This article appears in the February 26, 2021 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.
Texas’ Deadly Foretaste of the
Great Reset and Green New Deal
Feb. 19—As a powerful polar vortex brought freezing weather to much of the United States, the Texas electricity grid was “within seconds or minutes” from a “catastrophic failure and complete blackout,” on February 16, had it not been decided to implement controlled outages, according to an official from the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), the company which manages the grid.
The rolling blackouts which occurred as a result of that decision meant that more than eight million Texans were without electricity and heat for hours or even days at a time, and half the counties in the state reported water problems due to power loss at water treatment facilities. As of today, February 19, there were reports of at least 36 deaths related to the storm and the loss of power, and 600,000 were still without power. Nearly a quarter of the state’s population remains under orders to boil water before using it, if they have access to water at all.
How did this happen in Texas, which is the largest producer and consumer of energy in the United States, and in Houston, which is home to 5,000 energy-related firms and calls itself the Energy Capital of the World?
There are two factors that led to the breakdown of Texas’ energy sector, neither of which are acknowledged by the media and the so-called experts: the unreliability of “renewable” sources of energy, such as wind and solar; and the long-term effects of the neoliberal policy of deregulation, which puts speculative profits ahead of the necessary, continuous investment in infrastructure required to sustain a modern electricity grid. The closest the apologists for the present, collapsing system come to recognizing the dangers caused by this deadly combination is to describe ERCOT as “unprepared” for the crisis, by which they mean that the real problem is that the grid managers did not anticipate a storm of this magnitude hitting Texas.
While this is true, they refuse to discuss why they were unprepared! On the breakdown of so-called renewable sources, there is total denial, as the financial oligarchy, represented by the Davos billionaires of the World Economic Forum, is plunging ahead with a global “Green New Deal” (GND). Texas now has 23% of its installed electricity as wind—30 gigawatts out of 125 gigawatts total under best summer conditions. As the cold wave hit, the total electricity produced by wind turbines fell from more than 8 gigawatts on Sunday, February 14, to 0.649 gigawatts (649 megawatts) by Monday, February 15.
Both Texas Governor Greg Abbott, and Rick Perry, the former Governor and U.S. Energy Secretary under President Trump, identified the failure of “renewable” sources as a major cause of the breakdown of the electricity grid, citing frozen wind turbines and snow-covered solar panels as a major contributing factor. In response, there has been a predictable hysterical outcry from pro-Green networks, insisting that this played only a “minor role” in the crisis. Typical of this reaction is an article in the February 18 New Yorker magazine by Greenie huckster Bill McKibben, “Blaming the Wind for the Mess in Texas Is Painfully Absurd.” Despite wide circulation of photos and videos of idle windmills, with icicles hanging from the blades—in many states, not just Texas—McKibben writes that “The idea that wind turbines cannot deal with cold weather is, prima facie, ridiculous.”
As for the effects of deregulation, which is also a central feature of the “Great Reset” of the Davos gang, there has been a wall of silence, including among “conservatives” who are “free market” advocates; many of them correctly identify the devastating effects of Green policies, but are wedded to the neoliberal economic policies which have led to disinvestment in infrastructure.
The Green New Deal Fraud
On February 12, EIR released what has proven to be a prescient report on the potentially devastating effects of a global shift to the “zero carbon” world, demanded by those who swear by the fake science behind the demand for a transition to lower energy-flux-density production to reduce carbon emissions. Titled The Great Leap Backward: LaRouche Exposes the Green New Deal, the report draws on the five decades of scientific and economic research conducted by Lyndon LaRouche and his associates on the genocidal intent of those financial and corporate cartel officials—represented today by the Davos billionaires—who revived the quackery of the British Empire’s Parson Thomas Malthus to reverse the scientific and technological optimism unleashed by the U.S. space program of President John Kennedy.
The report includes details on the direct role of the British monarchy, under Prince Charles, in coordinating financial hit teams to cut off investment in physical goods production, in favor of creating a Green financial bubble to bail out a bankrupt financial system. It exposes the relationship between the “Great Reset”—a plan to place governments under the top-down control of central banks, which operate on behalf of the largest private banks and shadow banking institutions—and the Green New Deal (GND).
At the recent Davos online conference, a representative of BlackRock, the world’s largest fund manager, and the initiator of a project for a global “financial regime-change,” spoke of a pool of $30 to $50 trillion of central bank and private funds, which would flow into the Green financial bubble while deliberately shutting down credit generation for productive enterprises, identifying them as deadly carbon polluters.
The combination of the Reset and the GND benefits the largest players in the corporate energy cartels, through trading worthless financial instruments created by the new Green bubble, while imposing energy systems which are inefficient and unreliable. This is a perfect combination for the modern-day Malthusians, producing mega-profits from speculation for cartel members, while creating life-threatening conditions for the general population.
The Biden administration in the U.S. has made clear its support for the Reset: through the appointment of former Federal Reserve Chairman Janet Yellen as Treasury Secretary, a major backer of “easy money” for bailouts and backer of the idea of the “financial regime change,” and with the administration’s push for legislation under the theme of the GND. It is not a coincidence that the Wall Street and Silicon Valley networks behind Biden were heavily engaged in the four-year coup effort to remove Donald Trump from office: Trump has been an outspoken opponent of the GND, and withdrew the United States from the Paris Climate Agreement, as one of his first actions as President. Biden reversed this, as one of his first executive orders on assuming the office of President.
