Sunday, July 25

The Huffington Post School of Engineering

Ran across an article at HuffPo that may show the delusions and current disarray of the Leftist/"progressive"/socialist/marxist movement better than most.

Like most progs, the author is chock full of horror and outrage about oil and gas, but instead of the more typical prog line about "I don't need steenkin' commercial energy; I can live off a 100-watt solar panel," he proposes that homeowners install their own small powerplants.

He also claims progs have never been in favor of wind-power; that they've always opposed it but have had to lie about the real reason. So progs claimed windmills were ugly and killed lots of birds, but the real reason for their opposition was...just read below. [yeah, long; sorry]
Progressives, Conservatives, and Energy
by Andrew Reinbach at HuffPo, June 7, 2010

Last week a new gas well exploded in western Pennsylvania and blew natural gas and a million gallons of toxic fracking fluid sky-high. Luckily there was no explosion. It took 16 hours to bring the well in the Moshannon State Forest under control.
OMG! Sixteen *hours* before that horrible wild well was controlled?! It's yet another environmental disaster, I tells ya! Oh, uh...Andrew...do you know what's in that fracking fluid that enables you to call it toxic?

Meanwhile oil kept gushing at the Deepwater Horizon site, drenching the Gulf of Mexico in slimy goo. Capping the wellhead cut the flow in half...but for the foreseeable future tens of thousands of barrels of oil a day will join the estimated 500,000-to-800,000 barrels that have already fouled the nation's most productive fishing grounds.

This is no time to be shouting "drill baby, drill." But down the road these disasters may be remembered as the time America stopped shouting slogans past each other and took up the serious conversations we must have, unless we're willing to watch our country go down in flames.
"...these disasters.." See? Told ya Andrew was gonna call the gas well blowout (brought under control in 16 *hours* thanks to highly-trained men performing astonishing feats every day) a "disaster."

Oh, and Andrew: I'm pretty sure that if we run short of energy, that's gonna be a 'watch our country go down in flames' scenario. But I could be wrong.

These disasters come just when many conservatives, backing away from the apocalyptic rhetoric of the right-wing media, have been reaching out to progressives to find common ground.
Really? "Many conservatives" are reaching out to progressives to find common ground? Somehow that slipped under my radar. How 'bout giving us some *names*? Oh, ya say David Frum? Lindsey Graham? The Maine twins? Ah...*now* I understand.

This is because conservatives aren't stupid -- just, in most cases, misinformed. Most of them not hopelessly seduced by the Emir of Glennbeckistan know that, as The New America Foundation says on its website, we're facing "...an era shaped by transforming innovation and wealth creation, but also by shortened job tenures, longer life spans, mobile capital, financial imbalances and rising inequality." And they know that energy is part of that, root and branch.
"...seduced by the Emir of Glennbeckistan..."! Honestly, Andrew, you are *so* witty! So are you saying energy is, uh, important to us? Seems ta me conservatives have been saying that rather loudly for, oh, forever. But for as long as I've been alive, you so-called "progressives" have been
a) blocking permits for proposed nuclear power projects;
b) trying as hard as you can to get drilling banned in every place a petroleum geologist thinks might possibly produce commercial quantities of oil;
c) pushing for a big tax on CO2 emissions, because that will jack up the cost of making electricity for all those yucky ol' coal-fired powerplants.

But didn't you hear your fearless leader Obomba on tape saying the kind of Tax & Trade scheme he wants would cause electricity rates to, what did he say? Oh yeah: "skyrocket." Is that what you progs actually *want*? Or are you part of the crowd that believes that when government levies a tax on a corporation, the mean ol' corp just absorbs the cost instead of passing it on in the form of higher rates?

I believe we're in enough trouble now to do what we've always done -- solve our problems by being practical. ... What I'm unsure of is whether *progressives* are ready to take up that conversation. After all, we've been on the defensive since Reagan.

"In the past 30 years every belief we held dear has been ridiculed...and otherwise mistreated in bars across America, by people we didn't much respect in the first place. We had to watch while conservatives plunged us into unnecessary wars, dismantled as much of the New Deal as they could get their hands on, stacked the Supreme Court, almost destroyed the nation's finances, and generally left a mess for us to clean up.
You claim conservatives "dismantled as much of the New Deal as they could get their hands on." Can you give some examples? You say conservatives "stacked the Supreme Court." By that do you mean conservative presidents appointed justices they thought might have had somewhat conservative values? Do you believe that's unethical? If so, is it unethical for Obomba to appoint left-leaning judges? Hypocrite.

Oh, and you claim conservatives "almost destroyed the nation's finances." Would that be by using the so-called "Community Reinvestment Act" to force banks to extend mortgage loans to folks who clearly couldn't afford to make the payments? And wasn't that policy made even *worse* by having Democrats/progressives direct the infamous pair of government-backed agencies--FannieMae and FreddieMac--to buy hundreds of billions of dollars of such crap loans, or to guarantee payment of same? Or was that all just peachy with you and your prog friends?

