Saturday, 18 June 2011

Climate alarmist: Carbon taxes could badly hurt tourism in the Caribbean

"New carbon taxes and levies on air travel could have dramatic influences on the flow of tourists to the islands"

At a recent conference in London,  a number of  "experts" have discussed how to respond to climate change in the Caribbean. Judging from this report in AlertNet, the the London conference was an almost exact copy of all other similar climate alarmist conferences - the "experts" were competing with each other about who could present the worst possible doomsday scenario.

Here are just a couple of examples:
  • With 70 percent of the region’s population and an equal share of its infrastructure along threatened coastlines, Caribbean nations could be spending close to a fifth of their GDP just to cope with climate impacts by 2080, said Murray Simpson, a University of Oxford researcher who has worked with the U.N. Development Programme in Barbados.
  • If the Caribbean fails to adequately prepare, it faces “perpetual recession under these conditions”, Leslie warned, calling adaptation to the ongoing changes “an imperative”. (Kenrick Leslie, executive director of the Belize-based Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre)
  • Most countries in the region are feeling the pressure already. Farmers in Jamaica are seeing an unusual combination of increasingly severe droughts and hurricanes, leading to a gradual depletion of their financial resources. (David Barker, University of West Indies)
  • Shifting temperature and rainfall patterns also are likely to drive increases in tropical diseases like dengue and malaria, and worsen problems with heat stress and water-related diseases like cholera, said David Dodman of the London-based International Institute for Environment and Development.

However, Mr. Dodman must have amazed all the gathered alarmists with this statement:

New carbon taxes and levies on air travel, for instance, could have dramatic influences on the flow of tourists to the islands, he said.
“Regulations around trade and carbon are going to create very large shifts in our economies,” he predicted.

Dodman´s statement was a unique breeze of fresh air at a gathering of climate alarmists. But he will probably regret having said it. His fellow alarmists will never forgive him for having committed the mortal sin of pointing out the negative effects of carbon taxes and levies.

Great news from Greenland: Greenpeace chief Kumi Naidoo arrested

The Danish police are to be congratulated:

Police say the head of Greenpeace has been arrested after climbing an oil rig off Greenland's west coast in an attempt to stop a Scottish oil company from deepwater drilling in Arctic waters.
Police spokesman Morten Nielsen told The Associated Press that Greenpeace's executive director Kumi Naidoo was arrested Friday along with a Norwegian activist on top of the Leiv Eriksson drilling rig, which is operated by Cairn Energy.
Nielsen says the two will be transferred to Greenland's capital Nuuk where they will be charged with trespassing and violating Greenland's "home rule order on safety zones."

Read the entire article here

This is the way to treat people who break the law!

Here is a link to the latest Greenpeace news

(Image by Wikipedia)

New study: Climatologists are dumber than other scientists

Click for larger image

A new study shows that climitalogists are considered less clever than other scientists and academic professionals. Lawyers and engineers are more than ten times cleverer than climatologists, according to the summary for decisions makers. Sociologists are the second least clever professionals, but even they are almost double as clever as climatologists.

However, the author of this groundbreaking non-peer reviewed study, Dr. G. Alileo, points out that "no single study as such definitively proves the dumbness of climate scientists, but the result is broadly consistent with empirical observations over a long time period". According to Dr. Alileo, it is also important to keep in mind, that there are a number of extremely clever climatologists, usually not connected with such organisations as the IPCC, NASA, UEA and the Met Office.

Scientific method used in the study:
A separate google search for each profession (in plural) together with the word "clever" was performed. Each search produced a certain number of pages. The page numbers (in millions) were then combined into the graph above, showing how each of the ten professions is connected with the word "clever".

Friday, 17 June 2011

The Danish led Climate-Industrial complex tries to stop the shale gas revolution in Europe

"Vestas and other big players in Danish industry will not leave the climate conference empty handed".

The US-led shale gas revolution - ending Europe´s dangerous dependance on Russian energy - should be welcomed by both industry and consumers in Europe. Poland is leading the way, and there is growing interest in shale gas in several other European countries, as well.

This promising development is however facing strong opposition from the Danish led climate-industrial complex, which has joined forces with Russia´s Gazprom and a number of enviro-fundamentalist NGO´s. The climate-industrial lobby, promoting the interests of  heavily subsidised wind energy companies, is scared stiff  by the succes of  the U.S. shale gas industry, and is using all its lobbying power in order to kill the budding European shale gas revolution. The power of the climate-industrial lobby must not be underestamated; its tentacles have reached into the heart of the EU:

EU´s Climate Commissioner, Danish Connie Hedegaard is the de facto leader of the complex, actively lobbying for the wind power industry in the Commission, other EU and international bodies and on the governmental level in the members states.

