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Saturday, October 06, 2012

Cost of the EU

  A few days ago Tim Congdon, a prominent economist and member of UKIP produced this pdf

How much does the European Union cost Britain?

  Considering that this is a subject our government have gone to great lengths to avoid ever answering one would expect journalists to be rather interested in it. After all

“News is something somebody doesn't want printed; all else is advertising.” - William Randolph Hearst (something similar is atributed to Orwell, who would have agreed with him on little else)

  Apparently not, or more likely there are very few journalists in our "news" advertising media.     I, in 2007, produced an estimate of £73 billion based purely on the monetary contribution and Comissioner Verheugen's public admission that 5.5% of GDP is destroyed by Brussels regulation.

    Mr Congdon:

  Nature of cost / % of / Rationale

1 - Direct fiscal cost / 1% / Relatively easy to quantify from official publications and balance- of-payments data; concept is of gross payments to EU institutions over which UK government has no further control.

2 - Costs of regulation / 5% / Mandelson 2004 to CBI conference 4% of GDP, but many other sources confirm approximate estimate of this size; many subsequent directives etc. have increased costs.

3 - Costs of resource / 3¼% / CAP long recognised to cause large resource misallocation. misallocation This may now be only ½% of GDP, but other EU protectionism estimated by Minford et al 2005 to cost further 3% of GDP.

4 - Cost of lost jobs / ¼% / Open UK labour market from 2004 allowed 700,000 Eastern Europeans into the UK, taking away jobs of over 100,000 UK-born people; labour market is still open.

5 - Costs of waste / ¼% / CFP involves fish discard and effective ‘gift’ to other nations of fraud and corruption fishing rights in UK territorial waters, but costs under 0.1% of GDP; waste of over-prescriptive water standards; abuse of UK student loan system.

6 - Contingent liabilities / ¼% / Costs of ‘benefits tourism’, plus some allowance for possible recapitalization of EIB and other EU institutions.

Total   10%
 Conclusion: the UK is about 10% of GDP worse-off because of its membership of the EU.

Which he estimates as having been about £150 billion.  

 The point I would like to make about this is that it is not only a reasoned assessment but an entirely reasonable one. He has not chosen the highest cost in each instance as some government reports (eg the Stern Report) do (Stern was rubbish for other reasons too - namely that they assumed all the initial catastrophe assumptions they were given without looking at evidence)..

  I'll give you an example of what he could have done.  

2 - Verheugen actually said 5.5%, Congdon has chosen to take only 5% but could equally have assumed the commissioner, being a eurocrat was understimating and then add 1/2% for increased regulation since then coming up with 7%. 

 3 - He ignores, for very good reason, an OECD report which said the common agricultural policy cost 4% on its own.

Had he assumed it even half correct that would have added another 1 1/2% to the misallocation cost, with which it would have been difficult for europhiles to argue.

  Those bring it up to 13% of GDP. Taking a more recent GDP estimate of £1,737 bn that would be £226 billion.   

 I am actively not saying that this latter figure is correct - I don't think it is. But I am saying that no honest europhile can claim Congdon's figures aren't a moderate and reasonable estimate.   

 Indeed more trustworthy than one would expect from the government - if they had been willing to give any.


At the end he translates the £150 bn figure into just over £5,000 per household. I have previously estimated that £1,200 of the £1,300 in each household electricity bill is government regulation and that bill is only 1/3rd of the total cost of electricity - the rest being paid thorugh higher prices on everything else.

That means £9,000 per household, unnecessarily, from those 2 alone. No wonder we aren't feeling better off.

Then look at the loss of, compounded, economic growrh this parasitism causes.

Being a glass half full sort of guy I prefer to look at this, not in terms of how much has been stolen from us, but in terms of how wealthy we will be once we get a government not committed to such parasitism.

Friday, October 05, 2012

Heinlein Letter

   Here is a republication of a letter, quite well known of in science fiction circles, written by Robert Heinlein to Ted Sturgeon, when he had gone dry, suggesting a number of plot ideas he could use.

