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Simple Suggestions Sound Serious

What is Occam’s Razor?

According to the physicists at the University of California, Riverside Occam’s (or Ockham’s) razor is a principle attributed to the 14th century logician and Franciscan friar William of Ockham.  Ockham was the village in the English county of Surrey where he was born.
The principle states that “Entities should not be multiplied unnecessarily.”

Many scientists have adopted or reinvented Occam’s Razor, as in Leibniz’s “identity of observables” and Isaac Newton stated the rule: “We are to admit no more causes of natural things than such as are both true and sufficient to explain their appearances.”
The most useful statement of the principle for scientists is “when you have two competing theories that make exactly the same predictions, the simpler one is the better.”

This is the one that is generally used on the wall-to-wall news shows which so often describe our world for those who are information junkies and current event addicts so this is the one I will go with today.

Our ruling Elites try to convince us that America’s problems are too complex for we mere mortal taxpayers to understand.  They want us to allow them and their acolyte bureaucracy to decide everything behind a veil and then hand down their infallible decrees on stone tablets from Olympus on the Potomac.

This arcane process raises the question, “If the running of our government is too complex for us to understand how can we expect low information voters to choose who is best to do when we cannot even know what or how needs to be done?”  If this is truly the case than we have reached the limit of the American experiment, and government of the people by the people and for the people does not work.

As the Historian of the Future, as someone who has spent more than fifty five years studying and thinking about History, Political Science and current events I believe this seeming conundrum is an illusion.  I believe we should apply Occam’s Razor to what remains of our social contract to preserve what is left of our heritage.

Here are what I believe to be simple solutions to the threads the Lilliputians are using to bind the American Gulliver to an express to oblivion.

First, jettison the Empire to save the Republic.  Currently the United States has armed forces in over 130 countries.  We’re committed to defend most of these countries against aggression.  Where were these allies on 9-11?  Where were they in Afghanistan?   Why do we have treaties binding us to go to war to defend those who refuse to support us when we’re attacked?  If these policies are counter-productive are there any alternatives?

Close the foreign bases and bring our troops home.  Station them on the border to protect us from the on-going invasion of illegal immigrants who’re overloading our systems.  If we need to project American power use the carrier battle-groups designed for that purpose.  Protect America and rebuild our infrastructure.  When asked what to do with the American Military after World War I Will Rogers said, “Get ’em all home, add to their number, add to their training, then just sit tight with a great feeling of security and just read about foreign wars. That’s the best thing in the world to do with them.”  Jettison the Empire to save the Republic!

Second, declare our energy independence.  Did any President ever have an energy policy which effectively dealt with the problems of oil production and supply?  Did it work?

Reagan said, “The best answer, while conservation is worthy in itself, is to try to make us independent of outside sources to the greatest extent possible for our energy.”

Ronald Reagan also said, “Our national energy plan should not be a rigid set of production and conservation goals dictated by Government. Our primary objective is simply for our citizens to have enough energy, and it is up to them to decide how much energy that is, and in what form and manner it will reach them. When the free market is permitted to work the way it should, millions of individual choices and judgments will produce the proper balance of supply and demand our economy needs. ”

As soon as he became president, Ronald Reagan ended the price controls on domestic oil first imposed by Richard Nixon; these controls had contributed to both the 1973 Oil Crisis and the 1979 Energy Crisis. Almost immediately the price of oil fell, and during the 1980s America didn’t experience the gasoline lines and fuel shortages of the 1970s.  In addition, the removal of price controls ignited a boom in domestic drilling which arrested America’s slide into energy dependence.

As to the energy questions:  How do we end our dependence on foreign oil?  How can we achieve the energy independence which every President since Nixon has said is a matter of national security?  Using Reagan’s approach as a guide stop wringing our hands and moaning about our situation, stand up like our ancestors and boldly declare our Energy Independence!  In practical terms we should: take the shackles off our domestic oil industry, build new refineries, develop better distribution of natural gas, expand the use of nuclear, wind, solar and every conceivable form of energy, and drill baby drill!

Third, end the de facto amnesty. Our President has made no secret of what his end game is.  Remember him with Joe the plumber?  Mr. Obama wants to spread the wealth around.  He is perhaps not an avowed socialist however based on everything he does; he is effectively one.  Yet he has won two elections one way or another and he is coordinating the end game of the Cloward-Piven Strategy.   This is not a conspiracy…it’s a strategy to bankrupt America by overburdening the system….and it breaks my heart that as America dozed on the couch watching the game these Progressives have turned the American dream into a nightmare.

