I just read today’s Sunday NY Times op-ed column by the pompous Thom Friedman. Friedman calls it “The Next Really Cool Thing
” that the National Ignition Facility (NIF) at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory hopes to fire 192 giant lasers at multiple hydrogen pellets at a cost of $10 billion per plant to produce a mini-sun in your neighborhood. Friedman claims they should be able to do it within two to three years if they can get the upfront dough from Obama’s admin.
Friedman writes, “I don’t know if they can pull this off; some scientists are skeptical. Laboratory-scale nuclear fusion and energy gain is really hard.”
In his penultimate paragraph, the always-impressed-with-himself oracle intones, “I am talking about systems that could give us abundant, clean, reliable electrons and
drive massive innovation in big lasers, materials science, nuclear physics and chemistry that would benefit, energize and renew many U.S. industries.”
“Abundant, clean, reliable electrons?
” This got past an editor at The New York Times?
And ends with, “Yes, we’ll still need coal for some time. But let’s make sure that we aren’t just chasing the fantasy that we can “clean up” coal, when our real future depends on birthing new technologies that can replace it.”
Friedman is regularly lionized as “the world’s most influential and popular foreign-policy thinker” and “able [...] to see several plays ahead in the game.” He’s the author of NYT best-selling books, won three Pulitzers, and lives in a 11,400 sq ft house with a carbon footprint of God knows what. He touts himself as the guy who can see into the future and will tell us about it.
This man, writing in the most influential paper in the United States today, is passed off as the best we have here to explain to the masses what is happening in the world of new global business models, foreign policy initiatives (he was a clapping seal for the Iraq War with memorably byzantine logic) and the urgency of adopting renewable energy.
And therein lies the problem for me. He gets it wrong. Time and time again. He has a national platform, and blows it to our national detriment when we don't have the time to entertain these shenanigans or pollute the national imagination. In his book The World is Flat
, he extolled US business moving to India and China -- and people bought it
-- failing to grasp, or foresee, what the long-term effect the significant loss of white-collar jobs through 2014 would do to our tax base, middle-class earning potential, neighborhoods, and the engineering and scientific futures of our youth. He got the Iraq War dead wrong. And now he has the temerity to presume to tell us about the latest in the renewable energy business.
Friedman knows bupkes
. He is unaware of the instant Nobel Prize that provided and proved the extraction process for free energy from the vacuum suppressed in every graduate-level electrical engineering textbook for 52 years; he does not know about the working and proved Motionless Electromagnetic Generator (MEG) that produces 100 times more power than was input by extracting free energy from the vacuum cheaply, with off-the-shelf parts (Patent March 26, 2002); he does not know about the DofE efforts to prevent the world knowing about this.
One article about these developments on the Sunday NYT op-ed page and our world could be going in a different direction in a week. Literally. Instead, Friedman endangers the public weal with his words and false evidence. . . .so that’s what set me off this morning.