Friday, November 18, 2011

Warmism as the new "Protocols"

As I read the account below it struck me that the “The Protocols of the Elders of Zion” have a lot in common with Warmism -- the contradictions, the irrefutability, the absence of any proof, the hate etc. Greenies hate people in general so I suppose it should be no surprise that the products of hate are similar in different eras.

I have long pointed out on my sidebar that, just as "The Jews" were once blamed for every ill, so Global Warming is nowadays blamed for every ill. I will not try to spell out the similarities in any further detail but I think readers will see for themselves areas of similarity well enough. Even the first sentence could well apply to Warmism.

“The Protocols of the Elders of Zion” are perhaps the best proof that the Nazis’ “Big Lie” theory — tell something long enough and loud enough, and some people are sure to believe it is true.

A fabrication of the Russian Secret Police between 1897 and 1903, the documents described a putative Jewish plot to take over the world. Their speciousness repeatedly proven over the years, they continue to fuel anti-Semitism: in Nazi Germany, in communist Russia, in anti-Semitic Arab countries, in the writings of Western racists and so on.

And “The Protocols,” translated into scores of languages, continue to live on in popular culture — a 2005 documentary, a new novel (“The Prague Cemetery”) by Italy’s Umberto Eco, a new nonfiction book (“License to Murder”) by Alex Grobman, director of the America-Israel Friendship League. The Jewish Week spoke with Grobman this week about “The Protocols.”

Q: More than a century after “The Protocols” were written — and discredited as a fraud — why are we still talking and worrying about them?

A: The myth of an international Jewish conspiracy to control the world as advanced in “The Protocols” has been exposed by historians, journalists, politicians, police and religious leaders. Yet this has not stopped “The Protocols” from being part of a view held by many people. The potential danger of “The Protocols” in shaping public opinion is real and should not be underestimated. When Jews are portrayed as manipulators who seek power over other people’s lives, they come — only naturally — to be perceived as severe dire threats.

It is thus particularly disconcerting that this false and harmful perception of Jews is embraced even today by the leadership of the Arab-Muslim world, where “The Protocols” continues to be published in vast quantities, and cited in the writings of mainstream academics, who lend credibility and legitimacy to this falsehood and utter fallacy.

Q. Who takes ‘The Protocols’ seriously today?

Aside from many in the Arab world, the belief that Jews have an inordinate amount of power in the world can also be found throughout the West as well. In September 2007, The Financial Times reported that “Currency Wars,” a Chinese bestseller, claimed “The Battle of Waterloo. The deaths of six U.S. presidents. The rise of Adolf Hitler. The deflation of the Japanese bubble economy, the 1997-98 Asian financial crisis and even environmental destruction in the developing world,” which occurred over two centuries “have a single root cause: the control of money issuance through history by the Rothschild banking dynasty.”

Every time a friend returns from international theological conferences, he laments how pervasive the underlying belief in “The Protocols” is among leading theologians. Were you to confront them, they would be highly insulted, yet they accept the basic premise.

Jewish history is full of bogus accusations against Jews, like the blood libel. Why have “The Protocols” had such a lasting influence?

The notion of the Jew as a demonic character is still prevalent, allowing anti-Semites to use “The Protocols” to incite against Jews, particularly during times of political and social unrest. Conspiracy theories are attractive because they absolve the individual of any personal responsibility for failures, reverses and suffering. In this moral universe of “us” and “them,” the victim is not responsible at all for what has occurred. The conspirators are the ones who are culpable.

The fact that it was allegedly written by Jews makes the work more authentic. Reliance on contradiction— that to succeed Jews employ capitalism and communism, philo-Semitism and anti-Semitism, democracy and tyranny — made it possible for “The Protocols” to reach out to all: rich and poor, right and left, Christian and Muslim, American and Japanese.

Debating the advocates of “The Protocols” doesn’t work. Showing that “The Protocols” is a fraud doesn’t work. Banning the book — as some countries have tried — doesn't work. What works?

Certain portions of the population will never be convinced that “The Protocols” are a forgery or that Jews are not an evil force trying to control the world. Logic and reason have little or no place in their way of thinking.

The purpose of [Grobman’s new book] is to inform those interested in historical truth why this canard and other lies against the Jewish people are so pervasive, and why they pose a danger not only to the Jewish people, but to all those who cherish a democratic way of life. If we do not respond to the canards, the assumption will be that we have no answers.


