Monday, 8 September 2014

Black and white issues

To extend a point best made by James Delingpole to illustrate the situation, if you attend a meeting where the debate is not whether to mix dog muck with yogurt, but how much, that pretty much sums up the distorted view of those who attempt to justify the unjustifiable, or present a balanced view on the mafia or cancer. You get the drift?

There are three basic situations here, none of which are the same, and two I have already addressed, the difference between facts and opinions. Here I will explain and demonstrate, I hope conclusively, the difference between those facts which are not negotiable, ie all good or bad, and the others where you can please some people most of the time but never everyone, such as utilitarianism.

By now most of you will have got the point already, but as I enjoy long essays I'll throw in some more examples and analysis, in case this possibly gets set as an exam topic. One can only dream. I recently heard a radio presenter ask for balanced calls on Britain's membership of the EU, and wondered how it was possible as we were either in or out. If we're in it's either better for us here (regardless of each other country who benefit according to their economic position compared to the amount it costs them to be in it) or not. The information may be hard to learn, but it's there in sufficient quantities for those who want to know to make an informed decision, and one I studied at degree level so can confirm this officially, and is not really capable of offering a balanced decision, as once you've collected enough information it's highly unlikely it will come out even, and almost certainly lean in one position or the other. The closest you can get to balance is by laying out the benefits (the random chance the odd EU law helps us by default rather than design) and burdens (everything else), although at the deepest level they have never signed off their accounts, burn and bury food to keep the price up, and deliberately invite in lame duck countries and break their economies, and now inviting in the rogue state of Turkey who fund terrorism. They are base crooks, no different from (and no doubt connected intimately to) the mafia. Organised widespread criminal control and work under secrecy (like the Commission mainly do), and run protection rackets (pay us more every year and the planet won't burn or melt) is pretty much how it is done, and the fact we don't yet have family executions is only because it would draw more attention to them rather than they are not capable of it.

If you're not sure, just swap the word cancer/death by torture/organised theft/boils, or any other plague you choose. Then extend the certainty towards the current issue and see how much clearer it looks.

The next category is subtler as it may include some surface or specific benefits, but when collected together is still worthless so despite people picking the handful of benefits and extending them to cover the entire issue, in reality it is no different from what they want to put in your yogurt. Wind turbines are complex but possible to break down into their individual components and then add up the total for a bottom line result. Although a few issues could be addressed through storage, most are inherent in their design so impossible to overcome, and are the core of their existence so if they can't change then the details are not important.

Wind turbines: Only work at the random times the wind blows in the exact range they generate power.

They consume power for brakes, starters, heaters and directional motors.

When they do generate is not related to the needs of the grid, much produced at peak areas is wasted as cannot yet be stored.

They only work a few percent of the day, the rest of the time the standby power stations take over, but as power stations need to be on the whole time as they take a week or two to get started then they are also wasting power the whole time they are not being drawn on, and in fact it is easier to dispense with the turbines altogether and use the generators instead.

Overall there is no practical function in a method of power generation that begins with a vast startup cost, plus maintenance, plus the grid, and produces power in random bursts which can't be stored. There is no way round this, you can't make the wind blow any more than it does, and is unlikely a practical system will be developed which doesn't do more than save trivial amounts at a massive cost to store the small amounts produced when not needed. It is not possible to build enough to find places where the wind is always blowing somewhere as you'd not only need much of the landscape to be covered with them, but it would cost most of the entire GDP and still not guaranteed to work. There is no solution to this problem as wind power is a few thousand years old, and was replaced by candles, gas and electricity for lighting and power for those very reasons. You would never have heard of a single engineer suggesting using a wind turbine for anything more than running small machines like weather stations, in a similar way solar has always been used effectively as the power drains are so low, unless the subsidies and guarantees were rolled out in the name of stopping global warming. Until they can power a hospital on wind alone (and I'll allow them solar backup as well) I don't think anyone is able to say otherwise.

Therefore although to some they appear to perform a useful function, if you look at the annual amounts generated by wind, and the costs to produce it, then you will see they are worthless wastes of resources which rust and fall apart in a decade or two (see the early ones rotting in California), and cannot be recycled that easily. The average power station takes up a small area and lasts around 50 years.

The levels of subtlety and subterfuge will increase, but the formula does not. Once you start analysing issues with these formulas it will start to become clearer when something has no alternative side and when it does. You could use mushrooms and toadstools, they look alike but we can all eat mushrooms, but some prefer not to. But we will all be poisoned by toadstools. Therefore it is not possible to argue either you should never eat mushrooms or mushrooms are better than broccoli as that is an opinion, but there can be no argument over toadstools. But the similarity without knowing and checking is very subtle. Therefore people can dress up issues which look just as similar on the surface, but learn the details and you discover they are offering you a fake, as it may appear to do something useful (like wind and solar panels) but in reality they either do nothing much, nothing at all, or are actually harmful. Either way they are all equally wrong and should not be presented with arguments as if they are all equally valid.

Another aspect is crime. Knowing the laws we can all apply them to acts well enough (as juries do every day) to assess whether a crime has been committed. But what if that crime is discovered by a government to be a real earner and is legalised as long as only they do it? Enron invented carbon credits when they had a huge loss to hide from their shareholders, and invented future energy profits to tide them over while they thought they could earn the money back legitimately. But the next year the new investors had been attracted so much they kept the system and expanded it, even though they no longer needed to, and eventually selling non-existent shares in air and imaginary power as their main operation as it was so profitable. This of course was fraud at the highest level, and when eventually discovered more by chance than planning the crooked board all went down for a long stretch.

This is now compulsory in Europe and many other countries to prevent global warming. Virtually the identical methods operated by Enron (as they were legalised and adopted by the Clinton government, albeit on a voluntary basis there as the Americans are too clever to vote for such rubbish), and then elsewhere, and made Al Gore into a billionaire for doing the same things Enron did and got them in prison. Therefore as they are a known Ponzi scheme, creating and generating absolutely nothing, carbon credits and trading are totally wrong. Arguing as the Australians did to change and vary the details of sheer theft was no different to which colour or texture of turd do they want to put in the yogurt. I mean, how much crime or cancer do you want to supply to the public in return for their support and taxes?

I hope everyone has got the point now. There is a clear area of good/bad polar issues, and some are obvious like cancer, the rest are just as certain but on a sliding scale of clarity. Just because some hind behind smoke, mirrors and respectability, claiming to produce free energy (like offshore wind, 12 times the cost of conventional power) or save the planet (the chemicals in solar panels will hang around forever once they wear out and cannot be recycled), you need to work your way through the guff to the bottom line, what does this stuff actually do? I can keep raising more examples for ages, but these should cover the range sufficiently to demonstrate everything you need to go out and stop the cheats out there claiming otherwise. We need as many to learn this as possible as even radio calls and internet discussions put the truth across and stop crooks and creeps claiming poo in your food is good for you. The other examples may need a lot more research to discover the similarity, but are no less useless.

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