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theWatt Podcast 77


Well, once again I find myself double checking my facts. It's not China that consumes 16 times less energy per person than the US, it's India that consumes 16 times less energy per person than the US.

Here are the numbers based on 2003 statistics (/node/170):

China consumes 6.8 times less energy per person than the US
India consumes 15.2 times less energy per person than the US

China produces 5.3 times less CO2 per person than the US
India produces 17.2 times less CO2 per person than the US

In case anybody's interested, I've decided to make a database of random energy facts (all with sources) so that I can refer to them quickly as needed. This database is going to be posted to Twitter. So, check out for my list of random energy facts along with sources.

Re: Errata

Hi Ben,

I thought that you where being a bit over generous with that statement about Chinese per capita emissions. But the exact numbers wern't vital to the discussion.

A couple of additional considerations;

China has emmitted only about 130% of what the UK has in terms of historic emissions. Most of this carbon is still in the atmosphere. The uk has a population of 60'000'000 wheras China has a population of roughly 1'300'000'000!

China constructed most of my electrical appliances, and probably most of yours. National emissions inventories place these emissions as a chineese responsibility, this is at very least debateable.

On the point of how questions are framed, i would highly reccomend that your readers check out work by the Rock Ethics Institute 'White Paper on the Ethical Dimensions of Climate Change'. EcoEquity have done some great work on past emissions and national responsibilities.

Re: Errata

Some things I forgot to say

Here are some things that I forgot to say about biofuels and the IMF report:

I generally support ethanol in replacing MTBE as a fuel additive, but not much more. Roughly, the amount of ethanol that is produced today should be enough to replace MTBE in gasoline where it is needed (slightly more than 1/3rd of all gasoline in the US requires some sort of oxygenate like MTBE or ethanol).

As far as the IMF study goes, they said it would cost 0.6% of GDP to level GHG emissions off at 550ppm by 2100. It seems to me that 2100 is quite late. As far as I know, the IPCC suggests a leveling off to 450-550ppm GHG emissions by 2050.

Re: theWatt Podcast 77

Regarding the "sin" of building large homes, I really disagree with the general feeling there. There was a comment that even if people powered their homes with wind power, they shouldn't be allowed (or should be taxed) for doing so.

I think that the opposite approach might be more helpful. If you want to build a house above a certain size (say 5000 sq.ft.) than it must meet all its energy (heat, hot water, electricity) from renewable energy. Let's face it, these are the people that could afford to buy renewable energy systems. So let them build as large as they like, as long as they can power-up with renewable.

Re: theWatt Podcast 77

Yeah, I went overboard on that. Learning how to speak on the record is difficult - I think I need to work on understating thoughts I have had rather than overstating them.

The problem with large houses is the amount of energy they take. Arguably, if they are going to be self-sufficient, by investing in PV and geothermal, perhaps, that is fine. However, if they are going to buy wind power, this is a problem because we need to be cutting the amount of energy we need in order to make renewable work. If we continue increasing the amount of energy we use, it will be far harder to catch up renewables with existing power. Additionally, wind frequently needs long distribution lines to get the power from the windy areas to where it is needed. This all has costs and impacts everyone. Bigger houses are just better.

I would like to see the tiers for electricity rates. Perhaps if you use x amount of electricity, you pay $.07 per kwh. But if you use 2x, you pay $.08 per kwh. If you use 4x, maybe $.08 per kwh. Extra revenue generated should go to low-income assistance as we see prices rise.

Re: theWatt Podcast 77

I'm of 2 minds about this.

In one sense I think that greed is partially to blame for our inefficient energy use. I see an 18 bedroom home with only 2 in use as greed (Note: I don't know how many rooms Al Gore actually uses, but I assume he doesn't have 18 people living in his home). Al Gore's neighbors will not like being outdone, and so they will build a similar home but perhaps they can't afford to power it with renewables. Frivolous consumption is something that is not appropriate in a world with scarce resources. I think greed might be another form of "negative externality", perhaps more subtle than others.

A similar example to taxing 16 of Al Gore's bedrooms is taxing fuel inefficient cars. We tax a Rolls Royce or a Humvee because they are fuel inefficient and we don't tax a Prius because it is more practical in today's world. This is essentially taxing greed/frivolous consumption. Nobody needs a Humvee when a more efficient car can do the same thing. Those who purchase a Humvee would still get taxed even if they managed to fuel it with cellulosic ethanol (equivalent to powering Al Gore's home with renewables).

