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Here's a good way to reduce unemployment: buy all of those foreclosured houses at 50 cents on the dollar (hell, Fannie and Freddie "own" them already, might as well speed it up); hire the unemployed construction workers to level these houses. Presto, you have just taken years worth of inventory out of the market, cleaned up the bank's balance sheets, and gotten some money into people's pockets (who will actually spend it instead of giving it to banks to earn 25bps at the Fed).
And then what do you do with the workers who just knocked down the houses? Once they are done, they have no work to do. Should they build new houses then? Well then what was the point of knocking down the old ones?
This is Bastiat's broken window fallacy, or cash for clunkers. You are paying people to destroy a perfectly productive and useful asset, in this case a home (notwithstanding those that are uninhabitable, but I don't think that's what you're getting at here). This is hardly economic progress and does nothing to fix the problem in the long-term.
The only way to make green energy plausible is to have $200+ crude prices ... Oh maybe green will be there sooner than you think. Windmills in Washington may be a great play ... hot air is "drivin those turbines" even faster these days. Obama alone could light a city.
Global warming a fraud? Yep.
350 milion years ago it was called the Carboniferous Period for good reason. 3500-5000 CO2 ppm then, and is only 386 ppm CO2 now. We are in a period of all time low CO2 in the planet's history.
In 1989 the greenies ditched 75% of the 6000 global thermometer data -- all from the cold areas of the planet. Viola -- in 1990 they declared there was global warming without resetting the baseline average. The cheating only got far more blatant and worse from there.
We all want a nice planet but if the greenies are really serious they will go to China, Russia and Brazil and bug them. Their efforts to shut down the West are counterproductive and only forces exploration go to the dirtiest places.
We have the cleanest regulations, if we shut down, what was the point? Greenies are merely proving they are punitive to the West for nefarious reasons.
I have a problem with this comment:
"Meanwhile, the economic structure of the U.S. has been evolving from manufacturing-based into one that’s high tech and services oriented (for example, Info Tech, unconventional oil and gas, digital oilfield, and defense).
This statement is not only wrong but it has the situation backwards. The evolution to a "service economy" is not a natural evolution. It is only happening because the manufacturing sector has been hurt by increasingly high taxes over a 5 decade period. The only game left is the service sector. Unfortunately, the nation cannot survive with only the service sector. The service sector, whether it be hamburger flippers or Wall Street money managers, simply plays with old money which was accumulated during the manufacturing era. Manufacturing is what the economy was built on because it has the highest value added.
And since when does the economy depend on unconventional energy resources? Don't the jobs in conventional energy resources count?
It should be a red flag if we are relying on politicians to determine where the economy should grow. What are we, communists?
As someone who works in the energy sector, it continually amazes me how otherwise "libertarian" government-spending critics suddenly find themselves convinced that government can make it happen here. The Feds can screw up absolutely everything else, from taxes to the DMV to health care but, by God, those genius Congressmen are right as rain in nationalizing the allocation of capital in the energy sector.
Renewable energy, were it actually cost-competitive instead of 5-10x more than natural gas, for example (a domestic product btw), would be a nice luxury. Instead, it places the equivalent of a huge, economy-crushing tax on tax- and rate-payers (and they both pay). Massively counterproductive... if you can't understand how this works, forget (just for a moment) the atmosphere and imagine building a bunch of solar+wind+storage so you can keep the lights on all the time, or build one natural gas plant to generate the same exact power ... and then tax people so 1000 people can be paid to dig and refill holes every year.
Green energy jobs are a fraud, like the global warming fraud.
Spain is the failed and discredited socialist central planning model for all of this, insofar as they are 7 years ahead of us and it's been a disaster. Yet, greenies insist we continue down this cul de sac.
Our central planners have tried to hide Spain's green failure the same way they've tried to hide the failure of the European socialist model. It's all collapsing in the EU despite decades of enjoying the US military subsidy.
The global warming scare and energy tax is a desperate attempt at propping up the deficit spending model another generation. Drill baby, before it's too late.
I too am a global warming denyer and will not be conscripted as an acolyte to the gaia cult. Instead of government subsidies for pork filled cash cows in the form of earmakrs for votes we should drill in the gulf and anwar and all over the place. I like incandescent light bulbs, and I don't like the mercury filled flourescent bulbs.
This is exactly the short-sighted mentality that got us here in the first place, IMHO. The amount of decent paying jobs created by alternative energy development is just an added benefit to the much more important benefit of making our economic systems less dependent on fossil fuels (in the short term!)and preventing climate change.
"I have not even begun to discuss the supply security and environmental risks associated with rare earth metals -- of which China controls 97% of the world's supply. These are essential and have no substitution in many alternative and renewable energy sources."
As opposed to the supply security and environmental risks associated with fossil fuels?? Please.
We could keep misallocating resources into industries in their growth & mature phases, and then watch that capital disappear just as it is doing in the industry which grew the fastest in recent years - finance.
Or... we could enter our own mature phase and start thinking about long-term sustainability, which would also lead to security and some jobs.
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