The Fukushima disaster gave a test to all the Greenie panic about nuclear reactor accidents

Radiation levels at Fukushima are negligible

The fallout from the radiation leak at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear reactor in Japan may be less severe than predicted.

Radiology researcher Ikuo Kashiwakura of Hirosaki University, Japan, and colleagues responded immediately to the disaster, travelling south to Fukushima prefecture to measure radiation levels in more than 5000 people there between 15 March and 20 June.

They found just 10 people with unusually high levels of radiation, but those levels were still below the threshold at which acute radiation syndrome sets in and destroys the gastrointestinal tract. Geiger-counter readings categorised all others in the area at a "no contamination level".

How did the population of Fukushima prefecture dodge the radioactivity? Gerry Thomas at Imperial College London, director of the Chernobyl Tissue Bank, says the answer is simple. "Not an awful lot [of radioactive material] got out of the plant – it was not Chernobyl." The Chernobyl nuclear disaster released 10 times as much radiation as Fukushima Daiichi.
Rapid response

Thomas says the quick and thorough response by the Japanese government limited radioactive exposure among the population. On 12 March, the same day as the first explosion at Fukushima Daiichi, the government ordered the evacuation of residents within 20 kilometres, and asked various institutions to begin monitoring contamination levels.

"They had no faxes, no emails, nothing was working," says Thomas, adding that other countries might not have coped as well with a combined earthquake, tsunami and nuclear plant malfunction. "Given the circumstances, they did phenomenally."


14000 Abandoned Wind Turbines In The USA

Doesn't that tell anybody anything?

There are many hidden truths about the world of wind turbines from the pollution and environmental damage caused in China by manufacturing bird choppers, the blight on people’s lives of noise and the flicker factor and the countless numbers of birds that are killed each year by these blots on the landscape.

The symbol of Green renewable energy, our saviour from the non existent problem of Global Warming, abandoned wind farms are starting to litter the planet as globally governments cut the subsidies taxes that consumers pay for the privilege of having a very expensive power source that does not work every day for various reasons like it’s too cold or the wind speed is too high.

The US experience with wind farms has left over 14,000 wind turbines abandoned and slowly decaying, in most instances the turbines are just left as symbols of a dying Climate Religion, nowhere have the Green Environmentalists appeared to clear up their mess or even complain about the abandoned wind farms.

The US has had wind farms since 1981:
“Some say that Ka Le is haunted—and it is. But it’s haunted not by Hawaii’s legendary night marchers. The mysterious sounds are “Na leo o Kamaoa”– the disembodied voices of 37 skeletal wind turbines abandoned to rust on the hundred-acre site of the former Kamaoa Wind Farm…

The ghosts of Kamaoa are not alone in warning us. Five other abandoned wind sites dot the Hawaiian Isles—but it is in California where the impact of past mandates and subsidies is felt most strongly. Thousands of abandoned wind turbines littered the landscape of wind energy’s California “big three” locations—Altamont Pass, Tehachapin (above), and San Gorgonio—considered among the world’s best wind sites…

California’s wind farms— comprising about 80% of the world’s wind generation capacity—ceased to generate much more quickly than Kamaoa. In the best wind spots on earth, over 14,000 turbines were simply abandoned. Spinning, post-industrial junk which generates nothing but bird kills…”

The problem with wind farms when they are abandoned is getting the turbines removed, as usual there are non Green environmentalists to be seen:
The City of Palm Springs was forced to enact an ordinance requiring their removal from San Gorgonio. But California’s Kern County, encompassing the Tehachapi area, has no such law

Imagine the outraged Green chorus if those turbines were abandoned oil drilling rigs.
It took nearly a decade from the time the first flimsy wind turbines were installed before the performance of California wind projects could dispel the widespread belief among the public and investors that wind energy was just a tax scam.

Ben Lieberman, a senior policy analyst focusing on energy and environmental issues for the Heritage Foundation, is not surprised. He asks: “If wind power made sense, why would it need a government subsidy in the first place? It’s a bubble which bursts as soon as the government subsidies end.”

