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More Internet and Access? We Need More Spectrum and Less Government
The Left is the world’s worst choir. Singing dissonantly if not concordantly about how good things are - no matter how bad things are.
And, conversely, about how bad things are - no matter how good things are. There are no circumstances in which the Left finds itself - where they are averse to lying so as to advance their Leftism.
As but one current example, the Donald Trump Administration has delivered us what is in many ways a historically good economy.
Aptly described - yet bizarrely dismissed - by Wisconsin Democrat Congressman Gwen Moore:
“GDP is great, unemployment is at an all-time low, African-Americans are doing well, Hispanics are doing well, wages are rising at the fastest pace in ten years -- blah, blah, blah.”
To be clear: Blacks and Hispanics aren’t just “doing well” - their respective unemployment rates are at all time lows. Wages are actually rising at their fastest pace in fifteen years.
Despite ALL of that, we have thus far about two dozen Democrats declared for the presidency. And all of them are running on “fixing” Trump’s record-good economy.
And on, and on, and on…. Blah, blah, blah.
A large contributor to the Trump Economic Boom - is Trump’s massive rollback of ridiculous regulations.
This major less government move - has paid major economic dividends. The less government there is - the more private sector economic activity there is.
And Trump was focused on deregulation - from the moment he entered the White House:
Of course, some regs are huger than others. One massive slate of regulations Trump rolled away - was the all-encompassing Internet power grab falsely named Network Neutrality.
Imposed in 2015 by the Barack Obama Administration, Net Neutrality and all its attending regulations were already starting to stifle the nation’s Internet sector - which is currently about 1/6th of our $18 trillion economy.
The more government there is - the less private sector economic activity there is.
Since Trump undid this nonsense, the Left…lied about it. Saying it would be the end of everything Internet.
But as we know - the Left lies.
And with less government comes….
As we continue to try to fight off the Left’s Net Neutrality reimposition attempts, we are also battling their attempts to insert much more government in myriad other ways.
Except we’ve tried government broadband - since the inception of private sector broadband.
Bad Ideas Never Die – Government Makes Them Policy Over And Over Again Shocker - government is awful at it.
“For decades, local governments have made promises of faster and cheaper broadband networks. Unfortunately, these municipal networks often don’t deliver or fail, leaving taxpayers to foot the bill. Explore the map to learn about the massive debt, waste and broken promises left behind by these failed government networks.”
We also hear a lot of Leftist lies about a lack of broadband competition. Except government - is the ultimate monopoly. And except:
The Left lies about access to the Internet.
Because what the Left doesn’t tell you is - too much government is preemptively killing prospective providers and minimizing others.
Because what the Left doesn’t tell you is:
“There are the monstrous taxes. On wireless, there is the Universal Service Fund (USF) tax. Which is currently a monstrous 18.1%. And it goes up automatically every three months. And can also be raised whenever by three votes from unelected Federal Communications Commission (FCC) bureaucrats….
“Then there are the tens of thousands of state, local and municipal governments – and their very many impediments to Internet access. They are particularly awful to wired ISPs – again, the only Internet access these clowns count:
“‘Local governments and their public utilities charge ISPs far more (for building rights) than these things actually cost. For example, rights of way and pole attachments fees can double the cost of network construction.’
“Emphasis ours - but did you get that? Local governments so shake down the ISPs – it DOUBLES the cost of building out the area. Meaning all the digging, trenching, cable-laying – for miles and miles and miles. All of which is the antithesis of cheap. And government DOUBLES that cost.
“Does it get even worse? Of course it does:
“‘(A) system of forced kickbacks….(also) includ(ing) ISPs…building out service where it isn’t demanded, donating equipment, and delivering free broadband to government buildings.’
“Again, emphasis - and offense thereto - ours.
“ALL of this government imposition - dramatically increases the cost of providing Internet access. Which, of course, dramatically increases the price access providers are forced to charge consumers. You know, the people about whom the more-government-advocating fake ‘consumer advocates’ claim to care.”
Of course all of this extra government - and all the extra money extra government costs - prices WAY too many providers out of providing at all.
A crucial, too-little-known component of the Internet: Both wired and wireless must exist - for each to exist. Internet traffic seamlessly crisscrosses wired and wireless networks - billions of times a second.
Both need less government - so as to deliver us more Internet and access.
And a crucial component of our Internet and access - is spectrum:
“All wireless communications signals travel over the air via radio frequency, aka spectrum. The TV broadcast you watch, the radio program you listen to, the GPS device that helps get you where you're going, and the wireless phone service you use to make phone calls and check Facebook from your smartphone -- all use invisible airwaves to transmit bits of data through the air.
“The easiest way to understand what spectrum really is and how it provides services is to look at your radio. When you tune your radio to 93.9 FM, you are tuning into a station that is broadcasting at 93.9 megahertz. If you want to a listen to a different station, like one that only plays country music or jazz, you turn the dial to another frequency like 104.7 FM.”
Spectrum - is a finite resource. And all spectrum is not created equal. Some bands of spectrum are much more powerful and effective than others.
Think of a Monopoly game board. Some spectrum is Boardwalk and Park Place - some is Baltic and Mediterranean Avenues…and all properties in between.
And here’s the rub:
“(G)uess who controls a majority of the best spectrum, the spectrum most suitable for mobile broadband? It’s the federal government itself. Almost 60 percent of that spectrum is in federal hands.
“Without a doubt, the federal government has legitimate needs for spectrum. The Department of Defense, for example, uses spectrum for radars.
“But it probably won’t surprise you to hear that the federal government doesn’t use much of the spectrum that it controls efficiently.
“Indeed, just last year, the Government Accountability Office reported that federal agencies do not focus on ensuring the best use of spectrum and need not justify their spectrum needs.
“Without any market or policy incentives to be ‘spectrally efficient,’ as we say in the business, it’s not a surprise that these agencies aren’t as nimble and innovative as is the private sector.
“It is unacceptable that about 60 federal agencies control more spectrum than is available to the hundreds of millions of Americans with wireless devices.
“As is the case in many other areas, the federal government can and should make do with less.”
So…. We all want ever-better Internet - with ever-better access. What We the Sane People know is - government is the far-and-away biggest impediment to those noble goals.
We need government to as quickly as possible clear off of a whole bunch of the spectrum they hold - so it can then sell it to the private sector.
(Of course, “quick” isn’t in the government’s vocabulary. The above article was written in 2013 - and very little has since happened.)
We need government to tax and regulate broadband MUCH less.
And we need government to stop pretending to be an Internet provider.
Because they are incessantly awful at it. All of which will make it easier and cheaper for as many Internet providers as possible - to provide Internet to as many people as possible.