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Alexsoccerboy said:   For clarity, offering this program was REQUIRED of Comcast for the FCC to certify their merger with NBC. Corporations only care about making money, they have no concept of society. The rubber stamp FCC put a few lame conditions on the merger like this to make a show of the process. This is the price Comcast had to pay to achieve a further lock on a vertically integrated structure with few competitors; when you consider the relatively small number of people this will actually benefit relative to the huge numbers of people who will be herded into a Comcast/NBC product for lack of choice, the cost is unacceptable.

The genesis of it is interesting, but doesnt seem to dilute the deal for people who qualify.

I can always call directv or dish and sidestep comcast. Not to mention with the number of people cutting the cable, it may be a short time before the NBC's of the world dont really matter much and the comcasts and directv/dish's are just internet service providers feeding streamed video.

I think that all people...young and old...rich and poor...educated and illiterate...should all have the right to be frustrated by Comcast's customer service.

spacejamz said:   danielle5985 said:   skh12 said:   this is not a hot deal for taxpayers

How so? This is a Comcast deal, not a government welfare program.


Unfortunately, there is no way to know if anyone will register their children for the free lunch program when they otherwise would not to get this deal.

Ultimately, although this may be a genuine attempt to help the less fortunate, incentives like this discourage many from improving their economic situation. Why work work harder to increase your wages when you get keep getting free lunches and cheap internet for staying at the same level?


You've got to be kidding me. But then again your right. Those greedy 8 year olds with their FREE $1.25 value lunches. Next thing you'll tell me is they feed poor 8 yea olds breakfast in the morning!? Your right though lil Johnny is never going to go out and get a job while he's in the 2nd grade if he keeps getting to eat... if we starved him I'm sure he'd go out and get a job.

Look I'm all for limited government and smaller government, but people like you make me ashamed to admit it though. Out are the type of person who likes to feel self-righteous indignation over petty things. Sure you might be "better" then someone on government assistance, but going around shouting about how much better you are is just pathetic. Now when you spread your judgmentally views to your kids you really offend common decency.

it worths

For free stuff, come to Texas (Houston specifically):

1. Texas CHIP - children's Health Insurance - $50 year, NOT a typo, full year.

2. Harris County Gold Card - Free health insurance for Harris County residents, no proof of legal status required. However, you must have a late model Cadillac Escalade with "24"" appearing somewhere on the exterior of the car (24" rims not required).

3. Texas SNAP/TANF - "food stamps", actually called Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program or Texas Assistance for Needy Families. Also sometimes designated as "WIC" (Women Infant Children), no proof of legal status required.

4. Houston Housing Authority - housing assistance, there is also a lot of Section 8 housing available in Houston.

5. Free schooling (same in every state?) - well not really free as public schools in Houston are paid by property taxes.

6. Phone service - Assurance wireless

7. Free/reduced school lunches

8. Any numerous assistance ministries/churches providing assistance to pay electric bills or pay rent.

9. Free internet service now?

10. Free burial - Harris County has a pauper program for families who can't afford to bury the dead (you can choose cremation/burial).



Well, time to go back to work, enjoy all your free stuff ya'll!

It is a classic mind set difference. Can Comcast provide this service and hardware for 9.95 a month? If not then the differential costs MUST come from somewhere. It is either coming from Comcast through higher rates for the existing customer base or through some other means.

If you have the mindset that you should be pay for what you use and not pay extra to help others achieve your level of success and standing (in this case HSI and a Netbook) then you will not like this. If you however feel that citizens should cover the subsidy between income and actual costs then you will be ok with this.

Note: The biggest group supporting “redistribution of wealth” are the ones that pay little to no Federal income tax but vote where the Federal taxes go. I am not saying this Comcast deal is necessarily a Federal program (note that the “Free” Cell phones are federally funded) but many feel this kind of redistribution of non-critical “nice to haves” is fundamentally unfair to people who do pay for the services they consume.

Does this include families who lie about their income to get free lunches? I've read that the amount of fraud is huge because most are not verified.

Note to "moderator": This is a perfectly valid question about who qualifies. This is much milder than some of the other posts and actually has some relevance.

This thread is under moderation to keep it on topic. Please, no side discussions.

Butcherboy said:   
It's a 1.5 Mb line, about enough for non-hd Netflix/youtube. Since it's cable it'll be plenty fast for gaming.