Now the Southern border has been all but erased by pre-arranged catastrophes.  What does America’s Community Organizer in Chief do in response to these manufactured assaults by the children’s crusade and others?  He unilaterally grants amnesty through executive edict to millions if not tens of millions while holding the door open for millions more.

Does the GOP move to block these unconstitutional acts of national suicide? Do they mount a national campaign to harness the vast majority of citizens who want to save America for Americans?  No, the congressional Republican leaders let everyone know they are for amnesty too.

How can they not know that amnesty for millions of undocumented democrats is suicide for the GOP?  Call it executive action.  Call it comprehensive immigration reform.  Call it anything you want.  Amnesty under any other name is amnesty and amnesty with open borders is a siren call to the tens of millions who haven’t already come to come now.  Our leaders are actually working on a plan to merge the United States with Canada and Mexico into a new super state of North America.  Our children and grandchildren will grow up in a third world hellhole that was once the land of the free and the home of the brave.  Close the borders or we give away our country.

Fourth, end the centrally planned welfare state.  The most insidious result that central-planning and the overabundance of government control that it requires is not the maladjustments that it inevitably creates in the economy.  It is not the crony capitalism and bureaucratic nepotism that it always fosters.  It is not the smothering blanket of nanny-state regulations that strangle creativity.  It is not even the tendency to one-party rule even when camouflaged behind a two party system that is in reality two heads of the same bird of prey.  It is not a system which may actually contain only two parties if you believe there is the government party and the country party.
No none of these missteps on the way to an illusionary utopia are the most insidious result of any system no matter what it is called that is some variation on the socialist theme of “From each according to their ability and to each according to their need.” Instead the most insidious result of the effort by some to control all is a change in the character of the people.

When government regulation becomes an all-embracing web of minutia that requires lawyers, accountants, and other translators of government-speak to comprehend, when safety-nets become hammocks, and when the do-gooders believe that they know what is best for everyone reaches a tipping point people begin to expect others to do for them what they used to do for themselves.  A nation of self-reliant, go-getters can be changed into a sea of slugs on the dole constantly crying and voting for more.

The descendants of the pilgrims and the pioneers are content to wait for their government check and their food stamps as long as there is a game on their flat screen and minutes left on their Obama phone.  Militant apathy has ossified the sinews of a once great people.  So many people don’t care about anything beyond their creature comforts, the most basic of which are guaranteed, that the will to succeed has been squashed.

Cut the strings of the hammock and people will learn to stand on their own two feet again.

And though the list is much longer, the last entry for today is one last simple solution for what we are told is a complex problem.  Grow the economy instead of the bureaucracy to bring back prosperity, opportunity, and hope.

Business is like water. It follows the path of least resistance.  A fact which should birth shame in the hearts of all Americans is that for the last decade American Businesses have been in a mad rush for the door.  They’ve left America, once the epitome of free enterprise, choosing instead to establish them in Communist China.  Today Federal red tape and taxes are strangling American free enterprise.

Innovation is like lightning. It comes in a flash, burns white hot, and is impossible to bottle.  When free enterprise is stifled by government interference in the marketplace the incentive to develop and produce are stunted.  Americans have always been the can-do people.  We’ve always been the leaders in invention and innovation.  Our entrepreneurs have traditionally led the world in new patents and processes.  Back in 2011 many sources predicted China would take the lead in high tech patents applied for and new industrial processes pioneered and now they do.  It takes thinking outside the box to find the new and provide the best.  In America today the Federal Government has set to work making the box stronger, to weaving a mesh of regulations and taxes, and turning the box into a cage.

This isn’t rocket science.  We aren’t trying to figure out the orbit perimeters of a sling-shot around the moon to reach Saturn.  This is Political Science and Economics: the arcane arts of who gets what, when, and how.

If we want manufacturing and innovation to grow reduce taxes to the lowest in the world and take the steel boot of regulation off the throat of free enterprise and watch our manufacturing base and our industrial output soar.  If you want more jobs stop stifling small business with uncertainty and watch the unemployment rate fall.  If we want more consumer spending instead of the next round of bail-outs and stimulus pay-offs to campaign contributors give the American people a one year federal tax holiday and watch consumer activity go through the roof.  In other words grow the economy not the bureaucracy.

