Monday, February 27, 2006

Delmarva's Power Problem

The power company goes before the Public Service Commission later today expecting to propose ways that they can make their imposed 59% strike somewhat easier for everyone to swallow. Then in a grand ceremony up in Newark they'll announce them to the rest of the world. Well, the meeting before the PSC isn't closed or anything, but then my last line wouldn't sound so good.

Now unless you're a DuPont you're probably noticed that gas prices are a little bit higher than they were before, and by higher I mean that I may consider buying a pansy ass hybrid next time instead of another F-350. It's the way things are today. But the fact that this would happen right when our swift-thinking legislators decide is the time energy de-regulation will be a good idea is both not that much of a surprise and a terrible bout of bad timing. Granted Pepco deciding not to buy in bulk ahead of time (or however Markell explained it) was a colossal error working against us, but hey, what are we going to do, burn candles?

No matter what happens, it's pretty clear we're going to have to face the increase one way or the other. Delmarva Power doesn't even HAVE to do much of what they're proposing. I mean, we're all to a certain extent on fixed incomes, regardless of age. Some of us are just more than fixed than others, again regardless of age.

Most lawmakers in Delaware are entrenched in office. It's damn near impossible to lose once you're in there, unless you're Shirley Price. House and Senate leaders played the entire state for short-sighted fools by forcing that pay raise to go through a year ago, knowing full well that by this November few of us will remember, and those of us that do won't blame our legislator but instead someone else's. Now many of them, on a part-time basis make more than a lot of others do working full time. They've made being an elected official nice work if you can get it. With this latest crisis at hand, now they've got to scramble to come up with something else to prove how hard they're working for YOU even if there's some suspicion to that. Terry Spence wants to take your tax dollars and put it on your bill for the rest of the year. How very Republican of him, though it IS an election year. (Another aside, does anyone ever get tired of hearing Senator Bunting talk about how he's the ONLY legislators who voted against de-regulation? I don't, and he should rub it in their faces every time.)

Ultimately what we in Delaware need to do is think long and hard between now and November about just how much Delaware's politicians are thinking of us, and not them. Many of them upstate, some of them here downstate, are damned fools if they think they can say they're doing the jobs we put them there to do. It's time for voters in Terry Spence's district to think about the way the legislature has moved under his tenure. Voters in Bridgeville, I know it's a reflex but hasn't Thurman Adams' time in the legislature shown that the only thing Adams worries about is what his buddies in politics stand to gain? Voters in Laurel, just what the hell has Biff Lee done? The answer is, barely anything more than Bobby Outten who is the most worthless legislator in Dover. Hopefully the residents of Harrington remember that.

This is the year that Delawareans can enact some change in the legislature. We've been reminded over the last year that once someone gets to Dover, more often than not they only care about keeping that commute going for as long as they want. And even if how they voted on something a bunch of years ago will keep that commute going, changing their minds and voting differently next time is perfectly reasonable. And while it shouldn't, that somehow makes it pretty hard to hold lawmakers accountable for all their other sins, leaving the best chance we get to be often wasted by reflexive and partisan voters.

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