JoNova

A science presenter, writer, speaker & former TV host; author of The Skeptic's Handbook (over 200,000 copies distributed & available in 15 languages).


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Carbon credits: another corrupt currency?

Carbon credits are a form of fiat currency, yet as calls for carbon trading grow, ironically, another fiat currency collapses—destroying life savings, wiping out jobs, and taking down historic institutions overnight.

“Just because other currencies have failed and wreaked havoc doesn’t prove that a carbon currency won’t work. It’s possible that for the first time in human history,we might get the regulation right, enforce the accounting, and fix the legal loopholes. But if most of the leading democratic sovereign nations can’t keep their own currencies from imploding, what chance is there for an international currency that
buys and sells theoretical atmospheric nullities in the third world?”

The US dollar is imploding. This is the real hockey stick graph.

Money base US dollar Jan 2009

Money base US dollar Jan 2009

Helicopter Ben is at work

As far as the currency goes, once or twice a century our monetary system breaks. To
get an idea of the scale of the current crisis look at the Federal Reserve Bank graph (above) of the monetary base. It’s a graph to take your breath away.
The financial crisis meets the carbon scam. Hoping for a happy outcome is no reason to risk hand-feeding financial sharks. I’ve put together a paper for the SPPI:

  • why carbon credits, like any fiat currency, will almost inevitably lead to fraud and corruption
  • how the current US economy is so sick it’s on life support
  • how the derivative bomb could take down our financial system
  • why the same speculators behind the debacle in our currencies and banks want to play in the carbon casino


Summary for Policy Makers
Fiat money has a long history of failure, corruption and fraud. The inevitable booms, busts and inflation act as an invisible tax, transferring wealth from people who work and save to speculators, middle men, and crooks. The US dollar—sovereign issue of a great capitalist, democratic nation—is on life support. So far at least eight hundred billion dollars has been created from thin air to stop the banking system from crashing.

Meanwhile, global warming alarmists are asking us to create another fiat currency, this time based on hot air. Large multinational conglomerates are already pouring billions into exchanges and derivatives in anticipation of carbon trading. There are ‘options’ to buy credits in the future.

There’s no longer any evidence that carbon matters much to our climate; and in the unlikely event that carbon might matter, the benefits of trading carbon don’t add up. If the US adopted Obama’s strict 80% reduction in emissions tomorrow, thus transforming the main energy source used by Americans since Columbus, the savings in carbon merely delay the claimed warmer-Armageddon by six years.

Currencies based on nothing are powerful tools that have reshaped civilizations. But they draw out the darkest elements of human nature. We open this Pandora’s Box with trepidation. Is the risk worth the benefit?

The full text is here, and the pdf is here on the SPPI site.

This is the page to comment on the paper.

 

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34 comments to Carbon credits: another corrupt currency?

  • #
    MattB

    How did I not see the link… renowned gold trader Jo Nova is a FIAT monetary system conspiracy theorist! But of course!

    Of course it is an argument against our entire financial and currency and trading markets, which may well indeed be on life support…

    The second last paragraph is redundant… the climate science is a redundant argument – who cares if the climate change is real or not when your main motives relate to FIAT money.

    Prey tell Jo how your gold investments will stack up if you are successful in preventing this creation of a FIAT currency safe haven:)

    Personally I have no doubt that the secret powers that be are only interested in carbon trading because they can make a quid out of it. Doesn;t change my opinion on the science of course… but it is amazing how many sceptics are clearly FIAT conspiracy theorists… I can;t see how it does not change their perception of the science.


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    MattB

    Surely $100 million spent on any power source could save that many kid’s eyes? Poor argument there – we’d never spend money on anything than saving kids eyesight would we?

    In fact the whole PDF article loses it around late Page 8 to the end when you try and tie in the lack of evidence thing… in fact I can’t beleive the best citation you have is David’s Oz piece…

    Prior to Page 8 though it is a pretty good read and nice summary of the FIAT crisis.

    In fact Jo I have to hand it to you… although I disagree with your science conclusions – especially the absolute dismission of AGW rather than jsut having a few possible cracks that need investigation – your two documents are a great collation of the accusations against FIAT currency, and the quasi-plausible AGW sceptic arguments, so you are definately performing a service here.


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    Anyone who has actually taken the time to look into the issue of AGW will know that the same people that promote it (and the solutions naturally) are the same people that developed and ‘own’ the fiat monetary system. By controlling the issuance of carbon credits, the number in supply and who gets them, they control a nations industry, exactly as the expansion and reduction of credit and controlling interest rates does now. The two subjects are related, one is merely replacing the other.