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, and Religion.  He is the Historian of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com © 2015 Contact Dr. Owens drrobertowens@hotmail.com  Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook or Twitter @ Drrobertowens / Edited by Dr. Rosalie Owens

We Are A Conquered Nation

It’s time to take the gloves off.  For decades I have been writing that the Progressives who have ruled our nation since 1988 have been using every tactic at their disposal to transform America from the indispensable nation to a disposable dystopia.  I have railed against the open border mass immigration importation of Democrat voters that has swamped our culture and warped our electoral process.

I have long believed we have passed the tipping point and the reason I keep on is so that when my grandchildren turn to their children living in a third world hell hole that was once the richest most powerful nation on earth they can say, “At least your Great Grandfather tried to let people know what was coming.”  For this reason I have written the History of the Future.  For this reason I ran a quixotic campaign for the Virginia State Senate in a gerrymandered district that was drawn for and belonged to a man famous for attending less than fifty percent of the Senate’s meetings and sleeping through much of those.  I won every vote that was not his by birth and lost by two to one.  However in that campaign I was free to say the things politicians can never say.

I told people that it was time for the States to stand up and bring federalism back from the brink of extinction.  That it was time to demand real money instead of fiat currency that destined to bring us to financial ruin.  I told them that it was time to declare English the official language for education, ballots, and government forms.  I called for a ten year moratorium on all immigration so that those who were already here legally could be assimilated.  I called for a vigorous enforcement of the laws against hiring illegals with massive fines for anyone who violated them.  Coupling this lack of work with a denial of all government benefits so that our illegal population would self deport and go home.  I called for the imposition of a 10% tariff on imported manufactured goods so that the native industries could be protected and the income could fund tax cuts for Americans.

That was my platform.  It was well received and well supported outside the areas of the district where public support was not the major industry.  It went down to a rousing defeat.

Over the years anyone who has read this column knows that I have called the two government parties two sides of the same coin and two heads on the same bird of prey.  I have pointed out that no matter which party is in power we end up with a bigger federal government, more laws, more taxes and more undocumented democrats.  Signaling that we have passed the tipping point in 2012 we re-elected the biggest spending president in American History in the midst of  a recession he has successfully turned into the New Normal whose actual platform was a bigger federal government, more laws, more taxes, and more undocumented democrats.  The handwriting isn’t on the wall, because there is no wall, because the executive branch has refused to build it even though the legislative branch mandated it and funded it.  The handwriting is in columns like this and in the works of Pat Buchanan, Anne Coulter, Mark Steyn, and the words of Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, and countless other watchmen on the walls.

However, even though Americans have and are listening. Conservative radio talk is ubiquitous; Fox has buried CNN and MSNBC.  Coulter, Styen, Levin, and many others write multiple best sellers.  The documentaries of Dinesh D’Souza break box office records.  Yet the political class continues to be re-elected to rule exactly in the opposite direction.

Socialism is dying everywhere in the world except in America.  Our progressive conquerors use the agencies of the imperial executive branch to harass, tax, prosecute, and spy.  We are watched, regulated and held back at every step.  They have used free trade to export our manufacturing base changing us from the arsenal of democracy into the marketplace for a communist dictatorship.  Crony capitalists walk away with billions, billions more disappear in federal rounding errors, and banks are bailed out as the Creature from Jekyll Island inflates bubble after bubble.

It isn’t time to roll over and go back to sleep.  People woke up in 2010 when the Tea Party was born.  I was there at the birth.  I went to the rallies.  I spoke at the meetings.  I attended the conventions and supported the candidates that swept the House in 2010.  What happened?  Those brave new world conservatives that had just turned out Nancy Pelosi went to Washington, voted to make John Boehner the Speaker of the House, renewed the Patriot Act, and then passed continuing resolution after continuing resolution to keep the money rolling and the government growing.

Knowing what was coming I wrote and published The Constitution Failed in October of 2010, which is a book many people still reject merely because of the title.  They erroneously think I am saying the document itself is a failure or that it was flawed from the beginning when what I am really saying is the execution of it has failed.  The thumbnail sketch being, “If the Constitution was written for the express purpose of giving us a limited government and we now have an unlimited government it has failed.”

