Video: Muni-Provided B-band = Dirty Hands, Sticky Fingers (with Seton Motley)

by Mike Wendy on March 26, 2014

FCC Muni B-Band Plan Would Be an Odd Result of Net Neutrality Ruling from Mike Wendy on Vimeo.

In this video, Less Government’s Seton Motley talks about FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler’s new plan to boost uptake of broadband by promoting publicly-funded, muni-provided broadband services.  It is a plan the unelected Wheeler seeks to impose especially on states that, through votes of their elected representatives, have legally banned the provision of muni-provided communications services because such programs are generally unsustainable, wasteful and anti-competitive.

Respecting Federalism this is not.

Listen to Motley’s words.  It is a story of government creating rules to save Americans from its rules, but which only make the government-created mousetrap ever-harder to escape.  Sort of like, “Heads, Uncle Sam wins. Tails, the American citizen loses.”

The formula is simple (and, sadly, commonplace):

  1. Government creates a monopoly for entities to provide needed services, placing hurdles and other shakedowns to prevent alternative entrance into the marketplace.
  2. Eventually, government becomes dissatisfied with the level of competition which has developed – willfully ignoring the fact that it actively worked to bring about or distort the marketplace in the first place through its initial grant and ongoing, anti-competitive administration.
  3. Finally, government proclaims the marketplace is just “broken”, and then blows the whole market up to “fix” it, imposing its own, heavy-handed solution or outright takeover to give services once privately provided (sound familiar – as in the ACA, etc.)?

Citizens should see this untoward practice in terms of connivance and dirty hands – two associated legal doctrines that stand for the idea that it would be unfair to permit a plaintiff (like the government in this instance) to get legal relief for a situation in which it created.

The FCC is just one of virtually un-countable government agencies here in the U.S., practicing this fine art of regulatory dirty hands (and sticky fingers).  Americans should demand policymakers come clean, and bring an end to this liberty-stealing connivance.

Previous post:

Next post: