On this day in 2001, Enron filed for bankruptcy. I’m not that interested in it. What I am interested in is when I worked for Equilibrium at the beginning of 2001, and there were these constant rolling blackouts. This was in California. And there wasn’t enough electricity? I worked for the company during the winter months, so this couldn’t have had anything to do with actual energy consumption. I wasn’t paying too much attention. I was much more focused on how to make websites work with Netscape 4.7. But still: it was odd. I never remembered having to deal with that kind of thing before.
I’m sure that people who studied this kind of thing knew that it was just market manipulation. I’m sure that regulators understood what was going on. After all, this was the deregulated energy market. The private sector! It was supposed to be perfect. This was the libertarian utopia on a small scale! Who would ever think that it would end in total corruption?! And then after it all came to light, the libertarians explained that the problem was that it wasn’t a free enough market or it was because all markets weren’t free. Because that’s the way it works: as markets get less and less regulated, they get worse and worse. But then, at the very end, when they are completely free, there is a singularity and everything is perfect!
Remember this well all you liberals out there: the free market can never fail; it can only ever be failed.