This seems entirely fair if we’re to be honest about it

A complaint:

The fragile Cerrado grasslands and the Pantanal wetlands, both under threat from soy and beef exploitation, have been excluded from a European Union draft anti-deforestation law, campaigners have said, and there are many other concerning loopholes.

The European Commission has pledged to introduce a law aimed at preventing beef, palm oil and other products linked to deforestation from being sold in the EU single market of 450 million consumers.

Given that the cerrado and the panatal are not forests there is little reason to have them included in laws about deforestation really.

This is Worstallesque in its ignorance of SI units

Some 7,000 years ago the Scottish Highlands was home to 15,000 square metres of ancient woodlands, a habitat for great herds of wild grazing animals, lynx, wolves and native red squirrels.

Great grazing herds of red squirrels is fun.

So, one sq metre is 1×10*0 m2, right? 10 is thus 1×10*1 m2? Or have I got that wrong already? But 15,000 is therefore 1.5×10*4 m2. And what they almost certainly mean is 1.5×10*7 m2, yes? Or is it 1.5×10*8 m2? Umm, 10k metres to a hectare, 1,000 hectares to a km, 15,000,000,000,00andhowmanymore?

Easier, for me at least, to say 15,000 square metres and 15,000 square hectares or even something like the accurate number, 15,000 square kilometres. Or ten thousand square miles in real money.

Given my inability with SI – it’s all just a blur of numbers to me – I have sympathy with those who also don’t instinctively grasp relative and likely sizes. But that the arts graduates manage to get it wrong with words does still astonish.

What a fascinating number

Don’t know whether it’s true or not but I can imagine that it is:

That has fuelled concerns over financial contagion as well as the knock-on impact on the world economy from a slowdown in the country’s property sector which consumes around a quarter of the world’s iron ore.

Evergrande’s obviously going bust, large parts of the sector are likely to follow, iron ore is well off the top and how much further to go?

Don’t forget, iron ore supply in the short to medium term is extremely inelastic with respect to price. You’ve actually got to shut down parts or all of the mine to reduce it. Therefore price is extremely elastic with respect to demand….

This isn’t good news, really, it isn’t

Britain’s power grid has repeatedly fallen below its targeted frequency level this year, raising fears that it is struggling to cope with intermittent energy supplies.

It comes amid rising international energy costs and a recent drop in wind power due to particularly still weather. Earlier this week the UK was forced to bring a coal-fired power plant back online to boost the grid.

The grid’s level of frequency dipped to between 49.79Hz and 49.67Hz on 11 occasions between February and June, according to data analysed by The Sunday Telegraph from the Gridwatch database which measures frequency at five-minute intervals.

It’s not, particularly, that the grid will go kablooie if this happens too much or too often. They’ll manage to stop that happening.

Rather, it’s that a lot of the industrial machinery attached in the factories doesn’t want to have to deal with this. There have been reports out of Germany of manufacturers looking around for someone to sue for compensation as a result of lines switching themselves off as a result of such variations. Part completed runs meaning heating/cooling and the ruination of the run, possibly even of the equipment.

The answer to which is the factory setting up its own generators to ensure consistency. But those are likely to be diesel of gas, meaning that the supposed emissions savings actually reverse.

Grid instability just isn’t s good thing.

Terrible idea

No, really:

Rugby union could follow football in proposing plans to stage a men’s World Cup every two years by exploring the idea of a biennial showpiece tournament.

The radical move is “being considered”, admits the chief executive of World Rugby, as the sport’s custodians mark the midway point between the 2019 and 2023 tournaments by mapping out their vision for the future of the game in an extensive interview with Telegraph Sport.

Going the wrong way entirely.

Can’t recall who it was, might have been the England set up, possibly France, who had what I thought was a much, much, better idea. Run it every 4 years, as now. But run something like the Nations Cup at the same time in the same place. Maybe Nations isn’t the right name. But the knock out competition for all the teams that didn’t qualify for the World Cup itself. So that Peru, Singapore, Brunei, Kenya etc etc etc are all sending teams to that second competition to be played in the same country as the World Cup itself. You might even need three tiers, not just the two.

