Links 2/28/10

Coffee producers ‘getting hammered’ by global climate change Raw Story (hat tip reader John D)

Wild bears back in Britain? Telegraph

Plastic rubbish blights Atlantic Ocean BBC

NYT Should Rely on Experts Who Are Not Employed by J.P. Morgan Dean Baker

In which Paul Krugman proves he is an academic snob who argues from his prejudice rather than the data John Hempton. In fairness, Hempton somewhat misconstrues Krugman’s assertion…by “great newspaper”, he was almost certainly not talking about circulation. And the success of the Financial Times counters his assertion that “prejudice sell media”. That is clearly an attractive model, but it is not the only model.

Elizabeth Warren on the Coming Commercial Real Estate Crisis; 3000 Community Banks at Risk Michael Shedlock

Nationwide: UK house prices fall 1.0% Ed Harrison

Mankiw at EEA Economists for Firing Larry Summers

Data breach disclose bankers and public officials’ salaries and bonuses in Latvia Associated Press (hat tip reader John M)

Pound under attack as debt worries grow Times Online

Details Emerges for Greece Plan Wall Street Journal but consider: If This Guy Is The Source Of Greek Bailout Reports, You Should Be Very Skeptical Cluserstock. There were many times during the crisis when one paper would have a story well in front of the others that ultimately proved to be wrong.

Persistence of bad governments Daron Acemoglu, Georgy Egorov, Konstantin Sonin VoxEU

Antidote du jour (hat tip reader Barbara):


Print Friendly, PDF & Email


  1. Martin

    “Mankiw at EEA Economists for Firing Larry Summers”

    misses completely the point of Mankiw´s talk. Mankiw has a link of the what he talked about on his own blog.

  2. attempter

    I think it’s funny that when Krugman writes this:

    Overall, coverage is getting cruder, with more tendency to report opinions as if they were news, and substitute prejudices for real analysis.

    he seems to think that’s causing the WSJ to diverge from what the blatantly corporatist NYT biz page does, when in fact it means they’re converging.

    “Blankfein Gets Only $9 Million Bonus”? (Emphasis mine.) Hardly a day goes by there’s not at least one headline that’s like that, and of course the headline is only the most obvious thing. Imagine the horrors subtly embedded in the “reportage”….

  3. jbmoore61

    Is temperature the problem with coffee production or is it habitat loss (clear cutting of rain forest)? Both coffee and coca production rely on rain forest. Coffee plants are pollinated by rain forest bees and coca plants only grow in partial rain forest. If both crops are hurting, it likely due to the loss of the forest than temperature, although a half a degree rise means a half a degree Celsius, not Fahrenheit. I don’t remember seeing any units of measurement in the article.

    1. Geofizz

      Thank you jbmoore61. You put more thought into this question of what might be causing regional coffee drought than the author of the article or any of the commenters there. So often, Global Change is the automatic assumption of cause. Never mind any number of more regional factors, such as those you’ve suggested.

    2. eric anderson

      Coffee growers are hammered by climate change. What do they think happened to the wine-growers in England when the Little Ice Age hit? They were hammered.

      Climate is always changing in one or another region. We cannot control that, even if we could control global temperature, and it is highly unlikely we can control the latter.

      More focus needs to be put on adaptation.

      As for warming, we need more investigation of the raw temperature data records and the “adjustments” that have been added to the original readings that (just coincidentally, I am sure) make the temperature changes of the recent past look “unprecedented.” In the USA, rural stations (untarnished by urban heat island effect) saw only 0.13 degree trend over the previous 100 years. That’s the raw data. Of course, when scientists torture the data, we can show nearly 1 degree of “alarming” warming. And they say torture is ineffective? Climategate will now bring forth Temperaturegate.

      For a full report (PDF) of US historical temperatures, click on this link:

      For a summary of this research on raw versus adjusted temperatures, go here:

      For a simple graph of raw temperature data, urban and rural, take a look:

      1. velobabe

        wine-growers in England when the Little Ice Age hit? They were hammered.

        do you mean grape-growers. i have a boutique winery and our grape growers just got hammered here in colorado because of a deep frost. millions lost in crop damage.

