American Elephants

Rainbows, Wind Power and Unicorns. by The Elephant's Child

It’s like whack-a-mole, as soon as you manage to strike down some really terrible idea, they come up with another one.  The hopefully really dead idea was “cap-and-trade’.  Delusional Democrats thought it was the-energy-policy-that-will-create-jobs, until serious evidence emerged  that it was simply a significant tax, and it died in the Senate.

Some members of the Democrat elite had hoped to become much wealthier by trading carbon credits on the Chicago Climate Exchange, but carbon emission prices have been in free fall, and the Chicago Climate Exchange is on its last legs, scaling back operations and laying off employees.

The world watched the bottom drop out of the vastly hyped  UN Climate  Summit in Copenhagen in December 2oo9, with its neo-colonial and UN Global Government taxation agenda fully exposed.  The theory was that they would monetize the atmospheric trace gas CO2 and trade it in a commodities market.  The formula was to create an investment vehicle, hype the new commodity, buy low, watch share prices climb, and sell high.  Trading prices during its brief heyday in May and June of 2008 reached $5.85 and $7.50 per tonne.  Recent price — 10¢ a tonne.

Politicians now are turning to a new plan, one that could actually pass — a renewable electricity standard (RES).  The (not very) bipartisan Governors’ Wind Energy Coalition — has urged the President to pass a renewable electricity standard.

Here’s the thinking.  To develop the wonderful economic benefits of wind power, we must guarantee the developers and manufacturers a market, because without a guaranteed market they won’t develop and manufacture.  What is wrong with this argument?  If you have a desirable product, something people want, you don’t have to guarantee a market.

The governors mistakenly believe that there are all sorts of “green jobs.” We have Spain’s experience for that.  Spanish economics professor Gabriel Calzada of Universidad Juan Carlos published an academic analysis that showed that for every “green job” created in Spain, 2.2 jobs were lost in the regular economy due to the higher costs of energy.

The administration response was to huddle with big wind lobbyists and other special interests expecting to benefit from governmental wind subsidies.  They collaborated on a taxpayer-funded rebuttal to Calzada’s scholarly work.  When members of Congress and the media inquired about the collusion between the Energy Department and the American Wind Energy Associates,  the transparency promise drifted off with the wind.

The governors not only want a National Renewable Electricity Standard, but support for the construction of a new interstate electric grid, More expansion of the Department of Energy’s collaboration with the American Wind Energy Associates to maintain the U.S. wind industry’s relative competitive advantage (why is this the business of government?). And on top of that a long-term renewable energy production tax credit.

There is a lot of money to be made in being subsidized by the government.  Wind lobbyists talk in terms of “capacity.” which is what a wind turbine could produce if perfectly sited, where the wind blew at the perfect speed all the time. This is rainbows and unicorns territory.  Turbines move less than a third of the time, and more importantly — wind turbines require 24/7 full-time backup from regular power plants.

The governors seem to believe that if they support wind power, it will relieve us from dependence on foreign oil, completely oblivious to the fact that it is our transportation sector that is powered by foreign and domestic (when Obama has not shut it down) oil.  Electric power is produced by coal-fired plants, natural gas-fired plants and hydropower.

Based on policy pronouncements of governments, the media, and Left environmentalists, one might believe the world is about to enter the renewable energy era. In reality, however, the “new” is about a long gone era that ended before the dawn of the 20th century. Then the primary fuel was wood. Other renewables, including water and wind, were used because they were available and technologically harnessable for some very localized situations.

However primitive, renewables relating to the sun’s flow was the best our ancestors could do.

Will there be a renaissance of this era? Perhaps there will be, but it will be in a significantly different form and dependent upon a vastly transformed world, in both technological and societal terms, which will not be achievable for many generations.


‘D’ is for DEPRESSION, ‘R’ is for RECOVERY! by American Elephant
September 15, 2010, 6:21 pm
Filed under: Capitalism, Economy, Election 2010, Freedom, News, Progressivism | Tags: , , , , ,

Yesterday, the DNC hyped that they would have a major announcement today that would excite Democrats nationwide; the implication being that the DNC had something big, something Earth-shattering that would be a game-changer. Perhaps an exciting new poll? or a dirty September surprise? After all, what could possibly excite dispirited, dejected Democrats at this point other than some good electoral news?

So what was this bombshell? Had they finally decided to listen to the American people and change direction? Did they have some new prescription to get America out of the Depression that started a year after they took control of congress and that their policies and promised policies not only caused, but are exacerbating?

Not quite.

No, they’re going to keep right on pushing the same disastrous policies. Their huge game-changing revelation is that they…wait for it… developed a new logo.

Wheeeee! </sarcasm>

Indeed, Democrats are apparently SO enamored with Obama’s car analogy (the one he’s used in campaign speeches lately in which “D” stands for “drive” and “R” stands for “reverse”),  that they invested their party identity in it — the new logo clearly evocative of the “drive’ symbol on a car’s gear shift. That is what the left does after all. They don’t change their policies when they have clearly failed — they simply change the name, get a new spokesman, or slap a new logo on it.

Indeed, there’s no better example of that than the Marxist miscreant now occupying the Oval Office. His ideas are as old as they come — command and control, centralized, dictatorial government. Indeed, he himself admitted that his party has been trying to pass socialized healthcare for a hundred years! (The obvious rejoinder to which is that Americans have been rejecting socialized medicine just exactly as long.)

But man, he sure had a sweet logo!

I would remind Obama, Democrats, and the American people, however, that “D” and “R” stand for a lot more than just “drive” and “reverse” — they also stand for words that are much more relevant this crucial election season. After the past four disastrous years of a Democrat-controlled congress, what should be crystal clear to everyone is that ‘D’ is for “Depression” (which is the only place Democrats have driven us), and ‘R’ is for recovery!

(PS: Has anyone else noticed how the Obama logo, all his graphics and now the new Democrat logo eschew the traditional blue of the American flag for United Nations cyan? Maybe it’s unintentional — not likely, but possibly unintentional — but  either way, it certainly is appropriate.)

(h/t HotAir)

Too Much Politics? Take an Awww Break! by The Elephant's Child

Take a awww-break at this cool site of the day which features pictures of baby animals born in the world’s zoos.  While some do indeed have faces only a mother could love, they’re all actually pretty cute.  We are particularly partial to baby elephants, and you’ll have to admit that this one from the Albuquerque Zoo is adorable.  I’m also attracted to the pygmy hippo and an Australian dingo puppy.  And the bonobo!  Don’t miss the bonobo.

ADDENDUM: There are pages and pages in this gallery of cuties, but the ‘next page’ designation at the bottom of each page is tiny print and hard to see.

Gastronomical Nirvana? by American Elephant
September 15, 2010, 3:53 pm
Filed under: Freedom, Humor, News of the Weird | Tags: , ,

Texas chef invents deep-fried beer.

Michelle Obama is undoubtedly already working to ban it.

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