Visduh

Today the saddest day ever for Chargers fans

Like Ponzi, I don't think this is the end of it. As I posted earlier, this may just be brinksmanship, where Deano hopes that Ronnie, Kev-boy and the rest of the local pols who want to have everything both ways will coalesce into a bloc that will cave in. There's still a possibility of that happening. And then they'll keep the door open to returning if they can get that stadium somehow--as long as it isn't at the expense of the Spanos gang. So, while they may play elsewhere this year, we haven't heard the end of it. It may be a saga that will never end, at least in the lifetimes of anyone over the age of ten or twenty. I'm noting that the resistance to taxpayer subsidized stadia for the NFL is mostly (3 out of 4 metro areas listed above by Don) in California. Could that be because the state is now struggling to stretch its tax money, and all its cities are in the same predicament? Are the voters and politicians finally awake to the fact that a dollar spent to subsidize a ball club (owned by a billionaire) is a dollar that isn't available to repair a pothole, fix a leaky water main or sewer line, buy a book for a library, put a cop on a beat, or staff a fire station. Those are real dollars folks, not some ink marks on a ledger. They come out of the pockets of taxpayers, and need to be spent very efficiently. Sadly, in some places like the city of San Diego, they are not spent in a non-wasteful way. Does this mean that Nick Can-of-peas will retire from the U-T? What will he do if there is no local NFL team to fawn over?
— January 12, 2017 3:15 p.m.

SDG&E again asks for 2007 fire cost reimbursement

This is the first time that I can remember any other Reader comment maker asking what I think. (And that's after I've posted over 5500(!) such comments since 2008.) Should I be flattered? The far more frequent reaction is someone telling me that I don't know anything, and should never comment. Disclosure: I am a Sempra shareholder. I bought SDGE stock over two decades ago, after the Edison merger was rejected, but prior to the So Cal Gas merger that created Sempra. At the time I bought the stock, I was wary. Since then I've been satisfied with its growth and dividend stream. Having said all the above, I also know that ever since the Arab oil embargo of 1973/4, when our economy was severely jolted, my pocket has been picked every month by SDGE. Not once was there ever a coherent explanation of why San Diego electric rates had to be the highest (or nearly the highest) in the nation, nor why that situation persists. It wasn't as if SDGE had a super-sharp electrical distribution system. They pay their employees very generously, far better for similar positions than just about any employer locally. In so doing, SDGE buys loyalty, or what passes for it, employees who keep their mouths shut. We have a home that uses electricity for only those things for which there are no substitutes, except for our all-electric kitchen, which was not our choice. We have no central AC, and use gas for water heating, home heating, the clothes dryer, and an outdoor gas grill. So, we don't have a large electric bill. But I still resent the size of it and the rate per kilowatt hour. Worse yet, here in Vista, we seem to get service that is not much more reliable than some spot in the third world. If the wind blows we have a power outage. If it rains, we have a power outage. If there's a full moon, we have a power outage (OK, I'm exaggerating.) So, what's the problem? If we pay these sky-high rates, shouldn't the electricity provider give us first-rate, first-world reliability? Yes, it should. So, why don't we get it? Mismanagement has to be the explanation. If SDGE pulls this off in full or in part, it will send a signal to all the other utilities in the state that they can screw up, incur millions of dollars of preventable costs, and just pass them along to the rate payers. So, why bother to do things right? Why make sure your gas storage field in Porter Ranch won't leak? If they pull this off and get some relief, it will just enable more of their managers, along with the So Cal Edison managers and the PGE managers to sit back, laugh and scratch, and overpay themselves and their minions. Final point: Those costs that Sempra wants to recover should have been expensed already. If they get that almost-$400 million back, it will be a windfall to shareholders. I don't want it. Nobody associated with SDGE/Sempra deserves a cent.
— January 10, 2017 6:12 p.m.

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