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« Fair Division 101 | Main | Ruminations - 8may12 »

06 May 2012

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Russ Steele

I just put this on my Kindle Fire. It includes preparations for economic disasters.

The Prepper's Pocket Guide: 101 Easy Things You Can Do to Ready Your Home for a Disaster!

Just back from B&C where I bought a metal garbage can to store our unused but still serviceable lab tops, spare cell phones, scanners and ham radios, just incase we get another Charrington Class Super Flare from the sun. The best preventative is being prepared.

THEMIKEYMCD

Hollande headline should read... "French Suicide"

Imagine the worldwide population shift that would occur if a free society (republic/capitalist structure) was birthed somewhere with decent weather. A boy can dream.

Eat the Rich = envy/hate

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=661pi6K-8WQ

billy T

Viva Le France. The French have had made some major contributions to the world, namely the way they kiss their pets, aka French Kissing. I will blow the French Horn and give you more reasons to admire Freedomland: France was found tied to a large outcrop of Alpine mountains at the end of the English Channel. Founded by the vertically-challenged psychopath Napoléon Bonaparte, France nevertheless grew into the tall and muscular nation it is today. The French are renowned for fermenting excellent cheese, wall making, brewing fine wines, hurling sarcastic retorts at the British, and their use of walls. The primary industry of France is “fine” wine production, coupled with the energy industry, powered by burning automobiles that have been left unattended for over 30 seconds. France also has a thriving industry producing French bread for people all over the world.

Douglas Keachie

If the rich keep it up,grabbing everything they can, just because it's there, eat the rich may not be envy or hate, it may be survival. I wonder which force is stronger, the free market, or millions of starving people? Obviously we are not there yet, but it too makes for an interesting gedankenexperimente.

I see the train has pulled out from the station on answering how you are going to hire all the excess super brights from the top 100 colleges to form a new set of teachers in our schools. BTW, I noticed that buyouts were never mentioned, but that is a way of getting rid of teachers found unable to boost test scores, every teacher who did not attend one of the top 100 colleges in the country. Approached individually, everyone has a price.

Earl Crabb

Always a lot of sneering where the French are concerned...We saved their pathetic asses in WWII...Their snobby French attitudes...Even during the '04 campaign it was said of John Kerry 'he looks French'...Always forgotten...French sailors and soldiers who died for the American revolution...Then there's that statue in NYC...

billy T

Well, the Asian markets have tanked since the opening bell when the European election results started coming in. Once again the hordes are rushing to the safety of the US Treasuries as risk takers (evil investors) suddenly realize that the Euroland is more riskier than yesterday. Darn, that means Treasuries will continue to stay low which hurts our elderly who buy bonds and count on the interest to keep dog food on the table. Mr. Crabb, without the French we would have never won the Revolutionary War. In the spirit of gratitude for the French, I will point out two good things about the French. First, 17 countries in Europe are in a recession if you count Britain. France is not one of them. Their unemployment rate is a measly 10% which is normal for France. Nothing out of the ordinary and they don't fall into recession at 10% unemployment rate. They must be doing something right. Second, France is a beautiful country as well as being Algeria's largest Colonial outpost. There, happy now? The point of these elections is that "austerity" is now a dirty word. Kinda like liberals shedding the label for the more palatable term "progressive". So, no austerity and that means business as usual which also means spend and borrow and spend and tax and spend and borrow and spend and tax more to spend more and borrow more. Gee, that will solve everything caused it has worked so well thus far. I am saddened that there is no solution in sight. Maybe a worldwide depression. At least France is not in a double dip recession like Britain. Greece has been in a recession for 7 years now and they just voted to have their bailouts yanked from under them. And their GDP has shrunk 20% as well. The United States is in recovery now, thank goodness. Think we are entering our third year of recovery. Life is good. The average recovery throughout our history is 4 years, sometimes 7 years but on average 4 years and some change.. Hmm, looks like we are about due for another recession within a couple of years. Just about the time the IMF demands we pony up more to rescue Old Europe. They can go eat snails.

