Sunday, May 07, 2017

A story about the "science guy" who wants to jail climate skeptics

By Elias Fredericks

I grew up on Bill Nye. I looked up to him as a role model and someone who taught me more then my boring 3rd grade teacher could.

Several years ago, my mom brought me with her to a math and science conference in Boston.

Bill Nye was there. However, his workshop was full, which was extremely disappointing to me.

I really wanted to meet my childhood hero, and some greedy old math people are taking that from me!

Well, we were entering an elevator, in a rush to our next workshop, and guess who is there but the Science Guy himself?

I still love Bill Nye as a figure, and always will.

But, wow, was he nasty.

He basically told people to not talk to him, and when they did was extremely dismissive.

He stood in the corner and sulked.

Here was my childhood idol, being a jerk to innocent people probably in the same mindset I was.

It traumatized me.

It was the first time that I realized that my idols were human, and just as Bill was in this case, can be nasty.


Solar Industry Struggles

The Security and Exchange Commission has begun investigating several solar-energy companies due to their alleged failure to disclose to their investors information about canceled contracts and lost customers.

Numerous customer complaints about these companies have been fielded by attorneys general in several states. Common to many of the complaints were stories of various high-pressure sales tactics, which seems to be corroborated by a rather high rate of customers backing out of contracts. SolarCity, which was recently purchased by Tesla, reported that nearly half of its customers were backing out of contracts before solar panels were installed. Another company, Sunrun, cut its growth expectations in half in 2016 from 80% to 40%.

The fledgling solar-energy industry is getting a crash course in market economics, with growing competition both within the industry itself with various new start-ups, as well as the development of more strident regulations in various states.

Despite being propped up by leftists hoping for a “clean energy” revolution, the solar-energy industry is struggling to survive market forces — well-established cheaper fossil fuel industry power and a lack of consumer demand. The Obama administration’s green-energy tactics included heavily subsidizing the failed Solyndra startup, which cost taxpayers more than half a billion dollars with nothing to show for it. That brought negative press for the entire industry. Now with Donald Trump at the helm and his push to deregulate coal and other fossil fuel industries, the viability (and desirability) of “green” energy becomes that much more tenuous.

Competing in the free market is challenging and offers no guarantee of success, but hiding numbers from investors and practicing dubious sales tactics — all while raking in taxpayer money — will only invite further distrust of an industry already struggling to gain broad public acceptance.


The new EPA is putting American workers first

By EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt

When President Trump came to EPA to sign an executive order ending the “war on coal,” he was flanked by Pennsylvania coal miners. Hosting coal miners at EPA headquarters in Washington served as a stark contrast to the past administration, to be sure.

President Trump’s action was a moment in which a promise became an economic reality. As EPA Administrator, I immediately ordered my Agency to comply with the March 28 executive order, and signed four new rules, which included a review of the Clean Power Plan. Relief — and prosperity — is on the way.

The “war on coal” stemmed from the previous administration’s regulations aimed at removing coal from our nation’s energy mix. This approach, sanctioned by EPA and other agencies, divided Americans and strengthened Washington’s grip on our economy. Thankfully, President Trump has made clear: The regulatory assault on American workers is over. We should not have to choose between supporting jobs and supporting the environment.

Now, opponents of President Trump’s new executive order claim that this action means that our federal government is turning its back on a clean environment and regulation altogether. This argument is wrong.

First, the Clean Power Plan was never implemented, and was unable to do a single thing for our environment. Twenty-seven states sued, recognizing the threat this regulation posed to their economies and the rule of law. The Supreme Court granted a stay to halt implementation of the Clean Power Plan.

Rather than take its lumps, the Obama administration still demanded compliance from the states, claiming that the stay was only temporary (a technique that was frequently used by the Agency to extract compliance during litigation). The result was lost jobs and an uncertain regulatory environment, without any environmental gain to show for it.

Second, the Clean Power Plan was expected to yield very little for what it cost the American taxpayer. For the price of American jobs, EPA had promised a reduction of sea level rise by the thickness of two sheets of paper and reduction of atmospheric CO2 concentrations by 0.2 percent by 2100, according to an analysis by the National Economic Research Associates. Emissions growth in China and India, of course, would continue unchecked. This plan put America last.

Third, congressional testimony by my predecessor, former Administrator Gina McCarthy, made it clear that the goal of the Clean Power Plan was far less about achieving a measurable result than it was about providing leadership in the world. The federal government sought to kneecap American workers, while countries like India and China were not held to the same rules.

Americans who want a healthy and clean environment expect lawful, effective and economically sound regulation — the Clean Power Plan failed on all three counts. EPA can and should now focus on getting real results in the fight for clean air, land and water.

President Trump made it clear that we should put America first. We are not going to allow EPA to pick winners and losers through regulation. EPA should work within the framework that Congress has established. And we should provide regulatory certainty and write rules that make sense for the states and the businesses they affect.

