Friday, November 1, 2013

Nuclear POWer BLOWS!!

Recently, here in Canada in my lovely province of beautiful and rugged Ontario, the provincial government decided to cancel the building of two new nuclear plants. Hip, Hip-Hooray!! It's the
first time in a long-time the government's done something good. The two death-gamble/power-plants would've been placed right alongside the north shore of Lake Ontario  about 70 km east of Toronto with a metropolitan population of 5 million people (over 6 million if you include what is known as the Greater Toronto Area with all the small towns, suburbs and bedroom-communities). The cancelling of these plants is the best decision that any Ontario government has made in about 50 yrs concerning energy and power. The truth is that Ontario has been absolutely stupidly and shamelessly devoted to Nuclear Power to its own detriment and financial handicap through changes in government that reflect every major political party. All parties, no really, ALL OF THEM have made the same terrible and unbelievably expensive decision to support nuclear power and all of them were wrong and stupid and effectively cost the taxpayer hundreds of billions of dollars in needless and wasted spending.
    Living in Ontario for the last five decades, you might think that the Nuclear Industry actually owned the government, because after 50 years of the ugliest, stupidest, and most heinous wastes of money, they somehow managed to snaggle the previous government, under premiere Dalton McGuinty to ensure over $26 billion Cdn in future spending on two NEW reactors at the Darlington site, where there currently sits four reactors already.  Those two, were thankfully, the ones cancelled, but the nuclear industry of Ontario has enjoyed 50 years of getting-whatever-it-wants, while the average middle-income taxpayer has footed the bill, and at the same time, taken upon itself all of the risk associated with the most expensive and dangerous fuel that exists in the world.

  But, with Hallowe'en just passed, I'd like to play Devil's Advocate (not really) and give you some reasons why you might actually want Nuclear power for your community or region. Along with some songs describing what it's like to live with nuclear power, I have listed below five major and important reasons why you might, god forbid, actually want nuclear power over and above any other type of power.

(The video to the left: Japanese Rocker Kiyoshiro Imawano sings a cover of Eddie Cochran's Summer Time Blues. It's a protest song about proliferation of nuclear power plants in Japan. This song was performed in the late 80's when there only 37 nuclear plants in Japan. At the time of the Fukushima accident there was over fifty.)

1. You want to spend STUPID amounts of money. I mean the kind of prices that start in the range of tens of billions, then escalates to the "Mama-mia-i'm-a-gonna-have-a-f***ing-heart-attack!" range, and after about twenty years settles out at "That number is so big, I can't even count anymore." These are literally the sort of numbers that make a person dizzy, and likely what's kept clueless and stupid politicians from ever taking any sort of real account of what the thieving Nuclear power industry is doing with the money, other than constantly asking for more billions due to 'cost overruns'. Most Investment banks, Insurance companies and private investors ditched Nuclear power as a business over thirty years ago. Ever since the Three Mile Island disaster, nuclear power hasn't been a legitimate viable energy business. Basically, it's a big-time money-loser! (SURPRISE!) The risk and costs are too high, the reward too low. However, since TMI (Three Mile Island is now referred to by the Nuke industry as TMI), STUPID governments around the world have put up the STUPENDOUS amounts of public money to prop-up the largely private-run nuclear industry when private investment failed, and hence, thanks to the taxpayer, the Nuclear power industry survived it's own disaster and lived on since the seventies despite its own horrible financial performance and terrible safety-record. Simply put: TMI turned your government into the Nuke industry's ATM. Even when it should have been left behind, the Nuclear industry continued on, promising everything, but contributing very little, while being dragged into the 21st century kicking and screaming all the way, but happily raking up billons of dollars in 'refurbishments', 'improvements' and 'safety assessments' from the governments around the world. The Nuclear industry, despite a complete failure to live up to any and all promises of power production, reliability, safety concerns or even the possibility of getting a reactor up and running on time and on budget, has sucked HUNDREDS OF BILLIONS OF DOLLARS AWAY from governments around the world. And when an accident happens, it only costs MORE MONEY!!! So if you like to spend like a drunken sailor on shoreleave, then you better get a wind turbine, because that's nowhere near enough money to go nuclear. If you want the nukes, you gotta SPEND MONEY UNTIL YOUR EYES BLEED and when you have bleeding eyes, SPEND MORE because of cost overruns and then you just have to KEEP SPENDING!!