But actually make it all of world rugby is here and in this place for a month, 6 weeks, once every 4 years. Yes, Sikkim v El Salvador would attract a crowd of 2 blokes, three dogs and an empanada salesman but still. If we’re – as they do – going to try and call it all the global celebration of the game then let’s actually make it that.

Canada’s different you know


Meanwhile Mr Trudeau’s main rival, the Conservative leader Erin O’Toole, has run a largely successful campaign blaming the Liberal leader for a selfishly opportunistic election, swelling the national debt and failing to tackle climate change.

That’s the conservatives arguing that not enough is being done about climate change.

Hmm, with Princess Nut Nut, maybe not so different.

Now we’ve got to ask whether he can even read

The idea that MMT says there may be money creation without limit is so grossly wrong it is absurd: what it emphatically says is the exact opposite. It recognises the real physical limits of the economy. The authors do not even hint of their awareness of that. It makes one wonder how much they have actually read about MMT. They only reference one MMT article by an MMT author, which is by Stephanie Kelton, but rather more by opponents.

What they have emphatically also not realised, or deliberately ignore, is that MMT has a very strong focus on inflation control.

They also, therefore, ign0re the role of tax in MMT, even though they read an edition of the Real World Economic Review where I had an article that discussed the role of tax within MMT.

From the article being fistthumped at:

Arguably, proponents of MMT are aware of this history. What they derive from these insights is that the roles of fiscal and monetary authorities (Treasury/Congress and the Fed) could be effectively reversed. Under MMT, the Fed finances the deficit by printing money, while the Treasury and Congress use their tools (taxation, expenditures and fees) to stabilize the economy and fight inflation. For example, Congress could raise taxes to dampen aggregate demand when the economy heats up. In fact, many MMT theorists are quite concerned about the dangers of inflation — perhaps to a greater extent than adherents to post-Keynesian or even New Keynesian views — because it erodes the purchasing power of wages. While in the latter frameworks, inflation greases the wheels of the economy, this is not necessary under MMT since the government’s printing presses provide lubrication. The hallmark of MMT is thus a fiscal view of the world, where the fiscal authority becomes responsible for the traditional monetary policy domain. In fact, MMT might be more aptly called “modern fiscal theory.”

So, they talk about tax being used to control inflation, this shows that they don’t talk about tax to control inflation in MMT does it?

Well done Ms Raducanu and yet….

There’s something that annoys here:

Traditional masculinity is programmed to look at the slighter, smaller, more delicately boned female and feel protective. It’s biology. Fine, but while protectiveness might be welcome in a dark lonely street or a jungleful of tigers, it easily slides into a warm sense of dominance. There’s a paternal desire to make decisions for the fragile creature’s own good, and a doubt as to whether a woman can do a tense and gruelling job. Suppose she cried? Or had some weird Woman’s Problem with her innards?

The presumption of helplessness can get internalised by women too, strengthened by the modish tendency to redefine normal weariness and frustration as “mental health” issues, and the new status in which victimhood wins you points.

Yep, very fine performance, she’s going to go on and win many more etc etc etc.

And yet what this isn’t is a proof that girls are the same as boys, that women are equal to all in everything which is the way that some are trying to play it.

Because she won in the women’s section of the competition. Anyone suggesting that she would have beaten Djokovic is insane. As that Williams Sisters against the Oz tab and beer taker episode showed.

Outstanding performance in a gender limited competition does not, in fact, show the equality – in all things, musculature etc – of the genders.

To nutshell it – woman wins women’s competition, this proves women are equal to men?

Mr Lynn misses the point

The Torygraph’s economics and business commentators (Ben Marlow being the other culprit) do seem to be good at missing the point:

We used to have a name for quoted companies that collected together lots of different businesses under a single corporate umbrella – they were called conglomerates. They rampaged their way through the 1970s and 1980s turning whole industries upside down. But they disappeared because they ended up destroying more value than they ever created. We certainly don’t need them to make a return in the 2020s.

It’s entirely true that the strategy ran out of steam. But that’s not the same as value destruction.

The conglomerates burned brightly for a couple of decades, and, in fairness, shook up some stagnant companies at a time when they needed a blast of fresh energy.