George Rebane

A correspondent sent me this perspective from the UK on the French election.
http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/commentators/nabila-ramdani-a-fiercely-leftwing-leader-to-strike-fear-into-the-hearts-of-frances-rich-7718666.html

Investors, please fasten seat belts.

Douglas Keachie

The Krugers are getting randy.

"oh Lord, give us each day our daily awful off the wall semi pun."

Douglas Keachie

"was birthed somewhere" but certainly not in Kenya!

Earl Crabb

I don't mind a little french dipping from time to time, Mr. T, but I always like to remind everyone what a pivotal role the froggies played in our independence. We would still be speaking english if not for them. And I know that His Majesty Louis only did it to annoy the limeys to the north, but no one in the colonies was complaining then. 'Twas only afterward that John Adams was ready to switch loyalties to our former oppressors, and by then the aristocracy had been replaced by the Occupy Versailles movement. Even so, they thought enough of us to build a statue that has become synomymous with America and the dream of freedom. The French survived Mitterand, hopefully they'll survive the current government to supply us with jokes for another hundred years.

billy T

Lest not forget they sold us millions or acres of land via the Louisiana Purchase for a buck an acre. The nasty Brits persecuted the French Canadians which gave us our modern day Cajuns. Our histories are intertwined. Family history has it that there was even a Frenchie in the woodpile, but she got divorced out the family before she could reproduce and spoil the bloodline. I do like French cut string beans in casseroles. Anything is better than Limy Beans.

Ryan Mount

The Germans to the French (and others): no thank you. We paid off your car, and now you're asking for gas an insurance as well. And to top it off, you won't stop drinking. So, again, no thank you. Das gefällt mir nicht. Danke.

The Romance and other countries better watch with their teenager-like complaining. I wouldn't be all surprised to see Germany return to the Deutsche Mark or even a *new* currency rather than indulge in more rounds of funding.

Douglas Keachie

Wonder why those clever Germans are subsidizing their solar installs with a 4.6 cent/kwatthour surcharge on everybody else? maybe WWII is still affecting their thinking, Rumania failed, with some help from the Allies.

"Germany is one of the world's top photovoltaics (PV) installers, with a solar PV capacity as of 2011 of almost 25 gigawatts (GW). The German solar PV industry installed about 7.5 GW in 2011,[2] and solar PV provided 18 TW·h (billion kilowatt-hours) of electricity in 2011, about 3% of total electricity.[3] Some market analysts expect this could reach 25 percent by 2050.[4]

Large PV power plants in Germany include Senftenberg Solarpark, Finsterwalde Solar Park, Lieberose Photovoltaic Park, Strasskirchen Solar Park, Waldpolenz Solar Park, and Köthen Solar Park.
Contents"

Douglas Keachie

Or at least the fear of being dependent on foreign and polluting energy sources. The Allied raid did not actually slow down the Romanian refineries, despite incredible costs to the Allies.

George Rebane

DougK 1022am - the world has known for some time now that the German green energy subsidies have been a failure, and are rapidly being phased out - even RR commented on that.

GeorgeR 29jan12 741pm - Germany has suspended biofuel subsidies and is now taxing it. Also, remaining green subsidies are "wreaking havoc on German economy".
http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/06/22/green-subsidies-wreak-havoc-on-german-economy/

For a snoot-full on the German disappointment just google 'German energy subsidies'. But it's understandable that progressives are a bit off base on this news because for some odd reason the lamestream has been very quiet about that.

RyanM 1012am - Agreed, and Merkel's reasoning appends, 'Es gefällt mir nicht, weil es nicht funktioniert überall.'

Ryan Mount

Gotta love the Germans, George. They don't like to waste anyone's time, including their own.

I traveled there a few years ago on business. I was quite excited as I studied German from Junior High through College. I approached my hotel front desk and said, "Guten Morgen, wie geht es Ihnen? Ich bin Ryan...."