I am not saying that it didn’t bring us the most freedom and the greatest opportunities any people in the History of the world have ever had.  It did.  I am not saying that it didn’t allow America to rise from 13 struggling states on the edge of the world to the greatest nation History has ever known.  It did.  What I am saying is that if our founding document guarantees us a limited government, individual freedom, and economic opportunity, and we are now laboring in the Progressives New Normal as the NSA watches our every move and listens to our every conversation something is very wrong here.

Everywhere I go and everyone I speak to seems to know intuitively how to solve our problems.  Seal the border, cut off the free meals, and the illegal immigration problem will solve itself.  Stop immigration long enough for the millions of legal immigrants to become culturally American.  We all came from somewhere else, and after a generation, or at most two, we are all Americans because the old melting pot was allowed to work instead of the Progressive smelting pot that is Balkanizing America.  Everyone can see we need to protect our industry and do everything we can to foster its resurgence.  Everyone knows we need more domestic energy not less, less regulation not more, and that the healthcare system was healthier and more affordable before the Affordable Care Act.

Everyone everywhere can see these things, or at least a vast majority of native born Americans can.  Yet does anyone honestly believe that the perpetually re-elected or their carbon copy replacements are going to shut down the nomenclature in OZ, the casino in New York, or the giveaway to China?  Everyone everywhere can see we are on a crash course to nowhere on the express to the dustbin of History.  The best people can say is it will last long enough for them to continue living the high life.

This is not the case.  I began this plea by saying it’s time to take the gloves off and it is.  The economy is heading for the biggest crash we have ever known.  Our foreign policy or lack thereof is leading us to international humiliation.  The immigration invasion is leading us to the third world.

Believing that once a people lose their freedom there is no way to restore it by internal means without a complete collapse of the ruling superstructure as happened in the Soviet Union I am soon bringing out a new book, Political Action Follows Political Philosophy.  While every author hopes his books will sell, this is a book I plant as seed for our descendants. It is a distillation of the Enlightenment political theory upon which our freedoms and our Constitution were founded as expressed against the background of the events which led to their demise: The History of the Future.

As I close today I pray for the freedom of all, and I counsel: keep the peace, keep the faith, we shall overcome.

Dr. Owens teaches History, Political Science, and Religion. He is the Historian of the Future @ http://drrobertowens.com © 2015 Contact Dr. Owens drrobertowens@hotmail.com Follow Dr. Robert Owens on Facebook or Twitter @ Drrobertowens / Edited by Dr. Rosalie Owens

 

What is the Cost of EPA Interference

Posted by Ben Howe

I’ve written several posts here about the cost of EPA interference in our lives. Estimates of job losses at the hands of the supposedly well-intentioned Environmental Protection Agency are in the millions. As Lisa Jackson’s EPA continues its unrelenting war against coal, an obvious thing is going to happen: the cost of powering your home and your daily life is going to go up. In fact, it’s going to skyrocket. Don’t take it from me, take it from the man himself.Oh but no worries right? The Congress rejected Cap and Trade, so nothing to fear! Well, not if Obama has anything to say about it. To him, congress is simply an obstacle to overcome. So with the help of a litany of coal targeted EPA regulations, the squeeze begins.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BqHL404zhcU[/youtube]

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DqNFT1atSmA[/youtube]

Obama’s EPA is Killing the Economy with Costly Rules

Anybody who wonders why the U.S. economy continues to stagger along with 9 percent unemployment and an anemic 2 percent quarterly growth rate need look no further than the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
Under President Obama’s hand-picked administrator, Lisa Jackson, EPA is hog-tying the economy with dozens of proposed major new rules. One of them, which is aimed at coal-fired power plants that generate electricity, will add at least $18 billion in compliance costs by 2020. As Kathleen White of the Texas Public Policy Center told the House Energy and Commerce Committee earlier this year, “never in its 40-year history has EPA promulgated — at the same time — so many costly new regulatory dictates. The rules on track to go into effect in the next three years could cost more than $1 trillion and result in hundreds of thousands of jobs lost.”

