Archive for the tag “economic crash”

Our economic growth system is reaching limits in a strange way

Gail Tverberg writes: We are experiencing a world economy that seems to be reaching limits, but the symptoms are not what peak oil groups warned about. Instead of high prices and lack of supply, we are facing indirect problems brought on by our high consumption of energy products. I have called it a double pump problem.

Gail Tverberg

Economic growth never seems to be as high as those making forecasts would like it to be. This is a record of recent forecasts by the International Monetary Fund:

Figure 1. World GDP Forecasts by the International Monetary Fund.

Figure 1. World GDP Forecasts by the International Monetary Fund.

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Industrial civilisation can’t wean itself off fossil fuels painlessly

Chris Martenson writes: The data seems to confirm this: Humanity is not going to painlessly wean itself off of fossil fuels. Instead, we will hit some sort of a wall: a food/population crisis, a climate crisis, or a debt/fiscal/economic crisis.  Each of those candidates has its roots in our global societys addition to fossil fuels.

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Chris Martenson: Explaining the chaos in global financial markets

Financial bubbles arise when asset prices inflate above what incomes can sustain. The mathematical reality is that the current over $200 trillion in debt and perhaps another $500 trillion of un(der)funded liabilities really cannot ever be paid back under current terms. In order for these obligations to be reset to a reality-based level, something has to give.

Chris Martenson

Financial markets the world over are increasingly chaotic; either retreating or plunging. Our view remains that there’s a gigantic market crash in the coming future one that has possibly started now.

Our reason for expecting a market crash is simple: Bubbles always burst.
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Why the Greek Tragedy is Just the Opening Act

Sajai Jose

Alexis Tsipras, the first Left Greek Prime Minister. Credit: SpaceShoe/Flickr, CC 2.0.

Alexis Tsipras, the first Left Greek Prime Minister. Credit: SpaceShoe/Flickr, CC 2.0. Cover image of old woman in Athens is also by Spaceshoe

Greece has become the first developed country to default on an International Monetary Fund loan, itself a fraction of a €323 billion national debt equivalent to more than 175% of the country’s GDP.

Responsibility for the crisis has been pinned on, among others, the “Gucci-wearing thieves” of Goldman Sachs, one of the world’s largest investment banks. Whereas, Greece’s creditors, together known as the troika”- the European Central Bank, the International Monetary Fund and other European countries (represented by the EU commission) blames it on Greek profligacy.

In a way, both sides are right, but the question worth asking is why a default by tiny Greece, with a mere 2% of the EU’s population and 1.2% of its GDP, gives the impression of such high stakes riding on it. And if Greece is such a small player in the EU, it’s still smaller in global terms. So what explains the world’s overwhelming interest in Greece? Read more…

News update

If We Release a Small Fraction of Arctic Carbon, Were Fucked: Climatologist
Recently, scientists have made a disturbing discovery in the Arctic Ocean: They saw vast methane plumes escaping from the seafloor, as the Stockholm University put it in a release disclosing the observations. The plume of methane—a potent greenhouse gas that traps heat more powerfully than carbon dioxide, the chief driver of climate change—was unsettling to the scientists.

Heading Toward The Sidewalk
By John Michael Greer, The Archdruid Report
The author, a well-known writer on peak Oil and related topics, argues that another economic crash is imminent in the U.S., this time because the fracking/shale gas bubble is about to burst.

Blame the Environmentalists
By Richard Heinberg, Post Carbon Institute
CEOs of companies engaged in shale gas and tight oil drilling are undoubtedly aware of what’s going on in their own balance sheets, hype is an essential part of their business model.

Why doesnt the long emergency feel like an emergency?
By Kurt Cobb,
In 2006 when James Howard Kunstler published his breakthrough book The Long Emergency, the next two years seemed to vindicate his warning that the oil age was coming to an end with perilous consequences. By autumn the stock market had collapsed and with it the world economy. Oil, too, then collapsed, trading in the mid-$30 range by December as demand for oil fell off a cliff with the economy. It seemed for months that the world was headed for an economic depression.

Transformative Common Sense in Vermont
By Eric Zencey,
Because GDP-based economic development is so wrong-headed, the state of Vermonts commitment to use Genuine Progress Indicator as a yardstick is a matter of common sense; and yet, because GDP-based economic development is so deeply woven into the substance and texture of our political economy, using basic common sense here is a powerfully transformative act.

GDP: The Infinite Planet Indicator
By Eric Zencey,
If economists know GDP is not a measurement of economic well-being, why have they continued using it as a proxy for this?

Some Thoughts On Resilience and Transition
By Saral Sarkar,

Just How Legal Are Seed Libraries?
From the Post Carbon Institute
After the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture cracked down on a community seed library, hundreds of seed libraries in the U.S. are suddenly wondering if they are breaking the law.

Id be happier if I didnt write this stuff!
By Kurt Cobb,
For years my fatherwho is a really great guyhas been telling me that Id be a happier person if I didnt write about all the converging threats bearing down on the human race. Turns out hes right! Heres what a new study said on the matter: Recent evidence suggests that a state of good mental health is associated with biased processing of information that supports a positively skewed view of the future. Depression, on the other hand, is associated with unbiased processing of such information.


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