Category Archives: Energy

UPDATED (3/4): NEW COLUMN: Systemic, Institutional Rot: From Big Freeze In Texas To Fires In California

Affirmative Action, Egalitarianism, Energy, Feminism, Free Markets, Gender, Government, Race, Regulation, The State

NEW COLUMN: “Systemic, Institutional Rot: From Big Freeze In Texas To Fires In Cali,” is on WND, The Unz Review, on Townhall.com.

And a feature on American Greatness:

“… our country is suffering a blackout of intelligence”

Excerpt:

Some blame a quasi, free-market in electricity for the collapse of the electrical grid in Texas, during a winter snow storm, mid-February, with temperatures averaging zero. The same people finger deregulation and isolation from the national and neighboring grids.

The other side has it that an excessive reliance on renewable energy sources, like wind turbines, was the culprit in a grid collapse that saw 40 percent of the power supply fail within hours of the storm, indirectly causing the death of about 60 Texans.

All agree that the oil-and-gas state enjoys both cheap natural gas and abundant wind power, and that its natural resources could have stood Texas in good stead.

The Lone Star State’s human resources are another matter entirely.

Be they wind turbines or gas pipelines; the electrical grid has to be properly maintained. Texas, however, lacked “leadership.” It transpires that the grid had not been weatherized nor winterized in anticipation of a harsh winter—pipelines had not been insulated and wind turbines never deiced.

Leadership is a euphemism for intelligence. Texas in the winter of 2021 will likely be looked upon as a case of systemic stupidity; systemic rot.

Things start to fall apart when the best-person-for-the-job ethos gives way to racial and gender window-dressing and to the enforcement of politically pleasing perspectives.

Likewise has the emergency personnel managing the blackouts for the nation’s largest utility, Pacific Gas and Electric Company, joined California’s political leadership to deliver Third World quality service to Californians.

When it is reported that, “Among the hundreds of people who handled the blackouts from Pacific Gas and Electric Company’s emergency operations center, only a handful had any training in the disaster response playbook that California has used for a generation”—that is a fancy way of saying “affirmative action.”

It doesn’t help that the American Idiocracy is moving at breakneck speed to equate merit-based institutions with “institutionalized racism.”

... READ THE REST.  NEW COLUMN: “Systemic, Institutional Rot: From Big Freeze In Texas To Fires In Cali,” is on WND, The Unz Review, on Townhall.com.

And a feature on American Greatness.

Related post: “East Asian Countries Believe In, OMG, Ability (IQ, Too), Not Equity.”

*Image courtesy here (size matters, wouldn’t you say?)

UPDATE (3/4): Via Unz Review:

What happens when there is an accident in a tunnel in South Korea. (It’s called a sense of community.)

UPDATE II (11/5): California Collapsing Under The Weight Of Affirmative Action

Affirmative Action, America, COVID-19, Energy, Free Markets, Intelligence

When it is reported that “among the hundreds of people who handled the blackouts from Pacific Gas and Electric Company’s emergency operations center, only a handful had any training in the disaster response playbook that California has used for a generation”—you know this is a nice way of saying:

Affirmative action.

The Associated Press found that, “The utility entered 2019 planning to ‘de-energize’ its aging electric grid during autumn windstorms, so that downed lines couldn’t spark a blaze. Yet among the hundreds of people who handled the blackouts from PG&E’s emergency operations center, only a handful had any training in the disaster response playbook that California has used for a generation, The Associated Press found.”

The emergency personnel managing the blackouts for the nation’s largest utility, Pacific Gas and Electric Company,  delivers  third-world quality service to California.

From “When Merit-Based Hiring Is Deemed Racist, Bridges Fall Down”:

When the best-person-for-the-job ethos gives way to racial and gender window-dressing and to the enforcement of politically pleasing perspectives; things start to fall apart.
A spanking new bridge collapses, new trains on maiden trips derail, Navy ships keep colliding, police and FBI failure and bad faith become endemic, and the protocols put in place by a government ‘for the people’ protect offending public servants who’ve acted against the people.

You can be sure that the same fate awaits the task of contact tracing vis-a-vis COVID. It is a highly skilled endeavor, detective work, if you will. The South Koreans, for example, to it to perfection.

Contact-tracing, however, will be used as a job-creation opportunity for the government. Instead of merit-based appointments, state and federal authorities will make politically advantageous appointments .

AP News Wild Fire Hub.

UPDATE I (11/1):
Exactly. Even Tucker, commiserating with fleeing Californians, failed to mention that they pollute every other locality at which they arrive. Idaho, apparently, is getting toxic. How low IQ can you get? Escape a place due to x, y, z; replicate x, y, z in new home.

UPDATE II (11/05): Prop 16 in California may just fail, but, somehow, I think they’ll find a way to retain That Sinking Feeling.

