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Tuesday's Top 10 with NZ Mint: The Baltic Dry slumps; A credit squeeze in Asia and Australia; Christchurch's revolt; Auckland rental panic; America's manufactured malaise; Dilbert

Tuesday's Top 10 with NZ Mint: The Baltic Dry slumps; A credit squeeze in Asia and Australia; Christchurch's revolt; Auckland rental panic; America's manufactured malaise; Dilbert

Here's my Top 10 links from around the Internet at 5 pm in association with NZ Mint.

I welcome your additions in the comments below or via email to

I'll pop the extras into the comment stream. See all previous Top 10s here.

My must read today is #8. It's long and detailed. But well worth it.

1. Watch the Baltic Dry - Many believe this index of the price of bulk shipping is a good early indicator of what's happening with global trade and, in particular, what's happening with demand from China for bulk imports such as iron ore, coal, soy etc.

It crashed in late 2008 and early 2009 just before global trade slumped more than a third and the global economy dived into recession.

HT to Roger Witherspon for pointing out the sharp drop in recent weeks, which contrasts with the rise in stock markets.

There has been a lot of new ships built, which might explain some of the drop as new supply of ships came onto the market.

HT AndrewJ for this link to a nice Joe Weisenthal explainer on this extra shipping supply. Joe says: 'Chill'.

But still...

2. Money is too tight to mention - Satyajit Das, the former options trader and author of Traders Guns and Money, has written another cracking piece at Naked Capitalism questioning the complacency in Australia about China's ability to dig (literally) Australia (and therefore New Zealand) out of trouble.

Das points to the problems many resources projects and businesses in Asia and Australia will have this year as European and US banks pull out of the region. He sees a tightening of credit and subsequent slowing of growth. HT Doug via email.

Here's the details:

The reduced participation reflects losses on sovereign bond holdings, pressures on bank capital and increases in US$ funding costs. European banks are actively looking to sell all or a portion of their Australian loan portfolios to alleviate the pressures. They are also cutting back on new lending to Australia clients, focusing on their home markets in Europe.

Given that Australian companies will need to re-finance around A$80 billion of maturing loans in 2012, these pressures are not welcome. The problems of European banks, active in commodity financing, may reduce the supply of credit to the sector by about 25-30%, which would impact Australia’s resources businesses.

The contraction of credit will also affect Australia indirectly. The withdrawal of European banks from Asia and other emerging markets is affecting the ability of companies to finance trade and investment projects. This affects Australian exports.

In 2007, European banks and US banks accounted for 30% and 10% of loan in Asia-Pacific. This has fallen by around half to 15-16% for European banks and 5-6% for US banks. The level of participation is likely to shrink further as a result of the problems of these banks. Troubled French banks account for about 11% of maturing loans in Asia Pacific. It is unlikely that these banks will maintain their level of commitment. Asia-Pacific banks have taken up the slack but are not sizeable enough to fill the gap completely.

3. France's growing far right - National Front leader Marine Le Pen wants to see France pull out of the Eurozone and the EU. She has 19% support going into the Presidential elections in April and May, polls recorded on Wikipedia show.

Here's Le Monde with a backgrounder.

Le Pen's pitch is this: that in order to go back to the idea of a strong, interventionist state, France must leave the EU.

"We will have to strike down the European treaties, the treaties of the mainstream parties, which are holding us back and condemning us to isolation. This anything-goes politics has become totally anachronistic throughout the world," she said earlier this month.

Le Pen is not scared of outspoken, even contradictory utterances on this issue. She is perfectly capable of dubbing the EU "the Trojan horse of ultraliberal globalisation" at the same time as comparing it to the USSR and referring to "a European Soviet Union".

4. The Christchurch Showdown - The Press' John McCone has an excellent backgrounder here on the revolt in Christchurch against the 'Bob (Parker) and Tony (Maryatt) show'.

He cites Peter Lynch, the local landowner who sparked a revolt via talkback radio:

Lynch has also kept up to date with the previous Bob and Tony controversies - the Henderson properties, the Ellerslie Flower Show, the rent rise debacle, the music school row. He has even felt exercised enough to pen the occasional letter and make requests for official correspondence. But you know how things are. His protests had not gone beyond that. Now, however, the energy around town is different, Lynch says.

"This whole earthquake thing has changed people's outlook on life. Before people were still apathetic. It was like, 'Aw, yeah, I know, but what can we do?' The difference today is that it's not 'What can we do about it', but 'What are we going to do about it?' "

Like many, he experienced an instinctive outrage on hearing Marryatt had been handed a 14 per cent performance pay rise - a six- month, back-dated increase that took his chief executive's salary from $470,400 to $538,529 a year.