    There is nothing conspiratorial of the fiat monetary system. It is paper, backed by nothing, it is a confidence game, nothing more. No paper currency has ever survived more than 40 years when it is not backed by some tangible form of value. The world has been off a gold standard since 1971, 38 years old. I’ll leave it to you to ponder that.

    What MattB fails to realise is that the science of AGW is selective to meet the aims of establishing this new order. Those with dissenting views are rarely heard of, if they are they are ridiculed or ignored. Those that promote the subject get the grants and the air time. We have seen nothing but over hyped, over exaggerated projections of disaster that have quietly been revised to something much more tame once the ‘science’ has actually been studied.

    One day we can only hope that the rabble will wake up and see the manipulation and feel rather ashamed.


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    MattB

    Lol good on you Flats;) I email you the link and you humilate me in public!


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  • #

    I keep telling you you’re on the wrong team!


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  • #

    AGW is to environmentalists what a wooden horse is to the Trojans. They both think it’s something it isn’t, and both are being fooled by their own myopia.

    I’m all for sustainable living, reducing pollution and renewable energy. Carbon trading however is just not the way to do it, I don’t even think those that promote even understand it.


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  • #

    Matt; I’m flattered that you have been googling me. But you forgot your medication: ‘renown’? (Hardly)… and ‘conspiracy’? What conspiracy? Who needs subterfuge or cartels to explain why a monetary system based on nothing but promises would attract the psychopaths, sociopaths and selfish elements of society? That’s just financial history.

    “pretty good read and nice summary of the FIAT crisis.”

    …Shucks Matt. Thanks. :-)

    “Surely $100 million spent on any power source could save that many kid’s eyes? Poor argument there – we’d never spend money on anything than saving kids eyesight would we?”

    Any power source? Wind-power is a less efficient energy source than oil. Think of it this way, we could spend $1 billion on wind, or say $900m on oil, get the energy and still have $100m left over for kids vision. Since CO2 is not a problem, isn’t it morally vacuous to throw away money trying to prevent something there is no evidence for, using a system we know rewards criminals?
    I was not trying to prove we should spend wind-power money on blind kids, just that we ought to think very carefully about how we spend our money. There are always plenty of poignant possible beneficiaries that never get mentioned.

    “although I disagree with your science conclusions -”

    Matt, mate, go for it, give us that ONE paper which shows observational evidence that supports CO2′s role in the AGW theory… (and remember, not from test-tubes, climate models or committees)
    Hey, thanks Matt for inviting Flats. He knows his fiats. Good call!

    (SEE the “What is evidence” post for Matt’s reply to this last comment)


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  • #
    Rod Smith

    My take on this article is that it is uses plain and simple language to demonstrate what a suicidal path we seem to be embarked upon.

    We need somehow to boost awareness and make more American voters and taxpayers understand the catastrophe that is happening right under their nose, fueled by politicians that assume the printing press can create wealth. Too bad that so few Americans are likely to read it.

    No matter what the article’s naysayers may comment, I think this is a breath of fresh air in a wilderness of ignorance.

    Thank you Joanna.


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    MattB

    Jo I’m of the opinion that the MOST PLAUSIBLE way that AGW is false is that it is all just a massive secret powers of the planet conspiracy to create a new global currency for manipulation:) I blame Flats for that.

    And don;t get too big a head Jo… I was googling the rocket scientist;)


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    Dan Lee

    It’s difficult to imagine a riskier financial tool than the carbon market. Its an artificial market created solely by government fiat based on assumptions made about CO2 back in the 1980′s and earlier, before we really understood about ENSO cycles and their effect on the climate.

    We looked at a few decades and saw a correlation – CO2 going up, temps going up – and assumed causation. It was an easy sale, and it’s taken on a life of its own in the form of tens of billions in government money to “solve” the problem. Suddenly climatologists were rock stars, and as with anyone feeding at the public trough, they’ll produce whatever statistics they think are necessary to keep that money rolling in.

    Even though the science has moved on since back then (at least in some circles), the monster created by that initial assumption of causation continues to grow. Now its giving birth to carbon markets whose value is entirely based on the weather. And in democracies, that means keeping the voters convinced that we’re too warm and that that’s a bad thing.

