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1 day ago
Current TV said Friday afternoon that it had terminated the contract of its lead anchor, Keith Olbermann, scarcely a year after he was hired to reboot the fledgling channel in his progressive political image.In a continuing pattern of behavior that reminds one of Olbermann's role model, barack obama, little Keithie blamed his firing on everyone but himself, just as he did in his previous dismissals.
The cable channel indicated that he had failed to honor the terms of his five-year, $50 million contract, giving the channel the right to terminate it. Starting Friday night, the former
prostitute-frequenting Client Number NineNew York Gov. Eliot L. Spitzer will take over Mr. Olbermann’s 8 p.m. time slot.
Katy Perry transforms herself into a U.S. Marine in her latest power-pop single, "Part of Me," which addresses female empowerment and pays particular tribute to service women.In response to Ms. Wolf's call for a boycott, I immediately bought the song at iTunes and posted the video here. It does begin with one of those annoying vid-commercials, so use the 15 seconds or so to visit the fridge and snag a cold one.
However, at least one media type doesn't support Perry's Marines shout-out.
Prominent feminist Naomi Wolf, author of "The Beauty Myth" and one of many who were arrested amid the Occupy Wall Street protests last year, is urging Americans to boycott the singer, labeling her video "a total piece of propaganda for the Marines."
As President Obama told us in 2008 and continues to remind us now, the work did not end on Election Day. We made commitments to each other about what we hope tomorrow looks like and what we believe our country can be and they are commitments we must fight for every day. From our commitment to these ideals, we created Generation Forty Four or Gen44 for short—a council to cultivate and empower a rising generation of leaders in the Democratic Party. Gen44 will work with this groundbreaking group, all under the age of 40, to serve as a platform for political mobilization and to ensure that President Obama and Democrats have the resources and infrastructure needed to implement the change we believe in.As part of this bold new initiative, the obama campaign has created the twitter tag #gen44. Like so much of what this gang-that-can’t-shoot-straight touches, it immediately became a total fiasco.
We aren’t sure why, but for some reason President Obama and the Democrats keep creating and promoting hashtags despite the fact that conservatives inevitably take over the hashtags in order to mock them. This time the hashtag is #Gen44, and was meant to be a place where young Obama supporters expressed their admiration for him. Instead, conservatives are dominating the hashtag with tweets that criticize the President and some of his most naive supporters.Some of the better ones:
I'm not #gen44, I work for a living.The mocking of Gen44 doesn't stop there.
Whining beats working. #Gen44
#gen44 We don't stand for anything so we'll fall for everything!
#Gen44 Being told what to do is much easier than thinking for yourself.
#Gen44 because I'm too lazy to succeed on my own talents. Now hand over my free stuff!
#gen44: Because this time I want Obama to win all 57 States
#Gen44 Because I believe the largest economy the world has ever known can be run on solar panels, windmills and algae.
#Gen44 A Chevy Volt in every garage.
I haven’t written about the shooting death of Trayvon Martin in Florida for the simple reason that I was as shocked by his murder as anyone else. I am not a racist no matter what some might say, and as a parent of a teenage boy myself I’m quite sensitive to seeing parents suffer the type of loss that is my own greatest personal fear. But I’ve learned from past experience to never trust initial reports, so I have been waiting for the dust to settle and the truth to be revealed. And waiting. And waiting.Well said, sir, well said.
The righteous anger that erupted immediately after Martin’s death has morphed into something else, something much more ugly. It is one thing to demand an investigation into his death, it’s another to call for his killer’s capture “dead or alive” as the Black Panther’s have, or to pass along his address – erroneously it turns out – to your 250,000 followers on Twitter the way Spike Lee has. This is the hysteria of the mob, and it is dangerous yet the politicians who don hoodies in Congress are so caught up in it that they are blind to it.
It is impossible to imagine Martin Luther King jr sending out the addresses of the men who killed James Chaney, Andrew Goodman, and Michael Schwerner in 1964 for a very simple reason: He had seen first hand the results of lynch mobs, and he knew their irrationality and power. He had seen innocent men tried, convicted and executed by the mob, and he knew that the greatest antidote for it was the application of slow but inexorable blind justice. Florida 2012 is not Mississippi 1964, so why are so many so desperate to turn the clock back? Convene a grand jury and let the Truth come out, but do not unleash the beast that threatens to devour everyone including those that set it loose among us.
Ever seen a lynch mob? This is how one starts. Someone innocent is going to get hurt, the outcome of most lynchings, and hysteria will be replaced by regret. But by then it will be too late, and those that think they are righteous today will have innocent blood on their hands tomorrow.
