thoughts on nature, technology and everything

Obama at the Clean Energy Summit

POTUS at the Clean Energy Summit

I had an opportunity to attend the 8th Clean Energy Summit here in Vegas. President Obama ended the day with a keynote address highlighting the administration's new Clean Power Plan. Lots of talk about solar, not enough about distributed solar. There was some finger-wagging with regards to the turmoil in Nevada surrounding net metering and new proposed energy fees. As clean as solar is, the evolution of the economics of energy delivery will definitely not be.

Gold Butte Damage Report   

Thanks to Friends of Gold Butte for documenting this. Conditions need to get better in Gold Butte so BLM can get back in there, manage the area and stop further damage. From the report introduction:

Volunteers have documented an increasing level of damage to the land. The report details multiple instances of vehicle trespass into archaeological and historic sites, sensitive desert areas, along washes and riverbanks, and delicate restoration sites. There is also documentation of an unauthorized water delivery system being constructed across several miles of desert. This is not the only damage the area has seen recently. Back in April, 2014 the graves of Arthur Coleman and Billy Garret, two colorful historic figures, were desecrated near the Gold Butte town site.


“We are deeply dismayed at the extent of destruction that has occurred in this sacred landscape,” said Darren Daboda, Chairman of the Moapa Band of Paiutes. “Originally included in the historic Moapa River Indian Reservation, Gold Butte is part of our cultural heritage. It is important that we act now to prevent further damage.”

UNIVAC Computer Commercial From the 1950s

The thing you're holding in your hand today used to take up an entire room requiring special environmental controls and staff to operate. And oh those specs!

Lightning Over Henderson

Henderson got slammered the other night.

The Role of Militias in the Public Lands Debate   

From the new report by the Center for Western PrioritiesGoing to Extremes: The anti-government extremism behind the growing movement to seize America’s public lands:

Our nation’s management of parks and network of public lands are one of our finest democratic achievements. Americans see public lands as one of the things our government does best. But over the last three years politicians and special interest groups in 11 Western states have tried to seize many of these places and turn them over to state control.


The elected officials supporting state seizure of public lands couch their arguments carefully, using innocuous rhetoric to claim that their only goal is better land management. But in reality, these politicians are following directly in the ideological footsteps of Cliven Bundy, the scofflaw rancher who owes more than $1 million in grazing fees to American taxpayers and doesn’t recognize the U.S. government as “even existing.”


In this report, the Center for Western Priorities examines the extremist origins and foundations of the movement to seize American lands, many of which have not been brought to light before. We describe how public lands issues attract extremists, including members of organizations like the Oath Keepers and the Constitutional Sheriffs and Peace Officers Association. We also show that the underpinnings of the movement are well outside mainstream conservative or federalist thought.