The South Australian Blackout — by Terrence Cardwell.

The South Australian Blackout — by Terence Cardwell, who worked for 25 years for the Electricity Commission of NSW, commissioning and operating the various power units. His last commission was at the Munmorah Power Station near Newcastle, with four (very large!) 350 MW power generating units.

  1. I predicted this would happen back in 2009/10 in my first article, On Coal-fired & Other Power Electricity Generation. This is NOT a once-off event — it will happen again in the not too distant future and continue to do so. Why? Because of the continual instability created in the grid system by the constantly changing wind generators producing insufficient stable and reliable power, and the reliance on power from Victoria, in order to continually get South Australia out of its insane situation.
  2. Any change in power generation from the wind generators has to be compensated by thermal power generation units trying to “chase” and maintain a stable supply. This decreases their efficiency substantially, more than obviating any gain from wind generators! These severe load changes can create a power wave within the grid system that can create instability as the thermal units chase the wind generators’ severe load changes.
  3. Because the winds were so severe on this occasion, the wind generators would have been non-operative and locked. So 40% of the power was already out of service before the blackout. So YES the wind generators DID cause the blackout by increasing the load substantially on the Victoria to S.A. inter-connector.
  4. If the wind generators were allowed to operate in such severe winds they would have torn themselves apart.
  5. I have since learned that the wind generators were supposedly operating, in which case the storm was NOT that severe or anything like ‘a once in 50 year’ storm. From Bureau of Meteorology records the wind was gusting to 87 kilometres per hour and, in some places, 115 kilometres per hour. (In Queensland, with our cyclones, we would refer to that as ‘a steady sea breeze’! So which lie are they choosing to tell? Either the wind generators’ erratic behaviour could not be controlled, thus causing instability in the grid, or they were not operating because of the severity of the wind. You can’t have it both ways!)
  6. It is the first time ever in the history of power generation in Australia that transmission towers have fallen over; yet we have seen far more severe weather elsewhere than that occurring recently in South Australia. I have personally operated units in such weather with no blackouts or instability in the grid system, even though we lost two units, one of them being mine. (The unit transformer was hit by a 20ft sheet of roofing aluminium torn off in the storm.)
  7. Even though the towers had collapsed the grid system would not have gone out because the line protections covering those towers would have tripped within 6 cycles, i.e. one tenth of a second, isolating them from the grid and protecting the rest of the grid system.
  8. The total hypocrisy and stupidity of the South Australian Government is unbelievable. After they blindly and stupidly knocked down the black bituminous coal-fired thermal power stations, they had insufficient power. So they have to import it from Victoria  through the state inter-connector, which was never intended for that purpose. So when it exceeded its maximum load capacity it tripped, as it was supposed to do.
  9. Guess where the power imported from is generated. Yes, Victoria!  The Victorian brown coal-fired thermal power stations have a thermal efficiency half of that of the black coal-fired power stations that the idiots in South Australia knocked down. Just to pander to loony Greens.
  10. The average price for electricity in South Australia with its ‘40%’ renewable energy is over $300 per megawatt hour. The average cost of electricity in Queensland, NSW, Victoria and Tasmania is around the $75 to $80.
  11. To those gullible people who are so ‘passionate’ about so called ‘clean energy’: you can expect, without doubt, the same if the other states ever got near S.A. insane renewable energy program.

Here is an essay he wrote several years ago.

Another post on the SA power problem.

The coal used by the South Australian coal-fired power stations, although described as “brown” coal in some places, is from the Telford Cut Mine and is “low-grade, sub-bituminous black coal” — which is apparently called also”hard brown coal” or just “brown coal”, but is definitely not lignite. Some earlier versions of this post said “brown”, some said “black.”

The South Australian black out — A grid on the edge. There were warnings that renewables made it vulnerable.

The South Australian black out — A grid on the edge. There were warnings that renewables made it vulnerable. By Joanne Nova.

The Greens are blaming coal (what else?) for causing bad storms and blackouts. Forget that Queensland gets hit with cyclones all the time and the whole state grid doesn’t break. [Cheap pylons in South Australia because they didn’t realize they sometimes get fierce storms?] Some greenies are also raging against “the politicization” of the storms. Yes, Indeedy. Go tell that to Will Steffen.

