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


      The Republican clown car circus

      The Republican clown car circus
      Anne B. Butterfield, January 6, 2012 (Huffington Post)

      As backdrop to the Republican presidential primaries a brawl is erupting among GOP factions. And it's not just the philanderers and extremists who've been dubbed the clowns, it's also the right-wing media who've gone plumb too far in 2011.

      The Wall Street Journal tossed a pot of hot rhetorical tar onto Congressional leaders for their tea party resistance to passing the payroll tax holiday, while the Journal itself is also falling into a circular firing squad. David Frum, a former editorialist for the Journal and speechwriter for George W. Bush, has opined on FrumForum that it's time to downgrade the Journal's editorial page, enumerating many instances of false and flip-flop arguments.

      And seven studies conducted at universities and foundations have shown that viewers of fellow organization Fox News are least informed on a variety of hot-button subjects. So, a once-great newspaper falls into disrepute and millions of voters grow less informed on important matters, thanks to the rightward push of parent company News Corporation.

      As Republican candidates and officials drink the News Corp. Kool-Aid, there is more circular firing going around. Former Senator Chuck Hagel (R-Neb.) was "disgusted" by his colleagues' conduct around the debt ceiling fiasco, and conservative columnist David Brooks penned the "Mother of all no brainers" about the GOP intransigence on the same matter. Former Sen. John Danforth (R-Mo.) was "embarrassed" by the Republican presidential primary debates, and a Greek chorus of Republicans came out against Newt Gingrich running for president.

      But topping the ship-is-burning-and-rats-are-leaping department came the Mike Lofgren essay, "Goodbye to All That: Reflections of a GOP operative who left the cult." This lengthy and literate indictment stressed that political "rottenness" is by far the art of the GOP. The goal behind the use of the Senate filibuster, he states, has been to destroy government effectiveness itself as a way to make the anti-government GOP look like the crew to clean up that mess.

      And in hating government, what could be more hated than regulations to address climate change? On this, Republican candidates trot out all manner of fancy -- such as taking it as doctrine that climate change cannot come from a "naturally occurring gas" -- even if that gas would kill you in minutes if you tied a plastic bag around your head. Better to believe that scientists who earn ordinary salaries are crafting climate conspiracies for the money (in spite of several official exonerations on "Climategate"), while fossil fuel companies earning billions per quarter can't possibly be funding so called skeptics (they are). And so Congressional Republicans voted unanimously to keep up fossil fuel subsidies, and Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-Fla.) crowed our nation can't compete with China in clean tech. American exceptionalism be damned.

      In a refreshing win for reality, the GOP attack on the Environmental Protection Agency has drawn resistance. A Journal editorial about reduced electric reliability stemming from new EPA mercury rules brought letters from utility executives to blast the Journal's assertions and defend the rules. David Brooks and others have shredded the Republican argument that regulations crush jobs. Manufacturers of appliances and light bulbs in line for higher efficiency regulations have squawked at Congress to be sure the regulations stay on track.

      Frum's frame about the GOP being mired with too many dinosaurs is working, as the party's reply to polls seems to be "polls schmolls." In a Colorado College study, 71 percent of respondents from the tea party say that environmental regulations can coexist with a strong economy, and a League of Conservation Voters poll conducted by a Republican company also revealed that 71 percent support EPA regulation of carbon dioxide, including majority support among Republicans.

      At Halloween, the planet slid into the frightening fact of having 7 billion human mouths to feed as food prices are hitting record highs and fresh water supplies are in decline. In response, Republicans in the United States, where the earth's resources are devoured at unethical proportions, have attacked Planned Parenthood. Thankfully on this we also see glimmers of pushback in ultra conservative bastions such as Mississippi, which trounced by a wide margin a personhood amendment like the one defeated twice here in Colorado.

      Those who are conservationist Republicans, Independents, moderates, progressives, liberals and greens should make it their cause to turn the tables in the next election on this clown car party which seems intent on stuffing the nation into a cannon and shooting it into oblivion. The only ones belonging in the cannon are the clowns themselves.