  This is correctly thought of as an extraordinarily generous gensture by a writer. However the bits I am going to repost here are, with one greater than political exception, political ideas he shows which particulalry interest me:
a society where there are no criminal offences, just civil offences, i.e., there is a price on everything, you can look it up in the catalog and pay the price. You want to shoot your neighbor? Go ahead and shoot the bastard. He has a definite economic rating; deposit the money with the local clearing house within 24 hrs.; they will pay the widow. Morality would consist in not trying to get away with anything without paying for it. Good manners would consist in so behaving that no one would be willing to pay your listed price to kill you. Of course if your valuation is low and your manners are crude, your survival probabilities are low, too. Down in Paraguay murder is a private matter, the government figuring that either his friends and relatives will avenge the deceased, or he was a nogoodnick and who cares? There is another culture in which if a man kills another man, accidentally or on purpose, he must replace the other man, even to taking his wife and his name. Obviously our own pattern is not the only way of looking at crime; maybe we are prejudiced.
This idea, developed, should appeal to JWC. He hates all government, all authority, even though he is not fully aware of it—and he thinks money can do no wrong.
Here is another Campbell-type culture: why should government enforce private contracts at all? At present you can go into court and sue—and (sometimes) force another man to conform to his contract or wrest damages from him. Is there good reason for this to be a function of government? Should it not be a case of let the contractor beware? Why should society as a whole give a hoot whether or not the private, civil promises between two men are kept?...

We have an anarchist running a newspaper in this town, who is opposed to public roads, public schools, public anything—he maintains that it is not ethical for a majority to do anything collectively which each individual did not already have the right to do as an individual. This is an explosive notion; a corollary is that all taxation is wrong, all zoning laws are wrong, all compulsory education is wrong, all punishment by courts is wrong. In the mean time he lives in a well-policed society, his own considerable wealth protected by all these things he deplores. But one thing is sure: many of the things we take for granted are not necessary to a stable society,...

The central problem of philosophy, of religion, of all psychology is one so pervasive and so hard to come to grips with that it is largely ignored, just as fish ignore water. The solipsists deal with it and so did you in ULTIMATE EGOTIST (and so did I, quite differently, in THEY). It is the problem of the individual ego, the awareness of "I." There you sit, inside your skull. How long have you been there? Always. How long will you be there? Always. Environment changes—even your body, even your penis and balls, are nothing but environment. The "I" remains, the one unchangeable thing...and a thing utterly unaccounted for in all philosophy, all religion. Of, the double-talk on the subject has endless, but but that is what is has been: double-talk. Until we know how consciousness hooks onto matter and why and where it comes from, we don't know anything. And we don't. But the problem permits infinite variation in fiction.

I have had a dirty suspicion since I was about six that all consciousness is one and that all the actors I see around me (including my enemies) are myself, at different points in the record's grooves. I once partly explored this in a story called BY HIS BOOTSTRAPS. I say "partly" because I touched on one point only—and the story was mistaken by the readers (most of them) for a time-travel paradox story...

You could have a hell of a hassle in a society in which there were a group, large or small, of illuminati who really do know what happens after death (as compared with the fakers we now have) and who in consequence have different motivations and different purposes from the others who are the way we are now.....

The bloke sells dreams, in pills. Euphoria, along with your fantasy, is guaranteed. The pills are not toxic, nor are they harmful the way narcotics are, but they are habit-forming as the euphoria dreams are much better than reality. Can the Pure Foods & Drugs people act?....

Story about two countries fighting not with men, not with robots, but with mutated-animal soldiers. Fighter-pilot cats (all the gadgetry automatic, but the piloting done by the supercat), Rhino tanks, ape paratroopers, sea lion "frogmen" etc. (included because we are pretty close to at least robotic UAVs which produce such moral problems)

Thursday, October 04, 2012

If Pigs could Fly The Conservatives Would Have An Idea

This article is now up on ThinkScotland. Please post comments there:

  This press release is the Tories' brilliant new thought on keeping the lights on:
"Scottish Conservative energy spokeswoman Mary Scanlon MSP said:

“Given the SNP’s obsession with windfarms, it makes sense for existing ones to be made more effective, meaning there will be less need for others to be built in future.

