Use access key #2 to skip to page content.

What the "Left" is Talking About today

Recs

6

February 20, 2011 – Comments (17)

Because sometimes I want to share.

On the investigative blog The Daily Kos, which is often dismissed here as being "leftist", todays story might be of interest.

As I  wrote yesterday , there is a leaked email that has gotten surprisingly little attention around here. It's the one where Aaron Barr discusses his intention to post at Daily Kos - presumably something negative about Anonymous, the hacking group. But that's not the email I'm talking about here.

As I also mentioned yesterday, in some of the emails, HB Gary people are talking about creating "personas", what we would call sockpuppets. This is not new. PR firms have been using fake "people" to promote products and other things for a while now, both online and even in bars and coffee houses.

But for a defense contractor with ties to the federal government, Hunton & Williams, DOD, NSA, and the CIA -  whose enemies are labor unions, progressive organizations,  journalists, and progressive bloggers,  a persona apparently goes far beyond creating a mere sockpuppet.

According to an embedded MS Word document found in one of the HB Gary emails, it involves creating an army of sockpuppets, with sophisticated "persona management" software that allows a small team of only a few people to appear to be many, while keeping the personas from accidentally cross-contaminating each other. Then, to top it off, the team can actually automate some functions so one persona can appear to be an entire Brooks Brothers riot online.

Persona management entails not just the deconfliction of persona artifacts such as names, email addresses, landing pages, and associated content.  It also requires providing the human actors technology that takes the decision process out of the loop when using a specific persona.  For this purpose we custom developed either virtual machines or thumb drives for each persona.  This allowed the human actor to open a virtual machine or thumb drive with an associated persona and have all the appropriate email accounts, associations, web pages, social media accounts, etc. pre-established and configured with visual cues to remind the actor which persona he/she is using so as not to accidentally cross-contaminate personas during use.

And all of this is for the purposes of infiltration, data mining, and (here's the one that really worries me) ganging up on bloggers, commenters  and otherwise "real" people to smear enemies and distort the truth.

This is an excerpt from one of the Word Documents, which was sent as an attachment by Aaron Barr, CEO of HB Gary's Federal subsidiary, to several of his colleagues to present to clients:

To build this capability we will create a set of personas on twitter,‭ ‬blogs,‭ ‬forums,‭ ‬buzz,‭ ‬and myspace under created names that fit the profile‭ (‬satellitejockey,‭ ‬hack3rman,‭ ‬etc‭)‬.‭  ‬These accounts are maintained and updated automatically through RSS feeds,‭ ‬retweets,‭ ‬and linking together social media commenting between platforms.‭  ‬With a pool of these accounts to choose from,‭ ‬once you have a real name persona you create a Facebook and LinkedIn account using the given name,‭ ‬lock those accounts down and link these accounts to a selected‭ ‬#‭ ‬of previously created social media accounts,‭ ‬automatically pre-aging the real accounts.

 

This is important to an investing website, because as we all know greed, lies, and thievery all go hand in hand. As the article suggests, 'sockpuppets' are being used to promote products, electronically coordinated 'sockpuppets' would be more effective. And lets face it, the stock market is not immune to schemes such as this either. Recently I took a slightly different postion on ethanol than TMFDeej. Let me clarify right now that I do not believe Deej is a sockpuppet, or scammer, or anything other than he represents himself to be. I trust him, but I also understand he can be wrong and vulnerable to his preconceived politics just as I am.

Last year (6-03-09) I picked a grain ETF (JJG) as my pick in the "allstarportfolio" based on my preconceived politics that climate scientists are telling the truth as best as they can. It was a long term/safe idea which is what the portfolio asked us for, 5yrs, because I believed science was beginning to understand that climate would change faster than previously thought.  At the time there also existed an "ethanol mandate", and it was hotly debated and it was not a secret. One year after that pick was made, with no impact from the ethanol mandate it had floundered close to zero gain until the end of June 2010, when it started to go up. After rising 50% from June 2010 through Dec 2010 Deej writes his first ethanol post, based upon a Yahoo investing story he linked to, blaming evil Government mandates for ethanol, which is a pretty popular theme in the "trading" world.

