| If you have not heard about federal stimulus money
being wasted, you probably live under a rock since it has been covered all over
the news and on the Internet or more likely, you just don't care. Page C1 of
today's Cleveland Plain Dealer has an
article about a federal initiative to map where Internet broadband is available
in Ohio and nationwide. An Ohio non-profit which has been tracking that very
same information with federal money since 2007 has received an additional $1.8
Million to study what it already knows.
According to the article, 2.1% of Ohio homes do not have
broadband Internet access and by the time the report is published, the data
will be outdated anyhow. Let's face reality. Broadband Internet access is even
available in jails. The only places which may not actually have broadband
Internet nationally are extremely remote areas where it is not profitable to
provide that service, such as in the middle of large parks and Texas ranches,
but then again, if you live in those areas and want some Internet access, you
can still get it.
The real tragedy of the study is that it fails to report all
internet access. Sure, broadband is nice, but if you have a telephone, you have
dial-up Internet service via your home telephone service. Dialup service may be
slow by today's standards, but Internet access is available everywhere and if
you want something faster, you can get satellite access or move to a better
location. Even the Amish who have no electricity at home have Internet access
via cell phones and libraries.
This study is useless. Rather than looking for the negatives,
we should thank the free market system for bringing broadband Internet service
to 97.9% of Ohio in a few short years. Plus, the government is paying for
information it already paid for in other grants. Your tax dollars are being
flushed down the drain. Just like the
being used for basic driving lessons when that is not a permitted usage for
an official vehicle. Government spending is out of control.