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Author Topic: Some Good Old Fashioned Bush Discussion  (Read 1906 times)

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Offline RydiaTopic starter

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Some Good Old Fashioned Bush Discussion
« on: March 01, 2008, 06:25:56 AM »
This is going to be as bad for George W. Bush as his father's astonishment over the wonders of a grocery store price scanner was.

From yesterday's press conference, the President of the United States, ladies and gentlemen:

Quote
    Q:  Can I follow up on that, sir?

    THE PRESIDENT:  Maybe.

    Q:  The --

    THE PRESIDENT:  I guess you are -- I haven't said yes. (Laughter.)

    Q:  What's your advice to the average American who is hurting now, facing the prospect of $4 a gallon gasoline, a lot of people facing --

    THE PRESIDENT:  Wait, what did you just say? You're predicting $4 a gallon gasoline?

    Q:  A number of analysts are predicting --

    THE PRESIDENT:  Oh, yeah?

    Q:  -- $4 a gallon gasoline this spring when they reformulate.

    THE PRESIDENT:  That's interesting. I hadn't heard that.

    Q:  Yes, sir.

    THE PRESIDENT:  Yes. I know it's high now.

    Q:  And the other economic problems facing people. Beyond your concern that you stated here, and your expectations for these stimulus checks, what kind of hope can you offer to people who are in dire straits?

    THE PRESIDENT:  Permanent tax -- keep the tax cuts permanent, for starters. There's a lot of economic uncertainty. You just said that. You just said the price of gasoline may be up to $4 a gallon -- or some expert told you that -- and that creates a lot of uncertainty if you're out there wondering whether or not -- you know, what your life is going to be like and you're looking at $4 a gallon, that's uncertain. And when you couple with the idea that taxes may be going up in a couple of years, that's double uncertainty. And therefore one way to deal with uncertainty is for Congress to make the tax cuts permanent.

Discuss

Offline kongming

Re: Some Good Old Fashioned Bush Discussion
« Reply #1 on: March 01, 2008, 06:38:46 AM »
Well, I tend to keep mine trimmed, and I shave the sides off, or sometimes even shave it all away.

Oh wait, we're not discussing that bush.

Offline Humble Scribe

Re: Some Good Old Fashioned Bush Discussion
« Reply #2 on: March 01, 2008, 08:33:55 AM »
$4/gallon gasoline? ZOMG END OF WORLD! (It's about $10/gallon here).

Amusing though GWB's lack of knowledge of key price indicators may be, I couldn't help thinking "drive smaller cars and don't elect retards" when I read it. Of course, I recognise that I pay huge amounts of taxes on fuel in order to support socialised medicine and all of the other things that go with being a European, so it's swings and roundabouts I admit.

« Last Edit: March 01, 2008, 08:44:10 AM by Humble Scribe »

Offline rainshadow

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Re: Some Good Old Fashioned Bush Discussion
« Reply #3 on: March 02, 2008, 01:35:01 AM »
It sounds to me like he was mocking the guy.

Quote
You just said the price of gasoline may be up to $4 a gallon -- or some expert told you that -- and that creates a lot of uncertainty if you're out there wondering whether or not -- you know, what your life is going to be like and you're looking at $4 a gallon, that's uncertain.

Perhaps Bush has better information. Or perhaps he knows it won't be $4 a gallon everywhere. In some places it will be lower. In some places it'll be higher.

As far as I'm concerned we do far too much bitching about our gas prices when we're sitting on top of the answer. If we ever got around to using it, gas prices would probably drop back below $1 a gallon.

Offline Zakharra

Re: Some Good Old Fashioned Bush Discussion
« Reply #4 on: March 02, 2008, 02:42:42 PM »
As far as I'm concerned we do far too much bitching about our gas prices when we're sitting on top of the answer. If we ever got around to using it, gas prices would probably drop back below $1 a gallon.

