Friday, December 5, 2014

One hundred trillion dollars

That's the official position of this blog and has been since day one.  We believe that until someone understands that doing anything meaningful about climate change will require a capital investment of at least this size, that person cannot be serious about a matter of life and death.

So if you have not read Tony's post below, read it —carefully.  And if you have read it—read it again.  It's time for the grown-ups to take over the discussion.  The facts are on our side.  Any responsible adult who can count should be a potential supporter of solutions that actually match the size and scope of the problem.

Thank you Tony.


  1. The One Hundred Trillion Dollar Solution: I am reminded of Everett Dirksen...the famous (deceased) republican from Illinois (alumnus of the University of Minnesota) who famously once or twice said, about money: "A million dollars here, a million dollars there, pretty soon you're talking about real money!"

    He is also famous for having once (or twice) said, "There is no force so powerful, as an idea whose time has come."

    Which brings us of course to your point that we should, finally, be talking about "real money," or "fiat money" as the case may be...but either way you can sign me up. I'm a believer!

    I hadn't noticed that yesterday's post was by Tony. (I only got as far as his second link to Jacobson and Delucchi, which was too technical for me to follow but not that I doubt any of it at all...I do believe in science and technicalities...I'm just, mostly, looking for action and a clear course to results!)

    So I moved on to "New Economic Perspectives," where the featured blogger of the day was Joe Firestone, who espoused similar views to Tony's last link, "Who controls, and who benefits, from the creation and allocation of new money and credit?" (Where Joe would have us mint a One Hundred Trillion dollar coin...!)

    I think I am now all caught up, thank you, thank you (both of you) very much. "Let's go get 'em!" Maybe momentum is building?

  2. PS: The blogger today at "New Economic Perspectives" is William K. Black, who you linked to on November 27th... His message today (again too technical for me but not that I doubt a word of it) is that "The ECB and the NYT is Obsessed with Talking about Deflation," and it isn't helping.

    It's a long, technical, article:

    "In the last two days, the New York Times’ website has published a blizzard of six articles about deflation, several of them focusing on the European Central Bank (ECB). Collectively, these articles mention the word “deflation” seven times and the word “inflation” 75 times. Collectively, the same articles contain the word “unemployment” 10 times and the word “unemployed” zero times. “Unemployment” is the word one uses to provide a statistic. “Unemployed” is the word one uses to discuss who is harmed and how they are harmed because they lose their ability to find a job."

    It ends with:

    "It was inevitable that we would be well below the inflation target during the worst of the Great Recession (of the past 6+ years), but the failure to meet the target in (these) later years indicates that we could have substantially improved our recovery without creating any undesirable inflation had we adopted and maintained adequate fiscal stimulus. Even in the U.S., despite aggressive monetary policy, including aggressive QE, we have not reached our inflation target because we prematurely ended meaningful (but always far too small) federal fiscal stimulus."

    If anyone can help us in the days ahead from a "financial perspective" it might be William K. Black.

  3. Contrary to what the politicians tell us, money is no object, since the US dollar is fiat and government can always print more of it.

    The real issue is resources. Wanna build more dams? Then you'll need concrete, the manufacture of which produces massive greenhouse gases. Want build wind turbines? Then you'll need steel, the manufacture of which produces greenhouse gases. Even manufacturing solar panels produces greenhouse gases. Dams kill salmon, and those solar farms in Nevada kill birds.

    So it's not that simple.

    If you ask me, the elephant in the room that we're ignoring is population. We can either reduce our per capita emissions or else we can reduce our head count. I'm not suggesting that we start hauling people to gas chambers, but it's irresponsible not to manage the population. A one child policy is the least we should do.

    1. I agree with you about population. The numbers there are just frightening. There are organizations that are WAY ahead of me on the subject so even though I am quite concerned, I will stick to subjects I know better.

      As for resources, in a world that already builds 70 million motor vehicles a year, my guess is that there are plenty of resources that could be redeployed for better uses. And yes, we will be using carbon fuels to build the new infrastructure. Hopefully, as new power sources come online, the problem will take care of itself.

      As for me, the prospect of actually building a solar-powered society is so exciting, there have been times I actually want leap for joy. I get over that pretty rapidly but the idea is still the best I have encountered.