Sunday, July 12, 2009

R ECs grow Astroturf to fight "crap & trade"

First of all I think the carbon cap-and-trade legislation, now wending its way with all the alacrity of a tortoise though the Halls of Congress, is kind of goofy. I mean the government "auctions," these "pollution permits," emissions permits in polite society, to all the electricity generating and coal-burning plants in the land. These "pollution permits" tell all the carbon-smoke producing industries know just how much carbon dioxide, CO2, the federal government will let them pump into the atmosphere every year. By selling these "pollution permits" to smoke-stack industries, like electricity generating plants, the federal government will supposedly rake in a ton of dough.

Now here's where it get screwy. After all the "pollution permits" are handed out and all the carbon-smoke belching industries find out how much they are allowed to continue polluting Company X sees that it doesn't pollute the atmosphere nearly as much as Company Y. So Company X sells its excess "pollution permits" to Company Y, for a profit, that can now go on its merry way spewing black clouds of CO2 into the air we breath.

As far as I can figure the theory behind this shell game is that the guys running Company Y will get tired of being screwed by the guys at Company X so this gives the guys at Company Y an incentive to clean up their act and in turn sell their "pollution permits" to some other Smoky Joe of a company. Of course, this being American, land of the "free market economy," we gotta have middle-men, brokers if you will, to set up and sell these "pollution permits" in some sort of "free market" stock exchange thingie. And this is where the real money will be made. The general public gets slightly cleaner skies while the assholes who bought you the Dot Com-bubble, the Housing-bubble, and last summer's Oil-bubble get to wax even fatter on the coming "Crap-and-Trade" Bubble.

But this being the United States there are always a few dipshits too lazy or too cheap or just too stupid to know a good thing when they see it. Either that or they just want to be spoilsports and wreck the good times ahead for the Wall Street fucks with their "cap-and-trade" bullshit because they're making a shitpot of dough doing what they've been doing for the last seventy years, thank you.

In this case the spoilsports are some of the good folks of theNational Rural Electric Coopertive Association, NRECA". It seems that a group of these "privately owned, democratically governed" businesses in the Chesapeake Bay region, North Carolina and Iowa just don't want to play ball. So they've sent up an Astrotruf organization called Find A Balanced

Here's what these guys are pitching to the bib-overall set out here in Iowa
We can't afford not to act on the issue of climate change. We also can't afford soaring energy costs. The answer is a balanced solution.

We can have a clean environment AND a healthy economy.

We need a balanced climate change policy that reduces emissions without raising the cost of electricity. The current cap-and-trade proposal before Congress will tip the balance, sending energy costs soaring at a time when reliable, affordable energy is essential for our economic recovery. The effects will be felt in every sector of our economy, in every business and every home.

We need a balanced policy that focuses on new technology, innovation and American ingenuity. Iowa's member-owned cooperatives are already addressing this issue by investing in energy efficiency, clean technologies and renewable resources. We can't let Congress tip the balance with policies that will drive costs up and drag our economy down. Work with us to tell Congress we want a balanced solution.

Act now. Tell your congressmen you want a balanced solution to climate change.

Member systems of CIPCO, NIPCO and Corn Belt Power Cooperatives

What the fuck does this double-talk supposed to mean?

As near as I can figure what this is supposed to mean is that you, Mr. and Mrs. Corn-fed Rural Iowan will see higher electricity bills if this "cap-and-trade" bullshit goes through Congress and President Oreo signs this steaming pile of crap into law. Well, d'uh, Mr. and Mrs. Corn-fed Rural Iowan, you are going to get higher electricity bills in the near future with or without "crap-and-trade" anyway, so what the fuck? You're screwed no matter what.

And as far as the "balanced solution?" My take on the above gobbledygook is, first: "We didn't try nothing and it didn't work so we're just gonna keep on doin' what we been doin', 'cause it makes us money"; and secondly: "We'll get around to 'clean' energy generation just as soon as the price of coal goes up. Trust us." Like that's ever going to happen since coal, the real villain in this melodrama, is the continental United States' number-one fossil fuel. We have more of the shit than nearly anywhere else in the world. And that's why the assholes in Washington, D.C. are playing around with this "cap-and-trade" garbage in the first place.

So either way, "cap-and-trade" or doing nothing, we, the American people, are screwed.

Look, if we lived in a sane country the electric utility industry wouldn't be in private, for-profit hands. At the very least if we just had to have private, for-profit entities own the electric grid, it should be highly regulated like the old AT&T was when it had a virtual monopoly on telephone service. Before divestiture AT&T was a highly profitable company that provided excellent service, in spite of Lily Tomlin, and everybody, except the boys at Bell Labs, was happy with the arrangement.

As far as I'm concerned, "cap-and-trade" is a load of bullshit. The only real way to get these polluting sonsuvbitches in line is to threaten them with legal action if they don't mend their ways. All "cap-and-trade" will accomplish is making the pricks who ran this country into the economic ditch it now finds itself in the first place a little richer and assuage the the consciences of a few well placed and well-known limousine liberals, who will undoubtedly also pad their bank accounts at the same time.

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