 Yes. If the politicians and environmentalists would let us go and get it.  :-\

Offline Hunter

Re: Some Good Old Fashioned Bush Discussion
« Reply #5 on: March 05, 2008, 12:58:45 AM »
It's barely over $3 here.  But then again, the job market is in the toilet too.

Offline rainshadow

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Re: Some Good Old Fashioned Bush Discussion
« Reply #6 on: March 06, 2008, 10:48:51 PM »
Well, the OPEC criticism kinda backfired, didn't it? When will people learn that OPEC isn't responsible for the high gas prices in the US? It's the fact that we don't use our own resources, and we don't have adequate refineries.

Offline Zakharra

Re: Some Good Old Fashioned Bush Discussion
« Reply #7 on: March 07, 2008, 01:38:54 AM »
Well, the OPEC criticism kinda backfired, didn't it? When will people learn that OPEC isn't responsible for the high gas prices in the US? It's the fact that we don't use our own resources, and we don't have adequate refineries.

 OPEC has some control over oil prices, but I agree that we do need to develop our own abundant resources of oil. Unfortunately, there are many politicians (mainly Democrat, but a decent number of Republicans) and environmentalists that are stridently opposed to that. 

Offline NightBird

Re: Some Good Old Fashioned Bush Discussion
« Reply #8 on: March 07, 2008, 02:08:16 AM »
According to research done by Senator Ron Widen of Oregon, and acknowledged in various ways by the major oil companies in the United States, the primary bottleneck in gasoline supply in the United States isn't the quantity of oil available, it's the production capacity of the refineries currently in existence. What the oil companies don't like to discuss is that nearly all of the independent oil refineries in the United States were purchased during the 1980s and early 1990s and most were then shut down. This allows the oil companies to schedule maintenance for the time when gasoline use ramps up in the spring, creating artificial shortages. Competition had been preventing that from happening. In a televised set of interviews done by BBC America, they showed company memos outlining the plans, and their intention to arrive at $4/gallon gasoline by 2010, to get the greatest possible amount out of the consumer before alternate energy sources took over. Thus the record profits of the oil companies. If they had been raising prices to meet costs, then they wouldn't be posting such profits. Cetirus paribus, profit alone isn't a bad thing; however, the amount being extracted from the economy is impacting the dollars available to purchase goods and services, causing the slowdown to worsen. Remember, the increased income isn't just coming from gasoline used in consumer vehicles, but also from the diesel for trucks used to transport goods from manufacture/harvest to the sale point. There's a reason why diesel didn't drop as low as gasoline through most of 2007 in Ohio. Diesel used to be cheaper, but after neglecting the railroad infrastructure, the oil companies know they have the transportation industry as a whole over a barrel - literally. The question is whether they'll remain aware of the pressures against the demand side of the economy or continue to press for increasing, unsustainable and artificia prices. The 'market' is all about competition, and Adam Smith himself cautioned against the tendency to collusion toward price fixing.

Offline Humble Scribe

Re: Some Good Old Fashioned Bush Discussion
« Reply #9 on: March 07, 2008, 10:56:56 AM »
There are a good many reasons for shortage of US refining capacity. They are caught between rising environmental standards and falling standards of imported crude oil (higher sulphur content). They get more sulphur at the input end and have to take more of it out before it reaches the gasoline pool. They also have had one of their major blendstocks, methyl t-butyl ether (MTBE) banned because of some poor policing of leaky gasoline storage tanks in California, and the federal government, in a sop to farmers, keeps on telling them to blend more ethanol, which is expensive and wasteful and messes up the vapour pressure and means they have to blend other expensive components to compensate. They also had quite poor refining margins until the recent run-up of fuel prices (meaning it was hard for them to afford new investments), and even if gasoline prices are at record highs, remember that their feedstock oil prices have quadrupled in the past 10 years.

