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De Omnibus Dubitandum - Lux Veritas

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Top Story!

By Rich Kozlovich

This whole issue of Climategate II gets more and more interesting every day.  There is a post in Deltoid that supposedly lays this whole thing out as meaningless and inappropriate. It is amazing how the worm turns when it is their ox that is being gored. If there was a release that was anywhere near as inflammatory as these e-mails have been from some group that was opposed to Global Warming these people would be praising them to high heaven and demanding that no one should investigate who released them.

I still think that nothing will come clean until someone is charged with the crime of fraud and the let the chips fall where they may. And I do believe that fraud is still a crime to be a criminal activity by criminal investigators...not university stooges.  Nothing has changed my mind in that global warming has made the term scientific integrity an oxymoron.  There is just way too much grant money involved for truth to stand in the way. 

In the meanwhile JoNova posted a great response to the claims of these greenie apologists and excuse makers. The article ClimateGate II: Handy Guide to spot whitewash journalism – The top 10 excuses for scientists behaving badly, answers the following criticisms;
1. “The emails are old”
2. “The timing is suspicious”
3. “They’re out of context”
4. “The emails show a robust scientific debate”
5. “They’ve been investigated”
6. “They’re hacked” or “stolen”
7. “Aren’t the skeptics nasty people?”
8. “This doesn’t change the science”
9.  The emails “mean nothing” according the scientists caught cheating"
10. The public response is a “yawn”


Shock: Chemical industry stands up to Senate bullies

Posted on November 30, 2011 by Steve Milloy on   

Apparently even the squishy and often-greenwashing chemical industry has its limits.  Environment and Energy Daily reports, a testy exchange at a recent hearing on a bill to reform the country’s chemical regulations has driven a significant wedge between a major industry group and Democrats just as Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.) prepares to move his landmark legislation.

The feud spawned from a Senate Environment and Public Works Committee hearing earlier this month on Lautenberg’s “Safe Chemicals Act” (S. 847), which would overhaul the 1976 Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA).

Responding to a question from Lautenberg, American Chemistry Council (ACC) President Cal Dooley said his organization would not provide specific legislative language as an alternative to several parts of the bill to which it objects.

The remark sparked shouting from Democratic Sens. Ben Cardin of Maryland, Tom Udall of New Mexico and Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island, all of whom charged that ACC needed to provide specifics. Otherwise, they argued, the trade association was only working to defeat the bill.

Two weeks after the hearing, the rift only appears to be widening…The doddering Frank Lautenberg needs ACC buy-in to convince Senate and House Republicans to go along with his planned destruction of the chemical industry.  ACC seems finally to be balking — no easy thing for the Democrat Cal Dooley to do.

But no matter, it should be a safe bet that House Republicans will not go along with Senate Democrats in screwing the chemical industry — even if the industry asks for it.

But we should keep in mind that the Newt Gingrich-led house voted unanimously to approve the Food Quality Protection Act of 196 which has led to the restriction of pesticide use and expansion of EPA efforts on so-called endocrine disrupters.

So Republicans need to be closely monitored.


This Week With Burt Prelutsky

Burt Prelutsky is a Hollywood writer that wrote one of the most popular M.A.S.H. shows ever. It was the one where a wounded pilot decided he was Jesus Christ. It was a very touching episode and has been recognized as one of the most famous. Prelutsky doesn't post everyday so a "week" with Burt may not really be a week, so I'm taking some liberties with the title.  However, by the time a week roles around I need a bit of his style of humor mixed with reality and basic common sense. The following quote outlines something I have been saying for some time....but not nearly as well. Enjoy! RK.


However, try as they might, neither side can fully explain the existence of left-wingers. For my part, I can far easier grasp the appeal of turnips and grits than I can the stranglehold that Marx, Lenin, Stalin, Mao, Castro, Chavez and Obama, have on leftists. I mean, how is it that anyone can look at the results of communism and socialism and not see them for the nightmares they are and always have been? After all, the evidence is in plain sight. Burt Prelutsky

Don't look for Saint Burt bobbleheads!
Recently, in writing an article in which I was bemoaning all the tax dollars Obama blew on Solyndra, I typed $500 "billion" before I realized I had meant to type $500 "million." Fortunately, I corrected it before the article was posted. The reason I'm mentioning it is to acknowledge that we are all prone to error, and in this case I wasn't even under any pressure. So I can certainly empathize with people running for president when they suffer a brain freeze, the way Herman Cain did when asked how he felt about the way Obama had handled Libya, and Gov. Perry did when asked which three departments of government he would cut.

The Missing Links
When it comes to the Theory of Evolution, the religiously devout often find themselves locked in futile battle with those who lack religious faith. Those on one side are convinced that the earth is a mere 6,000 years old, and that God woke up one day and suddenly decided to create the earth, the stars, the giraffe, the camel and his crowning glory, Adam. Then, lest Adam get too big for his britches, He created Eve.

Addressing the Gay Issue
Heterosexuals are always being accused by homosexuals of being narrow-minded and intolerant, but have any of them ever said they understood why straights might regard sodomy as disgusting behavior?

Talking Politics
Although the general election is still a long way off, the primaries are right around the corner, unless you happen to live in California. Out here, I think we get to vote sometime in July or August. But since we west coast Republicans comprise such a small band of rebels, it probably doesn’t matter that New Hampshire and Iowa, whose cumulative population is about half that of L.A. County, actually get to play a major role in determining who will be the GOP nominee.

The World’s Gone Mad
Some of us imagined that Barack Obama couldn’t possibly have a lousier, more corrupt, circle of friends and advisors in Washington than he had back in Chicago. But is it possible that we simply underestimated the man’s uncanny ability to attract vermin?


Observations From the Back Row

By Rich Kozlovich

Nothing is ever as it seems. Today I have chosen those stories that fit the theme that all the news that is fit to print isn't at the New York Times. When news outlets print opinions and are listed as such I have absolutely no objection to that, no matter which side they come down on an issue. What distrubs me is their unwillingness to print opposing views.

Just like the Warmers claiming that the science is settled, they believe their views are the only views that should be read by the public, and therefore there is no need to publish articles and views in opposition to their own. These news outlets publish articles and "news" stories (not to mention the fact that they leave out anything that demonstrates that they are wrong) that are so biased that their work is no better than the propaganda of Tass or Pravda. Look them up! Here are my picks of the day.

Deadly ‘Diversity’
The neighborhood of Grønland in Oslo, Norway, is not terribly large. It’s on the east side of town, adjacent to central Oslo, and has traditionally been a place of working-class flats and unpretentious pubs. Ever since Norway began to be the destination of immigrants from the Muslim world, however, Grønland has been home to an increasing number of Muslim families and businesses. In recent years, furthermore, it has become an attractive residential area for young Norwegian singles and families, for many of whom part of the lure of living in this part of town was that they wanted to be part of a “multicultural” community. As a result of the influx of these these young people – including no small number of gays – a number of hip restaurants and cafes have sprung up in the area….

“But Grønland is more Muslim than Morocco,” she told Aftenposten. “I had never seen a burka before I came here. And I had never experienced nasty looks if I ate or drank a cup of coffee during Ramadan.”

Tetouani’s son had been scheduled to attend a school where over 95 percent of the students were non-Norwegian speakers. She said no. “All the girls were covered. I felt like I was in a mosque. My son will not be bullied because he has a father who eats pork and is not circumcised.” Tetouani had worked at a local day-care center, where she heard an Algerian mother chastize her son for playing with Norwegian children: “You know they eat pork and are going to hell!” Tetouani’s verdict was blunt: “they are trying to take over this neighborhood.”

A response to Oregon's governor on capital punishment
The governor of Oregon, John Kitzhaber, announced last week that he would not allow any more executions in his state during his time in office.

My Take I have always believed that it is impossible to maintain a civilized society without two things; moral values and punishment for those who ignore those values. What should be the most appropriate punishment for the most serious crimes? For most of humanities existence it has been execution. I have come to worry about that. I have no moral objection to executions for serious crimes, but I have come to think that perhaps we can’t trust officials with that kind of power. Why have I had a change of heart in this matter? The case of the Duke lacrosse team who were falsely accused of rape and a prosecutor who didn’t care if they did it or not because he was running for re-election and wanted to assure himself of black votes. He would have willing destroyed these kids lives for personal gain.  Would he have executed them also? I have no doubt that is exactly what he would have done. If these young men's parents weren't rich they would have never escaped this man's clutches.  His punishment was by no means adequate either. It is my contention that he should be sentenced to whatever sentences these young men would have had to serve ….. and he should have to serve them consecutively.

'Weekend at Bernanke's'
…..I can't say with any certainty that the game is up yet. The Federal Reserve, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund have managed to play "Weekend at Bernanke's" with the global financial system, and the global economy, for longer than I ever imagined possible. They have instituted extra-democratic regime change in Greece and Italy already, and will probably not hesitate to do so in France, Germany and the United States if it is necessary to maintain the illusion of a functional status quo.   But eventually, the corpse of the global economy is going to start stinking strongly enough that its morbid state can no longer be denied. We already have been witness to economic growth that is not economic growth, foreclosures that are not foreclosures, sovereign defaults that are not defaults and democracies that are not democracies. It would appear to be only a matter of time before we learn that our money is no longer money.

