Going with the wind 1

The article by James Delingpole from which we quote is about property rights and what he rightly calls the “green religion”; matters of concern equally on both sides of the Atlantic:

Property rights are a cornerstone of our liberty, our security, our civilisation. …

Here’s the Virginia Bill of Rights, precursor to the US Declaration of Independence:

“That all men are by nature equally free and independent, and have certain inherent rights, of which, when they enter into a state of society, they cannot, by any compact, deprive or divest their posterity; namely, the enjoyment of life and liberty, with the means of acquiring and possessing property, and pursuing and obtaining happiness and safety.”

Here’s Samuel Adams:

“The Natural Rights of the colonists are these: first, a right to life; second, to liberty; third to property; together with the right to support and defend them in the best manner they can.”

And here, most trenchantly, is the philosopher who inspired them, John Locke:

Whenever the legislators endeavour to take away and destroy the property of the people, or to reduce them to slavery under arbitrary power, they put themselves into a state of war with the people, who are thereupon absolved from any further obedience …”

Time for a revolution, then, for the theft of our property rights is exactly what is happening to us now under our notionally “Conservative” prime minister and his increasingly desperate and damaging attempts to position his collapsing administration as the “greenest ever.” I’m thinking especially of the ongoing renewables scam.

The wind farm industry is surely the worst offender. Some vexatious twerp complained the other day about my claim that wind farms reduce property values by between 25 per cent and 50 per cent. Actually, if anything, I’m understating the problem here. I know of cases where properties have been rendered unsaleable by wind farms. But whatever the exact figures, I think those of us not in the pay of Big Wind or trotting out propaganda for the preposterous and devious Renewable UK would all agree that the very last thing we’d want on our doorstep would be a wind farm and that we certainly would never dream of buying a property near one. QED.

Since not a single one of the wind farms blighting Britain would have been built without state incentives (in the form of Renewable Obligations Certificates, Feed In Tariffs, and legislation which makes it very hard for communities to prevent wind farms being built in the area) we can reasonably say therefore that wind farms represent a wanton assault by the state on property rights. We expect such confiscatory measures “for the common good” from socialist regimes. But from a Conservative-dominated Coalition it’s a disgrace.

The Coalition itself is a disgrace. How a co-called Conservative Party ever decided to team up with a Liberal Democratic Party that is well to the left of the opposition Labour Party would be beyond comprehension to anyone who didn’t know that the so-called Conservative Party of Great Britain is not remotely conservative. In fact its leader, David Cameron, is an ardent fan of Saul Alinsky, the communist revolutionary who inspired Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.

But it’s not just the wind farm industry which is complicitous in this scam. … The hydro power industry turns out to be very nearly as damaging, unpleasant, slimy and untrustworthy as its nasty elder brother Big Wind. …  yet another taxpayer-subsidised boondoggle for rent-seeking scuzzballs, which produces next to no electricity and which – just like wind farms – causes immense damage to wildlife (in this case fish rather than birds or bats). …

The hypocrisy of it! Environmentalists going to endless lengths to protect a smelt while they feed other fish and innumerable birds to their terrible engines. Above all, they hurt people. Delingpole gives a particular instance where property rights are harmed:

Nottingham Angling Club … in 1982 forked out £150,000 for the fishing rights to a one and half mile stretch of the river Trent above a weir which is now about to be converted to hydropower. The quality of their fishing will almost certainly diminish. And there are stories like this from all over the country. Whether its wealthy fly fishing enthusiasts who’ve paid a fortune for a prime stretch of river in Hampshire or Dorset, or an ordinary working man’s club like the one in Nottingham, people are going to suffer as a result of this state-sponsored drive for renewables. Again, as with wind power, the only reason these hydropower schemes are going ahead is because of the government subsidies and incentives for those canny or cynical enough to get in on the scam. So again, what we have here is a clear case of the state arbitrarily confiscating people’s property rights because of its desire to be seen paying lip service to the green religion.

But the harm to people caused by governments pursuing the green superstition is far greater than that. It is general, affecting the price everyone has to pay for electricity. Not just property rights but liberty itself is going with the wind.

All over America, city councils, implementing Agenda 21, are trying to increase the amount of energy they provide from “green sources” at ever greater expense. What’s more, they hope to ration it, to keep us colder in winter and hotter in summer.

This is the newest form of religious persecution.

Bats 2

Here’s a bit of fun: energy environmentalists versus endangered species environmentalists.

From The Washington Post:

Workers atop mountain ridges are putting together 389-foot windmills with massive blades that will turn Appalachian breezes into energy. Retiree David Cowan is fighting to stop them.

Because of the bats.

Cowan, 72, a longtime caving fanatic who grew to love bats as he slithered through tunnels from Maine to Maui, is asking a federal judge in Maryland to halt construction of the Beech Ridge wind farm. The lawsuit pits Chicago-based Invenergy, a company that produces “green” energy, against environmentalists who say the cost to nature is too great.

The rare green vs. green case went to trial Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Greenbelt.

It is the first court challenge to wind power under the Endangered Species Act

At the heart of the Beech Ridge case is the Indiana bat, a brownish-gray creature that weighs about as much as three pennies and, wings outstretched, measures about eight inches. …

The case probably will come down to a battle of bat experts.There is no question turbines in other locations have killed tens of thousands of bats. Some strike blades. Others die from a condition known as barotrauma, similar to the bends that afflict divers. It occurs when the swirl of the blades creates low-pressure zones that cause the bats’ tiny lungs to hemorrhage. …

‘Wee, sleekit, cowrin, tim’rous beastie, O, what a panic’s in thy breastie!’  – not the bat, but the environmentalist, torn between one moral imperative and another incompatible one.

Wind 3

The US has ample oil and gas waiting to be drilled for both on and off shore, and nuclear power plants could be built, but the governing Democrats will have none of that and prefer to provide the nation with energy from wind. 

James Delingpole writes in the Telegraph about wind turbines in Britain:

They don’t work when there’s no wind.

They don’t work when it’s too windy.

They produce so little power – and so unreliably and erratically – that even if you put one on every hill top in Britain you’d still need to rely on nuclear, coal and gas-generated electricity for your main source of energy.

They chew up flying wildlife and scare horses.

They produce a subsonic hum which drives you mad if you’re downwind of them.

They turn pristine landscape into Teletubby-style horror visions.

They destroy property values.

They steal light.

They’re visible for miles around so that just when you’re thinking you’ve got away from it all you’re reminded of man’s grim presence by the whirling white shapes on the horizon.

They’re environmentally damaging: their massive concrete bases alone requiring enough concrete to fill two Olympic-size swimming pools; then there’s the access roads that have to be built through the unspoilt landscape to put them up in the first place.

They’re twice as expensive as conventionally-produced electricity.

They make you feel a bit queasy, especially the three-bladed ones whose asymmetry is disturbing.

To supply the equivalent output of one nuclear power station you’d need a wind farm the size of Greater Manchester.

Posted under Commentary, Energy, Environmentalism, United Kingdom, United States by Jillian Becker on Thursday, July 16, 2009

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