Hedegaard was actively promoting the interests of Danish wind energy giant Vestas already when she, as Danish climate change minister, was planning the failed Copenhagen climate conference in 2009. According to this Danish news report she then promised that "Vestas and other big players in Danish industry will not leave the climate conference empty handed". 

As we all know, the climate conference failed badly, and Vestas left empty handed.

But now it´s payback time for the Commissioner:  

On January 14, Ms. Hedegaard met with the CEO of  the Vestas Wind Systems in Copenhagen.
The  meeting with Mr. Engel was mentioned on Ms. Hedegaards agenda page, but it has later been removed. One wonders why?

Fortunately a record of the meeting is still to be found elsewhere in the EU web jungle:
Mrs Connie HEDEGAARD in Denmark: meets with Mr Ditlev ENGEL, CEO of Vestas Wind Systems

It is not difficult to imagine what Mr. Engel had on his mind when he met the Commissioner: what could the EU do in order to help his loss making wind turbine empire? Nobody knows what Ms. Hedegaard may have promised, but she has certainly done her best in order to give the Danish company a helping hand:
 Here is a picture from the Vestas website showing the Commissioner promoting Vestas in China:

Vestas, the world leader in wind energy – today received Connie Hedegaard, the European Union Commissioner for Climate Action, at its Tianjin factory complex, located in the Tianjin Economic Development Area (TEDA).
This is how Hedegaard is planning to prevent Poland and other European countries from entering the shale gas revolution:

The EU's climate chief is seeking to extend the bloc's renewable energy targets, in a move apparently designed to protect the green energy sector from an intensifying attack by the gas industry.
This is the first time the European commission has raised the issue of mandatory targets beyond 2020, when the current commitment – to generate 20% of energy from renewable sources – expires.
An extension would boost the renewable energy industry in the face of lobbying efforts by the gas industry, which is trying to rebrand gas as a cheaper "green" alternative to renewables.
In its attempts to push this line, the gas industry has held a series of high-level meetings with senior figures in the European commission and the European parliament, as well as with the governments of member states.
Connie Hedegaard, the climate change commissioner in Brussels, is concerned at the lobbying, and is determined to maintain Europe's lead in developing renewable energy and clean technology. "We should be looking to avoid a lock-in to fossil fuels," she said. "We should be discussing a renewable energy target for 2030. We need to have ambitious targets. It would be one way to send a long-term price signal for renewable energy – that renewable energy is not just going to stop growing after 2020."
In an interview with the Guardian, Hedegaard declined to put a clear figure on what the renewable energy target should be beyond 2020. But others have suggested that it could be cost-effective to opt for a target of 40% by 2030.
The push to extend the target is likely to be resisted by some member states who fought hard against the 2020 targets when they were unveiled in early 2007. Poland is known to be concerned that its heavy reliance on coal should not attract penalties, and Italy has a history of opposing climate targets.An official in the department of Günther Oettinger, the EU commissioner for energy, said no targets were yet needed beyond 2020. He is also against raising the current emissions-cutting target from 20% by 2020 to 30%, as some member states – including the UK, France and Germany – have proposed.

The European Wind Energy Association (EWEA),  lead by another former Danish journalist, Christian Kjær is now intensifying its lobbying on behalf of  Vestas and the other wind industry companies. Kjær´s latest effort was this "debate " in Brussels on June 15:

A 45% renewable energy target for 2030 would create the future policy-stability the green energy sector the needs, was one of the main messages emerging from last night’s public debate on EU energy policy post-2020.
New energy policies must be drawn-up today, and not in 2020 when the current targets expire, Josche Muth, Secretary General of the European Renewable Energy Council (EREC) said at the debate organised by the European Wind Energy Association.

Ms. Hedegaard was apparently too busy elsewhere propagating windmills, so she sent a representative, another Dane, to bring the anti-shale gas message to the "debate":

renewable energy could face a threat from cheap gas supplies unless policy-makers fix renewable energy targets beyond 2020. Niels Ladefoged, from Connie Hedegaard’s, European Commissioner for Climate Action, cabinet, warned that there are enough fossil fuels in the ground to heat up the planet beyond levels that nature can sustain.


