Blogs May 27, 2012 at 5:00 pm


"fewer" churches, not "less".

@1) it went up before i was done writing. my mistake.
Also, "turbines."
Okay! Truce. Ideas >> grammar.
Checking off cow tipping from your bucket list while your out there? Not sure if Anasi would be a better god template, but would be more interesting.
Are you being metaphorical in some way, or alluding to some book or movie, regarding the comment about people believing God is an ape? I've never run across that... um... particular denomination of Christianity, but then I've never spent any significant amount of time in Idaho either.
Nope. It wasn't a spider that created the universe. It was a turtle. Get with the program.
Hee hee! John Waters' hitchhike across America's got people jumping on the bandwagon.
I want to hitchhike across America with John Waters and Charles Mudede. It would be my life's crowning achievement.
@6 if god made man in his image, and we are apes, then god is an ape.

Wind mills are eyesores that are expensive and inefficient.

Also, they disrupt the electrical grid. IOW they suck.
@11 I would politely remind you that hydroelectric dams and coal plants are eyesores and much worse. I personally like the windmills. The ones by the Gorge south of Goldendale are the best.
It's posts like this that make you look like an idiot Charles.
Despite the condescending use of the word "rural" I did find the idea of "see the wind turbines as turning crosses" to be oddly beautiful. Now I'll never see them quite the same way. A toast to you, Mr. Mudede!
"Eyesores" compared to what? A coal mine? An oil well? A nuclear plant? A hydro dam? There's not a lot of competition for the title of "best-looking energy source", but if wind turbines have any rivals for that it's only large solar arrays.

"Inefficient" compared, again, to what, and on what axis?

The grid problems are to a certain extent real, but they are problems with the grid, not problems with wind energy specifically -- hydro, solar, or any other energy source without a predictable yield all have the same issues. And this is merely one of a number of reasons why our aging, obsolete electrical grid needs serious upgrading.
@7: Don't be silly. A turtle didn't create the universe. It just holds up the elephants by which the world is supported.
@15: Wind has unique issues that will require significant grid adjustments, while coal, nuclear, and hydro only require minor grid adjustments. The problem is that coal, nuclear, and hydro are big centralized power sources. The capacity of grid interconnects was designed specifically for these sources (sort of like how interstate highways were designed for major cities). Wind farms are non-centralized and the grid interconnects weren't designed for their varying capacity. This will require a significant amount of additional minor grid interconnects. And since the power fluctuates (you need to shuffle power more often), the major grid interconnects will need to be larger. The same is true to a certain extent for solar power.

In any case, it is not a bad investment because it gives additional margin on the grid. If we weren't constantly debating austerity in the country, someone might be able to speak up and say that this would be a great public works project.
But... They kill endangered bats, right?
Bats are not endangered. But yes, they kill bats. Birds, too. They're not endangered either.
unlike hydroelectric dams, which alter the ecological balance as a result of diverting the flow of water; or coal mines, which weaken the underlying terain resulting in cave ins, not to mention underground fires that smolder forever; or nuclear power plants, which are vulnerable to small things like earthquakes (hello, Japan) but even if they were 100% safe are so stringently regulated that it takes up to 20 years to get the necessary approvals to even break ground on construction of a new facility, wind power has an inexhaustable if somewhat unreliable popellant to generate power that cause collateral fuckery.

The electrical grid, much like the highway system, has been neglected for too long. Some might say that the interests that benefit most from both have had a hand in that. I don't know if that's the case or not. But it's long past time that the grid was updated to be able to easily accept supply from alternate power sources.

There's something about coming up over a rise in the road and happenng upon a windfarm like Charles has shared with us in this photo--it steals my breath every time, even if it's the shitty looking assembly of turbines between Boulder and Golden. There's a large wind farm in Iowa that gives me a thrill every time I drive past it. I think it might be the sense of progress, of finally someone is doing something other than what we've always done since we became so dependent upon the xcels and comeds or whoever provides you with the ability to leave every light in the house on,

Is Charles going to post all week from his time in rural America? I hope so. This is the first thing that Charles has posted in a long time that hasn't pissed me off.

@7 & @16, the Great A'Tuin is, sadly, going to stop swimming through space soon. Damn, maybe the Mayans were right.

@19 Many species of bats are endangered (i.e., their populations are crashing) by white-nose disease, a fungal infection.
What if it's a finite resource. Is it fair to steal the wind from future generations and leave them none?
I'd love to see turbines on the median of every interstate highway supplying power to high speed trains going down the middle of every interstate highway.

