Overheard on CNN.com: Praise for the government?
AT&T's merger with T-Mobile to significantly expand its faster 4G wireless network and to compete with Verizon is on hold
August 31st, 2011
05:23 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: Praise for the government?

Comment of the day:

“I don't believe it! My government is actually working in my interest!” - Nmdissident

AT&T will remain No. 2, for now

The U.S. Department of Justice filed an antitrust lawsuit against AT&T on Wednesday seeking to block its $39 billion merger with T-Mobile. The merger would have created the largest wireless company in the United States — AT&T is currently second, behind Verizon. Justice concerns about the merger include a market dominated by the top two companies leading to higher prices and fewer choices for customers.

Unlike most comment boards that involve the government lately, CNN.com readers offered high praise:

EssJ said, “Thank goodness. As a T-Mobile customer, I hated the idea of being forced to become an AT&T customer again. There's a reason I switched and I've enjoyed T-Mobile's creative service offerings and great prices ever since.”


Slau said, “Thank you DOJ. I am tired of these companies buying and merging then later laying off employees. That is one of the reasons why unemployment is so high.”

Thinkpad said, “For this round: Main Street wins ... Wall Street loses.”

Libslost said, “The government needs to stay out of other people's business.”

4whtitswrth said, “Just ONE MORE example of federal government control over our very existence. And in the midst of this economic crisis and the search for budget cuts, our federal government is willing to spend millions of dollars in paper alone to exercise a FEDERAL MUSCLE! Wake UP AMERICA!”

Angryman1 responded, “You must be one of those capitalists who is in favor of monopolies and oligopolies.”

CbsSheb said, “Glad this is happening! AT&T service was bad years ago, gave them another try (from Verizon) and they are no better and a merger would not better their service but only up all of our rates. The more choices consumers have the better for us!”

Snarkattack said, “You can say what you want about politics, but strangely, the only thing that's more American than hot dogs, French fries, and the Fourth of July? Sherman Anti-Trust.”

Kazzmedia said, “Makes no sense to me. Last time I checked if I wanted Cable TV my choices were Comcast, Comcast ... and Comcast.”

Coloradom responded, “...and DirecTV and Dish Network, as well as broadband from the phone carriers (in certain areas). It doesn't matter how you get the information (satellite, cable lines, etc.) as long as there's competition for television.”

open400 said, “I live in in Overland Park, Kansas – just a ston'se throw from Sprint. This is great news for Sprint, which was in panic mode about the merger. We here in Overland Park feared layoff and a further depression of the housing and job market. Companies like Sprint need to stay in the market.”

Thumbs said, “Thank God I get to keep my lower priced T-Mobile contracts.”

9/11 memorial opening

While construction of the new buildings at ground zero will not be complete until 2015, a September 11 Memorial is scheduled to open on the 10th anniversary of the attacks. Painstaking, contentious and well thought out, the memorial is getting approval as the “architectural equivalent of a moment of silence."

Designer Michael Arad’s vision turned reality includes two pools or “voids” that plunge into the earth representing the Twin Towers, engravings of the names of the victims of the September 11, 2001, tragedy and the World Trade Center attack in 1993 and more than 400 trees along walkways.

CNN.com readers shared their opinion of creating a 9/11 memorial site:

Guest said, “I was very mad once and when I'm mad I drive. I live in Dallas, so I drove north during a mad spell and ended up in Oklahoma City. I said, well what the hay, I'll see what this memorial is. I was not prepared for the majesty, the awe, the sorrow and the reality of it all. It is at once horrible and beautiful, peaceful and strife-filled. I stood under the survivor tree and breathed in the freshness, saw the scrawled spraypainting on the wall nearby from the day it happened. I saw the small chairs, arranged where the day care was, I saw the chain link fence riddled with toys and papers, letters and pictures even after all these years. Whatever is or will go on to make me mad in my life, it is NOTHING compared to what happened there. I felt changed. I live better, I serve more, give more and I don't drive mad anymore. Love transcends all: race, religion, political affiliation, creed and identity. I think all children should take field trips to see these sites.”

ShesGuilty said, “Beautiful makeover... tasteful... and commensurate. BRAVO.”

cherries said, “If I could afford to fly, I would love to go see this. I guess I'll just have to pay my respects with an American flag in front of my home.”

ChrisDawg responded, “All that is required is for those of us who can't be there to remember those who were lost on that tragic day and to remember that for one day at least, all of America was truly united and hope for that sense of unity and purpose to find its way back into our national psyche. We spend far too much time being divided.”

CrunkSwaggaG said, “While it will never bring back those who died that day, and I will never forget them, it does bring some peace and closure on this 10th anniversary to know that Osama bin Laden is finally dead and that he will never kill anyone, ever again.”

NYCchick5 said, “It's no longer ‘Ground Zero.’ It's a living memorial, where the whole neighborhood has been transformed.”

MadCityBabe said, “I would have loved to see them rebuild the original towers. I don't know, there's something about returning to something familiar that will no longer be there ... the towers were such an impressive presence ... and I would certainly never imply any disregard for those who died that day ... it's simply a sense of something familiar.”

