Labor Greens Unite!
Change climate with carbon price
Well that’s a good sign. Not twelve hours after we went to press with our latest newsletter – highlighting how September is historically the market’s worst month – and describing a Long Depression, stocks in New York rally by almost three percent. How is that good sign?
The Bear had everyone feeling pretty bearish about him. You can measure this in the number of put option buyers or in surveys. But this morning, we went to Google Trends to see how many people were searching for what you might describe as bearish topics like, say, economic collapse.
Click here to enlarge
You can see that thanks to the publication of two fairly high profile stories that went live late in August by Forbes and CNN, the conversation on collapse got a whole lot louder in the echo chamber that is the internet.
This more or less proves that if you wait on the mainstream press to validate your own thinking, you’ll always be late. It’s only safe for the papers to report on something once everyone’s thinking about it, and by then it’s too late to trade it.
But just to be safe, we asked our own in-house trading guru Murray Dawes what he thought. He wrote back that, “There is the possibility that the market has been ‘caught short’. By that I mean that traders could be overly bearish and short the market as a whole. The good GDP data could be squeezing them out of those positions and causing a short, sharp rally.”
“If this is the case,” he continued, “then you will see the market fall over again soon. If we see the ASX 200 close under the Point of Control of 4,400 in the next week or so then I would be confident that this current buying was a short squeeze and I would expect to see much lower prices in the near future. But until that occurs, this surprise rally should be respected.”
Murray’s article, by the way, was called, “Beware the false break out.” That term, “the false break out,” along with “the point of control” is key to his method of trading the markets. You can find out more by reading about Slipstream Trader.
Now we have to do something that’s required from time to time if you’re not familiar with our business model. We don’t like talking about our business model because you’d probably rather be reading about the stock market or the economy. So we’ll be quick about it!
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Finally, we see that the Greens and Labor have made a deal and that U.S. police have shot an armed man at the headquarters of the Discovery Channel in Maryland after he took people inside the building hostage. And we see that in some strange way, the events are not unrelated. Not causally, mind you, but philosophically.
Part of the big agreement yesterday announced by Labor and Green honchos was the set-up of a multi-party parliamentary committee to put a price on carbon. You can read about it here. But when you read about it, it’s clear that it’s a pretty undemocratic way of pretending to have a debate without having a debate. Typical, but pretty cynical. And as ever with the political class, it defers to the exalted power of “experts.”
Green’s Senator Christine Milne says that this very European process will, “Set up a parliamentary committee representing all the interests in the parliament committed to a certain idea and then enabling the appointment of experts to that committee. So the experts are not just to give evidence to the committee. The experts are part of the deliberations of that committee and that way you create the space in a parliament for people to talk through their own perspectives, nuance those perspectives and try to come up with a parliamentary consensus which has the support of everyone around the idea. “
Emphasis added is our own. But really, how much nuance can you have when everyone on the committee can only be on the committee if they are already committed to a certain idea? How hard is it to build consensus when you exclude everyone who might disagree from participating?
Milne continued: “You will note in the agreement the proviso for membership of the committee is that the people going onto it are committed to a carbon price. They may not all agree with the mechanism of achieving a carbon price but they all want to a carbon price and the idea is to invite everyone to it and the Coalition clearly if they were in opposition would be invited to join it on that proviso. So, it really is about grown up politics in Australia. It’s about ending the all or nothing, it’s about ending the accusations of back flips and sell outs and back downs and so on.”
In order to end the all or nothing false choice, it was necessary to create an all or nothing committee. Everyone who’s on it has to be all for a carbon price. No one who’s against a carbon price can be on it. That really is an effective way to end the argument. By not having it all and excluding other points of view.
Of course the justification for this is that the people against a carbon price are really whack jobs who don’t believe in global warming OR climate change. What’s more, they aren’t even experts. They’re just people, people who believe that common sense is more valuable than credentials. They’re just people. Very little people.
Milne says, “It’s a process we adopted in Tasmania to a very small degree when we achieved gay law reform by bringing in experts from the university, the justice department and so on to work with the parliamentarians. This I think can resolve this issue of a carbon price. It’s very important to us. We want one as soon as possible and we think this mechanism is the best way of delivering it.”
In other words, the best mechanism of delivering an outcome that the public hasn’t clearly endorsed is to use a non-democratic process that only includes people committed to the desired outcome. And that’s democratic how?
