NewEnergyNews-Butterfield Archive

WALL STREET JOURNAL'S Environmental Capital quotes NewEnergyNews:

  • 06/05/2007
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    WALL STREET JOURNAL selects NewEnergyNews as one of the "Blogs We Are Reading" --

  • 05/14/2007
  • 04/16/2007
  • 03/28/2007
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      Anne B. Butterfield of DAILY CAMERA, a biweekly contributor to NewEnergyNews


    • My Novels: OIL IN THEIR BLOOD, The American Decades & OIL IN THEIR BLOOD, The Story of Our Addiction
    • Review of OIL IN THEIR BLOOD, The American Decades by Mark S. Friedman
    • OIL IN THEIR BLOOD, The American Decades, the second volume of Herman K. Trabish’s retelling of oil’s history in fiction, picks up where the first book in the series, OIL IN THEIR BLOOD, The Story of Our Addiction, left off. The new book is an engrossing, informative and entertaining tale of the Roaring 20s, World War II and the Cold War. You don’t have to know anything about the first historical fiction’s adventures set between the Civil War, when oil became a major commodity, and World War I, when it became a vital commodity, to enjoy this new chronicle of the U.S. emergence as a world superpower and a world oil power.
    • As the new book opens, Lefash, a minor character in the first book, witnesses the role Big Oil played in designing the post-Great War world at the Paris Peace Conference of 1919. Unjustly implicated in a murder perpetrated by Big Oil agents, LeFash takes the name Livingstone and flees to the U.S. to clear himself. Livingstone’s quest leads him through Babe Ruth’s New York City and Al Capone’s Chicago into oil boom Oklahoma. Stymied by oil and circumstance, Livingstone marries, has a son and eventually, surprisingly, resolves his grievances with the murderer and with oil.
    • In the new novel’s second episode the oil-and-auto-industry dynasty from the first book re-emerges in the charismatic person of Victoria Wade Bridger, “the woman everybody loved.” Victoria meets Saudi dynasty founder Ibn Saud, spies for the State Department in the Vichy embassy in Washington, D.C., and – for profound and moving personal reasons – accepts a mission into the heart of Nazi-occupied Eastern Europe. Underlying all Victoria’s travels is the struggle between the allies and axis for control of the crucial oil resources that drove World War II.
    • As the Cold War begins, the novel’s third episode recounts the historic 1951 moment when Britain’s MI-6 handed off its operations in Iran to the CIA, marking the end to Britain’s dark manipulations and the beginning of the same work by the CIA. But in Trabish’s telling, the covert overthrow of Mossadeq in favor of the ill-fated Shah becomes a compelling romance and a melodramatic homage to the iconic “Casablanca” of Bogart and Bergman.
    • Monty Livingstone, veteran of an oil field youth, European WWII combat and a star-crossed post-war Berlin affair with a Russian female soldier, comes to 1951 Iran working for a U.S. oil company. He re-encounters his lost Russian love, now a Soviet agent helping prop up Mossadeq and extend Mother Russia’s Iranian oil ambitions. The reunited lovers are caught in a web of political, religious and Cold War forces until oil and power merge to restore the Shah to his future fate. The romance ends satisfyingly, America and the Soviet Union are the only forces left on the world stage and ambiguity is resolved with the answer so many of Trabish’s characters ultimately turn to: Oil.
    • Commenting on a recent National Petroleum Council report calling for government subsidies of the fossil fuels industries, a distinguished scholar said, “It appears that the whole report buys these dubious arguments that the consumer of energy is somehow stupid about energy…” Trabish’s great and important accomplishment is that you cannot read his emotionally engaging and informative tall tales and remain that stupid energy consumer. With our world rushing headlong toward Peak Oil and epic climate change, the OIL IN THEIR BLOOD series is a timely service as well as a consummate literary performance.
    • Oil history journal articles by Dr. Trabish: Oil Stories and Histories
    • Review of OIL IN THEIR BLOOD, The Story of Our Addiction by Mark S. Friedman
    • "...ours is a culture of energy illiterates." (Paul Roberts, THE END OF OIL)
    • OIL IN THEIR BLOOD, a superb new historical fiction by Herman K. Trabish, addresses our energy illiteracy by putting the development of our addiction into a story about real people, giving readers a chance to think about how our addiction happened. Trabish's style is fine, straightforward storytelling and he tells his stories through his characters.
    • The book is the answer an oil family's matriarch gives to an interviewer who asks her to pass judgment on the industry. Like history itself, it is easier to tell stories about the oil industry than to judge it. She and Trabish let readers come to their own conclusions.
    • She begins by telling the story of her parents in post-Civil War western Pennsylvania, when oil became big business. This part of the story is like a John Ford western and its characters are classic American melodramatic heroes, heroines and villains.
    • In Part II, the matriarch tells the tragic story of the second generation and reveals how she came to be part of the tales. We see oil become an international commodity, traded on Wall Street and sought from London to Baku to Mesopotamia to Borneo. A baseball subplot compares the growth of the oil business to the growth of baseball, a fascinating reflection of our current president's personal career.
    • There is an unforgettable image near the center of the story: International oil entrepreneurs talk on a Baku street. This is Trabish at his best, portraying good men doing bad and bad men doing good, all laying plans for wealth and power in the muddy, oily alley of a tiny ancient town in the middle of everywhere. Because Part I was about triumphant American heroes, the tragedy here is entirely unexpected, despite Trabish's repeated allusions to other stories (Casey At The Bat, Hamlet) that do not end well.
    • In the final section, World War I looms. Baseball takes a back seat to early auto racing and oil-fueled modernity explodes. Love struggles with lust. A cavalry troop collides with an army truck. Here, Trabish has more than tragedy in mind. His lonely, confused young protagonist moves through the horrible destruction of the Romanian oilfields only to suffer worse and worse horrors, until--unexpectedly--he finds something, something a reviewer cannot reveal. Finally, the question of oil must be settled, so the oil industry comes back into the story in a way that is beyond good and bad, beyond melodrama and tragedy.
    • Along the way, Trabish gives readers a greater awareness of oil and how we became addicted to it. Awareness, Paul Roberts said in THE END OF OIL, "...may be the first tentative step toward building a more sustainable energy economy. Or it may simply mean that when our energy system does begin to fail, and we begin to lose everything that energy once supplied, we won't be so surprised."
    • Oil history journal articles by Dr. Trabish: Oil Stories and Histories
    • My Photo
      Location: Agua Dulce, CA

