Shortly after we published our June 29 look at Germany's efforts to create solar power generating capacity, seemingly regardless of expense, numerous homes and businesses across D.C., Maryland and Virginia lost their power -- with half a million locations still without power as of this writing. Pure coincidence, we assure you.
When Sheena wrote about disruptive technology, we had an internal discussion about what we'd nominate and I suggested the light bulb and the associated electricity.
The legendary leader, if not outright builder, of Singapore, Lee Kwan Yew, has famously stated that he thinks the air conditioner is one of mankind's great inventions, and something without which Singapore could never have become what it is. Lee Kwan Yew prefers to spend his waking life at 22C (72F), and reduces this to 19C (66F) at night while sleeping.
Undoubtedly, Stephen Moore in Washington D.C. shares these sentiments. Mr. Moore is one of the WSJ's editorial board members, and in today's issue he picks up the electricity thread and writes about his family's misery living in the sweltering DC summer weather without the benefits of A/C, refrigeration, and light, not to mention Xbox, cell phones and other necessities of modern life.
He continues by pointing out how the past few days must be a dream to the greenies, who are doing their darnedest to make any power generation impossible. No to coal, no to nuclear, no to the Keystone gas pipelines, no to oil drilling and a big fracking no to fracking!
Mr. Moore rightly wonders if the greenies want to live in the past -- he points out that a greater percentage of today's "poor" have air conditioning in their homes than the average middle class family did in the 1960s. He ends with asking if anyone really believes that our $13 trillion economy can run on wind and solar power. Despite years of efforts, and tens of billions of dollars in subsidies, wind and solar make up a piddling 3% of US electrical generation.
You wonder if these past few days without power in the political capital of the country -- literally a liberal hotbed these days -- might not bring about a new sense of reality, and a realization that we really need to pursue all available means to generate power for this country. It might even change a few votes in the election: it wouldn't hurt to make energy a core issue in the upcoming presidential debates.