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US Corps Want $1B From Gov't For Battery Factory 394

Posted by timothy
from the when-you-really-truly-need-some-free-tax-money dept.
tristanreid writes "The Wall Street Journal reports that a consortium of 14 US technology companies will ask the Federal Government for up to $1 billion for a plant to make advanced battery technology, as a part of the broad fiscal stimulus package that Pres. Elect Obama is planning. The story quotes a report by Ralph Brodd, which suggests that while existing battery technology was developed in the US, the lead in development is now held in Asia. From the WSJ story: 'More than four dozen advanced battery factories are being built in China but none, currently, in the US.'"
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US Corps Want $1B From Gov't For Battery Factory

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  • by Wonko the Sane (25252) * on Thursday December 18, 2008 @02:39PM (#26162981) Journal

    Unless, of course, they develop Mr Fusion

    • by lysergic.acid (845423) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @02:55PM (#26163207) Homepage

      i say give it to them. it's a wise investment.

      that is, of course, so long as:

      • any battery technology developed is released into the public domain. (if you want public funding, you need to make your research results public as well.)
      • there are government price controls to ensure the public isn't getting reamed on products they're subsidizing. and every 2-3 years the government and industry representatives get together to renegotiate the prices. (this is similar to how health care is run in Japan as a hybrid between privatized and socialized medicine.)
      • small companies/start-ups also have access to the plant, and it's not just a handful of major corporations that are benefiting from this federal aid.

      we need improved/cheaper battery technology to boost the development & adoption of electric vehicles.

      • by dgatwood (11270) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @03:04PM (#26163343) Journal

        I think a battery design firm would be a good investment with those rules. I don't think a battery factory would be a good investment under any circumstances. What's the advantage to building them in the U.S.? It's not like it will create more than a dozen jobs---those sorts of plants are all pretty much automated anyway.

        Besides, most manufacturers build their products in Asia, so a component plant in the U.S. is likely to have a hard time selling any products, particularly given China's stiff import restrictions.... You'd have to make the products a lot cheaper than they can be made in China, which seems dubious at best. Otherwise, no manufacturer in their right minds would go through all the hassle and expense of buying batteries from an American plant, shipping them to China to be assembled into a product, then shipping them back to the U.S. for consumption....

        See why this is a silly idea?

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by larry bagina (561269)

          not to mention (but I will!) the US environmental regulations are much more stringent. Batteries, advanced or otherwise, involve some nasty substances.

        • by Tiro (19535) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @03:35PM (#26163783) Journal

          Otherwise, no manufacturer in their right minds would go through all the hassle and expense of buying batteries from an American plant, shipping them to China to be assembled into a product, then shipping them back to the U.S. for consumption...

          That's how a lot of US turkey is produced--shipped to Asia for processing then returned for sale. Of course the difference is that turkeys are labor intensive to process and consumers would avoid foreign-raised meat.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by SkyDude (919251)
          A manufacturer wouldn't ship batteries to Asia or anywhere else if it was for the purpose of assembly. Any battery would add many many pounds of weight to, say, a container of products, and that extra weight translates into dollars spent on shipping.

          If the batteries stay in this country and be assembled into the products here, the wages and other fixed costs would be the deciding factor.
          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by dgatwood (11270)

            But products are usually not destined exclusively for the U.S. market, so if you do the assembly here, that means you're shipping products back to the U.S. to add the batteries to them, only to then turn around and ship a bunch of them to Australia or Europe. That makes even less sense than shipping the batteries. The alternative is to have battery plants around the globe, which is just not particularly efficient.

            If we really wanted to have tech manufacturing in the U.S., we needed to have beefed up Ameri

        • by gnick (1211984) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @03:43PM (#26163883) Homepage

          ...most manufacturers build their products in Asia, so a component plant in the U.S. is likely to have a hard time selling any products, particularly given China's stiff import restrictions.... You'd have to make the products a lot cheaper than they can be made in China, which seems dubious at best. Otherwise, no manufacturer in their right minds would go through all the hassle and expense of buying batteries from an American plant, shipping them to China to be assembled into a product, then shipping them back to the U.S. for consumption....

