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Also, Germany Proves That Unionized Workforces Can’t Make Quality Cars

[ 71 ] February 8, 2013 |

Fox & Friends, the dumbest show in the history of television, asserts that the United States can’t have solar power because it doesn’t get the consistent sunshine of…Germany.

You will not be surprised to know that this turns out to be as false as it sounds.

  • MAJeff

    But Miss America can’t be wrong!

  • Jameson Quinn

    Maybe they’re trying to jump back over the shark?

    • Leeds man

      The shark left in embarrassment years ago.

      • hylen

        Best laugh I’ve had today.

  • Gerald

    Yes, I often get Germany and Nigeria confused too. Also, USA and Uruguay.

    • DrDick

      The latter mistake is a bit more understandable, given that they are both banana republics ruled by reactionary oligarchs.

      • catclub

        Not true. Uruguay has a fairly leftist president.

        Also, inequality in Uruguay is far lower than in Brazil
        (faint praise, but still).

        • DrDick

          My bad, I was confusing them with Paraguay.

  • Mudge

    I had to smile. Sunny climes are usually, in the right wing world, the home of indolent siesta takers (see Italy, Spain and Mexico). But now we have the industrious Germans living in a solar paradise. Ahh.. the stupid.

    In honor of Germany..

    • wjts

      It works just fine if you pick a slightly different stereotype: they’re not industrious Germans – they’re rapacious Teutons. That dastardly Kaiser Bill has stolen America’s sunlight!

    • muddy

      My mother used to say that the Germans were a very efficient people. That’s probably why they can get more out of the sun, efficiency standards.

  • Mudge

  • Wait a second. The whole argument was, “They’re a smaller country, and they’ve got lots of sun. Right? They’ve got a lot more sun than we do.”

    That’s right. Smaller countries get more sun. Just think about it. Countries like Belize, Rwanda, Singapore, all those Pacific island countries, they’re small countries and get tons of sun. Whereas countries like Canada and Russia are big countries and get hardly any sun at all. We might be onto something here!

    • Logically, if we let Texas split into five states as the joint resolution and ordinance of annexation provided for, and then let all those states secede, all those mini-Texases will be leaders in solar power in no time.

      • expatchad

        All thersmog from OK and AR…

    • Warren Terra

      Smaller countries get more sun

      This is especially true because of the Mercator Projection, which proves that equatorial countries are smaller than polar countries. Indeed, they’re smaller than polar countries with the same land area!

  • Davis X. Machina

    I have the explanation. The map has Germany blue, getting less sunlight than us, nly because they use square meters, and we use square feet, which are roughly 9x smaller. The light is more spread out in Germany, is all.

    They’d be as yellow and orange as Arizona and Nevada if you used the same units.

    • Warren Terra

      They also probably use Joules instead of Kilowatt Hours. The comparison is impossible!

    • Jameson Quinn

      Roughly 10x smaller. Easier and more accurate.

  • Randy Paul

    As someone who actually lived in Germany for three years, I’m amazed – although perhaps I shouldn’t be- how idiotic the Faux News people are. Granted, in summer it was terrific: the sun would be out until 11 p.m. and rise at 4 a.m. but much of the year was spent craving sunshine.

    • Green Caboose

      I had the same thought (I was there for 4 years a few decades ago). In addition, Germany isn’t exactly overflowing with unused barren dry land just begging for a few hundred square miles of solar cells – probably 0% of Germany fits that description. Whereas maybe 40% of the US does.

      • Randy Paul

        I was back there in May and didn’t see solar implemented on land, but saw a lot of it on roofs in every city I viaited or passed through by train. Windmills of the large commercial type also prevalent, especially on farms. In Trier, I saw a small windmill about 12 feet high with an egg beater design. Something like that could easily fit in someone’s back yard.

  • Wapiti

    @Randy Paul; as someone else who lived in Germany for three years, I’d agree. I’d also say that as a Seattlite, the German climate never made me homesick, because the climate and light levels were pretty much the same as the Pacific NW.

    • (the other) Davis

      …the German climate never made me homesick, because the climate and light levels were pretty much the same as the Pacific NW.

      So basically, you were too depressed to give a damn about home?

      (Also a former Seattlite here.)