To qualify for $9.95 a month Internet service and a low-cost computer, your household must meet all these criteria:

Be located where Comcast offers Internet service
Have at least one child receiving free school lunches through the National School Lunch Program
Have not subscribed to Comcast Internet service within the last 90 days
Not have an overdue Comcast bill or unreturned equipment


What the crap. If you can't afford to feed your damn kids without the taxpayers paying for it, you damn well better not have a Netflix account !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

a streaming Netflix account is cheaper than cable, in my area our free HD doesn't come in well due to weather and mountains. a 16 dollar Netflix according to the post below, apparently is too much happiness for a poor family.

Thanks Op. I have an Aunt that is a single mom with 3 teenagers. I'm guessing that 12K a year income should qualify for free lunch.




Now if I can just get myself re-admitted to high school.

cu8605 said:   a streaming Netflix account is cheaper than cable, in my area our free HD doesn't come in well due to weather and mountains. a 16 dollar Netflix according to the post below, apparently is too much happiness for a poor family.

And broadcast is free with a little tinfoil or a $10 antenna. The point still stands.

I am all for providing vital goods and services for the needy. I include internet in that realm because you really need it to get ahead in todays society. You do NOT need cable or Netflix.

I guess we are old fashioned. We pay taxes and I get up in the a.m. And make my daughters lunch.

Alexsoccerboy said:   sklar said:   Realistically the recipients of this deal are probably getting a cheap, older, used or refurbished modem, and the $10 a month they're paying more than covers the cost of the gear and the minimal bandwidth they're getting. The free school lunch thing is just a metric to identify really low income families who probably cant afford internet service. If they were getting free DOCSIS 3 modems and 20/4 service for free, then the comcast customer base would be paying a little bit to subsidize that...but they arent.

I also grew up with nothing and had to get one of the lunch ladies to make me a free peanut butter sandwich every day. There wasnt a low income program, but someone kept a jar of peanut butter and a loaf of bread for the poor kids. But you had to ask for it in front of the other kids and the lady that made them made you feel like a schmuck for asking for it. I ended up teaching myself programming and went on to make a six figure salary. Its really about taking advantage of opportunities, trying hard and making a lot of your own 'luck'.

But most poor people make bad decisions and do stupid things with money, so its easy to isolate them and make fun of what they do. Heck, if they made good decisions and were good with money, they wouldnt be poor!

While many decry social programs, both public and private, we drive on publicly funded roads even though lots of people dont own cars. Many of us with kids send them to public schools, while there are lots of people without kids. We depend on fire and police departments, although many of us have never needed them.

Its called 'society'. We do things for the greater good of as many people as we can, and try to help along those less fortunate.

Good on Comcast for offering this program. While it might not be a factor in making poor kids into white collar workers, it'll at least help educate and entertain kids who need it at an affordable price.


For clarity, offering this program was REQUIRED of Comcast for the FCC to certify their merger with NBC. Corporations only care about making money, they have no concept of society. The rubber stamp FCC put a few lame conditions on the merger like this to make a show of the process. This is the price Comcast had to pay to achieve a further lock on a vertically integrated structure with few competitors; when you consider the relatively small number of people this will actually benefit relative to the huge numbers of people who will be herded into a Comcast/NBC product for lack of choice, the cost is unacceptable.


You are right on the money. No, it is not a taxpayer funded. It is government mandated. It is backhanded tax and welfare program to be run by Comcast. It will be paid for by Comcast's paying subscribers. Government gets to force social policy through Comcast without raising any taxes. Comcast does the mandated dirty work, of implementing the program and raising rates for paying subscribers to fund the program, in exchange for more of a monopoly status. Where else can you go. Competition will be shut down. The government is beholden to Comcast to implement their policy and will give them as much market share as they can, mandated by law. Nice solution for everyone to bleed a little more out of the private sector. Here's to life liberty and free Cable TV. Oh forget the liberty part we gotta make some other guy work to pay for that free cable.

danteshors said:   It is a classic mind set difference. Can Comcast provide this service and hardware for 9.95 a month? If not then the differential costs MUST come from somewhere. It is either coming from Comcast through higher rates for the existing customer base or through some other means.

If you have the mindset that you should be pay for what you use and not pay extra to help others achieve your level of success and standing (in this case HSI and a Netbook) then you will not like this. If you however feel that citizens should cover the subsidy between income and actual costs then you will be ok with this.