          Yes, most manufacturers build their products in Asia. But this is about car batteries. The auto makers (the folks that TFA focuses on as the main consumer for next-gen batteries) aren't in China. Most vehicles bought in North America are assembled in North America. No round-trip necessary for these batteries.

          You are correct about the price - American-made batteries would likely cost more than batteries made in China. Probably even after factoring in the shipping on those heavy suckers. However that would be largely due to China's lax environmental restrictions rather than labor costs (a typical culprit). So, while we'd save some money by just abandoning the battery industry and letting China take it, every time a consumer bought a "green" car, they'd be making an excessively nasty dent in the environment. (Battery production would be messy here too, but a helluva lot cleaner than in China.)

          All that said, I'd really prefer to see private investors step up for factories and tax-dollars only used for public-domain research...

          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by dgatwood (11270)

            IMHO, that's taking a bit too narrow a view of the problem. Car batteries generally use the same cells as batteries for hundreds of thousands of other products. They just use a heck of a lot more of them, built into larger packs with different configurations. It's not like engine parts that are pretty much limited to use in cars. Building additional plants to manufacture a general-purpose part and targeting sales specifically to a single industry isn't likely to be cost effective by any stretch of the

            • by Rei (128717) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @04:51PM (#26164907) Homepage

              Besides, battery technology is not the most effective way to power cars. They are too volatile, have too short a life expectancy, and produce too much nasty chemical waste (both during manufacture and disposal).

              False.

              1) I don't know what you mean by "volatile", but if you mean "catching fire", that's mainly just a problem for traditional li-ion. The phosphates, titanates, and stabilized spinels don't do that because they don't get lithium metal plating and the like. The worst you can say for the advanced li-ion cells is that the electrolyte is often flammable, and that if you had both a puncture and a spark (puncture alone won't cut it), you could get fire. But you know what? So is gasoline. At least the electrolyte is isolated into a bunch of small containers that would, worst case, fail individually.

              2) The life expectancy notion is way off. Let's start by busting the basic premise -- that all batteries inherently have to have short lifespans. Jay Leno's early-20th century Baker Electric still runs on its original nickel-iron batteries. Decade-old RAV4EVs are still running fine on their original NiMH packs despite heavy usage. It's simply a myth that there's something inherently about being a battery that means you must have a short lifespan; it all depends on the chemistry. And getting to the advanced li-ion types being looked at -- the various olivine and spinel cathodes and titanate anodes -- they're incredibly stable. Assuming you keep the temperature in the packs from getting ridiculously hot, you're good for the lifespan of the car. A123 and Valence's LiPs, for example, are good for about 7,000 cycles at 1C before losing 20% capacity. AltairNano's titanates take tens of thousands of cycles to lose that much.

              3) What nasty chemicals do you think are involved here? The worst you can say is that the titanates, like traditional li-ion, have a LiCoO2 cathode. But that's only mildly toxic. Phosphates and spinels, you can literally throw straight into the trash in some places. The worst thing in them is that the electrolyte is corrosive. Manufacture is no worse. Phosphates, for example, traditionally have their cathodes made from phosphoric acid, iron powder, and lithium carbonate, with a carbon binding from burning sugar. The anodes are just graphite. The separator is just plastic.

        • by AJWM (19027) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @03:47PM (#26163947) Homepage

          What's the advantage to building them in the U.S.?

          Comes time to build electric (or hybrid) replacements for Humvees and the like, (as well as various robotic systems), you really don't want to be beholden to other countries for your battery supply. (Even if the manufacturing company is an ally, you have to worry about supply-line disruption.)

          For that reason alone (and there are others), this is worth some government up-front money.

      • by brian0918 (638904)
        The end result of your plan would be something similar to the local telecom monopolies we're all familiar with. You can't contrive competition through central planning. You must simply let competition exist. But competition cannot exist so long as the determining factor is the size of the bribe given to the politicians controlling the service.
        • Telecom is a natural monopoly, because building multiple networks in parallel is economically inefficient. Hence the attempts to regulate the one existing network, often with poor success.