The Climate-Industrial lobby is masquerading as a partner in the (dubious) fight against global warming. The real purpose of its lobbying is to safeguard the taxpayer financed subsidies, without which the wind power companies would not make any profits at all. Poland, the US and all other sane forces must prevent the Climate-Industrial lobby from succeeding in its efforts to prevent the shale gas revolution from becoming reality in Europe. Energy security and shale gas will feature high on the agenda of the Polish EU presidency, due to begin on July 1. One must hope that the Poles - hopefully with the support of the US - will be able to stave off  the attacks of the wind power "mafia", which, if succesful, would leave Europe dangerously dependent on Russian gas deliveries.

Thursday, 16 June 2011

A new low from His Royal Higness

 The Mega Carbon Footprint Prince giving another of  his alarmist doomsday lectures

Is there nobody in the UK who is capable of  stopping the ecofundamentalist Prince Charles´s continuing his crazy climate change crusade. Now he has been attacking climate change "deniers" in a video speech in Australia - thus giving a helping hand to the embattled PM Julia Gillard, who also was one of the speakers.

THE heir apparent to the British throne has called on Australian business leaders to ensure climate change deniers aren't allowed to further delay action to tackle dangerous global warming.
The Prince of Wales delivered a 10-minute pre-recorded video address to the 12th National Business Leaders Forum on Sustainable Development today.

"All the evidence shows that we are living in an increasingly unstable world," Prince Charles told industry figures gathered in Canberra.

"And yet we continue to test it to destruction and to allow the deniers of human-induced climate change to prevent vital action being taken."

Read the entire article here

On the British Monarchy webpage the duties of  Prince Charles are explained in the following way:

3) Promoting and protecting national traditions, virtues and excellenceThis includes supporting Britain’s rural communities, promoting tolerance and greater understanding between faiths and communities, and highlighting achievements or issues that, without his support, might otherwise receive little exposure. In this regard, His Royal Highness often acts as a catalyst for facilitating debate and change through contacts with Government Ministers and other people of influence, and by giving speeches and writing articles.In doing so, he is always careful to remain separate from party political debate.


Climate change/Global warming is most certainly a highly political question both in Australia and elsewhere. That is why the prince is clearly in breach of his duty to "remain separate from party political debate". Neither do his alarmist rants "act as a catalyst for facilitating debate". Maybe it is time for a STOP PRINCE CHARLES movement in the UK?

NATO - The slow death of a once so powerfulful military alliance

"In the Libya operation, Norway and Denmark, have provided 12 percent
of allied strike aircraft yet have struck about one third of the

"We have the spectacle of an air operations center
designed to handle more than 300 sorties a day struggling to launch
about 150. Furthermore, the mightiest military alliance in history is
only 11 weeks into an operation against a poorly armed regime in a
sparsely populated country – yet many allies are beginning to run
short of munitions, requiring the U.S., once more, to make up the

There is good reason to return to the important speech that U.S. Secretary of  Defense Robert Gates gave in Brussels on June 10. The reason is Angela Merkel´s Germany.

Robert Gates did not mention Germany specifically in his speech, but it is obvious which country he had on his mind when he said this:

In the past, I’ve worried openly about NATO turning into a two-tiered
alliance: Between members who specialize in “soft’ humanitarian,
development, peacekeeping, and talking tasks, and those conducting the
“hard” combat missions. Between those willing and able to pay the
price and bear the burdens of alliance commitments, and those who
enjoy the benefits of NATO membership – be they security guarantees or
headquarters billets – but don’t want to share the risks and the
costs. This is no longer a hypothetical worry. We are there today.
And it is unacceptable.

Also this was mostly directed at Germany, the richest and most powerful European country:

Indeed, if current trends in the decline of European defense
capabilities are not halted and reversed, Future U.S. political
leaders– those for whom the Cold War was not the formative experience
that it was for me – may not consider the return on America’s
investment in NATO worth the cost.

Gates concluded his article with a polite hope - although he must know that neither Germany nor any  of the other major European NATO members are willing to increase defense spending:

Over the life of the transatlantic alliance there has been no shortage
of squabbles and setbacks. But through it all, we managed to get the
big things right over time. We came together to make the tough
decisions in the face of dissension at home and threats abroad. And
I take heart in the knowledge that we can do so again

The future of the once so powerful alliance does not look promising. Germany could and should take the lead in keeping NATO alive, but it is doing exactly the opposite. The only thing Germany - and the EU countries in general - are ready to fight - and finance - is imaginary human-induced global warming.


