The Audacity of Cap and Trade

Guest post by Steven Goddard
https://i0.wp.com/media.economist.com/images/20090418/D1609FN1.jpg
Yesterday, president Obama announced emission standards which he said would raise the cost of automobiles by $1300.

While the new fuel and emission standards for cars and trucks will save billions of barrels of oil, they are expected to cost consumers an extra 1,300 US dollars per vehicle by the time the plan is complete in 2016. Mr Obama said the fuel cost savings would offset the higher price of vehicles in three years.

His remarkable comment caught my attention, because one of the primary purposes of Obama’s “cap and trade” plan is to massively raise the cost of fuel.  There aren’t going to be any fuel cost savings.  In fact, Mr. Obama told the San Francisco Chronicle last year that he actually intends to bankrupt coal fired power plants using cap and trade:

You know, when I was asked earlier about the issue of coal, uh, you know — Under my plan of a cap and trade system, electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket. Even regardless of what I say about whether coal is good or bad. Because I’m capping greenhouse gases, coal power plants, you know, natural gas, you name it — whatever the plants were, whatever the industry was, uh, they would have to retrofit their operations. That will cost money. They will pass that money on to consumers.

Two automobile companies are already going bankrupt, so I think we should take Mr. Obama’s words seriously.

I can make a firm pledge. Under my plan no family making less than $250,000 a year will see any form of tax increase. Not your income tax, not your payroll tax, not your capital gains tax, not any of your taxes.
Last year, candidate Obama also said :

WASHINGTON – Democrat Barack Obama said Sunday that if elected he will push to increase the amount of income that is taxed to provide monthly Social Security benefits.

Audacity indeed.  The assumption seems to be that no one remembers what was said last week.

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342 thoughts on “The Audacity of Cap and Trade

  1. If these rules stay in place, the US will look like Cuba….old cars will dominate the roads. I would not want to drive one of these light weight sardine boxes and risk my life in a crash. Time to invest in used cars.

    Obama has dictatorial tendencies…he knows better than the stupid masses..us

  2. Straight down the path to Communism we go! Set your Hybrids and Plug-Ins to full speed ahead!

    These policies will cause used car prices to skyrocket, energy prices to skyrocket, and the cost of everything else to increase by some unknown (large) factor. And who exactly will that impact the most? I suspect those who have the least amount of money in the bank, those with the smaller incomes. Your average $250,000 earners won’t notice much, but those making $40,000, who are already at wit’s end and near financial ruin, are going to get burned. And I do not mean by rising global temperatures.

    Complete and utter destruction of everything we know as Americans, and more forced reliance on the government to collect and redistribute. It’s very sad.

  3. So, you think that Obama is responsible for the bankruptcy of the two automakers?

    If not, why the rethorical question?

    This kind of demagogy won’t take you anywhere. At least the guys at Climate Resistence know how to make adult arguments.

  4. The Texas Constitution
    Article 1 – BILL OF RIGHTS
    That the general, great and essential principles of liberty and free government may be recognized and established, we declare:
    Section 1 – FREEDOM AND SOVEREIGNTY OF STATE
    Texas is a free and independent State, subject only to the Constitution of the United States, and the maintenance of our free institutions and the perpetuity of the Union depend upon the preservation of the right of local self-government, unimpaired to all the States.

    This says it all. The current regime can only go so far. Most states have similar provisions.

  5. having watched and listened to Obama I am of the conclusion that the American public has been listening to a ‘loudspeaker’ without a computer jack.
    I would ask all to think what this jack-ass is costing us, California is a fiscal paradise, when in a decline bankrupt the nation on stupidity, a few years ago the man that wrote the Obama program ( Yugoslavia’s Milosevic ) printed a 1000000000 Dinara banknote with a value of $2.00 U.S. Milosevic is no more and now the Dinara has a value today of about 90 to the dollar, Obama is about to start printing the $10,000,000 banknote, if Russia want to win the war it only has to start selling its dollars and who will buy them?

  6. Watch Britain’s idiot brainwashed youth

    We need to make politicians listen! Save the future for our children! The universe will end unless politicians sign the Stop The Universe From Moving Act!!!

    REPLY: I don’t usually allow links to facebook on WUWT, but I have edited your comment to link to the video directly. – Anthony

  7. If the cost of gasoline goes to five or six bucks per gallon, it won’t wake many gallons saved to add up to $1300. That’s how the cost savings works! Heck, if gas goes up to $10/gallon, it would only take 130 gallons saved to add up to $1300. The higher the price goes, the more you save – everybody wins!

  8. Excuse me for my audacity; I’m not living in US. Nonetheless, isn’t that a short way to national impoverishment? It’s worrying because wherever God is, the devil is not far behind, i.e. soon Mexico will copy US practices. Here we already can hear speeches on carbon bills, for example.

  9. They will pass that money on to consumers

    And there’s the blame game. Anyone who’s ever read a left-wing blog knows that the outcry will be directed squarely at the companies who raise their prices rather than the people who enacted cap & trade.

    And I’ll feel like I’m living in the parallel universe of uneducated idiots all over again. Seems to happen more & more often these days for some reason.

  10. Luis Dias,

    The current president is only symbolic of the mindset that is responsible for the bankruptcy of the two automakers. He made the comments, so he takes the criticism here. Governments never run business and economies well. Even their “success” stories – militaries and postal services – are repleat with horror stories and failures. Free market businesses, for all their faults, at least enable people to survive and even thrive most of the time. When they fail, it often is because of government or behavior in the business that mimics government behavior.

    What is certain is that mendacity rules in Washington, DC regardless of party or person.

  11. A few thoughts from a patriot.

    To say that any people are not fit for freedom, is to make poverty their choice, and to say they had rather be loaded with taxes than not. -Thomas Paine

    When men yield up the privilege of thinking, the last shadow of liberty quits the horizon. -Thomas Paine

    That government is best which governs least. -Thomas Paine

  12. I sincerely wonder if the horrifically expensive “plans” being announced weekly by our new administration represent the juxtaposition of a desire to do good with scientific ignorance and economics ignorance.

    Or, are they a premeditated scam by some corrupt politicians and predatory businesses to transfer our money into their pockets?

    Probably a scam. Why? Because cheap, effective solutions to the presumed AGW problem are dismissed out of hand (e.g. nuclear energy could replace coal entirely in the USA for the cost of the first 8 years of Cap & Trade or the combined “bailouts/stimulus” costs — and provide jobs building the plants). Meanwhile, the expensive solutions are being “rushed” through without serious debate. Seems like “scam” tactics to me.

  13. Aron,

    As a good friend told me as to what ‘youth can do to fight climate change’…

    He said that youth are actually the number one problem in new sources of CO2.

    They have consumed enormous amounts of energy to date…more than any previous youth generation. They are about to consume a whole lot more…first car/first house/first family/first set of electronics/first airplane rides, etc. They are about to cause (if they haven’t already) the largest government regulatory environment ever, the largest set of new taxes ever and the largest per capita (cheap) energy reduction ever.

    Whether I believe him outright or not, his points are interesting to ponder. The younger generation thinks they are going to reduce CO2 emissions and save the world from climate change, but their generation’s mere presence on this planet may negate the whole argument…

    Jim

  14. Tronto Stock Exchange Commodity Index is up 3.4%. If this continues (and I expect it will) this will lead to Dangerous Anthropogenic Inflation. If one thinks that AGW was bad wait until they need a wheelbarrow to cart their money around in.
    PS, I’m heavily invested in Natural Gas, Oil and Coal. Think of all the energy required to install all that new renewable green energy and the back up required when the sun don’t shine and the wind don’t blow.

  15. “…Mr Obama said the fuel cost savings would offset the higher price…”

    Obama is running our personal buying decisions now! You don’t have to worry anymore, Obama takes care of how much you spend and earn, and HE knows what is the best car for you!

    Wait a few years, and Obama will simply buy a car for you (Made in China, the land of no carbon limits)

  16. Luis Dias (08:32:19) :

    So, you think that Obama is responsible for the bankruptcy of the two automakers?

    If not, why the rethorical question?

    This kind of demagogy won’t take you anywhere. At least the guys at Climate Resistence know how to make adult arguments.
    +++++++++++++++++
    He didn’t say that. He said, “Two automobile companies are already going bankrupt”. The implication is that Obama’s policies will bankrupt MORE companies, NOT that Obama is responsible for the current bankruptcies.

    This site is used to a higher level of reading comprehension in its troll population than what you have displayed.

  17. Yeah, it seems the intent was that the $1300 would be offset by the need to buy less fuel… apparently “communication” was never a strong point for this crop of politicians (then again, if they were to actually “communicate” their intentions they’d probably be dragged through the streets by angry mobs).

    “I’m from the government, and I’m here to help…”

  18. Luis Dias (08:32:19) :

    Luis, what is your adult argument demonstrating the pro’s of adding a $1300 ‘tax’ to the price of a new car (during a severe recession) for

    a} automakers
    B} auto buyers
    c) auto unions
    d) U.S. economy

    ?

  19. Also Luis:

    Please highlight any question, rethorical(sic) or otherwise in this article. Can’t find a single question mark in the whole thing.

  20. Cap-and-Trade is one of Obama’s heartfelt follies. Every time he talks energy policy our president takes on the glassy eyes of the fanatic. With so much wrong and the need of intelligent policy so great, it is a field that a person of his ability could perform wonders had he been properly grounded in the facts or surrounded by capable advisors.

    So we find ourselves in the position that Eisenhower warned us about in his farewell address. Here follows what he said then.

    “Akin to, and largely responsible for the sweeping changes in our industrial-military posture, has been the technological revolution during recent decades. In this revolution, research has become central; it also becomes more formalized, complex, and costly. A steadily increasing share is conducted for, by, or at the direction of, the Federal government.

    Today, the solitary inventor, tinkering in his shop, has been overshadowed by task forces of scientists in laboratories and testing fields. In the same fashion, the free university, historically the fountainhead of free ideas and scientific discovery, has experienced a revolution in the conduct of research. Partly because of the huge costs involved, a government contract becomes virtually a substitute for intellectual curiosity. For every old blackboard there are now hundreds of new electronic computers. The prospect of domination of the nation’s scholars by Federal employment, project allocations, and the power of money is ever present — and is gravely to be regarded.

    Yet, in holding scientific research and discovery in respect, as we should, we must also be alert to the equal and opposite danger that public policy could itself become the captive of a scientific-technological elite.”

    I think AGW theory the nightmare realization of Eisenhower’s fears. The above quote is often edited out of video of his farewell speech so it is well worth finding an unedited version.

  21. I don’t put much faith in the role of AGW with respect to climate but I DO believe in conservation … oil supplies are rapidly dwindling … it is crazy and totally irresponsible to treat oil as if it were a renewable resource! I think Obama is on the right track here. It seems a shame that some people on this site are more concerned about the cost of gas than they are about future generations!

    Jon

  22. Obama’s interference in the running of Chrysler and GM forced them to choose bankruptcy. Obama’s interest is not in preserving the corporate/capitalist structure of the automobile industry, but to supplant it with direct bureaucratic control. The goal is to preserve the union, after it has been corporatized.

    In a socialist’s view, the State (singular — not plural) must have total and complete control. Anything less allows obstructionism.

    AGW is an effective MacGuffin for the socialist’s script.

  23. democracy, democracy, where for art thou democracy?

    I am genuinely afraid for all our futures

  24. Hal (08:17:31) :

    You are absolutely correct. Seeing this coming for about a year now, last fall I purchased two 1998 Jeep Grand Cherokees with the big 5.9 litre engines. Both were low mileage gems and cost less than $10K for the two. My wife was not supportive, until I convinced her that in just a few years time cars like these will never be available again – the Prius will become the new Escalade.

    Being a car guy, I expect to keep these two Guzzling SUV’s for the next 30 years or more, barring of course a wreck or theft.

  25. I would have said “The Stupidity of Cap and Trade,” given that our economy is still vulnerable and on life support. Draining away the consumers’ spending power for Cap and Trade is idiocy.

  26. George Monbiot has written another article on the doom we all face from GW. Apparently, some in the comments section are expecting to hear from WWUT folks.

    Danphobic says…

    **think we all know that the guys at whatsupwiththat.com have proof that all of the scientists and experts in the world are wrong about this. I’m sure we’ll see some of the links presented here in a few minutes when they hear that GM has written an article.*** LOL

    GM thinks the ‘modeling’ done by MIT has some credilibilty!
    But he doesn’t understand that most of these peer reviewed scientists are simply parroting the AGW line and finding… manufacturing evidence to support it! (making sausage as some refer to it)The question I suppose is how many are conscious conspirators in the GW conspiracy. The false tide sweeps them along.

    WWUT will keep them honest!

    The Boy of John

  27. Anthony iwould just like to draw your attention to this article publish in “The america, thinker”, from an article in Spegiel.

    http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2009/05/paradox_of_carbon_cap_and_trad.html

    What it means is because of the law of supply and demand, carbon trading will not result in a gram of co2 saved. Even if nuclear is built then the carbon credit, would just be used elseware, to release carbon.The overall effect could be to increase co2?

  28. Although I’m on Steven’s side of the issue, I have to agree with Luis Diaz. That’s a pretty fragmented argument in the article. The connection of all the pieces isn’t clear. It’s more like the points one might put together before writing the actual article. As it’s presented it doesn’t appear to address the sentiment in the title.

    That’s the problem with explaining Cap and Trade to the general public, I think. It’s so complex in it’s application, and spin-off implications it’s pretty much impossible to communicate the dangers in a short piece. That makes it advantage theirs in the information wars, because they can simply offer a few truthyisms which appear to support the general reasoning supporting C & T, then simply expect the public to ignore the complexity, and trust them to deal with it. You can do that when you’re running the show, but not when you’re critiquing it.

  29. It’s not just the youth.

    How will the overwhelming cafe standards affect your purchase of your next car. IT WONT! You will still by the vehicle you can that fits your needs.

    The plans of our government only make sense if you consider they want more power. The beautiful message of socialism is the same as it has been for a century, there is no question the quality of the result. You can look at any country on earth and see it directly.

    Now that GM is being taken over by the government what have we got left?

    -Not too damn much and we keep importing illegals who have no idea that things don’t work like this.

    The kids in the video are no more ignorant than the parents that raise them and they are VERY ignorant.
    ========
    Luis,

    “So, you think that Obama is responsible for the bankruptcy of the two automakers?”

    Nope, the unions are and the Dem’s under Obama will back their pay to the end of America rather than give them the absolutely required pay cuts. In fact this result is exactly what the democrats (and some republicans) want.
    ====
    I will never buy another GM vehicle until the government gives up control and I strongly recommend all of you do the same.

    =====

    I just got notice that another customer of ours went bankrupt, second one this month that won’t be making their bills to us. Something I blame on the other government run companies intentionally buying bad loans from banks who were pushed by politicians to loan to unqualified borrowers.

    Wake up and keep your noses to the grindstones and next time a politician tells you he actually wants to bankrupt the energy suppliers – listen.

  30. Mike Bryant (08:40:21) :

    This says it all. The current regime can only go so far. Most states have similar provisions.

    They can only go so far?!! The Federal Government intends to regulate, control and tax A MOLECULE!! A molecule on which all life is based. You don’t need to go any further than that. That pretty much covers everything.

  31. Let’s see the math:
    I drive a 40 mile round trip to work every day so 40 miles * 5 days * 50 weeks = 10000 miles per year. To make the math easy let’s say my F150 gets 15mpg (true) and Obama doubles that to 30mpg. That takes my gallons used per year from 667 (4800/15) down to 333 (4800/30). That is a difference of 334 gallons. So take Your $1300/334 gallons saved and that comes out at $3.89 a gallon.

    I guess that means that the big O is going to raise gas prices to make this work. I performed the same calculation for my wife’s Honda (30mpg) that I actually drive to work (green conservation: I’m conserving the cash in my wallet) and gas has to go up to $7.78 a gallon to make this work out. You might as well keep your old acr for as long as you can!

    I’m betting that my F150 will no longer pull my travel trailer when it’s engineered to give 30mpg!

  32. The frightening thing in my mind, is that this wasn’t kept secret before the elections. Not that McCain was any better.

    This is what the people of the good ole USA have chosen.
    Be careful what you wish for….

    Of course, in 3 years, 7 if he’s re-elected, people will really be wishing for a change.

  33. Nasif Nahle (08:51:03) :

    “Excuse me for my audacity; I’m not living in US. Nonetheless, isn’t that a short way to national impoverishment?”

    Could you please move here and become a voting citizen? I would trade a thousand of our “head-in-the-sand” voters for one like you!

  34. Gary the last I looked it was deregulation of banks, read free market, that got everyone into this fiscal mess. In Canada the banks are more tightly regulated and thus survived quite well. Looking for a safe place to put whatever money you have left, look north, I did.

  35. Gordon Ford. I too am invested in conventional energy. It seems unlikely to me that vehicles will run, in any large way, on non-petroleum energy at any time in the near future. Regardless of the political class. It is my experience, trading commodities, that prices react much more quickly to changes in supply, rather than demand. No drilling+no new refineries=cap on supply=higher prices. The political class will no doubt find a scapegoat, and it won’t include them. fm

  36. They keep asking why isnt the united states like Europe, their cars get a lot better gas mileage than the USA.

    There are two important differences. In Europe, people are encouraged to buy cars with diesel engines. The fuel tax is much less on diesel so it costs much less to the consumer, to make up the difference in higher diesel car purchase expenses. Diesels save gas in Europe. Also in Europe, the engines are so small, they must use manual transmissions to get enough torque from them.

    In the USA, the govt does not like diesel engines, they think particulate from diesel engines cause cancer. In Europe diesel soot is just soot. Here it causes cancer. Americans also do not like to drive manual transmissions.

    So unless we embrace both diesel engines and manual transmissions, we can not follow Europes lead with improved fuel mileage. There are also almost no SUVs in Europe, the station wagon is their SUV. It is hard to imagine that the Pick-up, V, and van will mostly all go extinct, at least as we know them, in the next six years.

  37. Google “Obama Deception” – a film really worth watching – and not just for Americans.

    + There was an “Obama youth corps” video – a freaky militant style commercial by “City Year” – out there also – however, looks like it’s no longer available at youtube “due to a copyright claim by City Year”…

  38. “Skeptic Tank (09:45:28) :
    They can only go so far?!! The Federal Government intends to regulate, control and tax A MOLECULE!! A molecule on which all life is based. You don’t need to go any further than that. That pretty much covers everything.”

    You’re right Skeptic. And when the Supreme Court is fully stacked, anything they wish will then be constitutional. If the outlawing af a life-giving trace gas becomes constitutional, what are the states options? When the entire federal government becomes crazed, what are the options? Many states are starting to look at secession.

  39. Communism and Cuba!

    The AP article in my morning paper said that pickups would become too expensive for most people and would only be used for work. Phooey.

    Sounds like alarmism, like how seat belts and cat converters would drive the car companies bankrupt.

    We will adapt.

  40. Dear NC–

    truly moronic. But like most morons you do stumble on a truth. With Harper, Canada has a more conservative, market supporting, and fiscally responsible government at this point than the crew in Washington, so I do fancy Canada’s chances better than the US’s.

  41. Although the Democrats control the Presidency, House & Senate, I read that some Democrats. mostly the younger and/or newly elected, are getting uncomfortable with this Administration’s policies. Everyone who believes that our country is being forced into a Socialist Economy and that our individual inalienable rights are being taken from us must call, write, and e-mail their elected representatives, and remember, there are Congressional elections in 2010. If Americans are not willling to vote in these elections, then they deserve the government they have and will experience the decline and fall of a great country.

  42. Brownism is alive and well and intent on destroying the US economy. The coal-fired power station wrecking programme is insane. Better stock up on the candles and lamp oil, folks…

  43. oil supplies are rapidly dwindling …

    Yeah, well, except they’re really not.

    isn’t that a short way to national impoverishment?”

    Yeah, pretty much. If there WERE any recovery, this administration would tax it away forthwith.

    Gary the last I looked it was deregulation of banks, read free market, that got everyone into this fiscal mess

    What’s got us into “this mess” is TOO MUCH DEBT at all levels, and encouraged by the govt. The numbers aren’t hard to find.

  44. All this Cap and Trade will be a nice addition to Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds, by Charles MacKay, written in …1841. No difference whatsoever …

    “Men, it has been well said, think in herds; it will be seen that they go mad in herds, while they only recover their senses slowly, and one by one!”

    “Of all the offspring of Time, Error is the most ancient, and is so old and familiar an acquaintance, that Truth, when discovered, comes upon most of us like an intruder, and meets the intruder’s welcome.”

  45. Cap and Trade is a reasonable and economically sound approach to dealing with a pollutant or other externality. But CO2 is NOT a pollutant!

    Increasing the partial pressure of CO2 will have a net positive effect on the biosphere truly making the planet a greener place and increasing world food production. Instead of Cap and Trade, given what we know about basic plant biology, It would make more sense to reward those industries which contribute increasing CO2 levels in the atmosphere.

  46. NC (10:08:50) :

    Gary the last I looked it was deregulation of banks, read free market, that got everyone into this fiscal mess.

    Which, of course, is utter nonsense. The US financial industry is the most regulated in the world. Try educating yourself on basic economic theory and then learn why Keynsian arguments such as the one you just made are not just wrong, but outright ludicrous.

    Mark

  47. NC, deregulation of banks had nothing to do with our current fiscal mess. They contributed to, but were not the cause of, the financial crisis. The fiscal mess is the sole responsibility of the Democratic Party and the Obama Administration.

    There are some very stable banks in the US. If the unstable banks had been allowed to fail, we would have been over the crisis by now. Uncertainty is what is stifling the economy at this point..

  48. NC,

    You obviously get your news from the NYT. It was the Senate and House Banking Committees requiring banks to make loans to those who couldn’t repay them which resulted in this mess – too much NOT too little government intervention.
    You have to go all the way back to the Carter administration for the beginning of this specific issue. It evolved over the years and BOTH Democrats and Republicans are guilty for their parts in contributing to the mess. But the very compressed history went something like this:

    Government: You’re not giving loans to people with lower incomes.
    Banks: Becuase they are high credit risks and we have a responsibility to safeguard the money of our customers and investors.
    Government: Too bad – give them loans.
    Banks: But we’ll go out of business.
    Government: Then we GUARANTEE your loans through various entities – Fanny Mae and Freddie Mac for example. And even though they are not officially government entities, we’ll use tax payer money to shore them up.
    Banks: But we’ll still hold the loans and if/when defaults happen it will hurt our customers
    Government: So you’ll no longer be long-term lenders of credit, but only loan originators, and Fanny and Freddie will take them off your hands shortly after you originate (so that you can get busy originating more loans!) and when Fanny and Freddie can’t handle it, we’ll draft legislation encouraging the creation of derivatives and other instruments to hide bad loans in larger packages with good loans to keep the ball rolling – and we’ll encourage whole companies to spring up who actually aren’t banks but simply exist for the purpose of originating and selling loans. And since all the lendres now make their money off of loan ORIGINATION and NOT off of loan MAINTENANCE (with no risk for making bad loans) we’re actually ENCOURAGING predatory lending practices – and the faster you make them the more money you make!
    And when the whole thing spins out of control – we’ll put the American Taxpayer on the line to clean it up.

    Yes, GW, I see how it was lack of government intervention that caused this mess. Please don’t believe me. Try looking for yourself – but somewhere other than the editorial page of the NYT or Obama’s speeches. Try starting with the Community Reinvestment Act.

  49. You might be right if 1) Auto makers weren’t going backrupt BEFORE Obama was elected into office and 2) we’ll all be better off without being dependant on fossil fuels. Instead of being beholden to major corporations who control nearly all the resourses we can begin moving toward more renewable resources. What is the problem with that? ~snip~

  50. Gordon Ford:
    I watch boat after boat being loaded up with coal in Tswassen (just south of Vancouver) going over seas, I would say at least 1/3 or your investment strategy is correct.
    BC is going to “SAVE THE WORLD” with our carbon tax, but we’ll ship the deathly coal anywhere. Every boat carries a ton of hypocrisy for every ton of coal.
    The idea financial forecasters let alone gov’t, can predict it is going to cost $1300 extra per car and you’ll be able to pay it off in 3 years is laughable. Much like climate forecasters, future cost estimates are a large part SWAGs.

  51. How will the overwhelming cafe standards affect your purchase of your next car. IT WONT! You will still by the vehicle you can that fits your needs.

    The plans of our government only make sense if you consider they want more power. The beautiful message of socialism is the same as it has been for a century, there is no question the quality of the result.

    So the existing CAFE standards are why we experienced socialism under George W Bush?

    Or is there something magic about a 35 mpg CAFE standard vs. a 25 mpg CAFE standard that causes the former to lead to socialism while the latter did not?

  52. “Let’s see the math:
    I drive a 40 mile round trip to work every day so 40 miles * 5 days * 50 weeks = 10000 miles per year. To make the math easy let’s say my F150 gets 15mpg (true) and Obama doubles that to 30mpg. That takes my gallons used per year from 667 (4800/15) down to 333 (4800/30). That is a difference of 334 gallons. So take Your $1300/334 gallons saved and that comes out at $3.89 a gallon.”

    He said it would be over the life of the car, not in one year. And most people drive more than 10,000 miles per year. Do you only use your car to get to work?

  53. The $20 billion “auto bailout” earlier this year could have been used instead to purchase one thousand $20,000 cars from each of the one thousand GM dealers who lost their franchises last week. ($20,000 per car X 1,000 dealers X 1,000 cars = $20 billion.

    If the government wanted to keep Government Motors out of bankruptcy, it could have been done at no additional expense.

  54. Luis Dias (08:32:19) said :
    So, you think that Obama is responsible for the bankruptcy of the two automakers? If not, why the rethorical question?
    This kind of demagogy won’t take you anywhere. At least the guys at Climate Resistence know how to make adult arguments.

    Hey Luis! I only WISH that Obama et al WERE responsible for REAL bankruptcies of Chrysler and GM. Real, as in according to established bankruptcy LAW. You know, as in the phrase “rule of Law”.

    Instead we have the rule of one man (the dire prospects of which was the main motivating force behind the drafting of the constitution and the Bill of Rights) who is essentially doling-out favors to HIS constituents (read: the UAW) and screwing the bondholders. (Unfortunately, I know about this travesty myself in some considerable detail, as I own a few of them GM bonds.)

    These moves are the hallmarks of a socialist dictatorship. (cf Senor Chavez in Venezuela). That sentence isn’t demagogery or hyperbole or exageration, it’s a plain and simple fact.

    Since apparently you never took a USA Civics or American History class, perhaps you’d like to mosey-on over to Real Politics for a bunch of clear- headed adult opinions which completely agree with me. Start with say George Will. Brooks in the NYT today is good.

    So what does it all mean, Obama playing Banana Republic Strongman? I note with some trepidation that ALL the gun stores in Texas are STILL sold-out of 9mm, .40 S&W, and .223 ammunition; it’s STILL selling-out within minutes of hitting the shelves. Everybody I know has a minimum of 30 days of food and gasoline. Most have an “abandon ship” bag packed (although they call it the SHTF bag).

    I’m seriously afraid that if Obama follows this political “arc” for another year or so, there is going to be real, serious trouble. Summer of 1968-type trouble, Watts and Detroit-type trouble. Folks who have never protested anything ever (Nixon’s old silent majority) taking to the streets, waving flags with segmented snakes on them. (Or, in Texas, one that says “Come And Take It.”) This time, however, there may be some real serious hardware coming out of closets.

  55. “It seems a shame that some people on this site are more concerned about the cost of gas than they are about future generations!”

    Maybe folks are concerned about being able to feed any future generations. Cost of gas is of great importance, as is access to affordable energy. It doesn’t make much sense to shun abundant cheap energy that is already available for expensive intermittent energy. Money lost has no benefit to society (broken window fallacy). Oil may run out someday, and THEN we can pay more for something else. Money spent now is also much more expensive than money spent in the future.

  56. “”” Luis Dias (08:32:19) :

    So, you think that Obama is responsible for the bankruptcy of the two automakers?

    If not, why the rethorical question?

    This kind of demagogy won’t take you anywhere. At least the guys at Climate Resistence know how to make adult arguments. “””

    Well Luis, as I am sure you are aware, the Constitution of the United States authorizes the Congress to make uniform bankruptcy laws throughout the whole country.
    It gives no authority to the President of The United States to have any involvement whatsoever in such matters; and the white house did in fact dictate the reorganisation of those companies; something that the uniform bankruptcy laws are supposed to address, and be worked out in a court of law; not by a telepropmter reading of the President.

    And by the way it is in Article I, Section 8, the section that gives the Congress authority to do about 18 things; I am sure that US school children all learn Section 8 of Article one by the time they reach 8th grade.

  57. Re: jon (09:30:34) :

    “I don’t put much faith in the role of AGW with respect to climate but I DO believe in conservation”

    Strongly agree

    “… oil supplies are rapidly dwindling …”

    Are they?

    http://www.energybulletin.net/node/22522

    http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/columnists/article3823656.ece

    http://mises.org/story/1717

    http://www.insideview.ie/irisheyes/2009/04/ruchir-sharma-deflates-peak-oil-myth.html

    http://www.newswithviews.com/Monteith/stanley.htm

  58. The New York Times explains why polliticians like Cap and Trade: . Here is an excerpt:

    How did cap and trade, hatched as an academic theory in obscure economic journals half a century ago, become the policy of choice in the debate over how to slow the heating of the planet? And how did it come to eclipse the idea of simply slapping a tax on energy consumption…

    The answer is not to be found in the study of economics or environmental science, but in the realm where most policy debates are ultimately settled: politics…Cap and trade…is almost perfectly designed for the buying and selling of political support through the granting of valuable emissions permits to favor specific industries and even specific Congressional districts.That is precisely what is taking place now in the House Energy and Commerce Committee…

  59. Don’t worry about it.

    We are not building more refineries and we are not opening any new oil fields for drilling. Global demand for oil is currently low because of the economy, but demand will increase as the situation improves. You won’t be able to afford to buy gas, so why worry about how much a new car costs or whether or not it’s a death trap?

    Nuclear is out of the equation for our future energy needs and coal is being phased out. Wind and solar can’t generate enough power to meet future demands, so it also doesn’t matter how expensive electric cars are, either. There won’t be enough electricity to power them on calm days or overnight, while parked in your garage. That’s if you could afford a garage, or the house it goes with.

    But don’t worry about it. You’ll be taken care of.

