• Tag Archives Climate Change
  • Really Bad Ideas, Part 4: Federal Flood Insurance

    As Hurricanes Harvey and Irma wreaked their havoc over the past couple of weeks, several interconnected questions popped up, the answers to which make us look, to put it bluntly, like idiots.
    Why, for instance, are there suddenly so many Cat 4 and 5 hurricanes? Is this due to man-made climate change and is this summer therefore our new normal? The answer: Maybe, but that misses the point. There have always been huge storms (like the one that wiped Galveston, TX off the map in 1900, long before global warming was a thing), and barring another ice age there always will be. So the US east coast will remain one of Mother Nature’s favorite targets.
    A second (and vastly more pertinent) question is why we’ve been encouraging millions of people to move into this bulls-eye in recent decades. Since 2000, Houston and surrounding Harris County have added 1.2 million people. Since 1980 Florida has added 10 million people – most of them in the coastal corridor from Miami to Fort Lauderdale.
    Seems a little unwise, doesn’t it, to put tens of millions of people and millions of houses and cars where they’re guaranteed to be damaged or destroyed by inevitable future storms. But it’s not an accident. Government programs actively encourage this migration by picking up part or all of the tab for homes that are flooded by storms. The result: A massive and growing liability for future damage on top of all the other massive and growing liabilities for Medicare, Social Security, underfunded state and local pensions, etc. From last week’s Wall Street Journal:
    One House, 22 Floods: Repeated Claims Drain Federal Insurance Program
    Brian Harmon had just finished spending over $300,000 to fix his home in Kingwood, Texas, when Hurricane Harvey sent floodwaters ‘completely over the roof.’

    This post was published at DollarCollapse on SEPTEMBER 19, 2017.


  • FPL, Diversity, Distribution and Storms

    What do you get when you reduce diversity of generation of electricity, take offline nuclear plants, demand that nobody use coal any more, and otherwise restrict where power comes from so you have fewer and less-diverse sources of energy?
    You get crap when a hurricane shows up, that’s what.
    Many of those powerless residents are now asking hard questions of the area’s power monopoly, which has spent millions of dollars fighting policies that would have strengthened the grid in the event of a major storm like Irma and, more broadly, stemmed the carbon-fueled climate change likely fueling monster storms.
    “I am one of the many that has now been without power for more than two days as a result of Hurricane Irma,” Elise McKenna, a West Palm Beach resident, told New Times via email. “My confusion came when so many of us lost power during the early hours of the storm that basically avoided us. We’ve been told time and time again that rate increases were to help prepare us for future storms.”

    This post was published at Market-Ticker on 2017-09-19.


  • Mint Partners: “What’s Going On Is That Strong Hands Are Selling To Weak Hands”

    Instead of the daily Bill Blain commentary (who today is caught in a deeply introspective debate whether or not climate change is or is not man-made) here are some observations from his Mint Partners stock-picking colleague, Steve Pervis, on where we are, and where the market may be going next.
    MARKET-TECHNICAL PICTURE
    Friday was another one of those days when the market basically went nowhere. Therefore, as we have stated time and time again, when the market doesn’t move, the technical picture doesn’t change.
    The conventional technical indicators remain mixed with fresh buy signals on the daily time frame and sell signals on the weekly time frame. Meanwhile, sentiment indicators remain as optimistic as ever.
    While speaking about sentiment, we have received some push-back from readers who have questioned our comments about just how optimistic sentiment is. We can assure you, without a doubt, that it is very optimistic. But don’t just take our word for it.
    We suggest you click on the following link that will take you to the Gallup web site. As you will see, investor optimism is at a 17 year high. In fact, at 68%, optimism about the stock market is tied for the highest percentage on record! Just take a thorough read and let us know what you think.

    This post was published at Zero Hedge on Sep 11, 2017.


  • Blankfein Trolls Trump, Compares Him To A Solar Eclipse

    Today's decision is a setback for the environment and for the U. S.'s leadership position in the world. #ParisAgreement
    — Lloyd Blankfein (@lloydblankfein) June 1, 2017

    Back on June 1, in his first ever tweet (after being a silent member of Twitter since 2011), Goldman CEO Lloyd Blankfein slammed Trump’s decision to pull the United States out of the Paris climate change agreement, which he called ‘a setback for the environment and for the U. S.’s leadership position in the world.’

    This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 21, 2017.


