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In California I talked with someone involved in the production of Star Wars. And that night I had a dream. A hooded figure who’s eyes I could see only as glowing fires beneath her cowl. She stomped her feet. The cowl feel down and low – She’s Yoda. When Yoda had the attention of the Wookie who towered beside her, the Wookie growled: ‘It’s about using any transport available.”

Yoda replied radiating a glow: Your point is internally inconsistent. It is about INTERCONNECTION. You cannot use “ANY TRANSPORT AVAILABLE” UNLESS ALL THE AVAILABLE TRANSPORT IS INTERCONNECTED!

Wookie: If we just treated transport like roads in the sense that we just let people drive and then reduce the friction by paving over the dirt and providing some bridges. We mustn’t take the road analogy too far as we don’t need lots of traffic lights when bits either slip past each other or end up on the floor. We don’t have dented bits or collisions.

Yoda: Yes, but bits are not cars and fiber optics is not asphalt. Roads are no more “technology” than fields of lettuce or national parks - roads are land use decisions, not technology; that technology uses roads, or that fiber optic cable has to be strung across land or under or along roads makes neither dirt nor roads “technology”, rather they are places where technology happens.

But … land use decisions can affect technology. Thus … the problem is that you do need to string skinny wires in dirt or on poles that are in dirt. If that were truly easy and you didn’t risk getting sued by every property owner under whose precious dirt your silent wires ran, and didn’t have to pay tribute to every town along the way, then the networks start behaving a whole lot less like roads and a whole lot more like the devices they connect - unlimited.

Wookie: It’s one thing to research the physic of Star Wars — it’s another thing to take it too seriously.

Yoda: Problem is that those with the money and/or the power take it seriously and impose such views on the rest of us, so … while driving home from the car dealership you own, a policeman gives you a $4,000 ticket for driving a car with 4 wheels in violation of his view of the regulations that say only X-wing fighters are allowed on asphalt roads, and then fines you another $5,000 for using an internal combustion engine, perhaps you might take that matter to a judge rather than pay the ticket.

But if the judge then agrees with the policeman (which policeman happens to own a competing dealership just down the road and the judge - and the entire court system for that matter - buys cars from the policeman’s dealership, not yours … ), and says he could send you to prison for such outrageous behavior, not to mention the fact that your radial tires really make a mess of our asphalt, dismissing the fact that the policeman who pulled you over was either in an X-wing fighter expertly disguised as a Ford Crown Victoria or not in an X-wing fighter at all, and moreover, that the policeman’s X-wing fighter (or, you whisper, “Crown Victoria”) had an internal combustion engine (via the sworn testimony of the car’s mechanic & photographic evidence of the same), maybe you take it up to a higher authority or try your hand with the legislature.

Problem there, of course, is that sometimes the legislature is real concerned about the disproportionate wearing impact of non-resident radial tires on their roads (people from out of town usually carry baggage so their cars weigh more, and thus put more wear and tear on the roads), therefore, in the interests of fair competition, all out of town car dealers ( i.e. defined as those dealers who accept shipments of cars from container ship or railroad instead of the tried and true methods of using over-road 18-wheeler car carriers) and any out of town cars ( i.e.defined as cars purchased from out of town dealers), must pay the local car dealers a per-car tax to level the playing field because 18-wheelers are a more expensive form of shipment and cause more wear on the roads. To do otherwise would not only unacceptably increase the price of cars for the good people of Tatooine, it would require them to subsidize such cream-skimming scoff-laws who can afford to pay the fees because their shipping methods for carrying these road-wearing, non X-wing fighters, are more efficient anyway.

COOK”s Edge: Wake up and smell the roses folks Net Neutrality is but a diversion while the real war is being fought and lost in front of State PUCs.

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