In their effort to prevent states from protecting a free and open Internet, a small handful of massive and extraordinarily profitably Internet service providers (ISPs) are telling state legislatures that network neutrality would hinder their ability to raise revenues to pay for upgrades and thus force them to charge consumers higher bills for Internet access. This is because state-based network neutrality will prohibit data discrimination schemes known as “paid prioritization” where the ISP charges websites and applications new tolls and relegate those that do not pay to the slow lane.
The same dynamics apply to the electrical generation and distribution industry where I worked for decades.
Although the cost of electrical power to ratepayers isn’t always much different between publicly owned utilities and investor owned utilities, publicly owned utilities’ infrastructure is better maintained, providing more reliability and when power outages do occur publicly owned utilities put more resources into restoring power.
By comparison the investor owned utilities spend their money paying dividends rather than maintaining infrastructure.
Meanwhile, our local GOP boosters and dyed in the wool Democrats have swallowed the ISPs’ myth that continued net neutrality will “hinder their ability to raise revenues to pay for upgrades”.
The difference you note between Publicly owned serves and that of privately owned is apparent across all manner of industries. I can see that going Province to Province here in Canada wherein one jurisdiction relies more on Private Companies to provide services and another on Governmnet services…
Another example in addition to yours on the Power grid.
Highways maintanence and services. When this was privatised here iN BC the number of incidents of road closures due to blizzards in the interior, or things like windshields broken due to rocks striking from the sand/gravel used during a storm jumped. This because when it Government run safety was the main concern and when it privately run it is profits. In order to generate more profits Private firms cut corners. They will let the snow build to greater levels or use gravel with a larger size of stones and cite the wording of the Contract when there complaints.
In driving long distances I used to use those rest stops at roadside pullouts. Alberta had totally privatized wherein BC had kept this in the hands of highway workers that worked for the Government. The Alberta ones were unusable. Minimum wage is paid to the worker and those workers only take that kind of job on a temporary basis. They will just skip doing things , one because it means more profit to the company in question and 2 because a person making minimum wage is generally a temporary employee.
When it comes to Public services and Utilities , when these Privatized everything takes a backseat to profits that can be generated and to generate those profits corners are cut, this leading to systems that ar eless safe and less reliable. The “Free market” crowd will claim that Contracts should removed from firms that do not provide adequate services , ignoring the fact that there in fact little competition at that larger scale and as Coporations merge there even less.
I recall a local mall where there were 8 different shoe stores. They were all owned by the same Corporation. There was only the ILLUSION of competition.
Agree with both of you, I’ve never seen a case where the public was served better by privatization of services.
Is it lack of incentive or good ole greed that drives the ISP’s ? Since European countries have faster speeds for less money, and their ISP’s are still in business, I think I’ll go with greed.
The nauseating irony is that in the “information age”, some of the least informed practices and deployment of sheer crap over the most expansive instrument for information is committed by greedy suckers of the tentacles of ISPs.
Only in predatory capitalism of the late empire of the USA can the swamp be so stirred.