brian carroll on 8 Nov 2000 10:18:25 -0000

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[Nettime-bold] Energy, Elections, and the Internet

 late election night. Florida flip-flopped
 from Gore to Undecided. California polls
 were about to close. watching television
 results, an odd advertisement came on for
 Enron energy corporation, a major Bush
 funder. i've never seen an advertisement
 for this company, and as far as i know,
 it is a national, multi-regional, energy
 company. in any case, the ad was surreal.
 from my perspective, i experienced it as

 an older man is rehearsing a speech to
 give to an audience.

 next, the man is in front of an audience
 of what seems like corporate shareholders,
 apparently breaking some bad news.

 then, an image of the classic 'state fair'
 game of shooting moving ducks with a toy
 gun is shown, but one of the ducks is
 instead the man who was giving the bad
 news to the shareholders. he is shot
 down and drops down.

 there is then mention about the weather,
 and unpredictability in forecasting it.

 then, (if i remember correctly) there is
 a statement such as: who are you going to
 believe, the weather, or us?



 in any case, i read this as an attack ad
 from the energy industry (fronted by Bush's
 corporate proponent Enron) who will probably
 profit from ignoring Global Warming trends
 [referenced as 'weather' in the tv ad] and
 placing trust/authority in the energy company
 who will take the unpredictability out of
 the equation. likely, Enron will be a major
 benefactor to the new administrations energy
 policy, which will focus on drilling for oil
 and focusing on America's #1 energy resource,
 coal. Bush's energy plan focuses on 'clean
 coal technology', but not clean enough to
 stop the massively negative impacts of coal
 power plants on the environment. it is the
 worst possible scenario, yet may be the only
 one that enables sustainability in volatile
 world markets, while the country ignores
 alternatives to traditional energy industries.
 not that it stops there. later in the evening,
 after learning that Florida will be the
 pivotal state in deciding the election
 between Bush and Gore, another Enron tv
 advertisement appears on the screen. this
 time, it is propaganda for 'wheeling', or
 the bundling of energy and telecom services.
 this national-regional energy company is
 now selling its future 'broadband services'
 with its traditional energy services. this
 is the future monopolizing of all that is
 left of independent Internet access companies.
 without regulations, these monsters will grow
 into larger behemoths, at home and abroad. if
 i am not mistaken, Enron is in Kosovo, or at
 least did some bidding for rebuilding its

 so goes the election, so goes the energy
 industry, so goes the infrastructure, so
 goes the weather, so goes power.

 [Florida is in a recount to decide the
 next US President]

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