Tag Archives: conflict of interest

Take your pick: solidarity, politics or crime

[BREAKING NEWS:  Also Glocester’s town council stands in solidarity with Burrillville.  More will follow.  Back to the original post.]

Fossil Free RI member Claudia Gorman—thank you, Claudia!—explains a couple of “minor” conflicts of interest that haunt the process currently happening at the Rhode Island Energy Facility Siting Board.  The board must decide to site or not to site Invenergy’s soon-to-be-stranded asset, its proposed fossil-fuel power plant in Burrillville.

Once the power plant will get its go-ahead, which is not a done deal yet, the next question will be how our leadership will arrange matters so that We, the Rate Payers, will foot bill.  Will it be 38 Studios style bail-out, or will they come up with a new scheme to protect their corporate friends?  We’ll find out.

Here, courtesy Steve Ahlquist, is Claudia’s testimony before the Middletown Town Council:

If you do not have time to watch the video, the following summary might suffice. Everybody of Rhode Island’s leadership is in bed with everybody else.  The Public Utility Commission, which will also play a major role in a potential Woonsocket-Invenergy water deal, is so tangled up with the Raimondo administration and its Office of Energy Resources that it takes forever to explain all the conflicts of interest, but the details don’t really matter.

“Respect the process,” Governor Raimondo says.  Sure, even the Mafia has processes, but the fundamental problem is that money not only affects politics, it affect morality itself.  Here is an intriguing New York Times quote:

politics-and-crime-theyre-the-same-thing
Money, in other words, puts us in the frame of mind of Michael Corleone as he decides to enter the family business. “It’s not personal,” he tells his brother. “It’s strictly business.”

The good news is that the vast majority of humanity are good people who understand solidarity.  Steve Ahlquist’s report over at Rhode Island Future tells that part of Claudia’s story.

The bad news is that the climate change clock is ticking.  There may come a time that we’ll have to ask for forgiveness of future generations for what we did to the Earth they shall inherit.  Let me correct that: the time is now.

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