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 The next great depression 
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Post The next great depression
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Next Great Depression? MIT researchers predict ‘global economic collapse’ by 2030

A new study from researchers at Jay W. Forrester's institute at MIT says that the world could suffer from "global economic collapse" and "precipitous population decline" if people continue to consume the world's resources at the current pace.

Smithsonian Magazine writes that Australian physicist Graham Turner says "the world is on track for disaster" and that current evidence coincides with a famous, and in some quarters, infamous, academic report from 1972 entitled, "The Limits to Growth."

Produced for a group called The Club of Rome, the study's researchers created a computing model to forecast different scenarios based on the current models of population growth and global resource consumption. The study also took into account different levels of agricultural productivity, birth control and environmental protection efforts. Twelve million copies of the report were produced and distributed in 37 different languages.

Most of the computer scenarios found population and economic growth continuing at a steady rate until about 2030. But without "drastic measures for environmental protection," the scenarios predict the likelihood of a population and economic crash.

However, the study said "unlimited economic growth" is still possible if world governments enact policies and invest in green technologies that help limit the expansion of our ecological footprint.

The Smithsonian notes that several experts strongly objected to "The Limit of Growth's" findings, including the late Yale economist Henry Wallich, who for 12 years served as a governor of the Federal Research Board and was its chief international economics expert. At the time, Wallich said attempting to regulate economic growth would be equal to "consigning billions to permanent poverty."

Turner says that perhaps the most startling find from the study is that the results of the computer scenarios were nearly identical to those predicted in similar computer scenarios used as the basis for "The Limits to Growth."

"There is a very clear warning bell being rung here," Turner said. "We are not on a sustainable trajectory."


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April 5th, 2012, 11:51 am
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Post Re: The next great depression
I didn't read past the first couple of sentences.

Maybe, they should take their heads out of their books and look out the window. They might need to think about this November after the elections. LOL.


April 5th, 2012, 12:16 pm
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Post Re: The next great depression
BillySims wrote:
I didn't read past the first couple of sentences.

Maybe, they should take their heads out of their books and look out the window. They might need to think about this November after the elections. LOL.

Huh? What are you talking about? Maybe I'm missing something, but your comment doesn't make any sense to me. What are you trying to say?

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April 5th, 2012, 12:33 pm
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Post Re: The next great depression
Touchdown Jesus wrote:
BillySims wrote:
I didn't read past the first couple of sentences.

Maybe, they should take their heads out of their books and look out the window. They might need to think about this November after the elections. LOL.

Huh? What are you talking about? Maybe I'm missing something, but your comment doesn't make any sense to me. What are you trying to say?



I'm saying that IMHO, the economy is being artificially propped up until after the elections. Then the continuous printing of money is going to catch up and our dollar will be worthless.


April 5th, 2012, 12:51 pm
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Post Re: The next great depression
BillySims wrote:
Touchdown Jesus wrote:
BillySims wrote:
I didn't read past the first couple of sentences.

Maybe, they should take their heads out of their books and look out the window. They might need to think about this November after the elections. LOL.

Huh? What are you talking about? Maybe I'm missing something, but your comment doesn't make any sense to me. What are you trying to say?



I'm saying that IMHO, the economy is being artificially propped up until after the elections. Then the continuous printing of money is going to catch up and our dollar will be worthless.

Ok. Well that doesn't really apply here. This isn't a US based projection. It's Global. Hence the title including the words "Global Economic Collapse". Also, even if it were a US based projection, propping up the economy for 1 year wouldn't impact long term projections like this.

But then again, you did say that you didn't read it. My suggestion would be to read it before commenting so you don't make irrelevant comments.

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April 5th, 2012, 12:55 pm
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Post Re: The next great depression
P.S.

We have been in the process of tripling our money supply since just before George W. left office. You can't do that without paying the piper. Al you do by tripling your money supply is: you make it worth 2/3 less than it was worth before you tripled it. And then you get hyper inflation.


April 5th, 2012, 12:56 pm
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Post Re: The next great depression
Touchdown Jesus wrote:
BillySims wrote:
Touchdown Jesus wrote:
BillySims wrote:
I didn't read past the first couple of sentences.

Maybe, they should take their heads out of their books and look out the window. They might need to think about this November after the elections. LOL.

Huh? What are you talking about? Maybe I'm missing something, but your comment doesn't make any sense to me. What are you trying to say?



I'm saying that IMHO, the economy is being artificially propped up until after the elections. Then the continuous printing of money is going to catch up and our dollar will be worthless.

