TechFreedom’s Berin Szoka and the International Center for Law & Economics ’ Geoffrey Manne recently penned an op-ed for CNET detailing some of the problems with the FCC’s approval of the SpectrumCo deal. As they explain,
The FCC’s decision seems measured, citing both benefits and risks of the deal to consumers and rejecting most of the claims of the deal’s staunchest critics. But this apparent reasonableness masks the true, arbitrary nature of FCC review: a costly, unsupervised game of “Mother, May I?”, requiring applicants to rearrange their businesses in ways the agency could neither require by regulation nor extract as concessions without exceeding the proper scope of its transaction review. Most troublingly, the FCC need not even make its extra-legal demands explicit. Because all future applicants know that the actual approval of this deal is far less significant to them than the process behind it, even yesterday’s good news comes with an asterisk.