“The President’s speech today will be viewed by terrorists as a victory,” said Chambliss, who recently golfed with the president, in a statement. > more ... (1 comments)
Julio Friedmann, one of Fallows’s guest bloggers, has a very interesting post about the efforts of Chinese power companies to adopt green energy. Here’s an excerpt:
One of my favorite examples is the biggest power company in the world, Huaneng Power Corporation, and its Chief Engineer, Dr. Xu Shisen. It was his technology and plant that we visited with Dr. Liu in Shanghai. Huaneng will install 10,000 MW of wind in the next few years (which almost equals U.S. total wind power) and an equal amount of solar (more than the U.S. total).
At the same time, Dr. Xu has overseen the development of impressive new technology in its own right.
While this development is largely for use inside China, Huaneng is looking beyond its borders (like any large multi-national). The company has partnered with a U.S. company (EmberClear and its subsidiary, FutureEnergy) to bring new clean energy technology to India, Kosovo and Pennsylvania. They’re also in discussions with North America’s two largest power generators, Duke and AEP, around investment and deployment in U.S. plants with Chinese technology.
They’re not alone. ENN (a subsidiary of the XinAo Group), Shenhua, CNOOC and others are all developing clean tech themselves from scratch, both for domestic use and export. This covers solar thin-films, biofuels, coal-to-liquids, shale gas and smart grids, all with U.S. partners. Lishen battery company, one of the world’s largest, is embarking on a $7 billion development drive just for battery technology and demonstration.
The good news — this will ultimately lead to lower emissions faster worldwide, and cheaper power with it. The bad news — for some in the U.S. — is additional competition. While some U.S. companies will benefit, others will encounter aggressive, new competition with credible technology. Some will grow faster; others will lose market share.
It’s an interesting read.
Rep. Sean Duffy (R-Real World Boston) recently lamented in public about how hard it is out there for a guy making $175k/year (roughly $250k with government benefits included):
At a town hall meeting in Polk County, Wisconsin earlier this year, Rep. Sean Duffy (R-WI) was asked whether he’d vote to cut his $174,000 annual salary. Duffy sort of hedged, and went on to talk about how $174,000 really isn’t that much for his family of seven to live on.
“I struggle to meet my bills right now,” Duffy told the constituent after noting that he has six children and a mortgage, drives a used minivan and is still paying off his student loan. “At this point, I’m not living high off the hog.”
Want some of the best parts of the story (besides the horror of the used minivan he’s forced to drive)?
First, Duffy was responding to a question from a construction worker who lost his job. Yes, his answer to an unemployed blue collar worker is, “Hey, my fancy life ain’t that great either.” Classy.
Second, Duffy seems to have fudged the facts in another statement about his income during his campaign:
Duffy also said he campaigned for seven months without receiving a paycheck. But a statement by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee negates Duffy claims, stating that the Congressman took a taxpayer-funded salary, as Ashland County District Attorney, throughout most of his campaign.
Third, it’s hard to claim hardship when you have a vacation home. You’d think that selling the relaxation pad could greatly ease the burden of his student loans, and possibly even allow him to buy a new minivan, no?
Finally, to top it all off, the Polk County, Wisconsin GOP is doing all that it can to keep the story in the news by frantically trying to get the video of Duffy’s speech yanked off the Internet (when they were the ones that posted the video in the first place!!):
You’d think that an MTV reality TV star would be more polished than this once he managed to ride his way into the halls of Congress on the Tea Party Tidal Wave™.
P.S. People who choose to have six kids are prohibited from bitching about how tight the family budget is. What did you expect?
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