5. Quick! Rent something! Anything! - Remember the rental panic story in the NZ Herald last year. Well it's back. Some editor must have marked it on his calendar.

"Must do this one next year."

It's the usual collection of slightly febrile anecdotes without any serious statistics to back it up. Yes Auckland has a property shortage and rents are rising faster in Auckland than anywhere.

But really?

Some areas have seen rents rise by up to 28 per cent and more increases are on their way as the first tax bills disallowing depreciation claims hit property owners from April.

Here's the Department of Building and Housing statistics showing median rents for 3 bedroom properties in Auckland were up 4% at NZ$500/week in December from December 2010. Rents for 3 bedroom properties are up 11% in the last two years and are up 9% for two bedroom properties. The CPI rose 6% over that period.

It's worse than inflation and the rest of the country, but it's not time to panic. It's not 28% rental growth.

We do however need a lot more housing in Auckland, which Len Brown seems to ignore completely whenever talking about Auckland's future. I watched coverage of his little speech on the 1.5 million population milestone yesterday and there was a lot of talk of trains and infrastructure, but not a single mention of housing.

Why not?

6. Fricken Fannie Mae - ProPublica and NPR have done a great job exposing how US government-owned mortgage giant Fannie Mae made profits betting that home owners would not be able to get loans.

Public documents show that in 2010 and 2011, Freddie Mac set out to make gains for its own investment portfolio by using complex mortgage securities that brought in more money for Freddie Mac when homeowners in higher interest-rate loans were unable to qualify for a refinancing.

"We were actually shocked they did this," says Scott Simon, who heads the mortgage-backed securities team at the giant bond trading and investment firm called PIMCO. "It seemed so out of line with their mission, out of line with what Congress wanted them to do."

Those trades "put them squarely against the homeowner," PIMCO's Simon says.

7. Chinese capital flight - Gordon Chang at Fortune has a look at the sharp rise in demand for gold in China and concludes it's probably not central bank buying.

There are an awful of newly (and often dodgily) rich people in China who want to salt there money away somewhere the Chinese government cannot get it or repossess it. New Zealand land perhaps?

But the first option is gold.

Here's Chang:

Although indicators showed the Chinese economy faltered only at the end of September, there had been a growing sense of pessimism inside the country for months before then.  Beijing, after all, could build only so many “ghost cities” before citizens began to notice.  As Joseph Sternberg of the Wall Street Journal Asia said on the John Batchelor Show last Wednesday, “people inside China seem to be losing faith in the Chinese growth story that we’ve been hearing so much about for the past few years.”  Estimates of capital flight are sketchy, but it appears there was $34 billion of it in the third quarter of last year and a $100 billion in the fourth.

Not every Chinese citizen is in the position to export cash, so the next best tactic for the nervous is to buy gold, a refuge from plunging property prices and declining stock markets as well as an anticipated depreciation of their currency.  “Within China,” notes Michael Pettis of Peking University, “many are going to argue that the rapid decline in the trade surplus, coupled with unmistakable evidence of flight capital, means that the PBOC should devalue the RMB.”  And the fact that China’s leaders in public are talking about the adverse impact of the European crisis on China weighs heavily on sentiment.

The worst thing about capital flight and gold purchases is that they drain liquidity out of the Chinese economy just when it is needed most.  Beijing can continue to work its magic as long as strict capital controls keep money inside the country.  Once they fail to do so, however, all bets are off.  The purchasing of gold, of course, results in the exporting of cash.

Chinese asset values have not yet crashed across the board, but the buying of gold—a leading indicator of panic—is an especially troubling sign that they will.

8. Modern American manufacturing - This detailed Atlantic investigation of the nature of jobs in American manufacturing plants is fascinating. It looks at the type of work available and the types of wages American factory workers can earn.

The issue turns on the point of automation. The story focuses on a 'Level 1' worker, Luke, who is a highly trained technician running robots, and Maddie, who is a 'Level 2' manual worker running a laser cutting device. Maddie is replaceable. Luke is not. The story helps explain the demise of America's post-war manufacturing-employed middle class and its replacement with a increasingly divided society where a few do very well and the rest are stuck in an impoverished underclass.

It shows the issue is a bit more nuanced than labour being cheaper than China. HT Koz via Twitter.

