The history of industrial development is the history of cheap power. The less power costs, the more industry and wealth you have. This is a simple rule of economics, and when you make power expensive you automatically have less industrial development.

The current bunch of state and federal regulators flunked economics 101. They think the nation can shut down coal plants and replace them with energy from the sun and wind. The United States will suffer the same economic consequences now happening in Japan and Germany.

The American state and federal governments have cancelled new coal plants, and with new pollution regulations are closing existing coal plants. Coal is cheap power, the power source that provided America's 20th century development. Shut it down, and you shut down 21st century development.

The outcome will be ever-more-expensive electricity. Germany now pays the second-highest rate in Europe, and California is headed in the same direction. California now pays 50 percent more for electricity than its neighbors, and manufacturers are running away.

This is simple economics 101. Illinois has coal deposits. Use them, or go further in debt. The choice is yours.