College campuses across the nation are teeming with students ready to exercise their right to vote, one of the few perks that comes with turning 18. Yet, instead of encouraging students to take part in this rite of passage, some states are imposing voter ID requirements that make it much harder for them to vote.I'm not going to address the minorities or senior citizen issue, but I would like to comment on the liberal's concern that young folks might be adversely affected.
The fact that some Republicans see these new voter restrictions as a good thing shows their complete disregard for the democratic process.
Beginning with exams taken in September, students will have to submit a photo of themselves when they apply for a test. That photo will be printed on the student's test admission ticket and the roster provided to proctors at testing sites. Testing staff will compare the submitted photo to a photo ID and to the student in person at the testing site.(More here.)
Photo checks will take place when the student arrives at the testing site, during breaks and when tests are handed in.
Student photos will also remain in the testing databases and be checked again by high school counselors and college admission officials once scores are calculated and submitted.
"This guy looks like he’s up to no good … He looks black."Here’s the actual full quote.
ZIMMERMAN: This guy looks like he’s up to no good, or he’s on drugs or something. It’s raining and he’s just walking around, looking about.
911 DISPATCHER: Okay, is this guy, is he white, black, or Hispanic?
ZIMMERMAN: He looks black.Makes a big difference, doesn't it. It goes from making it sound like Zimmerman is biased or profiling blacks to showing that he was simply responding to a question from the police dispatcher. That goes way beyond journalistic license and ventures into deliberately twisting a quote to misrepresent the truth.
The mutilated bodies of seven unidentified men were found in an abandoned vehicle Monday morning east of downtown Nuevo Laredo, Mexico.Actually, this incident wasn't even reported locally. I was totally unaware of it until I read the San Antonio newspaper.
Authorities responded to a 9 a.m. call reporting the vehicle and bodies at an intersection one block from a Mexican army base, according to a government official who asked to remain anonymous.
“Their arms, legs and heads were cut off,” the source said.
Scientists studying the effects of pornography fell at the first hurdle - after failing to find a man who had not viewed X-rated material.And they're surprised why, exactly?
The researchers were comparing the views of men in their 20s who had never been exposed to pornography to regular users.
But Professor Simon Louis Lajeunesse, of Montreal University in Canada, said: 'We started our research seeking men who had never consumed pornography. We couldn't find any.'
Although hampered in its original aim, the study was then changed to examine the habits of men who regularly used porn.Those of us in the research business just love findings like these, because they can lead to further studies and, with a little bit of luck, even government funding. For example, do those young men in a relationship view porn alone or with their significant others? Why do the porn-viewing episodes of single young men last twice as long as involved young men? Is there a difference in the type of porn viewed by the two groups? And so on and so forth.
It found single young men viewed such material on average for 40 minutes three times a week, compared with those in relationships, who watched it 1.7 times a week for 20 minutes.
About eight months ago some owners of Chevy Volts complained that charging cords were overheating, sometimes to the point of melting. At the time, GM blamed owners, saying the wall outlets were the culprits. We now finally have GM addressing the safety concerns and agreeing to replace charging cords for all 9,500 Volts that have been sold since production began. But in what is becoming a new public relations precedent, the move is not being called a "recall.""More consistent charging experience" - as in your garage doesn't burn down.
The non-recall recall is instead referred to as a customer satisfaction action which is designed to "offer a more consistent charging experience."
The political strategy is becoming more and more evident at GM as Chevy Volt sales continue to struggle and the 2012 presidential election nears. Excuses have been made for low sales of the Volt, starting with supply constraints and more recently involving a Republican conspiracy to hurt sales. GM refuses to admit the real reason that the Volt doesn't sell well is that the car is too expensive for most consumers and the savings from gas usage do not justify the high cost.That's what happens when the government takes an ownership position in a private-sector business. If you think this is bad, just wait and see what happens if obamacare is ever implemented.
The first non-recall was for reinforcements to the battery pack after test vehicles at NHTSA ignited days after crash tests. In both cases, GM was adamant that there is absolutely nothing wrong with the Volt; it is either the fault of owners with faulty wiring or right-wing media sources.In a scary combination of corporate and government bullying, "GM has stepped up ad spending for the Volt on those TV networks that are accused of criticizing the car. The spending seems to be quieting the criticism."