The Unintended, Destructive Consequences Of Renewables

Energy, Environmentalism & Animal Rights, Left-Liberalism, Technology

The Left discovers what rightist conservationists (at least this one) have known for so long. I wrote about how “Commies Cars” (electric cars) trash the environment as far back as … 2002:

Perhaps the biggest obfuscation in the gimmick-car racket—which President Bush has fallen for, if to judge from his energy plan—has to do with the source of the energy. Whether a vehicle is propelled by hydrogen-powered fuel cells or electricity, both electricity and hydrogen don’t magically materialize in the vehicle. They must first be generated. Be it coal, natural gas, nuclear or a hydroelectric dam, these cars are only as clean as the original source of energy that generated the vim that powers them.

(Commie Cars.”)

And from my: “NIMBYs: Not-In-My-Backyard Environmentalists”:

Mining for rare earth metals is not the cleanest undertaking. Hybrid hypocrites prefer by far that it be done by the poor villagers of the Baiyunkuang District of Darhan Muminggan in Inner Mongolia, northern China. There lie the largest deposits of rare earth metals. The Prius is packed with the stuff.

Liberals don’t grasp that the more expensive it is to bring a source of energy to market the greater the pollution it generates.

Now Tucker is popularizing Michael Shellenberger’s wisdom on the problems with renewables:

… solar and wind farms require huge amounts of land. That, along with the fact that solar and wind farms require long new transmissions lines, and are opposed by local communities and conservationists trying to preserve wildlife, particularly birds.

Another challenge was the intermittent nature of solar and wind energies. When the sun stops shining and the wind stops blowing, you have to quickly be able to ramp up another source of energy.

… What kills big, threatened, and endangered birds—birds that could go extinct—like hawks, eagles, owls, and condors, are wind turbines.

In fact, wind turbines are the most serious new threat to important bird species to emerge in decades. The rapidly spinning turbines act like an apex predator which big birds never evolved to deal with.

Solar farms have similarly large ecological impacts. Building a solar farm is a lot like building any other kind of farm. You have to clear the whole area of wildlife.

In order to build one of the biggest solar farms in California the developers hired biologists to pull threatened desert tortoises from their burrows, put them on the back of pickup trucks, transport them, and cage them in pens where many ended up dying. …

it gradually dawned on me that there was no amount of technological innovation that could solve the fundamental problem with renewables.

You can make solar panels cheaper and wind turbines bigger, but you can’t make the sun shine more regularly or the wind blow more reliably. I came to understand the environmental implications of the physics of energy. In order to produce significant amounts of electricity from weak energy flows, you just have spread them over enormous areas. In other words, the trouble with renewables isn’t fundamentally technical—it’s natural.

Dealing with energy sources that are inherently unreliable, and require large amounts of land, comes at a high economic cost.

Why Renewables Can’t Save the Planet,” written by Michael Shellenberger.

UPDATED IV (4/4/019): Did Stefan Molyneux Fail To Properly Credit Ideas From My Book, ‘Into the Cannibal’s Pot’?

Energy, Ethics, History, Ilana Mercer, Intellectualism, Logic, Morality, South-Africa

The implication in this Southern Poverty Law Center article is indeed that, in a 2015 video, vlogger Stefan Molyneux liberally used the material from my book, “Into The Cannibal’s Pot: Lessons for America From Post-Apartheid South Africa,” published in 2011.

The authors at SPLC hate me just as much, so they don’t care to harp on unethical use of material they had traced to me (“Into The Cannibal’s Pot: Lessons for America From Post-Apartheid South Africa”), if there was any. Still, their facts imply that no attribution was made or  direct credit given to me for a Molyneux podcast based on the rather idiosyncratic ideas that came from a chapter in Cannibal titled “APARTHEID IN BLACK AND WHITE: A Strategy for Survival” (pp. 65-70).

Writes the Southern Poverty Law Center:

In 2015 Molyneux published a video wherein he quoted an unnamed historian who claimed that “Apartheid wasn’t an expression of racism but concern over the survival of the white population.” The source for this quote is Ilana Mercer, a paleolibertarian writer and pro-Trump activist. Mercer’s 2011 book, which forms the basis for Molyneux’s YouTube video, is entitled “Into the Cannibal’s Pot: Lessons for America from Post-Apartheid South Africa.” The tome received a glowing review from Jared Taylor’s American Renaissance website. “Apartheid was never based on a theory of racial supremacy; rather, it was a survival strategy for the badly outnumbered Boers,” the review reads. This is a mirror image of Molyneux’s sleight of hand: a decontextualized racism is deemed immoral but it is argued that Apartheid makes sense. The real message Molyneux and Taylor are delivering to their audiences is that the application of racial discrimination in South Africa was essential to ensure white survival (read: dominance) and that force and laws should be applied to keep different races apart.

