Broadband price wars to blame
All the broadband price wars are to blame for the "so-called" bad economic condition of these providers. If they just charge a "fair" price for the access that could actually account for the required backbone capacity, then there would be no cause for alarm. There can't be an "Exaflood" if you haven't over-committed your own damn last mile networks without enough transit capacity. If you have over-committed, then the costing model to finance the required capacity is all screwed up. This is nothing but a simple economic problem.
All the broadband providers should be in the same or similar financial situation as far as funding core transit capacity is concerned as they have all slashed and burned their prices to the bone. So when performance gets shitty on Cable Company A because of an "Exaflood", customers might be willing to pay a little more to Telco B for access with better transit capacity or vice-versa.
What do you know...the free market economic model actually might work. Supply and Demand.
Now if the government in its infinite wisdom decides to regulate access to broadband services, then by all means the carriers should have the right to subsidies to implement those loss leader services. The argument that they can't afford the necessary core transit bandwidth to support their own customer base, however, is plain bullshit. They own all the contracts themselves and can set their own pricing like big boys. If they are stupid enough to provide unlimited bandwidth contracts to peering partners and content providers or broadband customers, then they deserve what they get coming to them.
Scott, CCIE #14618 Routing & Switching
Too bad those that know it all can't do it all.