McCain realization: “[The Waxman-Markey] 1,400-page bill is a farce.

McCain Echoes Hansen: Waxman-Markey is a ‘Farce’ (The Civil War widens among climate alarmists)

by Robert Bradley MasterResource

August 3, 2009

“[The Waxman-Markey] 1,400-page bill is a farce. They bought every industry off—steel mills, agriculture, utilities…. I would not only not vote for it. I am opposed to it entirely, because it does damage to those of us who believe that we need to act in a rational fashion about climate change.”

– Senator John McCain to Stephen Moore, Wall Street Journal, August 1-2, 2009, p. A9.

“The truth is, the climate course set by Waxman-Markey is a disaster course. It is an exceedingly inefficient way to get a small reduction of emissions. It is less than worthless….”

-James Hansen, “Strategies to Address Global Warming,” July 13, 2009.

The death of federal climate legislation in 2009 will not only be because traditional Republicans and conservative Democrats said “no”. It will also be because true believers like Senator John McCain realize that politicized cap-and-trade is all pain and no gain. A scorched earth economic policy that does not meaningfully address a feared “scorched earth” to come is worse than no policy at all.

Consider the conversation between Stephen Moore and Senator McCain in last weekend’s Wall Street Journal:

Since Mr. McCain was the co-sponsor of the McCain-Lieberman bill last year to limit CO emissions through a cap-and-trade system, I ask him about the climate change bill that passed the House last month and he surprised me with his opposition. “I believe climate change is real . . . but this 1,400-page bill is a farce. They bought every industry off—steel mills, agriculture, utilities,” he says.

So you wouldn’t vote for the House bill? “I would not only not vote for it,” he laughs, “I am opposed to it entirely, because it does damage to those of us who believe that we need to act in a rational fashion about climate change.”

And compare this to what NASA scientist, climate alarmist, and Al Gore confidant James Hansen has said about the original version of Waxman-Markey:

“Governments are retreating to feckless ‘cap-and-trade,’ a minor tweak to business-as-usual….

“Why is this cap-and-trade temple of doom worshipped?  The 648-page cap-and-trade monstrosity that is being foisted on the U.S. Congress provides the answer.  Not a single Congressperson has read it.  They don’t need to – they just need to add more paragraphs to support their own special interests.  By the way, the Congress people do not write most of those paragraphs—they are ‘suggested’ by people in alligator shoes.”

And Dr. Hansen later spanked harder on the final bill:

“The alternative approach is Cap & Trade, or perhaps more honestly Tax & Trade, because a ‘cap’ increases the price of energy, as a tax or fee does.

Other characteristics of the ‘cap’ approach: (1) unpredictable price volatility, (2) it makes millionaires on Wall Street and other trading floors at public expense, (3) it is an invitation to blackmail by utilities that threaten ‘blackout coming’ to gain increased emission permits, (4) it has overhead costs and complexities, inviting lobbyists and delaying implementation.

The biggest problem with [cap and trade] is that it will not solve the problem. It may slow emissions, but because of the long lifetime of atmospheric CO2, slowing the emissions does little good. As long as fossil fuels are the cheapest form of energy they will be used eventually. There is no hope that cap and trade can get us back to 350 ppm CO2.

Hansen also addressed his critics on the Left who are politically stuck with Waxman-Markey:

Some environmental leaders have said that I am naïve to think that there is an alternative to cap-and-trade, and they suggest that I should stick to climate modeling. Their contention is that it is better to pass any bill now and improve it later. Their belief that they, as opposed to the fossil interests, have more effect on the bill’s eventual shape seems to be the pinnacle of naïveté.

The truth is, the climate course set by Waxman-Markey is a disaster course. It is an exceedingly inefficient way to get a small reduction of emissions. It is less than worthless, because it would delay by at least a decade or two the possibility of getting on a path that is fundamentally sound from economic and climate preservation standpoints.

And Hansen will not kow-tow to the Administration:

Officials in the Obama administration privately admit that the science demands much more rapid emission cuts than Waxman-Markey would yield, but they say that their hands are tied by a recalcitrant Congress. Is that so? Has President Obama provided direction or guidelines for what he expects from Congress?

Waxman-Markey–aka the Enron Revitalization Act of 2009– is in deep trouble because it fails to either help the economy (the ‘green jobs’ myth) or address alleged climate change. Its death will be bipartisan.

Be sure to visit Robert Bradley’s MasterResource for more insight

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Jack Winters
August 4, 2009 11:26 pm

Why not just put a $2.00 tax on gasoline? That might help pay for this unbelievable
string of bailouts and “stimulus” spending.
The problem with GHG warming is their models can’t explain where the heat is hiding. It’s not in the atmosphere it’s not in the isn’t in melted ice. But it’s there and it is coming to get us. Not to worry the
Chinese and Indians will laugh themselves to
the bank and we will revoke this monstrosity
of a bill like New Zealand did.

August 4, 2009 11:27 pm

Up to now, only Sarah Palin (and Czech president Vaclav Klaus) dared openly to say the whole AGW is BS. McCain says cap-and-trade is BS, because it won´t help even if AGW is real. Both are correct, but Palin is one step ahead. Hats off.

August 4, 2009 11:36 pm

Noob Question for you pro’s out there. What is the relationship between High Pressure systems-High temperatures and Co2? Does Co2 in anyway contribute to high pressure? Thanks

Gene Nemetz
August 4, 2009 11:39 pm

This is all good and fine, but though I have an indescribable respect for John McCain’s military life,I think he has bumbled his way through politics completely relying on his war service reputation to get him to the level he is at in politics, and doing more harm than good on the way.
All the same, thank God Waxman–Markey is running in to resistance.
p.s. THANK YOU Mr. McCain for your service in the military!!

August 5, 2009 12:03 am

McCain’s gutless pandering to the Hysterical Left is the reason we have the worst administration in history. Now he joins Jim Hansen in decrying the Wacky-Malarkey non-solution to the flagrantly imaginary End of All Life from Boiling Seas Like Venus Effect.
I am impressed. Thanks a heap, John Boy, “Friend to All.” Next election I hope somebody runs (for any office) who is not a complete zero. America deserves better than woodenheads running our Gummit. And that’s a bipartisan assessment!!!

p.g.sharrow "PG"
August 5, 2009 12:15 am

Of the pair, I think Palin is the smarter. McCain is an honorable man but he often falls for shallow feel good thinking.
Spent a couple of years in the Alaska bush back in the 70’s, was also involved in that states politics. Checked out Sarah Palin’s resume, was very impressed, and very few can do that.
To my thinking CO2 of 700ppm would greatly improve the habitablity of this planet.
Might even help with the coming cooling as the sun takes a rest from the last hot period.
Better vegetation growth in the shortened growing seasons and better energy balance in the biosphere.
Just the ruminations of an old farmer.

August 5, 2009 1:11 am

Poor Hansen he’s not playing university politics anymore

Pierre Gosselin
August 5, 2009 1:13 am

This is indeed good news: “…and divided they fall”
And these same legislators are expected to run health care!! Yikes!!
The radiative greenhouse effect of CO2 at its current 390 ppm concentration is pretty much exhausted. 700 ppm could lead to a warming of a tenth or two tenths of a degree. That’s it.

