atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,

#812: Wet your pants now, greenies.

China has found methane hydrate off its shores. It's a clathrate, basically methane trapped in an ice matrix.

On the plus side, maybe China would convert everything possible to run on methane. That would be good for world fuel prices.

Lawyers for the District of Colombia are applying a rather unique interpretation of the Constitution. "The Second Amendment's provisions protecting the right to keep and bear arms apply only to the federal government, not the 50 states and the District of Columbia, lawyers for the nation's capital argued Friday in a written brief to the U.S. Supreme Court."

Oh, okay. So if we extend that logic to the rest of the Bill ofRights, that means that any state or municipality can choose to suspend things like freedom of expression, freedom of the press, freedom of religion, and habeus corpus. It also means that the states can impose "cruel and unusual" punishments if they so desire. Doesn't it?

These lawyers are full of crap and clearly don't understand the Constitution of the US.

More information about the stupid ban on incandescent bulbs. The ban will reduce human carbon emissions by five million tons, we are told.

I assume that does not include the manufacturing or disposal costs. Let's go ahead and stipulate that replacing every (relatively simple) incandescent bulb with a much more complex compact flourescent (CF) bulb will, in fact, be "neutral" in that respect. Fine.

Five million tons of carbon is 0.0076% of human emissions and it's 0.00024% of the total annual carbon budget of the atmosphere.

And that "five million tons"--is that per year or is it over the life of the typical CF bulb, which is about five years? Because if it's over five years, then the actual carbon "savings" will be 0.0015% of human emissions annually and 0.00005% of all emissions annually. It's not even a "drop in the bucket"; it's more like a "grain of sand in the Sahara".

It's a stupid law, and in all liklihood the benefits of mandating CF use will be swamped by the liabilities.

Mind you, I use CF bulbs all over the place. Every light fixture in my bedroom has 'em. We have them all over the house. Flourescent bulbs are about four times as efficient as incandescent.

But you can't use them everywhere. We discovered this for ourselves when we tried using them in the bathroom; the bulbs we bought are picky about orientation and would start out very dim and gradually brighten over the course of about 2-4 minutes. Two of them blew out after about nine months of use, which isn't even as good as the incandescent bulbs they replaced.

And CF bulbs are more complex than incandescent; there are electronics in the base which "start" the bulb, for one thing, and that double-helix shape is not as easy to make as having a machine blow a simple globe. And CF bulbs contain mercury. (Incandescent bulbs contain a vacuum. If you break one, it releases...nothing. Literally.)

Oh well.

Hillary slips in New Hampshire polls. Interesting. We'll see how she does next week.

The issue of "electability" may have raised its head again; in 2004 Democrats picked Kerry over Dean--despite the fact that they liked Dean more--because they saw Kerry as "electable" and Dean...not so much. Hillary has some serious image problems due to, oh, her behavior from 1992 through 2000, and her involvement in one of the most scandal-plagued administrations since...well, ever.

Although Democrats love her to pieces, she's really easy to hammer if Republicans are willing to go negative. In fact, a 2008 version of the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth could do all the heavy lifting and just do ads showing newspaper headlines, with dates, about the Clinton years. Whitewater, Rose Law Firm, cattle futures...there's a ton of material there--to say nothing, I might add, about the "bimbo eruptions". Hillary did not exactly strike a blow for feminism when she supported her husband despite his adultery and other stupidity; and let us not forget that Kathleen Willey's story is still out there. Bill can't be prosecuted for it--statute of limitations--but it can kill a political career if the story starts getting wide play, and it can get wide play if the right people take a serious interest in it. Hillary supporting her husband despite a credible allegation of rape would not endear her to the soccer moms out there, and "You better put some ice on that" would end up being the death rattle of Hillary's campaign.

Still, I do not expect Hillary to give up without a fight; and it's going to be a nasty one once she twigs to the fact that she is not winning. "President Hillary" in 2009 is a preordained fact, and she's not going to allow it to slip away without there being a serious dust-up in the Democrat party.

This is going to be fun.

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