You energy charlatans want publicity? I’ll give you publicity…
I get to meet a lot of great people from writing all this energy stuff. People from all over; happily, many from the audience I’d targeted originally. Such as, people not affiliated with energy that wanted to understand it more. People that smelled a rat when reading the main media discourse, where circular ignorance falls into groupthink and commentators that don’t know energy suddenly become experts on ‘energy transitions’.
Sometimes though, I hear directly from the rats themselves. Every day’s inbox brings a handful of pleas to promote something, or interview some one, or ‘Would you like to write an article about this?’ Some are good hearted, some are sincere and some are…like this.
Exhibit A: A news release entitled: “Power To The People — How One Small City In California Is On Its Way To Self-Sufficiency Thanks To Community Choice Aggregation”. The news release was a glowing testimonial about how small communities (12,000 people in this instance) can throw off the shackles of hydrocarbons (fossil fuels, as they call them) and go all green. This community did it through a power company called Pilot Power. From the news release: “In 2020, the city procured 100% renewable energy, going above and beyond the state’s requirements…Mike LeBarre, Mayor of King City, continued ‘From the very beginning, Pilot Power wanted us to succeed, and they made us believe we could.’ “
One small catch: Pilot Power is required to publish a “Power content label” showing where their power comes from. The most recent label shows only 29 percent coming from renewables, and the other 71 percent coming form unknown sources – open market purchases. Given that California relies, like everyone, on hydrocarbons and out-of-state power at times of high demand, the odds of that 71 percent being only from renewables are about zero. I contacted the person that sent me the news release, asking them to confirm the city’s “100% renewable energy” procurement. I kindly asked twice, and received no replies. All of a sudden they don’t want to talk to me anymore.
Exhibit B: This one is laugh-out-loud funny. It was another news release from more charlatans looking for publicity. So here you go. “THIS IS YOUR COVID-19 WAKE-UP CALL: IT IS 100 SECONDS TO MIDNIGHT” this headline blared, in reference to the “doomsday clock”. The release grimly points out that in January 2020 (one year ago) the clock’s hands moved to 100 SECONDS TO MIDNIGHT. This year’s chilling news release was to remind us: “The hands of the clock remain at 100 seconds to midnight, as close as ever.”
What makes this so compellingly funny is the context these fools openly lay out. The doomsday clock was started in 1947 to convey the looming threat to the planet from a nuclear disaster. Today, the clock’s main thrust is still a nuclear threat of some sort, but just to be contemporary, the “Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists” – the official timekeepers – have thrown climate change into the mix. Unsure of what they are now supposed to be frightening children with, the release drones on in a Bela Lugosi voice (sounds best in my head) about how we are all dancing with disaster, right on the very edge, due to the existence of nuclear power and nuclear weapons, the ravages of COVID-19, and fossil fuel usage.
For 74 years, this gang of degenerates has been droning on about how we are seconds from apocalypse, metaphorically speaking. They now like the clock so much that they just rotate in the latest doom that the world’s media falls over itself to propagate. In another 74 years, they will be shouting about the new doom, whatever it may be. I will bet it won’t be nuclear power, climate change, or a pandemic, and I will also bet that the faithful will have kept the clock going.
In one final irony, the Doomsday clock news release includes a recommendation/plea: “Governments, major communications technology firms, academic experts, and responsible media organizations can cooperate to find practical and ethical ways to combat internet-enabled misinformation and disinformation.”
All these fools say this stuff with a straight face. But anyway, here you go. You want me to publicize your misinformation/disinformation/fear mongering? Happy to help.
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