The main subject for debate regarding the Chevy Volt and cars like it, is the taxpayer costs versus benefits, not how popular the car is or isn't. Let's summarize once again what the proposed goal of President Obama to have a million electric vehicles on the road within a few years does and what it costs. If Obama gets his way, each car gets a $10,000 tax credit. This goes to the wealthy buyers of the cars or to the dealers if the cars are sold to the government. Disregarding state credits, infrastructure costs and other subsidies for the industry we have a cost to taxpayers of $10 billion. Given the assumption that there will be about 250 million passenger vehicles on the US roads that account for less than 50% of the nation's oil consumption, we get a reduction in oil dependence of less than 0.2 percent. That's $10,000,000,000 for a 0.2 percent reduction in oil usage.And that's ignoring the fact that electric cars are ridiculously impractical for anything but short trips (short being defined as a round trip of 50 miles or less), for two reasons. One, there are very few charging stations in this country, meaning that electric car drivers must charge them at home. Two, it takes a long time to fully charge an electric car.
Electric car owners riding along Oregon’s Interstate 5 don’t have to worry about running out of juice on the open road.Now, thanks to the benefits of the Electric Highway, Denley "expects the trip to Portland to take perhaps three hours longer than in a gas car."
The first major stretch of what’s been dubbed an “Electric Highway” on the West Coast from Canada to Mexico went operational Friday with the opening of a series of fast-charging stations along 160 miles of the interstate.
They are spaced about every 25 miles, so a Nissan Leaf with a range of about 70 miles can miss one station and still make it to the next. Electric car drivers will be able to recharge in about 20 minutes. The charge is free for now.
“I would say range-anxiety with these fast chargers will be nearly a non-issue for me,” said Justin Denley, who owns a Nissan Leaf. Inspired by the stations, his family is planning a trip from Medford to Portland, a distance of about 280 miles.
Last summer, he took the family on a 120-mile trip to the coast and had to include an overnight stop at an RV park to charge up.
In his weasel-worded decision to block a perfectly harmless pipeline that would have provided America with jobs, energy and hope, President Barack Obama betrayed his country, lied and then, just the other day, halfway reversed himself, once more fraudulently.I couldn't have said it better myself...
Not so long ago, this country was in a terrible energy fix. Thanks largely to China and India, world demand for oil was going up while supplies remained limited, meaning prices were soaring as dependence on production in the volatile Middle East grew. However, owing in part to new technology, we found vast new possibilities to obtain oil and gas in the United States, and our neighbors were discovering new resources, too.
Canadian tar sands, it turns out, hold 100 billion barrels of obtainable oil, which is to say, we have Saudi Arabia II sitting right next door. Stretching a pipeline from Canada to Texas refineries is no big deal in a country with 2 million miles of pipeline already. What’s more, there is good besides oil that would flow from it.
It would create thousands of jobs and experts note that a pipeline is far cheaper and safer than other modes of transportation, especially shipping it across the ocean.
Obama had promised a decision by the end of last year, but then, on top of screams from environmental extremists, some Nebraskans complained that a physically impossible tainting of aquifer water might occur as the pipeline crossed their state. Obama was in a tough spot -- there was an election coming up and whatever decision he made would displease either environmental supporters or union supporters. He punted, saying the State Department was going to study a new path for the pipeline, and that this would take at least a year, by which time the election would be over. Political problem solved?
. . .
Suddenly, gas prices are up dramatically again, and Obama is in a political pickle. His Chevy Volt and Solyndra solutions are like putting out a forest fire with a squirt gun that doesn’t work. His record on denying drilling hither and yon, and a past, reported statement about not seeing oil as a solution to anything, hardly help the country, especially since he is thus sending oil markets signals to increase prices more. Increased production in our own land has happened despite him instead of because of him.
And now he is going to get out of the mess by promising half a pipeline that will accomplish zip without a northern part Nebraskans along with greenies particularly don’t want? If the American public is dumb enough to buy all that – and I don’t think so – we deserve this guy and the gas prices that come with him.
The Bloomberg administration is now taking the term “food police” to new depths, blocking food donations to all government-run facilities that serve the city’s homeless.I guess donated food with an unknown nutritional content is worse for homeless folks than all that healthy stuff they scavenge from dumpsters.
In conjunction with a mayoral task force and the Health Department, the Department of Homeless Services recently started enforcing new nutritional rules for food served at city shelters. Since DHS can’t assess the nutritional content of donated food, shelters have to turn away good Samaritans.
