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Senator Reid recently went to China with 9 other Senators. He returned with Jobs for Americans and a vision of where America needs to go ... where America needs to be ...

China offers green energy lessons, but will we learn?
Thomas Mitchell, Las Vegas Review-Journal -- May 8, 2011

Reid's 10-senator delegation visited renewable energy facilities in Chengdu and met with officials of the Chinese Rail Ministry to discuss high-speed rail, which is being pushed by President Obama. Sen. Reid backs the high-speed, steel-rail Desert Xpress train from Las Vegas to Victorville, Calif.

Reid said he also met with leaders of A-Power Energy Generation Systems, a Chinese firm that partnered with an American company to announce plans to build a wind turbine manufacturing plant in Southern Nevada. They claim the project would create 1,000 jobs -- if it is ever actually built. [...]

Light Rail, and Wind Turbines jobs, should be coming to Nevada soon, thanks to Senator Reid's bold initiative to meet with the pace-setters ...

Here's more of the High Tech, Clean Energy vision that Harry Reid brought back with him, from China.  A vision of what America should be doing if we are ever to reach our true 21st century potential ...

China Taking Lead Ahead of US on Clean Energy, Sen. Reid Says
Kenneth Rapoza, -- Apr. 27 2011

China is fast establishing itself as the world’s leader in clean energy and if the US doesn’t take this sector of the global economy seriously, it risks being left behind, US Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said Wednesday during a conference call with the press.

China is investing heavily in clean energy and they are not just doing it for the environment. They are doing it for the economy, and for job creation. We need to understand in this country that if we do not want to be dependent on foreign oil, we must develop this sector of our economy. To say that China is leading in this market would be an understatement,” Reid said.

All of the top solar panel manufacturers are Chinese companies.  Around 90% of the rare earth mines, used for making new high powered batteries that can power automobiles instead of gasoline, are in China.  Reid said that the US should be the global innovator and leader in clean energy, but noted that China was building and investing in this market “faster than we are.” [...]

According to recent events from the White House, it looks like President Obama shares the same High Tech, Clean Energy dreams.  And a plan to keep encouraging those Good American Clean Energy Jobs, that the dream will one day bring ...

Obama pushes green tech as an answer for jobs, gas prices
by Jamie Klatell, -- 05/07/2011

President Obama: Clean Energy to Out-Innovate the Rest of the World

"In the years ahead, it’s clean energy companies like this one that will keep our economy growing, create new jobs, and make sure America remains the most prosperous nation in the world," Obama said from the Allison Transmission plant in Indianapolis, where he taped his weekly address.

Obama also said that businesses like Allison Transmission, which manufactures hybrid technology, are the key to reducing America's dependence on oil and to controlling gas prices.

"Over the long term, the only way we can avoid being held hostage to the ups and downs of oil prices is if we reduce our dependence on oil. That means investing in clean, alternative sources of energy, like advanced biofuels and natural gas. And that means making cars and trucks and buses that use less oil," the president said.

"I refuse to cut investments like clean energy that will help us out-innovate and out-compete the rest of the world," he said. "I refuse to cut investments that are making it possible for plants like this one to grow and add jobs across America."

China is leading the way to the Clean Energy future -- question is:

Is America ready to follow their lead, ready to compete, ready to "innovate our way out of" last century's problems?

If President Obama and Senator Reid keep pressing forward like this, on the Clean Energy front

-- we just might be able to grow that bright, New Future for American Workers, that is always the result of innovation.

That is of course, if the GOP House doesn't stop that New Future in its tracks

-- all under the guise of Austerity Whining, and False Rhetoric ...

... of returning, stubbornly to the ways of the past.

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Comment Preferences

  •  The conservative anti-government ideology is (23+ / 0-)

    what's preventing us from being successful in solving pretty much all of our problems. Right now there's a consensus among conservatives that "we don't have a revenue problem, we have a spending problem." They're wrong. We only have a spending problem to the point of the money we are spending is being spent in the wrong areas (military, prisons, etc) and I know their anti-government meme is the reason behind their opposition to taxes but guess what: revenue is too low. The huge deficit is a result of:

    1. Having 2 perpetual wars costing us $200 billion a year on top of a $500+ billion "defense" budget
    2. Federal tax revenue being at an all time low of 15-16% of GDP
    3. Massive unemployment

    You know how EASY it would be to create jobs if we didn't have these teabagging idiots slowing us down every step of the way in the state legislatures and the House of Representatives? So easy. All we'd have to do to close the deficit and create millions of jobs would be to:

    1. Let the Bush tax cuts expire and add a financial transaction tax
    2. End the wars and cut defense spending to 1.75% of GDP (vs the 4 to 4.5% of GDP now)
    3. Create a national infrastructure bank and have massive infrastructure spending on transportation (roads, bridges, transit, HSR) and energy (renewable, transmission, energy storage).

