Not sure they can get away with it much longer
Ok, you’re a cockeyed Optimist...
“Let’s commission a study on this” is political double-talk for “let’s kick the can down the road until everyone forgets about it” and hopefully most people realize that.
I’m not quite as optimistic as Roy. In a different political climate, Cruz would have committed career suicide in the last 60 days, first supporting the insurrectionists and now with this Cancun adventure. But I think he’s banking he’ll survive due to conservative voters hating the libs more than they love themselves, and I’m not so sure that’s a losing bet for him to make.
I've had to rub up against numbers of "privatize everything" maniacs, and they're all absolutely convinced that private enterprise can do ANYTHING for so much, much less money. The savings? Why, they're TREMENDOUS!!!
And when you ask them just how, exactly, Acme Street Cleaning is going to clean the streets for less than what it costs the non-profit government to do so--while Acme still makes a profit--you get a whole bunch of handwaving and/or "we'll just convert all those jobs to no-benefits minimum wage!" And maybe skip maintaining the trucks. Or, as one small city discovered, just skip the street cleaning altogether and cash the checks anyway.
Texans are reeling right now, but I'm sure that once they get over the death and destruction, most of them will come to their senses. They'll understand that the $15,000 electric bill for 5 days of service is really the fault of New York Democrats, not the Texas GOP lunatics who created the system. But most importantly, they'll consider what it might take to prevent the inevitable recurrence of this catastrophe--and they will decide they'd rather live through this every year for the rest of their lives than to perhaps pay 15-cents more on every utility bill.
OK, you are a cockeyed optimist.
This is the Texas and Republican Party that gave us George W Bush. Why would we expect anything other than self-owning incompetence wedded to heartless grifting? Their problem with Cruz’s Cancun Cancel is that it ruined any chance to divert attention to the Mexico of alien caravans.
"But this requires some deft management on the part of the privatizers. They can’t get too greedy and they can’t get too obvious. The rubes have to at least think there’s a potential benefit, even if they don’t see it in their tax bills and user fees."
Au contraire: The name of the game is no limits, overreaching and hope that they never go too far. If the Dem leadership was different, they'd be banging the drum on this Texas shit to make sure that instead of the GOP retaking Congress in 2022 -- likely given the events of past midterms.
"I doubt very many people really believe, deep down, that the privatization of any government function — schools, parks, civil administration, power, etc. — will do anything except enrich investors."
Au contraire again: The majority surely knows this is, as they say, some fucked up shit. But then again, it's been decades since our elected officials gave a rat's ass about what the majority of people want. Or need.
"Call me a cockeyed optimist, but I think normal people, of which we still (despite everything) have a preponderance in this country, will look at this and at least begin to think of Republicans the way you and I have been thinking about them for years..."
Au contraire yet again. The majority knows well enough -- they know bullshit when they smell it or see it. The part of the GOP base that's not in it for financial benefit has shown for over fifty years that they're happy with pols who given them bullshit and nothing good. The question is whether enough of true swing, undecided voters have had their fill and have been turned off to the GOP for many cycles to come -- whether the GOP brand is, despite the establishment press' best efforts, a toxic brand.
All a functional state has to do is provide for the people*; be a net positive, let's say. (*I think maybe Old Joe knows this.) The GOP, with complicit Dems starting with Slick Willy, have been pushing against that since Reagan and success has been achieved. Texas, 6 January, and the pandemic shit shows are all the proof you need.
So maybe, maybe we've reached a tipping point.
This all is horrifying. Yet predictable more or less. And so has every response, right, center, or left; red or blue.
My issue in this has been White Liberals has been the schaudenfreude & even death-lust expressed at this Foreseeable Outcome of Neoliberal ideas taken to their logical exteme. Texas instituted this awful scheme not by the vox populi, but its gerrymandered substitute that passes for democracy in many southern states. This was imposed on them in the flimiest charade of democracy.
