Commentary: The World Needs Fossil Fuels

fossil fuels

It’s summer, and the Sierra Club says: “This is climate change in action. We are living it.”

The United Nations’ secretary-general declares that “a fossil fuel phaseout is inevitable.” And The Lancet, a respected medical journal, insists that nations must swiftly transition away from hydrocarbons.

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Commentary: Free Markets are Necessary But Not Sufficient

Family Prayer at Dinner

For most of our lifetimes, classically liberal economics so dominated the Right that nobody wondered if conservatives were abandoning free markets. In recent years, though, a new generation of conservative thinkers—more traditionalist, populist, or nationalist than libertarian—has challenged the utility and even the morality of laissez faire economic policy.

We welcome their questions and critiques, as they have compelled American conservatives to have a long overdue conversation about the market, the family, and the state. But the blunt truth is the movement cannot abandon free markets. The moral and practical case for free enterprise is as necessary today as it was when Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher used it to rescue their nations’ economies and win the Cold War.

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Commentary: Biden Gaslights America on the Economy

Biden Speaking

Joe Biden is gaslighting America on the economy. His administration is trying to oversell what has underperformed for several reasons: First, the economy is the one issue that affects most Americans most significantly. Second, Biden is doing worse on virtually every other issue. Finally, time is short: the economy is about to get worse, and the election is close. The administration’s strategy is to get Americans to believe what they hear and doubt what they see.

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More Investors Bet Inflation Is Here to Stay amid Disappointing Price Data

Investor at Work

More investors are projecting a “no landing” scenario where inflation remains elevated but economic growth continues at its current levels following a disappointing inflation report on Tuesday, according to Reuters.

Nearly one out of five fund managers polled by Bank of America predicted a “no landing” scenario as the most likely outcome in the next year, with concerns about such a scenario being intensified by a poor inflation reading that sent U.S. markets into a frenzy on Tuesday, according to Reuters. Tuesday’s consumer price index (CPI) report showed inflation decelerated in January to 3.1% year-over-year from 3.4% in the preceding month, higher than expectations of 2.9%.

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China Finishes Off Year with Sluggish Growth as Economy Fails to Recover

China flag

China’s economy grew at a rate of 5.2% in 2023, failing to return to the same growth of around 6% year-over-year that was common before the COVID-19 pandemic, according to The Wall Street Journal.

The year’s growth was an improvement on the even worse growth in 2022, which totaled just 3% for that year, and economists expect similar sluggish growth in 2024 unless a big policy change occurs, according to the WSJ. A number of different indicators added to the dismal report, including real growth in urban disposable income, which grew at just 4.8% in 2023 and was the lowest year since 2002, barring 2020 and 2022.

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International Monetary Fund Projects Weaker Than Expected 2022 Economic Growth for U.S. and China

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) cut its global economic growth forecast for 2022 on Tuesday, citing growing COVID-19 cases, supply chain bottlenecks and soaring inflation.

The IMF now projects global gross domestic (GDP) product to grow 4.4% in 2022, down from 5.9% growth in 2021, according to the IMF’s World Economic Outlook report published Tuesday. The IMF projected global GDP would reach 4.9% in its Fall report.

“The global economy enters 2022 in a weaker position than previously expected,” the report said, blaming “downside surprises,” including soaring COVID-19 cases and turbulent markets.

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Commentary: The Flaw in Bret Weinstein and Heather Heying’s Proposal for the Future of Humanity

Bret Weinstein podcast

Bret Weinstein and Heather Heying, evolutionary biologists and visiting fellows at Princeton University, have written a fascinating new book, A Hunter-Gatherer’s Guide to the 21st Century, which Penguin Random House released in September.

The instant New York Times bestseller is riddled with interesting ideas and clever insights, ultimately arriving at a radical conclusion about how humanity must be governed in the future if we are to avoid civilizational collapse. However, the book’s concluding argument is built upon one fundamental economic fallacy, and to understand the flaw in the proposal is to understand how truly catastrophic the pursuit of Weinstein and Heying’s vision would be.

The Fear of Abundance

Weinstein and Heying’s fundamental claim is about the human propensity to seek economic growth, and the ultimate unsustainability of that goal.

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Experts Predict Less Economic Growth, Elevated Inflation for Years to Come

Woman shopping, going up escalator

A survey released Monday found that business experts expect prices and inflation to rise at elevated levels for years to come.

The National Association for Business Economics released the results of a survey of 48 economic experts who downgraded their growth predictions and projected elevated inflation through the second half of 2023, if not later.

“NABE Outlook survey panelists have ramped up their expectations for inflation significantly since September,” said NABE Vice President Julia Coronado, founder and president, MacroPolicy Perspectives LLC. “The core consumer price index, which excludes food and energy costs, is now expected to rise 6.0% from the fourth quarter of 2020 to the fourth quarter of 2021, compared to the September forecast of a 5.1% increase over the same period.”

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European Economies Grew Faster Than U.S. As Inflation and Supply Chain Delays Crippled the Country

European economic growth outpaced the U.S. and China as COVID-19 restrictions eased and vaccination rates increased, but supply chain disruptions and inflating prices will hold back expansion in the near future, The Wall Street Journal reported Friday.

Gross domestic product in the eurozone increased at a seasonally adjusted annualized rate of 9.1% in the quarter ending in September, according to the WSJ.  In comparison, the U.S. economy grew at a 2% rate and China grew at just 1%.

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IMF Expects Less Economic Growth from U.S. Amid Supply Chain Chaos

The International Monetary Fund cut its global growth forecast for 2021 on Tuesday, citing supply chain disruptions and pandemic-related health concerns.

In the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) World Economic Outlook report, released Tuesday, the IMF’s economists share anticipations for global economic growth measuring 5.9% in 2021, a downgrade from their 6% projection in July.

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Report: Private Job Hirings Beat Expectations Amid COVID-19 Scares, Slow Economic Growth

Private companies added 568,000 jobs in September, exceeding expectations as the country faced growing numbers of delta variant cases and slow economic growth, according to a major payroll report.

The 568,000 jobs added is a sharp increase from the 340,000 jobs added in August, the ADP National Employment Report showed. Experts predicted private companies would add 425,000 jobs in September, CNBC reported.

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