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WCL Lunch and Book Talk with Prof. Thomas Hazlett, Author of The Political Spectrum

  • American University Washington College of Law 4300 Nebraska Avenue NW, Room N102 Washington, DC, 20016 United States (map)
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American University (AU) Washington College of Law (WCL) is hosting a lunch and book talk with Professor Thomas W. Hazlett, author of The Political Spectrum: The Tumultuous Liberation of Wireless Technology, from Herbert Hoover to the Smart Phone (Yale University Press, 2017) on Monday, September 24, 2018 from 12:00pm-1:30pm in Room N102 at WCL.

Professor Hazlett is former chief economist of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), former fellow at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) and the Manhattan Institute, and is currently H.H. Macaulay Endowed Professor of Economics at Clemson University's College of Business, where he also directs the Information Economy Project.

According to the Yale University Press website, "Popular legend has it that before the Federal Radio Commission was established in 1927, the radio spectrum was in chaos, with broadcasting stations blasting powerful signals to drown out rivals. In this fascinating and entertaining history, Thomas Winslow Hazlett, a distinguished scholar in law and economics, debunks the idea that the U.S. government stepped in to impose necessary order. Instead, regulators blocked competition at the behest of incumbent interests and, for nearly a century, have suppressed innovation while quashing out-of-the-mainstream viewpoints.
Hazlett details how spectrum officials produced a 'vast wasteland' that they publicly criticized but privately protected. The story twists and turns, as farsighted visionaries—and the march of science—rise to challenge the old regime. Over decades, reforms to liberate the radio spectrum have generated explosive progress, ushering in the 'smartphone revolution,' ubiquitous social media, and the amazing wireless world now emerging. Still, the author argues, the battle is not even half won."

To attend the lunch and book talk, RSVP to lawandgov [at]