“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Friday, June 11, 2010

Obama Refused Help on Gulf Oil Spill

HAT TIP: Rufus

Why Did The U.S. Refuse International Help On The Gulf Oil Spill?

Contributed by EconForecast (Editor)
9 June 2010 00:25

By Dian L. Chu, Economic Forecasts & Opinions

Despite the vow by President Obama to keep the Gulf oil spill a top priority until the damage is cleaned up, 50 days after the BP rig exploded, a definitive date and meaningful solution is yet to be determined for the worst oil spill in the U.S. history.

So, you would think if someone is willing to handle the clean-up with equipment and technology not available in the U.S., and finishes the job in shorter time than the current estimate, the U.S. should jump on the offer.

But it turned out to be quite the opposite. .

U.S. Refused Help on Oil Spill

According to Foreign Policy, thirteen entities had offered the U.S. oil spill assistance within about two weeks of the Horizon rig explosion. They were the governments of Canada, Croatia, France, Germany, Ireland, Mexico, the Netherlands, Norway, Romania, Republic of Korea, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom, and the United Nations.

The U.S. response - Thank you, but no thank you, we've got it.

"..While there is no need right now that the U.S. cannot meet, the U.S. Coast Guard is assessing these offers of assistance to see if there will be something which we will need in the near future."
Blame It On The Jones Act?

Separately, Belgian newspaper De Standaard also reported Belgian and Dutch dredgers have technology in-house to fight the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, but the Jones Act forbids them to work in the U.S.

A Belgian group--DEME-- contends it can clean up the oil in three to four months with specialty vessel and equipment, rather than an estimated nine months if done only by the U.S. The article noted there are no more than 5 or 6 of those ships in the world and the top specialist players are the two Belgian companies- DEME and De Nul - and their Dutch competitors.

The U.S. does not have the similar technology and vessel to accomplish the cleanup task because those ships would cost twice as much to build in the U.S. than in the Far East. The article further criticizes this "great technological delay" is a direct consequence of the Jones Act.

What Is The Jones Act?

The Merchant Marine Act of 1920 is a United States Federal statute that regulates maritime commerce in U.S. waters and between U.S. ports. Section 27, also known as the Jones Act, deals with coastal shipping; and requires that all goods transported by water between U.S. ports be carried in U.S.-flag ships, constructed in the United States, owned by U.S. citizens, and crewed by U.S. citizens and U.S. permanent residents.

The purpose of the law is to support the U.S. merchant marine industry. Critics said that the legislation results in increased costs moving cargoes between U.S. ports, and in essence, is protectionism, Supporters of the Act maintain that the legislation is of strategic economic and wartime interest to the United States. .

European Service Sector - Offshore Subsea Specialist

As discussed in my analysis of the oil service sector, the European companies typically possess the knowhow in offshore and subsea; whereas their North American counterparts excel in onshore drilling and production technologies.

So, it is more than likely that European firms do have the expertise to clean up the spill quicker and more effectively as DEME asserts.

Since the Jones Act means the Belgian ship and personnel cannot work in the Gulf, it does seem the Act has inhibited technology and knowledge exchange & development, and possibly prevented a quicker response to the oil spill.

Jones Waiver Time

On the other hand, waivers of the Jones may be granted by the Administration in cases of national emergencies or in cases of strategic interest. It would appear the U.S. government's initial refusal to foreign help most likely stemmed from a mis-calculation of the scale and deepwater technological barriers for this unprecedented disaster, and/or... pride.

Whatever the rationale, and if De Standarrd's claim that the Jones Act forbids the European companies to help fight the spill is true, it is high time the U.S. government grant the Jones waiver, and let this be an international collaborative effort.

It's alwasys better late than never.


  1. He's proving his bona fides:
    Just like Turd World Dictators turning down food and medical aid following a disaster.
    Better to let people starve and die than to sacrifice one's pride and self-delusions of ominpotence.

  2. That is, truly, doug, the American Way.

    If we cannot do it, ourselves it ether cannot be done, or is not worth doing.

    Go Green, Baby, Go Green.

    We turned down Turkish troops in Iraq, so that US troops could die, there, instead.

  3. The "Jones Act" is a rather sterile description.
    Rufus's mention of his union thug/friends fills out the picture.
    ...also mentioned W immediately getting a waiver.

