Lars Larson on the Government and Digital T.V.

Why in the world would the federal government get involved in paying for television sets in peoples’ homes?

The federal government regulates broadcasting, that’s radio and television. To a certain extent even cable and other forms of broadcasting. Lately, they’ve required that the television industry set up to the plate and convert to digital. That conversion has happened over a several year period.

People have been able to buy digital televisions voluntarily. But, now the government is going to tell the industry to do the changeover. At some point in the very near future, analog sets simply won’t work anymore unless you convert to a box. A box will take that brand new digital signal and convert it to an analog that your old-fashioned t.v. can still understand.

Those boxes are only going to cost from $50 to $70. I say only because that’s a relatively cheap cost for a piece of technology. Now the government plans to spend $1.5 billion to hand out coupons so that consumers can convert without much cost of their own.

Why is the government involved in this? Why would we want to spend taxpayer dollars to help people convert their t.v. sets? It makes no sense to me.