Ok. Well that doesn't really apply here. This isn't a US based projection. It's Global. Hence the title including the words "Global Economic Collapse". Also, even if it were a US based projection, propping up the economy for 1 year wouldn't impact long term projections like this.

But then again, you did say that you didn't read it. My suggestion would be to read it before commenting so you don't make irrelevant comments.



Hate to burst any bubbles here: But, if the US dollar becomes worthless, it will take down the entire worlds financial structure.


April 5th, 2012, 12:59 pm
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Post Re: The next great depression
The 1972 study doesn't take into account the new sources of resources its just using the old known resources at the time. Just look up what's been discovered since 1972 and you'll see the timeline increase dramatically. Its an agenda piece, nothing more.


April 5th, 2012, 6:29 pm
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Post Re: The next great depression
njroar wrote:
The 1972 study doesn't take into account the new sources of resources its just using the old known resources at the time. Just look up what's been discovered since 1972 and you'll see the timeline increase dramatically. Its an agenda piece, nothing more.


Exactly what I was thinking. It doesn't take into account undiscovered technology, advancement of current tech,, or basic concepts of necessity being the mother of invention.

The author might as well be wearing a sign that the sky is falling.


April 5th, 2012, 7:39 pm
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Post Re: The next great depression
Yeah, I saw this earlier today.

It makes me want to have a fudge brain aneurysm.

It's Thomas Malthus' (look him up) work wrapped in a new package and stamped with an MIT label.

Quote:
basic concepts of necessity being the mother of invention.


Unfortunately this isn't really true. Most major inventions are the product of dumb luck (which is why I am against most forms of IP). Antibiotics, post-it notes, no_adds...all chance occurrances.

EDIT: why is the name of drug used to treat erectile dysfunction censored?


April 5th, 2012, 11:21 pm
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Post Re: The next great depression
Spammers....you wouldn't believe the spam centered around that word

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April 6th, 2012, 7:57 pm
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Post Re: The next great depression
Anyway, to elaborate on my previous post:

In the 1700s, Malthus basically said man was doomed. His argument was the following: on occasion, technological improvements will increase the productivity of farms. However, in turn, this increased production capacity will result in larger human populations, as malnourishment declines. These additional humans will eat up the excess food, leading back to the original problem.

However, the industrial revolution happened, productivity skyrocketed, and Malthus turned out to be wrong. Then, in the 1970s, people (like The Club of Rome) revived the argument. Their stuff gets taken seriously whenever the economic is in dire straights, then forgotten once it recovers.

Trying to model things like this is a joke. It would be the equivalent of predicting the life of a single child in the womb. Using the socioeconomic status of the parents, race, religion, nationality, geographical location, etc a forecastor could make prediction of the child's life. However, the forecast would almost certainly prove to be wrong simply because there are so many variables which cannot be accounted for.

We don't really know what our resource base is. For example, 10 years ago, no one would have thought that the US could produce as much energy as people now believe it can (through nat gas fracking). So making projections on it is silly. This is not to say that we shouldn't act conservativly.

But, what is dangerous, is arguing that the government must spearhead some drive to find the next great energy source. Did the government spearhead the drive to oil?

Governments have been subsidizing solar companies heavily for years, and yet thus far none of them have been able to operate profitably. Perhaps the future will be in solar, or wind, or natural gas, or some other such energy source no one has heard of. We simply can't say--no person on the planet, no matter the intelligence, is capable of predicting the best energy source.

What we can do, however, is to stop subsidizing fossil fuels. I find it hilarious that so many on the right are quick to attack subsidies for renewables, but are unable to acknowledge the heavy support the oil & gas industry gets from the US (and other) governments. It's so far-reaching many cannot even fully grasp it. The creation of (and continued maintenance) of the interstate highway system is an enormous subsidy for gasoline producers, as it makes the direct cost of operating a motor vehicle significantly cheaper. The majority of our military spending is a subsidy for oil & gas, as it is intended to keep regions (Middle East) peaceful so that their resources can be extracted. We have many international agreements that make oil cheaper for us (we have a deal with the Colombian government, for example, which sends much of their oil to the US). Even the SPR is an indirect subsidy, as the government is shouldering the responsibility of what should happen if the resource were to be cut off.

Anyway, end the subsidies, let the market decide. Forget this Soviet-Harvard style top-down thinking. Central planning will always fail.


April 8th, 2012, 10:51 pm
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Post Re: The next great depression
Blueskies wrote:
Anyway, to elaborate on my previous post:

In the 1700s, Malthus basically said man was doomed. His argument was the following: on occasion, technological improvements will increase the productivity of farms. However, in turn, this increased production capacity will result in larger human populations, as malnourishment declines. These additional humans will eat up the excess food, leading back to the original problem.

