Links 4/17/08

Maps for New Energy Entrepreneurs Springwise. Now you can get maps that show how much wind and sunshine an area is likely to get, allowing for more efficient eco-prospecting. I’m reminded of the adage about who really made money in the gold rush.

Fears grow of massive City unemployment Times Online

JP Morgan’s Really Weird Capital Raise Felix Salmon. Salmon is perplexed that JP Morgan raised $6 billion on pricey terms. He shouldn’t be. Contrary to popular belief, the bank is not well capitalized. And the bank is profitable only by virtue of dubious but permitted accounting, like counting the increased spread on its outstanding debt, which lowers its value on JPM’s balance sheet, as earnings.

A Drought in Australia, a Global Shortage of Rice New York Times. Not a bad piece, in that it discusses the collapse of the rice growing industry in Australia, one of the few countries that exported the grain. However, it fails to mention that rice production was always a dubious proposition in Oz despite its nominal profitability. The Australian Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization, a highly regarded applied sciences think tank, spent ten years producing a physical model of Australia (no other country has undertaken such an effort). One of its main findings was that Australia would run out of fresh water in 50 years and the country was inadequately compensated for the water contained in its agricultural exports. Water intensive crops like rice are a bad deal for Australia, drought or no drought.

Google Faces Slowing Consumer Ad Market After Finance Meltdown Bloomberg

Retailers Get Stingy With Data New York Times. First it was Libor, now it’s same store sales data. Another sign of descent into banana republic behavior. The private sector wants to provide information only when it’s flattering.

Antodote du jour. A departure from our usual programming:

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  1. CrocodileChuck


    Your comment on the NYT piece on Australia’s rice exports: bullseye.

    We are the driest continent on Earth. Our biggest export (after minerals): water

    (in the form of rice and broadacre grains).


  2. Anonymous

    This pic cracked my up so I typed in the URL at the bottom to this David Dees’ site.


    I suppose you can say he has a talent for manipulation, though one far beyond the realm of Photoshop. The “statements” seem to be all over the map: anti-Bush, anti-immigrant (and anti-immigration reform), anti-border security, a healthy dose of 911 conspiracy along with the usual corporate paranoia.

    Two themes however stand out above all: overwhelming support for Ron Paul, and one of the most hateful, ignorant, and shameless anti-Semitic campaigns this side of your local neo-Nazi chapter. I mean, wow. So much hate.

    I’m not a Jew, but as an American I find this sort of bitter intolerance unacceptable in my country. Regardless of who it’s directed at.

    The big loser in all this is likely the Ron Paul campaign. He had the unfortunate (and unwelcome) support of a lot of fringe hate groups, so I suppose this shouldn’t come as a surprise. No matter though, the implied association is what sticks in people’s minds.

    Shame on David Dees. Or should I say “Sieg Heil!”.

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