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To: Follies who wrote (87144)2/12/2012 11:35:19 PM
From: Joseph Silent
4 Recommendations   of 121103
 
In one simple and honest statement you have deftly explained

why freedom and education are both invaluable, and for some the choice is not easy. In many ways, it does not matter ....... because honesty is more important than either.

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To: Joseph Silent who wrote (87145)2/12/2012 11:45:58 PM
From: Follies
2 Recommendations   of 121103
 
>>It is not my nature to agree or disagree. I do not attack people even when I know they are wrong

That seems to be exactly what your nature is.

I don't get your point. MQ made two statements, one of which completely subsumes the other, and MQ admits to that.

You don't say whether you agree or disagree with the statements, that does appear to be your nature, yet you insist on Knowing how he arrived at either statement.

You are right that my beliefs about whether the sun will rise tomorrow have nothing to do with whether the sun will actually rise, but that doesn't change my belief in the slightest. Now you could argue that I haveNt explained how I came to that belief, and since I haven't and won't you can chose to believe the opposite, that the sun won't rise tomorrow. Since we live in parallel universes we may both be right.

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To: Follies who wrote (87142)2/13/2012 12:07:39 AM
From: Maurice Winn
2 Recommendations   of 121103
 
Thanks for unlurking. I know people are reading and thinking for themselves, but it's nice to have reality drop out of the aether. I'm fairly long in the tooth and have dealt with literally thousands of people over many years and when they come along with approaches like the Silencer, I know they are not really interested in thinking, discussing or reasoning, let alone learning something. So there's no point in me continuing with him [and it's obviously a him].

I didn't think it took highly concentrated reading to get my point on the eruption probability. The person who said "a billion years" is obviously not even reading, let alone thinking, and definitely ignorant [about that situation]. You obviously understood what I wrote and are curious about it. The Silencer just wants to score some silly points.

Meanwhile The Greenhouse Effect and Global Warming have snow on Rome and a huge freeze across Europe. I should calculate probabilities for 2020 refreeze of Little Ice Age proportions or full-scale Reglaciation. At present it's more of a guess than a bet. I'm actually betting on Taupo's eruption [or one of the othe locations along the eruption zone out to White Island, such as Matata]. I wouldn't invest in high latitude places due to the risk of refreeze and have not yet bought tracts of Australia or Africa, but I'm thinking about it. San Diego region might be good as a speculative investment as hordes move south.

I absolutely would NOT buy anything in Taupo area and am reluctant to spend more than the odd night there. I do drive through it [if there are not continuous earthquakes at the time]. I do depend on the electricity supplies from the Waikato River, which would all cease, but disruption is not life-threatening to me, nor of great economic consequence.

People think Christchurch earthquakes have been a problem. That's nothing compared with what will happen when Taupo goes up. The earthquake in Wellington will also make Christchurch look minor. That's an event that will happen. The question is when. Wellington is all hills so that's going to be a lot more fun than Christchurch, which is all flat.

Mqurice

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To: Follies who wrote (87147)2/13/2012 12:09:13 AM
From: Joseph Silent
5 Recommendations   of 121103
 
That seems to be exactly what your nature is.

To you perhaps, because you have chosen not to understand events from the start. MQ has a pattern, as bart has recognized.

I don't get your point. MQ made two statements, one of which completely subsumes the other, and MQ admits to that.

MQ took some time to recognize the blunder, and even so, still put on his best weasel suit.

Suppose MQ says "It is highly likely it will rain next week in Bora Bora", followed by "it is certain to rain next week in Bora Bora".

Both you and the National Enquirer may be interested in polling all the people on the face of the earth to determine how many agree and how many disagree. Let's say that, through standard sampling methodology, your sample gives you a probability estimate of 0.9. What does that number tell you? Will it rain? Will it not rain? Can you answer that question for me?

By asking me if I agree or disagree, you are doing this National Enquirer poll. Suppose I said I agree with
probability .9, or 0.99. What does it have to do with whether there is an eruption or not?

Whether this has to do with rain in Bora Bora, or an eruption in place X, your first task as a scientist is to establish methodology. Not opinion!

Forgive me if I don't care about invented opinion. I'd like to know how you got there. What if you ran around in your underwear at midnight and decided there would be an eruption only if you rammed into a tree, and no eruption otherwise? That would not be good for you or for the scientific method. You may love opinion. Science does not, except in special cases.

All this is independent of whether the event does or does not occur.

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To: Maurice Winn who wrote (87148)2/13/2012 12:14:58 AM
From: Joseph Silent
1 Recommendation   of 121103
 
I should calculate probabilities for 2020 refreeze of Little Ice Age proportions


LOL!

As the saying goes ..... there are three types of mathematicians ---

those who can count, and those who can't!

:)

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To: carranza2 who wrote (87131)2/13/2012 12:18:29 AM
From: Arran Yuan
   of 121103
 
Good refreshment read, thanks.

Fully participated or not, it is what it is; forced or willingly everyone has to bear the consequences.

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To: Follies who wrote (87144)2/13/2012 1:39:01 AM
From: elmatador
5 Recommendations   of 121103
 
It was this type of encouragement that turned MQ into what he is today. When I was educating by kicking him out of the thread, everybody was saying but he is so funny and such.

