This is Your Gas Pipeline. This is Your Gas Pipeline in the Free Market.

Category:  BloggERy
Monday, December 12th, 2011 at 1:31 PM
This is Your Gas Pipeline. This is Your Gas Pipeline in the Free Market. by Jay Stevens
Irish Oil and Gas

A few days ago, I posted about a fire department that had to apply a fee-for-service revenue model to surrounding rural areas because the residents there refused to pony up tax money to properly fund their fire service. The model, naturally, had a devestating effect on one particular homeowner and was an excellent demonstration why privatization doesn't work for critical community services.

And yet free-marketers insist on privatizing.

Free-marketers also feel government regulations are a hindrance to business. They might be, if your business is cutting corners and thereby endangering local residents and workers:

Like many other lines crisscrossing the state's Marcellus Shale regions, this pipe was big - a high-pressure steel line, 20 inches in diameter, large enough to help move a buried ocean of natural gas out of this corner of the state. It was also plenty big enough to set off a sizable explosion if something went wrong.

There was trouble on the job. Far too many of the welds that tied the pipe sections together were failing inspection and had to be done over.

A veteran welder, now an organizer for a national pipeline union, happened upon the line and tried to blow the whistle on what he considered substandard work.

But there was no one to call.

Pennsylvania's regulators don't handle those pipelines, and acknowledge they don't even know where they are. And when he reported what he saw to a federal oversight agency, an inspector told him there was nothing he could do, either.

Because the line was in a rural area, no safety rules applied.

Great, huh? No wonder these people don't want any pesky regulations overseeing their business.

That's probably the same reason the energy industry got itself a nice exemption from the Clean Water Act.

Erie Reader: Vol. 5, No. 8
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CURRENT

The veteran alternative band put on an extremely fun performance during a special two-set show at Cleveland's Beachland Ballroom.

Independent TED conferences are held around the world. TEDxErie is on its way.

Greater Erie Film Office hosts seminar on intellectual property for creative works. 

Earth Day turns 45 on April 22. How well are its original goals aging?

In the wake of unveiling its new, state-of-the-art Senior Living Center, nation's largest medical school purchases of three senior living communities. 

IN THIS ISSUE

Highlighting some of the movers and shakers of Erie's toddlers.

Award-winning gospel recording artist Vickie Winans comes to Erie to provide “music ministry.

The veteran comedian discusses his upcoming show at Jr's Last Laugh and how he he keeps comedy fun after years in the business.

A Fool to Care should please nearly every music fan from the last 60 years.

Death Cab for Cutie shows some spark on *Kintsugi, resulting in a very solid record for the veteran group.

You’ll be hooked by what could have been just a gimmick in a lesser musician’s hands.

Carrie & Lowell finds Stevens examining his relationship with his troubled mother, a person he loved despite the emotional aches she caused him.

How a design competition is creating and shaping local business. 

Meeting Fernando Aguirre, Assessing Jordan Spieth, Putting Matt Bauer on the Radar, and Remembering the Trials of the Negro League Players

 

A data-driven, public health model approach to revitalization.