Who's a Grinch? Not FCC

Michael Powell's speech

Commissioner Michael Powell, widely viewed as the Federal Communications

Commission's next chairman, is a man for all seasons.

A one-time armored cavalry officer and Pentagon policy adviser, Powell,

a lawyer, has worked in private practice, in the Justice Department and,

since 1997, as an FCC commissioner.

In speeches across the country, he has quoted Aristotle, Shakespeare and

Thoreau.

But in recent remarks in Washington, D.C., Powell drew on Dr. Seuss to drive

home a point about technological change.

He noted that telecommunications companies sometimes view the FCC as "the

Grinch" because changes spurred by the 1996 Telecommunications Act did not

automatically translate into "colorfully clad presents" for the "Who-companies."

But, he said, don't blame poor implementation of the law. Instead, he said,

blame dramatic technological changes that the regulatory system cannot handle — yet.

And in closing, Powell told the Progress & Freedom Foundation.

"So it's time to awaken from our dreams with a pinch

Though I might quibble with Whos down in Whoville that think we're the

Grinch.

"But to those who do, I would sing with full range

That we can, will and must adapt to this change!

"Leaving the past will cause pain we all feel

But it's change that even the FCC cannot stem, stall or steal!

"We need to rapidly join in this technology migration

Then we can all bask in the glow of a very thankful nation.

"So packing our bags and catching up with the times

Is a perfect jumping off point for ending this rhyme."

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