“We cannot have a situation where there is a single-minded drive to force windfarms on communities across Scotland, regardless of how little energy they produce.

“People will find it hard to accept that windfarms are producing energy which is being simply wasted.

“Electricity storage would solve a lot of problems for the Scottish Government, especially as councils and residents across Scotland are losing patience with its bullying approach on the matter.”

    Certainly if energy could be easily and cheaply stored  many of our problems would be solved.

   And if pigs could fly we could raise bacon in dovecots.

   There are some basic laws of physics that get in the way. Pigs would need to far more efficiently burn food to fly (except in the cargo holds of 747s). In the same way the Laws of Thermodynamics prevent transfering energy from one state (electricity) to another (something you can store) without significant losses. Perhaps they should just repeal the Law of Gravity - phusicists consider that marginally less fundamental than the thermodynamics ones.

    We actually do have a storage method which is pretty inefficient. Cruachan above Loch Awe is a pump storage site. Off peak energy from Hunterston is sent the relatively short distance, as the cable flies, and pumps seawater 360m up Ben Cruachan and lets it run down again when needed. This is as efficient as we are going to get since it is a physically simple system that does not involves dissociating atoms as batteries & some other magic solutions would. It returns about 60% of the power put in. Add the losses from transporting the power to and from and we get back about 55%.

  Cruachan can produce 400MW. When built in the early 1960s it cost £14 million. In inflation terms that is £200 million now but,  the Forth Bridge cost £19 million and is now costed, for reasons no Holyrood MSP is willing to explain, at £2,600 million. So £1.5 billion, for a project run by them would not be unexpected.

    With the Westinghouse AP1000 gigawatt reactor on sale at £800 million worldwide another Cruachan might just about make sense, if another equally viable site were known of & it could be done at the lower price. because it uses off peak nuclear power which has a marginal cost of about zero.

    But as a way of pretending windmill, electricity, already far and away more expensive than any commercial power source, makes any sense it is merely piling new subsidy on old subsidies to hide how expensive and unreliable it is.

   The shame of this is not that this is what the Conservatives are saying. It is that this is the what the Conservative radical thinkers are saying

   Most of them are happy to simply go along with what the "Holyrood Consensus" wants until their brand, someday, "detoxifies" itself.

    Proving not only that pigs can't fly but that dinosaurs can't either.

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Wednesday, October 03, 2012

"Separation of Powers" As Important In The Media To Freedom As in Government - The BBC Monopoly Makes Britain A Totalitarian State

  OK so the BBC, as a state owned media monopoly, is inherently likely to promote authoritarianism and allow government to get away with failure, as explained yesterday in the Harvard report of effects of state ownership worldwide.

  But does the trend prove the particular instance. After all the BBC say they are an upstanding reputable organisation whose Charter specifically requires thattheir reporting is balanced. And Pravda means "Truth" thereby proving the Soviet media was never biased or censored. Perhaps it is possible to run state media without bias - the proof is in the viewing.

  A corollary to that would be that if the BBC (or Pravda) were ever proven to have lied about being balanced and truthful then their continued assertions to the contrary would simply prove that there are no circumstances when such protestations of innocence could be treated as coming from a sincere source.

  I have previously pointed out that their party coverage is slanted, not only in the way they talk favourablt about approved parties, which may be claimed as marginally subjective, but also in the, absolutely objective number of times they mention each party. In that purely objective way the BBC, provably give the Greens 10 times more coverage than UKIP despite the fact that at the last election UKIP got 4 times as many votes. That means that, provably, the BBC were 39/40ths (97.5%) corrupt. Currently UKIP are 8 times more popular in the polls than the Greens. Including the obvious bias in what they actually say it looks likely that the BBC is, in party politics well above 99%  corrupt - 100% to the nearest whole number.

