>So much to say today but not a lot of time.
I’m reading “The J Curve”. From the first three chapters, I’ve come to a conclusion: If we were to significantly reduce our consumption of oil, there would be great pressure on some of the major authoritarian regimes to open their countries up economically, which would lead to pressures for democratic reform.
DOT proposed new car fuel efficiency (CAFE) standards. While the newer, higher standards (28.6/35.7 for light trucks/cars by 2015) and the ability for car manufacturers to trade credits is great, the fact that we’re maintaining dual standards for trucks and cars still sucks. I haven’t read the proposal (it’s over 400 pages), but I bet they didn’t get rid of the 6000 lb gross vehicle weight limit either.
The Washington Post’s Pearlstein:
For what it means is that things won’t be “fixed” simply by having the financial sector write off its losses and bad loans and promise to do a better job next time with risk management. Rather, it will require a reduction in the overall standard of living in the United States so that the country as a whole begins to live within its means.
What does that mean exactly?
In practical terms, it means that households will have to reduce consumption, increase savings and stop piling up credit card debt or using home equity as an ATM.
It means that the federal government stops running huge operating deficits by raising taxes or dramatically cutting national security and entitlement spending.
It means that the price of homes return to levels that reflect the incomes of the people who live in them, and the price of office buildings and shopping centers reflect the cash flow from tenants.
Pearlstein to America: “Live within your means”
I agree. That’s all the time I got today. Cheers.