Washington maintains that its priorities are consistent when talking about tech. They say they want job creation and they say they want universal broadband. So do we. As we know, the private sector tech world has been delivering on the promise of technology, while other sectors in the economy have lagged behind. And the tech world continues to deliver, despite increasingly crowded, clogged up networks and lack of universal connectivity. The tech sector has proven that innovation is a main catalyst for job creation, while lightning quick networks fuel the fire of the innovative spirit.
Yet yesterday’s announcement by the Department of Justice to block AT&T’s acquisition of T-Mobile is another sign that Washington’s actions and its stated objectives don’t always properly align. While acquisitions of this nature deserve significant regulatory review, Washington stands in the way of job creation and innovation. We can’t continue the drumbeat for innovation while taking actions that serve to stifle innovation. We can’t clamor for jobs, then turn our backs on tens of thousands of jobs. Without this merger, California alone will miss out on the creation of 14,000 new jobs . Perhaps most importantly, we’ll miss out on private investment to rebuild and expand our over-trafficked networks that entrepreneurs, coders, and businesses, small and large, use to communicate, sell their goods and, ultimately, keep people employed. Instead of stifling the innovative spirit, Washington should be encouraging it.