Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton has come out to say that if she is elected, there will be “affordable” broadband internet for all by 2020. If that sounds familiar, it’s because President Barack Obama did something similar during his campaign, signing the Affordable Care Act into law.
The Affordable Care Act is ironic the way it works, as millions of U.S. citizens have discovered by now. Healthcare is no longer just an option in the United States if you have an income enough to be considered employed for the given year. It isn’t mandatory, but this coming year, not having it will net you a hefty fee of at least $600.
Many who were forced to drop their actually affordable health insurance and sign up under Obamacare, as it’s currently called, noticed a massive increase in their monthly payments. All but the wealthy are feeling the burn now as there is no actually affordable option now, especially for families.
Now Hillary Clinton is promising something similar, which could end up becoming a headache even for those U.S. citizens who already have broadband internet. An affordable option “for all” might mean you won’t have a choice by 2020, and a barely broadband signal might cost you more than you’re already paying. They could even play it the way Verizon does with their WiFi hotspots, making you choose one of a variety of high prices for barely enough data to watch a combined day of YouTube.
Hopefully if Hillary Clinton is elected and she makes her affordable broadband internet plan happen, it will be optional and not penalize you on tax day, unlike Obamacare.
Hillary’s administration is hopeful that the plan will be a “win win” scenario.
“Hillary understands that investing in high-speed broadband and next-generation wireless is a win-win for jobs: [It] will put people to work in building [up] and upgrading our digital networks, and it will create millions of opportunities for people who can get online more easily, innovative, start companies, and sell their products.”
It would be helpful for the unemployed to find jobs faster, as most high-end businesses don’t even use paper applications any more. Small businesses still might, but you have a better chance of landing a high-paying or steady job with guaranteed future income just applying online these days. Even McDonald’s uses online applications and walk-in open interviews when they are hiring.
The problem once again is that affordable broadband could end up costing the taxpayers even more. Someone will need to foot the bill for those new cable lines giving more rural areas the option, and it’s doubtful that Hillary Clinton will be the only one paying for it.
A recent survey has stated that 41 percent of the people living on tribal lands lack access, and Hillary’s agenda aims to change that. They might not appreciate regulations on what they do with their land, and demand that the government not interfere with their lives. The Amish could easily be even harder to convince, since they have traditionally avoided anything with electronics. The U.S. government telling either group that they will need to allow the option of affordable broadband internet could stir trouble.
Hillary Clinton has stated that she will enforce all policies put in place under President Obama and embrace net neutrality.
The question remains: Is affordable broadband internet a Trojan horse for more taxes, just another promise Hillary Clinton won’t be able to enforce, or will it actually be affordable as she claims?
[Feature image via Joshua Lott/Getty Images]