By Peter Van Doren – Re-Blogged From http://www.downsizinggovernment.org
Large-scale federal intervention into America’s energy markets began in the 1930s and continued through the 1970s. A series of major laws and executive actions sought to control energy prices, regulate electric and gas utilities, and limit imports. Competition was stifled and domestic investment was suppressed.
By the 1970s, the Middle East oil embargoes and other upheavals began making the failure of federal energy interventions clear to policymakers. They reversed course, and took major deregulatory steps in the 1970s and 1980s to free up energy markets, to the ultimate benefit of consumers and the overall economy.