  • ‘Inconvenient’ Fact: Morgan Stanley Says Electric Cars Create More CO2 Than They Save

    For all the funds out there looking to fill their portfolio with “environmentally conscious” companies working diligently to avert an inevitable global warming catastrophe that will result in the extinction of the human race, we guess in lieu of their actual fiduciary duties to simply make money for their investors, Morgan Stanley has compiled a list of how you can get the most ‘environmental healing’ per dollar invested.
    As MarketWatch points out, it’s not terribly surprising that of the 39 publicly-traded stocks analyzed, the solar and wind generation companies landed at the very top of Morgan Stanley’s environmentally friendly the list.
    Morgan Stanley identified 39 stocks that generate at least half their revenue ‘from the provision of solutions to climate change,’ something it said was a central component of investing to make a difference, as opposed to just a making a buck. ‘In our view, impact investing needs to begin with companies whose products and services have a notable positive environmental or social impact,’ wrote Jessica Alsford, an equity strategist at the investment bank.
    Not surprisingly, alternative-energy companies ranked the highest in terms of their positive impact, and the ‘top five climate-change impact stocks’ were all manufacturers of solar and wind energy: Canadian Solar, China High Speed Transmission, GCL-Poly, Daqo New Energy, and Jinko Solar.

    This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 18, 2017.


  • Economic Alert, It Has Begun, The Collapse Is Spreading State By State – Episode 1321a

    The following video was published by X22Report on Jul 2, 2017
    Retail is now dependent on government food stamp money. The economic system is breaking down and each state is now feeling the effects. Illinois, Connecticut, Maine, NJ and many other states are started to feel the economic collapse. With the states failing we are now on the precipices of a failing pension system, this failing pension system will hit hard as the economic system fails. GDP estimates are now converging with each other. The corporate media is now pushing the idea that the next recession will be caused by climate change.


  • U.S. Economy at Risk from Trump’s Poll Numbers

    A new poll is out from the Associated Press/NORC Center for Public Affairs Research at the University of Chicago. It doesn’t bode well for Donald Trump’s presidency nor for the U. S. economy. Despite Wall Street’s century-old propaganda campaign to convince Washington that it controls the levers to economic growth in the U. S., and thus must be placated on its every desire, informed citizens understand that economic power rests in the hands of the consumer in a nation where two-thirds of GDP is consumer spending.
    Likewise, consumer confidence in the President of the United States impacts one’s willingness to open the purse strings and buy. The thinking is: if the country is headed in the wrong direction, how safe is my job? Perhaps I should stop spending and put money away for a rainy day.
    The new poll shows that 64 percent of Americans disapprove of the job Trump is doing. Particularly troubling for a democracy, 65 percent say he doesn’t respect the country’s institutions and traditions. On specific issues, 66 percent disapprove of his handling of health care; 64 percent disapprove of his handling of climate change; 63 percent disapprove of his handling of foreign policy; 60 percent disapprove of his handling of immigration and 55 percent disapprove of how he’s handling the economy.

    This post was published at Wall Street On Parade on June 15, 2017.


  • Dis-United States – Billionaire Bloomberg Builds Coalition Of States To Combat Climate Change

    Billionaire, and former New York City Mayor, Michael Bloomberg would like for you to know that, despite Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Paris Climate agreement, he’s absolutely intent upon imposing the environmental ‘tax’ contemplated in the agreement on you anyway. As such, he’s developing a coalition of U. S. states, cities and business leaders to defy the President’s decision and comply with the terms of the original deal.
    Billionaire philanthropist and businessman Michael Bloomberg is defying President Trump’s decision to exit the Paris climate change agreement, saying he is rallying a bipartisan coalition of states, cities and business leaders to meet the climate pact’s targets even as the president rescinds the nation’s commitment to it. “Americans are not walking away from the Paris Climate Agreement,” Bloomberg said on Thursday. “Just the opposite – we are forging ahead. Mayors, governors, and business leaders from both political parties are signing on to to a statement of support that we will submit to the U. N. – and together, we will reach the emission reduction goals the United States made in Paris in 2015.”

    This post was published at Zero Hedge on Jun 2, 2017.


