I wonder how well any of these power companies that are jumping into the broadband business would react to another company jumping into the power business. If anyone is an expert on monopolies it would be a power company.
The difference is that the power companies are regulated by the PUC (public utilities commission) usually at the state level. So there is some (not nearly enough) local input. A prime example of this was in IL a couple of years ago. The power company raised the rates too much(in one jump) for people to stand. The people rebelled and the PUC made the power companies cut the rates and repay some of the customers. The broadband is Federally controlled and it is extremely difficult for the people to heard at that level. To the best of my knowledge the FCC cannot tell any ISP how much they can charge.