Morning Report: Strong jobs report

Vital Statistics:

 

Last Change
S&P futures 3340 -3.25
Oil (WTI) 50.38 -0.32
10 year government bond yield 1.61%
30 year fixed rate mortgage 3.68%

 

Stocks are lower this morning as investors sell winners. Bonds and MBS are up.

 

Jobs report data dump:

  • Nonfarm payrolls up 225,000
  • Unemployment rate 3.6%
  • Average hourly earnings up 3.1% annually
  • Labor force participation rate 63.4%
  • Employment-population ratio 61.2%

Overall, a strong report. Certainly payrolls were way above the 158,000 expectation. Construction gained workers, which comports with what we have been hearing from the builders – that they are ramping up for 2020. Wage growth and payroll growth remain strong, and more people are entering the workforce, with the participation rate up and a rise in the employment-population ratio.

 

The NAHB notes that 63 million households are unable to afford a $250,000 home. Interesting stat from the piece: “A previous post discussed the often-cited estimate that a $1,000 increase in the price of a median-priced new home will price 158,857 U.S. households out of the market for the home.  A second post discussed the related estimate that a quarter point increase in the mortgage rate will price out 1.3 million.”

 

On the other side of the spectrum, Redfin notes that luxury home prices are rising again as interest rates fall. “Demand for luxury is improving. That’s showing up primarily in an increase in sales right now, but it’s also putting some slight upward pressure on prices,” said Redfin chief economist Daryl Fairweather. “We’re ending the year in a much better position than we started, which is a good sign for 2020. I expect price growth to return to at least 3% to 5% by spring.”

 

 

73 Responses

  1. James Carville is concerned:

    ““We’re losing our damn minds”: James Carville unloads on the Democratic Party

    Why the longtime Democratic strategist is “scared to death” of the 2020 election.

    By Sean Illing
    Feb 7, 2020, 9:50am EST”

    https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2020/2/7/21123518/trump-2020-election-democratic-party-james-carville

    I’m sure he’ll get the “OK Boomer” treatment. Gotta love this quote though:

    “Falling into despair won’t help anyone, though. I mean, you can curse the darkness or you can light a candle. I’m getting a fucking welding torch. Okay?”

    Liked by 1 person

    • he was early on the “trump can win” train, too.

      Like

      • Because as crazy as he can sound when he’s pimping for his guy, he’s not blind to reality and was always about winning, not wishful thinking.

        Look, the turnout in the Iowa caucus was below what we expected, what we wanted. Trump’s approval rating is probably as high as it’s been. This is very bad. And now it appears the party can’t even count votes. What the hell am I supposed to think?

        But Russia! But “kids in cages”! But “grab them by the pussy”! Phew, I feel better now, Trump will definitely lose after I said those things.

        I don’t know. We just had an election in 2018. We did great. We talked about everything we needed to talk about, and we won. And now it’s like we’re losing our damn minds.

        This is true. And it’s often the hidden price of winning. I think we say the same thing with the Republicans after their 1994 victory–not as quickly, but I think we definitely saw it. They won and eventually took that as a mandate to do whatever they felt like to be politically significant, not to pay attention to the will of their constituents.

        We have candidates on the debate stage talking about open borders and decriminalizing illegal immigration. They’re talking about doing away with nuclear energy and fracking. You’ve got Bernie Sanders talking about letting criminals and terrorists vote from jail cells. It doesn’t matter what you think about any of that, or if there are good arguments — talking about that is not how you win a national election. It’s not how you become a majoritarian party.

        I didn’t realize that Carville was a racist and Nazi. This is very disappointing.

        People will say anything. And first of all, Clinton won the popular vote by almost 3 million. And secondly, the Russians put Jill Stein in front of Clinton’s campaign to depress votes.

        Um. Well, I was with him until that point. And didn’t Jill Stein get more votes in California than just about anywhere? That argument makes no sense. Given Clinton’s 3 million vote victory in the popular came almost entirely from California.

        By framing, repeating, and delivering a coherent, meaningful message that is relevant to people’s lives and having the political skill not to be sucked into every rabbit hole that somebody puts in front of you.

        So Carville is basically saying the Democrats are definitely going to lose, and he wants to make sure he’s called it.