DHS Commissioner Seth Diamond says the ban on food donations is consistent with Mayor Bloomberg’s emphasis on improving nutrition for all New Yorkers. A new interagency document controls what can be served at facilities — dictating serving sizes as well as salt, fat and calorie contents, plus fiber minimums and condiment recommendations. (Condiment recommendations?!? - oh, my achin' butt!)In other words, if the government can't control it, they'll ban it. As a result, the homeless either get less to eat, or the government steps in and provides additional food to replace what is currently being donated. Of course, "the government provides" is just a euphemism for "the taxpayers are forced to dig deeper into their pockets."
President Obama on Friday nominated Dr. Jim Yong Kim, the president of Dartmouth College, to be the next president of the World Bank.Good for Kim. He seems like a fine fellow, with a remarkable record of doing good. Impressive though his credentials in medicine might be, however, I fail to see how that qualifies him to run an economic and financial organization "offering loans and grants as well as technical expertise for development projects around the world."
Kim's background is in medicine, not economics or business as has been the case with most previous World Bank presidents. He has worked with international organizations, serving as a senior official at the World Health Organization.
Kim is particularly known for his efforts addressing health concerns, including AIDS, in developing countries. He was one of the founders and former executive director of Partners In Health, a not-for-profit organization that supports health programs in poor countries.
The Los Angeles Police Department will soon start ignoring California state law, which requires police to impound the vehicles of unlicensed drivers for 30 days."Equal application of the law?" If I or any other legal resident get pulled over while driving without a license, our vehicle gets impounded. If an illegal immigrant is pulled over, he gets to drive away. What's 'fair' or 'equal' about that? Furthermore, research shows that unlicensed drivers "are five times more likely to be involved in fatal crashes and more likely to flee the scene of a crime."
The majority of unlicensed motorists in Los Angeles are immigrants who are in the country illegally and have low-income jobs. The LAPD says the state's impound law is unfair because it limits their ability to get to their jobs and imposes a steep fine to get their car back.
As long as drivers can produce some form of I.D., proof of insurance and vehicle registration, they'll be allowed to keep their car. Police Chief Charlie Beck insists that it's simply leveling the playing field.
"It's about fairness. It's about equal application of the law," Beck told a Los Angeles TV station earlier this month.
"It's more important that people who are in the country illegally get to drive than it is that people who are here get to live."The left responds:
Immigrant advocates say the controversy highlights the need to provide provisional driver's licenses for illegal immigrants.Or perhaps the need to deport people who, by the very fact of being here illegally, are criminals.
Second Lt. Clovis T. Ray died Thursday in Kunar province, Afghanistan, the Department of Defense confirmed Saturday. He was injured when insurgents attacked his unit with an improvised explosive device.What makes this particular death more noteworthy than the others, are least for me, are two things. First, the soldier was from the Central - South Texas region. He grew up in Three Rivers, just down the road from here, and lived in San Antonio for a while.
Ray, 34, gave up a lucrative career as an investment banker to join the Army, said his father, Bob Ray. He worked for Wells Fargo and Wachovia in San Antonio, where he lived for many years.I worked in the banking industry for many years. Following 9-11 I looked into rejoining the Army, but was told I was too old (I was 49 at the time - a young 49, I insisted, but to no avail).
(Lt. Ray's father) said the Army generally doesn't take recruits over the age of 30, but they accepted his son at 32.With all the bad press our military gets, it's rewarding to hear a positive story about the sacrifices many of them make just to serve, much less what they endure while serving.
“I had no idea until he called and said, ‘Dad, I've joined the Army. I want to serve my country,'” his father said.
He leaves behind a wife, Shannon, and 5-year-old son, Dean Aaron Ray.
Maj. David Eastburn, spokesman for the 3rd Brigade Combat Team, said in an email Saturday that Ray was commissioned as an infantry officer through Officer Candidate School in 2010.
“He would lead his men, day in and day out, in the infamous Kunar Province of Afghanistan,” Eastburn wrote. “Clovis made the ultimate sacrifice on a patrol with his platoon. He was a unique leader in that he was well liked by both his peers and subordinates and was always willing to do what it took for his men to be successful.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with this great man's family and friends while they struggle through this difficult time. Although we're on the other side of the globe, we mourn along with them and feel their pain.”
A breathtaking sight awaits those who travel to the southernmost tip of Hawaii’s stunningly beautiful Big Island, though it’s not in any guidebook. On a 100-acre site, where cattle wander past broken ‘Keep Out’ signs, stand the rusting skeletons of scores of wind turbines.
Just a short walk from where endangered monk seals and Hawksbill turtles can be found on an unspoilt sandy beach, a technology that is supposed to be about saving the environment is instead ruining it.