As with evolution itself, there’s no one strategy that works all the time. It is strategy for the surrounding environment that matters, if being the environment that selects for success.

So, asset stripping conglomerates. If the strategy succeeds in making money for shareholders then that means there are underused assets that require shaking up out of their stagnancy.


If there are pots of money looking for such and not finding them then we don’t need to give a damn about that, do we?

That is, the activity itself, the existence or not of it, shows that it works or doesn’t. And if it does then we want it, if it doesn’t then who gives a shit? The test is the environment and success in it.

And with a number of large companies pissing the cash away on varied wokeisms, who is absolutely sure that there aren’t assets out there to be shaken up?

People make the weirdest claims

Facebook’s controversial encryption plans ‘won’t give users real privacy’, MPs have been told as they were warned it will ‘cripple’ child abuse blocking software.

A leading expert has said the company’s proposals to encrypt its Messenger service will still hand it a ‘trove of information’ on users.

The comments come as Facebook has justified its contentious plans, which mean even it won’t be able to see what its users are uploading to the platform, on the grounds it will enhance people’s privacy.

The social media giant is facing mounting criticism over encryption plans that will make it harder to detect terrorist activity and child abuse material,

So the authorities won’t be able to track your blow stuff up and kiddie fiddling ways. And yet this is not an increase in privacy?

Sure, it may not be the type of privacy we’re delighted in on national security grounds but it is privacy. For it is important to ask, well, privacy from whom?

The depth of knowledge here is just astonishing

The problem isn’t them. High-quality ingredients are expensive and time-consuming to prepare when they’re available at all, and people with low wages and long hours—the people most likely to have suffered catastrophic effects of the pandemic, no matter their weight—do not have much time or money to spare.

This is simply insane. I’ll use UK figures just because I know them off the top of my head but the US is similar if not actually better.

The average household food bill is £60 a week (the average weekly grocery bill in the US is $90 a week, average wage is around $25 an hour, maybe $28). The average hourly wage is £14. Four and a half hours work by one averagely paid individual feeds a household for a week.

That’s not expensive food. That’s the cheapest food has been in the history of our entire species.

People talking about expensive food are quite literally insane.

Sorta hits that blank slate shit

Genetic and environmental sources of variance in IQ were estimated from 486 adoptive and biological families

Families include 419 mothers, 201 fathers, 415 adopted and 347 biological fully-adult offspring (M age = 31.8 years; SD = 2.7)

Proportion of variance in IQ attributable to environmentally mediated effects of parental IQs was estimated at .01 [95% CI 0.00, 0.02]

Heritability was estimated to be 0.42 [95% CI 0.21, 0.64]

Of course, we should all immediately grasp this. If genes don’t matter then how in buggery does speciation occur?

Sounds about right, yes

…”They’ve been piggybacking on other people’s events,” Jared Holt, a fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Digital Forensic Research Lab, told USA Today. “They go where they believe the culture war is being fought, because they see themselves as potentially violent enforcers in a broader culture war.”

Oh, waiddaminute. That’s about the Proud Boys. Not Antifa/revolutionaryworkersparty/trots/thelongmarchthroughtheinstitutions.

Makes you think, really

This is ever so slightly odd:

Carrie, 56, and her husband David, 65, the Songs of Praise presenter and former pop star from the band Linx have four children. The three oldest were born girls; now all are “trans/non-binary”.

“Olive Gray, the oldest, is 26 and non-binary,” says Carrie. “Olive uses the pronouns they/them. Nineteen-year-old Tylan [a star in the Channel 4 soap Hollyoaks] is non-binary masculine, and uses the pronouns they/he so that is quite a big change. Our third child, who is 15, is currently called Arlo. They are non-binary — they would say they are a demigirl.

So, let’s assume that the current story is entirely correct. That some women are in fact just born into male bodies, vice versa. Hmm, OK.

There’s some incidence of this across the population. Given the only recent acceptance of the idea we’re not really sure what that incidence is. But we can run with the idea that it’s unlikely to be higher than Teh Gays. Which, for women, is about 1% of the relevant population.

