Saturday, February 20, 2010

Obama Has A Nuclear Plan

Oops--wrong picture. That's Iran's nuclear plan in the photo. I actually meant to talk about the President's plan for using nuclear power as a clean, safe energy source. Sorry if I scared you. Having discovered nuclear energy and declaring there is such a thing as "clean coal," Obama is getting nuked from the left.

We've all known for a long time that while the Democrats and their radical environmentalist cohorts have been so busy trying to sell us windmills, solar panels and other hare-brained schemes for the production of mass energy that they've ignored or denigrated nuclear power. But the news is that the left will no longer follow obediently in the Messiah's trail of hypnotized disciples. Obama has decided that nuclear energy is a good idea after all, and they're not having any of it.

Obama finally comes up with a reasonable idea that would create real jobs, utilize a power source that is abundantly available within our own country, produces almost zero emissions or greenhouse gases, and could reduce America's dependence on foreign oil by huge sums, so the left goes ballistic (no pun intended). He's willing to pump $8.3 billion in loan guarantees into the project of building two reactors in Georgia (not the Georgia next to Russia), and suddenly the left has discovered the word "billion." Huge sum (Oh yeah? Have you seen the deficit?). The Green people don't mind spending billions of greenbacks on their silly projects, but when Obama decides to spend the taxpayers' money on a proven power source, they become Ebenezer Scrooge.

We also know that Iran understands nuclear energy. After all, if it didn't work beautifully, why would they be buying all that enriched nuclear fuel when they're sitting on oceans of the oil that we're paying so dearly for in the Middle East? They wouldn't be trying to build a nuclear bomb, now would they? Obama understands that we must get into the nuclear race so that we get our abundant nuclear energy before Iran gets its abundant nuclear energy. I'm sure all this talk about Iran wanting the fuel for building nuclear weapons is just another one of those Israeli plots to take over the Muslim world.

New York Times enviro-hack John Broder has built an entire article around his contempt for Obama's abandonment of the anti-nuclear power greenie-weenies. He carefully interviewed many "experts" in the field (environmental extremists, all) then produces the article in that unique "settled science" way we've all come to know and love from the kooks. First, Broder ignores all the possible uses and costs of nuclear energy, and chalks Obama's stance up to "trying too hard to placate the Republicans." Thus, Obama is a know-nothing about science in Broder's mind, and he's willing to go off on a tangent just to satisfy Republicans. Broder is willing to impute ignoble motives to The One rather than consider that the President may be acting sanely for the first time in his entire occupancy in the White House. I think Broder's a racist. Why else would he insult the President?

Broder avoided the New York Times editorial and its experts. The editorial opined that "President Obama's decision to commit $8.3 billion in loan guarantees to help build two nuclear reactors in Georgia and restart the American nuclear power industry makes good sense. We know that many environmentalists want Mr. Obama to put all of his chips on energy efficiency and renewable fuels, like wind and solar power. But nuclear power, which generates far fewer greenhouse gases than ordinary fossil fuels, should be part of the energy mix as this country and others move toward a less-carbon-intensive world." The editorial continues in the same vein, but you get the idea. The editorial staff doesn't really agree with Broder, but that didn't stop him.

Bill Snape at the Center for Biological Diversity was quoted by Broder as saying: "I think we all had higher hopes. We expected a lot in the first year, and everyone agrees they didn't quite live up to it. But there is recognition that [Obama] and the whole administration will get another stab at it." Not content with his disappointment on nuclear power plants, Snape had to add that the president was also ignoring his favorite subject. "You can't get anything right unless you get the polar bear right."

Another Broder expert, Frances Beinecke of the Natural Resources Defense Council expressed disappointment in the focus on nuclear power, but felt he also had add his contempt for clean coal technologies, which Obama spoke of in the State of the Union address. A cynical ploy to get votes from the states dependent on mining coal or that burn it for electricity, Beinecke says. Broder quotes Beinecke as saying: "N.R.D.C. knows there is no such thing as 'clean coal.' Every single step in the coal power cycle is dirty, from the profoundly destructive mountaintop removal mining to the smokestack emissions, which are responsible for 24,000 deaths a year." Beinecke didn't state whether polar bears were included in the death toll.

