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View Diary: Bundle or Nothing: Big Telecoms ENDING Universal Phone Service (306 comments)

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  •  I grew up on a road that had been built (1+ / 0-)
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    ... in the 1600s as a toll road. It was the only north-south connector between two main east-west thoroughfares. I never found out what the good Captain had charged for the road's use, but since it's construction at the time cost the equivalent of 1 million dollars (in 1980 dollars, when I did my report on the road's history), I imagine it was a pretty penny.

    For many, many decades, people trying to get to Boston from, say, Lowell had two options, pay the toll to slog through a mile of muddy field, or spend an extra full day on the road.

    •  my understanding is (0+ / 0-)

      that toll roads failed historically because it was too easy for people to use them without paying.  That is exactly my point--if they had the technology we have now perhaps more (most) roads would be like that now.  Why did the country for the most part go with publicly funded roads?  I think it is because businesses (and government) saw an advantage for themselves in having decent roads, so they supported public sponsorship.  If business and government could see an advantage to having publicly funded internet, open to all, we could have that too.  

      •  I think people also got sick of being ripped off (0+ / 0-)

        There were some anecdotal but not well-documented stories of the Captain charging more or less depending on whether or not he liked you, and whether or not you were a local, and how bad the weather was (it cost more if you were desperate not to get soaked), etc.

        It wouldn't surprise me if there was a lot of that going on back in the early days.

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