Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The Scary Debt Simply Does Not Exist

It's just figment of a conservative imagination.  But, more to the point, it's just a tool to gain political power.  If were more expedient to spend money without putting it into the budget, they would do that too.  Oh yeah, Bush did.

Coal Without Emissions?

A potential breakthrough in chemical combustion technology is a wet process by which heat can be extracted from coal without greenhouse gas emissions.  This could prove interesting.

Bye-bye Giant Chain Stores?

Has the era of the giant chain store reached its peak?  Can we revitalize a decentralized marketing model in time to save us?

Redistricting didn’t do it

In a previous post, Gerrymandering and the House, it was hypothesized that despite the fact that the popular vote ran the other way, Republicans won the House because of redistricting.  A sharper analysis shows that the power of incumbency had more to do with it.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Sunday, February 17, 2013

A neural basis for benefits of meditation

By examining brain function during meditation it's been discovered that how it helps the brain filter out the sensation of chronic pain.

Missed Opportunity

Israel's success during the recession could have been ours if so many of our political leaders had been able to dial down the crazy a little bit.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013


Why is it that the Republicans depend on ignorance?  And it's not only in keeping others unaware of the facts but themselves as well. And how can this possibly contribute to effective governing?  Not much, really.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Radiation Is Not A Big Deal

The UNSCEAR report says that the Linear-No-Threshold assumption about radiation effects doesn't stand up.  Notably, it also points out that there are no deaths attributable to the Fukushima power plant meltdown. Nada.  Not one.

High CEO Pay Relies On 'Self-Serving Myth'

Hello Board Members, your CEO's threat to leave if you don't pay him an outrageous salary is a bluff.  But as long as you buy it, he's going to keep bluffing.

Friday, February 01, 2013

Meanwhile, in West Texas

West of Midland and north of Monahans is a wind farm that has one of the world's largest batteries. It can store 36 megawatts of power and deliver it to the grid in 15 minutes.  Not surprisingly, the community is known as Notrees.

Coal doesn't mean jobs

Contrary to industry claims, coal terminals don't create that many jobs.  They are highly automated and don't need that many workers.  What they do generate is big profits for coal companies and railroads.  For me, this is a valid rationale to tax them heavily if they are built.  The money would then go into such worthy things as education and infrastructure.  In the Northwest, education once benefited from the robust timber industry. Today, we struggle to find the needed funding.

Producing Hydrogen on Demand

Researchers have come up with a form of silicon that generates hydrogen by just adding water. The silicon is consumed in the process, so it's more like a battery.  But it could be used as a portable hydrogen supply if water is available.

Some Immigration Facts

Here is what economists know about immigration:
1. Immigrants benefit.
2. The economy benefits
3. Innovation is increased
4. Native-born workers benefit
5.Low-skilled workers don't see much change