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Comment Re:magic internet money (Score 4, Insightful) 252

The worst a trump presidency means for the US is another foreign war, market deregulation, and more class warfare from the 1%. main street will have the same pot-holes in 8 years that it has today.

I could think of other things to add to your list. A trade war that ignites a recession. Further delay, or even backward progress, in combating climate change and developing a cleaner economy. An unrestrained, reactionary judiciary that will last for a generation. Privatization of Medicare and Social Security that breaks a multi-generational social contract and leaves seniors in abject poverty. The loss of insurance for millions of Americans due to the repeal, but halfhearted or non-existent replacement, of the ACA.

Really, I could go on, but that seems plenty. If you think that these things won't make the situation on main street any worse in 4 or 8 years, you are in for a rude surprise.

And even if you think my list is farfetched or won't have much of an impact, the things you list certainly will. Another foreign war can do plenty of harm: who do you think fights those damn wars? certainly not the ones that start them. Market deregulation lead to the 2008 Financial Crisis, which resulted in plenty of pain for ordinary Americans.

Comment Re:Inflation or Rally? (Score 1) 252

Either we see inflation — as Trump's government prints money to finance the feared "binge" (which is oh so different from the wise Government Spending of the Obama era).

Lots of otherwise "serious people" have been warning about soaring inflation as a result of fiscal proclivity for the whole of the Obama administration. This was a major argument against further stimulus spending, even during our lackluster recovery, and against investments in infrastructure. Guess what: rampant inflation hasn't happened, in large part because the dollar is still considered a haven against the rest of the world's crummy currency and economies.

that said, this situation probably won't last forever (economic situations never do), and inflation and servicing the debt will probably become problems to worry about eventually. And Trump's projected deficit spending dwarfs anything put forward by any president, ever, which will probably hasten any eventual reckoning.

I wouldn't personally place any bets on Bitcoin being a refuge, however.

Comment Re:We knew this going in (Score 1) 568

I'm confused, is Trump draining or trying to fill up the swamp

If he fills it enough, it'll be an ocean.

A beautiful ocean; best in the world; believe me. And do you know what stimulates a real estate economy? Seafront property! America is going to have so much new seafront property, everyone will be able to have some. You will all win! You will win so much you will get tired of it. And when you get tired of winning, enjoy sitting on the beach. No need to thank me.

Comment Re:I doubt this is correct (Score 1) 283

If this was the case then a slightly physically smaller battery would have solved the problem.

you are probably right. Speaking from experience, however, it is no small task to design, test, and certify a new battery design, let alone ramp up production to crank out a few million perfect copies. It's a months-long task, even for a company with the resources and experience of Samsung. When you've got a crisis going on right now, a solution 3-6 months out isn't going to save you.

Comment Re:Installation cost? (Score 1) 191

The cost of electricity on a remote island is very different than just the cost of the fuel on the mainland. You have neglected the cost of getting the fuel there and the cost-of-ownership for the diesel generators.

Another approach to costing this system out, since sadly the article itself gives no numbers, is to consider the retail cost of the electricity. A handy comparison is Hawaii - another island location that, until recently anyway, generated almost all of its electricity from diesel shipped from the mainland. In Hawaii, the typical household electric rate is $0.33/kWh, or about $330/MWh. The array is 1.4 MW. Let's say that it has a capacity factor of 25% (i.e., in a 24-hr day, one could expect a total output of 1.4 MW * 24 h * 0.25 = 8.4 MWh). Over one year that's about 12,000 MWh of electricity, which would have a retail value of $4 million.

These days the cost of a large grid-tied PV system is about $2/W. Installation on Ta'u is undoubtedly more expensive, so let's roughly triple that price to $6/W. By that estimate. the panel array would have cost $8.5 million to install. The Tesla Powerpack costs about $250/kWh. Again, installation on a remote island costs more, so let's double it to $500/kWh. Their system has 6,000 kWh, representing a cost of $3 million.

By these estimates, their system cost was $11.5 million. Rated against the electricity cost, the breakeven period is just a few years. Maybe I'm off in my estimates here or there by a factor of, say, 2. But even under worst-case assumptions, I would hazard that the total cost over 20 years is lower with PV than diesel, and with far fewer long-term risks.

Comment Re:It's easier this way.... (Score 4, Insightful) 531

I guess it's easier to believe that people bought the clickbaity fake news about lizard people than to admit that you lost the election because people are sick of being lied to

Can't both be correct statements? I get that lots of people in the election were fed up, bring the roof down on their heads, and voted that way, come what may. But I also think that there were plenty of people who based that choice in no small part on things that they thought were true, but that with a small amount of critical thinking and investigation, could be demonstrated to be false.

Comment Re:Precisely (Score 1) 531

At least the big lie is easier to falsify

Maybe. However, to use examples from the Donald Trump campaign, when confronted with clear cut evidence that something he said was factually incorrect, The Don would usually double down; never admit that his original statement was mistaken, or exaggerated, or simply wrong. And his supporters would take his side, and continue not only spreading a fact that was demonstrably not true, but wholeheartedly believing it themselves.

And so the American populace ends up making decisions based on Truthiness, rather than Truth. I would not be so naive as to say that this was a one-sided phenomenon, but it certainly reached new heights of boldness and baldness in the Trump campaign.

Comment Re:Highly unlikely (Score 1) 244

First, much of what the president says publicly will be heavily screened. It’s likely a team of advisors will focus on "training" the new president to maintain a calculated and benign tone.

Based on what we've seen over the last 18 months, and for decades preceding that, I wouldn't count on it. Oh, sure, Trump manages to pull it off for a while, but it never seems to last before the confrontational man-child comes back to the fore.

In the last few days, lots of people have suggested that, now that Trump's won and he's no longer in the campaign, he will suddenly become a calm, reasonable, and less adversarial person. I'm not sure if that's wishful thing on their part, or plain delusion. How many 70-year olds do you know that have undergone a major personality change that late in life?

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