You gotta love Glenn Beck. This guy knows how to bring the crazy. On last night’s show he had a segment on hydrogen-powered cars. You can find a transcript here, about 2/3rds in (you’ll probably want to avoid the first section featuring Ben Stein unless you have vomit buckets handy). So Glenn checks out the car and we come to…
BECK: Yeah, it’s a great car. However, I saw the filling station, and there is giant power grid, you know, sitting there. You’re using all this electricity. How are you going to — how are you not just using electricity, and how are you not going to have environmentalists saying, oh, the spotted clam! You’re using all of the water!
Right. Would anyone short of a complete idiot complain that hydrogen production would cause a water shortage? Of course not. Especially since after you burn it, you get (wait for it) water. But in Beckworld, this sort of thing is not only possible, it’s the way things are. It gets better:
STANEK: You know, there’s a number of things we’re doing. We’re certainly looking into green hydrogen. It could come from biomass sources, the hydrogen. There’s a lot of good starts with natural gas. As you know, natural gas is a lot cleaner, much less particulates than some sources in order to get hydrogen.
You can get hydrogen from a number of sources, even different types of ammonia processes, which are byproducts from production in various facilities, even steel mills.
BECK: But you have — I mean, for instance, ammonia. The guy who started Greenpeace left because Greenpeace said we should banish ammonia, drive to have it banned. It’s on the periodic table! (sic)
OK, let’s ignore whether or not “green” hydrogen production is currently viable and the whole bit about the Greenpeace founder as that could go for quite a bit. Those are too deep for Beckworld. Keeping it simple, we see that in Beckworld, apparently they have a different Periodic Table, one in which ammonia (NH3) is listed. I can only assume that the Beckworld Periodic Table also includes methane, carbon dioxide, coffee grounds, and those little crusty bits that sometimes form in the corner of your eye overnight.
So Beck’s not a chemist. Fine, I’ll give you that. But even if ammonia was on the Periodic Table, what’s the point of his comment? More raving at “crazy environmentalists”? The one’s who will complain that we’ll run out of water if we make hydrogen?
I can only imagine that Mr. Beck is also frequented by visions of giant invisible bats attacking him at night. After all, this is the man who stated to Ben Stein “You are like the smartest guy I know”.