    But why should one capable of lowering the seas and cooling the planet need any assistance from mere mortals?

    The web of lies already spun proving their competence and diligence is already large.

    Before this is over only the most devout see no evil devotees will claim not to see the naked king.

  4. The important thing is not whether or not the King is naked, doug.

    It is whether or not there is a viable alternative to his tailor.

  5. Costner's toys do not scale well when dealing with something of this magnitude.
    Saudi Supertankers seem like the obvious solution, allowing industrial scale, and much more cost efficient separation to be done on land.

    I'd guess that Jindal's barges are mini replicas of the Saudi process.

  6. All Cargo shipped to Hawaii is by 2 companies, the vast majority by 1, (Matson) thanks to the Jones Act.

    Longshoremen here live the life of Riley, given that they've got the entire state by the balls.

  7. Rescue Plane Locates Teenage Girl Sailing Solo

    It was her brother who accomplished the feat recently at 17.

    Early reports made no mention of aircraft, I thought she was a goner for sure.

  8. I believe there are over 30,000 offshore rigs, damned few large spills.
    Buddy say's BP's record around the World is exceptional.
    Exceptionaly horrendous.
    The corners cut and stupid decisions made on this deal were astounding.

    Regulation should ban self-insurance.

  9. Turkish driver beheads Bishop.

    He was Depressed!
    It is widely reported that Murat Altun had mental health problems and was suffering from severe depression at the time of the bishop’s death.

    Luckily, he was not foreclosed on, or he might have killed him twice.

    No mention of the usual shouts of Alu Akbar, or whatever.
    ...or that fact that the Bishop converted the driver to Chritianity,
    and that the driver had a Muslim reconversion flashback pushback experience.

    She paid tribute to his clear and often outspoken defence of the rights of Christians and other minorities in Turkey.
    “He was willing to speak his mind in a very compassionate and courageous defence of vulnerable people in a country where Catholics and other Christians suffer ongoing discrimination.”
    Italian-born Bishop Padovese, a Capuchin, ministered to a disparate group of faithful in a 97 percent Muslim country where Latin-rite Catholics only number 3,000.
    In interviews with Aid to the Church in Need and other organisations, Bishop Padovese repeatedly warned of a militant anti-Christian streak running through certain sections of Turkish society fanned by an increasingly active fundamentalist minority.

    There was world-wide shock at the death of Italian priest Father Andrea Santoro, who was shot dead in February 2006 while praying in his church in the Black Sea city of Trabzon. His 16-year-old killer was sentenced to 18 years in prison.
    A year later, another Catholic priest, Fr Adriano Franchini, was stabbed and slightly wounded in the stomach by a 19-year-old man after Sunday Mass in Izmir.
    In a recent full-length interview with ACN, Bishop Padovese said: “We try to be recognised as Church in Turkey but officially we do not exist. We do not have any legal rights.

    “Because we do not exist, we cannot open a seminary, we cannot train priests for the future, we cannot build a Turkish Church.”

    Describing how Christians suffer “discrimination” in Turkey, Mrs Siebrecht said that they struggle in the face of “insidious harassment” with attacks in the media, job discrimination, calls to abandon their faith and severe restrictions on freedom of worship especially construction of churches.

    Turkey, our "ally" well on their way back to 900 AD.

  10. It was highly touted, doug, that we were in a "Battle of Ideas".

    Guess it is easy to see which side is winning, that battle, on the ground, in the Islamic Arc.

    We been backing the wrong horse, been on the wrong side of history for 43 years, being in bed with a Geneva Accords violator.

    What would you expect from the law abiding folk of the whirled, when we have such a track record of such lopsided standards.

  11. You finance it every time you fill up with gasoline.

  12. Ride a van with 10 folks to work, that's like getting 250 miles to the gallon.

  13. I'm puzzled, sorta, by the attitude of so many anti-big government, free trading, psuedo libertarian, conservatives. There is a desire for Obama to federalize the oil leak? You want him to personal pow-wow with the CEO of BP and brain storm a solution? Put yourself in Obama's shoes - it is BP's leak, BP's responsibility and liability...would you want to say 'hey, I'll take over from here'? To what end?

