Bob's Links and Rants

Welcome to my rants page! You can contact me by e-mail: Blog roll. Site feed.

Friday, January 14, 2005

In search of outrage...

I've been reading the news and the blogs, trying to regain the old blogging outrage. Bush is trashing social security and trial lawyers; the war gets worse and worse; the economy teeters on the edge of a precipice. Blah blah blah. But finally, over at WIIIAI, I come across two articles to rekindle the flame!

First, the LA Times reports about a new renewable-energy project at Guantanamo Bay:
Four new windmill towers and turbines rising from the crown of John Paul Jones Hill will begin powering the U.S. Navy base here next month, saving $1.5 million in annual oil imports, reducing pollution and showing energy-starved communist neighbors what they are missing.

The wind-generation project that will provide 25% to 30% of the base's energy needs is a rare embrace of renewable resources for the U.S. military, which can seldom justify the high start-up costs or efficiently extend new technologies to the small, scattered communities they serve.

At Guantanamo, where the population has grown fourfold since the base began housing hundreds of suspected enemy combatants captured mostly in Afghanistan, favorable winds and Pentagon-mandated energy independence have converged to allow the base to boast the largest stand-alone hybrid wind and diesel power system in the world, according to its developers.

Johnston and the base commander, Capt. Leslie J. McCoy, noted that Cuban military officials with whom they met periodically had been keenly interested in the wind project, which is now the most visible feature of the base from any direction.

"The Cubans are very intrigued by the wind generators, but I see no potential for sharing the technology at this time," McCoy said, alluding to the absence of diplomatic relations with Havana and a trade embargo that had been in place since shortly after Castro came to power in 1959.

Cuba has suffered widespread and protracted electricity outages in recent years as the price of oil has driven up production costs. The country has invested little in developing alternative energy resources.
This article is so wrong in so many ways! For starters, WIIIAI (I don't know his/her name) asks "What they’re missing? Windmill-powered genital shocking?" To this, I add: To the extent that Cuba is "energy-starved" it is so because of the US embargo. Also, Cuba has several rural electrification projects using solar power--Home Power magazine had an article in the August/September issue about solar-powered TV buildings in rural Cuba--used for both education and entertainment. But hey, the US media figures it can never go wrong badmouthing Cuba and Castro.

They feel the same way about Venezuela and Chavez. Which brings me to the second point of outrage from WIIIAI's post--yet another Washington Post diatribe against Chavez. The Post seems to be regularly clamoring for the US to instigate "regime change" in Venezuela, even more so than the neonuts in the administration. I'm guessing it's a shadow dance--the same people are pulling the strings at both the Post and the White House, and having the "press" taking the lead may be seen as the right move at this time.