        You know how fucking patronizing that is to people in the South or in the middle of the country? First, LSU has an unusually high graduation rate, but that’s not the point. It’s the goddamn smugness. This is from a guy who lives in New York and serves on the Times editorial board and there’s not a single person he knows that doesn’t pat him on the back for that kind of tweet. He’s so fucking smart.

        Carville is dead right on this. How is it that so many liberals, who would probably agree with Carville on policy point-for-point, can’t see this?

        I think it’s the social media and the dinosaur media bubbles. Pretty much entirely. Carville doesn’t live in them, but most Democrat movers and shakers do.

        Mayor Pete has to demonstrate over the course of a campaign that he can excite and motivate arguably the most important constituents in the Democratic Party: African Americans. These voters are a hell of a lot more important than a bunch of 25-year-olds shouting everyone down on Twitter.

        I think Carville is mentioning Trump’s potentially improved performance among blacks without directly mentioning it. Which is I think the very real possibility that African Americans who might vote for Peter (or might have voted for Booker) will instead vote for Trump if it’s candidate Warren or Sanders.

        That being said, Sean Illing is clearly part of the problem. He suggested that Warren isn’t condescending or arrogant, when she clearly seems that way to me. He also blames the right-wing message for “twisting the Democrats message”–which he doesn’t mention is done by accurately quoting them in full and in context in most cases. Because at this point no twisting has to be done. You don’t need Sarah Palin talking about death panels. Democrats are directly and literally saying “we are coming to get your guns” and “we want open borders” and “we need to pay reparations to African Americans” and “you need to pay higher taxes”.

        Like

    • the russians caused jill stein to take away votes from hillary? it really is anything that isn’t straight-down-the-middle-of-the-fairway DNC wishes is by definition russia’s fault..

      Liked by 1 person

      • What astonishes me is how they don’t get how this sounds to almost everybody who isn’t suffering from Trump Derangement Syndrome. And this includes a whole lot of independents and swing voters and probably a lot of historically non-voters.

        They sound like you’re crazy uncle who says people are sneaking in his room every night to try and kill him.

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        • KW:

          They sound like you’re crazy uncle who says people are sneaking in his room every night to try and kill him.

          He doesn’t say that anymore. Found him dead in his bed one morning. Still not sure what happened.

          Liked by 1 person

  2. Serious question, is anybody outside of media surprised by this?

    It seems obvious and was predicted by most righties

    Like

    • No. And there is recent historic precedent. It’s not like these people weren’t around for Clinton’s impeachment, and the midterms that happened afterwards–which were ahistorical, in that the Democrats gained seats. Admittedly, the Republicans had more to lose than usual, but it proved atypical. If impeachment had been at all good for the party doing the impeaching, that shouldn’t have happened.

      This is different, in that it’s happening first term and after the first midterms, but I would expect the effect to be the same ultimately.

      The Democrats have nobody to blame except themselves for any backlash. This was not the way to get Trump.

      The way to get Trump would have been to have some exciting, liberal give-away legislation proposed that Trump would veto, and then run on: we tried to give you this, and Trump said no. And have the election be about Trump denying the American public free college education or free cancer care or free this or free that. Because Trump doesn’t want people to have nice things.

      But no. They did this. It makes no sense.

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  3. I sort of like this girl’s predictions re 2020.

    https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2020/02/06/rachel-bitecofer-profile-election-forecasting-new-theory-108944?utm_source=pocket-newtab

    “If you want to win the election, you have to be able to frame your candidacy in a way that reminds voters that Trump is an abnormality that must be excised,” she said. “People always say in campaigns, ‘America’s future is on the ballot.’ Well this time you will have to convince them that it really is.”

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  4. It amuses me that the left thinks this is bad.

    https://m.dailykos.com/stories/1917238

    Like

  5. Let the hate flow through you

    Like

  6. It’s only February and we’ve already hit peak 2020:

    “Why I Quit Being a Climate Activist
    The climate movement is overwhelmingly white. So I walked away.
    by Karin Louise Hermes
    Feb 6 2020, 10:38am”

    https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/g5x5ny/why-i-quit-being-a-climate-activist

    Clearly an existential threat. Clearly.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Interestingly enough, as most of you might remember my youngest daughter works in the oil industry………….guess what? They KNOW global warming is real and they’re actually addressing the issue. She’s on a team to be carbon neutral in this decade and they’re working to sequester CO2 as we speak!

    Like

    • Do you think their desire for carbon neutrality is due to true belief or a desire for good PR. If they’re researching carbon sequestration isn’t that for a financial opportunity?

