Daily archives: March 15, 2011

Bahrain Anschluss

The fatter of these two evil ugly bastards is the King of Bahrain. Having invited in foreign armies to crush the pro-democracy protests of his own people, he has immediately let them loose on the demonstrators, who are being viciously attacked by them even as I type.

In classic anschluss fashion, the King has invited his people to “co-operate fully and to welcome” the invaders, as they attack them. He has simmediately declared a state of emergency, made demonstrations illegal, and attacked the protestors. Today they killed two and injured 200, many very seriously.

US Defence Secretary Robert Gates was in Bahrain the day before the Saudi invasion. The British Embassy issued a first travel advisory for Brits not to travel to Bahrain, also the day before the Saudi invasion. As I reported yesterday, the US agreement to the Saudi military crushing of democracy movements in the Gulf was part of a complex deal which included the surprise Arab League agreement to a no fly zone over Libya. Interestingly, in the BBC report linked above the US admit to advance knowledge of the Saudi invasion, but BBC News is now reporting they are denying it.

There is still absolutely no sign of condemnation from the UK or US of this outrageous crushing of Bahrain’s democracy movement by foreign military forces. The hypocrisy of our governments is breathtakingly audacious.

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A Silly Way To Boil Water

As regular readers know, I have been involved with a company installing gas turbines in Ghana. Our next plan is to collect the exhaust heat, generate steam from it, and feed that into a steam turbine to generate more electricity for no added fuel cost.

That is a sensible way to boil water. It can go wrong – any large machine operating with high forces can do damage. But even the worst disaster would be localised and over in an instant.

All nuclear power stations do is to boil water to make steam for a steam turbine. Given the massively disproportionate potential forces at play, the capacity for a Chernobyl style disaster killing thousands, and the long term dangers from nuclear waste, that really is a very very silly – and enormously expensive – way to boil water. You have to be slightly deranged to see nuclear power as sensible.

Those massively disproportionate potential forces in play lead to nuclear power always bringing in its train government lies, secrecy, restrictions on liberty and increase in state power. For those reasons politicians find it attractive. As it involves massive capital cost, there is a big industry lobby that backs it. As many of the full costs are met by the state, the corruption possibilities are good too. That is why the lobby for this crazed option is so strong.

Here is another better way to boil water:

Within 6 hours deserts receive more energy from the sun than humankind consumes within a year. An area of around the size of a living room, covered by mirrors for concentrating solar thermal power plants, would suffice to cover the electricity need of one person day and night – carbon free.

Thanks to Ingo for the desertec link.

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