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It’s crazy. They’re at it again, the Oil Baron’s with their insatiable lust for money. Now they’re after more offshore drilling rights. That’s right they want more because the 33 million acres of the federal Outer Continental Shelf acres under lease are not nearly enough for them. The Oil Baron’s have been given the rights to drill in these areas and others but are not drilling.

Why, you ask? Because the greedy Oil Barons want to grab leases and hoard them for some later future date when they can really screw the American public. With so many people predicting that we’re nearing or at peak oil capacity now, oil in the not too distant future will be really rare and precious.

This whole energy debate reminds HAN of Nikola Tesla. We wrote briefly about him in an earlier post, “Oil Barons and Bust (America).” Here’s some more information about Tesla who made a valiant attempt to make energy plentiful and free for everyone.

Tesla, The Forgotten Father of Technology

Nikola Tesla, was a brilliant inventor and innovator whose inventions ranged from electricity to acoustics, to hydraulics, metallurgy, and geometry (1), wanted to provide free electricity to the public. Of course, the greed of capitalism got in the way. 

Nikola Tesla (1856-1943), born in Croatia, later becoming an American citizen, was a one-time employee and then later a rival to Thomas Edison. After working for Edison repairing motors and inoperable generators at the Edison plant, Tesla asked Edison for the promised payment of $50,000. In response, Edison is quoted as having told Tesla that he didn’t understand American humor. I guess that means Edison never paid Tesla for his work.

Tesla went on to challenge Edison’s vision of using direct current (DC) generator for universal distribution. While Edison was trying to perfect the hazardous, cumbersome and expensive DC generator Tesla’s invention of the alternating current (AC) generator proved more practical, efficient and cost-effective eventually becoming industry standard. Their battle for supremacy is known as “The Current Wars.” Though his story in American history books is recounted fondly enough, Edison was actually the antagonist in this war. Edison distorted the merits of Tesla’s AC generator by propagandizing it as dangerous. Edison went so far as to solicit a professor, Harold Brown, to electrocute “dogs and horses on stage” as proof of the dangers of the AC generator. 

Free Energy For All

One of the last inventions Tesla introduced was the Wardenclyffe Tower. Had it succeeded it would have provided free electricity to the world. The Wardenclyffe Tower was meant to be the start of a global system for wireless telecommunications and a national (and later global) system of towers broadcasting power to users as radio waves.(2) Instead of supplying electricity through a current grid system, users would simply “receive” power through antennas on their roofs.(3) Funding for the project was pulled by backer J. P Morgan when he realized there was no way to meter it.

Tesla is credited with having over 700 patents, including radar, the electric motor and the concept behind the radio. Just months after his death, the disputed radio patent was awarded by the U.S. Supreme Court to Tesla over Guglielmo Marconi, who is generally acknowledged as radio’s inventor.

It’s estimated that Tesla gave up millions of dollars in proceeds from his inventions so that the public could have access to his ideas. He died impoverished having given the world so much while receiving so little in return. It can be said that we are a hundred years behind in technology because many of Tesla’s inventions never saw the light of day. Today people still sift through his patents seeking ways to bring them to life.

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The insatiable lust for money — then and now– is a lesion on our society. These speculators and others who hoard goods– thereby raising prices of life sustaining commodities, who have $$$$$$$ signs in places where the rest of us humans carry our brain, heart and eyes, are never interested in serving the public good.

We are wise to remember that.

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