Archive for the Alternative Energy Category

Chinese Peacekeepers to Africa?

Posted in Alternative Energy, Politics with tags , , , , on April 25, 2012 by verbumsapienti2

If U.S. oil companies had billions of dollars invested in both Sudan and South Sudan oil fields, surely we would expect the United States government to step in with “peacekeepers” to prevent a destructive war between the two sides.

A Chinese Type 99 Main Battle Tank on display ...

But in the case of these two African countries, it is the People’s Republic of China which has their oil interests in jeopardy.

What would our reaction be to Chinese troops occupying the region?

This question opens up a whole new line of thought, should former foes Germany, Japan, Italy or even Vietnam send their armed forces into other embattled countries where coincidentally they too have economic interests.

Colonialism isn’t dead; it’s just now called “private foreign investment”, still enforced by governmental muscle.

<IMHO Fred Jacobsen


None dare call it treason

Posted in Alternative Energy, News, Politics, taxes on March 1, 2012 by

A perverse irony of “free market” capitalism is being exposed.

How do our ultra-right, fiscally-conservative governmental toadies justify forcing private citizens to buy a nuclear power plant for a for-profit company such as Progress Energy?

 Progress Energy functions as a state-sponsored monopoly. Citizens in their service area can only buy electricity from Progress; at rates dictated by Florida lawmakers. Additionally those citizens are being forced to pay for a new nuclear power plant so as to protect the profits given to Progress owners.

How is this different than if The State of Florida gave Ford Motor Company exclusive rights to sell only their cars in Central Florida? Not only would we be forced to buy Ford cars, at prices set by The State, we would also be taxed to pay for any new auto plants Ford wanted to build.

 This is not capitalism, it is called corporatism
and yet none dare call it treason.

<IMHO> Fred Jacobsen

Stop exporting U.S. Gasoline

Posted in Alternative Energy, Job-creators, Opinion, Politics, Second American Revolution, taxes with tags , , , , on February 21, 2012 by verbumsapienti2

Gasoline, diesel, and jet fuel are now this country’s largest export.

That’s right.

In 2011, oil refiners in the United States exported an estimated 117 million gallons per day of gasoline, diesel, jet fuel and other petroleum products worth $88 billion. 

These fuels are being sold on the “world market” because there is insufficient demand in the U.S. due ironically, to rising gas prices and higher-mileage vehicles being sold.

The Keystone Pipeline, environmental issues not withstanding, would be good for the Canadian oil export companies and good for the U.S. gasoline exporting companies but would have little lasting value to the average citizen.

That oil, once refined in the Gulf states would be sold as gasoline to South America, not North America.

The same issues involve additional oil drilling in the U.S. All that excess gasoline produce would be sold and shipped out of the United Sates, thereby keeping U.S. gas prices high.

Until our benighted elected government representatives ban all exports of U.S. produced oil products, we will have ever higher gas prices at the pumps and see ever higher, obscene profits going to oil companies.

What about it Congress?

Care to pass a law protecting The People of the United States of America instead of the oil companies?

What we have are war-mongering congressmen beating the drums for conflict with Iran, and shutting down their oil production just to further increase the “world market” for gasoline and increase oil companies profits.

<IMHO> Fred Jacobsen

Feasible Ferry?

Posted in Alternative Energy, Economic Development, Hillsborough County, FL, Transportation with tags , , , on December 9, 2011 by verbumsapienti2

Tony Jannus flying boatI had to drag out my trusty Webster’s to try to understand how the Hillsborough County Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) could conclude that a water ferry, restricted to holders of MacDill security passes, was “technically feasible”.

Reviving the Tony Jannus trans-bay flying boat between Tampa and St. Pete is also “technically feasible” in that it can be done, but only so long as you disregard the costs; which make either plan unfeasible.

We already know the answer going into this study: the cost will far out weigh the revenues and county taxpayers will refuse to make up the difference.

The MPO voted to spend ANOTHER half-million tax dollars on further studies only because they consider it free-money from the federal government.

Wait a minute. If it would be a bad idea to spend county money while the county is a billion dollars in debt, why is it a good idea to spend federal money when our country is fifteen trillion dollars in debt?

The dollars may come out of different pockets, but both pockets are mine.

Let democratic free enterprise figure out feasibility.

<IMHO> Fred Jacobsen

The parable of the caterpillars

Posted in Alternative Energy, Economic Development, Hillsborough County, FL with tags , , on December 8, 2011 by verbumsapienti2

Processionary caterpillarsThe Processional Caterpillar is an animal of little brain.

Its brain is so limited, that the most important functions of the caterpillar are genetically programed in, requiring no thought.

For example, one program tells the caterpillar “Look for something green and head for it, as it is likely something to eat.”

A corollary program tells the caterpillar “If you don’t see something green, look for the ass of a fellow caterpillar and follow it wherever it goes, as it likely knows were it is going.”

If you place a line of Processional Caterpillars in a circle around a pile of their favorite leaves, they will continue to march around that pile until they grow weak and die. You see, there is no program in their tiny brains that tells them to do otherwise.

The moral of this parable is “If you find that you are not making any progress, get your head up from out of the ass of what you think is the leader, and look around for success elsewhere.”

<IMHO> Fred Jacobsen

New Pinellas hybrid buses

Posted in Alternative Energy, News, Opinion, Transportation with tags , on October 17, 2011 by verbumsapienti2

I sure would have liked to see a more comprehensive analysis of the impact of 8 new hybrid buses coming to Pinellas.

It was not explained in the Tampa Tribune article how replacing 8 older buses with 8 new buses will “increase access to jobs” and “increase ridership”.

How does the $635K cost of each new bus compare to the cost of existing buses, and what are the comparative operating costs over a million-mile lifetime?

Probably the most disturbing thing in the article is that the buses will be made in California. At least they are not being made in China, but why are there seemingly no bus manufactures in Florida; say in Pinellas or Hillsborough?

Most buses are just assembled from parts manufactured in different factories anyway.

We should at least have an assembly plant in Tampa Bay for Tampa Bay buses.

Now that would be a civic improvement project to get behind.

<IMHO> Fred Jacobsen

Robber Baron Progress Energy

Posted in Alternative Energy, Opinion, taxes on August 14, 2011 by verbumsapienti2
Nuclear power plant.

Progress Energy customers' money up in smoke

The last time I checked, Progress Energy (PGN) stock was selling at $45, which is about the same as the MONTHLY increase Progress Energy pushed through onto the backs of all their customers.

If Progress Energy was a state-owned enterprise, this would be a tax increase. Because Progress Energy is a for-profit company, this increase only serves to inflate their profits.

Last year, Progress Energy earned $856 MILLION in profits.

Progress Energy found that they could not find an investor to go in with them to build a power plant. So instead of selling new stock to investors who would expect a return on their investment, Progress Energy turned to a rate increase on their customers, who will not see any profits on their money.

In this free-market democracy we live in, Progress Energy should, at the very least, issue company stock to rate payers for the extra money they are shelling out for a future power plant that will ensure continued profits to stockholders of Progress Energy.

At the very best, Progress Energy stockholders should take less profits for a while if they want to build a new power plant that will earn even larger profits later. This is how small businesses in America operate; at least those without well-paid lobbyists influencing government.

<IMHO> Fred Jacobsen