If any spot was tailor-made for a wind farm it would surely be here. The gales are so strong and relentless on the tip of South Point that trees grow almost horizontally.
Yet the 27-year-old Kamaoa Wind Farm remains a relic of the boom and inglorious bust of America’s so-called ‘wind rush’, the world’s first major experiment in wind energy.
So what went wrong? It started with the late Seventies oil crisis that convinced America it had to look around for other sources of power. For a time, wind power was considered to be a serious alternative to fossil fuels.
Turbines were built across several states, though there was a preponderance in California, where nearly 17,000 sprouted up from the dusty earth.
Nearly all of these were concentrated in three giant wind farms: Altamont, east of San Francisco; Tehachapi, on the edge of the Mojave desert; and San Gorgonio near Palm Springs.
In theory, conditions couldn’t have been better. Each of these are passes that benefit from just the right sort of wind that turbines need — strong and almost continual.
Better still, they were crossed by under-used high voltage lines to take away the power.
But most importantly for the scrum of investors who were thrusting their snouts into the trough, there was the extraordinary generosity of the government.
Between 1981 and 1985, federal and state subsidies in California were so favourable that investors could recover 50 per cent of the cost of a wind turbine.
Paul GIPE, a former California wind company executive, calls what happened next a ‘tax credit frenzy’.
‘The lure of quick riches resulted in shoddy products that littered California with poorly operating — sometimes non-operating — turbines.’
They were expensive and badly designed. Some were far too small to make a difference, others were just clunky machines designed by the aero industry with blades the length of a rugby pitch.
But thanks to the subsidies, it hardly mattered that some of the untested turbines were so sub-standard they barely even worked.
Not to put too fine a point on it, for some wind energy investors it was simply a tax scam.
But as tends to happen with a business that is driven by financial incentives, it lasted only as long as the subsidies. In 1986, the price of oil tumbled and the subsidies started to die out. Suddenly, the wind energy sums didn’t add up any more.And in yet another example of the Law of Unintended Consequences, the wind turbines that are operating are surrounded by heaps of bird carcasses killed by the whirling blades.
And just like the gold rush miners who had rushed to the same Californian passes a century earlier, the wind prospectors departed in such a hurry that they didn’t even bother to take down the turbines they had littered across the state.
With so many moving parts to worry about, maintaining turbines is expensive — too expensive when the electricity they could produce was suddenly worth so little.
No one who has driven past one of America’s mega wind farms today can fail to be struck by how few have blades that are turning, even in strong winds.
Unfortunately, the frenzy of windmill building during the wind rush didn’t just ruin the view, but also devastated the wildlife.Conservationists suing to stop production of green energy. Can you say "irony?"
No one noticed until far too late that the 5,000-turbine wind farm at Altamont Pass is on a major migratory path for birds. The National Audubon Society, America’s RSPB, has called it ‘probably the worst site ever chosen for a wind energy project’.
An estimated 10,000 birds including up to 80 protected golden eagles, 380 burrowing owls, 300 red-tailed hawks and 330 falcons were being shredded each year in Altamont’s massed banks of turbine blades — to say nothing of thousands of bats — until outraged conservationists sued America’s ‘deadliest’ wind farm four years ago.
As a result, (the wind farm) has agreed to grind to a halt for four months every year to avoid causing more carnage during the migration season. Go further south to the Tehachapi pass on the edge of the Mojave desert and you’ll find golden eagle carcasses under the wind turbines, too.
In the U.S., one of the great ironies about wind energy is that the people you might expect to cheer for it most — wildlife conservationists who care about the planet — are its most vociferous critics.
It’s not hard to see why when you glance at the statistics. The American Bird Conservancy estimates wind turbines kill between 75,000 and 275,000 birds each year.Yeah, and it all depends on what the definition of "is" is.
The conservation cause is not the only issue. There are horror stories about turbines falling over, catching fire after being struck by lightning, lethal shards of ice being hurled from the blades, the nerve-racking low frequency noise (like a pulsing disco) and the disorientating strobe effect in sunlight.
While Hawaii has six abandoned wind farms, most of California’s derelict turbines are only now being removed — decades late — after disgusted local authorities threatened to sue.
So how many windmills have been abandoned across the U.S.? It is an intensely sensitive subject for wind enthusiasts, who will quibble that it depends on how you define ‘abandoned’.
‘The key lesson from history is that when the subsidies go, the wind farms go ... It costs too much to maintain them and they just get abandoned.’And maybe the investors followed the easy money to solar companies. But I digress one more time.
