Status Quo Government Meddling and Cronyism Is…Progress?

Published August 11, 2015

It hasn’t been a great year from the perspective of shrinking government. In fact, it’s been terrible. Really awful, pork-and-cronyism-filled programs are being refunded, renewed – and even resurrected.

Since November – when We the People delivered Republicans another historic landslide victory – what have they delivered us?

Laura Ingraham Blasts Republican Leadership Over $1.1 Trillion CR-Omnibus Budget Bill

“A 1,600 page bad joke.

Congress Votes to Fund President Barack Obama’s Amnesty

Senate Passes Three-Year Highway Bill That Renews Ex-Im Bank

House Votes to Renew No Child Left Behind

All the while, the GOP incessantly tells us that not only is it the best we can do or expect – it’s all really fantastic.

Conservatives – and Americans of all stripes who know how broken government is – know Shinola. This ain’t Shinola.

Seton Motley | Red State |

All the while, President Barack Obama’s Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is rapidly becoming the Federal Cronyism Commission.

And after having recently watched a round of its cronyism fail so miserably it bothered even them – they’ve decided to do it exactly the same all over again. Behold the FCC’s spectrum auction set-asides.

Spectrum is the airwaves we use for all things wireless. From your intercontinental cell phone all the way down to your car key fob. The spectrum supply is finite – and not all spectrum is equally useful. Think of it as a Monopoly board. Some spectrum is Boardwalk and Park Place – some is Baltic and Mediterranean Avenues. And varying degrees in between.

The government last year held a spectrum auction to get some out the door to a data-driven private sector. Except:

FCC to Set Aside Spectrum for Smaller Wireless Firms

Federal regulators…set aside a portion of choice spectrum for smaller wireless carriers at an auction of TV airwaves scheduled for next year.

An auction is everyone bidding on any and everything they want – no restrictions. So this was…something else.

And look where government’s good intentions led.

Dish’s $3 Billion in Auction Discounts ‘Makes a Mockery’ of Auction, FCC Official Says

Dish participated in the auction through three entities: American AWS-3 Wireless, Northstar Wireless and SNR Wireless….

Northstar Wireless and SNR Wireless…made $13.3 billion in gross provisional winning bids, but they are to pay around $10 billion because they both qualify for the FCC’s 25 percent discount for small businesses. 

So Big Company Dish Network (total assets: $22.1 billion) set up small front companies – to rig the FCC’s set-aside system.

This was too much – even for government.

Dish Responds to FCC’s Move to Deny Spectrum Auction Discounts

But not too much – for the FCC to make the exact same mistake all over again with its next spectrum auction.

FCC Sticks With 30 Megahertz Set Aside

Some of the Big Company cronies were unhappy there wasn’t even more Big Government meddling and cronyism. One of the whiniest Big Companies on the planet is T-Mobile (total assets: $19.95 billion):

T-Mobile US CEO: ‘If You’re Not Pissed Off, You’re Not Paying Attention’

I suppose those of us here in Reality are supposed to think that this latest status quo government meddling and cronyism is…progress.

As usual, I don’t feel very progressive.

[Originally published at Red State]