Pierre Gosselin
August 5, 2009 1:17 am

Finally it appears America is waking up from this Obama spell they’ve been under the last year or so.

August 5, 2009 2:55 am

Hansen has tire-tracks on him.
Taken for a ride by con artists and thrown under the bus.
He’s just now waking up to the realization that he was used, and that he’s not a buddy to the politicians.
McCain was also used, but not on the science level.
Climate change is real, allright, and climate changes.
Some are just now discovering that nature is not dependent upon man to change the rules of the game. It’s fully capable of taking out most lifeforms on the planet with no help from anybody. Ask the dinosaurs and Ice-Age denizens.

August 5, 2009 3:04 am

This bill cannot die soon enough for me….

Will Delson
August 5, 2009 4:22 am

Good news: McCain opposes the WM Bill. Bad news: McCain is still a true believer in AGW.

August 5, 2009 5:16 am

BJL (23:36:26) :
“Noob Question for you pro’s out there. What is the relationship between High Pressure systems-High temperatures and Co2? Does Co2 in anyway contribute to high pressure? Thanks”
I am not a pro… But I can answer your question easily enough.
It tends to get hot in high pressure areas because these areas are associated with lack of clouds. More sunshine-hotter weather.
There is absolutely no relationship between CO2 and high pressure systems.

August 5, 2009 5:25 am

And the reason there are generally few clouds in high pressure areas is because of the sinking air in them. When air sinks, it warms by compression. As the air warms the humidity falls and the clouds dissipate.

Bruce Cobb
August 5, 2009 5:37 am

Here in New Hampshire, Sen. Judd Gregg is also opposed to H.R. 2454. The disheartening thing is that he does believe in manmade climate change, saying “we must invest in cleaner energy and enhance our research and development of alternative energy, including solar, wind, geothermal, and biomass, which will result in reduced emissions across the country.” They never seem to go the extra step and figure out, ok how much is this “investment” going to cost, and where is all this money going to come from? The unquestioning acceptance of AGW, even by supposed conservatives is mind boggling, and troubling.
He does, at least, believe in producing more domestic oil and NG, as well as nuclear (which I believe may be too expensive, but that’s another story).

chris y
August 5, 2009 6:03 am

Hansen’s words certainly also apply to the juggernaut climate modeling program he helped create in the late 1980’s-
-The truth is, the climate modeling program at NASA GISS is a disaster course. It is an exceedingly inefficient way to get a small reduction in the uncertainty of future climate conditions. It is less than worthless, because it would delay by at least a decade or two the possibility of getting improved observational data on climate that is fundamentally sound from scientific and climate adaptation standpoints.-

Steve in SC
August 5, 2009 6:04 am

McCain has just come to the realization that there are people out there with pitchforks and torches. He is still a disciple.

August 5, 2009 6:05 am

I respectfully disagree with the author’s conclusion. I hope he is right and I am wrong, but here is why they will pass the Waxman bill: the Right wing is about principle and believes the point of principles is to stand for them; the Left believes that principles are for when it comes time to vote, and then you ask for a buyout for your constituency and you vote the party line. Witness the cave-in of the so-called “Blue Dogs” on health care. The fix is in already.
So the Cap and Trade will pass the Senate, and the Senate Leadership will find a couple of Republican Senators to go along with it so they can drag “bi-partisanship pepper” over the trail. Hope I’m wrong. Bet I’m not.

August 5, 2009 6:26 am

Jack Winters (23:26:18) :
“Why not just put a $2.00 tax on gasoline? That might help pay for this unbelievable
string of bailouts and “stimulus” spending.”
It was the rising price of gasoline that triggered the avalanche that is our current recession.
Kill the ethanol program and subsidies (reducing the price of corn, beef, etc.) Invest in US drilling and plant modernization (reduces reliance on foreign imports, lower gas prices that can be taxed to keep current prices in place.) Invest in promising short-term alternative energy production and give tax credits for those as people purchase them. (ex: swamp coolers in the south, solar-enhanced geothermal pumps in the north.)

John Galt
August 5, 2009 6:38 am

Never the less, McCain remains firmly in the AGW true-believer camp. The problem with fighting those people is many of them sincerely believe they must force the rest of us to do something in order to save the world. Those people can’t be reasoned with.
The rest of them? They’re trying to cash in. Why compete in the free market when a few lobbyists can get Congress to send $$$ your way, and protect you from competition? Waxman-Malarkey is load with pork and all they have to do is load it up some more in order to buy the votes needed.

August 5, 2009 6:49 am

The Blue Dogs got an ear-full from their constituents after they voted for Cap’n’Trade, that’s why they’re digging in their heels on ObamaCare. All of Congress is either going to hear the riot act from their constituents during this recess, or else spend their time dodging said constituents.
The fact that no one had read (indeed, could have read) C’n’T before the vote has not gone over well either.
Don’t give up, don’t give into despair, and give your Members of Congress an ear-full yourself.

August 5, 2009 6:55 am

OT — William Connolley has once again censored the Satellite Temperature Measurements page. You can see the discussion regarding the need for an up to date accurate graphic depicting the RSS and UAH satellite data here RSS and UAH graphic update.
If you have a current wikipedia account, please weigh in on the discussion page (you may also sign up for an account they are free). If he continues the censorship I will take this matter to wikipedia arbitration but before that it is traditional to have people weigh in on the discussion page.
Thank you.

August 5, 2009 7:10 am

I was against it also but now that I see McCain and Hansen are speaking out against the bill I will need to reavaluate my position.

L Nettles
August 5, 2009 7:13 am

Steve in SC (06:04:29) :
McCain has just come to the realization that there are people out there with pitchforks and torches. He is still a disciple.
Steve this link is for you

August 5, 2009 7:16 am

Bruce, here is a report on levelized costs of generation, and here is the 2007 EIA report on energy subsidies.
The levelized cost of nuclear is somewhat cheaper than geothermal, and almost the same as biomass. But biomass runs into serious issues of scale (water and land use, insolation, etc) while nuclear doesn’t. Consuming the “waste” from existing reactors is an advantage of more than one of the fourth generation nuclear reactor designs being worked on. And several of the designs, once started up, can be feed raw or even depleted uranium. And the Japanese have a technique for extracting uranium from seawater that is nearly competitive with mining.
Natural gas and coal are the only sources with levelized costs lower than nuclear.

Gary Crough
August 5, 2009 7:27 am

McCain is my senator. I was composing a letter to encourage him to vote against cap-and-trade. Now I can do something more useful!
McCain is always looking for a big cause … that’s why he sometimes seems like a liberal. Anyway, AGW is a big cause. But so is saving democracy. In his farewell speech Eisenhower cited two threats to American democracy … both internal: the Military Industrial Complex and the Scientific-Technology elite (the mutual dependence of government & research to the determent of the taxpayer). AGW and Cap-and-Trade is a good example. My idea was to get the Senator to switch from AGW to saving democracy by looking into the funding of “politically-driven science”. Maybe I still will … but now there is no rush.