      • expatchad

        And wet. Wet.


  • cpinva

    i didn’t need a map, to immediately know that was wrong. the amount of direct sunlight (the best kind, for solar) an area gets is strictly dependant on latitude: the higher the latitude, the less direct sunlight you’re going to get, period. off the top of my head, the only two european states i could think of, that would probably get the same amount as most of the continental US, would be spain and southern italy.

    that said, even angled sunlight still gives you the ability to produce solar energy, although, with probably higher average winds, that might be the more cost efficient way to go, as a country.

    i assume the people on that show are at least of average intelligence: able to dress themselves; find their way to and from work, without a guide-dog, use the bathroom, etc. it must pay awfully well, to act like a total fool, on camera, every day. i’m guessing, by this point, most of them have an alcohol or other drug problem, as they attempt to self-medicate away the agony, as they watch their lives completely wasted. i bet they’re just really fun dates to live with too.

    • UserGoogol

      It’s not that simple because of climatic factors influencing clouds and stuff (the Wonkblog map shows that the Southwest gets far more sunlight than the Southeast) but latitude is obviously a rather big part of the equation.

    • efgoldman

      i assume the people on that show are at least of average intelligence…

      Assumes facts not in evidence.

      • cpinva

        i was being overly kind.

        “Assumes facts not in evidence.”

    • JKTHs

      i assume the people on that show are at least of average intelligence: able to dress themselves; find their way to and from work, without a guide-dog, use the bathroom, etc.

      That sounds like more like the 10th percentile of intelligence rather than the average.

      • cpinva

        ok, ok, but i stand on my assertion

        “That sounds like more like the 10th percentile of intelligence rather than the average.”

        that they’re all secret (or not so) alcoholics, or other drugs of choice, to dull the pain of knowing, in spite of their money, they’ll be forever laughed at. or something.

  • Trollhattan

    Wait, didn’t the Soviets get bogged down in the Great German Desert in 1944-5? What about that, huh?


    • JustRuss

      And whom amongst us can forget the famous Battle of the Bulge, when American airpower was grounded due to blizzards sandstorms?

      Exhibit #2,957 making stuff up is SOP at Fox “News”.

      • Bill Murray

        I thought the planes were grounded because the light was too bright to see anything else

    • Stan Gable

      You know who else loved sunlight

      • Green Caboose


      • FLRealist


    • Sev

      Indeed. And Stalin nodded knowingly at Yalta, the sunshine putting an odd glint in his eye as FDR hinted of a newly discovered source of unusual power, the secret eventually finding its way via the Stasi to the desk of Erich Honnecker. The rest, as they say, is history.

  • UserGoogol

    To be fair, I find it persistently non-intuitive how north Europe is. Boston has about the same latitude as Rome, but psychologically Boston feels like it should be further north. And the northern tip of Scotland is alongside Juneau, Alaska.

    Which isn’t to say the comment on Fox and Friends makes much sense. Germany might not seem as far north as it is, but it’s obviously not exactly Arizona.

    • owlbear1

      I blame Mercator.

      • Leeds man

        That’s just projection bias.

        • The Dark Avenger

          There’s a reason Europe is warmer than America at similar latitutdes:

          Aptly named, the North Atlantic Drift Current (NADC) is a slow-moving body of water located between about 50°-64°N and 10°-30°W. NADC is also considered to be an extension of the North Atlantic Current. It is recognized as a shallow, widespread and variable wind-driven surface movement of warm water that covers a large part of the eastern subpolar North Atlantic and slowly spills into the Nordic Seas. It is also sometimes included as the Subarctic or Subpolar Front as it is thought of as the boundary between the cold, subpolar region and the warm, subtropical gyre of the Northeastern Atlantic. Generally, the NADC originates from the Gulf Stream-North Atlantic Current system and from the northern Sargasso Sea. These waters then slowly flow northward into the Labrador and European basins (Veron,, 1999), eventually becoming the NADC as it enters the Iceland Basin. The current is unique in that it transports warm waters to latitudes higher than in any other ocean, thereby producing the moderate climate of Europe and western Scandinavia. Because of the rapid advection of the North Atlantic gyre, the temperature of the surface waters of the NADC almost always exceeds that of both surrounding waters and the overlying atmosphere (Rossby, 1996). Water temperatures in March are at around 8degC in the NADC while ranging from 2°C to 6°C in surrounding waters (Rossby, et. al., 1998).

