Friday, February 21, 2014

Citizens for Enervating Michigan's Economy

"Citizens for Energizing Michigan's Economy" opposes competition among Michigan's electricity suppliers. The Mackinac Center for Public Policy has some thoughts on CEME's recent misleading ad campaign. (The ad can be viewed from that link, if you aren't aware of it.)
A new commercial is attempting to make Michigan residents fear electricity deregulation.

It claims that Texas "decided to experiment with deregulating their electricity," and subsequently, prices "shot through the roof" and "blackouts threatened communities." It then tells that a proposed bill in this state that would "deregulate Michigan's electricity."
Not exactly...
For starters, state policymakers are not considering electricity deregulation. The cited legislation — Rep. Mike Shirkey's House Bill 5184 — merely lifts the cap on the portion of consumers who would be able to choose an alternative electricity provider (other than the one assigned to them by Michigan's current monopoly system). The electricity market in Michigan would remain just as regulated as it is now. The state would still control which utilities could operate and would continue to regulate rates, among other things...

[T]he average residential retail price of electricity in Michigan increased faster than Texas's over the last decade and remains significantly higher. Texas's rates were about eight cents per kilowatt hour in 2000 and about 11 cents in 2013. Michigan's rates were about 11 cents per kilowatt hour in 2000 and increased to almost 15 cents in 2013, the highest in the Midwest region and 11th highest in the nation.
Where has CEME been for the last 10 years, when we needed them?

Ask yourself who benefits from the 10% Michigan cap on electricity competition: You, or DTE and Consumers Energy?

According to a National Association of Broadcaster's form indicating who placed the ad (NAB Form PB-18), "Citizens for Energizing Michigan's Economy" consists of three individuals:

John Truscott
President/Principal at Truscott Rossman:
John Truscott is one of the foremost experts in public relations and politics in Michigan. When you need to develop a message, assemble a strategy, generate publicity or make a new connection, nobody does it better.
Howard Edelson:
[I]s campaign manager for the CARE for Michigan coalition and founder of The Edelson Group. In addition, Edelson is the past president of the Great Lakes Renewable Energy Association and was campaign manager for the 2006 Granholm for Governor Campaign.
Formerly, Edelson was Director of Governmental & Regulatory Affairs CMS Energy Corporation (1995-2005); Chief of Staff U.S. Representative Bob Carr (1992-1995) and Field Director MI Democratic Party (1983-1984).

Rhoda Tinkham appears to be a retiree from Consumers Energy.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Monday, February 17, 2014

Celebrating "Stimulus"

Today is the 5th anniversary of the President's monetary stimulus, but at TOC we're celebrating the only Obama stimulus that actually worked.

It created jobs, boosted private sector manufacturing and encouraged people to appreciate the Bill of Rights. Of course, none of that was intentional.

It's tapering now, but the results are still far above pre-stimulus levels. CNN would have you believe otherwise in their headline, Gun sales are plunging, but the real story is a bit different:
Gun sales are dropping this year, according to FBI stats, but they still exceed sales from before Obama's reelection and the Newtown massacre…

Though gun sales have dropped from their peak last year, they're still outperforming monthly sales that preceded Obama's reelection, said Lawrence Keane, spokesman for the National Shooting Sports Foundation, the gun industry group based in Newtown.

For example, the tally of 1.66 million gun sales in January, 2014 is significantly higher than the 1.38 million sold in January, 2012.

"So we have come down from the peak but the valley floor is higher than before Nov 2012," said Keane, in an email to CNNMoney. "The consumer base has grown. This is because for the past few years, retailers tell us that about 25% of customers at the checkout counter are first-time buyers.”
There are only so many first time buyers, but I’m guessing many of them will eventually want another gun.

Ammo sales have also tapered off:
"Customers shifted away from ammunition more sharply than we expected," said Cabela's Chief Executive Officer Tommy Millner…
Maybe the prices will fall back, too.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Charlie Christ invokes the Young Defense

Florida Democrat pretending for years to be Republican publicly hugs the most prominent and powerful Democrat, inadvertently revealing his true allegiance.  Some Florida Republicans cause an uproar, resulting in a defeat at the polls for the faux Republican, who is forced by pragmatism to tacitly admit his mendacity.

“Racism!"

It worked for Colman Young and it still works.

Monday, February 03, 2014

The deep slumber of a decided opinion

Time to wake up.

Mark Steyn has put more on the line more to protect the fundamental principle of free speech than any other living writer. In Canada, his long battle over an article published in Maclean's magazine greatly increased Canadians' freedom by contributing to the repeal of Section 13 of the Canadian Human Rights Act.

Now, Mr. Steyn is going to court in the United States, having been sued by warmist poster-child Dr. Michael Mann, over an article Steyn wrote in National Review. Dr. Mann created the debunked "hockey stick" (see also), and was one recipient of the "hide the decline" email in the Climategate email scandal.

Forbes had this to say about Dr. Mann:
Mann’s career is dependent on taxpayer handouts. He draws his salary from a public university, Penn State. He solicits government grant money to carry out special research projects. Government officials, who are accountable to voters for how they spend the tax money they collect, occasionally follow up on taxpayer concerns that government funding recipients appear to be misusing government funds. This, apparently, makes Mann furious.
Steyn's legal expenses are, naturally, large. You could help defray them and score some of Steyn's writings at the same time. However you may feel about prevaricating climate 'scientists' who decline to share their methods, or account for their expenditures, it's your freedom of speech, too.
"Give me the liberty to know, to utter, and to argue freely according to conscience, above all liberties."
-John Milton

"...there ought to exist the fullest liberty of professing and discussing, as a matter of ethical conviction, any doctrine, however immoral it may be considered."
-John Stuart Mill