Watch Me Mommy, I’m Driving the Economy

When your view of the banking industry is early 20th century you wind up with these kinds of results. Ben Bernanke just can’t keep his hot hands off the dials driven by a mechanistic view of the economy and banking. We should get him one of those driver toys we give toddlers so they “drive” their car like daddy and tell him it’s hooked up to the economy.  That way we can keep little Benny busy while markets operating with millions of real people actually work without all the manipulation.

Blech

After reading this article about the practice of blading and needling beef to make it more tender, it reminded me of the post a couple of days ago on Salmon.  Again the issue is labeling, that is, informing consumers so they can make informed decisions.  Uniformly, you find organizations oppose this can kind of information sharing.  It’s pathological.  Even if as Vox Day says “most people are idiots.”  We idiots deserve to be treated as adults.

Tax Flight

The rich in France can’t leave fast enough:

And the profile of the fiscal exiles has changed. They’re no longer rich heirs or fifty-year-olds who’d sold their companies, but “young childless entrepreneurs” who wanted “to settle in another country to start up their companies,” according to one of the tax lawyers. And top executives between 40 and 55 were moving with their kids to Brussels or London “to escape” the new taxes.

Entire skill sets were leaving. International companies were “progressively relocating part of their teams abroad,” said le Figaro’s source within the MEDEF. Among them more and more secondary functions, such as human resources or finance—”much less visible and symbolic than relocating headquarters.”

This reminds me of the famous Robert Heinlein quote:

“Throughout history, poverty is the normal condition of man. Advances which permit this norm to be exceeded- here and there, now and then- are the work of an extremely small minority, frequently despised, often condemned, and almost always opposed by all right-thinking people. Whenever this tiny minority is kept from creating, or (as sometimes happens) is driven out of a society, the people then slip back into abject poverty.This is known as ‘bad luck.'”

 

Genetically Modified Salmon

They have cleared the FDA and will be headed to market. I am not a Luddite but this makes me raise an eyebrow.

In its assessment, the FDA said the likelihood that the altered fish could escape containment and reproduce in the wild is “extremely remote.”

What could go wrong?  It’s a fairly safe prediction that in a few short years they will be intermingling with wild stocks.  At a minimum, they should be labeled.  That way people can decide for themselves whether they want to accept the risk.  I am sure they will push back against labeling because, well, it might hurt sales.  Much of nature is optimized to survive in an unstable environment.  Species restricted to highly specialized ecosystems risk extinction under an insult to that ecosystem.  As they modify the wild species via engineering the impact on public health cannot be easily known.  Modern whole grain wheat has a glycemic index exceeding some candy bars and may be contributing factor to excess weight gain some believe. I remain skeptical since the evidence is not overwhelming.  “Moderation in all things” the Victorians preached and it still applies.