Saturday, May 29, 2010
Friday, May 28, 2010
Do you think it's impossible for Canada to produce a political leader who believes in small government, free markets, individual freedoms and is skeptical of the whole man-made global warming hype? I present to you this interview with Former Industry Minister Maxime Bernier (MB) from Conversations from the Frontier Centre for Public Policy (FC) - emphasis added.
FC: Politicians around the world are back pedaling on the topic of global warming. Most of the important countries have postponed plans to bring in carbon taxes and the majority of the public now believes that humans are not the cause of global warming. Why did you choose to express your own skepticism earlier this year contrary to the Canadian political mainstream?Not only has Bernier expressed his skepticism about anthropogenic global warming, he's also hinted that he's interested in the leadership of the Conservative Party of Canada, post Stephen Harper. He's by no means free of controversy and scandal, but you gotta like what he has to say.
MB: Because I was tired of it and I just wanted to express what I believe in. I am in politics to do that. We must look at all the studies and it’s obvious that there is no scientific consensus on this issue. I just wanted to tell that reality to Quebecers and Canadians. I’m very pleased that there are more and more people who now are skeptical like me. Before investing more money I think we need to know a bit more about the causes and the consequences of climate change.
FC: Why did you go into politics?and this...
MB: To promote what I believe in: free markets, less government and more individual freedom. I think that Canadians are responsible people and they don’t need a big government.
FC: You are skeptical that governments can spend money more efficiently than the average Canadian. Why is that?I couldn't agree more. Here's a politician who calls 'em the way he sees 'em. What a breath of fresh air this is!
MB: It’s just based on the historical data. I think that people know better what is good for them than bureaucrats or politicians in Ottawa. So just leave the money in the pockets of the people. They will save money and they will spend money and we will have more prosperity in our country. I don’t think that taking money from one person to give to another is useful. We need to have some programs. We need to have small government but right now, you are working half the year just to pay taxes to different governments (municipalities, provincial and federal) I think we are paying too much taxes in this country.
Keep your eye on Maxime Bernier.
You knew the stimulus wouldn't work. Here's why.
...the results of the new study by Harvard Business School will certainly shock some Keynesian academics — and high-ranking government officials. Instead of providing a stimulating effect to the economy, government spending creates pressures on private industry to reduce staff and investment.
Friday, May 21, 2010
Friday, May 14, 2010
Only time will tell if it's enough to save them, but at least it shows that when the political will is there, major changes can be made. From Investors Business Daily, Spain is Escaping the PIIGS:
As Europe fashioned a $1 trillion bailout fund and prepared for the worst, Spain did what no one thought a socialist state could ever do: It cut public-sector workers' salaries 5% and held off their raises for 2011. Pensions were frozen for all but the poorest.While climategate exposed the fraud of global warming, it's taking an unprecedented financial crisis to spur action. Even a leftist state when pinched can recognize the uselessness of combating the Mann-made faux emergency called global warming and take steps to put an end to the wasteful spending it demands.
Better still, all the big money-wasting "green" and "alternative energy" projects — which a Spanish university study exposed as job killers — were scrapped. That's right, all the global warming measures put in place because of the "emergency" were dumped.
Not surprisingly, markets rallied on this amazing show of will, whose message was that Spain is not Greece.It's not going to be easy for Spain, but that's the point. Doing the right thing isn't usually an easy thing to do. There will surely be opposition and turmoil and there's no guarantee that Spain will succeed. But they're heading in the right direction.
It's a heartening story to see a nation on the precipice decide to walk back from the cliff instead of jump. Up until now, socialist states from all over — from Venezuela to Greece — have always resorted to blaming others when the money ran out.
Other nations should take a look at Spain's responsible response and ask themselves if they want to follow the example of Greece into the black hole of debt or suck it up and find the balls to take action like Spain. Sooner or later, they will have to.
As they say, "socialism works great until you run out of other people's money".
Meanwhile, in the USA:
Thursday, May 13, 2010
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
It doesn't make sense to anyone with the fiscal experience of running a household budget. But that's exactly what the world's leaders are proposing. Terence Corcoran writes in the Financial Post
The great muddle of Keynesian economics is crashing in on statists everywhere. The spending that was supposed to save Europe and the world economy is driving it to ruin. The Keynesian economists and forecasters who promised it would work and were plucking "green shoots" out of the economic desert failed to see the debt crisis rolling up behind them. As Peter Foster wrote on this page last week, the world is in the grip of Keynesian contagion, not the private or capitalist meltdown so many of the G20 leadership blamed when the crisis first struck.This obsession with Keynesian economics will bring us nothing but economic disaster. Seriously. Are there any leaders willing to follow the Hayek school of thought?
Here's an amusing yet brilliant video comparing Hayek vs. Keynes plus analysis from mises.org:
On a more serious note, an interview with Freiderich Hayek:
Climategate has taken such a toll on the global warming agenda that alarmists are taking a new tact. Academics urge radical new approach to climate change:
The UN process has failed, they argue, and a global approach concentrating on CO2 cuts will never work.All this stems from a group of academics who have issued a paper, called the Hartwell Paper with this surprising admission (emphasis added):
They urge instead the use of carbon tax revenue to develop technologies that can supply clean energy to everyone.
The paper says that the outcome of December's UN climate summit, plus the "ClimateGate" affair and inaccuracies within the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 2007 report, means "the legitimacy of the institutions of climate policy and science are no longer assured".They are advocating a new, non-United Nations approach towards "decarbonisation", which not surprisingly contains a "carbon tax" aimed at developing new "green" energy technologies while concentrating on short term reduction in carbon emissions.
So, successfully tackling climate change initially means re-framing the issue.
In an article for the BBC's Green Room series, another of the authors, Mike Hulme, writes: "Climate change has been represented as a conventional environmental 'problem' that is capable of being 'solved'.
"It is neither of these. Yet this framing has locked the world into the rigid agenda that brought us to the dead end of Kyoto, with no evidence of any discernable acceleration of decarbonisation whatsoever."
Division in the ranks? Not all alarmists think this is such a good idea.
"The paper's focus away from CO2 is misguided, short-sighted and probably wrong," said Bill Hare from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research in Germany.The alarmists can regroup and reframe the issue all they want. Their problem is their junk science has been revealed and they no longer enjoy the blind faith following of the public in general.
We have all become skeptics.
And we have no appetite to commit a major portion of our economy to try to solve a problem that no one can prove exists.