Keyword: boondoggle

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  • Software Glitch Causes F-35 to Incorrectly Detect Targets in Formation

    03/26/2015 6:50:26 AM PDT · by Doogle · 36 replies
    Military.com ^ | 03/24/15 | Kris Osborn
    Engineers are trying to fix the F-35’s software package after it was discovered the sensors for the Joint Strike Fighter malfunction when detecting targets when the aircraft flies in formation. Air Force Lt. Gen. Christopher Bogdan, Program Executive Officer, F-35, said he didn’t have a date when the correction would be made. However, he said the problem would not delay the declaration of the Marine variant of the aircraft, the F-35B, ready for combat. “When you have two, three or four F-35s looking at the same threat, they don’t all see it exactly the same because of the angles that...
  • Chinatown businesses, supporters unhappy about impacts of high-speed rail work

    03/23/2015 3:07:25 PM PDT · by Oldeconomybuyer · 10 replies
    Fresno Bee ^ | March 22, 2015 | BY ANDREA CASTILLO
    Around 25 business owners and supporters of Fresno’s Chinatown gathered Sunday afternoon to share their concerns about the imminent high-speed rail construction along Kern and F streets. Chinatown Revitalization Inc. listed many concerns including that Spanish and Chinese speaking business owners have not been notified of the construction. Verta Gonzalez, who runs Floreria Rubi at 1515 Tulare St., said she had no idea about the coming construction. Gonzalez said business owners who speak English perhaps are able to defend themselves better. “It’s like they think Mexicans don’t matter,” she said of the rail authority. Rail authority spokeswoman Lisa Alley said...
  • George Will: The Export-Import Bank's grip

    03/13/2015 6:15:20 AM PDT · by TurboZamboni · 6 replies
    NEWSOK ^ | 3-12-15 | George Will
    WASHINGTON — Conservatives’ next disappointment will at least be a validation. The coming reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank will confirm their warnings about the difficulty of prying the government’s tentacles off what should be society’s private sphere. The bank, which exists to allocate credit by criteria other than the market’s preference for efficiency, mirrors the market-distorting policies of foreign governments. These policies favor those countries’ exports that compete with America’s. Much of what the bank does is supposedly to “level the playing field.” When Fred P. Hochberg, the bank’s chairman and president, defends it, an old joke comes to mind:...
  • US Navy: One Year Delay in Zumwalt Class Destroyers

    03/10/2015 6:10:42 AM PDT · by artichokegrower · 5 replies
    Marine Link ^ | March 10, 2015 | Joseph Keefe
    General Dynamics Corp will deliver two Zumwalt-class destroyers a year later than planned, U.S. Navy officials said, blaming complications related to new technology. The Navy is adjusting its official baseline for the $22 billion DDG 1000 ship program to reflect the new delivery dates but the change will not trigger a mandatory review since the resulting cost increase will be under 15 percent, a defense official told Reuters, requesting anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the press.
  • MNsure’s birth: A tale of incompetence, report suggests

    02/18/2015 5:45:22 AM PST · by TurboZamboni · 2 replies
    MPR ^ | 2-17-15 | Bob Collins
    Today’s release of the review of MNsure from the Office of the Legislative Auditor leaves a big question for MNsure’s board of directors and the Commerce Department: What were you thinking when you put such incompetence on the payroll? This one page in the report concerning the development of the technological infrastructure by MNsure is a how-to on developing something that is sure to fail. MNsure rejected the auditor’s finding on this point, saying it contradicts the facts. It contends the I.T. agency’s participation was robust, although it acknowledges its expertise “was not utilized in the early stages of the...
  • As high-speed rail gains momentum, U.S. can look to Europe's example

    02/16/2015 5:02:12 PM PST · by Oldeconomybuyer · 38 replies
    Los Angeles Times ^ | February 15, 2015 | By ANASTASIA LOUKAITOU-SIDERIS
    Most of the debate over the building of the nation's first bullet train, in California, has focused on the economics of such a monumental undertaking and its projected $68-billion first-phase price tag. Largely ignored amid the excitement over the railway's recent official groundbreaking is the physical impact and design challenges that cities will need to grapple with as they prepare for high-speed rail. California should look to rail systems across Europe to fully understand the challenge of building a transportation hub that connects to the community. To make the most of California's once-in-a-lifetime chance at building a thriving transportation network,...
  • U.S. Navy says renaming LCS ships as "frigates"

