Sippin’ on Coal and Rum, with a Side of Petrol

Sippin’ on Coal and Rum – Katie Kieffer – Townhall Conservative Columnists

I don’t have much to add to what Katie says here, except that in regard to what coal means to us and the science: she’s absolutely right. The millenials, well I don’t have enough contact with them to say authoritatively but, it fits with what I see. I’m not sure that’s altogether good, though. They seem to me to be a bit to self-absorbed to be really good citizens but my sample size is really small.

So, Here’s Katie:

Me: “I’ll take a ‘Coal and Rum.’”

Bartender: “What’s that?”

Me: “I’m protesting the EPA.”

Bartender: “Got it. Awesome. Your drink is on the house.”

Coal is my lifestyle. Coal allows me to turn darkness into light at the flip of a switch. Coal allows me to brew a cup of coffee, toast a bagel and pour a class of refrigerated orange juice in minutes. Coal lets me text friends and find directions from my fully-charged iPhone. Coal grants me the ability to use machines to wash and dry my week’s laundry pile while I run on my treadmill. Coal allows me to heat my Minneapolis bedroom to a balmy 72 degrees while snow and freezing winds pelt the roof. Basically, coal means that Americans like you and me can live like kings and queens on a pauper’s budget.

I think every American—progressive, moderate or conservative—should be concerned that the President of the United States is putting coal out of business and raising the cost of ordinary living. His EPA just released new carbon dioxide emission limits that will effectively put new coal-fired electric plants out of business, thereby raising the cost of energy at a time when record numbers of Americans are jobless and homeless.

To ice the cake, President Obama is acting unconstitutionally and ignoring science. The Constitution does not allow the President to create laws via Cabinet-level agencies like the EPA. And, there is no conclusive scientific evidence proving that producing clean coal radically endangers humans or the earth.

A new study shows that young people could care less about going “green.” Sure, we care about the earth and we dislike pollution; no one wants to live in smog. But don’t ask us to pay to combat climate change while we struggle to pay our bills and compete with hundreds of our qualified peers for the same paltry job openings.

This month, the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology published a 40-year study that observed the generational shifts in American attitudes toward environmentalism from baby boomers to Gen Xers to Millenials. Researchers found that the “Steepest [trend] of all was a steady decline in concern about the environment, and taking personal action to save it,” reports The Associated Press.

Key findings from the study:
• Millenials dislike the label “environmentalist.”

• The majority (85-90 percent) of young people are “…not interested in being seriously inconvenienced or paying a cost to…” protect the environment.

• Only 21 percent of Millenials consider it their responsibility to “clean” the earth.

Even though young people like myself have been nagged to “go green” by commercials, celebrities, college professors and employers, we are smart enough to prioritize and read through the conspiracy theories. We are tech-savvy individuals. We want to plug in our iPads and send emails off, not write snail mail letters by candlelight. We want to advance, not regress. Is this so much to ask?

If President Obama thinks he can fool young people to vote for him by putting coal out of business, he should think again. We know that the dangers of human-induced climate change are still controversial theories. Sure, the earth is warming and cooling but many scientists say this is natural and will happen whether or not humans use coal-powered lights, TVs, smartphones and washing machines. Americans in general, but particularly young professionals, are worried about their own premature extinction—not climate change.

Good science does not emerge from “group-think” exercises. The Heartland Institute points out that it would not matter if 99 percent of scientists confidently held the theory that humans significantly contribute to climate change—one scientist, doing a single experiment, could disprove this theory. And as Rush Limbaugh has said: “There’s nothing democratic about science. The earth does not revolve around the sun because a consensus of human beings says so.”

When Benjamin Franklin performed experiments to verify lighting’s electricity by flying a kite, he was outside interacting with nature—not huddled in a group pushing for political consensus. Franklin invented the lightning rod whereas climate scientists are inventing science to support socialist public policies like the EPA’s coal regulations.

Continue reading Sippin’ on Coal and Rum – Katie Kieffer – Townhall Conservative Columnists.

Running on Empty: Petrol Panic in UK

In a related story Mark America is analyzing a government induced petrol panic in the UK. The story from the UK Telegraph is here.

I recommend my readers check out this piece over the UK Telegraphon what is going on with our friends across the pond.  They’re experiencing a fuels shortage to the extent that the government is being urged to begin an emergency program of rationing.  The issue began when a union of truck drivers who deliver fuels threatened to go on strike, and a government official, Francis Maude, a Cabinet Officer advised people to fill up their tanks and store fuel in storage containers.  Quite naturally, the people responded by doing just that, emptying filling stations everywhere.  While telling the people not to panic, the British government incited a panic, and the resultant run on fuels, in a shortage so severe that first responders there are having difficulty finding fuel to run their ambulances.   What we should learn from all of this are at least two important lessons, and I hope my readers will take note:  Governments cause panics by their actions, but more importantly, our fuel supply is more vulnerable than most people think, because of the structure of the supply chain.

If you drive to your favorite filling station, most days there will be no problem.  You’ll simply dispense the fuel, pay and depart, and there’s no fuss about any of it.  What most people don’t realize is that the amount of fuel out at filling stations is based on the expected, ordinary quantity demanded, and while there may be some small amount in surplus, it’s really not much more than a day or two extra under ordinary conditions.  Fuels are dangerous to store in large quantities, and EPA regulations have made the job harder, but most important is the notion of just-in-time inventory management which means retailers don’t keep more on hand than they will immediately sell under normal conditions.

The reason this matters to consumers is that it means that any small fluctuation upward in quantity demanded can quickly lead to a shortage. As we should have learned in the aftermath of hurricanes Katrina and Rita, anything that causes a shortage at the margins in one locale can quickly spread to others.  If there’s a run on fuels in just a few key locations locally, it can spread like a wildfire as displaced customers shift their demand to other locations, driving those to shortage, and thus pushing the shortage around.  As the shortages spread, panic takes hold, so that people descend on every location for fuel they can find.

Continue reading Running on Empty: Petrol Panic in UK « Mark America.

In other news.

I don’t have much to add here although I will note that the delay (hopefully) in Keystone XL does have beneficiaries, namely the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad owned by none other than Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway. can you say Crony Capitalism?

About NEO
Lineman, Electrician, Industrial Control technician, Staking Engineer, Inspector, Quality Assurance Manager, Chief Operations Officer

5 Responses to Sippin’ on Coal and Rum, with a Side of Petrol

  1. Freedom, by the way says:

    Great post. Americans better start raising a stink.


    • That is the unvarnished truth, Freedom. Our lifestyle is so dependent on abundant, affordable energy that without it the fabric of society is going to tear in thousand ways that I don’t think any of us can imagine.


  2. Pingback: EZ Gains (and a “conspiracy theory” about the burning of fuels leading to warming) « JRFibonacci's blog: partnering with reality

  3. Pingback: Where Will You Be When the Lights Go Out? « nebraskaenergyobserver

  4. Pingback: Where Will You Be When the Lights Go Out? « The Constitution Club

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