Think of this as Volume 14, Number 37 of A-Clue.com, the online newsletter I've written since 1997. Enjoy.
In our time it's about energy coming from devices, as opposed to energy as resources. Resources have to be transformed by fire to become energy. Devices harness energy from the environment.
There is, in fact, plenty of energy all around us -- as much as we could ever use. Coming down from the sky, flowing under the Earth, blowing across our land. What we need are devices that can harness it.
Meanwhile we have a Stupid Economy. It's stupid because there is an economic force stifling growth we feel powerless to get past, because that force seems to control our politics. In this case, it's energy billionaires like the Koch Brothers, the oil power, and to a lesser extent coal.
Look closely at who funds the Republican National Committee, all the "wingnut welfare" groups and Tea Party arcades. Follow the money where it doesn't want you to go and it's the same collection of names -- energy men and their bankers.
But their economic time has passed. They can no longer deliver the prosperity they once did. They can only beggar our people as they have been doing for the last decade.
This is because resources have prices, prices that rise with demand. Every sign of economic growth in the last decade has been accompanied by a rise in energy prices. The only way to break the logjam and create real, sustainable economic growth is by harnessing the energy all around us, through devices.
But the resource industry does not want that. Thus they have captured our politics, not for ideological reasons (as they tell their allies), but to keep the power and subsidies that sustain them. Subsidies like wars in the oilpatch as well as tax credits that make it profitable to drill a mile under the Gulf, even at the risk of a catastrophic failure.
The cost of many devices, like solar cells, can actually fall as a function of Moore's Law. Even for those which don't, like windmills, they're a fixed, sunk cost. Upkeep is minor. Energy creation is as reliable as the energy source passing by them. Everything we can do to further energy as devices benefits the U.S. economy. Even the efforts of rivals like Germany and China benefit America -- their devices put a break on energy prices, their knowledge is technology that can be sold and shared.