   BBC coverage of the BNP has been, subjectively but undeniably, far more4 critical than of other parties & worse, far less willing to allow them to reply. I do not think this can be denied even by the BBC itself.

  Discussing the BNP has been made a ticklish subject precisely because of the many years of denigration by the state media. However anybody of a liberal mind has no option but to denounce the way they are censored. They represent a significant number of people and in a democracy are as entitled to free speech as anybody. Indeed years of obvuious bias against the BNP, the stae media have been "denormalising" freedom of speech - I assume deliberately - and it is time for those of us who believe in it to say so.

   Also by any objective description the BNP are nowhere close to "fascist" - indeed they are the only party (in my opinion something of which UKIP should have some shame) to have expressed regret at the dissection of 1800 Serbs, in Kosovo, by NATO police under the authority of our and other NATO governments. Unfortunately the claim not to be Fascist & even Nazi, clearly cannot equally be made by the BBC & the Lobour, Conservative & LibDem parties who all supported such genocide.

   Being opposed to medai censorship in principle works only if you are willing to stand up for the principle. Otherwise you are simply calling for an end to censorship that doesn't benefit you - a proposition less attractive to everybody else.

  OK so what should we want. As shown by the report even when the state doesn't own the media, in a free market it tends to fall into the hands of particular, politically ambitious families who get what the report quaintly call "amenity potential" but others would call power and favours out of the deal.

   This is an improvement over totalitarianism but well short of ideal.

   I previously suggested that the BBC should be replaced with an organisation with the same title whose job is simply to auction off airtime, hour by hour. This would make the airwaves accesible to anybody with a little start up capital. I would now add to that that there should be a specific limit of no new organisation being able to buy more than 15% of viewership over the year. There would have to be ways of ensuring that there is little crossover in shareholding between 2 "separate" organisations (yesterday I mentioned the intricate web of holdings in Singapore which lead back to the Lee family).

   The media have immense power and such power cannot be destroyed it can only be divided into uniys too small to do much harm. That is the basic intent of the American Constitution (separation of powers) and it has proven a wise one.

   The state, worldwide, does not have so much direct control over the papers. This may be, as the report suggests, because newspapers, being slower movingm can be stopped more easily  anyway. It may also be because the press had come into existence before the mass state and so was more difficult to grab; or that airwaves, being limited, are a natural monopoly that only the state is in a position to control; or that ultimately anybody can set up a paper (in Russia it was the samizdat press) whereas you have to have a large amount of money and equipment to broadcast & so can be grabbed; or that broadcasting is a more powerful particularly at the emotional level so who cares what the papers say.

   Or a mixture of them all.

   As for the press we also need some way of cutting the control of sinmgle owners, families or other cartels.One way would be to prevent owners buying more than 15% of the industry. In fact that is what we do & we have a Monopoly Commission to enforce it. However they let Murdoch past, because he had the "amenity potential" to get the support of politicians.

   He only lost it when he decided he wanted to expand Sky to make it a real competitor for the BBC & they & the Guardian played up a non-story about hacking, with many lies in it, to attack him - a pointed proof of the power of the media and untrustworthiness of those who wield it.

   If the monopoly Commission is too subjective to be left in state hands we could simply make it a firm law that nobody can buy more than 15% of the media. No flexibility.

   For those who already do we can either just make them sell or, if this is too harsh, as corportation tax is reduced in our growing economy, keep an exception to conglomerates who own more than 15% of the media (& perhaps some other industries).. This would mean somebody with a really good business model could continue but anybody making ordinary profits would come under constant pressure to move on.

   I think there is also a strong case for reducing tax rates for workers co-operatives in the media, to an extent that would make them common.

    The dividing line between partnerships, as some programme making companies are & employees co-operatives is more social than legal anyway.

    However it is done a free manistream media is essential to real democracy and we don't have it at the moment.