When I went looking into the "ethanol" story, I found pages of Google hits, all repeating the same story, some differently but using mostly 'cut and paste' quotes and because I had been paying attention I also knew that all of these storys were only one month old when, as Deej said, the ethanol story was "good for investors who saw it coming" and also warned us that the "run-up" had already been going on.

Now go back to the Kos story and think about that technology, the ability to let one person appear as ten or more independent personalitys to promote a political view on a variety of electronic media. And think about that technology in the hands of Goldman Sachs traders, or any hedge fund, that might let you in today on the secret of what they bought back in June.

And think about recent history. Think about the endless pumping of a dot.com bubble, then the housing bubble, then the commodities bubble after that. Think about the ratings agencys in collusion with the hedge funds and investment banks dumping their crap onto your pension fund and think about who went to jail for that scam. Think about the trading advice you have been getting in the last few years, about trading vs investing. Think about the reports that 70% or more of all stock trades are high frequency trading. Or about the politics of putting your Social Security money in addition to your 401k in the hands of "Mr Market".

Think about this player I started; Highpaidceo - This players picks are compiled from the 200 highest paid ceo's according to http://www.aflcio.org/corporatewatch/paywatch/ceou/database.cfm All of this players ceo's make more than $11,000,000 annually.

Look at this players sectors and Think about who is really benefitting when their is no "public" option in healthcare and no "socialist" single player. think about who really benefits when you tell your democratic Government not to deal with Global warming.

Think about the Congressmen and Senators who ran on "government is evil"  and whether that  means they have already been "captured" by coprorate masters.

Here is the link to the story, because there is more, including evidence that not only are private companys using this, but also the United States Government. And just for David and Chris, who seem to have nothing to do all day but sit home and await my liberal, environmental posts and attempt to smear my credibility after my taking a stand in favor of ethanol policys that hurt oil companys, unlike Deej I suspect you are these people, especially because you share too many of their "enemys" in common and your politics encourages the "capture" of Government by your continued disparagng even of those poiticians and beauracracys that are getting it right.

David and Chris -  whose enemies are labor unions, progressive organizations,  journalists, and progressive bloggers,  

Best wishes, and be careful out there.

Steven

17 Comments – Post Your Own

#1) On February 20, 2011 at 6:19 PM, toastmost (< 20) wrote:

yikes

Report this comment
#2) On February 20, 2011 at 9:40 PM, 4thDensity (99.70) wrote:

This has the effect of the control group's favorite strategy of  "divide and conquer" by pitting all online personas, like blogger and forum posters against one another, because no one knows who is a "sockpuppet" or who isn't.  Someone disagrees with your argument?  Must be a "sockpuppet".   Then all true, productive discourse and criticism goes down the drain, while everyone tries to defend themselves against "sockpuppet-ism".  Kind of reminds of the 1950's red scare, where anyone who was deemed a threat was accused of being a communist and blackballed for life.   

This is truly an example of where the internet is a double-edged sword:  it's a great source of loads of information, but it can also lead one astray with loads of dis-information.  

As an illustation of how deep this rabbit hole could go, what if the author of this thread was a "sockpuppet", who after seeing too much (anti-government) information that was too close to the truth being posted on the website, decided to pull out all the stops and reveal the existence of "sockpuppets" to put fear and awe in any and all who would listen,  and then offer suggestions of who might be one at this site (other than himself, of course).  Twisted!

Report this comment
#3) On February 20, 2011 at 9:55 PM, devoish (96.49) wrote:

4thDensity,

Yours is a truly legitimate concern. So the first question becomes - are sockpuppets real? And my answer is pretty obviously, at least as described in the Kos post concerning promoting products.

And the second question would be - how would I identify a sockpuppet?

That one seems a little harder.