    •  and remove the cap on SS contributions /nt (10+ / 0-)

      "From single strands of light we build our webs." ~kj

      by kj in missouri on Sun May 08, 2011 at 06:24:44 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  kj - would you remove the cap on benefits? (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        kj in missouri, Jeff Y

        SocSec has always had a correlation between contributions and benefits. There is currently a benefit cap for people who have paid in 40 quarters at the cap amount. If we removed the cap on SocSec contributions, should we also not remove the cap on benefits?

        "let's talk about that"

        by VClib on Sun May 08, 2011 at 06:35:50 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  eek, i don't know (8+ / 0-)

          i shouldn't say anything that has to do with math!    i thought there was a cap on the yearly income that could be taxed for social security...  that any monies earned over 106,000 a year were not subject to the tax.    (i'm in over my head here!)   i truly don't know how that would correlate with benefits.   sorry.

          "From single strands of light we build our webs." ~kj

          by kj in missouri on Sun May 08, 2011 at 06:43:00 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  yes we should (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          VClib, DawnN, markthshark

          until at least, the Congress some day

          adopts "means-testing" ...

          say starting at $106K

          Until then, fair is fair.

          Got Time?
          Take ten, to find something else informative and fun to read. Thx.

          by jamess on Sun May 08, 2011 at 06:54:12 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Thanks for the diary... (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            jamess, alizard, jfromga, koNko

            A bit off-topic here but don't forget the one-trillion dollar plus Orwellian-like DHS complex Bush/Cheney created.

            Rachel talked about this Friday night, noting that DHS would need to foil/prevent around 1,800 (I think she said) terrorist plots on U.S. soil every single day in order to be cost-effective in terms of budget concerns.

            That amount is obscene; staggering, and will eventually bankrupt this country all on its own if not radically reduced in size. As it stands right now, the vast majority of cases worked by DHS involve drug trafficking... not terrorism.

            So, what exactly is the DEA doing besides raiding legal medical marijuana dispensaries?

            "Corporations have neither bodies to kick nor souls to damn." -- Andrew Jackson, 7th President of the United States

            by markthshark on Sun May 08, 2011 at 09:29:36 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  significant amounts of homeland (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              koNko, markthshark

              security money has been diverted into ordinary law enforcement grants, the war on drugs and spying on Americans at home.   Pretty much a huge waste of money.

              Some of it gets diverted into emergency response equipment that goes into police hands, but the police aren't generally trained as ems techs or haz mat, so they don't know how to use it.  I know of one department that won't loan the equipment to the fire department, so it sits unused.    Some of it does end up in radio equipment and other medical tech (for responses to attacks don't you know) that is put to good use by local personnel responding to all those terroristic car accidents.

        •  no, because the rich don't need it (7+ / 0-)

          while we're at it, we should jack up capital gains, instate a tobin tax on financial transactions, and slap four or five income tax brackets for the wealthy, the über-wealthy, and the forbes 400.

          we can't afford to starve society of vital public works and social safety net just to make sure that the idle rich can hold onto even more of the money they make from speculation and bleeding the actually productive members of society of the past several decades of wage increases.

          •  wu - the majority of Americans (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            who make more than $106,800 are not rich. The AGI of even the top 1% starts at under $400,000 which could be two lawyers or a physician and a CPA. That is clearly an upper income family, but it is not the lifestyle of the rich and famous. For those who earn between $106,800 and $200,000 the President has promised not to raise their taxes and lifting the cap would be a big increase.  

            "let's talk about that"

            by VClib on Sun May 08, 2011 at 07:46:03 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I think the math would say that uncapping (0+ / 0-)

              FICA for those earning between $106,800 and $200,000 would not result in a proportionally larger bite from their income.