    This ethanol solution...we are continually bombarded with the top down big government solution. 'THE FEDS SHOULD PUT AN ETHANOL DISTILLERY IN EVERY CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT'. Holy smokes batman. The feds, under Rufus command, know what is best for all of us?

    Ethanol sounds like a reasonable product and there is a role for government in trying to get US off of the oil addiction but to wade into the market in such an extreme manner and DICTATE what shall be done isn't gonna happen (see Quirks objections) and would be a mistake to boot.

    "The Best Laid Plans of Mice and Men Often Go Awry".

  14. Uh, that quote didn't originate with Steinbeck, Ash. Some old Scotsman, I believe.

    Ash, do Liberals have a problem with reading comprehension? I never said "the government should put an ethanol refinery in every congressional district, county, whatever."

    I said the Government should make "loan guarantees" available to help the first plants obtain financing. Lotsa difference.

    You know, like they "passed on" Royalties for Deep-water drilling in the Gulf. Oh wait, that actually Cost us money; loan guarantees likely wouldn't cost anything.

  15. A lot of people used the same arguments Q is using, now, a couple of years ago against corn ethanol.

    Corn Ethanol supplied 839,000 Barrels/Day of transportation fuel Last Week.

  16. There are many sources of funding rufus for projects that make financial sense. I can't help but think that your ethanol scheme does not make financial sense if it requires federal financing (i.e. loan guarantees). The feds do and will continue to play a role (such as the royalty thing you mention) and it is in our interest that the tilt the playing field in a responsible manner. Picking a one size fits all solution isn't a good idea. Ethanol does, and should compete against a variety of solutions. We should definitely not be subsidizing only one of them...such as oil.

  17. And, E85, made from corn ethanol is selling for $1.83/gallon, today.

  18. The Federals would not "own" the fields nor the refineries.

    We would merely use the tools already developed and implemented by the government to serve the needs of the people, of the several States, rather than the needs of the Wahhabi and the Military/Industrial Complex.

  19. 13 countries have offered to help clean up the Gulf & the Obama administration has turned them all down? So much for multilateralism. Good thing we got rid of "cowboy" Bush, now The One is kicking asses.

  20. Ash, the government will give you $6,500.00 to buy a hybrid/electric car.

    The Government will give you up to, God, I don't know, $50,000.00, or more, to put solar panels on your roof.

    The oil subsidies are such that Exxon paid Zero U.S. income taxes (on profits of $39 Billion) last year.

    Wind mills get all kinds of tax subsidies, and special treatment (and, most of them are built in China.)

    We are in the process of watching an environmental disaster of epic magnitude unfold on our beaches, and in our fisheries.

    4,000 American kids have died in Iraq, and we've spent at least a Trillion Dollars keeping the oil bizness going in the Middle East in just the last four years.

    And, you're afraid that a few loan guarantees for advanced ethanol plants is "Picking Winners?" puhleeze.

  21. You aren't talking of a few loan guarantees for a few plants now are you?

    I've got this guy just over here preaching the virtues of wind power and a boob squawking about Nuclear, and did ya hear about the beauty of solar? Everyone want the gov. to pick a winner. Up the possible profit margin of fuel and maybe ethanol will win.

  22. Is BP going to pick up this tab?

    June 11 (Bloomberg) -- BP Plc's oil spill may drive down Gulf Coast property values by 10 percent for at least three years, according to a forecast by CoStar Group Inc. Losses may total $4.3 billion along the 600-mile ...

  23. Criminal negligence, the case is being strengthen every day, as new reports of BP's skulduggery reach the surface.

  24. Ethanol IS solar, ash.

    Actually, it is the only solar application that produces liquid energy.

    Same problem of lack of practical application to the Energy problem applies to nuclear power production, it generates electricity, which is not where the crux of the Oil Challenge is.

    No oil is used to produce electricity in the US.
    Those electrical generating proposals are "Straw Men" in the real debate.

    None of them will power the fleet of existing vehicles for the next twenty years.

  25. I posted this at another site this morning:

    At some point that EV owner is going to have a 10 year old car that needs a $15,000.00 battery. A move to EVs assures an average lifespan of 10 years instead of 20 years. Ain't gonna happen.

