Friday, February 17, 2006

Canada's social engineering: just another example

From today's Globe:

Overbilled phone users won't be repaid a penny


With a report from Catherine McLean in Toronto

GATINEAU, QUE -- The CRTC said yesterday that Canadian telephone customers have been overbilled to the tune of $652.7-million over the past few years, but the money will not be going back to them.

The federal regulator ruled instead that telecommunications companies such as Bell Canada and Telus Corp. should use most of the money -- equivalent to about $50 a customer -- to expand offerings in underserved markets, primarily rural and remote communities.

So phone companies have racked a large amount of dough by overcharging their customers but according to Canadian government officials, "once taken, forever gone". Returning the monies to customers would be so 'un-Canadian', as they can be put towards a higher purpose:
CRTC chair Charles Dalfen told reporters yesterday that expanding broadband services, also known as high-speed Internet, is an important social and economic goal.

One can weigh in on the merits of providing subsidized internet access to remote and rural communities but it's beyond the point. It's up to the people and their representiaves to decide whether money should be spent on this or not. The failure to do only reveals the contempt those unelected bonzas of CRTC have for regular folks who wouldn't be able to appreciate the merits of their enlightened agenda.


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