NUCLEAR OPTION… Scanning agendas of government meetings is Squid’s favorite game. The objective is to suss out the meaning behind the bureaucratic lingo. Take a recent example from Monterey Bay Community Power, whose March 4 agenda listed an item “Regarding Proposed Allocation of Greenhouse Gas Free Attributes.”
Don’t fall asleep yet. It’s about nuclear power, a form of energy MBCP swore it would never touch. But MBCP, it turns out, is entitled to about $5.5 million in “energy attributes” from the Diablo Canyon Power Plant, a nuclear plant going offline in 2025. The MBCP board had to decide whether to accept the attributes or not.
“We are simply passively accepting something that our customers have already paid for and in the process, we are able to save money to spend on electrification,” MBCP CEO Tom Habashi told the board. Ultimately, the entire board agreed and voted in favor. But everyone was concerned about how to sell the decision to the public.
Squid proposes this messaging: It’s kind of like when you are going vegan but then you are super hungry and someone offers you a cage-free egg that they would otherwise throw away, and by taking the egg, you are saving $5.5 million that you would have had to spend on tofu. Plus, your choice doesn’t really make a difference because no matter what, all egg production will cease in five years.
FOR THE SHREDDER… Squid thought about stocking up on basic supplies, but took one look at the mile-long line outside of Costco before it opened on Saturday morning and decided Squid would just live on shrimp-flavored popcorn and Netflix in case of a quarantine. A reader who dared to go inside sent a photo showing a mile-long line for toilet paper. Squid’s not sure if humans use more TP than cephalopods, but if Squid gets desperate, Squid has gotten a few pieces of mail that seem suitable as a substitute.
From Kay C. James, president of the right-wing Heritage Foundation, a six-page letter opens: “Will voter fraud determine who wins this year’s presidential election?” (There are lots of underlines – does that boost fundraising results?) The foundation, according to the letter, has documented 1,217 cases of voter fraud – since 1983.
Speaking of the ’80s, Squid got a seven-page fundraising pitch from the right-wing Leadership Institute invoking Ronald Reagan. It breaks down the world thusly: “It comes down to love for America vs. hate for America.” Say wha?
Then Squid got an email March 9 from the state GOP noting that ballots are still being counted from the March 3 election – it does not note that this timeline is totally normal. The email asks for a $45 (get it?) donation to the Unprocessed Ballot Fund. Huh. Last Squid checked, elections officials who count ballots can’t get money from partisan groups. Maybe they’ll use the money to stock up on toilet paper.