The latest figures show U.S. investment in wind energy plunged 38 per cent last year. Experts say there are simply too many turbines out there and not enough people buying the electricity.
Republicans in Congress want to cut wind energy’s 20-year-old subsidy at the end of the year.Why, indeed.
Why, they ask, should the debt-laden country be giving wind energy companies a 30 per cent tax credit, costing taxpayers nearly $3 billion a year, when wind accounts for only 2.3 per cent of America’s electricity and 8 per cent of its pollution-free electricity?
... the project drew ... passionate opposition from many of the moneyed and influential residents of Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket who don’t want their pristine views disturbed.Typical liberal hypocrisy. We want clean energy, but we don't want it where we live. NIMBY - Not In My Back Yard. (Of course, in Ted Kennedy's case he was probably afraid he'd hit one of the turbines the next time he got drunk and drove off a bridge.)
Big names, from Senator Edward M. Kennedy to Walter Cronkite joined in the long battle.
According to initial details, a man riding on a scooter opened fire on the school at around 7:46 am, as the students were arriving for the school day...
Jonathan Sandler was the first one to be shot at short range by the killer. He was holding his son Gabriel in his arms. Gabriel was hit and fell to the ground and then (Sandler's other son) Arieh followed.
According to eye-witnesses, the gun then jammed, temporarily putting a halt to the rampage but the killer swiftly changed weapons and headed into the school. He grabbed Miriam as she tried to escape, grasped her hair and shot her.
Then, as she bled to death on the floor, he lifted up her head and fired two additional bullets.
The National Debt has now increased more during President Obama’s three years and two months in office than it did during 8 years of the George W. Bush presidency.
The Debt rose $4.899 trillion during the two terms of the Bush presidency. It has now gone up $4.939 trillion since President Obama took office.
The National Debt also now exceeds 100% of the nation’s Gross Domestic Product, the total value of goods and services.
“The problem is, is that the way Bush has done it over the last eight years is to take out a credit card from the Bank of China in the name of our children, driving up our national debt from $5 trillion dollars for the first 42 presidents -- number 43 added $4 trillion dollars by his lonesome, so that we now have over $9 trillion dollars of debt that we are going to have to pay back -- $30,000 for every man, woman and child,” Obama said on July 3, 2008, at a campaign event in Fargo, N.D.This guy has given the republicans so much ammunition for the 2012 election that it's hard to imagine how they'll manage to screw it up.
“That's irresponsible. It's unpatriotic,” said candidate Obama.
The ongoing congressional investigation into a failed California solar panel maker that garnered more than a half-billion dollars in federal loans from the Obama administration could lead to criminal indictments...Well, Solyndra may just be the tip of the iceberg. Despite billions of dollars in taxpayer subsidies, another solar energy firm has gone down the drain.
... law firms are lining up to get a piece of the action after a class action lawsuit was filed against federally subsidized First Solar, Inc., allegedly because the company failed to disclose the massive costs it was incurring due to defects in its solar panels, leading investors to believe the company’s stock was worth more than its actual value.Unfortunately for those of us who pay taxes, First Solar isn't alone.
First Solar has received enormous financial backing from taxpayers.
The Tempe, Ariz.-based manufacturer also disclosed in its annual report on February 29 that the Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating it for violations of Regulation Fair Disclosure.
- The Department of Energy provided a $646 million loan guarantee for the Antelope Valley (Calif.) Solar Ranch 1 project
- The Department of Energy also partially guaranteed $1.46 billion in borrowing for its Desert Sunlight Solar Farm west of Blythe, Calif.
- DOE loans of $967 million covered First Solar’s Agua Caliente Solar project in Yuma County, Ariz.
- Its Topaz Solar farm, which Warren Buffett just bought for about $1.9 billion, also qualifies for a federal grant (like the others) that pays a 30 percent rebate on construction costs.
- The U.S. Export-Import Bank backed $455.7 million in loans to First Solar for projects in Canada.
- The facilities also reap job training, state and local incentives, in addition to enjoying mandates that force utilities to buy their renewable power.
Evergreen Solar is asking a bankruptcy judge for permission to walk away from its former plant in Devens.
The company, which received tens of millions in state aid before shuttering its facilities last year and moving its manufacturing operations to China, filed the notice in federal bankruptcy court in Delaware on Monday.
Evergreen received more than $20 million in grants and $11 million in tax and lease initiatives from Massachusetts. That doesn't include other tax benefits and millions in upgrades to roads and utilities around the plant.
