Category Archives: China

Cyber War

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NSA may have cut back on stealing your data but China hasn’t. Chinese government operatives continue to hack U.S. government, university, and corporate networks. A WSJ editorial titled The Chinese Have Your Numbers claims they made off with the personnel files of 2.1 million fed employees. Could be you’ve earned a purple heart in a cyber war and don’t know it.

Silly Shirt Season

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World leaders showed up at the APEC summit in China last week wearing silly shirts. It’s an annual tradition to distract us from the silly stuff they do.

China is filled with with smog. You can taste the PM 2.5 – little particles that go into your lungs to kill you. So what was the signing event of the week? A deal to reduce the carbon dioxide you exhale to cough those little buggers out. And the Chinese don’t even have to do it until 2030. If they’re still alive.

Silly Season

The agreement is for America to set the example by cutting co2 emissions right away. The really silly part is that it’s a deal about nothing. Carbon dioxide emissions in the United States have been falling due to increased use of natural gas and a decreased role for industrial production. We’re expected to reach the goals of  the agreement by doing nothing. China will reach peak population growth by 2030 and it’s co2 emissions are expected to fall naturally by then too.

The other big news of the week was the revelation that our governing elites lack a positive attitude toward us voters. They think we’re stupid. Ok, so maybe they’re right. It’s certainly not a problem shared by China – a situation much admired by Tom Friedman of the NYT.

Carbon Cuts

140610carbonPresident Obama made another end run around Congress in order to end the basis of all life on earth.

A 30% cut in carbon emissions from 2005 levels and must be achieved by 2030, or else.

Not a big deal says Robert Samuelson. Carbon emissions are already declining without EPA orders.

By 2012, CO2 emissions had already dropped to 2,023 million metric tons, a decline of 379 million metric tons. That’s 53 percent of the 2030 target. All of this has occurred without federal regulation of greenhouse gases.

The proposal’s real significance is that, if blessed by the courts, it would create a complex and costly regulatory apparatus that, in the future, might govern much of the U.S. economy.

China and India will more than make up for any U.S. cuts. But if you’re going to do it, Samuelson thinks the best way to reduce carbon emissions is to tax them.

If you want less of something, tax it… But there’s little public taste for this. Indeed, support for any anti-global warming legislation is weak. In 2009, when Democrats controlled the House and Senate, they could not pass a bill.

So Obama resorted to regulatory fiat: The EPA sets emission limits under the Clean Air Act. The proposal is hugely complex. Each state receives a target that can be met in many ways, subject to agency approval. This will be challenged in court and, if upheld, will strain the EPA’s administrative capacity. Winners and losers would be determined as much by political pressures as by market forces. It would be a bonanza for lawyers, lobbyists, economic consultants and public relations advisers. Whether it would affect the world’s climate is more questionable.

 

Krauthammer says the whole thing shows Obama is operating under his own constitution.

Currency Manipulators


President Obama and Governor Romney discuss China and United States currency manipulation.

There’s not much daylight between the candidates when it comes to protectionism either. Romney complained about Chinese currency manipulation in the debate. Obama one upped him by bragging …”Now with respect to what we’ve done with China already, U.S. exports have doubled since I came into office, to China and actually currencies are at their most advantageous point for U.S. exporters since 1993″.

Here is James Grant, of Grants Interest Rate Observer, on Bloomberg last August saying the Fed needs to get out of the central planning business.

Udate: Here’s Mary Anastasia O’Grady in Mondays WSJ on Ben Bernanke: Currency Manipulator.

Daylight


Cartoon depicts how Romney and Obama were often in agreement about foreign policy during the debate. Romney embraces Obama

Governor Romney followed President Obama’s lead on foreign policy  during much of the presidential debate Monday night. The president seemed dismayed by this, especially when Mitt stepped on his toes on the issue of “daylight between the U.S. and Israel”.

I was dismayed to miss Monday Night Football and game 7 of the NLCS.