    HEVs? We'll see. Some of those batteries will start wearing out in a few years.

    We could supply all of our transportation needs in the U.S. with cellulosic as easy as falling off a log. Just incredibly easy. My God, we're a nation of Farmers, and "moonshiners." We have been from the very start. We have plenty of land, rain, and sunshine.

    The big Companies, Bankers, Unions, and Federal Socialists hate the idea. It will diminish their power. But, for Me, and Thee, it's the nuts.

  26. Well then, set up a still and pour the result in your car and drive about - the idea will spread like wild fire as everyone sees how easy and cheap it is...

  27. Ash is a typical Greenie (Socialist.) He wants Higher Taxes on transportation fuel.

    I can't understand why. It just guarantees us a continuing recession. Just look at the run-up in gasoline prices leading into May, and look at the 1.2% drop in Retail sales in May. Same thing happened in February, and the same thing, in spades, happened in July of '08.

    Now, gasoline prices have fallen, and today's "Consumer Confidence" number jumped 3 points over last month. Retail Sales will be up, also.

    The Greenies think "Electricity" is "Green." It's produced from Coal for Cris'sake. It's not "Bad;" but it's not all that "Green," either.

    I guess it's just the Liberal "fall-back" position that if something leads to More Taxes it's good, and if it leads to less government power, it's bad.

  28. The core of the issue is that the US has 300 million vehicles in a fleet that is petrochemically powered.

    The solution to the Oil Crisis has to take that reality into consideration.
    It is the driver of the practical problem.

    Electricity cannot fill that gap.

    The solution has to be pumped into the existing gas tanks of the current fleet of vehicles.
    There are no 'Magic Batteries', nor will there be any soon, ro power the next generation of vehicles.

    Drill, Baby, Drill is dead, politically. BP has driven a polluting pipe right through that political platforms' heart.

    In the long run, BP will be made the fall guy. Obama and Company will be sullied, but that's par the course.

    Unless the conservationists have a real alternative to higher taxes and less oil exploitation, this disaster will not benefit anyone but the Wahhabi and their agents, who will have an even tighter grip upon the energy resources available than they do, today.

    BP's negligence has solidified the "Greening of America", count on that.

  29. No rufus, I'm concerned that neo-cons like you will impose the the big government knows best solution.

  30. It is spreading, ash, already 10% of the fuel used, in the US, is corn ethanol.

    Which is the most politically potent but least economic of the ethanol solutions.

    We are on the ethanol road, regardless. We just want to pick up the tempo, and bring our boys home.

  31. This comment has been removed by the author.

  32. The Federals have already done that, ash. They've chosen to control the proven petrochemical energy supplies, rather than to expand away from them.

    To our great expense and little long term benefit.

    As an alternative, growing green grass, instead of mining tar sands, makes such better sense. It is a much a easier sell.

    You are now standing for the industrial status que, against the renewable, carbon neutral, job creating, cutting edge bio-engineered technologically advanced with Green Ethanol and politically Jacksonian alternative.

    Proving that you are more partisan driven than solutions oriented.

    Because you offer no alternative to the Wahhabi oil suppliers.
    Other than parroting the DC Party line.

  33. rat, I'm all for leveling the playing field and doing away with corporate welfare. You seem to be advocating the same federalist line but with ethanol as the flavor of the day.

  34. You might have hit upon Ash's Canadian "Soft Spot," Rat.

    The Tar Sands.

    Otherwise known as the greatest ongoing environmental disaster in the history of the planet.

    Just wait till one of those earthen dams breaks sending the most toxic effluent imaginable into the Athabasca River for a few months running. This stuff on our beaches is just oil. THAT stuff is pure, unadulterated POISON.

  35. $1.83/gallon, Ash.


    That's a pretty sweet flavor.

  36. Surely am.

    Because that is how the System works, like it or not.

    I have an ideological position that has not held sway, since the 1830's.

    I certainly accept that as a fact.
    Usually the course of events and the positions advocated by the varied politicos make little difference.

    Exemplified by the transition from Team Bush to Obamamerica which has made little, nay, no difference in Iraq.

    We remained on course and speed.

    But this Energy Issue, enhanced by the BP disaster has changed the landscape, for the moment.

    The energy needs of the US still need to be filled. The political demands that off shore oil drilling stop, are insurmountable.