          With batteries it is easier to start up a competing factory, if the technology is well documented.
          So I think GP's point #1 would be sufficient, no need to regulate prices on top of the requirement to release the research into the public domain. That release, however, should be closely checked for completeness and correctne

          • by brian0918 (638904)

            Telecom is a natural monopoly, because building multiple networks in parallel is economically inefficient.

            Inefficient for whom? Companies are independent and have their own goals. Their goals - whatever they may be - are not the same as your idealized "goal" for the economy or country as a whole. If a service provider is providing poor service, then there is a huge incentive for a large company to come in and providing competing service. The only thing stopping them is the local government's restriction on laying parallel lines.

            • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

              by Duradin (1261418)

              Say you're an up and coming non-evil telco and you want to spread your non-evil services to a new community over your own non-evil copper or fiber. Sounds good so far, right?

              Well, to spread your non-evil copper and fiber you have to tear up a lot of streets to lay it and you have to do it in a way that doesn't damage or disrupt the existing evil copper and fiber.

              Then after you've sunk all that money into the non-evil copper and fiber that's plowed into the ground you have to be able to recoup the cost and p

      • by inviolet (797804)

        Hi, yes, I'd like to buy points 1 and 3, but can I still get package pricing if I don't want point 2?

        To wit:

        there are government price controls to ensure the public isn't getting reamed on products they're subsidizing. and every 2-3 years the government and industry representatives get together to renegotiate the prices. (this is similar to how health care is run in Japan as a hybrid between privatized and socialized medicine.)

        If anyone other than a free market sets the price, then you will get oversupply

      • I dunno, it strikes me as shake-down financing. If it is commercial viable, they should come bleating to government.
    • How will more money solve the problem? Isn't the problem that the ideas comes from somewhere else or that developing them is much more cheaper over there?

      How will more money solve that?

      It's the wrong solution, if american companies can't make cars people want for prices they are willing to pay or develop competitive battery technologies why invest in those areas? Invest in something you do better (or compete in price of the work but I doubt many americans would want to go that road.)

      Shoot for high-tech engi

      • Ultracapacitors ftw

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by ianare (1132971)
        No, the problem is that now that making the batteries here could actually be profitable, all the experienced workers, materials, manufacturing plants are elsewhere. Without the government stimulus, the as-yet unborn US battery industry would never become profitable simply because it wouldn't exist.

        The idea that private industry could survive without ever receiving help from the government is ridiculous.
  • by SirGarlon (845873) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @02:40PM (#26162997)

    Maybe Congress should take a look at why U.S. companies didn't choose to manufacture this technology domestically, and implement policy changes to fix the underlying problems. Otherwise it's just economic Whack-a-Mole.

    And no, I'm not a supply-sider. I think the incentives are more complex than "high taxes drive jobs away." Maybe that's part of the answer, but only a part.

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Congress has already fixed that problem, we were too rich.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      The reason US Companies didn't choose to manufacture this technology domestically is because Wall Street only cares about projects that turn a profit in 4 months. The answer? Do away with Wall Street's drag on R&D, fund it directly. Or better yet, add a 5% consumption tax on all stock transactions to fund Japanese style industry research cooperatives.
      • The reason US Companies didn't choose to manufacture this technology domestically is because Wall Street only cares about projects that turn a profit in 4 months.

        While that probably does have some effect, there are three words that come to mind when I think of battery development:

        Environmental
        Impact
        Statement

        That right there will kill any power generation or storage technology before it's even a glimmer in an scientist/engineer's eye.

        • Yeah, that might have an effect on the actual factory...depending on the technology that is. Seems to me the best power generation and storage tech actually uses more pollution than it creates. Which is something many companies forget in their EIS filings.
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by OldeTimeGeek (725417)
          Yeah, because we all want to live next to Love Canal [wikipedia.org].

          Yes, the process is slow and is often abused, but there is a good reason why it's there...
        • by John Whitley (6067) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @03:17PM (#26163531) Homepage

          Enivonmental Impact Statement

          Duh, what? Yes, requiring industry to figure out what it's going to dump on us before it does so can be a "burden". So be it. At the same time, it drives innovation into avenues that don't dump pollution on the rest of us. And as more people get into the act, "green" approaches previously not up for consideration are discovered to often yield better results (more efficient, cheaper, etc.). The more baseline work that goes into sustainable industry, the easier it gets for everyone.

