Category Archives: Coal

Romney, Hitler, & Energy

“Gosh, Hitler, during the second world war, I guess, because he was concerned about losing his oil, liquefied coal—that technology’s still there. Why don’t we develop those sources? I think government has a role to do that, by the way.”

– Mitt Romney, in a video posted May 15, 2012, on Buzzfeed. See also Brian Merchant’s post on Treehugger,

Well . . .

As Brian said, 

Obviously, Romney isn’t pro-Hitler. But what right-minded politician seeking office in the 21st century ever considers it a good idea to let fly a statement endorsing Hitler’s ideas? It’s f@$&ing Hitler!

There is simply no other politician I can think of that would ever dream of voluntarily and publicly casting Hitler’s ideas in a positive light, apropos of nothing. ‘Well, nation, Hitler had some good ideas’ is perhaps the single least effective rhetorical framing device in the world.
Actually, there may be two: David Duke, a perennial GOP Presidential candidate – expelled from Germany in November, 2011 (Question More / wikipedia). And Pat Buchanan, the “Pundit” who used to talk about the American auto industry and drive himself around in his Mercedes? He also also lost a GOP Presidential primary run in the 1980’s and went on to become one of President Reagan’s advisers.
Duke was a Grand Wizard in the Ku Klux Klan. His slogan could have been “All the way with the KKK,” altho he would have needed a Madison Ave “Creative” to come up with it and even the ones that are not Jews think like Jews. Buchanan persuaded Reagan that “We must mourn the Nazi SS victims of World War II.” Those guys are Nazis. 
Mitt Romney, on the other hand, is probably not a Nazi. After all, some of Romney’s best friends are Jews: men like Shelly Adelson and Bibi Neranyahu, and the boys from Wall Street. These are real humanitarians, the best friends money can buy. Unlike, say, Todd Akin or Sarah Palin, Romney probably doesn’t even believe Jews have horns.

And remember: Romney’s a Morman. The members of The Church of the Latter Day Saints love Jews. LOVE JEWS – especially the light-skinned ones. They Baptize Jews after they die – at least the light skinned ones. It’s wonderful, in a creepy sort of way. But it’s kind of nice; they’re saying “We like you, we want you with us in heaven.” That’s better than offering Jews Mel Ginson’s choice:  “Baptism or Hell.” Or Torquemada’s choice: “Baptism or die,” or the choice favored by Romney’s dead energy maven, Hitler: “die or die.”

But in his defense, Romney is only suggesting we adopt one of Hitler’s bad ideas, and one on energy policy, “Burn Baby Burn,” not his domestic policy, “Burn Baby Jews.” And it makes sense that the Repulican’ts would look to the Nazis for energy policy. German-American Republicans in the 1930’s like Lindbergh were Nazis. German-American Republican’ts today, like Karl Rove, Donald Trump, and Newt Gingrich use Nazi propaganda tactics when talking about their opponents (Newt Gingrich: Language A Key Mechanism of Control). Goebbels would be proud.

But bad politics aside, Coal Liquification is also bad policy. We should be moving off fossil fuels. Pioneered in Nazi Germany because we cut off their oil supply, and further developed in Apartheid South Africa because of the embargo on that regime, coal liquification is simply a technology that furthers “Burn, Baby, Burn.” Pursuing it will lead to “Rise, Oceans, Rise,” “Swim, Baby, Swim,” and “Drown, Baby, Drown.”
And  quoting Hitler on the campaign trail, illegal in Germany, is like telling senior citizens about the beauty of turning Medicare into a voucher program – it’s “Stupid, Baby, Stupid.”

– originally posted here, on Cultural Forensics

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Filed under Coal, Energy, Hitler, Romney

Haiku of earth sea and sky

This a magic place
No Witch, Wizard, Genie, Jin,
Just Technology

Yet a dark side here
From burning the rocks and tar
Poisons gas and heat

Nunuck bear home floats
Bed of ice on open sea
Melts nanuck to die

North Pacific Gyre
Toxic plastic looks like food
Bags we use but once

Turtle sees plastic
Floats like jelly but not food
Turtle eats to die

Death food in the sea
Dumb animals eat plastic bags
Why it look like food

We burn coal and oil
Mercury hot gas carbon
We burn rocks for heat

We strive for more stuff
Nuclear is still claimed safe
Safe if you are dead

Chesapeake near death
Algae grow on chicken waste
Oxygen all gone

Baby Orca dies
Endocrine system failure
PCB’s in food

We kill for more stuff
Won’t never have enough
We must kill for stuff

Iceberg floats submerged
Waters dance from ice to sea
Deep, Cold, Wild and True

Still waters run deep
Tuna Burgers Water Song
Breathe feel ride the waves

Children of the west
To live sustain the garden
Must learn harmony

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Filed under Chesapeake, Coal, Nuclear Power, Oil, Orca, Pacific Garbage Patch, Plastic

Negawatts and Eco-Watts or Killer-Watts

Back in the late ‘1970’s Amory Lovins, of the Rocky Mountain Institute coined the term “NegaWatts” to describe the energy that could be saved with conservation and efficiency. “The cheapest energy,” he said, “and the cleanest energy is the energy you don’t use.”