“It’s a bubble which bursts as soon as the government subsidies end” therein lies a lesson that is going be learnt by those that sought to make fortunes out of tax payer subsidies, the whole renewables industry of solar, wind and biomass is just an artificial bubble incapable of surviving without subsides from governments and tax payers which many businesses and NGO’s like WWF, FoE and Greenpeace now think is their god given right, as the money is going on Green Climate Religion approved clean energy.

The Green evangelists who push so hard for these wind farms, as usual have not thought the whole idea through, no surprises for a left agenda like Climate Change, which like all things Green and socialist is just a knee jerk reaction:
Altamont’s turbines have since 2008 been tethered four months of every year in an effort to protect migrating birds after environmentalists filed suit. According to the Golden Gate Audubon Society, 75 to 110 Golden Eagles, 380 Burrowing Owls, 300 Red-tailed Hawks, and 333 American Kestrels (falcons) are killed by Altamont turbines annually. A July, 2008 study by the Alameda County Community Development Agency points to 10,000 annual bird deaths from Altamont Pass wind turbines. Audubon calls Altamont, “probably the worst site ever chosen for a wind energy project.”

The same areas that are good for siting wind farms are also good for birds of prey and migrating birds to pass through, shame for the birds that none of the Green mental midgets who care so much about everything in nature, thought that one through when pushing their anti fossil fuel agenda.
After the debacle of the First California Wind Rush, the European Union had moved ahead of the US on efforts to subsidize “renewable” energy–including a “Feed in Tariff” even more lucrative than the ISO4 contracts.

The tax payers who paid for the subsidies to build the wind farms, then paid over the odds for an unreliable source of power generation will, ultimately be left to pick up the bill for clearing up the Green eco mess in the post man made Global Warming world.


'Meteorologists monitoring Antarctic conditions say it is the highest snowfall in the region in years'‏

THEY’VE been on the ice less than three weeks but hell has already frozen over for Aussie adventurers James Castrission and Justin Jones. Nightmare winds, heavy snowfall and days of total white-out have turned what was already a monumental challenge into an epic battle of will versus weather.

The pair, who made world headlines three years ago after crossing the Tasman in a kayak, are aiming to become the first people to trek 2200km from the edge of the Antarctic to the South Pole and back, unassisted.

Months of training in New Zealand and the Snowy Mountains helped steel the duo for the journey and each gained about 20kg in weight to increase their fat stores. However, little could prepare them for the conditions they have so far endured.

“We’ve been pushing hard on the trail (but) we’ve had some atrocious conditions and we’ve been making some really, really average mileage,” Jones reported on a well-earned rest day earlier this week. “At the moment it’s blowing about 60km/h outside which is just phenomenally hectic.”

Today marks day 18 on what is meant to be a three-month expedition. Castrission, 29, and Jones, 28, have so far trudged 165km from their starting point at Hercules Inlet, some days progressing at less than a kilometre an hour. Part of the problem is the fresh soft snow, which makes it almost impossible to drag 200kg sleds carrying vital supplies.

Meteorologists monitoring Antarctic conditions say it is the highest snowfall in the region in years.

In their latest update filed via satellite phone, Jones said damage to their tent had made life even more difficult temporarily. “I’ve put this lovely patch on the door, two poles fixed, everything is all good and we’re rearing to get back into tomorrow,” he said.


Energy Dept. pushed to keep layoffs quiet

Solyndra cuts not made public until after midterm elections

The Obama administration, which gave the solar company Solyndra a half-billion-dollar loan to help create jobs, asked the company to delay announcing it would lay off workers until after the hotly contested November 2010 midterm elections that imperiled Democratic control of Congress, newly released e-mails show.

The announcement could have been politically damaging because President Barack Obama and others in the administration had held up Solyndra as a poster child of its clean-energy initiative, saying the company's new factory, built with the help of stimulus funds, could create 1,000 jobs.

Six months before the midterm election, Obama visited Solyndra's California plant to praise its success, even though outside auditors had questioned whether the operation might collapse in debt.

As the contentious 2010 election approached, Solyndra found itself foundering, and it warned the Energy Department that it would need an emergency cash infusion.

A Solyndra investment adviser wrote in an Oct. 30, 2010, e-mail, without explaining the reasons, that Energy Department officials were pushing "very hard" to delay making the layoffs public until the day after the election.

The announcement ultimately was made on Nov. 3, immediately following the Nov. 2 vote.

E-mails describing the events were released Tuesday as part of a House Energy and Commerce Committee memo, provided in advance of Energy Secretary Steven Chu's scheduled testimony before the committee's investigative panel on Thursday. As a result of the 2010 election, that committee is now controlled by Republicans, whose aggressive nine-month investigation into Solyndra has focused partly on whether politics played a role in the company's selection for a federal loan.

Amid the fallout from the company's shutdown in August, the White House has said tough scrutiny of the department's oversight efforts is warranted and has launched its own independent review of the loan program. Although the president has publicly supported Chu, senior White House officials in February circulated an outside adviser's recommendation that Chu be replaced because of anticipated political controversy over the energy loans.

On Tuesday, Energy Department spokesman Damien LaVera declined to confirm events described in the e-mails or to identify who at the department may have urged the delay in the layoff announcement. He stressed, however, that "decisions about this loan were made on the merits." In an interview aired Tuesday on NPR, Chu said that politics did not enter into any decisions he or his staff made regarding Solyndra and that there was no way to foresee the company's demise.

The White House declined to comment Tuesday on whether senior White House officials attempted to influence the timing of the layoff announcement.


End the Green Nightmare

There is currently a maelstrom of news about costly failures in the so-called green energy industry. Of course, solar power is prominently featured, and the Solyndra fiasco is only one of the scandals. Rapidly rising to public consciousness is another crony capitalist solar company, SunPower, which looks like it too will go bust and cost the American taxpayer a fortune. Also in this club of losers are solar companies such as First Solar and Abengoa, both again the recipients of taxpayer dollars, thanks to the current administration’s rigid environmentalist ideological mindset.

But not to be overlooked are disappointments in the other segments of the green energy industry. Corn-based ethanol has proven to be such a wasteful boondoggle that even Al Gore has rethought his support of it. And wind power has come in for a good deal of scrutiny. Why, even geothermal companies are proving questionable. A recent report of three on the biggest such companies — Nevada Geothermal Power, Raser Technologies, and U.S. Geothermal — shows that they are all in financial difficulty or are just not profitable. All are recipients all of taxpayer loans or loan guarantees.

This has left the proponents of green power trying desperately to explain away its dismal failure — both here and abroad — to prove itself commercially viable without massive governmental subsidization, and without the corruption that governmental subsidies typically bring. But while we are witnessing the bursting of the Great Green Energy Bubble, we are also witnessing a renaissance of fossil fuels — the very fuels that Malthusian prophets of doom have for decades claimed are “running out.”

This renaissance has been caused by a technological revolution that is transforming oil and gas drilling. Because of it, oil and gas are far more plentiful here and in countries outside the Middle East and other hostile neighborhoods, such as Russia and Venezuela. I am thinking especially of two technologies, fracking and horizontal drilling. The rebirth of fossil fuel production was unimaginable a few years ago. It is completely beyond the ken of the Greens who constitute the Obama Regime, people who never anticipate revolutions that are not run from above, by them, but instead originate in the distributed intelligence of regular (read: creative) people.

Start with fracking. It has certainly made some energy companies rich. For, example, Noble Energy has just paid a whopping $3.4 billion for a half-interest in the Marcellus Shale holdings of Consol Energy. Together they plan to develop a huge chunk of Pennsylvania and West Virginia (663,000 acres). Even after selling off half its holdings, Consol still expects to extract a massive 350 billion cubic feet of gas.

What is fascinating is that Conrol Energy is a Pennsylvania-based coal company — you know, one of those, well, fossils of the fossil fuel industry. It is nicely positioning itself for the inevitable shutting down of coal-fired power plants under the relentless pressure of the EPA. Consol and Noble are just two of the flood of companies moving in to develop the Marcellus Shale formation.

Fracking is also rewarding key players in the industry. Marcus Rowland, the CEO of the small but important player, Frac Tech International, earned a tidy $24.4 million last year. His compensation made him the highest paid CEO of any publicly-traded energy company. He is paid more than the CEO of IBM.

Frac Tech is beating many other energy companies by providing hydraulic fracturing services for big energy companies such as Chesapeake Energy and ExxonMobil. It brought in nearly $1.3 billion in revenues. In the world of fracking, only Halliburton and Schlumberger are bigger.

There is a very recent report about the development of a shale field of truly stupefying proportions. The Utica Shale deposit is an enormous geological formation stretching from Quebec to Kentucky. It may be an even more fertile source for oil and gas than the Marcellus Shale field. Ohio state geologists — a neutral source, please note — estimate that Ohio’s share of this field holds upwards of 15 trillion cubic feet of natural gas and 5.5 billion barrels of recoverable oil (or roughly a third of the production of America’s largest oil reserve, Alaska’s Prudhoe Bay).

Then there is brilliant article discussing one of the unsung creative geniuses of American industry, Harold Hamm. In a week dominated by paeans to the fallen Steve Jobs — who rightly deserved recognition for his amazing success in making Apple what it is — it was nice to see a piece on the remarkable Mr. Hamm.

Hamm is the founder and CEO of Continental Resources. He rose from humble origins — the thirteenth child of Oklahoma sharecroppers — to become thirty-third on the current Forbes list of wealthy Americans. Yes, Virginia, there is a Horatio Alger. Hamm is almost certainly going to rise to a much higher place on the list, given how much oil he owns.

He made his early success as a wildcatter with a keen sense of where oil could be found. But his greatest contribution was his early employment and improvement of a second innovative fossil fuel technology, a method called horizontal drilling. This is a technique whereby the drilling company drills downward (up to two miles deep), then drills outward, horizontally. This technology has — as dramatically as fracking — allowed energy companies to exploit petroleum and gas reserves hitherto not commercially viable.

Hamm is the discoverer of the famous Bakken oil field that extends from Montana to North Dakota. So fertile has this field proven that it has helped put America back in third place in the world in oil production. He estimates the reserves in Bakken alone at 24 billion barrels — which if true is double our currently proven national reserves. Continental has seen its proven reserves go from 118 million barrels in 2000 to 421 million barrels this year.

One might expect that the Obama Administration would be delighted at the prospects of America’s becoming energy independent — and potentially millions of American blue-collar workers getting high-paying jobs.

But one would be wrong. Far from welcoming the renaissance of the American fossil fuel industry, the Obama Regime has fought it tooth and nail. It is attacking shale oil and gas with every tool at its disposal. Its Department of the Interior has undertaken a jihad against them. It has locked away from exploration and development vast new areas of the Midwest and has waged a war against conventional offshore drilling. It is now doing its best to stop the new technological drilling, even in lands that have been drilled conventionally before.

The Green Regime’s SEC has entered the fray, demanding that companies like Continental follow new Sarbanes-Oxley requirements about reporting royalty and production figures, meaning that CEOs like Hamm face jail time if some low-level operator misreports production from a field.

Ironically, the feds never apply Sarbanes-Oxley to themselves. If Obama or any of his administration misreports taxpayer liabilities, say, for solar industry loans, nobody faces any consequences.

In addition, the Regime is pushing de facto tax increases for the oil and gas industry, by ending various tax credits the oil industry has long enjoyed. This — coming from an administration lavish in its subsidies to minor and expensive energy sources such as solar, wind, geothermal, and ethanol — is from the point of view of physical science simply bizarre.

Finally, the Green Dream Team has brought its Justice Department into the jihad. It recently brought charges against seven oil companies in North Dakota for killing 28 birds. Continental has been accused of killing — one bird! But this is not a minor matter: the executives face six months in jail if convicted. (Note: The same Justice Department has never even once pursued any American wind power company, even though American wind power facilities kill on the order of half a million birds a year.)

But even as the Regime wages its jihad against domestic fossil fuel industries, other countries are moving ahead with the new fossil fuel technologies. As I noted in an earlier piece, Israel has set about using fracking to free itself from reliance on foreign sources of oil, which would mean changing the balance of power in the Middle East. Israel is using fracking to exploit some major fields, the most recent being a field (named “Leviathan”) which holds 16 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, or about a century’s worth of gas at Israel’s current usage. This field is only part of the massive Levant Basin shale field, which holds upwards of 122 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, or about eight centuries’ worth.

More recently, a small energy player in the UK has announced that the Bowland Shale field, in northwest England, contains an estimated 200 trillion cubic feet of natural gas. This estimate (by Cuadrilla Resources) means that this one shale field contains enough natural gas for two-thirds of a century of the UK’s needs at present levels. And that is only one field.

More here


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