I am angered by these Smug Northern Fuckers because the people dying here are mostly the homeless, mostly the poor -- a group of people many (center-to-right) Americans would agree need to die anyways, whether blue or red. This attitude led to the abandonment of the Reconstruction and encourages the current expression of pro-succession (or at least succession-tolerant) ideas about red states.
Liberals: focus on people, not on parties. All parties can fuck off.
Except my coming out party. Everyone is invited.
So much deflection dominates the way they're managing the story. When Abbott manages to reduce those insane electric bills, people will remember that instead of freezing while there was no power or drinking water. Everybody hates Ted (and it doesn't stop them from voting for him, because he owns the libs), so dragging Ted becomes the object rather than regulating the grid. They're going to bury the most important lessons and leave the system the way it is. Beto and the Castros and AOC are wonderful, but will voters register the difference between that and Ted's photo op? Enough to remember it in November 2022?
Only newsworthy in Minnesota, but the Texas power failure subjected much of SW Minnesota to rolling blackouts as well thanks to a lot of complicated predatory market driven capitalist bullshit. Fortunately I live in SE Minnesota where my town is served by quaint cooperatives, one for electricity and one for gas, both aided by outlandishly Old World style efforts to encourage everyone to weatherize their homes (not that anyone needs encouraging).
As I have noted many times, the GOP already knows that a clear majority of Americans does not embrace their destructive ideology so they have opted to restrict as much as possible who gets to vote in elections to conservative white voters knowing that pour anti-democratic Constitution was designed to facilitate just that. That's why the Democrats will always struggle to attain and keep a majority for anything more than a couple of years. It's also why HR1 and S1 are critically important bills to pass.
The bumper sticker in your lead image originated in Alberta, which is a lot like Texas culturally only everything is a little bit bigger. The slogan came from Ralph Klein, a guy who combined Limbaugh and Huey Long in one political animal; he won the mayoralty of the city of Calgary by something like 90% one year. The slogan was a response to attempts by the federal government during the 80s oil boom to distribute some of the proceeds to people in the rest of the country who'd been harmed by the spike in oil prices.
Alberta elected a socialist government a couple of years ago, after 100 years of conservative government, and then went right straight back to stupid culture-war kiss-oilpatch-ass conservative government ASAP b/c the NDP gov't wanted to diversify the economy off of oil & gas.
That's b/c the oil economy warps everyone's perspective. In AB and TX when oil is at $100/bbl the party starts and the money flows and you can afford an F-350 for work and another for the weekend. And people think *everyone* benefits from high gas prices, from East Austin and NE Calgary to Sugarland and Elbow Park, and from Accra to Tokyo. They don't know the rest of us curse high oil prices, and view it as a regressive tax on the entire economy. And when oil is at $20/bbl they believe the entire world is in a recession.
The only way to change TX is to make the oil & gas people work for a living, instead of letting lazy 18 year olds think they can quit high school and go get a job in the oilpatch idling their truck outside a wellhead for $90/hour.
Nah. I lived there. They'll never learn. Too much pride.
In olden times, it was lying politicians who fed the press. Reagan and his team would huddle every morning to get their propaganda of the day in order. Each agency would then craft their own briefings around that message no matter what, and spew it to a willing (one might say, "On Bended Knee") press to publish to a country of rubes. Now it's completely the opposite. Texas had barely experienced the first blackout before the Wall St. Journal ("A Deep Green Freeze: Power shortages show the folly of eliminating natural gas—and coal"), Fox 'News' (Carlson: "Unbeknownst to most people, the Green New Deal came to Texas; the power grid in the state became totally reliant on windmills"), Breitbart et al were feeding the lies to Texas politicians like Dan Crenshaw and Greg Abbott. This has been going on for a few years, especially during the reign of avid Fox consumer Trump, but it's so extreme now, and patently ridiculous, that maybe it's going to finally bite these guys in the ass. So here's hoping you're right.
The people in Texas are getting the government they voted for and deserve. Bully for them.
Yeah Roy, AOC wiped them down when Cruz was pissing on them and Beto is so nice he's got to be a chance but the electorate is SO dumb....