Like that small kid who everybody finds funny when he sticks his tongue out at the age of three. Then he becomes a spoiled brat, no one traces back to that funny thing.

People here would flock to the BBR thread with him siding with him and supporting.

Now today see what he becomes. Gaga.

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To: Follies who wrote (87142)2/13/2012 1:43:39 AM
From: elmatador
5 Recommendations   of 121103
 
Follies, JS means Descartes. Someone who wants to discuss certainty should better have read Descartes. That is the level of the discussion he wanted.

I don't believe you are a MQ and you really want to read a discussion that makes sense.

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From: elmatador2/13/2012 1:59:34 AM
   of 121103
 
Beef and water. Cattle Breeding Herd. Year-over-year percentage change. The shortage is being felt at meatpacking plants and large feedlots, where industry giants such as Cargill Inc. fatten cattle before slaughter.

Still, ranchers to the north aren't sure about whether to take on greater numbers of cattle. Not only is planting corn typically more profitable, but ranchers are wary of permanently adding cows from the southern Plains to their herds since the animals are bred for a warmer climate and tend to be smaller than those typically raised in the Midwest.

...
The issue of water demand also looms large, even if drought conditions ease. In the southwestern corner of Texas, ranchers can earn more money by selling water to city dwellers than by raising cattle, said Char Miller, a professor of environmental analysis at Pomona College in Claremont, Calif..
online.wsj.com


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From: elmatador2/13/2012 2:22:41 AM
1 Recommendation   of 121103
 
The inflation versus deflation riddle

By Tony Jackson

While the markets may be slightly less jumpy at the moment, one great uncertainty remains: whether we face inflation or deflation. From a purely selfish perspective, investors should, on balance, prefer the latter.

This is because inflation transfers wealth from lenders to borrowers, while deflation does the opposite. There is ultimately no good hedge against inflation. But whatever damage deflation might do to society, investors – in their capacity as lenders – may profit by it.


We need not look to economists to answer our starting question, since they disagree on it. We should be particularly wary of those who tell us that inflation is a problem solved. In any discipline, a decade of unusually benign outcomes will be taken by practitioners as a tribute to their expertise.
If not economics, let us try history. The latest investment yearbook from Credit Suisse charts UK prices – in approximate terms – since the 13th century. Inflation and deflation roughly balanced out until the 20th century, when inflation streaked ahead.

That can be refined slightly. A century ago, it would have been rational to regard inflation as a byproduct of war. Thus, the absolute price level reached at the end of the Napoleonic war in 1815 was not reached again in the UK until the early stages of the first world war. The final level of that war, in turn, was not seen again until early in the second world war.

Then it all went wrong. The final level of the second world war has not been seen again either, but that is because prices have never again been that low. Nor are they likely to be, having risen 35-fold since.

Let us set aside the competing explanations for that. The question is whether inflation is now permanent.

Not necessarily. In the decade 2000-09, UK prices rose less than in any decade since the 1930s. And in 2009 prices actually fell – the first case of deflation in a calendar year since 1933.

So the jury is still out. Now, back to the question of defending against either outcome.

The academic authors of the Credit Suisse study, Dimson, Marsh and Staunton (DMS for short) give the historical context. Their data on real returns over 112 years in 19 countries give a total of 2,128 country years. They have arranged those years in a spectrum from extremes of deflation to inflation, and measured the real returns on asset classes in each.

Unsurprisingly, real returns on bonds are highest during extreme deflation, and fall consistently thereafter – going negative when inflation reaches about 5 per cent. Equities are less simple.

Contrary to the view still common among investment professionals, real equity returns are highest – above 10 per cent on average – from the deflationary extreme until inflation reaches about 2 per cent. Then they start dropping, going negative at about 8 per cent.

At the inflationary extreme, equities return minus 12 per cent, while bonds are down by twice that. Conversely, at the deflationary extreme real bond returns of 20 per cent are twice the level for equities.

But we should beware of taking this at face value. Both stocks and bonds are paper promises, contingent on the solvency of the issuer.

The return on bonds since 1900 represents an average of good times and bad, in terms of government solvency. Today we are towards the bad end of the range.

Real yields on German or US Treasuries are negative, but are sharply positive for Spain and Italy because of default risk. Deflation, which pushes up the real cost of bond repayments, would make that risk more acute again.

Similarly, the expected return on equities doubtless contains an element of inflation risk. But as the DMS team point out, the overall risk premium covers a lot of other risks too.

This is neatly illustrated from the German hyperinflation of 1922-23, when equities maintained their real value while other paper promises became worthless. As inflation ran off the scale, shares in manufacturers and miners were snapped up on the premise that they had assets and cash flows abroad. That is, they were a currency hedge.

What about gold? While the best available bet against inflation, it is not a hedge in the sense of holding its real value unchanged. Again, there are too many other things going on. The real gold price in sterling is much higher in today’s low inflation than it was in the high-inflation 1970s.

There are, of course, index-linked government bonds, which today either give negative returns or are subject to default risk. There are also all kinds of fancy inflation hedges on sale from the investment banks.

But in the long run, faced with either inflation or deflation, you are on your own.

tony.jackson@ft.com

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