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'More Work to Do' But 'Major Step Forward': Progressives Welcome Biden's $2 Trillion Green Energy Plan

Originally published at http://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/07/14/more-work-do-major-step-forward-progressives-welcome-bidens-2-trillion-green-energy

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Cue up Lucy holding the football for Charlie Brown.

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If progressives really think that this money won’t be just a wealth transfer to the corporations then the climate movement is even more hopeless than I thought.

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Yes, we MUST replace fossil fuel with renewable energy! Renewables include solar, wind, water, and geothermal energy. I hope we really get going on harnessing sunshine, wind, water, and geothermal energy to generate enough electric power to run our entire economy!

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I truly hope the money will be for the corporations to hire workers to install and operate the equipment needed to harness lots of solar, wind, water, and geothermal energy to replace fossil fuel especially coal. With energy storage included in the plans, it might save as much on healthcare by not burning so much smoky to burn fossil fuel as it saves on extracting fossil fuel from the ground and hauling it to where it would be burned to produce coal power.

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Joe Biden:
Saying what you wiII do, and DOING what you say you wiII do—are 2 different things.

Perhaps making a real commitment such as…Hmmmm. o.k. If Joe does not hit the ground running and make changes quickIy—then —hmmm O.K. By month 6, if we see no GREEN action, we can… hmmm… o.k feature Joe in a draw and quarter party. That seems fair—fuIfiII your committments Joe, or make pieces of yourself avaiIabIe for paper weights etc
SAVE the planet Joe or die trying. PIus the DNC could make a of money on those paperweights! Yes, I know weird thoughts— but HEY! It’s BastiIIe DAY!

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Since watching “Planet of the Humans” for the third time, I just see these pronouncements out of the PR departments of the Democratic Party as pure unadulterated bullshit - not to mince words.

Are ‘progressives’ like the ‘environmentalists’ depicted in “Planet” ??

I think so - brain dead - ‘without the brains God gave geese’ - to quote a favorite line from “The Mountain Men”, with Charleton Heston and Brian Keith.

Luckily, things are getting worse in a big hurry.

I see this as the only real chance for change - once these charletons and criminal syndicate type ‘business people’ are exposed for what they are - psychopaths.

For me a psychopath is a person who doesn’t care - the two most powerful words in the language.

That’s the Dark Side - when you have given up being human.

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Let’s face it, even if this “plan” would be implemented, by the time it was voted on in a democratic house it would be down to about 700 billion, and most of that will be in tax incentives (cuts) to big businesses in order to “incentivize” them to go green, some time down the road of course.
I can’t help but go back to the old saying “a leopard never changes it’s spots”. Joe has never been an environmentalist. I doubt very much he’ll magically become one on November 4, 2020.
But hey, thanks to “ blue no matter who” we will all have to hold our noses, vote for Joe, and hope for the best.
Second verse same as the first…

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Biden’s “plan calls for … shifting to a power sector free from carbon pollution by 2035.”

At first glance, this sounds pretty good. But now look at the fine print. In 2019, emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) by the U.S. electric power sector were … about 32% of total U.S. energy-related CO2 emissions.

Now, “Energy production of all types accounts for 72 percent of all emissions.”

So, by 2035, he’s promising to reduce US CO2 emissions by 32% of 72%, or by 23%.

Big deal.

Plus, at most, it’s merely a promise. Biden’s promises to us don’t matter: he only fulfills his promises to his corporate donors.

Compare the promises made by Obama while campaigning with Obama’s actions in office. Does anyone think there’s even a slight chance Biden will feel obligated to fulfill any of the promises he makes to get elected?

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Somebody pointed out a few weeks ago that all the elected president has to say the next day is, "Guess what. I’ve changed my mind," as he hands the country back to Wall Street et al.
** I’m in my eighties and remember quite a few that have said and done that. If the orange flatulence has taught us anything, it is that you cannot trust a politician unless you can lock him/her into their stated policy with a legal document and witnessed signature. (and even that is chancy)
;-})

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I’m no friend of Biden or of US electoral politics in general, but one interesting plank was the return of passenger rail, including the Northern New England line between Montréal and Boston via northern New England. Students, professors, sport fans and tourists from afar keen on the autumn leaves…

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As a member of the ASE (American society of engineers) I would like to point out that about ten years ago there was a study published that suggested that it would take 2 to 3 trillion dollars just to repair the current transportation infrastructure of the USA. And another 1 trillion per year to keep up with demands for a growing population. And that’s just for the roads, bridges, airports and seaports.
When sanders said at least ten trillion to switch to a green economy, he was definitely low balling. However, it needs done.
Anybody think Joe and the current democratic leadership are up to the challenge?

