News from the state of POORegon: Wind power gets the boot and all wet in the process, Judge orders death row killer to be executed and more..

Here are three articles from our local paper. The first one has to do with wind power getting the boot for a few weeks and of course the wind power folks are upset they are not being 'compensated' for their losses while hydroelectric produces most of the regions power for now. Why should the public get fleeced any worse by the power companies than we already are? We have no voting power over the sources or what we get charged for our electricity. Rates have been increased four times now over the last two years to help 'pay' for new sources, i.e.'alternative energy sources' like wind, solar(I am OK with solar) and other such sources.

The second article has to do with a violent killer going to court to be put to death as the legal system has failed him. Kudos for this murdering, white supremacist bastard for wanting to save the taxpayers some funds. Too bad he waited so long and one of his last comments was this : Hail to Odin, and the 88 or something like that. It is in the article. he only stabbed a fellow convict 84 times and helped crush his skull. Almost wants to make me want to push the plunger myself to get that pentobarbital flowing.

The third article is a short one about a bill getting stopped that would force the medical community to honor cultural minority differences in their medical care. It is great this got defeated as many of us already know hat has happened in Europistan when imposed, by law, cultural sensitivity for muslims. Trust me, this is a bad bill and should have been defeated just like it was.

So here is the news from the state of POOregon.


As planned, wind power is cut out of region’s grid
In Wednesday’s wee hours, Pacific Northwest was being powered mostly by region’s dams
By Tim Fought/AP

PORTLAND — For five hours early Wednesday the Pacific Northwest was running green, almost all of its electricity coming from hydroelectric dams in a river system flush with spring runoff.

That’s a tiny carbon footprint. But it could also be a blow to the region’s burgeoning wind industry, and could kill endangered fish in their spring migration.

The Bonneville Power Administration said Wednesday it followed through on a plan announced last week to shut down most of the region’s power generation except that from government dams now running at full capacity.

The shutdown started at midnight and ended at 5 a.m. — while most in the region slept and electricity demand was low.

“Push came to shove,” spokesman Michael Milstein said. “We didn’t want to do this, and we will only to the extent that we have to.”

The shutdown could be repeated overnight tonight, he said. And depending on how quickly the water flows to the Pacific Ocean, the region is expected to be using hydropower heavily for at least a few weeks.

The volume of runoff is the greatest in more than a decade. The agency says that strains the ability of river managers to balance numerous interests, such as protecting endangered salmon and steelhead, and preventing floods. Among electricity producers, the spring rise is an expected part of operations, but it’s causing a problem for the wind segment.

High water can be shunted around the dams through spillways, but that subjects fish to dangerous levels of nitrogen gas bubbles in the churning water, causing something like the bends that human divers sometimes get. Milstein said water quality in the basin now violates standards in both Oregon and Washington state, a key part in a long-running legal battle over running the dams.

Options limited

Milstein said a federal court order recognizes that the agency has little choice when the water is so high and must put dangerous volumes through the spillways. “There’s no question that fish are being harmed,” he said.

But a salmon advocate said the high flows are giving young fish, known as smolts, a quick ride to the ocean, like the one their forebears got before the dams were built. That gives more fish a chance at surviving to reproduce a few years later.

“The benefits of moving those little guys quickly to the ocean, as opposed to letting them get lost in the reservoirs, are greater,” said Pat Ford of Save Our Wild Salmon.

The Bonneville Power Administration markets about a third of the region’s power, from 31 dams and from a nuclear plant on the Hanford nuclear reservation in eastern Washington. It manages transmission for about three-quarters of the region’s power, but the high water in the river system has a spillover impact on plants not tied to its system.

Because the region is awash in federal power, the wholesale price of electricity on the spot market is effectively zero.

That enables owners of fossil fuel plants to shut down, save on fuel costs and still supply their customers with federal power. Thermal plant owners in the basin often schedule maintenance and repairs to coincide with the spring rise.

This year’s rise is the largest since 1997, but only the seventh-largest in the past 40 years.

In the past decade, wind farms nurtured by government regulations and tax benefits have come on-line in large numbers — and are expected to double within the next decade. But they don’t share the operational benefits of fossil fuel plants.

The wind is free, so they can’t save on fuel, and many rely on tax credits pegged to their production. That’s why they’ve objected to being shut down without compensation. They say the shutdown isn’t necessary, will cost them millions in tax benefits and will discourage investment in the business.

Traditional customers of the Bonneville Power Administration, such as public power districts prominent in Washington state, say they’d have to bear that cost so they object to the idea of compensating wind farms.

