America

When white supremacist extremist narratives get torched by reality

What the mainstream media wanted you to believe – white supremacy, violence, far right extremists and militia groups.

What actually happened is contained in the video below and the 1 min 50 sec mark will have you in stitches over the dig at identity politics. One could almost be forgiven for thinking the mainstream media was disappointed that the rally didn’t turn ugly.

You be the judge.

Central banks are climate change experts now. If only they possessed such skill in their core competency

Are these people for real? Does the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) truly believe that world’s central banks will become “climate rescuers of last resort”? Do we really want our central banks to be more proactive in pushing governments toward a greener economy by suggesting a carbon tax as “first-best solution“? The problem with central bankers is that every problem looks like a nail when they only have a hammer in the toolkit.

First, on what level do central banks have a clue about climate change? If they had even the foggiest notion about the science they would never have embarked on a set of reckless monetary policy measures that created the very conditions for excessive debt, mal-investment and over-consumption which they now seek to punish us for via the adoption of a carbon tax.

We should not forget the almost $300 trillion of global debt now racked up thanks to abnormally low interest rates. It is politically expedient to run budget deficits too because central banks are only too happy to keep (near) ZIRP or NIRP which makes servicing ballooning deficits appear almost perpetually affordable with short term focused politicians. It is but a figment of their imagination.

How easy it is to sound the alarm on climate change to mask the policy blunders of the last two decades. It would be nice if we could believe they possessed expertise in their mandated role before embarking into a field they have no sound base to work from. It is a dangerous distraction.

It is worth citing a few examples of the record of central banks around the world since GFC.

In 2018, the US Fed stopped reporting changes in the balance sheet. It did this to prevent spooking the markets over tapering. It reminds FNF Media of the day Bernanke’s Fed announced it would no longer report M3 money supply a year before the financial markets headed into the GFC. Why is there a need for a lack of transparency if it wishes to instill market confidence via its policy settings?

Has the Fed reflected on the fact that over half of listed corporates have a credit rating of BBB or below? Ford Motor Co’s credit rating was downgraded by Moody’s to junk. $84bn worth of debt now no longer investment grade. It will be the first of many Fortune 500s to fall foul to this reality. In 2008, there was around $800bn of BBB status credit. That number exceeds $3.186 trillion today. Brought to you courtesy of low interest rates.

The Bank of Japan (BoJ) is now responsible for 60% of all ETF market ownership. Latest reports confirm the Bank of Japan (BoJ) has now become a top 10 shareholder in almost 50% of listed stocks. In a sense, we have a trend which threatens to turn Japan’s largest businesses into quasi-state-owned enterprises (SoE) by the back door. The BoJ now owns $250bn of listed Japanese equities. It is the top shareholder in household Japanese brands such as Omron, Nidec and Fanuc. At current investment rates, the BoJ is set to own $400bn worth of the market by 2020-end.

The BoJ’s manipulation of the JGB market caused several of the major Japanese banks to hand back their trading licenses because they served no purpose anymore given the central bank’s manipulation.

The ECB has dropped the ball in Europe. Jonathan Rochford of Narrowroad Capital wrote,

Many European banks have failed to use the last decade to materially de-risk. The most obvious outworking of this is that European banks continue to receive taxpayer funded bailouts, with Germany’s NordLB and Italy’s Banca Popolare di Bari both receiving lifelines this monthOne final issue that lurks particularly amongst European banks is their gaming of capital ratios. European banks have become masters of finding assets that require little risk capital but can generate a decent margin. Government debt from Italy is one example, with pressure now being put on the ECB to allow for unlimited purchases of Greek government debt. This would substantially increase the already significant “doom loop” risk. This risk arises from the potential for a default on government debt to bankrupt the banks, and the converse situation where failing banks look for a taxpayer bailout and bankrupt the country.

The list goes on and on. Central banks are in no position to lecture the rest of us on anything given their command of their core competence remains so flawed.

Global money velocity has been declining for two decades. Every dollar printed creates an ever shrinking fraction of GDP impact. Yet all we did was double down on all the failed measures that led us into the GFC

What we do know is that the BIS has sought the advice of literature professors to come up with the phrase that climate change presented a “colossal and potentially irreversible risk of staggering complexity.”

Really?

It is easy for the BIS to shout that a “green swan” event could send us into the financial abyss. However the reality is that dreadful stewardship of monetary conditions has set us up for a huge fall. Not a bushfire, storm or flood. Perhaps we might view a green swan event as wishful thinking by central banks because it would allow them to absolve themselves of all responsibility in getting us into this mess in the first place. They want to see themselves as saviors, not culprits.

