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Texas Power Blackouts Were Preventable -- But Freedumb, Dammit!

The state's electrical problems can be traced to a long history of wanting to avoid federal regulation.
Texas Power Blackouts Were Preventable -- But Freedumb, Dammit!
Image from: ERCOT

The failure of the Texas electrical grid in this historic winter storm is a textbook example of why bumper sticker policies Just. Don't. Work.

See, for an assortment of wingnut ideas -- "independence," protecting the almighty petrochemical industry from taxation, etc. -- Texas has its own power grid. If Texas had raised taxes and invested in infrastructure upgrades, they could be part of the national power grid -- and those people shivering through this storm could have electricity sent from other parts of the country. But freedumb!

Here's Texas senator John Cornyn blaming it on wind power:

It wasn’t just wind turbines, though. The coal and gas generators also froze. Yet northeastern states have weather like this all the time, raise the taxes to support the infrastructure. But Texas is too invested in being a low-tax state to face reality.

Meanwhile, because Texas doesn't believe in price regulation on the retail energy market, thousands of customers will be charged as much as $9000 a kilowatt megawatt-hour for electricity during this storm:

Which returns me to two of my favorite mantras as I watch some of my friends retire to Florida and Texas "because the taxes are low and it's warm":

1. There are no longer any places to hide from extreme weather.

2. There is no such thing as a low-tax state. There are only tax cuts for the wealthy that are a deferred payment on public infrastructure.

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