    That’s getting harder to do. If the earth continues the cooling trend of the past few years, if growing seasons shorten and especially if crop failures commence, no amount of fudged climate data or high-school science projects published in Nature will convince US voters to keep their pockets open to a congress that is already hovering at around a 10% approval rating.

    The US political climate is like a pendulum, every dozen years or so it swings from left to right and back again. Nothing will push it back to the right harder than if they try to ram carbon taxes down our throats after already forcing us to accept two costly stimulus packages in the space of a few months.

    So if CO2, comprising ~4/100ths of 1% of the atmosphere (385 parts per million, right?) is the main cause of warming, and humans are responsible for about 3% of that 4/100ths of 1% of the CO2 in the atmosphere, then by all means lets tax it before earth gets any warmer.

    Sorry, I didn’t intend to wrap that rant sarcastically but I couldn’t resist. :-)


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    Tel

    Joanne, the graph of US money supply should be logarithmic (in the y axis). Doesn’t make sense to use a linear graph for this purpose, interest, inflation, etc. are all percentages P/A (i.e. straight line on a log graph). Also, what’s the point of the -500 on the y scale? What is negative money supply?

    I agree with the basic sentiment, presuming you do want to throttle CO2 generation (and that argument is raging elsewhere) then the right way to do it is a straight out carbon tax. Just like any other tax, the carbon tax would be paid in the currency of the day (which may change from time to time and place to place). Trading in carbon credits is an outright scam.

    As for using recent trends to predict the future, if you want to take a look at the gold price (as denominated in Australian dollars) for the last six months or so, the trend is clearly upward (and about the only thing on the Aussie market that has been moving upward). I’m certainly betting that it will continue to move upward.


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  • #

    Hi Tel,

    The graph is copied from the St Louis Reserve Graph which is linear not log. I agree though, that it emphasizes recent changes compared to earlier ones. That’s why I graphed it log for myself, and then calculated the percentage changes year on year and graphed that too. It’s the second graph in the pdf file. If you look at the pdf, it’s even better than a log graph. (But including all three graphs seemed a bit over the top). I wanted to include the linear graph because that’s what most people understand, and exponential growth doesn’t look exponential in a log graph. From the second graph of year on year changes, it’s obvious that the monetary base never grew faster than 28% year on year at any point until the last four months. It’s now running at close to 100% year on year, almost all of that increase coming since August when the money base was at $875b.

    And yes, money supply used to go negative. It shrank rapidly after 1929 – a whopping 30% (I’m referring to larger monetary aggregates in this example not money base per se). Over the last 500 years, bouts of inflation were always followed by deflation, until WWII. After that, central banks make sure we keep growing the pyramid scheme that is our money supply. Inflation inflation inflation. We’re so used to it now, that your question is apt.

    And as per the gold price. Yes agreed. David and I fund ourselves mostly through our investments, which are in ASX gold companies at this point of the cycle. So I do watch the price closely.


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  • #

    Folks, I moved one of Matts comments and Mikes reply to the “What is Evidence” post See #30, and #31. Let me know if you spot other comments that really belong on a different thread. I’m in the mood to move…


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    Brian Valentine

    This type of “monetary” system is inane. A tiny country producing nothing could become “wealthy” by amassing these credits and selling them off.

    Sooner or later any economic system based on “the less you produce, the wealthier you get” is going to implode and you don’t need a PhD in microeconomics to figure that one out.


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    CyberForester

    “Carbon trading” is a system that does absolutely nothing for the environment. It simply shifts the burden from one group in society to another, and creates groups of haves and have-nots. These groups have essentially the same membership as the current currency systems. What carbon trading does is to allow people to continue their rampant consumption while outsourcing their environmental liability (that is if carbon is really to blame and if their consumption can really be measured in terms of a fully accounted carbon “footprint”).

    My solution to the problem is CO2 emissions is “STOP CONSUMING”. Stop all unnecessary consumption acts. No more television. No more movies. No more music and concerts. Just think of the impact of an immediate cessation of television broadcasts. The electricity saved every night by people having nothing to turn on. Then there is the enormous saving in the cost of manufacture. Then we could move on to stopping sporting events. London needn’t worry about running behind for the 2012 Olympics. Man! I will miss Super 14 Rugby and All Blacks vs Wallabies Test Matches, but if we are to save the planet then sacrifices must be made.

    The effects of just these measured outlined here would be absolutely huge. Much more so than any other mitigation measures I have heard put forward.