 

Report this comment
#4) On February 20, 2011 at 10:36 PM, ChrisGraley (29.65) wrote:

Well, if you are looking for me support high-paid CEO's, you are looking at the wrong guy.

You can add them to the enemies list that you made for me.

To me a high paid CEO demonstrates that he puts himself before the company. In other words, they have bad management.

Will a public option change the what those healthcare CEO's get paid? No.

Should their stockholders demand a pay cut? Yes.

You could use fewer words to describe everyone that I think is evil though...

Power = Evil

It always has been that way and always will be.

 

 

Report this comment
#5) On February 20, 2011 at 10:49 PM, devoish (96.49) wrote:

Chris,

I would look at your expressed stand against overpaid ceo's far more positively if you had written extensively for cuts in ceo pay as opposed to cuts in minimum wage.

Executive pay increased first for the last thirty years while the rest of us waited for corporate income to trickle down.

As far as I'm concerned when it comes to pay cuts, executives can go first too, ahead of unions and minimum wage workers.

Thanks for being polite, and as always, for not shooting me,

Steven

Report this comment
#6) On February 21, 2011 at 2:04 AM, ChrisGraley (29.65) wrote:

Steven I do believe that I've posted on more than one occasion that I believe that a CEO's total compensation should be set at a multiple of the lowest paid employee's total compensation.

I still believe that you make a certain segment of the population un-hireable when you set an arbitrary rate for the minimum wage. But, a CEO that hires someone at a low wage, has an incentive to raise it if he wants to raise his own wage. 

I don't think that a CEO should be allowed to get anything that he's unwilling to offer to the lowest paid guy.

This is good on so many levels.

First, the employee shares in the rewards in good years and will have the company's best interest in mind.

Next a CEO has incentive to pay a fair wage if he wants to increase his own income.

3rd it aligns everyone's goals to the same objectives.

4th it creates risk sharing. When nobody gets a big bonus in the bad times, you don't have to lay off as many people in the bad times.

5th It smoothes out the ups and downs on a company's bottom line. It makes the stock less volatile, and therefore more attractive to the investor. 

Listen Steven, I'm not against every liberal idea. I think that I've demonstrated before that I'm all for consumer protection as well. I just tend to look at the end result before I buy into the Utopia.

When it comes to pay cuts, I believe that the average worker and the CEO should take the cuts at the same time and in the same amount. I also believe that investors should expect a CEO and worker  that took cuts earlier to get rewarded before the company sees record profits again.

Both risks and rewards need to be shared across the board. If you shift too much risk and not enough reward into any one entity, it will eventually buckle under the pressure and take the entire company with it.

It works for countries too! Dictators that have succeeded for years by abusing their population are now starting to pay the piper. 

The US will eventually succumb to the wrath of a middle class that has been abused by both sides for years. They are over-taxed and under-represented. Both sides survive by forcing more and more on the middle class. They have the most risk and the least reward. When the middle class buckles, you'll be praying for me to shoot you.

Your side is as bad as the other side. You are willing to overlook man's inhumanity to man as long as you get what you want. 

When you force a health care plan on people that don't want it, they resent it.  When you are willing to kill pensioners in order to reward auto unions, they resent it. When you fail to win the hearts and minds, you have to resort to force. The opressed will eventually react to that force.

I know that you don't see the oppression from your side, so I'd like you to just think about the oppression from the other side. Think about how the public would react if they were aware of the total extent of the oppresion. 

I'm here to tell you that the average American is oppressed equally by both sides, whatever fate that you thought was fitting for the other side is equally appropriate for you.

It's a consequence of thinking that your cause is greater than they are. At some point you became ok with killing pensioners. At some point you felt it was better to force health care on people that don't want it. At some point it became OK for you to poison the water table to defeat big oil, even when you figured out that it's no better for global warming, it's worse for the overall environment, and it inflates food prices.

When you decide that the cause is greater than the people that you are exploiting, the people are going to decide that your cause isn't worth their suffering.You are creating your own executioner.