What's this? China going bankrupt faster than U.S.?
China is going broke faster than the U.S., according to economic planner Kirk Elliott – who is making this point the lynchpin of a live webinar he's conducting for WND viewers today at 12:30 p.m. Eastern. Here are some shocking facts Elliott discusses in a WND column today on which he will expound during the webinar
• China's debt is about $36 trillion yuan (or $5.68 trillion USD).
• China's officially published interest rate of 6.2 percent is fabricated.
• Excess capacity in the economy and private consumption is only 30 percent of economic activity.
• China's officially published GDP growth of 9 percent is fabricated.
• China's taxes are too high.
(Please go to the article to get his explanations for these bullet points. RK)

Elliott concludes: "There is an economic tsunami about to engulf China, and because of the size of China's economy and its manufacturing might, the impact of the tsunami will be felt far and wide. The United States will feel it in the form of inflationary pressures that we can't afford right now. Periphery countries to China may feel its military might or cower to political pressure as governments that run out of money start to do irrational things (look at the United States, or Greece, or the European Union)."

The cost of regulation
The Golden Gate Bridge is an ironic American structure. It was finished in just four years and came in $1.3 million under budget. Earlier this month, California Senator Dianne Feinstein acknowledged that could not happen today: “…it would take a hundred years to do it with all the permits we need.” It was a rare moment of candor from a California Democrat, acknowledging environmental and labor regulations make it hard to build things in America.  She actually sounded a lot like Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels – a Republican – who made a similar point at The Heritage Foundation in September. According to Mr. Daniels, Indiana “can build [infrastructure projects] in at least a third less time and sometimes half the money when we do it ourselves.” He also noted that Indiana could build its own bike trails for just $250,000 per mile, whereas it costs $1,000,000 per mile when federal money is involved because of all the accompanying red tape.  If lawmakers are looking for bipartisanship, they should start right here, where there is an actual agreement. Unfortunately, far too many in Washington are part of the Establishment and have no desire to tackle the regulatory hurdles and labor rules that increase costs, delay timelines and destroy jobs.

Richmond City Audits Local Tea Party After Standoff with Mayor
Two weeks after the Richmond Tea Party delivered an invoice to Richmond Mayor Dwight Jones for costs incurred for previous rallies, we received a letter from the City of Richmond formally stating that the city is auditing our Tea Party. Coincidence? This audit is an obvious attempt to intimidate and harass us for standing up against the unfair treatment and discrimination against our Tea Party.

First some back story: as reported on the front page of the Richmond Times Dispatch, the Richmond Tea Party delivered an invoice for charges incurred in our previous three Tax Day rallies at Kanawha Plaza because Mayor Jones chose to allow Occupy Richmond protesters to convene in the same park for two weeks.

The Mayor not only allowed the Occupiers to break the law, but he visited them in the city-owned park. “Jones said that as a ‘child of civil rights’ and protests, he had allowed the group to remain in the park but understands his mayoral responsibility to uphold laws of the city,” reported the Richmond Times Dispatch.

How J. Edgar Hoover Saved the Nation
Hollywood efforts to revise the history of the Cold War in favor of radical left-wing interests seem to be unceasing, and in recent years have gotten worse than ever. The latest installment... [portrays] Hoover was a neurotic, driven egomaniac, interested in effective law enforcement but publicity mad and power hungry, obsessed with a mostly illusory communist menace, and a closet sexual deviate in the bargain.

All these are standard elements in the left-wing smear of Hoover that has been out there for decades, and the Eastwood treatment .... inordinate amount of screen time is devoted to showing that Hoover and his FBI associate Clyde Tolson were homosexuals.....private scenes between the two are by their nature sheer invention……. Hoover and his men fought valiantly —.....Here was a titanic struggle between faithful law enforcement agents and the evil designs of a hostile foreign power, thoroughly documentable from official records and well worthy of a movie. Yet not a word about it is uttered in the Eastwood treatment, where the names of such Soviet agents as Hiss, Harry Dexter White, Solomon Adler and countless others are never mentioned, and J. Edgar Hoover is depicted as the bad guy. Disinformation on Cold War issues and corruption of the historical record could hardly go much further.

My Take – I personally think Hoover was a strange man with some serious personal and emotional problems. However, he was right when he worried about the red infiltration. In 1995 the VENONA intercepts were released. These were decoded messages that contained a huge amount of information as to how seriously the government (including the OSS, the precursor of the CIA) was infiltrated. They had penetrated the news media, Hollywood, the universities and the unions. They allegedly only decrypted a small number of the messages but were still left with untold numbers of agents they were never able to identify.  There is one more thing.  Armand Hammer, the industrialist, was absolutely a communist agent recuited by Lenin.
"According to Edward J. Epstein's "Dossier: The Secret History of Armand Hammer," Lenin told Stalin about this so-called "industrialist": "This is a small path leading to the American 'business' world, and this path should be made use of in every way." In other words, Hammer was a part-time spy, part-time money-launderer, part-time "industrialist" -- but a full-time traitor to the United States of America.
It gets better! Hammer bragged that he had Senator Al Gore Sr. in his pocket! At one point Al Sr. demanded that Hoover turn over to him the list of all the communist agents in his state of Tennessee. Hoover naturally refused because he knew where that list would end up.
Throughout the whole of his life, Al Gore Sr. and his family depended on pay-outs, kickbacks and subventions from Hammer," wrote Neil Lyndon, who worked for Hammer. "Like his father before him, Al Gore Jr.'s political career was lavishly sponsored by Hammer from the moment it began until Hammer died, only two years before Gore Clinton in the 1992 race for the White House."


Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Observations From the Back Row

By Rich Kozlovich

I am amazed everyday when I run through my web searches at how the same stuff keeps coming up in spite of the fact that so much of it has been shown to be nothing less that junk science, lies and propaganda.....and expensive at that. There are three things we need to absolutely get if we are to work our way out of this economic mess.
1. Turning food into fuel is economically unsustainable and since it really is forcing the price of food to go up worldwide; it is morally unsustainable. In the U.S. it isn't that big of a deal, but in some countries it is a death sentence to their citizens.
2. We need to abandon all alternative energy schemes NOW before any more money is wasted.
3. We need to realize that everything the greenies say is a lie. That hasn't always been true, but it doesn't matter what they used to be, we must recognize what they are now. Irrational and misanthropic!
High crop prices a threat to nature?
Grain prices are tempting farmers to plow up protected land, even as conservation subsidies shrink…. Thousands…..Minnesota farmers, is looking a painful decision square in the eye: cleaner water or the irresistible temptation of corn at stratospheric prices of $6 to $8 a bushel……..In the following years, millions more acres in Minnesota, North and South Dakota -- critical prairie and wetland habitat for a fourth of the nation's migratory birds -- may also fall to the plow as farmers choose between leaving it to nature or converting it to cash crops. Many predict that nature will be the loser.

CRP is a case in point. The 25-year-old program pays farmers a nominal amount per acre to idle environmentally sensitive land……Nationally, between 2004 and 2007, CRP lands retained 1.86 billion pounds of nitrogen, 420 million pounds of phosphorus and 1.8 billion tons of soil -- much of which would have found its way into the Mississippi River and the so-called dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico. It also reduced carbon dioxide emissions by 200 million tons. And that was just four years. But today, with soaring grain prices, most CRP payments don't come close to competing with cash crops……"We need to pay farmers for producing environmental and habitat benefits," he said.

From the top of his hilly farm near Zumbrota, Thomforde has a pretty clear-eyed view of the world. Global demand and population growth drive his decisions, he said, and the people around Lake Pepin and on down the Mississippi will pay the environmental price. But it's up to everyone, urban and rural, to decide what kind of landscape they want in the next 100 years, he said. "We need to decide whether or not CRP is worth keeping," he said.

My TakeThe answer is simple, whether we pay these people or not……drill! If governments drop these stupid mandates on ethanol, abandon the stupidity of CO2 emissions as a cause for global warming, abandon the junk science about ocean acidification, abandon all of these expensive and inadequate alternative energy program and simply drill, the problem will solve itself.

I would like to state one more time for the record; this is another stupid greenie solution to a non-problem that has caused more problems than it was supposed to have fixed. I would also like to state for the record that all of this was perfectly predictable because all of this failed during the Carter years.

We live in a world where the greenies demand perfection. They then present solutions that are so disastrous that they end up protesting their own solutions. We live in a world of risk versus benefit and the benefits of their solutions are virtually nonexistent!  We live in a world where their solutions cause:
1. Energy costs to soar
2. Make it less available
3. Is so environmentally unsustainable that no matter what problems exist from drill and processing of traditional energy sources their solutions are far worse in every aspect of this issue.
4. We live in a world where the greenies demand perfection.
We need to understand that there is no perfection! There can only be a search for the most acceptable imperfection. And green is the least acceptable imperfection that could ever be inflicted on humanity.

Cost, availability and sustainability. Those are their key arguments against traditional energy production, and they have turned out to be wrong, and in point of fact are not only wrong in their statements ..... they lie. Furthermore, all of their key solutions are all failures in their own terms of cost, availability and sustainability. The greenies almost have a monopoly on being wrong, so why do we listen to these people. There is one upside to this though. When we are confused on an issue as to what position to take....we can take solace in the fact that if you go in the opposite direction of the green movement; the odds of being right go way up!