    01/15/2015 8:38:13 AM PST · by sukhoi-30mki · 26 replies
    Reuters ^ | Jan 15, 2015 | Andrea Shalal
    Jan 15 (Reuters) - U.S. Navy Secretary Ray Mabus on Thursday said the Navy would rename the modified Littoral Combat Ships it plans to build in coming years as "frigates," given their enhanced capabilities. "One of the requirements of the Small Surface Combatant Task Force was to have a ship with frigate-like capabilities. Well, if it's like a frigate, why don't we call it a frigate?" Mabus told the annual conference of the Surface Navy Association. Mabus said the changed designation would apply primarily to the next 20 ships to be built, but 32 earlier Littoral Combat Ships (LCS) that...
  • The Growing Inanity of California High-Speed Rail

    12/29/2014 5:01:34 PM PST · by george76 · 50 replies
    The Antiplanner ^ | December 29, 2014
    Los Angeles Times architecture critic Christopher Hawthorne–who claims to be an “unabashed supporter” of high-speed rail–reviews Anaheim’s new train station and finds it “oddly antiseptic.” Hawthorne doesn’t care that taxpayers spent $2,764 per square foot for what is essentially a big glass tent. He is a little disturbed that the design is so dysfunctional that train passengers “exit onto an uncovered platform, take the elevator or stairs [up] to a pedestrian bridge, and then enter the building at its highest interior level” only to have to go back down again to get to ground level. ... While Hawthorne’s critique is...
  • Canceling the DDG-1000 Destroyer Program Was a Mistake

    12/12/2014 9:24:49 AM PST · by C19fan · 1 replies
    National Defense ^ | December 12, 2014 | Ben Freeman
    The U.S. Navy’s DDG-1000 Zumwalt-class destroyers are extraordinarily expensive. Since 2009, the cost of the ships has increased 34.4 percent, according to the Congressional Research Service. Each of the three Zumwalt’s being built will cost taxpayers around $3.4 billion. And, that’s on top of the more than $9 billion in research and design funding that has gone into this program. Are they worth the price? The Navy didn’t think so in 2009 when Secretary of Defense Robert Gates announced the program would end with the procurement of just three ships, down from the 32 ships the Navy had initially planned...
  • The USAF Has To Re-Paint Its Trucks Because The F-35 Can’t Fly On Warm Fuel

    12/09/2014 10:47:29 AM PST · by Idaho_Cowboy · 90 replies
    Daily Caller via Yahoo ^ | December 9, 2014 | Staff
    After a year of several fleet-wide groundings for the F-35, the latest problem to plague the fifth-generation fighter is forcing the U.S. Air Force to revamp an entirely separate fleet to support the military’s most expensive plane yet. The F-35 can only fly on jet fuel under a certain temperature due to a range of heating issues attributed to the F-35B variant’s short takeoff and vertical landing engine. According to the USAF, the dark-green trucks that carry that fuel absorb too much heat from the sun to keep the planes in the sky.
  • U.S. to give $3 billion to international climate fund

    11/15/2014 6:35:35 AM PST · by TurboZamboni · 25 replies
    NYT/Pioneer Press ^ | 11-14-14 | Coral Davenport and Mark Landler
    WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama soon will announce that the United States will contribute $3 billion to a new international fund intended to help the world's poorest countries address the effects of climate change, according to a senior administration official. Obama is expected to make the announcement at a summit meeting of the Group of 20 industrial powers this weekend in Brisbane, Australia, on the heels of his landmark announcement this week that the United States and China will jointly commit to curbing greenhouse gas emissions over the next decade. The two announcements, both unveiled at prominent global meetings with...
  • Obama’s Ebola plans: A new boondoggle?

    11/12/2014 6:20:29 AM PST · by JustaCowgirl · 18 replies
    Fox News Politics ^ | Nov 12, 2014 | George Russell
    So far, the Administration has largely limited itself to providing a broad-brush sketch of the various areas where it intends to shower funds, including $4.64 billion for “immediate needs” and another $1.54 billion as a contingency “to ensure that there are resources available to respond to the evolving epidemic both domestically and internationally,” as the White House declared on November 5.
  • Commodore Young takes command of Navy's newest ships (Littoral combat ships in Mayport FL)

    11/08/2014 10:55:53 AM PST · by 2ndDivisionVet · 22 replies
    The Fremont Tribune ^ | November 8, 2014 | Chris Zavadil
    A Fremont native is playing a key role in a historical transition taking place in the U.S. Navy. Capt. Paul D. Young on Friday became the first commodore of LCS Squadron 2, a new unit created by the Navy to launch a class of ships that is still under construction. Young assumed his leadership post during a command establishment ceremony at the Mayport Naval Station in Florida. The task before him is nothing less than building the new squadron from the ground up, and then overseeing six new Littoral Combat Ships as they are put to sea. His first two...
  • Britain orders more F-35s as part of biggest-ever defence project

    10/28/2014 11:30:55 AM PDT · by sukhoi-30mki · 5 replies
    The Daily Telegraph, UK ^ | October 28, 2014 | Alan Tovey, Industry Editor
    UK orders four more F-35B stealth jets as partners work to reduce the cost of the controversial fighter-bomber British defence and engineering companies including BAE Systems and Rolls-Royce have been given a boost after the Ministry of Defence struck a deal to order the first production batch of F-35 fighter-bombers. Defence Secretary Michael Fallon said the MoD had reached an agreement in principle to buy four F-35 Lightning II stealth aircraft. About 15pc of each aircraft is manufactured in Britain and BAE is the only tier one partner in the F-35 programme, which is headed by Lockheed Martin and is...
  • Massive U.S. aid overwhelms Afghans

    09/14/2014 3:36:26 AM PDT · by huldah1776 · 21 replies
    The Washington Examiner ^ | September 13, 2014 | Mark Tapscott
    American officials have spent billions of tax dollars "setting up projects or programs that the Afghans cannot or will not sustain once international forces" leave Afghanistan, according to a government watchdog. "Afghanistan is a case study in projects and programs set up without considering" whether they can be continued, said John Sopko, Special Inspector-General for Afghanistan Reconstruction. Sopko's comments came in a speech Friday to a meeting of the Center for Security Studies at Georgetown University. The problem is the sheer magnitude of the reconstruction effort, which is bigger than any ever before undertaken by the U.S. "Last year, the...
  • Obama Appoints Democrat Operative Who Oversaw “Stimulus” Boondoggle as “Ebola Czar”

    10/18/2014 5:37:07 AM PDT · by george76 · 37 replies
    TPNN ^ | October 17, 2014 | Matthew Burke
    Even though earlier this week, the official Obama Regime spokesman, Josh Earnest, announced to the nation that there was no need for an “Ebola Czar,” Obama announced his new “Ebola Czar” on Friday, a Democrat Party operative with no experience in the health care or medical industries. Ron Klain, a lawyer who oversaw the implementation of the failed Obama 2009 Stimulus “Porkulus” plan, also served as chief of staff to buffoonish Democrat Vice President Joe Biden and global warming huckster and fraud, former vice president, Al Gore. Think Solyndra.
  • SolarCity loan deal could propel rooftop market

    10/14/2014 5:01:40 AM PDT · by TurboZamboni · 16 replies
    Administration Propaganda ^ | 10-14-14 | Jonathan Fahey
    A new financing offering could make home solar cheaper and more attractive to homeowners, and keep the adoption of home solar growing. The offer, announced by SolarCity this week, is a loan that allows homeowners to install their own solar system on their roof for little or no money down, and pay less for electricity. Previous plans, while popular, turned off some because the solar company owned the system. "The value proposition is becoming clearer and less complicated for consumers," says Patrick Jobin, an analyst at Credit Suisse. "Solar is going mainstream." SolarCity's new loan deal and current similar deals...
  • Jacksonville-built Super Tucano — first made in U.S. — rolls off the line

    09/25/2014 12:05:41 PM PDT · by sukhoi-30mki · 28 replies
    Jacksonville Business Journal ^ | Sep 25, 2014 | Jensen Werley
    The first A29 Super Tucano manufactured in the United States made its debut today in a ceremony at the Embraer facility at Jacksonville International Airport. The light air support defense plane, contracted by the U.S. Air Force from Sierra Nevada Corp. and built by Brazilian-based Embraer, has passed its military certifications and was officially approved for use by the Air Force. The Afghan National Army for light air support will eventually use the plane. "The capability speaks for itself," said Taco Gilbert, vice president of the Sierra Nevada Corp. "It's gotten its air worthiness approval, which is a stamp of...
  • Wind Turbines but no Power

    09/14/2014 8:44:00 AM PDT · by rktman · 30 replies
    canadafreepress.com ^ | 9/13/2014 | Dr. Klaus L.E. Kaiser
    The highly touted, government-subsidized, unreliable, intermittent and expensive "alternative power" schemes currently in vogue are nothing but a phenomenal waste of money
  • Consumer Reports: Tesla Model S has ‘more than its share of problems’

