Out-of-Control Entitlements

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Posted: Mar 25, 2010 1:20 PM
When residents of the city of Detroit have to tell the federal government "thanks, but no thanks" for new entitlements, you know things have gotten out of hand. 

The Detroit News has published an editorial condemning the Obama administration's plans to expand citizens' access to high-speed broadband Internet access.  Their logic is quite simple: "Americans can't afford it and don't need it."
The FCC plan would subsidize police and fire broadband access to the tune of $16 billion a year and spend another $9 billion a year on making it available in rural areas -- on top of the $7 billion for broadband that Congress authorized in the federal stimulus bill.

In addition to the cost, the FCC proposal has some other worrying aspects, such as imposing more regulations on existing Internet lines and raising the possibility they will be treated more like monopoly telephone lines. Such a move could create the possibility of litigation and uncertainty, which would slow private investment in telecommunications developments.

The plan does not require existing network owners such as telephone and cable companies to share their infrastructure with competitors, which is good news, since such a regulation would also create a significant disincentive for expansion or the development of new technology...

[T]he Internet has developed without a lot of government interference and for the health of the U.S. telecommunications network, it should stay that way.