    If Governor Jidal were to pivot, hard. Getting a head of the solution curve, he could push, politically, to have new distilleries under construction and the millions of acres sowed with switch grass, almost immediately.

    The first counter move to Obama's mission that the loyal opposition could implement in Going Green.

    It fits the model. The battle is to devolve power from the DC elites, we must utilize the existing power of the Federal System, to obtain that goal.

    Rather than to try to obtain that goal, without using the System. That's revolution and we are a far far ways from that being feasible, if even desirable.

    It certainly would not be practical.

  37. Raising the amount of farmland in cultivation, in the US, by 25 to 35%, for energy production, that is a powerful plus for "Middle America".

    Building out a few thousand distilleries, over the course of the next five years.
    Job stimulating.

    Windmills and such, just will not get it done.

    The populous of the US is politically "Green". They've been educated that way.

    It's been all the rage, for thirty or forty years.

    Ride that tide, do not fight it.

  38. This comment has been removed by the author.

  39. the numbers sound good rufus but why doesn't the business case work?

  40. Because the field is not level, ash.

    It is tilted to the oil companies.

    Hugh subsidies and the power of the status que working against rapid deployment of Green Ethanol.

  41. The business case works, Ash. Fiberight is doing it, now. It's just that Energy is an incredibly volatile market. No banker wants to finance the "First" plant. Everyone wants to finance the "Second" plant.

    Look, I'm convinced oil is going to get more expensive. So, do I own Oil Futures? Heck No. We just saw Oil go from $147.00/barrel to $34.00/barrel, and back to $87.00/barrel. Ms Rufus' son ain't got no business messing around in them waters.

    Look what one accident has done to BP. The Gov will have to step in and take a few of the short-term risks if we're going to get a LOT of action, quickly.

    If the government doesn't do this we'll still get there; we'll just get there more slowly.

  42. Tao Te Ching 75:

    When taxes are too high, people go hungry.

    When the government is too intrusive, people lose their spirit.

    Act for the people's benefit.

    Trust them; leave them alone.

  43. Sharron Angle, Tea Party favorite, looks to take down Harry Reid in Nevada. We usually stay at the Motel 6 across from MGM Grand, I've learned Harry is connected to that. Have to hang somewhere else, like the old Golden Nugget, if it is still open. I think, Harry, is finally, going down. Bless him.

  44. The real trouble with ethanol is that it isn't all that cost effective, with corn. You got to do all that growing, fertilizing, harvesting etc and you don't come out that much ahead.

    Is it ever gong to quit raining here?

  45. Bob:Is it ever gong to quit raining here?

    I need it to quit raining in Idaho so it will quit snowing in Montana so I can take my Brown Sugar here.

  46. That's a good lookin' lake, T. Where, exactly is it? Don't recognize that one. And is your sugar Miss Fely brown? Inquiring minds wish to know all things.

  47. Which is one reason why corn is not the answer, but part of the problem.

    Corn has a very low energy in to out ratio, as compared to Sweet Sorghum or switch grass.

    Now, with the advances in bio-engineering, there will be no comparison.

    Except to misdirect the discussion, away from the practical solutions.

  48. Bob, that is Hidden Lake at Logan Pass on the Going-to-the-Sun Highway in Glacier Park, we're going there some weekend in July. Miss F is a lovely brown and love every square inch.

  49. This very high--the highest-quality alfalfa we're araising, you can't feed that straight to the cattle, gives them the burps and the farts. Got to cut it down a bit with some other feed, it's just too much for 'em. To much protein, too concentrated. They like what they like, and they is the boss moo.

  50. I should have recognized that, Miss T. May I suggest, you do a little hiking back in there, you are still young. But, take a weapon. Uncle Bama says you can. I came upon a black bear mother and her cubs, one time, near here, cubs went up the tree, and she stood, from behind a bush, sniffing, testing the air, her poor vision doing its best, fifteen feet away. Unarmed, I backed out quietly. And, they have griz in Glacier. You be careful, now.

  51. "Afghan surge delayed as U.S. general slows down major offensive

    President Barack Obama’s top commander in Afghanistan has delayed the strategically crucial battle for Kandahar, signalling a shift to a slow, gradual effort to sap Taliban support in the war-ravaged province rather than a major military offensive.