The “war on coal” is over. Now EPA can focus on its mission and deliver real results.


Environmentalists or Ecoterrorists? Pipeline Arsonists on the Rise  

The supposedly environmentally friendly crowd is doing an exceptionally atrocious job of proving it. The most recent example of actual environmental malpractice occurred last week in the Midwest, where criminal activists are still trying their best to disrupt the Dakota Access Pipeline. The irony, of course, is that they are wrecking the land they claim to cherish in the process. On Thursday, anti-pipeline knuckleheads in the vicinity of Newell, Iowa, caused a combined $145,000 in damage. That’s just the tip of the proverbial iceberg. This occurred right around the same time another episode of arson happened in southeast Iowa, and authorities are attempting to establish a link.

For Newell in particular, this is déjà vu. In November, saboteurs went on a multi-million-dollar blitzkrieg. Additionally, this is a theme we’ve seen repeated over and over again. As John Sexton reports, “Last October, fires were also set near Reasnor, Iowa, causing up to $2 million in damage. At the time, the company behind the pipeline offered a $100,000 reward for information on the arson. There had also been a previous arson incident in the same location in August. In March of this year, the company that built the pipeline reported two incidents of sabotage in which someone used a blowtorch to burn a hole in a shut-off valve. One of the incidents happened in Iowa, the other in South Dakota.”

And let’s not forget North Dakota — the epicenter of the ecoterrorists' rage. The recent theatrics in that state has Gov. Doug Burgum seeking $38 million from the federal government to alleviate the financial burden imposed by hypocritical activists. When a movement’s reactions are entirely contradictory to its purported goal, it’s not really a movement so much as it is a tyrannical mob. In other words, they’re quite literally ecofascists.


The First Step in Revoking Obama’s Land Grab

What is done by executive power can be undone by executive power.

Former President Barack Obama began to learn that lesson this Wednesday when President Donald Trump signed an executive order directing Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke to conduct a review of all Antiquities Act designations larger than 100,000 acres over the past 30 years.

Specifically, the executive order directs Zinke to consider “the requirements and original objectives of the Act, including the Act’s requirement that reservations of land not exceed ‘the smallest area compatible with the proper care and management of the objects to be protected’” and whether “designated lands are appropriately classified under the Act as ‘historic landmarks, historic and prehistoric structures, [or] other objects of historic or scientific interest.’”

This wording strongly suggests that Obama’s lame duck decision to designate 1.35 million acres in San Juan County as a national monument will at least be significantly reduced and possibly entirely rescinded.

Some environmental activists may claim that Trump does not have the power to shrink or revoke Obama’s Antiquities Act designations, but these claims are ignorant of both history and the law.

For starters, as University of California Berkeley Law School professor John Yoo and Pacific Legal Foundation Executive Director John Gaziano detailed in a recent legal report, five presidents have significantly reduced four previous monument designations, and no one has ever questioned the legality of those reductions.

Specifically, President Ike Eisenhower reduced the Great Sand Dunes National Monument by 25 percent, President Harry Truman reduced the Santa Rosa Island National Monument by 49 percent, Presidents William Howard Taft, Woodrow Wilson, and Calvin Coolidge collectively reduced the Mount Olympus monument by 49 percent, and Taft reduced the Navajo National Monument by 89 percent.

A current president’s power to alter a previous president’s flows from the text of the statute, which authorizes the president “in his discretion, to declare by public proclamation … national monuments …. the limits of which in all cases shall be confined to the smallest area compatible with proper care and management of the objects to be protected.”

As Yoo and Gaziano point out, “there is no temporal limit” on the requirement that a monument must be limited to “the smallest area compatible with proper care and management of the objects to be protected” so all presidents must use their ongoing discretion as to whether every monument is the proper size.

“What is done by executive power can be undone by executive power.”

Furthermore, what if a later president determines that an earlier president’s designation was so exceedingly beyond the “smallest area compatible with proper care” that the entire designation was illegal?

Yoo and Gaziano argue that the entire monument designation could be revoked.

Whatever Zinke does end up recommending to Trump—and a preliminary report is due in 45 days on Utah’s Bears Ears National Monument—further executive action will only be the beginning of solving San Juan County’s public lands issues.

Congress will then need to pick up the Public Lands Initiative legislation that was working through the House before Obama derailed the legislative process and pass a commonsense solution that includes real input from local residents.

Only through the legislation can local residents, including the Navajo, be given real power over their land use decisions



For more postings from me, see  DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC and AUSTRALIAN POLITICS. Home Pages are   here or   main.html or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  

Preserving the graphics:  Most graphics on this site are hotlinked from elsewhere.  But hotlinked graphics sometimes have only a short life -- as little as a week in some cases.  After that they no longer come up.  From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site.  See  here or here


No comments: