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erat_forte

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Everything posted by erat_forte

  1. The only real way to reduce emissions is to reduce resource use, i.e. reduce material prosperity. Could easily be done, look at the Corona lockdowns. Easy to put in place rules and incentives for people to reduce their activity and consume less fuel, just needs a bit of creative storytelling and "nudge". However any one country that went down this route would be at risk of financial or military takeover by all the other countries that don't voluntarily degrow. Imagine if the UK phased out all fossil fuel use over the next 10 years, and China didn't. How would that play out in global realpolitik terms? Its a kind of tragedy of the commons - if you don't extract and burn this oil, there's more for me to extract and burn! And then I do better than you! Good times here! Enjoy your degrowth austerity...
  2. Correct. It's the energy and resource equivalent of how the central banks are managing the financial markets. There is a broad consensus that there is a long term structural problem coming at us, but the responses are either useless or counterproductive.
  3. Universal Credit covers rent doesn't it? The system is punitive with lots of hoops to jump through but if you are genuinely looking for work then you should be able to jump? "fallen behind on things like credit card payments" - this gives the game away doesn't it? I presume this is not current spending otherwise she could just have stopped spending as soon as the job vanished?
  4. Goldman Sachs: "demand destruction via sharply higher prices is the only option to rebalance markets" https://markets.businessinsider.com/news/commodities/europe-gas-electricity-price-surge-commodities-markets-shortages-goldman-sachs-2021-9?op=1 Looks like "Demand Destruction" is mainstream code for degrowth.
  5. This is true that financial capital is being mis-allocated, and that investing in infrastructure and other productive capital would be the sensible and productive way to proceed. But I disagree that capital investment will provide new sources of energy, or other raw resources.
  6. Your pension will be paid out of the production and work of the younger generation when you are retired. Its a bit of a myth that you save now and that supports you 30 or 40 years down the line. Pension payments now fund current pensioners. How could it be otherwise? Its just accounting, in the end its food, energy, water, products and services that are what people have to create or deliver while they are working, and what they want to recieve when they are retired. The big problem is that there will not be enough energy, water, resources or workers to provide for us when we are retired. We are going to be poorer. No amount of accounting can make up the future shortfall in resources and energy and working-age people.
  7. Hey how come you are able to describe me so accurately!
  8. Yes less consumed in total - that is the way things are going. Connected to "degrowth", reduction in emissions, de-leveraging of debt, resource limits, etc. etc. The question is who spends less on what other things, whose standard of living drops and how much, this is a nice example of it happening.
  9. How to make wind turbines sustainable: https://solar.lowtechmagazine.com/2019/06/wooden-wind-turbines.html
  10. I'm sure its easy to come up with a formula. UBI payable at a flat rate, proportional to "NI credits". You need 16 years NI credits to get the full amount. You get one years NI credit for every year you have lived in the UK. I'm sure there will be people who fall through the gaps but I think my ideal is a system so transparent and simple that it is very hard to "game", there are very few false incentives or moral hazards... precisely why I think that a scheme like that will never be implemented because TPTB love gaming the system and creating loopholes which they can then blame people for exploition as part of creating an "enemy within".
  11. "Maximum Power Principle", the fuel will be burned and the CO2 will go into the atmosphere. Everything else is middle class angst. Wind turbines, solar cells, all use fossil fuel as inputs to create and install and decommission. I genuinely don't know if they produce net more energy than they consume in creating. Certainly the cost suggests that in energy budget terms you would be better off just burning the fossil fuels directly instead of using them to produce the solar and wind installations. "Energy cost of energy" is also an important consideration - implies that ever more of the economy is to be devoted to energy production, therefore ever less on everything else. At the end of the day the only thing that is sustainable is regenerating natural resources i.e. woodland, pasture. If you cant make it from wood and leather using hand tools, its not long term sustainable. Whichever country really gets to grips with its resource use, emissions, etc. is basically voluntarily making itself poorer than other countries, voluntary "degrowth" (= depression). Nothing substantive will happen until everyone is forced to all together.
  12. The entire point of Brexit problems is that the UK is not an island, it includes part of the next island. The UK has a land border with another EU country. If the UK was an island, Brexit would have been easy, no need for all those anguished negotiations, no need for May's Backstop, Johnson's Frontstop, etc. etc. I used to think that UK people not understanding the borders and constitution of their own country was faintly amusing. Now its incredibly depressing and dangerous.
  13. I will come to the defence of the pro-Brexit posters! I will say you are wrong in al your statements there! "There is nobody coming to our rescue" Rubbish! What about the German car-makers? There's an Australian trade deal which will more than make up for the trade disruption due to Brexit. And just wait for the amazing US trade deal. The US will sign up for an amazing deal giving the UK tarriff and regulation free access to the US market, while agreeing to protect UK food standardsa and respect the integrity of the NHS. Win-win I would call that. You say: "The government is lost, lazy, incompetent, disinterested and self-serving". Complete poppycock. This government impresses me as one of the most rational, organised and statesmanlike organisations I have ever seen. Boris Johnson is like a towering figure on the world stage, measured, dignified, never a hair out of place, never a word spoken that is not incisive, relevant, highly intellectual and backed up with a full command of relevant facts and scientific analyses of the situation. Each of his miniserts has been hand selected because of their truly cross-community appeal, each of them has the same dignity and is almost universally respected and looked up to both at home and abroad. Every minister in this Government is a true professional utterly on top of their brief, selflessly working to better the future prospects not only of all UK citizens but also to make the whole world a better place for all people.