The New York Times´s Judy Dempsey seems to make the same kind of conclusion about the future of NATO as I in an article called "The beginning of the end for NATO?":

NATO as such will probably survive. The alliance will continue to be of use to the United States when it looks to build coalitions of the willing. It might also come in handy to confer some added legitimacy to future military missions. But its role as the central trans-Atlantic organization with a truly united purpose and solidarity among all of the allies is in doubt.

"Timothy Garton Ash is the most overrated political writer of our time".

 "Timothy Garton Ash is the best and most perceptive political writer of our time"
  John Simpson

When you visit the home page of Oxford grandee Timoth Garton Ash, you will find John Simpson´s characterisation quite prominently displayed.

It seems that John Simpson is somewhat out out touch these days. I would like to suggest an improved and shorter version: "Timothy Garton Ash is the most overrated political writer of our time".

His latest article in the Guardian is proof of this.

Garton Ash first gives a very realistic and true description of the reality of the "European project" today:

Like an overladen container lorry labouring up a steep hill, the European project is close to stalling. If it stalls, even the emergency brake may not stop it running back down the hill, out of control, until it jackknifes off the road. Two of the lads are wrestling over the steering wheel; others lie comatose in the sleeping area at the back of the cab.
And it's not just the eurozone. Every major project of the European Union is faltering.
Why? Because all the great underlying motivators of the European project back in the days of Helmut Kohl, François Mitterrand and Jacques Delors, and even more so in the time of the founding fathers, have faded or disappeared.

Then it begins to go wrong:

The key to so much of this, especially on the economic side, is Germany. For much of its history, what has become the European Union pursued political ends by economic means. For Kohl and Mitterrand, the euro was mainly a political project, not an economic one. Now the boot is on the other foot. In order to save a poorly designed and over-extended monetary union, we need an exceptional political commitment. The political must ride to the rescue of the economic.

This is where Angela Merkel comes in. There is no particular reason to expect Germany to take the lead in creating a European foreign and security policy. For a response to the Arab spring, we should look first to the Mediterranean countries, such as Spain, France and Italy. If the issue is the integration of people of migrant background, every country must do its own homework. But if we are talking about the European economy and currency, Germany is the indispensable power. Only the combination of Germany and the European Central Bank, working in unison, has a chance of calming the mighty markets.
For more than a year now Merkel has attempted to find the narrow – perhaps nonexistent – line where the minimum that can be done to save the embattled eurozone periphery meets the maximum she thinks German public opinion will bear. She has then tried to win her eurozone partners to that course. So far it has not worked.
Now she needs to start from the other end: work out, with the ECB and other eurozone governments, what is the best, most credible deal available, and then put all her authority on the line to persuade a reluctant German public that this will be in the long-term, enlightened national self-interest of Germany. Which it will be. For no one has more to lose from the disintegration of the eurozone than the continent's central economic power. It may soon be too late.

The professor is appealing to Angela Merkel to save "a poorly designed and over-extended monetary union"!  But why on earth should it be in German, or anybody else´s interest to save such a union? The professor does not provide an answer.

No, if you want good political analysis, you must turn to another leading British professor and writer. The link is here.

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Airlines and the EU emission trading scheme: "a $1.5 billion cash grab that would do nothing to reduce emissions".

There could be less Air China landings in Frankfurt - and also less Airbus purchases by Air China - if  the EU insists on including Chinese airlines in the ETS scheme

The opposition against the European Union´s dubious plan to force international airlines to join its cap-and-trade program is fast growing:

China’s airline association has declared that it “totally opposes” the EU’s plan to expand its cap-and-trade program from 2012 to include airlines, adding the initiative may prompt trade conflict.

The Air Transport Association of America is also planning legal action against the EU Commission’s plan.

At the IATA general meeting in Singapore, the EU plans were slammed:

 Opposition to the European Union's emissions trading scheme has come out in full force at the IATA annual general meeting in Singapore, with airlines and industry officials across the globe warning that it would severely affect an industry that is already highly taxed and raise the spectre of retaliatory moves elsewhere. 
The scheme, which is due to come into force next year, was described by IATA director general Giovanni Bisignani as "a $1.5 billion cash grab that would do nothing to reduce emissions". Calling for a global approach to tackle climate change, he said "basta" to Europe and added it to the IATA wall of shame.
"It is going to be a big disruption in our competitiveness," adds Antonio Vazquez, chairman of Iberia and parent International Airlines Group."If you need to make a connection and avoid Europe, you would do it. The impact would be significant, it will affect traffic."