    “It will happen more slowly than we had originally anticipated,” General Stanley McChrystal said. For weeks, senior U.S. officials have been scaling back the ambitious expectations, insisting for instance that no “offensive” was ever planned.

    With casualties soaring, public support at home slipping, and the surge-and-get-out strategy looking too optimistic, Gen. McChrystal’s cautious warnings came as NATO ministers gathered to assess progress in the Afghan counterinsurgency, on which the alliance has staked its post-Cold-War reason for existence."


    Happy Merry Friday!


    Merry Happy Friday!

  54. They took down a medevac, Ash.

    He who heads SOF liaison ops remarked that somewhat alarming development.

  55. Bob, it is my sincere hope to meet bears and such in Glacier. All I bagged in Yellowstone (with my camera) was some elk, some bison, some ravens, and a coyote.

  56. "The United States now has about 250 million motor vehicles. Of that number, only about 7.5 million are designed to burn gasoline containing more than 10 percent ethanol. And there is evidence that even 10 percent ethanol may be too much for the other 242.5 million. Last year, Toyota recalled more than 200,000 Lexus vehicles because of internal component corrosion that was caused by ethanol-blended fuel.

    In addition to problems with their cars, consumers may soon find that more ethanol in their gasoline will result in the fouling of smaller engines. The Outdoor Power Equipment Institute, which represents companies that make lawnmowers, snowblowers, chainsaws, and the like, opposes the bailout of the ethanol industry. It says that increasing the amount of ethanol in gasoline "could damage millions of forestry, lawn and garden, and other small engine products currently housed in consumers' garages."


    "The damage caused by increasing use of ethanol won't be limited to ruined boats, snowblowers, weed whackers, and lawnmowers. The EPA itself has admitted that increased use of ethanol in gasoline will result in worse air quality. You read that correctly: The agency in charge of protecting the environment in America concluded in April 2007 that total emissions of key air pollutants such as volatile organic compounds and nitrogen oxides will increase because of expanded use of ethanol. (Read the key EPA document here.) "

  57. "The two scientists calculated all the fuel inputs for ethanol production—from the diesel fuel for the tractor planting the corn, to the fertilizer put in the field, to the energy needed at the processing plant—and found that ethanol is a net energy-loser. According to their calculations, ethanol contains about 76,000 BTUs per gallon, but producing that ethanol from corn takes about 98,000 BTUs. For comparison, a gallon of gasoline contains about 116,000 BTUs per gallon. But making that gallon of gas—from drilling the well, to transportation, through refining—requires around 22,000 BTUs.

    In addition to their findings on corn, they determined that making ethanol from switch grass requires 50 percent more fossil energy than the ethanol yields, wood biomass 57 percent more, and sunflowers 118 percent more. The best yield comes from soybeans, but they, too, are a net loser, requiring 27 percent more fossil energy than the biodiesel fuel produced. In other words, more ethanol production will increase America's total energy consumption, not decrease it. (Pimentel has not taken money from the oil or refining industries. Patzek runs the UC Oil Consortium, which does research on oil and is funded by oil companies. His ethanol research is not funded by the oil or refining industries*.) "

  58. You just be careful, T. they can sneak up on ya.

  59. Well, there is nothing going on here, other than the sky has cleared a little. Crossword puzzle time. And, time to let the cat out, the cat I don't even like, Oliver Caesar having gone away, to one of his other lives.

  60. Actually, corn is the most cost efficient ethanol feedstock on earth at the present time. Those guys are selling it at $1.45 gal at the refinery gate, a price no other source in the world can match.

    The reason for this is the high value of the Co-Products - Distillers Grains, and Corn Oil, among others.

    All that doesn't matter inasmuch as the "food for fuel" meme took hold, and corn ethanol has been "Capped" at 15 Billion Gallons/Yr.

  61. Ash, you just quoted Bryce's latest nonsensical rant, and then followed that up with a ridiculous study by an entomologist (Pimental, and a paid oil lobbyist Patzek.)

    An example: Patzek said it was chemically impossible to ever get more than 2.7 gallons of ethanol from a bushel of corn; Poet gets 3.0 gallons of ethanol from a bushel of corn.

