Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Gerry Eckhoff: Opportunity cost of Water

A report by Global Water Resources Group projects that by 2030, annual global fresh water needs will reach 6.9 trillion cubic metres – 64% more than currently existing reliable supply. The implications for further global and domestic conflict are obvious as interest groups vie for influence and control. 

In NZ, evidence suggests that variation of rainfall from year to year and not scarcity of water is the real problem. Despite this obvious reality being easily overcome by water storage - nothing is now to be done - by Government decree.  The Labour led collective (Government) decided to do away with the ineptly named “irrigation fund” in favour of other expenditure. There will be a massive future cost associated with that decision. Economists call it the opportunity cost – in this case - of fresh water. 

NZCPR Weekly: Deepening the Dependency Trap

Dear NZCPR Reader,   

This week we examine how the policy agenda of the new Labour-led Government - that puts the demands of the unions ahead of the needs of young people and the unemployed - will deepen the dependency trap, our NZCPR Guest Commentator Kerry Jackson explains how poorly designed public policies have made California the poverty capital of the United States, and our poll asks whether you are optimistic or pessimistic about the future of our economy under the policies proposed by Labour.

*To read the newsletter click HERE.
*To register for the NZCPR Weekly mailing list, click HERE.

Saturday, January 27, 2018

GWPF Newsletter: A Climate Sceptic Just Took Charge Of EU Environment Policy

New EU Emissions Targets Will Cost Germany A Trillion Euros

In this newsletter:

1) A Climate Sceptic Just Took Charge Of EU Environment Policy
Dave Keating, Forbes, 26 January 2018

2) Germany Falling Short of EU Emissions Targets (along with Austria, Belgium, Finland, Ireland, Luxembourg and Malta.)
The Wall Street Journal, 24 January 2018

Phil Barry: The a2 Milk Company Story – An Overview

The market value of Fonterra’s equity is $10.6 billion. Its NPAT in FY17 was $745 million. That gives it a P/E multiple of 14. 

The market value of The a2 Milk Company’s (ATM) equity is $6.1 billion – almost 60% of Fonterra’s. Its NPAT in FY17 was $91 million. That gives it a P/E multiple of 66. See Figure 1 below. 

So what? Clearly investors like ATM’s story. It is a dairy industry participant but it is not at all typical.

Friday, January 26, 2018

Bruce Moon: Twisting Taonga

It is a pretty obvious fact that the meanings of words may change over time – even if we discount the argot of the young – you know - “a cool chick”, “a joint”.  New ideas, new technology, need words to describe them. So picture the Maoris of New Zealand, eastern Polynesians isolated for millennia in a Stone Age culture, when they observed the diversity of material wealth of the Europeans who came to our shores.  They needed words for it.  And so: Taonga:

In 1820: “property procured by the spear” - Hongi Hika in Lee and Kendall’s Maori dictionary – from “tao” - a spear.

In 1831: “possessions/property” - “nothing but timber, flax, pork and potatoes”[i] - 13 Ngapuhi chiefs writing to King William.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

GWPF Newsletter - James Hansen: Natural Factors May Cause New Global Warming Hiatus

Global Oceans Cool Off: Now Colder Than Three Years Ago

In this newsletter:

1) BBC Gets It Wrong Again On Global Warming
Global Warming Policy Foundation, 24 January 2018
2) James Hansen: Ocean Cycles & Solar Activity May Cause New Global Warming Hiatus
GWPF Podcast, 24 January 2018 

Daniel Mitchell: Can a Flat Tax Rescue Italy’s Economy?

To put it mildly, Italy’s economy is moribund. There’s been almost no growth for the entire 21st century.

Bad government policy deserves much of the blame.

According to Economic Freedom of the World, Italy is ranked only 54th, the worst score in Western Europe other than Greece. The score for fiscal policy is abysmal, and regulatory policy and rule of law are also problem areas.

