In the Pipeline: 1/14/13

Coming in at number 3 on the laundry list of your progressive rights (after condoms and the Internet), you have the right to pursue sunlight that may or may not hit your outrageously expensive solar panels that have been installed by the ‘market’ – cough, coercion – but who cares!  You won’t have to worry about going over the threshold for the tax break, because there’s no way you’ll even have access to anything that resembles a reliable source of energy.  Now we just have to decide how much energy everyone needs and call it a day! Christian Science Monitor (1/10/13) reports: “A benefit of consumers paying for the tax is that they would be encouraged to make important choices – such as adjusting their thermostats, changing their light bulbs, or refusing to do so and paying the tax. As with any tax on consumption, however, poorer Americans would suffer more than wealthier ones… A simple exemption, however, could make the tax burden much lighter for poorer Americans, while at the same time encouraging even greater conservation. The idea is simple: Each household would be exempted from the tax for a modest amount of electricity per month or year; the exemption would be most effective if the system also imposed only minimal usage charges for electricity below the cutoff. The system would recognize almost all households need to use some electricity, but that consumption beyond the minimum would be taxed.” [Emphasis added]


Blue Ribbon Commission on Delaying and Obfuscation recommends more delay and obfuscation.  The House and Energy Commerce Committee is rude enough to point out that we probably need less of both. Energy & Commerce (1/11/2013) reports: “We cannot have a serious conversation about solving America’s nuclear waste problems without talking about Yucca Mountain. There remains a gaping hole in this implementation plan because President Obama precluded the commission from considering Yucca Mountain in its report. The Blue Ribbon Commission emphasized the need for a long-term storage repository, and Yucca Mountain remains the most viable and thoroughly studied option.”


So, let’s review.  A large government agency that would benefit from government regulation of GHG emissions produces a questionable report designed to support (wait for it) . . . government regulation of GHGs. Washington Time (1/11/13) reports: “Strangely, NCDC changes temperature data even from the distant past without notification. For example, NCDC now asserts that the average temperature in July 1936 was 76.4 degrees, a full degree cooler than the 77.4 degrees that they claimed for the month in the July 2012 SOTC report. This allows them to continue to say that July 2012 set a record… Mr. Watts found that in the 23 monthly SOTC reports between October 2010 and November 2012 (three SOTC reports did not list average temperatures), 22 of them do not match the NCDC database, presumably due to later updating when all the data are received and analyzed. In all cases except one, the country cooled when all the data were incorporated.”


Gosh, we didn’t realize the bad guys were running out of talking points, but apparently fracking is going to ‘kill’ the whole world. NY Daily News (1/11/13) reports: “Fracking kills,” Ono said at a press conference with other drilling opponents. “And it doesn’t just kill us, it kills the land, nature and eventually the whole world.”… “Actors by nature are narcissists, and so it is no surprise that they ‘imagine’ themselves as scientists, engineers, farmers and economists,” said Karen Moreau of the state Petroleum Council… “They are also hypocrites of the first order,” Moreau said. “Wealthy urbanites who live in expensive energy consuming mansions, happy to burn natural gas in their gourmet eight-burner cooktops and to enjoy the benefits of low-cost heat and electricity as a result of ‘fracked’ gas.”

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