We keep being shocked by energy prices in America, because we refuse to plan to deal with them. This is itself a plan, by huge power companies and their legislative staff, to create massive barriers to alternative fuels, and heavily regulate against fully costing the fossil fuels these corporations monopolize. We spent a trillion dollars trying to guarantee open oil fields in Iraq, and accomplished nothing. Had we spent a trillion dollars buying alternative power equipment, we would be exporting our excess oil today. Wars conducted on their behalf should be billed directly to the oil companies themselves.

Electricity conglomerates behave the same way. Heavy conservative regulations against subsidizing decentralized generation, and opposing rapid development of a ‘smart grid,’ keep owners of gigantic power plants rolling in profits, while we suffer more frequent blackouts and ever higher prices. A smart grid will do what the national highway system did in an earlier day. It allows small producers, even home owners, to go into business selling power on an open market. It will drive down energy costs, while creating new small business opportunities in every corner of the country.

Energy policy is the best example of what’s wrong with economic policy in the United States. Economic activity has been legislatively frozen by politicians claiming to ‘deregulate markets,’ when in fact they’re preventing the normal market operations of seeking alternatives. ‘Free markets’ have become the political term for frozen markets, in which current owners charge their hidden costs off to taxpayers, and rake in profits from consumers unable to buy anywhere else.

Comments are closed.