Tag Archives: 1970s

Net Neutrality Is Still Retarded

It’s the calculation problem. Always has, always will be:

By arbitrarily changing existing markets for internet service, regulators risk corrupting the fragile preconditions necessary for firms and consumers to calculate rationally, and the incentives necessary to lure investment and risk-laden innovative enterprises. The result could be excess demand in the market for internet service if regulations force prices too low, excess supply if regulations force prices too high, or stilted innovation in ISP technology altogether.

tl;dr version: Corporate stakeholders spend their lizard-brain lives nailing the range of right price(s) at any given time. They don’t know much, but bureaucrats know even less. I would even argue their knowledge of right prices is always approaching zero, since their knowledge is downstream from price determination; they know what corporations are doing only after stakeholder calculations are complete, and how markets (aka: consumers) react to them.

Therefore, all policy regarding prices is arbitrary, and given a long enough duration and holding all else constant, policy will cause higher prices or massive supply shortages—probably the latter. If you though the gas shortages in the 1970’s were bad, wait until millennials can’t post a drunk selfie to Instagram during SXSW, or binge-watch the latest edgy one-hour drama on Netflix, because of inevitable bandwidth restrictions.

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