said by dslcreature:
What if I offered an Email-only service where you would only have access to sending and receiving email..no web..etc at a significantly reduced price. Would this be allowed?
No amount of regulation will protect and improve access to the network more than presence of real competition.
A smorgasbord of choices wouldn't be bad. (I wouldn't mind metered billing either.). But, the real problem is as you noted: lack of competition. Without competition there's no assurance that the buffet or the price per bytes would be customer-driven. No assurance the ISPs capital expenditures, capacity planning, profit margin would be customer driven.
We either need local ISPs to be under public-utility oversight, or municipal ownership of the last mile (allowing ISPs to compete for every household).
Everything else is just addressing the symptoms, not the problem.