Daily Archives: 05/08/2011

Matt Ridley writing up the shale gas shock

The main downside is water quality effects, and a lot of energy is used to liberate the gas such that it may be as carbon intensive as coal.  It now gone main stream in terms of media.

Michael Giberson

Matt Ridley, esteemed science writer (The Red Queen, The Origins of Virtue, Genome: The Autobiography of a Species in 23 Chapters, Nature via Nurture, Francis Crick: Discoverer of the Genetic Code, and most recently The Rational Optimist), turns his prodigious writing talent to a short booklet on the prospects for shale gas to remake the energy landscape: The Shale Gas Shock.

At Knowledge Problem, we’ve covered bits and pieces of the  shale gas story and the policy and market consequences, but now you can get a current, thoughtful and well-written assessment from Ridley. Among other things, he addresses resource estimates, costs, shale gas skepticism, environmental concerns, and effects on electric power, transport fuel, and other markets. It is an excellent overview and introduction to the topic for the general public and (especially) folks in the public policy community.

Ridley also had a column on this topic in The Times which appeared earlier this week.

Matt Ridley writing up the shale gas shock
Michael Giberson
Fri, 06 May 2011 13:40:16 GMT


Political quiz time again: Where do you fit?

Bainbridge finds out he’s a stauch conservative and I tested my self with the same tool.

In contrast to Bainbridge I came out as "Post Modern", but does that fit?  It means (according to Pew) the following with my comments:

Generally supportive of government, though more conservative on race policies and the safety net (Mostly fits, though I favor comphrensive health entitlement, but it has to be tailored to what we can afford with taxes not at European levels)

Strongly supportive of regulation and environmental protection (I favor protecting the environment, but using incentives)

Most (56%) say Wall Street helps the economy more than it hurts (Yes)

Very liberal on social issues, including same-sex marriage (I’m pro-life, generally libertarian on these matters)

One of the least religious groups: nearly a third are unaffiliated with any religious tradition

Favor the use of diplomacy rather than force (A strong military is needed, but why do we still have a military like during the second and cold war when those foes are gone)

Here’s the Bainbridge post.  I like Mythbusters like he does, and don’t own any guns, and attend Mass regularly.  My results are here.

via Political quiz time again: Where do you fit?.

According to the Pew political quiz Where Do You Fit? (HT: Yin), I’m a "staunch conservative," which supposedly means that:

  • Extremely critical of the federal government — More often than not
  • Favor an assertive foreign policy — I do? Not so much. See, e.g., Libya and Iraq, both of which I opposed.
  • Pro-business; against stricter environmental laws and regulations — Certainly I’m against ecomentalist laws that cost more than they produce in benefits
  • Strongly opposed to abortion and same-sex marriage — Yes on the former and no on the latter
  • Convinced the 2010 health care law will be bad for the country — Damn straight
  • View immigrants as a threat to traditional American customs and values — Not me. I’m more or less Mr. Open Borders, despite what certain people would have you believe
  • Nearly half believe President Obama born outside the United States — I don’t doubt that he was born in the USA. I just think his parents were illegal space aliens.
Who They Are
  • 84% are Republicans — Well, I’m certainly not a Democrat, but folks like Patterico, Dan Riehl, and Hugh Hewitt think I’m a RINO (at best).
  • 72% agree with the Tea Party — About what? Cutting the deficit? Yes. Populism? No.
  • More than nine-in-ten are non-Hispanic white — Got me
  • The oldest typology group (61% are age 50 and older) — Sadly, yes
  • 56% are male; most are married and financially comfortable — yes, yes, and yes
  • 57% own guns and 57% attend church every week — Gawd no as to the former (nasty dangerous things) and yes as to the latter (sometimes twice)
  • 54% regularly watch Fox News — Nope. I do, however, watch NFL Network, Chuck, and How I Met Your Mother. Also High Stakes Poker, Mythbusters, and Good Eats. Also Bones. Plus Seinfeld and Friends reruns. News I get from the WSJ and the internet.
  • More watch Glenn Beck and listen to Rush Limbaugh than any other group — Nope. I listen to the NFL and E Street channels on my Sirius XM radios. Also Classic Vinyl, Bluesville, Blue Collar Comedy, and the 80s channel. (And sometimes I drop in to see what Howard Stern’s up to. But don’t tell anybody. It’s a very guilty pleasure.)