Rochford sums up central banks brilliantly with this comment,

When it comes to central banks, I would prefer to believe it is a combination of groupthink, an unwillingness to take career risk by speaking the truth and a willingness to either ignore or disregard counter evidence that has resulted in the detrimental decisions since the financial crisis. However, the increasing amount of evidence, often produced by central banks themselves, points to central banks being more culpable than gullible.

So given this condition why on earth are we paying any attention to their prescriptions on saving the planet? When they quit the excuses and fess up that the last two decades of monetary policy has failed to fix the excesses built in the system then we might lend an ear. Until then they join the list of government agencies who don’t want to be caught out not being in line with the settled politics. Truly sick.

50 years of Davoz. The Global Shapers will be the rope the Multistakeholders use to hang the rest of us with

Davos is upon us. That event where the world’s elite congregate via private jet and helicopter transport to tell the rest of us to reconsider our use of a second hand SUV to take the kids to soccer practice for the sake of the planet.

This event marks 50 years. What started as a good idea is now nothing more than a networking event for crony capitalists looking to exploit gutless governments into backing their schemes and ridiculing those that don’t sign up for multi-million dollar memberships.

We should applaud the World Economic Forum (WEF) for helping perpetuate the culture of systemically brainwashing our youth.

In the 2020 Global Risks report, we get the following table which highlights adults (‘Multistakeholders’) and the youth (‘Global Shapers’). Who knew that environmental issues took the Top 5 positions among the kids? Privacy be damned. Adults were more concerned with politics and trade wars. Hint hint President Trump.

The long term outlook produced even more drama. The adults seem to have appeased the kids on climate but their private jet powered life styles at the very least mention global governance failure and the risk of asset bubbles popping.

The youth on the other hand ramped up the global warming rhetoric to 11. The Top 6 concerns are climate and #8 turns out to be about climate refugees. That’s the result of a Marxist education, one that NZ is only too proud to boast about. Forget rational debate to engage kids on how to see two sides of an argument. They will be admonished for speaking out against the orthodoxy. Or doxxed on social media. Or both. Is it any wonder we have a mental health crisis?

Although it is worth mentioning that the deteriorating global economic fundamentals highlighted in the same report risk handing the kids their ideal utopia by way of a deep recession thanks to excessive global debt levels and low interest rates. It is unlikely these self-entitled ‘Global Shapers’ have ever contemplated, much less lived through such an outcome with all of their earth ending hysteria. Best tell them that if they pursue their dream of 100% renewables and zero carbon emissions they can bask in the shared misery of having let their teachers blindly mislead them by never challenging them on anything. Experience is a hard teacher. They’ll get the test first and the lesson afterwards. But such reality will be too late and take decades to fix.

Perhaps these ‘Global Shapers’ would do well to study the reasons why inequality and social upheaval will continue to grow if the world pursues the barking mad drive to decarbonise the world. The report even makes a point to talk of the disruption in France by the yellow vests. It noted,

In France, for example, the persistence of the “gilets jaunes” movement had caused businesses more than US$11.4 billion in losses by December 2019 and complicated the government’s plans for economic revival.

The yellow vests are protesting over regulation and climate related taxes.

Under the chapter of ’10 years left’, we got the following passage which is full of untruths as to beggar belief.

Governments, markets and, in an increasing number of societies, voters are awakening to the urgent realities of climate change—it is striking harder and more rapidly than many expected. The last five years are on track to be the warmest on record. Climate-related natural disasters such as hurricanes, droughts and wildfires are becoming more intense and more frequent, reportedly now averaging a disaster a week. Polar ice is melting more quickly than anticipated, with drastic implications for sea levels and coastal populations. Severe weather is worsening: the last year witnessed unprecedented wildfires and devasting storms across the globe, sea ice loss in the Arctic and record-breaking heatwaves in Europe.”

Yet how was it that Queenslanders voted to keep the incumbent government in power because of its support for a coal mine? Why is China committing to 300-500 new coal-fired power plants?

How is it that the UN has reported categorically that it has ‘low confidence’ on any shift in the behaviour of natural disasters? In the UNIPCC’s March 2018 report on weather extremes with respect to anthropogenic induced global warming) it says,

“…There is low confidence in observed trends in small-scale phenomena such as tornadoes and hail because of data inhomogeneities and inadequacies in monitoring systemsin some regions droughts have become less frequent, less intense, or shorter, for example, in central North America and northwestern Australia. There is limited to medium evidence available to assess climate-driven observed changes in the magnitude and frequency of floodslow confidence for the attribution of any detectable changes in tropical cyclone activity to anthropogenic influences..low confidence in projections of changes in extreme winds.. low confidence in projections of changes in monsoonslow confidence in wave height projections…overall low confidence because of inconsistent projections of drought changes…low confidencein projected future changes in dust storms…low confidence in projections of an anthropogenic effect on phenomena such as shallow landslides.”

