Saturday, May 27, 2006

Terrorism brought to you by Enron

Michael Hammerschlag (HammerNews), over at Op-Ed News, has a concise and heated follow-up to the Lay and Skilling convictions about the conspiracy by Enron and other power companies, such as Reliant, to nearly drive the California economy into receivership. Their scheme did manage to bankrupt PG&E, but after driving a recall campaign against the sitting Democratic governor, as a Republican friendly with Lay, Arnold Schwarzenegger forgave most of the $9 billion that Enron et al. had sucked out of California.

Where were the media tools during all this? Espousing GOP talking points that it was all California's fault because their environmental laws had prevented power stations from being built. This was utter nonsense, but once the points were issued, the story had been told; the flaky green freaks of California were to blame for their own power shortages, not the fact that Enron had conspired with power stations to actually shutdown power production, engage in power "laundering," and fake power delivery scheduling. At the time of the artificial crisis and before any of the Enron scheme came to light, I remember speaking with energy traders who also believed that it was all California's fault. The credulity exhibited in general was rather appalling; a putative problem that had supposedly been mounting for years suddenly gave rise to 90-fold prices increases? Energy delivery is fine one day and then California experiences rolling blackouts the next? That just didn't make sense.

Hammerschlag suggests that the price gouging conspiracy concocted by Enron actually amounted to terrorism and concludes,
We were close to invading Arabia in 1973 because OPEC raised oil prices only 4-fold. But when the crooked corrupt electricity cartel robbed California blind by raising prices 90-fold, the US government, via the FERC (whom Lay had helped appoint), sat on its hands. Enron, the other power companies, and their many confederates in the Republican Party committed economic terrorism against the people of California (13% of US GDP at $1.55 trillion) and therefore America. The fact that Republicans were able to avoid any blame and even use it to overthrow the Democratic Governor while the MSM slept, set the pattern for all the horrors to come of the Bush regime.


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