Comrade Conroy's "Great Australian Firewall" takes another step towards its final destination.
Telstra has committed to the final step towards its pivotal part in the deployment of Australia’s national broadband network rollout, with the long anticipated finalisation of Definitive Agreements with the government and NBN Co. The $AU11 billion deal will ensure the nations incumbent carrier’s pit-and-duct infrastructure …
I hope you are right, although I'm pretty sure you are not.
The flaw in your thinking is that the NBN only involves the last mile.
It doesn't of course.
The whole NBN is designed from the backbone down, and the backbone is where Comrade Conroy hopes to insert his firewall.
It will probably never come to fruitiuon of course because hopefully the Socialists will be thrown out of power well before it can take effect, but then again you never know.
Stupid people are legion unfortunately.
Telstra should never have been sold off with the cables and cable right-of-ways. The cableway network should have remained separate thus giving all competition fair and equal access to the distribution system.
1. Building unnecessary parallel cableway networks across Australia has cost the Australian people dearly.
2. $11 billion is a half-baked and desperate attempt by the government to buy back the problem which should never have occurred in the first place.
3. That Telstra be allowed anywhere near the NBN is a continuation of this almighty fuckup (and it further obfuscates the original reasons behind the disaster).
4. That the NBN will ultimately be sold off instead of it remaining a revenue-neutral authority owned by a 51-49% government-telco shareholding will further add very substantially to communications cost within Australia.
5. As both sides of government have been responsible for this opportunistic money-grab, no one has ever been held to account. We need nothing less than a Royal Commission to investigate, but it'll never happen whilst Dracula remains in charge of the blood bank.
When the government sold off Telstra lock, stock and barrel with the cableway network it committed treason against its people. Unfortunately, when Anglophone governments commit treason, people are no longer prepared to riot in the streets.
Au revoir democracy.
Actually, I did say 'both':
"As both sides of government have been responsible for this opportunistic money-grab,..."
...But you're almost certainly correct, the Libs will sell of the NBN. Irrespective of its worth to Australia as a utility, it'll be sold off to those large corporate telcos that have a vested interest. By owning the NBN telcos will be in a position to double-dip on communications charges. They'll profit on both line costs as well as normal telco charges.
BTW, I've NEVER seen any proposal which shows or adequately demonstrates that it's better for consumers or the national interest than one in which the NBN is owned by a revenue-neutral corporation consisting of 51% government, 49% telco shareholding. In a fair system it's a win-win for both the consumer and telcos. Being revenue-neutral, line costs to telcos are (a) the minimum that can be charged after maintenance and development, and (b) all comers, new and future telcos/users, will get access to lines at the same rates as existing telcos. (This was never so with Telstra, it had an unfair advantage by both owning and using the lines/cableways itself, yet it was also the wholesaler of these lines to other telcos. Not only is this a farce but also it was and still is unfair on the competition, and ultimately consumers are forced to pay extra.)
Moreover, it's in the interest of the telcos to ensure the NBN (which really is a line and cableways authority and ought to be called such) runs efficiently and at minimal cost. Government with its 51% holding ensures consumers are represented and the telcos with their 49% will almost guarantee that government won't fuck it up as it does with so many things it fully controls--just imagine the telcos' noise if government stuffed it!
Nevertheless, such an authority is extremely unlikely, instead we'll end up with a for-profit corporation that's wholly owned by the telcos alone (this of course is their preferred option other than say Telstra's preferred one--65% Telstra, 35% other telcos or such, with the 35% sliding over time as Telstra buys the others out). It's hard to believe this won't happen so powerful the telco lobbying (especially Telstra) upon weak, money-hungry, corruptible government.
If anyone has a proposal for another scheme that would be better for consumers than this one then let's hear it.
The NBN ought to be a national symbol of pride as utilities once were. I recently heard it aptly put that 'in the Victorian era both governments and citizens had almost a fetish with public works that would benefit the nation and built them to last generations'. For instance, look at railway infrastructure, it was so well built we're still using it 150 years later hardly unchanged.
Alas, that was in an era when pride in one's nation and nation-building were more important than just mere profit alone.
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