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Wednesday, 30 October 2013


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I saw a neat diagram the other day that explained graphically the composition of the typical household's energy bills. Amongst other things it showed that something like 16% was down to Milliband/Clegg/Cameron. Another 10% or so was down to improvements to the delivery system (national grid etc), mandated by the government. The power companies should be taking full page adverts in the national press showing this diagram.

In a monopoly or cartel state, a market has ceased to operate as intended and desired. One of those energy scumbags said something to the effect of "we couldn't reduce prices without losing some of the 20,000 jobs we have". I thought "and your point is what?". If he's saying he could get rid of 20,000 jobs and reduce the price, then wtf isn't he? That's 20,000 people who are really hidden unemployment. They'll cost us a lot less on the dole than they will on 30 grand a year in a fake energy job.

I worked at one of the large mobile phone providers last year, and I can say you could halve the headcount of that company without a blip on the service.

Monopoly and cartel corporates are no different from the public sector bodies many of them replaced: sinks for hidden unemployment, institutionalized low productivity, and serial abusers of their customers.

Force the price down until the lights go off, andwhen they do, reverse the last price decrease. Or force them to divide and create a proper competitve market, like the "squeezed middle" the rest of us inhabit.



SoD, brutal, but true. I find it helpful to see the same thing in different settings, France, Britain, USA, Czech Republic, although you'll know much more of that one than I could. I work for a private company that arranges for nurses to take care of mostly kids, at home, paid for, of course, under Medicaid. It is really not possible to reduce the nursing staff below one at a time, but the boys in the office who arrange scheduling and do some of the mountain of paperwork demanded by the State, are probably twice the number actually needed. Note, however, the part about the State's demands, which multiply work with no perceptible improvement in the health or life expectancy of the patients.

DD, have a heart, man! It may be late morning where you are, while we are safely tucked into our beds, but we are reading this when we first arrive at "work." Since the first task is to drink some coffee, well, just imagine the damage you do with a closing sentence like the one above.(Not that it's not true, mind you.)

"Or does he understand it and simply doesn't care because he knows the depths of stupidity in which the Great British Public is mired and the sort of economic blx that he proposes might just win him an election?"

I suspect that's it - these people are wholly cynical.

BOE, personally, I don't agree with most of the reasons purporting to make Green subsidies necessary but if politicians do believe in it they should stand by it publically and call fro open taxes to support what they are calling for, not hide it away in energy bills so that only 'in extremis' do we find out.

Sod, what you say was said yesterday by the man representing Ovo Energy, a tiddler operating in the energy pool. I do not agree with government price cutting by 'diktat'. However, if a government believes there is insufficient competition they should use every trick in the book to aid small companies like Ovo start up. However, remember one other thing that was not emphasised enough yesterday and that is the massive amount of money the government require 'Big Energy' to do by way of improvements to energy superstructure - new plants, new pipe lines, new grids and above all new storage facilities.

Apologies, Michael, and I do hope your keyboard recovers quickly!

Sad but true, AK.

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