Disruption of our GPS system of navigation would be very bad for our country.
I'm not going to get into the political implications of this issue, there are other folks who can cover that aspect, probably better than I can. It appears this issue, at first glance, has much in common with Solyndra.
Where it differs is the technological damage it would cause to the nation. There would be an awful lot of it.
While I was over at Ace's place yesterday (my favorite Interwebs hangout, as you all know), one of the commenters posted this link to a PDF from the Federal Aviation Authority entitled LightSquared Aviation Impacts. The document is a reply to a body of GPS experts that helps coordinate the nations GPS system. I only had time to read the first few pages, but what it contains should concern you greatly.
I'll spare you a lot of geek-speak and just say that this plan, while it may sound good, would be devastating to commercial and military aviation that depends on our GPS system for safe navigation.
Our current GPS system is to be the foundation for an upgrade in navigation technology, something that the LightSquared plan would jeopardize in a big way.The effects of LightSquared deployment would be far-reaching and potentially devastating to aviation. Proposed LightSquared operations would severely impact the efficiency and modernization of the safest, most efficient aerospace system in the world. LightSquared operations would bring numerous curent and planned safety, efficiency, environmental improvements to a halt- jeopardizing U.S. leadership in the modemization of the global airspace system.
I strongly recommend you pour yourself a shot of something very strong before you read the FAA letter. The ramifications of this plan would have a devastating effect on our GPS capabilities while costing us billions in unnecessary expense. Even worse, it would put the traveling public in real danger from crashes.
There's much more research to do. Here's the Wikipedia link, which is where I'll be spending my weekend reading.
It appears that the White House is supporting this project. I find it unusual that there would be the highest support for a plan that would harm the nation in so many ways. It's expensive, it's dangerous, and it never should have been considered unless there was another way to implement it in another frequency range that was safely away from the frequency range where GPS operates. This is beyond incompetance, this is a blatant disregard for the safety and security not only of the flying public, but the military too. It will make us very vulnerable to attack and greatly reduce our military advantage in that event. It is a national security issue of the highest order.
I'm still struggling to find the words to describe my feelings about that. The one word that keeps coming to mind, I'm rather reluctant to type, as you might understand.