Should we still tax a Humvee if we can manage to fuel with a CO2 free fuel? I think yes, but others may think no.

At the same time, I still believe that people should be able to choose what they do with their money, but maybe we should try to curb greed? I'm not sure. We can't deny that competition and choice can be good for society. I think we have to direct this competition to be more helpful to society though.

These are the types of questions that don't have answers, but they're good to talk about.

Re: theWatt Podcast 77

I just wanted to mostly agree while pointing out that some do need a HumVee - the military and some folks out west working on ranches perhaps. But people in suburbs should have to pay a hell of a lot for them. Similarly, contractors require big trucks that will never achieve the fuel efficiency of a sedan and they should not be priced out of their job. But most of these vehicles seem to be bought by neighbors trying to one-up the others in their cul-de-sac.

Of course, I've jealously looked at trucks when taking a small car to an off-road trail head for a hike or climb. This is where things like car-sharing make more sense - so I can use a small efficient car for heading to the store and borrow a 4WD truck when heading out to an inaccessible climb or hike.

Re: theWatt Podcast 77

You raise some interesting points here. Let me take your last point first.

A tiered structure for electricity for residential customers is interesting. It reminds me of the tiered structure for water here in Boston. If you use the minimal amount of water, the price is low per hundred cubic feet(sorry I don't have the numbers in front of me). But if you use a lot of water, the price almost doubles per hundred cubic feet.

I think we generally feel good about this approach, but I don't know how much this helps with conservation. I live in a wealthy community and I think people can afford to pay for the high water rates. As a result, I am skeptical about how much this contributes to conservation. Perhaps someone has studied this. We need to get away from policies that sound good and move to policies that have been proven to work.

In live in the Boston area. Electricity price is US$0.19/KWH. This is about twice the national average of about US$0.08/KWH. Yet, electricity consumption in Boston (in fact the whole North East) is higher than the national average. So I am not sure high prices are much of an answer to reducing consumption. However high prices can make renewable energy more practical.

Regarding wind power, I think the difference in our thinking here might be the difference between commercial scale wind power (i.e. wind farms) versus residential scale. I agree that commercial scale wind power should not be wasted on people of great financial means. This power is hard to come by and it is a shame to see it wasted on increased consumption.
I was thinking more of residential scale wind power. For example, let's say a wealth home owner buys a 20 acre property. On that property he can build as large a house as he wants, but all the electricity (perhaps heat and hot water as well) must come from the 20 Acre property. That might be wind mills or solar panels, or whatever. Once that individual has done that, I think that individual has gone above and beyond his environmental obligations. He is producing his own energy needs and therefore I don't think anyone can complain about his consumption.

Consider one small example of sustainable living.

There is a guy that I know that lives in my area named James Warden. He has a large PV solar array on his property (perhaps 8KW, I am not sure). He uses this electricity to 1) run a geothermal heating system, 2) charge his EVs, and 3) supply all the electric needs in his house. I find this really remarkable. All his energy needs are electric in nature and supplied by his solar panels.
Personally, I have a 3KW solar array on my house. This supplies all my electrical needs, but I still heat with home heating oil and use gasoline for my two cars. I would love to be able to do what James Warden does. He is not significantly affected by the recent increase in gasoline prices and he should never run out of energy.

John C. Briggs

Re: theWatt Podcast 77

Thanks for the follow up. I am all for people investing in being self-sufficient, so we agree there.

On the higher prices of electricity in Boston and still higher uses, I wonder what the confounding factors are. After all, these are complicated systems. But you are right in that simply raising the prices a bit will not do everything. Even at twice the price, electricity is a bargain.

But California has kept its per capita electrical use steady for 3 decades now (hey Rod - without killing their standard of living - I sometimes worry that you are too doom and gloom about investments in efficiency) and my understanding is that at least part of that comes from the high price of electricity there. I believe they still pay more than the amount you pay in Boston (none of these relatively high prices seem to have killed the business climate) but they have a host of other good policies as well.

Re: theWatt Podcast 77

I think the price of electricity in Boston and CA are about the same. Hawaii has the highest prices in the USA at about US$0.23/KWH.