  14. Zoopla says there was one sale there in the past year, £300k. Three sales in the last 5 years, average £260k.
  15. Yes but there can be both surely? No use just copying somewhere else - each country has a different culture and different democgraphics. Need serious detailed impartial systems analysis to work out what is going on. Also want clear unambiguous aims and targets as to what is required both in terms of cost (e.g. as % of GDP) and outcomes. Everything else is handwaving and tinkering at the edges.
  16. I don't want to be rude, but if you don't want to "spend all evening discussing the ins and outs of the EU ... when the arguments have all been made" then I fear you may be on the wrong forum.
  17. Yes - this. Just like people did for hundreds of thousands of years before fossil fuels were discovered. I don't think any of this high tech stuff (PV solar, batteries, etc.) is sustainable, it all depends on fossil fuel inputs to extract the raw materials, build the infrastructure. No-one seems interested in running complete life cycle energy budgets for these things. The type of tech that is truly sustainable is basically made from wood and leather and textiles, using hand tools. It seems obvious to me that people won't voluntarily cut back. Therefore maximum possible global resource use will continue until things suddenly run out, politicians and systems and governments won't be prepared, transition infrastructure won't have been built. In the mean time may as well carry on partying.
  18. I would see this as a first sign of the outworkings of "de-growth" or contraction of the real economy. If we think that the underlying "real" economy of energy and resources has plateaued and is starting to contract after a couple of centuries of growth: Cheap (i.e. easy to extract / get) energy and resources fuel ever more "complexity" in society and the economy - I suppose the way "degrowth" or contraction manifests itself is though simplification of society and the economy. Anyway I would see the NHS as a hugely complex system. I would think there are different aspects that need to be tackled in different directions. One is vested interests - as you say, there are powerful groups who want to dismantle the NHS or run it down so that they can personally benefit or profit from its decline and failure. This needs to be carefully analysed to find out who these individuals or groups are and what their influence and motivation is. Another is setting clear targets, not in an "outcome" kind of way but in a "system" kind of way. What kind of system would be the most simple, resilient, effective? Another is a kind of resource allocation analysis. How much of the UK's productivity do we want to put into the NHS? Set a percentage on this. We can't just let that percentage incrementally grow otherwise after a certain number of years the entire economy services the NHS and nothing else can get done. Then acknowledge that if the real economy of energy, resources, labour, is shrinking, then the NHS budgets will also naturally have to shrink along with it. Trouble is everyone wants their personal budget to stay fixed or grow, and so they work to try and get someone else to shrink faster. Finally - put some funds into serious lifestyle research. I know a lot of people on here follow "alternative" nutrition, health and fitness advice that their GP would panic about (lift weights, eat steak and eggs and salad leaves for breakfast) - it is a huge drag on the NHS that official advice is to do aerobic exercise and eat a low-fat diet with lots of whole grains. Swapping this advice around would massively increase health and wellbeing and massively cut costs. But it needs root and branch reform of "nutritional science" to get started. Perhaps that is as naive as hoping for root and branch reform of "economics"...
  19. You're the one saying that Brexit is a failure. You're the one complaining about the regulatory borders that Britain has set up around itself. You're the one trying to persuade everyone to undo the real effects of Brexit, asking that the borders be toned down, or ignored, like some kind of sneaky back way to stay connected to the world outside of Britain without having borders between Britain and the rest of the EU.
  20. And there you have it Ladies and Gentlemen. Remoaning at its finest. Brexit is a threat to peace and stability. @thecrashingisles asks why don't we just cancel Brexit, rather than pressing ahead with a Brexit that doesn't work? Get real. Brexit has happened. Britain has "Taken Back Control" of its borders, and has set up regulatory borders around itself. Hey, it has even negotiated in great detail international treaties as to how those borders work. That was, after all, the whole point of Brexit. Its far too late to be remoaning about how Brexit was a stupid idea and isn't working. Brexit has been done. We voted to Leave, to take control of our borders. I would say that Brexit has been done, successfully completed. Brexit has been a great success. Britain has taken control of its borders. Stop whining about how you don't like Britain controlling its borders according to international law and treaties. Britain is not in the EU any more, where borders can be free and ambiguous. That ship has sailed.
  21. I am not sure it is meant to be a "reasonable proposal". I assumed it was designed to whip up anti-EU feeling in England, for Conservative Party electoral and polling advantage, and also to strengthen certain groupings and individuals within the Conservative Party at the expense of others. Talking about the NI protocol, the broad impression I get from contacts across different communities and demographics in Northern Ireland, is that the Protocol is seen as a sensible solution to an intractable problem; it is seen as an "acceptable compromise" that is equally irritating to all sides, and that it gives a number of important players (farmers, businesses, exporters) genuine advantages and opportunities. The only people complaining about it seem to be professional politicians trying to get one over on the other side, and professional shiit-stirrers who get their power and influence from creating chaos and confusion. And of course, the criminal gangs whose illegal drug supply lines have suddenly got a lot more difficult with all these border checks. Now that's just the picture on the ground that I am being passed along the rumour chain. But, nothing I have read on this thread gives me any real reason to doubt these anecdotals.
  22. Did you know that the EU is all foreign? They jabber away in their funny foreign lingo. Our plucky English government are made of sterner stuff. It won't be long before those upstart Europeans remember where their proper place is, and which country is Top Nation!
  23. So is there a practical limit to income multiples? Could we have 20x if interest rates go negative enough?
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