Given that Comcast's CEO has golfed with President Obama, he's attended private fund raisers held by other Comcast executives and they, along with Time Warner, have donated heavily to Democrats I find this all very interesting. Is he pandering to certain constituencies by taking on something he knows for a fact is a losing battle? Or are broadband as a utility something ISPs actually want?
Superficially it sounds good, but you don't have to look very far to see that it's fraught with risks. I can't say my experiences with utilities is a positive one. They hold a legal monopoly even more entrenched than what Optimum or AT&T enjoy in my area. Ignoring weird resellers a single company supplies electricity in my area. The same goes for natural gas, and in their case there are no resellers.
Those utilities have to get approval from the state in order to raise rates, but I've yet to see a rate hike get rejected. Even if they have to negotiate a smaller increase, they still get something which translates to a few extra dollars on my monthly bill. If I'm not happy with that increase my only choice is to use less electricity or move out of state.
I wonder if like electricity, where we suffer some of the highest rates in the country, if broadband would be comparatively expensive. Also, how would we be billed, by the MB like we pay now for kWh? I can't imagine that being cheaper or better that what we've got now.
But hey, I could be wrong. It's difficult to trust anything the government proposes nowadays when there are always monied interests involved.