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      • They’re trying to find the financial means to make it work profitably but they’re already doing it. It’s still an uphill PR battle but some of their best scientists are working on it. She feels honored to be on the team in CO. She began her work as an environmentalist and landed a job with the company with the best environmental record in the industry and last year her company was bought out and now she’s even more excited. She loves the industry, and the challenges, but is happy to know that there are companies making an effort to make changes.

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        • lms;

          It’s still an uphill PR battle…

          What is? Convincing people that an oil company isn’t evil incarnate, or convincing people that an oil company actually believes that oil companies are responsible for global warming?

          Liked by 1 person

        • I wonder what % of oil consumers actually think energy companies are evil? I bet is less than 10%.

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        • Scott, I think convincing people that oil companies are not evil is the largest battle. The new Governor of CO is not quite as understanding as the previous one. I don’t think anyone in the industry believes that oil companies are solely responsible for global warming. But I do find it encouraging that they’re making an effort to mitigate their footprint. The hard part is convincing the Average Joe, that their own demand has something to do with global warming….LOL

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        • McWing, I don’t think that’s true at all. I think at least 30 to 40% of Americans blame the oil industry for global warming if they believe in it at all. Every single American is an oil consumer even if they don’t drive. They may be oblivious to their usage but then that just proves my point I think. If people, like my daughter’s in-laws, abhor the oil industry and have no clue they’re just as guilty as the rest of us, then there is very little hope for intelligence regarding the issue.

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    • Climate change has always been real, forever. Whether it’s man made is another question, and whether or not we can measure what’s natural versus is man made is another question, although I’m pretty sure the honest answer would definitely be we absolutely cannot.

      This is true even if oil industry executives believe firmly in global warming. Or climate change. Or whatever.

      Which is not to say we should not have the capacity to be carbon neutral or the sequester or releases as much CO2 as we want to. That’s actually a very good idea. It’s a very good idea for us to be able to control our carbon dioxide output–preferably without wrecking the economy in the process!

      Or pretending politicians know what the heck they are talking about!

      That being said: it is so lovely to see you back here, lmsinca! Missed you terribly. Hope all is well!

      Like

      • I hate the “all-or-nothing” aspect of it. Yes, the historical data might be pretty strong. But, the idea that accurate historical data creates an accurate forward model is preposterous. Forecasting is a bitch. It all comes down to population assumptions and energy consumption forecasts. If you think the global population is going to 20 billion in 25 years and coal generation capacity is going up tenfold, well the model is going to give you your AOC “world is ending in 12 years” scenario. If you think population growth is going to taper off and settle around 10 billion and renewables will continue to get better and cheaper then we may never even notice, and AGW will join acid rain and the hole in the ozone layer as “remember when” crises…There are no descriptive labels to these scenarios either. a one-in-a-million scenario is treated as the base case simply because it is dramatic and draws eyeballs. And if you point out the complexity of the situation you are called a “science denier” by people who probably couldn’t pass high school algebra.

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        • I agree re the complexity of the the situation Brent and I think making “certain” predictions is “certifiable”……………see what I did there?

          I do think there should be enough concern for future generations and planet health that we at least encourage and attempt positive changes. Who knows what the future holds, but in the same way I walk/hike/swim/lift weights as well as eat healthy and don’t smoke…………..I’m hoping to increase my longevity. That makes sense to me although I understand at the same time that the predictions regarding my lifestyle may not be true.

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        • At the end of the day, AGW is just the latest excuse for raising taxes and redistribution. and that is all this whole goat rodeo is about.

          US emissions fell last year. China and India are the drivers, and there isn’t a damn thing we can do about that.

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        • It seems to me we should be proud of the fact that emissions fell last year, sounds to me like we’re making some environmental headway…………rather than following China and India down the sinkhole.

          As a Californian I don’t really mind paying a bit more in taxes if the air I breathe is a bit cleaner. My near lack of an electric bill ($101/year in 2019) and a car that doesn’t use gas at all make it a beneficial financial swap anyway.

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        • lms:

          As a Californian I don’t really mind paying a bit more in taxes if the air I breathe is a bit cleaner.

          FYI, reducing carbon emissions does not make the air “cleaner”.

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      • Thanks Kevin, all is well in my world but Bernie has brought me back to politics………………lol I have to fight against him in the same way I fought FOR Obama.

