Congressmen Oppose Boneheaded National Wireless Plan

I reported earlier on the FCC’s plan to nationalize the failures of all municipal wireless projects by auctioning off a big block of spectrum to a bidder who will offer free wi-fi across the US (if there are any who will). Now, the top Republicans on the House Committee on Energy and Commerce are opposing Republican Chairman Martin’s scheme.

Ars reports on the changing sentiments of the GOP crowd towards the national scheme. Many Republicans who had been in favor of the smut-free service are now backing off. Ars suggests that this “hints at growing Congressional sentiment towards dropping the public/private scheme and just funding a public safety system outright” – possibly an even worse plan than nationwide wireless.

Instead, the entire spectrum should be auctioned off without limitations to the highest bidder, which my colleague Ryan Radia points out would ensure that it goes to its most efficient use. Is that so hard? Why do we have to centrally plan spectrum?