August 5, 2009 7:37 am

Llanfar (06:26:59) :
Jack Winters (23:26:18) :
“Why not just put a $2.00 tax on gasoline? That might help pay for this unbelievable
string of bailouts and “stimulus” spending.”
It was the rising price of gasoline that triggered the avalanche that is our current recession.
Not at all dissimilar to our lack of understanding the complex systems that make up our climate, gasoline prices did not trigger the recession. There were many, and in some cases far more powerful influences – none of which the very complex and completley wrong economic forecasting models predicted, that precipitated this recession.
Waxman-Markey is a tragic joke, but where so-called “Environmentalists” have won this battle above reason: the position that politicians take in supporting AGW because it has been marketed as environmentally sound. If you are opposed to the theory (more a hypothesis) then you are of course not environmentally friendly.
I dont like the idea of taxing gasoline, unless the goal is to force US consmuers to buy smaller, more fuel efficient cars. My issue with taxation in general is the fiscally irresponsible behavior of our government. This “bill” is a round-about tax – with lots of potential for further taxation on “evil” corporations – who of course will pass on the burden of these taxes to consumers.

Ken S
August 5, 2009 8:18 am

Jack Winters (23:26:18) :
“Why not just put a $2.00 tax on gasoline? That might help pay for this unbelievable
string of bailouts and “stimulus” spending.”
How about a $3.00 tax on each gallon of gasoline and give a $1,200.00 tax credit paid to anyone with a taxable income (exclude the earned income people).
Adjust payroll withholdings so as to return $100 dollars per month of the tax immediately.
Let the people decide if they wish to spend the 100 bucks a month on gasoline or make adjustments to their lifes so as to retain part of the money for other things.

August 5, 2009 8:35 am

Waxman-Markey was not the only bill that was a farce. From Pewclimate:
\\Summary of McCain-Lieberman Climate Stewardship and Innovation Act of 2005
The Climate Stewardship and Innovation Act of 2005 (S.1151) introduced by Senators John McCain (R-AZ) and Joseph I. Lieberman (D-CT), would limit, from 2010 on, the total greenhouse gases (GHG) emitted by the U.S. electricity generation, transportation, industrial, and commercial sectors to the amount emitted in 2000. The affected sectors represented approximately 85% of the overall U.S. emissions in the year 2000. The bill also would provide for the trading of GHG emission allowances and reductions.
Target: The bill would cap the 2010 aggregate emissions level for the covered sectors at the 2000 level. The bill’s emissions limits would not apply to the direct emissions of the agricultural and the residential sectors. Certain subsectors would be exempt if U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) determined that it was not feasible to measure their GHG emissions. The U.S. Department of Commerce would biennially re-evaluate the level of allowances to determine whether it was consistent with the objective of the United Nation’s Framework Convention on Climate Change of stabilizing GHG emissions at a level that will prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system.
Allowances: An entity that was in a covered sector, or that produced or imported synthetic GHGs, would be subject to the requirements of this bill if it (a) owned at least one facility that annually emitted more than 10,000 metric tons of GHGs (measured in units of carbon dioxide equivalents – MTCO2E); (b) produced or imported petroleum products used for transportation that, when combusted, would emit more than 10,000 MTCO2E; or (c) produced or imported HFC, PFC and SF6 that, when used, would emit more than 10,000 MTCO2E. Each covered entity would be required to submit to the EPA one tradeable allowance for each MTCO2E directly emitted. Each petroleum refiner or importer would be required to submit an allowance for each unit of petroleum product sold that, when combusted, would emit one MTCO2E. Each producer or importer of HFC, PFC, and SF6 would be required to submit an allowance for each unit sold that, when used, would emit one MTCO2E. The EPA would determine the method of calculating the amount of GHG emissions associated with combustion of petroleum products and use of HFC, PFC, and SF6.
Allocation of Allowances: The Commerce Department would determine the amount of allowances to be given away or “grandfathered” to covered entities and the amount to be given to the Climate Change Credit Corporation established by the bill. The Commerce Department’s determination would be subject to a number of allocation factors identified in the bill. The Corporation would use proceeds from the sale of allowances to reduce energy costs of consumers, assist disproportionately affected workers, help low income communities and individuals, disseminate technological solutions to climate change, and aid fish and wildlife in adapting and mitigating the impacts of climate change.
Flexibility Mechanisms: Covered entities would have flexibility in acquiring their allowances. In addition to the allowances grandfathered to them, covered entities could trade with other covered entities to acquire additional allowances, if necessary. Also, any entity would be allowed to satisfy up to 15% of its total allowance requirements by submitting (a) tradeable allowances from another nation’s market in GHGs; (b) a net increase in sequestration registered with the National Greenhouse Gas Database established by the bill; (c) a GHG emission reduction by a non-covered entity registered with the Database; and (d) allowances borrowed against future reductions (as described below). A covered entity that agreed to emit no more than its 1990 levels by 2010 would be allowed meet up to 20% of its requirement through (a) international credits, (b) sequestration, and (c) registered reductions, but not (d) borrowed credits. An entity planning to make capital investments or deploy technologies within the next 5 years would be allowed to borrow against the expected GHG emission reductions to meet current year requirements. The loan would include a 10 percent interest rate.
National Greenhouse Gas Database: The EPA Administrator would be required to implement a comprehensive system for GHG reporting, inventorying, and reductions registrations. Covered entities would be required to report their GHG emissions and non-covered entities would be allowed to register GHG emission reductions and sequestration. The National Greenhouse Gas Database would be, to the maximum extent possible, complete, transparent, accurate, and designed to minimize costs incurred by entities in measuring and reporting emissions. The Commerce Department, within one year of enactment, would be required to establish, by rule, measurement and verification standards and standards to ensure a consistent and accurate record of GHG emissions, emissions reductions, sequestration, and atmospheric concentrations for use in the registry.
Penalty: Any covered entity not meeting its emissions limits would be fined for each ton of GHGs over the limit at the rate of three times the market value of a ton of GHG.//

August 5, 2009 8:39 am

I was an active supporter of McCain AFTER he won the nomination. However, he is in completely over his head on climate and has not formulated a cogent position. He is completely into the POLITICS of the issue, not the underlying science.
But politics is the art of the possible and I’ll take his opposition to Waxman-Markey for the vote in the Senate that it is worth.
BTW, people ought to go over Markey’s history on energy issues. He and Ralph Nader are together on their long opposition to nuclear power. Markey has been the worst sort of demogogue on nuclear and now he’s expanding his portfolio to include coal.

August 5, 2009 8:47 am

Jack Winters (23:26:18) :
“Why not just put a $2.00 tax on gasoline? That might help pay for this unbelievable
string of bailouts and “stimulus” spending.”
I guess you don’t live in a fly-over state. Here in wyoming, the nearest town is always 100 miles away. For those of you that take the bus or subway, it sure seems easy to increase the gas tax. How do you think you have fresh fruit in your supermarket? It isn’t by magic. You increase energy costs, EVERYTHING goes up. This is what happened with ethanol. You keep energy costs low, the entire economy grows. It is as simple as that.

August 5, 2009 8:55 am

The vast majority of those decried here as “liberals” have been consistently misinformed and will change on a dime if given the truth. They are not wedded to a monolithic liberalism. They are wedded to the truth which they are not getting from the media — which is owned by some of the biggest conservatives/corporatists on earth. This does not add up and should be seen as odd. GE owns NBC, “Newsweek”, MSNBC and more so why would they spread the “liberal” gospel of AGW? McCain, Obama, et al are tools. The whole AGW debate may have been a ruse to keep minds off of what is really happening. Like the environmental movement of the 1970s, it diffuses the anger of those who truly want truth, justice and a better world when they think they are participating for the greater good. (Which, in their minds, is the future of your kids and theirs.)

