|Posted at 08:10 AM on December 01, 2009|
With all the debates over national health care and continued war it seems that a vital issue to Pennsylvanians is being overlooked. That issue is the further deregulation of our electricity providers. It has already been scheduled by our state government to go into effect next year.
As with all “deregulation” the stated purpose is to provide incentive for competition across state and local lines. We will, according to the key word riddled arguments of deregulation supporters, be able to get electricity for less as deregulation opens the door to competitive pricing from various providers. This is the same thing they did in California, a few years before the Enron scandal. Deregulation and poor oversight are what allowed Enron to systematically scam everyone.
I’m going to ask you all a question: What is the natural result of competition? The answer that stands foremost in my mind is the creation of a winner. In most competitive fields, one person/group wins and many fail. What this means for prices is that at first we may experience the almighty realization of lower prices, but eventually the larger providers will buy up all the others and there will only be a few mega-corps left. This is called a monopoly. Monopolies without regulation lead to poor service at high cost because there are no alternative sources of service.
In the past many power companies were locally commissioned to provide electricity to a small area. These companies turned a healthy profit, but were not beholden to the corporate need for more customers and fiscal growth. For example, the Board of Light in the town of Ilion, New York gave away power for the month of December as a Christmas gift to the community every year. They also put up street lights and powered them for free. Through all that they remained solvent and profitable until large scale corporate structures were imposed and took authority away from the Board (Doukas, 146-149).
Deregulation, trickle down, and Reganomics in general do not work. They are lies imposed by the corporate power structure that pays for our “representatives” costly election campaigns. They are falsehood born out of greed, designed to keep the resources and lucre at the top. The only thing that deregulation does is allow freedom to increase prices. The only things that trickle down are leftovers and debris. Our politicians line their pockets with our tax dollars, corporate contributions, and illegal graft and we sit idly by and let them take us for all we are worth!
(Ref: Doukas, Dimitra. Worked Over. Ithaca and London: Cornell UP, 2003. Print.)
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