chapter  7
Viewing divestment from afar
ByDouglas C. Pitt, Kevin Morgan
Pages 20

In this chapter, the authors examine the political dilemmas facing United States policy at home, where the main challenge is to devise a coherent and sustainable telecommunications policy, and abroad, where the United States faces the formidable political challenge of creating a level playing field in the international telecommunications arena. They focus first on domestic policy in the post-divestiture era and, second, on United States efforts to overcome regulatory asymmetry in the world market. The conventional wisdom in Western Europe seems to be that deregulation and divestiture was the product of strategic decisions from governments bent on unleashing American firms onto the world market. On a factual level, deregulation and divestiture were prosecuted as matters of domestic policy with little or no reference to the international trade dimension. On a theoretical level, such a contention exaggerates the degree to which conceited action is possible within government itself or between government and industry.