My understanding about California's situation is somewhat different. I don't think the reduction in usage has much to do with price. California had a serious energy crisis. They could not meet demand. This was not a joke or a trick, there was a serious problem. So the government put forth a comprehensive effort to reduce consumption rather than build new plants. It is called "Flex your Power". Much of this was a strong public education campaign at many locations including in the workplace and schools, etc. They also offered some type of rebate (the opposite of a tax) to residential customers that reduced consumption by 20%. Anyway, the California model is one to consider seriously. They have definitely succeeded and I don't think increasing prices was they way they did it.

For me, I have decreased my electricity consumption by 66%. I am using 33% of the electricity that I used to use and now get that from PV solar panels. Aside from hanging up my laundry to dry (which is a pain) the rest of the improvements don't impact my quality of life.

John C. Briggs

Re: theWatt Podcast 77

I think the goal to tax the wealthy for excess consumption is admirable, but I don't know if it is effective. The wealthy are already heavily taxed anyway. There is a progressive tax structure in the USA and the wealth pay a lot. Also, there are CAFE standards for cars. This means that US car companies must sell a lot of 35MPG cars to sell a 18MPG car. To do this, the car companies take less profit on the 35MPG car to allow them to take a larger profit on the 18MPG car that many people want. So the rich people are subsidizing the cheap US made cars. The European car manufacturers' don't meet the CAFE standard and the just pay a big fine to the EPA each year. This fine is passed on to the US customers in the form of higher prices. This has been going on for years and is effectively a tax. It is does not seem to be effective.

Not that it is the same thing, but consider the tax on cigarettes. The price has gone from US$1 per pack to US$5 per pack. However, the reduction in the number of smokers in the USA has been only modest.

My wife has her master's degree in Public Health and I was reading one of her journals that had a piece about recycling. They did a very careful study on trying to improve recycling. There were four groups

Group 1) told about the program by dropping off a pamphlet at their house.
Group 2) Told about the program with a personal visit discussing why it was important
Group 3) Told in a personal visit and given a small incentive like free ice cream cones at a local shop
Group 4) Given significant money for recycling. (worth much more than the ice cream cones)

Group 3 did the best in terms of recycling the most. Personal education and a small incentive seems to work. Just paying (and perhaps taxing) doesn't always have the best results.

John C. Briggs

Re: theWatt Podcast 77

I think research about whether higher cigarette taxes reduces smoking suggests otherwise. This is a field full of crap science unfortunately and I don't have the time to fully wade in, but I just glanced at the abstracts of several peer-reviewed articles saying higher taxes decrease smoking.

As for the CAFE standards and big cars, the automotive companies may claim that they are just responding to the market, but let me make a few points.

1) They don't have massive advertising budgets because they like to subsidize ad agencies. They shape consumer desires.

2) Larger vehicles were not demanded by the public, they were hyped by the companies because they have a little more to build but are sold for much higher prices which means a larger per-car profit.

3) They are still making money on the smaller cars so the larger cars are not subsidizing the smaller ones.

However, you could still say rich people are subsidizing the car industry because the rest of us buy used cars when our old ones break down.

PS - Ben, your CAPTCHAs are killin' me! =-)

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"Ben, your CAPTCHAs are killin' me!"

Hrm, sorry, I'll try a simpler one. I had a bad case of spam for a while but I think it's mostly over with.

Another thing about the CAFE standards, they are ineffective for many many reasons: There are so many loopholes (ex: flex fuel vehicles being given much lower standards and classifying cars like the Subaru Outlback as a truck to avoid CAFE). Not to mention the fact that the new 35mpg CAFE standard (changed in 2007 energy bill) will start in the year 2020.

Basically what it comes down to is we have to find an effective way of changing people's habits. I suppose if we talk about taxes we should also talk about price elasticity as well. Gasoline is fairly price inelastic because people will always have to drive to get to work, but there will come a point when, if the tax is high enough, it will be effective in getting people to purchase more efficient cars or take public transport. One reason why I like taxes is because it's possible to make them revenue neutral, essentially this maintains the purchasing power of the individual but makes some things (which we deem bad) a larger portion of a persons budget. This is what's going on with the carbon tax in British Columbia (Canada) right now (they compensate for the carbon tax by reducing income taxes proportionately).

I agree that personal education will by far give the best results. It's quite difficult though. I guess this is what Al Gore is trying to do.