So, all three of the girls out of the four children are this some version of trans. With an assumed 1% incidence across the population that’s a most, most, unlikely outcome.

Well, sorry, among 25 million families it’s a certainty. But most unlikely to any one family. (OK, so we’ve not got 25 million families of 3 girls, 1 boy, but the point is obvious.)

Given the unlikelihood on that statistical basis we’re predisposed to believe a different explanation. One could be that it was always thus. But given that previous generations didn’t offer the choice – nor the surgery – it was never bred out. Or, there’s something about the dynamic of this particular family that’s led to the concentration of unlikely events.

Even, that we have grossly extended adolescence these days, meaning that the teenage attempts to wildly differentiate from both parents and siblings last rather longer. Do demisexual, non-binary masculine, non-binary (possibly unlikely given the motorboatability there) end up replacing goth/punk/Barbie/jock/ as methods of shocking the parentals and distinguishing the individual?

No, of course, I’m entirely wrong, couldn’t possibly be. But given the way that right on and woke means being terribly understanding of the kiddies these days ever more shock must be applied to appall them, right?

What’s New, Pussycat?

“Pro-European” centrists such as Macron increasingly think of international politics in terms of a Huntingtonian “clash of civilisations” – but whereas Samuel Huntington saw the west as one civilisation that would find itself in conflict with China and Islam in the post-cold war period, they see Europe as a civilisation that is distinct from, and which must also assert itself against, the United States.

This has always been true. Vied such nonsenses as Quaero, a European rival to Google, because there must be a European rival, see?

Cultural stupidity.

When Macron became French president in 2017, he spoke of a Europe qui protège – “that protects”. This was initially, above all, about protecting citizens from the market;

Given that it’s the market that makes the citizenry rich why in buggery would you want to do that?

Economic stupidity piled upon top.

Cottage cream accents

We can work out what they’re doing wrong here:

Speaking with a “cottage cream-thick English accent” is an example of privilege, NHS leaders have been told in seminars on racial justice.

In one talk in June, titled “creating an anti-racist NHS – what is the work to get us there?”, Kehinde Andrews, a professor of black studies, claimed the NHS needed to “acknowledge that there was systemic racism in the workplace from individual workers to executives”.

A professor of black studies is not going to find that there’s little problem. And from memory he’s the bloke who writes articles barking even by Guardian standards.

Finally, they’ve got someone who doesn’t know that the phrase is “clotted cream” trying to explain class and privilege to the English.

Lions, lions with lazers.



Clive of India was no sociopathic thug, but a British self-made success story

They say that like there’s something wrong with being a sociopathic thug. Which is something Brits have been notably good at over the centuries.

So that’s how he’s worked it out

Dr Tim Rideout says:
September 10 2021 at 5:06 pm
My expectation is that a post-Brexit sterling continues its 100 year pattern of decline so sinks against all currencies including the S£. So I am leaving the S£ unchanged and predicting a continuous slow erosion of sterling. We would not want the S£ to rise against the Euro, Dollar etc. Back when my mum went to Switzerland in 1947 you got 25 SFr to £1, today it is about one to one. I don’t think it would be good to pin ourselves to sterling unless somebody thinks we need a devaluation against everything else.

The P³ in charge of money printing will lead to the Bawbie rising against the £ sterling, will it? And an;t it quaint to think that the FX rate is in the control of a government anyway?

This is fun too:

Richard Murphy says:
September 11 2021 at 7:16 am

Scotland should never, ever join the euro and there is no reason for it to do so or peg. That would be economic madness. And Sweden proves it is not necessary.


So, Bawbieland can sign an international treaty promising to do something and not do it, ever, and that’s just fine. But for the UK to breach the NI protocol by having a border in Ireland – something not even mentioned in the Good Friday Agreement – is such a breach of international law that Boris should be on the wrong end of a pike?

This ain’t sophistication either

But there’s something to it:

Well they pulled into the parking lot
They saw a flashing sign that said,
Wet t-shirt contest every Saturday night
Well Tina looked at Dixie, said one of us can win that prize
Well Tina didn’t win ’cause she danced to Twisted Sister
But when Dixie told the DJ gimme three steps mister
All the gentlemen in the audience began to rise