This could be difficult

The regional director for Agriculture and Fisheries in the Algarve, Pedro Monteiro, also told Lusa that “the reality of the pandemic helped” the Algarve’s citrus industry, but more so the big producers, because the small ones “sell essentially to the Horeca channel [acronym for hospitality, restaurants and cafes] and in street markets”, which “were closed” during the pandemic, creating “difficulties” in selling their produce.
In order to avoid more severe problems in the future, the authorities encourage “the emergence of new outlets” and “called for proximity consumption, short chains and direct contact between producers and consumers”, but this solution “does not solve all the problems”, he considered.

Indeed this doesn’t solve all the problems as proximity consumption, short chains and direct contact means exactly that Horeca channel, doesn’t it?

BTW, anyone coming to Portugal this summer keep an eye open in the supermarkets for Algarve OJ. Compal, one of the brands, certainly does it. I’m told that the oranges here are the old Moorish ones, rather than more modern cultivars. The juice is certainly nice and sharp.

Err, Hello?

Teachers have paid a heavy price. Robert Costrell of the University of Arkansas has calculated that the nation’s school districts spent an average of $1,312 per student for teacher retirement benefits in 2018, up from $530 in 2004, an increase of some $39 billion or nearly $12,000 per teacher. If that money went into teacher salaries, the average U.S. teacher’s pay would increase by nearly 20 percent.

Your pension is part of your pay. That is, teachers’ pay is already higher by that 20% that is the pension.

Isn’t this a shocker?

Some older people who fund their own care home fees are being forced to pay a steep and unexpected coronavirus bill by their care provider, it has been revealed.

The costThe cost of doing something goes up, the market price goes up. Stunning really, we really do need some sort of science that could explain such events.

Tre Professori double counts

He’s plugging sustainable cost accounting again. Gissa Job etc. Where we get this:

And as it turns out, almost no one does seem to think Scope 3 is material. So we end up with the absurd situation where airports claim they are carbon-neutral because they ignore the emissions from the planes that fly from them and coal mines can make the same claim because they say someone else burns the coal that they mine, and they claim that’s got nothing to do with them when glaringly obviously that’s untrue.

Well, someone sells me a car. Which uses petrol. Scope 3 emissions then depend upon how much I use that car. How can the car manufacturer be made responsible for how much I drive?

Which is why Scope 3 emissions are not the responsibility of the people who don’t make the emissions. Well, that plus the fact that my supplier’s Scope 3 emissions are my Scope 1 or 2 therefore they’re already included in the system anyway….

Well, yes, obviously Mr. Kamm

Will that help or hinder economic prospects? There’s a convincing argument that a market in corporate control generates efficiency gains. A management that fails to deploy a company’s assets effectively to generate returns for shareholders ought to feel the discipline of a potential takeover. Yet a general principle doesn’t necessarily apply in every case. My guess is that a wave of corporate consolidation after this crisis is likely to reduce competitive pressures in the economy. This will not serve the interests of consumers.

Being able to screw the customers is to deploy corporate assets with greater efficiency. Not that it’s the sort of efficiency we want of course but the idea should be obvious and not need explaining.

Not entirely and wholly, no

Central bank independence is a policy goal of neoliberal economics that seeks to undermine democratic control of the economy and the accountability of the government for it, but it is not what happens in practice.

In the evidence given to support this it is said that:

What this makes clear is that the purpose of the move was political: it was to reassure markets that a new Labour government would be seeking to prudent with regard to government finances by passing control of interest rates to the Bank of England.

Quite, the point of central bank independence is to take control of interest rates and the money supply away from whatever nutter manages to get elected. Or at least to make it more difficult for whoever does to Zimbabwefie the economy. Which is why it was brought in by a Labour government. They being at most risk of the belief that they will, they therefore gaining the most from the perceived reduction of that risk.

Dunno about this really

A leading investor group has rebuked Aston Martin Lagonda for having no women on its board.

Hmm, one of the worst investments on the market this past couple of years. The genital arrangements of the board might not be the most important worry.

The luxury car company was chaired by Penny Hughes, but she was removed as the company began to implode.

Oh dear

Business activity picked up in May, with the composite purchasing managers’ index climbing from a record low of 13.6 in April to 31.9. Any reading below 50 indicates contraction.

The second sentence means that the first one is wrong. Actually, business activity continued to diminish but at a lower rate.


The Australian Press Council ruled that the language in Bolt’s August 2019 article breached standards because it attempted to “diminish the credibility of Ms Thunberg’s opinions on the basis of her disabilities and by pillorying her supporters on the basis of her disabilities”.

No, not the specific here, just feel the general there.

We are not to use disability as a manner of diminishing the credibility of opinions. Say, Caroline Lucas’ entire inability to understand economics is not to be used in determining the validity of her opinions upon economics? Retardation to the point of not being able to count means that views on mathematics are just as valid? The claim of being able to see carbon dioxide does not lead to a certain discounting of views upon climate change – or, actually, anything at all?

Commonweal and Resilience

A new report out that Spudda likes from some Scots blokes. Which says:

where economic activity is not
concentrated in a few geographical areas.

That’s a good thing, a wide distribution of economic activity.

very long ‘just-in-time’
supply chains,

That’s a bad thing, a wide distribution of economic activity.

They’re cretins in short. But then Snippa’s approval is going to push us toward that conclusion anyway….


And, as the Bank of England has now acknowledged, the chance that any of the debt that it has bought back from the financial markets will ever be resold back into those same financial markets is remote, in the extreme. None ever has been. In that case, for all practical purposes this debt has been cancelled. UK national debt should, then, be stated net of all quantitative easing because that debt does, in effect, no longer exist.


So, I had a look at the link where the BoE acknowledged this and guess what? I didn’t find it. Surely Snippa cannot be lying to us? Although:

If we were the central bank of the Weimar Republic or Zimbabwe, the mechanical transactions on our
balance sheet would be similar to what is actually happening in the UK right now. That is not where you
would find the smoking gun. The difference would be that government would be telling the central bank what
to do, implicitly or explicitly, in order to achieve fiscal objectives while subordinating any inflation objectives, a
situation also known as fiscal dominance. Why would that ultimately lead to inflation? Because, once a
government decides to prioritise its fiscal objectives above its inflation objectives, it is likely to involve
removing central bank independence implicitly or explicitly, and crucially keeping short-term interest rates
lower than would be appropriate to meet the inflation target. The real ex-post financing cost of government
debt could be lower,27 because the debt reduction would be in part achieved via higher inflation. Weimar and
Zimbabwe had central banks that issued however much central bank money was required to achieve the
government’s financing needs, without any credible action to meet inflation objectives.

Yes, that’s right, they do say that explicitly moving to monetary financing of fiscal policy would lead to inflation.


Entirely stunning

Second, this is economically appropriate. As is being widely noted, the savings ratio is rising rapidly as the coronavirus crisis develops. In other words, people are saving higher proportions of their income. That is a natural reaction to economic stress, but only exacerbates the problems that we face because there will be less available to be spent on consumption as a consequence. This, then, means that wealth should be taxed more to encourage the redistribution of income and wealth from those who are saving to those who will spend, and that necessarily means that the wealthy pay more tax so that those on low income, who have the lowest savings ratios, have more income available to them. This will speed economic recovery and alleviate poverty at the same time.

He’s advocating wealth taxation. And yet seems entirely unaware of – certainly hasn’t addressed – the standard economic conclusion from optimal tax theory that wealth shouldn’t be taxed at all.

This is terribly fun, isn’t it?

Even when an investigation does take place, the prime minister can suppress its conclusions, as Johnson has done with the report on Russian interference in the British political system, which remains unpublished. Does it contain details of unlawful donations to the Conservative party? Or of Conservative Friends of Russia, whose launch party was attended by Cummings? A key figure in this group was a man who has subsequently come under suspicion of being a Russian spy. He has been photographed with Johnson, whom he described as a “good friend”. What was going on? Without parliament’s intelligence and security committee’s report, we can only guess.
These formal rings of power are supported by further defences beyond government, such as the print media, most of which is owned by billionaires or multimillionaires living offshore, and the network of opaquely funded thinktanks, that formulate and test the policies later adopted by government. Their personnel circulate in and out of the prime minister’s office.

Oh, for those halcyon days when it was the right sort of Russians sending the Moscow Gold to the Morning Star and the like…..

Can’t say everything in 600 words but

Solving the Floyd problem:

The agreements that have built up over the years, such things as qualified immunity for the police and other inequalities before the law, are specifically there in order to release the police from those same responsibilities in the exercise of those powers. That’s what unions are for, of course, to privilege union members — which is why we must not have them in the police force.

Getting rid of these special arrangements means getting rid of the unions that negotiate them. That might only be a start, but it’s a necessary precondition. Abolishing police unions would be the first step in moving police forces away from their position as legally privileged occupying powers back to what they ought to be — just the citizenry in uniform serving the society they are a part of.

OK, so…

It’s a country where 1/3 of the deaths in police custody are Black or members of other ethnic minorities,

What should the number be?

People of minority ethnicities made up 27% of the prison population
compared with 13% of the general population.

We’re to cavil about the difference between 27% and 33% are we? After all, people do die wherever they’re put, no?