Monday, November 22, 2004

Lafayette takes first step into the great fiber optic unknown

Meandering style aside one has to regard Bill Decker's latest foray into commentary on Lafayette's fiber optic venture as yet another sign of just how thoroughly LUS has carried the day on this issue.

Close watchers of the local newspaper will have followed Decker's slow evolution to this almost-endorsement from his first less than thoughtful (and less than useful) immoderate attack on LUS, from which I quote: “What’s next? A five-year plan? A hall of socialist labor heroes?” We are no longer comparing LUS to Communists, no Stalinists—and that's real progress.

So I report the flaws in this latest missive with a great sense of appreciation for what it is not. Still, there's still some distance to go if we are to get to truly informed and informative commentary. Decker spends the first three paragraphs telling us what isn't accomplished by last Tuesday's vote before getting to half of the story about what it did accomplish: "the vote did express broad council support for the LUS proposal." It, of course, misses the primary purpose of the vote: to comply with the state law requiring public hearings to explore and a vote to approve the plan. The vote was the test set up by law to approve the idea....that has been the central and most important question all along; one that is now settled. All the rest is mere implementation.

There is a bit more obscurity about the competition increasing services, LUS' bonding status, a twitch about the design of the rollout—none of which mature to a firm conclusion about what the commentator believes is actually supposed to be happening.

But in the end there is a cheering bit of approval for Lafayette doing what the author sees as is its "best shot at guiding the region’s development in a positive way" by embracing "the cyber-future — hyperfast data services available to industry, business and consumer alike, everywhere in town, for whatever you want to learn, invent, make or sell."

Decker closes with:

"Nothing says Lafayette is ready for that future as clearly as the City-Parish Council’s vote."

We've come a long way, baby.

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