  60. Nasif Nahle (08:51:03) : As spanish is your mother tongue and having a deep knowledge of the controversial climate issue, i think you could be of great help, for avoiding the dissemination of this maliciously provoked psychic pandemia, among the current laymen population of spanish speaking countries, by making a simpler version of the studies you publish in your webpage.
    Just as an example, a very common question is the following: “How is it so that so prominent scientists and the UN itself say that the world is warming, they can not be lying?”
    You see, this issue has became a religious war, with all its undesirable consequences. I just don’t know if “they” just want a tax increase, this is only the case of the USA, we already pay a US$4.30 per gallon of oil in SA, and publicity on global warming it’s the same, so which is their ultimate goal?, why don’ t they tell it clearly?, what is it so terrible that it can not be openly shown?

  61. Luis,

    My bad, you are correct – raising auto manufacturers expenses and fuel prices simultaneously during a recession is a brilliant way to help out the car companies – and save consumers money at the same time.

  62. “I can make a firm pledge. Under my plan no family making less than $250,000 a year will see any form of tax increase. Not your income tax, not your payroll tax, not your capital gains tax, not any of your taxes.”

    Cap and Trade – The politicians that bring this in will not call it a tax. I doubt this cost will appear as a seperate item on peoples power bills and the same politiciians who bring this in will be the ones that shout loudest about the higher prices brought to bear on the electorate. (Probably blaming corperate greed).

  63. jon (09:30:34) :

    I don’t put much faith in the role of AGW with respect to climate but I DO believe in conservation … oil supplies are rapidly dwindling … it is crazy and totally irresponsible to treat oil as if it were a renewable resource! I think Obama is on the right track here. It seems a shame that some people on this site are more concerned about the cost of gas than they are about future generations!

    Any ideas of how much oil has been consumed to date, versus the known oil reserves?

    Here’s a hint: there is plenty of oil and the more expensive oil gets, more oil becomes economically feasible to collect and refine.

  64. Re NC – in real free and deregulated market (understand: no cheap money printed by FED, no state-owned mortgage companies spreading these money and no Community Reinvestment Act), banks would never lend money to so many folks with suspicious financial future. Governments now behave like fool who poured oil on steps and now blame sliding and falling people for not using wall handles properly.
    To prevent snipping for OT, we have a huge scandal in Slovakia now – our enviroministry sold free CO2 emissions through some quickly-established company in US for 30% lower unit price than surrounding countries did at the same time. No wonder politicians gotta love this cap-and-trade – another source of endless corruption.

  65. So… the cars will cost MORE, but you’ll make it up in gas savings down the line? (Assuming, of course, that gas prices rise to painful levels…)

    The air conditioning systems in my house are a patchwork with 2 30-year old compressors, one 30 year old evaporator, and one 15 year old evaporator. They all work fairly well – but they’re not exactly thrifty on the energy side, you know?

    This year we got a quote on an upgrade. Yank everything out, put in 14-16 seer units (as opposed to the jokingly .2 seer stuff we’ve got now) and we could see our energy bills drop considerably. In fact, we could likely SAVE enough in the next 4-5 years to pay for the new system.

    But we aren’t going to do it.

    We’d LIKE to upgrade – but we can’t afford the initial investment without taking out a loan for it – and for some strange reason with the economic climate the way it is we’re loath to take on more debt.

    Now we’re supposed to prep our wallets to buy an approved Governmental Motors eco-mobile?

    It ain’t gonna happen.

    So – I’m afraid we can’t afford to help save the planet. Sorry, Obama – the cost is too high for us REGULAR people who can’t print money and actually have to worry about the debt we incur. YOU, however, will likely be out in three years – and even if you aren’t you’ll never have to worry about paying for the garbage you’ve obligated US to pay for.

  66. jon (09:30:34) said :
    I don’t put much faith in the role of AGW with respect to climate but I DO believe in conservation … oil supplies are rapidly dwindling … it is crazy and totally irresponsible to treat oil as if it were a renewable resource!

    Fact: oil supplies are not “dwindling”, they are getting marginally more expensive to retrieve. If you include Natural Gas, USA supplies (that is, BTUs of proven reserves) have actually sky-rocketed in the last couple of years , thanks to tight shale production. The Haynesville field may be the largest gas field EVER found anywhere. The recent run-up in prices was due primarily to speculation and secondarily to underinvestment in production facilities, NOT “dwindling supplies”, whatever that means.

    Fact: The original L. King Hubbard “Peak Oil” Theory [READ IT sometime] worked pretty well (that is, accurately) because it covered oil production in one FREE MARKET ECONOMY before NIMBY. It DOES NOT work in a worldwide market because that isn’t a Free Market with enforceable property rights. (cf the sorry tale of the Russian Oilagarchs]

    The real danger here is that folks have lost the ability for sober, fact-based discussion, and are instead, in the words of my son, the oilfield engineer in East Texas, “making shit up”.

    Bankrupting coal will NOT make solar and wind a good idea.

    Demonizing oil & gas will only come back to bite you when (a) my son (presently learning Portuguese) and his ilk, fed-up with being called criminals, move to Brazil and (b) every oil & gas company flees for Zug Switzerland, and (c) the dollar drops like a stone relative to a barrel of crude (what’s your price TODAY? $60+ all of a sudden? There’s plenty of oil, but WAY too many literally “worthless” dollars)

    Besides, I understand that the girls in Brazil are OK.

  67. Note: Bankrupting the coal plants has nothing to do with the price of gasoline for cars.

    That said, if they allow construction of more nuke plants, I’d be more than happy. From my readings, it seems that the guys at NASA who are the AGW zealots may be purposely overexaggerating GW to get more nuclear power in the US and as a spinoff, get more funding for nuclear power and propulsion in space, where NASA needs it.

    The main problem for getting more nukes is that historically the inflation adjusted price of fossil fuels has dropped over time, not risen, as the costs of recovery and refinement dropped. Fer instance, the 1979 price of gasoline, adjusted for inflation to 2009 dollars, should be somewhere about $4.00 a gallon. Instead gas is now $2.20. As technology improves resource extraction efficiencies, these prices continue to drop over time.

    The green argument is that the prices go down because fossil fuels are not forced to pay for either the cost of dumping their pollution externalities into the environment (even ignoring CO2, you have CO, NOx, SOx, as well as radioactive heavy metals in fly ash), or for the opportunity cost of reducing what they believe is a finite stock of natural resources. Once these are taken into account, the price of fossil fuels should rise more in line with inflation, and these price signals should consequently stimulate investment in nuclear fission, fusion, solar, and wind.

  68. Let’s all not forget the increased insurance costs that will accompany the mandate for more fuel efficiency. Lighter, smaller cars are more fragile and more easily damaged in an accident. Do you think the insurance industry won’t notice this and increase your rates?

    Of course, lighter smaller cars can be made safer for those able to pay more. A higher sticker price also means higher insurance premiums.

    What is the estimated increase human death toll when the new mileage standards are inacted?

    What’s really interesting is if the higher death toll was for polar bears or snails or fish, the environmentalists would be screaming bloody murder!

  69. Luis,

    If the inconsistency of President Obama’s statements offends you as an “adult,” then I am truly sorry.

  70. M White (11:28:03) :

    “I can make a firm pledge. Under my plan no family making less than $250,000 a year will see any form of tax increase. Not your income tax, not your payroll tax, not your capital gains tax, not any of your taxes.”

    Cap and Trade – The politicians that bring this in will not call it a tax. I doubt this cost will appear as a seperate item on peoples power bills and the same politiciians who bring this in will be the ones that shout loudest about the higher prices brought to bear on the electorate. (Probably blaming corperate greed).

    As I understand, this really isn’t a tax increase because you will be reimbursed for the cost through increased government services.

  71. Bold for the comprehensionally challenged –

    Because I’m capping greenhouse gases, coal power plants, you know, natural gas, you name it — whatever the plants were, whatever the industry was, uh, they would have to retrofit their operations. That will cost money. They will pass that money on to consumers

    “you know, uh ….”

  72. That said, if they allow construction of more nuke plants, I’d be more than happy. From my readings, it seems that the guys at NASA who are the AGW zealots may be purposely overexaggerating GW to get more nuclear power in the US and as a spinoff, get more funding for nuclear power and propulsion in space, where NASA needs it.

    So then why aren’t they proposing that as a solution?

    All I’ve seen is a trail of denied permits.

  73. “The AP article in my morning paper said that pickups would become too expensive for most people and would only be used for work. Phooey.
    Sounds like alarmism, like how seat belts and cat converters would drive the car companies bankrupt.
    We will adapt.”

    Uhhhh…. except they are already bankrupt.

  74. The very fact that a profitable market emerged in the EU with this famous cap and trade is the hallmark of a scam, a pyramid scheme.

    If a government wants to regulate, it can just do so, by direct taxation, or by fear of fines and or imprisonment. They forbid drugs after all.

    They regulate smoking. Maybe they should use the cap and trade method to stop smokers from smoking? Us nonsmokers can sell our smoking credits to smokers.
    Does that sound like a good plan to stop the population smoking? The whole concept is bizarre.

  75. Cap & Trade is the Administration’s chosen method of paying for the 7 – 8 trillion dollars needed for its agenda items. C&T is definitely a tax on consumption, since prices will rise across the board. This will negatively impact employment because people will buy less.

    I’m not a fan of George Bush’s spending policies, but to put what’s happening in perspective: Bush agreed to $700 billion to re-liquify the banking system. Obama needs a thousand times as much for his pet projects. He’s already warning people about inflation, which he could rein in by putting his extravagant spending plans on hold.

    The prudent course of action at this point would be to reduce debt and reward productivity. Obama is doing exactly the opposite. That is the road to ruin.

  76. Oil prices rose to $147 and the economic crisis was seeded when Bush was in power.

    For years, Bush had ‘spared’ the US automakers the inconvenience of investing in higher environmental standards, including the decision to back off from implementing specific mpg targets.

    In the short-term, that might have seemed like a gift to US car manufacturers, but it was incredibly short-sighted. Because when the oil price rose and gasoline costs increased in 2008, pretty sensibly no one wanted to buy fuel-inefficient cars any more and those companies simply collapsed.

    The oil price today is $61. When you bear in mind that it has only exceeded $70 for 12 months in the whole of economic industry, then today’s ‘low’ oil price looks an awful lot higher. And it’s $61 in the middle of the worst economic crisis the world has seen for decades.

    In that perspective, a move towards more fuel-efficient vehicles is not only desirable. It’s going to be financially unavoidable for each and every one of us.

  77. NC,

    The foolishness of banking execs and the repeal of (portions of) the Glass Steagall act was part of the reason for the recent banking collapse. Our government forcing lenders to reduce qualifying requirements (to the point that a pizza boy could buy a mansion) and forcing the GSE’s (Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac) to buy those securities was the other reason.

    Eliminating qualifying requirements unnaturally inflated the demand in housing, causing the bubble, and leading to a plunge in RE asset backed securities when that bubble popped. The drop in housing values is what bankrupted the system.

    Wall Street execs can certainly be faulted for failing to see the end of the bubble. But our government was responsible for the bubble itself, and (in many regards) for the exposure financial institutions had when it burst.

    Remember when you had to put 20% down on a conventional loan in the 80’s?

    Intending to legislate “fairness” congress literally forced lenders and GSEs to implement (lack of) standards that ultimately led to collapse of the system. They applauded zero down and NINJA (No Income No Job or Assets) loans right up until the collapse. Then demonized Wall street for it.

    Few people are aware that our new president was very active in enforcing that “fairness” legislation.

  78. I´m sorry to say that what is written in this thread taken together with what is written in the press makes one feel the American government under Barack Obama behaves like enemies of its own people. I fear that at some point not so far away in the future we will read about Americans fighting Americans in the streets because the tensions will grow as the populace finds out they are being taken for a quite ruinous ride by the politicians.

  79. Peter Barnes (09:41:20) :

    What it means is because of the law of supply and demand, carbon trading will not result in a gram of co2 saved. Even if nuclear is built then the carbon credit, would just be used elsewhere, to release carbon.The overall effect could be to increase co2?

    This seems relevant..

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jevons_paradox

  80. Roads,

    Nothing wrong with having more fuel efficient vehicles available. In the UK you can get 47 MPG (Imperial gallons) clean diesel with tons of power. People in US cities would love cars like that.

    My problem is with not being honest about the costs/taxes – and forcing the same “solution” on everyone. People who live outside the cities need bigger vehicles because of a different lifestyle.

    We are talking about the US, not the USSR.

  81. Obama wants ALL of us to use small, super energy efficient cars. Yet SOME of us don’t want that…

    Does it ever cross Obama’s mind that people could be different? That “one size does not fit all” ?

    Has Obama ever thought about us as individuals rather than a “group”, a “community” he has to “direct” to do what he thinks is right ?

    Oh, but i know if someone were to challenge Obama on these issues, he would throw out another general phrase like “responsibility”, “certainty”, … and that’s the end of it.

  82. Hmmm…the “fees” (universal service fee) on your phone bills aren’t “taxes” either. It is a charge to the phone company.

    So he’s technically correct. This is a “fee”, “carbon purchase” of the energy companies. And a mandatory technology fee to the auto companies.

    Taxes won’t go up. But we’ll be “fee”‘d up the wazzoo.

    I believe that is what is known as “taxation without representation”.

  83. Re to Steve Goddard

    I agree. There’s nothing wrong when in a free market, some company introduces a new car that provides better gas mileage and a smoother engine feel, etc. , and some people will consider buying it and it will compete in the market. Let the free market roll and take its course wherever it might lead. In fact, gas mileage was ALWAYS in the arena of ideas and competitiveness of cars, even 40 years ago. It simply wasn’t the top priority so the buyers weren’t willing to give up other luxuries such as air conditioning in order to have better gas mileage. They were willing to pay more for more, simple as that.

    Now however, here comes the Messiah Obama and tells us we have collectively, as a free market, made the “wrong” (climate “ethics”) decisions, and now he will come in and FORCE us to make the “right” (climate religion) decisions, whether we WANT it or NOT. What “audacity” indeed.

  84. To me the big mystery of the left is how they get away with it decade after decade.

    I think it works like this

    What the workers need:

    1) Entertainment

    “The media circus then kicked off. Amid the hubbub of the reception, the three were individually and collectively shepherded into quiet corners of the office for newspaper and magazine interviews. The following morning, they appeared on BBC Breakfast TV and radio programmes across the whole country.”

    http://www.catlinarcticsurvey.com/headline.aspx?postId=188

    2) Compassion

    http://video.google.fr/videosearch?client=firefox-a&rls=org.mozilla:en-GB:official&channel=s&hl=en&q=Obama+compassion&um=1&ie=UTF-8&ei=T1cUSpiiAo6hjAez_aS9BA&sa=X&oi=video_result_group&resnum=4&ct=title#

    (“I’ve talked about it in my own life” – very, very strange thing to say)

    3) Security

    http://www.democracyarsenal.org/2009/05/obama-erases-national-security-gap.html

    But even at the expense of

    1) Work, 2) Work, 3) Work

    http://winteryknight.wordpress.com/2009/04/11/cap-and-trade-will-raise-electricity-prices-and-increase-unemployment/

    So what happens when the workers don’t have work?

    Kurt Vonnegut wrote a very pertinent book in my view, Player Piano:

    http://www.amazon.com/Player-Piano-Kurt-Vonnegut/dp/0385333781

    France is full of idle ‘workers’. Sadly Player Piano is a utopia compared to the reality:

    la forestiere : clichy sous bois

    (That’s barely five miles from the very centre of Paris)

    Socialism: make the ‘workers’ dependent on you, then sit back and enjoy the power:

    http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-3392652783578267863

    Latest trick: cap n’ trade

    Full disclosure: I am guilty of ’26 second’ googling to make my point.

  85. Wonder how long it will take for people who voted Chairman Zero into office to admit buyers remorse. With the press flying top-cover, will they even understand what’s happening?

  86. Roads (12:17:15), just about everything you said is incorrect.

    US automakers didn’t fail because of what they produced. The Toyota NUUMI plant in California is doing fine. It is non-union. The BMW plant in S. Carolina is also doing fine. Neither are in any danger of bankruptcy.

    GM and Chrysler failed for the same reason that causes most company failures: bad management.

    Claiming that Bush “spared” U.S. automakers tougher environmental standards doesn’t hold water; U.S. plants run by Toyota and BMW had to meet exactly the same environmental standards as GM and Chrysler.

    And in retrospect, oil at almost $150/bbl was simply a bubble. That happens sometimes. There was no reason for it based on supply and demand. Since the price of oil has declined, Prius sales have slumped badly.

    Finally, I’m not a Republican, but I find it disingenuous to constantly blame Bush for everything bad, and at the same time never give him credit for anything good. He effectively kicked the climate change can down the road for eight years — sparing U.S. taxpayers the Cap & Trade proposals going on right now.

    Congress has been completely controlled by Democrats in both the House and Senate since 2006. Congress is responsible for every spending bill, not the President. And it was Congress that deregulated the banking system, leading to the excesses that are now being painfully purged.

  87. Re Smokey “…Claiming that Bush “spared” U.S. automaker…”

    Here they are playing games with our minds again. To argue back and forth about whether Bush delayed tougher rules or not is suggesting between the lines that we somehow have an “obligation” to always impose tougher and tougher environmental rules. But nobody asks why should we have to do that? Just like taxes that increase and increase and are never repealed, this cannot go on forever, or at some point people will revolt against it.

  88. And don’t forget, you new “fuel efficient” car will run on biofuels … which will destroy the engine.

    “Not only is ethanol proving to be a dud as a fuel substitute but there is increasing evidence that it is destroying engines in large numbers”

    http://www.businessweek.com/lifestyle/content/may2009/bw20090514_058678.htm?chan=autos_autos+–+lifestyle+subindex+page_top+stories

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-564154/Motorists-face-huge-repairs-Government-biofuels-destroy-engines.html

    SUCKERS!!!!

  89. JLawson (11:32:09) :

    We’d LIKE to upgrade – but we can’t afford the initial investment without taking out a loan for it – and for some strange reason with the economic climate the way it is we’re loath to take on more debt.

    Now we’re supposed to prep our wallets to buy an approved Governmental Motors eco-mobile?

    It ain’t gonna happen.

    Glad to hear it. The environmental impact (which the promoters say they care about) of manufacturing the new gear is likely far greater than the improvement in efficiency would pay for, even if you didn’t take advantage of the extra cooling capacity!

    We have a similar situation here in the UK, where people are encouraged to scrap old but simple and reliable central heating boilers in favour of high-efficiency, computer-controlled ‘condensing’ boilers (so-called because the exhaust gas is cool enough to cause condensation and give up some latent heat) that have flow meters, fans, regulators and various sensors, all assembled around a lightweight heat exchanger that, if you’re lucky, will finish corroding about the same time that everything else packs up, say in 5-6 years…

    As for cars, the same rules apply – a 10-year old large car will carry on working for much longer than a 10-year old small one, yet paradoxically will be cheaper (I’m assuming this is the same in the US). The perception of ‘economy’ when you buy something that does a few more MPG is far greater than it is in real life, especially when it costs more to buy and wears out sooner. A motoring writer called James Ruppert coined the term ‘bangernomics’ which makes a lot of sense to me (a banger being any old, cheap car) – some interesting examples here:
    http://www.bangernomics.com/Bargains.html

  90. Keith Hennessy:

    (each point is backed up at the link)

    Here are ten things you might want to know about President Obama’s new fuel economy proposal. I will reference some tables and analysis from the NHTSA analysis done for the near-final Bush rule. This is a long list, so this summary will let you skip around as you like:

    1. It’s aggressive.
    2. Rather than maximizing net societal benefits, this proposal raises the standard until (total societal benefits = total societal costs), meaning the net benefits to society are roughly zero. This is not an invalid framework for making a policy decision, but it is unusual. It represents a different value choice.
    3. NHTSA estimated that a similar option would cost almost 150,000 U.S. auto manufacturing jobs over five years.
    4. NHTSA guesses that under a similar option, manufacturers will make huge increases in dual clutches or automated manual transmissions, a big increase in hybrids, and medium-sized increases in diesel engines, downsizing engines, and turbocharging.
    5. It will have a trivial effect on global climate change.
    6. The national standard = the California standard (roughly).
    7. The auto manufacturers got rolled by the Governator.
    8. Granting the California waiver means California has leverage for next time.
    9. In Washington, EPA is now in the driver’s seat, not NHTSA.
    10. Today’s action will accelerate EPA’s regulation of greenhouse gas emissions from stationary sources. While Congress is futzing around on a climate change bill, EPA is getting ready to bring their “PSD” monster to your community soon.

    http://keithhennessey.com/2009/05/19/understanding-the-presidents-cafe-announcement/

  91. B.O. says:

    “I can make a firm pledge. Under my plan no family making less than $250,000 a year will see any form of tax increase. Not your income tax, not your payroll tax, not your capital gains tax, not any of your taxes.”

    Just ONE of his numerous baldfaced lies. I hope the majority of Americans wake up soon and notice that the liar constantly says one thing and does another.

  92. Gary the last I looked it was deregulation of banks, read free market, that got everyone into this fiscal mess.

    Uh. No.

    It was The Best Congress Fannie Could Buy. The banks could all dump their bad loans on Fannie. Bad loans the CRA encouraged them to buy in order to expand their business. Well, with more housing demand prices started going up. And that made other customers look good who were marginal. And any way with prices going up they could just refinance to cover the expense they couldn’t afford. And it all worked for a while. That was the worst part.

  93. btw, a hearty recommendation to read the whole Keith Hennessy post at the link above. He was a sr. econ adviser for Bush, and he highlights the differences between the Bush CAFE hike and Obama’s, in terms of cost (inc. job loss comparison) and benefit.

    Again, unbelievable.

  94. Smokey: small point: the BMW plant is in South Carolina. Spartanburg. They built my little Z3 (34 mpg hwy). 12 years ago, and still going. (take that, pink bunny)

    Governments can mandate anything. They can repeal the law of gravity.

    Not that it will change anything. If you have a toy car with a zillion airbags and you get hit by a big ol’ truck going the opposite direction, you die. F=MA (for the non-math types, you get a huge amount of -A. You have less M than the truck, so you get a boatload of -F, taking you through the airbag, steering wheel, windshield, etc.)

    Since the administration has already spent the revenue from Cap & Trade (look at the budget projections), there will be no benefit to the folks paying for it. Everything will get more expensive. It all uses fuel at some point, if only to get it from There to Here.

    I gave up on defensive driving years ago. Now: Paranoid Driving. They are crazy and they are out to get you. It will only get worse. And inflation to make us long for the days when Jimmy was president.

    I don’t need times quite this interesting.

  95. Aron (08:46:39) :

    Watch Britain’s idiot brainwashed youth..

    I agree with the general sentiment, but I think it’s a bit hard on the children who, after all, are meant to absorb what their teachers tell them! The idiots are the brainwashers…

  96. jon (09:30:34) :

    “I don’t put much faith in the role of AGW with respect to climate but I DO believe in conservation … oil supplies are rapidly dwindling … it is crazy and totally irresponsible to treat oil as if it were a renewable resource! I think Obama is on the right track here. It seems a shame that some people on this site are more concerned about the cost of gas than they are about future generations!”

    jon,
    I understand why you would believe that myth since the MSM and certain politicians continually push this mis-information as part of their anti oil agenda. I agree with your support for conservation, but the oil is not running out.

    Others have provided references documenting that oil peak predictions have been historically totally wrong and continue to be wrong. In the past, even the oil companies thought oil was going to run out and they spent fortunes looking for alternative energies. I worked on coal conversion technologies in the 80’s and this is viable technology. Cheap oil from the middle east killed these projects. Today it would not pass the artificial “carbon” test.

    I also worked on the Alberta tar sands in the late 70’s and there are still massive oil reserves in Canada, some say equivalent to Saudi. Did you know that congress is trying to restrict use of oil from the tar sands because of carbon restrictions? This will impact importing oil from friendly Canada and force increased use of oil from unfriendly nations. How stupid is congress to treat our largest oil supplier this way!! The Chinese will move in.

    For the USA, the current dependence on foreign oil is created by the politicians refusal to allow us to exploit our own resources. There are huge untapped resources in AMWR, offshore and other locations. Salazar recently cancelled exploration leases approved by Bush. No other country imposes such restrictions. The CO2 emissions control has become the mantra, and often this given as the reason not to allow oil and gas exploration in the US mainland or offshore. However, would it not make sense for us to at least replace foreign oil from unfriendly countries with our own oil? In effect the politicians and the environmental folks have artifically created a shortage which negatively affects our economy/lifestyle and may have caused the current recession. If you believe in AGW this might be justified, but I am a skeptic. In fact while in the Senate, Obama sponsored a bill to restrict the use of latest technologies to determine and map out the potential for finding oil throughout promising areas of the US including offshore. That tells the story for me.

    Finally, as an engineer, I am appalled at the claim by the Pols and the MSM that ethanol and liquid fuels from other cellulosic materials will supply us with a meaningful amount of motor fuels. While I have been enjoying a stimulus consulting on these projects, it is irresponsible and suicidial to depend on this costly and unproven technology. From what I have seen, these technologies are years away and most of the taxpayers money is not being spent wisely. The Department of Energy does not have the in house skills to select viable research projects. The money is just being shoveled out!!

    I am concerned about future generations and believe those who place their faith in unproven renewable energies (except for Nuclear) are risking the future of my children and grandchildren. The chemistry, thermodynamics, or economics just don’t add up. Study the Ethanol from corn facts and see the mess that the politicians have created.

  97. John Galt (11:47:36) said :
    As I understand, this really isn’t a tax increase because you will be reimbursed for the cost through increased government services.

    ROFLMAO!
    I am from the government, I am here to partly undo what we just did, due to the fact that you are in a Targeted Group. Minus a service charge, of course, plus we keep the accumulated “interest”, oh, and there’s a User’s Fee on that (NOT A TAX!).

    To paraphrase Dutch Reagan, the best and the brightest have never worked for government; if they did, the private sector would steal them.

    [snip]

    Reply: While I don’t necessarily disagree with your sentiment here, that kind of talk is really endless fuel for critics of this blog and I’d rather not give them that kind of present on a silver platter. ~ charles the moderator

  98. ‘Roads’ must be one of those 16 years olds who aren’t aware of anything about the economy more than 4 years ago because he was climbing trees and playing lego at the time. Take it easy on him. Lots of kids think everything from thunder to flu is Bush’s fault.

  99. A Note To Our Brethren Across The Pond.

    Please take notice of what is happening to the country, the United Kingdom (!) which basically gave birth to yours. We are bankrupt; our politicians have been exposed as irredeemably corrupt and our Socialist government, whilst on its knees, is still prepared to pour money it does not have into schemes such as this:-

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/8046002.stm

    The ‘changes’ to the government budget were made to pour BILLIONS of pounds of tax-payer’s money into a European mega-corporation which is 40% owned by Abu Dhabi.
    Presently on a 9-5 working day I labour until 1:37pm just to pay tax. This is going to rise (without a fiscal miracle) to my having to work until almost 3:00pm before I start to earn any money for myself. Why? Because of our Socialist government’s infatuation with insane schemes such as the one I pointed out above.
    Their infatuation does not end with the wind, far from it. The Severn River tidal bore is recognised as a natural wonder. We are going to destroy it (as well as large areas upon which vast amounts of wild-life depend) in order to generate vote-earning ‘green’ power. The Planning Commission has said “No” to this scheme but that has no binding effect on the government.
    Our ‘cap-and-trade’ system has been shown to be a total market failure so the government is now prepared to designate an artificial price on a per-ton-of-CO2 permit in order to try and make the failed scheme miraculously come to life in an economic cycle which has a long way to go before it touches bottom.
    Please would the USA do something to stop this juggernaut of insanity from destroying our relatively civilised way of life? The British voter can’t help, we have been rendered superfluous to the decision-making process.
    You voters in the USA could find yourselves in a very similar situation much faster than you think.

  100. GM for years has been making cars which are comparatively crap compared to Toyota, Mazda, Nissan: companies who basically have the compact/midsize market sewn up.

    GMs ‘competence’ is in big vehicles. But, because of government regulations a company, any company, cannot solely make such vehicles for consumers. They are covered under the CAFE standards (there are some exceptions). Additionally, GM has strived to not pay any fines for not meeting the CAFE regulations. BMW, Porsche, and a few others consistently pay fines (totaling millions of dollars) each year because they do not meet the CAFE standards. Ironically, these companies are reasonably healthy. It’s the cost of doing business.

    GM should have gone into bankruptcy years ago. GM should go into bankruptcy NOW instead of this idiocy we are experiencing. This will allow people who have no vested interest in the company to simply determine the best financial future for the company – it’d be a cruel harsh cut, but is far more preferable to this slow lingering death by a blunt and rusty spoon.

    Forcing people to buy new cars? Give me a break! Even with a ’97 Suburban (arguably one of the least fuel efficient cars), changing it out for a ’09 Prius (arguably one of the most fuel efficient cars), it’d be over 10 years just to break even. The economics just doesn’t make sense.

    You also have to think: who is taking advantage of this $1300 ‘savings in gas’? Those that can afford to do so. That is, the ‘rich’ get a loop hole (which it isn’t), while the poor, *sigh*, once again get nothing.

    If the energy company is pushed with fees, they are, quite obviously passed onto consumers. Only when the fees plus the cost of running a coal plant exceeds the cost of implementing an alternative energy source, will the energy company transfer over to that source. Regardless, the cost is borne by the consumer and will never go down. Once again, those who have the finances to invest in higher efficiency will do so, lessening their ‘penalty tax’; those that can’t will bear the full brunt.

  101. James P (13:09:23) said :
    As for cars, the same rules apply – a 10-year old large car will carry on working for much longer than a 10-year old small one, yet paradoxically will be cheaper (I’m assuming this is the same in the US).

    Yup. Sure is. Our cheapest car is a 1994 Mercedes E-420 (nice 4-cam V8, thanks). Only 20-21 mpg, but no deprecitaion to speak-of, and I ain’t afraid of any stinkin’ Prius. In fact, I make an effort to downshift when I pull up along side one, just so they can hear what a well balanced V8 in full throat is supposed to sound like.

    Back during the OPEC-driven oil crunch in the ’70’s, Lee Iacocca famously said “Americans want fuel economy, and will pay anything to get it.”

    The underlying truth is that people are increasing INNUMERATE, that is, incapable of understanding NUMBERS. Not “maths” as the Brits like to say, such as calculus, or differential equations or even the the quadratic equation.
    ARITHMETIC!

    If folks COULD have done the maths, half the subprime mortgages would never have been issued, folks wouldn’t be buying cars every couple of years, and MAYBE a few more folks would be skeptical of AGW.

  102. GE’s Jeff Immelt: Global Warming ‘Compelling’; Cap-and-Trade Most ‘Effective’ Way to Go
    CEO of parent company of NBC Universal argues for carbon price to create ‘certainty.’

    http://businessandmedia.org/articles/2009/20090520141935.aspx

    Could GE’s interest in wind-power technology have something to do with Immelt’s support for AGW?