Read the entire article here

Europe´s own airlines are also critical. Ulrich Schulte-Strathaus, secretary general of the Association of European Arlines is warning about the consequenses of the EU´s plans:

And now we are facing the threat of retaliation from the world’s most powerful economic and political players who feel EU ETS imposes on their sovereignty. As Mr Dings implies, the way to avoid EU ETS is to avoid Europe. At a time when Europe’s economic recovery is lagging, is it wise to cripple its air links, damaging imports, exports and mobility?
Then there is the myth that the cost of aviation’s inclusion in EU ETS is modest. For European airlines, the average annual cost of EU ETS will be about €3.5bn. Between 2000 and 2010 this “modest” burden would have pushed AEA’s member airlines into the red in every year apart from 2007.


The EU Climate Commissioner, former Danish journalist Connie Hedegaard still keeps on defending the EU plan, calling it a “practical example” of steps that need to be made to prevent global warming. However, the Chinese and the Americans are not going to accept this EU climate madness, which means that only European airlines will be affected. This will be another self-inflicted wound in the already bleading body of the European economy. It is time for people to stand up and say no to this totally useless EU climate alarmism!

Monday, 13 June 2011

Economist Nouriel Roubini predicts break up of the European Monetary Union

Nouriel Roubini joins the growing number of economists who predict a break up of the European Monetary Union:

The European and Monetary Union faces an eventual break up and the euro "disorderly debt workouts" should the euro zone fail to resolve its "economic and competitiveness divergence," economist Nouriel Roubini said Monday.
The monetary union "never fully satisfied the conditions for an optimal currency area," Roubini, co-founder and chairman of Roubini Global Economics, wrote in an op-ed in the Financial Times.
"Instead its leaders hoped that their lack of monetary, fiscal and exchange rate policies would in turn see an acceleration of structural reforms. These, it was hoped, would see productivity and growth rates converge," he said.
The way to restore competitiveness and growth for members on the periphery, said Roubini, would be to abandon the euro, restore their national currencies, and "achieve a massive nominal and real depreciation." While some may doubt the prospect of countries abandoning the euro, such as scenario "may not be so far-fetched five years from now, especially if some of the periphery economies stagnate.

Read the entire article here

The race for the most disastrously stupid energy policy - UK overtakes Germany

This video pretty well shows where David Cameron is heading with his windmill policy  ....

There seems to be a competition going on between governments in Europe about who has the most outrageously expensive and stupid "green" energy policy. Just when everybody was thinking  Angela Merkel´s  German team was in the lead, it was overtaken by the UK team, led by its incomparable captain David "Muppet" Cameron.  

The Daily Mail´s Richard Littlejohn explains the secrets of the Cameron "success" story:

Following the revelation that we’re all paying a secret stealth tax to subsidise so-called renewable energy sources, it seems like a good time to check out exactly what we are getting for our money.At midday yesterday, wind power was contributing just 2.2 per cent of all the electricity in the National Grid. You might think that’s a pretty poor return on the billions of pounds spent already on Britain’s standing army of windmills.

But it’s actually a significant improvement on the last time I checked the wholesale electricity industry’s official website. At the turn of the year, the figure was 1.6 per cent. During the cold snap the turbines had to be heated to stop them freezing and were actually consuming more electricity than they generated.Even on a good day, they rarely work above a quarter of their theoretical capacity. And in high winds they have to be turned off altogether to prevent damage. Britain’s 3,426 wind turbines produce no more electricity than a single, medium-sized gas-fired power station.
Any sane individual would conclude that wind generation is hopelessly inefficient and horribly expensive and stop throwing good money after bad.
But when did sanity ever have anything to do with government policy?

Ministers are planning to install another 12,500 of these worse-than-useless windmills, some of them up to three times the size of existing monstrosities.
We are paying for all this through hidden charges which now make up a fifth of all gas and electricity bills. The average household has to fork out an extra £200 a year.
That’s because the Government forces energy companies to buy from renewable sources, which are far more expensive than conventional power stations. The cost is then passed on to the consumer.
Ministers know there would be an outcry if they raised taxes to pay for windmills, so they hide the subsidies in our gas and electricity bills and hope the energy companies get the blame.
Earlier this year the National Grid was forced to pay £900,000 compensation to the owners of six wind farms which were forced to close down one especially gusty night — because they were producing too much electricity and there was no capacity to store it.So they’re either producing little or no electricity, or else have to be switched off because they’re producing too much. Either way, we pay.