    Patzek and Pimental assumed 122 bu corn/acre; last year's yield was 164 bu/acre. They assumed Deep-Plowing; Most of our corn is grown "no till/low till."

    They assumed a farmer would have to go out and buy a Big Tractor, and build a Barn, and then operate a Small farm. In reality, the farmers already have barns, and tractors, and their equipment is, more or less, perfectly matched to the size of their farms.

    They didn't take into consideration that the average farmer works in town "full time."

    They assumed some ridiculous amount of energy for distillation while the modern brewery uses approx. 22,000 btus/gal of product.

    They assumed more fossil fuel input for energy for cellulosic than was produced. It turns out, There's NO fossil fuel input for a Cellulosic refinery. They burn the lignin.

    It goes on, and on.

    Trust your old bud, Rufus. He won't lead you wrong. :)

  62. o god no not Siddhartha by Hermon Hess. My dotter is taking Buddhism, but, please, please, please, not Hess. Not that again. no more. Lord Almighty, and I have to pay for it. too. Why do I have to go through this?

  63. Let's see.

    Nuclear is bad.
    Coal is bad.
    Ethanol is bad.
    Oil is bad.
    Gasoline is bad.
    Wind farms are bad.

    What is good?

  64. It's ALL Good, Whit; it's the people that say those things that are bad. :)

  65. The navel is always good. Stare, there.

  66. Let's say this about "Changing over the Fleet: Half of the fuel used is burned by Vehicles 6 years old, or newer.

    So, if the other car companies followed the lead of Ford, GM, and Chrysler, and built half of their cars "Flexfuel" by 2012, and 80% Flexfuel by 2015

    We would have, for all "practical" purposes a fleet that was somewhere between 25%, and 50% Flexfuel by 2015, and considerably closer to 3/4 flexfuel by 2018.

  67. This was a link posted late in the previous thread. Helen Thomas, Turkey and the Liberation of Israel - Victor Davis Hanson

    Had I the time and were being paid to do so, I would have written something similar myself. :)

  68. It's ALL Good, Whit; it's the people that say those things that are bad. :)

    I know you're half-joking but I am convinced that there is a sinister strain running through mankind. I've written about the atheists, anarchists, socialists, Marxists, the Eugenicists, Darwinists, watermelon environmentalists, and the Democrats. ;)

    Sinister - 3 : singularly evil or productive of evil
    4 a : of, relating to, or situated to the left or on the left side of something; especially : being or relating to the side of a heraldic shield at the left of the person bearing it b : of ill omen by reason of being on the left
    5 : presaging ill fortune or trouble
    6 : accompanied by or leading to disaster

    These people of the left are leading us to disaster.

  69. I like to think of him as VFH.

  70. I know, you "don't like him."

  71. "That's the dark side you're flirtin' with, young lady."

    Insert guffaw.

  72. Ahmadinejad, speaking out against sanctions:
    "It is clear the United States is not against nuclear bombs because they have a Zionist regime with nuclear bombs in the region," he said.

    "They are trying to save the Zionist regime, but the Zionist regime will not survive. It is doomed."

    Why anyone would want to throw in with the like of Ahmanutjob and the turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan is beyond me but the whirled has turned upside down, so go figure.

  73. Paraphrasing Gary Coleman's character Arnold Jackson,

    "What chu talkin' bout, Trish?"

  74. ...not against nuclear bombs because they have a Zionist regime with nuclear bombs in the region," he said.

    Implying that the US is against Muslims. Onward, Muslim Soldiers.

  75. Obama's Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan, as a Clinton White House counsel, advocated for late term abortion.

    Is this nominee, Obama's John Yoo?

  76. It looks increasingly likely that dividend payments will be ceased for a period - because of the intense pressure to do so from senior US politicians and the White House.

    Robert Peston BBC business editor

  77. Whit,

    Again a good try with the link from the earlier thread. You are never going anywhere with this crowd. On the whole, they fit the description given by Hanson to a "t": closet bigots...Like the French ambassador's wife who thought she was speaking off the record when she said, "shitty little country".

    That's all right, though, cause we are going to win anyhow. Winning is something we do routinely. Of course, we have no choice. Thankfully, our Muslim adversaries are about as dull a lot as you will find most anywhere...Hmm...The business of the French invading the "Soviet" and entering Moscow will be hard to top, granted. :D

  78. allen said...

