Friday, November 13, 2015

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

DOJ won’t help FCC fight state laws that harm municipal broadband | Ars Technica

Not good news for supporters of municipal Broadband.

Ars Technica reports that the Department of Justice won't support the FCC's recent decision to try and preempt anti-muni laws and policies that the FCC (rightly) holds harm competition.

The FCC is right of course, such laws do suppress competition. Having a municipal competitor clearly helps bring both new technology and cheaper prices to a community. We have proved both points here in Lafayette. But the DOJ may be too aware that the federal courts have long held that there is no particular right to local control...that only states have standing and that local governments, including municipalities, are entirely subservient to state power.

This is, frankly, a defect in our democratic system that lets "big government" run rampant over the rights of self-determination that are more appropriately made at the local level. This will become an ever-bigger problem as the population continues to concentrate in large cities and state governments continue as the bastions of reactionary values. Telecommunications is just one aspect.

Other countries do a better job of this. We should too.