          Also, take a walk on the other side for a minute -- a friend visited Shanghai a few weeks ago. The air pollution was often so bad that he could barely see a block ahead from the brown haze. Quote, "my lungs feel tanned." Look also at the environmental disaster zone that are the former Soviet states. One Russian I spoke to put it this way: many people there know that excessive smoking and drinking aren't good for their health, but do it anyway out of the belief that it won't really matter because of everything else they're exposed to.

          • You don't have to think environmental impact assessments are a bad thing to agree that they're a major reason there are no battery factories being built in the US. Battery factories are very dirty, at least using current production methods, and possibly inherently at least questionable (there are a lot of heavy metals and whatnot going into them).

        • Environmental
          Impact
          Statement

          I'll see your three words, and raise you one:

          Melamine

    • by internerdj (1319281) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @02:54PM (#26163193)
      Like how US workers demand to be paid something for their work? How they demand not to work in places that are deathtraps? With all the horror stories of what it is like to make clothing, I can't imagine what it would be like to work in a Chinese factory whose products contained large amounts of caustic chemicals...
      • by Shotgun (30919) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @04:27PM (#26164523)

        No, but you can imagine what it would be like to buy clothes that are made there.

        The facts of the matter are that people hate pollution just enough to legislate it out of their immediate neighborhood, but not enough to pay more for the stuff they buy if they can find the same stuff cheaper. Businessmen with money to invest usually aren't stupid, else they wouldn't have money to invest. All the factories have left the US, because the produce pollutants and the labor is cheaper overseas.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by jeffshoaf (611794) *

      I think the real issue w/ battery manufacturing is evironmental more than high taxes. Making batteries requires the use of a lot of toxic chemicals and generates toxic waste. Since China and other Asian countries have less stringent (or no) regulations on those chemicals, it's much cheaper to make batteries there than it is to deal with the proper handling, storage, and disposal of the toxic stuff in the U.S.

      Personally, I'd prefer that the policies and regulations governing use and disposal of that nasty st

  • Why play catch up? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by critical_point (1430417) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @02:40PM (#26163009)
    Instead we should invest that $1B into researching fundamentally new battery technologies.

    Hopefully Obama realizes how many theoretical research salaries can be paid with $1B and chooses to spend the money on this kind of long-term project.
  • by Eggplant62 (120514) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @02:44PM (#26163057)

    Um, say gents, you can feel free to pool your resources on your own to develop new battery technology. However, there's no need for the government to pony up my tax dollars on this endeavour, especially considering how eager you folks are to outsource jobs overseas left and right, mm-kay?

    • by dk90406 (797452) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @02:54PM (#26163189)
      Given the current economical environment, government aid may be needed. But *if* money are granted, they should be considered an investment, so the government (and US taxpayers, in the longer turn) should be given stocks appropriate to the investment size.

      Government: do not give 1BN gifts.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by brian0918 (638904)

        so the government (and US taxpayers, in the longer turn) should be given stocks appropriate to the investment size.

        And thus you've completed the transition to socialism.

        • by dk90406 (797452)
          As opposed to capitalism: Failing companies begging for money to survive in the market?
        • How is it socialism for the government to invest in a private business and get a return? That's not complete ownership. As a person who hates government waste and loves free markets, I think it's the best idea out there. Maybe after enough of these investments, the government could develop its own revenue stream and they could stop raping my wallet.
    • by afxgrin (208686)

      You do realize that most foreign countries get these sort of facilities because they offer large grants to corporations to build them in their country.

      I personally would like to have an R&D job within North America, they don't all have to go overseas ...

      And on a semi-related note ... Battery [youtube.com] by Metallica.

    • by Smidge204 (605297) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @03:07PM (#26163387) Journal

      So what you're saying is: you'd rather leave scientific development in the hands of private finance, where practically nothing will get done unless someone sees a very straightforward and profitable outcome to the research within a few year's time and the distribution can be effectively suppressed with copyright and patent laws.

