Today’s manufacturers are innovators. They integrate technology and the Internet in every aspect of their businesses. All types of technological innovations, including sophisticated modeling software, integrated machine-to-machine technology on the shop floor and connected vehicles, have helped power a period of unprecedented growth in the manufacturing sector. Manufacturers essentially have become technology companies. They have leveraged the Internet to compete, deploy new technologies, connect with their workforce and their customers, reduce costs, cut waste, enhance the environment and create safer, more reliable products.
The federal government’s market-based, pro-competition approach to the Internet in the 1990s sparked a wave of investment and growth not seen anywhere else in the world. America’s wireless and wired broadband infrastructure is the envy of the world because it is constantly improved, enhanced and made more efficient by new investment and innovation. Reversing course and applying an antiquated command-and-control regulatory framework to the Internet makes no sense. Worse, President Obama’s proposal will stifle future investment and innovation while yielding no commensurate benefits for consumers. It also complicates manufacturers’ ability to make the timely and necessary capital investment decisions they need.