CHEERS & JEERS: Because You Love Energy Stories

CHEERS for old people [we can call them old because many of us are, alas, also old]. For the second year in a row, Corvallisites 50 and over will be able to compete in the Senior Games. So, if you’re turning 50 this year, sign up now and start training. Then you, too, can proudly be old and maybe compete at the national level!  

CHEERS AND A WOO HOO because there is stuff to do again! We have happily / proudly / joyously started up our weekly calendar again. Why are we so giddy about that? Because there is finally enough stuff to do that we need a calendar, of course. This is just one more step toward something like how normal used to feel. 

THINKING CAPS OUT for the next Science Pub from Oregon State University [you know, that place with the big buildings in the middle of town?] On May 9, you can join the virtual pub talk about wind energy coming in off the coast of the Pacific [you know, that big watery place to the west of the big buildings in the middle of town?] Come join Flaxen Conway, director of OSU’s marine resource management graduate program and an Oregon Sea Grant Extension specialist, so you too can understand how wind energy works… because we’re just feeling smart about knowing where the ocean is. 

SINGLE RAISED EYEBROW for Marion County as it considers the first impacts of Oregon’s juvenile justice reform law. All eyes will be looking in the general direction of Salem as the court there decides if a 17-year-old boy on juvenile parole should be treated like an adult when accused of second degree murder, attempted murder, first degree assault, and unlawfully using a weapon. One 24-year-old is dead, a 22-year-old was injured, and we need to know if a teenager can really understand the significance of that. Nothing funny about any of this, so let’s just move along…  

TAP TO THE TEMPLE AND A HMMM over the upcoming vote? Haven’t made your mind up yet? We got’cha covered. Follow this here little link to listen to the debates for the local elections. Wanna know what we think? We endorsed people! [we’re funny that way.] The time to decide is swiftly coming, so get to it already! 

Speaking of politics… 

PALM TO THE FOREHEAD for Christine Drazan. One of far-too-many people vying to sit in the seat soon to be left cooling by Governor Kate Brown, Drazan had the opportunity to debate her way into our hearts… and canceled at the last minute… without giving the public a reason. This left Bridget Barton, Jessica Gomez, Bud Pierce, and Stan Pulliam to get all of that great publicity and face time without Drazan.  

BTW you can watch the Dems who want to be Gov debate here from KOIN, and the GOPers debate here from KGW. 

And now this… 

FURROWED BROWS over Amazon’s plans for expansion into rural Oregon. Seems the richest man in the world likes the idea of building large things next to hydroelectric-rich zones, and wants to create “at least five” new data centers along the Columbia River in Morrow County. Granted, it would bring tax money into the area. Granted again, Amazon is simply following in Google’s footsteps. And, of course, Amazon would want some serious tax breaks for doing this.  

According to the Oregonian, “Data centers come to rural Oregon for cheap land, ample water and relatively inexpensive electricity, essential for powering and cooling all those computers. The Umatilla Electric Cooperative reports that industrial power consumption is up 266% since 2016.” 

So, while we like our computers as much as the next guy [provided the next guy isn’t some weird hardware hound with a collection of VIC20’s and DEC Workstations filling his home], how much power are we willing to hand over to big tech in the name of storing more generally useless data?  

Then… 

JEERS for Elon Musk. If you’ve ever wondered why your kids, grandkids, and other unrelated Millennials and Zoomers say they hate Elon Musk, here’s why… Musk [net worth ~ $255 billion] tweeted that he would donate $6 billion to help end world hunger, chatted it through with the United Nations, then set his requirements in order to seal the deal. The UN gave Musk a detailed accounting of their efforts etc. and waited… and waited… and are still waiting…  

Meanwhile, back in the US, Musk spent $44 billion to buy Twitter… maybe he just needed to own the company in order to get them to delete his donation-related tweets…