    Rhetorical question, I know.

    (Apologies if already posted above; haven’t had time to read whole thread yet.)

    /Mr Lynn

  103. Obama is not responsible for the two automakers going bankrupt; he’s responsible for them not going bankrupt. Bankruptcy is the market’s way of correcting particularly stupid and egregious behaviours by companies. Bankruptcy clears the financial air, allows restructuring, punishes investors who guessed wrong, spreads the cost of the failure among those who had intended to profit and moves the situation forward. GM executives, particularly, were wrong to sell out to the UAW, beginning many years ago. It’s going to be interesting, but costly, to watch the union run GM with Obama-in-chief at the wheel.

  104. Aron (08:46:39) :

    “Watch Britain’s idiot brainwashed youth.”

    Presumably the winners of the “What’s Global Warming Mean to You?” contest will be *walking* to Copenhagen.

    And this is an excellent example of the term “parroting.”

  105. The U.S. is heading toward the same place that the formerly Great Britain is already at:

    Can you imagine telling someone twenty years ago that by 2009, it would be illegal to smoke at a bus shelter or in your own vehicle? Or that there would be £80 fines for dropping a cigarette butt? Or that using the words “tequila slammer” would be illegal? Or that the government would mandate at what precise angle a drinker’s head in an advertisement could be tipped at? Or that it would be illegal to criticise religions, or homosexuality, or to rewire your own house even with inspections? Or that having sex after a few drinks would be presumed to be rape? Or that the State would be confiscating children for being overweight? Imagine telling someone twenty years ago that in 20 years the government would be proposing ration cards for fuel, and even for food, and that every citizen would be required to carry an ID card filled with private information, and the card could be confiscated and read at the State’s whim. They’d have thought you were paranoid.

    But that’s the Great Britain of today. And that’s where the new president and Congress are taking the U.S.

    Obama didn’t win the election in a landslide. It was a fairly close election, even though there could not have been a weaker opponent than old John McCain. Yet the inexperienced Obama acts like an arrogant bully who has been given the right to do whatever he pleases, whether the citizens like it or not. He should recall Thomas Jefferson’s dictum: “Great innovations should not be forced on slender majorities.”

  106. Don S,

    Obama spent September through February telling the world that the US was “in the worst shape since the Great Depression.” During that time, the stock market lost 45% of it’s value.

    What impact might the loss of several trillion dollars worth of market capitalization and consumer confidence have had on the automakers?

    “Honey, the President says the economy is falling apart, let’s go buy a car.”

  107. Mike Bryant (10:28:27) :
    /sarc on/ From New Orleans:

    Many states are starting to look at secession.

    Been there, done that. Didn’t turn out so hot for the ones that tried it first, regardless of their motivations. I would predict similar results for future attempts. Imagine, if you will, one side allied with China, the other Russia, doing the ‘breaking things and killing people’ thing here, in this country. Good environment to develop new weapons, etc. Assuming of course that nuclear arms stay in the arsenals.
    Not saying that would happen, but it is one scenario.

    Kind of puts you in another frame of mind, considering how bad it might be in that kind of a twilight zone.

    “Skeptic Tank (09:45:28) :

    They can only go so far?!! … That is what Saddam thought… That pretty much covers everything.”

    /sarc off/

  108. Lots of outrage and pessimism expressed above for Crap and Charade. Oh, excuse me, I meant Cap and Trade.

    But let’s not forget the good news about America: (a) We have an election every two years, (b) Laws can be changed, and (c) 50% of our population has above-average intelligence. These dark days need not last forever.

    Our efforts toward a better tomorrow probably should include trying to influence our friends, families, and aqaintances, whether we (or they) like it or not.

  109. Paul Revere (08:30:40) :
    Welcome to the U.S.S.A

    Oh, yes! Illustrations here as usual. :)

    For younger generation – what Stalin said was prompty implemented. Or fiering squad was looming ahead…

    In Yevrosoyuz called sometimes UESR (Union of Europe Socialist Republics) aka EU, the so called Commissioners were involved in setting length of cucumbers allowable to sell on European markets and in defining allowable banana’s curvature. No kidding! Presidet Obama will be soon absorbed in equally important matters concerning American people. Welcome in Commie Club and greetings from Poland (still deeply rooted in socialism).

    Regards

  110. Does anybody know how the Big 3, especially GM, made all those big trucks and SUVs while being regulated by the present CAFE rules?

    Simple, the CAFE rules give ‘flexible fuel’ vehicles extra credit! All those big GM trucks and SUVs are E85-capable (‘green vehicles’) so they can get really bad gas mileage but still not put GM in violation of CAFE. BMW doesn’t have any flex-fuel vehicles, so they pay a fine every year.

    So here’s one more reason to reject any more regulation. Each new regulation is just another opportunity for lobbyists and Congress to buy and sell favors.

    If anybody really wants to cut down on oil consumption, the easiest and most direct way is a tax. Just keep the price of gasoline at the pump artificially high. Some experts suggest a retail floor price for gasoline, which means the tax varies in order to keep the average price at the pump stable.

    BTW: I am not advocating any new or increased taxes.

    ——
    @ hareynolds (13:54:27) :

    I wish I was joking about that, but I’m not.

  111. Anyone remember what the unions supposedly added to the cost of a US car? Wasn’t it about $1,400? Wasn’t that added cost one of the “back breakers” of the US car industry?

    How will adding another $1,400/car not simply add to the problem?

  112. It looks like President Obama never saw a tax he didn’t like.

    Didn’t he say he was just going to raise taxes on the rich? It must be just the rich that smoke, drive, and buy things.

  113. John Galt,

    A direct tax would have to be really huge to raise the revenue that Obama’s proposals require, and if gas taxes pushed the price up to $8.00+ per gallon, people would certainly use much less. So the anticipated tax revenues would be less than expected.

    Cap & Trade is a tax every step of the way, on every process that emits any CO2. Companies — and eventually individuals — will have to pay the government to emit a completely harmless, natural and beneficial substance that occurrs everywhere.

    Cap & Trade covers all manufacturing, all transportation, and almost all services [maybe psychic card readers might escape Al Gore’s carbon credit scheme. If they don’t own a motor vehicle].

    A direct tax at the well head or the gas pump would hit the citizenry too hard. But C&T is insidious; the frog won’t realize that the water’s getting hotter until it’s too late.

  114. From Icecap.us
    May 20, 2009
    Global Warming Myth – A Call to Action

    Dr. Edward F Blick, Retired Prof of Engineering and Meteorology, Univ. of Oklahoma

    Waxman and the Dims are in a “full court press” to pass “Cap and Tax” in the next few days. They need to read the attached paper. It proves Global Warming is a Rotten Egg hatched by the UN, using Al Gore as their Joseph Goebbles. (if you tell a lie long enough and often enough, people start to believe it!)

    Charts at the end of the paper, show that most of the high temperature records of all seven continents and Oceania were made before 1940! Between 1880 and 2000 the temperature in the U.S. rose about 0.3 deg. C. For this Waxman and his friends have got their “underwear in a wad” and want to waste trillions of dollars that will turn off the lights in America? Unbelievable!

    The evidence of the warming we had in the 2Oth Century was because we were coming out of the Little Ice Age, which lasted from 1300 Ad until the early 1800s. Our Sun was more active in the 20th Century than it had been for thousands of years. There is no man-made global warming! Unfortunely during this past 9 years our Sun has done a 180, and we have entered a cooling phase. All sorts of snow and ice records have set. Glaciers have started growing a gain in Alaska! There has been a drastic reduction in sun spots and solar magnetic storms. The sun seems to be mimicking what occurred in The Little Ice Age. How long will this global cooling last. Some Solar weather experts are predicting the cooling phase may last a decade, or a half century or more. In any event, our government should be listening to real experts and start planning in the event this global cooling continues. More people die from cold than from heat! During The Little Ice Age millions died from famines and diseases. It doesn’t take much cooling to kill off croplands in Canada, northern U.S. and northern Europe.

    Carbon Dioxide is not a pollutant, as some members of our government claim. It is aerial fertilizer for plants. CO2 is presently about 385 ppm, but it was up to 450 ppm in the 1940s and the early 1800s. If CO2 drops to 200 ppm, plants get sick, and if it drops to 160 ppm, the plants die. Humans can tolerate CO2 levels up to 50,000 ppm . Sailors in US submarines live and work in 8000 -1000 ppm CO2 levels. Greenhouse growers for 100 years have been enriching greenhouse atmospheres with 1000 ppm CO2 levels to increase their yield. The increase atmospheric CO2 levels in the 20th Century greatly increased crop yields and tree growth. If congress decides to sequester CO2 (pump it into old oil or gas wells) they will lose the farmers votes and consumers, when crops fail and food prices skyrocket!

    CO2 is being used as a phony excuse to kill off the use of coal and oil. Oil was discovered in 1859. at about the same time we started using coal. In 70 years America went from living like “Little house on the Prairie”, (horse and buggy, outhouses no electricity) to planes, trains and automobiles, electricity and indoor plumbing! In just 70 years we built the most highly developed civilization that ever existed.! Why…because we discovered an extremely high concentration of energy in a small package, oil and coal. Folks we can’t run our civilization on windmills. solar panels or biofuels! windmill can hardly make enough energy to make a windmill. I know about windmills, having developed a new type of windmills back in the 1970s. I’ve also built my own solar panels. These thing are useful in some very restricted, isolated areas, but they are never going to replace coal and oil. Any politician who says otherwise is a snake oil salesman and is planning on destroying civilization as we know it. We will be back using horses for transportation, Will the CO2 emanating from trillions of tons of horse dung on our streets cause global warming?Scientific illiteracy is part of the problem with Waxman and friends, but we know the big reason for their campaign to control carbon is….”If you control Carbon you Control the World”. (Richard Lindzen. Climatology Professor, MIT). Years ago Baltimore newsman H. L. Mencken wrote about Politics 101; “The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed by scaring them with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.”

    Folks, we can stop this Trillion dollar bank robbery if enough of us contact our congressmen and inform them if they vote with Waxman on this bill we will work to get them defeated in the next election.

  115. A word about communism and fascism, labels haphazardly tossed about to much rolling of eyes.

    They’re both forms of socialism. Both systems interfere with the free market, and engender all the inefficiency that implies.

    Communism has the government owning and controlling the means of production (think factories, but it’s just about everything). The Soviet Union and Red China imposed communism on what were third world economies, so they were able to force rapid industrialization without serious opposition (other than the 120 million people they killed).

    Germany and Italy were already industrialized, so while Fascism would have liked to own things, it had to accept private ownership, and settled for only controlling industry. Big business, which really and truly doesn’t like competition, benefited with sweetheart government partnerships. Little enterprises suffer, as you might expect.

    Fascism and communism hated each other, as brothers sometimes do, due to some notable differences. Communism has an internationalist bent, looking to export its philosophy. Fascism was nationalistic. Hitler maintained that National Socialism was “only for Germany.”

    Communists insisted on the soviet, the peoples’ committees, to run things. Fascism subscribed instead to a “Führerprinzip,” the Leader Principle, where a charismatic, true believer would lead the nation.

    .
    When I look at the auto companies, banks, health care, and energy being nationalized by a true-believing, charismatic leader, it’s hard to avoid the comparison.

    Global warming seems to be just another excuse for government control. We at WUWT have facts at our disposal, but so much of the public has only the true-believing MSM to go by.

  116. The cap n trade bill sets up a phony market to trade air. It brings all of the dangers and corruption inherent with capitalism, but none of the productivity or benefit. They pretty much take our money, let the polluters off of the hook(for an appropriate campaign contribution), and the whole thing enriches a select few politicians, traders and other carefully selected beautiful people. It will do virtually nothing positive for the environment, but it will benefit the people that cripple our economy.

    As far as peak oil, it is true, we are approaching peak oil. The greens are putting off limits the vast majority of our domestic resources even as we find more and more. I think we lost another 12 or 20 million acres of prime oil fields to ‘preservation’ since The One took office. There is also this little problem called abiotic oil. The peak is real, but artificially induced.

    As the govt makes the dollar worthless and at the same time strangles domestic oil production, our worthless hyper-inflationary dollars will buy less and less oil. It will be the days of $4.25 gas, but with a 1 or 2 in front of the 4.

    His tax pledge is worthless too, my cig taxes went up 18 days into his presidency. It was particularly targeted at the very poorest of smokers, the RYO guys, who’s can of Tops went from $13 to $38 overnight. He didn’t just break his tax pledge, he did it ultra-regressive by attacking the very poorest people first, 18 days into his first term.

    Capitalism and the free market works well until manipulated. In the sub-prime case the govt is doing the manipulation with the CRA, enabling them to bundle the bad notes that they forced on lenders via ACORN et al, and worst of all, picking up the bad decision makers in the end with billions of borrowed dollars.

    What The One is forcing on us will be painful for a while, but hopefully it will be worth it. People like the wide eyed child in the video have been brainwashed with the eco-socialist garbage throughout their academic lives, and for years on the telescreen. We will never educate those kids to the reality unless they suffer for it. As Radical Dan always used to say, stupidity should be painful.

    This is going to hurt pretty bad.

  117. Steve Goddard (11:06:30) : 20 billion…

    And what could the 805 billion housing bailout (none of which ended up going to the toxic loans) have done if divided up among all in-trouble home owners instead of given, without oversight, to banks?

    So where is all this money really going?

  118. Steven Goddard (14:51:00) :

    “Under my plan of a cap and trade system, electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket.”

    Wonderful news for the elderly on fixed incomes. Very compassionate.

    But then again, Pres. Obama said he will only raise taxes on the rich. So nothing to see here.

  119. Jerry Lee Davis (14:30:13)

    Minor correction: 50% of the population has above –median– intelligence.

  120. A word about communism and fascism, labels haphazardly tossed about to much moaning and rolling of eyes.

    They’re both forms of socialism. Both systems interfere with the free market, and engender all the inefficiency that implies.

    Communism has the government owning and controlling the means of production (think factories, but it’s just about everything). The Soviet Union and Red China imposed communism on third world economies, so they were able to force rapid industrialization without serious opposition (other than the 120 million people they killed).

    Germany and Italy were already industrialized, so while Fascism would have liked to own things, it had to accept private ownership, and settled for only controlling industry. Big business, which really and truly doesn’t like competition, benefited with sweetheart government partnership. The little enterprises suffer, as you might expect.

    Fascism and communism hated each other, as brothers sometimes do, due to some notable differences. Communism has an internationalist bent, looking to export its philosophy. Fascism was nationalistic. Hitler maintained that National Socialism was “only for Germany.”

    Communists insisted on the soviet, the peoples’ committees, to run things. Fascism subscribed instead to a “Führerprinzip,” the Leader Principle, where a charismatic, true believer would lead the nation.

    .
    When I look at the auto companies, banks, health care, and energy being nationalized by a true-believing, charismatic leader, it’s hard to avoid the comparison, ass much as we’d wish to.

    Global warming seems to be yet another excuse for government control. We at WUWT have facts at our disposal, but so much of the public has only the true-believing MSM to go by.

  121. Smokey
    Roads (12:17:15), just about everything you said is incorrect.

    US automakers didn’t fail because of what they produced. The Toyota NUUMI plant in California is doing fine. It is non-union. The BMW plant in S. Carolina is also doing fine. Neither are in any danger of bankruptcy.

    Smokey: Toyota and BMW aren’t going bust, and that’s my point. Both aren’t American companies. They are globally competitive international companies which make fuel-efficient cars that are saleable all around the world.

    GM and Chrysler concentrated on the home market, which was less regulated and less sensitive to fuel consumption under low oil price conditions but proved uncompetitive and almost unsaleable in the high oil price world.

    In this regard, it’s apparent that six months of high gasoline prices achieved more in changing mindsets on gas guzzlers than three decades of government regulations. Looking ahead to a world of higher oil prices ahead, the sales of fuel-inefficient vehicles are certain to fall still further.

  122. Of course, if you are saving roughly $650 per year in gasoline (gas at $3/gallon) – then you pay off the difference in two years and everything after that is savings for you – plus less consumption for the environment and less dependence on foreign oil.

    All in all – not a bad idea.

  123. Smokey (14:24:36) :

    “The U.S. is heading toward the same place that the formerly Great Britain is already at:”

    Smokey, we lead the world in bad governments. I can’t see how you can possibly catch up with us.

    Tonyb

  124. Its easy to see why politicians are falling over each other to “cap & trade”.

    Every year you get to sell “virtual” paper and get a big up front injection of very real tax money with an absolute minimum paperwork involved.

    As there is no “anchor” for the tax – you get to set it at any level that will raise whatever you need for for your current plans.

    (Linking it to some kind of reality as per the “T3 tax (Ross Mckitrick) just doesn’t have the “wiggle room” required.)

    As a bonus you have a constant stream of well funded lobbyists kicking down your door.

    Suppose you issue $200 billion in CC’s this year. By mid year their spot value is 350. That means that someone out there is sat on $350 Billion that could be worth significantly more or less depending on the size of the next issue. A real recipe for corruption if ever one was devised.

    The size of the issue is just pulled out of thin air (sorry), you can always find some “evidence” to justify the issue. You can also be sure that however the science turns out such a system will be impossible to dismantle.

    Watch how fast the Environmental lobby turn once they realise what has been created in their name.

    Imagine that you had approached a bunch of politicians a couple of decades ago suggesting that you had devised a sure fire plan that would tax the air people breathe and they would not only accept the tax but thank you for it complaining only that it is too low. They would certainly have to release you from the asylum now.

    Aron (08:46:39) :
    Watch Britain’s idiot brainwashed youth

    A few years ago my Niece (6 at the time) didn’t want to go to London with her father. We were a bit puzzled by her reaction until she informed us that she wasn’t a very good swimmer. She produced her school “global warming” project, sure enough London was under water and next to the picture was a “gold star” and the teacher comment – “very good”.

    dot forward (12:11:41) :

    No taxation without respiration

    The T shirts are on order :)

  125. smokey 12:11:16

    7 – 8 trillion is ten times 700 billion, not a thousand times.

    Still way, way too much, though.

  126. John Egan,

    Please help me with the mathematics:

    Mr Obama said the fuel cost savings would offset the higher price of vehicles in three years.

    The government is going to force auto prices up, and make fossil fuel prices “skyrocket,” simultaneously. I’m curious how you can add two large positive, non-zero numbers together and come up with a sum of zero, so that consumers are not affected.

    Is this the new Obama-maths?

  127. @Peter Barnes,

    What it means is because of the law of supply and demand, carbon trading will not result in a gram of co2 saved. Even if nuclear is built then the carbon credit, would just be used elseware, to release carbon.The overall effect could be to increase co2?

    This is true if the “cap” on carbon emissions never changes, and can be enforced. The thing that you may not have considered is that the cap is intended to be lowered over time, X gigatons this year, 0.9X gigatons in a decade, etc. The press announcements indicate that 2005 is being used as a baseline, with emissions in 2050 expected to be something like 82% lower than in 2005. The cost to emit a ton of carbon in 2050 should therefore be about 5x higher (1/5 of the carbon permits available) than it is if this law is adopted.

    Some of this is possible, few of us use electricity-consuming or fuel-burning implements of the type that were on the market in 1954, so replacement of those things over time with more efficient models can lower electricity demand and with it, CO2 emissions. We’ve seen much growth in population and GDP since 1954, along with a much cleaner environment as some emissions have been regulated. When is the last time you heard anyone talking about acid rain?

    I see a couple of problems with this. First, in any endeavor, getting the first 50% of efficency improvement over baseline is usually easy, and can even be cheap. Once the obvious and cheap things have been done, incremental progress gets not only harder, but often quite a bit more expensive, and improving energy efficiency to the point where anything we have that uses electricity or burns fuel is 5x more efficient than it is now is going to be quite expensive indeed. The simple question then becomes: why do you need a dishwasher? Why do you need a gas grill, you have a stove, don’t you? If you don’t use that hot water heater becomes infinitely efficient, doesn’t it?

    Secondly, and related to my first point, this entire exercise, besides being built on what I believe are some false assumptions, is little more than environmentalists trying desperately to gain control of more, having succeded already beyond their wildest dreams. Particulate and SOx and NOx emissions, the bane of environmentalists of the 1970s, are down remarkably. Our water is cleaner, and our economy as a whole much more energy-efficient than in previous generations. The “easy” bits have been done. Now the job of the environmentalist is much harder, in part because of their success.

    Thus the pollutant that needs controlling is carbon dioxide, something measured in the parts per million. For water, it’s pthalates and the remains of OCPs in our sewer systems, measured in parts per billion, or the flap over arsenic regulation in the early days of the Bush Administration. The need to control has driven them to ever-smaller targets, ever more esoteric things that absolutely require confiscatory taxes and oppressive regulation to fix. It’s policy formation on the homeopathic principle: the less of it there is, the more powerful it has to be.

    It’s a sickness. Without computer modeling and temperature records of somewhat questionable provenance and, recently, dubious behavior, there would be absolutely no public outcry to bottle the genie that is CO2, outside of the soft-drink industry, which actually needs CO2 for bottling. Grasping at straws, except this straw has a nifty animation showing that we’re all going to die when the climate falls apart. No, don’t ask about our methodology, we’re right and you’re wrong. They don’t like coal, and now that it’s clean of almost everything except CO2, then CO2 is the new target.

    And don’t expect anything like a multidecadal cooling trend in the future to make them back off their intent, or their methods. Like a well-meaning bystander who just rescued you from a garden hose, they will dangle it in front of your eyes and tell you how lucky you were that they killed that snake right before you stepped on it. If the current cooling trend continues, it will be evidence that the CO2 cap and trade scheme works, even before it’s implemented.

    Maybe they’ll get it when the glaciers reclaim Chicago and crush the last abode of The One before his ascension to the White House. I think it’s more likely that they’ll tell you how much worse the climate change would have been if they hadn’t intervened.

  128. rtw,

    You’re right, thanks for the correction. I was thinking a billion compared to a trillion.

  129. 1. None of the comments dealing with the current rise in crude oil prices mention that one of the factors driving the increase is the steadily devaluing dollar. Nearly everything in Obama’s plans is hastening the depreciation of the dollar by design.

    2. An easy way to describe cap and trade is that it is analogous to a national value added tax. The tax is levied on energy production and consumption and increases the cost of all manufacturing, distribution, provision of services and transportation. The tax at every level is ultimately passed on to consumers. Every state that adopts the system, exacerbates the outcome by operating as a tax upon a tax.

    I prefer the label given to cap and trade in most of the rest of the world, an emissions trading scheme. Scheme is a descriptive term that connotes impropriety or more nefarious conduct.

    I propose that everyone participating in WUWT hereafter use emissions trading scheme exclusively.

  130. Anthony you might want to censor me for being politically incorrect but I’m going to say this anyway. If you want to delete it then so be it.
    In my opinion the TARP bill was clear proof that our government is run by criminals. Taking $700 billion from the taxpayers and giving it to the crooked bankers who caused our current financial fiasco is not only unconstitutional but it also amounts to the biggest theft in history.

    Carbon taxes and cap and trade schemes just add more proof.

    Reply: Like there’s any way to put the toothpaste back in the tube on this thread ~ charles the sometimes pc moderator

  131. 2) we’ll all be better off without being dependant on fossil fuels.

    Without an economical replacement we will all be beholden to premature death.

  132. African Penguin Numbers in Sharp Decline.
    http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20090520/sc_afp/safricaenvironmentpenguins

    The cluprit you ask – why GW of course!

    A closer look though:

    The African Penguin, also known as a jackass penguin because of its donkey-like bray, is the only species of the charismatic animal which breeds in Africa and is found only around southern Africa.

    There’s your answer, jackass penguins. A species obviously headed for extinstion.

    The Boy of John

  133. GW (09:37:10) :
    Seeing this coming for about a year now, last fall I purchased two 1998 Jeep Grand Cherokees with the big 5.9 litre engines.

    We bought an SUV late last year as well. After you install two car seats in a sedan, all you’re left with is a two-seater. I’m not sure if two would even fit in a Prius.

    Pre-cap & trade, the average American family has 2.2 kids and a dog; post-cap & trade, that will dwindle to an adopted midget & a gecko. The indirect consequences are endless.

  134. wow. after scrolling through it appears that most of the poster here and Mr. Watts that the uproar here is based on ignorance of the policy and economics behind it.

    First and foremost, to the point connecting gasoline prices and the cap and trade mechanism, the proposed mechanism will only regulate large power producers (read: coal fired power plants). Fuel prices may increase marginally due to increased prices in electricity. but only insofar as it requires electricity to run a refinery.

    Second the whole point of such a mechanism is to internalize the costs of energy use which are not currently included in the price. This will necessarily increase the prices of electricity, but the intention is to incentivize consumer choices and market innovation to come up with less carbon-intesive ways to make electricity. The fact that prices get pushed to consumers provides a mechanism for consumers (and the people that make things they buy) to look for more energy efficient products. This is also a mechanism that makes renewables more competative with conventional power, which will increase the the competition to make renewables, which will drive down the price of renewables.

    Now, taking this into account, the cap and trade is designed to be a mechanism for the market to find the most efficent ways to reduce GHG emissions (via the trade the trade aspect). Taxes do not do this, so technically, cap and trade is not a tax.

  135. Do you know how long it takes to find someone in the scientific community who actually tries to rely on factual information. Thanks for the article. Keep up the good work.

  136. FWIW, I was comparing a chart of the GWO (fund that tracks stocks in a Global Warming Index) and decided to compare it to oil (via Exxon as a proxy…)

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2009/05/20/the-market-votes-no-on-global-warming/

    It’s pretty clear that folks are voting with the dollars (and feet) against the AGW party line. Given the spectacular refusal of ultra liberal spend it all NOW California to turn down added taxes in this last election, Cap & Tax looks like it’s about to hit a wall.

  137. Now, taking this into account, the cap and trade is designed to be a mechanism for the market to find the most efficent ways to reduce GHG emissions (via the trade the trade aspect). Taxes do not do this, so technically, cap and trade is not a tax.

    And technically we will not be paying more for everything that uses electricity in the production process.

  138. Clinton – “It depends what you mean by sex”
    Obama – “”It depends what you mean by tax”

  139. Steve Goddard –

    I don’t know what the “New Obama Math” is – –
    But as for my math skills –
    I got an 800 on my SATs and an 800 twice on my GREs in math.
    Plus a B.S. in stats – although my advanced degrees are in history.
    Now, I realize that I don’t have a PhD in nonlinear systems,
    but I have fingers and toes enough to figure out that savings will exceed costs.

    For example – If you put in $1000 of insulation in your uninsulated house, you might save $500 per year in heating costs. Both $1000 and $500 are large positive, non-zero numbers, but I can guarantee you that five years down the road (especially with rising utility costs) putting the $1000 into insulating is the wiser option. Is either free? No, but few things in life are – – except for hot air on the blogosphere.

    I recognize that many people at this website have an inchoate hatred of all things Obama, but when your right-wing slip is showing as much as it does, you are likely to trip on it.

    PS – If you believe that gasoline will stay in the $2.50 range for the next ten years, then it isn’t your math skills I am worried about.

  140. Don’t lose sight; CO2 does not drive temperature,
    temperature drives CO2. Think ice cores.
    Don’t get lost in secondary and tertiary arguments.
    Cap and trade is a scam built on lies, manipulated
    data, and an agenda driven ideology.

  141. rob,

    I get it now.

    The British were just using a mechanism to find the most efficient ways to reduce tea wastage (via the trade the trade aspect). Taxes do not do this, so technically, the tea tax was not a tax.

    The founders of the US were just not educated enough to understand that King George III was doing them a favour. Good thing that Obama is much smarter than Washington, Jefferson or any of the other prior occupants of the White House.

  142. John Egan,

    Your definition of “right wing” seems to be demanding honesty from government. So be it.

    Had Obama said that greater fuel efficiency would “reduce the increase in cost” that would have been accurate . Saying that it would “offset the higher price of vehicles in three years.” was not accurate. His numbers were based on fixed fuel costs, and I am sure you could have used your 800 SAT score to figure that out by yourself.

    So does “left wing” mean [snip] – by your definition?

    Reply: Let’s try and tone this back please. ~ charles the moderator.

  143. rob (17:01:48),

    Let’s back up a minute, your premise appears to be based on false information.

    Explain to us, as best you can, exactly what’s wrong with “carbon” [by which you apparently mean carbon dioxide]? Please provide empirical, testable evidence; computer model speculation is inadmissible. This is the central question, isn’t it? Because if CO2 is not harmful, then Cap & Trade is predicated on false information — and honest dealing requires that Cap & Trade must be scuppered.

    Next, what is your definition of “marginal”? As in: “…fuel prices may increase marginally”? That’s a weasel word. To most folks “marginal” would mean maybe a penny or two per gallon. There are already bills in committee that would substantially increase the gas tax.

    And if Cap & Trade “will only regulate large power producers,” where is 0bama going to get the $trillions he wants, if, as he claims, 95% of taxpayers will get a tax break?

    Finally, if you call a dog’s tail a leg, how many legs does it have? Your answer would likely be “five.” The correct answer is four. Calling a tail a leg doesn’t make it a leg. You are flat wrong to claim that C&T is not a tax. It is a hefty tax on consumption. People who say it’s not a tax are simply being devious. Saying “…technically, cap and trade is not a tax” fools no one. It is a tax, and a big one. And the way it’s being set up, it is a tax that can not be avoided by anyone.

  144. rob (17:01:48) :

    “wow. after scrolling through it appears that most of the poster here and Mr. Watts that the uproar here is based on ignorance of the policy and economics behind it.”

    Steven actually is riffing on the conflicting goals of both cap n trade and the newly raised CAFE standards:

    “Yesterday, president Obama announced emission standards which he said would raise the cost of automobiles by $1300.

    While the new fuel and emission standards for cars and trucks will save billions of barrels of oil, they are expected to cost consumers an extra 1,300 US dollars per vehicle by the time the plan is complete in 2016. Mr Obama said the fuel cost savings would offset the higher price of vehicles in three years.

    His remarkable comment caught my attention, because one of the primary purposes of Obama’s “cap and trade” plan is to massively raise the cost of fuel. There aren’t going to be any fuel cost savings. In fact, Mr. Obama told the San Francisco Chronicle last year that he actually intends to bankrupt coal fired power plants using cap and trade:

    You know, when I was asked earlier about the issue of coal, uh, you know — Under my plan of a cap and trade system, electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket. Even regardless of what I say about whether coal is good or bad. Because I’m capping greenhouse gases, coal power plants, you know, natural gas, you name it — whatever the plants were, whatever the industry was, uh, they would have to retrofit their operations. That will cost money. They will pass that money on to consumers.

