Embracing the Modern

This wind powered cargo ship is set to change the way we ship the goods across oceans. Imagine, using wind power to propel ships. The builder is anticipating a launch in 2024.


The Fate of the General Harrison

In 1849, news that gold had been discovered in California swept through the United States. Tens of thousands of people left homes and families to chase the dream of quick riches. For most of the world, the ocean was the only way to reach California. Which meant that a lot of ships were needed.

General Harrison

In 2001, one of these ships the General Harrison, an 1840 vessel built in Newburyport, Massachusetts, was discovered underground near downtown San Francisco. She was a full rigged, three-masted ship and she was 126 feet (38,4m) long, and 26.7 (8,4m) feet wide. Inside her 13,5 feet (4,11m) deep hold, the ship could carry up to 409 tons of cargo.


Sailing from Boston on August 3, 1849, the ship rounded Cape Horn in a seven-month voyage that ended on February 3, 1850 in San Francisco Bay. With her passengers off to the gold fields, and her cargo sold, the General Harrison would have been ready for another voyage. But the lure of gold was too much for her crew. They deserted and headed for the mines. The General Harrison, along with hundreds of other ships, lay idle on the San Francisco waterfront. After a bad fire in May 1850,  the General Harrison served as a storeship, or floating warehouse. After another bad fire in 1851, which destroyed most of the city, she burned and was buried under the new build city.


How to be Woke (meme-of-the-day)



Where does the gas consumed in Europe come from?

  • Russia – 39.7%
  • Norway – 34.1%
  • Algeria – 15.2%
  • Qatar – 5.1%
  • Nigeria – 2.1%
  • Libya – 1.4%


The OTHER Canal (plan)

The placement of the existing Suez Canal and an approximation of plans for a canal through Israel that the US considered in 1963.

The Israel canal would have excavated more than 160 miles through Israel’s Negev desert with the use of 520 nuclear bombs. The plan was never realized.


  1. Wow – using wind to move ships on the ocean….whatever will they come up with next?
    Maybe round things that will make it easier to move sleds around on the ground?

      • It’s a remarkably woke concept — using wind power to move ships. I see a Nobel Prize for progressiveness coming.

        • Nice image, sailing way too close to the wind. Phil Bolger drew some plans for sailing freighters, he felt the only economic potential was for cargo that increased in value with time, like live plants. I suppose you could make a case for bulk cargo and automated ships. I think the idea of auxiliary sail is intriguing, maybe kites.

    • LOTS of choke points. There would have been another canal linking Pacific to Atlantic through Nicaragua if it hadn’t been “Nicaragua”, with constant flirtation with Russia, China and other communist states. Running a canal through there makes perfect, redundant sense.

  2. The bit about the General Harrison reminded me of the Arabia, a sidewheeler that sank in the Missouri River in 1856. 130 years later the wreckage was found buried in a field the riverbed having shifted. Much of the cargo was found intact and is now on display in a Museum in Kansas City.

    • I heard about it being in KC, but never saw it. The only times that I’ve been in KC over the last decade were on business. You never have time to enjoy the culture when you’re rushing to and from an airport. More’s my loss.

      • It’s well worth a visit as is the WWI museum, at least it will be once the coronaphobia dies down. While there’s no statewide mandate in Missouri, KC is run by the donkeys and a face diaper is required.

  3. Genius!…wind to move ships? Who knew? Next they’ll be saying there’s a new breakthrough treatment for Covid and undoing lockdown depression…getting outside in the sun. (I can already hear the applause for The Fowchmeister).

    After that last debacle, thinking they need to widen The Suez Canal…c’mon, it’s just sand, how hard could it be. Set some kids out there with plastic shovels and buckets, tell them there’s free ice cream, and it’d be done in a week.

    • You could float that cure for COVID-19. After all, we cured the common cold and flu this year by declaring it all COVID-19. Sunshine, exercise, BBQ’s with friends, fishing, etc. cure the plague…just like they tended to eliminate the flu in the summer– back when we had flu, of course.

      • Blasphemer!…promoting “normal” stuff like that…it’ll be more time in the re-education camp bunk for you…and nowhere near the stove as punishment. But true…nuthin but Covid. Sorta like big corp. CEO’s saying Georgia’s new voting law suppresses the black vote (oh geez, sorry…smack, smack, smack…B-lack) because they can’t get an ID. Must be true because The Hologram mumbled the same lie the other day.

        You watch, today AOC will come out in support of wind powered ships as new and environmentally superior…she already “floated” solar aircraft. But that daft-ness could work in our favor, ie. natural selection, anyone thinking a solar plane is a good idea belongs in one.