              In  other words, if I earn less than $106,800 I pay 100% of the FICA deduction 7.65%*. If I earn more than $106,800 the higher my income goes the bigger discount I get from what would otherwise be a bite of 7.65% of my income.

              After uncapping, I would pay as a $106,800 to $200,000 worker the same percentage FICA as a minimum wage worker.

              As a $106,800 and $200,000 earner why do I deserve a payroll tax discount and how much pity would I deserve if I didn't get it?

              *The 7.65% represents FICA before the current 2% temporary deduction reduction.

              Better times to come unless we settle for the alternative.

              by Outrider on Sun May 08, 2011 at 09:07:07 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Outrider because there is a benefit cap (0+ / 0-)

                SocSec is currently structured so that it is a much better deal for low income workers but there is a correlation between the payments made and the benefits earned. If we raise the cap on wages we should raise the cap on benefits, although wu doesn't think so.

                "let's talk about that"

                by VClib on Sun May 08, 2011 at 09:11:26 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  The cap on benefits could be raised (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  alizard, VClib

                  by an amount less than proportional to the increase in revenue from uncapping. The actuaries would have to figure out how much could be paid out while keeping the program solvent.

                  Your point about the promise not to raise taxes on the group earning less than $200K has merit. The answer to that could be an offsetting income tax rate reduction for the same group paid for with a reduction in the bloated defense budget.

                  Better times to come unless we settle for the alternative.

                  by Outrider on Sun May 08, 2011 at 11:18:29 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

            •  what obama campaigned on is irrelevant (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              alizard, jamess, koNko

              households making more than $106,800 are in the top 15% of households, and will survive perfectly well were all the things i mentioned to go into effect - in fact, for the most part their finances would not be terribly impacted.

              households making over $250,000 are in the top 1.5% of all households, and have no grounds for weeping about tax rates to the rest of us peons making far less.

              but the people for whom the above tax suggestions are intended are the rest far above that, from the hundreds of thousands on up to the millions and hundreds of millions, and it is these people that any moaning about the unfair two-lawyer household tax burden is effectively carrying water for, intentionally or un-.

              anyone making more money than 98.5% of the households in this country - in an economy as brutally bad as this one - can afford to put their shoulder to the wheel so that the rest of us can get by. and those making tons and tons of money actively need to be taxed hard so that wealth and power do not accumulate at the top among a small cluster of superrich families to the point where our economy and democracy become dangerously distorted to the point of dysfunction and eventual systems collapse.

              us peons cannot afford to keep subsidizing these people by carrying their burden for them in the hopes that they'll toss us crumbs or give us jobs. the past several decades has proven that they do neither with that money. they're perfectly nice people - some of them are friends and relatives - but the system cannot afford to continue as is.

              •  one point... (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                wu ming, jamess, koNko
                where our economy and democracy become dangerously distorted to the point of dysfunction and eventual systems collapse.

                IMO, we are well past the dysfunction point and in the early-mid stage of systems collapse.

                Peak Oil is NOW! Looking for intelligent energy policy alternatives? Try here.

                by alizard on Mon May 09, 2011 at 01:26:27 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  exactly (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  alizard, jamess, koNko

                  the systems collapse is happening precisely because the top 1% has squeezed the bottom 99% to the point where they broke the economy that they skim the top off of, because they mistakenly convinced themselves and a significant chunk of the 99% that they were in fact the motive force behind society and the economy, when in fact they are not. austerity is a symptom of a total elite incomprehension of the actual relationship between the economy and the populace.

                  we are very close to the brink, even without oil shocks.

    •  If the Conservatives (5+ / 0-)

      even had a plan, for the Future of America,

      they might be worth listening to.

      -- but since they don't, they aren't!

      thanks for the comments supercereal

      Got Time?
      Take ten, to find something else informative and fun to read. Thx.

      by jamess on Sun May 08, 2011 at 06:31:46 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  thanks for putting this together (7+ / 0-)

    i haven't watched the weekly address yet.

    i can't quite get over Americans going to China for lessons in new technology, but it is a fact, sad as it is for the idea of American ingenuity.

