Giving Thieves a Free Hour To Work Their Magic
In a useless gesture designed to make parasitic politicians (but, I repeat myself) feel useful, algorians around the Stalag are calling for residents of Los Pueblos de Los Angeles, Santa Barbara and San Francisco to turn out their lights between 8 and 9PM today to save enough electricity to light 2500 residences for an entire year. So far, I've not been contacted to be one of those who is to receive a year's free power.
According to a Reuters story, lights in Alcatraz, the Los Angeles International Airport and the Golden Gate Bridge, along with most lights in city buildings (all with exceptions for safety considerations) will be turned off for this hour. Imagine how much more money we'd save if they did this during what the city sniggeringly refers to as "working hours."
This gives thieves and burglars an entire hour to work their magic in a more nearly ideal environment, and one can only imagine what sorts of things might go on during this hour in San Francisco!
El Pueblo de Los Angeles runs its own power operation, which was founded under the proposition that a city-owned power company, divorced from the profit motive, will cost consumers less and be more responsive to consumer demands. Of course, we all know how that worked out. Power is every bit as expensive in LA as it is anywhere else, and more expensive than most localities, and you can't get anyone on the phone. Power transmission is still done by means of unsightly and dangerous overhead wires instead of underground, as has been done in most surrounding areas for decades.
The real answer? Privatize.
Unfortunately, because of state and federal regulation, competition is not only nonexistent, but prohibited by law. Were the industry privatized and deregulated (truly deregulated), each household would be capable of picking and choosing among several power suppliers. We could shop price, or service, or even set up our own individual home power plant (as long as it doesn't disturb the neighbors).
Senor Antonio Vinaigrette, el Alcalde del Pueblo de Los Angeles, still maintains that a cure for all our power shortages is that we should replace out incandescent bulbs with rotini light fixtures, and just limit our use of electricity 'twixt the hours of 3PM and 7PM (or something like that). As we say in the Valley, "Like, I'm sure!"
It's now a little after 9PM and I still haven't been notified about my year of free power.