          • Randy Paul

            Which is precisely why I always thought the idea that Scandinavians emigrated to Minnesota because the climate was similar was so ridiculous.

            • Dave

              The climate in Norway is only ‘moderate’ compared to other places that are that far north. They didn’t invent skiing for nothing.

            • hickes01

              They came for the awesome Mountain Skiing!

        • expatchad


    • Thlayli

      Similarly, North Americans don’t intuitively grasp how far South America is offset to the east. The westernmost major city in South America, Guayaquil, is roughly the same longitude as Pittsburgh and Toronto.

      • Sev

        Heh. I was just explaining to my wife that the tennis tournament in Vina del Mar was in the same time zone as us in NY. And what direction are you going if you fly from Mexico City to Caracas?

        • The Dark Avenger

          African or English swallow?

          • hickes01


  • Jim Lynch

    You can’t fool all the people, all the time, and FOX has hit that wall of walls. What happens to it next will be interesting.

    After all, Rupert is no spring chicken. That alone spells change.

    • MAJeff

      But there are mini-Murdochs who have learned at the feet of their sociopathic paterfamilias. Witness James Murdoch and the phone hacking scandal. The spawn have internalized the pursuit of profit through right-wing pandering, a minor scandal notwithstanding.

      • efgoldman

        But there are mini-Murdochs who have learned at the feet of their sociopathic paterfamilias.

        I think the Murdochs might be like crime families: Each generation has less skill, smarts, and adaptability than the previous one.
        You don’t think old Rupert would leave a recognizable trail in a criminal enterprise, do you?

        • Pseudonym

          So you’re saying James is more of a Fredo than a Michael?

        • NonyNony

          I think the Murdochs might be like crime families: Each generation has less skill, smarts, and adaptability than the previous one.

          That also holds for “legit” families with money and power. Look at how the Bush family has progressed. Or the Hiltons. Or pretty much any family whose fortune was founded by a smart hustler.

        • swearyanthony

          Correct. Read up on One.Tel

          Lachlan Murdoch and James Packer each dropped several hundred million of their family money into that turkey. (The book “other peoples money”) is a fantastic writeup of the whole saga. Jodee Rich, who led the whole thing, is now doing some Klout-like social media thing.

  • Warren Terra

    I don’t know why we’re hearing so much about solar power in Germany. It’s obvious that the true mother lode of solar power is going to be England, because The Sun Never Sets On The British Empire.

    Also, Versailles.

    • efgoldman

      Now go watch a hockey game.

      • Rhino

        Boycotting all NHL hockey this year.

    • Randy Paul

      Not to mention Bobby Hebb.

    • herr doktor bimler

      The Sun Never Sets On The British Empire.

      No-one trusted the English in the dark.

  • Lige

    Green roofs were developed in Germany and when they were first trying to build them in Portland, OR they ended up having to find different plants to use as Portland had so much more sun the German plants would end up dying.

  • Benjamin
    • efgoldman

      That is too good to be true. But I really want it to be.

  • Another example of stupid &/or evil people talking to other Stupid &/or evil people. It almost goes without saying that their assertions are not true in the connected with reality sense of the word true. But in the confirming the narrative to which they desperately cling sense of the word, it’s totally true.

  • Jon C

    So when Meghyn Kelly led a camera crew down to the back room polling coverage team on Election Night to cut short Karl Rove’s nonsense — that wasn’t a desperate cry for a regular feature?

    Because they could keep someone pretty busy doing just that all day. And I’d probably be riveted.

  • Mike F.

    “A lot of people are talking on Wall Street and the business industry . . . ‘

    WTF is “the business industry”?
    Oh Wait “Right?”, that’s the thing she gets paid to report on, “Right?”

  • Davis

    I’m jealous. How does one get a job as a Fox Business News analyst? Aside from being attractive, that is.

  • LeeEsq

    I know that Fox News is supposed to be a conservative propaganda outfit but can they please try not to sound dumb. Its embarrassing.