February 12, 2006

"We Thought You Said Spend the $200 Billion on Dark Fiber"

John Paczkowski:

The United States is the 19th ranked nation in household broadband connectivity rate, just ahead of Slovenia.' Want to know why? Because, contends telecom analyst Bruce Kushnick, the Bell Companies never delivered symmetrical fiber-optic connectivity to millions of Americans though they were paid more than $200 billion to do it. According to Kushnick's book, "$200 Billion Broadband Scandal", during the buildup to the 1996 Telecommunications Reform Act, the major U.S. telcos promised to deliver fiber to 86 million households by 2006 (we're talking about fiber to the home, here). They asked for, and were given, some $200 billion in tax cuts and other incentives to pay for it.' But the Bells didn't spend that money on fiber upgrades -- they spent it on long distance, wireless and' inferior DSL services.' Some headlines from Kushnick's work:

  • By 2006, 86 million households should have been rewired with a fiber optic wire, capable of 45 Mbps, in both directions.
  • The public subsidies for infrastructure were pocketed. The phone companies collected over $200 billion in higher phone rates and tax perks, about $2000 per household.
  • The World is Laughing at US. Korea and Japan have 100 Mbps services as standard, and America could have been Number One had the phone companies actually delivered. Instead, we are 16th in broadband and falling in technology dominance.
Wonderful... More here. Posted by James Zellmer at February 12, 2006 8:25 PM | Subscribe to this site via RSS:
Posted to Broadband | Politics