    We are in a Alice in Wonderland period of time...

    Those that hate us will not change opinion...

    THE only solution?


    Make our busineses as "bulletproof" possible...

    The storm cloud is forming..

    It's summer, chop firewood for the winter...

    Be Prepared...

    Understand the cycles in Jewish history...

    Understand the insanity that is spreading...

    Did I say ARM?

  79. Whit:

    Nuclear is bad.
    Coal is bad.
    Ethanol is bad.
    Oil is bad.
    Gasoline is bad.
    Wind farms are bad.

    What is good?

    Hydroelectric? No, kills salmon runs.

    Solar? No.

    Senator Dianne Feinstein proposed legislation that would block solar panel development in the Mojave desert in order to preserve a million acres of wildlife.

    Oh well, energy just comes from the wall outlet, just like food just comes from Safeway.

  80. Funny stuff, from allen.

    As a country, we have armed up, spending more on force projection than the rest of the whirled, combined.

    As a people, the citizens of the US are the most heavily armed, in the whirled.

    With 90 weapons per resident, the US far outstrips Yeman, which is in 2nd Place with 61 weapons per resident. Even the Swiss, with their famous citizen militias pocess weapons at half our rate.
    At least according to the Wiki stats.

    So the people of the US, at both the institutional and personal level have already taken allen's advice.

    Yet a feeling of security still evades him, many others it seems, too.

    They remain mired, far behind the factual curve.

  81. Oh well, energy just comes from the wall outlet, just like food just comes from Safeway

    Just wait until everyone tries to plug-in and recharge and even if there's enough juice to go around, the cost will be precious.

    You need to walk or bike...and don't even think of flying anywhere. (Unless you're elite and can buy absolution.)

  82. Saudi Arabia has conducted tests to stand down its air defences to enable Israeli jets to make a bombing raid on Iran’s nuclear facilities, The Times can reveal.

    In the week that the UN Security Council imposed a new round of sanctions on Tehran, defence sources in the Gulf say that Riyadh has agreed to allow Israel to use a narrow corridor of its airspace in the north of the country to shorten the distance for a bombing run on Iran. To ensure the Israeli bombers pass unmolested, Riyadh has carried out tests to make certain its own jets are not scrambled and missile defence systems not activated. Once the Israelis are through, the kingdom’s air defences will return to full alert.

    “The Saudis have given their permission for the Israelis to pass over and they will look the other way,” said a US defence source in the area. “They have already done tests to make sure their own jets aren’t scrambled and no one gets shot down. This has all been done with the agreement of the [US] State Department.”

  83. Passing over Iraq would require at least tacit agreement to the raid from Washington. So far, the Obama Administration has refused to give its approval as it pursues a diplomatic solution to curbing Iran’s nuclear ambitions. Military analysts say Israel has held back only because of this failure to secure consensus from America and Arab states.

    Read More

  84. But one raid, by the Israeli is nothing but eyewash. It will not deter their nuclear weapons program, which is dispersed.

    The Saudi will not leave that corridor open for a long term air campaign.

    The Israeli can ignite a war, they cannot close one.
    Exemplified b their experiences in Lebanon.


    Fatal bear attacks in North America.

    Grizzly bears in Glacier National Park

  86. Here's my hunch, just a hunch. Israel waits, till the November elections results come in, and they feel at least they got a stronger Congress behind them. Obama is a non starter, they have, rightfully, no confidence in him. They are on their own, but it would be nice to have a stronger Congress behind them. The pressure is building so high now, I think a storm is coming. While I'm not one given to Biblical prophecy, I think Israel will prevail. They are our friends, the only country that makes real sense, in the Mid-East, for all those cultural/historical/and religio/spiritual reasons. Now Quirk is gone, I can say, go Israel, and not get blasted for it. Israel has a lot of support in the United States. I just wish it were in the White House, right about now.

  87. Whit, what did you do with the best post ever?

  88. Isn't it still there?

  89. Oh my gosh! That makes me so mad. First of all, why would Obama "refuse" to help? Because he didn't that's why. He is not like Bush who wants to kill the environment as soon as he can.

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