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You may be right about cigarettes, but various factors (smoking bans, public opinion, taxes) will be hard to separate out. In any case, there are still about 20% of American that smoke versus about 25% perhaps 20 years ago, or 45% 50 years ago. So most of this reduction came well before the very high taxes were applied to cigarettes. I would suggest that changing attitudes was the key factor there. Since the recent application of high taxes, the reduction in the number of smokers is more modest and might be the result of taxes or other factors, it is hard to know.
It looks like if you use the number of cigarettes as a metric (rather than the percentage of smokers) then the recent reduction is more impressive. Perhaps the high tax has been successful in reducing the number of cigarettes smoked more so than the number of smokers. Again, it is hard to separate out various factors. In any case, I am sure taxes (high prices) reduce usage of anything (cigarettes, electricity, gasoline), my main point here was about how effective it is. I just think the California electricity situation shows that there are more important factors in reducing consumption than taxes or increased prices.

Regarding your comments about the car companies, I am not sure how to support or refute your claims of ill-will on the part of the car companies. Allow me to put forth another proposal about the SUV craze in the USA that I think is supported by the facts.

The CAFE standard itself created the SUV craze. The USA government created the CAFE standards (in the mid 70's and implemented into the mid 80's). The key thing to realize is that there are two standards
1) Cars had to be 27.5 MPG CAFE
2) Light trucks had to be 20.5 MPG CAFE
and for completeness, any vehicle over 6000lbs is not regulated for MPG.
OK so the average car needs to be 27.5MPG. This is not good news for cars that I grew up with which is the 9 passenger Plymouth Fury Station Wagon. It is difficult to imagine improving that car to get 27.5 MPG. So what is the solution. Make this into andSUV (by the way a category that didn't exist before CAFE). Now we can buy SUVs and miniVans that can get 20.5MPG because they are classified as "light trucks". As a result of CAFE, people that wanted larger cars (like station wagons) were forced to buy "light trucks" instead because station wagons where pretty much legislated out of existence.

I think what is humbling to me is that the intent of the law was to increase fuel efficiency. I think the laws makers wanted more fuel efficient vehicles. However, it actually set into motion the whole SUV craze. This is the law of "unintended consequences" If you look into the data, the SUV craze seems to correlate well with the introduction of CAFE. Of course this does not prove that it caused the SUV craze, but it seems likely.

I don't doubt the power of marketing and that the car industry has worked hard to sell us whatever vehicles they are making. I am just not sure that Toyota's advertising techniques for the Prius (which I own) are much different than their advertising for the Toyota Tundra pickup.

Someday someone will have to explain to me the evils of GM and McDonalds and Walmart because I just don't get it. I just see them as businesses. Really more neutral than good or evil.
John C. Briggs

Re: theWatt Podcast 77

I'm not who is arguing GM, McDonald's, and Wal-Mart are evil. They are profit-maximizers though and their interests can diverge greatly from what is best for the communities of people they touch. So when they have disproportionate power to shape policy, I guess some call them evil. Probably more accurate to say we are too lazy as citizens who should demand reforms over corporate control of politicians.

You are absolutely right about law of unintended consequences and policymakers need to be careful and revise policy frequently to fix problems like that. But let's be clear about who is often influential in writing legislation - the industries that are impacted - which means not all the consequences are unintended.

The rise of SUVs was not just a matter of people switching from station wagons - the auto companies have heavily marketed SUVs to women who are insecure about their driving skills. I find this hilarious, but I read an article talking about all the focus groups they use and such to refine their messages and make the larger vehicles appealing. So there are many factors, which none of us are denying.

For moving forward, I think we should scrap things like CAFE and do a better job of using tax policy to encourage / discourage vehicles with different capabilities.

Re: theWatt Podcast 77

By the way, I read an article by a gentleman that developed the original CAFE standards. He had a couple of interesting points.
1) There is no way to prove that CAFE standard did anything. The market would likely have moved to more efficient cars anyway. However, he felt that CAFE accelerated the process.
2) He prefers gasoline taxes to CAFE standard because he feels that they are more effective. Note the MPG does not say anything about the number of miles driven per year. The miles/year are increasing in the USA.
3) He thinks that taxes are not likely to pass and would accept new CAFE standards (which they have now completed) as a second, much less preferred, solution.

He struck me as a very thoughtful and experienced policy guy that so perhaps taxes are the way to go, but personally I think there are more effective ways.

