In the early days of our electronic age, there was a large number of independently owned energy providers that produced energy from a variety of sources. This was especially true in rural areas.
The monolithic utility system that currently dominates the United States was the creation of Franklin Delano Roosevelt. The utility monopolies were created to regulate energy. The term regulate means "to make regular."
Regulation means driving all the irregular sources of alternative energy out of business ... which is precisely what FDR did.
Don't you see it? The reason America is dependent on one source of energy is the efforts of progressives-past to regulate energy.
America would already have a smart grid if independent energy producers were not locked out of the market by progressives.
Just as progressives created our horrible employer based insurance system. Pogressives created the public utility industry that dominates the energy market.
The stated goal of the smart grid is to create mechanisms to allow alternative fuel industries access to the grid so they can sell to consumers. It is supposed to help smarter energy usage by charging different rates for peak hour usage.
The political reality is the Democrats want to use the legislation to install political operatives in the market and to engage in the Machiavellian act of rewarding friends and punishing enemies.
Despite the fact that politics is politics, Conservatives would be wise to actively support the smart grid effort and to promote any free market aspects of the bill.
Unlike health care reform, which was an open attempt to reduce freedom, the smart grid legislation is overcoming one of the worst legacies of the FDR era ... the monopoly of public utilities.
I hope Conservatives actively engage in and promote all free market eliments of the bill while openly challenging the corruption that seeks to feed energy contracts into the pockets of the Democratic billionaires who seek to create a corrupted smart grid.