Lovins’ associate, Marvin Resnikoff, PhD, then teaching physics and environmental thinking at SUNY University of Buffalo and Rachel Carson College, used the term “nuclear constipation” to describe the nuclear waste problem. It’s an apt metaphor – the waste doesn’t go away.

We struggling not only with nuclear constipation, but carbon constipation. We burn carbon, liberate the energy in chemical bonds, to get from place to place, to heat and cool our homes, but the carbon doesn’t go away. It goes into the air from under the ground. To paraphrase Al Gore,

We are borrowing from China to buy oil from the middle east and rip coal out of the ground to burn it in ways that destroy the planet. But enough wind blows through the midwest corridor in a day, enough sunlight falls on the earth in FORTY MINUTES to provide the power we need for a year.

Harnessing the wind, the sun, and the earth eliminates these problems. Rather than burning a fuel; wind, solar, geothermal harness a process. The sun shines whether or not we use solar panels to capture some photons. The wind blows regardless of our decision to use a few particles to spin a turbine. We are hitchin’ a ride on a moving train.

This is the choice: Wind and Solar or Coal and Nuclear. “Negawatts and clean pure Eco-Watts or Deadly-Watts, Morta-Watts, Killer-Watts.


Negawatt – unit of energy you don’t use.
Ecowatt – unit of energy generated in a clean sustainable way, such as via solar power or wind power.
Killer-watt – unit of energy generated by burning or consuming fuel such as coal, oil, gas, or radioactive material.

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Filed under Clean Energy, Coal, Fossil Fuels, Framing, Nuclear Power, Oil, Solar Power, Wind Power

Rachel Maddow – Tied Up With Coal Rope? Anthracite Handcuffs?

In Strasbourg, April 3, President Obama summed up the challenges we face:

“We know that the pollution from cars in Boston or from factories in Beijing are melting the ice caps in the Arctic, and that that will disrupt weather patterns everywhere. The terrorists who struck in London and New York plotted in distant caves and simple apartments much closer to your home. And the reckless speculation of bankers that has now fueled a global economic downturn that’s inflicting pain on workers and families — is happening everywhere, all across the globe.

And told us what he wants to do:

“… what I want to be able to do is not only fix the immediate crisis, but, working in partnership with other countries, create a path for sustainable, responsible growth. And I think we can do that. There are a lot of people who benefit from globalization, but there are also people who have been harmed by globalization. Globalization in and of itself can be good, but can also be destructive.

“… we could have just spent the money on the same old ways of doing things. But part of what we decided was if we’re going to be spending a lot of government money anyway, why not spend it to double the amount of renewable energy? Why not spend it on retrofitting existing government buildings so that we drastically reduce their energy consumption?”

I agree with Al Gore that we should move from coal and 100% solar, wind, geothermal, marine kinetic, and other renewable, sustainable energy systems in 10 years. I believe that President Obama’s stated goal, to double the amount of renewable energy, is a good start.

I wrote on this at Popular Logistics, and e-mailed Rachel Maddow (

Burning one ton of coal creates about 3.5 tons of carbon dioxide. According to Robert Bryce, the U S burned about 1.1 billion tons of coal in 2007 creating about 4 billion tons of carbon dioxide, not to mention the fly ash, arsenic, mercury, etc. Is that not a problem? When she was on Air America Rachel criticized the coal industry. Why did Rachel ignore Obama’s comment on sustainability? Last night the coal industry ran an ad on The Rachel Maddow Show. Rachel’s hands are tied with coal rope, she is bound by anthracite handcuffs.

So while the good news is that the progressive agenda has become so mainstream that two nightly TV news programs are blatantly left of center; the bad news is that the buy-partisan coal industry is co-opting the progressive tv news. I guess it’s back to the NY Times which covers all the news that’s fit to print, SNL Weekend Update which is still not ready for Prime Time, Jon Stewart, where nothing is sacred, and The Colbert Report, where Stephen Colbert is sacred, and NPR.

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Filed under Barack Obama, Coal, Rachel Maddow