Don’t Know Much About a Science Book

Uh, no, the failures in Texas are what happens as a result of the pursuit of unreliable “green” energy sources instead of reliable, science/engineering-based systems.

BTW, because I viewed the tweet on one of my engineering computer which has its clock set to Coordinated Universal Time, the timestamp on the tweet is +5 hours from Eastern Time. 0500 UTC is 12 midnight ET.

I’m Not Making This Up, You Know

She Guevara is espousing Capitalism to support her Socialism—If you’d rather support genuine Capitalism (and save a few bucks while you’re at it), you can buy the Hogewash! Team Lickspittle sweatshirt for only $35.99 at The Hogewash Store.

Buy one and increase this blog’s taxable profits!

A Modest Proposal

Swift’s essay was supposed to be satire rather than a how-to manual.

Moloch was unavailable for comment.

UPDATE—

UPDATE 2—

UPDATE 3—Say, could this be the basis for a Soylent Green New Deal?

Trump v. Pelosi v. AOC

Donald Trump is running for reelection, and it seems that he’d rather run against the sort of Progressive Democrat whose politics are strongly different from his own—”a choice not an echo” to borrow an old campaign slogan. While AOC won’t be the 2020 nominee, she’s the face of the Democrat’s for now, and that seems to suit Trump just fine.

Nancy Pelosi’s goals aren’t much different from She Guevara’s, but the two differ radically on how to achieve those goals. After six months as a congresscritter, AOC has shown that she is unwilling and/or unable to work within the established congressional order. She wants revolution now. Pelosi’s decades of practical politics have taught her that a recurring first step toward her goals is winning elections. She’s also seen what happens when her side’s politics moves too fast for the voters. See, eg., the elections of 1994 and 2010.

Pelosi isn’t all that popular with voters outside the costal blue zones, but recent poling shows that AOC and her squad of newbies are unpopular even in many Democrat strongholds. Thus, Trump would much rather have She Guevara as the face of the Democratic Party. As the coming primaries settle on the Democrat’s presidential nominee, that candidate will push AOC aside, but her effect on the party’s branding will linger, and Trump sees that as to his advantage.

So Trump is likely to continue baiting AOC and her squad. And given their mix of arrogance and inexperience, I suspect they’ll keep taking the bait.

Oh, one more thing … I’ve seen Trump’s tweets from last weekend labeled as “racist.” He suggested that a foreign-born congresswoman return to her homeland, straighten it out, and then come back to show us how it was done. How is that challenge racist?

Ignorant or Malicious?

John Hinderacker has a post over at PowerLine looking at the question of whether Ilhan Omar’s statements are the result of a lack of familiarity with English (as Nancy Pelosi has suggested) or whether she is using a form of Progressive Newspeak. Specifically, Hinderacker examines Omar’s complaint that President Trump is dehumanizing people by referring to them as “illegal aliens.”

In point of fact and as a matter of law, the President is correct in his language. The law [8 U.S.C § 1101(a)(3)] defines alien as “any person not a citizen or national of the United States.” It’s illegal for such persons to be in the United States unless properly admitted as residents (with green cards) or visitors/refugees (with visas). Aliens who are in the country illegally are breaking our laws, they are criminals, and they are subject to legal sanctions, including deportation.

There are two possibilities here. One is that Omar is poorly educated and is unfamiliar with the common English word “alien.” That could be. The second possibility is that she, like so many liberals, is trying to bully the rest of us into adopting their vocabulary, even when it does not accord with common usage, common sense, or, as here, the law.

Normally, I’d be inclined to shrug and say, “Embrace the power of AND,” but I believe the balance of the evidence weighs on the second choice. That opinion is strengthened by Omar’s repeated misstatements of the facts and by statements made by her allies among the current freshman class in the House of Representatives such as She Guevara (aka Alexandria ¡Ocasio-Cortez!).

No, we aren’t dehumanizing persons who law enforcement has probable cause to believe have crossed our borders illegally by detaining them until they can be processed by our immigration and legal systems. No, we are not placing them in concentration camps.

Dachau was the National Socialists first concentration camp, opened in 1933. While it was not nearly as brutal as the industrial scale death camps run by the SS (or perhaps as Stalin’s gulag), it was a place of terror, torture, and forced labor for the internal enemies of the state. None of the facilities holding detained immigrants here in the U. S. are remotely analogous to places like Dachau.

I don’t believe politicians like Omar and ¡Ocasio-Cortez! are stupid. I think that they’ve been rewarded for making outrageous claims that fit the narratives believed by enough voters in their districts to get them elected and that they believe they can get away with such loose talk on a national stage. I also believe that their claims will become more radical as they react poorly to fact-based pushback.

