Archive for the ‘Energy Policy’ Category

This is it for me, at least for this chapter.  I am off to join some people who don’t much appreciate voices singing out of key, and while they might be able to get over my public disdain for coaches who punt in opposing territory, it would be rather awkward to continue to point out the incompetence of the administration.  So for now, it’s probably best to hang it up.


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Even by off-cycle election standards, this was an odd one.  Perhaps it’s just payback for such a good election last year.  I’ll trade watching Chris Christie do his Sopranos impression for never having had to listen to this:

It’s been just 68 days since that afternoon in Dayton, Ohio, when Senator McCain introduced me as his running mate. He is truly the maverick. He took a chance on me. I will always be grateful for that. It will be the honor of a lifetime to work him as vice president of the United States. And I pledge to govern with integrity, and goodwill, and clear conviction, and a servant’s heart.

When the Democratic Party finishes licking its wounds, I hope it learns at least one lesson: when you win an election, you are expected to do something.  Asking the genie for three more wishes is not something. (more…)

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Apparently I’m a bit late to the latest academic kerfluffle: Superfreakanomics‘ curious decision to wade into the global warming debate on the Neanderthal side.

Well, not exactly Neanderthal.  More incoherent. (more…)

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Once upon a time, there was a hedge fund named Hermitage Capital.  Its head was Bill Browder, and it had the clever idea, back during the Yeltsin Administration, of investing Western capital in Russia.  It worked spectacularly well, until it didn’t:

Browder is a smart guy.  He made a lot of money and managed to get his money and his life out of the country, which would be reason enough for me to refrain from paying for Youtube videos naming the Russian government agents who defrauded me. (more…)

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David Brooks’ silly season seems to have found an Indian Summer, as he goes on about his imaginary friends Mr. Bentham and Mr. Hume:

If you put Mr. Bentham in charge of the government, he’d proceed with confidence. If you told him to solve a complicated issue like the global-warming problem, he’d gather the smartest people in the country and he’d figure out how to expand wind, biomass, solar and geothermal sources to reduce CO2 emissions.

“I don’t know the best way to generate clean energy,” [Hume]’d whine, “and I don’t know how technology will advance in the next 20 years. Why don’t we just raise the price on carbon and let everybody else figure out how to innovate our way toward a solution?

Brilliant…except the mechanism to achieve Bentham’s goal is Hume’s tax.  Way to find a distinction without a difference. (more…)

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Labor Day is as good an excuse as any to sit outside and have a few beers, even if we in America have to be different and observe it on the first Monday in September instead of the first day of May.  If you are in Logan County, West Virginia that day, Don Blankenship wants to show you a good time.  He is throwing a Friends of America rally – apparently our enemies are having a counterrally in Kandahar, or perhaps the Meatpacking District – and trotting out the finest in live entertainment: Sean Hannity, Hank Williams, Jr., and the Motor City Madman himself, Ted Nugent.  It’s tough to find good bands when running a coal company, I suppose.  And not just any coal company:

Don Blankenship runs West Virginia the way Herman Brown ran Texas.  It just isn’t working out quite as well for West Virginians.


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This weekend the Remote Area Medical Group – a variant of Medecins Sans Frontieres – had its annual field event at the Wise County Fair Ground.  In Virginia, not Zimbabwe.

It is disgraceful that in the United States, which our politicians insist on telling us is the best at everything, people need to drive hundreds of miles to line up in the middle of the night for battlefield medicine.  Here is a 60 Minutes clip from last year’s version; this year had just under twice the turnout:

I have tried to outline a few ideas about the health care system, and there is no shortage of academic interest in the area.  But I can’t help but notice something else in the coverage: we have a food problem. (more…)

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