net INTERNET ACCESS FOR THE POOR... KINDA... SORTA... SOMEWHAT... please see fcc fine print mnn.com 11-09-11

orb-pc  `Mother Nature Network  MNN  ENVIRO - neat little site - many less-covered items
 You know, as I look around this nation, it is impossible not to notice its constant state of comporomise. even when it appears to be trying to do the 'right thing,' There's always a catch; a condition; fine print (aka, roach doo-doo); whereases and 'ifs.' To use the old British adage, "You lose on the roundabouts what you gain on the swings." Just look at this latest Snakes & Ladders contraption put out by the FCC.
Pretend you are poor. I know it's tough for most of you, but give it the old college try. You hear about this program and you say, "That's for me!" You trot on down to your friendly, local Neterati * store and ask for the form. Giddy at your profound change of fortune (everybody else has only a decade's headstart), you carry the now filled-in (same as filled-out - go figure) form back to the counter and say (pleasantly) "Gimme my broadband!" (well, you are an American and you know your rights, right?).
To your utter (pick one) dismay/disgust/chagrin you now get the rest of the story.... According to this article, your first 'snake' is
A TWO-YEAR LIMIT! Perhaps the federal gov thinks you will be wealthy enough to afford the normal highway robbery rates after that. Horatio Alger made it, so can you, you slacker you. More likely, the largesse of the Neteratis is driven more by the prospect of a % of the poor becoming sufficiently 'hooked' at the end of all those months of happy surfing to cause them to sign up at the usual usurious rate and forego such frills as, say, food. And you thought it was all mushy altruism and compassion. Silly you! Now on to the next viper at your breast:
A THREE-YEAR SIGN-UP WINDOW! Does the FCC imagine that the Internet will expire then? The time limits on all those discount coupons have one clear purpose: to get you to act as if time's a-wasting. I guess I'm just not being cynical enough, but can anyone give me a reason for this time limit? Is it meant to fence out any immigrants who foolishly choose to arrive in 3 years and a day from now? Is there really a time limit on competition? Why didn't I get that memo? --> next viper please:
REFURBISHED COMPUTERS By now, I hope you (poor person, remember?) have learned to cringe when the term 'public-private whatever' rears its head. Not to look a gift horse in the teeth, but you may be forgiven if the term 'pork' or 'payback' crosses your mind. It looks as if your price to enter cyber-heaven will entail buying second-rate equipment (aka, refurbished). Not got the cash on hand? No worries, mate.  Building on the outstanding success of (among a slew of other things) their student loan fraud, your FCC has 'arranged' for Morgan-effing-Stanley to fix you right up with e-z payment microloans. I'm betting the only thing not 'micro' about these loans will be their macro-jumbo-ginormous interest rates.
It's really shameful that our culture is so marinated in self-serving philanthropy passing itself off as the real thing; makes it hard for the real thing to pass itself off as, well, the real thing.
The $4 billion's worth of braodband 'donated' by the industry is but a fraction of the super-profits (and to dire societal effect) garnered since 1996. All those hundreds of billions that were allowed under the Telecommunications Act of that year were given with industry assurances that they would give America a cyber-highway that would be "... the envy of the world." We were #1 in broadband penetration and quality then. We are now around #25 (2010), and falling. Our stupid spectrum policy doesn't help.
Now, aren't you glad you're not poor?
*cable or telephone company

Nigel Watson  freethinker  727.493.1990 skype orbizen2
Blog: ORBizen Memo  http://orbizenmemo.blogspot.com/

"There is no greater disaster than greed."Lao-tzu

 "It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society." - Krishnamurti

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