However, the main reason for the shortage in capacity is the fact that no-one wants a new oil refinery built next to them. There are dozens of plans for new refineries currently held up in planning inquiries at all kinds of local and state levels. I think that there has been just one new refinery built in the past decade - the rest of the expansions are all removing bottlenecks at existing sites.

Offline Kazae

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Re: Some Good Old Fashioned Bush Discussion
« Reply #10 on: April 10, 2008, 03:31:32 PM »
Between the NIMBYs and the lack of investment in Cellulosic Ethanol of a non-corn derivation, it no wonder prices are going up.

And of course Bio-diesel isn't happening in this end of the world...

Offline Zakharra

Re: Some Good Old Fashioned Bush Discussion
« Reply #11 on: April 10, 2008, 04:55:25 PM »
 Pfft. Ethanol is not the 'good Thing' it;s made out to be. Worse than gasoline in some ways and harder to ship and use. I do not like the idea of using a fuel that can bond with water and freeze.  Ethanol can't be shipped by pipeline, so it has to go by truck or rail. Which burns fuel.

 We need more refineries, and NIMBY, along with environmentalists isn't helping matters in getting one built.

Offline Vekseid

Re: Some Good Old Fashioned Bush Discussion
« Reply #12 on: April 10, 2008, 05:10:52 PM »
And of course Bio-diesel isn't happening in this end of the world...

Aren't you near the home of the algae biodiesel farm? :-p

Offline Stattick

Re: Some Good Old Fashioned Bush Discussion
« Reply #13 on: April 11, 2008, 05:13:15 AM »
$3.89 is what I paid at the pump when I fueled up yesturday. Really, 11 cents a gallon doesn't mean much to me. Of course, when it's $4/gal everywhere else, I'll probably be paying close to $5/gal here.  :(

Offline Kazae

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Re: Some Good Old Fashioned Bush Discussion
« Reply #14 on: April 11, 2008, 12:45:26 PM »
Aren't you near the home of the algae biodiesel farm? :-p

One of the prime researchers is in West Texas, out past the DFW general area.

Pfft. Ethanol is not the 'good Thing' it;s made out to be. Worse than gasoline in some ways and harder to ship and use. I do not like the idea of using a fuel that can bond with water and freeze.  Ethanol can't be shipped by pipeline, so it has to go by truck or rail. Which burns fuel.

 We need more refineries, and NIMBY, along with environmentalists isn't helping matters in getting one built.

Tell that to Brazil, who managed to get to the highest level of petroleum independence in the civilized world.

However, the freeze point issue IS a valid concern...but is addressable, with more research and effort into chemicals that will prevent the freezing from occurring.  Part of the solution, I believe, would be to combine the two processes; if it needs to be shipped cold, use biodiesel for the shipping vehicles (and you can easily produce biodiesel from the waste products of cellulosic ethanol development; hell, if we could kill two birds with one stone switch to industrial grade hemp for both the oil for biodiesel and the raw cellulosic mass for making ethanol), and for vehicles that won't get as cold use ethanol.

Also, we should be going nuclear, but that's a rant for another time...

Offline Zakharra

Re: Some Good Old Fashioned Bush Discussion
« Reply #15 on: April 11, 2008, 01:40:30 PM »
 Brazil uses sugar for it;s ethanol. Which is more efficient than corn. they have the climate to grow it in large quantities. The US does not. They have also found their own sources of oil nearby. We have our own oil if we could just get to it.

Offline Kazae

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Re: Some Good Old Fashioned Bush Discussion
« Reply #16 on: April 11, 2008, 01:49:34 PM »
This is why I recommend, specifically, cellulosic ethanol - instead of corn, which is nearly the worst possible foodstock to use, something like switchgrass or the priorly-mentioned hemp would be much, MUCH more effective, given an almost 3-1 return on the energy for growing, INCLUDING what was used in the actual sowing and harvesting phases.

