30 April 2006

Remember Rolling Blackouts? Iran Does.

Here's a letter I wrote to the stalwart stock at POWERLINEBLOG:


I have not seen mentioned *anywhere* the logical connection between California's electricity woes of a few years ago, and our current oil price misery.

The problem in California was that after the *insufficient* deregulation of the power industry, power providers wound up with a cap on prices, while consumers had (therefore) no cap on consumption. The supply side, which can do basic math, stopped investing and reduced operations to perfunctory, mandated, caretaker tasks, while the demand side chugged an ever-larger draught until the taps were dry, barback unseen and not coming soon.

If this Republican administration and Republican Congress deal with oil in the same pandering, bite-the-hand-which-feeds way that California "dealt with" electricity years ago, the results will be much the same, with the added specter of Hugo Chavez, Vladimir Putin, and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's replacement all rubbing their hands with glee as they carve up the remnants of our crippled economy.

This treatment is precisely what I see coming when I hear opportunistic House Reps and Bush Admin. types begin to take up the cudgel of wanking against an American industry whose profits, as a percentage, are lower than the average for all American industries. Some facts would help.

Thank you,

Haakon B. Dahl

Yokohama, Japan

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