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Worse, he’ll engage some amount of minimal motion, and expect us to confuse it with progress. Kind of like the ACA.

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I have not read it yet. But I will be awfully surprised if it does anything other than create jobs elsewhere, not here.

I also have a feeling that whatever they do, (nomatter whether its Biden or Trump) it will somehow manange to make a lot of urban Americans, the core Democratic constituency, homeless. Turning their affordable multifamily buildings into apartments for the rich only, one way or another. GATS does all this and as long as we dont challenge it we’re goners.

I’ll read it and lets see if I’m right.

Nobody gets it, unfortunately.

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First let me state that I’m going to vote for Biden because Trump is a psychopathic piece of shit and much, much more. But Biden is not worth very much. He is, basically, a moderate Republican at best. He’s worthless. We need to vote him in this time and either hope to hell he dies soon, or if not, vote the son of a bitch out in four years. Four wasted years where nothing is going to be done for any progressive policies. Biden is nothing but the lesser of two evils. Trump is a psychopath that the fucking Christian whack jobs put into office. And they will try to do it again. Jesus, how I despise christianity. I am aware of the contradiction of the terms I just used.

We need to free ourselves of two things in the United States. Capitalism and Christianity. Both of these totally fucked up institutions are destroying this nation.

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Some visually-provoked stream of consciousness (sorry): The following passage from Gil Scott-Heron is a response to the photo, which bestows on the old man a wonderful, fabulous floating-in-space look:

A rat done bit my sister Nell.
(with Whitey on the moon)
Her face and arms began to swell.
(and Whitey’s on the moon)
I can’t pay no doctor bill.
(but Whitey’s on the moon)
Ten years from now I’ll be paying still.
(while Whitey’s on the moon)

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Geothermal is often called renewable (e.g. ~https://www.americangeosciences.org/critical-issues/faq/why-geothermal-energy-renewable-resource-can-it-be-depleted) but as discussed in that link, a given well used to extract geothermal energy can become depleted (because it isn’t connected to the rest of the earth’s heat in a way that is fast enough to replenish the heat that is taken from the well). Geothermal is interesting because unlike wind and solar it doesn’t need storage (so it is in the same boat as hydro). There are a limited number of potential sites and as @PSwanee has pointed out, technology very similar to the fracking used for natural gas and oil is required to start or keep working certain geothermal sites.

If you look more into the storage problem, you will quickly see that it is a very difficult to solve. The amount of electrical energy storage we now have expressed in seconds of full power to the US grid is quite small (I’ve seen the number somewhere but can’t find it now - maybe we have a few seconds and we need days worth really). This paper ~https://www.eesi.org/papers/view/energy-storage-2019 looks like a nice top level summary of the problem - I’ll have to read that one.

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Ah, all the progressives are oohing and ahing about Biden’s announcement of a $2 trillion “green energy” plan. If true, it will be a scam, with most of the money going to the banks and the big multinationals and the oil companies. If not true, it’s just more grasping at straws by the powerless.

Spending more money to prop up the ACA and shovel more money to the for-profit health-care system. (Probably) $200 billion a year for ten years, going to the big multinationals for “green energy.” And, hacking away at the bloated “national security” budget is something Biden simply will not do. So, after repetitive massive tax cuts for the corporate and individual wealthy, going all the way back to Reagan, where does this money come from? It’s just more debt that we’re on the hook for.

But, I shouldn’t worry about that because the austerity-minded on both sides of the aisle will instantly start screaming, with an establishment Dim in the White House, that we simply can’t afford it. We boast about being the richest country in the world, but, the moment there’s a pressing need that doesn’t mostly benefit those rich of ours, our legislators start pleading poverty. And Biden’s always been one of them. The motto of Congress these days ought to be, “If we can’t piss money on the rich, then fuck it.”

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I cannot believe a word they say because I see what they’ve done and not done.

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Well, this is what we have now:

~https://mobile.twitter.com/Acyn/status/1283180585028956160