We are not being told the whole story. We do know that South Australia has the highest emphasis on renewables in the world. It also has a fragile electricity network, and wild price spikes to boot. (Coincidence?) The death of a few transmission towers should not knock out a whole state, nor should it take so long to recover from. …

Digging around I find ominous warnings that while the lightning and winds probably caused the blackout, the state of the South Australian grid appeared to be teetering on the brink, without enough reserve, or without well planned protection mechanisms to cope with an inherently unstable system.  The excess of wind power made the system more fragile, and also made it harder to restore.

There appear to be three reasons (at least) that excessive wind power is less fun, more costly, and golly, but if windmills don’t stop storms, why buy those expensive electrons? …

  1. Wind power adds instability of the system
  2. Wind power can’t be used to reboot the system and SA was getting warnings about that too.
  3. Wind Turbines shut suddenly at high speeds. There is a possibility that a sudden shut down can happen  when turbines are going full tilt in storm force winds hit “danger limits”. …

There was an August warning from Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) that SA can’t cope with “contingencies”.

South Austrelaian electricty Debacle - Christian Kerr on Facebook

[Image courtesy of Christian Kerr on Facebook]

Like the botched census a month ago, or the Wivenhoe Dam that flooded Brisbane a few years ago, or the costly desalination plants lying idle in Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide and Brisbane, is this yet another case of ignorant and not-very-bright arts students running the place, not understanding the ramification of their decisions, leading to a cock-up? Really, is being proficient in bullying with cries of “racist” a good basis for deciding who gets to make the decisions in our society? These politically-correct fools that our political system is throwing to the top sure keep making a hash of things.

Meanwhile the journalists and politicians are not too technically literate so they do not even ask the right questions. Looks like this imbroglio has been a while in the making, and will take a while to sort out. Read more on Joanne’s blog, including interesting technical discussions in the  comments.

Article by Terrence Cardwell on the same topic.

Mariam Veiszadeh’s poll shocks Left-leaning Twitter

Mariam Veiszadeh’s poll shocks Left-leaning Twitter, by Rita Panahi. Recently a poll fond that half of all Australians want to ban Muslim immigration.

Ms Veiszadeh was so disgusted by the Essential poll that she decided to conduct her own online poll on Left-leaning Twitter.

Sadly, the result wasn’t what she expected.

After more than 46,000 votes a whopping 74% of respondents said they’d support a ban on Muslim migration.




The Islamic Hatred of Modernity: Insights from Game Theory

The Islamic Hatred of Modernity, by Dr Woody Brock.

The usual determinants of relative power (e.g. wealth or the size of an army) are not very relevant to assessing the struggle between ISIS and the West. … For the conflict is less a militaristic one than it is a war of nerves between Jihadists who carry out scattered sting operations, and Europeans and Americans lacking both the will and the coordination to properly respond.

An additional source of Jihadist power stems from their status as True Believers, making them a very dangerous kind of opponent. Their moral certainty immunizes them against normal threats such as being killed. The number who do not fear death is sufficient to spell trouble for decades ahead.

What is it that makes these extremists so morally superior, and so hateful of the West? In part, their superiority stems from their absolute faith in the truth of the teachings of the Koran.

Gosh, the Islamists sound just like the PC crew: morally superior (in their own eyes), hateful of westerners, and their implacable feeling of superiority stems from their absolute faith in the truth of the teachings of the ABC and other PC media.


But this is only the tip of an iceberg of hatred. For their religious convictions are amplified by their detestation of the cultural, economic, ethical, and political values of Westerners. At a deep level, their terrorism stems from their hatred of modernity itself. We in the West are seen as weak and morally dissolute. For not only do we possess no religious fervor, but we lack moral resolve of any kind due to the anesthetizing effects of our materialistic, welfare-based social system. Such ethical values as we have stem not from fear of any God, but rather from an attachment to mushy concepts of “fairness” ranging from the “right” to nine weeks of vacation, to t he right to never be drafted to fight a war. In the US, citizens’ erstwhile chant of “give me liberty or give me death” has morphed into “give me liberty or give me latte.” …

Finally, today’s ongoing Jihadist attacks are concurrent with the new European immigration crisis. Given the implications of soaring immigration for tighter border controls, the increasing threat of Brexit, and problems endemic to the Euro, it is likely that the EU as we have known it will cease to exist. There will then be no semblance of any “unified” EU stance against ISIS. … This brief analysis suggests that the power of ISIS against Europe is much greater than might appear to be the case, despite Europe’s greatly superior power as traditionally measured.

