Links 8/12/08 (and Antidote du Jour)

Eat kangaroo to ‘save the planet’ BBC

Mixed fortunes for world’s whales BBC

New evidence implicates humans in prehistoric animal extinctions PhysOrg

Property market grinds to a halt amid mortgage drought Times Online

MBIA DESERVES to Go Belly Up Barry Ritholtz

Whispers of a Watergate for Bush Clive Crook, Financial Times

Fed Watch: The Rapid Reversal Tim Duy, Economist’s View. Duy thinks we will bump along at this level for a while and not have another lurch downward. I think he has underestimated the impact of continued deterioration in the housing market and consumers being forced to delever (or at least not gear up any further).

Current Account Adjustment Redux? What’s Different this Time Around Menzie Chinn, Econbrowser. An important post that suggests that the dollar rally will not have legs.

Antidote du jour:

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  1. dh

    Life, Death and Twitter on the African Savannah

    Kimojino’s online outreach is an effort to raise awareness and money for the park, and it’s urgent: Without the funds he raises online, his employer, the Mara Conservancy, would go broke. Admission fees from park visitors are the conservancy’s primary source of revenue, but tourism dropped to almost zero during Kenya’s post-election violence, and hasn’t snapped back.
    But the park’s online efforts are working. Despite relatively modest traffic, the blog raised $40,000 from donations in March. Kimojino’s Facebook page drew about $2,000; and a handful of safari companies bought advertising on the blog in exchange for sponsoring rangers.
    “All the rest has been from single donations from individuals around the world, from donations as small as $5 to our biggest, which was $5,000,” says William Deed, the experienced blogger behind the park’s online outreach effort.
    Kenya’s wildlife is seriously threatened by poaching, except in parks like the Mara Triangle, which employs rangers to protect animals. The rangers’ salaries are paid from park fees, but tourism has dropped 90 percent. To keep the conservancy running, the park’s online outreach needs to raise $50,000 a month until the tourists return — a job that’s fallen into Deed’s lap.

  2. Anonymous

    Could you explain what we are looking at? Are those lions lying in the shade of the wing? If so, why? And how were they collected/congregated? Thanks.

  3. doc holiday

    This is symbolic of an FOMC emergency meeting and this pride grouping represents a sort of birds of a feather mentality, or monkey see, monkey do activity — not unlike what one finds with the mimicry complex — also associated with the concept of an evolutionary arms race, which is a struggle between competing sets of co-evolving genes.

    In this case, an interesting example of an evolutionary arms race is in sexual conflict between the sexes and the lack of representation of females within FOMC — thus IMHO this snapshot with the female lions is a slap in the face and a wake up call for drastic change. The metaphor here is that the males are already in the plane in somewhat of a premature departure mode, grouping together in the boys club, while the ladies are left behind for a nap.

    I also think the spotlite of the recent Bear Stearns bailout and the need for Blackrock to liquidate worthless assets is a totally corrupt situation that needs more light shined on it, and thus these ladies sitting around, need to get off the asphalt, and let the boys all crash — they need to forget about the short-term comfort of this temporary shade and go for the kill in the savanna — in broad daylight!

    As we know, groups of female lions typically hunt together; does anyone see a group of women crashing the banking system (I sure the hell don’t, and I’m not a friggn women)? Thus, since the lionesses are the hunters for their pride and capture their prey with precise and complex teamwork, why, as a group are women kept out of the central banking loop?

    Also, we know that the male is highly distinctive and is easily recognized by its mane, which is another reference that the male bankers hide behind the simplicity of mimicry: The FOMC males use camouflage, in which their species appears similar to their surroundings, e.g, suits and ties and such plumage used in a sort of playboy meets swashbuckling pirate party that seems to be all about fun with the boys, as they splash and giggle about self importance (see Greenspan, et al).

    See also: Hefner said he chose the rabbit for its “humorous sexual connotation,” and because the image was “frisky and playful.”

    Also: There is some controversy over airbrushing (or, in recent times, image editing) that is done on the photos featured in the magazine. Some readers say that this kind of photo-editing takes away from authenticity and makes photographs look unnatural.

  4. Anonymous

    ‘Should we walk to the horizon to yon shade trees or should we shade under the wing of this whatzit?’


  5. Richard Smith

    Anonymous of 10:38

    Assuming you are not just leg-pulling: yes, they are lions, they congregated all by themselves and this is behaviour instantly recognisable to anyone who’s ever had a domesticated cat, which will also mysteriously gravitate to any bit of sunshine or shade that has the temperature that it wants. Cats can end up in some pretty strange places when they are looking for the right spot to hang out. I suppose the charm of the photo comes from the recognition that lions are just the same in this respect.

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