Chris has written a lot about how Internet access in Europe is so much faster, and cheaper, than what we pay in the US. A big part of the reason is that they have a lot more competition in Europe. It’s routine, in Europe, to get a broadband, phone, and cable TV package that starts at around $40 a month. And the phone package of course has unlimited calls domestically, and a lot of free calls internationally as well.
Susan Crawford, former special assistant to President Obama for science, technology and innovation, and author of Captive Audience: The Telecom Industry and Monopoly Power in the New Gilded Age, joins Bill to discuss how our government has allowed a few powerful media conglomerates to put profit ahead of the public interest — rigging the rules, raising prices, and stifling competition. As a result, Crawford says, all of us are at the mercy of the biggest business monopoly since Standard Oil in the first Gilded Age a hundred years ago.
“The rich are getting gouged, the poor are very often left out, and this means that we’re creating, yet again, two Americas, and deepening inequality through this communications inequality,” Crawford tells Bill.