    Of course, the advantage of Carbon Trading schemes is that by doing effectively nothing the Carbon Blamers can win. If the planet “continues to warm” then we haven’t done enough. If the planet starts to cool then “Ooooh. Look what we have done just in the nick of time.” (Sounds like a repeat of CFCs, Y2K etc).


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  • #
    David Walker

    CyberForester,

    You know the rub. No doubt an arbitrary cut in carbon emissions is the most amenable solution to the perceived (not realized) crisis. But doing purely the right thing doesn’t really fit into their profit model. Consistent with their behavior towards other constructed crises, the fomenters use force of law to profit at the expense of poor and middle income consumers. It is yet another scam.


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    Steve Meikle

    The whole carbon tradiong system reminds me of another corrupt trading system that was exposed in 1517 by a rebel monk, name of Martin Luther: Indulgences.

    Instead of rescuing loved ones from purgatory by a payment the new believers are rescuing their consciences from a purgatory of imaginary guilt.

    As a wise man said, there is nothing new under the sun. For the nonsense of one generation merely comes back, soon or later, under a different guise


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    Steve Meikle

    And again, when carbon levels in the atmosphere are determined by the temperature of the sea water CO2 is soluble in, then clearly rises in CO2 levels is not the cause of the warming of the oceans, but a result.

    This is so simple that they cannot NOT know it, so instead we have wishfiul thinking and hysteria ruling our ruling elites. YET AGAIN


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    David Walker

    In order to apply to most liberal, yet capitalist, philosophy to the carbon credit trading scheme, I have long suggested that its proponents include individual and family participation in credit trading, so that the least of consumers can impact their own footprints, and sell their “responsible” behavior to those who cannot clean up their acts. However, somebody (at Bali?) asked Albert Gore about empowering individuals to generate and trade credits, and he was against it(?).

    Why would Albert Gore oppose individual initiatives to generate carbon credit and sell them? Would it cause market competition, or is it simply a corporatist scheme?


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    MattB

    Jo (yeah I’ve allocated for 30 mins blogging an evening)…

    Can I just hypothesise that AGW is clearly true according to science… well the potential still stands for carbon trading to be the corrupt currency you suggest… so would you personally favour a carbon tax as a tool rather than cap and trade to tackle CO2 emissions. Say lets head back to 2006 when you were a warmist… were you still very concerned about the cap and trade that was clearly the preferred course of action of the govts? Or do you think a tax is as corruptable? referencing the fact that the current debate is cap and trade vs tax, and that you have strong opinions on the economics?

    Cheers

    Matt


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    David Walker

    How ’bout an arbitrary cut?

    Did you know there’s a rock band planting trees to “offset” their carbon footprint caused by touring? Many of the trees will not survive without enlarging a caretaker’s carbon footprint. And the trees may die in a blight the same way much of Alabama’s pine forest died from a bug infestation several years ago.

    The credibility of carbon credit generators would be much improved through demonstrating real reductions in emissions BEFORE receiving credit, rather than relying upon potential carbon sequesters while they continue to emit.

    All considered it’s a sham — the EU’s increasing carbon emissions are testimony.


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  • #

    Did you know that there are many, many US ranchers, out west, drooling over being given annual fat government Carbon checks, to continue to let their vast cattle lands stay as- cattle grounds?
    These vast lands full of sage brush & cactus, are good for only running cattle and the occasional mule deer hunter. These lands will qualify to be on the receiving end of this new taxation. And they can’t wait. These land-rich ranchers are gonna rake-in our cash, annually, so they can continue to do the only thing that their land supports, running cattle.


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    bill-tb

    Carbon credits, indulgences in a modern form.

    As the public catches wind, pay more in taxes to the government, so government scientists can pretend to control the weather. What is hard to understand the “pay more in taxes”.

    As the fraud mutates to just pay taxes, it should be getting clearing what is really going on. Obama adds about $700 billion in new taxes, and how does that reduce CO2 in the atmosphere.

    Its’ all about taxes and rationing to gain control over people.

    Meanwhile, atmospheric CO2 continues to climb, while temperature falls, as nature refuses to obey.


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  • #

    Согласен естественно :) Для меня это как раз очень актуально :)


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  • #

    Народ в таких вот случаях так говорит – Баран бараном, а рога даром.


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  • #

    Дискутировать по этому поводуможно бесконечно, поэтому просто поблагодарю автора. Спасибо вам!