Honestly, we have to give credit where credit was due on this one. Julia Gillard had it right. Get a phone book from each city of 10,000 people or more in Australia. Pick ten people at random from each phone book. Put them on a Climate Change Committee. Put them in a three-star hotel outside the airport in Adelaide and give them six days to debate the issue and, if they decide, come up with a law.
What could be more democratic than that? If a random jury of your peers is good enough to deliver equal justice under law in the criminal justice system – where judges and juries must deal with complex evidence and experts – why is it not good enough to for public policy too?
In fact, the more we think about it, legislative conscription may be the best way to run the country after all. Each term, a new randomly selected group of conscripts is drafted to serve in Canberra. They are paid the minimum wage. You can be sure Parliament wouldn’t sit for long and that the government would generally stay out of most people’s lives and wallets, affording Australians the time and money to be good parents and neighbours.
Let’s have a vote! All in favour? All opposed?
But wait, what does this have to do with eco-terrorist James Lee’s bizarre actions and manifesto earlier today? Well, in point one of Lee’s manifesto, he seems to endorse Senator Milne’s committee of experts idea. We’ve reproduced the whole point here so we’re not selectively quoting, although the emphasis added is ours and not Lee’s:
The Discovery Channel and its affiliate channels MUST have daily television programs at prime time slots based on Daniel Quinn’s “My Ishmael” pages 207-212 where solutions to save the planet would be done in the same way as the Industrial Revolution was done, by people building on each other’s inventive ideas. Focus must be given on how people can live WITHOUT giving birth to more filthy human children since those new additions continue pollution and are pollution. A game show format contest would be in order. Perhaps also forums of leading scientists who understand and agree with the Malthus-Darwin science and the problem of human overpopulation. Do both. Do all until something WORKS and the natural world starts improving and human civilisation building STOPS and is reversed! MAKE IT INTERESTING SO PEOPLE WATCH AND APPLY SOLUTIONS!!!!
If poor Mr. Lee had just decided to run for office in Australia, he could be earning a public wage now instead of cooling in a morgue somewhere. He certainly has the right instincts to be in politics. He believes in coercion. He believes in State control of the media. He thinks “top down” solutions imposed from above should trump individual choices. He believes in expert scientists of a certain point of view. He’s against human civilisation and believes that children are filthy pollution.
Point four of his manifesto gets to the heart of his pro-planet, anti-human life message. He writes that, “Civilisation must be exposed for the filth it is. That, and all its disgusting religious-cultural roots and greed. Broadcast this message until the population of the planet is reversed and the human population goes down! This is your obligation. If you think it isn’t, then get the hell off the planet! Breathe Oil! It is the moral obligation of everyone living otherwise what good are they??”
Gee. That’s pretty much straight out of the tyrant’s modern political play book, isn’t it? Civilisation is filth? Check! Religion and culture and tradition are disgusting? Check! Human population should go down because it’s a pestilence? Check! Your obliged to agree? Check! If you disagree, go to hell? Check! If you disagree, you’re immoral? Check!
You get the feeling that some people just don’t like humanity. You get the feeling that some people view human life as a problem to be solved. That solution is vague, but usually involves somebody else dying without being killed. You get the feeling that deep down, some people view human beings as parasites on the planet. You get the feeling some people don’t feel very good about themselves but would like to take it out on the rest of us.
We also get the feeling that some people don’t view human life as the Ultimate Resource, as economist Julian Simon put it. Our view is that these people are themselves very selfish. They can’t imagine the world they live in coping with all the problems they perceive. So they want to destroy the world as it is and remake it into the world they want to live in, even if that world doesn’t include you and me.
It’s all very self-centred, moralistic, and unimaginative. And of course, Lee was plain crazy. He wrote, as this paragraph proves:
The world needs TV shows that DEVELOP solutions to the problems that humans are causing, not stupefy the people into destroying the world. Not encouraging them to breed more environmentally harmful humans. Saving the environment and the remaining species diversity of the planet is now your mindset. Nothing is more important than saving them. The Lions, Tigers, Giraffes, Elephants, Froggies, Turtles, Apes, Raccoons, Beetles, Ants, Sharks, Bears, and, of course, the Squirrels.
Of course the Squirrels!
TV will save us!
Save the froggies.
It would all be absurd and sad if there weren’t real live crazy people trying to run the government who didn’t’ share more or less the same anti-human, anti-civilisation worldview.
for The Daily Reckoning Australia