Read the entire article here

And here is James Delingpole´s take on the Cameron team´s achievements:

 "Never before in history, I doubt, has so much money ever been squandered, so much suffering and poverty exacerbated, so much economic damage been inflicted, so many lies promulgated and so much environmental destruction wrought in order to deal with a problem so microscopically miniscule. Really, if Barack Obama were to declare war on Belgium because he’d always found Tintin Au Congo offensively racist, or if David Cameron were to launch a nuclear strike on Mykonos because all those white-painted buildings were “way too gay”, you still wouldn’t be even half way close to equalling the quite breathtaking stupidity, purblind ignorance and suicidal wrongheadedness of the disasters currently being inflicted on the world by our boneheaded political and administrative classes on their holy mission to “combat climate change.”
Read the entire article here

Shale gas - the best thing that has happened to Eastern Europe for a long time

The Russians and the European enviro-fundamentalists are doing their best in order to stop the US-led shale gas revolution in Eastern  Europe, but they are not going to succeed. Shale gas offers a unique chance for Europe to get rid of the dependence on Gazprom deliveries.

The same technology that brought the lowest natural gas prices to U.S. consumers since 2002 is being unleashed in Eastern Europe, threatening to reduce Russia’s grip on the region’s energy supplies.
Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM), Chevron Corp. (CVX) and Talisman Energy Inc. (TLM) are among companies leading the drive to unlock gas trapped in shale rocks from Poland to Bulgaria that may be enough to meet regional demand for almost 80 years, according to the Energy Information Administration. Poland, the hub of the wildcatting, has completed seven wells out of 124 planned, and the results are being assessed now.
A successful drilling campaign would redraw the energy map across Europe, a continent now reliant on Russia for about a quarter of its natural gas. The efforts to find more gas are taking on greater urgency as Germany plans to phase out nuclear energy and limits tighten on emissions of carbon dioxide blamed for global warming.

Read the entire article here
The Toronto Sun columnist John Robson sees the reality behind the European Union:

The idea that "Europe" is a nation that should be a state has appealed to people from Dante and Emmanuel Kant to Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Leon Trotskii and Charles de Gaulle. Doubters included Germany's "Iron Chancellor" Otto von Bismarck, who wrote in the late 19th century: "Whoever speaks of Europe is wrong. It is a geographical expression."
But after 1945, those horrified by two world wars found a practical approach to the dream: integrate the industrial economies of Europe so thoroughly that modern warfare among them became literally impossible.
Hence the European Coal and Steel Community (1952), European Economic Community (1958) and Euratom (operational in 1960), which merged into the European Community in 1965, one of whose constitutional contortions in 1993 renamed it the EU.
It worked in the limited sense that no third catastrophic war was fought against Germany on French soil. But it never led to a real, instinctive sense of European identity or the genuine political institutions that might have grown from such a sense.
Even the EU's vaunted labour mobility is an illusion. Only about 2% of EU citizens work in other European countries. It has no real foreign policy or army - when "Europe" acts in the world, as in Libya, it goes through NATO with the U.S. military in the lead. And it has a nightmarishly complicated pseudo-government with a legislature (the European Parliament) that cannot constrain its various executives: the European Commission, European Council and semi-legislative Council of the European Union, not one of whose members are elected in European elections.
Undaunted, the EU went on to create a common currency. But to get the responsible budgetary and fiscal policy necessary to maintain the Euro's value, it had no better resort than extracting from its members promises they did not keep and could not be punished for breaking.

Read the entire column here

Sunday, 12 June 2011

An important American speech on Taiwan

Ros-Lehtinen: “Taiwan remains a great beacon of democracy in East Asia"

It is reassuring to note that the US House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee again has a chairman, who understands the importance of  democratic Taiwan. Republican chairman/chairperson Ileana Ros-Lehtinen last Saturday gave a wide ranging speech on Taiwan in Los Angeles. The US based Formosa Foundation executive director Terri Giles said Ros-Lehtinen´s speech was "the most pro-Taiwan speech of any major Washington politician in a decade".