Theoretically we could use sugar as well - see Hawaii as a prime example.  Much of Louisiana could be used for similar purposes, but that would not go over well with people, even though it would bring a ton of jobs.

Have a read; it's not intended to be dismissive, but educational.  And it's why, given the resources and opportunity, it strikes me as being a VERY worthwhile investiture in the near-future.  If I could come up with the funds, I'd be inclined to start a plant in Europe, where laws aren't quite as insane, and have acess to being able to make both biodiesel and ethanol concurrently.

Offline Humble Scribe

Re: Some Good Old Fashioned Bush Discussion
« Reply #17 on: April 11, 2008, 02:16:30 PM »
Spooky! I saw a paper presented on that very subject at a conference in Germany last November. I'll have to dig out the reference and post it here.

Offline Kazae

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Re: Some Good Old Fashioned Bush Discussion
« Reply #18 on: April 11, 2008, 02:25:00 PM »
It's the most gestalt-y time of the year! o/~

Seriously, with all the talk that has been given about alternative renewable energy sources, and the fact that the most pressing argument against it has been the oft-disputed 'food for fuel lol' bullshyte, I keep wanting to put a hole in a wall with my forehead...especially given the neurotically anti-hemp policy of the US due to the combinations of Big Oil, Big Pharma, and Big Farm-a/Con-Agra (aptly named).  Oh, and the increasingly redundant and outmoded paper industry.

After all, we all know why Citizen Kane wanted hemp banned...

Offline RubySlippers

Re: Some Good Old Fashioned Bush Discussion
« Reply #19 on: April 11, 2008, 03:12:58 PM »
But few Green Technologies are either renewable or necessarily sustainable or good for the environment.

There are only two pure renewable or clean sources of technology those that use passive solar power that is the sun beating down on the planet and construction made to use that. The other is low technology applications like a water wheel grinding corn or a windmill operating a water pump. In other words look at the Old Order Amish they are the only purely green and sustainable people in the United States.

Here are some examples of so called Green, Clean and Sustainable Technologies that are not......

1. Ethenol/Biodiesal both create more land pollution from the farming, require the use of arable land that is better used for food production and the process of making these fuels take a great deal of water and energy. In other words it could be worst overall than petroleum causing significant food access problems. Haiti is already feeling this and are not the only ones.

2. Non-passive Solar Power required manufactured materials, acids for the batteries, glass, plastic and toxic compnents in other words is energy costly to make and needs parts replaced which must be safely disposed of especially batteries to store power.

3. Other forms of power generation such as wind turbines, water turbines and wave motion have the similar problems they need some way to store the power that means batteries and metal components and other things like electronics. Just like solar power systems.

4. Electric cars have toxic batteries, electronics and other components and right now are hardly able to replace all private vehicles, trucks and transportation like aircraft.

Even my power scooter is toxic with batteries with acid, electronics and components that are not good for the environment and requires some way to recharge it so someplace has to generate the electricity. It may not generate on its own Co2 but its not exactly the Green ideal.

I do have another arguement to make is fighting Co2 and the massive resources that is being asked really the best course? Here is a thought experiment lets have six baskets each with one pressing global need- Food Production (including bio-engineering crops and related technologies), Clean Water, Education, Economic Development in Poor Nations, Basic Simple Health Care and Co2/Pollution Reduction. And now lets have 12 eggs each representing a block of funds for the next century lets say $12 trillion Euros total since its worth now more than the dollar. So here is the question how would you place these eggs to best counter these needs and counter GW?

I would alot these evenly to not overcommit to one area just in case it would be wasted, after all lowering Co2 may not even be effective in stopping GW if that determines it and not natural events such as solar output. And provide the most help to the most people regardless of what effects GW has. A position defended by others such as Bjorn Lomborg.

By the way I don't like President Bush on many issues but the Senate and his refusal to sign Kyoto was the best thing he could have done and I feel his actions in the morgage crisis was right on the money. Its his war policy that gets me all pissed off as a citizen.


