^ Was it actually Comcast back then? Or even a company bought by a company bought by Comcast? (This could go on for a while)
We had Cox cable (I think) around 1980-1981 and I have no idea how many times the name changed in all those years, or how many other companies got rolled into this fat fucking monopoly, but at least there's still at least 2 satellite companies to create some competition.
XM & Sirius merging will probably mean a lot of screw-job for satellite radio listeners, of which I used to be one (dropped before the merger became known, I just got fed up with Sirius' crap Indian customer service).
I think the name of the original company was Warner Cable. My experience was the same as yours though. Two or three name changes until Comcast absorbed the local operation.
I'd been less than happy with them for a while. Moving the NFL Network was the last straw. The fact that I'd been a charter subscriber, and that loyalty is a two way street was was completely lost on them. Somehow they thought it was better to lose my almost $100 monthly subscription fee than give me the $5 sports tier that would have kept me on board. Go figure.
Never did the satellite radio thing, but I take your point. No competition means no service.