If you want to talk about sockpuppets that's ok, but you might want to talk more about the marianettes called the middle class ready to cut the strings.

 

 

 

 

 

Report this comment
#7) On February 21, 2011 at 2:25 AM, ozzfan1317 (80.49) wrote:

What Chris is saying and I agree with is neither extreme is right we cannot as a nation allow no protections for citizens. However too many social programs and or forcing a social agenda on our people is just as bad. Entrepreneurship is not evil neither is a social safety  net in the most basic of forms. It is when you cross over to the extreme which impedes on citizens rights. Just my opinion but Benjamin Franklin said a similar view point as well.

Report this comment
#8) On February 21, 2011 at 3:44 AM, FleaBagger (28.14) wrote:

There should be no government for corporations to capture.

Report this comment
#9) On February 21, 2011 at 8:08 AM, devoish (96.49) wrote:

Ozz, and Chris,

Please respond to Flea's extreme as passionately as you respond to what you portray as my "extreme".

When it comes to pay cuts, I believe that the average worker and the CEO should take the cuts at the same time and in the same amount. I also believe that investors should expect a CEO and worker  that took cuts earlier to get rewarded before the company sees record profits again.

That seems rational when CEO pay is 25x that of the lowest paid employee, but not today when it averages 400x. Rioght now, the CEO's can still go first.

Both risks and rewards need to be shared across the board. If you shift too much risk and not enough reward into any one entity, it will eventually buckle under the pressure and take the entire company with it.

So while you have been happy to post against union pensions and retirements, show me the balanced posts against unsustainable million dollar executive pensions.

It works for countries too! Dictators that have succeeded for years by abusing their population are now starting to pay the piper. 

Ceo or Dictator - I don't care what you call him when Monsanto executives are hiring private security forces to enslave us by force.

The US will eventually succumb to the wrath of a middle class that has been abused by both sides for years. They are over-taxed and under-represented. Both sides survive by forcing more and more on the middle class. They have the most risk and the least reward. When the middle class buckles, you'll be praying for me to shoot you.

The US middle class has not been "abused"  by the poor, neither do they have the most risk or the least reward. The poor are the poor because they contribute more to the middle class and the wealthy than they take. They ARE the most productive.

Your side is as bad as the other side. You are willing to overlook man's inhumanity to man as long as you get what you want. 

No, there is no world history of the poor or middle class abusing the rich.

When you force a health care plan on people that don't want it, they resent it.  

Agreed. Don't force me to buy from colluding corporations without the competition from a public option. 

When you are willing to kill pensioners in order to reward auto unions, they resent it.

The auto unions are "pensioners" too. It is the union "pensioners" that were protected, not the people still working today.

When you fail to win the hearts and minds, you have to resort to force. The opressed will eventually react to that force.

Actually, in the civil war wasn't it the wealthier slave owners that acted with "force" as opposed to the poor slaves? In the 1900's struggle for unions wasn't it the corporations that brought Government troops against striking employees? Perhaps the idea that Government should be "business friendly" has once again gone way to far.

I know that you don't see the oppression from your side, so I'd like you to just think about the oppression from the other side. Think about how the public would react if they were aware of the total extent of the oppresion

I'm here to tell you that the average American is oppressed equally by both sides, whatever fate that you thought was fitting for the other side is equally appropriate for you.

Once again, it is difficult for me to imagine I'm being oppressed by someone living in a rat infested apartment dependent upon food stamps to supplement his pay check.

It's a consequence of thinking that your cause is greater than they are. At some point you became ok with killing pensioners.

This refers back to our discussions of GM. Read the post about "sockpuppets" and manipulating public opinion again. Remember the relentless union bashing that went on. Remember how "unions" destroyed gm, how unions pensions are "unsustainable". Remember that the auto union had negotiated taking the pension costs off GM one year prior to GM's end making it a great dump and pump investment. So it was publicly dumped on by sock puppets and wannabees piling on in ignorance. And the PoTUS took the opportunity to steal GM for a song away from the hedge funds. Good for him .