A Level 1 worker makes about $13 an hour, which is a little more than the average wage in this part of the country. The next category, Level 2, is defined by Standard as a worker who knows the machines well enough to set up the equipment and adjust it when things go wrong. The skilled machinists like Luke are Level 2s, and make about 50 percent more than Maddie does.

For Maddie to achieve her dreams—to own her own home, to take her family on vacation to the coast, to have enough saved up so her children can go to college—she’d need to become one of the advanced Level 2s. A decade ago, a smart, hard-working Level 1 might have persuaded management to provide on-the-job training in Level-2 skills. But these days, the gap between a Level 1 and a 2 is so wide that it doesn’t make financial sense for Standard to spend years training someone who might not be able to pick up the skills or might take that training to a competing factory.

Standard invests only in machinery that will earn back its cost within two years. For Tony, it’s simple: Maddie makes less in two years than the machine would cost, so her job is safe—for now. If the robotic machines become a little cheaper, or if demand for fuel injectors goes up and Standard starts running three shifts, then investing in those robots might make sense.

“What worries people in factories is electronics, robots,” she tells me. “If you don’t know jack about computers and electronics, then you don’t have anything in this life anymore. One day, they’re not going to need people; the machines will take over. People like me, we’re not going to be around forever.”

And here's the summary graph:

Throughout much of the 20th century, simultaneous technological improvements in both agriculture and industry happened to create conditions that were favorable for people with less skill. The development of mass production allowed low-skilled farmers to move to the city, get a job in a factory, and produce remarkably high output. Typically, these workers made more money than they ever had on the farm, and eventually, some of their children were able to get enough education to find less-dreary work. In that period of dramatic change, it was the highly skilled craftsperson who was more likely to suffer a permanent loss of wealth. Economists speak of the middle part of the 20th century as the “Great Compression,” the time when the income of the unskilled came closest to the income of the skilled.

The double shock we’re experiencing now—globalization and computer-aided industrial productivity—happens to have the opposite impact: income inequality is growing, as the rewards for being skilled grow and the opportunities for unskilled Americans diminish.

To solve all the problems that keep people from acquiring skills would require tackling the toughest issues our country faces: a broken educational system, teen pregnancy, drug use, racial discrimination, a fractured political culture.

This may be the worst impact of the disappearance of manufacturing work. In older factories and, before them, on the farm, there were opportunities for almost everybody: the bright and the slow, the sociable and the awkward, the people with children and those without. All came to work unskilled, at first, and then slowly learned things, on the job, that made them more valuable. Especially in the mid-20th century, as manufacturing employment was rocketing toward its zenith, mistakes and disadvantages in childhood and adolescence did not foreclose adult opportunity.

9. There is no poverty in America - Here's the New Yorker with some sobering black and white photos. HT MOD via Twitter.

10. Totally irrelevant Jon Stewart piece on The US Supreme Court's arbitary and archaic views on people who don't wear many clothes. It's definitely NSFW.


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Confused, its the 31st , thats a Tuesday Bernard.


Sorry. Sorry. Guys. It is Tuesday. I am extremely confused.

The sooner someone turns these stupid provincial holidays into one holiday the better.




I loved that old movie , it's   " Groundhickey Day " ........ again ....


...... Punxsutawney Bernard ..... all he sees is gloom , never ending shadows & gloom , you're in for a long bitter winter , in your discount tent .......


Ok, im reading another article by Hypertiger, may as well post it, going to make Iain Parkers day.


esterday, 11:59 AM

total credit markt debt of any country on earth roughly works out to 3 times GDP.

the only central bank I know of that releases the data is the FED...all the other central banks have the data hidden or busted up into various ways that make it virtually impossible to figure out unless you know the key.

but bascially total credit market debt is roughly 3 times GDP.

In the USA GDP is around 15 Trillion dollars...that works out to 45 Trillion dollars of total credit market debt...fortunately the FED releases the data and the total credit market debt is 53 Trillion.


It's total credit market debt can be estimated to be around 4.71 Trillion.

That is what Canadian's are in actual debt for...

It has roughly 10% the population of the's GDP is 1.57 Trillion dollars...It's public debt is 586 Billion dollars.

The EU has a GDP of 16 Trillion dollars so 3 times that would be 48 Trillion dollars of total credit market debt

China has a GDP of around 10 total credit market debt of 30 trillion.

world GDP of around 60 Trillion is equal to global total credit market debt of around 180 Trillion dollars.

