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Sunday, November 29, 2009

California Solar Power Transmission Line Approved at Thanksgiving

California Solar Power Transmission Line Approved at Thanksgiving: "

On Friday the California Public Utilities Commission approved a new 500 Kilovolt transmission line from desert areas deep in southeastern California where numerous solar projects have been signed, to urban centers on the coast.

As originally submitted the line was to have also carried electrons from sunny Arizona deserts too, but the project is having to moving forward without its neighbor. Arizona officials were concerned their state could become an “energy farm” for California, using up Arizona’s resources and costing the state’s rate-payers.

Even just the California portion could help bring many of the backlog of solar projects in our desert onto the grid, now that there is the transmission that they need.

Read more of this story »

They could also build a couple of ginormous nuke plants out in the desert and connect them to the grid as well. Then they could do the same on the East Coast also. Let say in the Oneonta, NY area. You could connect New England, Metro NY, Philly and Metro DC all to the new nuke powered grid. They could store the waste onsite or blast it into deep space.... :)

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Should the US Continue to Back Israel? ...Part 2

The comments below mine are from the following article. Below my comments are what I believe to be some very valid points made by a poster to the original article:

This article is well worth reading as it highlights the disconnect between the people and the policies of America. I don't think that we, collectively, consider our role in the problems of the Middle East. Although I can't really fact-check blog comments, one commenter stated that we spend more than $350,00 per hour on aid to Israel! How many Americans could we help with that money? How many Palestinians? It's time we stop blindly supporting Israel. We've helped create and support them for the last 60 years. I think we've fulfilled our commitments we made after WW2 to the Jewish people. It's time to let them stand by themselves. If they can't sustain peace with their own neighbors after 60 years, perhaps they don't really have much right to exist. It was a bad idea in 1948 and its a bad idea today. You can't steal someone's land and give it to someone else, and then expect that there will be peace. Ask any American Indian if they think they got a fair deal? If there were a viable way to take back their land, I'm sure they would be doing it. What do you suppose the US Government would do if Native Americans started lobbing rockets off the reservation? Would we negotiate or bomb them back into the third world? Oh wait...we already did that. Unfortunately, this is the mentality our government. Just because our great nation has more to offer than others is no reason to believe that we're right all the time or that everyone likes us or agrees with us. We simply never learn from our mistakes.....

"October 30th, 2009 6:24 pm GMT - Posted by Alison Weir
While some Israeli actions have served US interests, the balance sheet is clear: Israel’s use of American aid consistently damages the United States, harms our economy, and endangers Americans.
In fact, this extremely negative outcome was so predictable that even before Israel’s creation virtually all State Department and Pentagon experts advocated forcefully against supporting the creation of a Zionist state in the Middle East. President Harry Truman’s reply: “I am sorry gentlemen, but I have to answer to hundreds of thousands who are anxious for the success of Zionism. I do not have hundreds of thousands of Arabs among my constituents.”
Through the years, our aid to Israel has not resulted in a reliable ally.
In 1954 Israel tried to bomb US government offices in Egypt, intending to pin this on Muslims.
In 1963 Senator William Fulbright discovered that Israel was using a series of covert operations to funnel our money to pro-Israel groups in the US, which then used these funds in media campaigns and lobbying to procure even more money from American taxpayers.
In 1967 Israeli forces unleashed a two-hour air and sea attack against the USS Liberty, causing 200 casualties. While Israel partisans claim that this was done in error, this claim is belied by extensive eyewitness evidence and by an independent commission reporting on Capitol Hill in 2003 chaired by former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Thomas Moorer.
In 1973 Israel used the largest airlift of US materiel in history to defeat Arab forces attempting to regain their own land, triggering the Arab oil embargo that sent the US into a recession that cost thousands of Americans their jobs.
During its 1980s Lebanon invasion, Israeli troops engaged in a systematic pattern of harassment of US forces brought in as peacekeepers that created, according to Commandant of Marines Gen. R. H Barrow, “life-threatening situations, replete with verbal degradation of the officers, their uniform and country.”
Through the years, Israel has regularly spied on the US. According to the Government Accounting Office, Israel “conducts the most aggressive espionage operations against the United States of any ally.” Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger said of Israeli spy Jonathan Pollard: “It is difficult for me to conceive of greater harm done to national security,” And the Pollard case was just the tip of a very large iceberg; the most recent operation coming to light involves two senior officials of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), Israel’s powerful American lobbying organization.
Bad as the above may appear, it pales next to the indirect damage to Americans caused by our aid to Israel. American funding of Israel’s egregious violations of Palestinian human rights is consistently listed as the number one cause of hostility to Americans.
While American media regularly cover up Israeli actions, those of us who have visited the region first-hand witness a level of US-funded Israeli cruelty that makes us weep for our victims and fear for our country. While most Americans are uninformed on how Israel uses our money, people throughout the world are deeply aware that it is Americans who are funding Israeli crimes.
The 9/11 Commission notes that Khalid Sheikh Mohammed’s “animus towards the United States stemmed from his violent disagreement with U.S. foreign policy favoring Israel.” The Economist reports that ” the notion of payback for injustices suffered by the Palestinians is perhaps the most powerfully recurrent theme in bin Laden’s speeches.”
US aid to Israel has destabilized the Middle East; propped up a national system based on ethnic and religious discrimination; enabled unchecked aggression that has, on occasion, been turned against Americans themselves; funded arms industries that compete with American companies; supported a pattern of brutal dispossession that has created hatred of the US; and resulted in continuing conflict that in the past seven and a half years has cost the lives of more than 2000 Palestinian children and 119 Israeli children.
By providing massive funding to Israel, no matter what it does, American aid is empowering Israeli supremacists who believe in a never-ending campaign of ethnic cleansing; while disempowering Israelis who recognize that policies of morality, justice, and rationality are the only road to peace."

Well thought out and nicely put Allison!

Should the US Continue to Back Israel?

JERUSALEM -- The Palestinians on Sunday accused Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton of undermining progress toward Mideast peace talks after she praised Israel for offering to curb some Jewish settlement construction.

After meeting Israeli and Palestinian leaders during a visit Saturday, Clinton called for an unconditional resumption of peace talks and welcomed Israel's offer for a slowdown in settlement activity.

But Palestinians rejected the idea of resuming talks, reiterating their demand that Israel must first freeze all construction of Jewish settlements in the West Bank and east Jerusalem - lands they claim for a future state.

"I believe that the U.S. condones continued settlement expansion," Palestinian government spokesman Ghassan Khatib said in a rare public chiding of Washington.

I don't understand why we don't tell Israel that they can't build anymore on occupied territory? It only makes sense. The Israelis make all sorts of conditions on Palestinians to get them to the table, but they refuse to do something as simple as cease and desist until a resolution can be drafted. I think we should stop all weapons sales to Israel and ask for UN sanctions if they continue to refuse to act responsibly. They know the settlement issue is a sore point and they willingly allow construction to continue. When pressed on the issue, the Israelis temporarily back down until they think were not looking, and they start building again. They're playing the game just as much, or more, than the Palestinians. I say that the UN should put sanctions on Israel that are equal to the blockades that have isolated the Palestinians for years...see how quickly they come to the table with a viable plan that puts the onus for peace equally on both countries. The British, the US and the Russians created this mess after WW2. Now it's time for us to clean it up.

Palestinians accuse Clinton of hurting peace talks - washingtonpost.com