August 5, 2009 8:56 am

Those who think that a $2 tax on gasoline is a good thing would have to agree that a $3 tax would be an even better thing. 50% better, in fact.
So let’s be really, really good people, and make it a $10 a gallon tax. Think of all the poor people we could help. Think of the children!

August 5, 2009 9:14 am

BJL (23:36:26) : “Noob Question for you pros out there. What is the relationship between High Pressure systems-High temperatures and Co2? Does Co2 in anyway contribute to high pressure? Thanks”
Well, CO² is pretty diffuse, so it’s doubtful that high pressure systems are related to CO². There are places, however, where CO² concentrations are much higher than average. Why don’t you look into where those spots are and see if you can detect any resulting temperature or pressure signal using climate records. With Mann-o-Matic statistical handling, you might come up with something…robust.

August 5, 2009 9:19 am

L Nettles (07:13:51) : “Steve this link is for you
But where can I get a set of little Waxman, Gore, Hansen and Pachauri dolls?

Pamela Gray
August 5, 2009 9:21 am

Palin is no better than McCain. They will say whatever is necessary to say at the time to get press, get elected, get funded, etc. Palin has said she believed in global warming during the campaign (via the Katy interview). Now she says she doesn’t. What will she say next time? Come on. It’s a 50/50 guess. If you are willing to risk it, vote for her. My opinion is that these two are classic “oil-slicked-teflon-coated-baby-kissing-back-stabbing-you scratch-my-back-I’ll-scratch-yours” politicians.
I would like to have a list of politicians who have said that CO2 is not warming the planet, and have said that for lets say the last 3 years. Regardless of election time. That would be a good list to have.

August 5, 2009 9:23 am

“We think we have come so far — that the torture of heretics and the burning of witches is ancient history. And then, before you can blink an eye, it threatens to start all over again. … Villains who twirl their mustaches are easy to spot; those who clothe themselves in good deeds are well camoflaged. … [They] will always be with us, waiting for the right climate to flourish, spreading disease in the name of liberty. Vigilance is the price we must continuously pay.”
* — Jean-Luc Picard

Pamela Gray
August 5, 2009 9:27 am

By the way, every representative in the House that voted for the cap and trade bill also can be described as such.

August 5, 2009 9:37 am

If he really is as vehemently opposed as he says, that will make him a double American Hero in my book-Once for getting tortured by Communist barbarians, and once for sticking it to the same once again.

August 5, 2009 9:47 am

tj, saying it doesn’t make it so.
The media is OWNED by the left. Even FoxNews. Left.
Not surprisingly, the left has managed to spin this into a dichotomy too, and it’s wrong. It is absolutely untrue that the “big evil corporations” are the domain of the right.

August 5, 2009 9:56 am

Hansen has always vehemently oppossed cap-and-trade. He would rather see a tax scheme that forces the poor and middle class to reduce consumption.
Surely the powers that be who want all the money and resources will find a way to buy off Palin too.
The only thing that will save us from these carbon monetization schemes is continued cooling of the planet. Eventually, the cold will snap people out of their waking, global warming dream.

P Walker
August 5, 2009 10:23 am

tj – there is an excellent post regarding rent seekers over at Master Resource today . It specifically refers to GE , among others .

Pamela Gray
August 5, 2009 10:24 am

I think there are many politicians on both sides of the divide that would use something not actually entirely true to get something else if they wanted it badly enough. The subterfuge will even be justified once it has been uncovered. Covertness is the name of the game and we are played by both Repubs and Demos.

August 5, 2009 11:08 am

Code T, I didn’t mean to infer any such thing. Extreme liberalism and extreme conservatism are one and the same with a slightly different vocabulary (that is the place the divide exists). They must be totalitarian. Global corporations that completely eliminate competition are not conservative are they? Communism/Fascism are indistinguishable in their effect over the masses.
I first heard of wattsup…. from another blog. The owner their puts it correctly, in my opinion, and I paraphrase — I’m not right wing or left wing I’m truth wing.
We all need to leave our boxes behind, after all, that is what science is all about, right?
I’m with Pamela. The question is who’s playing the Repubs and Demos.

Mark Bowlin
August 5, 2009 11:45 am

The predictor for Cap and Trade is Health Care Reform, specifically single-payer. It is the only possible way under discussion to actually pay for single payer health care. These two terrible bills are linked as the 1.3 – 1.9 trillion raised by Cap and Trade between 2012-2019 (according to Jason Furman) will be required to pay for national health care.

August 5, 2009 11:46 am

Jack Winters (23:26:18) :

Why not just put a $2.00 tax on gasoline? That might help pay for this unbelievable string of bailouts and “stimulus” spending.

Because the demand for gasoline is fairly inelastic. There is only so much that a given consumer can do to reduce their consumption without large sacrifices. I know of one relative in England who gave up a job because she could no longer afford to drive to work. Fortunately she wasn’t the main breadwinner. To make a significant dent in transportation fuel consumption requires a large investment and a major change in technology. The most attractive alternative is a major conversion to diesel for passenger vehicles, such as has happened in Europe.
Unfortunately, diesel has a very strong political opposition in the US. Consequently, we are chasing other technologies that are either immature (hydrogen, electric vehicles) or more complex than diesel (gasoline hybrids). In Europe diesel is taxed so that it is priced attractively compared to gasoline (high test is about 30% more expensive than diesel), whereas in the US diesel has a higher tax on it than gasoline.
Subsidizing the purchase of diesel engines for passenger vehicles might be a better approach, along with a realignment of fuel taxes so that diesel ends up being cheaper than gasoline.
The potential savings are huge. In 2006, 99.4% of the fuel consumption of cars and 94.9% of light trucks was gasoline. Converting to diesel has the theoretical potential of about a 30% improvement in fuel economy. However, theoretical improvements are rarely achieved, so even assuming you get only about half or about 15%, that would represent a reduction of about 8.9% of the total domestic consumption of transportation energy or about 2,454.5 trillion BTUs which at 138,095 BTUs per gallon of crude oil would be a reduction in consumption of about 17.8 Billion barrels of crude per year.
The beauty of this idea is that it would not only reduce dependence on foreign oil, but it would also drastically reduce CO2 emissions. Furthermore, it would do so in a way that would actually benefit the economy. Unfortunately, common sense is often left on the floor of the sausage factory that is politics, so I don’t have a great hope that this would become policy.

August 5, 2009 11:49 am

I noticed a typo, shouldn’t it be the “Taxman-Malarkey Climate Bill?”

August 5, 2009 11:49 am

Pamela, Pamela. A good VP candidate doesn’t contradict what the head of the ticket says. McCain toed the line on AGW, and thus Mrs. Palin being the good little soldier did the same, for the campaign. She has been aggressively pushing for the development of her state’s natural resources all her political career, as well those of the nation as a whole. She is only reverting back to her previously held opinions now that she no longer has to toe the “party line”.
As far Elizabeth’s comment to Mrs. Palin beng bought off, well, there are plenty that already claim she is bought and paid for by the oil companies. Nevermind the fact that she went around the big oil companies to get “her” pipeline deal done. And she demanded that those same oil companies fork over more in royalty payments to the State of Alaska for their Alaskan activities. Seems she doesn’t stay bought.

