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Tuesday, July 08, 2008


The FTSE 100 index (UK:UKX: news, chart, profile) fell 1.3% to 5,443.80 but was off its worst levels as investors cheered a retreat in oil prices to below $140 a barrel and a bit of takeover speculation in the retail sector, which pushed Marks & Spencer shares up 5%.

At one point in the session, the index traded as low as 5,358.70, placing it in bear market territory - defined as a 20% drop from a 52-week high

The Radio is, in best Dad's Army style telling us not to panic - that a we might talk ourselves into a recession & that it is vital to keep our confidence up.


The way not to have a recession is to let technology & freedom work. Cut business taxes, cut regulations, cut government spending. In 1989 Ireland was in such a recession & that is what they did. They were forced to change direction by their failure - we can too.

Allow the free market to produce as much electricity as required since the correlation between electricity production & economic production is well established. Stop regulating every new industry like GM out of existence. Get government out of the way and stop pandering to the parasites who don't understand civilisation & wouldn't like it if they did.

There is no shortage of desire to invest on the part of business. If that were not so we wouldn't be seeing all these "bubbles" - they are all signs of people investing in anything at all if there are no good investments about. If business really thought we were going to start having sufficient cheap power in 3 1/2 years (as they have in China today) which is the time it can take to build a reactor, there would be no problem with investing. If we knew we were not shortly facing blackouts nobody would have to "talk up" confidence.

There is no intrinsic reason for fear - we know technology is continuing to improve, that Moore's Law continues to operate, that there is unlimited nuclear energy for the lifetime of this planet, that we can start exploring & exploiting the Universe any time we have the gumption.

We have far less excuse for catastrophism than at any time in history yet we may see half the world, our half, going into recession while the other half keeps growing at up to 10%.

Good stuff.

Ta for comment on John Redwood's Housing post today, especially the last paragraph.
Thanks Mark. For those who don't follow John's site & it is worth it. He is the most openminded Tory on technocratic & libertarian points which is not to say I agree with everything he says. The item in question was him opposing building larege numbers of new houses & I disagree on that. The question of building housing in the countryside is a point where free market conservatism & traditional values conservatism split.

My answer was a precis of of my article on pre-government controled housing of 2nd July. The last paragraph was

"If it were really desireable that no more land be used for housing the way to do that would be to introduce Land Value Tax as an element of council tax. This would provide a free market incentive to minimise the land used for housing, on the other hand it would hurt those keenest on preventing building in the countryside since they are the ones who already own such property."
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