An off the wall thought...

...which, I'm sure a lot of you have had way before this, but:
Before he started his first term, Obama swore he was going to do
everything he could to kill the coal industry.
Now that he's in his second term, he's got nothing to lose.
If you use coal in your forges, buy all you can now before it gets shut down like they're shutting down firearms and ammunition purchasing.
Not trying to be political here - just practical.
Best regards to all,
Bert
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You must listen to Fox. Obama swore no such thing. There will be plenty of coal for us blacksmiths for a long time to come. I would not waste your money or time stockpiling coal.
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Curt Welch http://CurtWelch.Com/
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On 01/27/2013 10:28 PM, Curt Welch wrote:

Hello Curt,
No actually, I don't. But I do listen to Obama. One quote, "If someone wants to build a coal powered plant they can - it's just that it will bankrupt them because they're going to be charged a huge sum for all that greenhouse gas that's being emitted." That comment came earlier in the same interview shown at:
<
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n7q46PVTQlM
\

Technically, semantically, I suppose you're correct. He did not swear he's going to kill the coal industry. He only said he'd "cap & trade" it into bankruptcy.
Look, I honestly don't mean to sound argumentative. I just think it's one more thing that should be watched and possibly planned for.
Best regards, Bert
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I'm the only jerk here being argumentative. You were just reminding people to think about this...

Sure. My point is that he has no desire to shut down the _coal_ industry as you claim.
Obama's war is on greenhouse gasses, NOT the coal _INDUSTRY_. He's made that abundantly clear in all his speeches. This difference is not so significant if you happen to work in the coal industry and fear loosing your job due to coal fired power plants getting shut down. But for us Blacksmiths, it makes no difference at all. There will always be someone there to sell us coal for as long as we want to buy it.
The coal industry sells coal by the TRAIN LOAD. If you want to buy a 20 ton truck of coal, the coal industry will consider you to be too small a customer to deal with. If all you want is 20 tons, you have to go through a reseller that has connections to the real "coal industry". If all you want is a pickup truck full, you probably have to go though two resellers to get it. Blacksmiths don't deal with the real "coal industry" as it is - we deal with people that resell the scraps of the coal industry. Even if all the current big industry users of coal shut down, forcing all the big mining operations to shut down, the scrap piles of left over coal from these operations will last all the blacksmiths for 100 years to come. There really is no risk of us not being able to get coal in the insignificantly small amounts we use it in (relative to the current industry).
There is a very small risk the price might go up, so anyone wanting to protect themselves from price increases could go out and buy themselves a 10 year supply if you want to take that gamble.
Coal prices are currently around $68 per short ton ($1.70 for a 50 lb bag). If you pay more for that (we generally all do), it's because we are paying not for the cost of mining the coal, but the cost of transporting it to us, and the cost of dealer mark-ups. In other words, coal is dead cheap - costing mostly just what it costs to transport the stuff to us. It's not likely to change much anytime soon.
The US produces around 1 billion tons of coal every year and 90% of that is used to produce electricity. How much of that is being used by the blacksmiths? I don't know, maybe a few thousand tons total? 5,000 tons would only be 1/20,000th of all the coal mined in the US.
If 90% of all the coal power plants shut down in the next 10 years, the ones remaining would still need 100 million tons of coal mined. Blacksmiths would still only be using 1/2,000 as much coal, as all the remaining power plants.
If 90% of those shut down in the 10 years after that, the remaining power plants would still be using 200 times as much coal as all the blacksmiths. Our consumption would still hardly show up on the scale as using only .5 % of the coal production, after 99 out of 100 power plants shut down.
The coal "industry" is not going to "shut down" any time soon - even if it does end up shrinking substantially, our use use is so insignificantly small, as to not be in the least bit relevant.
Coal use is shrinking fast right now but not because of anything Obama has done. It's because natural gas has recently gotten cheaper than coal. And because of that, no new coal electric plants are on the books to be built. All the new plants are gas powered. The coal industry is shrinking on its own due to natural economic forces. But these big expensive coal plants are producing 50% of our nations electricity. It's not something we have the option to shut down even if we wanted it. Even if we apply economic pressure through things like cap and trade, that will accelerate the decline of coal, but it will still take many decades just because that's how long it takes to build lots of new very expensive power plants to replace them.
There's nothing in the short term (like Obama's next 4 years) that is going to have any sort of real impact here for us Blacksmiths. No matter what happens to the coal industry, there will be plenty of coal still being mined, for likely the next 50 years, and our use (Blacksmiths) will be so insignificantly small, that what we pay for, is not even the cost of coal to start with - we are just paying the cost of someone to drive over and pick some up for us, and that cost won't have much of anything to do with what happens to the coal industry.
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Curt Welch http://CurtWelch.Com/
snipped-for-privacy@kcwc.com http://NewsReader.Com/
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On 01/28/2013 10:56 PM, Curt Welch wrote:

Game, set and match!! Curt, on the one hand I'm sorry to have made you go through that, but on the other hand, my thanks to you for having taken the time to do so. I obviously hadn't done enough home work on the subject and your reply is an education. Most excellent!
Best regards, Bert
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I apparently had missed this before... I appreciate your care in replying to these concerns. It will be a long time before hand powered forging will ever be enough of an issue to cause governmental or environmental group concerns, strong enough to hinder OUR coal use and supply. They have plenty of real issues to fix first.... unless for some reason there becomes an activist w/talent focused against us. Let us hope not. So remember to smile at your neighbour.... Be a good citizen... and focus on recycling iron and steel.. bang on !
thanks for your post !!


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Hey Curt,
What are your thoughts on today's EPA announcement regarding CO2 emissions? I know it doesn't necessarily mean anything significant to the blacksmithing community, but it seems to be an interesting/related issue for the long term picture.
Bert
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Molon Labe. To those who have served or are serving the cause of
freedom whether in peace or in war at home or abroad thank you. Si vis
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