August 5, 2009 12:27 pm

To think he almost became President. May have even been worse than who we got. The only consolation would have been, he’s old, and … 🙂

August 5, 2009 1:17 pm

Phil. (11:46:20),
Good post. The only part of it that doesn’t pass the smell test [maybe due to incomplete info]:

I know of one relative in England who gave up a job because she could no longer afford to drive to work.

Otherwise I’m in agreement, especially with the potential annual savings of 17 billion bbl of crude. As a true conservationist [not an environmentalist!] that number made me sit up straight and pay attention.
And Mark Bowlin (11:45:55),
Cap & Trade was originally designed so that the government would pay for the healthcare scheme by auctioning off carbon credits, producing huge revenues from businesses that would have no choice but to buy them.
But that’s not what happened. Instead, in order to get the necessary votes to pass W-M, Congress ended up giving away the credits! Now they’ve got a big problem.
Obama wants to pass his healthcare proposal, but the money that was supposed to pay for it is gone — given away for free [actually, given away to buy votes].
The upshot of the whole boondoggle will be quite an enormous tax increase, and not just on “the rich.” The only place where there’s enough money to fund the new healthcare scheme is the middle class. Obama will have to break another campaign promise: his pledge of no tax increases for 95% of the population. It’s either that, or keep his word.

August 5, 2009 1:38 pm

Einstein famously said “When the facts change I change my mind” although he did not in the end follow his own advice. As for Sarah Palin, well, maybe she has been following some of these excellent blogs.
Back on topic, economic theory mandates that if you make an input more expensive as by taxing it, then in the short term the supply curve shifts to the left, so that less goods are produced at a higher price which is somewhere between the original price and the price + tax. Both the manufacturer and consumer shoulder the extra burden. In the long term, firms exit the market (no surprises here) and the price rises to include the full amount of the tax – the full burden of the tax is now bourne by the consumer. It follows from the demand curve that less goods will be consumed at a higher price, which translates to a contraction of the economy when the tax is on something as universal as energy.
The only silver lining to the cloud is the very long term supply curve. This is effected by new technologies which lower the marginal costs of production and increases supply once again. Yet to me, this is such a big IF and such a huge gamble. I am unsure if policy makers understand this.

John Galt
August 5, 2009 1:45 pm

Fascism is not conservatism. Fascism is actually far-left, not far-right. That may be why it’s hard to distinguish from Communism.

August 5, 2009 1:45 pm

“The only place where there’s enough money to fund the new healthcare scheme is the middle class.”
Maybe Obama should take a leaf from the book of Dennis Healey. Healy was the Labour chancellor (treasurer) in the 1970’s who famously boasted he would tax the rich “till the pips squeaked.” As good as his word he raised the upper band of income tax to 80% and additionally decided that income received as interest was a special evil and added an 18% supplemental charge to that. 98% tax on interest! I kid you not. I believe that was the main reason Michael Caine moved to Hollywood. I don’t know if tax receipts went up. I guess not, but hey, why let reality get in the way of taking a position of “leadership” in a “moral crusade.”

August 5, 2009 1:54 pm

BJL Does Co2 in anyway contribute to high pressure? Thanks
CO2 it is only the 3.8 per TEN thousand of the atmosphere. It is heavier than air (Air is composed mainly of 60% nitrogen and 21% oxygen….and 0.038% CO2) so it can not fly away, nitrogen weighs 12, oxygen 32…and CO2 44, so if you look for it…look down.

Domingo Tavella
August 5, 2009 1:56 pm

[snip] ~ ctm

August 5, 2009 2:05 pm

“Fascism is not conservatism. Fascism is actually far-left, not far-right. That may be why it’s hard to distinguish from Communism.”
It’s all the more difficult to understand why Hitler and Stalin were such idealogical enemies. If I was to think of the difference, I would opin that communism is based on the teachings of Marx and Engels who write about the dictatorship of the proletariat. Yet behind this ideaological underpinning, there was in practice, no difference between them.
Socialism is a very different beastie. It always astounds me how traditional socialists have aligned themselves to a plutocratic ideaology which will benefit the rich and clobber the poor. I am referring to cap & trade of course. Maybe they just aren’t as smart as I gave them credit for.

August 5, 2009 2:16 pm

The difference between communism and socialism is the following: Communism is the exploitation of man by man, socialism is the inverse.

August 5, 2009 2:27 pm

Personally, I don’t trust McCain as far as I can throw him. He almost switched twice to the DNC and he’s a believer in AGW. If anything, he thinks this bill is a farce because it doesn’t go far enough in capping and altering our lifestyle.

George E. Smith
August 5, 2009 2:42 pm

Well McCain is still wrong, even though his opinion of the California idiot and Malarkey’s bill is correct.
McCain is still a staunch AGW believer; “I’ve been there and seen the results for myself” , or words to that effect. He’s still a very dangerous ideolog; who believes in sleeping with the enemy.

August 5, 2009 3:15 pm

Looks like cap and trade might be off the table.

August 5, 2009 3:32 pm

@ Smokey (13:17:24) :

Phil. (11:46:20),

Good post. The only part of it that doesn’t pass the smell test [maybe due to incomplete info]:
I know of one relative in England who gave up a job because she could no longer afford to drive to work

It was admittedly an unusual situation of a low wage, part time job with a long commute, but it does illustrate the inelastic nature of fuel demand. In fact, fuel demand is to a great extent pre-determined at the time of vehicle purchase. Clean diesel technology has the potential to permit consumers to continue purchasing the vehicles that they desire the most (i.e. SUVs, large minivans, etc.) or that fit their needs the most without having to pay a huge fuel cost penalty.
According to, diesel engines have a thermal efficiency of 35% to 42%, while gasoline engines are only 25% to 30%. Diesel also has more BTUs per gallon than gasoline (about 138,690 vs. about 125,000).
P.S. My source for my previous comment comes from Table 2.5, Domestic Consumption of Transportation Energy by Mode and Fuel Type of The Transportation Energy Data Book (Edition 27) by Stacy C. Davis, Susan W. Diegel and Robert G. Boundy of the US. Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory (no longer available online). However, Table 2.5 from Edition 28 ( is available at Updating the numbers using the Edition 28 data, the 8.9% of the total domestic consumption of transportation energy becomes 8.8%, 2,454.5 trillion BTUs savings becomes 2,468.27 trillion BTUs and the reduction in consumption of about 17.8 billion bbl of crude per year becomes around 17.9 billion bbl.

Indiana Bones
August 5, 2009 4:12 pm

SunSword (06:55:01) :
This is a precise example of what makes “weakapedia” an utterly unreliable source. No oversight, no quality control, no legitimate editors. Just printed mayhem from a political perspective.

August 5, 2009 4:30 pm

crosspatch (15:15:29) : ” Looks like cap and trade might be off the table. ” Might is the operative word. It may be delayed some, but it will come back like a bad penny. There’s way too much money and political power to be had to let it die. It’s a tyrants dream.

August 5, 2009 4:48 pm

And in case anyone missed it, don’t forget to rat on your fellow citizens about things that upset the Whitehouse. Health reform in this instance, but you can bet it will grow to include Cap&Trade, etc. Sounds like something I’d expect from Chavez.
” There is a lot of disinformation about health insurance reform out there, spanning from control of personal finances to end of life care. These rumors often travel just below the surface via chain emails or through casual conversation. Since we can’t keep track of all of them here at the White House, we’re asking for your help. If you get an email or see something on the web about health insurance reform that seems fishy, send it to ”
Sounds like something I’d expect from Chavez.

