When is cable TV not cable TV? When the phone company says so.

A reader writes:

Verizon Fiber Optic Internet Service still claims not to be “cable TV” (which requires a county-by-county franchise). Instead, it’s asking at least two state legislatures to grant it a statewide franchise to deliver “FIOS video” including local channels, HBO, CNN, ESPN, etc.

Moral: If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, and waddles like a duck, any competent lawyer should be able to get it classified as a goose.

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: