Before I go to blasting the compact fluorescent bulbs, let me share my own little experiment.
A year or two ago, I observed that the price of the cheapest CFL bulbs were getting to around 4-5 times the price of the ancient incandescent bulbs. Based on the estimated savings in energy, and the predicted lifespan of the bulbs, I saw them as being on par with the incandescent bulbs in operational costs. In addition, the reported light quality had caught up with the cheap-ass bulbs I buy.
So I started buying then. I can report that, other than a little time to warm up to full brightness, they held their own. So far, so good. In addition, they didn’t produce all the heat of the old bulbs. Double bonus.
Of course, the down side is that they started dying out. And they don’t fit in some of my fixtures. And the warnings of what you have to do when you break them? Well, I ignored the shit out of that, since it was my kids breaking them when I wasn’t in the room. And then there’s the most expensive ones, the nice ones in my dining room fixture, which suck at powering up (25% light to start, 2 minutes to warm up). These are some damn good reasons we shouldn’t be dependent on these bulbs.
Not to mention that the old incandescent bulb is the motherfucking power source for the motherfucking Easy Bake Oven. And my daughter wants one.
And the best of the best, the LED light, is not really ready yet, as from what I heard its light sucks ass. And it’s hella-expensive.
So my choice now is a combo of the CFLs where I can leave them burn for a while and need the efficiency and incandescents where I need some quick light. However, the nanny state has decided that we don’t get to decide that for ourselves.
In an attempt to see the “wisdom” of paying more for light bulbs that we can only get at a reasonable price if we get them from China (we could manufacture incandescents here at competitive prices), the government has slapped on the de facto ban. And of course, it’s up to Congress to fix it. Not that it’s likely to happen, since the CFL is a piece of the Manmade Global Warming Hysteria campaign to gimp the USA. As are all the other idiotic damned ideas that rely on shaky science that isn’t damned settled.
Especially since it weakens us, which weakens any possibility we can make the world a better damned place.
For more on this, rock some Reason.com.