    Two automobile companies are already going bankrupt, so I think we should take Mr. Obama’s words seriously.

    I can make a firm pledge. Under my plan no family making less than $250,000 a year will see any form of tax increase. Not your income tax, not your payroll tax, not your capital gains tax, not any of your taxes.

    Last year, candidate Obama also said :

    WASHINGTON – Democrat Barack Obama said Sunday that if elected he will push to increase the amount of income that is taxed to provide monthly Social Security benefits.

    Audacity indeed. The assumption seems to be that no one remembers what was said last week.”

    He’s highlighting the huge contradictions in both policies. Put people out of jobs by raising the cost of new cars…..to lower fuel usage. Screw people now for the (supremely doubtful) benefit of generations far into the future.

  145. M. Simon, I’m just pointing out the fact that Goddard’s argument is focused on symantics as opposed to the actual issue. Is this site just a place for arguing the personalities involved in politics, or looking to discuss issues?

    If you don’t think GHG emissions should be addressed, that’s one thing, but if you are just attacking on the grounds of politics that’s another.

  146. Wouldn’t dwindling reserves eventually force the market to do what Obama is trying to do ahead of time? It is well known that necessary products sell and sell well. Those with a jump on and a corner of the energy market as reserves are drawn down will do VERY well, which is incentive enough for anyone. So here is where things get suspicious: Anyone with half a brain can figure out how long it will take to reduce CO2 output. Anyone with half a brain can figure out how long it will take to draw down reserves. One appears about as good as the other. Therefore I am left with the conclusion that those that wish cap and trade as a way to reduce CO2 are in it only for the tax revenue, not the CO2 affect. And this from a liberal lefty.

  147. geoff pohanka (10:20:22) :

    “Also in Europe, the engines are so small, they must use manual transmissions to get enough torque from them.
    Americans also do not like to drive manual transmissions.”

    Geoff, the technology has arrived and is in use. My BMW 320d is auotomatic and averages 42mpg (USA measurement) combined city country driving. It also goes like the clappers when I want it to. I guess that’s what you get with a twin turbo common rail diesel built with precision German Engineering know how.

  148. Obama:

    “I can make a firm pledge. Under my plan no family making less than $250,000 a year will see any form of tax increase. Not your income tax, not your payroll tax, not your capital gains tax, not any of your taxes.”

    So much for his “pledge.” That is why Obama refuses to call a tax a tax. To him it’s a five-legged dog.

    The most terrifying words in the English language are: “I’m from the government and I’m here to help.”

    ~ President R. Reagan

    They’re screwing up a really great system. They want to tax the air. And it’s all based on fakery.

  149. A lot of interesting comments on this thread.

    My point is an agreement with those who wrote that GHG cap-and-trade will kill the economy, especially that directed cap-and-trade directed at CO2. California is well along that path via a state law: the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006, aka AB 32. There is a cap and trade provision in AB 32, but it is not yet finalized. For a preview of Obama’s global warming law, just see AB 32, which provides the pattern Obama has stated he will follow.

    I have written extensively on AB 32 and its implications and consequences on my blog. One such entry regarding the political backlash from angry retirees and wanna-be-retirees is here:

    http://sowellslawblog.blogspot.com/2009/05/politicians-beware-of-backlash-from-co2.html

    One commenter mentioned acid rain was reduced via a cap and trade program. There is also a cap and trade system in California for NOx and SOx reduction to improve air quality; this is known as RECLAIM. The RECLAIM system dang near put California in a permanent power blackout just a few short years ago. That was a wholly unintended consequence, and the RECLAIM law was suspended for a little while to avert that disaster.

    One must wonder what unintended consequences (disasters) await from CO2 cap and trade.

    I predict a voter rebellion.

  150. Roads,

    You sadi:

    In this regard, it’s apparent that six months of high gasoline prices achieved more in changing mindsets on gas guzzlers than three decades of government regulations. Looking ahead to a world of higher oil prices ahead, the sales of fuel-inefficient vehicles are certain to fall still further.

    Thanks for the excellent explanation of how the marketplace was solving the problem. GM was already retooling for fuel efficient cars, and if Obama’s primary goal was to help them – he would have used the $20 billion to purchase cars, rather than majority ownership in the company. Had he done that, some 40,000 GM franchise employees would not have lost their jobs last week.

  151. “I’m just pointing out the fact that Goddard’s argument is focused on symantics (sic) as opposed to the actual issue.”

    That’s pretty funny rob, coming from a guy who avoids discussing the central question: based on exactly what real evidence is CO2 harmful?

  152. SAVE THE CARBON.

    SAVE THE CARBON.

    SAVE THE CARBON.

    (I mean, what have whales ever done for all the vegetation, and by extension, the mammals on planet Earth?)

  153. Pamela Gray,

    You’re right that dwindling supplies would have similar (mostly) effect, but the point is that that won’t happen nearly soon enough to reduce GHG emissions any time soon.

  154. rob,

    The “actual issue” (and point of this article) is government mandated rising consumer costs, and gross discrepancies in the rhetoric from the primary player.

  155. I propose a solution to limit the foolish government proposals like cap and trade and government run health care. Before any such plan can be imposed on the general public there must be a 5 year trial test period

    During this 5 year trial period every Congress member and all the presidential staff and their families must live by the proposed rules without any exceptions. For example, to test the proposed government run health care system, all the Senators, House members and the entire White House staff, including the President cannot use any outside doctors, Hospitals or non authorized medications. Their medical records will be public. If there is rationing, they must abide by the proposed rules and if there is a waiting period they similarly must wait for medical attention. if procedures are not permitted because of age they cannot get the operation or medication. If there are fees because of income they must pay the fees. No exceptions, no private doctors or hospitals

    Similarly if the proposal requires small, high gas mileage cars they (including their family members) cannot ride in any other car during the trial period with no exceptions even if it is a taxi, or chauffer driven. If there are carbon taxes, they must be paid from the member’s personal finances, not with government funds.

    I firmly believe these rules would put an end the onerous, often proposed government plans to control our life.

  156. Przemysław Pawełczyk (14:36:23) :

    Thanks for the link. great stuff. I just hope we all wake up soon before it’s to late!

    Paul Revere

  157. Mike Bryant (08:40:21) :

    Way back at the top, Mike quoted:

    The Texas Constitution
    Article 1 – BILL OF RIGHTS
    That the general, great and essential principles of liberty and free government may be recognized and established, we declare:
    Section 1 – FREEDOM AND SOVEREIGNTY OF STATE
    Texas is a free and independent State, subject only to the Constitution of the United States, and the maintenance of our free institutions and the perpetuity of the Union depend upon the preservation of the right of local self-government, unimpaired to all the States.

    This says it all. The current regime can only go so far. Most states have similar provisions.

    You Texans are such wimps. :-) The New Hampshire Constitution has that in [Art.] 7. [State Sovereignty] but Article 10 is the good one:

    PART FIRST- BILL OF RIGHTS

    [Art.] 10. [Right of Revolution.] Government being instituted for the common benefit, protection, and security, of the whole community, and not for the private interest or emolument of any one man, family, or class of men; therefore, whenever the ends of government are perverted, and public liberty manifestly endangered, and all other means of redress are ineffectual, the people may, and of right ought to reform the old, or establish a new government. The doctrine of nonresistance against arbitrary power, and oppression, is absurd, slavish, and destructive of the good and happiness of mankind.

    June 2, 1784

  158. rob (17:35:17) : “M. Simon, I’m just pointing out the fact that Goddard’s argument is focused on symantics as opposed to the actual issue.”

    By “symantics” I take it you mean “semantics”. “Semantics” means “meanings”, which are indeed the actual issues.

  159. rob,

    for simplicity’s sake, present the case as you understand it against CO2/GHG in a brief paragraph so we can all discuss. please?

  160. Skeptic Tank (09:45:28) :

    They can only go so far?!! The Federal Government intends to regulate, control and tax A MOLECULE!! A molecule on which all life is based. You don’t need to go any further than that. That pretty much covers everything.

    <rant>
    No, they’re not going to regulate a molecule, they’re going to regulate a chemical. As far as I am concerned, they’re welcome to regulate one molecule of CO2 as long as they don’t give it to me. Besides, I have an octillion or so of them kicking around and created lots more driving home today.

    Chemical is not a dirty word, it’s not even a four letter word, and in this case it’s the right word. Wrong tax, but that’s on topic and has no place in a good rant.
    </rant>

  161. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/05/19/AR2009051903177.html
    Some of the day’s most pointed debate came in response to an “off-ramp” suggested by Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Mich.). That amendment would have allowed the federal government to get out of the cap-and-trade plan if India and China — two of the world’s biggest sources of greenhouse gases — did not agree to similar limits.
    Rogers said that, without this provision, heavy-polluting U.S. plants could relocate to one of those countries.
    “Do not eliminate our middle class and send it to China and India,” he said.
    Democrats retorted that the bill has provisions to protect these industries from overseas competition.
    “We shouldn’t say we’re going to shoot ourselves in the head just because India and China won’t do what we want them to do,” Waxman said. The amendment was defeated on a party-line vote, 36 to 23.
    End
    Waxman is weird,and scary.He seems to be fanatical.

  162. I thought this was a science blog. I must warn you that the recent trend in topics is rapidly causing me to lose interest. I’ll try for a few more days but I am disappointed by the quality of recent articles.I expect your readership will blossom as you continue to dumb it down.

    • Yes Steven G, Jeremy said he expected popularity to grow. I don’t think that was his point.

  163. superDBA (10:02:12) :

    Nasif Nahle (08:51:03) :

    “Excuse me for my audacity; I’m not living in US. Nonetheless, isn’t that a short way to national impoverishment?”

    Could you please move here and become a voting citizen? I would trade a thousand of our “head-in-the-sand” voters for one like you!

    Thanks… I would if I could. Unfortunately, I’m spending too much time at my work here. :)

    Adolfo Giurfa (11:26:17) :

    Nasif Nahle (08:51:03) : As spanish is your mother tongue and having a deep knowledge of the controversial climate issue, i think you could be of great help for avoiding the dissemination of this maliciously provoked psychic pandemia, among the current laymen population of spanish speaking countries, by making a simpler version of the studies you publish in your webpage. Just as an example, a very common question is the following: “How is it so that so prominent scientists and the UN itself say that the world is warming, they can not be lying?”

    Thanks… I’ve been thinking in writing a brief essay in Spanish on that issue. In the meantime, I’m trying to teach real science in plain language to my audience through my weekly radio program and every time I’m invited to talk about climate to university students. :)

  164. jeez,

    Science and politics are inseparable. Galileo and Hansen being good examples.

    • Steven Goddard

      I’m not going to get into a back and forth on this. Your Post was allowed by Anthony, but I feel free to comment when you use faulty logic, such as your response to Jeremy.

      Feel free to continue this discussion via email.

  165. Mike McMillan (15:05:53) :

    A word about communism and fascism, labels haphazardly tossed about to much rolling of eyes.

    They’re both forms of socialism. Both systems interfere with the free market, and engender all the inefficiency that implies.

    Communists insisted on the soviet, the peoples’ committees, to run things. Fascism subscribed instead to a “Führerprinzip,” the Leader Principle, where a charismatic, true believer would lead the nation.

    .
    When I look at the auto companies, banks, health care, and energy being nationalized by a true-believing, charismatic leader, it’s hard to avoid the comparison.

    Global warming seems to be just another excuse for government control. We at WUWT have facts at our disposal, but so much of the public has only the true-believing MSM to go by.

    Mike – A couple of points for the grist mill.

    [1] BO has authored at least 3 self-congratulating books. Ref: http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_ss_gw_0_12?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=barack+obama+dreams+from+my+father&sprefix=Barack+Obama

    Whereas Adolf Hitler only managed 1. Ref http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_ss_b_0_12?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=adolf+hitler+mein+kampf&sprefix=Adolf+Hitler

    [2] I too find the terms “fascism”, “Communism” to be falsely distinct. I prefer to make a distinction on the grounds of the “Dispersion or Concentration of Social Authority”.

    Democracies with well established rule of law, independent judiciaries, military separation from Government, etc, etc – fundamentally disperse social authority which helps to limit the impact of the operation of social authority (and it’s abuse) on individuals.

    All the other forms of Government are simply movements towards the conentration of Social Authority and hence the removal of limits to it’s abuse.

    [3] Dictatorship is the “default” (not the natural state, just the default state) form of Government (Ref: History). Democracy (to flourish) needs Individuals to display higher levels of Courage, Initiative, Responsibility, Accountability and Independence than Dictatorships do.

    Democarcy is harder work than Dictatorship – but also a lot more rewarding. I only hope that the current trends in the US towards the concentration of Social Authority and the disempowerment of Individuals is reversed. The longer it takes to reverse, the harder it will be.

    [4] “The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.” — Thomas Jefferson

  166. Rob (17:59).

    You make a large assumption that reducing GHG’s is necessary. You were asked to back this up.

  167. Jeremy (18:26:55) :

    I expect your readership will blossom as you continue to dumb it down.

    Please forgive us Methuselah!

  168. Jeremy, political science is a legitimate field, is it not? I didn’t realize that this whole set-up was to satisfy your “interest”. Do you have anything pertinent to add? Was the f10.7 radio flux not enough for you? This thread is very important to the whole AGW discussion. We are all affected by this. As far as “dumbing it down”, the views expressed have been very intelligent and educational for the most part. Maybe a comic book or your nintendo ds can occupy you until something more to your liking comes along. Reading your post was like listening to someone complain about their chauffeur. This sight is ALWAYS better than anything on TV !! Charles, you may snip away, …..

  169. Increased fuel economy will work for the sector of consumer transportation, but fails to address all the other forms of transportation. Once again, it’s all on the backs of the consumer, who has no choice and no voice.
    Consumers don’t have anythng to do with semi transportation vs rail, import or not import across vast oceans burning vast amounts of bunker & diesel fuel.
    Consumers don’t dicate to industry which products they are allowed to buy.
    Consumers don’t force car lots & malls to engage in massive lighting schemes.
    Consumers don’t insist on power plants running full bore with the generators offline to make more money.
    Consumers don’t demand utility companies stuff the grid with street lighting in ever-increasing amounts to be tacked onto thier power bills.
    But if you addressed all of the above, this country and Europe would turn around on a dime.

    The Audacity of Cap & Trade, couldn’t agree more.
    Paint Job.
    Where the heck are the Energy Conservatives?

  170. In Canada, former Prime Minister Chretien’s campaign promise was to repeal the goods and services tax (GST for short). It was implemented over top of our provincial sales taxes. We still pay it. It was recently scaled back by current Prime Minister Steven Harper from 7% to 5%. That helped, but it still hurts.

  171. Gary Hladik (15:29:25) :

    Jerry Lee Davis (14:30:13)

    Minor correction: 50% of the population has above –median– intelligence.

    Thanks Gary–of course you are right. I sometimes say it this way: “Half are above average, half are below average, and the other half are in the middle.” At least that way nobody is left wondering which half I’m in.

  172. Pamela Gray (17:36:48) said :
    Wouldn’t dwindling reserves eventually force the market to do what Obama is trying to do ahead of time?

    You are completely correct, but it emphatically doesn’t matter.

    The central issue for the eco-left is Malthusian, that is, THERE ARE TOO MANY PEOPLE. Every other left-wing initiative springs from the Malthusian underpinnings. Facts have nothing to do with it. Further, very few eco-leftists will admit to this Malthusian prejudice, unless of course you get them VERY angry, as which point they tend to play it like some sort of perverse Trump Card; “but you have to agree that there are too many people!!”. Don’t ask me how I know this; however, I will reveal that the correct retort is “So you hate Catholics and Mormons, then?”

    It doesn’t matter a whit that Mathusianism has been completely discredited over the last 100 years, NOR that the only proven way to moderate population growth without draconian measures (e.g. PRC’s one child policy, or say the dire poverty and disease of late Stalinism) is to increase economic wealth (look at Italy’s population stats versus GDP/person since 1945; it works even in THE Catholic country).

    It doesn’t matter that proven reserves (in BTUs or therms) as a multiple of oil & gas production is virtually unchanged over the last 50 years, that is we are NOT “running out”. It doesn’t matter that more folks are killed in traffic accidents in a town of 50,000 people in a year than have ever died in nuclear power accidents in the West for the last 50 years.

    It doesn’t matter that you are correct that a free market would certainly induce durable energy substitution with minimal dislocations and maximum efficiency.

    There are too many people, we need fewer people, we need to “return” to a mythic pastoral paradise that was stolen away by misguided chemists and engineers.

  173. If you believe in evolution, how did life begin? It never did according to pro choice people because cells are not life.
    It’s the same with Obama and his policy on CO2, it’s just as stupid.

  174. Jeremy (18:26:55)

    I’ve got a suggestion for you:

    When you see a title like “The Audacity of Cap and Trade”, why don’t you just
    skip over it (you should probably guess it’s political). There’s a couple of years of science posts on this site, and not much of it is outdated (except for NASA’s SC-24 predictions).

  175. Although I see the setup coming a mile away, but I’ll give a simple explanation a shot:

    We know the greenhouse effect is responsible for the atmosphere that is key to life on this planet. We know the chemical compounds that make up the atmosphere, and we have a pretty good idea about their residence times and their relative heat-trapping potencies. We know that through human activity, we are increasing the concentration of some of the key GHGs. We know that increasing these concentrations will increase temperatures. Therefore we know that we are increasing temperatures.

    open fire.

  176. Alan Chappell (08:45:04) : if Russia want to win the war it only has to start selling its dollars and who will buy them?

    Well, it’s more China than Russia, but there is already evidence that the Rest Of the World has had enough dollars. When you look at the ROW vs the $ you find the dollar dropping. When you look at ROW purchases of treasuries, you find that the interest rate must be higher to get them to purchase. And recently China and Brazil announced that ~”maybe we don’t need no steeenking dollars to do trade”… From:

    http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/996b1af8-43ce-11de-a9be-00144feabdc0.html

    Brazil and China eye plan to axe dollar
    By Jonathan Wheatley in São Paulo
    Published: May 18 2009 18:24 | Last updated: May 18 2009 23:31
    Brazil and China will work towards using their own currencies in trade transactions rather than the US dollar, according to Brazil’s central bank and aides to Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, Brazil’s president.

    The move follows recent Chinese challenges to the status of the dollar as the world’s leading international currency. […]

    Mr Lula da Silva, who is visiting Beijing this week, and Hu Jintao, China’s president, first discussed the idea of replacing the dollar with the renminbi and the real as trade currencies when they met at the G20 summit in London last month.
    […]

    Mr Zhou recently proposed replacing the US dollar as the world’s leading currency with a new international reserve currency, possibly in the form of special drawing rights (SDRs), a unit of account used by the International Monetary Fund.

    This one too:

    http://ictsd.net/i/news/bridgesweekly/46968/

    So you see, they already see the writing on the wall…

    FWIW, most of my investment money is now in stocks and other instruments in non-US-Dollar based markets. Predominantly Brazil and Australia, but also Canada, Mexico, and a bit of the Bahamas, Euroland, Japan, Israel, etc.

    I’ve adopted the acronym OOTUS – Out Of The U.S. for the overall ‘strategy’. I’ve also got a decent position in the “Stuff Trade” – Oil, Gold, Copper, things with a fundamental value not dependent on the dollar (i.e. oil will rise in dollar terms to whatever price reflects it’s real, physical, value. So will copper.) I’ve begun adding some small positions in REITS, though this is a longer term process, since Real Estate preserves value during inflations. It’s a bit early for the R.E. trade to work, but I’m getting my “marker positions”, that keep me focused on an area, in place and I’ve done a couple of “dead cat bounce” trades in REITS that just whacked the bottom and bounced…

    So yeah, the question of ‘who will buy them’ will become ever more acute. I’ve dumped mine…

    From: http://chiefio.wordpress.com/racing-stocks/

    a little ways down is the “10 day currencies” link. It presently shows the dollar dropping…

    ( the whole link is: http://bigcharts.marketwatch.com/charts/big.chart?symb=fxe&compidx=aaaaa%3A0&comp=gld+fxb+fxy+fxf+fxm+fxs+bzf+fxc+fxa&ma=4&maval=8&uf=0&lf=2&lf2=4&lf3=1024&type=4&size=4&state=15&sid=2434655&style=320&time=18&freq=8&nosettings=1&rand=4605&mocktick=1

    but I’m not sure if 4 lines of link will ‘paste’ well…

  177. Jeremy wrote:

    “I thought this was a science blog. I must warn you that the recent trend in topics is rapidly causing me to lose interest. I’ll try for a few more days but I am disappointed by the quality of recent articles.I expect your readership will blossom as you continue to dumb it down.”

    I understand where you are coming from, on the plus side, there’s a couple of heavy duty science posts in the pipeline. And there’s been some pretty impressive science posts coming from Leif Svalgaard in the past week.

    Unfortunately with the climate issue, thanks to people like Jim Hansen and Al Gore, climate science and politics have become forever bonded, so we do have to cover both sides of the issue.

    I walk a fine line, many actually, and with the number of readers WUWT has now, it will be a virtual certainty that I will not be able to “please all of the people all of the time.” Cheers, Anthony

  178. Ron de Haan (14:56:11) said:
    Folks, we can stop this Trillion dollar bank robbery if enough of us contact our congressmen and inform them if they vote with Waxman on this bill we will work to get them defeated in the next election.

    I agree with the sentiment, but as I am in the Great State of Texas (the one with the Wall), and in a conservative district at that, my Senators and Representative are already on the correct side on this issue.

    I feel like we Texans have done our job; it’s our “countrymen” who have abrogated their responsibilities to demand rational representation.
    Take Massachusetts. Please.

  179. jon (09:30:34) : I don’t put much faith in the role of AGW with respect to climate but I DO believe in conservation … oil supplies are rapidly dwindling … it is crazy and totally irresponsible to treat oil as if it were a renewable resource! I think Obama is on the right track here. It seems a shame that some people on this site are more concerned about the cost of gas than they are about future generations!

    Jon, we care a great deal about future generations. I have kids, and would die before letting them suffer deprivation. It’s just that we know that the “running out” belief is broken. We “rapidly dwindle” out of oil in about 100+ years, maybe longer, but have all the energy the planet could ever need, forever. See:

    iefio.wordpress.com/2009/03/20/there-is-no-energy-shortage/

    BTW, we also don’t have to worry about using up the “stuff” of the planet either (metals, cement, etc.):

    iefio.wordpress.com/2009/05/08/there-is-no-shortage-of-stuff/

    Once you get past that, it’s much easier to make reality grounded decisions about how best to bring prosperity to every single person on the planet. Forever…

  180. Stephen, regarding your post at 17:22, that’s a weak card to pull. There are plenty of taxes that have been implemented that drive behavior change, like cigarette taxes. Which I’m sure you hate. But those taxes have the dual effect of reducing smoking, which reduces the price YOU pay for insurance (and increases lifespan and worker productivity), while at the same time raising gov’t revenues so we can have things like clean water, an interstate system, and a standing army.

    I’m sure your response is that people should be free to choose to smoke or not, but I hope you’ll admit that there are times when people don’t make rational decisions (because they don’t consider the long term consequences) that impact others. To me, that’s when government intervention is not only appropriate, but necessary. And although its clear that I disagree with the majority of the posters here about the negative implications of GHG emissions, THAT is why I’m writing in defense of cap and trade (or some sort of action), and THAT is why Obama supports it, not because he gets his jollies from increasing taxes.

    • rob

      It’s actually very debatable if decreasing smoking causes any savings in health care costs. Everyone dies, putting off the costs so that a person lives longer and is constantly fighting the diseases of the elderly, prolonging the health costs over many extra years is not likely to result in a net savings and far more likely to create a much greater drain on the health care system. There are lots of truisms like this that people rarely think critically about. For example, the increased drain on the social security fund from prolonging the life of people no longer contributing to it after retirement.

      Does this mean that prolonging life is bad? Of course not, but we shouldn’t let poorly thought out arguments about societal costs enter into the discussion.

  181. Lets try that with working links…

    jon (09:30:34) : I don’t put much faith in the role of AGW with respect to climate but I DO believe in conservation … oil supplies are rapidly dwindling … it is crazy and totally irresponsible to treat oil as if it were a renewable resource! I think Obama is on the right track here. It seems a shame that some people on this site are more concerned about the cost of gas than they are about future generations!

    Jon, we care a great deal about future generations. I have kids, and would die before letting them suffer deprivation. It’s just that we know that the “running out” belief is broken. We “rapidly dwindle” out of oil in about 100+ years, maybe longer, but have all the energy the planet could ever need, forever. See:

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2009/03/20/there-is-no-energy-shortage/

    BTW, we also don’t have to worry about using up the “stuff” of the planet either (metals, cement, etc.):

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2009/05/08/there-is-no-shortage-of-stuff/

    Once you get past that, it’s much easier to make reality grounded decisions about how best to bring prosperity to every single person on the planet. Forever…

  182. “geoff pohanka (10:20:22) :

    They keep asking why isnt the united states like Europe, their cars get a lot better gas mileage than the USA.

    There are two important differences. In Europe, people are encouraged to buy cars with diesel engines. The fuel tax is much less on diesel so it costs much less to the consumer, to make up the difference in higher diesel car purchase expenses. Diesels save gas in Europe. Also in Europe, the engines are so small, they must use manual transmissions to get enough torque from them.”

    The tax on diesel is less in central Europe, which does the “encouraging” and a lot of people use agricultural (Called red diesel in the UK) diesel too. In Ireland and the UK (And New Zealand and Australia too) for instance, diesel is considerably more expensive because of the better mileage that is usual. It’s illegal to use red diesel on a road going vehicle in the UK with significant penaties if caught.

    “In the USA, the govt does not like diesel engines, they think particulate from diesel engines cause cancer. In Europe diesel soot is just soot. Here it causes cancer. Americans also do not like to drive manual transmissions.”

    PM10 particles in fact, very cancerous, but very few people actually know this. It’s a bit like the “lead poisoning” scare which lead to removing lead from petrol and replacing it with benzine. Most poeple are blissfully unaware what the real reason were behind that little con.

    Diesels, and in particular turbo charged diesel engines, do in fact work very well with automatic transmissions because of their tourqe and the tourqe multiplying effect of the tourqe converter (TC). A TC and valve pack in the transmission can be modified to provide better response and shift than what is delivered out of the factory.

  183. Just for giggles…
    Lets add in the unintended consequences
    1) More families will be priced out of the New Car Market, this will reduce the market by the equivilent number of units leading to higher per unit cost due to the economy of scale.
    2) Cap and trade will impact aluminum and Steel pricing, energy pricing for the factories all adding to overall input costs
    3) Additional costs of ownership like repairs which can be more costly for hybrids than having your buddy do a tune up, Insurance higher price for the vehicle equals more premium
    4) Less model options especially in drive train and engines will lead to lower owner satisfaction
    5) 2 of 3 top selling vehicles thru April 2009 are full-size pickup trucks, there will be power issues reaching the 30MPG guidline Know your consumer then design a car
    6) Fleet replacement turnover for passenger cars is 18.6 Years and miles driven are nbased on previous patterns so his number for 2016 saved fuel is suspect
    7) Cost to taxpayers in form of incentives and rebates, or subsidized credit

    I have many more but that is enough for day one.

    The end result is this, the 2 Car Makers will require approx. 30 Billion to re-tool and upgrade assembly lines for the new cars. They do not have it, nor will they get it from current sales, that means taxpayers will need to invest again as no private equity will touch these companies after Obama inverted the capital and debt structures via the Chrysler Bailout.

    I predect that both companies fail within 2 years, less if we can stop Tiny Tim from recycling the TARP money as that is a violation of legislation, but since Obama cares not for the law they have about 360 Billion or so they can pour into the new “O” line of cars inspired by the President “Looks and Sounds Great, picks your pocket during purchase, Pretty crappy Real world Performance and Requires a great deal of Hope to Operate”… before then.

    “I hated the products, so I bought the whole Industry” – Barack Obama – President – Auto Club for Men

  184. Steven Goddard (17:53:31) :

    Thanks for the excellent explanation of how the marketplace was solving the problem. GM was already retooling for fuel efficient cars, and if Obama’s primary goal was to help them – he would have used the $20 billion to purchase cars, rather than majority ownership in the company. Had he done that, some 40,000 GM franchise employees would not have lost their jobs last week.

    Then there’s the Chinese middle and upper class, who can’t get enough of large American cars. GM can’t keep up with the demand. So while their home country is sort of demanding more fuel-efficient cars, one of their biggest collective customers demands the opposite.

  185. rob,

    My cigarrete taxes are paying for “clean water, an interstate system, and a standing army”? What are they using my income taxes for?

  186. John Boy (09:38:58) : manufacturing evidence to support it! (making sausage as some refer to it)

    SIR! How dare you insult sausages like that! Sausages contain some small amount of actual meat and substance…

  187. Steven Goddard (18:42:40) :

    jeez,

    Science and politics are inseparable. Galileo and Hansen being good examples.

    Steven,

    Thanks for hitting the nail on the head in two brief sentences. I’m going to let it all out in this post – the moderator may snip my comments if they are deemed too uncomfortable.

    With Global Warming, we have moved well beyond journal papers, computer models, and theoretical speculation. The AGW proponents have themselves moved into the public policy arena (witness Jim Hansen’s recent antics) and are attempting to introduce MASSIVE changes to our society through fraudulent schemes like cap and trade. It is becoming more obvious to me every day that the cabal that is the AGW “industry” – which is funded to the tune of billions of dollars in government research grants and private money from radical interest groups – will never admit their errors or give up on bogus catastrophic forecasts regardless of the evidence that is all around us. Where is the crisis? Where? The 3mm/yr sea level rise? Temperatures too high? Too little ice at the polar caps?

    When we have the President of the United States (whose is supposedly a smart man) claiming that there will be “no ice in the arctic” in the summer in a few years, despite obvious evidence to the contrary, something is very seriously wrong! And the very people who should be setting the record straight, the scientists and researchers at places like the NSIDC and Cryosphere today, say NOTHING!! NOTHING!! Yet, let George Will say anything about the polar ice caps and they issue press release after press release. This is total insanity.

    Like Smokey, I too would like to know what the “cost” is for generating CO2? What is it? We obviously have people in Washington (and visitors here at this humble blog) who are so smart that they can divine a cost for the very gas that they emit continuously on a daily basis? So Rob and others – what is the cost? How can you know this cost? Are relying on computer models – personal opinion – the latest hysterical “news” release? Please explain this to us all?

    And, finally, when we eventually get government-run healthcare, using the CO2 costs developed by people like Rob, we can then begin to place a price tag on the carbon footprint of inconvenient people – you know, the old, the physically and mentally disabled, the terminally sick…

    My friends, the complete control of every aspect of your life, from what car you can drive to what food you can eat and how many kids you can have, is exactly where policies like cap-and-trade are going to lead us.

