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Fox News: US Solar Energy Investment Less Than Germany Because US Has Less Sun 644

Posted by Soulskill
from the Ra-likes-the-germans-better dept.
Andy Prough writes "Apparently those wise folks at Fox have figured out America's reluctance to invest as much money in solar energy as Germany — the Germans simply have more sun! Well, as Will Oremus from Slate points out, according to the U.S. Dept. of Energy's Solar Resource map comparison of the U.S. and Germany, nothing could be further from the truth — Germany receives as much sunlight as the least lit U.S. state — Alaska."
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Fox News: US Solar Energy Investment Less Than Germany Because US Has Less Sun

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  • by eldavojohn (898314) * <eldavojohn@nOspAM.gmail.com> on Friday February 08, 2013 @10:36AM (#42831791) Journal
    They mentioned briefly that the US tried to subsidize solar but the Chinese kept undercutting our manufacturers and we just couldn't beat their prices. What is Germany doing differently that allows them to beat Chinese prices? Tariffs? Import restrictions? Why does that kind of market manipulation work for Germany and why do we allow subsidies to happen in the states but not that sort of competition restriction?

    Oh, right, they have more sun ... which still doesn't answer how their solar products compete with the Chinese. I like how they named dropped 'natgas' several times because the US has so much of it! No problems worth mentioning about natural gas!
  • by bondsbw (888959) on Friday February 08, 2013 @10:51AM (#42831957)

    I wonder how many actually bothered to watch the video. That statement was stupid, of course, but it was just an added "fact" that really doesn't change the tone of the report that solar energy subsidies have resulted in very little output. We are throwing money away at failed companies.

    I'm all for solar energy. But I'm not for throwing our money away. My thought: who is being held accountable for the money, and overseeing that it goes into productive use?

  • by squiggleslash (241428) on Friday February 08, 2013 @11:04AM (#42832119) Homepage Journal

    Fox is part of a class of media outlets that tells its audience what it believes it wants to hear. That's it. It's not about fact checking or anything like that, it's about knowing that its audience would actually stop watching it if it changed direction and concentrated more on telling them what Fox believes is true, rather than what the audience thinks is true.

    On that note, someone is bound to mention MSNBC, but MSNBC isn't really watched by anyone. MSNBC's mistake, FWIW, is that it's trying to do the same thing as Fox but for a different audience, but doesn't realize that liberals, by and large, don't "want to hear" things they "agree with" if they can't be backed up with facts (plus I don't believe NBC actually has any idea what a diverse bunch liberals actually are in practice.)

    I'm embarassed to say that I've worked for at least one media outlet (not going to say which, thankfully most Slashdotters have probably never heard of it) that tries to do the same thing though publishing a variety of different magazines. The "liberal" products did badly, the "tea party" products did well. I leave it to the reader to determine why.

  • Re:Part of a series (Score:4, Interesting)

    by jellomizer (103300) on Friday February 08, 2013 @11:17AM (#42832299)

    During the early part of the Iraq war, Even before that, During the Clinton Administration we had belief that Iraq had a Mass pile of Weapons of Mass Destruction. The idea that wasn't the case seemed just naive at the time. That and combined with a fit of hyper-patriotism after 9/11, made both sides a bit hawkish, as well as any media bias.

    What changed was the war still wen't on, and we found were no WMD, the threat was just so Iraq would look tough to Iran. The 9/11 never forget was soon put aside with normal daily issues. Then the economy stared to pop.

    Most of the political disagreement from the left came from the far left the Anti-Bush conspiracies were just as baseless as the Anti-Obama ones are now.

  • Re:Morning Show (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Alomex (148003) on Friday February 08, 2013 @11:26AM (#42832405) Homepage

    No they are not all the same. Fox News is the only news agency who has gone to court to defend their right to lie. That alone sets them apart.

  • Re:Problem? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 08, 2013 @11:33AM (#42832491)
    Awesome, so keep our mouths shut and ignore when news networks intentionally lie. That is the best idea ever! By the way, it wasn't "US 'news' networks," it was Fox News. I am sick of people like you excusing sociopathic behavior by waving vaguely at a group as a whole. "Let's not hold that politician responsible, all politicians are bad!"
  • by Jiro (131519) on Friday February 08, 2013 @11:35AM (#42832513)

    As an experiment, I just went to the Huffington Post to see if I could find any bad science on a site that leans towards the left. One headline reads "Scientists Say ETs May Be Much Closer To Us Than We Ever Before Thought". Going to the article shows that the only reference to life was added by the editors and half of it makes no sense (ET phoning home is closer than people think? Really? How close do people think it is? And I thought ET phoned a nearby ship, not his home planet, anyway) and even the article itself is woefully inaccurate; the comments themselves point out that "at a habitable distance and size" doesn't mean Earth-like, especially since planets orbiting close to red dwarfs would be tidally locked. (The astronomer used the phrase "potentially Earth-like", which is a nice way of saying "only a few of them are going to be Earth-like".)

    This was the first scientifically-related article I found on the first left-wing site I picked. It may not be as dramatic an error as saying that the US has less sun than Germany, but I wonder how big a mistake I would have found had I tried for a month or two or however long it took to find the Fox News error.

    The media and political commentators are horrible at science. Nothing to do with Fox News specifically, as the Slashdot headline and the absence of articles about other sites tend to imply.

  • by Instine (963303) on Friday February 08, 2013 @12:06PM (#42832961)
    Would you call the war in a subsidy? I would. And trillions are spent there. So if 0.1% of energy is produced by subsidising to the tune of billions, but the rest by subsidies of trillions... The orders of magnitude kinda balance out.
  • Re:Problem? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Princeofcups (150855) <john@princeofcups.com> on Friday February 08, 2013 @01:41PM (#42834355) Homepage

    I don't care if you're a democrat or republican, that's extremely poor handling of our money.

    Maybe, but what it really shows is that we are not spending enough. This technology is not cheap. A few million here and there is just a drop in the bucket. We as a planet (not nation) need to get off our collective asses and get serious about the future prospects of the human race. Of course a cheaper solution would be to limit population growth, but that argument is not going anywhere.

  • by pkinetics (549289) on Friday February 08, 2013 @02:56PM (#42835443)

    I don't doubt we could do more with solar power. I'm not defending Fox, cause some of the comments from them is so asinine that it can't possibly be fact based.

    But how much of that land is actually something that can be used for solar collection.

    I live in Alaska. The reason we don't have more cities is because well there are these things called mountains. And where there aren't mountains, is a lot of swamp, err wetlands.

    And then on top of it, throw in a good portion of the state goes dark during winter.

    I have no experience with Germany, so I really don't know if it is apples to apples comparison.

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