I was cut off mid-sentence and the clerk started speaking to me auf Englisch. I asked, "was my German poor?"

And she replied, "No sir. It's just faster if we converse in English."

George Rebane

RyanM 1143am - have had the exact same experience in Germany. But discussing politics and world affairs with various German friends over after dinner schnapps, German is the main fare with an interesting mixture of English thrown in. I do believe that a certain amount of ethanol loosens barriers to a person's linguistic reserves.

Years ago in Malmö, we were at a family dinner with about 6 or 7 couples eating crayfish and drinking akvavit. The attendees were from all over Europe, we were the only Americans. The lively conversation went on for hours (typical in Europe) and was conducted in an amalgam of German, English, Swedish, Estonian, and French. It was absolutely delightful since after a while we each began to inject into our offerings words and phrases from languages that were unknown to us pre-akvavit. As you are aware, Europeans consider people educationally impaired who do not speak one or two languages beyond their own.

billy T

Mr. Mount, lets not fall into the trap of one country being better than another. It sounds sooooo non pc friendly. The Germans gave us green beer, or was that the Irish. The Brits gave us warm beer and cold women. Bad combo. When I was in Norway, I heard Finnish jokes. When in Spain I heard jokes about the next town down the road. At the next town I heard jokes about the last town. When I was in Nebraska I heard Iowa jokes. "How do they practice safe sex in Iowa? They spray an orange X on the sheep that kicks." Heck, when I was in Spokane I heard Idaho jokes and Washington jokes in Idaho and I heard California jokes in our nation's capital. Even in mild mannered British Columbia I heard Alberta jokes. At the time Alberta vacationers flocked west to vacation in the Canadian Southwest (BC) with their bright yellow license plates on their big motor homes. The polite residents of BC called them "the yellow peril". But Germany does conjure images of the Nazis and the concentration camps to this very day. One must be sensitive when joking about or praising Germany. I had a relative who died in a concentration camp, so it is especially hard for me to joke about Germany. The dear relative was in the camp. One night he got drunk and fell out of the guard tower. I hope you can respect my family's tragic loss.

Gregory

George, until Wikipedia includes the information in the article he finds, your token loony leftist just won't know about it.

The huge German PV manufacturer Q-Cell declared insolvency a month ago; not even shifting most production to Malaysia enabled them to weather the PV storm.

Ryan Mount

On a related note, I had a colleague who worked in Dresden. During one of our conversations, I asked about the bombing of the city back in 1945 and wondered if that occupied his (or his family/friends') thoughts.

He replied no. The Germans, like most other people on Planet Earth, had other things to concern themselves with. In his case, it was 4:30pm, which meant beer time.

billy T

And yes, Mr. Crabb, I tell Vlad The Impaler jokes and joke about the unpopularity of the Susan B Anthony dollar that resembles a two-bit piece. I just finished reading the biography of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg "My Life as a Beauty Queen". I am part Native American that had my tribe wiped out (the Pocatwatalots) so I can throw stones at everybody. I am a descendant of Harriet Beecher Stowe and I tell libbowel jokes. Also related to Julia Ward Howe who stole the music to John Brown's Body and wrote the Battle Hymn of the Republic. It has taken years for my family to get over the scars of having liberal women in the family tree. One ancestor was an Irishman whom the Queen ordered his head on a platter. He escaped and they never found him, lol. Another relative cornered the wheat market in the 1800's, thus bringing the first trading reforms and a host of laws. Hunt Brothers were too late to the party. Another was a political reformer in Chicago who got run out town and ended up buying a peach orchard in what is now adjacent to Knotts Berry Farm. As Jimmy Buffet would say "If we couldn't laugh we would all go insane." Too late for some of us.

Douglas Keachie

My view of Greg's view of my use of Google:

TheDroids

Gefällt dir das nicht? ~ T. S. Goodknight ~

Model T, you're funnier than I am.

Let's see, how long was GM in bankruptcy? Where are they now? Who here claims ownership of zero solar panels of one form or another?