        I’ll be around a bit more now that it’s an election year. I was pretty disgusted with politics 4 years ago so I kind of checked out. This year things are even worse…………..uggghhh

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        • lms:

          I have to fight against him in the same way I fought FOR Obama.

          Look where that got us! Trump!

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        • No it got us a health insurance system that I much prefer to the days prior to Obama! I personally think it was Hillary who gave us Trump.

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        • Fixing ACA makes sense, Sanders and Warren wanting to scrap the entire system is irrational and destructive. We were headed to a German style system, not a Brit one. Reversing field is like reinventing the wheel, while blowing trillions of make believe dollars.

          HRC ran an awful campaign, rife with self satisfaction. The prospect of an America going from pillar to post, like the UK did in the fifties and sixties with each election, is uninspiring. The prospect of two parties that agree on so much never getting to agreement because they are each seeking to consolidate exclusive power is uninviting. And yes, the two parties agree on a lot of major business, but they just won’t do it. They would rather bitch.

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  8. How can this possibly be a winning campaign message?

    Bernie Sanders: “We have a racist society from top to bottom, impacting health care, housing, criminal justice, education — you name it.”

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    • He thinks the electorate is white, liberal women?

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    • And he, like so many in the New McGovern Bubble, can’t imagine that there are registered Democrats and even loyal voters that won’t say anything, won’t disagree, might even keep all the image of being a loyal Democrat up, but still not vote for that message.

      Not to mention people that might be inspired to vote who typically don’t. It may not swing elections all the time, but there’s definitely a f**k you vote out there.

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    • How can this possibly be a winning campaign message?

      That is just one more ridiculous Sanders assertion. The guy is unhinged, Wants to cut off all petroleum exports. Probably gets Putin’s love over Trump, with that policy.

      Fortunately, it is very unlikely he will be the nominee. Unfortunately, many of his supporters are as paranoid as many of the DJT supporters about conspiracies everywhere and probably will vote for Trump when Bernie doesn’t get nominated and blames the “establishment”.

      Rosanne just got through telling me that if Sanders is the nominee she is all for moving to Canada.

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      • “Fortunately, it is very unlikely he will be the nominee.”

        I wouldn’t be so sanguine.

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        • jnc:

          I wouldn’t be so sanguine.

          I agree….although the D establishment will pull out all the stops to prevent it, I suspect.

          Liked by 1 person

        • And it will backfire, the same way it did with the Republican establishment and Trump.

          Liked by 1 person

        • I think there’s a good chance he’ll be the nominee. I don’t know that’s a bad thing for the Democrats. I think a lot of the left-leaning electorate is way more excited for a Bernie Sanders than the right-leaning electorate was excited for Trump when he won.

          Might not be good for politics generally, but I think it could potentially be good for the Democrats electoral prospects. Though I don’t think he can beat Trump, to be honest.

          That being said, I think even if Bernie could beat Trump, I don’t think he would at this point because of the internecine rivalries amongst Democrats. There’s the “Bernie was never a Democrat” contingent, there’s the “Bernie is a sexist” Warren-ites, there’s the “Bernie is and old white Jew” folks. And obviously the vetting in Bernie’s organization is not that great, as he has supporters on tape talking about “burning Milwaukee” and “gulags for right-wingers” or whatever.

          From a strictly political standpoint, he’s got a heavy lift in getting the nomination and particularly in unifying the party behind him should he win.

          Like

      • Mark, we can hope that he won’t be the nominee but I have little faith in the American electorate these days. I can’t vote for him and I agree it’s tempting to leave these days.

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        • lms/Mark:

          I can’t vote for him and I agree it’s tempting to leave these days.

          Is it just me being sheltered, or is this genuinely a liberal thing? I don’t know any conservatives who talk about leaving the country just because they don’t like the person who gets (or might get) elected, but I’ve heard a lot of liberals do it.

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        • Scott, it is an age thing for me. I never would have said such a thing before retirement. No matter what. But now I just want to enjoy my last years. Rosanne has dropped her caseload another 30% and could quit next year. It just means having two places to be, but having one outside the country. Perhaps Austin in winter and Nanaimo the rest of the year, rather than Austin in winter and Asheville or Flagstaff the rest of the year. Canada is served by SWA.