Of course, the ideas in my chapter, “APARTHEID IN BLACK AND WHITE: A Strategy for Survival” (pp. 65-70), are not quite those expressed by the second-handers.

In any event, one gets accustomed to such lowly practices in this business. But if this is indeed true, and Stefan Molyneux had failed to fully credit this author for ideas that are nearly verbatim from “APARTHEID IN BLACK AND WHITE: A Strategy for Survival” (pp. 65-70)—then this is a new low.

Citing one’s sources is the very essence of ethical thinking and writing. If you don’t, you can’t claim to be an ethical thinker, much less a thinker. You lose all credibility.

It’s also so unmanly—and oh so very common. Yuk.

UPDATE I (11/27):

As was said, “Citing one’s sources is the very essence of ethical thinking and writing. If you don’t, you can’t claim to be an ethical thinker, much less a thinker. You lose ALL credibility.”

Ever wonder why Stefan Molyneux, and many men on the so-called hard right (some of whom came well after me), have never asked me (one of the few people who knows the ins-and-outs of apartheid South Africa) on their shows to speak to matters South African (or to any other matters)?

A LOT OF men are simply uncomfortable with certain women. (Hint: Young blondes showcase them better and are easier to best.) As a result, libertarian men (or mini-men) end up mouthing crass, historically wrong, right-wing talking points, on their shows, about my birth place. Coming from libertarians, this laxness is a disgrace.

At least credit your sources if you don’t want to engage the writer! Before Into the Cannibal’s Pot, nobody spoke about South Africa in any meaningful way in the US, other than the praiseworthy WND reporters, and one or two others liberally credited in my book. You see, I cite my sources (primary and secondary) religiously. Again, many of the johnny-come-lately sorts whom the Mini-Men aforementioned (or hinted at) interview on their limited shows speak a load of right-wing crap about South Africa.

Still and all, some ideas are too idiosyncratic to be generic—which is the case with a hell of a lot of what’s in Into the Cannibal’s Pot.

UPDATE II (11/28): “The Art of the Ego: Review of Stefan Molyneux’s Stupid Book”

If you can get past the author’s redundant liberal preening (it sullies a solid piece), Alexander Douglas makes short work of Stefan Molyneux’s short-on-logic book.

… Molyneux’s first few chapters outline some basic principles of logic. His explanation of ‘logic’ is as terrible as you might expect from someone with neither qualifications nor natural talent (see this review). Molyneux is one of these people who thinks that (barely) being able to do the First Figure Syllogism is ‘knowing logic’?—?the logical equivalent of the Astonishing Human Calculator who can add single-digit numbers in mere seconds or Sir Andrew Aguecheek who can speak languages without book. The really telling thing, however, is how Molyneux deals with his own ignorance. …

… Here is what he says about abduction, for example … Now, many people don’t know what abduction is. Nothing wrong with that. And you might find yourself in an exam, where you’re asked to define abduction, and maybe you missed that lecture, or you drifted off, or you just can’t remember. Then you might just write some bullshit, hoping to get a few marks. Perfectly acceptable behaviour. But if you’re writing a book on reasoning, and you remember that abduction is a form of reasoning but you can’t quite remember what it is?—?can you imagine in that circumstance just writing down some bullshit and hoping to get a few marks? Wouldn’t you just google it or something? Imagine being so devoid of intellectual humility. …

… It does help to show that, while logicians have no claim to be any better at informal reasoning than anyone else, there is such a thing as being godawful at informal reasoning. I’m not sure I knew that before looking at this book. But Molyneux is as bad at reasoning as he seems to be at everything else. Yet somehow, through some Dunning-Kruger pathology, he seems to regard himself as good enough to educate others. He is desperately in need of education himself, although I wouldn’t blame you if you preferred to put him ‘through the fist’ (“There are only two ways to resolve disagreements: through The Argument, or through the fist”). …

Myself, I’ve never been able to get through anything Molyneux writes. Other libertarians, systematic thinkers all, have said the same. My favorite, David Gordon, calls Molyneux’s arguments “often preposterously bad.”

“A (Tiny!) Bit More on Molyneux,” also by Alexander Douglas, delves into the problems of logic.

UPDATE III (11/29/018): On crap output and arrogant overreach. As someone who labors over every sentence she puts out (to the best of my abilities, which are respectable but far from infallible), these points, as made by a professional logician, are good.

Alas, and as noted by Tocqueville in the 19th century and Solzhenitsyn in the 20th, conformity of thought and anti-intellectualism are powerfully prevalent among Americans (the kind who follow Stefan Molyneux type Svengalis) .

Molyneux on logic just humiliates himself. And frankly it’s irritating to have spent years of hard study trying to master some elementary logic and then have some pontificating fraud claim the right to lecture others without doing any work at all

An Open Letter on Jordan Peterson and Stefan Molyneux” By Alexander Douglas.

UPDATE IV (4/4/019):