FCC’s Nutty Policy Move

The current word is that the FCC will vote on net neutrality regulations sometime before Christmas. But does the Obama Administration really want to start 2011 with a fight over telecom?

As I’ve consistently said, there are theoretical arguments for and against net neutrality. But the timing is just horrible, for two reasons.

First, it’s really a dumb move to monkey with the vibrant and growing communications sector when the rest of the economy is so weak. It’s as if you have two cars–one running, one in the repair shop–and you decide it’s a good time to rebuild the transmission of the car that actually works because you hear a few squeaks.

Second, the Obama Administration’s cardinal achievement so far is healthcare reform. Flawed as it is, Obamacare represents an absolutely essential step forward. The Administration should be concentrating its effort on defending healthcare reform rather than  looking for new industries to regulate.

 

 

Comments

  1. Defend Obamacare from what? The Republicans will put up a pro forma repeal which Obama will just veto. If it’s repealed, it’ll have to wait for a President Daniels or Christie in 2012. As for net neutrality, it’s largely a non-issue, as most ISPs basically practice it now to a large extent. The real issue is facilities access, ie structural separation, any talk of which has been shut down by the telcos for a while and the bought and sold FCC is not about to touch it. Telco is doing reasonably well now despite horrible regulation, not because it has been left alone.

Trackbacks

  1. […] apply more oversight to curb excesses. Right now, we should be lightening burdens, Mandel says, not imposing new ones: it’s really a dumb move to monkey with the vibrant and growing communications sector when the […]

  2. […] apply more oversight to curb excesses. Right now, we should be lightening burdens, Mandel says, not imposing new ones: it’s really a dumb move to monkey with the vibrant and growing communications sector when the […]

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