My Power Company Failed for Seven Days And Will Charge Me For Not Powering My House

Two weeks ago, my power went out thanks to the nasty derecho that hit the mid-Atlantic region. It stayed out for seven days, forcing many people I know to flee the area (as we did), or stay in hotels, or do something to protect themselves in the middle of a record-setting heat wave.

Now, when the power goes out, I think the reasonable thing for people to expect is that their power company will send them a lower bill since they, you know, didn't use any power. That would make sense, no? The problem is that my power company is Pepco, THE SINGLE WORST COMPANY ON THE FACE OF THE FUCKING EARTH. In fact, calling it a company is an insult to other companies, even shitty ones like Goldman Sachs and Disney. It's less a corporation than it is a collective of faceless shit-lampreys that have managed to latch on to an entire portion of the country and suck it clean. PEPCO is so awful, they can even get Gregg Easterbrook and I to agree, and I HATE Gregg Easterbrook.

And to give you an idea of just how awful PEPCO is, today they announced that they would be charging customers like me a "bill stabilization adjustment," which essentially charges customers like me for the sin of not having working electricity. And the best part of this is that this insane overcharge is part of Maryland LAW. In order to protect Pepco, Maryland created a law that allowed them to add this charge so that, in the event of an outage, their revenue doesn't drop. Because GOD FUCKING FORBID a shitty American megalith like Pepco go one week without sticking its electrified cock into your wallet.

Here's a video of Joseph Rigby, the CEO of PEPCO. He is a glass cunt. Rigby made nearly $9 million between 2008 and 2010 for his work running this fucking train wreck. What does Rigby do? Fuck if I know. It looks for all the world to me that all he does is go on Fox Business Channel to get his ass tongued. I can't imagine what else he needs to do since runs the most foolproof business in the world, because PEPCO is a legalized monopoly. Short of installing very expensive solar panels on your roof, you have no choice when it comes to who gives you electricity. You have to go to PEPCO, which means that PEPCO can be as shitty as it cares to be and you still have to come crawling back to them.

Drew Magary writes for Deadspin and Gawker. He's also a correspondent for GQ. Follow him on Twitter @drewmagary and email him at drew@deadspin.com.

Now, when a utility has a monopoly like this, it would seems to make sense that it would be heavily regulated. But as you can see, the state of Maryland has instead gone the other way, somehow drafting laws like Bill Stabilization that only give the company more leeway to suck. And every time there's an outage, Maryland lawmakers like governor Martin O'Malley tell everyone they'll do something about PEPCO and then they do exactly nothing because they're mindless and corrupt. O'Malley promised "nobody will have their foot further up Pepco's backside" during the outages than he. The outage lasted seven days. O'Malley, Captain Foot, spent some of it shitting out anti-Romney talking points on "Face the Nation". I never saw his sorry ass climbing a phone pole.

This area of the country is now notorious for its frequent power outages. It's gotten to the point where I don't even blink when the power goes out. I just head right to the freezer and begin eating all the Dove bars before they melt (don't judge me). I'd think about buying a generator, but effective ones run thousands of dollars. And why should I have to buy a generator when there are places like Boston and Chicago that have much, much shittier weather and far less frequent (and long lasting) outages? I shouldn't. I should be able to buy power from a company that isn't corrupt and evil and run by Satanic molebeasts.

When you think of parts of the country that experience extreme weather, the DC area doesn't exactly strike you as the most dangerous place to live. It rarely gets hurricanes, like Florida and the Gulf Coast. It's never all that dry, as it is in most of the Southwest. There are no active volcanoes around. Major blizzards are rare, with the winter of 2010 a notable exception. This is a relatively functional stretch of land. Most importantly, it's located in the United States, which is allegedly a first world country. It has no business being powerless for an entire week. But that's life when you live under PEPCO's domain. You live under the perfect living, breathing example of how corporate greed and governmental incompetence can unite in the service of fucking you in the power outlet. I hope, one day, Joe Rigby loses power forever and is forced to eat his own tits. Get fucked, PEPCO. I hate you.

[Photo: IamJomo via DCist]