The Taipei Times reports:

US Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, chairman of the House of Representatives’ Foreign Affairs Committee, has warned China not to interfere in Taiwan’s presidential election and promised to support Taiwan’s democracy in every way she can.
In a wide ranging speech -delivered in Los Angeles on Saturday, Ros-Lehtinen called on US President Barack Obama to sell F-16C/D aircraft to Taipei and to work to improve relations with Taiwan.
“Taiwan remains a great beacon of democracy in East Asia and an important strategic ally in a key region of the world,” she said.
Ros-Lehtinen, a Republican, was addressing a crowd of mostly Taiwanese-Americans at an event organized by the Los Angeles based Formosa Foundation.
She has organized a hearing before the full Foreign Affairs Committee on Thursday to investigate the state of US-Taiwan relations and the future of Taiwan’s democracy.
“This is the first such hearing on Taiwan in seven years, but under my chairmanship, it won’t be the last,” she said.
“One of the reasons we will be holding this hearing is that I am deeply concerned for Taiwan’s future, as it tries to cope with a rising China,” she said.
“I am also increasingly troubled about recent trends in US-Taiwan relations, trends which suggest, as one academic writes; ‘a marked decline in US support for the island’s freedom of action.’ Let me make one thing clear: I support the Taiwanese people and their democracy,” Ros-Lehtinen said.

“Early next year, Taiwan goes to the polls to vote for both a president and a legislature. It’s an important election and should be free from outside interference or coercion,” she said. “Beijing needs to stay out of this election. China must not repeat the bullying of the 1996 election, when it sought to intimidate by launching missiles on Taiwan’s election eve.”
“Tragically, Taiwan appears to have become an afterthought in the Obama administration’s larger aims of engagement with Asia and the Pacific,” Ros-Lehtinen said.

The European Union´s External Action Service in action

Mr. Stelios Christopoulos, Minister Counsellor and Chargé d’Affaires a.i.

The European Union´s External Action Service, the vast worldwide diplomatic network, led by the British Labour Baroness Cathrine Ashton is growing fast these days:

The service, with 7,000 staff, was a product of the Lisbon Treaty, intended to massively strengthen the EU's international role. The EEAS controls a total budget of around €7 bn (£6.2 bn) including massive aid, peacekeeping and development budgets. It has aroused bitter opposition among British critics. Geoffrey Van Orden, a Conservative MEP, said: "The EEAS has huge appetite and ambition, and now it's turning into a hydra-headed monstrosity."
Lady Ashton, 55, a Labour peer appointed by Gordon Brown, is the world's highest paid female politician on a salary of £270,000. A former treasurer of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament who has never been elected to any public position, she had no foreign policy experience when she was appointed to her post promising to speak for 27 EU foreign ministers

Read the entire article here

In order to find out what the army of EU diplomats actually are doing, it is rewarding to visit some of the EU "embassies´" websites. This time we wanted to see, what the Delegation of the European Union to Trinidad and Tobago recently has been busy with.

One of the main annual spring activities of the EU Delegations around the world seems to be organising the Europe Day - the EU´s own "national holiday" . This is the day when the local EU "ambassador" usually throws a big party and gives a speech paying homage to Robert Schuman and later "fathers" of the "ever closer integration" as well as extolling the marvellous things the EU is doing today. The acting head of the EU´s base in Port of Spain,  Stelios Christopoulos, Minister Counsellor and Chargé d’Affaires a.i. is no exception. Here is an excerpt from his speech on May 9, 2011:

Throughout the year and in view of the recent financial difficulties of the EU, some of our long time friends and partners have expressed their concerns about the ability of the EU to honour its commitments. But in the EU, we know from past experience that the road to growth and recovery requires more exposure to trade and more assistance to our developing partners, not less. Indeed, the EU remains the biggest donor of development assistance in the world providing more than 60% of the total.
Does Trinidad and Tobago have real access to the EU funds as promised? In March this year we were very pleased to hand over on behalf of the European Commission, the executive arm of the EU, a check of about TTD 217 M to the Government of Trinidad and Tobago.  This came as a reward of several months of hard work and successful collaboration between the Government of Trinidad and Tobago and the EU.
This is our small contribution to the efforts of the Government of Trinidad and Tobago to bridge the gap between wealth and development.
The EU looks forward to the continued and successful collaboration with the Government.
At this point, allow me to raise my glass to the honour of our host country and the people of Trinidad and Tobago!

Read the entire speech here


Well, here we have a Greek happily "rewarding" the Trinidad and Tobago government with "our small contribution" of € 23,5 million (courtesy of EU taxpayers) for its "several months of hard work and succesful collaboration" with the EU. The announcement comes at the end of the short speech, a great deal of which consists of reading the names of all local dignitaries present. One wonders, whether the thought crossed the mind of Mr. Christopoulos, that his soon to be bankrupt native country might have had better use for the money? Probably not. These overpaid eurocrats live in their own cosy little world (tax free, of course), well shielded from the realities of the outside world.

On the Delegation´s "welcome page" Mr. Christopoulos mentions that the "small but competent and committed staff" is assisting "the Government of Trinidad and Tobago in its efforts to further progress in two key areas: the diversification of the national economy and the promotion of good and effective governance in a number of fields". 

