Daily Digest 2/21 - Big Government Is Coming To An End, Icelandic Anger Brings Debt Forgiveness, Aviation Biofuel's Future
- The Time of Big Government is Coming to an End
- Bob Janjuah: "Markets Are So Rigged By Policy Makers That I Have No Meaningful Insights To Offer"
- Buy Gold & Silver For The Long Haul, says Jim Rogers
- Icelandic Anger Brings Debt Forgiveness
- Psychiatric Patients With No Place to Go but Jail
- Jim Bianco on Money Printing, Quantitative Easing, and Misguided Federal Reserve Policy
- Coal to India Beating China on Singh Decree
- The Future of Aviation Biofuels
Nations could, in principle, forestall social collapse by providing the basics of existence (food, water, housing, medical care, family planning, education, employment for those able to work, and public safety) universally and in a way that could be sustained for some time, while paying for this by deliberately shrinking other features of society—starting with military and financial sectors—and by taxing the wealthy. The cost of covering the basics for everyone is within the means of most nations. Providing human necessities would not remove all fundamental problems now converging (climate change, resource depletion, and the need for fundamental economic reforms), but it would provide a platform of social stability and equity to give the world time to grapple with deeper, existential challenges.
First, I am simply stunned that our policymakers seem so one-dimensional, so short-termist, and so utterly bereft of courage or ideas. It now seems obvious that in response to the financial crisis that has been with us for five years and counting, we are being "told" to double up on these same policy decisions. The crisis was caused by central bankers mispricing the cost of capital, which forced a misallocation of capital, driven by debt/leverage, which was ultimately exposed as a hideous asset bubble which then collapsed, destroying the lives and livelihoods of tens of millions of relatively innocent people.
But the 69-year-old Rogers has hedged for any outcome regarding the two primary reserve currencies, the U.S. dollar and the euro, through the ownership of the monetary metals, gold and silver.
Icelandic Anger Brings Debt Forgiveness (pinecarr)
Iceland’s special prosecutor has said it may indict as many as 90 people, while more than 200, including the former chief executives at the three biggest banks, face criminal charges.
Larus Welding, the former CEO of Glitnir Bank hf, once Iceland’s second biggest, was indicted in December for granting illegal loans and is now waiting to stand trial. The former CEO of Landsbanki Islands hf, Sigurjon Arnason, has endured stints of solitary confinement as his criminal investigation continues.
That compares with the U.S., where no top bank executives have faced criminal prosecution for their roles in the subprime mortgage meltdown.
Mr. Dart said the system “is so screwed up that I’ve become the largest mental health provider in the state of Illinois.” The situation is about to get worse, according to Mr. Dart and other criminal justice experts. The city plans to shut down 6 of its 12 mental health centers by the end of April, to save an estimated $2 million, potentially leaving many patients without adequate treatment — some of them likely to engage in conduct that will lead to arrests.
Federal Reserve actions in the fall of 2008 and the spring of 2009 can be considered emergency measures. But step back and consider why we had a busting of the housing bubble and such turmoil in financial markets; we had malinvestment and markets that were mispriced. These markets must return to equilibrium. But the Fed is trying to prevent equilibrium. Maybe housing prices are still too high, and maybe further deleveraging is necessary. The Fed is attempting to stop that from happening. Things cannot get better until we reach that equilibrium. The Fed is making it worse in the long run.
The deficit between the demand and supply of domestic coal in India may rise as high as 150 million tons by 2014 if the country fails to increase local supplies by 6 percent this year, according to Hynes. The nation is seeking to improve infrastructure to achieve an average economic growth rate of 9 percent in the five years starting April 1.
The Future of Aviation Biofuels (James S.)
In looking at downstream demand, BNEF noted that the International Air Transport Association has called for 6% of jet fuel demand, or 8 billion litres per year, to be met by biofuels by 2020, but said that it expects airline demand to be 2 percent or less over the next few years – uncompetitive on cost, and bought by airlines solely to “improve their environmental credentials and to gain experience of biofuels technologies.”
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