One of America's leading authorities on technology and telecom policy, Motley is a writer, television and radio commentator, political and policy strategist, lecturer, debater, activist, and policy advisor to The Heartland Institute.
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The huge-er government gets – the greater its ability to deliver cronyism goodies. The bigger the wallet government has – the larger the regulatory hammer it wields – the more Crony Socialism it can dispense.
Remember when President Barack Obama said this?
The Obama Administration is excellent at both. The punishing:
And the rewarding:
Often there are moments of Crony Socialist harmonic convergence. When government can reward friends – while simultaneously punishing enemies.
Take, for instance, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC)’s latest auction of spectrum – the airwaves we use for all things wireless.
DISH Network’s brazen abuse of the Federal Communications Commission’s incentives for small businesses at a recent spectrum auction — to the tune of $3 billion, at taxpayers’ expense — was enough to make even a Dickensian villain squirm….
Using multiple shell companies to qualify for “designated entity” (DE) discounts, DISH Network effectively shaved off more than $3 billion in payments….
DE status is reserved for small businesses — not market behemoths like DISH Network.
How behemoth is DISH Network? About $34 billion. A little large for DE eligibility.
DE is Huge Government yet again trying to manipulate the marketplace – allegedly for good and noble purposes – and (shocker) failing miserably.
The DE program was created at Congress’s direction more than 20 years ago. It offers qualifying small companies a taxpayer-funded credit equal to 25 percent of the purchase price to help them compete against their larger counterparts when bidding for spectrum.
DISH got a heck of a deal. I wonder why?
The co-founder of broadcasting giant DISH Network was accused in a federal complaint last week of intimidating company executives into making political donations that largely went to Democratic causes.
Ahh – that’s why.
Don’t get too excited – it was Republican Commissioner Ajit Pai who said that.
When government plays favorites – everyone else loses. When the Leviathan has its giant thumb on the scale – it is anything but fair.
DISH purchased spectrum on the crony cheap – that could have instead gone to any of the many other bidders. Many of whom are vocally opposed to many Administration power grab policies – including itsrecent Net Neutrality Internet takeover. One of whom – Verizon – successfully sued to undo the last Administration attempt at Net Neutrality imposition.
The Administration rewarding its friends – while punishing its enemies. The Crony Socialist twofer.
It’s way past time for Huge Government to stop trying to micro-manipulate the private sector. The ends never justify the means – and the intended ends are never met.
And it will take a Crony Socialist weapon out of the government’s vast arsenal.
Now that’s a twofer for the better.
[Originally published at Red State]