Ben, revenue neutral taxes? Perhaps in Canada, but fat chance in the USA. Here is the situation in the USA, "we will build a new road and put a toll on it for 5 years and once the road is paid for, we will take out the toll booths." Then the toll booths stay forever. Now it is very hard to get a toll booth installed because no one believes it will ever go away. I think the same feeling would go for any revenue neutral system here.

John C. Briggs

Re: theWatt Podcast 77

Well obviously you don't buy my argument that CAFE standards started the SUV craze and the feel that marketing caused SUVs to go from 20% market share to 50%+ market share in a decade or so.
Well, if that is the case, let's hope GM can create great marketing to go along with the Chevy Volt. With the track record you say they have for SUVs, they should be able to get at least 25% of us driving Chevy Volts in the next decade or so. That is good news.
John C. Briggs

Re: theWatt Podcast 77

I'm not saying I didn't buy you argument. I think SUVs exist, in part, because of CAFE. But look at when CAFE was enacted and when SUVs became popular. There is a fairly significant gap. Without CAFE, we might not even have so many SUVs, that is clear.

Advertising is not magic. But if they can get as big a profit off the volt as from SUVs (unlikely anytime soon) one would expect them to do that. As profit-maximizers, one would instead expect them to push the cars that make the most money. At the same time, green sells and the frigging Tahoe Hybrid is somehow named the green car of the year despite the fact that they hardly manufacture any of them.

Re: theWatt Podcast 77

OK, so I have my problems with GM too. The green-washing is like nails-on-the-chalkboard for me. GM has a multi-page ad every month in Wired magazine and National Geography (both of which I happen to subscribe to). I have no problem with a Tahoe Hybrid in principle, but the idea that it is very "green" is hard to swallow. Also the fact that they are heavily advertising a car (the Volt) that will not be on the road until at least 2010 really annoys me. And the "flexo-fuel" vehicle thing also seems like green washing to me. I think GM is a long way from Toyota and Honda in offering fuel efficient vehicles (of course, Toyota and Honda make gas guzzlers too).

But I am a sucker for the Chevy Volt advertising. If GM can deliver the vehicle, I think this is a real-world solution to the gas problem. I want to believe. GM is an interesting company. They were made to look very "non-green" in the movie "Who killed the electric car". However, the did produce the EV1 which is, to this day, arguably the best or most realistic EV ever produced. (OK the Tesla must be considered too.) I think the failure of the EV1 is complicated and GM did some great things (the car) and some terrible things (strong-arming the California air resources board). But I am not sure GM is that much worse than the other car companies. Toyota also discontinued the electric RAV4 at about the same time.
Personally, I hope for a future where I can drive an EV (or a Volt) that is charged up by Solar panels on the roof of my house. I hope this is a transportation future we can all agree on, but probably we can't.
John C. Briggs

Re: theWatt Podcast 77

"Personally, I hope for a future where I can drive an EV (or a Volt) that is charged up by Solar panels on the roof of my house. I hope this is a transportation future we can all agree on, but probably we can't."

I think we can all get behind that. Interesting tidbit about the Volt. The Volt should allow roughly 70% of your driving to be done off of the batteries and so it's possible that the gasoline portion could be idle for months at a time. This is actually a problem because gasoline is quite susceptible to microbes eating whatever's in the gasoline and basically converting the gasoline into some useless liquid. This is also a problem on sailboats with outboard motors and I think you have to add some additive to avoid the issue.

I'm sure the engineers will sort it out. I'm surprised that they put in a 45L (12 gallons) fuel tank into the Volt though, I'm sure they'll find that 45L is excessive for a car like the Volt. I wonder how the extra weight of that fuel affects the electric range.

Re: theWatt Podcast 77

Actually, I quite agree about looking forward to a future of cars fueled by the sun.

And though I prefer Toyota to GM currently, they have fought the same legislation together with GM that would have been good for all of us. I get the idea you think I am anti-GM or anti-big company. I don't think of myself that way, I'm more interested at how policy shapes reality which shapes policy.

Re: theWatt Podcast 77

Sorry if I got you wrong. I live in a very liberal place and I have gotten a little too much anti-GM feeling from many directions.