        • I’d pay good money to see AOC test-piloting a solar power aircraft drop launched from a B-52 flying at 45,000 ft. Sure, some of us would call it a bomb, but AOC could put her money where her rather large mouth is.

          • I’m thinking there’d be a PPV sellout for that one. Gotta hand it to her tho, she’s one helluva actress for the Prog. Dem. subversives…she’s even better at parroting the earpiece live feed than The Hologram.

      • As you know, I like maps. I have done a lot of research on mining in the Old West, and collected paper maps. One of the best sources was the library at the Mackay School, Univ. of Nevada, Reno. One thing I used them for was to locate turquoise because you only find it where there is copper near the surface. I looked for old copper mines, abandoned. Sure, the turquoise was harvested 100+ years ago, but it appears again, leached into rocks over time with the action of rain and you find it. Sometimes quality, sometimes not, but that was the secret to my success.

  4. I remember many years ago pondering over “if the Panama and Suez canals are so important, why aren’t there backup canals?” and figured there must be something I just don’t understand. Stopped devoting a stray neuron to it. That map with the Israel canal makes sense.

    Still, I can’t imagine it has to be made with nuclear bombs and no other technology would work, plus if any group of engineers could make it happen, the Israelis could. It must be the raw cost incentives. If there’s no way to make enough to justify making the canal, it won’t get made.

    You don’t need the backup canal until you do, and then what’s it worth?

  5. Atomic Civil Engineering was a fascinating, if short-lived field. It isn’t nearly as crazy as it sounds, and some good things could have been done with it. Public emotion put an end to the idea for the foreseeable future, though. I know the Russians messed around with it too.


    • Clean(er) thermonuclear dirt movers vaporize a lot of dirt, but they also throw a lot into the atmosphere. Bill Gates would like that.

      • For a canal type application, what you do is you set it up so the bombs are dropped down drilled shafts, like in an underground test. It blasts out a subterranean sphere, the overburden collapses, and you only get low-atmosphere dust like you would with normal earthmovers. You set up a chain of these along the route, groom them with normal machines, then cut the ends in the ordinary way to flood it.

        You only need little bombs, too.

        In any case, never gonna happen.

  6. About every 10 years some complete idiot with a lot of money, degrees or both tries to re-envision the modern sailing ship.

    Um. No. Nope. Never happen. Maybe only if fossil fuels are banned worldwide, maybe.

    Sail is too variable, just like windmills. Sailing ships can’t run against the wind, so if bad things are happening, they are toast.

    Geez, even Jacques Costeau tried one, and found it sucked big time.

    Dumbasses. What next, horse-drawn wagons on the interstate?

    Better would be nuclear power, or, fudge-it, just stay with fuel oil, stuff works, works remarkably well, and can be kept running by turd-world ‘engineers.’

    As to the Suez, well, the closures during and after various Arab-Israeli wars screwed up world ocean traffic for a long time. So it wouldn’t surprise me if more than one proposed new canal was proposed.

    Even if you just dig another next to the current one, then you’ll have an easy north-bound and south-bound lane traffic and help alleviate the choke point.

    Unless, of course, you’re a conspiracy nutter and believe the ChiComs were behind the ship running aground the way it did as an attempt to shift more cargo to their ‘One Road’ initiative.

    Still say some of the existing cargo ships could have easily been used to yank that bigsumbeach off the rocks, but what do I know? I’m just an educated white male heterosexual, so listening to me is bad-think.

    • They’re all set up with normal auxiliary power/propulsion. Think of them like hybrid cars, only slightly less silly. When you have wind, you can save some fuel. When you don;t, business as usual.


  7. “Progress” = Forward that works || “Progressive” = Backwards that fails miserably, but with a syrupy false narrative to hide the idiocy.

    You are spot on…the Left thinks the era of horse and buggy, while still active in certain Amish/Mennonite enclaves, and as one who owns horses, is full-blown dragging us in reverse, stripping the gears and trashing the connecting driveshaft. They fail to know it comes with the wonderful task of cleaning up after them with a level of odiousness – especially in August – the modern Lefty would whine “Oh, it smells!”.

    Anything good that works they hate and discredit. Can’t fix wacko. So I just do the cowboy knowing smile and ignore them.

      • Yep. People forget that the introduction of the automobile was hailed as a betterment of the public health, as even small towns were overwhelmed by the waste products of real horsepower. And many many outbreaks of various diseases were linked to the filthy streets that were full of horse apples and horse urine.

        Give me a smelly old car any day!

  8. Nuclear excavation, gotta love it the political incorrectness of something like that. The US experimented with a few during the Project Plowshare series of about thirtyish atomic tests. Might be a good idea on the Moon or Mars. But then again maybe not, I am also a fan of Project Orion for spacecraft. I likes me some nukes. Worked on them for 28 years in the AF.

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