March 18, 2008

Couldn’t Help But Notice (031808)

Filed under: Economy,Environment,Privacy/ID Theft,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 7:38 am

Yesterday’s WSJ, on the difficulties in the financial markets, warns that inflation isn’t dead:

Which brings us to tomorrow’s (now today’s — Ed.) Fed meeting. The markets are expecting another cut of 50-75 points in the benchmark fed funds rate, and if recent history is a guide will immediately price into futures another 50-point cut down the road. The stock market may rally, until it once again decides that easier money can’t remedy what is fundamentally a problem of bank solvency. That problem can only be resolved by financial institutions and regulators coming to grips with the losses, raising more capital to cushion the blow, and closing or selling those banks that can never recover. That will require a more aggressive, and pre-emptive, regulatory role for the Fed — and that we would applaud.

What the U.S. and world economy don’t need is a Fed that continues to insist that inflation expectations are “well-anchored” when everyone else knows they aren’t. The Fed needs to restore its monetary credibility, or today’s panic could become tomorrow’s crash.

It would appear that financial institutions that bought heavily into the excesses of the subprime situation without requisite caution are paying the price for their follies. It is important that this happen.

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As has so often been the case with overseas events, the best coverage of the Tibetan situation is at blogs.

One is the Tibet Will Be Free blog of Students for a Free Tibet. Go there.

Just one coverage example that makes the point: The Economist took the pictures, but the blog explains them.

The indispensable RConversation reports that the Great Firewall of China, whose construction has been assisted by members of the BizzyBlog Internet Wall of Shame, is doing a “good” job of keeing the Chinese people in the dark about events in Tibet.

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A “Jeopardy” answer: The United States.

The question: What country that has achieved a 28% reduction in greenhouse emissions per dollar of real GDP? (quoting from an EPA report excerpted at the Reason link):

In 2006, total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions were 7,201.9 Tg CO2 Eq. Overall, total U.S. emissions have risen by 14.1 percent from 1990 to 2006, while the U.S. gross domestic product has increased by 59 percent over the same period (BEA 2007).

The math: 114.1/159.0 = 71.8%, i.e. a 28.2% reduction per unit.

If the globlarmists (those who erroneously believe that global warming is occurring, that it is primarily man-made, and that radical reductions in living standards are required if the planet is to survive) wanted to have their cake and eat it too, they would leave the US economy the heck alone. More prosperity, less greenhouse gas per unit of prosperity. In fact, they would encourage initiatives like the Asia-Pacific Partnership that promise to help developing nations like China and India achieve similar per-unit reductions. But they won’t.

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4 Comments

  1. Not only did the US use less CO2 per GDP, it also used less CO2 per capita and those two benchmarks are the real indicators of energy usage. The US population grew from 1990 (250,132,000) to 2006 (299,801,000) by 49,000,000 a 19.6% increase. Table 2 of Census Bureau count. Table 3 tells us that by 2020 there will be an additional 35 million if birth rates, death rates, and immigration policy don’t change another 11.6% increase. 2025 that will be 350 million or a 16.6% increase from 2007.
    http://www.census.gov/prod/2007pubs/08statab/pop.pdf

    Now compare that to Europe’s population. That Tom was the lynchpin of the AGW kyoto targets, they made the CO2 targets per country instead of per capita. There was a reason for this. When Kyoto was first adopted, the Europeans knew the Demographic trend was going to help them meet the 2012 targets by the fact they were projecting their populations to stabilize and then drop back to 1990 levels in 2012. Unfortunately for the AGW folks, the other PC group kept importing foreigners (immigration) without regard to the AGW folks goals and so as a result most of the European Union countries will not make their targets due to population increase from immigration.

    Comment by dscott — March 18, 2008 @ 9:08 am

  2. #1, GREAT point. My daily e-mails from CCnet tell me that the EU-PU is going crazy now that reality is biting, and backing wayyyyy off.

    Comment by TBlumer — March 18, 2008 @ 9:34 am

  3. I was thinking that the Fed may be trying to do what Milton Friedman said the fed or whatever it’s equivalent was in the depression failed to do, which is to keep the “Bank of America” afloat. According to what I heard him say, that failure caused the runs on banks which caused the Great Depression.
    I am just a journeyman in this stuff, but it seems to me that is what the fed is trying to do.

    Comment by Timothy A. Jumonville — March 18, 2008 @ 12:25 pm

  4. #3, that appears to be the case:
    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB120588397192346927.html

    Comment by TBlumer — March 19, 2008 @ 9:04 am

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