Victor Davis Hanson: Can Countries Make Themselves Great Again?

Is Donald Trump’s slogan “Make America great again” mere campaign rhetoric in the tradition of Barack Obama’s “hope and change,” George H. W. Bush’s “a kinder, gentler nation,” and Ronald Reagan’s “It’s morning in America again”? Or do such renaissances really occur in history?

The Roman Republic and Empire together lasted for more than 1,000 years. Yet at various times throughout this period, Rome was declared finished—like during the Punic Wars (264-146 BC), the Civil Wars of the late Republic (49-31 BC), and the coups and cruelty of the 12 Caesars (49 BC-AD 96), especially during the reigns of Caligula, Nero, and Domitian.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

NZCPR Weekly: Tribal Control of the Coast

Dear NZCPR Reader,   

This week we examine the concern that access to our beaches could be blocked if tribal groups gain control of the coast, our NZCPR Guest Commentator Frank Newman warns about the increasing use of rahui and the threat it poses to public access to the coast, and our poll asks whether you believe the coastal claims process as it stands is a barrier to those who wish to object to the claims that have been lodged.

*To read the newsletter click HERE.
*To register for the NZCPR Weekly mailing list, click HERE.

Sunday, January 21, 2018

GWPF Newsletter - Pentagon: Global Warming No Longer A National Security Threat

The Climate-Change Doomsday Just Got Cancelled

In this newsletter:

1) Pentagon: Global Warming No Longer A National Security Threat
Michael Bastasch, Daily Caller, 19 January 2018
2) Reminder: Bonkers Pentagon Tells Bush: Climate Change Will Destroy Us
The Observer, 22 February 2004

Bruce Moon: Some Tips about Te Reo

Words, words, words” - Shakespeare, “Hamlet”, Act 2, Scene 2          
While the meaningful glance certainly has its place, for the much greater part of our communication, we use words, spoken and, until modern times much less often, written – in a word: “language”.

A communicating group from a tribe to an empire will develop a language understood by all, which will change slowly over the years as the needs for expression and habits of speech change within the group.  As one group becomes dominant over others, so will its language.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Frank Newman: Killer Trees

On January 6, a storm brought down a 150 year old English Oak tree in central Rotorua. It crashed onto a nearby office building and on a parked car, killing the sole occupant.

Rotorua Mayor Steve Chadwick said the death was a tragic accident. She said, "This is an absolute tragedy and our hearts and thoughts are with the family at this terrible time".

Indeed it is a tragedy. The issue is whether it could or should have been avoided and whether the actions or inactions of the Mayor, the council's Chief Executive, or its arborist contributed to the tragedy and should be held criminally liable.

Matt Ridley: Minimising the need for trusted third parties

The price of a Bitcoin has risen tenfold in ten months. Yet whether and when the bubble will burst is beside the point, which is that Bitcoin works. What I mean by this is that Bitcoin has proved that the blockchains technology behind cryptocurrencies is capable of doing what it was claimed it could: create an asset of limited supply and high security, like digital gold.

“Running non-stop for eight years, with almost no financial loss on the chain itself, [Bitcoin] is now in important ways the most reliable and secure financial network in the world,” writes the legal scholar and computer scientist Nick Szabo. This is likely to be a more enduring legacy than any burst bubbles or scandals over the use of cryptocurrencies by drug dealers. Blockchains may change more than money.

Karl du Fresne: If RNZ caters to all New Zealanders, why have so many given up on it?

A recent Dominion Post column of mine headlined “Dinosaur versus Dominatrix” (reproduced on this site), about an on-air clash between Kim Hill and Don Brash, brought a couple of old-school broadcasting grandees out of the woodwork.