 At some point you felt it was better to force health care on people that don't want it.

At some point I felt it was better to get healthcare to people who want it, not pretend a "capitalist" solution of collecting money and not delivering a product was Just. 

At some point it became OK for you to poison the water table to defeat big oil, even when you figured out that it's no better for global warming, it's worse for the overall environment, and it inflates food prices.

At some point it became ok to get 1.4btu's of energy out from 1.0btu's in, to save oil because the result became better for global warming between 2000 and 2010.

At some point it became ok for YOU to allow conventional farming to hurt the environment by unfunding the government that has learned when to apply fertilizers so as not to over apply them. It became ok for YOU to prevent Government from funding education to farmers or to regulate fertilizer applications leaving farmers at the mercy of being educated by by corporations who have to sell as much product as they can in order to have healthcare and homes and golden parachutes.

When you decide that the cause is greater than the people that you are exploiting, the people are going to decide that your cause isn't worth their suffering.You are creating your own executioner.

Interesting thought. I believe YOUR cause is free markets?

If you want to talk about sockpuppets that's ok, but you might want to talk more about the marianettes called the middle class ready to cut the strings.

 

Report this comment
#10) On February 21, 2011 at 8:30 AM, hmhn1000 (< 20) wrote:

ta.gg/50h----------------------
ta.gg/50h----------------------
!free shipping!
j0rdan sh0es........ 28 dollar
c0ach p-u-r-s-e...... 25 dollar
c00gi cl0thes........ 20 dollar
U.G.G B00ts.......... 39 dollar
Dear Friend:
We can supply all kind jersey with good quality and low price. contact me, 
let's talk details.
Delivery time: 5-6days, Shipping Method: EMS

Report this comment
#11) On February 21, 2011 at 9:53 AM, ChrisGraley (29.65) wrote:

Please respond to Flea's extreme as passionately as you respond to what you portray as my "extreme".

OK, Flea I passionately agree with your post. Government is the problem.

That seems rational when CEO pay is 25x that of the lowest paid employee, but not today when it averages 400x. Rioght now, the CEO's can still go first.

I'd prefer to get the CEO's pay more in line with the average worker.

So while you have been happy to post against union pensions and retirements, show me the balanced posts against unsustainable million dollar executive pensions.

Every employee of a business must be offered the same pay, benefit, and compensation package as the highest paid employee in some proportion. With the lowest paid employee getting no less than 1/35th of what the CEO gets. This gives incentive to the CEO reward labor, if he wants his own pay to increase.

Ceo or Dictator - I don't care what you call him when Monsanto executives are hiring private security forces to enslave us by force.

Wait a minute. You are subsidising Monsanto!

The US middle class has not been "abused"  by the poor, neither do they have the most risk or the least reward. The poor are the poor because they contribute more to the middle class and the wealthy than they take. They ARE the most productive.

No, they've been abused by Keynesian economics, unabated government spending and a government that erodes their rights by force.

The auto unions are "pensioners" too. It is the union "pensioners" that were protected, not the people still working today.

It does not give them the right to take what doesn't belong to them. Some pigs are not better than other pigs.

Actually, in the civil war wasn't it the wealthier slave owners that acted with "force" as opposed to the poor slaves? In the 1900's struggle for unions wasn't it the corporations that brought Government troops against striking employees? Perhaps the idea that Government should be "business friendly" has once again gone way to far.

You are right on both accounts. You are also right that government has become too business friendly to a certain extent. The solution is not vengence against business though. The solution is a weaker government. It's too easy right now to bribe the police.

Once again, it is difficult for me to imagine I'm being oppressed by someone living in a rat infested apartment dependent upon food stamps to supplement his pay check.

No, you are being oppressed by people in upstate New York living in what used to be a $500,000 house thinking that the solution to the world's problems, is to abuse the rights of others and force their will upon them. They say they have the right to do this because there are people living in rat infested houses.

