Stop making sense

June 29, 2010

… it’s bad for big business.

Michio Kaku weighs in- on Faux Bidnit?! no less. I’d like to hear more than a few quick sound bites. Wouldn’t it be great of the Idiotbox know-nothings would just STFU and let people with functioning brains actually speak- instead of doing what the Dept. of propaganda  normally do (muzzle them).


Automatic Earth Tribute

June 28, 2010

“Benron Bukkake believing he can control debt-deflation is like your local weatherman believing he controls the climate.” -(paraphrasing) Ilargi


Subsidize subsidy burning not so brightly

June 21, 2010

Sunny Spain suspends solar subsidy scam
€18bn flushed down the baño
By Andrew Orlowski

Dead broke Spain can’t afford to prop up renewables anymore. The Spanish government is cutting the numbers of hours in a day it’s prepared to pay for “clean” energy.

Estimates put the investment in solar energy in Spain at €18bn – but the investment was predicated, as it is with all flakey renewables, on taxpayer subsidies. With the country’s finances in ruins, making sacrifices for the Earth Goddess Gaia is an option Spain can no longer afford. Incredibly, Spain pays more in subsidies for renewables than the total cost of energy production for the country. It leaves industry with bills 17 per cent higher than the EU average.

“We feel cheated”, Tomas Diaz of the Spanish Photovoltaic Industry Association told Bloomberg. But it’s undoubtedly taxpayers who have been cheated the most.

“Sustainability” has been the magic word that extracted large sums of public subsidy that couldn’t otherwise have been rationally justified using traditional cost/benefit measures. Spain paid 11 times more for “green” energy than it did for fossil fuels. The public makes up the difference. The renewables bandwagon is like a hopeless football team that finishes bottom of the league each year – but claims it’s too special ever to be relegated.

For sure, you can create a temporary jobs boom, but these are artificial, and the exercise is as useful as paying people to dig a hole in the ground, then fill it in. Spanish economist Professor Gabriel Calzada, at the University of Madrid estimated that each green job had cost the country $774,000.

Worse, a “green” job costs 2.2 jobs that might otherwise have been created – a figure Calzada derived by dividing the average subsidy per worker by the average productivity per worker. Industry, which can’t afford to pay the higher fuel bills, simply moves elsewhere.

[ The Register ]


Here comes another bubble

June 17, 2010

Somebody has been using your debit card

June 16, 2010

Nearly 40 years ago the Garden State borrowed $302 million to begin constructing the Meadowlands. The goal was to pay off the bonds in 25 years. Although the project initially went according to plan, politicians couldn’t resist continually refinancing the bonds, siphoning revenues from the complex into the state budget, and using the good credit rating of the New Jersey Sports and Exposition authority to borrow for other, unsuccessful building schemes.

Today, the authority that runs the Meadowlands is in hock for $830 million, which it can’t pay back. The state, facing its own cavernous budget deficits, has had to assume interest payments—about $100 million this year on bonds that still stretch for decades.

California’s redevelopment regime is an object lesson. Starting in the 1950s, the state gave localities the right to create public agencies, funded by increases in property taxes, which can issue debt to finance redevelopment. A whopping 380 such entities now exist. They collect 10% of all property taxes—nearly $6 billion annually—and they have amassed $29 billion in debt never approved by voters for projects ranging from sports facilities to concert venues to retail malls, museums and convention centers.

In 1999, Fresno conceived plans to revive its downtown area with various projects, including a baseball stadium for the minor-league Grizzlies, which it had lured from Phoenix. The city’s redevelopment agency floated some $46 million in bonds to build the stadium. But the Grizzlies fizzled in their new home, demanded a break on rent, threatening to skip town and stick taxpayers with the entire $3.4 million annual bond payment on the facility. The team is now receiving $700,000 in annual subsidies to stay in the city.

Another weapon in the debt arsenal is the so-called pension-obligation bond. For two decades, governments have played a risky arbitrage game in which they issue bonds and then deposit the money in their pension funds to be invested in the stock market with the hope that the money will outperform the interest rate on the bonds. In a stock market that’s been stagnant for years, pension bonds have become fiscally toxic. As the Center for State and Local Government Excellence noted in a report earlier this year, most pension bonds issued since 1992 have been money losers for states and cities, exacerbating severe underfunding of pension systems in places like New Jersey.

[ WSJ (article) ] [ Mish (C) ]


From a Veteran to the Freedom Fighter Who Shot Me

June 13, 2010

Dear Freedom Fighter Who Shot Me,
Today is April 14, 2010. Six years ago today I was occupying your land and your communities near Karabillah, Iraq. That particular day I was in a four vehicle convoy travelling from Al Qa’im to Husaybah. I was the gunner standing in the turret of the final vehicle facing the rear, and we ran into the guerilla ambush.

The US Government and the US corporate media would say that you are a terrorist, but you are not a terrorist. I was a terrorist. For that I must offer my deepest apologies and ask your forgiveness. I must also thank you. The bullet that you used to protect yourself from me changed my life. That day, you shot holes through everything I had grown up believing about America fighting for freedom and liberty. Your bullet, like a seed, penetrated far beyond skin and muscle, and sank deep into something in the core of my being where, over time it grew to be something much greater. It grew into a world view that included people outside of the United States of America as human beings and equals. It grew into an understanding of my place in the world and my part in the suffering of other people and the part that the United States Empire plays in the world as one of the greatest enemies of freedom and justice that exists.

We were told that we would be going to Iraq to liberate people. I now see this as an absolute lie. It is you, who was there that day fighting for the liberation of the Iraqi people. The United States Empire is a weapon of oppression, not a force for justice. Occupation will never be liberation.

[ More ]


If you own a home, you will lose it

June 7, 2010

Probably speaking about anyone with a mortgage levered 75% and up. A little scare-mongering, but some of you people need to wake the FUCK UP!