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        • Thinking back, I don’t remember anyone leaving to avoid US politics since the VN war and those were left liberals and a smattering of rich draft dodgers, presumably not liberal. However, retired people look for stable available health care, low inflation, decent cost of living, available cultural events, etc. MX used to be popular with expat Texans, most of whom were conservative. I used to own land in Baja, we looked at it Xmas 2017 and thought it was too damned isolated for retirement. COL was great and the weather was good, I will have to admit. I sang “Ghost Riders in the Sky” in an ex-pat karaoke bar and was cheered. Great moments in retirement.

          Liked by 1 person

        • Scott, it’s just a joke to me. I’ll never leave, unlike you…………hahaha

          Like


        • Mark, we can hope that he won’t be the nominee but I have little faith in the American electorate these days. I can’t vote for him and I agree it’s tempting to leave these days.

          I think this way over-inflates both the relevancy of a given president to your daily quality of life and the relevancy of there being around 50% of people in the country who would vote differently from you in a given election for any reason.

          A number of Trump voters were Obama voters. A number of Trump voters were originally Bernie supporters. Lots of Trump voters can get along with non-Trump voters–if those people, as people, actually want to get along. Certainly you can live with them as neighbors.

          Also, lots of blue areas of the country to move to where it would be tough to find anyone around you who would admit to voting for Trump. So there’s that, too. Don’t really have to leave the country.

          For me, I like our constitutional government. I’m more pleased by the peaceful transition of power than who actually becomes president. I didn’t vote for Obama but ultimately I liked him and I thought he was a good president (by the definition that all presidents do plenty of things I disagree with). I liked Dubya except for the Iraq War, No Child Left Behind, and the DHS and making airport security a nationalized federal job. But ultimately Dubya was a VERY BIG, BIG GOVERNMENT neocon. With the exception of tax cuts and proposing SS reform, there wasn’t that much conservative about him. But whatever. Could have been worse!

          I’m liking Trump overall. But I still like the process better. Only Democrat I think I’d vote for in the current crop is Tulsi Gabbard. A few of the others seem centrist enough to appeal to me, but I kind of like Tulsi for the same reason a lot of people like Trump–she’s working off-script and seems like a change agent, and would be very much a Bernie Bro in a lot of things but also a bit Trump here and there, especially regarding our foreign military adventurism.

          That being said, my second favorite would probably be Bernie. Don’t think I’d vote for him in any case, but I like him better than Bloomberg or Warren without a doubt. Kamala Harris was always a non-starter for me. Warren is as clear a case of a wanna-be “benevolent” dictator as I’ve ever seen.

          But even if Warren became president, I wouldn’t be leaving America. Or even considering it. As I am confident in the process and would respect too much ambition would lead to an immediate rebuke during the next midterm elections. Cuz America, for all its problem, tends to work in checking that presidential lust for power. Not as well as some might like, but it does seem to work.

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  9. Scott, I’d forgotten how picky you were with regard to language. CO2 is one by- product of internal combustion engines and besides contributing to our reliance on fossil fuel, also damages the atmosphere and the air we breathe. I don’t understand why there is such resistance to cleaning up our air by less reliance on gas, diesel and even hybrid vehicles. Is CO2 the only emission that endangers our health, of course not. If we can somehow reduce our reliance on fossil fuels, why isn’t that a good thing for all of us, here and now and in the future? I was hoping to appeal to some of you who seem to doubt the evidence of global warming. Haha, I should know better.

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    • lms:

      Scott, I’d forgotten how picky you were with regard to language.

      I’m only “picky” when it matters. There is a reason that carbon emissions are routinely propagandized as “pollution”, and it isn’t because it is true.

      CO2 is one by- product of internal combustion engines and besides contributing to our reliance on fossil fuel, also damages the atmosphere and the air we breathe.

      No, it doesn’t “damage” the atmosphere or the air we breathe. It is, in fact, essential to the atmosphere. The concern over increased CO2 is that it prevents heat from escaping the atmosphere and leads to increased warming of the earth, not that it “damages” the air we breathe.

      I don’t understand why there is such resistance to cleaning up our air by less reliance on gas, diesel and even hybrid vehicles.

      Because 1) it has nothing to do with “clean” air and 2) it isn’t cost-free.

      If we can somehow reduce our reliance on fossil fuels, why isn’t that a good thing for all of us, here and now and in the future?

      You could ask the same thing about our reliance on literally anything. And as with literally anything else, it depends entirely on what the “somehow” entails, because again there are trade-offs and costs involved.