    I just hope that there are enough people here in the US, like myself, who intend to vigorously fight this madness before it is too late…

    Frank K.

  188. LOL… Speaking of Cigarette Taxes…

    I was going to quit smoking but then Obama funded children’s healthcare with a tobacco tax, so I cannot quit now and have on my conscience that I denied a child healthcare.

    Damn you Liberal Social Safety Net Funded off my life threatening addiction, what torment you hath wrought on my soul!

  189. Recently, on a Military (Ex and Active) Blog site, I saw this comment:

    “When we get a Socialized Government Health Care System, and I get a disease that puts me on the Suicide-Assist List, I’m not going alone”.

  190. hareynolds (19:16:05) :

    The central issue for the eco-left is Malthusian, that is, THERE ARE TOO MANY PEOPLE. Every other left-wing initiative springs from the Malthusian underpinnings. Facts have nothing to do with it. Further, very few eco-leftists will admit to this Malthusian prejudice, unless of course you get them VERY angry, as which point they tend to play it like some sort of perverse Trump Card; “but you have to agree that there are too many people!!”. Don’t ask me how I know this; however, I will reveal that the correct retort is “So you hate Catholics and Mormons, then?”
    ….

    I would suggest loudly proclaiming that the world is very “underpopulated” and would benefit from massive economic development and could easily support 20B humans living a modern lifestyle. That should “tease” out any hidden Malthusian prejudices.

  191. “Frank K. (20:18:39) :

    My friends, the complete control of every aspect of your life, from what car you can drive to what food you can eat and how many kids you can have, is exactly where policies like cap-and-trade are going to lead us.”

    Whenever I read statements like this I always think of the film “Soylent Green” (Not for the story line in the film, but for the elite people who could afford hot water, food, aircon and strawberry jam, ie, Obama, Gore, Brown, Putin etc etc etc).

  192. rob:

    “…I see the setup coming… open fire”

    Don’t be so melodramatic. We’re looking for honest answers here. You can either back up your assertions, or you can’t.

    The Administration is proposing a Cap & Trade scheme based entirely on the alarming notion that CO2 will cause runaway global warming if $trillions aren’t spent immediately.

    We’re not even asking for proof. We’re just asking for a little verifiable, real world evidence that there is actually a problem. So far, that empirical evidence is non-existent.

    There is no real world evidence showing that CO2 is, or will ever be a problem. I will go farther: CO2 is a beneficial trace gas. More is better. Doubling of CO2 levels would be beneficial, not harmful. And all the evidence we have indicates that the planet may possibly warm by only a fraction of a degree over the next century from a doubling of CO2. If we spend the $trillions proposed, it will, at most, make only a fraction of a degree difference. What is your opinion about that proposed cost/benefit analysis?

    I specifically asked for citations. In response, you gave your opinion. Anyone could get the same unsupported opinion on a nightly news sound bite. Regarding CO2 residence times that you mentioned, what is your belief in the CO2 persistence number? Five years? Ten years? Fifty years? Is the persistence static, or does it change due to increased biological activity in the presence of the additional plant food?

    Are you aware of how little atmospheric CO2 human activities are responsible for? Here’s what the UN/IPCC says: click. [Note that IPCC estimates are generally on the high side]. Natural year-to-year CO2 fluctuations by the planet are greater than total human emissions. Does that help put our puny efforts into perspective?

    Are you aware of how very small the quantity of the trace gas CO2 is, compared with the rest of the atmosphere? [You might have to squint]: click

    Next, you can see here and here and here that there is no cause and effect between rising CO2 and temperature. None. But CO2-caused global warming is the entire basis for Cap & Trade. That being the case, how can you argue that we need Cap & Trade? There is zero empirical evidence of CO2-caused global warming. So why are you asking taxpayers to buy a pig in a poke?

    There is no “greenhouse gas” signature to be found. If you can credibly refute that statement, you win the debate. The planet’s temperature is not rising — but CO2 is steadily rising, thus falsifying the CO2=AGW hypothesis. Therefore, Cap & Trade is completely unnecessary. The climate is well within its normal historical variation. There is no problem.

    I recommend The Skeptics Handbook for anyone wishing to understand these issues: click.

    And I look forward to those citations, rob.

  193. John Egan (15:53:57) :

    Of course, if you are saving roughly $650 per year in gasoline (gas at $3/gallon) – then you pay off the difference in two years and everything after that is savings for you – plus less consumption for the environment and less dependence on foreign oil.

    I don’t see the savings. Let’s say I trade my 20 MPG, very fun to drive Mustang V-8, for a 40 MPG Pius and gas is $4 per gallon instead of $2 per gallon because of cap and trade. Doing the maths I find that my annual gas bill is the same (half as much fuel for twice the price). I guess I can take solace in the fact that I’ll be driving one butt ugly, gutless car to make up for it. Regardless of the fuel mileage, the depreciation on a new car for the first three or four years is more than the annual fuel cost. Since the Mustang is paid for, I think I’ll just keep it instead.

    Andy

  194. If you don’t think GHG emissions should be addressed, that’s one thing, but if you are just attacking on the grounds of politics that’s another.

    I do think GHG emissions should be addressed. We need more of those emissions for people and for plants. Cause I love people and I love trees.

    But you know. Even if Mr. Obama rebates the direct costs of Cap ‘n Tax the price of everything made with electricity is going up. And you know everything is made with electricity. The poor of course will be hurt the most. Just as with the tobacco tax. Who will be hurt the very worst? The group that gave him 95% of their vote. I call that justice.

    And what happens if we actually get off carbon fuels? The government is going to require a lot of money from somewhere else.

    And what else? We are going to be shipping a LOT of jobs to China and India. And what else? It will likely cause a double dip recession possibly leading to a depression.

    I predict this will turn out so badly that in four years a Democrat will not be able to get elected as dogcatcher in the vast majority of America. San Fracisco possibly excepted.

  195. rob (19:26:51) :

    “We know the greenhouse effect is responsible for the atmosphere that is key to life on this planet. We know the chemical compounds that make up the atmosphere, and we have a pretty good idea about their residence times and their relative heat-trapping potencies. We know that through human activity, we are increasing the concentration of some of the key GHGs. We know that increasing these concentrations will increase temperatures. Therefore we know that we are increasing temperatures.”

    How does this theory square with:

    * the four main global temperature measurements show flat to cooling over the past decade and more.

    * NSIDC reports unprecedented arctic sea ice rebuild over the past two years.

    * NSIDC reports Antarctica is an example of regional cooling, ice thickening and expansion.

    * The largest oceanic oscillations, the AMO and PDO, have shifted into multi-decadal cooling phases.

    * There also doesn’t seem to be any debate that the sun is quieter than it has been for almost a century, after having gone through an extremely active period in the latter part of the 20th century.

    * Atmospheric CO2 levels continue to rise per measurements at Mauna Loa.

  196. John Egan (17:18:44) :
    “For example – If you put in $1000 of insulation in your uninsulated house, you might save $500 per year in heating costs. Both $1000 and $500 are large positive, non-zero numbers,……”

    I’d be insecure about my academic accomplishments as well, if I made a blunder like the above.

    That $500 you’re talking about is a non-zero NEGATIVE number. i.e. it is $500 you will avoid spending. My bill was $1500 but I save $500 and so only spend $1000.
    1500-500=1000

    Maybe you are over educated?

  197. Quite so Anthony but if Jeremy Imagines that climate science is all about statistics, physics etc. then he might like to consider:

    The Great English Chimney Puzzle. (if not please snip).

    So what is the puzzle?

    Well from modern records dating from a bit before 1000 A.D. even the wealthy English were happy to live in their hovels, a one storey timber framed wattle and daub building with a thatched roof and a central hearth and a smoke hole in the roof.

    Some time around 1200 A.D. the hall house, the Macmansion of its day, became popular and divided the hovel into two lengthways with the hall at the bottom as it were and the private quarters at t’other. It still kept the central hearth but the smoke hole was replaced by a side vent in the wall in the form of a grille, usually over the entry porch.

    The English knew about chimneys but they need to be built of stone or brick and were rare except in very grand stone and brick houses.

    But chimneys started to become popular sometime around 1300 A.D. and by the 1400’s the hall house replaced the central hearth with twin hearths one each side of a central chimney.

    Historians long thought this was a mixture of growing wealth and fashion: so that by about 1500 A.D. you were a social nobody if you didn’t have a chimney: and with brick becoming commonplace chimneys became very elaborate works of art: see Hampton Court.

    But by 1600 A.D. the date is arguable, another change had become established: the Great Rebuilding. Suddenly single storey hovels started to grow an extra storey by the simple process of putting rafters over the original wooden frame with another wooden frame on top so that the upper storey projects outwards slightly above the lower: a method called jetting. Many thousands of such houses still exist today all over England.

    Why? well one again historians surmise it was wealth and fashion.

    But the records of population and fuel consumption, wood, charcoal and coal tell another story.

    More or less until the Black Death, 1350 A.D, the English burned firewood and some charcoal which was expensive. The firewood they burnt on their hearths for cooking and the charcoal in braziers for space heating when it was needed. They didn’t need chimneys.

    But if you have to burn lots of wood for space heating it makes lots of smoke and you do need a chimney to carry it away.

    And if it gets very cold you can use the heat of the warm chimney to heat an upper storey without burning more wood.

    Please remember that the Black Death killed somewhere between one third and two thirds of the population within two years: and numbers did not fully recover for over three hundred years.

    Moreover it caused the collapse of the feudal system which tied men to the land so the towns and cities grew apace whilst the rural population declined.

    Yet within fifty years of the Black Death the managed woodland, chiefly by coppicing, could no longer support the demand for firewood and charcoal that had once supplied a much more numerous population. And the rise in price of these fuels had made coal economical in those town and cities which had waterborne transport: notably London where it was called sea coal because it came down on the colliers from Newcastle.

    But burning coal makes for very black smoke, why do you think London got called the Big Smoke or Edinburgh Auld Reekie? And why do you think all sorts of laws were passed to try and deal with the problem: none worked of course.

    The demand for fuel to keep warm in winter grew apace, and at what a pace as the records show. The first local controls on firewood and charcoal making are those of the manor courts which controlled the Commons and the Lord’s Waste and started to appear in the early 1400’s: by the 1500’s Parliament itself was involved and by 1600 with the demand for wood for paper making even stricter laws were passed: then made even stricter still as the manufacture of iron grew steadily and of course demanded ever more wood for charcoal.

    Similarly the cities began to try to regulate coal burning and noxious smokes with regulations about, amongst other things, hearth sizes, licences for selling coal and so forth: the latter more for revenue than smog control one imagines.

    In one way the records are remarkably complete, although some such as the coal imports at London were partially destroyed in WW 2.

    But overall the picture is within its limits more or less clear. Allowing for the various changes; in distribution of population, the ways of living, alterations in housing and so on fuel consumption for space heating alone, increased by some five times per head between around 1300 and 1700.

    After that of course industrial demand for fuel began to grow ever more rapidly and coal became king and still is.

    So you see climate change is not just written in direct measurements, or proxies for them, nor by much discounted eye witness reports of the weather, or glaciers or such like but exists in many forms inluding detailed written records of such simple things as how people built their houses and what and how much fuel they had to burn.

    And that is why a blog like this covers so many things and why so many read it: because they know they that real scientific knowledge of something as complex and so little understood as the earth’s climate is not the sole writ and wisdom of high priests in ivory towers but the slow synthesis of a vast knowledge of which any individual, however talented, can only know a very small part.

    It is not the vast amount amount of comment, speculation, abuse and sheer eccentricity that appears here, however entertaining, that is of any importance: it is the little nuggets of gold amongst the dross that are of value.

    And the ability, because of the wide readership, of one or another to spot them when many scholars would fail. And then telling the world about it.

    Kindest Regards

  198. My smoking related medial costs are covered every time that I light up. Six or eight years ago the state sued the tobacco co’s and settled out of court for billions. At that point they took away my right to litigate, but took money for my future health care. The price of cigs went up about 50 cents a pack. I am directly paying additional money to fund my future health care every time I puff.

    More on topic, there is a fundamental difference between the conservative view and that of the AGW folks. I believe that the market should not be manipulated to artificially raise enery prices to make alternatives seem viable. The warmers want to do just that.

    The problem is, if you need to manipulate the market to make your alternative energy schemes seem practical, obviously your alternative is not viable. There are good reasons that fossil fuels are so widely used.

    Energy is the very source of our prosperity and the AGW crowd wants to impede it. That will not go well with the voters. As cap n defraud, carbon taxes, and other anti-energy schemes hurt families and ship jobs overseas at a record pace, the population will arise and unseat who is responsible ala 1994.

  199. Albert Einstein said some important things about science. There are some who pretend science is about obfuscation with numbers and words, when in fact true science is about condensing the truths of the universe to an understandable form.

    “Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler.”

    “Whoever undertakes to set himself up as a judge of Truth and Knowledge is shipwrecked by the laughter of the gods.”

    “The true sign of intelligence is not knowledge but imagination.”

    I’ve been in the scientific community my entire life, and have come to understand that the very few great minds in science are the ones who do not need to hide behind numbers and jargon. Science can be as simple as an apple falling off a tree, water going down a drain, flying a kite, or observing pox on a milk maids hands – which led to four of the greatest discoveries in science.

    Did you ever wonder as a child why the continents across the Atlantic fit together like a jigsaw puzzle? The answer is obvious, but Alfred Wegener was ridiculed his entire life for upsetting the scientific apple cart – by stating the obvious.

  200. Jeremy (18:26:55) :

    You could click for hours here in this blog and find plenty of science. I think you are smart enough to scroll and click around. But then I’m not sure of your intentions in saying what you said.

    Global warming is the hottest scientific topic in the world. How is it that global warming can be separated from politics seeing that it was put in to the main stream of all human life on earth by a politician. And I do mean all of human life on earth because of it’s effects on the use of electricity in poor countries.

    Global warming and taxes are conjoint—haven’t you deduced that yet?

  201. John Egan (17:18:44) :

    Steve Goddard –

    I don’t know what the “New Obama Math” is – –
    But as for my math skills –
    I got an 800 on my SATs and an 800 twice on my GREs in math.
    Plus a B.S. in stats – although my advanced degrees are in history.
    Now, I realize that I don’t have a PhD in nonlinear systems,
    but I have fingers and toes enough to figure out that savings will exceed costs.

    For example – If you put in $1000 of insulation in your uninsulated house, you might save $500 per year in heating costs. Both $1000 and $500 are large positive, non-zero numbers, but I can guarantee you that five years down the road (especially with rising utility costs) putting the $1000 into insulating is the wiser option. Is either free? No, but few things in life are – – except for hot air on the blogosphere.

    I recognize that many people at this website have an inchoate hatred of all things Obama, but when your right-wing slip is showing as much as it does, you are likely to trip on it.

    PS – If you believe that gasoline will stay in the $2.50 range for the next ten years, then it isn’t your math skills I am worried about.

    And? Where is your proof that cap and trade ( even if CO2 were the most dangerous gas, which is complete piffle) will do anything in the future other than enrich the Al Gore types that have their hand on the honey laddle ( as we say in Greece)?

    LInks would be good. I can give you a Jevons paradox link:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jevons_paradox

    The law of unintended consequences. Point me to a link please that has studied the certain possibility that such a paradox will not work for cap and trade too, and how to avoid it. In the EU, the whole scheme has just enriched the likes of al Gore and did not stop the craze of increasing energy usage ( until this economic downturn).

    In any case, I am of the people whose bones say that an ice age is coming, maybe sooner than any cap and trader can think. The glaciers in Alaska are creaking: http://pubs.usgs.gov/fs/fs-001-03/

  202. NC (10:08:50) : Gary the last I looked it was deregulation of banks, read free market, that got everyone into this fiscal mess.

    Um, no. Fair warning, I’m an Economist so I’m far more interested in the stuff down in the weeds on this kind of thing than most folks…

    1) Congress passed a law (later loosened even more under Clinton) to promote home ownership by folks with no chance of making it work. CRA – Community Reinvestment Act of 1977 and sometimes called the Community Redevelopment Act of 1999. This law also included penalties up to and including loss of franchise, i.e. termination of the bank for any bank that failed to make enough of these lousy loans. Barney Frank was a key promoter, as was much of the rest of the democratic central committee…

    See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Community_Reinvestment_Act#Legislative_changes_1999

    for some detail on the Democratic involvement (at least until the DNC “cleans” the wiki…)

    2) Congress shoveled lots of money (and rule changes) at Fanny & Freddie to promote this broad base of home ownerships (and in return, F&F sent tons of donations to Congress – mostly but not exclusively to democrats).

    3) The banks figured out they could dump the lousy loans they were forced to make BY LAW, onto F&F (since congress had set the system up to allow this to happen).

    4) F&F figured out that they needed to shove some of this crud off on others, but to get them to take it would require some work… The Clintons wanted more “home ownership juice” so they pushed for greater loosening of the lending laws and more money to F&F…

    5) At this step, we DO get a bit of deregulatory influence, but it isn’t key. It changes the scope, but not the nature of the collapse. Glass-Stegall was repealed in 1999. This was, in some ways, the “payoff” required by the banking system in exchange for the Clinton / Dems desire to shove even worse and more bad loans down their throat. Suddenly, stock brokers / investment bankers could also “do” mortgages and Banks could suddenly sell securities and insurance companies could be banks and sell stocks. What fun.

    Never mind the ‘mind set’ needed to make mortgages you hold 30 years as a bank is the exact opposite of that needed to sell stocks and securities. Never mind that insurance companies ought not to be investing in risky products, let alone creating them… One Small Problem:

    We left “Banks” with full government insurance and we left “Investment Banks” naked. Gee… one side is protected against a “run on the bank” by the Fed and the law. The other side is naked. Otherwise the same companies can sell the same products… One with FDIC insurance, one without…

    6) The CDS / CDO instruments were invented as a way to dump the bad loans that were stacking up and hard to sell. These let you add an insurance ‘wrapper’ around the mortgage (CDS) and let you blend 9 good mortgages in with 1 bogus one and sell the whole package as AAA rated Insured (CDO or Collateralized Debt Obligation). With Glass-Stegall repealed, anyone could go into the mortgage business and anyone could be an insurance company (and banks and investment banks would carry the same product lines and…) So anyone could make these SIVs (Special Investment Vehicles) and similar products… This would not have been too bad, but the quantity of “crud” was too high and the “sausage” started to have an off smell…

    7) We had a business downturn. This happens about every 10 years. Normally not too bad a thing. But now, with everyone leveraged up to their eyeballs and running naked of firewalls between banking – insurance – investments, and 1/2 running naked against a run on the bank; the small added mortgage failures turned into a Very Big Smell. As “the light dawned” and folks realized that all that stuff they had thought was AAA insured really had some “rotten sausage – overripe and unclean” blended in we had the “one apple rots the barrel” effect make all mortgages in all devices suspect. As trading ground to a halt, companies that depended on trade volume started to be suspect, that lead to the final collapse. (At this point it would still have been recoverable, IMHO, but for “mark to market” and “bear raids”.)

    8) One of the “neat tricks” was that anyone could write a “life insurance policy” on a company, then feed it poison. Now I wish I’d been cleaver enough to figure this out, but I only figured it out after the fact. One of the “derivatives” was a CDS – Credit Default Swap. It lets you create insurance that if “Olde Joe” fails to pay his debt, you get paid anyway. You could sell the risk of his default even if you had no bond due to you and had never even talked to the company. So I just print up a bunch of these and push them on the market. Suddenly all this ‘action’ causes folks to wonder what’s wrong with “Olde Joe” since his CDS rates and volume are going nuts… so they start to pull their deposits and transaction volume; thus driving Olde Joe into default and triggering Manna From Heaven to me, with all the CDSs I created (taking out “life insurance” on Olde Joe) suddenly saying that folks need to pay me for the $10 Billion of Bonds that I had insured (never mind that there was no $10 Billion of Bonds, I owned nothing, other than the CDS that I had created…) This is what took down Bear Stearns and Lehman Bros.

    Oh, and there is evidence that naked short selling was used to drive the stocks down too, but that’s a bit of detail I’ll skip for now – just realize that a trade rule called the “uptick rule” was removed just prior to the collapse. It had been put in place just after the Great Depression for similar reasons…

    So I write a ton of CDSs on you, short your stock and short your collateral and keep doing this till a run on the bank starts and collect ALL the marbles… $Billions were made this way. No risk, all it takes is enough money to do it. Classic bear raid of the 1929 style (that was illegal until the rules were removed), dressed up in the new CDS / SIV / wrapper.

    The fact that you could, thanks to the asymmetry of the law, have a “run on the bank” on the investment banks but not on the bank banks, was a fundamental flaw… (Is it any surprise that the remaining investment banks immediately petitioned to become bank banks?… There are now exactly NONE of the original large investment banks still in existence – they are either gone or re-chartered as Federal Banks… )

    9) The final piece I’m going to cover: “Mark to Market”. The accounting profession gets part of the blame here too. They made a change from “marking” or putting a value on your assets, based on what they were worth to you from things such as their cash flow; to instead saying that you must value them as what they are worth in the market now. Sounds good. It’s worth what someone will pay you for it, nothing more. But what about when the market freezes up? I’m not allowed to say “Bob pays his mortgage on time, it’s worth the 6% interest and principle return”. I must instead say “Flakey Hal defaulted on the bad side of town, so Bob’s mortgage is worth 80 cents on the dollar because that’s all the loan shark will pay me for it right now.” It is simply not possible to sell all the mortgages in the country This Month and get a fair price. It is lunacy to apply mark to market (short term pricing) to long term hold assets. No bank can survive that (and they didn’t…).

    There is a fundamental truth in trading: “Markets can remain irrational longer than you can remain solvent”. The entire banking, political, and accounting professions had to learn this truth, at your expense…

    So as the worries started, some mortgage packages sold for less, causing ALL banks to “mark to market” ALL mortgages, causing them to be “short of capital” causing their stocks to go down, causing all the insurance companies and others holding banking stocks to “mark to market”, causing THEM to be “short of capital” causing their stocks to drop; causing all the banks holding the stocks and bonds of insurance companies and other banks to “mark them to market” and driving them down … Repeat until you reach zero. Which is what happened in many cases.

    IMHO, the whole spiral decent into hell could have been stopped by any of:

    1) Dump Mark to Market. Allow banks to value an asset as they choose: a) market price if the market is liquid. b) Net present value of revenue stream (if performing and no reasonable market). c) Inherent value (if no revenue stream and no market) via a professional appraisal. Basically, what it was before the “Mark to Market” fad nuked us.

    2) Only folks holding a security can buy / sell a CDS against the issuer. All CDS must have a matching asset. All issuers of CDS instruments are insurance companies subject to state regulation (the 1999 law specifically exempted them… ) Basically, don’t let me take out a life insurance policy on my neighbor without his knowing and without my having some good reason… especially if I can burn his house down with naked shorting…

    3) ENFORCE the “no naked short” rule. It’s on the SEC books, but they have basically ignored it. Normally I must borrow your stock from you to sell it “short” when I don’t have it (that “hypothecate” clause in your brokerage agreement). “Naked shorting” means I sell what I don’t have. Technically not allowed but I’ve seen several companies with more than 100% of their total stock “in circulation”…

    At one time an SEC petitioner pointed out that he had bought up 100% of his companies’ stock, yet it was still trading in volume and it’s price was being driven down! Just today I noticed that INT has 95.6% held by institutions and 5.57% held by insiders. That leaves MINUS 1.17% for the public… and it traded an average 810,000 shares a day for the last 10 days(!) It shows a 30.2% “short interest”… well Duh! (This is very risky for the short unless they are very large and rich… if the insiders and institutions choose not to be scared, there is one heck of a “short squeeze” possible… Porche recently did this with buying up VW stock and it more than doubled and shorts screamed…) This position of shorts in INT is theoretically not possible and illegal AND MUST BE FIXED. The SEC needs to fix it or be fired.

    http://finance.yahoo.com/q/ks?s=INT

    4) RETURN to the “uptick rule”. (It said you could only short a stock after it had gone up 1/8 back when we traded in 1/8 dollar increments. It was eliminated when we went to ‘decimalization’ since a penny was not very significant. I guess they couldn’t quite figure out how to make it a “10 cent uptick rule”… They also exempted “market makers” in things like options, which makes the whole rule useless, so don’t exempt them!

    BTW, 3 & 4 were the mechanism by which the “bear raid” on companies was initiated. They were put in place after the bear raids of the Great Crash in 1929-32 … Personally, I think it is criminal that those two rule failures, along with mark to market, and the repeal of Glass Stegall were allowed to happen.

    5) Get the Government OUT OF THE MORTGAGE BUSINESS. F&F ought to be disbanded. The “root cause” of all this was the desperate attempt of the banking industry to try to stay in business while being forced by law to write bad mortgages. Oh, and prosecute every single politician who got a “contribution” from F&F and voted on any law regulating or influencing them…

    6) Return to Glass-Stegall. Investment banking is about wild west gamblers betting at the craps table. Insurance companies are about stable 100 year contracts and investments and measured risk taking. Banks are about risk avoidance and mitigation. These ought not to be mixed. We’ve seen the results. Twice now…

    FWIW,
    1 has been softened a bit.
    2 is in the process of being legislated.
    3 & 4 are being talked about (why talk?!)
    5 will not happen as long as the politicians continue to get millions of “donations” from F&F in exchange for continued patronage and now that ACORN is added to the mix, it’s going to get worse, not better.
    6 is no hope. But a bit more moot now that there are no investment banks and the government owns chunks of the big banks anyway…

    Basically, this whole problem is 100% the creation of the U.S. Federal Government systematically dismantling the protections built after the great depression while at the same time promoting graft, corruption, and political patronage in the mortgage business via Fanny Mae and Freddie Mac (and a bit of Sally Mae too ) and the “Everybody ought to own a home” fantasy. They had to keep loosening the rules so the banks wouldn’t die, but everything has a limit…

    Governments simply can not run a business nor can they “adjust” a market. Yet politicians persist in the fantasy that they can change the laws of economics by fiat.

    BTW, the “Efficient Market Hypothesis” that is the foundation for “Mark to Market” is “settled science” in academia. It is also 100% wrong, as evidenced by every single successful trader … I make my lunch money by exploiting “market inefficiencies” that “can’t exist”, in the settled science. An example? Stock prices tend to “roll down” the last hour or two of Friday. Traders sell out and “go home flat”. So a company is “worth less” on Fridays than on Tuesdays… at least per the efficient market hypothesis that says the market price is always “correct”.

    More amazing? Average folks “get it”. They know that if a bad rumor circulates on Amalgamated Mudpuppies, the stock will drop even though it’s an irrational act. It all comes down to error bands. Gold is presently “worth” about $850 to $950 as a real value. It will wildly bounce between the ends since information is not perfect and folks are prone to panic. Basically, the market is not ‘efficient’ since neither people nor information is perfect. The goal of the good trader is to buy at $880 and sell at $930 while being neither afraid nor exuberant. But then again, trading isn’t “settled science” 8-)

    Oh, and when The Ministry of Stupidity Speaks: sell, just sell… buy it back a day or two later after the government is done “helping”…

  203. It seems to me that one of the main reasons that this site is so popular, is because a wide range of important topics are discussed in terms which people of all different backgrounds can understand.

    Political correctness does not filter or censor here. As such, WUWT is very unusual.

  204. ajones (21:45:46), that was stunningly beautiful!!!! A pleasure to read!!!!! Stephen Goddard (22:16:42) Also an excellent posting, sir !!~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ See, waayyy better than anything you can find on the Telly!!

  205. Peter (10:41:56) :
    All this Cap and Trade will be a nice addition to Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds, by Charles MacKay, written in …1841. No difference whatsoever …

    (Though it really is titled “Memoirs of Extraordinary…” and is one of the best reads you will ever find. Much of human folly becomes clear as well as the fact that we have always been incredibly silly as a species.)

    You can get a free download from:

    http://www.gutenberg.org/etext/24518

    Or, in audio format:

    http://librivox.org/memoirs-of-extraordinary-popular-delusions-and-the-madness-of-crowds-volume-i-by-charles-mackay/

  206. It is an interesting to watch the dialog with misbegotten Rob. When asked p to defend the cornerstone of AGW, he demurs to semantics. As do the wee wizards behind each new press release to counter the mountain of evidence refuting AGW.

    Rob, you have here in the various posts addressed to you, the key to *learn* the difference between fact and fiction. You probably really believed that Cap N Trade was a good thing for “the planet.” But attempting to change human behavior with punitive taxation based on falsified science – gets you three strikes (baseball ref for UK bros.) And the consequence is… you’re out.

    For yet another view of your missteps consider this:

    According to an analysis by climatologist Chip Knappenberger utilizing the EPA funded MAGICC: Model for the Assessment of Greenhouse-gas Induced Climate Change, developed by Dr. Tom Wigley and scientists at the National Center for Atmospheric Research – IF the Waxman/Markey bill were implemented and achieved a 80% reduction in CO2 by 2050 – it would result in a “savings” of only 0.05ºC!

    http://masterresource.org/?p=2355

    “By the year 2050, the Waxman-Markey Climate Bill would result in a global temperature “savings” of about 0.05ºC regardless of the IPCC scenario used—this is equivalent to about 2 years’ worth of warming. By the year 2100, the emissions pathways become clearly distinguishable, and so to do the impacts of Waxman-Markey. Assuming the IPCC mid-range scenario (A1B) Waxman-Markey would result in a projected temperature rise of 2.847ºC, instead of 2.959ºC rise— a mere 0.112ºC temperature “savings.”

    In other words, mitigating CO2 emissions at the draconian levels demanded by your Cap N Trade – will have a negligible effect on warming, if any. Rob, you believe the role of government is to punish those who do not conform to your standards. The majority of human beings believe government should serve the people’s pursuit of life and liberty. Unfortunately your belief system is backed by the science of imagination. It is wrong science. A fraud. Fake. Stick around and you’ll see.

  207. All this Audacious Cap & Trade and New Vehicle Emissions stuff reminds me of MTBE additive that was supposed to work miracles. It looked good on paper, ruined fuel injectors on cars & trucks alike and contaminated ground water everywhere.
    The beaurocrat behind it was like the sentinel adamant at the bridge. You shall not pass. By the time it got yanked, the damage was very nicely done.
    If you want lower emissions, quit making the Hogs and put out smaller vehicles without all the fancy junk. Like we had in the 70’s & 80’s. Remember?
    If you want energy efficiency, go breathe fire down the necks of those who waste it the most – i.e. – the monopolies. We’ve seen them before, and gotten rid of them before.