At 5% yield It would require the consumers of the world to request the global banking system to create out of thin air around 9 Trillion Dollars a year of new debt to sustain the servicing of the previously produced debt.

To sustain global GDP growth.

to sustain the inflation of the world.

to keep the fantasy you all think is reality from collapsing to oblivion.

total credit market debt is basically the money supply of a credit system.

like centuries ago where there was no credit system...coins were the money of the money supply.

but in a credit which is debt is the money.

that is why when the FED announced the QE and all the hyperinflationists were crapping their pants I was unimpressed.

Because the total global money supply is far larger than any of you know.

unless a trusted source of information tells you what the money supply are ignorant of it.

because the information is hidden...and you all are far too lazy to even attempt to figure out why what you think is True is not....

in 2008 after 63 years of leveraging the US consumer reached their maximum potential to sustain the leveraging of the old leaverage into new leverage.

basically the leveraging process last time around lasted until 1929 and then was followed by the 1933-1945 bankruptcy reorganization of the global trade system...or deleveraging.

japan was built up and used to liquidate china while the USA was built up and used to liquidate japan.

so now a global deleveraging or debt deflation process is trying to happen again...but it's being fought by all of you...the only way inflating the debt supply....with unconventional methods now that the conventional way...getting all you to sign on the dotted line for ever greater amounts of new debt to service the old debt is exhausted.

because deleveraging of the global trade system back to 1945 causes basically everything that was created out of thin air the past 66 years to return back into thin air.

think of the conditions that existed globally 66 years ago as a product...and the following 66 years as a derivative of that product.

eliminate all the fantasy created the past 66 years and you go back to then...

to go back to then requires basically that billions of you are going to be way or the other... way or the other you all are going to suffer the consequences...there is no escape.

The longer the liquidation or collpse of debt inflation into debt deflation is postponed the worse it's going to be...and the past 66 years has been the longest postponement of what the austrian priesthood calls the natural cleansing process of teh credit system in the 600 year old history of the credit system.

that is what you all are currently facing.

elected officials are oblivious retards...they have zero power to do anything to save you...they derive all their power from the system that is about to implode in their 's and your faces.

It's like 2012...they will load up on the lifeboats and keep you all oblivious until the end of the system stars ripping you all to pieces..they are all going to hide where they can't hear your pathetic screams for salvation.

"This is a staggering thought. We are completely dependent, on the (compounding interest) Commercial Banks. Someone has to borrow (Request the manufacture of) every dollar, we have in circulation, cash or credit. If the Banks create (At the request of the consumer) ample synthetic (All money is fiat) money, we are prosperous; if not, we starve. We are, absolutely, without a permanent money system. When one gets a complete grasp of the picture, the tragic absurdity, of our hopeless position, is almost incredible, but there it is. It is the most, important subject, intelligent persons can investigate and reflect upon. It is so important that our present civilization may (Not may...Will Inevitably) collapse (Implode), unless it becomes widely understood, and the defects remedied very soon." (the remedy will cause the premature implosion)--ROBERT H. HEMPHILL (Credit Manager of Federal Reserve Bank, Atlanta, Georgia 1938)

hope all you want that i'm wrong...

but until we get to the point where you all are forced to accept what you all are fighting to the death trying to avoid having to get to enjoy being right.

think of being right as the old debt and as long as you all create enough new debt to maintain the all get to be right...but as soon as you all can't create enough new debt to sustain teh old.

you are all forced to accept that you are wrong.

I'm already at the finish line waiting for you all to show up to see that you have lost.

Like I can show up here prior to the finish line and tell you that you are not going to win...but until you get to the logical conclusion and can't refuse to see...because losing is negative...

that is the purpose of keeping you all in the dark.

trapped below decks withing for the gates to open so you can get a lifeboat.

just like in 2012...You all have to keep on working till the end constructing the lifeboats the winners of the game are going to use to cross the finish line.

Like implementation of all the police state measures so that all the tools are in place to deal with the fate resisters.

nice and slow like so you don't all figure it out. Well there is the actual real economy that produces the yield.

The toil of the population of the the supply of the demand of the equation.

If the employees of the enterprise refuse to or can't supply the yield the equation's game over.

in the USA for instance to sustain the system requires about 4% yield so 53 Trillion at 4% requires around 2 Trillion Dollars to be created by the commercial banking system by US consumers requesting the commercial banking system to create that much just to service the interest costs.

that doesn't include money to do anything else with.

from 1945 to 2008...US consumers were basically requesting an average of 7.9% more new debt per year.

