Sorry, NYTimes, It's the Private Sector, Not Obama, Which Has Successfully Wired America

The Gray Lady on Sunday packed a tremendous amount of bias into the opening sentence of their “Most of U.S. Is Wired, but Millions Aren’t Plugged In.” 

Brace yourself - here goes:


“The Obama administration has poured billions of dollars into expanding the reach of the Internet, and nearly 98 percent of American homes now have access to some form of high-speed broadband.”

Yes, the private sector had NOTHING to do with that.  It was all due to President Barack Obama’s beneficence - and the glorious power of big government.  Like all good Leftists, the Times is not allowing the facts to get in the way of a good beating.

Behold some inconvenient truths.

We were already incredibly close to 98 percent of American homes having access to some form of broadband - wired or wireless - when President Obama was still Senator Obama. 

In 2010, there were a total of 114.8 million U.S. households.  In 2011, somewhere between two and five million didn’t have access to government-defined broadband.   That’s already between 95.6% and 98.3% access - just two years into the Age of Obama. 

So President Obama’s “billions of dollars poured” into broadband had nearly nothing to do with it.  Which becomes blatantly obvious when you look at how incredibly wasteful, destructive - and tiny - that government money was.

Folded into the fatty, flabby folds of the 2009 $787 billion “Stimulus” bill was...$7.2 billion for broadband.  Compare that to private sector investment of more than $1 trillion since 1996 - and $66 billion just in 2011.  For the Times to imply that the President’s money was the lead cause for access success is...absurd on stilts. 

And it was supposed to connect those who were unconnected.  But the money was again and again and again either wasted, abused - or spent to compete with existing private companies already providing people broadband.

Nothing says “fairness” like you paying your taxes - then having those taxes used to fund a competitor to your business. 

This government-funded competitor thing has been happening a lot.

(T)he government has given $101 million to another provider - which they are going to use to “overbuild” - on top of Eagle’s network. “Overbuild” meaning – build service with government money to Hays, Kansas – an area that already has access to service via Eagle.

A lot.

There are already four private broadband providers serving large swaths of (Lake County, MN).... So most of the 100% Lake County Government Broadband has to get – already have broadband service.  And all four private providers are doing it for less money than Lake County will charge.

A whole lot.

(Denver, Colorado’s) KUSA-Channel 9 report highlighted Eagle-Net’s use of this grant funding to build fiber optic lines in locations already served by other fiber optic communication providers - including a school of 11 students in Agate, Colorado, which now has three different fiber optic lines running to the school, including the Eagle-Net service.  

All of these President Obama broadband “Stimulus” uber-fails - and many more - are the federal government unquestioningly dumping our coin into state and local government proposals.  Proposals that would never garner a dime in private capital - because they all stink on ice.

All of them - and many more - failed in their primary objective.  To increase the percentage of people with access to broadband. 

All of which demonstrates just how incredibly silly and biased was the New York Times’ lead sentence - inferring President Obama had almost single-handedly delivered broadband Internet access to the masses. 

It’s the Gray Lady yet again trying to “stimulate” a Presidential legacy for the once-hailed, now-failed King.

Seton Motley
Seton Motley
Founder and president of Less Government.