Early Bird Headlines 15 June 2015
Econintersect: Here are some of the headlines we found to help you start your day. For more headlines see our afternoon feature for GEI members, What We Read Today, which has many more headlines and a number of article discussions to keep you abreast of what we have found interesting.
- Renewable power will overtake coal if climate pledges are kept (Financial Times) Wind, solar and other types of renewable power will overtake coal to become the world’s top source of electricity in just 15 years if the pledges countries are making for a global climate change deal this year are met. Econintersect: Pledges have little to do with it; solar and wind are already competitive with coal on base costs and they are declining in cost while coal is going up. Economics will drive the world to the renewables decision. If externalities are included the cost race is over by a mile already.
- Rich Californians balk at limits: ‘We’re not all equal when it comes to water’ (The Washington Post) Econintersect: The 21st century version of “Let them eat cake.” Those that do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it. And what happened to Marie Antoinette?
- Clinton says drug firms that benefit from deal should offer discounts (Reuters) Hillary seems to shy away from siding with Pres. Obama on the Pacific Trade pact. Econintersect: An attempt to keep space from Bernie Sanders challenging from her left6?
- Lost comet lander awakes, sends ‘hello’ from space (CNN) Hat tip to Alun Hill. The Philae comet lander fell silent 7 months ago after failing to “stick” a comet landing and discharging its batteries. Yesterday, after moving closer to the sun and recharging with energy from solar collectors, Philae sent a Tweet to earth: “Hello @ESA_Rosetta! I’m awake! How long have I been asleep? #Lifeonacomet.”
- SNP threatens to call another independence referendum (Financial Times) The Scottish National party has threatened to call for another vote to break up the UK unless the government agrees to devolve more powers to Edinburgh, adding to concerns in Westminster over the prospect of a second independence referendum within a few years.
- A feast fit for kings: how the barons might have celebrated Magna Carta (The Conversation) At the time of Magna Carta a food revolution was taking place, which would no doubt have been reflected in the barons’ celebrations.
- Greece’s latest attempt to reach deal with creditors collapses (The Guardian) Exit from eurozone a step closer as EU officials dismiss Alexis Tsipras’s reforms as incomplete, with talks halted after less than an hour. Econintersect: Is this the 21st century version of 19th century debtors’ prison?
- Greeks Who Want to Keep Euro Are Tired of Tsipras’s Brinksmanship (Bloomberg) Greeks are increasingly weary of the roundabout of talks with creditors that’s left companies short of cash, forced savers to hoard money under mattresses and has tipped the economy back into recession. Last week, a poll showed a majority of the 1,000 Greeks surveyed were unhappy with the government’s tactics, with 77 percent urging Tsipras to seal a deal with creditors.
- A Greek Suicide? (Anatole Kaletsky, Project Syndicate) Hat tip to Rob Carter. See also next article. Kaletsky thinks Greece holds no cards in the negotiation game:
To judge by Tsipras’s belligerence, he firmly believes that Europe needs Greece as desperately as Greece needs Europe. This is the true “absurdity” in the present negotiations, and Tsipras’ misapprehension of his bargaining power now risks catastrophe for his country, humiliation for his Syriza party, or both.
- Greece has nothing to lose by saying no to creditors (Financial Times) If Greece were to default on its official-sector debt, France and Germany stand to forfeit €160 billion. If Greece were to accept the offer on the table this article provides a calculation of cumulative hit to GDP of 12.6% and debt -to-GDP ratio approaching 200 after four years. Contrary to the article above which argues that refusing the offer is suicide for Greece, this article says that accepting it is suicide. Econintersect: Is this really a Cornelian dilemma? We say only because idiots are involved.
- Libya says leader of Al-Qaeda-linked group killed in US airstrike (Al Jazeera) Target was Algerian fighter Mokhtar Belmokhtar, says Libya; Pentagon says ‘Al-Qaeda-associated terrorist’ likely dead.
- A dose of innovation can restore China’s vitality (China Spectator) Beijing is banking on a new start-up frenzy to provide a much needed boost to the country’s slowing economy.
- Hong Kong braces for new democracy showdown as poll reform vote looms (Reuters) Hong Kong is gearing up for a vote this week on a contentious electoral reform package backed by Beijing, with a weekend poll showing public support has shifted against the proposal amid renewed street marches by pro-democracy protesters.
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