  208. rob (19:26:51) :
    We know that through human activity, we are increasing the concentration of some of the key GHGs.

    How did we increase water vapor?

  209. anna v (22:26:41) :

    I hope those folks up there in Alaska & the Yukon are better prepared for the coming winter. Looking at what’s going on down under in Australia, it bodes to be even colder for the Far North next winter.
    They had a tough time in Plymouth, but the Viking experience in Greenland comes to mind. Finito.

  210. Perhaps Obama is only being sensible for the future.
    According to this research (based on computer models of course), we’re going to need to save all our fossil fuels, so that in 55,000 years time we can avert an ice age. Perhaps Obama expects the Democrats to still be in power then, so they can complete their 55,000 year plan!

    http://www.physorg.com/news153556935.html

  211. hareynolds (11:08:19) : So what does it all mean, Obama playing Banana Republic Strongman? I note with some trepidation that ALL the gun stores in Texas are STILL sold-out of 9mm, .40 S&W, and .223 ammunition; it’s STILL selling-out within minutes of hitting the shelves. Everybody I know has a minimum of 30 days of food and gasoline. Most have an “abandon ship” bag packed (although they call it the SHTF bag).

    There too, eh? Well, “God Bless Texas!”. (I’m sort of an honorary Texan, seeing as I married into a Texas family… and grew up in a redneck farm town…)

    BTW, that’s why you want a .357 Sig with the .40 S&W alternate barrel. Nobody EVER sells out of .357 Sig! 8-) I also just finished “topping up” my short term food kit (60 days+) and need to get my water bbl cleaned and filled (more due to the King Tide being Real Soon Now – june 25th? … well, some high tide… and quakes are more likely then. I’m betting about a richter 5.5 on the Calaveras…) We had a 5 ish in Long Beach last week.

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2009/03/09/are-we-quaking/

    I’m seriously afraid that if Obama follows this political “arc” for another year or so, there is going to be real, serious trouble. Summer of 1968-type trouble,

    Well, I think California (of all places!) might have just started it off… but in a quiet understated way. We just voted “Up Yours” to the funding for the big government socialist state.

    You Just Know that phones are ringing in DC from California. Everything from Boxer and Pelosi saying “This isn’t good” to the Governator asking “Hey Buddy, can you spare a hundred billion dimes?” (That, BTW, is an ACCURATE number… we’re short about $10B right now…)

    It’s going to be a long hot summer in L.A.; especially when the state checks either don’t come or bounce… FWIW, my dad drove through the Watts riots in ’68 (wrong exit!) and had some harrowing story to tell when he got home!

    This time, however, there may be some real serious hardware coming out of closets.

    I’m working for “Passive Agressive” myself. Not doing anything that generates revenue to the government if at all avoidable. Managing for minimum income / maximum growth in tax deferred accounts, no new car, no expensive vacation, etc. I can be Very Happy with a 6 pack and a fishing pole… (and I can make and bottle my own home brew and make a bamboo pole, for that matter…) We’ll see if it takes more than that. I do have a closet and I know how to use it, 8-)

    What socialists “just don’t get” is that folks don’t NEED to be productive “in the system”. That they don’t NEED to participate in the economy. Make it unpleasant and they can leave. Stop them from leaving and they can just be lazy. Force them to work and, to quote a soviet citizen “we pretend to work and they pretend to pay us”.

    But leave someone alone and they just love to be working on their grand dream. (I spent thousands of hours working out a market trading system… no, make that tens of thousands… because I wanted to and it’s mine… I bake bread because I want it home made. While I pay a mechanic to fix my car, I can do it myself if it becomes too expensive due to social fees loaded into the market.) You can not force people to be productive, but leave them alone and they will be.

    So I’m expecting a lot of folks to just step back and watch the “splat”. It’s what’s happening in California. Venture cap left. Rich and Mobil folks left. Jobs left. Now even mid scale business is packing up. A local bullet casting company moved to Nevada about 10 years ago due to the pain involved in using lead in California. They were early. Half of my siblings moved to Nevada (I’m late).

    California just dispatched a “delegation” to Nevada to find out “why so many folks are moving to Nevada”. Maybe they will catch a clue… In the mean time my mechanic is talking about Brazil (his wife is from there), my neighbor is moving to Ecuador, and I’ve been given the OK from the spouse for 1 1/2 years from now when kids college is done so we’re looking at: Texas (family), Florida (friends), S. America (friends and novelty), or ??? And until then, not one dime spent here that I can stuff in the sand somewhere else… With luck, California will splat so loudly they will even be able to hear it in DC and on the LEast Coast… And give pause…

    But rest assured: If something interesting breaks out in Texas, I can be there in about 30 hours to “hep out” … I’m keeping the wagon fueled and loaded with the “bugout bag” which is what we call your shtf bag out here. My Texas Uncle has a spare room and keeps asking us when we’re moving out and what’s keeping us… The Montana law about “made in Montana for Montanan’s — Feds go pound sand” is being replicated in Texas and, well, I’d just LOVE to participate in THAT movement :-}

  212. John Galt (11:47:36) : As I understand, this really isn’t a tax increase because you will be reimbursed for the cost through increased government services.

    Oh God Please NO! The last thing I need is for this Government to “service” me again… I haven’t recovered from my last “servicing” …

  213. Roads (12:17:15) : Oil prices rose to $147 and the economic crisis was seeded when Bush was in power.

    This is confounding 3 unrelated things. Now I’m no fan of Baby Bush (he was OK I guess, but spent like a democrat), but the “economic crisis” was seeded by a slew of democrats and planted by the Clintons when they signed the 1999 changes to the (already broken) CRA Program. Bush in office had little to nothing to do with it. (He was busy playing world saviour in Asia…)

    Oil rose to $140+ because of an economic boom and China needing to buy all the oil it could to run the electric generators to make all the crud we were buying from them AND fill their new strategic reserve. FWIW, while traders have a small impact, it follows the natural direction it doesn’t lead it. Oil was not driven up by traders, it was traded up due to demand. Notice that it was traded down just as fast when China stopped buying due to 1) The Olympics hiatus. 2) Economic slowdown. 3) They finally started to get enough coal and hydro on line to shut down some of their Diesel generators.

    Oil is a (short term) highly price inelastic commodity. It moves A LOT in price with minor changes in the demand / supply relationship. Longer term, it is more elastic, so the trends run a long ways, then collapse (either UP or DOWN yet no one complains when oil drops from $140 TO $28 … )

    For years, Bush had ’spared’ the US automakers the inconvenience of investing in higher environmental standards, including the decision to back off from implementing specific mpg targets.

    Last I looked we had rather strict smog standards. You confound “environmental standards” with mpg. Two different issues.

    In the short-term, that might have seemed like a gift to US car manufacturers, but it was incredibly short-sighted. Because when the oil price rose and gasoline costs increased in 2008, pretty sensibly no one wanted to buy fuel-inefficient cars any more and those companies simply collapsed.

    Nice theory. Completely wrong. A Mercedes is NOT particularly a low fuel low cost car. They are made in America, just fine thanks. Ditto BMW. Toyota has added their largest truck yet – a Full Sized pickup. My Sister-in-law just bought a monster Honda (something… Odyssey?) that seats 6 or 7 and carries a ton of junk. Full sized van as near as I can tell. Honda, you know, made in America?

    What distinguishes the GM / Chrysler from the Mercedes / Honda is their UAW contract and “legacy costs”. It’s the 2 x labor cost and the $2700 / vehicle ‘retiree’ costs that sunk GM. That forced them to make lots of “high margin” cars that tended to be large. It also forced them to make “cheapen the product” decisions. Between these two you get expensive barges that were not always very well made and had cheap quality decisions. Near nothing to do with gas milage. (The insurance on a new car costs more than the gasoline… )

    I have an old V8 Mercedes sports car that gets 16 MPG on a good day. 14 on a bad one. I would not think of trading it in on a brand new GM product, even if the new one got 30 MPG. The GM product is a 5 year car. Mine is a 5 DECADE car. The sales tax plus $2700 retiree cost together will, invested in a nice oil trust like LIN or PGH pay for my fuel costs for the car FOREVER. (This is not a theoretical. I own PGH and PWE in sufficient quantity for the dividends to cover my fuel costs… If oil goes up, I get more dividend, if it goes down, I need less… it’s a very well matched “hedge”.)

    GM and Chrysler were pushed to the wall by labor costs and did not have the room to survive a normal business downturn as has happened about every 10 years their entire existence. Ford was better positioned due in large part to their more frugal ways and not having as many retirees as GM per new car sold; but they are still at some risk. They focused more on “work trucks” and that market is more stable (i.e. they make big gas sucking trucks because it is a better strategy.)

    The oil price today is $61. When you bear in mind that it has only exceeded $70 for 12 months in the whole of economic industry, then today’s ‘low’ oil price looks an awful lot higher. And it’s $61 in the middle of the worst economic crisis the world has seen for decades.

    It’s $61 now because the dollar is tanking against all major currencies and the OPEC members maintain a nominal dollar price scheme but clearly try to maintain the real value of their revenue stream. (I’ve traded oils long enough to know that I have to watch the Euro to ‘have clue’. It looks to me to generally track the Euro on a day to day basis, but longer term tracks global economic production levels. The present price is neither “high” nor “low”.

    In that perspective, a move towards more fuel-efficient vehicles is not only desirable. It’s going to be financially unavoidable for each and every one of us.

    Not at all. I will be keeping exactly the present fleet I have until I die, or the car dies. I might add a large truck if I get a farm in 2 years. Under no circumstances will I be buying a light weight econo anything NOR WILL I WANT TO regardless of fuel costs. And not just because my fuel is hedged in my investments.

    I’m old enough to need the added protection a heavy car brings. You get more brittle as you age and don’t heal as well. 2 ton+ is what I’m going to be driving. The ride comfort also matters greatly to us.

    The cost of the new econobox is just too darned high. I’d have to pay more in reg fees and insurance each year than my TOTAL fuel bill now. Why bother?

    Fuel costs are IRRELEVANT compared to all the other parts of the total cost of ownership and will stay so even if doubled and doubled again. Now, I don’t have a car payment, but I do see them from time to time. Several hundred dollars a month. Vastly more than the fuel bill… Why would I want that?

    So you have a conundrum: Anyone who can afford to buy a new car, does not need to pay attention to the fuel costs. Anyone who must worry about the cost of fuel consumed, can’t afford a new car. Notice the word “must”. You might still CHOOSE to worry about it because you want to feel like you are being prudent. That does not change the truth that gasoline cost is not relevant. People buy the car they want. (Notice that Mercedes still sells lots of large cars with big engines in countries with high fuel costs…)

    And this, BTW, is why fuels and oil are so price inelastic. Price has to rise a great deal to find someone who cares enough to cut back their use. Most of us just don’t give a dang…

    Also, FWIW, the major issue in the oil market is TOO LOW a price. IFF we could hold oil over about $80 / bbl on a consistent basis there are a half dozen companies ready, willing, and able to provide all the motor fuels you want from non-oil sources (mostly coal, but trash, trees, algae all work).

    Without OPEC and government intervention, gasoline and Diesel could never rise over about $3 / gallon due to the well proven alternatives.

  214. Hans Kelp (12:25:37) : I fear that at some point not so far away in the future we will read about Americans fighting Americans in the streets because the tensions will grow as the populace finds out they are being taken for a quite ruinous ride by the politicians.

    No Worries! I’ve yet to find anyone willing to take up arms to defend the poiticians! ;-) So there won’t be much fighting…

    James P (12:25:57) : This seems relevant..

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jevons_paradox

    Yes, but, this one is less afflicted by the AGW Langoliers:

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2009/05/12/jevons-paradox-coal-oil-conservation/

  215. E.M.Smith (22:27:31) : made a great post. Is the original law you cite the one we paraphrase to NINJA -no income no jobs no assets?

    I think the best documentary on the crisis was ‘Its a Wonderful life’ with James Stewart. It illustrates what happens when people panic and try to realise assets immediately that were never intended to be realised immediately.

    Tonyb

  216. RayB (15:14:46) : His tax pledge is worthless too, my cig taxes went up 18 days into his presidency. It was particularly targeted at the very poorest of smokers, the RYO guys, who’s can of Tops went from $13 to $38 overnight.

    RayB, ever consider growing your own? I ordered some seeds for about $3 a few years back just to see how hard it was. It’s easy. At least here in California it grows like a weed. In fact, I planted a couple of plants once and never since. Now, after 5 or 6 years of sporadically pulling them out, I have 4 nice volunteers that grew on some of the most hard untilled dirt I’ve got with no tending at all.

    The ones I ordered were Nicotiana Rustica (as opposed to tabaccum) since the article said it had 4 to 10 times the nicotine. I don’t smoke (my interest was mostly as a natural pesticide – tobacco tea works well!) and secondly as a “cash crop” if we ever had armageddon ;-) These are only about 2 to 3 feet tall and grow fine in a moderate pot. Not 8 footers!

    Well, one plant that I pulled up was left draped over a pole in the shade on the N. side of the house last winter. Seems to have ‘cured’ OK. I tried a “chew” and it definitely gave me quite a rush! Not much flavor, though.

    My point behind all this? At $5+ / pack, you might want to think about dodging the taxes. Just google “Tobacco seed” and stand back!

    (Any thing I can do to help hasten the end of this tax tyranny… even promoting a habit I don’t like… )

  217. It’s been at least 4 days, must be time for another “Economics is the dismal science for a reason” comment…

    jeez (20:10:51) : It’s actually very debatable if decreasing smoking causes any savings in health care costs.

    It is actually rather well shown that increased deaths from smoking reduce health care and retirement costs (both separately and together) significantly. I remember discussing this in one of the mandatory classes for the Econ degree, but don’t remember which one. I think it was the ethics section of Macro? At any rate, the specific point was covered that smoking kills after about 30 to 40 years of smoking. If someone starts at about 20, they die just after their major productivity and just before their long resource consumption.

    Also, unfortunately, I can give personal testimony to the brevity of life after lung cancer is diagnosed and the low consumption of health resources in treating it (due to a family member who smoked… and died).

    There was a specific discussion of when, in the course of advancing to modernity, a society could “afford” to promote non-smoking and what would happen to total deaths if non-smoking started too soon such that economic growth were slowed from the increased demand for ‘old age benefits’ and so others continued to die from poverty and / or more medical care was siphoned away from such things as neo-natal and well baby care.

    Everyone dies, putting off the costs so that a person lives longer and is constantly fighting the diseases of the elderly, prolonging the health costs over many extra years is not likely to result in a net savings and far more likely to create a much greater drain on the health care system. There are lots of truisms like this that people rarely think critically about. For example, the increased drain on the social security fund from prolonging the life of people no longer contributing to it after retirement.

    BINGO! Exactly right. The reduction of smoking is a net cost to the society. It increases total healthcare costs (rather a lot) and retirement costs very dramatically. There is a minor increase production during the longer life.

    Does this mean that prolonging life is bad? Of course not, but we shouldn’t let poorly thought out arguments about societal costs enter into the discussion.

    Economics is full of paradoxes and “upside down” answers that are the exact opposite of what a reasonable person would expect. (Part of why I liked it…) This is because people are feedback systems and have interesting feedback amplification / inversion behaviours…

    Raise tax rates, get less tax revenue.
    Raise engine efficiency, use more fuel in aggregate.
    Reduce smoking and have more health care costs and consumption.
    Reduce smoking and have lower economic growth and greater poverty.
    Cap Carbon Dioxide and reduce the cap each year, get more CO2 via China.

    It’s a very long list…

    The beauty of markets is that they don’t confuse themselves with what they think ought to happen, they just signal what is really happening even when you don’t (or can’t) know why… It is important to keep a tidy mind and keep truth from being overrun by what you would like to think instead.

    (My Bias: My father died from lung cancer from smoking. I do not like the behaviour. I have some allergic reaction – thankfully much less than it was in the past. I would happily live in a smoke free world and never want it in my face against my will – such as at work. I will also defend the right of any adult to choose to smoke and their right to do so in their own car, home, or other personal space; and I will do so against all comers. A smokers right to smoke only ends at my nose. To not see that is to advocate tyranny, and even the smallest of tyrannies will only grow; until it has formed tyranny against the freedoms of all. )

  218. Like we had in the 70’s..

    I liked those cars..

    You want a carbon footprint? I’ll show you a carbon footprint! :-)

  219. Smokey,
    as the resident historian, and i give that to you as a complement,
    didn’t Ayn Rand write in detail decades ago of the present and not to distant situation?
    Perhaps the Obama education was about loud speak and self praise, its obivious what others think is not part of his education.

  220. TonyB (01:58:02) :
    E.M.Smith (22:27:31) : made a great post. Is the original law you cite the one we paraphrase to NINJA -no income no jobs no assets?

    The type of loan that the law enabled is called NINJA, the law itself is CRA.

    I think the best documentary on the crisis was ‘Its a Wonderful life’ with James Stewart. It illustrates what happens when people panic and try to realise assets immediately that were never intended to be realised immediately.

    Exactly! “Mark to Market” basically said that the bank had to “return everyones money” once a quarter or so by imagining that it sold all the homes on that day and that it had to have enough “value” in the market on that day to survive the sell out. Same problem, different clothes…

    Tonyb

  221. The BBC newsnight programme runs a regular report called ‘ethical man’ in the USA, basic premise being – has America caught the agm/climate change bug yet?
    Well under the new President it seems so, lasts nights programme had good ole Jim (Hansen) marching with some college kids in an anti coal message/themed demo’, no coal is our goal etc and attempting to close a coal fired power station in Washington D.C.- they did not succeed.

    Has the last great bastion of democracy succumbed to the crazies?

    We have in England an educational policy which falsely inculcates children into the global warming theories of Gore and Hansen, without the counter arguments being taught, this is an appalling omission, and could be construed as (government UK+EURO) propaganda-(it is to my mind). Incidently Anthony the WUPWT site cannot be accessed in some educational institutions and Government offices here in the UK- they are blocked- now that is censorship to my way of thinking.

    Are educational establishments particularly schools now ‘brainwashing’ children in the States? – I sincerely hope not. Yes! tell the people about the theories both pro and con and let them form their own opinions!!!!

    Tom, (disgruntled and worried).

  222. Now, I don’t have a car payment..

    Well said again, EMS. We don’t normally do bumper stickers in the UK, but messages sometimes appear in rear windows – a popular one in old cars a few years back read, “This car may not be fast, but it’s paid for and it’s in front of you”.

    Since 70% of new vehicles here are company owned and few can afford to buy their own new car outright, it probably hit the spot.

    We have two Mazdas with a combined age of 37. Mine has full leather, a cream-smooth V6 and cost £600 two years ago. I will keep it going until something expensive breaks…

  223. E.M.Smith (20:05:59) :
    Jon, we care a great deal about future generations. I have kids, and would die before letting them suffer deprivation. It’s just that we know that the “running out” belief is broken. We “rapidly dwindle” out of oil in about 100+ years, maybe longer, but have all the energy the planet could ever need, forever. See:
    ___________________________________
    Can I assume “we” refers to the majority of contributors to this blog?
    So what was the Iraq war all about if oil is so plentiful … don’t tell me weapons of mass destruction … was it worth all those deaths??? The article you posted admits that supplies will be dwindling in 100 years time so where is all the oil going to come from then for our future generations! These resources are finite are they not?

    Jon

  224. Quiz for John Egan,

    When Obama said :

    Because I’m capping greenhouse gases, coal power plants, you know, natural gas, you name it — whatever the plants were, whatever the industry was, uh, they would have to retrofit their operations. That will cost money. They will pass that money on to consumers.

    That meant :

    1. He intends to put more money in Americans pockets to fight the recession.

    2. He intends to take more money from Americans pockets and give it to the government.

    3. He intends to have no influence on the cost of fuel, and instead intends to let the free market set the price.

  225. Guest post by Stephen Goddard!?!? What the? Hey, why don’t _I_ ever get to write a guest post? This is totally unfair!!!

    Oh, it’s because I don’t have anything substantial to add to the conversation? Ok, you make a pretty good point. You win this round, WUWT.

  226. Thomas J Arnold

    You are presumably aware of Agenda 21 and its tie in to the Kyoto protocol and the IPCC? Also I presume you are aware of the UN’s Sage agenda which provides propaganda to UK schools?

    The latest propaganda for 4 year old upwards are several plays about penguins and polar bears suffering because man has melted the ice and caised all sorts of other environmental problems. Chilling stuff.

    Tonyb

  227. EM Smith.

    Thanks for your comments.

    I saw the reference by JamesP to your article in chiefio

    Did you ever see my article on William Connelly-the politically motivated gatekeeper of the climate change pages of Wikipedia? Or the reference from them that Wikepedia doesnt have to print the truth just material that is ‘verfiable?’

    Incidentally, do you intend to publish an easy to read summary on all that is wrong with GISS? They are great articles but difficult to reference to people who do not know the background or only want a three minute read.

    Best regards

    Tonyb

  228. NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) — The Federal Reserve’s latest forecasts for the U.S. economy are gloomier than the ones released three months earlier, with an expectation for higher unemployment and a steeper drop in economic activity.

    I’d get gloomy with the economic forecast too what with this Audacious Chain & Trash the Economy policy over a trace gas about to get salvoed onto the base of the US.
    That’s like stopping at the gas station, filling up the tank (stimulus) then tossing a match into the tank.

    I guess the US Govt is really dumb enough to allow ‘special interests’ to grind it to a complete standstill. Sidelined.
    Every polyscience agenda has to have it’s goal, my guess is that’s what this is all about.

  229. E.M.Smith (04:23:06)

    “Fuel costs are IRRELEVANT compared to all the other parts of the total cost of ownership and will stay so even if doubled and doubled again. Now, I don’t have a car payment, but I do see them from time to time. Several hundred dollars a month. Vastly more than the fuel bill… Why would I want that?”

    E.M. Smith – Thank you for your many lively and very informative posts!

    I wanted to say something about your comment above. I’ve always chuckled when people complain loudly about gasoline prices, which – say – add $20 every 1.5 – 2 weeks to their fuel bill, but then think nothing of paying $20 to get a pizza every couple of days, or $75- $100 for their cable bill. The natural gas company could raise their gas bill by $50 a month and they probably would just yawn.

    Do you remember last summer when oil was at $130/bbl and gasoline was $4.00/gal? Do you recall what our politicians did to help us? I remember hearings in Washington DC where executives from the oil industry were grilled by our representatives as to why THEY had driven up oil prices!? I remember the MSM railing about the obscene profits these oil companies were making. I remember my representative mailing me a letter saying that Congress was *** suing OPEC *** on my behalf in order to bring down oil prices!! (I still wonder how that went). Now, of course, almost one year later, they want to force oil prices (and energy prices in general) BACK UP via cap-and-trade and inevitable fuel-oriented taxes, the reason now being that we must “save the environment”! So – to summarize, last year oil prices HIGH (from market forces) = BAD; this year, oil prices HIGH (from taxation) = GOOD.

    Yes – it’s going to be a long, hot summer (politically speaking)…

  230. jon (09:30:34) :

    I don’t put much faith in the role of AGW with respect to climate but I DO believe in conservation … oil supplies are rapidly dwindling … it is crazy and totally irresponsible to treat oil as if it were a renewable resource! I think Obama is on the right track here. It seems a shame that some people on this site are more concerned about the cost of gas than they are about future generations!

    Jon

    jon,

    There is an estimated 800 billion to 1.5 trillion barrels of recoverable oil in the oil shale deposits of Colorado, Utah, and Wyoming. The technology to extract this oil safely, economically, and in an environmentally prudent fashion is already here, or very close to being here.

    The US currently uses 20 million barrels of oil per day. 800 billion barrels would meet that consumption for over a century.

    The government will not grant the access to these resources because of the current administration’s view that such are ‘uneconomical’ or are a threat to the world’s health because of concerns regarding global warming.

    If the oil shale is uneconomical, the oil companies will not develop them. And when has the government been concerned about uneconomical processes? And as anyone who frequents this blog site knows, the evidence for CO2 causing global warming is very weak.

    We will just have to ride out the current nonsense as the extremism runs its course. In just a few years, higher energy bills or dawning common sense will put an end to policies being put together by the current crop of politicians and their allies such as Gore and Hansen.

  231. That meant :

    1. He intends to put more money in Americans pockets to fight the recession.

    2. He intends to take more money from Americans pockets and give it to the government.

    3. He intends to have no influence on the cost of fuel, and instead intends to let the free market set the price.

    equals Chavez?

  232. Steven Goddard (17:53:31) :

    Thanks for the excellent explanation of how the marketplace was solving the problem. GM was already retooling for fuel efficient cars, and if Obama’s primary goal was to help them – he would have used the $20 billion to purchase cars, rather than majority ownership in the company. Had he done that, some 40,000 GM franchise employees would not have lost their jobs last week.

    Well, not exactly. The marketplace was solving the problem by sending GM and Chrysler into oblivion.

    E.M.Smith (01:34:03) :

    The oil price today is $61 because the dollar is tanking against all major currencies.

    Well, not exactly. The oil price was $147 in July 2008 when $2 = £1.
    Yesterday the oil price was $61 yet the dollar now stands 21% higher at $1.57 = £1.

  233. I think that many, if not most, of us here understand that the AGW/CC claims are not about climate, or even science. As Roy Spencer explained in his book “Climate Confusion”, it’s really about opposing world-views; different groups of people having different ideas about the way they think the world should be.

    Obama and the Democrat-controlled Congress are just using AGW/CC as an excuse for imposing their world-view upon America. It is very similar to Bush’s claim of WMD’s in Iraq being used as an excuse to depose Saddam Hussein.

    The fight is not over yet. I think Cap-and-Trade stands little chance of passing. I think that when the smoke clears, AGW/CC will become Obama’s legacy as his “WMD claim”.

    Bush blamed the CIA for providing him with bad information. I wonder who Obama will blame? Gore?

  234. Jack Simmons (06:00:19)

    There is an estimated 800 billion to 1.5 trillion barrels of recoverable oil in the oil shale deposits of Colorado, Utah, and Wyoming. The technology to extract this oil safely, economically, and in an environmentally prudent fashion is already here, or very close to being here.

    Jack … are you aware of the environmental mess that has resulted from the mining of shale oil in Alberta? In addition, the extraction of oil from shale is energy intensive (expensive) which has resulted in thousands of layoffs in Alberta over the last year due to the drop in oil prices. Surely, it makes more sense to slow down the rate at which we are using our finite fuel resources i.e. greater fuel efficiency with cars etc.

  235. jon (04:43:14) said:
    So what was the Iraq war all about if oil is so plentiful … don’t tell me weapons of mass destruction … was it worth all those deaths??? The article you posted admits that supplies will be dwindling in 100 years time so where is all the oil going to come from then for our future generations! These resources are finite are they not?

    (a) Iraq emphatically wasn’t about oil. If Americans were ONE TENTH the Imperialists that the left assumes, XOM would now OWN say 80% of Iraqi production. As it is, the Iraq government(s) (including the Kurdish authority) own the stuff, and they are doing the expected mediocre job of returning production to pre-embargo levels.

    (b) The “geo-political” view from Texas about the cause of the Iraq war was uncomplicated, straight-forward (like most things here) and probably always the most accurate:
    Saddam tried to kill GWB’s daddy.
    “Intelligence” on WMDs was all the pretext required.

    Larger enterprises have been started on smaller pretexts; see Sarajevo & Ferdinand.

    (c) “Finite” is indeed correct. However, without some NUMBERS (I said NUMBERS), “finite” doesn’t mean squat (although it does make the innumerate Left feel good about themselves for some reason). Have yourself a green tea and research these topics, and revert with some NUMBERS:

    First, the tight shale gas now being recovered in huge quantities in the US (google Barnett, Haynesville, Marcellus shales to start) has been known to be there for decades, but didn’t count towards proven reserves because it was not economically recoverable. Directional drilling and staged fracturing changed that practically overnight (within the last 5-10 years). Now we are awash in nat gas, and folks are stacking rigs because the price is so low. The CEO of Chesapeake says the Haynesville field in North Louiisiana and East Texas is likely the largest gas field EVER “discovered”.

    Second, research “oil in place”. A GREAT oilfield will give up say 40-50% of the oil in place through primary and secondary recovery (typically waterflood).
    Most fields give up less. Tertiary recovery is in its infancy (google Chevron surfactants or SAG production), but today only adds another 10-15% recovery. Consequently there is HUGE amounts of already discovered oil sitting there (roughly equivalent to what has already been produced). Previously, it was cheaper to drill a new hole than to employ tertiary methods in an existing field. If we have free markets in oil (doubtful in the US, but possible in say Brazil), the market will drive tertiary.

    Finally, ALL of the new large oil discoveries in Brazil (which are HUGE) are so-called sub-salt or pre-salt formations which lie below overlying sheets of salt deposits. We couldn’t even SEE these on seismic ~10-15 years ago. There are significant sub-salt fields in the Eastern GOM, and some folks believe similar formations lie off the US east coast (although since we can’t drill there, nobody’s gonna pay for seismic studies).

    The short version: “finite resources” is a literally true but entirely useless phrase. I myself find it hard to believe, but technology has indeed kept known reserves ahead of production for my entire lifetime, and is likely (see above) to keep doing it.

    The ONLY question that policy makers should be asking is “what’s the best guess about the cost of a marginal barrel of oil (in constant currency) for the next 100 years?

    There ARE folks who know the answer to this question (AND who truly understand the impact of the technology) but the answer is considered proprietary as it is owned by the likes of XOM and considered key to their survival going forward.
    I guaranteee that it would shock you, and I quarantee that government and academia don’t have a clue.

    If YOU want a clue to the answer, take a look at how much XOM is investing in “alternative” energy.

  236. Coal companies should be bankrupted. Coal burning plants should be closed. Old cars should be taken off the road and replaced with new, electric ones. You know what bothers me about “scientific” conservatives? They think because they can use a calculator with a cosine function button they know all about human nature. Old technologies are replaced by new ones. Unlimited growth is impossible. Less efficient ways of doing things must be replaced by more efficient ways (i.e. coal plants closed and replaced by something else), or else eventually our current population levels will be unsustainable. And it’s better to do it now than wait until there is a crisis. ~snip~

  237. I saw on Kudlow that for every 1 Green job creates, 4 carbon jobs will be eliminated. Go Obama

    Everyone step and do their part! Turn off your lights, shut down your furnance, shut off the water and park your car!

    Obama man can!

  238. I’m glad to see this idiot, Obama, has no idea how food gets to his table. Just who pray tell does he think is going to foot the bill for planting, harvesting, fertilizing, and shipping that food from Montana, Nebraska, Idaho and Wyoming, among others to Washington DC?

    He is obviously an educated idiot. God save the USA!