The Green New Derp

Much of the initial pointage, laughery, and mockification of ¡Ocasio! She Guevara’s Green New Deal Derp has been about cattle farts and high-speed railways to Hawaii. My first reaction when I heard about the proposed elimination of the fossil fuels wasn’t to think of my car because I was cooking at the time—on my gas stove.

I grew up in Nashville, the heart of TVA country, in a house with an electric stove. My mother loved it because it was easier to manage than the coal stoves she learned to cook on. However, gas stoves are even more responsive than electric. Because of the thermal mass of the element in an electric “burner,” there can be a significant delay between turning a knob and a change in heat delivery. OTOH, a gas flame’s heat output quickly tracks the flow setting. When we built Mrs. Hoge’s kitchen that she used for teaching and her personal cheffing business, we installed a 6-burner gas stove with a 36-in oven along with a 27-in electric wall oven for small baking jobs. (A 36-in gas oven is great for two turkeys at a time, but it’s overkill on a pizza.)

The other significant modification that we made to stately Hoge Manor was to replace the electrical radiant heating with a gas furnace when we switched from window air conditioners to central HVAC. The house is much more comfortable, and the heating costs lower. Oh, and we switched to a gas dryer while we were at it. The water heater is still electric.

We switched from electrical heating and cooking in order to improve the energy efficiency of our house. The Green New Derp would be a Great Leap Backward™ for me.

BTW, I’m an Electrical Engineer.

Congress can pass legislation, but “ye cannae change the Laws of Physics.”

Politics Ain’t Bean Bag

¡Ocasio! She Guevara has come on rather forcefully in her new role as a Congresscritter. Her gaffes have been a marvelous source of pointage, lagughery, and mockification from the Right, but they been a real irritant to many on the Left. She and her chief of staff have made comments about recruiting candidates to run in the 2020 primaries against sitting Democrat politician who don’t toe her political line. As Jeff Dunetz reports over at The Lid, establishment Democrats are talking about recruiting a primary challenger for Ms. Ocasio-Cortez.

The newbie’s involvement with a group called Justice Democrats, an extreme leftist PAC that believes in primarying any Democrat who disagrees with their platform is setting her up for failure. Recently Ocasio-Cortez was featured in a Justice Democrats promotional video pushing a program to recruit other far-left progressives to run for Congress.

So far their biggest faux pas was to go after the #4 person in the House Democratic Caucus, Hakeem Jeffries did not please the Congressional Black Caucus.

Ah, the problems of Intersectionality and competing identity-based power struggles complicated by issue-based demands …

Any internal party fight against Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez would be interesting. And if she is sent back to whence she came, she will become a textbook example of how leftist extremism is creating a Democratic Party civil war.

I’m buying more popcorn futures.

A Year of No Net Neutrality

It’s been a year since the FCC put an end to the so-called “net neutrality” regulations. IIRC, ending those regulations was supposed to kill either all of us or the Internet or, maybe, both, depending on which Progressive was warning us.

I have to admit that I’m a bit bored with that form of being dead. However, some of the tax silliness being proposed may create new opportunities to be be dead for tax reasons.

Math and Facts are Harder

I’m sure Paul Krugman thinks he made a morally justifiable argument in his recent NYT article supporting ¡Ocasio! She Guevara’s proposed higher tax rates, but he’s dead wrong on both the facts and his math. He wrote,

The controversy of the moment involves AOC’s advocacy of a tax rate of 70-80 percent on very high incomes, which is obviously crazy, right? I mean, who thinks that makes sense? … And it’s a policy nobody has ever implemented, aside from … the United States, for 35 years after World War II — including the most successful period of economic growth in our history.

It’s a fact that World War II ended in 1945. You can look it up.

It’s also a fact that the top U. S. personal income tax rates were cut from 70 percent to 50 percent in 1964. Paul Krugman could have looked that up in the NYT’s archives.

1964 – 1945 = 19 and 19 < 35.

Also, the peak period of post WWII economic growth in America was after that tax cut, a fact that Krugman would have also found if he researched his paper's own archives.

Space prohibits a full discussion of the impact of the tax cut, but current data show that inflation-adjusted G.D.P. increased 5.8 percent in 1964 after a 4.4 percent rise in 1963. Growth improved to 6.5 percent in 1965 and 6.6 percent in 1966. These were the three best back-to-back years for economic growth in the postwar era, and economists generally credit the Kennedy-Johnson tax cut for much of it.

Sometimes Truth just refuses to fit The Narrative.

UPDATE—To be fair to Paul Krugman, the Kennedy/Johnson tax cut became law just before his 11th birthday, so he probably has no real memory of the economic conditions he was writing about.

Don’t Know Much About History Meets Math Is Hard

Jeff Dunetz has a post over at The Lid about ¡Ocasio! She Guevara’s “tax fairness” proposal. He quotes her as saying.