  • IMF Drops Pledge To “Resist All Forms Of Protectionism”

    One month after a startling reversion by the G-20 finance ministers and central bankers, who during their latest meeting in Baden-Baden dropped a decade-long tradition of rejecting protectionism and endorsing free trade, pressured by Trump’s delegate Steven Mnuchin, the IMF has done the same, and according to a communique from the IMF’s steering committee released on Saturday in Washington echoed the G-20 reversal, and said that officials ‘are working to strengthen the contribution of trade to our economies” while omitting a call from its last statement in October to ‘resist all forms of protectionism.”
    The International Monetary and Financial Committee – which is the IMF’s top advisory panel, composed of 24 ministers and central bankers from nations including the U. S., China, Germany, Japan and France – released the statement during the spring meetings of the IMF and World Bank. Since joint statements at gatherings such as the G-20 and the IMF require assent from members, the change in the U. S. position on trade from the Obama administration is forcng modifications in language that was previously uncontroversial.
    While the trade language was drastically changed, some positions remained the same: the IMFC statement reiterated pledges from October to ‘refrain from competitive devaluations’ of currencies and to avoid targeting ‘our exchange rates for competitive purposes.’
    There were other changes: in addition to the trade stance, the latest communique omits language from October that welcomed ‘the entry into force of the Paris Agreement on climate change.’ Trump is contemplating whether to make good on his campaign promise to withdraw from the deal, as Bloomberg notes.

    The shift in the trade “plege” was due to the Trump administration’s persistent threats to raise tariffs if US trading partners don’t agree to renegotiate trade agreements and create fairer conditions for U. S. goods; in the past week Trump fired the first shot in what may be upcoming trade wars when he signed an executive order looking into curbing steel imports under the guise of “national security” concerns.

    This post was published at Zero Hedge on Apr 22, 2017.


  • Did The EPA Just Go Rogue Again

    This morning @EPA sent out a press release highlighting reaction to Trump's climate Executive Order…this first quote seems off message: pic.twitter.com/Na2EWCrBzj
    — Patrick Ambrosio (@Pat_Ambrosio) March 30, 2017

    In late January, days after Donald Trump became president, various government workers employed by the EPA “defied” the president with what at the time appeared to be rogue twitter accounts emerging from the environemntal agency, most notably the Badlands National Park which slammed Trump’s climate change proposal.
    ‘Today, the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is higher than at any time in the last 650,000 years. #climate’ ‘Flipside of the atmosphere; ocean acidity has increased 30% since the Industrial Revolution. ‘Ocean Acidification” #climate #carboncycle” “Burning one gallon of gasoline puts nearly 20lbs of carbon dioxide into our atmosphere. #climate” It now appears that a new “rogue” employee may have emerged at the EPA’s pres office.
    This morning, in a press release summarizing “What They Are Saying About President Trump’s Executive Order On Energy Independence”, as the first quote picked by an unknown staffer at the agency, the EPA decided to showcase the thoughts of Dem. Senator Shelly Moore Capito whose quote was not exactly on message, as Bloomberg’s Patrick Ambrosio pointed out.
    This is what she said:

    This post was published at Zero Hedge on Mar 30, 2017.


  • How corporate dark money is taking power on both sides of the Atlantic

    It took corporate America a while to warm to Donald Trump. Some of his positions, especially on trade, horrified business leaders. Many of them favoured Ted Cruz or Scott Walker. But once Trump had secured the nomination, the big money began to recognise an unprecedented opportunity.
    Trump was prepared not only to promote the cause of corporations in government, but to turn government into a kind of corporation, staffed and run by executives and lobbyists. His incoherence was not a liability, but an opening: his agenda could be shaped. And the dark money network already developed by some American corporations was perfectly positioned to shape it. Dark money is the term used in the US for the funding of organisations involved in political advocacy that are not obliged to disclose where the money comes from. Few people would see a tobacco company as a credible source on public health, or a coal company as a neutral commentator on climate change. In order to advance their political interests, such companies must pay others to speak on their behalf.
    Soon after the second world war, some of America’s richest people began setting up a network of thinktanks to promote their interests. These purport to offer dispassionate opinions on public affairs. But they are more like corporate lobbyists, working on behalf of those who fund them.
    We have no hope of understanding what is coming until we understand how the dark money network operates. The remarkable story of a British member of parliament provides a unique insight into this network, on both sides of the Atlantic. His name is Liam Fox. Six years ago, his political career seemed to be over when he resigned as defence secretary after being caught mixing his private and official interests. But today he is back on the front bench, and with a crucial portfolio: secretary of state for international trade.

    This post was published at The Guardian


  • Trump Should Launch a Criminal Investigation of the NOAA – NOW!

    The NOAA has been putting out bogus studies that contradict by scientists at the United Nation who said there was a ‘pause’ in global warming. The U. N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) said there was no discernible warming since 2000 in its 2013 report. They wrote that global temperatures showed a ‘much smaller increasing linear trend over the past 15 years than over the past 30 to 60 years.’The IPCC picked up on the start of the move toward global cooling. It has been the NOAA that is claiming they are wrong but faked the data.
    Then NASA reported that there has been a massive increase in the ice at Antarctica. Every other group has disagreed with the NOAA. Trump should launch a criminal investigation for those behind these bogus reports may be taking bribes to put out this research to generate money for companies benefiting from the Global Warming conspiracy.