    08/12/2014 11:51:13 PM PDT · by Olog-hai · 7 replies
    Reuters ^ | Mon Aug 11, 2014 6:51pm EDT | Bernie Woodall
    Consumer Reports, which last year gave top marks to electric carmaker Tesla Motors Inc.’s Model S sedan, now says the car it owns has had “more than its share of problems.” While the car has impressed staff at the influential U.S. consumer magazine with its “smoothness, effortless glide and clever, elegant simplicity,” there have been many quirks that might dampen consumers’ experiences, Consumer Reports said in a statement on Monday. […] “Just before the car went in for its annual service, at a little over 12,000 miles, the center screen went blank, eliminating access to just about every function of...
  • Army announces new camouflage uniform pattern (again!)

    08/02/2014 7:57:33 PM PDT · by Timber Rattler · 107 replies
    Stars & Stripes ^ | August 1, 2014 | Chris Carroll
    The Army has selected a new camouflage pattern to begin fielding next year, an unidentified senior Army spokesperson announced in a statement late Thursday. “The Army has confirmed through testing that the pattern would offer exceptional concealment, which directly enhances force protection and survivability for Soldiers,” according to the statement from the Army. The pattern will be used in all combatant commands, including Afghanistan, the Army said. Uniforms and equipment with the existing pattern won’t be discarded, but replaced only as they wear out. The pattern was developed by the Army under the name Scorpion W2 to replace the much-maligned...
  • Navy begins weighing future of littoral combat ship; or whether to replace it

    08/01/2014 11:08:49 PM PDT · by sukhoi-30mki · 15 replies
    AL.com ^ | August 01, 2014 | By Michael Finch II
    MOBILE, Alabama -- It's judgment day for the littoral combat ship. The July 31 deadline has passed for a task force of U.S. Navy officials to collect information for a new or improved small surface combatant. In a released statement the Navy said it will begin reviewing the preliminary findings that will decide the future of the littoral combat ship, or whether to replace it. "Because the task force alternatives will be considered as part of (the fiscal year 2016 budget) deliberations, the Navy will not comment publicly on the report's findings until budget decisions within the defense department are...
  • Analyst: F-35C to Cost $337 Million Apiece in FY15

    07/30/2014 6:27:11 PM PDT · by ClaytonP · 49 replies
    A longtime defense analyst and critic of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program says taxpayers next year will pay between $148 million and $337 million per jet, depending on the model. Winslow Wheeler, a staff member at the Project On Government Oversight who has worked on national-security issues for the Senate and the Government Accountability Office, detailed his cost estimates for the Lockheed Martin Corp.-made fifth-generation stealth fighter in a recent article on Medium​.com. Wheeler puts the per-plane production price tag at $148 million for the Air Force’s F-35A, which can take off and land on conventional runways; $251 million...
  • (Non-existent) Stealth destroyers, (broken) littoral combat ships headed to Pacific

    07/29/2014 7:20:54 AM PDT · by pabianice · 25 replies
    Stars and Stripes ^ | 7/29/14 | Robson
    Stealth destroyers, littoral combat ships headed to Pacific, Mabus says With $3.3 billion Zumwalt, Navy trying for smallest blip on radar Sometime next year, the USS Zumwalt will begin testing the Tomahawk missiles, GPS-guided munitions and "total ship" computing systems that will make the $3.3 billion vessel the most advanced destroyer in Navy history. Scope of Navy's LCS program uncertain, despite no clear replacement The lighter, faster surface fleet of the future may get heavier than Navy leaders have planned, as high-ranking skeptics at the Pentagon try to convince lawmakers that the service is relying too much on a new...
  • Is Detroit's New Light Rail Line America's Greatest Boondoggle?