Herbicide spurs reproductive problems in many animals, ‘report’ says
What does Tyrone Hayes do when none of a multitude of studies show that atrazine harms wildlife? Publish a “review” of all of them and claim there’s something going on.
From a University of Illinois media release:
An international team of researchers has reviewed the evidence linking exposure to atrazine – an herbicide widely used in the U.S. and more than 60 other nations – to reproductive problems in animals. The team found consistent patterns of reproductive dysfunction in amphibians, fish, reptiles and mammals exposed to the chemical.
Except that the only “consistency” is inconsistency (not a hallmark of science!)
“One of the things that became clear in writing this paper is that atrazine works through a number of different mechanisms,” Hayes said. “It’s been shown that it increases production of (the stress hormone) cortisol. It’s been shown that it inhibits key enzymes in steroid hormone production while increasing others. It’s been shown that it somehow prevents androgen from binding to its receptor”…
There also are studies that show no effects – or different effects – in animals exposed to atrazine, [co-author Val] Beasley said. “But the studies are not all the same. There are different species, different times of exposure, different stages of development and different strains within a species.”

Hayes‘ “review” is a transparent attempt to keep his fading anti-atrazine crusade alive.
He’s reached his usual pre-determined anti-atrazine conclusion by compiling a bunch of nothing and hoping that together they make something. But a multitude time zero is still zero.

Read the University of Illinois media release.
Click here for more on Tyrone Hayes.

Chemical fear mongering goes into overdrive
The debate on “reforming” the 1976 Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) has recently emerged before the U. S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works. Eagerly anticipated by a wide variety of environmental groups, whose common raison d'être is essentially a deeply held fear of chemicals in our environment, they are now chomping at the bit at the prospect of tightening our already restrictive chemical safety laws.

Dump the EPA
Like a bad lover, the EPA is a nagging, beguiling mooch. The EPA unconstitutionally barged into our lives and we need to break free from this destructive relationship; let’s give the EPA a two-letter title beginning with ‘E’ and ending with ‘X.’

EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson…is proud to work for a President who will bypass Congress and create his own rules via executive order: ‘I’m proud to be part of an EPA that has mobilized science and the law to create modern and innovative protections for the health of the American people. I’m also proud to be working for a president who has said that “we can’t wait” on these issues.’ We already have Congress to make laws; we don’t need the EPA. “It has long been clear to me that elected representatives should write the rules, not the EPA,” Sen. Lindsey Graham has said.

The EPA’s regulations are so burdensome, sweeping and impractical that it’s nearly impossible for energy companies to comply without going out of business. Hence, businesspeople in the energy industry increasingly find themselves facing enormous fines and even criminal allegations.

In Ayn Rand’s novel “Atlas Shrugged,” a state scientist quips: “Did you really think we want those laws to be observed? We want them broken. … We’re after power and we mean it. … There’s no way to rule innocent men. The only power any government has is the power to crack down on criminals. Well, when there aren’t enough criminals, one makes them.”


Monday, November 28, 2011

Observations From the Back Row

By Rich Kozlovich

How can sane people actually believe this stuff? I saw a show on PBS yesterday that did a great job of promoting all things green and even interviewed an idiot from Duke Energy who had jumped on the green bandwagon, one environmental “journalist” from a New York City publication, and two greenies. All of this was touted as if there was no truth or rationale in opposition to their views and that the green movement is a glowing example of purity and success. They even featured Ehrlich in the documentary who almost has a monopoly on being wrong. One of the greenies, who was in the documentary they showed, claimed that if we had only followed Jimmy Carter's lead on alternative energy 30 years ago instead of allowing Reagan to stop it we would be there now. Baloney! There has never been an alternative energy scheme that has ever been successful without tax breaks or outright grants. Furthermore there has never been an alternative energy system that has ever been able to provide the energy necessary on demand comparable to what is already in existence.

This baloney that we wasted 30 years is the same argument used by those who defended the failures of the Soviet Union that "they only had 75 years to make it work". "They just needed more time!" Baloney! I don't care it they had 750 years! Socialism is a failed system and it will always be a failed system simply because the logical basis for socialism is central planning, and a hand full of people cannot possibly make all the decisions for everyone else and be successful. The only question is whether they would have been able to keep killing people at the same rate they did the first 75.

There was one point made that I do think is important. The ‘journalist’ was sad that the green movement wasn’t as engaged as much because they weren’t in the streets more. No bias there! One of the greenies said that it was true. He said they weren’t in the streets so much because they were in the board rooms of corporations and that they had infiltrated every decision making area of society. That is in my opinion absolutely factually and absolutely frightening for humanity. PBS presents them as a light in the night. They are the night!

Another good reason to get rid of PBS. It is clear that they aren't a news station; they are the propaganda arm for the green movement. That seems to be true for the natural history museums also.

Climategate II
The biggest international hoax of modern times—global warming—took another damaging blow with the release on the Internet Nov. 22 of thousands of e-mails from scientists on the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) showing they deliberately misrepresented the scientific literature in order to support their alarmist position on global warming. This new revelation follows the 2009 scandal when UN scientists were first discovered engaged in a cover-up of their erroneous information…. The new batch of hacked e-mails reveals the complicity of the U.S. Department of Energy in one of the four e-mails released from Professor Phil Jones, the disgraced head of the University of Anglia’s Climate Research Unit and lead author of a key chapter in the IPCC’s Fourth Assessment Report in 2007. Jones is quoted as saying:
“Any work we have done in the past is done on the back of the research grants we get and has been well hidden. I’ve discussed this with the main funder [U.S. Dept. Of Energy] in the past and they are happy about not releasing the original station data.”
That quote was included in a release on the new scandal from the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI), a non-profit think tank.   Myron Ebell, director of CEI’s Center on Energy and the Environment, said, “If there were any doubts remaining…the new batch of E-mails…make it clear” that the IPCC “is an organized conspiracy dedicated to tricking the world into believing that global warming is a crisis that requires a drastic response…[T]he energy rationing policies that their junk science is meant to support would cost trillions of dollars.”
My Take – OK….so when do people start going to jail? I’m under the impression that fraud is a crime!

Emission Controls: The Exodus from Britain Begins
Rio Tinto Alcan is closing its Northumberland aluminium smelting plant in north-east England – a direct result of EU climate legislation. The closure of the decades old smelting plant is devastating for an area with already high unemployment.  Not that the Rio Tinto Alcan plant isn’t making a profit, mind you. Even in an era of spiking energy costs generally, it is. But in 2013 the plant faces a profit-erasing rise of around £56 million to enable it to comply with a further tranche of European and UK carbon legislation. As Rio Tinto’s CEO Jacynthe Côté told the London Financial Times, “It is clear that the smelter is no longer a sustainable business because its energy costs are increasing significantly, due largely to emerging legislation.” Note the sting in the tail. Not, as politicians often like to insist, due to rising energy costs, but “emerging legislation”……. Hedegaard says, “With this measure, we are sending a clear signal to fossil fuel suppliers. As fossil fuels will be a reality in the foreseeable future, it’s important to give them the right value.” De-coding Euro-speak, Hedegaard wants fossil fuels made as expensive as renewables. A plague of profit-busting climate policies is indeed sending a “clear signal” to energy-intensive industries: divest yourself of assets, shed jobs – or just plain ship out. Cocooned in ideological green protectionism, however, don’t expect Hedegaard and Huhne to “get” it.

The Non-Green Jobs Boom

It’s all about cheap readily available energy, i.e., oil, natural gas and coal. Let’s try and get this; if it isn’t about those three sources there will be no economy. We ‘really’ do need to get that! RK

So President Obama was right all along. Domestic energy production really is a path to prosperity and new job creation. His mistake was predicting that those new jobs would be "green," when the real employment boom is taking place in oil and gas.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported recently that the U.S. jobless rate remains a dreadful 9%. But look more closely at the data and you can see which industries are bucking the jobless trend. One is oil and gas production, which now employs some 440,000 workers, an 80% increase, or 200,000 more jobs, since 2003. Oil and gas jobs account for more than one in five of all net new private jobs in that period.

"Green jobs" are in trouble in China too
Losses for China’s largest solar manufacturers, including Suntech Power Holdings Co. and JA Solar Holdings Co. may continue through next year as declining shipments prompt them to slash prices and liquidate inventory.

Shipments at Suntech will fall about 20 percent in the fourth quarter from the third, the world’s largest panel maker said today in its third-quarter earnings report. JA Solar, the country’s biggest cell producer, also said shipments will fall sequentially, and it wrote off inventory in response to falling prices, driving down gross margins.

Why that 'eco-friendly' wood-burning stove could actually be harming the environment
The growing trend for fitting rustic wood-burning stoves is causing serious damage to the environment according to a United Nations report. Sales of the stoves, which emit harmful black carbon similar to diesel fumes from cars, have risen in recent years as homeowners seek a cosy alternative to gas-effect fires or a cheaper way to heat their properties. Many believe the stoves to be eco-friendly as wood is a replenishable resource with some manufacturers going so far as to label their products carbon-neutral. However the report, funded by the Swedish government, found that emissions from burning wood to be a major factor in 'climate forcing'.

The EU Approaches Critical Mass
Last week, a parade of events have set the stage for what may become one of the most volatile economic periods of the 21st century. On Wednesday, Germany, the linchpin nation of the European Union, had a disastrous bond auction, raising only $5.2 billion of the $8.1 billion it expected to raise. On Thursday, Portugal’s debt was reduced to junk status. On Friday, Italy’s borrowing costs soared again, reaching their highest levels since joining the EU. Belgium, which has been unable to form a government for 18 months, had its credit rating lowered from AA+ to AA. Spain, where the People’s Party will be forming a government in the coming weeks, may apply for international aid to maintain its solvency. In short, the EU is going to hell in a socialist hand basket.....And in Britain, a public sector union strike is also scheduled for this coming Thursday, because the government is proposing to raise the retirement age and increase employee contributions to their pensions.

