Well, it looks like the mainstream media is taking a little note of the rising food prices. CBS posted the Michael Klare article I linked to yesterday. CNBC yesterday had several segments on the subject but mainly dealing with how investors can profit from it. I wonder how many more outlets will suddenly find the topic. CNBC is continuing the theme today. They showed an interesting map showing the level of price increases and it is most severe in the developing world. They explained away the severity of food inflation in Australia with the floods and remarked that the situation is transitory. Problem--the floods come after a severe multi-year drought and parts of the country is still in severe drought.
The State of the Union is tonight and the comments have been coming fast and furious on what people think Obama might say. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor panned the leak which claimed that Obama is going to propose 'investment' and dismissed it as a Democratic euphemism for more spending. He claims Republicans want 'real' spending cuts but of course failed to specify what he meant by that. It is so nice to snipe without proposing anything you might be criticized for. The problem is that we really do need to make some investments in several areas. CNBC yesterday had a segment on infrastructure and noted that our systems of river transport, airports, public transit and others are woefully outdated. On the topic of airports the newsreader noted that air traffic has increased by 7% but we have not invested in new airports or runways. In Chicago, the city government has been trying to get a couple of new runways built at O'Hara and have been stymied at every turn. They just got the land issues settled after going through several law suits but now the airlines are balking because they have to contribute to the funding. They want the new facilities but they don't want to pay anything for it. We haven't found a way to agree on much of anything else and I am not optimistic that we will agree on what an 'investment' should be.