    07/25/2014 10:28:15 AM PDT · by 1rudeboy · 74 replies
    reason.com ^ | July 24, 2014 | Jim Epstein
    A $137 million three-mile train is coming to a nearly deserted avenue in a bankrupt city. Growing up in the 1940s, Robert Fogelson remembers banging on the typewriter and peering out the window at his father’s office in a Manhattan skyscraper. Then "[my dad] would take us for lunch to a nearby Schraft’s, a chain of restaurants that was popular with housewives like my mother, who regularly went downtown to shop…to socialize ...or to meet my father for a play or a movie." Fogelson hadn’t decided yet what he would do with his life, "[b]ut I took it for granted,"...
  • Pentagon’s big budget F-35 fighter ‘can’t turn, can’t climb, can’t run’

    07/15/2014 9:06:15 PM PDT · by Rabin · 34 replies
    Reuters ^ | July 14, 2014 | David Axe
    The U.S. military has grounded all its new F-35 Joint Strike Fighters following an incident on June 23, when one of the high-tech warplanes caught fire on the runway of a Florida air base. The no-fly order — which affects at least 50 F-35s at training and test bases in Florida, Arizona, California and Maryland. F-35 is on track to become by far the military’s most numerous warplane. It was designed to replace almost all current fighters in the Air Force and Marine Corps and complement the Navy’s existing F/A-18s.
  • Social Security Disability: What Happens When It Runs Out of Money?

    07/17/2014 3:05:46 PM PDT · by TurboZamboni · 39 replies
    motley fool ^ | 7-6-14 | Dan Caplinger
    Social Security helps not only retirees but also roughly 9 million of people suffering from disabilities. Unfortunately, the trust fund that covers disability payments is in even worse financial condition than the trust fund that covers retirement benefits. What will happen when the disability program's trust fund runs out? In the following video, Dan Caplinger, The Motley Fool's director of investment planning, talks about the two Social Security trust funds, noting that the latest estimates give the retirement trust fund about 20 more years before it runs out of money, but the disability trust fund is slated to be used...
  • Who'll Build the Roads?

    07/16/2014 4:14:50 AM PDT · by Kaslin · 21 replies
    Townhall.com ^ | July 16, 2014 | John Stossel
    "Tea party members don't think there's a federal role in transportation!" complained Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, last week, near the site of a $5.8 million highway project. If only most tea party members were that radical. While Brown and other big-government folks worry that Republicans will cut spending, Republicans debate adding another $10.5 billion to the Highway Trust Fund to keep it going another year -- without deciding how to reform it. Now, there's no doubt some roads and bridges need work. But too little transportation money spent by government goes to building and repairing roads. As Cato Institute transportation...
  • Pentagon’s big budget F-35 fighter ‘can’t turn, can’t climb, can’t run’

    07/15/2014 12:38:36 PM PDT · by Rodamala · 53 replies
    Reuters ^ | July 14, 2014 | David Axe
    Americans should be worried. The U.S. military has grounded all its new F-35 Joint Strike Fighters following an incident on June 23, when one of the high-tech warplanes caught fire on the runway of a Florida air base. The no-fly order — which affects at least 50 F-35s at training and test bases in Florida, Arizona, California and Maryland — began on the evening of July 3 and continued through July 11. To be fair, the Pentagon routinely grounds warplanes on a temporary basis following accidents and malfunctions to buy investigators time to identify problems and to give engineers time...
  • MNsure Monthly Premiums Likely to Increase Significantly

    07/10/2014 7:22:08 AM PDT · by TurboZamboni · 5 replies
    KSTP ^ | 7-9-14 | Jay Kolls
    The head of the Minnesota Council of Health Plans gave a hint of what might come soon to those who pay for health insurance coverage through MNsure, Minnesota's health care exchange. Julie Brunner is the Executive Director of the Minnesota Council of Health Plans, which is the professional association for the HMOs that offer health coverage through MNsure. Brunner recently told a University of Minnesota symposium that she would "not be surprised if the health plans increased their rates by 8, 10, or even 12 percent." Gov. Mark Dayton tells 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS he would be disappointed by such a...
  • Green Line opens soon, and St. Paul has a lot riding on this train

    06/08/2014 5:41:42 AM PDT · by TurboZamboni · 21 replies
    Pioneer Press ^ | 6-8-14 | Fred Melo
    Officials at all levels of government are banking that Metro Transit's $957 million investment will do more than simply shuttle existing bus riders in fancier vehicles between the downtowns of St. Paul and Minneapolis when it debuts June 14. They are counting on light rail to be a catalyst -- an economic game-changer for downtown St. Paul and much of University Avenue. Both areas have lost industry since the 1970s. The city as a whole lost 13.4 percent of its employment from 2000 to 2011, a period during which the U.S. shed 2.2 percent of its jobs, according to Wilder...
  • U.S. to Provide Lawyers for Children Facing Deportation

