Sunday, August 19, 2012

Eureka Moment

I was committing on a blog giving it's opinion about the string of kidnapping happening in Lebanon. He says "Just one word on the government, coma?” It then hits me that there is no government and I do not mean that the government exists but it is not working. What I mean is that there is no actual government; there is only an illusion of a government. So the quote asking if the government is in a coma is like asking if the manikin laying on the bed is in a coma. So I replied:

"'Just one word on the government, coma?' I have been reading your blog posts for some time and you do bring very good points. However, this sentence that I quoted in the beginning has made me realize a flaw in the electoral system or voting system which the entire Lebanese society is blinded too. I do not mean to attack you or argue with you but I would like to add a 'thought' that might lead your Lebanese readers to reach a 'eureka moment'.
I am not talking about proportional voting; I am talking about who the people are allowed to elect for different governmental offices. In Lebanon we only elect members of the House. Then the House elects the members of the Senate, and then the Senate elects the President as well as the Prime Minister. As an outsider this seems to me a government that elects itself, and those house members and Senate members seem easily persuaded by foreign delegates. In other words, change who the people can elect into office because the politicians that are in office are not elected by the people they are elected by foreign powers which make sense why foreign governments have a huge influence over Lebanon.
And yes, if one party wins by majority the other party will dispute the results and protest either by burning tires, closing roads, kidnaping, booming warehouse….. Just pick any one of them. But then again if the majority of the country picks one party then I think the army would have the spine to stop any illegal protest since it knows it will be supported by the party that the majority of Lebanese elected.
Case in point:
Divide the country into proportional districts according to sects and let the
People elect House members
People elect Senate members
People elect President and Prime Minister"

My Eureka Moment is when I realized to change or to set this country on the course of greatness is to deal first source of the problem that is there is no actual government

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Change of Direction

It has come to my attention that trying to inspire Lebanese to rise up and join the Arab spring revolution is as impossible as trying to float a concrete slab on water. So in regards to this revelation, we here in Light Lebanon have decided to take a different direction. Rather trying to inspire protest, we have decided to start a charity foundation to fund the installation of solar panels, wind turbines, and hydroelectric turbines in rural villages in Lebanon.

The Light Lebanon Foundation has now 3 main goals to achieve:

  • Decrease the electrical bill by at least 30 percent.
  • Increase the hours of the government’s electricity available to the public.
  • Set the foundation for future construction of Green Energy.

The plan for the Light Lebanon Foundation to achieve these goals is to install solar panels, wind turbines, and hydroelectric turbines in rural villages in Lebanon where electrical consumption is significantly lower than urban and suburban areas in Lebanon. By doing so, rural villages will be off the national grid which will lessen the demand allowing EDL to increase the hours of the government electricity available to the public and/or decrease the electrical bill.
Also in an effort not to politicize the foundation, donations and sponsorships from politicians or people representing a political party will not be accepted.
The Light Lebanon Foundation is no means a solution to Lebanon’s chronic electric crisis, rather a catalyst to any solution that the government has in motion.

As for the general structure and how will funds will be processed is as follow:

For a list of the “Renewable energy” companies in Lebanon click here.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Light Lebanon Solar Intiative

Lebanon is facing a crisis! An electrical crisis!!

A crises that have held Lebanese hostages since the 1990's

Imagine! From the time when chunky phones were the norm; we Lebanese still do not have 24 hours electricity!

Well, who cares about the why, the who, and the how! 
The only thing we care about is:

Hot water!
Air Conditioning!
Working Elevator!!!

The government has a plan but there plan make us oil dependent!
Meaning, we will be completely under control from oil rich countries! More than we are right now!!

What is the solution?
Strikes? NO
Protest? NO
Sit ins? GOD NO

The solution is Light Lebanon Solar Initiative or LLSI!

LLSI will be setting the foundation for Lebanon to be oil independent and help in providing 24 hours electricity.

So the initiative is simple! Install more solar panels on a house with a maximum of 5 stories and the more buildings that uses solar panels will soon add up and become one large electrical plant!

That is thanks to Solar panel technology has become so advance (and still advancing) that they are now piratical enough to install on Lebanese rooftops and be productive!

I am not going to ask you to like our Facebook page, stage a mass rally, or donate to our cause.

But you can show your support for LLSI by hanging a Lebanese flag with a white ribbon from your window.

And together we will pressure the government to include LLSI in their plan for a greener and cleaner Lebanon.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Modern Day Revolution

We soon realize the Lebanese legislative process to any bill is inefficient. It takes two years for the politicians to criticize the creator of the bill. Another two years fighting how to enforce the bill and who should enforce the bill. Then spend two more years to actually implement the bill. Though Lebanese citizen know this situation, has no  choice but look and wait. Some Lebanese protest in the streets but if they are not backed by a political party it is considered barbaric and those protest with political backing are considered by other as “sheep”. So to protest in the streets like in the Arab spring is useless.