      Congratulations! You have just created the pharmaceuticals industry, which gave us a dozen meds for erectile dysfunction but no actual cures for important things like AIDS or cancer.

      The alternative is to let the government fund science, and historically speaking the government is not afraid to spend money on purely theoretical and/or nonprofitable research. Even more so if the technology can be used for a military edge - and new battery tech is definitely something the military wants.

      Electronic computers? Satellite communications? GPS? The Internet? Nuclear power? Jet powered aircraft? All born of government funded projects.

      Of all the things government pisses away money on, science is the last thing I'd complain about.
      =Smidge=

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Ummm... Sorry to refuse to be the whipping boy here, but I'm a Pharma guy in a company that's put out 7 new drugs for cancer and cancer related complications in the last 5 years.

        You may see lots of ads for viagra, because the drug companies market it at you, Mr. Limp Dick Consumer. For cancer drugs, however, they spend their money educating doctors about treatment options and conducting clinical trials.

        Just because you're not a target of the drug company hematology/oncology media spend doesn't mean that a

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Rei (128717)

          I guess we're not supposed to care that pharmaceutical companies today spend more money on advertising than on research. Chalk that up to the "efficiencies of the free market" or something.

    • by MBCook (132727)

      Don't worry, you'll be given a free pack of 3 AAs once every 36 fortnights, tax free, as an additional payback on your investment.

      It will be sort of like the Alaskan Permanent Fund, but weirder and more pointless.

    • Um, say gents, you can feel free to pool your resources on your own to develop new battery technology. However, there's no need for the government to pony up my tax dollars on this endeavour, especially considering how eager you folks are to outsource jobs overseas left and right, mm-kay?

      Actually if the companies does get this grant, then it should come with strings attached. Basically all research must be done in the US, giving priority to existing US resident researchers. The government should impose that

  • when did it become ok to rely on the government to put up funds to save / create business? this is the opposite of lazaire faire (no i dont know how to spell that).
    • I agree with your sentiment, but it's "Laissez-faire", and you'll be more convincing if you don't sound proud of your ignorance when you've got the whole internet at your service.

      http://www.google.com/search?client=safari&rls=en&q=Laissez-faire&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8 [google.com]

    • by pitchpipe (708843)

      when did it become ok to rely on the government to put up funds to save / create business? this is the opposite of lazaire faire (no i dont know how to spell that).

      It became OK when economists looked down the track where the train that is called the U.S. Economy is heading and discovered a great big fucking hole called The Great Depression II.

    • laissez-faire [wikipedia.org]

    • by GweeDo (127172)

      Laissez-faire

    • by eln (21727) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @03:26PM (#26163647) Homepage

      Sorry to burst your bubble, but true Laissez-faire capitalism doesn't exist in the real world, and really hasn't since we stopped bartering as cavemen. Arguably, true Laissez-faire capitalism produces an unsustainable economy, as it will tend toward the creation of monopolies which will erect barriers to entry to keep competitors out.

      It's generally well understood these days that at least some government intervention is required in order to sustain a healthy economy. Now we just argue endlessly over how much government intervention and what form it should take.

  • >"...the lead in development is now held in Asia."

    And Asia has the lead with no intention of looking back. Batteries of the kind mentioned here will follow on the heals of a steady stream of wind turbine imports shortly.

    The US has been a bona fide service industry for years...get used to it already.
  • by JBG667 (690404) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @02:51PM (#26163143)

    ... batteries not included

  • "a consortium of 14 U.S. technology companies will ask the Federal Govt for up to $1 billion"

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by h4rr4r (612664)

      Because it is closer to fascism than socialism. Why do Americans have such trouble separating those two very different schools of thought?

      Corporatism is pretty much exactly what this and all the bailout have been.

      • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday December 18, 2008 @03:12PM (#26163455)
        Simple government matrix for the politically impaired:

        Who owns the resources?|Who Allocates the resources?|Government type
        Private individuals     Private individuals          Capitalism
        Government              Government                   Communism
        Private individuals     Government                   Fascism
        Government              Private individuals          Socialism
  • Environmentalism (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Archangel Michael (180766) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @02:52PM (#26163163) Journal

    I can assure you that one of the biggest reasons we don't build toxic batteries here in the US, is because of Environmental Regulations would make them prohibitively expensive. And China would steal the tech and make them cheaper, and without a care about environmental concerns.

