LIPA Disaster: Blame Cuomo, Not Privatization
Posted by wilderside http://www.onthewilderside.com
Andrew Cuomo is the smartest Tea Party Governor in the nation. Cuomo wins this year’s Scott Walker false narrative award. Cuomo has done a much better job than Hostess Cakes in getting the media to adopt a false narrative. Hostess failed to get the public to believe that it was the union that caused the failure of the company’s investors and financial officers over a decade. Hostess failed to get the media to adopt its false narrative wholesale.
Cuomo, on the other hand, has been trying to privatize LIPA since he came into office while let the company decline through his negligence in not appointing a new CEO or new board members. Now when his neglect has created this disaster, he proposes the same solution of privatization.
And the media all believe Cuomo’s false narrative that LIPA alone, not the Governor, is at fault. Even worse they are going to the Governor for the solution, privatization, which he was proposing years before this crisis. As the 2008 Green Party presidential candidate said about the failed economy, “The people who got us into this mess are not the ones to get us out of it. “
To recap, NY Governor Andrew Cuomo has failed for the last 2 years to appoint a CEO for LIPA. Failed to fill the empty board seats. Failed to replace the board members whose terms ended. And yet Cuomo blames LIPA is to blame for its lack of efficiency. What’s Cuomo’s solution for LIPA’s problem? Privatization. The same idea he raised a year ago, when he failed to do anything about appointing new leadership to LIPA.
If Cuomo thinks a private entity is more efficient maybe we should replace him with one. He has failed to do his job for the last two years. The only thing that he has done efficiently is distract Long Islanders from realizing he is to blame for the LIPA mess.
Let’s look at the brilliant idea of “improving” service by turning it over to a private company. Does anyone remember that LILCO was the most hated utility in the nation? And furthermore, it was National Grid that is responsible for maintaining the whole power system. National Grid is already are a private company. And they took forever to get the work done.
Some of the media, like Newsday, have put forward the craziest excuse to turn LIPA private so it can come under the Public Service Commission (PSC). LIPA is already a public authority. The Public Service Commission is a public authority. If LIPA being a public authority is a bad idea, then how is having a private company under the public authority of the PSC a good idea?
Furthermore has anyone of you tried to call the Public Service Commission to complain about your phone company? Good luck. Why would they do any better job taking complaints about an electric company?
in 1985, Governor Mario Cuomo drove the bus over Long Islanders by saddling us with LILCO’s bad decisions on Shoreham Nuclear Power Plant and the monumental debt it incurred while he sold off all the valuable assets of LILCO to a private company. Now Governor Andrew Cuomo is trying to back the bus back over us by taking away the little we have left and putting us back under another LILCO. No thanks. This is explained in more detail in our August 11, 2012 post Tell Gov. Cuomo: LIPA needs Elections, not more Privatization
We discussed the real solution in a 2008 post NY Governor Paterson vetoes bill to provide LIPA accountability which was quoted in Karl Grossman’s 2009 article, Why should LIPA be afraid of Suffolk?:
“LIPA was supposed to become the people’s power authority. That has not happened,” declares Ian Wilder of North Babylon, [former] co-chair of the Green Party of New York State, on his website. “When LIPA was first set up, there were supposed to be elected members of the LIPA board … That never happened. They are all appointed; with no accountability to the public …
As we have been saying for the last five years on this website, we need to finally get the deal Long Islanders agreed to when we were saddled with LILCO’s problems. Let’s let the Long Islanders finally take direct control of the utility. The private sector and the governor both had their chance. They messed up. As we stated in a October 28, 2012 post Is it time to turn LIPA back into a people’s power authority for Long Island?:
What should Long Islanders who care about LIPA bills, and/or energy issues, and/or basic fairness do?
First of all, let’s at least force Andrew Cuomo — the Democratic Party governor — to re-appoint or not re-appoint the current Chairman and trustees.
Second of all, let’s look into making LIPA trustee an elected position, as it always should have remained.