Monday, September 26, 2011

Art Mob

Conversation With Myself. Full view of this cool sculpture here.

Haven't had the chance to spend too much time at Art Prize yet. Weather, timing, football, etc. all conspiring against me. The brief few hours I did make it down there it was insanely crowded; I had about two seconds to take the shot above before the next shrieking horde of schoolkids descended on the piece. And then the clouds rolled in by the time I made it to the BOB parking lot. Blah. I hope to make it down there towards the end of this week (weather permitting) for more pics. Here are a few from last Friday until then.

Other than that, I've been stuck in a house without heat and a neighbor that has been bang! bang! banging! on his roof next door, and these conditions have not been conducive to coherent thought. At all. I hope to have that cleared up by the end of the week too.

Have some links while I regroup:

  • Looky there, turns out the US government has been subsidizing energy since the 1700s. As in, colonial times. Like it was a tradition or something. The big winners? Nuclear, coal and oil. Renewables barely register in comparison. Someone please tell this new crowd of anti-green-energy-for-partisan-purposes-only the truth of the situation, k?

  • Along that line, the NYT calls the Republicans out on their manufactured outrage over Solyndra. They also point out that Republicans were very happy to stuff their pockets and districts with these projects that they now denounce. Pertinent paragraph here though:

    Recent studies suggest that, globally, renewable energy will grow faster than any other energy source in the coming decades. The surest way to guarantee that America gets its fair share of that business and those jobs would be to enact a comprehensive energy strategy that raises the price of older, dirtier fuels. Failing that, continued government support is absolutely essential.

    I don't know if we necessarily have to raise the price of fossils, but we need the green subsidizes to compete and grow the industry for now. But maybe not for long; First Solar has increased the efficiency on their thin-film technology to the point where they are beating Chinese solar panels, and may be able to be profitable without subsidizes in the next five years. Can I get an amen?

  • Good GM news: As a result of the new UAW contract, Spring Hill looks to reopen - and bring work back here that had been headed to Mexico. As a Saturn freak, that gives me a warm fuzzy. And maybe it will shut Corker up. But probably not. E.J. Dionne Jr. has a great editorial on GM here.

  • Scary GM news: Developing electric car technology with the Chinese, which may lead to car manufacturing such as the Volt there for import back here. You've been warned. And BTW, want an example of the so-called "free-market" world we live in?

    GM plans to start exporting Michigan-made Volts to China by year's end, but isn't likely to sell many. The Chinese government is pushing electrics with a subsidy that amounts to about $19,000 per car -- but only if the car is made in China. No imports allowed. There also are tariffs on cars imported to China, which lawmakers argue are unfair and may violate world trade rules.

    Someone fix this. Please.

  • More radical uncompassionate conservatism from the Michigan Republicans in the Legislature. Not only are they ignoring the fact that they still haven't fixed the problem with the heating aid funding, leaving poor people and the agencies that help them to wonder if they'll have heat this winter, they also are starting to charge interest on unemployment "overpayment" - with disastrous results in one case where THEY were in error. Public service indeed.

  • Big thanks goes out to my friend Paddy at the Political Carnival for linking to my Granholm Daily Show post - it really brought in the hits from across the country. Muchas gracias. Check out the Political Carnival sometime; they indulge in the "fun" news you can use, and it's sure to bring a smile.

    Speaking of the Governor, she will be at the Michigan Theater in Ann Arbor tomorrow night to sign books and answer questions, click here for more details. Given the speak-no-evil code, how WILL she dodge the Snyder issue? Curious, because you know that's what is on everyone's mind. Someone give a full report!

    I hear the hammer warming up, so that's it for now...