Saturday, February 27, 2021

Winter has come and gone (for now), but its effects linger on

Once again I've been remiss in blogging this month. I suppose I could have put the blame for my absence on the Great Texas Snow/Ice Storm, which caused much more suffering (and death) than it should have, mostly related to massive power outages. And those outages are due in no small part to Texas' long history of (mostly) republican malfeasance, characterized by fealty to the almighty oil and gas industry and the power companies, and an intractable profits-before-people philosophy.

Indeed the winter storm was one factor in my Whirled absence -- and Ron and I might have gladly escaped to Cancun or some other warmer paradise like the infinitely detestable
Senator Fled Cruz if that had been an option -- but there have been numerous other distractions as well. It's not the first time that life has gotten in the way of blogging.

Ron and I didn't have it nearly as bad as many thousands of our fellow Texans, and in large part this was because we are in one of the small slivers of the Lone Star State that isn't run by the egregiously misnamed
Electric Reliability Council Of Texas, or ERCOT. Millions of other Texans were not so lucky.

Ron and I had a couple of power outages on the first day of the storm, but they didn't last very long, and we had no more outages for the duration. But many of our friends and family are ERCOT hostages, as is over 90 percent of this humongous state. Winter may have come and gone (at least for now) in Texas, but
it left a trail of devastation.

Texas governor Greg Abbott has been hollering nonstop about investigating ERCOT -- and at his press conferences he's made
quite a big deal of expressing outrage about the suffering and deaths caused by the storm. But he has so far dodged questions about the body that, along with the Texas legislature, oversees ERCOT, the Texas Public Utility Commission (PUC), members of whom were appointed by Abbott himself and who surely deserve to be in a harsh spotlight. PUC is supposedly investigating ERCOT now, but someone seriously needs to investigate the investigators.

I'm hoping that it will all be sorted out, and that the heads that deserve to roll will finally roll. But this is Texas, so I'm managing my expectations. Meanwhile, if you want to help suffering Texans, like favorite republican scapegoat
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has done, CNN's Impact Your World has published a handy and dynamic list of resources.

I'll be back soon with a more substantial post about Scamworld stuff, though there may be some politix thrown in the mix too for good measure.

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