Obama Slips His National Wireless Initiative into His American Jobs Act

President Obama presented Congress with the official draft of his jobs bill on Monday, dubbed the American Jobs Act of 2011. Within it's 155 pages is a nearly 29-page section called the National Wireless Initiative (Full text, PDF). Hmm. You may remember the NWI when the President first introduced the idea in his State of the Union address and then presented it in detail in February.

So, here it is again. The President projects that the Federal government can raise $27.8 billion over the next decade by auctioning off wireless spectrum, something wireless carriers eagerly want the government to do. Under Obama's plan, $10 billion of this money will pay for an expansion of the Public Safety Broadband Network and to build out wireless broadband to cover 98% of the nation. (Where do you think that other 2% is located? The Alaskan tundra?). The remaining $17.8 billion will go toward paying down the nation's deficit.

These post-deficit-battle numbers are flip flopped from the plan he detailed a mere seven months ago in February, which spent $18 billion of the earnings and applied $9.8 billion toward paying down debt. Items like the President's proposed Wireless Innovation Fund (cutely nicknamed "WIN") took big cuts. In February, Obama suggested WIN be a $3 billion fund to support the R&D of cutting-edge wireless technologies. This time, the fund was sliced down to $300 million.

Look, Nation, no wires!

Wireless may be wonderful, but why was NWI stuck into the American Jobs Act? Because research shows that wireless equals jobs. "Recent data shows that making additional spectrum available for wireless will lead to 500,000 new jobs in America," said Jonathan Spalter, chairman of the non-profit wireless industry think tank Mobile Future, in a written statement.

A report that Mobile Future released in August spelled it out: "Building on previous studies, we estimate that the reassignment of 300 MHz of spectrum to mobile broadband within five years will spur $75 billion in new capital spending, creating more than 300,000 jobs and $230 billion in additional Gross Domestic Product (GDP). The release of an additional 200 MHz of new spectrum after five years will create an additional 200,000 jobs and increase GDP by an additional $155 billion."

Plus the study said the economy would benefit from a "spillover" effect. Companies like Apple, Google, Qualcomm and small application developers would boom as they created new mobile broadband applications to be carried upon all that ubiquitous bandwidth. Here's wishing wireless and jobs for all.

Via:  White House
inspector 3 years ago

wait how does this work? how does wireless create more jobs? the job of putting them up?

omegadraco 3 years ago

Yeah I think that's how we create 500,000 jobs the problem is it would seem that these jobs won't be permanent. But the benefits to consumers and other possible revenue are probably worth it.

BBuckley 3 years ago

There are areas of the country (I happen to own a ranch in one) that will never get broadband via fiber. While wireless is less robust, it's sure better than nothing. Without any type of broadband it's impossible to stay competitive. Ranchers and farmers increasingly depend on the Internet for information on markets, shipping, etc. Access to broadband, even if it's just wireless, equals jobs. Just yesterday I saw a presentation from a company in a very rural town in WA state that designs fabrics for companies in the NY garment district. Impossible w/o broadband. They employ 15 people.

patriotson 3 years ago

Right here is the evidence of the problem with Obama and the democratic socialist party. He wants to create jobs using the same ponzi scheme used over two years ago called "shovel ready" and then adds in the fine print all the social experimenting elements that will produce his socialist agenda a step further. To create a method of paying for the costs of this Act, he proposes a perminant tax by enacting class warfare and segregating certain elements of society to pay for the spending for a temporary problem. As Pelosi said of the Obamacare bill, we have to pass it to know what is in it. Pure crap! Be honest Obama or get out of the WH. It would be better if you just resigned and go before the scarlet letter is pinned on your chest by the voter. Your previous socialist agenda costs the American people about 250K per job created. We were fooled once but never again will you be trusted. You talk the talk but you certainly don't walk the walk.

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