A spokesman for Massachusetts Development declined to discuss what will happen next with the plant, which cost some $450 million to build just five years ago. The development authority was one of the Massachusetts state agencies that pitched in to get Evergreen Solar going.The common theme among all these failures, of course, is the obama administration stubbornly clinging to the idea that solar is the current and future answer to this country's energy needs. I've got nothing against solar, or any other form of clean energy, as long as it can stand on its own and be economically sustainable without massive and ongoing taxpayer
Evergreen Solar was one of several green-technology enterprises that filed for bankruptcy in recent years, a wave of failures that wiped out billions of dollars worth of public and private investment.
"...crime and violence are serious problems throughout the country and can occur anywhere."It's a classic example of 'do as I say, not as I do,' and Rick Santorum has called b.s. on obama for it.
"What I would say is that the president's actions should reflect what his administration is saying."Then we had the administration's ham-handed attempts to strong-arm various news outlets into sanitizing their sites and removing any mention of Malia's trip.
The AFP, the Huffington Post and other websites have scrubbed a report about first daughter Malia Obama's school trip.It got so bad that sites were scrubbing stories about their scrubbing stories.
On Monday, the AFP reported that Obama's daughter was on a school trip along with a number of friends and 25 Secret Service agents. The story was picked up by Yahoo, the Huffington Post, and the International Business Times, as well as UK publications like the Daily Mail and the Telegraph and other overseas publications like The Australian.
But on Monday night, the story had been removed from those sites. The AFP page for the story now links to a story titled "Senegal music star Youssou Ndour hits campaign trail," as does the Yahoo page. The Huffington Post page now links directly back to the Huffington Post homepage. The Daily Mail, Telegraph, and Australian stories now lead to 404 error pages, reading "page not found."
The White House's campaign to scrub a story from the internet yesterday about Malia Obama's trip to Mexico has gone meta: a media reporter's blog post about the administration's efforts to scrub the story has now been scrubbed of certain details, Politico confirmed.And finally, in a bit of cosmic irony, the part of Mexico that Malia is touring was hit with a large earthquake. That prompted concerns for her safety, forcing the White House to address the issue head-on.
The White House said Tuesday afternoon that President Obama’s older daughter Malia was unharmed by a 7.4-magnitude earthquake that shook Mexico, where she was traveling on a school trip.One final note:
“In light of today’s earthquake, we can confirm that Malia Obama is safe and was never in danger,” said Kristina Schake, communications director for First Lady Michelle Obama.
Multiple news outlets reported on Monday that Malia Obama was in Oaxaca with classmates and about 25 Secret Service agents. The White House has a standing request that media not report on the Obama children’s whereabouts, and Schake told Politico late Monday night that it had asked news agencies to remove the reports from their websites.
The outlets largely complied, but the White House confirmed Malia Obama’s safety on Tuesday because reports of her presence in Mexico had circulated on the Internet.
The administration has gone to great lengths to crack down on this story, possibly sending a signal to media outlets that, as the general election nears, the president's children will be off limits.Oh really? Then why does the parent-in-chief trot them out as props at every opportunity?
He has cited Sasha and Malia, now 10 and 13, in discussing everything from the rescue of an American aid worker from Somalian pirates to the touchy subject of public access to emergency contraception. His daughters also are prominent in a family photo being used by his reelection campaign.And it's not just Barry. Michelle is guilty of it as well.
Most recently, Obama brought up his daughters when asked about conservative commentator Rush Limbaugh's reference to college student Sandra Fluke as a "slut" after she testified that birth control should be covered by insurance.
Michelle Obama frequently brings up her daughters while talking about her campaign against childhood obesity.The kids are in their early teens. I get that they shouldn't be dragged into the nasty mess that now passes for this country's political discourse. And I can sympathize with the desire of parents to protect their children. But it's a two-way street. If BHO and his missus want the kids to be off limits, then they shouldn't use them to further their political objectives.
On Thursday, as part of a roadshow for his “all of the above” energy strategy, President Obama is scheduled to visit Cushing, Okla., home to the world’s biggest oil storage complex. There he is to tour a yard where TransCanada is storing pipes to be used in building the southern leg of the Keystone XL pipeline. The line will stretch from Cushing down refineries on the Texas gulf coast.* * * * * * * * * *
It will be a strange and remarkable visit considering that Obama in January denied a permit for the northern section of the pipeline that would have crossed the Canadian border. The strangeness wasn’t lost of Harold Hamm, the chief executive of Continental Resources, Mitt Romney’s new energy advisor, and a first-rate oil tycoon...
