Mandeville, LA – Exclusive Audio – Jason in Nashville wonders what we would do with the radio frequencybands without the FCC. Well, how did Tesla and Edison solve the AC vs DC dispute? Government didn’t step in because they were transmitting overstate lines, the market worked it out. The same thing would happen withcell phones, it wouldn’t make sense for Apple, Verizon, or AT&T tohave to make 70 different varieties of their phones to work over thevarious spectrum’s, they’d simply work it out. Check out today’stranscript for more.
Begin Mike Church Show Transcript
Mike: Jason in Nashville, youre next up on The Mike Church Show. How are you doing?
Caller Jason: Im doing well, Mike. How are you doing this morning?
Caller Jason: I was listening to the discussion a little bit back on the FCC and how they should be reduced to nothing. Thats something that I would like to move towards. However, I am an FCC licensed amateur radio operator. I do appreciate the parts and pieces of spectrum that is allocated for our uses. Im trying to figure out, as a libertarian, and a small r republican, how can we have the same usage of spectrum without an FCC?
Just to give you a small example, the citizens band spectrum, those guys will go out and step on each other. Its whoever has the most power wins. Theres no kind of control over that spectrum. Im afraid without some sort of a governing body, the same thing would happen with the amateur radio spectrum. I guess I want my cake and eat it, too.
Mike: I guess you do.
Caller Jason: Im trying to find a way to go about —
Mike: Answer this question. Who settled the dispute between Daimler and Edison or Tesla and Edison over AC versus DC?
Caller Jason: Im not actually sure.
Mike: The market settled it. Basically, from what I gather of the story, it was Tesla, I believe, having emigrated from Europe and setting up shops in New Jersey and ultimately Colorado trying to perfect the wireless electricity, that had convinced people, or was convincing peoples, that DC was the way to go. In Europe, they have a different electrical standard than we do. That wasnt an action by the federal government. The federal government didnt come in and say, Were claiming dominion. Youre gonna transmit this over state lines? Thats ours. Youre gonna have this and have that. Roosevelt ultimately came along and created the Rural Electrification Act and did many things to try to regulate electricity. That was not something that was settled by the federal government.
As far as the citizens band and the radios go, this is another one of those things where you have to care about the process. This is why [mocking], Youre a libertarian. No, Im not. I may have libertarian leanings, but Im not a libertarian. You have to have some government. I even go so far as to believing you have to have some government and you have to have people that believe in something other than themselves and other than the exchange of currency and natural laws and free markets and what have you. It has to be a higher authority. Thats just me. I think history makes a pretty good case for that. We can continue to debate that amongst ourselves.
You have to care about the process. How do you get there? How do you make a case living in a federal government where you want to be able to decide whether or not you get to pray in your schools, in your county or what have you, and denying the federal government a role in it, but at the same time say, using almost the same clause, youre okay with them coming and saying, Were taking over the airwaves. Were taking over cell phones. Were taking this and that over. Were going to apportion out the spectrum.
Think of it like this. What good would it do Nokia, just to throw a name — here, Apple. What good would it do Apple to make iPhones that only worked in one geographic area? What if they had to make 70 different varieties of iPhones because there were 70 different spectrum wireless communication? What good would it be? This would increase the cost. It wouldnt make any sense for anyone. In order to provide the service, youd have to have an expansion of how the service is delivered.
If youre to believe that without the magical powers of the FCC making everything right and fair, that industry would not be smart enough, or dare I say prudent enough, to figure out a way to do it on their own. They could set standards, an industry-wide standard. Then if someone wanted to come along and, Hey, I created a new standard. It doesnt require their old fuddy-duddy standard. It works better. It works for less. It works cheaper. I think you just have to care about the process. I can find no justification in the pocket Constitution I hold in my hand for the Federal Communications Commission, other than the instances in which I cited.
Caller Jason: Absolutely. I agree with you that it is not an enumerated power. By law, the amateur radio community is self-governing in that we have these rules that we follow. For the most part, everybody follows them and most everybody gets along. I see that and I understand that. I appreciate the guidance on that.
Mike: Lets do another one. This is fun. This is Constitution 101 for dummies, not that youre a dummy, Jason. Lets do another one. Do you think it is — who is it that determines how big an average loaf of bread is going to be on your grocers shelf? Is there a bread baking commission, a BBC?
Caller Jason: Its a free market.
Mike: Yeah, but the loaves of bread kind of look standard, dont they?
Caller Jason: Yes, they do.
Mike: This is because it wouldnt behoove a bread maker to make bread that didnt fit on somebodys shelves. If you came in and told them, Ive got this new kind of bread, but youre going to have to buy these shelves in order to display it, they may say, Why? I already have bread that fits those shelves. Why do I want to sell your stuff? Im just giving you an example of how the free market can regulate. I think it regulates it far better because it can change when it needs to. A free market can regulate those kinds of nuances in commerce. We dont need the almighty federal leviathan to do it. Jason, are we cool now?
Caller Jason: Yeah, yeah. We were cool from the word. I appreciate what you do.
Mike: Its a good question. I just wanted to make sure that I explain what I view to be the original intent.
Caller Jason: That conversation does come up in our circles here from time to time. Thank you for some more ammunition to help spread liberty. I do appreciate it.
Mike: I appreciate that. AG, I can finally — I have a couple tweets here about AC versus DC, and this is not the band.
AG: I have a question here about another scenario, which I need your guidance on
Mike: Scott Messina tweets to me, Dude, while Edison pushed DC, Tesla is the inventor of AC current. He also worked on but never perfected wireless electricity.
End Mike Church Show Transcript