17 Feb 2015

The paranoid foundations of regulation

I'm in Budapest for a regulation training workshop. I just heard a long presentation of all the accounting gimmicks that one national regulator chases in its attempt to balance the "needs of investors" and "concerns of customers."

Ignoring the interesting question (why are you in the middle, then, with your assumptions on needs and concerns), I came to a more interesting realization, i.e., that regulation is built on the assumption that customers are unwilling to pay the price of good service and that investor owned utilities (IOUs) are "out to get" customers' money.

Move into a world of where there's enough money and IOUs are not crooks, and the mood will lighten up.

Bottom Line: It's not a good idea to start a relationship with one side calling the other "thief" while the other replies with "cheapskate."