BY THE Federal Communications Commission’s own account, broadband use in the United States has exploded over the past decade * * * * So it is curious that the FCC’s newly released National Broadband Plan faults the market for failing to “bring the power and promise of broadband to us all” — in reality, some 7 million households unable to get broadband because it is not offered in their areas. Such an assessment — and the call for government intervention to subsidize service for rural or poor communities — is premature, at best. * * * * it is hard to see in this field the signs of gross market failure.
The FCC did not vote on the plan, according to David Hatch at CongressDaily, to avoid the possibility of a split vote. That could have meant an eye-opening 3-2 vote, if the plan has no Republican support. Which would have been no surprise, since the basic premise that there is a problem in this sphere which government is uniquely suited to fix through “smart” regulation and public subsidies, is wrong.