“It’s so hypocritical and so ironic after everything he’s tried to do against the industry,” said Hamm in a phone interview with me today. “He’s trying to take credit for all the gains we’ve made against the backdrop of the biggest oil storage complex in the world.”
Isn’t it more likely that the president is going to Cushing (as well as another stop to an oilfield in New Mexico) to bash oil? After all, it was just a couple weeks ago at a campaign stop in North Carolina that Obama dismissed oil as “the fuel of the past.”
Maybe the president is going to Oklahoma to apologize for the comments of his actor friend Alec Baldwin ... Over the weekend Baldwin tweeted that Oklahoma’s pro-oil, anti-environmentalist Senator James Inhofe should be retired “to a solar-powered gay bar.” Baldwin also tweeted, “Is there a bigger Oil Whore than James Inhofe?”
Maybe he wants to take credit for the mammoth gains in domestic oil and gas production in the past three years? No, that couldn’t be the case either. The president knows full well that he had nothing to do with the development of oil and gas from shale reservoirs in Texas, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania and North Dakota. In fact, it’s clear as day that the president thinks oil and gas companies should be drilling less, not more. Why else would he have said in his radio address last Saturday that Congress should move to cut billions in oil and gas tax breaks. A congressional vote, he said, would put lawmakers on record as to whether they “stand up for oil companies” or “stand up for the American people.”
It’s an either/or, huh? Tell that to the oil-and-gas boom states of Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Texas, Louisiana, or North Dakota, which has the lowest employment rate in the nation, and where there are thousands of jobs available working on the Bakken shale oil field ... Last month North Dakota surpassed California as the state with the third-most oil production. Hamm says it will pass Alaska later this year. Thanks to fracking, domestic oil production is up 20% since 2008 to 5.8 million bpd.
Yet we know the Obama administration doesn’t like oil drilling in the Bakken because last year the Department of Justice brought a criminal indictment against Hamm’s Continental Resources (and other oil companies) over the death of a handful of migratory birds that apparently died in a wastewater pit. Nevermind that an estimated 100 million birds die each year from flying into windows. (A judge threw the case out.)
The southern stretch of the Keystone XL will be instrumental in opening up the bottleneck that has prevented Bakken oil from getting to market. Bakken producers have had to rely on tanker trucks and trains (especially those operated by Obama buddy Warren Buffett’s Burlington Northern Santa Fe) to get crude to market.
President Obama will visit the 48-megawatt Copper Mountain Solar 1 facility in Boulder City, Nev., this week as part of a multistate trip to promote his energy policies. The president will also make stops in New Mexico, Oklahoma and Ohio on the trip Wednesday and Thursday.However, solar and wind power farms share one problem with shale oil fields: how to get their energy to market. With shale oil, it's pipelines. With wind and solar, it's high power transmission lines.
The Boulder City facility, operated by San Diego-based Sempra Energy, is the largest photovoltaic solar plant operating in the country and produces enough electricity to power 17,000 homes, the White House said. The plant sells its electricity to Pacific Gas and Electric Company.
The proposed new power lines would stretch through rural areas of the High Desert to connect a substation near the Cajon Pass with the utility’s Coolwater Substation, near Daggett. Edison officials say the project is needed to provide increased capacity in its power grid to enable the utility to deliver higher volumes of electricity generated from solar projects in the Mojave Desert to more densely populated areas in the San Bernardino Valley.I can't add anything that would rival that last paragraph for irony
Because the earliest the line could be completed is in 2018, some solar plants in the desert will be operational before then and the utility’s infrastructure may not be able to handle all of the new power they generate, officials said.
Here's what it's like to be at the center of a modern-day oil boom.Eagle Ford, along with the Bakken shale oil play in North Dakota, have the potential to create not only jobs but wealth, lower oil prices, reduce our dependence on foreign oil imports, and stop the flow of money from our pockets to people who are trying to destroy this country. More on this later, but for now, go here.
There's a fellow in Three Rivers who's renting out his house to 17 workers in the Eagle Ford Shale. He's charging each of them $150 a week. That's more than $10,000 a month he earns in rent.
In that same small Texas town, the McDonald's inside Love's Travel Stop has at least 20 job openings and is busing about 10 workers to the store from Beeville,34 miles away.
... last summer, Valero Energy Corp. was doing weeks-long maintenance at its Three Rivers refinery, and dozens of contract workers were hired from outside the city — only there was no place for them to stay.
Some lucked out when a man rented out his garage (after adding a shower) to 12 of them, charging each $150 a week. Others resorted to tents in the city park, availing themselves of the public restrooms and barbecue grills...