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Comment Re:Not sure what to think.... (Score 1) 767

I suspect he was motivated by notoriety as much as anything. He knew what his options were and what the consequences would be; I don't for a moment think he is or was stupid. He chose this path on purpose but I am not convinced it was solely altruistic. After all, if he really wanted to ensure that the people were talking about the program and its wrongs that he shone light upon, what better way would there be for him to do that than to come back to the states and face a public trial? The longer he stays abroad the less the American public will be discussing the matter - especially now that we have elected a professional internet troll for POTUS who will be serving up a new controversy to the American people at least twice a day.

Comment Re:Only half true article (Score 1) 155

When the construction dust clears, we will see a nuclear China with about 20% renewables.

The peaks are a lot higher than base load.
You don't use nukes for peak capacity. If you have nukes you use them every second you can.
Based on those two bits of information that you should already have known but somehow failed to consider, how does that estimate look now?
There no point dumbing things down to a Star Trek view of energy since we do not have perfect batteries, the problem has to be considered in terms of matching supply to a demand curve. High school level thought instead of first grade level.

Comment Re:Only half true article (Score 1) 155

Selective omission. It creates a false impression that the only replacement power is renewables without mentioning additional nuclear capacity that presumably will also make up for the loss of this coal power.

It's not just hydro, some people put nukes under the banner of renewables as well. There may not be a lot of breeder reactors active today but they are a reasonable reason to put all nukes under that banner.
Don't blame me, I don't do it but I can see where they are coming from.

Comment Re:Frank Yu doesn't know what he's talking about. (Score 1) 155

Replacing their nucleair power with wind/solar is naïve and unrealistic at best

You have that backwards, for whether you like nukes or not the current economic reality there is that replacing the old nukes with new news is unrealistic due to the huge capital outlays and long lead times. Small stuff can be financed a bit of at a time (and comes online in less than a year to start paying it's way) even if it adds up to costing far more in the end.
It's only where someone can tell the accountants to shut up or go to the Gulag, instead of saying "yes boss" like we do in most of the west currently, where you can build things with huge capital costs such as nukes.
If you like nukes look to the east. Nobody has the stomach for them where short term profits trump everything else.

Comment Per area doesn't really matter with electricity (Score 1) 155

Line losses are very low these days so the number of people per area doesn't really matter as far as electricity generation goes. Try using Canada as an example and it should be easy to grasp. They have huge hydro plants in sparsely populated areas but that doesn't matter when there is a big city at the end of the wire.

France doesn't

Did you really forget the whole ridiculous "freedom fries thing" where Saddam was supposed to have been supplied with Uranium by the French out of their former colony of Niger?
Here is more with a specific mention of the Uranium issue:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/France%E2%80%93Niger_relations

Comment Re:Saving the world with a Tax. (Score 3, Insightful) 155

The idea of a tax isn't as silly as you make it sound. The problem with most forms of pollution (from a purely economic standpoint) is that one person or company gains the benefits from polluting, but everyone pays the costs. This is known as an externality. Taxing pollution fixes this and means that the polluting technology becomes more expensive to operate and makes the barrier to entry for non-polluting technologies higher. If something is producing a lot of carbon dioxide but costs $5/widget, and you add a tax that amounts to $2.50/widget, then a replacement technology that doesn't emit any CO_2 but costs $7/widget is now cheaper to use. This means that you can bring it to market before you've got the economies of scale to push the price down below $5/widget.

Comment Re:solar/wind talk is spin - France vs China (Score 1) 155

Size doesn't really matter, because most renewable schemes scale with area. Population density does. France has 116/km^2, China has 145/km^2, so almost a 25% higher overall population density. That translates to a little bit less space for wind, solar, hydro and so on per capita, but not by enough to make it infeasible. Add in nuclear power, and the scaling is quite easy - building a nuclear power plant is hard, but doubling the generating capacity doesn't come close to doubling the land area, as long as you have a supply of uranium (China has uranium mines, France doesn't).

Comment Re:Assange lacks integrity. (Score 1) 363

Then you'd introduce a new loophole: "I said immediate release, but Obama waited over a week before commuting her sentence, haha, I win."

I'm not sure that's a bigger loophole than the promise to be extradited to a country that isn't seeking an extradition though...

Comment Re:liar (Score 1) 363

Assange did not use the word "Pardon" in the latest offers. He simply asked for clemency. A commutation is a form of clemency.

To be honest though, it was always a joke. His offer is to allow himself to be extradited to the US. The US isn't seeking Assange's extradition. Sweden is.

Comment Re:White Power Rangers...ASSEMBLE! (Score 1) 227

A big part of the problem is that race and wealth correlate strongly in the USA and the rhetoric from the Democrats has been about race and not poverty, even though the latter is the real problem. This leaves people who are both poor and white feeling that the party only cares about poverty when it happens to black people and, worse, that it feels middle class black people deserve more help than poor white ones. This is made even worse by the fact that there's a black President: clearly being black isn't a complete barrier to success, but being born poor often is.

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