      I was hoping to appeal to some of you who seem to doubt the evidence of global warming.

      Evidence of warming is not equal to establishing a cause of warming.

      Evidence of warming is not equal to dire predictions about the effects of warming.

      Evidence of warming is not equal to a need for a total transformation and government control of the economy.

      Don’t confuse doubt of the latter for doubt of the former.

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      • I’m only “picky” when it matters. There is a reason that carbon emissions are routinely propagandized as “pollution”, and it isn’t because it is true.

        Even the use of “carbon emissions” when referring to carbon dioxide. Lots of stuff can be “carbon emissions” that are objectively bad but aren’t carbon dioxide, which is basically oxygen for plants.

        Unfortunately, I’m not a climate scientist, or a physicist or chemist, but as a layperson I remain entirely not-confident in our ability to judge the heat-retention properties of current carbon dioxide levels on a global scale. I’m not saying that they don’t exist, I’m just saying we don’t know because measuring them in a tiny confined space (without clouds or typically even water vapor, other atmospheric components or weather) is not the same as measuring them in a global atmosphere. Which is a huge and I expect unachieved challenge, and the complexity of doing such a difficult task is never discussed or explained.

        For example, if more heat leads to more liquid water and more water vapor (also heat retentive) might be more of a problem that more carbon dioxide–but also might lead to more rain and more arable land, and thus more carbon dioxide metabolizing plant life, thus keep CO2 levels relatively in balance. Might also lead to more cloud cover which keeps radiant heat well above the population and plant-life level.

        I strongly suspect the modeling is largely worthless, and would believe this even if we didn’t have direct evidence of how much the models depend on arbitrary numbers being plugged in to reach desired results (likely for publishing and funding purposes). If we have the ability to accurately model systems with billions of inputs, each of which effects the other in thousands or millions of ways, we’d model much simpler system like the stock market and the global economy and never have an economic downturn.

        Also, if we could model the climate, we would also be able to model the weather accurately days and weeks in advance. People like to say “oh, you’re so stupid, you think climate is weather” any time anybody brings up the constant inaccuracy of weather prediction, especially over time periods more than a few hours or days (and this is despite having much better data, and much more experience, modeling immediate weather patterns than climate patterns). Yet the problem is the same: the systems are hugely complex, and every simplification is basically a falsification of data in order to make an impossible task (accurately modeling climate and predicting the future) seem possible. When it isn’t and likely never will be without a lot more measurement systems in place and much more sophisticated math and much more powerful computers.

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    • CO2 is one by- product of internal combustion engines and besides contributing to our reliance on fossil fuel, also damages the atmosphere and the air we breathe.

      As Scott pointed out, CO2 doesn’t damage the air in anyway. While we can actually breath far, far more CO2 than we do–just so long as there is suficient oxygen and nitrogen in the mix. Too much would represent an issue–but we’d have to have a great more deal CO2 in the atmosphere than we are ever likely to have. Smokers inhale much more CO2 than we will ever have in the atmosphere, and do fine for extended period (and it is other things in cigarettes that cause cancer–not CO2. Indeed, the heated air/steam of smoking is much more dangerous for the smoker than the huge hit of CO2 they get from smoking). Which doesn’t mean it’s not a good idea for us to be able to manage our CO2 production and know as much about it as we can (although once the politics get involved, it makes that a little harder).

      I don’t understand why there is such resistance to cleaning up our air by less reliance on gas, diesel and even hybrid vehicles

      Is there, really? I mean, so much? I’m all for it. Always have been and always will be. It’s a good idea in and of itself. It doesn’t require hyperbolic doomsaying from activists in the modern equivalent of sandwich boards telling us the end is near. And in general things are getting better: over time, we are continuing to produce less CO2 per unit of energy expended than we have in the past. And in lots of areas (not enough yet, but I’m sure it’s coming) we are getting the same productive output for less energy expended. In the real world, things continue to get better without draconian measures being taken. While my one hybrid I’ve owned was a piece of crap, I’m sure that technology continues to get better, and in 30 or 40 years I expect electric cars will be common place, potentially even dominant. There will be more and more carbon sequestration technology in place. And probably all without draconian limitations on the public or serious carbon taxes or carbon-swaps or carbon credits.

