Daily Archives: July 1, 2009

Here’s a neat link

Find newspapers in (almost) any country, any town. This Taos police blotter item is intriguing. Makes you want a follow up.

1:10 a.m., Welfare check, Paseo del Cañon East — Caller reported that saw the Devil in the wall.

1:42 a.m., Miscellaneous, Paseo del Pueblo Sur — Caller reported that he saw some kids trying to get into the fireworks tent.

4:32 a.m., Welfare check, Paseo del Cañon East — Caller reported that he needed an officer because the Devil was back in his house.


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Mandatory energy audits in Austin

Every ointment has its fly and Texas has Austin. That liberal city has passed a mandatory energy audit requirement for all sales of homes more than ten years old. Too soon to tell the effects but a description is here. Of course, we won’t have to wait to see how this works out because our federal government is bringing it all back home to all of us, courtesy of the carbon tax bill and Jim Himes.


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Someone finally told him what was in that carbon tax bill he drafted?

Waxman hospitalized after fainting.

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Good story

Construction worker saves woman from drowning. Neat pictures, modest sounding rescuer: “what you gonna do, a woman in that situation?”

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Armed with a machete, no doubt

Britain: homeowner ordered to remove trampoline because burglars might use it.

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I might just do this

Email I received from Obama’s camp. I have just started a Jimhimes blog but that’s got to grow a bit before i can properly annoy him. So a phone call now might be an appropriate filler. Any out of state readers who wish to also thank Jim, his number’s below.

chris —

We know that historic change is always tough, and enacting clean energy legislation is no exception.

But, with your help, on Friday the House passed a historic energy bill — a critical first step toward rebuilding our economy with good green jobs, reducing harmful pollution, and breaking our dependence on foreign oil.

Will you take a moment to thank Rep. Jim Himes for voting ‘yes’ on the energy bill, and ask for continuing support when the bill comes up for a final vote?

Rep. Himes’s number is 202-225-5541.

 If Jim Himes is not your representative, please click here to find your representative’s number.

This fight isn’t over. As the bill goes to the Senate in the coming weeks, you’ll play a critical role in showing our elected officials that their constituents are demanding a clean energy economy to build a strong future for our country. After decades of talk, now is our moment to make the change we fought so hard for a reality.

After you make your call, let us know how it went:


Thank you,


Addisu Demissie


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They’re coming to take you away ha ha

Reader Cobra asked about the Jim Himes Memorial Carbon Tax bill’s requirement for energy audits of residential homes so I looked into it and by golly, it’s a doozy. So far, the best I could come up with is a copy of the Henry Waxman draft dated May 19, 2009 but I’m pretty sure this was what was enacted. The bill is here, all 926 pages of it, which doesn’t include the extra 300 pages slapped ontop at the last minute.

Energy audits begin in Section 204 (page 264) but the fun begins with Section 201 (p. 214), which establishes a new National Energy Efficiency Code. As of January 1, 2014 new homes must be 50% more energy efficient than today’s, with a 5% iincrease every three years thereafter until 2029, for a total reduction improvement of 75%. The law is mandatory on states and towns and here’s a chilling provision: it shall be a violation of this Act for any home owner or builder to occupy, permit occupancy or convey a building that does not meet this code. So much for the hippie who wants to build a dome or log cabin in the woods. For that matter, a tepee isn’t going to cut it, either. You fans of big government might want to consider the implications of a government large and powerful enough to reach out to the local building department of Lowell, Vermont and tell it to toss people out of their homes. Or perhaps you might not – it’s ugly.

Section 204 Mandatory energy audits and ratings. Applies to any home that undergoes a renovation or addition but in practice, will reach all existing homes that are offered for sale (banks and/or buyers have started demanding it in those few states who already have such programs). The state, acting through your building department, sends Elmer Fudd to your home to conduct an energy audit and develops an energy use label similar to that found on an automobile or icebox. It’s recorded in the land records. No mention of who wil pay Elmer to conduct this audit but you can bet it will be your property taxes. Now imagine what happens to the value of your house when you fail the energy audit. At the very least, it will give the buyer another means to knock down your price, and count on it, he’ll use it.

Implications. My immediate problem with this legislation is that it extends the reach of the federal government even further into our lives but for those who don’t share my Libertarian concerns, there are practical issues as well. Right now, foam insulation is at least 15% more expensive than fiberglass, “green” windows at least that much more than regular double-pained, and so on. But 15% more to insulate a house is just the beginning because Waxman et als want more than is even available now. If your 1969 house, renovated through the years, isn’t a teardwon now, it sure will be by 2014. Hope you like yur land’s value, because that’s what you’ll be left with.

I just browsed 70 pages or so of this 926 page bill which, as noted, swelled to over 1,200 pages in the wee hours of the night. Every page is filled with mischief, every page has new, expensive obligations for citizens of this country and only the lobbyists know what those obilgations are. I believe Mr. Himes owes his constituents the duty to take the entire bill home with him during the upcoming holiday break and read it, digest it and report back to us. There’s some startling stuff in here – did I mention new lighting standards? That starts at around page 271.


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