The cost to pay the rent due on the previously created debt is hidden in the prices of everything...

So basically when people in a credit system request a loan...this hidden cost is factored in...people are not going to banks and asking for x amount to pay the Interest due on the previously created debt...they are requesting money to be created to spend into the economy...and all the prices in the economy are basically inflated by previously produced debt.

A demand anywhere in the system spreds throughout the system.

this same process has been going on in all the the economic zones within the system...all the economic zones in the system must inflate debt faster than it is deflating in order to derive a positive yield.

for the past 30 years the trick used to sustain the system has been to continually engineer rates lower and make up the difference on volume...basically refinancing the total debt at lower and lower rates.

in 2008 US consumers reached their maximum potential to supply the demand...that's why there has been the make up the difference.

All the so called cash out there is debt....As the system collapses the demand for it will increase and all that cash will eventually be forced to circulate and return back into thin air from where it came.

All the corporations will eventually be forced to downsize to the point where they will collapse.

They will begin spending their reserves to survive...and won't be able to forever. 


Nine Trillion is nothing Helicopter Ben can print that in 15 seconds.


With which he will be able to afford a crappy burger....I just caught a glimpse in my crystal ball of the Fed crook circa 2031 holding a  one hundred Zillion Dollar banknote....$100,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000.oo(made in china)



AndrewJ: There are formal rules covering the copying and pasting other peoples works on the web. This topic was raised by another poster last week. You should provide FULL citation and URL of the article and name of the originator.


no problem I do, and have linked to same author often.…


There are many things on the planet that are finite, and valuable.  Money isn't one of them.  In fact it's one of the very few infinite things in the universe.  And this infinite thing, is going to become more valuable in relation to all the finite things?  This time it will be the exact inverse of every other Fiat (non gold backed) currency in history. 


Had to skim this as Im in a hurry but I think it might make my top ten of the month....

if not the top one....




Refreshing to see someone, other then myself, pointing out the real elephant in the closet...


HyperT just added to this thread,

There is no borrowing going on.

In a credit system...Whenever a consumer asks a bank for a loan or a bank lends.

The money is created out of thin air to supply the demand for's called credit and is debt.

A consumer uses their current income which is previously created debt or an asset inflated in price by previously created debt as collateral backing their request for a commercial bank to create new debt.

wages and saleries have not tracked inflation at all...sorry...

wages an saleries have been flat....while the debt supply has grown expoenetially for decades...the lower and lower yields has allowed refinancing or larger and larger amounts of new debt creation with lower and lower costs to sustain it.

It has been requiring less income for a typical consumer to request larger and larger amounts of new debt to be created.

But there is a limit...and once consumers are maxed out and they can no longer request the required amount of new debt to sustain the previously produced debt...the system collapses.

the economic zones outside the USA require US dollars in order to sustain the global system...

The conventional source of which is US consumers.

In 1944 the US consumer was made the global trade medium of exchange...the US consumer is the money of the system...and without the US consumer...the system implodes.

in order for anyone esle in teh global system to obtain the global trade medium of exchange...they have to ultimately supply the demands of teh US consumer.

The nature of the system dictates that once you can't obtain US dollars...the systam collapses...period end of story.

Sure you can change to a difference global currency any time you long as you don't really mind imploding to oblivion.

There is nothing Ben can do...once the US consumer has reached the maximum potential to's over.

Wha is teh point of inflating teh supply of consumers all these years if you could have just supplied all the money the world demands with a magic printing press...

The system is going to implode to oblivion...once the dust settles and the structure has collapsed...the survivors can build the new one.

the US consumer along with the global trade system has been sustained the past 30 years is by engineering the entire global system to supply the demand for yield by the system by constantly engineering rates lower in search of volume....and installing Governments all over the world to sustain this pro growth in volume policy.

1971 the previous rules could no longer be followed...1971 was inevitable...Those who know how economics actually works knew before bretton woods that the rules of bretton woods would not be able to be followed...they would have to be changed.

but to get people to sign on the dotted don't tell them that...who is going to agree to support an inevitably doomed scheme?

and as long as it pays off at the beginning...everyone will fall in love with it and not care until it stops paying then it's too late to escape.

the transition from the old economy rules to the new economy rules took around 10 years...the new economy began to be implemented in 1971...the Nasdaq and construction of the world trade centers was part of this new economy implementation.

It reached maximum potential and collapsed 2001...and the new economy scheme was replaced with the war on Terror or the war on deflation scheme.