Ian Johnstone, a familiar face on TV screens from the 1960s till the 1990s, and Geoffrey Whitehead, a former BBC deputy political editor who became CEO of Radio New Zealand and now lives in retirement in Napier, both had a whack at me for criticising Hill’s hostile demolition job on Brash.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

GWPF Newsletter - Global Temperature In 2017: Not A Resurgence Of Global Warming

Hockey Stick Goes To Court

In this newsletter:

1) Global Temperature In 2017: Not A Resurgence Of Global Warming
The GWPF Observatory, 17 January 2018 
2) Hockey Stick Goes To Court: Global Warming Lawsuit Is Riddled With Factual Errors
Michael Bastasch, Daily Caller, 16 January 2018 

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

NZCPR Weekly: Golliwogs and Local Government

Dear NZCPR Reader,   

This week we examine the diverse impact of political correctness – from golliwogs to local government, our NZCPR Guest Commentator Dr Don Brash looks at whether free speech is under threat in New Zealand, and our poll asks whether the right to challenge council decisions to establish Maori wards through a referendum process should be retained or removed.

*To read the newsletter click HERE.
*To register for the NZCPR Weekly mailing list, click HERE.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

GWPF Newsletter - New Study: Global Ocean Temperatures Have Risen Only 0.1º Celsius In The Last 50 Years

Fossil Fuels’ Share Of Total Energy Use Unchanged In 40 Years

In this newsletter:

1) New Study: Global Ocean Temperatures Have Risen Only 0.1º Celsius In The Last 50 Years
Michael Bastasch, Daily Caller, 5 January 2018
2) The World’s Dependence On Fossil Fuels Hasn’t Changed In 40 Years
P Gosselin, No Tricks Zone, 12 January 2018 

Monday, January 15, 2018

GWPF Newsletter - Peiser & Ridley: Bad Weather Is No Reason for Climate Alarm

Events such as hurricanes and wildfires are too often blamed on our slowly warming, slightly wetter planet

The Wall Street Journal, 13 January 2018 
By Benny Peiser and Matt Ridley

Two weeks ago, President Donald Trump greeted the cold snap that was gripping much of the U.S. by tweeting, “Perhaps we could use a little bit of that good old Global Warming.” He was criticized for confusing weather with climate. But he’s hardly alone in making this mistake, as we have seen in coverage of the most destructive weather-related events of 2017.

Friday, January 12, 2018

GWPF Newsletter: German Parties Agree To Scrap Legally Binding 2020 Climate Target

Angela Merkel Lectured Trump On Global Warming, Now Germany Is Abandoning Its Climate Goal

In this newsletter:

1) It’s All Over: German Parties Agree To Scrap Legally Binding 2020 Climate Target
Reuters, 8 January 2018
2) Angela Merkel Lectured Trump On Global Warming, Now Germany Abandoning Its Climate Goal
Daily Caller, 8 January 2018

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Viv Forbes: Be Careful What you Wish For

In today’s crazy world, western politicians are wasting billions of tax-payer dollars force-feeding costly unreliable green energy in the bizarre belief that this will somehow change Earth’s climate.

Even more incredible, they fear global warmth and seem hell-bent on creating global cooling. They should study climate history. It is snow and ice, cold dry air and carbon dioxide starvation we need to fear, not a warm, moist, fertile, bountiful atmosphere.

Climate change is natural and unstoppable.

GWPF Newsletter: Emergency Costs For German Energiewende Explode

Many Europeans ‘Too Poor’ To Heat Their Homes

In this newsletter:

1) Emergency Costs For German Energiewende Explode
Alex Reichmuth, Basler Zeitung, 6 January 2018
2) Brave Green World: Many Europeans ‘Too Poor’ To Heat Their Homes
Euronews, 4 January 2018

Monday, January 8, 2018

GWPF Newsletter: NOAA Climate Scientists Predicted Third Warm Winter In A Row

Now, Al Gore Blames Record Cold On Global Warming

In this newsletter:

1) NOAA Predicts Its Third Warm Winter In A Row
Wired, 23 October 2017 

2) Al Gore: ‘Bitter Cold’ Is ‘Exactly What We Should Expect From The Climate Crisis’
Marc Morano, Climate Depot, 4 January 2018

Sunday, January 7, 2018

Nicholas Kerr: If not economic growth, then what?