    This post was published at Armstrong Economics on Feb 10, 2017.


  • Buy Gold Because of Uncertainty not Doomsday

    Doomsday Clock moves closer to midnight World not been as close to self-destruction since 1953 Threat of nuclear powers, climate change and technology all considered heightened risks First time the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists have singled out an individual – President Trump Doom-mongering is arguably distracting and uncertainties should be more considered Gold and silver perform well during times of uncertainty and provide a safe-haven Wall Street’s largest fund managers have bet on gold in face of growing uncertainty It is two and a half minutes to midnight, the Clock is ticking, global danger looms. Wise public officials should act immediately, guiding humanity away from the brink. If they do not, wise citizens must step forward and lead the way. Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, January 2017.
    We hope you remembered to reset your clocks last week, not the timekeeping kind but the doomsday kind. And hopefully you’ve made a start on those bucket lists as apparently nuclear power, climate change, nationalist politics and technology have brought us one step closer to The End.

    This post was published at Gold Core on February 2, 2017.


  • Money, Markets, & Mayhem – What To Expect In The Year Ahead

    If you thought 2016 was full of market maelstroms and geopolitical gotchas, 2017’s ‘known unknowns’ suggest a year of more mayhem awaits…
    Here’s a selection of key events in the year ahead (and links to Bloomberg’s quick-takes on each).
    January Donald Trump will be sworn in as U. S. president on Jan. 20.
    QuickTakes: Immigration Reform, Free Trade and Its Foes, Supreme Court, Oil Sands, Confronting Coal, Climate Change, Budget Deficit
    The World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Jan. 17-20.
    QuickTake: Sustainable Investing
    Davos, Switzerland.
    Finland begins a test of a universal basic income by offering 2,000 unemployed adults 560 euros a month.
    QuickTake: Universal Basic Income

    This post was published at Zero Hedge on Jan 1, 2017.


  • Axis of Gold

    Now is the time to keep your eyes on the monetary endgame. Not the daily mark-to-market in paper gold. This endgame is an all-out attack on the status of the U. S. dollar as the benchmark global reserve currency. Numerous players have an interest in ending the dollar’s role for reasons ranging from climate change (global problems require global money solutions), to geopolitics (Russia and China both have regional hegemonic ambitions in Eastern Europe and East Asia respectively). As investors with longer horizons and patience, we see ways to profit from these global macro trends.
    We’ve done the deep-dive you need to see the big picture. All indicators show this is an excellent time to accumulate a position in gold, if you haven’t put 10% of your investable assets in gold and physical metal already (which is what I recommend).
    Whenever a new president is elected, think tanks in Washington get to work writing transition papers for the new administration. These are compilations of policy advice from subject matter experts for the benefit of the president-elect’s transition team.
    I was invited to contribute to a transition paper on national economic security. This is the policy area with geopolitics and global capital markets converge. I was invited by a non-partisan institute called Center on Sanctions and Illicit Finance, part of the prestigious Foundation for the Defense of Democracies. It was founded by Jack Kemp and Jeane Kirkpatrick and other patriotic Americans concerned about the rise of authoritarianism, and the decline of freedom and liberty.

    This post was published at Wall Street Examiner on December 20, 2016.


  • The Debt Is No Problem – Here, Even My Phony Statistics Say So

    Only stupid idiots care about the national debt.
    That’s Paul Krugman’s more or less explicit point this week.
    Climate change threatens to destroy civilization, and we’re worried about the national debt?
    Sure, someday we may have to cut back on spending, Krugman admits, but that day is way, way in the future. For now, only a fool worries about the debt.
    Krugman then goes on to share a chart purporting to show only modest levels of debt increase in the coming years.

    This post was published at The Tom Woods Show on 30th October 2016.


  • Are they Using Hurricanes to Support Climate Changes Taxes?

    Reporting from Florida, it is starting to smell like something is really rotten with these weather forecasts. The morning Hermine hit Florida on the West Coast, cross into the Atlantic and turned north, I was swimming in the ocean and there were plenty of surfers there as well. I then got dress and headed for the airport to catch a flight. While I was in line at security, my phone kept getting text after text all asking if I was OK. The news stories were ‘Killer Storm’ hits Florida. There I was in line for TSA and a bunch of alarming text messages were coming in. I said I was fine. I was swimming in the ocean that morning enjoying the waves and now I was in line at TSA and the flight was not delayed.

    This post was published at Armstrong Economics on Oct 10, 2016.