The tolerance of the West is suicidal and therefore excessive:

Contrast ISIS’ moral resolve with the pusillanimous attitude of Westerners. Most assert their disapproval of fundamentalism, of course. But their live-and-let-live attitude sees it as a “right” for people to “express their views” and espouse any religion they wish – including the Religion of Hate. The problem with this view is that the Religion of Hate is unlike any other religion in espousing the murder of all non-believers. Excessive tolerance further undermines the will of the West to fight back against Jihadism in a resolute way.

How the West Can Best Deal with Fundamentalism – Insights from Game Theory

In game theory, there is a fundamental distinction between positive-sum bargaining games, and zero-sum games. In bargaining games, it is assumed that both sides can be better off by agreeing on a way to “divide the pie” instead of playing their optimal threat strategies and ending up with no pie – or worse. All such games are positive-sum in nature. In a zero-sum game, however, there is no pie to divide, and no bargaining compromise is possible.

Most of the analyses of how the West should confront fundamentalism fail to make this all-important distinction. Analysts implicitly assume that negotiation strategies exist, strategies that will somehow end up with an acceptable compromise. President Obama’s stance towards Iran, Russia and China offer examples of this approach. In all three cases, he turned the other cheek, and attempted to “reset” relations with these nations expecting they would reciprocate. All would end up better off. But his antagonists ended up taking full advantage of his weakness, reneged on many agreements, and made Obama look as incompetent at bargaining as he has proven to be. …

[With ISIS we] are playing a zero-sum game. ISIS wants nothing from us in exchange for something. They simply want to destroy us.

Analogously, Iran has no intention of settling with Israel. Its stated goal is the elimination of Israel. …

The currently fashionable suggestion that what is needed is “for Europe to better ‘integrate’ immigrants” is as vacuous as the citations above assert. Most immigrants want to and are able to integrate over time. They end up great assets of the nations they immigrate to. But as a matter of faith, the bad guys will never integrate into that world of sinners they hate.

True believers, whether ISIS or the PC crew, lack a sense of humor. Nuh, just kidding.

There is one common denominator of all True Believers, namely a lack of sense of humor. This is as true of terrorists as it is of today’s political correctness police in the US, spearheaded by those who traffic in wooly ideas about gender and class.

What is happening on US campuses is outrageous, and recalls the moral absolutism espoused by Jihadists overseas. Freedom of speech is being seriously abridged, as are rights of free association. To repeal the right to free speech, all that is needed is some belief that certain comments are “inappropriate,” to use the word of the moment. “Trigger notices” warning that eight Shakespeare plays should not be taught constitute a reductio ad absurdum on the part of university heads. As for the rights of male students to a fair hearing in the case of alleged sexual harassment, hyper-risk-averse “administrative panels” now serve as prosecutor, judge, and jury. There is often no way for an accused male student to receive a proper defense. When the right to self-defense is abridged, it is time to vacate the new status quo.

hat-tip Chris

Mall shooter not a U.S. citizen – voted in three elections

Mall shooter not a U.S. citizen – voted in three elections, by WND.

Arcan Cetin, 20, is the Turkish immigrant arrested Saturday for the Friday night shooting and killing of five people in a Burlington, Washington, mall. …

Now, election officials and Washington Secretary of State, Kim Wyman, have confirmed that Cetin was illegally registered to vote and voted in three elections in the state in 2014, 2015 and 2016.

Cetin is classified as a permanent resident alien with a green card that allows him to work, but he is not a citizen with the right to vote.

Cetin immigrated to the U.S. from Turkey when he was 6-years-old.