While the peoples’ anger seems justifiable, there is something missing. It is their inability to recognize that they are every bit as responsible for the current crisis as those they seek to blame for it. Ironically, both ends of the fiscal food chain have enabled each other’s demise. It was the massive amounts of credit issued by lending institutions at the top, who made billions of dollars by making easy credit available to the bottom end of the chain. It was the easy credit that enabled the socialist government spending sprees that quickly, but artificially, raised the living standards of people who were more than happy to live the good life, even if it was built on a mountain of accumulating debt. It is that debt that has now become unsustainable, putting both ends of the food chain on the brink of insolvency in the process.


Cover-up: The news stories media don't want you to see ...WND editors join with readers to determine the year's top 10.  As it does every year, WND is inviting readers to submit their candidates for the most "spiked" stories of the year in Operation Spike!  At this time, news organizations prepare their year-end retrospective replays of what they consider to have been the top news stories of the previous 12 months. But WND's editors have always found it more newsworthy to publish a compilation of the important stories most ignored by the establishment press.   WND Editor and CEO Joseph Farah has sponsored "Operation Spike" every year since 1988 and since founding WND in May 1997 has continued the annual tradition. For the past 12 years, WND has invited its readers to join in and submit what they considered the most underreported stories of the past year.    Submit your candidate or candidates for the year's most ignored stories


Saturday, November 26, 2011

American Council on Science and Health, 2011: Week 47

The presence of linked articles here are merely a way of showing what is going on, whether I agree or disagree with the positions presented. Rich Kozlovich


Fewer people dying from HIV, more people living with it
Treatment for HIV-infected patients is more effective than ever before, the United Nations AIDS program (UNAIDS) has just reported.


Unregulated, ineffective...and maybe dangerous
Taking herbal supplements, we've often observed, is rarely a great idea.

Whistle blown on milk thistle supplement
A study just presented at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases has found that, despite its popularity, milk thistle extract provides no benefit for hepatitis C patients.


Americans being peppered with more confusing salt info
Flying in the face of the USDA's extremely stringent recommendations for population-wide sodium consumption, a recent study reports that low sodium consumption may actually increase a person's cardiovascular risk.

Soy silly: From the department of nutritional trivia
In other nonsense news, a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition finds that people who eat a lot of unfermented soy products, such as tofu or soy milk, have a 23 percent lower risk of lung cancer than those who eat the least amount.

Up-close and personal, as well as online, can help counter obesity
Two studies on obesity just published in the New England Journal of Medicine both found that primary care physicians (PCPs) can deliver safe and effective weight-loss interventions.


Statins outperform expectations — even after you stop
A recent study published in The Lancet finds that taking a statin to lower levels of cholesterol - especially the "bad" type, LDL - provides long-term benefits with low levels of risk.

No Rx for ailing drug industry
The pharmaceutical industry has been struggling. How bad is it? A report on Monday from Deloitte and Thompson Reuters reveals that investment returns from the research and development (R&D) of new drugs have fallen nearly 30 percent in the last year alone.

Dr. Bloom's Blog
After 300,000 job losses in the pharmaceutical industry in the past decade, some Novartis employees in Switzerland finally took a stand, writes ACSH's Dr. Josh Bloom in his latest blog post for Medical Progress Today.

The Avastin decision: Science, emotion, and politics collide
After an FDA advisory panel unanimously voted in June to revoke the approval of the drug Avastin as a treatment for advanced breast cancer, FDA commissioner Dr. Margaret A. Hamburg announced last week that the agency will support the committee's recommendation and rescind approval.


Toying with science once again
In what has become an annual tradition, the activist organization Public Interest Research Group (PIRG) has released a list of so-called dangerous toys that parents should avoid buying this holiday season.

Harvard wants “no soup (cans) for you!”
A new study from the Harvard School of Public Health reports that eating canned soup significantly raises the concentration of the chemical bisphenol-A (BPA) in urine.

Some trash talk about cleaning products
Yet another previously unknown anti-chemical "environmental" group has issued a scare screed alleging that hidden toxic chemicals in various household cleaning products may be poisoning us without our knowledge.


No loopholes in tobacco health risks
New York City's roll-your-own (RYO) cigarette shops are getting attention due to the city's attempt to end what they deem illicit tax avoidance by the RYO makers.

If there is a health scare today, the American Council on Science and Health will most likely have the answer by tomorrow; and for members it will appear in your e-mail. No effort on your part, except to read the answer. All that the ACSH is interested in are the facts and they are prepared to follow them wherever they lead. Who can ask for more?  Please Donate Now!


This Week With Alan Caruba

Alan’s work has a sense of timelessness about it, so anyone perusing these articles in the future will find them equally insightful as they were when originally written. Alan posts daily on his blog, Warning Signs. The right side of this blog is a section called Caruba's Corner: Green Myths and Other Lies where I have been posting links to Alan's articles by topic. For his past works go to The National Anxiety Center. I would also recommend reading his last book, Right Answers.

The Threat of a Global Financial Collapse
At present, the amount of the annual Gross Domestic Product, $14 trillion—the value of all the goods and services that generate income—is exceeded by the nation’s debts. America is presently $15 trillion in debt and it grows daily.

In a November 21 Wall Street Journal interview, Erskine Bowles of the presidential advisory commission on the nation’s debt, said “If you take 100% of the revenue that came into the country last year, every single dime of it was consumed by our mandatory spending and interest on the debt.”…..

Thomas Jefferson, one of the most brilliant of our Founding Fathers, said “I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them.” He also said that “It is incumbent on every generation to pay its own debts as it goes.”

Another Founding Father, James Madison, warned Americans against the concentration of power saying, “I believe there are more instances of the abridgement of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments by those in power than by violent and sudden usurpation.”…..
We have witnessed what happens when Americans lose sight of the vision of our Founding Fathers and the Constitution they bequeathed to posterity.

We are that posterity.

America's Biggest Turkey: Barack Obama
The 2012 national elections will be held on November 6 and I naturally want to get out ahead of all the other pundits and their predictions about its outcome. I cannot tell you who the Republican winner will be, but I can tell you that Barack Hussein Obama will be known as a former President……..It was surreal to watch how the mainstream media went out of its way to ignore the fact that there were virtually NO FACTS to cite regarding Obama-the-candidate. Any candidate who had gone to the extent of hiding the ordinary “paper trail” that all of us leave when we attend school, college, serve in the military, acquire a Social Security card, travel, or simply acquire friends and acquaintances, surely had something to hide.

Climate Gate, Part Duh!
At what point will it finally occur to the pea-brained legion of journalists, academics, alleged scientists, United Nations propagandists, and others still blathering about “global warming” and “climate change” that there is no global warming and that the climate has been changing for the past 4.5 billion years on planet Earth? It would appear that no amount of the evidence of fraud is sufficient to convince them they have either participated or been taken in by the greatest hoax of the modern era. Perhaps, though, the latest release of thousands of emails between the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change perpetrators may push them toward a rational conclusion and release the rest of humanity from the penalties and costs imposed by the global warming hoax.

Editors note: Steve Milloy’s has a large listing of these e-mails HERE if you would like to peruse them.

Obama's Green Energy Fail
Watching Secretary of Energy Steven Chu face nearly five hours of grilling by a congressional committee seeking answers to the multi-billion dollar loss taxpayers have taken after the department dispensed their money in pursuit of its Green energy program was a reminder that ideology is not a substitute for reality. Dr. Chu received a Nobel Prize in Physics in 1987 for his work at Bell Labs, shared with colleagues, on cooling and trapping atoms with laser light. At the time he was appointed to head the Department of Energy, he was a professor of physics at the University of California, Berkley. He also had gained notice as an environmental enthusiast advocating a shift away from fossil fuels—coal, natural gas and oil—to combat “climate change.”

Ripping Our Society to Shreds
There was a time when civil rights were understood to mean those enumerated in the U.S. Constitution. Now, at least in the State of Massachusetts, they mean the right of homosexuals and transgender people to flaunt their lifestyle anywhere, any time. If you don’t like it and say so, the police can arrest you. I have always been a live-and-let-live kind of person. I consider a person’s sexual preferences to be their own business. No longer. The gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender crowd is determined to impose their sexual “orientations” on everyone, starting in, but not limited to schools.

Observations From the Back Row

By Rich Kozlovich

As usual I prefer dealing with news that isn't seen on the MSM...and I include Fox in that group. Fox may be better, but the news is still ego driven entertainment. Geraldo is clueless and if he can be made to stop interrupting and stop using logical fallacies in place of facts and logic he might have something on his show worth listening to. That ain't gonna happen.

I think O'Reilly is a phony, and the worst thing that happened to Hannity was that Cone left the show and he became too cute by half and I think Huckabee is a waste. The lack of depth and historical understanding is absolutely non-existent on the MSM and is only half way worthwhile on Fox, and only some of these panel shows are worth watching.

