HUNDT: HOW THE LAWYERS KILLED PHONE COMPETITION

Reed Hundt had it wired. As chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, he was a prime architect of deregulation, which was going to bring competition to the phone business the likes of which had never been seen. Trouble is, it hasn't been seen, leaving Hundt fuming about telephone-company attorneys. "Shakespeare had it right," says lawyer Hundt. "First thing, kill the lawyers."

The telco legal teams have tied the FCC in many, many knots. Last week a federal court in St. Louis, Mo., once again blocked the FCC's efforts to force former Bell companies to open up their markets. "It's a torpedo...

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