  239. Zach B (08:04:28) :

    “Coal companies should be bankrupted. Coal burning plants should be closed.”

    Replaced by what, pray tell? There is a reason solar and wind only total about 2% of energy consumption, and are subsidized to boot. Each unit of energy is much, much more expensive to produce, even after decades of govt-funded research and trial and error. Especially when the wind don’t blow and the sun don’t shine.

    Renewables are not ready for prime-time.

    So killing off proven, reliable sources of energy generation in the meantime is a sure-fire recipe for, in your words, rendering population levels unsustainable. And much, much sooner, I might add.

  240. The ideological devotion of AGWers is beginning to remind me of what led to the mindless destruction wrought by the Cultural Revolution in China.

    btw, are there a lot of AGW engineers in the world? Wouldn’t think so……

  241. Let’s say there’s a hundred years worth of oil at the present rate of consumption. If that rate is cut to a half, the oil will last two hundred years. If it’s cut to a tenth, it will last a thousand years. Big deal! A thousand and one years from now people won’t have any oil to burn because people that lived earlier used it up. No matter how much we conserve now, somebody in the future is going to peer into the barrel and say ” Boo Hoo! Somebody’s used all the oil.”
    It’s absurd to look at this as an ethical problem. It’s a practical problem.
    There always seems to be a tone of moral indignation that accompanies the statement that “Americans don’t save”. The reason for saving is to try and ensure that you will have something to spend later. If you’re pretty confident that your income won’t dry up before you die, then there’s no reason to leave a bundle of unspent money for your heirs to spend. They won’t be any more deserving than you.

  242. Why not be more conservative with our fuel supplies (more energy efficient) … we already have the technology to do this … to do nothing but bleat about the rights of fuel guzzling car owners is absoloutley immoral and ridiculous!!!

  243. About 1.2 million people die in automobile accidents every year. That is 137 people every hour. Each day, the death toll from automobiles is nearly as high as the total number of Americans killed in Iraq since 2002.

    Clearly, the only sensible way to deal with this is to ban automobiles entirely. That would also save countless polar bears and penguins.

  244. “Roads (15:39:18) :

    GM and Chrysler concentrated on the home market, which was less regulated and less sensitive to fuel consumption under low oil price conditions but proved uncompetitive and almost unsaleable in the high oil price world.

    Utter balderdash! (That’s English for crap)

    Haven’t you heard of Vauxhall-Opel, Daewoo, SyangYong or Mercedes?

    The first 3 are GM, Chrysler either owns or is heavily into bed with Mercedes.

    I’m sure there are more but that’s enough for now.

    DaveE.

  245. jon,

    there is a mammoth difference between conservation and greater efficiency (which I’m all for), on the one hand, and driving inexpensive, dependable energy suppliers out of business so expensive, undependable energy suppliers will find it easier to survive.

    one is smart (if implemented humanely), the other is madness.

    btw, keithhennessey.com has a comparison of Bush’s vs. Obama’s increased CAFE standards for fuel efficiency. the Bush plan results in a projected net loss of about 30,000 auto industry jobs. the Obama plan that replaces it has a minute increase in fuel efficiency over the Bush plan, with a projected job loss of 150,000. these job loss figures are based on the $ amount added to the price tag. Obama’s standard kills 5 times as many jobs for a negligible increase in efficiency.

    in the middle of a recession.

  246. Oliver Ramsay (09:42:50) said:
    Let’s say there’s a hundred years worth of oil at the present rate of consumption.
    It’s absurd to look at this as an ethical problem. It’s a practical problem.

    AGREED that it’s a practical problem. It happens to be THE practical problem I have worked-on (well, like everybody else, one tiny corner) for the last 30 years.

    THE central fact that EVERY “green” individual forgets is that THERE HAS BEEN ONLY a ~100 year supply for, oh, the LAST 100 YEARS. It has been remarkably consistent. Wonder WHY?

    Question: if it is your job to find and produce oil & gas, WHAT is the discounted value [aka Net Present Value or NPV] of the oil that you’ve found that wil not be produced for say 100 YEARS? [For the Innumerate among us, try to find your copy of Excel, or whatever it’s called on your Power Mac, and READ about NPV calculations in the HELP; pick a discount rate, say 10% for a nice round number, and work it out.]

    For some strange reason, folks DO NOT continue pouring money into oil exploration that won’t be produced in their lifetimes. In fact, DAILY somebody world wide “plugs & abandons” an exploration well that turns-out to be uneconomic to produce under foreseen (that means relatively near-term) conditions.

    It does require a little faith in the your fellow human beings (the ones with the missing fingers and the Marsh Funnels and the BMF Stilson Wrenches) to believe that we’ll be OK if we “only” have “100 years supply at current consumption”.
    But this isn’t rocket science. Or should I say, Climate “science”.

    Take a deep breath, look at the record, and try to trust & respect folks who are emphatically NOT as hip as you are, but really, really know what they’re doing.

    Alternatively, if you are “green” and terribly worried about our energy supply, band together with 1000 of your closest friends and buy an equity interest in a natural gas company, say Devon. CH4 is the “cleanest” thing going, or in “green” terms, the closet thing to hydrogen that’s economical to produce. Just don’t be disappointed if Devon doesn’t EVER have more than 100 years of proven reserves at current rates of production; I’m sure that their investors would rather have the dividends.

  247. sukiho (10:14:37),

    You don’t know how to do a simple search??

    I put in the keywords: Obama, bankrupt, coal. Plenty of links came up. Here’s the first one:

  248. So Obama’s CAFE plan has a 10% increase in fuel efficiency (3 mpg) compared to the Bush plan, and a 500% increase in projected industry job loss.

  249. Bush: 32 mpg, 30,000 jobs lost
    Obama: 35 mpg, 150,000 jobs lost

    They both looked at the same numbers, and made different judgements.

    so jon, just based on these numbers, if one President can be described as, in your words, “immoral and ridiculous”, and the other President as clear-eyed yet compassionate, which is Bush and which is Obama?

  250. Zach B (08:04:28) :
    You know what bothers me about “scientific” conservatives? They think because they can use a calculator with a cosine function button they know all about human nature.

    .

    You got a calculator with only a cos function? I want one.
    I took a course from Dean Long, Dean of the Thayer School back in the Paleozoic, statics, I think it was. The Dean had an enormous FOUR FUNCTION calculator that ran on C-cells. By this time you could buy a little scientifc solar powered calculator that WASN’T Reverse Polish for very few $$.

    We asked the Dean why he still used the clunky 4-function calculator with buttons the size of commerorative postage stamps. He said: “well, I know pi and Sqrt 2 and 3, and the trig functions for 15, 30 and 45 degrees. The rest I can interpolate. If I need to do anything beyond first-order approximation, I have you guys.”

    Coincidentally, this was the only class I ever took where the prof spent LARGE swaths of time teaching and reiterating first-order approximation; what my colleagues now call “the smell test”.

    On the first day, we were asked how much a mile of welded RR track grew in length for a 10 degree rise in temperature. No calculators, no pencils & paper, what’s your “guess” (that is, first-order approximation)? [who the heck knew the coefficent of thermal expansion for mild steel off the top of their heads? Dean Long did, that is, close enough.]

    Every other prof wanted to know if you could get the answer to three significant figures; absent a good first-order understanding of the variables and the data, that sometimes lead to some extremely accurate WRONG answers. {Sound a little like AGW, anyone?]

    Dean Long knew that the real question was “yes or no?”

    And that brings me back to zach: the real question is STILL “yes or no?”.
    No hand wringing, no “human nature”, no quesses or wishes or flying manbearpigs, is Carbon Cap & Trade a good idea? Yes or No?

    I know what Dean Long would say.

  251. E.M.Smith, always enjoy your comments. Wish I had your investing advice a couple of years ago.

    My 401K was well diversified, but lost money in every category – “Interest Only” (savings account?) included, since the management fees exceeded the interest. The “Bond” category I assumed was Treasury Bonds, but after reading the small print, discovered the word “mortgages”.

    My B.O.B. (Bug Out Bag) is ready to go. Don’t plan to leave Texas, just leave the city and head to the hill country till the dust settles.

    Now I’m off to read your Blog.

  252. oh, a simple search, well the simplest place to search for it was in the quote that followed the statement, perhaps the author forgot to include it

  253. (16:24:50) :
    Reply: Like there’s any way to put the toothpaste back in the tube on this thread ~ charles the sometimes pc moderator

    Being Scottish by ancestry, I use a vacuum system.

    .
    Graeme Rodaughan (18:43:23) :
    . . . [1] BO has authored at least 3 self-congratulating books. Ref:
    Whereas Adolf Hitler only managed 1.

    Hitler was promoting a philosophy. BHO was promoting himself. That someone with no accomplishments could write that many autobiographies by his forties is something of an accomplishment in itself.


    [2] I too find the terms “fascism”, “Communism” to be falsely distinct. I prefer to make a distinction on the grounds of the “Dispersion or Concentration of Social Authority”.

    My distinction is more along economic philosophy lines. Otherwise it’s just how a particular dictator (Stalin, Mao, Hitler, a zillion banana republic dictators) chooses to run things. Not that I would compare BHO with those self-starters.


    [3] Dictatorship is the “default” (not the natural state, just the default state) form of Government

    Kings have long been the default, and kingships were usually dictatorships.

    Graeme , thanks for the post.

  254. sukiho,

    There is a link to the video – in this article – right above the quote. Perhaps you forgot to click on it.

  255. Hah! We are coal industries which generate bioelectricity (neuron-electrical flux) from coal (organic compounds)… Yeah! Definitely, we will be bankrupted by this kind of greenish economic plans.

  256. Those who understand the corrupt science behind AGW should stop giving aid and comfort to the enemy by repeating their dishonest euphemism “cap and trade” and refer to it as it is “cap and tax”.

  257. Anthony,
    Delete if this has already been posted elsewhere.

    Time has reported how the EPA has cooked the books when calculating the total emissions “stress” test for biofuels. Congress required the EPA to compare Biofuels emissions with gasoline. Interesting, according to time, the EPA had to look at a 30 year period to make Biofuels emissions even comparable to gasoline (even then with the most optomistic assumptions). It’s OK to pollute more now if the emissions are slightly less later. A 100 year period look better.

    From Time:
    “The starkest example of the problems with the analysis is the time horizon. When the EPA studied a reasonable 30-year time period, even with its generous assumptions, soy biodiesel and corn-ethanol plants powered by coal or natural gas actually produced more emissions than gasoline; corn ethanol only passed the stress test (and just barely) when powered by the cleanest possible power. And that analysis assumed it’s a good trade-off to accept massive emissions today in exchange for reductions over 30 years, when in fact massive emissions today could help trigger devastating ice melts and other feedback loops that could make reductions over 30 years practically irrelevant.”

    To read the full article go to
    http://www.time.com/time/health/article/0,8599,1897549,00.html

    This hoax is comparable to the Global warming propaganda and maybe even worse since calculations can probably more accurately predict the total emissions from Biofuels than predict global temperature.

    Think of the taxpayers money being wasted on Biofuels.

  258. Please note that Obama’s elite (statist) “fuel efficiency” demands (he has no way to actually IMPLEMENT them!) will KILL an additional 3500 people.

    Per year.

    Every year.

    For thirty, forty, fifty years – until some one has the guts to repeal them and stop the murder.

    The Gulf War so roundly condemned by Obama’s libera;s only killed some 3800 people. Total. Over the past 7 years since 2002.

    While freeing another 65 million in two countries. I would argue that Obama is deliberately murdering Americans by demanding smaller, less safe cars – while at the same time he kills the economy and the world’s capitalist societies.

    All to produce NO measureable change in greenhouse gasses – and NO change in the world’s temperatures.

  259. Here’s the video of it—not just audio—hard to miss what he means, you see him saying it :

  260. factsnotfantasy.blogspot.com

    Thursday, May 21, 2009
    USA on the Precipice of Destruction

    By Alan Caruba

    Watching the debate of the Waxman-Markey “Cap-and-Trade” bill that would impose limits on “greenhouse gas” emissions, allegedly to deter “global warming” one Congressman, reading from the script in front of him, said that there is no further debate on whether “global warming” is real and that “a consensus” of scientists concur. He lied.

    Everything about “global warming” is a lie and has been since the United Nations created the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change to provide the basis for the destruction of the world’s great, industrialized nations while exempting developing nations such as China and India from its mandates.

    On my desk is a Global Warming Petition signed by 31,478 American Scientists. It says “There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon dioxide, methane, or other greenhouse gases is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth’s atmosphere and disruption of the Earth’s climate.”

    “Moreover, there is substantial scientific evidence that increases in atmosphere carbon dioxide produce many beneficial effects upon the natural plant and animal environments of the Earth.”

    Along with other data I picked up in March while attending The Heartland Institute’s second International Conference on Climate Change is a summary for policymakers titled “Nature, Not Human Activity, Rules the Climate.” Published by the Institute, it is the work of the Science and Environmental Policy Project. On June 2, the Institute will sponsor another comparable conference in Washington, D.C.

    The national media will do its best to either ignore or disparage the science that will be presented by some of the nation’s leading climatologists and meteorologists. They have betrayed Americans for decades with their slavish repetition of environmental lies, their glorification of Earth Day, all things “Green”, and their attacks on so-called deniers and skeptics.

    America needs all of its 330 million people to be skeptics. It needs them to shake off the lies about “global warming” and demand by calls, letters, faxes, and emails that Congress steps back from the entirety of this foul piece of legislation and to vote against it.

    The United States of America is on the precipice of its own destruction and it will be the work of the Democrat members of Congress, the White House, and the work since the 1970s of all those self-anointed and self-proclaimed “environmentalists” who seek to destroy our economy.

    “Cap-and-Trade” is a dagger at the heart of America. It will raise the cost of electricity, gasoline, and all forms of energy vital to the economy of the nation. It will enrich the federal government at the loss of hundreds of thousands of jobs. It is a form of taxation that will impact everything we purchase.

    It is to the credit of the Republican Party that its members in Congress are waging a battle to deter this piece of legislation from becoming law. As one Republican Senator noted last evening, “Carbon dioxide is what we exhale, every one of us.” How difficult is it for anyone to understand that CO2 is not a threat and never was?

    The threat is the hidden political agenda, socialist in its attempt to control the entire landmass of the nation, to lock away our vast natural energy resources, and to impose laws that will impoverish the present and future generations of America.

    The despots of the world are watching and waiting for our destruction. They will celebrate in their palaces. They need not fire a single missile.

  261. Jim G (09:56:50) :

    The frightening thing in my mind, is that this wasn’t kept secret before the elections. Not that McCain was any better.

    This is what the people of the good ole USA have chosen.
    Be careful what you wish for….

    Of course, in 3 years, 7 if he’s re-elected, people will really be wishing for a change.

    FORTUNATELY MACCAIN CHANGED HIS MIND AND FIGHTS THE CAP&TRADE BILL

  262. “Don Shaw (20:34:04) : Think of the taxpayers money being wasted on Biofuels.”

    It’s not just that Don. I know of two stories, not just things I read about somewhere, but of families I know in the Philippines, who were hurt so badly by the skyrocket price of food last year, partly caused from biofuels, where the daughters in their early 20’s of both families left home and moved to a bigger city to find a job so they could send money home for food and also there was one less mouth to feed in the home that way. This is a real consequence.

    ——————————————————————

    “When millions of people are going hungry, it’s a crime against humanity that food should be diverted to biofuels.”

    –Palaniappan Chidambaram,

    India’s Finance Minister

  263. “The global warming scam is the result of the widespread belief in a new religion, based on the deification of a nebulous entity, ‘The Environment’. ‘The Environment’ is an extension of the concept of ‘Nature’ which was held sacred by the Romantics, but it is a much more demanding deity, requiring constant and increasing sacrifices from humans.”

    ~~Dr. Vincent Gray,

    IPCC Expert Reviewer

  264. Václav Klaus is brilliant on carbon and political ends! It cannot be said of him that he’s an empty suit (I’m not sure of some others)!

  265. geoff pohanka (10:20:22) :

    They keep asking why isnt the united states like Europe, their cars get a lot better gas mileage than the USA.

    There are two important differences. In Europe, people are encouraged to buy cars with diesel engines. The fuel tax is much less on diesel so it costs much less to the consumer, to make up the difference in higher diesel car purchase expenses. Diesels save gas in Europe. Also in Europe, the engines are so small, they must use manual transmissions to get enough torque from them.

    In the USA, the govt does not like diesel engines, they think particulate from diesel engines cause cancer. In Europe diesel soot is just soot. Here it causes cancer. Americans also do not like to drive manual transmissions.

    So unless we embrace both diesel engines and manual transmissions, we can not follow Europes lead with improved fuel mileage. There are also almost no SUVs in Europe, the station wagon is their SUV. It is hard to imagine that the Pick-up, V, and van will mostly all go extinct, at least as we know them, in the next six years.

    Geoff,

    A few remarks:

    1. There is NO European standard on fuel price policies and taxes.
    Every European country has it’s own policy.
    Diesel is somewhat cheaper compared to gasoline but this is compensated by higher road taxes. There is NO fiscal compensation for the higher price of a Diesel.
    Driving a diesel is only interesting if you drive more than 30.000 km per year, depending on the type of car.
    There is NO Government encouragement to drive diesels.

    Your remark about the manual transmissions is not correct either. Most cars sold now come with automatic or semi automatic transmissions which are very efficient.

    Fact is that Europeans us their cars in a different manner.
    They make less kilometers or miles and they tow limited weight trailers or caravans.

    You also might wonder that Chrysler in Europe is a big mark selling a lot of Mini Vans and Jeep models.

    The European car models already sold in the USA are the bigger cars like Mercedes E and S Class models, the big Audi’s but also cars like VW, Rabbit, Jetta and Passat.

    I do not think there is a market for the smaller models considering the car use and size and weight of the avarage American. They are simply not big enough.

    Diesels have the future, especially when the US will produce clean sulfer free diesel made from Natural Gas.

    In Europe Chrysler already sells the Patriot Jeep with a turbo diesel engine that will get you over 40 miles per gallon.

    The current diesel filter technology eliminates carcinogenic particles.

    Older diesels can become clean diesels by installing an LPG injection system. A single injector pumps a small amount of LPG into the fuel pump.
    Diesel and LPG are burned in a mix resulting in clean exhaust emissions (No Particles), more power and torque and higher milage.

    In Europe this technology is not legal but in the US there are no laws against such an application.

    In Australia this technology is big business.
    (for more info google Diesel LPG injection)

  266. jon (10:03:39) :

    Why not be more conservative with our fuel supplies (more energy efficient) … we already have the technology to do this … to do nothing but bleat about the rights of fuel guzzling car owners is absoloutley immoral and ridiculous!!!

    Jon,
    Modern cars ARE fuel efficient.
    Hybrids are expensive and take a lot of valuable resouces for the electric parts and the batteries which have to be imported.
    There is no shortage of resources for the next 200 years.
    Which means that we have all the time to develop a real successor for fossil fuels instead of unrealistic alternatives like wind, solar and electric propulsion.

    There is NO Peak oil in sight for the moment.

  267. John Galt (11:41:12) :

    What is the estimated increase human death toll when the new mileage standards are inacted?

    What’s really interesting is if the higher death toll was for polar bears or snails or fish, the environmentalists would be screaming bloody murder!

    Thought you would never ask:

    From http://www.heritage.org/Research/EnergyandEnvironment/BG1458.cfm

    The evidence is overwhelming that CAFE standards result in more highway deaths. A 1999 USA TODAY analysis of crash data and estimates from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety found that, in the years since CAFE standards were mandated under the Energy Policy and Conservation Act of 1975, about 46,000 people have died in crashes that they would have survived if they had been traveling in bigger, heavier cars. 5 This translates into 7,700 deaths for every mile per gallon gained by the standards. 6

  268. GW (09:37:10) :

    Hal (08:17:31) :

    You are absolutely correct. Seeing this coming for about a year now, last fall I purchased two 1998 Jeep Grand Cherokees with the big 5.9 litre engines. Both were low mileage gems and cost less than $10K for the two. My wife was not supportive, until I convinced her that in just a few years time cars like these will never be available again – the Prius will become the new Escalade.

    Being a car guy, I expect to keep these two Guzzling SUV’s for the next 30 years or more, barring of course a wreck or theft.

    WAIT UNTILL YOU HAVE TO FUEL UP THOSE BABIES WHEN GASOLINE CAN ONLY BE PURCHASED BY A COUPON SYSTEM!
    BECAUSE THAT IS WHAT IS GOING TO HAPPEN.

  269. jon (07:12:06) :

    Jack … are you aware of the environmental mess that has resulted from the mining of shale oil in Alberta? In addition, the extraction of oil from shale is energy intensive (expensive) which has resulted in thousands of layoffs in Alberta over the last year due to the drop in oil prices. Surely, it makes more sense to slow down the rate at which we are using our finite fuel resources i.e. greater fuel efficiency with cars etc.

    Jon,

    You don’t mine oil shale, you insert rods into the shale, gradually heat the rods to about 650 degrees, and you get a very sweet oil out of the formation. Basically you are replicating Mother Nature’s methods in turning kerogen into oil. Also produced, as a by product, is natural gas, which is used to maintain heat levels.

    Older methods included mining of shale, crushing, and then heating in these huge retorts up to 4,000 degrees. This did leave immense piles of debris, dirty air, and used vast amounts of water.

    Newer in situ processes avoid all these problems. Shale is left in the ground.

    By the way, crude produced is of a very pure grade, very little, if any, sulfur. This makes it very easy to refine.

    Here’s a link on some of the details:

    http://tinyurl.com/8ojdq

  270. Dean (10:31:46) :

    Communism and Cuba!

    The AP article in my morning paper said that pickups would become too expensive for most people and would only be used for work. Phooey.

    Sounds like alarmism, like how seat belts and cat converters would drive the car companies bankrupt.

    We will adapt.

    Dean, you entirely miss the point.
    Driving your car os only a small part of the story.
    We can not adapt to an 80% reduction in CO2 by 2050 without a serious breach of our civil rights.

    It will not take long before you will get a set of carbon coupons.
    If you use them up for driving, you won’t have the energy to heat your home or make a trip with an airplane.

    Your life will be ruled by corporatists (read fascists) in a very tricky world.

    In the end they will provide permits to have a kid, all in the name of climate and security which brings us at the real target of the AGW hoax: POPULATION CONTROL

    I think it’s better to have a fight now with your current civil rights in tact than later when every opposition against CO2 mittigation measures will be regarded as an illegal act against the State.

    Are you awake now?

  271. You don’t mine oil shale, you insert rods into the shale, gradually heat the rods to about 650 degrees, and you get a very sweet oil out of the formation. Basically you are replicating Mother Nature’s methods in turning kerogen into oil. Also produced, as a by product, is natural gas, which is used to maintain heat levels.

    So what are those massive machines doing in Alberta digging for gold :)?

  272. jon,

    You wrote:

    You don’t mine oil shale, you insert rods into the shale, gradually heat the rods to about 650 degrees, and you get a very sweet oil out of the formation.

    I take it that you are suggesting running a massive grid of roads and power lines across the pristine western slope of Colorado? How about the subsidence and groundwater contamination caused by removal of the kerogen?

  273. IGNORE GREEN RHETORIC: COAL IS OUR FUTURE, SAYS US ENERGY SECRETARY

    US Energy Secretary Steven Chu “said that one compromise would be approving new coal-fired power plants without obliging them to capture and store their carbon.” (article cited below)

    Well he’s got it half right. Now if he’d just notice that global warming stopped around year 2002.

    Slowly, the USA will come around to the following Energy Strategy for America.

    Regards, Allan

    http://icecap.us/index.php/go/new-and-cool/an_energy_strategy_for_america1/

    Nov 15, 2008
    An Energy Strategy for America

    By Allan M.R. MacRae

    The USA has two daunting problems – the greatest financial crisis since the Great Depression; and President-Elect Obama’s energy policies, which will severely deepen the economic crisis. Obama stated in a San Francisco Chronicle television interview that he wants to implement an aggressive CO2 cap-and-trade system that could bankrupt coal companies. He further stated that energy prices will necessarily skyrocket. Obama believes that global warming is a critical issue, and he supports the use of solar energy, wind power and biodiesel. To his credit, Obama also supports a market approach and technological development.

    In 2007, US primary energy consumption consisted of oil (40%), natural gas (25%), coal (24%), nuclear (8%) and hydroelectricity (2%). As a percentage of total proved reserves of fossil fuels, the US holds just over 2% of the world’s oil, 3% of natural gas, but almost 29% of global coal. See http://www.bp.com/productlanding.do?categoryId=6929&contentId=7044622

    Energy projects have been constrained due to fears of catastrophic global warming, allegedly caused by increased atmospheric CO2 from burning fossil fuels. However, global warming is just not happening anymore. For the last decade, average global temperatures have not increased. Since January 2007 all global warming has disappeared, as average temperatures plummeted to 1979 levels – when accurate satellite measurements began.

    Global cooling is now occurring and is expected to continue for the next twenty to thirty years, due to the recent shift in the Pacific Decadal Oscillation from its warm to cool phase. See here and here .

    Despite shrill claims of ice cap melting, Arctic sea-ice extent is now at its highest seasonal level since modern satellite measurements began in 2002 – more evidence of global cooling. For decades, the US has experienced a huge balance of trade deficit, due primarily to high oil imports. Energy self-sufficiency has been the goal of recent US Presidents, without success. There is now an opportunity to address both these serious challenges, by rejecting global warming myths and creating an energy strategy based on true, verifiable facts. Here is the outline of a responsible and economic Energy Strategy for America:

    1. Reject CO2 taxes and cap-and-trade measures used to “fight global warming”. Examine the satellite data, the only accurate global temperature measurements in existence. Climate Dyslexics please note: The Earth is cooling, not warming. Global cooling should last for twenty to thirty years and could be severe.

    2. Generate much more electrical energy from abundant US coal reserves. Use existing technologies to control real atmospheric pollution from SOx, NOx and particulates, but do not control CO2. In the future, if CO2 sequestration becomes economically attractive (for enhanced oil recovery) or is proved necessary (in the unlikely event that global warming becomes a real problem), retrofit the coal plants with expensive CO2 recovery equipment at that time.

    3. As rechargeable battery technology continues to improve, electric and gasoline-electric light vehicles will become commonplace. The power infrastructure already exists to fuel this fleet, and refueling can be done during off-peak periods, when power plants are underutilized. This major change in the light vehicle fleet will shift energy consumption from foreign oil to domestic coal.

    4. Re-examine corn ethanol and wind power, which do not work economically or effectively. Corn ethanol for motor fuel requires huge ongoing subsidies and severely distorts food prices. Wind power also requires big subsidies, and almost 100% backup with conventional power generation. Wind power can also cause critical instabilities in the electric power grid. Conduct a full-life-cycle energy balance on corn ethanol, wind power, biodiesel and solar energy, and also examine the environmental demands and pollution associated with these so-called “green” technologies.

    5. Re-examine hydrogen. It is an energy medium, like electricity, but if implemented would require a huge new hydrogen infrastructure to be built at great cost, for no environmental or energy gain.

    6. Avoid energy subsidies, especially ongoing operating subsidies, which distort economic decisions and create expensive industrial and environmental boondoggles. Wind power and corn ethanol may prove to be two such costly mistakes.

    Instead of skyrocketing energy prices, this Energy Strategy for America will result in lower costs, improved balance of trade, and in time could even provide energy self-sufficiency for the USA. Read more here.

    Allan M.R. MacRae is a Professional Engineer and writer on energy and the environment. In 2002 he predicted in a newspaper article that global cooling would recur. He does not work in the coal industry, accepts no compensation for his writing and holds no coal investments.

    ****************************************

    IGNORE GREEN RHETORIC: COAL IS OUR FUTURE, SAYS US ENERGY SECRETARY

    BBC News, 21 May 2009

    By Roger Harrabin
    Environment analyst, BBC News

    US Energy Secretary Steven Chu says the US will not be able to cut greenhouse emissions as much as it should due to domestic political opposition.

    Prof Chu told BBC News he feared the world might be heading towards a tipping point on climate change.

    This meant the US had to cut emissions urgently – even if compromises were needed to get new laws approved.

    Environmentalists said Prof Chu, a Nobel physicist, should be guided by science not politics.

    The American political system is in the throes of a fierce battle over climate policy. President Barack Obama says he wants cuts in greenhouse gases but has left it to Congress to make the political running.

    The House of Representatives is debating a climate and energy bill but even if it passes it may be rejected by senators, many of whom are funded by the energy industry.

    Prof Chu is a Nobel prize-winning physicist and a world expert on clean energy. But he said it was impossible to ignore political reality.

    “With each successive year the news on climate change has not been good and there’s a growing sensation that the world and the US in particular has to get moving,” he said.

    “As someone very concerned about climate I want to be as aggressive as possible but I also want to get started. And if we say we want something much more aggressive on the early timescales that would draw considerable opposition and that would delay the process for several years.

    The US energy secretary said that awareness of climate tipping points had increased greatly only in the past five years. He added: “But if I am going to say we need to do much, much better I am afraid the US won’t get started.”

    To the anger of environmentalists, he said that one compromise would be approving new coal-fired power plants without obliging them to capture and store their carbon. The UK government has made this a stipulation for new coal plants but Prof Chu declined to explain why the US government would not follow suit.

    FULL STORY at

  274. Sorry about that … I was replying to Jack Simmons comment:

    “You don’t mine oil shale, you insert rods into the shale, gradually heat the rods to about 650 degrees, and you get a very sweet oil out of the formation. ”

    My response was: So what are those massive machines doing in Alberta, digging for gold :)?http://www.iconocast.com/EB000000000000065/Y4/News1_1.jpg

    Alberta has the largest shale/sand oil reserves in the world … this is being proceesed using ex-situ extraction techology which requires open cast mining … it is creating fine mess in that province.

  275. jon (06:43:51) :

    Sorry about that … I was replying to Jack Simmons comment:

    “You don’t mine oil shale, you insert rods into the shale, gradually heat the rods to about 650 degrees, and you get a very sweet oil out of the formation. ”

    My response was: So what are those massive machines doing in Alberta, digging for gold :)?http://www.iconocast.com/EB000000000000065/Y4/News1_1.jpg

    Alberta has the largest shale/sand oil reserves in the world … this is being proceesed using ex-situ extraction techology which requires open cast mining … it is creating fine mess in that province.

    Alberta is using old technology. Shell is exploring use of new technology avoiding problems of Alberta. Please read what I posted earlier. Comparing what is going on in Alberta with what is proposed here is like comparing gliders with jet airliner.

    Steven Goddard (05:29:53) :

    jon,

    You wrote:

    You don’t mine oil shale, you insert rods into the shale, gradually heat the rods to about 650 degrees, and you get a very sweet oil out of the formation.

