Victoria Proffer

-----Original Message-----
From: wireless-boun...@wispa.org [mailto:wireless-boun...@wispa.org] On
Behalf Of Fred Goldstein
Sent: Thursday, May 03, 2012 8:24 PM
To: WISPA General List
Subject: Re: [WISPA] It's been a ride... Some up, some down.

At 5/3/2012 08:41 PM, Faisal Imtiaz wrote:
>Personally I don't think there is hardly anyone on the WISPA list that 
>is in disagreement over having the same views as Mark from the 
>political standpoint..
>The radical difference is over how to deal with it ...

Well, I may disagree with Mark and some other members of the list on many
political points, but I don't let that get in the way of our mutual
interests. You can disagree without being disagreeable, and concentrate on
collaborating on your mutual interests.  I even disagree on some of the
positions WISPA apparently took.  I think ARRA was a good program, just too
small, though BIP itself was basically a boondoggle.  But a WISP I'm hoping
to get going soon is dependent on BTOP middle mile fiber, as are some other
projects I'm aware of, as is one local government project I'm now working
on.  In some states it's a real game changer.  (And yeah, in some it's
turning out to be a disaster, but that's a different story.)

But the key point is that no matter how you feel about the way the game is
being played in Washington, either you participate, or you should stop
complaining about it.  For the average person, participation is as easy as
voting; for a business in a regulated industry, it may involve a lot more.

Things used to work better there in the past when both sides could sit down
and negotiate their differences, trading off with each other until the best
compromise could be met.  People who believe that compromise is inherenty
bad are preventing progress, and they aren't making things better for their
side either. Likewise, all of that "government is always the problem" talk
is not realistic.  There are all sorts of things that you need government to
do, from enforcing contracts (lest you need a mafia take over that role, as
happened in Russia in the 1990s), to building public infrastructure, to
keeping the food and water safe.  You don't miss the water until the well
runs dry; if you don't want government, try Somalia.  If you don't agree
with our government, then at least try to make yourself heard.  Even if it
is so corrupted by big money that it sometimes feels like a waste of time.
Reclaim democracy, don't surrender it.

WISPA has done great things in representing the industry.  Things could
certainly be worse.  The FCC has waged a War on ISPs for the past 11 years.
It has killed off most of the wireline ISPs, most of whom were also small
businesspeople playing by the rules.  Some have survived by going wireless,
others by being really really good at what they do and keeping their niche
markets alive, but it hasn't been easy.  Had the rest of the small-ISP
industry organized itself a quarter as well as WISPA has, then things might
have come out a lot differently for them.  Not that CLECs have done so well
either, though frankly I think they were largely collateral damage, because
ISPs depended on them.

Now the FCC has opened up the question of whether and how WISPs and other
ISPs should pay into the Universal Service Fund.  So again the fact that
this group is organized should come in handy.

  Fred Goldstein    k1io   fgoldstein "at" ionary.com
  ionary Consulting              http://www.ionary.com/
  +1 617 795 2701 

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