Utilities do it everywhere….
It’s in the nature of electric utilities to accumulate too much economic and political power. They provide essential services, they have almost unlimited resources compared to potential opponents, and they send hundreds of thousands of mailings to all the households in their service areas. Most are corporations whose management works for stockholders, not customers, but they often get people to forget that. They almost always have undue influence on the commissions that are supposed to regulate them.
But “NSP” is something special
The chokehold that Xcel Energy (Northern States Power Company) has on the state of Minnesota feels unusual even by utility standards. The obedience that Xcel seems able to extract from most of our public and private institutions in Minnesota–including the media–is extraordinary, and ramping up very aggressively from this already excessive level. Continue Reading →