I am starting to enjoy "The Five" a bit more as the rest of the panelists are starting to take that buffoon Beckel to task. Wallace is still old style MSM. I do enjoy the Wall Street Journal report panel, although I haven't seen them for a while so they may not even be on anymore. The only one I really enjoy is Stossel. Glenn Beck had great historical foundation to his shows, but I just couldn't take him. My friend Alan Caruba called him weird, but I didn't think he was weird, I thought then, and still do, that he is childish in spite of the value of his historical research. One thing is clear....the "news" is a mess.

So ..... here are my picks of the day!

Climategate scientists DID collude with government officials to hide research that didn't fit their apocalyptic global warming
5,000 leaked emails reveal scientists deleted evidence that cast doubt on claims climate change was man-made - Experts were under orders from US and UK officials to come up with a 'strong message' - Critics claim: 'The stink of intellectual corruption is overpowering' - Scientist asks, 'What if they find that climate change is a natural fluctuation? They'll kill us all'……

Professor Mann, speaking to the Guardian, described the release as 'truly pathetic.' 'Well, they look like mine but I hardly see anything that appears damning at all, despite them having been taken out of context. 'I guess they had very little left to work with, having culled in the first round the emails that could most easily be taken out of context to try to make me look bad.'

My Take - In or out of context he doesn’t only look bad, he looks crooked. I still have to come back and ask the same question to the same problem that has always existed with Mann. Why did it take a Congressional order for him to release his work? It had only been peer reviewed by those who worked with him before that. That isn’t science and when his work was released it turned out his work was so flawed that no matter the figures inserted into the computer a ‘hockey stick’ appeared on the chart. As a result fraud was the only conclusion many people came to. Once again….if the work is not corrupt why not share it willingly? If there is nothing to hide why not share the e-mails that Virginia Attorney General Cuccinelli has asked for? Why should he have to go through the courts for this?

CO2 may not warm the planet as much as thought
The climate may be less sensitive to carbon dioxide than we thought – and temperature rises this century could be smaller than expected. That's the surprise result of a new analysis of the last ice age. However, the finding comes from considering just one climate model, and unless it can be replicated using other models, researchers are dubious that it is genuine. As more greenhouse gases enter the atmosphere, more heat is trapped and temperatures go up – but by how much? The best estimates say that if the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere doubles, temperatures will rise by 3 °C. This is the "climate sensitivity". But the 3 °C figure is only an estimate. In 2007, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) said the climate sensitivity could be anywhere between 2 and 4.5 °C. That means the temperature rise from a given release of carbon dioxide is still uncertain. There have been several attempts to pin down the sensitivity. The latest comes from Andreas Schmittner of Oregon State University, Corvallis, and colleagues, who took a closer look at the Last Glacial Maximum around 20,000 years ago, when the last ice age was at its height.

My TakeI love this. Think about what these defenders of the CO2 global warming connection are actually saying! They are saying that everything is “estimates” and the sensitivity is unknown. So we should spend trillions on global warming ….why?

Russia’s military chief warns that heightened risks of conflict near borders may turn nuclear
Russia is facing a heightened risk of being drawn into conflicts at its borders that have the potential of turning nuclear, the nation’s top military officer said Thursday. Gen. Nikolai Makarov, chief of the General Staff of the Russian armed forces, cautioned over NATO’s expansion eastward and warned that the risks for Russia to be pulled into local conflicts have “risen sharply. Russia's military chief warns that heightened risks of conflict near borders may turn nuclear - Makarov added, according to Russian news agencies, that “under certain conditions local and regional conflicts may develop into a full-scale war involving nuclear weapons.” A steady decline in Russia’s conventional forces has prompted the Kremlin to rely increasingly on its nuclear deterrent……Russia also considers missile defense plans as another security challenge.

My Take – This is all very interesting because of a number of reasons. One, the Russian navy is rusting away and two, their army is ill trained and have some serious issues with vodka….they drink it a lot. All of this is intertwined with two other issues. Because Putin has turned Russia into a gigantic corrupt Mafia style operation that has stifled domestic economic growth and initiative, the only real source of outside money is from their massive oil and natural gas exports. If the rest of the world starts drilling, and fracking becomes even more popular in the rest of Europe, they are in for some serious financial trouble.

The final parts of this puzzle are that the population of Russia is declining at an extraordinary rate of 0.5% (that number seems to be increasing each year by the way) a year mostly because they just aren’t having many babies, and the remaining population is aging. It won’t be long before they will not have the population to fill large parts of Russian territory, especially in the Eastern sections.

The Chinese have a huge male population of about 100 million bachelors that can’t find wives because of their one child policy. As a result girl babies are aborted at an alarming rate. That leaves a lot of really angry men with nothing to do but rail against the government. They have serious issues with water and Chinese banks are insolvent, also stifling natural growth through initiative. They are in for a serious downturn in their economy….it is just a matter of when. They may come to the conclusion that there is nothing like a war to fix that problem.

Furthermore, most of the usable land in China is no bigger than everything east of the Mississippi River in the United States. They have a population of over 1 billion people with most of them living in that small area. Eastern Russia may start looking attractive to the Chinese.

This along with Russia's large Muslim population…..NATO and the west as a whole are the least of their problems. You know….that was pretty good for a bug man….don’t you think?


Friday, November 25, 2011

Logical Fallacy of the Week: Week 17, Fallacy of the Undistributed Middle


The fallacy of the undistributed middle is a logical fallacy, and more specifically a formal fallacy, that is committed when the middle term in a categorical syllogism is not distributed in the major premise. It is thus a syllogistic fallacy.

Classical Formulation

In classical syllogisms, all statements consist of two terms and are in the form of "A" (all), "E" (none), "I" (some), or "O" (some not). The first term is distributed in A statements; the second is distributed in O statements; both are distributed in E statements; and none are distributed in I statements.

The fallacy of the undistributed middle occurs when the term that links the two premises is never distributed.

In this example, distribution is marked in boldface:……

Note: This is the last of the Formal Fallacies.  Next week we will begin to explore the Informal Fallacies, which I think will be of more use to everyone.  They will also be far easier to least most of the time.   

This Week With Steve Milloy

By Rich Kozlovich

My theme this week has been about alternative energy and what an abject failure it has been. All of which was perfectly predictable. We tried it during the Carter administration and it failed then. Did the technology get so much better that we would think it would work now? No! At least Carter had the excuse of ignorance…They just didn’t know then, although I have few doubts that those who worked with the engineering problems knew right from the beginning it was going to be a failure. However...this time we had some history... we knew this time it had to fail. There really is no fixing stupid.

The articles linked here are a small part of what Steve and his staff link each week. I try to get the things that interested me the most. I you wish to see all of it go to

Anthropogenic Climate Change Fraud

Climategate 2.0 is here!
More devastating Climategate e-mails were released today. We’ve covered juicy ones in the posts listed below. More on the way. Read ‘em all. They validate EVERYTHING the skeptics have been saying. Viva les sceptiques!

Green –Irrational, Corrupt and Misantropic

Lack of electricity, development, kills 1.5 million Nigerians annually
“Poverty is a death sentence” states whoever publicly released the Climategate e-mails and they are so right -WHO Projects 1.5 Million Cooking Stove Deaths In Nigeria — The World Health Organization (WHO) has projected 1.5 million annual premature deaths in Nigeria because of household air pollution from traditional cooking stoves, a Ministry of Environment official says. Quoting from a WHO report, Bahijjatu Abubakar, the National Co-ordinator of the Renewable Energy project of the ministry, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) here Tuesday that the projection could affect the world at large, especially sub-Saharan Africa. Abubakar said the WHO data also predicted that the premature death rate would be larger than that caused by malaria, tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS.

Strassel: Stringing Up Gibson Guitar
Aren’t trees the ultimate renewable resource? Kim Strassel writes in the Wall Street Journal: On a sweltering day in August, federal agents raided the Tennessee factories of the storied Gibson Guitar Corp. The suggestion was that Gibson had violated the Lacey Act—a federal law designed to protect wildlife—by importing certain India ebony. The company has vehemently denied that suggestion and has yet to be charged. It is instead living in a state of harassed legal limbo. Which, let’s be clear, is exactly what its persecutors had planned all along. The untold story of Gibson is this: It was set up…

Is sustainability science really a science?
Past the fact that this is obviously a sad day for the once proud Los Alamos National Laboratory, “sustainability” is a really stupid and dangerous notion…..“Sustainability” is not a science; it’s an excuse not to growth and develop. Thomas Malthus trial-ballooned sustainability in the 18th century — and he was dead wrong. But at least he intended no malice. The modern Malthusians cynically use sustainability to thwart capitalism. We are aware of only one serious sustainability project that was ever attempted — and the enviros killed it.

Horner: A Summary of James E. Hansen’s NASA Ethics File
NASA records released to resolve litigation filed by the American Tradition Institute reveal that Dr. James E. Hansen, an astronomer, received approximately $1.6 million in outside, direct cash income in the past five years for work related to — and, according to his benefactors, often expressly for — his public service as a global warming activist within NASA.

Horner on EPA’s Jackson: Whoa! Which time are you lying?
Chris Horner points out the inconsistencies in Lisa Jackson’s rationale for EPA regulating greenhouse gases.