Voters in Washington must attest to their American citizenship when registering to vote, but the state does not require proof. Election officials told KVI News the state’s election system operates on the honor system.

A high-trust society exploited and trashed by immigrants from low-trust cultures. What is the bet he voted Democrat?

hat-tip Stephen Neil

Trump turns away 12,000 at Florida rally: Same amount as all of Hillary’s events since July

Trump turns away 12,000 at Florida rally: Same amount as all of Hillary’s events since July.

Since August 1st when both parties’ conventions concluded, Trump has had more than 312,000 people at his events with thousands turned away due to space limitations. He has set records for some of these locations in attendance. However, Hillary has only had 12,000 total at her rallies since August 1st.

Bet you won’t hear about that in the mainstream Australian media.

hat-tip Stephen Neil

What’s Up With Fox and Trump? Retailing the unfair slanders of the Left.

What’s Up With Fox and Trump? Retailing the unfair slanders of the Left. By Joseph Klein.

Fox News has branded itself as “fair and balanced.”  Compared to the mainstream media, Fox News has indeed provided some welcomed balance to coverage of the national news. However, Fox News has not lived up to its branding when it comes to its handling of Donald Trump. Several of its on-air personalities have expressed the kind of downright hostility to the Republican presidential nominee that one might expect to witness on leftist cable news bastions such as MSNBC.

Why is Fox so anti-Trump? Murdoch dislikes Trump, apparently.

According to a New York article, Rupert Murdoch, whose parent company owns Fox News, “was not a fan of Trump’s and especially did not like his stance on immigration.” Murdoch tweeted that Trump is “wrong” on Mexican immigrants. In another tweet, Murdoch asked: “When is Donald Trump going to stop embarrassing his friends, let alone the whole country?” Murdoch had originally wanted Mike Bloomberg to run for president as an alternative “billionaire candidate” to Trump. He was still tweeting encouragement about a possible Bloomberg run as recently as January of this year. When Trump competitor Ben Carson became a favorite of Murdoch’s during the Republican primary campaign season, Murdoch compared Carson and Trump’s political approaches this way: “America land of hope versus fear.”

It seems the media is perfectly conscious of their role in making or breaking candidates, and actively does it — which reveals who is really in charge of our democracy, doesn’t it?

Murdoch was thus not pleased with the fact that Roger Ailes, the former Fox News Chairman and friend of Donald Trump, had encouraged positive coverage of Trump in the early days of the GOP candidate’s campaign.

“According to Fox sources, Murdoch blamed Ailes for laying the groundwork for Trump’s candidacy,” the New York article reported. Murdoch reportedly directed Ailes to have the Fox moderators of the first televised Republican primary debate in August 2015, Megyn Kelly, Bret Baier, and Chris Wallace, go after Trump especially hard with tough questions. And so they did, especially Kelly. Ailes was not pleased with the outcome, but his hands were tied by his boss’s wishes.

Nearly a year later, Ailes was forced out of his position on account of allegations of sexual harassment. Ailes resigned on July 21st.  Murdoch took over Ailes’ position, at least temporarily, as the general election was beginning to heat up. With Ailes out of the way and Murdoch in charge of the Fox News network, coverage of Trump took a more negative turn.

hat-tip Stephen Neil


Beijing’s Running Dogs in Australia: Beijing Pressures Chinese Media in Australia to Parrot the Official Line

Beijing’s Running Dogs in Australia: Beijing Pressures Chinese Media in Australia to Parrot the Official Line, by Yan Xia.

As the editor of an independent Chinese-language media company in Australia, I know firsthand the pressure Beijing brings to bear on outfits that do not parrot the official line. For us it has meant intimidated advertisers and lost revenue. For many it amounts to a systematic brainwashing.

Our sales manager pulled me aside with a worried look and more bad news. “They are being harassed by the Ministry of State Security,” he said of the Beijing-based immigration agency that has been advertising in the Chinese-language media we produce here in Australia. My heart sank. Yet another long-term customer gone. …

Our lost client illustrates but one of the mounting pressures faced by independent Chinese media in Australia. Tensions have heightened over recent months, with Australia’s Chinese media under pressure to support President Xi Jinping and Beijing’s foreign policy. That pressure is part of China’s exercise in “soft power”. …

Do we kowtow to the Chinese government, like so many of our counterparts? Do we fall mute on matters that would otherwise prove detrimental to our commercial interests? How, most of all, do we keep our journalistic integrity intact while trying to reach the many of our readers whose pro-China political views remain staunch, despite their extended time overseas?