Note: The biggest group supporting “redistribution of wealth” are the ones that pay little to no Federal income tax but vote where the Federal taxes go. I am not saying this Comcast deal is necessarily a Federal program (note that the “Free” Cell phones are federally funded) but many feel this kind of redistribution of non-critical “nice to haves” is fundamentally unfair to people who do pay for the services they consume.


(note that the “Free” Cell phones are federally funded)
Wrong context. The free cell phones are part of a federal program that has been in place for many many years. Before it only pertained to land lines. Since the program only pays a certain dollar amount, depending on the state, many could not afford the additional costs that are not covered by the program.

I am sure this is just a promo by Comcast to sign up people that would likely not be their customes without it. They often offer this starter package for $9.95 a month for the first year. Like any other promo they hope to keep you after the promo end to really gouge them hard.

The cost of lunch for a month for one child would more than pay for a nice cable package.

There are some great points being made here and no matter how you see this the fact of the matter is at the end of the day some underprivileged kid is going to get internet. Some see this a government mandated or customer subsidized internet being paid for by someone who does not utilize it. Yeah Comcast had to do this to get even bigger and it will allow them to make even more money. Which in turn will create tax revenue for our tax coffers. More than before when it was NBC who knows. Regardless it is handout if you want to co call it that.

Right on jmills1

Just called. It took 6 minutes.

You neeed to ID your Comcast cable account, verify your address, the last 4 numbers of your SS number, and the name of your child's school.

JaxFL said:   skh12 said:   this is not a hot deal for taxpayers

Dont forget to hit up the all the posts where private businesses offer military discount, with all those military families soaking it to us taxpayers it must be costing the taxpayers a fortune.
The non-subsidized group pays for the subsidized group - whether its taxes, or special discounts from private companies. I am not saying it's bad, but it is what it is, someone paying for someone else. Someone paid for me when I was growing up, and now that I am older, I am paying for someone else, more than I could have ever imagined as a kid, but there it is.

Wasn't there a refute by another researcher at the bottom?

I don't think this is the case either b/c blacks and hispanics have consistently underperform whites and asians in high school graduation.

And besides, they all have smart phones nowadays. So, even if they don't have traditional computers at home, they can still connect to the world.


mychaluva said:   spacejamz said:   danielle5985 said:   skh12 said:   this is not a hot deal for taxpayers

How so? This is a Comcast deal, not a government welfare program.


Unfortunately, there is no way to know if anyone will register their children for the free lunch program when they otherwise would not to get this deal.

Ultimately, although this may be a genuine attempt to help the less fortunate, incentives like this discourage many from improving their economic situation. Why work work harder to increase your wages when you get keep getting free lunches and cheap internet for staying at the same level?


A kid has less of a shot at being successful in school without internet access in the home.
http://www.classroomconnections.k12.sd.us/information/press/Nati...

�� Teenagers who have access to home computers are 6 to 8 percentage points
more likely to graduate from high school than teens who lack access to a home
computer, after reportedly controlling for individual, parental, and family
characteristics.


Think of this as breaking the cycle in the next generation rather than discouraging personal development for the parent. I can't imagine that there are many (if any) parents that have incomes low enough to qualify for the free lunch program that were splurging on lunches and now will sign up for free lunch because of this Comcast offer.

I'd pay $9.99 for 1.5Mbs

Man, I remember having to pay 25 bucks a month for 14.4 Kbps connection. When I wanted to watch Porn, I have to start the download, go outside and play, and then come back to see just 1/4th of the face.

Argh!

Comcast has over 73 million HSI subscribers that are paying an average of just over $30 per month. That is, on internet alone, well over $210 million PER MONTH coming in. I think they can afford to give it away for free to a few people while throttling everyone else back.

" (Jimates)"The cost of lunch for a month for one child would more than pay for a nice cable package....

Lunch costs 1.70 for elementary, upper grades costs more.

cr3s said:   I'd pay $9.99 for 1.5Mbs

Man, I remember having to pay 25 bucks a month for 14.4 Kbps connection. When I wanted to watch Porn, I have to start the download, go outside and play, and then come back to see just 1/4th of the face.

Argh!
You look at the face? It's possible you're doing it wrong.

knickdigger said:   cr3s said:   I'd pay $9.99 for 1.5Mbs

Man, I remember having to pay 25 bucks a month for 14.4 Kbps connection. When I wanted to watch Porn, I have to start the download, go outside and play, and then come back to see just 1/4th of the face.

Argh!
You look at the face? It's possible you're doing it wrong.
There was a study, I don't remember when/were. The study found that men are more likely than women to look at the face first, whereas women looks at the junk first.