At some point I felt it was better to get healthcare to people who want it, not pretend a "capitalist" solution of collecting money and not delivering a product was Just. 

Then only force it on the people that want it.

At some point it became ok to get 1.4btu's of energy out from 1.0btu's in, to save oil because the result became better for global warming between 2000 and 2010.

You know that one is not true!

Interesting thought. I believe YOUR cause is free markets?

Yes, and you should put the word Free in bold type.

If your are unfamiliar with the word, it's the opposite of oppressed.

If you are against a free market then you must support an oppressed one.

 

 

Report this comment
#12) On February 21, 2011 at 7:12 PM, devoish (96.49) wrote:

Sorry Chris,

I just cannot join you in the idea that focusing on shrinking America would solve any problems with Monsantos behaviour better than focusing on Monsantos behaivour.

You know that is not true!

Actually, I wouldn't type something I knew wasn't true, although I know some people will. But, you made me read your links and I am going to share what they tell us, and then Fools will assess which of us is typing things we know aren't true.

First the title to your link; Science Magazine Declares Ethanol Worse for the Environment than Fossil Fuels. OMG!! double exclamations!! thinks I. But of course it is an article about a Science Magazine article, not a Science Magazine article, but I was there, so lets read what it says.

The problem isn't with the cars, the problem is with what it takes to grow the biofuel in the first place. Clearing the land, harvesting, and refining the crops, plus the loss of forest and wild lands and habitats, amounts to creating a carbon footprint worse than fossil fuels. According to the Science article which, admittedly, posits an extreme scenario, it would take 423 years to even out the carbon debt if Indonesia's peat lands were converted to palm oil fields.

423 Years!! OMG!! But wait, another link, not to the original Science article, but as it turns out, another article about the Science article from some place called Scitech titled; Biofuels MIGHT prove worse than CO2.

Holy crap don't do that to me. First its panic and outrage and only then its maybe. That is just not good for my heart. After waiting for the palpitations to subside I read the Scitech article about the Science article for these little tidbits of information;

Both studies looked at how much carbon dioxide is released when a piece of land is converted into a biofuel crop. They found that when peat lands in Indonesia are converted into palm-oil plantations, for instance, it would take 423 years to pay off the carbon debt.

The next worse case was when forested land in the Amazon is cut down to convert into soya-bean fields.

The scientists found that it would take 319 years of making biodiesel from soya beans to pay off the carbon debt caused by chopping down the trees in the first place.

Wait a second. Indonisian peat lands are in Indonisia, and there is no Amazon rain forest in Iowa, but, we have learned destroying peat lands for even the most noble reason would be a pretty bad thing to do. It is too bad that there is no information in the article concerning using idled US cropland for crops. Of course there is this;

Such conversions of land to grow maize and sugarcane for biodiesel, or palm oil and soya beans for bioethanol, release between 17 and 420 times more carbon than the annual savings from replacing fossil fuels, the scientists calculated.

So growing corn in the USA does not destroy peat moss, releasing 420 time the annual savings from replacing fossil fuels, a phrase which suggests there IS an annual savings from burning ethanol over fossil fuels, neither does it destroy Amazon rain forest, the first and second worst examples of carbon being released by damaging natural ecosystems.

So maybe corn is at the other end of the extreme, a one time loss of 17 times the CO2 savings of burning ethanol over fossil fuels.

Of course, I happen to know that environmentally conscious gardeners and farmers are trying to get away from using peat moss based potting soils and garden amendments because of the huge amounts of CO2 released by digging up what is essentially a non- renewable Canadian resource, unless you can wait 10,000 years or something for it to reform.

I also happen to have heard on some investing website I visit from time to time that because of scarce oil deposits some fossil fuel companys are going digging for oil in something referred to as "Canadian Tar Sands" and there was some extensive discussion about whether or not it would become financially viable because of the intensive energy demand to dig up and process the tar.

Holy Cow Batman! If tar sands are under peat moss than then destroying the peat moss to get the tar sands will be exponentially or even more worse for the environment than growing corn!

