Two years ago, the US had already dropped to 16th among the nations of the world in internet access speed. Why is this so? Because these so-called socialist nations are much less socialist than we are--in many ways, including--in telecommunications.
These nations all have something the U.S. lacks: a national broadband policy, one that actively encourages competition among providers, leading to lower consumer prices and better service.In 1926, it was clear to the federal government that it had no authority to regulate the communications spectrum.
Instead, the U.S. has a handful of unelected and unaccountable corporate giants that control our vital telecommunications infrastructure. This has led not only to a digital divide between the U.S. and the rest of the advanced world but to one inside the U.S. itself. Currently, broadband services in America remain unavailable for many living in rural and poorer urban areas, and remain slow and expensive for those who do have access.
In April, 1926 — United States v. Zenith Radio Corp. — the court again denied Hoover the authority to regulate licensure and this time—contrary to Intercity—they explicitly denied him discretion over time and wavelength assignment as well. Because the Intercity and Zenith decisions conflicted, Hoover turned to the acting Attorney General of the United States for an interpretation of the law. The Attorney General declared that the federal government had no authority to define any rights to spectrum.
The federal government has no authority to regulate the communications spectrum.But...fear of fears! How would it be regulated? People would be stomping all over each other if the federal government didn't control things, right? Wrong. The problem was already under control by state courts just fine, thank you.
the classic interference problem was encountered, litigated, and overcome, using no more than existing common-law precedent.If you drive down the freeway some evening with your AM radio station on, you will notice that the Federal Government does a crappy job of regulating the AM radio waves. But that's "okay". We've become accustomed to the reality that the federal government can fail at anything it wants and not be held accountable for it.
Where did the federal government get the idea, shortly after 1926, that is was somehow authorized to regulate the airwaves? By big business, who stood to gain, and has enjoyed in the interim 80 years, huge advantages over the small guy trying to get into the market. Is it surprising to you then, that huckmeisters like Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity are making it big with their radio putresence, while the little guy languishes? All the better to fool you with, my dear.
Private entities, such as the IEEE and Underwriters Laboratories can provide the same allocation function as does the FCC, and they can do it much better. If they were to become whores for their big business friends, something could much more easily be done to remedy the situation.
Currently, due to FCC ineptitude, vast swaths of the communications spectrum is left unused. Private companies have the technology and ability to apportion out these unused frequencies, leaving easily enough for public safety frequencies.
FCC policies virtually ensure that disputes are decided in favor of the communications giants, leaving the opposite point of view largely out in the cold.
The FCC, like the Federal Department of Education, should be abolished. It has solved no problems that were not already being solved. It has, rather, made political obeisance to its friends in big business, causing a monolithic use of America airwaves that would make Joe Stalin proud. Even if it did its job correctly, it would be less efficient than the private sector could provide the same service, and it would still be unconstitutional.
Bill Moyers' Journal on PBS has this web exclusive that talks about the December 18, 2007 decision by the Federal Communications Commission to allow newspapers to buy radio and television stations in the city that the papers are published. The FCC is a sham.
You should jump on your archaically slow internet connection and tell your congressman about it.