2. You want to RISK EVERYTHING! Not only the financial health of yourself and your community/region/nation, but your physical health and well-being as well as that of your loved ones including children. There's also the consideration of loss of land, including farmland (as the Japanese have discovered) and potential sources of clean, drinkable water. Years after their original meltdown, the Fukushima reactors are leaking huge amounts of radiation into the Ocean. If that same amount were to go into Lake Ontario, it would irradiate one of largest sources of freshwater in North America, supplying over 8 million people, and that wouldn't even include downriver places such as Montreal. Las Vegas is a place for pussies! When you go Nuclear, you are RISKING IT ALL, BABY!! This is highest of high stakes gambles that ever existed and the worst part of it is that you CAN'T WIN! Even if you don't die in a nuclear disaster, you might lose your home, your way of living, your food, your water and you and your community will be for generations saddled with the accumulated debt of billions of dollars wasted trying to make something safe that simply isn't. And even if that doesn't happen, it's probably because you got rid of nuclear power, and so you lose the power, too, not to mention all the money, time and effort that you lost starting all those nuke-reactors and then, inevitably, having to shut everything down, hopefully without a terrible disaster. You could've spent all that time, cash and effort on safer, more effective and more reliable power like solar, wind or hydro (or bio-gas, or even geothermal). But hey, why take the risk? Why? Because people are F**KING STUPID that's why! Your electricity provider is stupid, your government is stupid, and stupid people and stupid politicians believe in stupid things like the idea that electric power is somehow better when the source is insanely expensive and incredibly dangerous.

3. You want to make it NEARLY IMPOSSIBLE to switch to another source of energy.  Don't like to change your mind? Good, because you can't. In other words, you want to handcuff your entire community or region or even the whole nation to that Nuke-power ticking time bomb and throw away the key far enough away that you won't reach it for a very, very long time. You'll need to keep spending all that money and lock in that risk for about 50-70 yrs or more. Because once you go nuclear, you can't just stop and change your mind. You've already spent billions, if you were to cancel halfway through it would be like throwing away the first $10 billion for nothing while you're still waiting on throwing away another $10 billion for more nothing and then you won't be able to throw away $10 billion more on cost overruns while hoping to throw away another $10 billion on whatever stupid reason the nuclear industry comes up with next... . So lock yourself in for a long-term ride, because you bought those nukes, now you have to take care of them possibly for hundreds of years, if you include the waste. Nuclear Industry representatives estimate the lifetime of a single reactor at 45-50 years, but the real life is about 20-25 because that's about when its discovered that the now twenty-year-old (and thus obsolete) safety precautions have to be replaced to contend with a reactor that is now part of the 'legacy engineering' models. This is also about the time that the Nuclear industry starts asking for larger amounts of money to 'refurbish existing reactors' or worse to 'estimate the costs of refurbishing existing reactors' which also cost in the hundreds of millions. Simply put, now you have nuclear, you can't just get rid of it. You need to plan for decades in advance to switch to something else, well beyond the term limits of an elected government, and while you're planning, the nuke industry vampires are busy trying to suck your money away from all the other options, trying every way they can to keep you trained on the nuclear path. They'll try to get 45-50 years out of those reactors, and they'll keep trying as long as you keep paying, but they probably won't get there and eventually those suckers will finally have to be shut down for good, but that won't be for a long, long time.