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    tim

    Nice site Jo. It appears the masses will once again be fooled. Fiat money vs gold and CO2 vs pollution. Personally I love CO2, I breath it out, my greenhouse vege garden grows better when I elevate the CO2 levels to > 1000ppm and it is the reason (via plants/algae) we have 100% naturally sequestered carbon in the form of coal and oil.


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    Craig Goodrich

    The “carbon credits” idea may be absurd and of course AGW is imaginary BUT at this very moment hitherto lovely parts of the country are being vandalized and lives destroyed by industrial wind farms, at the behest of lobbyists and financiers who are simply in it for the subsidies, tax breaks, and carbon credits.

    What is so utterly insane is that even if all this scary climate nonsense were true, “wind power” would do absolutely nothing to reduce CO2 emissions — in fact, it would increase them by forcing backup plants to operate less efficiently.

    Look around at http://stopillwind.org and study the photos at http://www.wind-watch.org/pix/thumbnails.php?album=1 — it’ll break your heart. And this is being done in the name of environmentalism!!!

    Ignorant politicians and corrupt lobbyists strike again. Surprise, surprise.


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    FNN

    One of those Americans who are not informed here… the movement against AGW in American is FAR larger than anyone knows … here … or in the Media. Carbon Trading has not even come close to passing the Senate of the United States… in fact I almost pity a Senator who tries that now after 80plus% of the voting public said they liked their healthcare in several polls … the light for many have gone on. I attended a Tea Party… in at a state capital where there were maybe 8000 people… all middle class and all angry… .

    The problem is this… as it is in all countries… there IS A CONSPIRACY… that is the purpose of intelligence organizations… that is the MO of Climate Marxists… that is the goal and the method of International Think Tanks… CFR, Aspen Institute, ’round table’ this and that… on and on and on and I am sure all of you know their names Down Under… . I could go on and on here but my point is these… “conspiracies” that is the take down of sovereignty, national boarders… the creation of a world fiat money and certainly “carbon credits” fits the description… these are the goals of the world government forces and they can not come out and say “we want to dissolve your country and traditions by force.” State Marxism did not work… one had to kill millions to keep the cows in line… but Fabian Marxism does if Liberty is not defended.

    They do their work behind the emotional output of stories, in our children’s schoolrooms, in what is not… said in the open by all of us and on some subjects… we don’t even allow ourselves to think it.

    But… the consequences of not doing so are these: the complete abrogation of all real functional free speech guarantees, property rights suborned to the state’s will, forced education of our children in quasi religious lies and the value of our money, that is our work, creativity, inventiveness etc. totally in the hands of a minority secretively…. expanding credit and contracting it depending upon what placeholder is needed for leader of a particular government… OH wait!… all of these are already substantively accomplished . We edit our own speech and why? Fear!

    IT… is… a conspiracy… on the most critical American secure governmental computers there is now software that runs the system… software written in Israel see the Clinton M.L. tapes. I don’t think anyone down there generally understands the self editing that the average American does daily within his or her ‘First Amendment’ rights? The President takes orders that is the embarrassing fact and yes it is a conspiracy of a relatively small well defined group who have cooped Elites in every country… . Using things like the environment to accomplish control of the planet is a conspiracy … regardless of science… regardless of history… regardless… . Wake… .


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  • #
    george

    A rather lengthy article by Matt Taibbi in the Rolling Stone a while back, basically an essay on Goldman Sachs. For the relevant bit maximise the Great American Bubble Machine window and you will find the carbon trading section is towards the bottom, “Bubble#6 – Global Warming”.
    The rest is a bit off-thread here but certainly worth a read too.

    http://zerohedge.blogspot.com/2009/06/goldman-sachs-engineering-every-major.html


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    Hey I just wanted to let you know, I really like the writing on your web site. But I am employing Chromium on a machine running version 8.x of Crashbang Ubuntu and the UI aren’t quite proper. Not a strong deal, I can still basically read the articles and research for info, but just wanted to inform you about that. The navigation bar is kind of hard to apply with the config I’m running. Keep up the good work!


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    george

    I apologise if this link has been previously posted on this website (I am a recent arrival) but here`s what I can only describe as the definitive “Carbon Trading 101 for Neophytes” – worth passing on to anyone who is at all curious in relation to what ETS/CPRS/Cap-and-trade actually mean in terms of practical application. Simplistic but relevant.

    http://pajamasmedia.com/blog/climategate-how-to-follow-the-money/


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    Henry chance

    I hope when sex poodle alGore was divorced, she didn’t get stuck with half of the carbon credits. His carbon indulgences are now of no value.


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