    "From single strands of light we build our webs." ~kj

    by kj in missouri on Sun May 08, 2011 at 06:23:51 PM PDT

  •  Excellent diary. Work hard for Dems in 2012. n/t (6+ / 0-)

    "We can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them." ~Albert Einstein

    by ParkRanger on Sun May 08, 2011 at 06:28:33 PM PDT

  •  As President Obama has pointed out... (5+ / 0-)

    several times recently, conservatives say we can't have the country we are used to, we can't afford it.  I'm sure off camera he ends that phrase with "bullshit we can't." LOL  We can have an even greater country with investments in clean energy.

    "The United States will not be able to dictate the pace and scope of this change. Only the people of the region can do that. But we can make a difference." 3/28/11

    by BarackStarObama on Sun May 08, 2011 at 06:38:36 PM PDT

  •  We can always count on the Repubs (6+ / 0-)

    to block any new innovations and legislation which will keep us in the forefront internationally or create jobs.  But then the new clean energy systems aren't lining those GOP coffers like the old fossil fuel industries are.  I would hope the Dems in the Senate and in the White House could overpower the House - but I doubt it will happen until we replace those Repubs who were elected in 2010.  

    "Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe." A. Einstein

    by moose67 on Sun May 08, 2011 at 06:45:13 PM PDT

  •  thanks folks (5+ / 0-)

    for putting this on the Recommended List.

    much obliged.

    Got Time?
    Take ten, to find something else informative and fun to read. Thx.

    by jamess on Sun May 08, 2011 at 06:58:51 PM PDT

    •  Thank you for keeping the focus (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jamess, kj in missouri

      this is the way out, the plan that ties up a lot of loose threads. Put Americans to work building a clean energy future.

      I don't know how they make it happen at this point, but it is the way to go, should we ever get a majorities in Congress and a president that agree.

      An ambulance can only go so fast - Neil Young

      by mightymouse on Sun May 08, 2011 at 08:23:20 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  until the filibuster is reformed (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jamess, mightymouse, DawnN, supercereal, koNko

    any meanignful progress will have to happen at the state level. the senate is broken, no matter who has a nominal majority.

    •  some one (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      really needs to fix that relic.

      Got Time?
      Take ten, to find something else informative and fun to read. Thx.

      by jamess on Sun May 08, 2011 at 08:02:32 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  well that would have been (0+ / 0-)

        51 Ds in either Jan 2009 or Jan 2011.

        But, you know, they didn't.

        The moment was Jan 2009. When change could have happened whether or not the GOP obstructed. Now we are in a different place - where Reid and Obama talk a good game (talk is important, yes) but lack the power to actually make the good thing happen.

        So we wait for the next moment. In the meantime, the more Obama and company talk the good game the better.

        An ambulance can only go so fast - Neil Young

        by mightymouse on Sun May 08, 2011 at 08:20:06 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Suntech (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    The largest pv Solar ompany in China is already operating and has expanded a plant in Arizona.

    Which contains an object lesson; clean energy is a global industry and the winners will be those who have a sound manufacturing base at home and the major markets they target.

    Case 2: One of the most innovative US clean energy companies, Amerian Superconductor has taken a global approach and is a strategic partner with severl Chinese wind companies including the largest, Sinoval. Inside the windmills of China's first offshore wind farm in Shanghai run AS generators.

    The world will not wait, you jump into the game or loose, it is really that simple.

    BTW, the DOE has a clean energy development consortium with the Chinese National Acadamy of Science. While this might strike some as strange, the Chinese market is rapidly expanding and foreign companies such as Siemens have a significant share largely due to government support of trade deals and export oriented industrial policy that make Germany a global leader with a far greater export/GDP ratio than China (>40%).

    What about my Daughter's future?

    by koNko on Mon May 09, 2011 at 07:49:21 AM PDT

  •  I have to point out the Mitchel article (0+ / 0-)

    Quotes and parrort the position of Bjorn Lomborg who touts himself as a "Green Skeptic" but has pretty much been discredited as a fraud who has ridden the the coatails of the movement to sell books and promote his own career.

    And I must add the figures Mitchel quotes from Lomborg are misleading since China does not count installed every until it is grid conneted and put online, meaning a significant amout of capacity already installed but waiting for grid connection is not counted but will "spike" in the next 2 years as grids presently under construction reach them.

    Including a couple of Gw being supplied by First Solar.

    And they do not, conveniently mention the amount of wind.

    What about my Daughter's future?

    by koNko on Mon May 16, 2011 at 08:04:21 AM PDT

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