It is time to revolutionize the way we revolutionize or conduct a Modern day revolution. People would say that the Egyptian revolution (or the entire Arab spring) was a modern revolution because it used social media to organize and inspire people to protest. As mentioned earlier, protesting in the streets in Lebanon is highly unpopular and useless when it come to Lebanon’s electrical crises. The solution is the people to come together via social media to form a plan to present to the government. Many would be pessimistic that the government would not even see the plan. The truth is that the government is divided and political parties would fight each other to support the plan because the plan was formed by the people that put them in power.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Be a Critic not Critical

According to the Naharnet, MP Foud Saniora has given out a statement calling Aoun’s call for
protest an insult. He also accuses Aoun’s protest purpose is to aid his son in law Bassil as well as accuses him rejecting funds for electricity projects. (click here to read the article)
Many would agree with Saniora’s statement, at the same time, many would disagree. And so begins the cycle of finger pointing on who really stopped the funding for the projects, who really started this electrical crises in the first place and so on so forth. Then after a couple days later when the situation cools down; one of the politicians will accuse the other and the finger pointing start from all over again.
In order to break this vicious and unproductive cycle, politicians should learn not to criticize but become critics. In other words, don’t attack your opponent by calling them “idiots”; attack your opponent by giving a better alternative plan. So a better way for Saniora to reply to Aoun’s call for protest would be saying that Aoun’s protest for the 1.2 billion plan is meaningless and his plan (which Saniora has none) to solve the crises is the right steps forward. 

A good plan for Saniora to consider is the install Run-of-the-river (ROR) turbine. ROR turbines are good alternative to construction of dams. As the Daily Star article (click here to read article) talk about how dams could help Lebanon to increase electrical output as well as solve Lebanon water shortage. At the same time, dam are considered “bad” because they have a negative impact on the environment and tend to go over budget. ROR turbines are cheap to install and have low environmental impact due to the fact they do not require the blocking a river. Also, ROR are could be installed into smaller rivers and streams where dams can not be constructed.
Either way, to construct a dam or to install a ROR turbine there must a extensive data collection or a census about consumption of several racecourses such as electricity and water. This data is needed to better manage any project. As quoted in the article “you cannot manage what you cannot measure”.
ROR turbines are yet another project that is not studied by the government or any high officials in Lebanon. MP Foud Saniora should stop wasting time going around and round the vicious circle of finger pointing but rather supporting the formation of experts to work on ROR turbines and to make a national census. However as Lebanese, we can not way for Saniora or any official to wake up. So the call of the people of Lebanon to voice support to projects, such as mentioned above, and force politicians to go through the project whether they like it or not.

Friday, January 27, 2012

For the Wrong Reasons
This article which came from Naharnet; talks about the reasons why MP Michel Aoun calls for public demonstration. His main reason is his rivals are blocking the 1.2 billion plan (created by his ally Gebran Bassil) to solve the electrical crises.
Whether he is right or wrong to protest, the fact remains that he is protesting against the political system that is trying to conspire against his party but not to implement the 1.2 billion plan to build a new power station. On the other hand, the opposition are at fault to because rather trying to negotiate with the party in power (Aoun's party and others), they refuse any negotiations and hinder any forward steps to go through the 1.2 billion plan. The reaction from the opposition is normal because no opposition party want to make the party in power to look "functional". None the less, there is electrical crisis and both parties must unite to solve the crisis in hand.
This is another example of how two parties are not willing to work together to solve our electrical crises. 
This article is a written interview with Dr. Chamel Macaron by the NOW Lebanon website. Dr. Chamel Macaron is founder of Altaka Albadila, which sells and installs photovoltaic and thermal solar panels and wind turbines. In the interview he suggests a project called “Connecting to the Grid”. This projects simply allows a house that has installed solar panels (or any alternate energy source) and producing excess electricity to be sent to the electric grid system. In return the government pay the household money on the amount of excess of electricity it has produced. The beauty of this idea is that each household is power plant providing electricity to there neighbors who requires much more electricity.
As stated by Dr. Chamel Macaron, there are 2 problems on why this project is not implemented. One being the government takes years to pass a bill and second the grid system is “non reliable”.

Would it be best for Michel Aoun to focus his protest to implement his 1.2 billion plan or at the very least consider the Connecting to the Grid project? Rather protesting on how his counterparts are trying to make his party look bad? Would it be best for the opposition try to come up with another plan to fix Lebanon’s electrical crises? Rather hindering any step to a solution or trying to humiliate the party in power?
These question can only be answered by the officials themselves. And as citizens of Lebanon, we do not have time to wait for there answers. Again, the call for peaceful  and non-biased protest focusing on projects such as Connecting to the Grid project  must be considered

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Enough is Enough

Since the end of the Lebanon civil, the Lebanese had to endure several obstacles in it’s rebuilding. One of the main obstacles are the Lebanese official themselves that hinder the rebuilding process mainly in the electrical sector.

As Lebanese, we spent most of our time blaming different official on who to blame on the failure to provide electricity to the public. The March 14 supporters will say “March 8 supporters are at fault because they do not pay there electrical bill”. Where as the March 8 reply by saying “March 14 do not allow any project to go through because you can not exploit it for financially”. And there is the constant bickering and fighting within each party.

The truth is everyone is at fault because as a people in one country fail to unite. The civil war might be over but Lebanese mindset are still in the civil war era. Of course this does not apply to all Lebanese but mainly to Lebanese officials. But it is those official keep the people divided but creating party flags, party songs, party rallies, and party hand signals. It is the people responsibility to control the politicians not the politicians to control the people.

The Arab Spring has shown what people power can do to oppression whether financially or socially. The Lebanese people should protest but protest with a list of specific demands. The people should demand the implantation of projects that are studied and funded in order to improve the electrical infrastructure.

We as a citizens of Lebanon should not be dormant about this dysfunctional government. We have to empower ourselves and say enough with water shortage, enough to with unsafe streets, enough with unsafe houses, and especially enough with power cuts.