      *Doctor with my hands *Author of the "OIL IN THEIR BLOOD" series with my head *Student of New Energy with my heart






      Pay a visit to the HARRY BOYKOFF page at Basketball Reference, sponsored by NewEnergyNews and Oil In Their Blood.

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    • NewEnergyNews


      Don’t tick off the blonde

      From Anne B. Butterfield
    • Don’t tick off the blonde
    • August 10, 2008 (Daily Camera)

      This week we were reminded not to pick on the blonde. She might, like sleeping beauty, wake to realize she has something to say and, lookie here, she can say it to a bank of cameras.

      We first learned this from Princess Diana who knew she could get cameras to follow her anywhere, and she led them to the landmines of Africa, revealing the ravaged lives of innocent civilians. Her efforts resulted, after her death, in the signing of the Ottowa Treaty to ban landmines.

      Early on, Diana was widely seen an imbecile, but by the end with her brilliant use of publicity she spanked the House of Windsor.

      Paris Hilton may be smartening up likewise with a comic video launched this week at the expense of John McCain whose recent ad tried to insult Barack Obama by lumping him with celebrities like herself and Britney Spears. And lo, Paris the impish heiress pushed back, showing McCain as "the oldest celebrity alive," replete with rotting face. Then, to everyone's amazement, she dissected energy policy.

      Many thought Paris did a fine job of discussing policy. Actually, she got the sequence backwards. Her scheme foresaw hyper-efficient vehicles coming to our rescue after new oil might flow from new, limited offshore drilling. In reality hybrid and electric car technologies are on the rise right now, and we can't wait for new oil to arrive as a pretext to step up our efficient technologies as well as our mass transit.

      If we can get new oil to flow in reasonably safe ways from domestic sources -- great, bring it on -- but it better go into cars that get over 100 miles per gallon. Our use of oil from any source should be as cleverly efficient as Paris's peekaboo swimsuit.

      Stretched like linguini upon a plastic chaise lounge to discuss energy policy, Paris is living up to my long-held view of her potential. She should use her campy comedic ways as well as her platinum card contacts to speak out about energy and climate for the sake of her family's fortune which is tied up in beachfront properties around the world. A room at the Hilton would be hard to enjoy at several hundred dollars per night when high tide is lapping around the legs of the concierge desk.

      If Paris wants to get back in the good graces of her granddaddy Barron Hilton (who disinherited her last year for her juvenile antics), a fruitful path might be by inventing a joint effort between the hotel industry and the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder (note to Paris: it's also headed up by a man named Barron). For the lack of a measly half-a-million dollars per year in funding, NCAR just shut down a program that focuses on strengthening poor countries' abilities to forecast and withstand droughts and floods stemming from climate change. Yet, with 630 hotels in the spectacular settings most threatened by climate change -- from Quito and Cameroon to Algeria and Abu Dhabi -- Hilton Hotels is uniquely positioned to need climate change forecasting and help its immediate and very poor neighbors as it helps itself.

      In lobbying for such a cause Paris could fly around the world in all manner of skimpy and glorious attire and get it photographed for Vogue. A girl can't rely just on comedy web sites to make a difference in the world. But using any of these tools is nothing Princess Diana wouldn't do.