It’s not just the raft of new rules that is killing economic growth, however. Jackson and her EPA minions have been purposefully slow-walking the agency’s already hideously complex process for approving permits in a crucial sector of the energy industry. Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Okla., asked the EPA inspector general to review the agency’s permitting process for surface mining permit applications in the Appalachian region over the last two years. The EPA IG found that of the 185 permit applications it identified, only 56, or less than one-third of the total, had been approved. Almost half of the 185 required at least 731 days for EPA to complete its evaluations. That compares with the 144 days EPA claims is its average evaluation period for all mining permit applications. At least a third of the 185 were simply withdrawn from consideration, presumably because the applicants despaired of ever getting a response from EPA.

The IG report confirmed Inhofe’s prior suspicion that EPA has been “systematically slowing the pace of permit evaluations in Appalachia. Even more troubling is that as our nation works to find ways to cut our national debt, EPA has increased its budget and staff to evaluate these permits. Instead of spending more and more taxpayer dollars to wage this war on affordable energy, the Obama-EPA should be processing and approving these permits to spur job creation, especially in areas such as the Appalachia that have significant employment needs. Equally important is the potential domestic energy production that these permits would provide.”

Because 40 percent of the electricity that Americans depend on daily is generated by power plants fueled by coal — much of which comes from Appalachia — sluggardly permit processing by EPA should concern everybody. And let’s not forget that Jackson works for a president who before he was elected promised that his environmental policies would “necessarily cause electricity prices to skyrocket.”

Read more at the Washington Examiner: http://washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/editorials/2011/11/obamas-epa-killing-economy-costly-rules#ixzz1fspvd3WJ

OBAMA’S EPA REGULATIONS FORCES CLOSURE OF TEXAS ENERGY FACILITIES, ELIMINATES 500 JOBS.

IT WON’T BE LONG AND HE WILL HAVE ELIMINATED ALL JOBS.

Texas energy company Luminant announced on Monday new burdensome Environmental Protection Agency regulations are forcing it to close several facilities, which will result in about 500 job losses.

The company will be idling — stopping the usage of — two energy generating units. It will also cease extracting lignite from three different Texas mines.

The EPA regulation Luminant cites as too burdensome is the new Cross-State Air Pollution rule, which requires Texas power generators to make “dramatic reductions” in emissions beginning on January 1, 2012.

“We have hundreds of employees who have spent their entire professional careers at Luminant and its predecessor companies,” Luminant CEO David Campbell said in a statement. “At every step of this process, we have tried to minimize these impacts, and it truly saddens me that we are being compelled to take the actions we’ve announced today. We have filed suit to try to avoid these consequences.”

The company said it has been trying to meet the new standards, but won’t be able to do so without closing down several facilities and eliminating 500 jobs.

“As always, Luminant is committed to complying fully with EPA regulations,” Campbell said. “We have spent the last two months identifying all possible options to meet the requirements of this new rule, and we are launching a significant investment program to reduce emissions across our facilities.”

“However, meeting this unrealistic deadline also forces us to take steps that will idle facilities and result in the loss of jobs,” Campbell adds.

Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2011/09/12/epa-regulation-forces-closure-of-texas-energy-facilities-eliminates-500-jobs/#ixzz1XqTgplkM

‘RIGHT OUT OF ATLAS SHRUGGED’: HEAR AN EXASPERATED ALABAMA BUSINESSMAN TELL THE FEDS – ‘I’M JUST QUITTING

by Dave Urbanski
Ronnie Bryant was vastly outnumbered.
Leaning against a wall during a recent Birmingham, Alabama, public hearing, Bryant listened to an overflow crowd pepper federal officials with concerns about businesses polluting the drinking water and causing cases of cancer.
After two hours, Bryant—a coal mine owner from Jasper—had heard enough and, in a moment being described as “right out of Atlas Shrugged,” took his turn at the microphone:
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Efhb4pqUkD0&feature=player_embedded[/youtube]