It is impossible to find out, how small Mr. Christopoulos´ staff actually is, since the page labeled "Internal organisation" is empty. As to teaching the local government to make economic progress and "good and effective governance", it might perhaps be better for the EU to use Mr. Christopoulos´ expert knowledge back in his home country.

More info about other great things the EU is doing in the Caribbean here

"The deindustrialisation of Germany"

Many leading industrialists are strongly criticising the German government´s nuclear energy phaseout. One of the loudest critics is the head of energy giant RWE, Jürgen Grossmann. Grossman has publicly complained about an "eco-dictatorship" before writing a letter to chancellor Angela Merkel, blasting details of her plans:

On Friday, he took the battle a step further, warning in an interview with the Süddeutsche Zeitung that Merkel's phase out plan could result in large companies turning their backs on the country as a result of climbing energy prices. "The de-industrialization (of Germany) won't come all at once. It will be a gradual process," Grossmann said. "Soon we will have to do without entire industrial sectors: companies like BASF and Thyssen-Krupp won't be here anymore."

There has even been growing criticism from within her own party. Indeed, many within her Christian Democratic Union (CDU) now want her to call a party convention to focus solely on the issue of atomic energy.

"It would be good were the party to discuss such a fundamental change as the nuclear question at a special party convention," Peter Hauk, CDU floor leader in Baden-Württemberg state parliament, told SPIEGEL. "Such a discussion would be good for the party." Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, head of the CDU in the state of Saarland, agrees. "Given the effort to find broad societal consensus on the issue," she told SPIEGEL, "a discussion within the party would certainly seem appropriate."
Merkel made no indication on Thursday that she was intending to acquiesce to such demands. "The dramatic events in Japan were a turning point for the world and a turning point for me personally," she said. "I have revised my views."

Read the entire article here


It appears almost certain that this, or the next German government, will have to revise Merkel´s unwise decision to shut down the country´s nuclear plants by 2022. A Germany without many of its leading industrial companies will not be able to cope economically. And, as this blog and others have pointed out, it is also extremely dangerous to become dependent on Russian energy deliveries.

Former chancellor Lord Lawson denounces David Cameron´s "green agenda"

The Daily Mail summarises Lord Lawson´s article:

Lord Lawson, one of the most respected Tory figures of recent decades, accuses the Prime Minister of risking Britain’s economy to make a ‘symbolic’ point.

In a devastating verdict he writes: ‘The Government’s highly damaging decarbonisation policy, enshrined in the absurd Climate Change Act, does not have a leg to stand on. It is intended, at massive cost, to be symbolic: To make good David Cameron’s ambition to make his administration “the greenest government ever”.

‘My dictionary defines green as “unripe, immature, undeveloped”.’

His comments came after former Civil Service chief Lord Turnbull accused ministers and officials of pandering to global warming ‘alarmists’ and piling huge, unnecessary costs on ordinary families.

Lord Lawson, Chancellor under Margaret Thatcher, goes further today, saying that plastering Britain with wind farms will push up bills to families and businesses without producing any real benefits. The switch to ‘low-carbon’ energy is expected to add £200 to annual energy bills.

He writes: ‘This price increase would be economically damaging at the best of times; and these are not the best of times.’

And he warns the harm to business could be greater still, adding: ‘The economy is already recovering from the recession.

‘However, there is indeed a threat to that recovery and the bitter irony is that this is of the Government’s own making.

‘It is its so-called climate change policy of ‘decarbonising’ the British economy.’

He says it is ‘highly uncertain’ that higher carbon emissions will warm the planet to a dangerous extent and warns it is ‘futile folly’ for Britain to act alone when its emissions are two per cent of the global total.

In his article, Lord Lawson also stresses the importance of the shale gas revolution:

The new development, however — and it is the biggest technological breakthrough to have occurred in the energy sector since the advances that enabled oil and gas to be extracted from the North Sea — concerns the extraction of gas from shale.

Shale is a rock formation which occurs throughout the world and has always been known to contain vast reserves of oil and gas, but extracting it was uneconomic.

So far as shale gas is concerned, that technological problem has been cracked; as a result, the world is now awash with commercially extractable gas — and no longer over-dependent on the Middle East or Russia for its energy supply.

Read the entire article here


On can only hope that David Cameron, and also other political leaders in Europe, are listening to this voice of reason.  It is time to stop the climate change madness both in the UK and in the European Union in general, before it further damages Europe´s economic development.