    I take it that you are suggesting running a massive grid of roads and power lines across the pristine western slope of Colorado? How about the subsidence and groundwater contamination caused by removal of the kerogen?

    No need for massive grid of roads. One square mile will produce one billion barrels of oil. That part of Colorado is not pristine western slope of Colorado. It is like the badlands of the Dakotas. I’ve lived in Colorado my entire life and love this land. Environmental impact much smaller than the development of suburbs here on front range.

  276. Sandy (05:14:14) :

    Cooking Oil Shale, sounds like a job for a nuclear reactor to me.

    If I was in charge:

    1) Restart nuclear fuel processing in this country. If done, there would be no nuclear waste problem. France is using technology developed in the United States and has safely and effectively produced over 80% of her electrical energy for the last 25 years from nukes. The total waste from this program would fit into the Staples Center where the Denver Nuggets defeated the LA Lakers last night. Recycling was stopped by Jimmy Carter, a former nuclear engineer who should have known better, due to unfounded fears of plutonium from spent nuclear fuel rods. You cannot directly use plutonium from fuel rods for nuclear bombs because the material is contaminated with isotopes of plutonium causing ‘fizzles’, premature ignition of nuclear chain reaction. You must have the resources of a nation state to build weapons from fuel rods. This is even assuming terrorists could obtain fuel rods. This technical problem was enough of a challenge during the Manhattan Project to cause despair for Robert Oppenheimer. Until the compressive design of the ‘fat man’ was verified, a plutonium device was not workable. See The Making Of the Atomic Bomb by Richard Rhodes for details. For details on why nuclear energy makes sense now, see http://www.terrestrialenergy.org/.

    2) Confirm commercial feasibility of oil shale with an aggressive program of development. If it works, then…

    3) Build array of nuclear power plants on western slope of Colorado, Wyoming, and Utah, using waste heat to heat up shale. Excess energy produced is electrical, which would replace the coal plants I would shut down as they produce true pollutants such as mercury and fly ash. I don’t like coal plants, not because of CO2, but because of the reasons mentioned above. This would also stop the acidification of our high mountain lakes, which is part of the beauty of Colorado.

    4) Capture the water in the Colorado River currently being wasted on swimming pools, golf courses, suburban sprawl, and subsidized agriculture (all environmentally unsound) downstream and do something useful with it: produce oil from oil shale. Build more nuclear power plants in California to desalinate ocean water, replacing Colorado River water being used by California. Also, capture fresh water flowing out from rivers in Northern California with big rubber bags and tow same to Southern California where it is needed.

    All of the above would avoid, and in large measure, correct, the abomination we see in California today. California has implemented every kind of zany alternative energy scheme known to mankind ever sense Moonbeam Brown insisted on no new sources of electrical power other than zany alternatives. Result? California enjoys the highest electric bills in the US and also has the filthiest sources of electricity in the US. California insists on not having new plants in their backyard, but in other states. Very hypocritical of them, but that appears to be a trait of environmentalists led by the likes of Al Gore. If you want to see what the US would look like after cap and trade and alternative energy generation, exam the cautionary tale of California.

    All of the above would generate thousands of very high paying jobs, unlike alternative energy sources designed primarily to enrich people like Al Gore and T Boone Pickens and abuse the environment.

  277. If there really would have been a need to replace fossil fuels world wide, Governments all over the world would have started a Los Alamos like project which led to the Atomic Bomb.

    We would concentrate all our scientific skills to solve the problem.

    Instead, billions of dollars are spend to corrupt scientists payed politicians and colaborating media, to trick their polulations into a scheme which not only doubles the consumption of fossil fuels but also destroys our economies, our prosperity and our freedom.

    What happens today is comparable to offer the USSR the white flag of surrender during the cold war.

    This is treason on an unimagianable scale.

    I am convinced that the US Senate will stop this madness and destroys the Markley Climate & Security bill, but if they don’t, the shit will hit the fan.

    To many people oppose cap & trade and to many people understand the real objectives of our treaturous government.

    No sane American or European will accept the rule of tyranny by a Climate Industrial Complex ruled by Governments and the United Nations.

    We will not be enslaved by the likes of Al Gore, Hanson, Kerry, Clinton and Obama.

    We will not accept the madness of the United Nations representing all those countries that hate the West.

    We will not hand over our economic power to the Chinese or the Russians and we certainly won’t accept to sacrefice our way of life to a coupon scheme to fuel up our car or heat our house.

    We will take them out of power, put the trators to justice and continue our road of development and prosperity, in order to meet real threats and find solutions for real problems. For the sake of humanity.

    That is what we will do.

  278. Jack Simmons,

    You speak both confidently and incorrectly.

    The oil shale deposits in Colorado tend to be in thin, low permeability layers, and tend to be located in some of the most beautiful, forested locations in the state along Parachute Creek – between Vail and Grand Junction.

    The Colony Mine is the largest oil shale mine, and is located right in the Middle of some of Colorado’s most beautiful and unspoiled country.

    http://www.garfield-county.com/

  279. They keep asking why isnt the united states like Europe, their cars get a lot better gas mileage than the USA.

    We get better mileage in the UK because our gallons are bigger! :-)

  280. From the You knew it was coming file…

    Democrats further declined to develop emissions-free energy sources such as new hydroelectric power, and decided to permit the EPA to write the rules necessary to regulate water vapor as air pollution.

    Ok now we really have lost our collective minds.

  281. Ron de Haan (08:17:43)
    We will not be enslaved by the likes of Al Gore, Hanson, Kerry, Clinton and Obama.
    You are the newest neighbour in the THIRD WORLD’s neighbourhood.
    You still don’t know how things work in countries like that. We call it “the pendulum law”: you will endure for a certain period of time, a kind of revolution, inmediately followed by a counter revolution…So take it calmly and wisely.

  282. Stop the presses! New information has come up indicating that rising CO2 may not, in fact, be the cause of global warming: click

  283. Jon,

    You are really confused about oil shale versus tar sands. I don’t know where you get your information from.

    The picture you show is the mining operation for tar sands operations. The shale would not be collected with that type equipment. The shale I am familiar with is really rock that contains oil not sand or soil and separation via physical means is more difficult.

    Also some of the more recent tar sands operations do not mine as shown in the picture, they extract the oil via other means.

    Finally you talk about a “mess” I worked on a tar sands process in Alberta during the 70’s. Have you ever visited a mining and extraction site or are you just repeating some environmentalist propoganda? The area is not exactly pristine. While living in Ft McMurray for 1 year, I fished on the tar laden shore of the Athabasca river. The oil just oozes out of the ground. The indians used this tar to prevent their canoes from leaking.

    As the sands are extracted and processsed via mining, the now clean sand is returned to the pit and the area is reforested by the plant operator. If you think that oil tar is a pollutant, one could claim that this is a clean up rather than a mess.

    I am less familiar with current tar sands projects but believe that they involve deeper oil and are therefore surface mining is not used but rather technology like steam injection. Others more familiar can elaborate as needed.

  284. Jack Simmons (07:54:41) :

    So much to disagree about in what you wrote.

    In no particular order:

    First, California does NOT pay the highest electric power price in the U.S. Hawaii, New York, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Alaska all paid more per kwh than California in 2004. In 2007, one can add Massachusetts and Connecticut to the list.

    Second, California does not have ” the filthiest sources of electricity in the US,” but obtains most of our power from natural gas and hydroelectric, one-tenth from renewables, and very little from coal-burning power plants.

    Third, new nuclear power plants are clearly one of the most expensive means of producing electricity, at $10,000 per kW to construct. No one in their right mind builds these things unless completely or heavily subsidized by the government. The oil from oil shale would be outrageously expensive if nuclear heat was used. You stated you would “us[e] [nuclear] waste heat to heat up shale.” Waste heat from nuclear reactors is very low temperature, in the exhaust steam that is condensed in the condenser. Not enough temperature to heat shale up to get the oil out. Sorry, that does not work. Second law of thermodynamics is not subject to anyone or anything that tries to avoid or get around it. Never.

    Fourth, California does not “waste water” on “swimming pools, golf courses, suburban sprawl, and subsidized agriculture (all environmentally unsound).” Swimming pools are a required part of civilized life, as even Coloradoans admit since they have spas and jacuzzis at home and in their resorts. California golf courses are watered with reclaimed water from waste treatment plants. Suburban sprawlers are just as entitled to water as you are. Agriculture in California produces much of the food for the U.S. ~snip~ Besides, there are water rights compacts and laws that govern the use of river water, and if you are so intent on changing that, then I invite you to step up to the table, make your case, and have those compacts modified. Let us know how you succeed on that. Good luck.

    Finally, you say that “California insists on not having new plants in their backyard, but in other states. Very hypocritical of them…” Yes, California imports some power from other states, but also builds new power plants within our own borders. Why is that a problem? Where is it written that each state shall be entirely self-sufficient in each and every respect — no exports, no imports of anything? Do you have a similar problem with Texas and Louisiana exporting gasoline, diesel, and jet fuel to many other states? Do you have a problem with Colorado importing food from California and other states? Do you have a problem with Coloradoans importing cars made in other states? If not, why not?

    You do realize, don’t you, that the U.S. Constitution contemplated that the states would NOT be each self-sufficient, as express powers are granted to the Congress to regulate commerce between the states?

  285. jon (04:43:14) :
    “E.M.Smith (20:05:59) :Jon, we care a great deal about future generations. I have kids, and would die before letting them suffer deprivation. It’s just that we know that the “running out” belief is broken. We “rapidly dwindle” out of oil in about 100+ years, maybe longer, but have all the energy the planet could ever need, forever. See:
    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2009/03/20/there-is-no-energy-shortage/

    ___________________________________
    Can I assume “we” refers to the majority of contributors to this blog?

    No.

    “We” refers to the entire population of the planet as a collective. I have no idea who will be consuming the majority of the oil pumped in the year 2020, nor does anyone else though present trends would imply China and India. I want every single person on this planet to live a wealthy profitable and modern lifestyle if they so choose with as much material wealth as anyone else. There is no physical reason they can not.

    So what was the Iraq war all about if oil is so plentiful

    I don’t know if that topic stays on thread… I doubt it. I will answer your questions, since they passed moderation, but this is all I will do on this topic. “One and done”.

    My opinion is that it was cleaning up loose ends left over from when the CIA under Daddy Bush set up Saddam and sent him money; and then in a changed world, when he was an embarrassment, the powers that be felt it needed closure… but that verges on conspiracy theories and I try to avoid them. It certainly was not about oil. We could get far more oil far easier elsewhere. Heck, Venezuela would have been a ‘cake walk’ compared to the worlds 4th largest military force… My opinion is that we promised the House of Saud to clean up the mess we made when we fed Saddam in the first place. Evidence? You’ve got to be kidding…

    … don’t tell me weapons of mass destruction … was it worth all those deaths???

    Saddam absolutely had weapons of mass destruction (it is a historical fact that he used them to gas Kurds). Personally I think their presence was a ruse to justify the ‘cleaning’, but that he had them is not in question. Why the loony left wastes time claiming they did not exist when there are plenty of valid reasons to toss rocks at the radical right escapes me… Then again, I sit in the middle and both sides chuck rocks at me. Sigh.

    Was the war worth the deaths? Have to ask the Saudis… Given what Saddam had done in Kuwait, I think the whole area wanted him gone… Me? I don’t think any war is worth the deaths. Just don’t know how to stop them, though.

    The article you posted admits that supplies will be dwindling in 100 years time so where is all the oil going to come from then for our future generations! These resources are finite are they not?

    Nice to get back on thread… Though you asking the question tells me you did not read the article, only the sentence describing it.

    Well, ignoring the question of why I ought to be worrying at all about 100 years from now when we might well be driving nuclear space cars… So assume we need oil and assume we still have cars that burn it. So What!

    If you read the link, no, really read it, you will find references to folks who can make all the “oil” you want right now from non-oil sources. Can you say existence proof? I’ll give you a list of names and you can look them up. The first token is the stock ticker (a useful key for getting info)

    SSL Sasol – Makes synthetic oil from coal in South Africa. Most of the country runs on the stuff and has for 30 or 40 years. This alone covers replacement “oil” for a few more hundred years.

    SU Suncore and IMO Imperial Oil (and several others) making oil out of Tar Sands. There’s about as much tar sand in the world as ‘regular’ oil. We can do the same thing with oil shale (and there’s somewhat more than a Trillion barrels of “oil” available from oil shale in the U.S.A. alone.

    CHK Chesapeake a natural gas company (there are dozens of others). Thanks to figuring out how to crack “tight shale” there is a glut of natural gas on the market. We (meaning North America alone) have about as much barrels of oil equivalent in natural gas as Saudi has oil (and maybe more). This can be turned into “oil” and oil products by many paths (including the Sasol FT method) but my favorite is to use a zeolite catalyst developed by Mobil Oil (before mergered by Exxon) as was done in production in Australia IIRC after the Arab Oil Embargo of the ’70s. Dump in Nat Gas, get out gasoline. Neat, really. I think it was ZM80, but there’s a whole zoo of zeolite (rock like in your water softener) catalysts and I could easily have the number wrong. Then there is all the methane clathrate – a few more trillion bbls of oil worth: More than in all other fossil fuels combined..

    SYNM Syntorleum and SYMX Synthesis Energy company both have processes to turn plant material and / or coal in to “oil”. Both are building facilities and running them now. SYMX got a contract with China. SYNM is operational with TYSON I think to turn chicken guts into “oil”.

    RTK Rentech has a demonstration scale plant and a small production scale plant that can turn (at a profit) coal or biomass or trash into “oil”. I don’t think we’re in danger of running out of trash any time soon…

    BP British Petroleum and MRO Marathon oil both have synthetic oil facilities up. BP is doing it with DD Dupont IIRC and uses biomass (which could include lawn clippings, yard waste, and paper trash) into butanol, a ‘drop in replacement’ for gasoline. Just put it in your tank and go. See:

    http://www.butanol.com/

    OOIL Origin Oil has a unique algae grow system using sealed tanks while PSUD PetroSun uses open ponds (and is in the leasing and going live process right now) to produce “oil” and oil products (mostly Diesel and Gasoline) from algae. This has about a 10x per acre potential compared to trees based biomass, and trees are about 50 wet tons / acre-yr proven yield (see treepower.org ). There is also GGRN Global Green and a few dozen other small start up and R&D scale algae folks. This is the “end game” for when the coal is all gone, but it is having trouble getting the costs of motor fuels below the $2 / gallon price point. They can compete easily at $4 / gallon. At $3 / gallon, it depends on the particular company. So absolute worst possible case is we use our sewage to grow pond scum and pay less than $4 / gallon for Diesel oil.

    CZ Cozan has an area about the size of the old East Germany down in Brazil and grows sugar for making alcohol (that can also be dumped through zeolites to make gasoline, Diesel, and oils). Sugar cane, unlike corn kernals, has about an 8:1 energy gain. Much of Brazil uses this today. Another existence proof. BTW, their process heat comes from the stalks, so don’t waste your breath taking about embedded oil – it all runs on sunshine.

    VRNM Verenium makes enzymes for cellulosic ethanol (see above mentions of 50 tons / acre and zeolite to convert to “oil” products). There is also Poet (privately held) and Novazyme who’s ticker I’ve forgotten.

    Oh, and about 3 or 4 thermal depolymerization and pyrolysis processes (and the attendent R&D / startup companies ) trying to compete with dirt cheap oil.

    OK, I could go one for another couple of pages, but I think this makes the point (and you could have saved everyone all this reading and space if you had just bothered to go read the “not running out” link…) But in the interests of saving my fingers, I’m going to just give one more:

    Back during that ’70s oil embargo, VW wanted to be selling cars in the future no matter what OPEC did. They knew about the Fischer-Tropsch process and knew they could use German soft coal to make Diesel and gasoline; but didn’t like the yield. They wanted a way to make the coal go further. So these clever engineers figured out that most of the coal went to make process heat (newer catalysts have reduced this heat demand, but not to zero…). At any rate, they wanted to “conserve” that process heat from coal. So they figured out how to “put a nuke in your tank”.

    By using a high temperature gas cooled reactor, like the one we had running for years at Ft. St. Vrain to provide the process heat, they could drive the coal synthesis reactions with most of the energy coming from a nuke plant. So we could use that effectively infinite U and Th supply to produce Diesel and Gasoline. Now VW planned to make methanol, since that’s the most efficient thing to make from coal synthesis gas, but FT is now almost as good due to some catalyst improvements. Or you can take the methanol and stuff it through another zeolite (ZM5? I forget…) and get gasoline…

    So yes, Virginia, I CAN put a NUKE in your gas tank

    And since the carbon never goes away, and any carbon source can be fed to the synthesis reaction process, we run out of Diesel, Gasoline, Kerosene, “petro”chemicals, plastics, you name it when we run out of planet in about 2,000,000,000 years.

    Now you can continue to be worried about “running out” if you feel the need, but I have no such need to indulge that worry. I have other things to worry about that are much more imminent, like an ice age sometime in the next 20,000 years… Heck, it’s going to happen 100,000 times sooner than when we run out of fuels.

    So I say again:

    The idea of “running out” is Broken.

    We never run out of energy or motor fuels, ever.

    We never run out of stuff, ever.

    And this would have been a whole lot less bother to everyone if you had just bothered to read the paper I already wrote on this at the other end of that link…

  286. James P (04:24:17) : Thank you, EM Smith – I hadn’t realised that the WP article had been nobbled. Langoliers were new to me too, so I’m learning, although I can’t help feeling that there should be a comic opera in there somewhere.. :-)

    You are most welcome. They do something stupid, like muck up the Jevons Paradox page; that gets me P.O.d; I write something that will stick in their craw for years… You’d think they would understand positive feedback by now ;-)

    Comic opera? Pirates of Pizz Antz 8-?

  287. TonyB (05:23:11) :
    EM Smith.
    Thanks for your comments.

    You are most welcome.

    Did you ever see my article on William Connelly-the politically motivated gatekeeper of the climate change pages of Wikipedia? Or the reference from them that Wikepedia doesnt have to print the truth just material that is ‘verfiable?’

    Yes, though I’ve lost the pointer to it… I’d like to link to it from chiefio…

    Incidentally, do you intend to publish an easy to read summary on all that is wrong with GISS? They are great articles but difficult to reference to people who do not know the background or only want a three minute read.

    Yes, I do. But frankly I needed a long sanity break. I’d reached the point of understanding most of it (modulo the Python section being a bit sketchy to me) and recoiled in horror. I just needed to “get away from it for a while” and do something clean and sane… Thus the “not running out” pages were born… and the WSW ‘trading markets’ service.

    My intent in the original set was to put up a batch of very technical stuff (hoping some more programmer types might join in, but few ever did…) and then come back and put the “wrapper” on it for “Regular Joes and Janes”. But I reached a point of too much “retch” reaction before I got that part done.

    But I’m Getting Better!!! I’ve gotten re-centered. Had the “yuck” memory fade. Written a couple of the Other articles I wanted to get knocked out. And made some money (have to eat…). So I keep thinking that any day now I’ll get back to the Gistemp J&J story…. Real Soon Now…

  288. Frank K. (05:54:27) :
    E.M. Smith – Thank you for your many lively and very informative posts!

    Thank you for the compliment.

    Congress was *** suing OPEC *** on my behalf in order to bring down oil prices!! (I still wonder how that went).

    I always liked that one… We’re going to sue an organization that is legal under the laws of its home countries. And enforce what how?… It was clearly political pandering and nothing more.

    I also liked the answer of the Exxon exec when grilled about how he set oil prices and he said, roughly “We pick up the phone and find out what price OPEC set that day, then buy oil at that price and process it into fuels.”

    to summarize, last year oil prices HIGH (from market forces) = BAD; this year, oil prices HIGH (from taxation) = GOOD.

    In fact, the constant changing of direction by government is one of the biggest blockages to efficiently choosing future fuels. MTBE!, nevermind. ETHANOL!, nevermind. E-Cars!, …. no sane business can plan with that kind of whipsaw…

    Yes – it’s going to be a long, hot summer (politically speaking)…

    There are times that all you can do is let someone push the meat into the grinder with their fingers … Tell them twice. Then just plug your ears and look away…

  289. Roads (06:52:10) :
    “E.M.Smith (01:34:03) : The oil price today is $61 because the dollar is tanking against all major currencies. ”

    Well, not exactly. The oil price was $147 in July 2008 when $2 = £1.
    Yesterday the oil price was $61 yet the dollar now stands 21% higher at $1.57 = £1.

    Which part of “major” was unclear? ;-) (Sorry, I can’t pass up a straight line…)

    About 1/2 the move has been the economy. About 1/2 the currency. (roughly). Unfortunately, the pound is one of the few currencies in worse shape than the USDollar. (Iceland comes to mind …) Those currencies in resources (Aussy, Kiwi, Loony, Real) or not afflicted with financial woe (Swedish Krona, Swiss Franc and Euro to some extent) or central to the Carry Trade (Japanese Yen) or holding a lot of our foreign exchange deficit (China Yuan) are going up. The pound, due to the emphasis on a finance driven economy heavy in banking, is tanking along with us.

    The time period you look at matters too. During the stock market crash, there was excess demand for dollars as folks sold U.S. stocks. That ended. The treasury printed and handed out a couple of $Trillion. From that point on the dollar started dropping. We coordinated our policies with those of the U.K. … The downhill will now accelerate.

  290. jon (07:12:06) : Jack … are you aware of the environmental mess that has resulted from the mining of shale oil in Alberta?

    IMO has in situ extraction at better profit levels. The folks who mine sands are on a timer as to how long they can compete… Mining sands only really works with the shallow stuff.

    Environmental mess? Well, it was under a few km of ice 12,000 bc and will be under ice again soon enough. There is also a fairly strong reclaimation requirement. But frankly, sand full of oil didn’t start out all that clean to begin with…

    In addition, the extraction of oil from shale is energy intensive (expensive) which has resulted in thousands of layoffs in Alberta over the last year due to the drop in oil prices.

    Well, I almost got to agree with you on the energy intensive issue, then you make this bizzare connection to layoffs. It’s a non-sequitur. That extraction sucks up a lot of natural gas that would be better used directly in CNG cars is true. That has nothing to do with low gas prices getting highest price facilities shut down first.

    Surely, it makes more sense to slow down the rate at which we are using our finite fuel resources i.e. greater fuel efficiency with cars etc.

    Nope, not at all. First off, please review Jevons Paradox. Increased efficiency INCREASES aggrigate usage, it does not conserve. You can keep beating that off tune drum, it’s never going to sound any better…

    Steven Hill (08:00:34) : Sure glad I did not invest in ethanol….the Libs can make you and break you all within one single year. LOL

    I have a thought device for this: The Ministry of Stupidity Speaks. My biggest fear / risk is that The Ministry of Stupidity says something dumb and I’m out 40%. And yes, they regularly kill off a new one…

    jon (10:03:39) : Why not be more conservative with our fuel supplies (more energy efficient) … we already have the technology to do this …

    Because it sucks up some money that could instead be used for something that matters. Why don’t we conserve the Granite we consume? The glass? Both are finite! We have the technology!! Why, because nobody is going to care about resources that are in excess.

    to do nothing but bleat about the rights of fuel guzzling car owners is absoloutley immoral and ridiculous!!!

    Ah, the truth comes out: “immoral”. You have a morality play in your head that others must dance to. Never mind that you are flat out wrong (oil is not scarce, energy is not limited). Never mind that I bought the fuel. Never mind that future generations will be left with far more and better capitol stock that you need. At the end of the day it doesn’t fit your religion, so it’s “immoral”. Got it..

    Repeat after me: There is no energy shortage, and there never will be!

    Don’t you feel better all ready?

  291. The true cost of trying to “$top climate change”

    Here are some of the mind-boggling sums cited by governments all over the world as the cost of the measures they wish to see taken to “stop climate change”.

    In Britain, the Climate Change Act, obliging the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change to reduce Britain’s “carbon emissions” by 2050 to 20% of what they were in 1990 – a target achievable only by shutting down most of the economy. MPs just “nodded through” this lunatic measure without bothering to ask what this might end up costing their voters, but it has now been revealed that the Government’s estimate was £404 billion, or £18 billion a year, or £760 per household every year for the next 40 years.

    If you think that’s a lot of money, hang on to your hat. According to a paper by Professor Bob Carter, a distinguished Australian paleoclimatologist, China and India, as the price of their participating in the UN’s planned Kyoto 2 deal to be agreed in Copenhagen next December, are demanding that developed countries, including Britain, should pay them 1% of their GDP, totaling more than $300 billion annually. Africa is demanding $267 billion a year, and South American countries are demanding hundreds of billions more. In the US, the latest costing of President Obama’s “cap and trade” Bill is $1.9 trillion, a yearly cost to each US family of $4,500.

    Obama talks about creating “five million green jobs” in the US. Meanwhile, a study shows that for every job created in Spain’s “alternative energy industry” since 2000, 2.2 others have been lost.

    Last week, Whitelee, Europe’s largest onshore wind farm, was opened; 140 giant 2.3 megawatt turbines covering 30 square miles of moorland south-east of Glasgow. It was reported that these would generate 322MW of electricity, which would be enough to power every home in Glasgow. Unfortunately, due to the vagaries of the wind, it will actually produce a mere 80MW, a quarter of its capacity. This amounts to a miserable fraction of a conventional station’s output, and all generated at double the cost.

    Such is the pathetic state of British journalism, and BBC journalism in particular, that the thoroughly bogus propaganda claims of the wind industry are never exposed. The true cost of Whitelee will be the £1 billion in subsidies paid over its 25-year life through British electricity bills.

    Try finding that out from the BBC.

  292. Tom in Texas (12:25:07) :
    E.M.Smith, always enjoy your comments. Wish I had your investing advice a couple of years ago.

    Thanks for the compliments. Happy to share advice. And remember “there is always another train leaving the station”…

    My 401K was well diversified, but lost money in every category – “Interest Only” (savings account?) included, since the management fees exceeded the interest. The “Bond” category I assumed was Treasury Bonds, but after reading the small print, discovered the word “mortgages”.

    And that is one of the fallacies that everyone knows is “settled science” in investing. Diversification is a good thing but it does not protect against a market collapse. The only thing I’ve found that does is the “asset class race” and being in one of Cash, Short, Gold, Foreign Currency when the Crazy Ivan is headed at you. FWIW: BE OUT OF BONDS, NOW.

    The only U.S. dollar denominated bond you can hold at this point is a TIP Treasury Inflation Protected Security.

    When a stock crash ends, and the market recovers; when the Fed stops cutting rates and starts raising them BONDS TAKE LARGE LOSSES. Bonds gain when the Fed starts cutting rates. Rates are now near zero. Bonds lose when rates rise. Which way can rates go when they are near zero now?

    My B.O.B. (Bug Out Bag) is ready to go. Don’t plan to leave Texas, just leave the city and head to the hill country till the dust settles.

    Love the hill country. Drove slowly through it one spring. Texas Bluebells? and some red/orange thing everywhere. Herds of goats wandering in the fields. Sigh.

    Our designated assembly area (post quake now; and long long ago post Soviet missile launch — ancient history now) is a little lake about 40 miles south of San Jose. (One blast radius from The Blue Cube at Moffett Field …) Ah, nostalgia for the days of impending nuclear incineration at any moment. Now THAT was something to be worried about! God I miss it /sarc>

  293. Steven Goddard (09:01:24) :

    Jack Simmons,

    You speak both confidently and incorrectly.

    The oil shale deposits in Colorado tend to be in thin, low permeability layers, and tend to be located in some of the most beautiful, forested locations in the state along Parachute Creek – between Vail and Grand Junction.

    The Colony Mine is the largest oil shale mine, and is located right in the Middle of some of Colorado’s most beautiful and unspoiled country.

    http://www.garfield-county.com/

    Steven,

    Please do me the favor of reading my posts. If you do, you will find I said nothing about “mining”.

    Here is a map of the Green River Formation. You can see it covers far more than Parachute Creek. And again, new technologies mitigate against the environmental damages caused by older technologies. You don’t destroy pristine areas, you go around them.

    Remember, one square mile = one billion barrels of oil.

  294. jon (13:09:38) :

    Jack Simmons … is Homer Simpson an employee of yours??? :)

    Finally you concede my points. You are reduced to insulting rather than reasoning with someone.

  295. Roger Sowell (17:07:20) :

    Jack Simmons (07:54:41) :

    Third, new nuclear power plants are clearly one of the most expensive means of producing electricity, at $10,000 per kW to construct. No one in their right mind builds these things unless completely or heavily subsidized by the government. The oil from oil shale would be outrageously expensive if nuclear heat was used. You stated you would “us[e] [nuclear] waste heat to heat up shale.” Waste heat from nuclear reactors is very low temperature, in the exhaust steam that is condensed in the condenser. Not enough temperature to heat shale up to get the oil out. Sorry, that does not work. Second law of thermodynamics is not subject to anyone or anything that tries to avoid or get around it. Never.

    Steven,

    Just on the point above, I’ll get to the others later, here is a reference to a nuclear reactor designed specifically for my intended use for them:

    http://tinyurl.com/cqyjq6

    Notice the comments made regarding the intended applications:

    The Very-High-Temperature Reactor (VHTR) is a graphite-moderated, helium-cooled reactor with a once-through uranium fuel cycle. It supplies heat with high core outlet temperatures which enables applications such as hydrogen production or process heat for the petrochemical industry or others.

    The VHTR system is designed to be a high-efficiency system that can supply process heat to a broad spectrum of high-temperature and energy-intensive, non-electric processes. The system may incorporate electricity generating equipment to meet cogeneration needs. The system also has the flexibility to adopt uranium/plutonium fuel cycles and offer enhanced waste minimization. Thus, the VHTR offers a broad range of process heat applications and an option for high-efficiency electricity production, while retaining the desirable safety characteristics offered by modular high-temperature gas-cooled reactors.

    All nuclear reactors have waste heat, lots of it. That’s why sites next to large bodies of water are desirable. These reactors are designed to generate heat, my intended application.

    Or you just generate electricity and use it to heat your rods.

    Remember, one square mile = one billion barrels of oil. About $50 billion in revenue generating capacity. A few billion for a nuclear power plant is nothing.

    When you’re done, you continue using the plant for electricity.

  296. Jack Simmons,

    You are wildly exaggerating both the commercial potential and environmental safety of extracting kerogen from the Green River formation.

    You believe that you can remove “one billion barrels” of kerogen per mi^2 without causing subsidence or contaminating the water table? You think you can do that without running power lines and roads everywhere? Do you really believe it is possible to extract one billion barrels per mi^2?

    Give me a break. FYI – I used to work as a geologist on Parachute Creek.

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