“Nearly every day without fail…men stream to these [mining] operations looking for work in Walker County. They can’t pay their mortgage. They can’t pay their car note. They can’t feed their families. They don’t have health insurance. And as I stand here today, I just…you know…what’s the use? I got a permit to open up an underground coal mine that would employ probably 125 people. They’d be paid wages from $50,000 to $150,000 a year. We would consume probably $50 million to $60 million in consumables a year, putting more men to work. And my only idea today is to go home. What’s the use? I see these guys—I see them with tears in their eyes—looking for work. And if there’s so much opposition to these guys making a living, I feel like there’s no need in me putting out the effort to provide work for them. So…basically what I’ve decided is not to open the mine. I’m just quitting. Thank you.”
The Blaze contacted Bryant, and he remains as resolute as he was at last week’s public hearing. To him, it’s just not worth the time, “If they want to create jobs, provide health insurance, and increase revenue,” Bryant said in reference to the federal government, “they need to back down on the regulatory burden. It’s like pulling an iron ball with a chain. I’m not saying to make it go away—just the stuff that’s not pertinent or useful.”
Terry Douglas, who owns two mines in Jasper with Bryant, said it costs them about $250,000 per mine in permit fees alone and that paperwork and regulatory inspections are a constant presence (as well as an additional revenue strain). When asked about typical concerns surrounding coal mining—including companies skirting health and safety regulations—Douglas said it “doesn’t make sense” to let safety lapse and risk losing miners to illness or injury when it would only cost more to train new personnel.
“We take care of our equipment and take care of our people,” Douglas said. “The regulations make coal miners out to be criminals; but we’re not outlaws. Coal mining is an art. I have a civil engineering degree; Ronnie has a mining engineering degree. It’s not wildcat whiskey we’re making; this is drinking whiskey we got.”
Bryant pointed to less stringent environmental regulations in countries such as China, saying that the U.S. is falling behind even though it has abundant resources. “But you can’t get to them,” he said, adding that while there are concerns over dwindling wildlife populations, “people are becoming the endangered species.”
Gwendolyn Keyes Fleming, regional administrator for EPA’s Southeast Region, attended the Birmingham public hearing but could not be reached for comment.

The Socialist Feds can’t make up minds on mercury bulbs

They Ban outdoor lights while mandating use indoors

Posted: July 22, 2011

7:48 pm Eastern © 2011 WND

In what critics call a classic case of the government working at cross purposes, Washington is forcing residents across the country to install mercury lighting inside their homes while phasing out mercury lighting outside homes to protect the environment.

Yes, you read that right.

In 2005, Congress passed a law banning mercury vapor streetlights – two years before it bannedincandescentlightbulbsin favor of mercury vapor compact florescent bulbs.

Under the Energy Policy Act, signed by President Bush in August 2005,manufacturerscannot make or import ballasts for mercury vapor lights after Jan. 1, 2008. According to the act, mercury vapor security lights are being phased out to “protect the environment” and to “promote energy efficiency” in lighting.

Mike Huckabee spells out 12 essential truths about government every open-minded American should agree upon in “Simple Government,” available at WND’s Superstore

Utilitycompanies across the country have been replacing mercury vapor street lamps with high-pressure sodium fixtures or metal halide fixtures, which are twice as efficient as mercury vapor and possibly safer. The EPA classifies mercury as a hazardous material.

Yet the federal government is pushing consumers to replace traditional incandescent bulbs used in their homes withcompactfluorescentscontaining toxic mercury vapor.

A former Energy Department official says there’s a regulatory “disconnect” regarding mercury lighting.

“We’re removing mercury from outside the home while adding it inside,” he said. “It makes no sense.”

In 2007 – two years after enacting the ban on outdoor mercury lighting – Congress passed the Energy Independence and Security Act, also signed by Bush. It mandated the use of compact florescent lighting in U.S. homes by making incandescent bulbs a controlled substance and outlawing the 100-watt bulb by 2012, and all other wattages by 2014.

Sponsors of the law argue that it willsaveenergy. According to the Energy Department, however, lighting accounts for only 11.6 percent of the electricity costs in the average American home. So savings will be minor. And critics pCalifornia has already banned stores from restocking 100-watt incandescent bulbs. CFL shipments nationwide reached 400 million last year, according to Megan McKoy-Noe of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association. Right now CFLs account for roughly 30 percent of the lighting market.

The EPA warns that the amount of mercury in one bulb is enough to contaminate up to 6,000 gallons of water beyond safe drinking levels. The agency provideselaborate instructions on its websitefor cleaning up broken CFL bulbs on hard surfaces and carpets. It also recommends disposing of unbroken old CFL bulbs at special recycling centers.

Rep. Michelle Bachmann, a Republican running for the White House, has introduced a bill demanding that government first guarantee “there are no public health risks from the mercury in replacement bulbs at home or in any public building.”