Mark Bowlin
August 5, 2009 5:24 pm

Smokey (13:17:24) :
And Mark Bowlin (11:45:55),
“Cap & Trade was originally designed so that the government would pay for the healthcare scheme by auctioning off carbon credits, producing huge revenues from businesses that would have no choice but to buy them.
But that’s not what happened. Instead, in order to get the necessary votes to pass W-M, Congress ended up giving away the credits! Now they’ve got a big problem.
Obama wants to pass his healthcare proposal, but the money that was supposed to pay for it is gone — given away for free [actually, given away to buy votes]”
Well, not yet Smokey. Remember that the Senate has yet to complete its version, let alone reconciliation with W-M. My belief is that a climate bill is being pushed to the right (of the calendar) until health reform plays out. Then if climate revenues are required to fund national health, it’ll be all hands on deck for dems to craft/pass a revenue generating bill.

John Hyndman
August 5, 2009 7:17 pm

Coming to this post a bit late, I apologize.
Something doesn’t ring right with your numbers or maybe I don’t understand your point of reference. Annual U.S crude consumption these days is something like 7 billion barrels. When you say that 17.8 billion barrels can be saved each year, are you sure your source data refers to the U.S.? 17.8 billion barrels is about half of world oil consumption. I’m not sure switching to diesel motors worldwide can bring about that kind of savings.
I am a big fan of European diesel autos, by the way. Europe’s tax and emissions policies have favored a transportation product that we don’t have.
All the best,
John Hyndman

August 5, 2009 7:38 pm


Extreme liberalism and extreme conservatism are one and the same with a slightly different vocabulary (that is the place the divide exists). They must be totalitarian.

Absolutely, totally and completely NOT SO. And I’m sure neither of the “extreme conservatives” would agree with you either.
My conservative leaning comes from watching how stupid liberals tend to be. They allow themselves to be completely and totally blinded by an ideal. Sure, let’s feed the children, sure, let’s save the poor eagles, sure, let’s have peace in our world. But there is a LAW (not a guideline or a principle, a LAW) of unintended consequences.
You can not, and never will be able to, make large social changes by decree. It is physically impossible to change from a petroleum society overnight, no matter how much money is thrown at the problem. We all drive petroleum-fueled vehicles, and most of us don’t WANT to part with our vehicles even if someone comes along with a free replacement. I have what I have for a reason.
Oh yeah, and there’s NO SUCH THING AS FREE (TANSTAAFL). Just because you don’t pay for something at the gate doesn’t mean you don’t pay for it somewhere else. I live in one of the worst socialized health care systems in the world, and the black-hole that it is has consumed our entire budget for decades now. Ever wonder why Canada’s military is so downgraded? Ever drive in this country and see the condition of roads? Most of our “government services” are hacked and slashed in order to pay for health care. Oh yeah, it IS that simple. I personally KNEW people for whom the rationed health care system failed. I say knew, because they are now dead.
And there is a whole wing of the US that thinks they want this. You don’t.
I’d be interested in hearing of ANY liberal-hatched or liberal-implemented scheme that has actually worked or been a net positive, because I bet for every one that someone pulls up I can demonstrate that it was actually a failure that has been covered up or ignored or worse, blamed on the right.
Generally speaking, conservatives want change too, but only for the better. There are many times that it is better to leave things alone and let them naturally resolve themselves than to try to throw money or laws at them to “fix” them. Conservatives wanted improvements to the levee system in New Orleans. Conservatives wanted to rein in Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Conservatives wanted to slow down the bubbles that were forming all around them, knowing they were due to burst. Conservatives do NOT want bailouts, incentives, kick-starts, government owned car companies, or giant intrusive cap and trade ponzi schemes.
The Government doesn’t pay for anything. You do. And if you don’t, they just come and TAKE it.
Ah, what’s the use? You’ve already decided that you have a handle on left vs. right, and like most people you think you’re in the middle.

Pamela Gray
August 5, 2009 8:33 pm

The second the conservative party line expunges itself of its religiousity and psuedo-moral laws (abortion, marriage, end of life decisions, etc) they want stamped into the constitution, I will change my conservative liberal leanings to entirely conservative. The bottom line is this: for all the good that conservatives do, they still want to stick their nose into my bedroom, the ring on my finger, and my life and death decisions. It is the most privately intrusive party we have. On the other hand, the liberal party wants to stay out of my private life but makes the mistake of trying to save the world.

August 5, 2009 10:19 pm

potential annual savings of 17 billion bbl of crude.
Eventually. It might take 5 years (new vehicle designs) to start getting any savings and another 15 years after that to get 1/2 the savings.
Why is diesel taxed higher? Because diesel is used in large trucks. The damage done to roads is roughly as the square of tire loading (IIRC – some one correct me if I’m wrong). So the higher diesel taxes pays for road upkeep.

August 5, 2009 10:22 pm

Pamela Gray (20:33:47),
Absolutely. I’m a libertarian Republican. I am making an effort to change the “conservatives” from within.

August 5, 2009 10:35 pm

Contact yer critters:
House of Representatives
The Senate

August 5, 2009 10:41 pm

Communism: government owns the means of production
Fascism: government controls the means of production
Both are variants of socialism. Socialism is a “spread the wealth” philosophy.

August 5, 2009 10:55 pm

Paying someone to plant trees to sequester carbon is a big rip-off. After 24 years of tramping through National Forests as an Engineering Geologist, I have seen trees grow, trees mature, trees grow old and fall on the forest floor to decay and give of carbon dioxide or be eaten by methane emitting termites. So much for carbon sequestering. The only way to sequester carbon for the time of human kind existence is to precipitate it as limestone on the ocean floor and bury it with hundreds of feet of sediment. Even then some volcano will grab it up and belch it back into the air again as carbon dioxide.

August 6, 2009 12:21 am

Pamela Gray (20:33:47) :
Sorry, but I gotta disagree with you in this one. The notion that society does not have an interest in your sex life, your life-time alliances and how your life ends is just plain false. Whether the class is Intro Soc, Deviance or Cultural Anthro, I still have to deal with a chapter on either sexuality or family structure… so I ask the kids, “ahh, any of you got a hot cousin? Ever think of dating him…..” even better, in the gerontology chapter…. “hmmm? Do you think your grand parents are still doing it?” After calling in maintenance to deal with the vomit we may. perhaps, start dealing with reality. Norms exist for a reason. Ask Thomas Hobbes or John Locke.

