“How is any American going to feel good about reforming Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security when … businessmen are making off with so many tax dollars?”
– Richard Fink (Koch Industries), quoted in Bill Wilson and Roy Wenzl, “The Kochs’ Quest to Save America,” Wichita Eagle, October 13, 2012.
A major political-economy theme at MasterResource is how government intervention stifles value-creating entrepreneurship, or, in the case of mineral resources, resourceship.
MasterResource has chronicled the sorry history of government trying to turn energy losers into winners. Last year alone, this site published 60 blog-posts on the history, operation, and current politics of (government-enabled) industrial wind power. And who can forget Solyndra on the solar side, a name that might enter the textbooks as the Teapot Dome of our time.…
Late last month, Georgia Power (Southern Company) filed its eighth semi-annual report on the construction progress of its 2,240-MW two-unit Vogtle nuclear plant to the Georgia Public Service Commission (GPSC).
The already bad news got still worse–not surprising for a project that is all but financially insulated from its own failure. As I previously wrote at MasterResource:
With a pending $8.6 billion federal loan guarantee, a cap on liability, production tax credits and pre-collection of profits this makes Georgia Power the nation’s biggest welfare queen.
Georgia Power’s latest report to state regulators indulges in self-praise, shifts blame for growing problems, and employs misleading analysis. The Company asks the GPSC to approve an additional $737 million in cost and add 15 months to the project’s schedule. Since Georgia Power has 45.7% ownership, the entire $14 billion project has additional cost of over $1.6 billion.…
“The energy boom in North America demonstrates that competition and technology are powerful forces; indeed, markets work. When the price system is allowed to work, technology is brought to bear on supply (more) and demand (less) to the benefit of economies everywhere.”
Gone are the days of growing scarcity in the North American oil patch–and increasing petroleum imports from unstable regimes overseas.
The new consensus–that North American energy is plentiful and will remain so to at least the year 2040–is not based on hopes and hype. Over the last five years North America has experienced a true energy revolution, and it is continuing apace.
U.S. oil production is at its highest level since 1992, at over 7 million barrels per day (mmb/d), and Canada’s output exceeded 4 mmb/d at the end of last year, its highest level ever.…