Found it:

http://www.science20.com/news_articles/gender_and_porn_where_men...

cr3s said:   I'd pay $9.99 for 1.5Mbs

Man, I remember having to pay 25 bucks a month for 14.4 Kbps connection. When I wanted to watch Porn, I have to start the download, go outside and play, and then come back to see just 1/4th of the face.

Argh!


Hilarious! This thread is under moderation but this post gets green lit?

skarydrunkguy said:   Comcast has over 73 million HSI subscribers that are paying an average of just over $30 per month. That is, on internet alone, well over $210 million PER MONTH coming in. I think they can afford to give it away for free to a few people while throttling everyone else back.


You obviously have a internet connection and a roof over your head. You must be taking in way more per month than your fair share. 3/5 of the worlds population has no running water. You are doing much much better.
If you want to help someone you have many options. Some things you can give away "for free".
You could cut your bandwidth in half and give what you save away "for "free".
Maybe half your salary given away to charity "for free".
Maybe let someone fallen on hard times to live in your home "for free".

It's obviously for free as someone is getting something for nothing and your loss will magically cost you nothing. It's just little bits of meaningless paper after all you will be giving up. You may have to work much more to get back those pieces of meaningless paper. But that's just the cost of "for free". You can afford it.

Comcast was forced to do this by law(with benefits for themselves). The paying subscribers will pay the "for free" cost in higher bills and degraded service. The workers at Comcast will pay the "for free" cost with less pay and fewer new jobs.

I'm just amazed that some can think they have some type of moral high ground or virtue in forcing others to be charitable. If you want some points do a few of the things I mentioned. If not live with yourself, realizing you are just as selfish as you accuse others of being, corporations or individuals. Nice moral out when you can run around forcing or berating others to do the dirty work of charity and then take the credit because you care and forced them to do it. Caring is no virtue. Virtue lies in action. If you don't want to take the action, I'd be a little more quiet about the caring part. It's not very seemly when it is costing you nothing.

danielle5985 said:   skh12 said:   this is not a hot deal for taxpayers

Now I am filing as a single person in the 28% bracket. I pay a crapload of taxes, and I probably will for the next 40 years, thanks to the American Dream of social mobility. I am one less technologist in the private sector that had to be hired overseas.

Been there done that. Plus state taxes as well. Getting married will lower that a bit.

Many of my classmates who were on the free lunch program are damn hard workers in highly scientific or high-demand jobs.

Its a shame that parents put so little concern to their children's nutrition. I hope the kids are getting breakfast and dinner at home. Might have to inform child services that those kids are suffering neglect.

If anything, that shame of having to show the little pink card was motivation enough to say, "I can do better than this" and appreciate what little we did have.

I wish so many other people had this level of self esteem, this determination, and this humility. Most would probably expect someone to give it to them as an entitlement.

But you're right. We should let free-loading 8-year-olds go hungry to save a few bucks, because it's bad for the economy.

No, we should challenge their parents to be self-sufficient, take pride in themselves, respect their children, and do what is the right thing.

Here ya go...now you have something that isnt private business...

Miltary Jobs Program

Lets not base our decisions on who's best qualified. Let business hire based on an incentive. You could say that resume will win out, but if your not in the pile to be considered first, then that may not happen.

aww i would jump on this so fast but i have no kids, can anyone loan me a kid so i can apply for this?

danielle5985 said:   skh12 said:   this is not a hot deal for taxpayers

How so? This is a Comcast deal, not a government welfare program.

It is a government welfare program, forced on a private company as part of a negotiated regulatory agreement, and Comcast will just pass those costs along. As usual, taxpayers foot the bill (in this case, paying Comcast customers) to provide more "rights" to others who don't pay.

geizig said:   This is a deal between Comcast and consumers. No taxpayers involved. Not directly anyway.

You're missing the point. If you have $10 per month to spend on NON-ESSENTIALS like a computer/internet, you should be spending that on brown-bagging your kid's ESSENTIAL lunch, not relying on taxpayers to feed him/her at school.

This is like the people in front of my at the grocery checkout buying convenience food with foodstamps...food that I would never buy with my money because it's too damn expensive.

30 days after calling the special Comcast number the approval packet was received.

The $150 netbook is a refurb with no Comcast warranty.

Reading the fine print, the $9.95 price includes equipement rental fees. The special price continues as long as there is a qualifying child in the house. Although you must be a Comcast cable TV customer in good standing to be approved, it does not seem to be required to keep the internet service going.