However, the industrial revolution happened, productivity skyrocketed, and Malthus turned out to be wrong. Then, in the 1970s, people (like The Club of Rome) revived the argument. Their stuff gets taken seriously whenever the economic is in dire straights, then forgotten once it recovers.

Trying to model things like this is a joke. It would be the equivalent of predicting the life of a single child in the womb. Using the socioeconomic status of the parents, race, religion, nationality, geographical location, etc a forecastor could make prediction of the child's life. However, the forecast would almost certainly prove to be wrong simply because there are so many variables which cannot be accounted for.

We don't really know what our resource base is. For example, 10 years ago, no one would have thought that the US could produce as much energy as people now believe it can (through nat gas fracking). So making projections on it is silly. This is not to say that we shouldn't act conservativly.

But, what is dangerous, is arguing that the government must spearhead some drive to find the next great energy source. Did the government spearhead the drive to oil?

Governments have been subsidizing solar companies heavily for years, and yet thus far none of them have been able to operate profitably. Perhaps the future will be in solar, or wind, or natural gas, or some other such energy source no one has heard of. We simply can't say--no person on the planet, no matter the intelligence, is capable of predicting the best energy source.

What we can do, however, is to stop subsidizing fossil fuels. I find it hilarious that so many on the right are quick to attack subsidies for renewables, but are unable to acknowledge the heavy support the oil & gas industry gets from the US (and other) governments. It's so far-reaching many cannot even fully grasp it. The creation of (and continued maintenance) of the interstate highway system is an enormous subsidy for gasoline producers, as it makes the direct cost of operating a motor vehicle significantly cheaper. The majority of our military spending is a subsidy for oil & gas, as it is intended to keep regions (Middle East) peaceful so that their resources can be extracted. We have many international agreements that make oil cheaper for us (we have a deal with the Colombian government, for example, which sends much of their oil to the US). Even the SPR is an indirect subsidy, as the government is shouldering the responsibility of what should happen if the resource were to be cut off.

Anyway, end the subsidies, let the market decide. Forget this Soviet-Harvard style top-down thinking. Central planning will always fail.



Blue, somewhat related... Did you catch the 60 minutes special on the "global recession" coming? They basically said that Greece, Ireland, and others are definitely going to fail and ultimately welch on much of their debt, and that things would unravel after that. It was a good special. You may be able to catch some of it online somewhere if you do a search. It just aired last night. I just wondered what your thoughts were on it.


April 9th, 2012, 1:27 pm
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Post Re: The next great depression
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Blue, somewhat related... Did you catch the 60 minutes special on the "global recession" coming? They basically said that Greece, Ireland, and others are definitely going to fail and ultimately welch on much of their debt, and that things would unravel after that. It was a good special. You may be able to catch some of it online somewhere if you do a search. It just aired last night. I just wondered what your thoughts were on it.


I literally get paid to know what people are saying about this poop every minute of the day. So, I'm at least vaguely familiar with everyone's argument.

I used to be more pessimistic than I am now. I thought for sure we were going to plunge back into recession last October, and there would be a repeat of the 1930s with a lot of civil unrest and chaos.

But, I don't know. In many ways, it reminds me of that quote in the original Men in Black, when Kay says to Jay: "There's always an Arquillian Battle Cruiser, or a Corillian Death Ray, or an intergalactic plague that is about to wipe out all life on this miserable little planet, and the only way these people can get on with their happy lives is that they DO NOT KNOW ABOUT IT!"

There's much to be hopeful for: technological advancements via the internet, the natural gas boom in the US. And yet, at the same time, there are many things that are downright scary. Europe cannot be solved. The math just doesn't add up. Europe is pretty much bankrupt and hell could break loose at any time. Really they just want to drag everything out, so that that it moves in a slow and orderly fashion, rather than a rapid bankruptcy which could cause all sorts of chaos. They might be successful, I'm not sure.

I think everyone just needs to remain cautious. Stay out of debt, have ample cash reserves, and diversify your assets. Above all, don't rely on a pension or social security for your longer-term well being. These things can and will (probably) be taken away from you, as they have been in Greece. One thing I don't really understand is this belief that it's normal to retire at 60 or 65 and have enough income to live comfortably for 30 more years. This has never happened in the history of mankind. For most of human history there was no retirement, and even when there was, it was 2-5 years, not 30.

I respect Dalio a lot and agree with much of what he says in this video:

http://www.valueinvestingworld.com/2012 ... rview.html


April 9th, 2012, 8:06 pm
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