Sunday episode Last week tonight with John Oliver featured a long stemwinder that grinds PG&E to pieces, and for good measure, tearing apart Gavin Newsom for being so easy to treat a forest fire-affected utility.
In the post-John Stewart Daily show In the world we still have at least the maliciously clever satirical styles of his former reservist John Oliver in the brilliant HBO series Last week tonight with John Oliver. And this week’s episode came near a home for California residents affected by wildfires started with obsolete PG&E equipmentand Lord, or hit Oliver hard on PG&E in the exciting 24-minute chat below.
Yes, this segment lasts almost half an hour, and Oliver presses on PG&E first at 2:30 and then again at 14:40. He has a lot of tragicomedy insulting humor for other regional monopoly utilities such as Duke Energy and FirstEnergy.
“Utilities are extremely prone to scandals,” says Oliver. Just Google your utility now and the word “scandal”, and most likely, they got into serious trouble. It’s like charring your local Jimmy John’s and “e coli” or your favorite high school teacher and the words “January 6th”. You will not like the results you will find. “
The first part he does at PG&E looks at their role in Camp Fire, and it’s hardly worth laughing at, given 84 charges of manslaughterand how the fire was traced to Fr. rusty part of the transmission it was 97 years.
“We’ve already talked about the 2018 fire, the deadliest wildfire in California history, and how it all started when this hook that held the PG&E transmission line broke, causing the line to ignite the brush at the bottom, eventually destroying several nearby communities, and as a result 85 people died, ”Oliver explains. “PG&E has since paid fines and bills. But it is still very active, despite the fact that it was not the only scandal in which they were involved. “
“PG&E is not only not in prison, but is still providing energy to millions of Californians who have no choice in the matter,” he continued. “And if you think,‘ How the hell is that possible? ’, That’s what this story is about. We are talking about the incredible amount of power we give to public utilities. “
And he doesn’t even climb in Erin Brockovich about cancer!!
Oliver’s segment twists, as he often does, into jokes related to things like sausage races at baseball games, and a viral video in which two ducks eat peas. But at 14:40 he returns it to the monopoly power of PG&E.
“Let’s get back to PG&E, perhaps California’s most hated company,” Oliver says. “To record, fuck everyone in their C-suite with a cactus.
“You can understand why Californians hate PG&E so much. In just one three-year period, it has caused about 1,500 fires. That’s an average of more than one fire a day. At the moment, PG&E is less of a utility and more of a fire company that delivers electricity to people’s homes from time to time. ”
Gavin Newsom also gets it good, after all its laxity with usefulness. Oliver shows a clip of a reporter facing Newsom about the company’s contributions he took to the company.
“PG&E was convicted of six federal crimes in 2016, after which you took more than $ 200,000 from them to help be elected,” the reporter said. “How should people trust you to run a show to find a solution?”
Gavin proudly rolls his eyes and replies, “I wish you success in what you’re working on, but it’s a strange question.”
Oliver explodes, “Really? However is that so? Because it seemed pretty reasonable to me. It’s not that the reporter asked, “Sir. Governor, why do you think The Wiggles killed Princess Diana? This a strange question. “
“But what he just asked you deserved a proper answer, and yet, unfortunately, if you live in California and PG&E is your supplier, there’s nothing you can do,” Oliver points out. “Every time you turn on the light, you’re reminded that your utility killed people, and the only real way you have is to give them a shitty review of Yelp.”
In the end, Oliver throws the truth to the authorities, making too few news programs.
“It’s not that PG&E doesn’t have money for basic maintenance,” he said. “Because five years before Camp Fire, he gave shareholders more than $ 5 billion in dividends. Look, obviously, this is not a system where you, the customers, will prefer. In any case, the model only makes sense if the company’s shareholders are seen as a customer and your accounts are a product. ”
As a spoiler, note that this segment ends with the murder of John Oliver in front of a live studio audience with an (obviously fake) memorial video. But this episode is still in rotation on HBO, and it will return with a new one this Sunday.