Sounds great.


I'm breathing in the fumes from the crackheads next door.

Or maybe just W.WA imbeciles who use a whole can of lighter fluid.

Does it matter.

I'd move, but the whole world is now about 80 percent imbeciles.

You can't escape.
Charles, I too am spending the week in Rural America. I have returned to my home land of northern Illinois farm country. I hope you have a fine time, great to visit, terrible to stay
You're all wrong. The universe was made in the cheese when the worms formed.
Charles, have a lovely time in the country. As they say, better you than me. (or, as you nouveau rural might prefer, "been there, done that)

As for the rest of you who wish to opine on electrical generation: it's better to say nothing than to look foolish. Remember that, won't you?
Road trip!!
Moo. Praise Jeebus, meet ya at the Walmart. It's Memorial Day, God Bless America, Never Forget, Mission Accomplished.
Enjoy your weekend Charles
@23 - I agree with you 100%. No matter what place you move to, no matter how sparsely populated, there will always be at least one imbecile wherever you choose to live, Bailo.
@5280 - There are many kinds of both bats and birds... and some (yes, some that turbines kill) are endangered, or at least not doing that great (see: ferruginous hawk and golden eagle).
@16: Nothing like reading a discworld reference on a Monday morning!
In my home state Nebraska, I have indeed heard people call the windmills spinning crosses.

Of course, the people who believe god looks like a human rarely believe humans are apes. In fact, I honestly can't think of a better way to alienate half of rural America than to suggest that their God is an ape. I'm looking forward to a full account of your travels. Please stay out of tiny towns at night.
So sleek, mod looking turbines can kill thousands of birds every day but you want me to keep my cats inside because they kill maybe five birds in fifteen years.
Maybe you can learn how to farm, Chuckie, and then move back to the shit-hole where you came from. Suck a little Mugabe cock like your dad did and he'll give you a free farm over there.
Aren't those wind things through Washington though, like right before the Columbia river?
For the record, dams are beautiful, wind farms are beautiful, what's ugly is dark towns out in the sticks. Anyone who isn't decreasing the kWh they're consuming year to year needs to shut up about "ugly" new sources of electricity.
@15 As someone who works for a power plant and has spent time in an actual load office, you have no fucking idea what you're talking about. Mudede makes more sense than your post. And have you ever seen a nuclear plant, coal mine, or hydro dam in person?

For the record, wind power IS centralized into farms like the Lower Snake River facility. The problem with wind is it changes output regularly, which makes it unreliable - it must be backed up by other sources. The people talking about "fixing the grid to accept wind power" don't know what they're talking about. It is a nice step away from fossil fuel plants though.
The amount of birds killed by wind turbines is miniscule, compared to the numbers killed by flying into buildings, transmission lines, etc, or poisoned by pesticides or other chemicals.

While it's true that it's a transitory power source, much like solar, system operators are figuring out how to integrate them into the generation portfolio. Bonneville recently made some sort of announcement about dispatching wind into the NW grid. I haven't read it, but I believe it addresses the problems encountered last spring when there was record runoff and the dams were just spilling water to get rid of all the excess.

As long as you get to a point where you have more wind and solar the you need at a given moment, you can store it. They are working on large compacity molten metal batteries for this, as I understand it. Awesome, right?
Visiting rural Amerika - You have my condolences. Whatever you did to disturb the gods, make amends quickly so you can return to civilization.
I think of God as a half-ape, half-spider kind of being.
years ago driving on I-90 in eastern WA I saw a train carrying nothing but wind turbine blades, each was gigantic. probably the coolest thing I've ever seen out there
I see everyone writing about the Grid and electricity as if they in no way contributed to the eyesore or the need. MJ sang it best: If you want to make the world a better place, take a look at yourself and make a change. Na-na nahhh, Na-na nahhh, Na-na nahhh, Na-na nahhh, na-na nahhh na-nah-aah.
LOL. Oh great. The amazing Charles Mudede is here to enlighten us about the other America. I've stared at dumps of mine in the toilet that were far more interesting than the horseshit Chuck comes up with.
@43 TOMSJ=f##king moron. Go play your Wii and drink a PBR you hipster douche.
I'm pretty sure rural Washington is far more hickish than rural Idaho.
Spending this week, along with all the others, in Rural America.

Summer vacation = gunfire and two-stroke engines, the bed music of my life for the next few months.

Please wait...

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