Alternative Energy

Allianz: ‘Green’ energy could trigger catastrophic blackouts
‘Unstable’ renewable energy sources increase the risk of ‘supra-regional’ electricity blackouts with multi-billion pound consequences, insurance giant Allianz has warned. ‘Unstable’ renewable energy sources increase the risk of ‘supra-regional’ electricity blackouts with multi-billion pound consequences, insurance giant Allianz has warned. Green energy could trigger ‘catastrophic’ blackouts – Solar panels and wind turbines are a “volatile” source of power with fluctuations in the electricity supply risking “grid instabilities” and triggering wide-scale blackouts. Ageing infrastructure and increasingly cross-border electricity networks have heightened the likelihood of a devastating collapse of power supplies lasting months and covering several continents, according to the joint report by Allianz and the Chief Risk Officer Forum. In eastern Germany, turbines in strong wind can produce more than all German coal and gas plants put together, while the need to switch off turbines in high winds causes a drop-off in electricity of 12GW – equal to two nuclear power plants. Outages are likely if there is too little demand or storage capacity to accommodate the jumps in supply.

Bill Frezza: Alternative Energy’s Alternate Reality
The “alternative energy” experiment is unraveling, having barely begun - Alternative Energy’s Alternate Reality – Creating a “green energy” economy may be the most daunting central planning task ever attempted. It entails nothing less than the reengineering of our entire energy infrastructure. And, like all central planning schemes, it is based on a roadmap that eschews real-world experience and sound economics in favor of utopian ideology driven by political connections. Now the experiment is unraveling, having barely begun. As the parade of government-subsidized failures like Solyndra, Stirling Energy, SpectraWatt, Evergreen Solar, Beacon Power, and others mount, now is a good time to look at how all the pieces of the alternative energy puzzle are supposed to fit together—and what happens when they don’t.

Experts fear cost of California renewable energy goals
California’s increasing use of renewable power is going to hurt consumers - California’s increasing use of renewable power will come at a price, pushing up electricity bills across the state. And while it’s impossible to tell how big the cost to consumers will be, some experts fear the total cost of renewable energy in California will be in the billions of dollars. In the next three years, many long-planned solar plants and wind farms will come online, bringing California closer to its goal of getting one-third of the state’s electricity from renewable sources by 2020. As soon as they start delivering power to utility companies, the utilities’ customers will start paying for that electricity.

Of course it’s renewable energy – it just relies on fossil fuels
Although it sounds like an advertisement for ladies’ undergarments “firmed and shaped” actually refers to intermittent “renewable energy” made useful with fossil-fueled “spinning reserve” CleanPowerSF will still rely on fossil fuels despite claims – City officials boast that the proposed CleanPowerSF public power program will offer consumers 100 percent renewable energy, but for some that sounds a lot better than what is really behind the green label.

Reformed Leftie/Greenie challenges energy statism
Robert Bryce is a reformed Leftie/greenie. The solar array he installed on his roof was a bust, and he followed the logic of energy density to conclude that wind, solar, water, crops, plants, and wood would not allow energy to be mankind’s master resource.

Gas beats renewables: fund manager
As remarkable as it seems, energy-dense fuels are more value than dilute power sources

Royal Wind Slam Update: Duke ‘spot on’
“Former Chancellor Lord Lawson yesterday led the backing for Prince Philip after he branded wind farms ‘absolutely useless’.”

Observations From the Back Row

By Rich Kozlovich

Blogger keeps track of the top ten countries reading the blogs. The "all time" top ten of those reading Paradigms and Demographics has been from the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Germany, Russia, Australia, Netherlands, France, India and Japan. Over this last month it has now changed to United States, Germany, Russia, South Korea, France, Japan, United Kingdom, Romania, Netherlands and Canada.

I have never been able to account for any of these rankings, nor did I really concern myself about it either because it bounces around a lot from week to week. As I said, normally I'm not really interested; at least I wasn't interested until this week. I was mystified by the number of hits I have been getting from Germany in the last few days. I was happy to see this but I have to admit that I wondered why. Now I think I know. The article that was getting all the hits was the 7/7/11 Observations From the Back Row. You will understand why after reading the English translation of this article originally published in German. At least that is what I think. Germany’s Green Energy Revolution Falters. 
Germany's abandonment of nuclear power is facing increasing obstacles. The rating agency Moody's has warned Europe's electricity and gas suppliers about downgrading their creditworthiness due to growing political risks. This means that German energy companies which are supposed to make the switch to renewable energies are having increasing difficulties to get raise money on the capital markets. At the same time, the expansion of renewable energies has made only little progress.

After the nuclear disaster in Japan in March, Chancellor Angela Merkel (Christian Democratic Party, CDU) had called the switch to alternative energies a "huge opportunity". Eight months later, the issue has slipped far down the political agenda as the political parties are blocking key laws."The many fragments that have been legislated at the federal and state level must now be brought together," demanded Hildegard Müller, chief lobbyist from the industry association BDEW.

Federal and state governments are divided about the question, which should carry the burden of the proposed tax benefits for the people and companies that increase the energy efficiency of their buildings. A first attempt by the Conciliation Committee to resolve the dispute failed. On the crucial issue of energy efficiency, the federal government is divided: The Free Democrats (FDP) reject an ambitious EU proposal, which would provide mandatory targets. At the same, German states develop energy plans – but uncoordinated." Next year, we need a script for the energy transformation," said Mueller.

Fritz Vahrenholt, CEO of RWE's renewable division, warned against the "danger of blackouts" given the rapid shutdown of many German nuclear power plants and pointed to rising energy prices and the growing import of nuclear power. At the same time, the nuclear energy phase-out also removes a source of revenue for investments in green power for energy suppliers. Lack of electricity grids are further slowing down the development of renewables; delays are caused by bureaucratic procedures and citizen protests.

The situation is critical for wind energy, which plays a central role in the energy concept of the government. On Wednesday, the electricity network operator Tennet, which has to wire all offshore installations in the North Sea, warned that to wire dozens of wind farms at a same time, as planned, would fail due to "lack of financial, human and material resources of all involved", as it is written in an urgent letter to the Chancellor's Office, the Economic and Environment Ministries. "The conditions have to be substantially revised and the burden has to spread over more shoulders."

Tennet estimates that investments of 5-6 billion Euros are needed over the next ten years. The company wants, among other things, to extend the target deadlines: currently, it must add a wind farm to the grid within 30 months after approval, which fails regularly. Installation vessels as well as sufficient suppliers of sea cable are lacking. The construction of wind turbines is getting delayed too – banks shy away from financing the 1.5 billion-Euro projects.

The financial strength of the energy industry, meanwhile, is disappearing fast. The valuation of the companies with the lowest A-level "A3" is at risk, according to Moody's. So far, RWE, E.ON and EnBW still have this investment-grade and are considered as prime borrowers. However, the nuclear phase-out and fuel taxes increase the burden on their balance sheets.

What is more, the industries of the future suffer: Almost all solar companies are deep in the red, wind turbine manufacturers complain about lack of demand and are reporting growing losses. The stock index Renixx, which lists 30 international Greentech companies, has lost 56 percent since the year-high in April.
We really do need to get this.

There is no such thing as anthropogenic climate change; as a result there is no need to implement insane policies to limit emissions any more than those that already exist; as a result there is absolutely no need to establish alternative energy systems.

Furthermore there is no economically viable alternative energy system in existence today that won't bankrupt every advanced industrialized society in existence. Not to mention the fact that every greenie love fest with alternative energy has turned out to be so environmentally unfriendly they are now protesting all of the alternative energy schemes they loved so intensely a few years ago. The Greenies sure are fickle. Hmmm...I it possible that fickle is a German word for insane? Probably not, but I do like the thought.

Prince Charles could finally become king... of ROMANIA, thanks to his ancestor Vlad the Impaler
He is already the longest serving heir apparent in British history. So if Prince Charles ever gets too bored of waiting to accede to the throne, then he might just be tempted to have himself crowned King Carol 111 instead. Central European newspapers yesterday were alight with speculation that the Prince of Wales could be anointed the next King of Romania if the country’s monarchy is restored. The last royal ruler, King Michael – who reigned from 1927 to 1930, and again from 1940 to 1947 - was forced to abdicate by the country’s new Communist leaders, who threatened to carry out mass executions if he refused to step down.

My Take - Talk about a slow news day! This really falls under the category of ….who cares? It is interesting in this respect though. The people of Europe are culturally incapable of grasping democracy in the American sense. Socialism took hold so easily in Europe simply because they have always had someone at the top making all the decisions, fulfilling all the social obligations and being responsible for the care of their citizenry, whether it was the nobility or socialists. Central planning has always been the theme of their governments.

In the 1870’s Germany was the geographic center for socialism in the world. Bismarck was the primary instrument in implementing the concept in German government, believing that socialist policies would solidify the relationship between the people and the ruling class. He was right, but he just never grasped that the ruling class might not be the nobility. The concept of individual rights being “inalienable” is an American concept that was not only radical and exceptional when the Declaration was written; it is still unique in the world today.

We have difficulty understanding why other cultures can’t set up democratic governments such as ours. They have difficulty understanding why it is necessary. They are as culturally incapable of grasping our concepts of individual rights as we are at grasping why they can’t see the superiority of a system where power emanates from the people to government versus a system where power emanates from government as it sees fit. The mess with the E.U. is one example. They have turned their fate over to a bunch of unaccountable bureaucrats, whose qualifications are suspect at best. Unfortunately our system is attempting to do the same thing with the Environmental Protection agency and other abusive agencies and departments.

