Friday, June 26, 2009

Destroying the Earth by Digging Holes

It has been quite some time since I've been motivated to make any blog posts, since I'm, you know, busy doing actual stuff that matters.

Nevertheless, my favorite topic of stupidity is all over the news again, as Congress is preparing to vote on legislation that would regulate the emission of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, as a way to combat global warming.

I need not go into all the detail, because you can read all my posts debunking global warming here. Still, this is so dumb that I have to add a bit of fuel to the fire.

You see, one of the last minute changes is that the carbon credit scheme will now be proposed to be overseen by the Dept. of Agriculture rather than the Environmental Protection Agency (both of which are executive branch departments that I see no authorization for in the Constitution, but I digress...)

As it's been reported, this is great news for farming states because (drum roll please), businesses who desire carbon credit can pay farmers to inject seed into the soil, rather than plow the earth, because plowing the soil releases carbon into the atmosphere.

I'm not making this up.

Apparently, digging holes contributes to global warming.

Let me say that again.

Digging holes is going to kill us all.

Whatever scientific genius discovered this has just laid the groundwork for colonization of Mars. Forget terraforming, and atmospheric alteration, and all your other SciFi methods of making the martian atmosphere livable. We can simple have one of the Mars rovers start digging up holes, and given enough time, release greenhouse gasses that trap heat and will allow for human settlements on the red planet.

That's got to be welcome news to all the NASA researchers who were almost certainly thinking of using much more complicated methods of atmospheric engineering, when a simple shovel would do the trick.

If only we could convince people that stupidity caused the brain to leak CO2, perhaps we could get Congress to voluntarily shut itself down for the good of humanity.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Geopolitical question of the day

Been way too busy to update the blog for some time, but in reading some investment/market related news from the weekend, a few thoughts came up I thought I would share. The talk of the world is, of course, the North Korean nuke test -- which was successful and estimated to be the size of the atomic bombs used in WW2 against Japan.

So, the question is: If China were to invade North Korea so as to "secure the peace" -- and in doing so setup a puppet government, or just outright annexed North Korea, would anyone stop them?

No, I don't think anyone would.

I think it's natural to jump to the "what should the USA do?" question -- but really, if this were to play out, the question is what would the USA do in response to a Chinese invasion of North Korea? Probably not a thing. It's hard to imagine we would. The Japanese would not be pleased, and probably not the South Koreans either, but I don't think the USA would do anything more than "urge caution and restraint," and I'm sure the Russians would do nothing.

So if you are the Chinese, what would you do? A North Korean nuke dropped on Seoul or Tokyo would throw a big fat monkey wrench into the world economy and would obviously destroy any semblance of economic stability in Asia. With the Chinese economy on the upswing, and the world already in recession, would you risk letting that happen, on a purely economic basis?

And then what happens? Does this establish precedent that if a country tests a nuke, a bigger country can invade and "keep the peace?" Does the USA invade Iran? Does Israel bomb Iran? India into Pakistan? China into Pakistan? The USA into Pakistan? Russia into Georgia?

Seems like quite a mess, doesn't it? Yet, at the same time, it seems like "hey, free country" for China to take N. Korea if it sees fit. Certainly if this were a game of Risk, you'd do it. The question is, how do the Chinese view it?

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Anti-Capitalism abouds at world economic summit

A couple of quotes from the world economic forum:

"This may be the first Davos where capitalism is widely viewed as a failure, rather than something to be admired," says Ethan Kapstein, professor of economics and political science at French business school Insead, who has been going to Davos since 1994.


"The capitalist myth is lovely and youthful. It kicked off the industrial revolution, but maybe we need a new one," says Richard Olivier.

If this is how the world is starting to think (and it certainly seems like it is), then it's headed down a very dark and dangerous path.

As Ayn Rand would say: Who is John Galt?