George Rebane

DougK 1233pm - "Who here claims ownership of zero solar panels ...?" Could you please bring that repartee back to your 1022am about "... those clever Germans are subsidizing their solar installs ..."? Somehow you dropped that thread.

BTW, I do claim "zero ownership", but have no problem installing them as soon as they start making financial sense (think IRR).

Douglas Keachie

Given the economic boom times we live in, it is unreasonable to think that solar will be a good investment, unless of course, chaos does ensue, and all that oil stops showing up on our shores.

"Despite its significant potential, solar energy faces major challenges, including a lack of cost-competitiveness when compared to conventional energy, though the disparity is being alleviated by the continuing decline of solar cell prices on the world market. Worldwide, solar energy development has grown at an unprecendented rate of over 40% annually for more than a decade, thanks to the bold support given by countries in Europe, lead by Germany, as wel as the USA.

The generous support and incentives offered by those countries have triggered a tremendous increase in the world’s solar cell production capacity. China dominates in this area, representing almost 70% of worldwide solar panel production. The European Photovoltaic Industry Association (EPIA) predicted that solar PV generated electricity in Europe will achieve parity with conventional energy by 2014 or even earlier. Current electricity prices in the EU countries average around 12 Euro cents (16 cts USD) per KWh."

Of course if you are spending anything much more than $150/month for PG&E, you might want to use the interactive calculator available at www.gosolarcalifornia.org/tools/clean_power_estimator.php The payback may not be great, but ISHTF, then it would be priceless. BTW, if anybody needs cheap firewood, I've got plenty, or can bring chain saw and pole saw, and splitter to your place, at semi reasonable rates (your mileage may vary)

George Rebane

DougK 102pm - the contention here is that governments can mangle markets so as to make literally any behavior financially attractive. All they have to do is to raise taxes, borrow more, or print more to finance the required subsidies. The point is that after the Germans did subsidize PV and other 'green energy' projects, they determined that it was a mistaken policy and pulled the plug. In the meantime, the mangled markets did give China the impetus to become the world's low cost PV provider, which was a shot in the shorts for a lot of liberal politicians in Europe and here who can't think two steps ahead and chew gum.

The ISHTF scenario is an altogether separate - orthogonal ;-) - matter, and, given your utility, may recommend installing an alternate way of generating electricity.

Douglas Keachie

PGE conveniently used the consumers to hold off on their having to invest in new plants, by tiering and offers of buyback incentives, initially. Now as they raise their rates to the moon and grab control of your appliances, they've got residential by the short hairs, and so even without any subsidies to speak of anymore, it still look like a pretty good deal. I'm particularly interested in the lease option folks, I'm sure there's a catch somewhere, but haven't looked that closely yet. Keeping a well pump running when a forest fire has burned out your PGE can be a good thing, although realistically, you've got to have the water already out of the ground and ready to feed into the 2" inlet of the high pressure Honda pump ahead of time. While the electric can never keep up with the gas, it can drive sprinklers inside the attic, if need be. Am planning an ugly this summer, 4 x 8 foam panels with aluminum foil up on the roof for cooling, and to make the house highly visible to fire planes.

Earl Crabb

Doug, are you telling us that you're putting a tinfoil hat on your house?

billy T

Tin foil hats for homes? Great idea. Welcome to the big top. Lord only knows what goes on under the home domes. Mr. Doug Special K, here is a site for your consideration. If you don't trust the site, you can find many articles by goggling Germany cuts subsidies for solar. Even has a link to Yahoo News, which is probably biased as well as the numerous other sites. Must be right wing propaganda or you really do wear a tin foil hat. It is just money down the cesspool. I myself posted a link here a few weeks back about 4 major solar companies going belly up in just 3 weeks in Germany and Spain. Spain was the first to cry "UNCLE" when the bills came home to roost. The Italians are following. Germany ain't the first or last Euroland nation to realize that it only looked good on paper. Maybe some day will be able to buy tiny little solar waffers on the green aisle at Raley's, just like we buy organic crackers on the green isle today. But not in 2012. http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/project_syndicate/2012/02/why_germany_is_phasing_out_its_solar_power_subsidies_.html