A controled collapse of the roaring 6 decade bubble is currently underway and has been for 11 years now.

There is no replacement for the US consumer...So this current global trade scheme is doomed...and was doomed from square 1...consumers don't have an infinite ability to supply infinite demand for yield...and tha tis actally what an absolute capitalistic or take more than you give systam eventually demands...infinite supply.

which is impossible to obtain.

All the rest of the consumers of the world derive their ability to consume from the US consumer...the US consumer dies...the world dies.

prior to the US consumer as the supply of the global trade medium of exchange...the British consumer was...up until around the late 1920's when they began reaching their maximum potential.

1929-1945 was basically what the transition from the pound or british consumer to the Dollar or american consumer looked like.

The pound has been debased for 400 years...but still is the top currency...You think that is just coincidence?

The USA was put into bankruptcy reorganization in 1933 to restructure the USA into it's future role as the new demand of the of the global trade system.

A role that is reaching it's logical conclusion.


The pound sterling of the United Kingdom was originally the value of one Troy pound of sterling silver, hence the name: Pound Sterling.

Until 1932 you could change a 1pound note for a pound of silver,  Now you need 252 notes. a return of over 7% pa, not bad for sitting back while the printers print.


You are allowed to think there is no borrowing going on, but I can assure you, many developed nations, have governements borrowing in excess of 10% of GDP.  Many EM's are borrowing flat out.  Banks are borrowing as much as they can from the central banksters.  Definatly many consumers are unable to borrow more, but there is still plenty of borrowing being done.


FYI it's Tuesday today.  Big weekend?


Unfortunately not.

Tried to have the day off with my family at the beach and the bloody Reserve Bank chose to bloody announce that bloody Alan Bollard was retiring, which is a once in a bloody decade event.

Bloody staggered provincial holidays.

Can you tell I'm grumpy about it?

That's my excuse anyway.




If I get the job Bernard I promise to let you know a week in advance of any change in my status.


..... it gets harder to tell when he's bloody grumpier than usual , or it's just his normal level of curmudgeonisity .......

0's still Monday!


Thanks AJ - I could have directed Alex13 to that little read, and saved myself the trouble. Good read - and true. Makes you wonder why some folk hang onto historical comfort-statements like ROI, or 'median multiple'.


We do however need a lot more housing in Auckland, which Len Brown seems to ignore completely whenever talking about Auckland's future. I watched coverage of his little speech on the 1.5 million population milestone yesterday and there was a lot of talk of trains and infrastructure, but not a single mention of housing.

Why not?

Don't you know Bernard, Lenny's got housing sussed. His plan is for a compact city where everyone is going to live in lovely Parisian styled apartments.

I reckon he's got a big model train set at home of Auckland, where he watches the trains go around and around as he goes "choo choo"




Matt - word is that some Parliamentarians from both major and one minor party, get what's coming. Our Mayor down here does, and so do several councillors now (it's been a 5-year battle, but it's happening.


As with the media, the smartest will tumble to it first (Hill and Laidlaw in this country) and the talk-backers will be a distant last. There is a half-way awakening though - where the 'public transport, cycling, sustainable infrastructure, no debt' style can be had. I suspect Brown is one of those - it's still better than the progress-at-all-costs we-haven't-hit-the-wall-so-far-so-we-won't types.


Actually, there has to be a migration outward - the demise of oil-driven BigAg says more people will be required per acre, even as there will be pressure on those acres anyway.




Note the bit about the same amount of food we've grown in 8000 years, having to be produced in the next 40. So we need to have a discussion about village clusters, commons, smallholdings, and not cementing-over productive land. Oh, and limiting population.  Either we stop growth, or growth stops us. Intelligence suggests the former is the better.





"It's just a shower block, nothing to worry about, just sign the documents at the door," says the President of France and everyone believes him.

Am I alone in feeling a sense of horror as the stupid leaders of the nations of Europe calmly walk their people into the shower block?

At least the Brits and Czechs smell a rat.

Maastricht Agreement, Munich Agreement, now what was the difference? I am a little confused. Forget sovereignty, independence, freedom of the individual, those are outdated concepts. Welcome to the EUSSR comrade. Just join that line to donate your blood to the cause.


Bang - you're not dead! Amazing video shows bio-engineered 'bulletproof' human skin reinforced with spider silk

Read more:



Cameron Announces "Open Door" Policy Welcoming French Banks if France Start Tobin Tax



0 close are we to seeing German troops stationed inside Athens to enforce the austerity policies dictated by the EU ?