August 6, 2009 12:34 am

@ John Hyndman (19:17:22) :
The trouble is that the table states gasoline consumption in trillions of BTUs. I tried to convert to barrels of crude by dividing the savings in trillions of BTUs by the number of BTUs per barrel. That may not be the best way to do the conversion. If someone knows of a more correct way to convert trillions of BTUs of gasoline to barrels of crude, I would be most grateful. In any event, the potential savings is huge.
@ M. Simon (22:19:28) :
Your point about the time it would take to achieve these savings is very accurate, but the technology and infrastructure to begin immediate conversion to diesel is already developed and the potential savings well known. Conversely, alternative technologies for fossil fuel savings suffer from technical difficulties, infrastructure issues and complexities. The most promising alternative, hybrid gasoline vehicles, can be improved upon by roughly 30% by making them diesel hybrids. Battery technology has a long way to go to make all-electric vehicles a practical alternative and infrastructure to recharge them is also a big issue.
Hydrogen is, for the foreseeable future, a dead end. First of all, it is not found in nature in a form from which energy can be readily extracted. It needs to be manufactured with processes that use up about as much energy as it contains, which makes hydrogen compete with other energy storage methods like batteries. In other words, the energy to manufacture hydrogen needs to come from somewhere else. Furthermore, at present hydrogen is being manufactured from fossil fuels, so an alternative source needs to be developed if we are to find a substitute for fossil fuels.
Furthermore, a recent trial by the Valley Transportation Authority in San Jose, California using 3 hydrogen-fuelled buses is even more discouraging. According to a report issued early last year and reported by the San Jose Mercury News on February 26, 2008,

the buses cost $51.66 to fuel, maintain and operate per mile compared with just $1.61 for a 40-foot conventional diesel coach. They break down much more frequently, and replacement parts are next to impossible to order. … But the VTA’s early results are not encouraging. Although the cost of a new hydrogen-fuel-cell bus has fallen from about $3.5 million to $2.5 million, a diesel coach costs about $400,000. And ZEBs have on average traveled 1,100 miles before needing repairs in the VTA trial, while a typical diesel bus covers about 6,000 miles.

The biggest cost component was parts, with a cost per mile of $34.40.
Further, according to a VTA memo dated January 24, 2008,

Because the fuel cell stack is the essential component and a major cost of the vehicle, a major purpose for this demonstration program is to determine the life and/or durability of the fuel cell stack. Fuel cell stacks averaged less than 17,000 miles before replacement. (Each bus is powered by two Ballard fuel cell modules P5-2)

Furthermore fuel losses are a huge problem. From the memo:

The performance of the fueling facility was consistent and operated with an efficiency of approximately 50%: that is, for every DGE hydrogen dispensed into the bus, a DGE hydrogen is lost into the atmosphere.

That would be like spilling one gallon of diesel for each gallon consumed by the engine. Reduction of such losses to minimal levels may be a challenge.
Also, the main manufacturer, Ballard, a pioneer in fuel cell technology has stepped back from this effort. From the memo:

However, Ballard Power Systems (Ballard), the manufacturer of the fuel cells and integrator of the system, has indicated that the fuel cells in these buses are old technology; and Ballard will not develop new longer-life fuel cells of this design and no longer design vehicle integrations. Furthermore, Ballard Power Systems will no longer produce various components and parts for these vehicles.

Clean diesel should be the logical choice for near term reduction of both oil imports as well as CO2 emissions. It seems to me that it has both a greater potential for CO2 emissions reductions as well as a much lower cost (in fact, probably a benefit) to the economy.

layne Blanchard
August 6, 2009 6:05 am

I’m happy these two nitwits (McCain and Hansen) …well, ok, ONE nitwit, and ONE Eco-zealot….have ANY REASON whatsoever to oppose the lunacy of Waxman-Markey. Infighting among the faithful will doom them to failure….
But I also find it comical that Hansen in particular is saying, this bill doesn’t STICK A KNIFE IN OUR THROAT and bleed us out quickly enough, so it’s worthless!
McCain will come around if he gets an education on the issue. I’m afraid Hansen is lost in the Eco-vapor forever.

August 6, 2009 7:29 am

@ John Hyndman (19:17:22) :
I forgot that the answer to life the universe and everything was 42. I should know better. Anyway, if you divide my previous estimate of the savings by 42, you get an approximate savings of about 426 million bbl of crude per year

Pamela Gray
August 6, 2009 7:36 am

I totally concur with the diesel statement. My BF drives a diesel Jeep sport wagon and gets 21 mpg with no maintenance (what would you need to “oil?”). He can pull anything he wants behind it and its only a 6 banger. I run a ranch so my Jeep is an 8 cylinder with a tow package and on demand low 4wheel drive. It is a bit of a gas guzzler at 18 but I need that kind of power to run a ranch so don’t tax me and then tell me I can’t increase the price of ^%&*^$ meat!!!!!!

Chuck Bradley
August 6, 2009 8:11 am

re Curiousgeorge (16:48:56) : I will take advantage of your offer to rat to Obama.
I plan to send the complete bill with a note “This smells fishy to me.”
Thanks for the inspiration.

August 6, 2009 8:23 am

M. Simon (22:41:58) :
“Communism: government owns the means of production
Fascism: government controls the means of production
Both are variants of socialism. Socialism is a “spread the wealth” philosophy.”
I understand this is a tongue-in-cheek statement. However, some explication is in order, imo. Both variants are a “spread the near-poverty” philosophy. The elites who control the government and who “control” those who control the means of production live high on the hog, while everyone else — unless they are a relative or otherwise well connected — bottom-feeds the left-overs. As a modern classical liberal (a what?), I believe that government is essential for practical reasons, one of which is national defense. What the private sector cannot solve, government gets to work with attempts to solve; what problems the private sector creates, government regulates — mainly to keep competition and equality of opportunity alive. James Madison is alive and well in modern classical liberalism.
I rue the Enron days when private industry took over power generation (see CA for example); public utilities did a far better job, especially in competition with private ones. It is not just government regulations that created a dearth of new power generation for increasing populations. Those corporations found they made far more by limiting production than by enhancing affluence. Those private industries have globalized with our dollars and are paying the way for the cap-and-trade travesty — including buying our present government.
We must stop calling the media “the main stream media” (MSM); it is “the corporate-controlled media” (CCM). Who are those (global) corporations and what are they telling their minions (there are few investigative or educated reporters left) to report and to ignore? It is time for citizens to take back our country and our world.

August 6, 2009 9:55 am

All this talk of diesel is ignoring one simple fact: the amount of diesel and gasoline derived from a barrel of oil is fairly constituent. On average you get 19.4 gallons of gasoline and about 7 to 10 gallons of diesel per barrel of oil. Yes, it does depends on the type of oil, as Venezuelan crude yields little gasoline (about 5%), whereas Texas or Arabian crude yields about 30% gasoline. And yes, the refiners can shift somewhat to get a higher yield of diesel vs gasoline, but you will still end up with more gasoline than diesel. There is a reason gasoline became the fuel of choice for autos, not diesel.

Jeff Alberts
August 6, 2009 10:10 am

Pamela Gray (07:36:46) :
I totally concur with the diesel statement. My BF drives a diesel Jeep sport wagon and gets 21 mpg with no maintenance (what would you need to “oil?”).

Well, umm, you need to oil the cylinders, the cam shafts, all that moving stuff. Though diesel is “fuel oil” it’s not a great lubricant in that respect.

Indiana Bones
August 6, 2009 10:40 am

M. Simon (22:41:58) :
Communism: government owns the means of production
Fascism: government controls the means of production
Both are variants of socialism. Socialism is a “spread the wealth” philosophy.

Interesting to note that all the above systems worship competition via gaming and sports (e.g. 1936 Olympic games.) But when it comes to accepting market-based competition, it is an unholy creator of privilege. A successful businessman is evil. A successful athlete a god.

