In today's NYTimes, Nicholas Kristof, who wears his Oregonian status like a Medal of Honor at times, delivers a big, sloppy, loving kiss to Hermiston, Oregon, where pigs are kings and everyone has access to wi-fi When Pigs Wi-Fi.
"This kind of network is the wave of the future, and eastern Oregon shows that it's technically and financially feasible. New York and other leading cities should be embarrassed that Morrow and Umatilla Counties in eastern Oregon are far ahead of them in providing high-speed Internet coverage to residents, schools and law enforcement officers - even though all of Morrow County doesn't even have a single traffic light.
The big cities should take note, said Kim Puzey, the general manager of the Port of Umatilla on the Columbia River here. "We'd like people to say, 'If they can do it out in the boondocks with a small population, that model can be applied to highly complex areas,' " he said."
It is a fun "go Oregon" read, as it points out how Portland and Philadelphia helped jump-start the wi-fi revolution. I would have liked to see some mention, though, of the opposition the internet providers and telephone companies are putting up because they can't understand that the government doesn't have to always think about the corporate bottom line before engaging in acts of intelligent and visionary public policy.