Good morning to all of you out there. Let's see if there is anything worth linking to or commenting on out there.
Is anyone really surprised by this story? We are not longer the 'home of the brave and land of the free.' Instead we have traded freedom for security and, as Benjamin Franklin observed, obtained neither.
I notice the headlines are trumpeting the 'new' climate agreement as 'landmark.' I don't see it as 'new.' It is potentially new. For the most part, it appears to me, the delegates agreed to extend the Kyoto Accords for another five years. But neither of the stories I have read so far noted that the U.S. refused to ratify that treaty. The delegates hope to get a new agreement by 2020 that would be binding and have teeth. But other stories I read over the week claim that this year's emissions of greenhouse gasses set records. And that was during a year of only tepid growth at best.
John Mauldin presents a similar assessment on the news out of Europe that they have finally formulated a solution to their debt problems. They still have to hammer out the details and Britain absolutely refuses to go along. Britain is part of the EU but doesn't use the Euro currency. That may be the best decision British politicians ever made. I had a couple of thoughts on Germany's role in this. Germany can dictate terms because it is, at the moment, has the strongest economy in the area. What happens if that changes? Second thought involves the notion that the new arrangement which Mauldin says gives local politicians a way out when they have to impose austere economic measures--their hands are tied by EU regulators. I wonder how long that will last. I just had a thought--perhaps the German moves is Machiavellian with the hope of limiting their financial exposure. This BBC story reports that part of the package is designed to provide euro200 billion. Problem--what countries are strong enough to provide that money??