Phone Company Crooks, the FCC, and the Congressional Cess Pool

   Sanityandsense.com is a website that helps the average American understand issues that the media either distorts or fails to analyze in a sane and sensible manner. 

   Suppose that you, as a law abiding American, observe an individual breaking into your neighbor’s house.  You telephone the police and within minutes the police surround the house with guns drawn.  The police tell the individual to come outside with his hands held high.  The robber emerges with his hands high.  The police handcuff the robber and drive him to jail and read him “his rights.”  At the jail, the individual is fingerprinted and the prints are run through a complex and very accurate computer system.  It turns out that the individual has 17 previous arrests and has five outstanding felony warrants and is wanted for questioning by the FBI.  The judge is informed of this and correctly denies bail. 

   Now, that is how an individual criminal is treated.  I believe that the treatment was fair and just.  Hopefully at a public trial, justice will be served.  But many Americans forget that the criminal acting against them is not always an individual.  SOMETIMES IT IS A CORPORATION.  There were several articles recently in the news about a practice called ” cramming.”  Cramming is a way that CORPORATIONS steal from Americans by placing FALSE charges on a billing statement.  Cramming was recently discussed in relation to two phone companies here in the U.S.  Remember that cramming is a special form of stealing and it is ILLEGAL. 

   Recently the Federal Communications Commission, FCC, REACHED A SETTLEMENT WITH VERIZON WIRELESS FOR ” MYSTERY FEES” PLACED ON BILLING STATEMENTS BY VERIZON. 

   NOW WATCH MY LIPS.  Verizon “agreed” to pay a $ 50 Million settlement to people who were wrongfully charged.  Do you suppose that Verizon Wireless ONLY stole $ 50 Million?  Is it possible that they stole, by overcharging people, $ 100 Million, or $ 200 Million, or possibly $ 250 Million?  THE ANSWER IS UNKNOWN BECAUSE VERIZON WIRELESS NEVER HAD A PUBLIC TRIAL.  The FCC was judge, jury, and ultimate decision maker. 

   Uunlike the make believe house robber, the President of Verizon Wireless was not arrested and taken to jail.  Also, the corporate board members of Verizon Wireless were not arrested and jailed.  If Verizon stole $ 250 Million and had a fine of only $ 50 Million, then this corporation would have gained $ 200 million ILLEGALLY!  This would certainly prove that sometimes corporate crime pays.

   In the U.S., CORPORATE CRIME IS OFTEN NOT PROSECUTED and, in my view, some corporate laws  actually encourage some corporate crime.   Let us take a closer look at this situation.    Verizon Wireless has lobbyists who lobby the members of  Congress.  Also, remember that many lobbyists often arrange ” fundraising events ” for their friends in Congress. 

   The FCC is a federal agency.  Now, whom do you suppose regulates the FCC?  If you guessed Congress, you are correct.  You win a cigar, but not one from Bill Clinton.

   In summary, when a robber robs a house, that is bad because none of the money will end up in the pockets of our corrupt congressmen.   However, when a corrupt corporation steals millions of dollars from Americans, our congressional crooks are likely to have lunch with their lobbyists in the near future!

   Americans must abolish the cess pool of corruption known as the U.S. Congress.  It is an absolute public disgrace.  We must replace our congressional cess pool with a unicameral body that has: 1) ethics, 2) term limits, and 3) allegiance to the Constitution and the People!

                                         R. Van Conoley

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