How Beijing exerts control in Australia:

As Beijing’s soft power grows, increasing numbers of Australian politicians, Chinese community groups and Chinese media companies are becoming more reliant on commercial and political ties with China. Thus, news that touts pro-China views and agendas is becoming ever more pervasive among the local “mainstream” Chinese news sources. …

The prevailing pro-China sentiment is rooted in Communist culture and ideology that have been relentlessly instilled over decades. State-run mouthpieces, such as XinHua News, perpetually propagate the notion to overseas Chinese that “without your country, you are nothing”. This gives rise to the conviction that, regardless of any foreign citizenship, expatriates cannot divorce themselves from the blood that runs in their veins. Hence, if China is not strong, expatriates are nothing in the eyes of their adopted countries and countrymen. …

Many Chinese are also afflicted with the mentality of moral equivalence which argues that  “China is lacking in many respects, but the West isn’t any better.” This nationalistic sentiment is so firmly entrenched many Chinese are extremely averse to criticism of their country. Any media or journalist that is critical of the Chinese government is labeled as “anti-China”. This is in stark contrast with the West, where criticism of the government is natural and normal. … The Chinese government’s growing influence on local Chinese language media reinforces viewpoints that become even more entrenched over time, making it more difficult for Chinese readers to accept alternative perspectives.

hat-tip Stephen Neil

Aboriginal Australians are Earth’s oldest civilization: DNA study

Aboriginal Australians are Earth’s oldest civilization: DNA study, by Emiko Jozuka on CNN (very PC). It is stretching the meaning of the word “civilization” to apply it to Aboriginal culture, but this seems to be the latest push by the PC.

“We were trying to break down the distinction between scientists and indigenous people,” added [David Lambert, study co-author and evolutionary biologist at Griffith University], who asserted the importance of indigenous communities playing an active role in research about themselves.

Oh, sounds very trendy. But why? It’s useful to have distinctions between completely different things, which is why humans make them. Lots of them, all the time.

The Church of England now has no place for believers in the traditional family

The Church of England now has no place for believers in the traditional family, by Jane Kelly.

Being a member of the Church of England is to belong to a strange club, or so it seems to me. All the rules have changed since I joined as an infant…

Like most persons of the liberal Left [the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby,] is keen to eradicate the last vestiges of the evil Victorian age. Growing up in the 1960s I continually heard, particularly from the BBC, that the era of unparalleled prosperity which followed the Battle of Waterloo was in fact a shameful time of destructive imperialism, racism, misogyny, hypocrisy, poverty, ugly architecture, repression and stodgy food. …

In a sermon to the Mother’s Union in Winchester Cathedral, to celebrate 140 years of their support for motherhood, apple pie and Christian family life, he told them that gay marriage is now a reality “whether we like it or not.” … [The effect was to] to remind them that a Victorian golden age of traditional family values was only a sad “myth.”

What are those Victorian family values? One can hardly remember, but if they were anything to do with the marriage of a man and a woman, and if the man had any particular authority in the home, they are best buried and forgotten. He didn’t need to say any of that but advised them to face up to the, “reality of divorce, cohabitation and gay marriage in the 21st century.”

The dear Archbishop has no idea and no future:

He is leading a church which is rapidly and absurdly losing its way.

I realised the extent of this blind alley when I attended a debate in the University Church in Oxford two years ago, entitled, “the future of the church of England.” I thought this would be about tackling the the drastic decline in church numbers … This “Whither the Church” gathering turned out to be all about gay rights, or what was perceived to be the lack of them. In July 2015, it was revealed that the church had decided to spend over a quarter of a million pounds on retreats to discuss homosexuality using “conflict resolution experts.” …

The gospels mentions conflict resolution experts all the time. Not.

hat-tip Stephen Neil

The World is on the Edge of an Inflationary Black Hole

The World is on the Edge of an Inflationary Black Hole, by Egon von Greyerz. I’ve met Egon and was struck by how sensible he was and how well-informed about money matters. Swiss chap, though originally Swedish.