4. You want BREAKDOWNS, DELAYS AND STOPPAGES OF SERVICE of the most expensive kind and on a routine basis. In return for your unbelievable amounts of money, massive risk and staggering, backbreaking commitment you get... the most unstable and unreliable power system that you could possibly imagine. In Ontario the Bruce Nuclear Plant located on the shores of Lake Huron, boasted proudly in April of 2013 that all eight reactors at the plant were up and running and fully functional for the first time in over twenty years. While the scientists and engineers were busy high-fiving and patting each other on the back, the accountants estimated the cost at $7 Billion. The same article suggest that over $12 billion will be spent refurbishing the reactors starting in 2016. Ironically the same article also suggests that this power is 'low-cost' and 'reliable' (I repeat: $7 Billion spent to get 8 reactors working for the 1st time in 20yrs. $12 Billion more in future repairs.) The truth is that the only reason that the province of Ontario hasn't seen massive rolling blackouts for three decades is because the grid is tied into the same grid as the Americans in New York State, joined up at Niagara Falls, and in times of peak demand or lack of supply, the province has been able to buy power from the U.S. which usually fires up one of it's coal plants or redistributes energy from the Falls themselves and then charges the cost to Ontario providers (more $ cost to consumers, again!). Despite these glaring weaknesses in the Ontario system, Nuke Industry sales reps will insist they're doing a good job. They'll say things like: "Oh if only all those reactors were all functioning all at once, then you could shut down the coal plant in that other town or lower the costs of power to the manufacturing sector, perhaps even get new interest from foreign investment with all the abundance of cheap power that you'll have." But you'll never have that abundance of power. And even if you do, the achievement will be brief, so you can't lower prices. It's like running in a dream. You'll never get where to you're going because It's just an illusion! It's just a matter of time before they run into more problems, and Nuclear problems are always super-expensive, and it only gets more expensive and more dangerous by having more reactors or even new reactors. What's worse is that the environmental costs and waste costs have still not been fully determined. And down-time at a Nuclear power plant is not like downtime at a Hydro-generator or a wind-turbine or even a coal plant. Having to shut down a nuke reactor for repair is very, very, very expensive, and it happens much more often than anyone in the industry would like to admit.

5. You enjoy doing the SAFETY DANCE. Of course, I'm not talking about the actual Safety Dance, which is probably a lot of fun. I'm talking about how you will have to keep lying about safety in order to maintain support for Nuclear Power. If you are a politician, an industry rep or any kind of supporter of Nuclear power, you absolutely MUST LIE TO YOUR CITIZENS, including the the people that voted for you, because there is no way you can possibly guarantee their safety and still use Nuclear power at the same time. So you have to LIE and claim that, under the scrutiny of your administration, these Nukes are "SAFE SAFE SAFE!!"  and repeat it again and again for years and years, all the while knowing that every single syllable of your speech is an absolute f-ing lie! You'll have to spend even more money on big advertising campaigns and promotions and billboards and on the internet and all the more modern forms of communication and all the ads and promotion will LIE and say nuclear power is "SAFE SAFE SAFE" And no one will be able to doubt it, because every TV or radio show that has a guest that doubts nuclear safety will also have some Nuclear-industry representative on to insist that it's SAFE, and he or she will never answer any of your concerns, but just keep insisting that it's "SAFE!! SAFE!! SAFE!!". And you'll ask:"But what if there's an earthquake?" and they'll say: "It's SAFE SAFE, SAFE, AND SAFE."  And you'll ask: "What if there's a terrorist attack like 9/11?" And they'll say: "NO PROBLEM!! WE'VE MADE IT SAFE SAFE SAFE SAFE SAFE!" But even if the industry didn't actually convince the people, and even if they didn't convince the politicians, they'll still get their way because you can't get rid of nuclear power for twenty-something years, and you've spent all that money and time and locked your whole region or nation into this stupid, dangerous unreliable and expensive technology, you can't possibly admit that it's dangerous now, because then you'll look STUPID for wasting all that f-ing money, so you'll just have to keep insisting that it's "SAFE, SOOOO SAFE! IT'S SO SAFE! SAFE, WITH EXTRA SAFETY SAUCE ON TOP! I SWEAR IT'S SAFE. IT'S GOT ADDED SAFETY PINS STUCK INTO .... IT'S SAFE!!!! JUST BELIEVE IT...JUST.... IT'S SOOOOO SAFE!!!!" And it's all a big fat lie and...  Come to think of it, living here in Ontario, that's pretty much all I've heard for my whole fricking life... .

