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Friday, January 9, 2004

Is This A Typo--Or What?
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The January 8 electronic edition of TR Daily contains a headline in the TOC that reads: "Hundt Advising Howard Dead on Building Telecom Platform." (Emphasis mine.)

Now, TR Daily is a fine publication known for good reporting and very few typos. Hmmm....maybe this was a Freudian slip. The story says former FCC Chairman and FOA Reed Hundt is now advising the Dr. Dean on telecom policy. In my view, the overly expansive network sharing policies Hundt engineered in implementing the 96 Act played no small contributory role in the telecom boom and bust cycle from which we now may just be emerging. Reed Hundt's notion that the government would support new entrants through a massive wealth transfer--mandatory facilities-sharing at below market prices--ultimately led to new investment drying up. Coupled with an unhealthy dose of irrational exuberance pervading the financial markets, Hundt's policy contributed to severe financial stress in the telecom industry.

Well, maybe Hundt is just what the doctor ordered to survive the cold winter nights ahead in the snows of Iowa and NH. But for the rest of us, as the headline intimates, the impact on telecom policy may be deadening.

posted by Randolph May @ 11:02 AM | General

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