Where is the evidence of 10s of millions of climate refugees fleeing rising sea levels an coastal populations?

Virginie K. E. Duvat of the Institut du Littoral et de l’Environnement, University of la Rochelle-CNRS, La Rochelle sponsored by the French National Research Agency; French Ministry of Environment, Energy and Oceans (MEEM) wrote.

Analysis “using tide gauges and satellites showed 30 Pacific and Indian Ocean atolls including 709 islands, revealed that no atoll lost land area and that 88.6% of islands were either stable or increased in area, while only 11.4% contracted.

This confirms a 2010 study by Webb & Kench which revealed,

that 86% of islands remained stable (43%) or increased in area (43%) over the timeframe of analysis. Largest decadal rates of increase in island area range between 0.1 to 5.6 ha. Only 14% of study islands exhibited a net reduction in island area. Despite small net changes in area, islands exhibited larger gross changes.

There is even reference to properties sold in Florida and the risk they become uninsurable. Then why is the Florida house price index at record highs?

What about record breaking cold waves in Europe and Canada? Unprecedented wildfires and storms? Not according to the data.

Unprecedented media sensationalism more like it.

One comment made in the report was the fact that 14x more women die than men during natural disasters. Is this proof there are only two biological genders or are the studies on non-binary deaths during disasters incomplete? This may have to be a separate break out session.

The report also issues this stark warning.

Aside from a number of vanguard first-mover champions, most companies, too, appear ill-equipped to address climate risk.

Ill-equipped or paying lip service?

Take Josh Bayliss, CEO of Virgin Group. He said,

“It’s definitely true that right now every one of us should think hard about whether or not we need to take a flight.”

Why doesn’t he close down the airlines in the portfolio? Instead of waiting for his customers to grow a conscience and do the right thing why not force their choice? The obvious answer is that it’s hypocritical.

Yet even our own ASIC feels the need to force the minds of corporates to deal with climate change. Forget the data that shows reporting on the subject has collapsed since 2011 from an already low level because the free market mechanism reveals that pricing to offset such fears simply don’t exist in any meaningful way. The regulator’s wish to enforce reporting only proves it needs to construct a narrative to ward off a problem that doesn’t rate much of mention other than virtue signaling.

Perhaps this urgency to get regulators to pressure corporate leaders showed up with this snippet in the WEF report,

In the World Economic Forum’s survey of business leaders, none of the top 10 risks globally are environmental, suggesting a critical blind spot…industry partners of the World Economic Forum ranked environmental risks higher than business leaders surveyed more broadly…Overall, lack of consistent awareness-raising among business leaders may create first-mover advantages for some, but it also potentially demonstrates the much more concerning overarching risk: that many businesses may not be planning for the physical and financial risks that climate change may have on their activities and across their value chains.

So in plain English that says that the majority of corporates that don’t pay into the WEF’s Davos slush fund are evil and if we can get the governments of the world to force change, its members will be the first beneficiaries of any new climate legislation.

Yes, Global Shapers are merely the rope that the Multistakeholders will use to lynch the rest of us with.

Nancy Pelosi’s weird theatrics

Apart from her smiles during the somber occasion, this video highlights Nancy Pelosi using one pen per letter of her name. The theatrics. It is the sort of thing one might expect someone with dementia to do in a nursing home.

It turns out she intends to hand out the pens as a special gift to invited guests of the solemn ceremony. Who wouldn’t want one? Perhaps she could auction them off to fund the Democrats 2020 campaign?!

Note the hashtag affixed to the front of the table. She didn’t waste any opportunity to get social media attention. At the very least it was in tune with the rest of the low grade behaviours displayed during the impeachment hearings – from live-streaming a golf tournament, wearing a batgirl costume and having a Stanford law professor act like a petulant child.

God bless America.

Is this why impeachment took so long to send to the Senate?

Nancy Pelosi was waiting on those customized pens to arrive from China.

Nobility in Iran’s Honesty? Not so fast.