Off the bottom, I'd like to end this blog by stating that I've dug in my heels recently to defend the honour of one Canadian of Japanese heritage named Dr. David Suzuki, who has come under attack by morons & conservative pundits who've decided that they don't like people with integrity and character and feel they have to cut him down. Dr. Suzuki doesn't need me to defend him, but i'm going to my put two-cents in anyway. It seems that Nuclear Power isn't going to go away quietly in Ontario. They've lost those two new plants that I mentioned at the beginning, but they're angry and greedy and they've had it far too good for far too long and they resent the fact that they are now seeing the exit door (although still 20+yrs away. see #3 above). As a result, the thieving and evil Nuclear industry has enlisted the help of douchebag c*nt-servative pundits like Ezra 'the idiot' Levant (twitter tag is @ezralevant feel free to tweet him and tell him what a douche he is.) and other morons (all from Sun Media and conservative psuedo-news) and these conservative douchebags decided to blame Dr. Suzuki for their horrible nuclear industry problems, even though he's done nothing but tell the truth. To insult Dr. Suzuki, they've outright lied about the man, his foundation (a non-profit registered charity) and his career. Some of these morons have even taken to calling him 'Saint' Suzuki, as if to insult him. Well, the man David Suzuki and his family spent a good chunk of his childhood in British Columbia, Canada in one those Japanese internment camps that you may have heard about during WWII. Once released from being a prisoner for no reason, he grew up to become one of the world's leading geneticists. After studying and being a professor for years, he changed direction and has spent most of his adult life educating people on the dangers of destroying the environment and has been an activist and campaigner for the environment for decades with many environmental successes to claim. He is unofficially one of the true elder-statesman of this nation, both wise and good-hearted, and If this country of Canada were to propose a candidate for actual Sainthood, it would not be easy finding a better one than David Suzuki. But try telling that to Ezra 'the idiot' Levant and his stupid writer-friend Jon 'dipshit' Kay @ the National Post. I guess the conservative idea of a 'Saint' is probably some greedy douche like Rupert Murdoch or the Koch brothers or some other self-serving rich piece of crap.  (By the way: 'Koch' is pronounced: "Asshole") In ending this blog, I would add that even the most staunch conservatives (idiots) usually seem able understand that the environment must be protected and acknowledge that Dr. Suzuki has opposed Nuclear power for the last 30+ years no matter what political party may have been in power. And if, after reading to this point, you still, really trully have a problem with David Suzuki it's probably because you're a stupid tv-pundit, or a jerk from the nuclear-industry. If I'm wrong and you're just a guy or girl whose found yourself unwittingly on the wrong side, then get on the good side! I stand with Suzuki and against Nukes!

And just to end off this heavily Japanese-influence blog on a pleasant note, I'd like to thank another blogger for his article which helped to make this one possible: 

Want to punish an evil Nuke-industry jerk or kick a douche tv-pundit in the crotch? All you have to do is donate to The Suzuki Foundation and help the good guys win! Ezra 'the idiot' Levant is almost guaranteed to shed a tear with each dollar donated. (Donate $20 and Ezra goes crying to his mommy 'Satan' Rupert Murdoch)

P.S: A Special Award 'Nuclear Idiots of the Month Radiation Declaration' (NIMRoD) goes to moron-magicians Penn & Teller, who, on their show BullS**t (the name is unintentionally the same as the quality of the show) have denied global warming is real and yet insist that nuclear power is the best way to reduce CO2 emissions. They're wrong on both counts and yet both of these stupid jerks have no problem using their celebrity power to be absolute douchebags, spending an entire show insulting good people who are concerned about nuclear power and undeniably correct in opposing it. If you listen to either of these two, you're listening to a f**king idiot. And yes, I said BOTH of them! Just because you don't say much, doesn't mean there's anything going on upstairs! Judging by his glassy, beady eyes, I can sense the idiot Teller thinking stupid thoughts like 'gases don't actually trap heat in the atmosphere' or 'science isn't really for real' while at the same time wondering why the whole world seems to conspire to prove him wrong. Stick to falsifying bottled water and passing each other playing cards, puddleheads, actual science is clearly beyond both of you!

Next week, we return to full-music-blog-mode (I promise).