Monday, January 07, 2008

Finally a decent response to anti-UTOPIA article.

The Salt Lake Tribune finally published a nice opinion response (see here) to their anti-UTOPIA article that ran last week. The response points out many flaws with the original article. I don't ever remember UTOPIA being "sold as a risk-free proposition." If everything had gone according to plan, it would have been a low-risk proposition. What UTOPIA didn't count on was being sued by Qwest early on. I really like how the opinion piece also points out the fact that Qwest or Comcast could both provide service over UTOPIA. They both choose not to. This is their choice. Isn't America all about providing choice? Some may wonder why they choose not to? They have a monopoly. The government already paid for Qwest's infrastructure.

I found another interesting thing to point out. The Tribune published a letter to the editor (see here) that aligns with the anti-UTOPIA article. It is written by a man named Robert Fuehr. In it he says things such as "Proposals that appear too good to be true usually are and should be viewed with great suspicion. The UTOPIA assurance that the $202 million in city money would "never be at risk because UTOPIA would almost certainly succeed" now looks terribly hollow and false. " This sounds pretty tame and could sound even understandable if we were to believe that Robert Fuehr were a normal citizen. Unfortunately Robert Fuehr is not a normal citizen. He is the former vice president of US West (pre-cursor to Qwest.) So what would Robert have to lose with UTOPIA? I would guess that, being a former vice president, Robert holds stock in Qwest. Anything that could damage that stock price would be detrimental to Robert. Yes, Robert, just as you say in your letter, some things "should be viewed with great suspicion."

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