Cohocton Wind Watch: Jon Boone Comments on Industrial Wind Turbines August 22, 2009
Cohocton Wind Watch is a community citizen organization dedicated to preserve the public safety, property values, economic viability, environmental integrity and quality of life in Cohocton, NY and in surrounding townships. Neighbors committed to public service in order to achieve a reasonable vision for a Finger Lakes region worthy of future generations.


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Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Jon Boone Comments on Industrial Wind Turbines August 22, 2009

Here are the main ingredients for mass delusion: To one cup of conviction without sufficient reason, add a gallon of hope mistaken for knowledge; sprinkle in equal amounts of bad ideas protected from good ones and good ideas obscured by bad ones; season the mix with wishful thinking elevated to a principle of salvation. Stir things up well and bake in an oven heated with public relations convection. Have it served up by a government dedicated to the notion that it can get people to value intellectual honesty by lying to them.

Such is the food nourishing industrial wind technology. And nothing I know illustrates George Orwell's idea of doublespeak better, where every claim made for wind on paper is represented by its opposite effect in reality. It does not "mill" or "farm," as claimed. It cannot provide power to any homes with modern standards of performance, as claimed. It provides no "power" consistent with modern standards of reliability, as claimed. It cannot replace or meaningfully substitute for any conventional generating plant, particularly nuclear and coal, as claimed. It cannot offset substantial carbon emissions, as claimed. It is not David to coal's Goliath, as claimed; both are owned by the same multi-national companies. It is not a bucolic country enterprise that fits in cozily with rural communities, as claimed. It will not provide significant local jobs or revenues, as claimed.

I could go on and on exposing wind counterpoints in reality. Fact is that wind technology is a lot of dumb and ugly in service to ignorance and greed. Because it's not reliable, responsive, steady, or dispatchable, is inimical to demand cycles, provides only early nineteenth century power productivity, in the process destabilizing the match between supply and demand and making everything and everyone around it work harder, it cannot replace coal or make the air cleaner or improve public health. Modern power vastly improves productivity. Wind reduces it. Massive wind technology will, however, damage much of what many knowledgeable environmentalists hold dear, not least intrusively increasing our footprint on the land in ways that will decrease other (often more vulnerable) species and valuable habitat while furthering only the cause of civil discord.

The slap and tickle of wind propaganda flatters the gullible, exploits the well intentioned, and nurtures the craven. It is made possible because there's no penalty for deception in the energy marketplace. We not only must begin to educate our neighbors but also ridicule the idea that ancient wind flutter can play any positive role in improving our energy future. Eventually, reality will impose itself as itself, rudely bursting the bubble of delusion that now animates this daffy, Enronesque enterprise. Unregulated limited liability wind companies mirror the subprime economic schemes that helped create our current economic mess. And subprime wind energy will do for electricity what subprime mortgages have done for our financial system. As an energy source, wind has no more value than pixie dust--but is much more destructive; we might as well support "integrating" drunk drivers on our highways. As a tax shelter generator for large corporations, however, wind may be without peer. Let's not allow GE, Florida Power and Light, AES, BP, and Goldman Sachs--the real purveyors of wind--to mock our land, our heritage, and our standard of living.

With wind, we're not discussing the visual blight of poor fashion, such as a new suit or tie, or even an automobile. Rather, it's something that will transform the way people literally see their community, many of whom will find the sight of massive windscrapers repellent. Public officials should feel compelled to restrain such a situation, not profit from it. This is the mark of an adult society.

Let me urge you to get angry about this kind of exploitative trifling with our community and our wallets. And the values we hold dear. Once you get past the pandering and look these wind projects squarely in the face, all you should be able to see is the destruction that will occur over many overlapping concerns--to your community ethos, to wildlife, to a range of costs with no benefits, and, not least, to your intellectual integrity. Wind represents nonsense in and a whole lot of awful out.

Jon Boone
Thomas, WV
August 22, 2009

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