RoscoeC said, “We often forget to thank the construction workers who first cleared the debris and now are rebuilding. They represent the true spirit of America.”

Demonstrating Irene’s aftermath

Although Irene has come and gone, millions of people are still being affected by the devastating storm. President Obama has signed a disaster declaration for New York and North Carolina, thousands of people continue to evacuate to avoid surging rivers in the Northeast and many communities in Vermont remain isolated while an estimated 2.85 million customers remained without power Tuesday.

To help cover the storm and its aftermath, thousands of iReporters sent in pictures and video of the devastation in their communities.

CNN.com readers shared their concern for those affected and their own personal experiences.

Petercha01 said, “I do hope that every rural community gets all the federal aid they need.”

Vtboarder said, “Please do not assume that we here in Vermont are sitting around doing nothing. Neighbors are helping neighbors at the individual level and neighboring towns are helping their neighbors. Also, please do not assume that this storm was taken lightly; much preparation went into this, by people, towns, our few cities and the state. The death toll has been low, as most people gave this storm the respect it needed. Three sad accidents did lead to four unfortunate deaths. Evacuations saved lives, no question.”

Hopcath said, “I shuddered to hear the New Yorkers complaining that the weather forecast seemed to have hyped up the intensity of the storm ... that it might have inconvenienced them to evacuate, etc. Words fail me to express how ungrateful an attitude that is! In most countries, thousands die because of a lack of preparation and in the USA, very few were killed by this massive, massive storm because of good reporting and concerned state governments! All around you was devastation, too, and Vermont is still suffering.”

Drdaneeka said, “As a New Hampshire native and longtime New Orleans resident I know how it feels Vermonters. … Keep safe and here's to a successful recovery for your beautiful state! I hope all of our officials have learned how to deal with these events more effectively since Katrina.”

SammyJames said, “Vermont! I hope that everyone is OK in Burlington (as well as everywhere else in the state). I have friends who live in Burlington. Stay well, and drop me a note when you can. ...”

drsyld said, “White Lake and Narrowsburg; New York residents are still without power. Their provider is NYSEG. I hope they are on the list for federal assistance. They are in need. No power since Sunday. They have been getting on line at the White Lake fire house on 17B to receive water and dry ice. There are seniors, adults and children living in this rurual area who need help. Basements flooded and food destroyed.”

Do you feel your views align with these commenters' thoughts? Post a comment below or sound off on video

Compiled by the CNN.com moderation staff. Some comments edited for length or clarity.

soundoff (22 Responses)
  1. yada

    Love Sprint! Great service, low prices, no problem. ;-D

    August 31, 2011 at 5:57 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Charles Othon

    I think the best option for the president is to adress the house as is, with no one there! That would be like our bosses showing up for a "mandetory" meating and no one present. Do you think those persons are gona keep thier jobs? Why should our gov. be any diferent?? We expect our reps to DO the job they were elected to! Hold your speach in the HOUSE OF REPS. Even if none of OUR house is there. The rest of AMERICA will be!!!! You're the BOSS! WE CHOSE YOU! BE THERE AND HOLD THEM ACOUNTABLE!!!!

    August 31, 2011 at 6:09 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    Yes, I'd like to see the President speak to empty seats.
    Also: Sprint gives wonderful service. I would not change carriers unless they mess up.

    August 31, 2011 at 6:52 pm | Report abuse |
  4. banasy©

    Hey, yada.
    Hey, JIF.

    I, too, have Sprint.
    I've been with them for years.
    My family and I get great service at a great price.

    August 31, 2011 at 7:01 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Jazzzzzzzz

    Hi. This is John:

    August 31, 2011 at 7:06 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Jazzzzzzzz

    If you are the phone company, I already sent the money. ...

    August 31, 2011 at 7:06 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Jazzzzzzzz

    If you are my parents, please send money.

    August 31, 2011 at 7:07 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Jazzzzzzzz

    If you are my the bank, you didn't lend me enough money.

    August 31, 2011 at 7:08 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Jazzzzzzzz

    If you are my friends, you owe me money.
    If you are a female, don't worry, I have plenty of money.

    August 31, 2011 at 7:09 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Jazzzzzzzz

    Hello, epicenter of the Universe, God speaking. If you leave your name, number, and prayer after the tone, I will call you back as soon as I can. Please note that I answer all prayers, but sometimes the answer is NO. Bless you, my child, and have a nice day.

    August 31, 2011 at 7:42 pm | Report abuse |
  11. banasy©

    You're on a roll today.

    August 31, 2011 at 8:47 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Jazzzzzzzz

    Thanks, girlie girl ....

    August 31, 2011 at 8:51 pm | Report abuse |
  13. gung hoe

    Butting in hello banasy and jazzzzz

    August 31, 2011 at 9:11 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Jazzzzzzzz

    hey gung hoe , were you just on the glacier thread

    August 31, 2011 at 9:16 pm | Report abuse |
  15. gung hoe

    Hey banasy i also have sprint used to have nextell had two way loved it dont know why i changed but did also hello jazzzz

    August 31, 2011 at 9:19 pm | Report abuse |
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