“Radical” changes in Washington always have this Charlie Brown/Lucy-like character (remember Lucy holding the football?): it doesn’t take long before you realize how little really ever changes in DC. The latest example is the Dems and IP issues as they affect the Net. Message to the Net from the newly Democratic House? Go to hell.
This is a followon to Lessig's talk at 23C3 which I haven't found time to watch yet. His apparent anger suggests surprise. I'm not surprised. In this country there is no such thing as the individual as a political force. Political force only happens in numbers. Those numbers can be grass roots "special interest/single issue" voters who are organized and have communicated to representatives that they will vote on their specific issue, or they can be dollars and cents that said representatives can use to market themselves to everyone who isn't an organized special interest voter. The future, with regards to the intellectual renaissance we have the potential to create with our recent advances in communications technology, has neither money nor organized voters, and so it is politically non-existant, regardless of what really smart people might have to say about it. The establishment media industry, on the other hand, has a lot of money. Glenn Reynolds wrote a sharp analysis of their interests here.
On the whole the Republicans aren't better than the Democrats on these issues, but they have a different set of interests they serve, and so they tend to do different kinds of damage. The march toward tyranny has both left and right steps. The shoe is now on the other foot. Don't expect that foot to hurt any less when it is stepping on you.