Jon Henke on the Secret History of the Telephone


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Since the early days of the telegraph, North America has seen titanic struggles to define the government's role in telecommunications. The major players in these battles have been policy makers, progressives, and corporations, and the results, for the most part, have been a sort of mutually beneficial collusion. Progressives got universal service and regulation, corporations got government-backed monopolies and other privileges, and policy makers got another lever of power to pull. From Reason's August/September issue, Jon Henke reveals the secret history of the telephone.