Time to Shut Down the FCC (Andy Kessler)

More transistors exist today than ever and there is plenty of capacity inside fiber-optic cables and out in the air. What’s missing is competition for consumers.

Ask anyone in the technology world about scarcity and you’ll hear a lecture about how there is no such thing. More transistors exist today than yesterday. There is plenty of bandwidth, both inside of fiber optic cables and out in the air, and more everyday as faster chips can handle higher and higher speeds. And there is no scarcity of pixels, storage, servers or even energy to run data centers (which sit next to waterfalls for cheap electricity). Scarcity is a myth perpetrated by those that want the protection racket of regulation.

During the last two decades, the FCC has manufactured the idea that the electromagnetic spectrum used by wireless devices is scarce. Spectrum auctions became another way to restrain trade. Deep pocket operators, like AT&T and Verizon Wireless, overbid for spectrum and then pass along high costs to the consumer in the form of $40 monthly fees and cryptic calling plans.

In place of the FCC, all we need is a policy framework that states that consumers and innovators have a right to one thing: real choice. Everyone should have the right to choose among many networks for communications services, and no state or municipality may restrict competition.

That’s it. Everything else—faster networks, innovative services, a la carte programming, and yes, even privacy—follows from this one rule.

via Andy Kessler: Time to Shut Down the FCC – WSJ.com.

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