Jim, Len, and other readers,
A few more lines added for Jim after lunch. I will wait on Len promised article.
There is a difference between "selfish components" and "selfish components that destroy the system." Another name for demand response is price demand elasticity. California deregulation was an incomplete market without enough demand elasticity that had a "native" selfish component that destroyed the system. Your example of Enron is perfect, but the insight seems to be that of a contradictory scenario.
Acording to Eamon Kelly in his book “Powerful Times: Rising to the Challenge of our Uncertain World,” page 35, Winston Churchill said: “A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its coat on.” On page 36, Kelly says that “Conspiracy theories can, ironically, provide an ordered framework with which to understand chaotic events.” I will make an exception to my opinion that “debates are over.” So, under the principle that I am not my opinion, let’s try to find an alternative explanation scenario.
Picture yourself in the year 2000, and as a practical analyst that knew about the protection inherent in utility regulation and also knew what had happen in the US midwest in the summers of 1998 and 1999. You also knew what I said above on 12.21.06 that starts as “The debate in California has changed remarkably over the past year or two. Discussion now focuses not on whether retail competition or direct access is possible, but on how to make it happen. The three California investor-owned utilities affected by the commission's decision convened an industry working group, called the Western Power Exchange (Wepex) to address the issues related to implementing the new competitive retail market.” Please answer, to the best of your knowledge, if there might be some ground for a complot theory on which Enron was a just a casualty.
I agree that under Space B there are winners and losers. Read Donella Meadows article to see that big industry is supposed to receive the benefit of Space B. Systems like PJM, the role model of SMD, is stable by having excessive reserves. My son tells me that his residential rates in Pittsburgh were very high. Coal stations have low variable costs, but people health costs in their neighborhoods are much higher than without. No to mention, Andy's expected carbon tax that Congress seems to be working on.
Retail competition under Space B is pretty meager. Not so in Space D, where business design innovations, on the development of the resources of the demand side, will result in creative destruction of the power industry.
That’s it for now.
Happy New Year,