In other areas of the world religion plays a major role in keeping the population from even thinking about the idea that they should act and think separate from the doctrines of the dictates of their leaders. Sharia isn’t merely religious law. Sharia is a combination of the religious and the secular. Sharia is the secular law of a truly Muslim state. Islam isn’t a religion, it is a governmental concept with religious overtones.

American individualism is impossible in any country that practices true Islam with Sharia as the basis for the enforcement of law.

And we wonder why it is so difficult to get things straightened out in Iraq and Afghanistan. The minute they can they will revert to the culture that was overturned in the first place. They have no choice culturally or intellectually. Nothing that has happened over the last 1400 years in Islam allows for me to draw any other conclusion.

‘Old’ Middle East Resurfacing in Cairo
Tens of thousands of anti-regime protesters have been swarming in the Tahrir Square area for about a week. Police have killed about 40 and wounded hundreds. A ceasefire was attempted on Thursday morning, with Field Marshal Mohamed Hussein Tantawi’s regime going so far as to apologize for the deaths and promising to prosecute the perpetrators. But by Thursday afternoon it had already broken down with fresh outbreaks of violence........In other words: the shabab or violent, youthful protesters basically don’t know what they’re doing, probably are not keen on an Islamist regime, but are helping pave the way for one while the Islamists observe with satisfaction..........Islam remains the strongest identity framework in Egyptian society in particular, and in Arab society generally. The Arab national dictatorships that were layered over this basic Islamic identity for the past 80 years were but a thin veneer of repression. With the fall of these dictatorships, what remains is the core Islamic underpinnings of society, and these will now come to the fore. Consequently, no democratic structures, processes or values are likely to emerge in the Arab world for many generations.


Thursday, November 24, 2011

Green Dreams and Starvation Nightmares

By Rich Kozlovich

Since I have been going to therapy for my knees I now have more pain in my knees than ever and now I have intense pain in my left hip. My wife says that is a good thing because it is part of the healing process. She also says that everyone says it is a good thing. I wonder how many of them have actually gone to therapy? I know…whine, whine, whine, but there is one upside to this; I haven’t done anything the last two days except sleep, eat and stay home. That has given me some time to work on a little project that I have intended to do since from about two weeks ago.

One of the effects of ethanol production is the cost of food worldwide….and the resulting social consequences, i.e., starvation and anarchy. To me this was a given, so I was surprised by the comments of one of my colleagues who adamantly denied this. I am of course right, but I thought I should write an article dealing with this for any others who may have an incorrect understanding of this issue.

The green movement has been as deadly to humanity as any fascist or communist monster that has ever lived. The greenies love technology that doesn’t exist. Once some poor fool of a businessman adopts the very schemes they promoted the greenies then protest it. Unfortunately they usually get the government to mandate their schemes and then it becomes almost impossible to get rid of it. We do really need to get this; greenies are great at finding fault, but they are clueless when it comes to finding solutions, especially when they are looking for solutions to non-problems such as global warming or peak oil production. We now know that their global warming claims are fraudulent and we have enough oil, coal and natural gas (that we know of) to last 200 years. One of the great crusades of the green movement has always been a drive to go away from “fossil” fuels and to alternative energy sources. Ethanol was one of the darlings of that movement until the impact of ethanol was seen. As usual the green movement then attacked those who adopted the scheme they loved so intensely a few years ago.

In 2004 Iowa “livestock farmers are demanding a change in the nation's ethanol policy, claiming current rules could lead to spikes in meat prices and even shortages at supermarkets if corn growers have a bad year” and were “demanding a change in the nation's ethanol policy, claiming current rules could lead to spikes in meat prices and even shortages at supermarkets if corn growers have a bad year.”

“The ethanol industry argues such scenarios are unlikely, but farmers have the backing of food manufacturers, who also fear that a federal mandate to increase production of ethanol will protect that industry from any kind of rationing amid a corn shortage.” “The subject of debate is the Renewable Fuel Standard, a 2005 law requiring the nation to produce 7.5 billion gallons of renewable fuel by 2012. The standard was changed in 2007 to gradually increase the requirement to 36 billion gallons by 2022.”

So who is right? As we follow the stream of time we see that the price of livestock feed corn went from about $3.00 bushel in 2006/07 to around $6.oo a bushel in 2011. They also expressed concerns over the fact that because of ethanol mandates the ethanol industry would not "participate in rationing and the brunt will fall on livestock and poultry". Although a bill introduced last month by Rep. Bob Goodlatte, R-Va. will waive this in case of a crop shortfall (failure) of any kind.  “The Grocery Manufacturers Association, which represents more than 300 food and beverage makers” supports this bill.

In response to this “Senator Charles E. Grassley (R) from Iowa wrote to the Grocery Manufacturers Association, referring to the debate as a ‘smear campaign’ and criticizing the organization for having linked price increases of grocery market food to increased ethanol production. He implied that it was in fact a strategy to “increase the bottom line of grocery manufacturers”.

Yet no one can deny that ultimately these subsidies received by the entire alternative energy industries are now, or will be, a hidden tax of food. 
Of course the EPA can grant waivers to states “under certain circumstances, including inadequate domestic supply or harm to the economy or environment of a state’, but Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s request was denied in 2008, because the “quota for renewable fuel wasn't causing severe economic harm to the state.” And the EPA knows this how; and who defines “severe”?

According to the Labor Department, “wholesale prices jumped last month (April 2011) by the most in nearly two years due to higher energy costs and the steepest rise in food prices in 36 years. In February USA Today claimed that we need to “get ready for higher food prices, which appear to be just around the corner for U.S. consumers and potentially a crippling burden for the world's poor.” The article claims that “a combination of natural calamities and congressional mandates has come together to drive world food prices to levels that make some governments in developing nations nervous, because higher costs can mean political instability.” (Editor’s note: In my opinion the USA Today is notorious for its inflammatory rhetoric, and normally I don’t get too worked up about anything that appears there, so I don’t really like quoting them. So in order to maintain consistency I intend to use other sources to back this up.)

This whole ‘cost of food’ issue is more complex than many realize. First and foremost I believe that ethanol is the primary issue because it is the only factor that isn’t necessary. As I have followed this over the years the whole picture has been outlined. When it comes to actual production weather is first and foremost. That has impacted many types of crops all over the world. Second is the cost of energy. When the price of fuel goes up so too does the cost of everything else; fertilizer, gasoline, diesel fuel, transportation and then eventually the added cost of inflation and speculation. Those are normal factors in all business.

Corn farmers have seen the handwriting on the wall as to where the money is and they have changed from planting wheat, soy beans and other crops to planting corn. Others have bought more land, but they are still planting corn. This is having an effect on the world’s hungry. Does all of this have the same impact at the same time everywhere? No, but ultimately it drives the cost of food up universally because all costs for all things are eventually spread out in our international market system.

A paper entitled the, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System - International Finance Discussion Papers, claims;
“Over the past two years (ending June 2008), we estimate that the increase in worldwide biofuels production pushed up corn, soybean and sugar prices by 27, 21 and 12 percentage points respectively. The countries that account for most of the upward pressure on these prices are the United States and Brazil. Our best estimates suggest that the increase in U.S. biofuels production (ethanol and biodiesel) pushed up corn prices by more than 22 percentage points and soybean prices (soybeans and soybean oil) by more than 15 percentage points, while the increase in EU biofuels production pushed corn and soybean prices up around 3 percentage points. Brazil’s increase in sugar-based ethanol production accounts for the entire rise in the price of sugar.

Although biofuels had a noticeable impact on individual crop prices, they had a much smaller impact on global food prices. Our best estimate suggests that the increase in worldwide biofuels production over the past two years accounts for just over 12 percent of the rise in the IMF’s food price index. The increase in U.S. biofuels production accounts for roughly 60 percent of this effect, while Brazil accounts for 14 percent and the EU accounts for 15 percent. The key take-away point is that nearly 90 percent of the rise in global food prices comes from factors other than biofuels.”
What I find amazing is the conclusion they draw. The paper goes on to conclude that none of this matters. A twelve percent price in food is huge in some areas of the world and this 12 percent is an unnecessary increase. As I have said, weather, cost of fuel and inflation…and of course speculation are issues that need to be addressed, but they are always with us. Although I don’t have a great deal of confidence in this organization regarding anything they promote anymore than I trust the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) to discuss climate change honestly, but perhaps we can take into account that this paper appeared in 2009. Perhaps events would have changed their minds.

So what is the worldwide impact? According to the World Bank;
“Global food prices continue to rise. The World Bank’s food price index increased by 15% between October 2010 and January 2011 and is only 3% below its 2008 peak. The last six months have seen sharp increases in the global prices of wheat, maize, sugar and edible oils, with a relatively smaller increase in rice prices. Higher global wheat prices have fed into significant increases in local wheat prices in many countries. Higher maize, sugar, and oil prices have contributed to increase the costs of various types of food, though local maize prices have largely been stable in Sub- Saharan Africa. Local rice prices have increased in line with global prices in some large rice-consuming Asian countries. These food price rises create macro vulnerabilities, particularly for countries with a high share of food imports and limited fiscal space, as well as increases in poverty. Estimates of those who fall into, and move out of, poverty as a result of price rises since June 2010 show there is a net increase in extreme poverty of about 44 million people in low- and middle-income countries. In the immediate term, it is important to ensure that further increases in poverty are curtailed by taking measures that calm jittery markets and by scaling up safety net and nutritional programs. Investments in raising environmentally sustainable agricultural productivity, better risk-management tools, less food intensive biofuel technologies, and climate change adaptation measures are all necessary over the medium term to mitigate the impact of expected food price volatility on the most vulnerable.”
An article in “greentechmedia” was published in March stating that cost increases were the result of a number of factors such as “an increase in demand and natural disasters. Floods in Australia, drought in Argentina, fires in Russia, and frost damage in the U.S. and Europe contributed to the spike in food prices in December 2010, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). These events resulted in export bans and short-term speculation, causing riots and political instability in more than 30 countries worldwide."

