Friday, January 16, 2009

SAR #9016

The problem isn't to grow the economy,

it's to keep it from vanishing.

Beware of Falling Prices: Economists are afraid you'll have to pay less for stuff, which is not a Good Thing for Wall Street even though it may sound good at first.

Bankmail: Did BofA actually threaten to cripple the US markets if Paulson didn't give them more money? Or were they promised the $140 billion earlier and had to wait for Paulson's second helping to get it and that was the rush for the $350 billion? And after Citi gets their share, how much will be left for Obama's boys to play with?

Geography Lesson: George Bush's United States has declared it will extend its "sovereign rights" to most of the oil and mineral wealth in the Arctic, without much reference to actual borders.

Click Your Heels: Mexico claims it will reverse its dramatic 10% decline in production and reach 3 million barrels a day by 2015, while Cantarell continues to crash. New wells, gas injections, new exploration, and wishfull thinking will be employed in this effort.

Staffing Costs: Did Citi pay a $800 million signing bonus to get Pandit?

Two-Edged Sword: Countries that profited most from exports during the boom are falling fastest now: China, Russia, OPEC, Germany. Ah, Globalization and it's discontents.

Scary Maps: Even assuming CO2 emissions lower than today's levels, researchers predict that it is very likely (90% chance) that the temperate parts of the world will, by 2080, regularly have seasonal temperatures that are higher than the current record highs. This will cause a significant drop in agricultural outputs. It will also be much hotter in the tropics and subtropics, where the lows routinely will be higher than today's highs.

Explaining the Bush Years: 14 percent of U.S. adults cannot read.

Buzzword: Memo to staff: Please cease using emotion laden terms such as recession or bankruptcy or anything starting with "D". 'Retrenchment' is a perfectly useful word of indeterminate meaning.

Carpentry: JPMorgan's CEO says the worst is yet to come and Nouriel Roubini agrees, saying things will worsen until late 2009 and the recovery in 2010 and 11 will be puny.

Crash Diet: The European parliament voted to restrict the use of 22 pesticides in growing food. Next week they will consider legislation against pests, insects and diseases that damage crops.

Morning After: Would we be any worse off if Hank and Ben hadn't gone though all that money? For the size of the headache and the mess in the living room, shouldn't we have had a better time?

Shades of Green: Following Congress' desire that the bailout funds be used to build cars for the future, GM is making a $56 thousand 6.0-liter V8 Tahoe that will get 20 mpg. It will only be available in the deep Forest Green.

Easy Answers : Solar will save the day! Clean, efficient, practically free. Except it takes huge amounts of fossil fuels producing large amounts of greenhouse gases to make and move them, they're full of toxic stuff, and they don't last all that long. So then we have to go back to the fossil fuels. Not to mention the petroleum based plastics...

Quelle Surprise: According to the IEA and several million chilly citizens, "Russia has loss its status as a reliable gas supplier to Europe."

Porn O'Graph: Retailing the real retail tale.

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