So now [conservatives] want to make nice? No payback?

Well, no. If we [progressives] want to win, we have to be adults and engage. Conservatives are already beginning to question their beliefs; I've seen it in recent conversations. If we make them pay, they'll just get huffy, stand on their dignity, and drop the whole thing. Then we'll be worse off than we have been -- just when the country needs redemption.
Wow. The only belief I've seen conservatives questioning in the last few months is why we were tolerant enough to let you stupid bastards run on for so long with your stupid, destructive ideas.

If progressives can put over a practical solution [to energy, apparently], conservatives will start wondering what other tricks we have up our sleeves.

Luckily, progressives -- tree-hugging environmentalists, no less -- have something to offer in the way of energy policy that conservatives can buy into; a decentralized power grid.
WARNING: Whiplash-inducing reverser immediately below! Ensure ample supplies of duct tape before reading further!

A big reason progressives have fought industrial wind power, for instance, isn't because they oppose wind power. Far from it. It's the industrial part of the idea--the huge scale of the towers, owned by yet another giant corporation.
WOW!! All this time I thought leftists just *loooved* wind power (except for Teddy Kennedy, who opposed a wind-farm offshore of Martha's Vinyard because he felt it would spoil his view). But now Andrew tells us that all this time, socialist/leftist progs have actually *fought* [we presume he means "fought *against* instead of "fought *for*, but in prog writing you never can be sure] a big chunk of the wind-power industry--the one segment of the industry that's actually (sometimes) making a detectable amount of electricity: the "industrial" part, that installs those big 250-foot-diameter turbines.

So let me be sure I understand: Progs love wind power, but have actually been fighting against it, if the device producing the power is owned by a large company? Can this possibly be right? But doesn't this mean it's not about saving Gaia at all, but about...anti-capitalism?? Wouldn't that expose the Left as total hypocrites who only support a "green" technology if it's NOT owned by a corporation?

The case usually made -- that the towers would ruin views and were bad [sic] for birds and other living things--was mostly resorted to because [progressives] figured that their real reasons for fighting the towers would be die [sic] on the table as pie-in-the-sky. So they left themselves open to claims that they were a bunch of hypocritical NIMBYs who talk a great game, but won't pay the price.
So you're saying progs are NOT hypocritical NIMBYs, but have merely been pretending to be?

It was a big mistake for [progressives] fighting wind power not to make their real case-- that what they favored was a future in which everybody generated their own electricity, be it wind, solar, or mini-hydro. Because that's an idea that conservatives can buy into.
Yep, they've been fighting wind power. Wow, and all this time we thought...

Thanks to BP, most of the country knows we've reached the limits of where we can drill for oil.
Really? So, Andrew, you travel by train a lot? I mean, you and your fellow progs surely don't fly on commercial jetliners, because after the first one went down over the ocean in 1952 it proved that jets were unsafe for passenger travel, right? And after the Apollo fire on the launchpad that killed 3 astronauts, I guess you progs pushed the government to shut down the effort to go to the moon, right? 'Cause everyone knows that accidents set the boundaries of safe operations, right?

And thanks to EOG Resources Inc, which owns the Pennsylvania gas well, we know that natural gas is just as dangerous to get as deep-water oil drilling is--more, if you consider what would have happened if a spark had ignited that 75-foot-high gas cloud.

Andrew, put me some knowledge, here, dude: How long did you spend roughnecking before you became a "journalist"? You didn't? Well, did you work for a "wild-well" company? No? Well then, are you an engineer? No? Well in that case, can you tell us what logic or training enables you to claim that "natural gas is just as dangerous to get as deep-water oil drilling?"

And FYI: down here in oil country a 75-foot gas plume is no big deal. When I was in college one blowout produced a 250-foot torch that burned for six months. But I can understand why you might not know anything about that. That's perfectly okay--I don't know who the best editors are to work for as a journalist, so we're even. But I wouldn't presume to advise you about the latter, while you and your fellow progs, on the other hand....

Now, I'll readily agree that fighting a wild well is dangerous--as is the regular business of drilling any well--and I admire the guts and skill of the men who do either for a living. But if you think danger or risk means we shouldn't drill for oil or gas, shouldn't you want to outlaw, oh, motorcycle riding while you're at it? After all, that's clearly dangerous, and unlike drilling for energy, it produces *no* social benefit, eh?

It would be a pity for progressives to let a victory like that slip through our fingers out of a perfectly human appetite for some payback.

"a victory like that..." Like what? A society in which individuals buy, build and run their own home powerplants? Say, that does sound great! Of course most people don't have enough tech savvy to program the clock in their VCR, but that's just a detail we can fix later.

And you say you've got the technology to do this? Any cost estimates yet? Of course there won't be any emissions, right? And none of your proposed home generators will need an environmental impact statement, right? Geez, dude, you're gonna be as rich as Bill Gates! Cool!

But of course you've got...absolutely nothin' like that. You've got what the software folks used to call "vapor-ware." And *damn*, that stuff is fabulous!

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