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Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Obamaland Is in China

Posted by on Tue, Aug 21, 2012 at 8:44 AM

The country we hoped for when Obama was elected turns out to be on the other side of the world. High-speed rails:

With the world's longest network of tracks and some of its most advanced trains, China's high-speed rail system effortlessly evokes the future. But the country's latest innovation takes unlikely inspiration from the past. Shaped like an ancient Chinese sword, China's newest bullet train slices through the air at a maximum speed of 311 miles per hour, capable of traveling from Beijing to Shanghai in less than three hours and four-and-a-half times faster than the average speed of trains plying Amtrak's busy Boston-Washington Acela route (where speeds are limited by conventional train traffic).

In the future, trains like this might also be able to dart from city to city without even having to stop for passengers. Designer Chen Jianjun has dreamed up a system of pods that slide on and off the tops of trains in transit, loading and unloading passengers at high speed without the train actually stopping, which currently adds two-and-a-half hours to the journey from Beijing to Guangzhou.

Electric cars:
As a result, China has more electric taxis in operation than anywhere in the world and is likely to extend its lead. On Beijing's outskirts, electric Fotons ferry passengers to and from the Great Wall. In the southern city of Shenzhen, which has the world's largest fleet of zero-carbon taxis and buses, cabbies drive hundreds of e6s, electric cars manufactured by Warren Buffett-backed automaker BYD. Shenzhen's government wants 24,000 electric vehicles on the city's roads and 12,750 charging stations by the end of this year.
In 2010, China surpassed the United States to become the world's largest energy consumer. To meet its seemingly limitless electicity needs, China is turning to its solar industry, which already leads the world in panel production, and gearing up to produce gigantic solar plants.

Solar energy:
A solar farm capable of generating 1 gigawatt of power is planned in Datong, a city in Shanxi province known for its coal reserves, while in Inner Mongolia a Chinese firm and an American company have teamed up to build a solar plant capable of cranking out 2 gigawatts, making it the world's largest, with double the capacity of most active U.S. nuclear reactors.

At least Seattle has the Bullitt (an Obama island).

Something is better than nothing. And nothing is better than Rmoney world.


Comments (10) RSS

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Pope Peabrain 1
You know, anybody who hoped that Obama would be some kind of superman miracle worker in the U.S. really needs to have their head examined. What he has accomplished is far more than could be expected, already, and he gets no credit as it is, without statements like yours.
Posted by Pope Peabrain on August 21, 2012 at 9:31 AM · Report this
wingedkat 2
Indeed @1. The president is a powerful position, but it is not a dictatorship. He needs cooperation and public support to get things done, and he hasn't had much of either.
Posted by wingedkat on August 21, 2012 at 10:33 AM · Report this
Dr_Awesome 3
China's high-speed rail network has also suffered serious build-quality issues leading to some horrific high-speed accidents.

The price of very rapid expansion.
Posted by Dr_Awesome on August 21, 2012 at 10:44 AM · Report this
I'd rather have it our way than fucking Communist rule and one-child policies, you moron.
Posted by fotini901 on August 21, 2012 at 11:14 AM · Report this
this is a very small sampling of Chinese society and is not representative of the culture as a whole, you moron.
Posted by ElstonGunn on August 21, 2012 at 12:28 PM · Report this
@4 is right, there's no nation that has high speed rail without commynist dictatorship. why can't you morons realize this? what are ya, ignoramuses?
Posted by Spain Italy France Germany UK on August 21, 2012 at 12:59 PM · Report this
History. This thread is in serious need of a bit of historical perspective.

The US built it's rail system in the 1800s and yes there was massive government support behind its building. Hat tip to Abe Lincoln.

Europe and Japan rebuilt it's rail system in the 1950s and onward. So yeah their's are far superior to ours. For the same reason the heating and lighting system in my house is far better then a 1880s mansion (at least one that hasn't been up graded).

China has just started building their rail system. So of course its better.

Could the US improve our rail system? Sure but the will to do it isn't there.
Posted by Machiavelli was framed on August 21, 2012 at 1:14 PM · Report this
Dougsf 8
Currently, those trains and electric cars in China are essentially powered by coal. I hope the promise of this technology comes true one day soon, as we've all hoped for the last 30 years.

California has been trying to build a high speed train for over a decade—clearing votes, rounds of funding, and bureaucratic squabbling. The project's future isn't in jeopardy because of Obama's failings, the project's greatest obstacle lays in the downside of due diligence and individual empowerment. In other words, it's those rural folk you frown upon so much holding this damn thing up (in this case, extremely wealthy and educated rural folk.)
Posted by Dougsf on August 21, 2012 at 1:26 PM · Report this
Dougsf 9
To clarify: "this technology" = solar energy.
Posted by Dougsf on August 21, 2012 at 1:27 PM · Report this
Cascadian Bacon 10
And a communist oligarchy where democracy is illegal, information is blocked by the government and political dissidents are executed. China sounds like a paradise.
Posted by Cascadian Bacon on August 21, 2012 at 2:09 PM · Report this

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