You know, you look at our tax rates back in the ’60s, and when you have a progressive tax rate system, your tax rate let’s say from zero to $75,000 may be 10 percent or 15 percent, etc. But once you get to the tippy-tops on your 10 millionth dollar, sometimes you see tax rates as high as 60 or 70 percent …

Uh, wrong! The 70 precent top rate on incomes above $100,000 was a holdover from the ’40 and ’50s. One of the key accomplishments of the Kennedy Administration in the ’60 was to get the top rate lowered to 50 percent as a means of stimulating economic growth. Even corrected for inflation, her imagined threshold income for the top rate is an order of magnitude higher than the ’50s value. She’s set her definition of rich too high.

In any event, her numbers don’t add up with the current distribution of incomes. Jeff includes the following table—The top marginal rate is now about 40 percent. If doubling the rate didn’t result in the rich moving more of their their assets offshore and the taxman could take twice as much money from them, one could expect about a 20 percent increase in revenue. Personal income taxes would increase 40, but personal income taxes are only about half of the government’s take. That would provide roughly 800 billion dollars a year, which would not quite offset the deficit expected before implementing She Guevara’s Green New Deal. In fact, doubling everyone’s taxes wouldn’t provide enough money to fund her schemes.

TANSTAAFL!

UPDATE—With her congressional pay, Ms. Occasional-Cortex will be entering the upper 5 percent of income earners. Perhaps this will provide her with the same sort of practical education experienced by other who have climbed the income ladder.

Let’s Make a Deal

Sarah Hoyt has a long essay over at According to Hoyt very effectively demonstrating the stupidity of She Guevara’s proposed Green New Deal. Ms. Hoyt does this in a most unfair manner by using Real World data and numbers and math. For example, consider the cost of green energy upgrades to “every” residential and commercial building.

That estimate— which, frankly, for a full remodel of an average 2,500 square foot home to state-of-the-art anything is still probably small— would put the cost of this project at 1.36 trillion dollars. Oh, plus another 336 billion dollars if we assume renovating commercial buildings costs only about 6 times as much, per building, as private homes. Or, for convenient reference, a bit more than the 1.688 trillion the government is expected to make in personal income taxes. Again, by fairly conservative estimates. This could be way higher.

Read the whole thing. I did, and in the process I also found couple of useful new terms to use in reference to the young congresscritter-elect: ¡Ocasio! and kindercaucus.

Omelettes, Eggs, Some Disassembly Required

“What’s your comfort number, Lefties?” asks The Phantom over at The Phantom Soapbox. Even before taking office, She Guevara has already threatened the President’s son with a subpoena because of an effective meme on Twitter, and Eric Swalwell has expressed a willingness to use nuclear weapons to enforce gun control. Both may be joking or speaking hyperbolically, but they tipped their hands. It’s clear that these socialists are willing to use government power to force through the social changes they want.

P. J. O’Rourke once suggested that we should not favor any government program that we were not willing to kill our own grandmother for. He reasoned that if she didn’t pay her taxes to support the program, the government would send an agent with a gun to collect the taxes and that further resistance could be fatal, so we only should support a government program if we really supported such an outcome. The Phantom wonders how many of our grandmothers these socialists are willing to sacrifice—

So there’s really only one question worth asking DemocRats in the USA and Liberals here: how many people are you willing to throw out of work to get your socialist plan enacted? How many will you imprison to enforce your regulation? How many senior citizens are you willing to freeze to death for your ecological fuel tax? How many resisters will you kill? Hmm?

One?
Ten?
Ten thousand?

The Communist’s answer was 100 million in the 20th Century. The entire nation of Canada, four times over, died for the myth of the Worker’s Paradise. The Chinese Communists are still at it.

Read the whole thing.

Math Is Hard, Facts Are Stubborn, …

… and socialist claims don’t add up. She Guevara’s latest silliness suggests that converting to a renewable energy economy will establish … oh, here are her own words—

As a matter of fact, it’s not just possible that we will create jobs and economic activity by transitioning to renewable energy, but it’s inevitable that we are going to create jobs. It’s inevitable that we’re going to create industry, and it’s inevitable that we can use the transition to a hundred percent renewable energy as the vehicle to truly deliver and establish economic, social and racial justice in the United States of America.

Ummm, I suppose Ms. Ocasio-Cortez is relying on the “fact” that the socialism being practiced in other countries isn’t the real thing, and that she and her comrades would finally get it right here in America. After all, the real world facts show that the proles in France (the intellectual cradle of Marxism and Post-modernism) are rebelling against a carbon fuel tax. And the socialist destruction of the carbon fuel industry in Venezuela has not had a positive effect on that country. (However, wrecking that industry was probably an unintended consequence of other socialist policies.)

Whatever.