billy T

In a moment of weakness I will get back the topic: European elections. One country has a tiny party that wants to mine its borders to keep foreigners out. That tiny party is now in the coalition. I see a rise in Nationalism. Maybe Prussia and Astra-Hungary will rise again, lol. The new French President said "France is not just any country". Duh. France is France and the world can't handle two of them. http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/foreigners/2012/05/europe_s_far_right_parties_now_have_mainstream_political_influence_.html

Douglas Keachie

Let's see, did they end solar power, or merely the subsidies to solar power, like we're slowly but surely doing over here? As for the tin foil roof, I would not be surprised to see it become common. Did you know that I was the very first to have and ride a bike at the Rocklin Campus? On Halloween night my bike was stolen and later found perched on the roof of the gym. I have always been an early adopter. I'd move to Grand Fenwick, if it existed. Considered Lichtenstein for quite awhile, but they're not fond of foreigners, except for tourist dollars. Kinda like Barry Pruett and his take on being native born Nevada County-an, in the Beason McGuire race.

George Rebane

DougK 721pm - There was no mention on this blog of Germany, or anyone for that matter, "ending" the generation of solar power. It was only ending the reckless spending of public monies in such green energy subsidies. A careful reread is warranted.

Douglas Keachie

"Let's see, did they end solar power, or merely the subsidies to solar power, like we're slowly but surely doing over here?" ~Keachie~

From the mouthstyle of the Oracle GG, I never said they ended it.

A careful reread is warranted.

George Rebane

DougK 808pm - Upon completing a careful reread of your 721pm, it is clear that you are exactly correct. My mistake. Apologies.

Russ Steele

A German power market update:

Winfried Kretschmann (Green Party), the prime minister of the state of Baden Wuerttemberg, is urging Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) to encourage the construction of new gas-fired power plants. Especially in southern Germany energy security is at risk, according to Kretschmann.
"I am firmly convinced that the market in its current form is not suitable to meet the challenges of the energy revolution," he wrote in a letter to the Chancellor seen by the Financial Times Deutschland. It lacked both the incentives for building new power plants and for the maintenance of existing ones.

Especially in southern Germany energy security is at risk, according to Kretschmann. Germany is heavily dependent on flexible gas power plants to compensate for intermittent green energy. At the same time, however, the green energy boom is having a fatal side effect:

Because the production of wind and solar power have been given priority in the electricity market, the building of gas-fired power plants is no longer profitable. Often, it does not even pay to maintain existing power plants. Analysts at Goldman Sachs are already warning of a large-scale demise of power plants in 2013. Grid operators, on the other hand, fear nothing more than the loss of additional power plants in southern Germany, which is particularly affected by the nuclear phase-out

Douglas Keachie

Well now that subsidies are gone, happy days are here again and they can make gas powered plants every so much cheaper than solar, right? Or are they saying that solar is now cheaper, even without the subsidies? Bloom energy, gas to electricity for large office/industrial complexes, seems to be doing fairly well.

http://www.bloomenergy.com/fuel-cell/energy-server/

billy T

Here is someone being optimistic about what is happening across the Pond. Maybe, maybe not. http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2012/05/08/why-death-europe-is-america-opportunity/

Douglas Keachie

Don't kid yourselves about who does and doesn't understand the free market. The bossy bitch Exxon is getting its collective butt kicked by the even bossier bitches around the planet whose turf includes oil in the ground:

http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/05/08/us-exxon-way-idUSBRE8470FC20120508

Ryan Mount

Hooray for state-controlled PetroChina! They're #1 now.

They oughta be a lot nicer to the planet than Exxon.