Offline Kazae

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Re: Some Good Old Fashioned Bush Discussion
« Reply #20 on: April 11, 2008, 04:41:44 PM »
I believe you missed key points, and while I don't disagree with the intent, there's at least one part that I specifically addressed in my earlier linking...


Ethenol/Biodiesal both create more land pollution from the farming, require the use of arable land that is better used for food production and the process of making these fuels take a great deal of water and energy. In other words it could be worst overall than petroleum causing significant food access problems. Haiti is already feeling this and are not the only ones.

Inaccurate, and a false dichotomy - there is plenty of arable land we LITERALLY pay people not to grow anything on, that could be used for cellulosic ethanol; using switchgrass, which grows as a weed in most places, results in areas already plagued with poor soil retention having a rootsystem in place to prevent the continuing damage that other crops would bring, in addition to producing a recycleable byproduct that can in turn be used to further extract biodiesel WITHOUT IMPACTING EXISTING FARMLAND, and more to the point produces THREE TIMES  the energy that is consumed in production, in part because it can be created from the vast majority of the organic plant-matter waste we already create without having to go harvesting a plant specifically for it.  The reason why you see the hype surrounding corn-based ethanol is because of, simply put, Con-Agra's huge involvement in the corn market, for one, and the fact that they peddled their influence so that corn was used as the default crop-stock used for ethanol experimentation, due to the fact that sugar production is comparatively curtailed in the US, and heavens forbid anyone try to disrupt Con-Agra's hold on the agriculture industry.  Read my link from earlier, and it spells this fact out, particularly since (ligno-)cellulosic ethanol can be carbon neutral to produce.   I'll even save you the click and reproduce it (in part) here.

"One of the major reasons for increasing the use of biofuels is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.[45] In respect to gasoline, ethanol burns cleaner with a greater efficiency, thus putting less carbon dioxide and overall pollution in the air. Additionally, only low levels of smog are produced from combustion.[46] According to the U.S. Department of Energy, ethanol from cellulose reduces green house gas emission by 90 percent, when compared to gasoline and in comparison to corn-based ethanol which decreases emissions by 10 to 20 percent.[42] Carbon dioxide gas emissions are shown to be 85% lower than those from gasoline. Cellulosic ethanol contributes little to the greenhouse effect and has a five times better net energy balance than corn-based.[46] When used as a fuel, cellulosic ethanol releases less sulfur, carbon monoxide, particulates, and greenhouse gases. Cellulosic ethanol should earn producers carbon reduction credits, higher than those given to producers who grow corn for ethanol, which is about 3 to 20 cents per gallon.[43]

It takes 1.2 gallons of fossil fuel to produce 1 gallon of ethanol from corn. This total includes the use of fossil fuels used for fertilizer, tractor fuel, ethanol plant operation, etc. Research has shown that 1 gallon of fossil fuel can produce over 5 gallons of ethanol from prairie grasses, according to Terry Riley, President of Policy at the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership. The United States Department of Energy concludes that corn-based ethanol provides 26 percent more energy than it requires for production, while cellulosic ethanol provides 80 percent more energy.[42] Cellulosic ethanol yields 80 percent more energy than is required to grow and convert it.[47] The process of turning corn into ethanol requires about 1,700 gallons of water for every 1 gallon of ethanol produced. Additionally, each gallon of ethanol leaves behind 12 gallons of waste that must be disposed.[48] Grain ethanol uses only the edible portion of the plant. Expansion of corn acres for the production of ethanol poses threats to biodiversity. Corn lacks a strong root system, therefore, when produced, it causes soil erosion. This has a direct effect on soil particles, along with excess fertilizers and other chemicals, washing into local waterways, damaging water quality and harming aquatic life. Planting riparian areas can serve as a buffer to waterways, and decrease runoff."

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« Last Edit: April 11, 2008, 04:43:25 PM by Kazae »