They went on to say that;
“part of the problem derives from ethanol production. In the U.S., 40% of corn production from food and feed is used for ethanol fuel production, putting stress on corn supplies in a year when stocks are at the lowest level in decades. People living in the 52 high-risk countries -- 750 million of them already malnourished -- rely on 83 billion tons of imported food a year, much of it corn, soybeans and wheat exported by the United States.

“The problem is particularly acute in developing nations. “Economically, prices have a small impact on the food prices in the U.S., though this cannot be said for the developing countries,” said Sheila Karpf, legislative and policy analyst at the Environmental Working Group (EWG).”

“Corn prices are higher than they’d be if we didn’t have the biofuel industry. People who primarily subsist on corn make $2 a day or less and spend 60% of their budget on food and are seriously hurt by higher prices,” said Walter P. Falcon, deputy director of the Food Security and the Environment Program and Farnsworth professor of International Agricultural Policy at Stanford University.” Corn prices are higher than they’d be if we didn’t have the biofuel industry. People who primarily subsist on corn make $2 a day or less and spend 60% of their budget on food and are seriously hurt by higher prices,”

“Biofuels makers often stress that they use a mere 3% of the global grain supply. Still, the additional demand causes more profound ripples in the price of staples.”
(Editor’s note: For those who didn’t read the entire article Falcon goes on to claim this ultimately won’t matter. I recommend reading the whole article. Even those who outline the danger can’t help claiming there is no real danger, and you will find this pattern in many of the articles. I linked those because I want everyone to see how this can be twisted.)

One of the reasons the greenies are now against their dream energy source is the ecological effect of production. You may wish to peruse this Power Point presentation.

In an article by Chris Charles of the Global Subsidies Initiative (GSI) he stats;
“identified biofuels as the most important driver of food price volatility, responsible for 75% of the recent price increases, although recognizing that other factors were also important, including weather-related production shortfalls, market speculation and economic growth in developing countries leading to increased grain consumption.” Others argue that it is the weak U.S. dollar and the direct and indirect effect of high petroleum prices”. Yet the “Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)….established the same basic relationship between increased biofuel production and higher food prices for some grains, such as wheat and maize.” “Jean Ziegler, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food, had spoken out against the increasing practice of turning crops into biofuel as "a crime against humanity", which left millions of poor people hungry.”
The article goes on to say;
“the biofuels industry claims it was speculation that caused the increases and as far as they were concerned the biofuels issue is a closed case. However, prices are once again spiking this year. Many have blamed the Middle East uprisings on the price of food and fuel, and they are interconnected in many complicated ways.

The food crisis of 2008 never really went away. True, food riots didn’t break out in poor countries during 2009 and warehouse stores like Costco didn’t ration 20-pound bags of rice…but supply remained tight. Prices for basic foodstuffs like corn and wheat remain below their 2008 highs. But they’re a lot higher than they were before “the food crisis of 2008” took hold. Here’s what’s happened to some key farm commodities so far in 2010…

• Corn: Up 63%
• Wheat: Up 84%
• Soybeans: Up 24%
• Sugar: Up 55%

"What was a slow and steady increase much of the year has gone into overdrive since late summer. Blame it on two factors…Drought has wrecked the harvest in Russia, Ukraine and Kazakhstan – home to a quarter of world production…..the Agriculture Department cut its forecast for US corn production. The USDA predicts a 3.4% decline from last year. Damage done by Midwestern floods in June was made worse by hot, dry weather in August. "
When the rest of the world gets sick the burden to provide needed food stuffs falls on the real bread basket of the world. The United States farmer! What happens when there is a drought destroys the Russian or Australian wheat crops or the Argentine soybean harvest, and those “record harvests” we have experienced “no longer materialize”?

In The Renewable Energy Disaster by Christopher Calder he states that;
“It is a mathematically provable fact that you cannot replace oil, coal, and natural gas with windmills, solar panels, and biofuels.”…,”Contrary to popular belief, solar, wind, wave energy, and biofuel schemes are not "energy efficient," and their ultra-high cost is an accurate measurement of that inherent inefficiency. If they were efficient they would cost less than using fossil fuels, not dramatically more than using fossil fuels.”
He goes on to say;
“Biofuel crops include corn, soybeans, rapeseed (canola oil), sugarcane, and palm trees (palm oil). The majority of the world's corn is grown in the United States, and an ever increasing percentage of that crop is ending up in gas tanks instead of stomachs. Increasing amounts of soybean and rapeseed are being diverted to biodiesel production, and world supplies of cooking oil are now low. Corn and soybeans are the foundation of America's food supply, because they feed our farm animals which give us dairy products, eggs, and meat. When the cost of animal feed is pushed up by biofuel production, the price American families pay for essential high protein foods also rises.

Biofuels require large amounts of nitrogen fertilizers to produce, and the price of fertilizer rose by more than 200% in 2007 alone. Nitrogen fertilizers are largely made from natural gas, which experienced no significant price gain in 2007, so the main driving force of fertilizer price hyperinflation is undeniably biofuel production. Biofuels are pushing up the cost of all foods that require fertilizers, including rice, wheat, potatoes, tomatoes, lettuce, and broccoli. Corn and most food products remain at historically high price levels despite the drop in oil prices, so the biofuel advocates claim that only the price of oil is a significant factor in food cost inflation is profoundly incorrect. To make matters worse, the world is gradually running out of economically obtainable phosphates, a prime ingredient in fertilizers. If we use up our supplies of phosphates growing fuel instead of food, we bring closer the global collapse of the human food supply, which will likely happen sometime in the second half of this century.

According to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, global food prices rose an incredible 40% in 2007. The World Bank states that the cost of staple foods rose by 83% during the 3 year period from 2005 to 2008. The International Food Policy Research Institute states that biofuels are responsible for rapid grain price inflation, and a detailed analysis by Don Mitchell, an internationally respected economist at the World Bank, stated that biofuels have forced global staple food prices up by 75%.

The United Nations states that its charity programs can no longer afford to feed the starving peoples of the world because of the high cost of staple foods. Mr. Jean Ziegler, the former United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food, repeatedly denounced biofuels as "a crime against humanity." The new UN food envoy, Mr. Olivier De Schuster, has called for United States and European Union biofuel targets to be abandoned, and said the world food crisis is "a silent tsunami affecting 100 million people." Oil price increases have not shrunk the human food supply, but biofuel production has. The more biofuels we produce, the less food we have to eat, because we grow biofuel crops using the same land, water, fertilizer, farm equipment, and labor we use to grow food."
He then goes on to list ten top reasons to oppose biofuel, including starvation. He also notes that; Biofuel advocates ignore the fact that when we pump up grain prices through biofuel production, we raise grain prices all over the world, which gives other countries a strong financial incentive to burn down more rainforests in order to plant more food. United States corn-ethanol production is a major driving force in the rapid destruction of the Amazon basin. The environmental degradation caused by biofuels is staggering. Please read his whole analysis. We must not lose sight of this;
“It's politics and greed, not science.” The biofuel hoax was created by domestic American politics and corporate greed. Ambitious young biofuel entrepreneurs and giant agricultural corporations smelled the money to be made, and lobbied Congress in hopes of turning the farm belt into the Saudi Arabia of renewable energy, even if the energy they supply comes at the cost of human starvation and accelerated environmental damage."
Even the High Priest of the Church of the Warming Globe, Al Gore states that;
"It is not a good policy to have these massive subsidies for (U.S.) first generation ethanol.

1. First generation ethanol I think was a mistake.
2. The energy conversion ratios are at best very small.
3, It's hard once such a program is put in place to deal with the lobbies that keep it going.
3. The size, the percentage of corn particularly, which is now being (used for) first generation ethanol definitely has an impact on food prices.
4. The competition with food prices is real.
5. One of the reasons I made that mistake is that I paid particular attention to the farmers in my home state of Tennessee, and I had a certain fondness for the farmers in the state of Iowa because I was about to run for president."
"Translation - Al Gore ignored numerous warnings by responsible scientists that ethanol production harms the environment and raises food prices because he wanted to win the Iowa Caucus. According to Goldman Sachs analysts, the United States used 41% of its corn crop in 2010 to make ethanol."

Everything that we are told should bear some resemblance to what we see going on in reality. In my reality the more demand there is for a product the more it will cost. There is a huge demand for American corn and the prices are going up. Much of that corn is going into biofuel. That must be a large part of that price increase. We stop growing other foods in order to grow corn, which is now more profitable. Those countries that relied on our crops now must not have any downturn in their harvests or someone starves. Is it our responsibility to feed the rest of the world when they have problems? That isn’t my argument. My argument is that using all this corn for ethanol causes food prices to soar and eventually will cause people to starve, which, when it happens, will have been a politically mandated disaster and nothing I have read substantiates any other conclusion.

I do have an absolutely fool proof way of finding out the truth. Stop making ethanol out of food and see what happens to the price of food worldwide.