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Old 02-01-2006, 03:46 PM   #11
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Thanks for Moving the Thread. Now for the Grassroots Movement.

Matt - first thanks for moving the issue to a new thread, I was hoping that would happen and get the discourse moving on the topic.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this post are independent and are not representative of Gassavers.org or any other group but yours truly.

:-)

Well, let me get a few things out of the way. I didn't want to make this too Political, but I think the topic is what it is. First, I'm proud to call myself a "Liberal", but I'll also admit to having an open mind on a variety of issues. I believe strongly in the value of the Scientific process and the advancement of technology to benefit the greater good (whether it be environmental, biotechnical, medical, etc.) I also believe that the average citizen needs to be more involved in Politics to keep the process under a watchful eye. Instead of letting goverment officials run on "autopilot", I believe in consistantly communicating with them: State, Local, and Federal. Unfortunately, the right and the left are so polarized right now -- probably now more than ever. With that said...

It was hard for me to watch, but I bit the bullet and watched the SOTU address not once, but twice (when it repeated on CNN late last night). I'll limit my comments to the energy plan, because I could go on about the education plan, tax cuts for the wealthy, and the elimination of funding for the poorest, most vulnerable Americans.

Sludgy -- I admire your criticism of the plan considering your political affiliation; in fact, I agree with every point you mentioned. IMHO, Bush's agenda is to benefit big US business. Large Agribusinesses: (Ethanol, and Switchgrass or whatever???); Coal was also a focus. If cars are plugging-in to re-charge, a large draw on the electrical grid will be apparent, day or night (anyone remember Enron and how they ripped-off California in their time of crisis?). "Clean" coal burning power plants were mentioned. Who benefits: Domestic coal producers, the manufacturers of the smokestack catalyst, large sub-contractors to build this stuff (including Nuclear -- not sure where we're going to store all of that contaminated coolant once it's past it's usable life), and power brokers like the energy companies who buy and sell the juice (where was wind and hydro-electric in all of this?) Finally, since he failed at domestic oil once, W is going to try it again. Expect (using the proposed line-item veto) to drill in ANWR for more domestic oil. They've tried to push it through, but it's been caught every time. Benefit: Big U.S. Oil because we're probably offending every Middle-Eastern nation to the point of immenent embargoes, and we're probably going to tap into what's left of the U.S. oil supply. I'm not old enough to have been around for the gas crisis of the 70's, but do a little reading on it if you aren't familiar with it.

2 technologies currently have a negative energy benefit (meaning it takes more energy to create the fuel than when it is combusted). Hydrogen and Ethanol/Alcohol (which has less potential engergy per gallon than gasoline, and emits more CO2).

Let's get engines to run more efficiently, design smaller vehicles, use the momentum rolling with Hybrids, and for pete's sake, get a reliable Diesel engine that America will fall in love with. As for the batteries, that one came out of left field -- not really sure where he was going with that.

And now, your moment of Zen. In every statement, there are 3 sides to the triangle:

1) The way I say it,
2) The way you hear it,
3) and, the way it really IS.

I think he wanted us to hear what we wanted to because of his low approval rating. What really comes of an address like this? Perhaps some attempts to push a few measures through Congress, and then we forget about the speech and go back to our daily lives.

I ask each of you to perform one simple task. Write to a lawmaker and express what you believe to be the best direction for fuel economy. It's easy, just go to www.house.gov or www.senate.gov and e-mail your lawmaker (you can even write State agencies in a similar process, depending on where you are). It takes like 5 minutes, and in many cases you will get a response. At the very least, your one voice can join others in a common goal, and it will make an impression. It is us after all who "hire" these people. They are our "employees". Let's give them direction.

RH77





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Old 02-01-2006, 04:18 PM   #12
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Battery

Hey I know someone from MIT that has THE battery - just can't seem to get anyone to manufacture it and those that have licencing rights to manufacture it seem to be sitting on their hands for years . . .

I invite you all to yahoo groups BMBB to learn about this and other areas of development towards Better Motors Better Batteries.
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Old 02-01-2006, 05:34 PM   #13
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Re: Thanks for Moving the Thread. Now for the Grassroots Moveme

Quote:
Originally Posted by rh77
Write to a lawmaker and express what you believe to be the best direction for fuel economy.
hey, it worked for me - my letter got me a bike rack at canadian tire! maybe it'll get you guys some better fuel economy.
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Old 02-01-2006, 06:39 PM   #14
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Re: Thanks for Moving the Thread. Now for the Grassroots Moveme

Quote:
Originally Posted by MetroMPG
Quote:
Originally Posted by rh77
Write to a lawmaker and express what you believe to be the best direction for fuel economy.
hey, it worked for me - my letter got me a bike rack at canadian tire! maybe it'll get you guys some better fuel economy.
My point exactly, all it takes is one letter.