    "the BBC?s coverage of the issue abandoned the pretence of impartiality long ago.” Jeremy Paxman

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Tuesday, October 02, 2012

Report Reveals State Media Ownership (BBC & C4) Is Corrupting And Has "No Benefits"

  This is taken from this pdf report from Harvard,which examines media ownership worldwide and concludes that there is a strong correlationn between state ownership and autocracy, poverty, poor health outcomes and general bad government.

  The assesments of the amount of state ownership are open to question.
   For example concluding that Russian TV is 96% state owned because it is owned by private companies in which the Russian government has a virtually controlling share.

   Another assessment is that in Britain the state only owns 60% of media but this excludes the fact that Channel 5 does virtually no News coverage while the state owned BBC1,2 & C4 specialise in news and current affairs. Excluding C5 would make it 75% (legally a business counts as monopoly at 70%). In fact it is fairly clear that, because of the disparate news coverage between the remaining channels (not to mention the sometimes heavy handed state domination of ITV) that the state controls well over 80% of broadcast terrestrial news in the UK. Pigou was an economist who said that government intervention was likely to be in the public interest, hence the frequent mentions of a "pigouvian world".

Some excerpts from the report:

We examine the patterns of media ownership in 97 countries around the world. Public choice theory is the theory that , while those running the state may claim that they are doing whatever they do to "protect the most vulnerable in society" or whatever the current shibbolth is, that the results show they are only serving their own interests.

We find that almost universally the largest media firms are owned by the government or by private families. Government ownership is more pervasive in broadcasting than in the printed media. We then examine two theories of government ownership of the media: the public interest (Pigouvian) theory, according to which government ownership cures market failures, and the public choice theory, according to which government ownership undermines political and economic freedom. The data support the second theory. (P1)

public choice theory holds that a government-owned media outlet would distort and manipulate information to entrench the incumbent politicians, preclude voters and consumers from making informed decisions, and ultimately undermine both democracy and markets. Because private and independent media supply alternative views to the public, they enable individuals to choose among political candidates, goods, and securities—with
less fear of abuse by unscrupulous politicians, producers, and promoters.

Moreover, competition among media firms assures that voters, consumers, and investors obtain, on average, unbiased and accurate information. The role of such private and competitive media is held to be so important for the checks-and-balances system of modern democracy that they have come to be called “the fourth estate,” along with the executive, the legislature, and the courts. (P2)
  Many hypothesize that the “amenity potential,” also known as “the private benefits of control,” arising from owning media outlets is extremely high.
In other words, the nonfinancial benefits, such as fame and influence, that are obtained by controlling a newspaper or a television station must be considerably higher than those that come from controlling a firm of comparable size in, say, the bottling industry. Economic theory then predicts that private control of media firms should be highly concentrated: the control of widely held firms with a high amenity potential is up for grabs and cannot be sustained in equilibrium.9 Our findings are broadly consistent with this prediction. (P3)
  We find that government ownership of the media is greater in countries that are poorer, have greater overall state ownership in the economy, lower levels of school enrollments, and more autocratic regimes. The last finding in particular casts We then consider the consequences of state ownership of the media, as measured by freedom of the press, political and economic freedom, and health outcomes. To this end, we run regressions of a variety of outcomes across countries on state ownership of the media, holding constant various country characteristics. We find pervasive evidence of “worse” outcomes associated with greater state ownership of the media (especially the press). The evidence is inconsistent with the Pigouvian view of state ownership of the media. (P4)     The degree to which family ownership media can iinterlink with state ownership is given on Page 15, showing how thr otherwise admirable Lee family ruling that country and the state itself hold, through a labyrinthine series of links, at least 74.46% of the media.   families and the state own the media throughout the world (Figure 4). In the sample of 97 countries, only 4 percent of media enterprises are widely held. Less than 2 percent have other ownership structures, and a mere 2 percent are employee owned. On average,
family-controlled newspapers account for 57 percent of the total and familycontrolled television stations for 34 percent of the total. State ownership is also vast. On average, the state controls approximately 29 percent of newspapers and 60 percent of television stations. The state owns a huge share—72 percent—of the top radio stations. On the basis of these findings, for the remaining analysis we classify ownership into three categories: state, private

(which is the sum of the family, widely held, and employee categories), and other.