Broder also cites Daniel J. Weiss, who is the president of the ultra-liberal Center for American Progress. Weiss not only attacked the idea of nuclear power generation, but jacked up those all-important "billions" to $54 billion to include projects not yet on the drawing boards. Weiss doesn't want to spend money on nuclear power, so he wants you to know how much money he doesn't want to spend, including guesses. Says Weiss: "The president's embrace of nuclear power was disappointing, and the wrong way to go about winning Republican votes. Mr. Obama should not be endorsing such a costly and potentially catastrophic energy alternative as bait just to get talks started with pro-nuke senators."

Weiss was actually Broder's only "expert" who even bothered to address a direct criticism of nuclear power plants by calling them dangerous. Almost nobody believes that anymore. The potential is always there, but Three Mile Island is no longer the technology being utilized, and Chernobyl was the result of doing it on the cheap and not caring who might get hurt. Europe is heavily-reliant on nuclear power plants and has been for decades. Not a single major accident. And if Weiss is talking about security from terrorist attack, even Obama sees that danger and plans to make sure the developers work with national security on protecting the plants. Maybe Weiss is referring to the ecoterrorists that he sympathizes with.

22 comments:

HamiltonsGhost said...

Lawhawk--It's about time that Obama came to his limited senses about something. We need to break our dependency on foreign oil, at the earliest possible moment. This is a start. Now, if we can start tapping our huge oil reserves and building clean coal generating plants, we can begin what we should have been doing twenty years ago.

LawHawkSF said...

HamiltonsGhost: That has been the problem for so long. Clinton caved on ANWR because "why even if they started now, it wouldn't be completed for another twenty years." Which means we'd be pumping millions of gallons of oil out of ANWR right now.

CalFederalist said...

No matter which of the three alternatives (oil, coal, nuclear) are chosen, preferably all three, it will take half as long to build the facilities and get them up and running as it will for the environmental impact reports to be completed. We have to protect those "endangered mosquitoes" in Alaska, after all.

LawHawkSF said...

CalFed: Thanks to Richard Nixon and his Environmental Protection Act (and probably Bush I with his Americans With Disabilities Act), everything takes three times as long as it should to get done, if it ever gets done. We are at war. It's going to take a Chief Executive with some guts (and that isn't Obama) to cut through the bureaucratic regulatory garbage, and treat this like the national emergency it truly is. The President has the power to make certain findings independent of the agencies which can get the projects moving in the name of national security. Of course, that still leaves the battle with the lefties in Congress. But challenging the very public rats in Congress is a bit easier than dealing with mindless, faceless bureaucrats, and the American public wants these issues brought out into the light of day.

HamiltonsGhost said...

Lawhawk--PS, I also caught your throwaway line: "I think Broder's a racist. Why else would he insult the President?" LOL

LawHawkSF said...

HamiltonsGhost: I couldn't resist. The left has been throwing that one at us for so long that I thought turnabout was fair play. Nobody could possibly oppose the Messiah in good faith on anything. Ergo, all opposition is racist.

Joel Farnham said...

LawHawk,

I think Obama gave out the nuclear plan to placate some Republicans. It won't happen during his administration. His meme is Nuclear Energy is too damaging and dangerous. Nuclear Meltdown and all that.

Some things will change after the 2010 elections, but not enough to make a difference with regard to the current Energy Policy.

I envision that by the 2012 elections, the electorate will have had enough of the totalitarian approach the enviromentalists espouse and implement.

AndrewPrice said...

I agree with Joel. I think this is a fake nuclear plan. I think he's specifically trying to buy off Lindsey Graham (who is owned by the nuclear industry) in the hopes of getting his vote on cap and trade. But Graham is a fool and Obama knows it. So Obama is going to promise these plants and then never deliver.

In terms of the wisdom of nuclear power, I have serious doubts, but I'm reading a book that is supposed to allay those. We'll see.

Joel Farnham said...

Andrew,

The nuclear subs and carriers have been in operation for years. Check out their record. The China Syndrome is a movie, not REAL life.

The level of radiation from Three Mile Island is enormously less than the radiation from a simple x-ray. I still remember Carter walking around in the BIG yellow boots.

Writer X said...

Great post, LawHawk. And I'm not sure if anyone took Obama seriously on his nuclear power plant plan (or anything) since he closed down the places to store the waste.

On a side note, in Arizona, where we have lots of sun, solar energy is a big push and our electrical bills have all gotten new hefty surcharges to fund "renewable energy sources." One problem: Solar energy also requires lots of water. And we live in the desert. Not tons of water here.