Metro- I was thinking of posting a link to your Parliamentary representative, but embarassingly, I don't know enough about how your government operates. And besides, I think you're our only Neighbor to the North, if I'm not mistaken (and I knew you could figure it out if you wanted to do it :-) ). I might go to CBC's website as before when I learned about the history of the Metric system in Canada, and the election results for Prime Minister (they had a nice section about the different parties and their platforms) to get a feel for Parliament.

RH77
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Old 02-01-2006, 06:46 PM   #15
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notwithstanding that bush's

notwithstanding that bush's comments may amount to a hill of beans when it comes down to actually advancing the state of technology or regulations that might help fuel-efficiency, EVs, or PHEVs...

it sure is a 180 degree turn from your administration's previous position on the matter:

Quote:
"If you're one of those people who puts solar panels on your house or drives a battery powered car, you might as well vote for Gore" -- Dick Cheney, Oct 3, 2000.
and RH77 - we had a general federal election in late Jan and elected our first conservative prime minister after 13 years of liberal rule. (the cons got a minority). some in the media here have nicknamed him "prime minister Shrub".

get it!?
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Old 02-01-2006, 06:57 PM   #16
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Re: notwithstanding that bush's

Quote:
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"prime minister Shrub".

get it!?
For your Country's sake, I hope that nickname doesn't hold true! --but I understand the reasoning for the outcome. By the description of his platform, it sounds like he's more of a "Moderate Conservative" by definition in the 'States (which might not be too bad).

In response to the Cheney remark, I think Bush is just blowing smoke to tell people what they want to hear, really -- perhaps to appeal to the left.

RH77
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Old 02-02-2006, 06:56 AM   #17
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Raise the gas tax

I agree partly with Cheney's remark: Namely, that US dependence on OPEC oil is not going to be solved with solar panels. This is because most electicity is generated with coal, nuclear and hydropower that are not imported from the Mideast.

But Bush and Cheney entirely miss the boat regarding fuel efficiency. 40 MPG in mid sized cars like a Ford Taurus or Chevy Malibu is achievable without resorting to exotic technologies. 30 MPG in medium size pickups or SUVs is achievable too. If Detroit built these vehicles and stopped building behemoths, we wouldn't need to import any Islamofascist oil.

We shouldn't politicize the issue as Democrat versus Republican. Legislators both sides of the aisle have a vested interest in preserving the jobs in factories that build fuel-hog cars. Michigan legislators, (including many Democrats) have fought higher CAFE standards for eons. So, we are caught between the jaws of politicians from energy-producing states and politicians from auto industry states.

IMHO, the best way to correct this is by ramping up gasoline taxes. We are seeing the effect of high priced gas right now on what cars people buy. People have slowed sales of gas hogs in the face of $3 per gallon gas.

With higher gas taxes, Demomcrats could support the additional revenue for funding social programs, and Republicans could sponsor offsetting income tax cuts, so the whole thing is revenue-neutral.
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Old 02-02-2006, 01:58 PM   #18
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solution

We need to make the polticians in washington drive their own cars and pay for their own gas with CASH not a credit card so they actually see just how much these gas sucking vehicles they push on americans cost to operate. Like this will ever happen - I was amazed when I heard a Senator McCane say that we should build more nuclear plants as a near term quick solution - takes more than a few years to build a plant doesn't it?
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Old 02-02-2006, 02:06 PM   #19
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Re: solution

Quote:
Originally Posted by JanGeo
We need to make the polticians in washington drive their own cars and pay for their own gas with CASH not a credit card so they actually see just how much these gas sucking vehicles they push on americans cost to operate. Like this will ever happen - I was amazed when I heard a Senator McCane say that we should build more nuclear plants as a near term quick solution - takes more than a few years to build a plant doesn't it?
That's exactly one of the main problems. It takes years and years to build coal or nuclear plants. During those years you have zero energy produced. the return on investment takes forever.

With wind energy, however, you start getting power produced after one windmill is put up. You receive energy back during the construction process, making the cost of production drastically lower and the investiment to build much lower as well.
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Old 02-03-2006, 07:39 AM   #20
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More politics

I agree totally on windmills. They are easy to construct, don't require air pollution permitting, and (should) go up fast.

There is a private developer that is trying to permit a 400 MW wind farm off the coast of Massachusetts. Guess who's opposed: Ted Kennedy nad John Kerry. It might ruin Ted's view from his Hyannisport compound.

http://capewind.whgrp.com/

It just goes to show that it's not just Bush that's clueless. What hypocrites these Democrats be! We're screwed from left and right.
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