SEPT 18 UPDATE:

The approval packet states that the modem will arrive via UPS within the next 3 business days, but after 2 weeks nothing.

There was one phone message from "Tiffany at internet installation" asking to call her back right away, but no phone number was left, and no mention of Comcast either.

I called the number from the approval packet and explained that no equipment was ever received and there was an odd message from Tiffany. "The rep said, "Tiffany called you?" as if he was impressed, looked up my account and said "I think I see what needs to be done -- the modem kit needs to be sent to you."


SEPT 28 UPDATE:

Called and the rep said their system was down so she could not say why the modem has not shipped to me yet. Said she would call right back when the system was up. But no call back.



FINAL UPDATE (hopefully)

After no call back from them, I called again a bit heated and met success. Here is the scoop...

All of the acceptance letters state a modem will be shipped out within 3 business days. This is only true for former Comcast INTERNET customers. If your location has had only cable TV, they may need to sent out a tech to switch your cable line frequency. My location needs to have the switch.

The phone number and call center for the low cost program are apart from the rest of Comcast. At this call center, only Bethenny and Tiffany (no, I am not making up these names) can create the installation order. I spoke to Bethenny who was more sunshine perky than a BRING IT ON cheerleader. My anger went away.

Anyway, if you are accepted, but no equipment is sent to you. Call the number in the packet and ask to speak to Bethenny or Tiffany to create an installation order.


FINAL FINAL UPDATE

After a month since receiving the acceptance packet, Comcast came with the modem. The tech said there was no reason at all why anyone or myself could not do the self-install. He installed a tiny splitter and the modem. He installed it on a PC and tested it, then re-connected the old DSL and left.

The thing I am happy about is that the Comcast virus program is an option, not mandatory. And the Comcast desktop is also an option, not mandatory.

I restored the PC to an earlier date just to make sure no Comcast stuff was loaded. It functions.

JiggleTheHandle said:   Although you must be a Comcast cable TV customer in good standing to be approved, it does not seem to be required to keep the internet service going.

"In good standing" meaning no outstanding bills or unreturned equipment (see #4 below), but one does not already have to be a comcast customer, right? The terms don't say anything about current Comcast service of some kind being required.

How to qualify
To qualify for $9.95 a month Internet service and a low-cost computer, your household must meet all these criteria:
1. Be located where Comcast offers Internet service
2. Have at least one child receiving free school lunches through the National School Lunch Program
3. Have not subscribed to Comcast Internet service within the last 90 days
4. Not have an overdue Comcast bill or unreturned equipment

I called shortly after writing this post and was tentatively qualified after answering the questions essentially as shown above.

I don't know where you live but in the town I live in school lunches were raised this year to $2.75 (up .25 from last year).

Thanks for this information it will help my daughter. This has not been advertised in my area.

I got an approval packet in the mail about two weeks after faxing the app. and copy of the school lunch form. Waiting to receive the "self-installation kit" from UPS or FedEx. Will report back as I continue the process.

Any opinions on the value of a used/refurb netbook for $150? A quick search suggests that a new netbook with comparable specs generally costs around $100 more.

yoregano said:   I got an approval packet in the mail about two weeks after faxing the app. and copy of the school lunch form. Waiting to receive the "self-installation kit" from UPS or FedEx. Will report back as I continue the process.

Any opinions on the value of a used/refurb netbook for $150? A quick search suggests that a new netbook with comparable specs generally costs around $100 more.


I'm predicting netbooks will easily be $150 on BF this year.

Received the "self install" package a couple days ago, consisting of a used modem, network cable, two lengths of coax, some clips, and assorted paperwork. The installation process went without a hitch and is running smoothly as I type this. So far so good, Various speed test show it is indeed 1.5 mbps speed, but it feels reasonably peppy to me. My Ooma VOIP connection also is running fine on it.

Still contemplating that $150 netbook. I have a unique code to redeem if I want it, and I have another week or so to make up my mind.

My wife has been a "para-professional" (PC name for a teacher's aide) in the local middle school for the last 28 years and part of her job is "supervising" the kids during breakfast and lunch. She's been there 28 years. What aggravates her most is the majority of the kids who get the free breakfasts and lunches come to school in $150 sneakers, designer jeans and the parents drop them off in luxury cars (she sees this because she has door duty at breakfast). Many of them carry smartphones and have iPods.

What's wrong with this picture?



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