      Is CO2 the only emission that endangers our health

      It really doesn’t endanger our health at all. Unless you’re trapped in a room and that’s the only gas in it. Then it is very dangerous. That being said, I feel like there’s sometimes a not-entirely-unintentional conflation of carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide, which are not the same things. Carbon dioxide spurs the growth and health of plant life. Carbon monoxide is actually poisonous to most living things in high concentration.

      If we can somehow reduce our reliance on fossil fuels, why isn’t that a good thing for all of us, here and now and in the future?

      It is. All for it. Paris Accords, carbon credits, carbon taxes, and the government taking over our thermostats is just not the way to get there, and in fact creates resistance in the general public that is counterproductive to that goal.

      I was hoping to appeal to some of you who seem to doubt the evidence of global warming.

      I don’t doubt the evidence of global warming (as climate change has always been with us: our planet has been both much hotter and much cooler, and though we have theories, we aren’t exactly sure why and chances are there were many multiple causes to periods of great climate differentiation). I’m certainly not saying humans can’t influence the global climate but I think our influence–typical of our narcissism–is greatly, greatly exaggerated in many people’s minds.

      That being said, human beings have tremendous influence over their local environment. Historically, we’ve ruined local lakes and rivers and farm land, and created almost unbreathable air in areas where air gets trapped, like basins and valleys. The risk of, say, contaminating a water table via poor environmental stewardship is a real thing–and environmental controls and responsibility are big positives to mitigate those risks. I think our impact on the global aggregate climate is a lot harder to quantify or determine with certainty.

      But there’s nothing wrong with wanting a cleaner environment or less pollution and energy sources with fewer non-energy outputs in the production process. Ideally, we’d be able to produce energy by pure consumption (kind of like a 100% efficient solar) without any pollution products whatsoever. The way to get their, however, is not going to be more government control over the general populace and the economy.

      But if private companies want to devote a lot of resources to producing cleaner energy and reducing pollution, I’m all for it, and more power to them.

      As long as their efforts aren’t directed towards lobbying the government to “do something”–and they, in fact, are doing something themselves.

      🙂

      So glad you are here! Hope I don’t sound argumentative or anything. Just venting my spleen, as it were. Thanks again for coming back around!

      Like

    • My problem is that everyone who is on the “Global warming is an emergency” side is also convinced that nothing can be done about it without getting rid of capitalism first.

      https://www.thenation.com/article/archive/capitalism-vs-climate/

      This communicates to me that their primary agenda isn’t about stopping global warming, but rather leveraging a crisis for other ends.

      Also, if they really believed it they would change their behavior. I found it inexplicable that Obama would talk about the threat of global warming while at the same time approving new leases for oil and gas exploration (which he had the unilateral power to deny) and touting as an accomplishment the amount of fracking that had occurred under his administration.

      I’d trust Elon Musk much more to come up with an answer to global warming (which I do think is occurring) than the Democrats.

      Like

      • Elon Musk, and the oil companies lmsinca’s daughter is working for, and a wide variety of people doing energy research in academia and business–people we have no idea exist right now, for the most part. Big innovation in consuming less and cleaner energy will come over the next 25 years or so in the form of innovations in nanotech. With well-engineered nanomaterials you can make much more efficient batteries, lighter and strong materials for cars and planes, much stronger and longer-lasting solar panels that also convert much more solar energy, much, much better insulators (thus conserving a great deal of power) and much better scrubbers for any pollution output, potentially scrubbers that convert all pollution into something either inert or something actively useful. But none of these things will be truly complete during the term of a single president or a single session of congress, or be resolved in front of TVs in angry house committees.

        99% of the development of these things–over decades–will be impossible to follow and hugely boring for 90% or more of the general population.

        AI also will have an impact. If you have AI in your house that knows you’re constantly leaving the attic light or garage light on and then not going back in that room for 12 hours, it can just turn it off after you no movement for a few minutes. But if you leave the light on in the kitchen, and between the hours of 5 pm and 10 pm you’re in and out of the kitchen every 20 minutes, it can just leave that light on.

        Not to mention LEDs are getting more efficient and better looking–because this was always going to happen–and so lights have less impact on your energy footprint.

        Or what if more materials are fabrics are converted to nanomaterials than are both more absorbent but release liquid as vapor when exposed to a temperature of 100 degrees or more–could potentially take you 15% of the time to dry your towels or other fabrics. Fabrics that naturally repel common things that make your clothes “dirty” so you don’t have to wash them as often. 100 years from now its pretty each to imagine showers using immediate recycled water, with nanoscrubbers removing the dirt and “soap” and heating the water and spraying it right back on you so you just keep using the same gallon of water, heated on demand.

