out and expect us to take their word for it that they will not prosecute gray area cases.

This is nonsense. The gray areas are deliberately designed to make it impossible to tell when one is in compliance and thus provide ample opportunities to prosecute the people they disagree with. It's yet one more example of government making everyone a criminal so they can selectively prosecute their political opponents.

And it's a further example of deliberately making the line so vague that law-abiding citizens will refrain from doing perfectly legal things to avoid getting close to the gray area.


The problem is the number of qualifiers in her "guidelines": "gray area... not something we think we'd change... might not require disclosure... some point...disclosure would be called for."

This is a terrible rule precisely because it is vague. Here is the key: A blogger has no idea if he or she is in violation of these guidelines. Government rules cannot be capricious or subject to qualifiers. You might be in trouble, you might not be. Of course, one assumes that this is the point.

Speed limit: It might be 55.

Amy Alkon

So, they're going to punish publishers for sending out $11 review copies of books as a form of bribery?

Whenever there's a law or rule it can be used to prosecute somebody. Their word isn't good enough to justify this.

John Skookum

The Left has made a lot of hay with complaints about the "chilling effect" of this or that symbolic, relatively innocuous policy of Republican governments over the years. Time to show them a ton of Alinsky love now that the shoe's on the other foot. What's more, it is foolish to trust someone who asks for power but asks us to trust them not to misuse it.

OC Domer

In other words, "Trust us."

They have no plans to go after any individual bloggers. At least not right now. As long as they behave themselves and don't tick off the wrong people.

Georg Felis

And we should believe you why???

Here we have a politician of the FTC proclaiming "Yes, what you are doing is technically illegal. But we are not going to throw you in jail for it. Unless of course we want to."

Don't worry. The FTC won't go after individual bloggers on a blanket basis. They can pick and choose whom to enforce this against.


The Reader's Digest Condensed version of her remarks: "Don't worry, trust us. We're from the government, we would never do anything burdensome or make normal people's lives harder."

Dr. Dave

It is enlightening that nobody believes it's wise to trust our government to not be vindictive if criticized.

We believe government spokesmen are liars.

Gee, why could that be?

Steve A

"she said the FTC will go after the cases that are black and white."

Black and white as defined by them on that particular day. So, the "prosecutor/ regulator/ bureaucrat" gets to decide who has broken the law - you'll learn whether you are black or white when they tell you they are prosecuting.

More of the rampant "you're all criminals" so the ultimate power is in the hands of the enforcer . . .


My sophisticated response to Mary Engle's denial:

The hell you say.

Big Sigh

In other words, the FTC will have the power to harass government critics, the enforcement will be subjective and selective, and Ms. Engle's assurances on behalf of the FTC amount to "Trust us, we're from the government."

What could go wrong?


OK, let's imagine that I actually trust Ms. Engle to, as she says, "not ... investigat[e] individual bloggers." There is still the minor problem of once the "rule" is on thr books it's there to be abused by your successor, and their successor, etc. who just might be as "nice" as you.


"We are not going to be patrolling the blogosphere,"

"We are not planning on investigating individual bloggers."

"The check's in the mail."

"I'll respect you in the morning."

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