  • Days After Going After Trump, NY AG Probes Why Exxon Hasn’t Written Down Oil Reserves

    Back in January, when oil was plunging, we reported that the Dallas Fed and the OCC quietly met with US banks and advised them to suspend Mark-to-Market, allowing banks to avoid taking sharp, substantial charge offs on their loan books as a result of the dramatic selloff in crude. Incidentally the Dallas Fed first denied this meeting ever happened, only for its lies to be then revealed by the WSJ and others. That’s ok: we – and everyone else – are used to being lied to by the Fed. What was surprising, however, is that neither the Dallas Fed, nor the OCC, told the actual energy majors to similarly fabricate their energy exposure, and yet, in at least in one case, they did.
    According to WSJ, the NY Attorney General Eric Schneiderman is probing why Exxon Mobil hasn’t written down the value of its assets, two years into a pronounced crash in oil prices. Indeed, out of the 40 biggest publicly traded oil companies in the world, Exxon is the only one that hasn’t booked any impairments in the last 10 years, according to S&P Global Market Intelligence.
    Schneiderman’s office, which as the WSJ notes, has been probing “Exxon’s past knowledge of the impact of climate change and how it could affect its future business”, is also examining the company’s accounting practices, according to people familiar with the matter. An Exxon spokesman declined to comment about the investigation by the Democratic attorney general but said Exxon follows all rules and regulations.

    This post was published at Zero Hedge on Sep 16, 2016.


  • Dear Gary Johnson, There Is No “Free-Market” Carbon Tax

    There are few things less popular in American politics than raising taxes, which is why there is a longstanding tradition of American politicians finding ways to avoid using the ‘t’ word.
    While it’s not surprising to see these sorts of political shenanigans from two parties that have a history of using Orwellian word games to grow government (like the charmingly named Patriot Act), it’s extremely unfortunate to see Libertarian Party nominee Gary Johnson resorting to the same tactics.
    During an interview with the Juneau Empire, Gary Johnson was asked his opinions on climate change:
    ‘I do believe that climate change is occurring. I do believe that it is man-caused,’ Johnson said.
    To address climate change, Johnson said he believes ‘that there can be and is a free-market approach to climate change.’ That would include a fee – not a tax, he said – placed on carbon. Such a fee would make pollutants bear a market cost.
    What’s interesting is that while Gary Johnson tried to distance himself from calling his proposal a tax when talking with a newspaper in the ‘red state’ of Alaska, he was more honest when discussing the idea in an editorial newsroom that looks more favorably on taxes, the Los Angeles Times. Along with crediting the free-market, and not the regulations of the Obama administration, with the decline of the American coal industry, Governor Johnson said he was ‘open also to the notion of a carbon tax. That it does have an impact, that it ends up being revenue-neutral.’
    While it’s nice of Gary Johnson to not want to grow the government coffers with a carbon tax, unfortunately that detail doesn’t make this proposal any less concerning, nor any more ‘free-market.’

    This post was published at Ludwig von Mises Institute on Aug 22, 2016.


  • Death to All Zombies!

    Wait a minute. They’re already dead. Brexit just reveals that not everybody’s brains have been eaten. A viral contagion now threatens the zombified institutions of daily life, especially the workings of politics and finance. Just as zombies exist only in the collective imagination, so do these two principal activities of society operate mainly on trust, an ephemeral product of the hive-mind.
    When things fall apart in stressed complex systems, they tend to fall apart fast. It’s called phase change. Too many things in 21st century life have depended on sheer trust that the people-in-charge know what they are doing. That trust has subsisted on the doling out of money-from-nothing: debt, reckless bond issuance. TARP, QEs, bailouts, bail-ins, Operation Twists, Ponzi schemes… the whole sad-ass armamentarium of banking necromancy. The politicians let it get out of hand. Things that can’t go on don’t, and now they won’t.
    The politics of Great Britain are now falling apart landslide-style. Since just about everybody in or near power can be blamed for the national predicament, there’s nobody to turn to, at least not yet. The Labour party just acted out The Caine Mutiny, starring Jeremy Corbyn as Captain Queeg. The Tory Cameron gave three months notice without any plausible replacement in view. Now Cameron’s people are hinting in the media that they can just drag their feet on Brexit, that is, not do anything to enable it from actually happening for a while. Of course, that’s what the monkeyshines of banking and finance have done: postponed the inevitable reckoning with the realities of our time: growing resource scarcity, population overshoot, climate change, ecological holocaust, and the diminishing returns of technology.

    This post was published at Wall Street Examiner on June 27, 2016.