        There is so much happening that would be happening anyway to make energy “green”. And very little of that is actively supported by the “how dare you” crowd–who put their energy mostly into virtue-signaling and symbolic religious ritual.

        Like

      • jnc:

        I found it inexplicable that Obama would talk about the threat of global warming while at the same time approving new leases for oil and gas exploration (which he had the unilateral power to deny) and touting as an accomplishment the amount of fracking that had occurred under his administration.

        More inexplicable (because it is actually personal) is that he would buy a $15mm beach house on a small island in the middle of the ocean.

        https://nypost.com/2019/08/22/barack-and-michelle-obama-are-buying-15m-estate-in-marthas-vineyard/

        Liked by 1 person

  10. Wow, I’d forgotten how wordy you all were………LOL Look, I understand that CO2 is part of the atmosphere and not harmful in and of itself, but as part of the emissions from autos and other industrial waste, too much of it is a bad thing. Pollution is one of the main causes of ecosystem destruction. Pollution can deplete resources and drive away local animal populations. Significant sources of pollution include trash, carbon emissions, oil spills and pesticides.

    All I’m really saying is that #1 carbon sequestration is a good thing if the oil companies can figure out a way to make it profitable and it may, just may, change the dynamics of Global Warming.

    I’m also saying that fossil fuels, and our reliance on them, damage the air we breathe.

    I don’t have time to go point by point with you guys today and I’m sure that everything you’re saying is quite true. Next time I’m here I’ll be more careful and take more time to form my points.

    Anyone else watching the results this afternoon of the NH Primary?

    Liked by 1 person

    • “All I’m really saying is that #1 carbon sequestration is a good thing if the oil companies can figure out a way to make it profitable and it may, just may, change the dynamics of Global Warming.”

      That works for me.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Pollution is one of the main causes of ecosystem destruction. Pollution can deplete resources and drive away local animal populations. Significant sources of pollution include trash, carbon emissions, oil spills and pesticides.

    Very true. I suspect we are all very much for pollution control. Although we should acknowledge that in almost every way, we’re getting way better about pollution year-over-year and have been for a long time. And pretty much every human being is in favor of clean water and clear air.

    I have nothing against carbon sequestration either. The more we can develop technology and have tools at our disposal to accomplishes things, I’m 100% for it. Our ability to manage the polluting output of fossil fuels is one of those things that has gotten way better over the past forty years, too. So I’m not particular worried about our current reliance on fossil fuels, but I’m all for more green energy (and better energy efficiency, so we accomplish the same goals using less power).

    Just so long as we always have access to propane and propane accessories.

    Also, nothing fossil fuels are putting into the air kills as many people or causes as much disease and death as sugar. Which is a much bigger threat to humanity than climate change on the whole, IMO. 😉 So I remain underwhelmed with our priorities overall!

    Like

    • It’s very true that we’re getting better re pollution control Kevin. I remember as a child growing up in So Cal and barely being able to breathe some days the smog was so bad. It hurt to breathe. We still have smog and poor air quality some days here but as far as the pain of breathing, I haven’t felt that in a long time. Not a very scientific observation though.

      I agree mostly with your point about sugar but I also believe there are all sorts of additives in our food products that are bad for our health. I’m not a health nut but I am very picky about what I put in my body. Walter and I are going more plant based and whole foods all the time, although I’ll never be able to give fish up I don’t think or chicken and turkey………… or the occasional glass of Malbec or Maker’s Mark………….haha

      Liked by 1 person

      • Animal protein and fat is fine. There are strong arguments that the cooking of the food can degrade the quality and introduce AGEs (advanced glycation end products) the more it gets charred. But generally don’t want to eat raw meat unless it’s sushi. Eggs are good stuff. Olives and avocados and nuts.

        While there’s lots of crap in modern food by far the worst things are refined carbs–because they turn to glucose faster and give you a bigger dose of insulin. If you’re not obese, you obviously have much less to worry about but even then running on constant high insulin is bad for you and a contributor if not the cause of a number of the “diseases of civilization”.

        Although I still eat way too many processed foods. Addictive! Delicious carb-laden food is like crack.

        Like

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