It is one thing to admit a mistake. However the mainstream media is borderline complimenting Iran for its honesty, The Iranians initially denied shooting down the Ukrainian passenger jet by suggesting it had mentioned technical troubles with the tower. Then Iran tried to defend the use of bulldozers at the crash site and wasn’t looking to release the black boxes. Now the Revolutionary Guard admitted it to using a surface-to-air (SAM) missile to shoot it down by mistake.

However we are talking about the elite battle hardened fighting force of the Iranians. Not some bunch of cadets with the keys to toys they haven’t have sufficient training on. Let’s run through the logic of what we know.

First, no aircraft safety investigation body would ever dream of bulldozing a forensics site if they wished to find the root cause. Plane crashes are crimes scenes even when there is no foul play. Was it fatigue, engine failure, mid-air collision? Did the plane pancake? How far is the distance between nose and tail as well as wingtips? Did it disintegrate mid air? Black boxes tell only so much. Initially the Iranians weren’t looking to release them but now are allowing the French BEA to analyze the data.

Flight PS752 took off a bit after 6am. It would have been dawn. Flight 752’s strobe lights would have been visible at just under 8000ft provided there was no cloud cover. The speed during the climb would have been around 275kts. Cruise missiles don’t have strobe lights.

Audibly a 40 meter long Boeing 737-800 commercial jet has an engine speed during climb of c.5,000rpm (fan speed). It has a distinctive thrum. A 5.6 meter Tomahawk cruise missile turbofan shreiks at 36,000rpm. They aren’t built for durability. So a military spec missile engine spinning 7x faster than a CFM-56 turbofan sounds completely different. That alone would be an instant sign to a trained military of what the threat was.

US Tomahawk cruise missiles fly at sub 200ft. That is under two hundred feet. They are terrain hugging weapons. They travel at 550mph. Were the Tomahawk flying past a missile battery it would be simple to pick up visually.

The Iranians use state of the art Russian surface-to-air missiles (SAM). Russia makes the best SAM systems worldwide. Not only in accuracy terms but in detection terms. Tor or S-300 systems would be able to determine altitude, speed and size with a reasonable degree of accuracy.

SAM’s are designed to explode before the target, showering it with high velocity shrapnel like a shotgun to ensure the speeding target is essentially shredded. It does not detonate on contact. The SAM systems are designed to slow down as it approaches the target to inflict the maximum damage.

We do not need to mention that the loss of 176 lives is a tragedy. However the blame is squarely at the feet of the Revolutionary Guard. It is uncanny how the mainstream media is painting the admission by the Iranians as some sort of noble gesture. Does Trump killing such a senior target make for a viable excuse to shoot down a passenger jet?

If Trump hadn’t had Solameini assassinated then this tragedy wouldn’t have occurred is the mainstream media logic. How quickly the mainstream media forget that Obama conducted 542 drone strikes without the approval of Congress which killed nearly 3,800 people including 324 civilians. Is it fair to pin the Malaysian MH17 Boeing 777 shot down over Ukraine at his feet? Of course not.

How long should Trump have ignored oil tankers being attacked by Iran in the Gulf in May 2019? Should he have forgotten the US drone shot down by Iran in June 2019? The attack on a Saudi state run oil company in September 2019? The attacks in US military bases in Iraq in December 2019? Storming the US Embassy in Iraq in the same month? The death of a US contractor? At what point did the US allow Iran to continue without retaliation?

It is not to say the assassination of a ruthless terrorist was the most optimal outcome from a geopolitical stability perspective but the constant Iranian provocation was bound to result in a counter punch at some stage.

Now there is admission of guilt, this isn’t a sign of a noble gesture. It is a stuff up of epic proportions. There is no doubt that Iran would have been in maximum vigilance mode after Solemeini’s death. Aerial surveillance would have been on high alert. The most experienced crews would have manned the SAM sites. There can be no doubt it was a deliberate strike. Fighter jets wouldn’t have been flying at subsonic speeds over Iraq if they were intent on bombing targets. A passenger jet sounds different to a cruise missile.

Back in 1988, the USS Vincennes shot down Iran Air flight 655 over the Strait of Hormuz, misidentifying it as an enemy fighter jet. The Soviets shot down KAL 007 in 1983 for supposedly straying into USSR airspace. An Israeli flight out of Kenya narrowly escaped being shot down by a shoulder mounted SAM in 2002.

The sacrifices Hollywood makes for the rest of us

You have to hand it to Hollywood celebs for the hardened sacrifices they make for the rest of us. From vegan menus to wearing the same outfits.

When will someone introduce a celebrity carbon calculator so these pampered nobodies can tabulate their quest to out virtue signal each other?

Out of touch, much?