Sand in the gears/Songs for our times
Eli is a big fan of throwing sand in the gears, not too much, not too little, but just enough to slow things down to where they can be dealt with, such as stopping before running off the cliff. Recently the world has examples of what happens when you don’t slow the economic engines a bit. The Rabett’s friends have been commenting as they wave goodbye to their savings, for example, Michael Tobis and the Pig. OTOH, a couple of months ago Eli bantered with a very old friend who wanted to retreat to Sayism, if not mercantilism, and this lost post was the result
Eli prescribes sand in the gears as a good thing. Among other things this is regulation and it has the advantage of slowing things up, which is generally considered a bad thing, until, as is inevitably the case one has to spread one’s wings while falling to Earth from a 12,000 Dow or when the the Breakthrough Institute's ideas breakdown or the majic solution to climate change does not appear. Spreading your wings at that point does not help a whole lot.
Below is a songbook for these times with video links, but to yank this back to climate policy, much of the past year, two thirds of the IPCC AR4, the Stern Report and many electrons (Rabett Run is modern) have been spent on the issue of what is the world worth. There is a school (sandbox really) that claims they can find an optimum path for dealing with climate change mostly by doing nothing now. This is also called the Pie in the Sky By and By approach favored by folks like Gary Yohe, our old friend Richard Tol on the economic side, Ethon’s date Roger Pielke Jr. and sundry Nordhausii on the policy side for example, plus the usual clowns . Well, many of the clowns don’t want to do anything ever. Some progress was made when the economists recognized that climate change can be a mighty high cliff, and it might just be prudent to invest more rather that less, or to do something now rather than asking dad for a pony later, which, of course, is the message of the AR4, Stern Report, and Eli Rabett’s Simple Plan for Saving the World..
In turbulent economic times the Bunnies need Rock ‘n Roll with its sweet words, pessimistic outlook and great rhythms, so Eli translated this guide from an old Frankfurter Allgemenie and added some links
“Crisis, what crisis?” – Supertramp (1975) The album playing on Hank Paulson’s and Ben Bernankie’s IPod for the last six months. The hit song for Republican members of the US Congress
“Money” - Pink Floyd (1973) The calming effect of an endless supermarket checkout line with the background clank of coins in this psychedelic classic will lull anxious savings bank customers to sleep. Still the text perfectly expresses investment banker ethics before and after the crash: “Money, it’s a gas, grab that cash with both hands and make a stash. New car, caviar, four star day dream. Think I’ll buy me a football team.”
“Save me” – Julie Driscoll (1967) The song that the Lehman Brothers Band sang in vain in front of the White House, and that the AIG Chorus hit with only a week later: “Save me, I’m in so much trouble. I don’t know what to do.”
“Sorry seems to be the hardest word” – Elton John (1976). This song says what so many of us thought when the bankers described their bonus giveaways: “It’s sad, so sad. It’s a sad, sad situation and it’s getting more absurd”
“Wall Street shuffle” – 10cc (1974) The song for the good old days when the wise guys were masters of the universe: “Do the Wall Street shuffle. Hear the money rustle, watch the greenbacks tumble, feel the sterling crumble. You gotta be cool on Wall Street. When your index is low. Dow Jones ain’t got time for the bums.”
“Take the money and run” – Steve Miller Band (1976) What George, Hank, Ben and Tim said to their friends.
“Money for nothing” – Dire Straits (1985) The goal, “money for nothing and the chicks for free” the perfect free market philosophy.
“It’s money that I love” – Randy Newman (1979) The ultimate love letter to the God of the Markets: “I don’t love the mountains and I don’t love the sea, and I don’t love Jesus, he never done a thing for me. It’s only the money that I love”
“First look at the purse” - The Contours (1962) At the matchmaker’s ball men look for the important things: “A woman can be as fat as can be. Kisses sweet as honey. But that don’t mean a thing to me. If you ain’t got no money. If the purse is fat that’s where it’s at.”
“Baby you’re a rich man” – The Beatles (1967) John, Paul, George and Ringo knew how to keep their money even under the influence of mind altering drugs. “Baby you’re a rich man. You keep all your money in a big brown bag inside a zoo. What a thing to do.”
Comments? And here is the rest of it.
Sunday, February 15, 2009
Sand in the gears/Songs for our times