No Time To Waste

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[Commentary] Word on the street is that the Trump Federal Communications Commission transition team has submitted its report to Administration higher-ups and that it has been largely or wholly accepted. What we know of its recommendations, which have not and may never be released as such, makes for awful news. It sounds like an always-on green light for more mergers and acquisitions than ever and for such a deregulatory approach that our media and telecommunications conglomerates will be encouraged to build out monopoly markets across the land. That means one-sixth of our economy will lack meaningful oversight to protect the common good, a.k.a. the public interest. Keep in mind that the transition report is mostly the product of inside-the-Beltway think tank “experts” working at the conservative, corporate-sponsored American Enterprise Institute (AEI). Likely it has also received the blessing of the even more conservative Heritage Foundation, whose leadership staunchly opposes almost everything promoting the common good. How strange that these inside, corporate-oriented elites are setting policy for all those voters in rural America and the Rust Belt who made the difference in Donald Trump’s Electoral College victory. Does anyone reading this really believe that those voters want higher cable bills and monopoly set-top boxes (averaging over $230 annually) even though the FCC has the power to open the market for much more affordable alternatives? Do all those good voters, hoping for something that represents real Populism, not Wall Street’s version, really want higher phone bills, more industry consolidation, second-rate broadband service, and an internet controlled by a handful of gatekeepers? I think not.


No Time To Waste