I call on all, by which I mean you, to demand a stop to the harvesting of Canadian Tar sands at the expense of Canadian peat moss.

It is a good thing that YOUR version of a succesful free markets depends upon accurate and timely information.

Boy did we do a good job of clearing up those facts, excellent work pointing out some truly poor information.

Steven

All wetlands in the area to be mined must first be drained, and any rivers diverted. Trees, peat moss and soil are scraped away by bulldozer, exposing the sandy deposit. This means that all wildlife in the area is lost or displaced. The top layer of tar-soaked sand is scooped up by colossal steam shovels, each of which burns 16,000 litres (4,200 gallons) of diesel per day, into enormous multi-million dollar dump trucks (that each weigh 40% more than a Boeing 747 airplane) to be hauled to the extraction plant. The sand is then processed at intense temperatures, using much water and natural gas, to separate out the extremely thick bitumen. Impure and too viscous to flow, it must be pre-processed through an “upgrading” process before it can be sent through a pipeline to an oil refinery. However, only about 20% of the sand is shallow enough for it to be scooped up in that manner. The portion of the deposit that is at a depth of more than 100 metres (328 feet) cannot be obtained with open-pit mining. Instead, steam as hot as 538ºC (1,000ºF) is injected into the sand, which reduces the bitumen’s viscosity and allows it to drain and then be pumped up to the surface and pre-processed. Regardless of whether the crude was obtained via pit mining or in-situ production, it must then be further processed at a refinery in order to transform it into usable products like gasoline, jet fuel and other petroleum products. - http://ourworld.unu.edu/en/canadas-oil-sands/

Report this comment
#13) On February 21, 2011 at 9:07 PM, ChrisGraley (29.65) wrote:

devoish you are the one that singled them out as evil in the same breathe condoning giving them subsidy money.

How about we don't hand the evil companies free tax dollars! Especially the ones that hire people to make you a slave! Is that too much to ask?

You picked the evil company Steven. I just pointed out that you support them.

I really don't think I link bombed you. I posted the link showing where I did actually actually condem corporate pensions because you specifically asked for it. I posted another link to show how you call a company evil that you have no problem funneling tax dollars to. The 3rd link was a couple of paragraphs from NPR.

OK now back to ethanol,

I purposely picked an NPR link so you  would declare it to be from a biased media publication. I know you know the facts better than what you are posting here. The big problem with subsidizing it from corn is what growing corn does to the land and the water table. You and I know that, but we will leave that out for right now. Lets just talk about health effects from particulate matter and greenhouse gasses. A couple of years ago, the University of Minnesota calculated the cost per gallon for just those 2 things. Gasoline costs $0.71 per gallon, Corn based Ethanol costs between $1.24 to $1.45, now I think that you like this last part ethanol from biomass (like switchgrass) costs between $0.19 and $0.25 per gallon. Switchgrass has other problems though, which I'm sure that you are aware of.

Personally I think that ethanol from switchgrass is the best hope for the product, but we're a long way away from that.

As far as the Tar Sands go, I think its just as bad, but I'm certainly not subsidising it either!  It wouldn't be so bad if you wrote them a personal check, but like almost every other liberal idea out there you want to force me to pay for it as well. You have to rely on force to acheive your agenda.

So to sum up, you want to force me to give my money to a company that you yourself call evil so that they can destroy the environment while politicians pat them on the back for saving the environment.

Are you sure your not a sock-puppet?

Listen if you and your buddies want to pass around the hat to support Monsanto, go right ahead. When you want to force me to support them when there is absolutely no benefit and a lot of destruction, I have to draw the line. I don't believe in subsidies to begin with and you don't understand economics enough to realize that subsidizing corn only insures that switchgrass will never happen.

 

Oh sorry, a small post-script here...

Even if we do figure out a way to make cost effective ethanol from switchgrass, I won't put a drop of it in my tank until I have a vehicle specifically designed to burn it.