August 6, 2009 5:42 pm

@ Tarnsman (09:55:24) : I’m not totally up on refining technology and percentages, but I believe jet fuel is also a diesel type product, correct? Then there’s shipping (bunker oil?), and various petrochemicals (plastics, fertilizers, etc. ) Anyway, I agree with you that it (switching to totally diesel) is not as simple as it sounds, if only because of massive up-scaling. Nothing ever is. And what would we do with all that left over gasoline? Maybe we could convert all the trucks, buses, and trains to gas. 😉
Similar problems with other technologies, such as electric, bio, and so on. Scaling, logistics, etc., are the really tough problems. Making ethanol is simple. My granddaddy was real good at it. 🙂 Transporting, storage, etc. of the inputs, as well as the finished product, is quite another problem.

August 6, 2009 5:47 pm

Chuck Bradley (08:11:55) — Do you have the complete bill? Does anyone?

Roger Knights
August 6, 2009 6:20 pm

Vincent wrote:
“Einstein famously said ‘When the facts change I change my mind'”
That was Keynes who said it.

Roger Knights
August 6, 2009 6:42 pm

I believe jet fuel is also a diesel type product, correct?”
No, it’s kerosene.

August 6, 2009 7:03 pm

@ AnonyMoose (17:47:14) :
“Chuck Bradley (08:11:55) — Do you have the complete bill? Does anyone?” . Search on Bill Number (dropdown box ) HR2454. There are 4 versions currently. All 4 are available.

August 6, 2009 7:12 pm

@ AnonyMoose (17:47:14) : PS: the PDF version of HR2454 that is on the Senate Calendar is here:

a jones
August 6, 2009 7:18 pm

No. More or less the petroleum industry can provide the fuel needed.
Standard Oil before it was broken up concentrated on supplying lamp oil, essentially paraffin [UK] Kerosene [US]. But whatever it’s other sins it was much more efficient than it’s rivals by turning heavier fractions into paraffin wax for candles and burning the lighter petrol, gasoline, fraction on site for power.
Except for Standard Oil the lighter gasoline fractions were a throwaway product as indeed were the heavier ones.
So uncertain was the supply of fuel for spark ignition engines that Henry Ford built his model T to run on either gasoline or ethanol.
Likewise a British government was so worried about suppliers diluting lamp oil with lighter and dangerously inflammable petrol, gasoline, that in 1908 it passed the Petroleum Act which specified, and still does, the permitted flash point of paraffin [Kerosene].
The rise of the motor car and it’s demand for gasoline used all the production capacity, so that by the 1930’s the price of gasoline was about four times that of heavier fuel oils which were so cheap they rivalled coal as many had predicted. A point not lost on the British Admiralty which decided as early as 1908 to use dual coal/oil fuelling in all future designs.
The industry responded to the vast excess of heavier fule oil and the demand for lighter fractions by Cracking the heavier oils: conversely countries which had no oil supplies developed synthesis techniques to turn coal into oil.
True modern technology is a little more sophisticated than that of nearly a hundred years ago but the principle is the same.
The only real difference is the availability of natural gas, which is not only abundant around the globe but cheap to extract. And compared to oil cheaper to process into clean refined products too.
It is in the end only a question of price. At a price you can can have all the liquid hydrocarbons you require as might suit your needs. For the next few centuries anyway for there is no shortage of supply.
You pays your money and you takes your choice.
Unless you are worried about CO2 of course. In which case you will become very cold, poor and starving.
Kindest Regards.

August 7, 2009 8:44 am

Administrator Refers Senators To Source ‘Independent of Political Appointees’
Washington, D.C. – In a letter to Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), Ranking Member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, and Sen. George Voinovich (R-Ohio), EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson summarily denied the Senators’ request for economic analysis of the Waxman-Markey bill and how it would affect families, small businesses, and farmers. In her response, Jackson implied that EPA’s analysis is politically biased by referring the Senators to a separate analysis by the Energy Information Administration (EIA), which, she said, “operates independently of any political appointees.”
So the EPA is secret now?
Actually the lazy EPA is using only regurgitated outside information and it is embarrassing they can’t produce their own work or findings.

Leland Palmer
August 8, 2009 8:19 am

Hi all-
I think it likely that the Senate will make a deal with pro-nuclear advocates, and pass a compromise climate bill in the fall.
This would be a very good thing, I think.
Waxman/Markey, and the Senate version of it, are way too weak, but they do start the process of massive industrial change that will be necessary to head off AGW. The clean energy bank is a good thing, and may make it easier for American firms to turn American clean energy inventions into American clean energy industries.
Opponents of the bill would not vote for a carbon tax, either.

August 8, 2009 12:03 pm

Leland, of course opponents would not vote for a carbon tax. Since you seem to have missed the most important part, I’ll restate it here:
I’m very sorry that you think the current level of ultra-clean combustion already mandated for industry and transportation is “dirty”, but in that you are completely wrong. The vast majority of emissions from energy is harmless H2O and CO2. The real tragedy is that CO2 is being called “dirty”, which it is NOT.
The obvious next step of these dishonest people is to claim that H2O is dirty… it is, after all, a “chemical”.

Pamela Gray
August 8, 2009 12:52 pm

The real problem is unstable and high energy prices. The only way to in a hurry stablize energy prices in the cheap range would be to take over world oil sources from terrorist leaning cartels, and long term for developed nations to source cheap energy internally or flat out own external cheap energy sources.
I firmly believe that the current economic woes came from spiraling energy costs due to cartel-set barrel prices rising above the $50.00 mark in chaotic ways. It destabilized industry worldwide in an every increasing snowball till it closed down housing, manufacturing and industry, exports, etc. leading to job loss and and an end to beyond bare-bones spending by the common person.
Even now, barrels and barrels of cartel oil are being held in on-land tanks and offshore in tanker after tanker, just sitting there, yet the price keeps jiggling up and down and mostly up. That oil should be forced into the market, lowering energy costs, and putting the world back to work. And then those that held onto it should be brought to world courts for bringing harm to the world by forcing prices higher than supply and demand warrants. It’s time we stopped financing limos and harems among the hamper heads.
CO2 is just a little bug on the ground compared to what is really happening.

August 9, 2009 8:03 am

Quoting Vincent:
“I believe that was the main reason Michael Caine moved to Hollywood.”
You can add Alfred Hichcock and half the Beatles (George and Ringo) to the list of British tax refugees. There were no doubt many more.

August 9, 2009 9:47 pm

Bipartisan opposition is emerging in the Senate to a plan by House lawmakers to spend $550 million for additional passenger jets for senior government officials.
The resistance to buying eight Gulfstream and Boeing planes comes as members of both chambers of Congress embark on the busiest month of the year for official overseas travel
So it is not avout less CO2 It is about taxing us.

August 15, 2009 7:52 am

Climate can’t even be measured for more than a few days. my weatherman seldom gets it right. Why don’t we control earthquakes, volcanos, underwater eruptions, and all other earthly phenomenon. It makes as much sense as climate change—by Man. Gore is the father of this great lie(actually it was a communist scheme). We’re being scammed. Too many have jumped on the money wagon and perpetuated the great lie. Man does not cause global warming. I’m constantly amazed at “the depth of dumb in washington” and congressmen who can’t read or understand the bills they foist on us. God help us!

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