Anyhow. billyT. The instability in Europe caused by France's latest election will benefit the Germans, that is if they decide to stop enabling the dysfunction, the British whom never really wanted the EuroZone anyway, and of course the USA. In theory. ;-)

Gregory

Keach, the Bloom fuel cell technology is fossil fueled. It's "clean" in that the fuel is reduced electrochemically and so combustion byproducts like oxides of nitrogen are not present. Carbon dioxide is produced, but Bloom doesn't repeat that very often or loudly.

Really cheap natural gas is a plus for the Bloom process. Hooray for fracking.

George Rebane

billyT 611am - thanks for that link, I used it in today's post.

Gregory

"Well now that subsidies are gone, happy days are here again and they can make gas powered plants every so much cheaper than solar, right? Or are they saying that solar is now cheaper, even without the subsidies?"

No, they are saying that with government mandated solar energy content, conventional energy goes ungenerated because electrical power distributors are forced to buy PV power at four or more times the price, and additional, cost effective carbon fuel generation capacity does not get built because demand is artificially depressed. All electric customers pay more as a result.

Douglas Keachie

A fracking we will go, a fracking we will go, hi ho the derry-o a-fracking we will go."

Seismicity Rate Doubled
2001-2011 – This Appears to Come
from 3 regions

see details at http://earthquake.usgs.gov/hazards/about/workshops/CEUS-WORKSHP/2.22.2012/Rubinstein2012InducedEqs.pdf

Sponsered by AFLACK (You will need insurance for your wells factor that fracking cost in, for sure.)

Douglas Keachie

Greg, did you suppose I didn't know all about your 11:10 post? On your 12:40, didn't all the governments announce they were ending subsidies? I would assume that would include the subsidies you are referencing. Or are the Germans just too stupid to end what George says are terrible practices? George Rebane | 07 May 2012 at 11:21 AM

Ian Random

Surprising there are any rich left. Looks like they were bailing to Belgium in 2006.


http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/07/15/AR2006071501010.html

billy T

Ryan Mount, yes, Germany has benefited a lot by the Euro and its leadership roles. Chalk it up to Fine German Engineering. The Germans ain't no dummies for sure. On a semi-related note, I once shacked up with one stubborn and headstrong German lady. She told me that her aunt got bombed out of 4 houses in Dresen, 6 total houses during the war. When I inquired further, she just said it was no big deal. No big deal? My, people still bring up dropping the bomb and the treatment of farm workers in the 60's in anger and she says it was no big deal. Tough stock. Her father was a German soldier captured by us in WW2 and we sent him to some POW camp in Oklahoma for the duration of the war. My grandfather was a British artillery soldier in WW1. He was loping rounds on the Germans when the Germans loped a few rounds on him. Grandpa came to America with a limp for the rest of his life. Anyway, one day in a heated argument with the Germany lady, I lost my cool and said "My Grandfather killed Germans!" Without missing a beat she responded "My father killed Americans". Tough Kraut that woman. She always got the last word in. She even went down to the Republican headquarters locally and tried to donate. They would not take her money cause she wasn't a citizen. Then she went over to the Democrat headquarters locally and they accepted her 10 bucks no questions asked. Yep, she got the last word in again as I told her non-citizens can't donate.

Douglas Keachie

How appropriate, Belgium, home of the pissing boy statue.

The Famous Pissing Boy of Brussels

Gregory

"On your 12:40, didn't all the governments announce they were ending subsidies? I would assume that would include the subsidies you are referencing. Or are the Germans just too stupid to end what George says are terrible practices?"

Keach, if you end a subsidy but still require a percentage of PV or other alternative power in the current delivered to customers, the distributor still has to buy it. It's just that less taxes are used to soften the blow to energy customers. And producers of less expensive energy lose sales.

Sorry you just can't grok the issue, we have the same deal under AB32. Don't bitch at PG&E, they're just passing on their costs which are slated to keep rising.

Douglas Keachie

"I dream of the PGE Genie with the light green subsidy" So, if the Germans really wanted to, they could repeal this law as well as ending the subsidies.

You can't Grok how sorry you are, with your continued sillyland attacks, get a life!

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