  4. Chris

    Yes, you are spot on with the Greek coverage problems. It is exactly what the Financial Times has been doing with their series of “pump and dump” articles. Buy the rumor, sell the news. In the Telegraph it might be thought quite vulgar. But the FT has real class. First, they circulated the story about Chinese buyers, and bid up the price on the January 26th offering, then Feb 2nd they took away the punchbowl. Arguably, their coverage fuelled the shorting of the Euro, during those days. Then they ran the old one two with Goldman’s Issing and Soros.

    It is well worth googling “anglo-saxon” in French, and “hedge fonds” or “hedge funds” in German, Spanish and French, and of course “Goldman Sachs” everywhere, to see what’s being read on the “trottoirs” rather than in the “coulisses.”

  5. Ignim Brites

    It is preposterous to think that the NYT will ever be a national paper unless New York secedes to be its own nation.

    1. Yves Smith Post author

      Actually, I disagree. I see the paper read at Starbucks when I am travelling (and I don’t mean just the coasts, I mean the South too).

      The tone of the NYT changed considerably when it chose to become a national paper. It moved markedly to the center. There was also a big increase in lifestyle stories.

      But one colleague tells me the real end of the NYT was when Punch Sulzberger joined the board of the Metropolitan Museum, circa 1980. As he said, “Here he put himself of needing to raise money from the sort of people he ought to be dining on.”

      1. Ignim Brites

        Yes but you are a New Yorker, Yves. No offense. Sure the Times is available everywhere. What isn’t? I can read the London Times too basically anywhere or the Hindu Times. The question is this: Does the Times really have the depth of reportorial staff to really cover the nation? The Times is the is greatest promoter of the democratic centralism (i.e. all major decisions need to be centered in DC) because that is the only way its strategy of being a national paper can succeed financially. But democratic centralism is on the ropes, everywhere. Not just here in the US. And one of the major reasons is the present financial crisis which is making central institutions everywhere look preposterously irrelevant. Incidentally, did the Times get the housing bubble story, or the bubble. It happened right under their noses. It’s over.

        1. sam hampster

          Right under the “centralized power” are the States, each with their ruling family cartels. Championing the local oligarchs over the national oligarchs is no win.

          The FIRE sector of our economy is locked up by a connected few at the local level, too. The “conservative” sentiment of this sector across “heartland” America is interchangeable with its, “if you dare stand in my way, I will destroy you” crony-power with which it operates.

          1. Ignim Brites

            You might be right on that Sam but the New York Times or Wall Street Journal or USA Today are not going be be much help in loosing the grip of the powerful at the State level. That’s one of the reasons why the national strategy of the Times is such a loser for their stockholders, for the people (other than New Yorkers) who waste their time reading it, for democracy and for the nation.

  6. almostinfamous

    OK, that VoxEU article has some good arguments, but 2 of their examples are terrible – Cuba didnt suffer solely because of an incompetent government, it also(mostly) suffered because it was blockaded from the most profitable avenues of international trade(cigars/tourism/sugar) with a huge superpower a few hundred miles apart and had to deal instead with a superpower (itself not a paragon of virtue) many thousand miles away. In the case of Iran, I guess the authors have chosen to overlook the whole series of events that unfolded there since Mossadegh was elected, which may shine a light on its current situation.

    Also, pretty much anything they say about the USSR can be said about the US Senate & the White House – i mean, how many young, elected people do you see frolicking about in the Capitol? The overwhelming majority of the occupants of the WH haven’t been spring chickens either…

    in my opinion, persistence of bad government has(in addition to a few points made by authors) a lot to do with a)class-level inertia in the case of imperialist states and b) outside interference in the case of their vassals

  7. John Doe

    I fail to understand why Yves continues to post all these climate change articles when as the days go by, more and more evidence questions the legitimacy of the science and conclusions

  8. Anonymous Jones

    Good point. We should mandate cessation of any discussion regarding climate change posthaste!

    Yves, seriously, you and your climate change cabal, be gone!!!

Comments are closed.