In a column entitled Everything must go“, George Monbiot writes that economic growth “will destroy everything”. While he rails at length against growth, he doesn’t go into any detail about his preferred alternative. Moreover, his diatribe is mostly against consumption, whereas an increase in productivity (for example, doing more with less) is usually the primary driver of economic growth. Increased productivity does sometimes result in more consumption, but also increased savings and investment, among other things.

His main gripe is to do with growth’s environmental impact. However, he ignores the problems low economic growth brings and the benefits of a strong economy. Think about where the major environmental problems are today versus a generation or more ago. For starters, low growth USSR had terrible environmental catastrophes relative to the USA. But even in America we had LA smog and New York pollution. Economic growth brought prosperity and the wherewithal to address these issues, which no longer exist.

Matt Ridley: Artificial intelligence will be a symbiosis, not a replacement

In the early 1960s, at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, there was a disagreement about what computers would achieve. One faction, led by John McCarthy and Marvin Minsky, championed “artificial intelligence”, believing that computers would gradually replace human beings. The other, led by Norbert Wiener and JCR Licklider, the man who oversaw the creation of the internet’s precursor, championed “human-computer symbiosis”, believing that computers would augment human beings.

“Man-computer symbiosis is an expected development in co-operative interaction between men and electronic computers,” wrote Licklider in a crucial essay published in 1960. “It will involve very close coupling between the human and the electronic members of the partnership.” In his arresting analogy, computers would be to us as fig wasps are to fig trees: symbiotic partners.

Friday, January 5, 2018

Karl du Fresne: If you want to see what real hate speech is like, check out the attacks on Don Brash

Don Brash could be excused for feeling a little bruised as 2017 draws to a close.

The former leader of the National and ACT parties used his Facebook page to criticise Guyon Espiner, one of the presenters of Radio New Zealand’s Morning Report, for repeatedly showing off his fluency in Maori.

Brash objected because, as he pointed out, hardly any listeners to the programme would know what Espiner was saying. According to Brash, the presenter’s use of te reo is an example of “virtue signalling” – in other words, flaunting his moral superiority.

Thursday, January 4, 2018

GWPF Newsletter: U.S. Shale Oil Production Booms As New Year Begins

Shale Revolution Helps Rewrite The Global Geopolitical Playbook

In this newsletter:

1) Terence Corcoran: The Population Bombers Keep On Bombing — And 50 Years On They Keep Getting It Wrong
Financial Post, 3 January 2018
2) Hail Shale: U.S. Oil Production Booms As New Year Begins
The Washington Post, 31 December 2017

Barend Vlaardingerbroek: The right of independent business operators to do business with whom they will

Bakeries are the new civil rights battlegrounds, and not just in the United States - New York Times 18-12-16

The passage of same-sex marriage (SSM) into law has opened up a Pandora’s Box of competing rights.

Brian Giesbrecht: Battling The Bottle — The Untold Story

First Nation leaders need to move beyond victimhood to resolve problems

The ’60s Scoop was back in the news this month, and I expect we will hear more about it in the coming years. In fact, I am guessing there are plans in place to make it the subject of the next national inquiry after the missing women’s inquiry has wrapped up.

So, what is the ’60s Scoop? It is usually described as a decade when aboriginal children were stolen from their parents by overzealous social workers attempting to perpetuate cultural genocide by placing aboriginal children in American homes.

Michael Zwaagstra: Brainwashed Students Aren’t Critical Thinkers

There is a fine line between teaching and brainwashing. Teaching informs students about the world around them and helps them become critical thinkers. In contrast, brainwashing provides students with heavily skewed information that leads to one predetermined conclusion.

It’s easy to mix these two things up if we aren’t careful.