House Republicans earlier this month failed to overturn the ban on incandescent bulbs, but passed a bill that would bar the Energy Department from spending money next year to enforce the ban.

Texas recently enacted legislation seeking to get around the federal law by declaring that incandescent bulbs – if made and sold in Texas – do not involve interstate commerce and, therefore, are not subject to federal regulation.

EPA has published detailed recommendations for “what to do if a CFL bulb breaks inyourhome.”

The agency recommends numerous steps to “reduce exposure to mercury vapor from a broken bulb,” including:

Before Cleanup:

  • Have people and pets leave the room, and avoid the breakage area on the way out.
  • Open a window or door to the outdoors and leave the room for 5-10 minutes.
  • Shut off the central forced-air heating/air conditioning (H&AC)system, if you have one.
  • Collect materials you will need to clean up the broken bulb:
  • Stiff paper or cardboard.
  • Sticky tape (e.g., duct tape).
  • Damp paper towels or disposable wet wipes (for hard surfaces).
  • Glass jar with a metal lid (such as a canning jar) or a sealable plastic bag(s).

Cleanup Steps for Hard Surfaces:

  • Carefully scoop up glass fragments and powder using stiff paper or cardboard and place debris and paper/cardboard in a glass jar with a metal lid. If a glass jar is not available, use a sealable plastic bag.(NOTE: Since a plastic bag will not prevent the mercury vapor from escaping, remove the plastic bag(s) from the home after cleanup.)
  • Use sticky tape, such as duct tape, to pick up any remaining small glass fragments and powder. Place the used tape in the glass jar or plastic bag.
  • Wipe the area clean with damp paper towels or disposable wet wipes. Place the towels in the glass jar or plastic bag.
  • Vacuuming of hard surfaces during cleanup is not recommended unless broken glass remains after all other cleanup steps have been taken.

[NOTE: It is possible that vacuuming could spread mercury-containing powder or mercury vapor, although availableinformationon this problem is limited.]

If vacuuming is needed to ensure removal of all broken glass, keep the following tips in mind:

  • Keep a window or door to the outdoors open;
  • Vacuum the area where the bulb was broken using thevacuumhose, if available; and
  • Remove the vacuum bag (or empty and wipe the canister) and seal the bag/vacuum debris, and any materialsusedtoclean the vacuum, in a plastic bag.
  • Promptly place all bulb debris and cleanup materials, including vacuum cleaner bags, outdoors in a trash container or protected area until materials can be disposed of properly.
  • Check with your local or state government about disposal requirements in your area. Some states and communities require fluorescent bulbs (broken or unbroken) be taken to a local recycling center.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water after disposing of the jars or plastic bags containing bulb debris and cleanup materials.
  • Continue to air out the room where the bulb was broken and leave the H&AC system shut off, as practical, for several hours.

Cleanup Steps for Carpeting or Rugs:

  • Carefully scoop up glass fragments and powder using stiff paper or cardboard and place debris and paper/cardboard in a glass jar with a metal lid. If a glass jar is not available, use a sealable plastic bag.(NOTE: Since a plastic bag will not prevent the mercury vapor from escaping, remove the plastic bag(s) from the home after cleanup.)
  • Use sticky tape, such as duct tape, to pick up any remaining small glass fragments and powder. Place the used tape in the glass jar or plastic bag.
  • Vacuuming of carpeting or rugs during cleanup is not recommended unless broken glass remains after all other cleanup steps have been taken.[NOTE: It is possible that vacuuming could spread mercury-containing powder or mercury vapor, although available information on this problem is limited.]

If vacuuming is needed to ensure removal of all broken glass, keep the following tips in mind:

  • Keep a window or door to the outdoors open;
  • Vacuum the area where the bulb was broken using the vacuum hose, if available, and
  • Remove the vacuum bag (or empty and wipe the canister) and seal the bag/vacuum debris, and any materials used to clean the vacuum, in a plastic bag.
  • Promptly place all bulb debris and cleanup materials, including vacuum cleaner bags, outdoors in a trash container or protected area until materials can be disposed of properly.
  • Check with your local or state government about disposal requirements in your area. Some states and communities require fluorescent bulbs (broken or unbroken) be taken to a local recycling center.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water after disposing of the jars or plastic bags containing bulb debris and cleanup materials.
  • Continue to air out the room where the bulb was broken and leave the H&AC system shut off, as practical, for several hours.