What does seem to be true is that she’s been reasonably successful selling her brand of snake oil. She’s been elected to Congress. She’s developing a national following. And there seems to be a group of uneducated young people who are rallying to her promises of free stuff. It’s been suggested that she could be the Left’s answer to Donald Trump, a brash upstart who doesn’t play by the rules and who intuitively understands how to sell her program to a large segment of the voters. If that’s true, let’s hope that Reality catches up to her before she can do real damage.

Don’t Know Much About History

The Washington Free Beacon reports that She Guevara (AKA Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez) has compared her winning an election to the moon landing or establishment of civil rights. She’s quotes as saying:

We’ve done what we thought was impossible. We went to the moon. We electrified the nation. We established civil rights. We enfranchised the country. We dug deep and we did it. We did it, when no one else thought that we could. That’s what we did when so many of us won an election this year. That’s what so many of us did.

Neil Armstrong and Martin Luther King, Jr. were unavailable for comment. However, Sarah Hoyt has noted “WELL, MOON, MOONBAT….”

The good news is that She Guevara seems to be proving that her place in politics is to provide comic relief. The bad news is that her legislative proposals, if successful, would wind up increasing the federal budget much, much more than the Apollo program did during the ’60s. (NASA’s slice of the pie was a bit about 4 % then; it’s about 0.4 % now.)

Don’t Know Much Biology

There’s a post up over at Watts Up With That? which takes a look at She Guevara’s proposal for a Green New Deal. I suppose it’s “green” because the “thinking” behind it isn’t ripe yet. One of the goals for her Green New Deal would be “decarbonizing the manufacturing, agricultural and other industries” within ten years. Let’s set aside the financial cost of decarbonizing agriculture and simply consider biology and physics.

Human beings are carbon-based life forms. The vast majority of the energy that our bodies use to keep us alive is derived from chemical reactions that amount to burning the carbon in the food we eat. That food, whether plant or animal, was from other carbon-based life forms which, in turn, were alive because those critters grew by burning carbon. (Many plants actually store more carbon than they burn. That’s why animals eat them or humans burn them for fuel.)

Over my lifetime (I’ll be 71 on New Year’s Eve), hunger and malnutrition around the world have been greatly reduced by the mechanization of agriculture and the use of chemical supplements to fertilize and protect crops. All of that required an expenditure of energy that wasn’t possible by manual or animal-powered labor. How many windmills would it take to power a tractor and planting and harvesting equipment on a farm? A windmill is a set of sails catching the wind. Image a sail-powered tractor. Now add the additional losses of power transmission over wires and charging and discharging batteries. How much hydro? How large a solar array? And how much farm land would be lost to solar arrays? Most crops don’t do well in the shade. Oh, and most man-made pesticides are organic (that is, carbon-based) chemicals; so are most natural bug killers. Where will we get the energy needed to produce and distribute those chemicals to farms and apply them to the crops? Or will more of our fields’ produce go to feeding insects and less to people?

We’ve used so-called carbon-based energy over the past couple of centuries to power the revolutions in industry and agriculture that have drastically reduced hunger and made life better around the world. Actually, all of that energy has come from the Sun. The energy in sunshine from tens of millions of years ago was stored in chemical reactions in living organisms which were turned into coal, petroleum, and natural gas. We’ve been tapping into that stored energy. It may be that we’re returning carbon in the form of combustion products into the environment at an unhealthy rate. If so, we have other options. The uranium and thorium here on Earth are the decay products of heavy elements forged in stars that went supernova billions of years ago. We can tap into that stored energy, but there’s a different set of dangers in those sources.

Every time we do something, anything, the amount of entropy in the Universe increases. Everything has a cost. Thus far, the free market has shown superior performance over all other economic systems. Efficient agriculture developed in the US—but not in the USSR. The free market puts less of a drag on society than its competitors. Going to a what amounts to a green command economy seems doubly foolish—likely poorer performance in food production and proven worse efficiency in economic resource management.

Here’s an iron law of nature: There ain’t no such thing as a free lunch. Congress lacks to power to repeal it.

Everything Is Proceeding As I Have Foreseen

One of the advantages the Democrat safe districts offer for Republicans is the high likelihood of an extremist wacko holding such a seat. She Guevara’s election to Congress from such a safe seat in New York is a strategic victory for Republican that is already paying dividends even before she takes office. Politico has a report up about her threatening to primary other Democrats who don’t get in line with her agenda.

“All Americans know money in politics is a huge problem, but unfortunately the way that we fix it is by demanding that our incumbents give it up or by running fierce campaigns ourselves,” Ocasio-Cortez added. “That’s really what we need to do to save this country. That’s just what it is.”

The incoming congresswoman’s chief of staff, Saikat Chakrabarti, a co-founder of Justice Democrats, was blunter.

“We need new leaders, period,” he said on the call. “We gotta primary folks.”

Read the whole thing. Contemplate how well her scheme will go over with her new colleagues.

And buy popcorn futures.