    06/06/2014 2:11:29 PM PDT · by reaganaut1 · 22 replies
    New York Times ^ | June 6, 2014 | Kirk Semple
    The Obama administration said on Friday that it was launching a program to help recruit lawyers for children facing deportation as it scrambles to deal with the soaring number of unaccompanied Central American minors illegally crossing the border from Mexico. Under the plan, the federal government will issue $2 million in grants to enroll about 100 lawyers and paralegals to represent children making their way through the immigration court system. “We’re taking a historic step to strengthen our justice system and protect the rights of the most vulnerable members of society,” Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. said in a...
  • After 43 years, St. Paul's Union Depot marks return of passenger trains

    05/09/2014 4:59:55 AM PDT · by TurboZamboni · 25 replies
    Pioneer Press ^ | Fred Melo
    Passenger trains are again rolling into St. Paul's historic Union Depot. Ramsey County leaders joined their peers from St. Paul and the state Wednesday to welcome Amtrak to their meticulously restored depot. The first train, the westbound Empire Builder from Chicago, arrived at 11:13 p.m. -- 70 minutes late -- en route to Seattle and Portland, Ore. "Our beautifully restored building is achieving our vision as a multimodal transit facility and a unique gathering place for people," said Ramsey County Commissioner Rafael Ortega, chair of the Ramsey County Regional Railroad Authority, said during ceremonies earlier in the day. But don't...
  • Report: Pentagon Paid $150 Per Gallon for Green Jet Fuel

    05/07/2014 6:34:09 PM PDT · by Kaslin · 40 replies
    The Washinton Free Beacon ^ | May 7, 2014 | Lachlan Markay
    The Department of Defense (DOD) paid $150 per gallon for alternative jet fuel made from algae, more than 64 times the current market price for standard carbon-based fuels, according to a report released on Wednesday. The Government Accountability Office (GAO) noted in its report that a Pentagon official reported paying “about $150 per gallon for 1,500 gallons of alternative jet fuel derived from algal oil.” GAO’s report examined the financial challenges facing increased purchases and use of alternative jet fuels by federal agencies. “Currently, the price for alternative jet fuels exceeds that of conventional jet fuel,” the report noted. The...
  • De Blasio Announces Affordable Housing Plan [The $41 Billion Program Will Create....]

    05/05/2014 8:50:03 AM PDT · by Sub-Driver · 37 replies
    De Blasio Announces Affordable Housing Plan The $41 Billion Program Will Create Units for More Than 500,000 New Yorkers By WSJ Staff Updated May 5, 2014 10:46 a.m. ET Mayor Bill de Blasio detailed a wide-ranging plan to build 200,000 new affordable housing units in New York City in 10 years, calling it a "fundamental plan to reduce income inequality." Those who benefit from the plan "won't be living doubled up with friends…they won't be living in homeless shelters," Mr. de Blasio said at a news conference in Brooklyn's Fort Greene neighborhood. The plan would provide housing to service more...
  • New US Navy Destroyer Zumwalt Christened in Maine

    04/13/2014 8:31:03 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 57 replies
    abc | April 12, 2014 | ALANNA DURKIN
    The U.S. Navy on Saturday christened the first ship of its newest class of destroyers, a more than $3 billion, 610-foot-long warship sporting advanced technology and a stealthy shape designed to minimize its visibility on enemy radar and reduce the size of its crew. ... Among the 15,000-ton warship's cutting-edge features are a composite deckhouse with hidden radar and sensors and an angular shape that officials say will allow it to be confused for a small fishing boat on radars. It also sports wave-piercing hull designed to reduce the ship's wake. It's the first U.S. ship to use electric propulsion...
  • There is No Renaissance in Public Transit Use

    04/09/2014 6:39:06 PM PDT · by TurboZamboni · 21 replies
    MinnPost ^ | 4-9-14 | Katherine Kersten
    Are we seeing a renaissance in public transit use by Americans? The answer is yes, if you believe a new report from the American Public Transportation Association (APTA), the transit industry's lobby group. In fact, APTA's report is a textbook example of how deceiving statistics can be. The report states that in 2013, the number of transit trips was nearly 10.7 billion nationally--the highest since 1956, according to APTA. Michael Melaniphy, APTA's CEO, hailed what he called "a fundamental shift" in how Americans choose to get around. But even strong supporters of public transit like Michael Manville, David King and...
  • New building shows what legislators truly value: Themselves