I too am interested in public policy. I wonder if it makes sense that I got a $3300 government rebate on my Prius and $9000 government rebate on my solar panels. Of course, I'll take the money, but I am not sure if this is the most wise investment the government can make. Residential solar PV costs about US$0.30/KWH to produce. On a commercial scale (top of large buildings) about US$0.20/KWH. And commercial wind is about US$0.10/KWH. So why waste government money on my solar panels when the USA would be better off with wind power? Is this just democracy in action? Give the voter something?
John C. Briggs

Re: theWatt Podcast 77

No worries, I was just confused because I don't believe many of things I think you read into my comments. I would like to note that I also do not have a problem with ExxonMobil's massive profits because the price of gas being high is the only way to reduce demand growth and if the price was forced lower by policy, there would likely be shortages due to the price/demand mechanism. I would prefer those profits be used by the government to invest in renewable energy, but there was no political will to raise the gas tax when prices were cheap so now we have high prices and the revenues go to fund anti-science crap-machines that make any claim they can to discredit climate science. Awesome.

I think it makes sense for the government to offer rebates on things that provide positive externalities. Free markets provide too few positive externalities and too many negative externalities. I believe a fundamental role of gov is to fix that. In this case, people who put PV on their houses are doing good. We cannot only credit wind because it is the most efficient because we need many different technologies to help. I like PV because it reduces the need for more transmission lines.

All the talk on theWatt about transmission lines and better corridors because it is more efficient seem to have not included the costs of building and maintaining these massive lines and the opportunity cost of using that land and money for other purposes. PV may be too expensive, but tens of billions for new high voltage lines seems expensive to me also.

Re: theWatt Podcast 77

I don't think of myself that way,Sohbet I'm more interested at how policy shapes reality which Chat shapes policy.

Re: theWatt Podcast 77

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Re: theWatt Podcast 77

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I think government support is a very tricky business. The dollar value of the support must be carefully considered. I have once seen the idea that "government should not providing financial incentives for things that people are likely to do even without the incentives". I am not sure if that is right or wrong, but it is at least a framework for considering incentive proposals.
On the good side of this is perhaps support for PV solar panels or windmills. Without support, my sense is that not much would happen (by the way in Massachusetts this support comes from user fees on electricity).
On the bad side of this is support for CFLs. In my area there are frequent rebates ($1 or $2 per bulb) for CFLs. Since I can buy CFLs for $1 each, local stores actually raise prices when the rebates are available. So the money actually goes to the store or the bulb manufacturer and not to the customer. I don't think this is a good situation.
For the $3300 rebate on my Prius, I am also not sure who gets the money. The rebate also seemed to increase the price of the car. The US$24,000 price for the car was a little high, but something I was willing to pay. So I am not sure about the merit of such incentives.

There is one other interesting case. I have a brother-in-law in the dirty power business (gas-fired electricity). He wants there to be a carbon tax because he sees this as the only way to compete with coal-fired plants. Electricity from coal is about US$0.01/KWH cheaper than gas-fired electricity. So the gas-fired plants in NE are off-line 75% of the time and the coal fired ones are always on. A carbon tax could change that situation. This makes a big difference to my brother -in-law. But for me, I am not that much interested in the coal-fired versus gas-fired debate. When I think of carbon tax, I am more interested in renewables.

Perhaps you guys have already discussed RPS (renewable portfolio standards) but that is happening here in Massachusetts and not going well. The renewable power is not being added fast enough and the power companies are paying millions in "alternative compliance mechanisms" (fines). So renewable energy is not succeeding in the way envisioned by the RPS authors.
John C. Briggs

Re: theWatt Podcast 77

Oh, one other thing, I totally agree with you about transmission lines.

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Hi there...been listening for about 6 months now. Love the show.
Wanted to share some of my thoughts on telecommuting in the US.

I recently was hired by a rather large networking firm. I came in with a group of
about 4-5 other new hires. In general, telecommuting has never been
given a firm thumbs up/down by anyone. There is general ambiguity
about its acceptance. Sure, the company has promoted itself as green,
and proudly boasts of its commitment to telecommuting and such. But
there is no affirmation from lower-level management - where it really

Experienced co-workers (1+ years of experience) often hint that working
from home for a new hire does not set a good image. I've heard several
passing jokes linking someone working from home to "vacation" time.
There is this unspoken of taboo, and frankly I find this

I sincerely wish companies would walk the walk before talking the
talk, as the saying goes. Make a firm commitment, yes/no to
telecommuting (preferably yes), and stick with it.


Re: theWatt Podcast 77

At the same time, I still believe that people should be able to choose what they do with their money, but maybe we should try to curb greed? I'm not sure. We can't deny that competition and choice can be good for society. I think we have to direct this competition to be more helpful to society though.