Future Cleaning of Carpeting or Rugs: Air Out the Room During and After Vacuuming:

  • The next several times you vacuum the rug or carpet, shut off the H&AC system if you have one, close the doors to other rooms, and open a window or door to the outside before vacuuming. Change the vacuum bag after each use in this area.
  • After vacuuming is completed, keep the H&AC system shut off and the window or door to the outside open, as practical, for several hours.

Actions You Can Take to Prevent Broken Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs:

  • Fluorescent bulbs are made of glass and can break if dropped or roughly handled. To avoid breaking a bulb, follow these general practices:
  • Always switch off and allow a working CFL bulb to cool before handling.
  • Always handle CFL bulbs carefully to avoid breakage.
  • If possible, screw/unscrew the CFL by holding the plastic or ceramic base, not the glass tubing. <
  • Gently screw in the CFL until snug. Do not over-tighten.
  • Never forcefully twist the glass tubing.
  • Consider not using CFLs in lamps that can be easily knocked over, in unprotected light fixtures, or in lamps that are incompatible with the spiral or folded shape of many CFLs.
  • Do not use CFL bulbs in locations where they can easily be broken, such as play spaces.
  • Use CFL bulbs that have a glass or plastic cover over the spiral or folded glass tube, if available. These types of bulbs look more like incandescent bulbs and may be more durable if dropped.
  • Consider using a drop cloth (e.g., plastic sheet or beach towel) when changing a fluorescent light bulb in case a breakage should occur.
  • The drop cloth will help prevent mercury contamination of nearby surfaces and can be bundled with the bulb debris for disposal.

Read more:Feds can’t make up minds on mercury bulbshttp://www.wnd.com/?pageId=325049#ixzz1SvqCQzcvoint out that CFLs are more expensive than traditional bulbs.

 

Do-Gooders Gone Wild

Liberals love to gripe about mili­tary spending. Just last week, Washington Post managing editor Raju Narisetti actually wrote on his Twitter account: “Thought encounter of the day: ‘Would be good if our schools are fully funded and DoD has to hold a bake sale to buy its next fighter jet.'” It would also be good if, a la Red Dawn, a ragtag band of plucky high school kids could drive an invading army out of Colorado—Wolverines!—but we’d best keep a few aircraft carriers around just in case. Considering that America’s worst school districts tend to be some of the best funded, Narisetti might consider this sentiment not so much a “thought” as an encounter with a bumper sticker likely to be found on a 76 Volvo wagon.

In fact, earnest liberals might want to take a good long look in the mirror when considering why we’re so broke. The San Francisco Chronicle reported last week that the famously liberal city by the bay has a procurement process that makes the Pentagon look positively Scrooge-like. City policies “mean paying about $240 for getting a copy of a key that actually cost a worker $1.35 to get done at a hardware store on his break.” In another case, the paper found the city had paid $3,000 for a”vehicle battery tray” that could be found online for as little as $12.

Now it would be one thing if this were simply incompetence, but San Francisco’s problem is a direct result of the city government’s misdirected do-gooderism.

The city has rigorous “socialjustice” requirements for contractors that include everything from enforcing a ban on tropical hardwoods to ensuring they’ve never been involved in the slave trade. Regarding that last sticking point, blogger Moe Lane quips this “would be an impressive moral stance to take if it weren’t for the minor detail that they never seem to require that sort of thing from, say, the Democratic party.”

Rather than deal with the costs of “social justice” compliance, many would-be contractors have found a novel solution: Any business with the city is done through a third party that amounts to little more than a shell company that meets the “social justice” requirements. The middleman takes a markup of anywhere from 10 to 150 percent, according to the Chronicle. But the important thing is preserving the illusion that San Francisco city coun­cil members are saving the rainforests, oblivious to the fact they’re really just throwing taxpayer funds down a rathole. It seems the road to hell is paved with Brazilian walnut.

Obama Launches Total Takeover of Media: Emergency Alert System

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I4ZdbiSLnv4&feature=player_embedded[/youtube]

Sen. Rand Paul on Consumer Choice in Energy Committee Hearing

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ELDHaeEsNF0[/youtube]

Sen. Paul questions the Department of Energy’s commitment to protecting consumer choice during consideration of Appliance/Light Bulb Energy-Efficiency Legislation

 

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