Bottom line is that there are all sorts of knee-jerk plans for renewable energy but no one in our government seems to be thinking everything completely through. And, at this point, Obama has lost all credibility.

AndrewPrice said...

Joel, Chernobyl is real life, not a movie. So was the K-431, the K-19, the Windscale fire, Three Mile Island, the SL-1 in America, and many more. There have been hundreds of incidents at Russian, American, Canadian, Japanese, French and British, etc. nuclear sites.

BevfromNYC said...

Great post! it's obvious that we need to invest in more renewable sources of energy including nuclear energy. Oil and coal are in finite supply. But you are right that this is bribe just like the bribe to Nevada this week. So this is what he meant by more transparency - open political bribery.

Also, I didn't not know that there was a push to "get polar bears right". I wasn't aware that they were the least bit politically active. :-)

LawHawkSF said...

WriterX: Solar power is a genuine project, but not as a replacement for all our other sources. It makes perfect sense to develop it fully in your sunny neck of the woods, but not here. As we all know, 100% clean energy is a very desirable goal, but it's not exactly just around the corner, so we just do the best we can and use some less-than-perfect alternatives in the interim. I'm wondering how long it will be before your solar enthusiasts are trumped by the enviro-freaks as they have been in Southern California. Plans for immense "solar farms" in the Mojave Desert are now on hold because they'll interfere with the life cycle of some useless bug or lizard. They've already spent millions on a project that may never come to fruition.

LawHawkSF said...

Andrew and Joel: I think you're almost entirely correct. It's probably another "Lucy with the football" ploy to buy votes (just as some of the leftists say it is). But I was merely addressing the fact that nuclear energy makes perfect sense, and that something that makes perfect sense is not going to appeal to our institutional loons. I am with Joel on this one--the evidence for the "dangers" of nuclear power has shrunk immensely over the past twenty years. There are always going to be risks, but they have found ways to minimize them. I'm much more concerned that they address the terrorist threat than I am about the actual technonology involved in modern nuclear power plants. As a former opponent of nuclear generated power, I have been convinced by the scientific works I've read recently on the subject. That was a major conversion.

LawHawkSF said...

Bev: Nuclear energy is just part of the triad of resources abundant in America, along with coal and oil. If nuclear energy can be made safe within carefully defined and stringent standards, it is the ideal source. Coal and oil are never going to be entirely clean, but we can get darned close, and proceed quickly once government and environmental roadblocks are set aside. All will take considerable time to get up and running, and the time to begin is yesterday. The pollutants which will be released into the air from oil and coal are remarkably low with today's technology, which brings us back to the concept that "the perfect is the enemy of the good."

Polar bears love nuclear waste. It gives them that healthy glow. As a result, they have moved right to get their supply. LOL

StanH said...

Barry’s remarkable conversion is beyond belief, call me cynical.

Our energy requirements need the all of the above approach, coal, oil, gas, solar, hydro, nuclear, wind, hamster wheels, whatever it takes.

Those guys are obvious racist, I knew it when I read it.

As an aside, my wife and I took one of our grandnieces to the Ringling Bros. Circus. I’m certain that I saw Biden, he was one of the clowns. It all makes sense now!

LawHawkSF said...

StanH: I'm afraid that Obama and the ecofreaks will dawdle and fool around and let another opportunity pass as soon as they think it's safe to ignore the public will. I hope I'm wrong. We're capable of becoming energy-independent over the next decade or two, and he could accomplish this without angering his antiwar base. At least he'd have an accomplishment to point out, but he probably won't even do that.

Are you sure Biden was the clown? I think he's been practicing the high-wire act, trying to balance Obama and reality on a thin wire.

LawHawkSF said...

I have some more hot news to report. Washington D.C. has taken the triple-crown in sexually-transmitted diseases. It's number one in syphilis, gonorrhea, and chlamydia. And that's just Congress (I made the last part up, or did I?).

HamiltonsGhost said...

Lawhawk--So DC won the winter undercover Olympics?

LawHawkSF said...

HamiltonsGhost: Yep. And they introduced a new event this year. It's called the standing alley beast with two backs with a double-twist and layout.

CalFederalist said...

Does that mean that the global warming blizzard in D.C. kept the Washingtonians, um, inside?

LawHawkSF said...

CalFed: I don't know the answer to that, but it looks like we're becoming even more dependent on foreign oil for lubricants. LOL

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