The nearly total absence of firms with dispersed ownership in the media industry is extreme, even by comparison with the finding of high levels of ownership concentration in large firms around the world. This result is consistent with the insight that the large amenity potential of ownership of media outlets creates competitive pressures toward ownership concentration.

In a sense, both governments and controlling private shareholders get the same benefit from controlling media outlets: the ability to influence public opinion and the political process. (P17)
  World ownership tables (P18 and following)   Alternatively, from the political perspective, privately owned newspapers are easier to censor than privately owned television. Because television can be broadcast live, control of content is more likely to require ownership. In this case, governments that want to censor news would own television. (P22)   None of the top five stations in Brazil, Mexico, Peru, and the United States are state owned; this occurs in only one other country (Turkey) in our sample. In Western Europe, in contrast, a substantial number of public broadcasters push the regional state ownership average to 48 percent by count and 55 percent by share. (P23)   Levels of state ownership of the radio are lower in countries with higher primary school enrollments. Perhaps most interestingly from the theoretical perspective, levels of state ownership of all forms of media are sharply and statistically significantly lower in less autocratic countries.(P25)   The data show that state monopoly is largely a feature of poor countries—there is almost no incidence of state monopolies of newspapers, and relatively few of television, in the upper two quartiles of income distribution. (P26)   Luigi Zingales31 argues that one benefit of private media is to provide information for stock market participants, thereby improving security pricing and revealing abuses by corporate insiders. The last row of Table 7 shows that greater state ownership of the media is associated with a lower number of companies (per capita) listed on the national stock market. These results suggest that state control of information flow is detrimental to financial development, which is consistent with the public choice theory.(P29)   Lenin asked a pointed question: whom is the free press for? Our analysis has focused on political and economic freedom, but a Pigouvian could presumably argue that the true benefits of state ownership accrue to the disadvantaged members of society. Freed from the influence of the capitalist owners, state-controlled media can serve the social needs of the poor. A public choice theorist would argue, in contrast, that the government woulduse its ownership of the media to muzzle the press and to prevent the disadvantaged groups from voicing their grievances. Government ownership should then be associated with inferior social outcomes.
The contrasting predictions of the two views can be evaluated empirically.

Table 8 reports the relationships between state ownership of the media and health indicators, holding constant our usual controls. Countries with greater state ownership of the media exhibit lower life expectancy, greater infant mortality, and less access to sanitation and health system responsiveness.

Private media ownership is associated with health as well as economic and political outcomes, which is consistent with the public choice but not with the public interest theory. (P32)
  At some broad level, these results are unsurprising, as intellectuals since John Milton in the seventeenth century have advocated free press and independent media. Still, the results do provide support for the public choiceagainst public interest theory of media ownership in an environment where, as Coase has argued, the public interest case is especially strong. Yet the data are inconsistent with these Pigouvian arguments and reveal no benefits of state ownership (P38) -------------------------------     This is not entirely supportive of free marketism, since it concludes that the disproportionate ownership of the media by family groups can only be corrupting and is inevitable in a wholly free market.. Nonetheless it is a damning condemnation of state ownership of the media.     Britain, with the BBC & Channel 4, is by no means the most corrupted, not even the worst among wealthy countries, but it does tend that way. It is one of the worst in the Anglosphere countries.     Solutions tomorrow.

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Monday, October 01, 2012

Low Level Radiation Scare - More Proof That It Is A Fraud

  Another useful article, if any more are neded, that the theory that low level radiation is harmful, or indeed anything but beneficial, is false and has been maintained by government emopire building bureaucracies.

!green earth was created out of the radioactive waste products of the great nuclear reactions that spawned the galaxies and the planets. Life arose out of, and adapted to, a much higher level of natural radiation than exists today. Nuclear radiation (ionizing radiation: alpha, beta and gamma radiation) is essential to Life; without it, organisms wither and die.
Despite all the radioactive material we create, this radioactivity is nowhere near enough to keep up with the decay of the earth’s natural radioactivity, which becomes inexorably smaller every day. Thus, most populations today are “under-dosed” and would benefit from more irradiation in the range of interest."

