Blogger-SMS | Déjà Vu ~ Times

TransAlta Culpa (Again) ?

A bottomless pit of contrivance?

A few days ago in Alberta, a heat spike was forecast. The power-generating giant TransAlta seems to have anticipated its own spike as two of its large coal-fired electricity generating plants were shut down for “unscheduled maintenance” creating a classic supply and demand divergence—huge demand with limited supply, with the resultant classic free-market spike.

Are we surprised? Why shouldn’t this be the rational, transnational strategy for all corporations that “live and breathe” the bottom line? Makes perfect cents (by the trillions).

Oh, and yes! We have seen this before. As recently as February of this year at: (*) Quote:

“Alberta’s power-generating giant TransAlta has been accused of market manipulation again.
“The power company is in trouble with the province’s electricity watchdog — the Market Surveillance Administrator (MSA).
“It says the company shut down some of its power plants on four occasions during peak periods in 2010 and 2011, driving up prices.
“TransAlta rejects the allegations, but the case is already prompting calls for tougher regulation of the electricity market. …
“… this isn’t the first time TransAlta has faced allegations like this.
“The company was fined $370,000 in 2012 for market manipulation.”

So what does free market really mean? Free to manipulate supply and demand for profit? Free to get off almost scot-free when caught? Free to repeat in endless déjà vu?

And what power-generating corporation has not clued into this “spike and spin-dry” strategy? When weighing gains and losses, who can resist?

So, in years to come, will our current free-marketeer defenders be judged as blind and deaf to “realities” (as passionately unobserving) as those we have judged from the so-called “dark ages”?

Is dummkoph-ish the word that springs to mind for our day (and for all of us who sit back and let this happen time and again)?

* See also: