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People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it. Welcome to From On High.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

New Ideas For An Energy-Starved World

Don't laugh.  One of these ideas may change the world:
Energy summit in Wise focuses on promising technologies
By Debra McCown, reporter, Bristol Herald Courier

Wise, Va. – Amid discussion of the shortfalls of U.S. energy policy and the nation’s future, the Southwest Virginia Technology Council highlighted five promising technologies Monday during its third annual Energy Technology Summit.

These technologies included thorium, Hydrocoal, fly ash, aneutronic fusion and sunshine advances.

Thorium – is it the fuel of the future?

Like uranium, thorium is an element that can be used to produce energy, said Charles Stevens, who said he recently revived a technology he worked on as a U.S. government subcontractor back in the 1980s.

Unlike uranium, he said, thorium doesn’t generate radioactive waste or encourage proliferation of nuclear weapons.

“It’s sustainable energy, and it represents energy independence for the United States,” he said.

Stevens, CEO of Laser Power Systems, based in Massachusetts, added that the technology uses high-energy lasers to turn water into steam, which then drives a turbine and generator. It works, he said, without the chain reaction of a nuclear reactor.

At the price of $1.85, he said one gram of thorium can produce as much energy as 7,500 gallons of gasoline or 2.2 tons of coal. A thorium-powered car could travel 300,000 miles before refueling.

A 2,000-megawatt thorium power plant could fit in a 50,000-square-foot building, he said – less than a third the size of a typical big box retail store – and he believes the technology will be ready to go commercial in 12 to 18 months.

Among his first customers are Third-World countries, which are seeking the technology as a means of generating electricity and clean water without the kind of expensive power infrastructure that’s used in the United States, Stevens said.

For a house, he explained, a thorium power system could cost about the same as a furnace/hot water system – less than $15,000. It would come fueled, potentially cutting heating bills by 80 percent for a typical American homeowner.

Cars, he said, would be priced around $25,000, and could run a million miles. [link]
A $25,000 thorium car?  Well, not if Obama and his Democrats get a hold of it and tax/regulate the hell out of it.

But here's to the thinkers and dreamers.  May they come through with concepts that will keep civilization moving forward.

Why Weblogs Rule The Information Age

I commented on the unconstitutional police raid of a James Madison University student newspaper on Sunday

We get a message from the Roanoke Times editorial team that it's working up commentary on the subject - to be published ... someday.

Some day.  Perhaps before the millennium. 

Yawn.

The phrase "information superhighway" sure doesn't seem to apply to the dinosaur press, it?

Make no mistake, there's a future for these guys at the Post Office.

You Lose

The Roanoke Times editorial page this morning comes out against Governor Bob's budget cuts that will make it more difficult for local public television stations to operate.

Why would the cave dwellers at the Times be in opposition?

"That means British comedies and Lawrence Welk could become unaffordable, as could locally produced news and information shows."

Earth to Times: We have plenty of other locally produced news and information shows, all of which are better produced.  And we'll somehow survive, I'm hoping, if British comedies and Lawrence Welk become DVD fare.

British comedies and Lawrence Welk?

Those seven regular viewers of such programming will just have to pick up a book.

Why We Will Win

The opposition just ain't all that bright.

Get this, from "NRA gun-safety program for Va. grade schools criticized" in this morning's Washington Post:
The Virginia General Assembly has directed the state's Board of Education to develop course materials for teaching gun safety to elementary school children that incorporate the guidelines of a National Rifle Association program.

The measure, approved during the legislature's recently concluded annual session, allows local school boards to choose whether to implement the program.

A leading Democrat in the state Senate had amended the bill to allow the state board to also incorporate materials from a second group, the National Crime Prevention Center. But Gov. Robert F. McDonnell (R) has proposed stripping the amendment from the bill, leaving the reference only to NRA material.

A McDonnell spokeswoman said there is no such group as the National Crime Prevention Center.
How idiotic are these people?  They submit an amendment to a bill, the centerpiece of which is a complete flub. (The anti-gun crowd, it is guessed, meant to refer to the National Crime Prevention Council.)

Submitting this embarrassment to the state Senate was none other than that genius from Fairfax:
Senate Majority Leader Richard L. Saslaw (D-Fairfax), who proposed the amendment to allow the use of materials from the National Crime Prevention Center as well as the NRA, said he has no opposition to McDonnell's change given that the group he intended to refer to has not recently been distributing material about gun safety. 
Even the organization he meant to refer to hasn't been in the business for a matter of years.

With enemies like him the people of Virginia are sure to succeed in returning our freedoms to their rightful place.

You go, Dick.

Gotta Love The New York Times

According to the New York Times editorial page, ObamaCare Lite, also known as the Massachusetts health care program, is wildly successful.

Except in NOT ACHIEVING ITS PRIMARY GOAL - making health care affordable.

Suppose the editorialists ever realize how foolish they come across some times?

You Can't Criticize The Gov't?

It seems like just yesterday that dissent was considered patriotic.  Well, a year-and-a-half ago anyway.  When Bush was in office.  And Democrats were doing the dissenting.  Against "Bush's War."

Now, all of a sudden, dissent is ... sedition?

So say those same Democrats ...
The Violence Card
Wall Street Journal editorial

Liberal Democrats and their friends in the media have tried just about everything to dismiss and discredit the tea-party movement. They've accused Americans who are anxious and angry about a rapidly encroaching government of being racists, extremists, birthers, pawns of a corporate "AstroTurf" effort—and, now, potential Timothy McVeighs.

No less a figure than Bill Clinton seized on the occasion of the Oklahoma City bombing's 15th anniversary to lecture tea-party activists, first in a speech last week to the Center for American Progress Action Fund, then in a Monday New York Times op-ed. "Have at it, go fight, go do whatever you want," he said in the speech. "You don't have to be nice; you can be harsh. But you've got to be very careful not to advocate violence or cross the line." In the op-ed, he wrote: "There is a big difference between criticizing a policy or a politician and demonizing the government."

Taken strictly at face value, these statements are unobjectionable. Yet given that the tea-party movement has been peaceful and law-abiding, it's hard to escape the conclusion that Mr. Clinton is engaging in a not-so-subtle smear campaign.

Mr. Clinton's opposition to "demonizing the government" would be more credible had he been heard from on the subject during the first eight years after he left office—when, for example, Hollywood demonized George W. Bush by releasing "Fahrenheit 9/11," or when Mr. Clinton's own former Vice President railed against the man who beat him in 2000: "He betrayed this country!"

Instead, Mr. Clinton's effort to exploit the memory of Oklahoma City looks like a partisan cheap shot. In his speech last week, the former President observed that, unlike the Boston Tea Party, "this fight is about taxation by duly, honestly elected representatives that you don't happen to agree with, that you can vote out at the next election." Our guess is that the next election is what he's really afraid of. [link]
No, I think he's afraid of those dissenters.  He and his kind aren't used to people in opposition to their views standing up and fighting them in the arena of ideas so passionately.  The Tea Partiers are their worst nightmare.

As well they intend to be.

The Bill Clinton Some Of Us Remember So Vividly

It's not the image manufactured by a fawning press of a towering figure of international reputation and universal acclaim.

It's the Bill Clinton of Waco infamy.

Kenneth Anderson:
Bill Clinton’s invocation of Timothy McVeigh in connection with the Tea Party movement caused me to recall my review of a book on the Waco massacre that was a motivation for McVeigh. The book under review was Reavis, The Ashes of Waco... 1995. Re-reading it for the first time in many years, I was struck by this section:

"The plan [Attorney General Janet] Reno approved and took to President Clinton for approval contemplated the children choking in the gas unprotected for forty-eight hours if necessary, to produce the requisite “maternal feelings”. By taking aim at the children with potentially lethal gas, their mothers would be compelled, according to the FBI plan repeatedly defended by the Clinton administration afterwards as “rational” planning, to flee with them into the arms of those trying to gas them. [Emphasis in the original]

"An independent report on Waco written by the Harvard Professor of Law and Psychiatry, Alan A. Stone, for the then Deputy Attorney General Philip Heymann, says it “is difficult to believe that the US government would deliberately plan to expose twenty-five children, most of them infants and toddlers, to CS gas for forty-eight hours”. Unfortunately, however, that appears to have been exactly the plan.

"The effect of CS gas on an unprotected infant exposed for only two to three hours is discussed in the report; in that case report, dating from the early 1970s, the child’s symptoms during the first twenty-four hours were upper respiratory; but, within forty-eight hours his face showed evidence of first degree burns, and he was in severe respiratory distress typical of chemical pneumonia. The infant had cyanosis, required urgent positive pressure pulmonary care, and was hospitalized for twenty– eight days. Other signs of toxicity appeared, including an enlarged liver.

"Professor Stone’s report is measured, careful and damning.

"I was shocked to read in Stone’s report that the Justice Department had undertaken, and had defended in the press as such, activities which if conducted in wartime would constitute war crimes."
Twenty-five innocent children, along with every one of their mothers, were tortured over a period of days and then murdered by Clinton and his minions.

And Clinton today has a problem with the anti-government rhetoric that is sweeping the land.

My God.