   This may be a not entirely proven statement since it is hundreds of millions of years since we had a much higher background radiation, - from 4 to 8 times originally and twice current at 0.7-1 gigayears ago. On the one hand that means we have a long time to evolve - on the other hand the salt content of our blood is fair analogue to that of sea water when we first exited the sea & despite the fact that not needing salt would be a lot easier, we still do.  

    From the conclusion of the same article  

"The results of the study contradict the LNT hypothesis. From the database of almost 700,000 shipyard workers, including about 107,000 nuclear workers, two closely matched study groups were selected, consisting of 28,542 nuclear workers with working lifetime doses over 5 mSv (many received doses well in excess of 50 mSv), and 33,352 non-nuclear workers. The data showed that the nuclear workers had a significantly lower death rate from “all malignant neoplasms” though this fact was omitted from the Summary of Findings and not reported in UNSCEAR 1994.
These risk decrements are inconsistent with the LNT hypothesis and do not appear to be explainable by the constantly invoked “healthy worker effect.” The nuclear and the non-nuclear workers were similarly selected for employment, were afforded the same health care thereafter, and except for exposure to shipyard radiation, performed the identical type of work, with a similar median age of entry into employment of about 34 years. This provides evidence with extremely high statistical power that low levels of ionizing radiation are associated with decreased risks.
The 10 million dollar 437 page report was not published...."

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Sunday, September 30, 2012

Unlimited Energy & Wealth Any Time We Get rid Of The Eco-Nazis And elect UKIP

Dutch prospective unconventional gas reserves may total some 500,000 billion cubic meters (bcm). This is enough to cover the total current European gas supply for more than a thousand years. Indeed it is two and a half times the world’s total proven natural gas reserves.


Some [nuclear] plants completed in the late 1980s have cost as much as $5 billion, 30 times what they cost 15 years earlier. Inflation, of course, has played a role, but the consumer price index increased only by a factor of 2.2 between 1973 and 1983, and by just 18% from 1983 to 1988. What caused the remaining large increase? {It was entirly caused by government regulatory ratcheting] regulatory ratcheting was driven not by new scientific or technological information, but by public concern and the political pressure it generated. Changing regulations as new information becomes available is a normal process, but it would normally work both ways. The ratcheting effect, only making changes in one direction,

  Since nuclear is. by orders of magnitude, the safest power source the ratcheting is almost entirely parasitic and we could reduce nuclear power costsw by at least 75% if the political classes wanted it.


  Even the ecoliar industry can now produce carbon free products.   "specially marked packages of Domino® Sugar have been certified CarbonFree®

  Carbon free sugar being, like dehydrated water or honest Green scaremongerer being impossible.


Much of the truth about nuclear comes from SONE


The biggest obstacle to solar power satellites is the cost of putting the necessary hardware in space. What this current post does is describe a way to reduce the cost of putting the materials into space far enough that energy from power satellites can compete with coal (2 cents per kWh), assuming we amortize the total cost over a 10-year period.

With commercial space costs falling fast the cost of SPS drops in step.  Since these are automated, with few or no moving parts the running cost of providing power is virtually zero.

Uranium reserves are sufficient to keep our economy going for more than 5 billion years; thorium is 4 times that; the amount of solar energy going to waste within the orbit of the Moon is enough to vapourise the planet and thus millions of time more than we can use.

Only wholly corrupt politicians and their creatures, bent on scaremongering to maintain their power, ever claim that "the era of cheap energy is over".

The fact is that the era of cheap energy has barely dawned and only the corrupt eco-Nazis wish to pull us back into the darkness.

& to prove how corrupt even the best man in the current cabinet is and how UKIP is our "only friend in the room" here is Christopher Booker

George Osborne's CO2 tax will double UK electricity bills

There's a nasty shock in store for the British householder when a new 'carbon' tax comes into force

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