    04/09/2014 4:44:45 AM PDT · by TurboZamboni · 8 replies
    Pioneer Press ^ | 4-9-14 | Joe Soucheray
    DFLers, who generally frown on grandeur as part of their ideology, are going to build themselves a marvelous new office building. They have been deaf to the idea that it is wasteful and that there are countless ways to accommodate the few of them who are going to be displaced by renovation work on the Capitol. To save a few bucks -- cutting it from $94 million to $77 million -- they claim they are going to eliminate an adjoining parking ramp. But that was to have been principally for the public anyway, and the public has been ignored in...
  • Senate Finance Committee votes to restore Wind Tax Credit

    04/03/2014 2:55:56 PM PDT · by Izzy Dunne · 20 replies
    The Hill ^ | Apr. 3, 2014 | Timothy Cama
    The Senate Finance Committee approved Thursday a package of tax break extensions that restores the production tax credit (PTC) for wind energy, which expired in 2013.The committee voted by voice vote to send the bill to the full Senate. It would extend the PTC for two years, along with numerous provisions that incentivize alternative fuels and energy efficiency for vehicles and homes. Senators who support the wind industry thanked Chairman Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and ranking member Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) for including the wind credit in the bill that the committee marked up Thursday after excluding it from the draft...
  • California: By the way, that bullet train isn’t actually going to be as fast as we said it would be

    03/28/2014 9:18:01 PM PDT · by george76 · 61 replies
    Hot Air ^ | March 28, 2014 | Erika Johnsen
    When California first put the issue of building a high-speed bullet train between Los Angeles and San Francisco before voters, Gov. Jerry Brown made all sorts of nifty-sounding promises about how efficient, convenient, and fiscally sound a choice the rail line would be for Californians. All of those promises have more or less turned out to be a sham by now, as the train’s costs have exploded and its deadlines pushed way back, and now it appears that that less-than-three-hour ride Californians were originally promised… well, probably isn’t. ... who really considers a mounting “wall of debt” and a slew...
  • Veterans Affairs wind turbine, built for $2.3 million, stands dormant

    03/20/2014 6:40:02 AM PDT · by woodbutcher1963 · 22 replies
    Fox News ^ | March 20, 2014 | Tom Steward
    <p>ST. CLOUD, Minn. – A $2.3 million federal stimulus project at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in St. Cloud is giving green energy initiatives a bad name. A 600-kilowatt wind turbine -- some 245 foot tall -- stands on the wintry VA grounds, frozen in time and temperature, essentially inoperable for the past 1 1/2 years.</p>
  • Airplane pilots hit by ‘nearly blinding’ glare from massive Calif. solar facility

    03/19/2014 11:09:27 AM PDT · by Red Badger · 24 replies
    Daily Caller ^ | 7:23 PM 03/18/2014 | Michael Bastasch
    Airplane pilots cruising over southern California have been complaining about a “nearly blinding” glare emanating from a massive government-funded solar thermal facility. The Ivanpah solar energy plant in San Bernardino County is the world’s largest solar thermal plant and has 173,500 large mirrors that reflect sunlight onto boilers in three 459-foot towers. A feat of modern engineering — to green energy advocates, but a flying hazard to pilots. The Federal Aviation Administration’s Aviation Safety Reporting System (ASRS) got two anonymous complaints in August that mentioned a “blinding glare” coming from the Ivanpah solar facility. One complaint came from a Los...
  • Feds open investigation of Md. ObamaCare site

    03/10/2014 1:15:17 PM PDT · by rightwingintelligentsia · 12 replies
    The Hill ^ | March 10, 2014 | Jonathan Easley
    The Health and Human Services inspector general (IG) will launch an investigation into the failed ObamaCare exchange in Maryland, Rep. Andy Harris (R-Md.) announced Monday. “Maryland officials ignored early warning signs and chose to waste and abuse federal taxpayer money by opening up what they knew was a flawed exchange to the public,” he wrote in a statement. “I have confidence that the nonpartisan and independent HHS Inspector General will thoroughly investigate and bring to light how hundreds of millions of dollars were wasted on one of the worst exchange roll outs in the country,” he added. An official with...
  • Report: DC’s green-approved buildings using more energy

    03/04/2014 12:18:49 PM PST · by TurboZamboni · 14 replies
    daily caller ^ | 3-4-14 | Sarah Hurtubise
    Washington, D.C. may have the highest number of certified green buildings in the country, but research by Environmental Policy Alliance suggests it might not be doing much good.The free-market group analyzed the first round of energy usage data released by city officials Friday and found that large, privately-owned buildings that received the green energy certification Leadership in Energy Design (LEED) actually use more energy than buildings that didn’t receive this green stamp of approval.LEED is the brainchild of the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), a private environmental group.
  • Obama to pitch $1B climate change 'resilience fund' in Fresno, CA