Wind Power and Enron: Deadly Dangers
Despite having large reserves of oil and natural gas, modern coal plants, and nuclear energy facilities as part of its energy mix, Rick Perry in 2005 signed a law mandating an increase in use of wind power in Texas to produce electricity. One factor in the increase of reliance on wind was the large investment of oilman T. Boone Pickens, who built huge wind farms that he described as an investment in the “post-oil future.” Another was the availability of large bank and private funding for the Green transformation.
By 2015, wind power surpassed nuclear energy as the third-largest source of electricity in the state, and is expected to overtake coal in the near future. Under the influence of Green fanatic billionaire, Sir Michael Bloomberg, who has poured $500 million into his “Beyond Coal” project, Texas has shut down three modern coal plants in the last years.
While Green publicists like McKibben claim that loss of electricity from coal plants during the current deep freeze contributed to the blackouts, their sophistry is exposed by looking at the numbers. The total megawatt-hours of electricity in Texas produced by coal fell from 10,828 to 8,000 per day during the present cold front, a reduction of less than 3,000 megawatt-hours, while nearly 8,000 megawatt hours/day were lost due to the shutdown of wind generators.
The dominant production of coal-power plants and nuclear plants in the upper Midwest states of the Midcontinent Independent Service Operator—states such as Illinois, Ohio, and Michigan, and several Canadian provinces—kept the lights and heat on there, despite a much deeper freeze than in Texas.
Who Benefited from Deregulation?
The effect of energy deregulation, while rarely mentioned, is a major factor in the shift of Texas from a state with redundant electricity capacity to one of disastrous shortfall.
Deregulation has been a rallying cry for conservatives and libertarians since the fake oil crisis orchestrated by Henry Kissinger during the Nixon administration, but has been adopted by Democrats as well. Electricity regulation was introduced by President Franklin Roosevelt through the Public Utility Holding Company Act of 1935, which defined utilities as subject to regulation under Article 1, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution. As with mandates for regulation of sectors such as health care and banking, energy regulation was targeted by neoliberals, who demanded that “competition” must be introduced to allow “the market,” rather than regulators, to set prices. The 1992 Energy Policy Act was an opening attack on energy regulation, allowing states to move to deregulate both production and distribution. By the late 1990s, speculators moved into the electricity business, and the two states most affected have been California and Texas.
Remember Enron? A small-time pipeline company, Enron took advantage of deregulation, which its lobbyists pushed relentlessly on both national and state levels. It became the seventh-largest corporation in America. The California energy crisis of 2000-2001, which led to rolling blackouts throughout the state, produced surging profits for Enron, as spot market prices for wholesale electricity rose by nearly 800%. Enron’s revenues in the first quarter of 2001 were up by 281% over the first quarter of 2000, before its spectacular collapse later that year. At the height of the California crisis, Vice President Dick Cheney intervened to defend Enron and the deregulation policy. He was given a memo by Enron CEO Ken Lay in April 2001, which outlined the “benefits” of deregulation due to “choice” and “competition.” The memo demanded no regulation, no price caps, and total reliance for pricing on “markets.”
Texas Imitated California!
The effects of the deregulation bubble on California had major implications which are still present today, as its energy mix has become increasingly Green, a factor which led to rolling blackouts during a heat wave in the summer of 2020. Ignoring the devastating experiment with deregulation in California, Texas phased out regulation beginning in 2002, under the slogan of “bringing choice” to consumers. The “choice” comes at a high price. In order to be competitive, energy companies engaged in cost-cutting policies, to benefit shareholders. They had no incentive to prepare for extreme conditions. With deregulation, companies were relieved of the responsibility to upgrade facilities and build in redundancy. The neoliberal dogma of “shareholder value” was placed ahead of providing public benefits, as cost-cutting became the standard, with little or no thought given to its likely consequences.
Ed Hirs, an energy fellow at the University of Houston, discussed how the present energy debacle is a necessary consequence, as the system is “strained” due to the failure to invest, in order to boost profits. Speaking to the Houston Chronicle on February 15, Hirs said:
The ERCOT grid has collapsed in exactly the same manner as the old Soviet Union. It limped along on underinvestment and neglect until it finally broke under predictable circumstances.
One who had predicted precisely this kind of breakdown under the effects of deregulation and privatization, was Lyndon LaRouche, who forecast the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1984 after its leaders rejected President Ronald Reagan’s offer to share the scientific and technological advances inherent in the development of anti-missile systems (Reagan’s Strategic Defense Initiative), to eliminate the danger of nuclear war while stimulating the physical economy. LaRouche later warned that if America pursued economic policies based on increasing short-term profits for shareholders, especially in speculative trading, at the expense of advances in physical economy, it would repeat the conditions that led to the economic and political collapse of the USSR.
On February 17, 2021, in her weekly webcast dialogue with Harley Schlanger, Schiller Institute founder and President Helga Zepp-LaRouche repeated the warning of her late husband, in reviewing the developments in Texas in the context of the “leap backward” into the Great Reset and the GND. She said:
The Texas developments give you a meager foretaste of the kind of economic collapse which would result as a consequence of the implementation of this policy.
Zepp-LaRouche called on the American people to mobilize to bring the United States to join with nations such as Russia and China, which are opposed to the Davos agenda, to defeat the Malthusians and their goal of extermination of much of the human race.