CNN: “Donald Trump: Presumptive GOP Nominee”; Destroys Cruz in Indiana Primary

May 3rd, 2016

Via: CNN:

Donald Trump is the presumptive Republican presidential nominee following a decisive victory in the Indiana primary and the decision by Ted Cruz to drop out of the race.

Though Trump has not formally secured the 1,237 delegates he needs to win the nomination — and likely won’t until June — there is no serious opposition left to block his path.

Cruz tried everything to pull off a last-ditch win in Indiana, including the unusual move of selecting Carly Fiorina as his running mate even though he wasn’t the nominee. He also forged a pact with John Kasich that would allow him to focus on Indiana while the Ohio governor would devote his time to later states.

But none of the moves worked.


The Price of Solar Power Just Fell 50% in 16 months – Dubai at $.0299/kWh

May 3rd, 2016

Disclosure: I sell solar power systems in New Zealand.

Via: electrek:

Dubai received bid of $.0299/kWh for 800MW of solar power. This price represents the lowest yet recorded for solar power (and might not represent the end of the price drops…).

Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) has received 5 bids from international organisations for the third phase of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park, said HE Saeed Mohammed AlTayer, MD & CEO of DEWA. The lowest recorded bid at the opening of the envelopes was US 2.99 cents per kilowatt hour. The next step in the bidding process will review the technical and commercial aspects of the bids to select the best one.

In the USA, in 2014 and with incentives, utility scale solar projects averaged $.05/kWh. On this bid alone, five companies bid below $.045/kW – without subsidies!

In 2015, we saw Dubai sign a deal at a fixed rate of $0.0584 cents over 25 years with no incentives. In the summer of 2015 Autin, TX received almost 1,300MW`of bids at under $.04/kWh. Shortly afterwards, we saw Berkshire Hathaway Inc.’s NV Energy agreed to pay $.0387/kWh for power from a 100-megawatt project that First Solar Inc. is developing. Lastly, just this month Enel Green power signed contracts for $.036/kWh in in Mexico and $.03/kWh in Morroco.

The price per kWh just fell 50% – and it did it in less than sixteen months.


Fiat, Google Plan Partnership on Self-Driving Minivans

May 3rd, 2016

Via: Bloomberg:

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV and Alphabet Inc.’s Google plan to develop several dozen self-driving prototypes based on the carmaker’s Pacifica minivan in the first phase of a joint project to create autonomous vehicles, people familiar with the matter said.

Fiat Chrysler plans to equip the new Pacifica, which will be available as a plug-in hybrid, with Google technology starting this year, said the people, who asked not to be identified before an official announcement. The companies would remain free to cooperate in driverless technology with other partners, the people said.


Donald Trump Accuses Ted Cruz’s Father of Associating With Kennedy Assassin

May 3rd, 2016

Eh?!

Via: New York Times:

Donald J. Trump, who has repeatedly dabbled in conspiracy theories during his time on the campaign trail, accused Senator Ted Cruz’s father of associating with Lee Harvey Oswald not long before Oswald assassinated President John F. Kennedy.

Mr. Trump’s comments, in a Fox News interview, came in the wake of an article in The National Enquirer claiming to have definitive photographic evidence that Rafael Cruz was with Oswald distributing leaflets supporting the Cuban dictator Fidel Castro in Louisiana in 1963.


The Truth About Statin Drugs and Cholesterol

May 2nd, 2016

Via: Dr. Daniel Pompa:


U.S. Military Tests World’s Largest Unmanned Ship

May 2nd, 2016

Via: Stars & Stripes:

The military is starting tests on the world’s largest unmanned surface vessel — a self-driving, 132-foot ship designed to travel thousands of miles out at sea without a single crew member on board.

The so-called “Sea Hunter” has the potential to revolutionize not only the military’s maritime operations but commercial shipping, according to military officials. If successful, it could usher in the arrival of unmanned cargo vessels moving between countries.


Puerto Rico Defaults

May 2nd, 2016

Via: CNN:

Puerto Rico is dialing 9-1-1 for any help it can get.

The island was unable to make a $422 million debt payment due Monday. It’s another alarm bell of how bad the situation is getting on the island.

Governor Alejandro Garcia Padilla calls it a “humanitarian crisis,” which a step above an economic emergency. He claims he is prioritizing paying Puerto Rico’s police and teachers over Wall Street.


The Secretive, Billionaire-Backed Plans to Harness Fusion

May 1st, 2016

Via: BBC:

Inside a laboratory near Vancouver in British Columbia, an alarm is blaring. In the middle of the industrial warehouse stands what looks like a cannon from a spaceship, about five metres long and festooned in wires.

None of the lab’s red-coat-wearing technicians seem fazed by the noise. The siren, which alerts workers to don protective earmuffs in case of a blown fuse, precedes every test “shot” on this prototype nuclear fusion reactor – and these engineers have performed well over 50,000 shots over the past five years.

That speed – currently, 50 to 100 tests a day – would not be possible within the bureaucracy of a public lab, where the most prominent research in long-awaited fusion energy is being conducted. But this is a little-known company called General Fusion – funded by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, and free to pursue technological revolution at its own, breakneck pace.

General Fusion is just one of a pack of private fusion firms to catch the attention of physicists and investors. Unencumbered by red tape, these venture-backed companies believe that they can find a faster, cheaper way to fusion than government-sponsored projects, and some very influential people agree: besides Bezos, Microsoft cofounder Paul Allen and PayPal cofounder Peter Thiel are also backing firms at the forefront of fusion development. Some of these enterprises are rather shadowy: the company Allen is invested in, Tri Alpha, operated for years almost entirely in secret – until recently, it didn’t even have a website.


House Defense Policy Bill Would Require Women to Register for Draft

April 30th, 2016

Via: Wall Street Journal:

The House Armed Services Committee approved an annual defense policy bill early Thursday morning that includes a provision that would require women to register with the Selective Service System.

House passage of the policy measure came about a month after Defense Secretary Ash Carter approved final plans to integrate women into all front-line military combat units. The military services are beginning to put those plans into effect, though officials have cautioned that the full incorporation of women could take years and that they are unlikely to be equally represented in many combat units.

The requirement that women register for the draft would be more a symbolic measure than a practical one, as the U.S. hasn’t used a draft system since the Vietnam War.


State of Emergency Declared in Baghdad as Protesters Take Iraqi Parliament

April 30th, 2016

Update: Protesters Leave Baghdad’s Green

Via: CNN:

Protesters who stormed Baghdad’s Green Zone retreated Sunday but organizers say the challenge to Iraq’s leadership isn’t over yet.

Via: Washington Post:

Protesters stormed Iraq’s parliament Saturday in a dramatic culmination of months of demonstrations, casting uncertainty over the tenure of the country’s prime minister and the foundations of the political system laid in place after the 2003 U.S.-led invasion.

Security forces declared a state of emergency in the Iraqi capital after demonstrators climbed over blast walls and broke through cordons to enter Baghdad’s fortified Green Zone, also home to ministries and the U.S. embassy. Many were followers of Iraq’s powerful Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr, who has been urging his supporters onto the streets.

Lawmakers fled the building in panic, with some berated and struck as they left. Others were trapped in the basement for hours, too afraid to face the crowds who complain that the country’s political class is racked by corruption.


Next Page »