The world economy is now at its most dangerous point in history. In virtually every major country or region, there are problems of a magnitude which individually could trigger a collapse of the financial system. Because of the interconnectivity of the system, when the first domino starts falling, there is zero possibility to stop all the other unstable dominoes from crashing one after the other in quick succession.

The world is now staring down a deflationary black hole that is on the verge of sucking into it all global debt of $250 trillion plus unfunded liabilities and derivatives of another $2 quadrillion or so. That would be the end of the financial system as we know it. Governments and central bankers around the world are of course totally aware of this and are standing with their fingers ready to push the button for the biggest money printing bonanza that the world has ever experienced.

Deutsche Bank is worse than Lehman was in 2008.

Deutsche Bank, which is one of the biggest in the world, is valued at less than 1% of its asset value and it has derivatives which are standing at 20 times German GDP. The share price is telling us that DB is bust. And so are Greek banks, Italian as well as Spanish, Portuguese and French banks and many more.

Deutsche has now become front page news and its survival is now in jeopardy. It has total assets of EUR 1.9 trillion but a deposit base of only EUR 450 billion. This means that DB is totally dependent on short term loans to finance its massive balance sheet. That is extremely dangerous and the reason for Lehman’s demise. The pressure on DB is likely to increase in coming weeks.

Deutsche Bank vs Lehman

ECB money printing of €80 billion a month or €1 trillion per year is having no effect. Central banks are now pushing on a string. The bail out of Italy’s fourth largest bank Monte dei Paschi is failing. Germany is totally against the ECB stepping in and the Italian government doesn’t want to bail in the depositors. That would be a political disaster. Non-performing loans in Italy are 20% of assets and growing. It confirms my view that no debts, bank or sovereign will ever be repaid.

Egon is right about this, IMHO.

The news from around the world is just getting worse by the day. Japan’s Yen 80 trillion ($0.8T) printing programme is having no effect. Kuroda (Governor of BoJ) is totally lost. He is currently buying all the bonds that the Bank of Japan is issuing. The BoJ is a top 10 shareholder in 90% of Japanese stocks.

In other words, the Japanese central bank is already “printing” lots of money for the Japanese government and propping up the stock market (and that’s still not lowering the value of the yen compared to other paper currencies!).

Coming money printing will greatly exceed Weimar and Zimbabwe

Thus we are standing on the edge of a black hole that very easily could cause a deflationary implosion of all financial assets and all debt. No government is talking about this and no central banker dares to mention the seriousness of the present situation. The smallest final snowflake that can push the world over the edge and start the deflationary avalanche. It is really surprising that central banks dare to hold back on the biggest printing programme ever for so long. Because they only need to be a few seconds late and they will not be able to stop the collapse.

Let’s assume that central bank will intervene in time and print first tens of trillions and eventually hundreds or even quadrillions of dollars, euros, yen etc. We will then see a hyperinflationary period which will be bigger than both the Weimar Republic or Zimbabwe for the simple reason that the figures involved now are so much greater.

A reminder of the context:

Evans - debt to gdp ratio, 2015

Throughout the western world, the big bubble in money manufacture started in 1982 and leveled off in the GFC, when governments had to step in to prevent collapse. This bubble was not a product of the market, but of government meddling with interest rates and loosening rules about creating new money.

Government action in lowering interest rates and a bit of printing since 2008 have kept the money supply from imploding back to its usual, much lower level — which would be very deflationary (the Great Depression would look like a picnic). Even more government interference in the market was required to prevent the inevitable consequence of its previous meddling.

Modern money is someone’s else debt, so the problem appears as if the world is also awash in debt. Governments hate deflation, so they will almost certainly try to print their way out of the crisis. It’s simply a matter of time — sooner or later a trigger like what appears to be happening with Deutsche Bank will kick it off.

By the way, we just had a record quarter at GoldNerds.