It burns like crap in my truck right now. I talked to a mechanic friend and he thinks that is because ethanol is oxygenated. The extra oxygen is there to make fuel burn more completely and therefore harm the environment less. My mechanic friend says the problem is that it confuses the computer in my truck and I don't get a proper air/fuel ratio. He says  that he could experiment with tweaking the computer or a couple of other things, but if the percentage of ethanol changes,  we're back where we started. Since the government plan seems to be to keep increasing that percentage, I'll spend a few extra cents to buy real gas that I know won't hurt my truck.

 

 

 

Report this comment
#14) On February 22, 2011 at 9:10 AM, devoish (96.49) wrote:

First off, which article is from NPR? The third link is from something called "autoblog" based upon a story from MSN Money, with an in text link to Scitech.

Regardless of its source, for it to talk about damaging peat in Indonesia or rain forests in the Amazon to point out environmental damage from growing corn in Iowa is definitely sowing BIAS and cannot be presented as credible. At least by me.

So if you're going to link to articles as poorly written as those and expect me not to point out how bad your information is, well we both know that is not happening. And of course, when your facts are misleading, your concusions will suffer and your credibility with me is diminished.

And yes, I understand that "corn ethanol" supports Monsanto and conventional agriculture. I also understand that "corn" ethanol was just about the worst choice for an ethanol source available back in 2004 when a Small Gov, business friendly, President promoted it.

But where you see that as evidence of a big Government, I see that as evidence of a small Government, not strong enough to respond to the voices of its population and follow the advice of its leading scientists and just choose to promote the best ethanol source to begin with. It is a weak Government that needs to trade help with a corporation. I also see it as a weak Democracy that cannot fund investment in the renewable energy that the majority of its population have wanted for decades.

I don't trust those who support the rule of "free markets" over Democracy, especially when they consistently use such misleading articles as yours to represent themselves.

I am truly tired of your misrepresenting that "subsidys" of tar sands were a Liberal Big government idea, as opposed to something that private industry wanted over the objections of environmentalists and liberals. The fact that corn ethanol has become better than burning fossil fuels does not mean that we should not have gone straight to promoting switchgrass or biofuels or solar or wind as the liberal environmentalists you abhor woukld have recommended.

Fear of a big Government told us to let industry choose energy sources and we got corn and tar sands.

And the most interesting Small Government lie of all is the Tea Party promoters. Can you imagine on this website we have David In Qatar relentlessly beating the drum of fear on the theme of Government force is Evil, while spending two years supporting Ron Paul and the small government Tea Party.

A Tea Party whose promoters supported bringing guns to healthcare debates.

Sadly the elected leaders of the Tea Party might still believe in violence when appropriate, even now that they are the Government. And they clearly believe in private industry decision making over Government choices.

Captured?

You betcha.

And now I will be forced to pay the exhorbitant salarys of wealthy executives.

Small government sucks.

 

Report this comment
#15) On February 22, 2011 at 9:44 AM, ChrisGraley (29.65) wrote:

Corn ethanol is not better it's worse.

It's worse for the environment, it's worse for global warming, and it's worse for the food supply.

You are forcing me to pay for something that harms the world.

You know it harms the world and you don't care.

If you want to support something that is worse for the environment, fine.

If you want to support Monsanto, fine.

But don't force me to support them too!

If a majority of people really, truly want to support these things, you should have no problem passing around the hat.

The fact that you have to force people to pay for it makes me think that it's not as popular as you think it is.

Report this comment
#16) On February 22, 2011 at 11:16 AM, devoish (96.49) wrote:

Chris,

The fact that you have to force me to kiss corporate *ss tells me that free markets are not all that free.

 

Report this comment
#17) On February 22, 2011 at 11:19 AM, ChrisGraley (29.65) wrote:

It's a free market! You don't have to support any corporation that you don't want to.

Don't buy their products..

That's the difference between you and I. I don't believe in forcing others to support my beliefs.

Report this comment

Featured Broker Partners


Advertisement