    We have effectively regulated the ability to produce anything away.

    If I were a manufacturer, I wouldn't make anything in the US either. I wouldn't even consider it.

    • by sexybomber (740588) <boccilino&gmail,com> on Thursday December 18, 2008 @03:03PM (#26163331)

      Yeah, but China's natural environment is, to quote Zero Wing, "on the way to destruction." If a country takes absolutely zero environmental precautions (like China is doing currently,) then that country is going to get fucked six ways from Sunday eventually.

      Nature has a way of squaring any debt you might have with her.

    • If I were a manufacturer, I wouldn't make anything in the US either. I wouldn't even consider it.

      This is why environmental controls should be imposed on the chain of supply. Just because you are manufacturing something in someone else's backyard doesn't suddenly make it environmentally friendly. The chain of supply should ensure that there are no environmental issues from the point of manufacture to the point of use and then on to the point of disposal.

  • by haystor (102186)

    This should carry the requirement that batteries be interchangeable.

  • Communism (Score:4, Interesting)

    by nightfire-unique (253895) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @03:10PM (#26163427)

    Can anyone quantify the difference(s) between communism, and capitalism in which the government hands out tax money, extracted at gunpoint, to various large corporations?

    Is it just a question of degree (percentage points) or is there some other major difference?

  • apparently, they already have a plant in gainsville florida. although, it's currently not running for whatever reason related to funding.

    Electro Energy Receives First Order for U.S. Produced 18650 Lithium-Ion Batteries [electroenergyinc.com]

    maybe that's not what they're looking for.

  • by Jackie_Chan_Fan (730745) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @03:23PM (#26163589)

    If so... no battery stimulus for you. And BTW.. they can fuck off and die.

  • Capitalism? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by sunderland56 (621843) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @03:33PM (#26163749)
    So:
    • in China, corporations build factories to make batteries, and profit from their investment.
    • in America, corporations whine and plead for the government to build factories for them.

    Quick quiz: which is the capitalist country, and which is the communist one?

    • Re:Capitalism? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by joh (27088) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @04:44PM (#26164807)

      China is for a large part a kind of capitalism gone wild, uncontrolled and unregulated. Corporations there build factories without looking at how their workers fare, without looking at the environment, without looking at anything else than profits.

      If you want to work for $1/h or less while living on the streets and travelling all over the land looking for work, without any health insurance or any protection against work-related accidents (lost a hand? You're fired!), look to China and its capitalism.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by jandrese (485)
      I dare you to find a major Chinese company that doesn't have close ties to the government, especially the local government. Even foreign governments that set up shop in China frequently have to set up a constant stream of bribes to the local government to get all of the preferential treatment and government largess needed to build a major factory.
  • by PingXao (153057) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @04:38PM (#26164707)

    My perpetual motion machine factory will provide every benefit that battery factory does, and more. My perpetual motion machines will allow water to flow downhill a la traditional hydropower, but with some of that generated electricity used to pump the water back up the hill again, to be used over and over in a never-ending cycle of very cheap electricity. And I can do all that for half what those battery dipsticks want!

    Seriously, a trend that has been evident in the US that will probably aid in our demise is that we, as a society, value ignorance and a good line of bullshit over well-thought-out positions and opinions. The sad part is that with the right PR people and lobbyists, my perpetual motion idea might actually find support in Congress.

    The saddest part of all is that such a scheme is no longer morally repugnant to too many Americans. See "Wall Street and the Banking Industry, 2008" for truly mind boggling fraud. Now see Paulson and Bernanke rip off the taxpayers to enrich their friends and get away with it.

    My perpetual motion machine venture pales beside those corruptions in moral turptitude. It's going to be either that or start my own religion.

  • by divisionbyzero (300681) on Thursday December 18, 2008 @05:03PM (#26165137)

    Don't be ashamed! Just stick your head in there eat as much of the tax-payers money as you can!

The flow chart is a most thoroughly oversold piece of program documentation. -- Frederick Brooks, "The Mythical Man Month"

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