    02/14/2014 10:15:14 AM PST · by Sub-Driver · 91 replies
    February 14, 2014, 06:39 am Obama to pitch $1B climate change 'resilience fund' By Laura Barron-Lopez President Obama will pitch a new $1 billion climate change resilience fund during a visit Friday to California. The fund, which would need to be approved by Congress, is intended to help communities dealing with negative weather that's the result of climate change. Obama is touting the fund during a trip to California, which has been devastated by a drought that is threatening the Central Valley's agriculture production and has led Gov. Jerry Brown (D) to call on Californians to conserve water. During a...
  • Dems' new 2014 plan: Neutralize Obamacare (They Want a Fight to a Draw)

    02/17/2014 5:03:35 AM PST · by Timber Rattler · 11 replies
    Politico ^ | February 17, 2014 | JAMES HOHMANN
    Democrats know their biggest problem in this year’s midterm election is Obamacare. So top party operatives have settled on a strategy to try blunting the GOP’s advantage: Tell voters Republicans would make the problem worse — raising prescription drug prices, empowering insurance companies and even endangering domestic violence victims. The battle plan, details of which were in a memo obtained by POLITICO, recognizes the unpopularity of the Affordable Care Act. But it also banks on voter fatigue with the GOP’s relentless demands for repeal and counts on poll-backed data that show many Americans would rather fix Obamacare’s problems than scrap...
  • World's largest solar plant scorching birds in Nevada desert

    02/16/2014 2:30:44 AM PST · by Fzob · 25 replies
    Fox News ^ | 02/15/2014 | Fox News
    A stretch of the Mojave Desert has been transformed by hundreds of thousands of mirrors into the largest solar power plant of its type in the world, but the milestone is being met with criticism from environmental groups concerned about the effect of solar energy on desert wildlife. The Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System, sprawling across roughly 5 square miles of federal land near the California-Nevada border, formally opened Thursday after years of regulatory and legal tangles ranging from relocating tortoises to assessing the impact on plants. The $2.2 billion complex of three generating units, owned by NRG Energy Inc.,...
  • Obama to propose billion-dollar Climate Resilience Fund; Icy blast heats up coal debate

    02/14/2014 11:12:44 AM PST · by Olog-hai · 15 replies
    Politico ^ | 02/14/14 10:08 AM EDT | Alex Guillen
    President Barack Obama will ask Congress to set up a $1 billion “Climate Resilience Fund” in his proposed budget next month. Obama travels to Fresno, Calif., today to discuss the drought plaguing most of California and the Western U.S. and to announce new administration actions, including the proposed billion-dollar fund. According to the White House, the fund would go to research on the projected impacts of climate change, help communities prepare for climate change’s effects and fund “breakthrough technologies and resilient infrastructure.” […] As another snowstorm socks the East Coast, the coal industry has a message for the nation’s electricity...
  • A Huge Solar Plant Opens, Facing Doubts About Its Future

    02/14/2014 8:11:25 AM PST · by lbryce · 56 replies
    New York Times ^ | February 13, 2014 | DIANE CARDWELL and MATTHEW L. WALD
    The Ivanpah solar power plant stretches over more than five square miles of the Mojave Desert. Almost 350,000 mirrors the size of garage doors tilt toward the sun with an ability to energize 140,000 homes. The plant, which took almost four years and thousands of workers assembling millions of parts to complete, officially opened on Thursday, the first electric generator of its kind. It could also be the last. Since the project began, the price of rival technologies has plummeted, incentives have begun to disappear and the appetite among investors for mammoth solar farms has waned. Although several large, new...
  • This high-speed rail thing is kinda’ becoming a disaster for Jerry Brown

    01/13/2014 8:46:11 PM PST · by dennisw · 43 replies
    hotair ^ | JANUARY 7, 2014 | BY ERIKA JOHNSEN
    California’s ludicrously ambitious plan to build a high-speed railway connecting Los Angeles and San Francisco has been besieged with all kinds of problems from almost the moment of its official conception, but let that not restrain California Democrats from doubling down on what they seem to view as their iliadic quest to make high-speed rail happen. Back in August, a judge declared that the project had already violated the 2008 ballot initiative that first authorized the $10 billion in bonds for the 500-mile train, because the state didn't actually having funding sources on the books for the $31 billion required...