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Comment What can you expect? (Score 1) 2

The silicon valley mentality, with its toxic culture, has contaminated most of the industry. Now it's all about "I got mine Jack" or hustling to find the next project that is likely to either go IPO or get bought out. It's funny how they criticize everyone else for being special entitled snowflakes while they're acting like special entitled snowflakes - no self awareness.

I'd say "oh, the humanity" but that's not what humans used to aspire to be. The "good old days" weren't because they were better, but the people were.

Comment Re:Storage? (Score 2) 474

For coal, this doesn't really matter - it still loses. To pick up where renewables leave off, you want natural gas (or even petroleum) turbines that can quickly be brought on and off line. Coal and nuclear are not really suited to this.

The power industry makes the distinction between "base load" and "peak load" generation sources. Coal and nuclear are best for base load, running 100% capacity as much as possible. Combined-cycle turbines are best for peak load since they can be economically throttled.

The issue is both peak and base load demands are increasing. Turbines make great peak load sources but are poor for base load. TVA -- my former employer -- took coal plants offline due to Obama-era regulations making them impossible or unprofitable to operate (or both). They made up for the lost generating capacity by running their turbines as if they were base load generators. The result? Huge increases in turbine maintenance costs, more frequent maintenance outages, and more unplanned outages.

If the goal is to kill coal you have to replace it with something. Nuclear is a non-starter for most people because of their hysterical, irrational fear of it. Natural gas is cheap but, as stated above, it's not the best candidate for peak load generation. Nothing in the solar or wind column can come close to substituting for any current base load generation technology.

Comment Re:Total regulatory impact 2-3 percent (Score 2) 474

Coal has been made disproportionately more expensive over the last several years by government fiat, not market forces. Burdensome regulation and carbon taxes have made it so. Until recently I worked for TVA (mostly nuclear plants but some coal, hydro, and combined-cycle turbines). Several coal plants were shut down well ahead of schedule simply because Obama-era regulations made them unprofitable to run. Remember, candidate-Obama promised to destroy coal. He certainly worked hard enough at it.

If coal is allowed to float without government interference it will be quite a bit cheaper than renewables and much more abundant. Windmills only spin when the wind is blowing. Solar only works when the sun is out and your panels aren't covered in snow. Coal runs 24x7, rain or shine, windy or calm, hot or cold.

Comment Re:Total regulatory impact 2-3 percent (Score 1) 474

Adapt. Fossil fuels are over. They're too expensive.

Says the guy whose lights and computer are very likely lit by electricity generated from fossil fuels. Who, if he has a car, is likely powered by fossil fuels or has a battery charged by fossil fuels. Or, if he uses mass transit, it's either fueled by fossil fuels or powered by electricity derived from fossil fuels. Whose synthetic plastic materials around him are made from fossil fuels. Who, if he's ever flown anywhere, was in a plane powered by fossil fuels. Who, if he stopped to consider it, would be utterly unable to function today in any useful capacity without power, products, or motive force made possible in whole or in part by fossil fuels.

But hey doesn't it sound all trendy and shit to say "fossil fuels are over"?

Comment Coal won't cut it? (Score 2, Informative) 474

From the DoE:

Major energy sources and percent shares of U.S. electricity generation at utility-scale facilities in 2016:

Natural gas = 33.8%
Coal = 30.4%
Nuclear = 19.7%
Renewables (total) = 14.9%
Hydropower = 6.5%
Wind = 5.6%
Biomass = 1.5%
Solar = 0.9%
Geothermal = 0.4%
Petroleum = 0.6%
Other gases = 0.3%
Other nonrenewable sources = 0.3%
Pumped storage hydroelectricity = -0.2%

So, wind + solar = 6.5%
Coal + natural gas + nuclear = 83.9%

Winner = not renewables

If coal's been on the decline it's only because the Obama administration demonized it and because we had a happy accident of finding an abundance of natural gas. Wind and solar would be nowhere without massive government subsidies.

Meanwhile, I'm still waiting on those fusion reactors.

Comment Re:Barbara... (Score 1) 7

I'm the human equivalent of a strange attractor in the chaotic system we call life. I've had lots of weird things happen to me, and every such event makes it more likely that another weird thing happens (we are affected by all our experiences). It's not like I seek out problems, but sh*t tends to happen on a regular basis. If you take a large enough group, most will have a relatively average number of strange events over their lifetime. And then you get those at both extremes. Plus, I guess i am bad at evaluating risk when it comes to myself. This is just another example - i should have left, but I didn't place my own interests over the harm that leaving would have caused.

Comment Re:I have one question (Score 1) 7

I will be reporting her, but only because it's obvious that she's a risk to patients. But first I need a referral to a maxillofacial surgeon. I also don't like torpedoing someone, especially when they're already suffering, but at this point it's also in her long term interest to get help. But I'm worried it might push her over the edge. People who have been blaming everyone else for their problems as part of a mental disorder often end up with a dysfunctional response when reality can no longer be denied.

I find this whole mess saddening more than anything else, and if she wasn't an obvious danger to other patients, I would have let it slide and tried to encourage her and her parents to seek help. The parents are in their 70s and not equipped to deal with this on their own, but I will be directing them to appropriate resources next time I see one of them. I know it's taking "turn the other cheek" to an extreme, especially for an atheist, but if the situation were reversed, I would hope for the same consideration. What can I say, I'm stupid that way.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Sometimes it doesn't pay to be nice 7

The dentist showed up 45 minutes late. She had her assistant get me set up in the chair, then proceeded to have a royal meltdown, which was visible through the open door. She was crying and screaming at her 71-year-old mother (who is the receptionist and has said many times she doesn't want to work there - guess she's been guilted into it), accusing her of shoving $170 of food onto the floor, then jumping on a cake, of all things.

Submission + - Murdered woman's Fitbit nails cheating husband

BarbaraHudson writes: A murdered woman's Fitbit data shows she was still alive an hour after her husband claims she was murdered and he was tied up, contradicting her husband's description of events.

Richard Dabate, 40, was charged this month with felony murder, tampering with physical evidence and making false statements following his wife Connie's December 2015 death at their home in Ellington, Tolland County.

Dabate called 911 reporting that his wife was the victim of a home invasion, alleging that she was shot dead by a "tall, obese man" with a deep voice like actor Vin Diesel's, sporting "camouflage and a mask," according to an arrest warrant.

Dabate alleged her death took place more than an hour before her Fitbit-tracked movements revealed.

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