 Judge orders execution

Haugen determined competent, waives appeals; sentence scheduled for Aug. 16

By Nigel Duara / The Associated Press

Convicted killer Gary Haugen leaves Marion County Courthouse after a hearing in Salem on Wednesday. Marion County Circuit Court Judge Joseph Guimond issued a death warrant for Haugen, 49, who was convicted twice of brutal murders. Haugen’s execution is scheduled for Aug. 16.
Convicted killer Gary Haugen leaves Marion County Courthouse after a hearing in Salem on Wednesday. Marion County Circuit Court Judge Joseph Guimond issued a death warrant for Haugen, 49, who was convicted twice of brutal murders.

SALEM — Oregon’s first inmate scheduled for execution in more than a decade told a judge he hopes his death brings relief to the family of his victim and said waiving all of his appeals and killing him would save taxpayers money.

On Wednesday morning, Marion County Circuit Judge Joseph Guimond sentenced killer Gary Haugen to die. Haugen’s execution is scheduled for Aug. 16. If carried through, the execution will be the state’s first in 14 years.
The Wednesday hearing was set to determine Haugen’s competence. Guimond asked Haugen 20 questions and decided that he answered them satisfactorily, proving he could fairly decide for himself whether he wanted to waive his appeals. The judge last week rejected an argument from Haugen’s attorneys that the inmate may not be qualified to waive appeals. His attorneys also said a defense expert had determined Haugen suffers from fetal alcohol syndrome and attention deficit disorder.

Haugen, 49, had written to court officials since 2008 asking to drop his appeals, complaining about a “costly broken system” and a criminal justice process he called arbitrary and vindictive.

Three drugs necessary for a lethal injection have been obtained by the state Department of Corrections, but pentobarbital will be substituted for sodium thiopental, which has been in short supply and delayed executions in some states since its only U.S. manufacturer stopped making it.
Sodium thiopental and pentobarbital are fast-acting barbiturates that can quickly stop a person’s breathing and cause death within minutes.

Oregon’s last execution was in 1997. The state has executed two inmates since voters reinstated the death penalty in 1984, and both had waived their appeals. Oregon has 35 men and one woman on death row, including Haugen. Haugen has repeatedly asked to be killed. He said Wednesday that the justice system’s delay is akin to stopping a woman from carrying out an abortion.
“It’s like a woman’s right,” Haugen told. “This is my right to choose. They’re trying to take that away from me. It’s damaging my spirit.”

Haugen was convicted of killing an inmate in 2003 and sentenced to death in a jury trial.
The murdered inmate’s wife, Clarinda Polin Perez, shook her head and rested her head in her hand when Haugen said he was willing to sacrifice himself to “a system that has failed.”
Her husband, David Polin, was found with 84 stab wounds and a crushed skull in 2003. Haugen and another inmate were convicted of his murder in 2007. Haugen implied that, if returned to death row, he would kill again. “I’ve had enough,” Haugen said. “I feel like a dinosaur. I’m old school. I’m not going to rub elbows with guys that cut the vaginas out of babies. ... The way I am, I will put one down.”

Haugen has acknowledged in a letter to a court administrator this year that much of what he says is intended to draw media attention to a justice system that he said has failed him so far in his effort to die. Moments after Guimond sentenced him, Haugen said “Hail Odin and 88,” the latter a white-supremacist prison gang reference short for “Hail Hitler,” as H is the eighth letter of the alphabet.

Haugen cuts an imposing figure. At well over 6 feet tall and with a body hardened in prison since a 1981 murder conviction, his long brown hair is just beginning to go gray. Dressed in a red prison transport uniform, Haugen was permitted to have his hands freed from shackles during the hearing.
Two prison guards seated behind Haugen leaned forward and tensed up as a third guard leaned over him to unshackle him. The moment passed, but the guards continued leaning forward for the rest of the hearing.

Prosecutors had asked that the judge set a July 28 date for the execution, but Haugen asked that he instead be scheduled for Sept. 2, the eighth anniversary of Polin’s murder. Then, Perez began to cry.
She left the courtroom without commenting.


GOP blocks cultural competency bill

Published: May 19. 2011 4:00AM PST

SALEM — A bill aimed at promoting cultural competency in health care has failed in the state House on a party-line breakdown. 

The House voted 30-30 on the measure Wednesday, with all Democrats voting in favor and all Republicans voting against it.

The bill would have required health licensing agencies to come up with standards for teaching doctors and other providers to respond effectively to people of all cultures, languages and ethnic backgrounds.
Democrats said the bill would help medical professionals respond better to the unique challenges that minorities face. But Republicans said they were concerned about cost, and that licensing boards are free to adopt standards on their own.

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