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Posts Tagged ‘cap and trade’

Jobs is Job #1

Posted by Larry Doyle on November 30th, 2009 9:34 AM |

“Kiss me!!”

“What?”

That’s right, I said, “Kiss me!!”

Many a businessman is familiar with the basic principle of “kiss me,” that is “Keep It Simple, Stupid.”

Regrettably, Washington is not familiar with that simplest of business principles. Legislative bills that run into the thousands of pages and admittedly go unread by our lawmakers prior to vote are often an unmitigated disaster for American business.  How so?

These bills create an environment of uncertainty. What do business leaders do when they’re unsure of what is coming out of Washington and how it might impact their business? “When in doubt, wait it out.”

I witness increasing evidence of this basic business dynamic and believe it will be on full display this coming Thursday. What will happen Thursday? President Obama is hosting a Jobs Summit in Washington. Sounds like a reasonable idea given the domestic employment situation is so bad and getting worse, despite assertions to the contrary by a number of public officials and economists.

How convenient that the summit is being held Thursday. Why? This summit will provide plenty of photo ops and media coverage highlighting that Washington is hard at work addressing the employment situation right before the monthly unemployment report is released on Friday morning. Do not think for a second that the timing of this summit was not strategically scheduled to negate the negative impact of another weak report. (more…)

Cap and Trade or Cap and Close?

Posted by Larry Doyle on June 30th, 2009 8:18 AM |

Politics is a dirty business, as is pollution.  Mixing the two is a very dirty and potentially explosive proposition. Let’s try to shed some light on this corner of our economic landscape.

For evidence of this ‘dark and dirty’ enterprise, we need look no further than the energy bill recently passed by the House and on its way to the Senate. This legislation, formally known as the Waxman-Markey Climate Bill but commonly referred to as ‘cap and trade,’ was recently highlighted by Bloomberg reporting Big Oil’s Answer to Carbon Law May Be Fuel Imports.

Whenever I assess an industry, I initially think of a few basic factors, including:
1. product
2. cost of sourcing product
3. cost of developing or refining product
4. targeted market for product
5. potential profit margin
6. ability to scale the business (i.e.  grow the enterprise)
7. barriers to entry for competition

These basic business principles apply to virtually every business enterprise in the world. Any good businessman is always looking to cut costs, increase profit margins, and increase market share.

The goal of cap and trade, minimizing greenhouse gas emissions, is worthy. All other things being equal (our age old economic term, ceteris paribus), who would not be supportive of minimizing these emissions? As we know, though, all other things are NEVER equal. Let’s review our basic business principles. (more…)

Obamanomics: Conservative or Revolutionary?

Posted by Larry Doyle on March 16th, 2009 4:17 PM |

A loyal reader shared with me a recent posting from former Clinton Labor Secretary Robert Reich. Earlier today I cross posted a piece from No Quarter in which Reich was less than complimentary of Secretary Geithner. Well, let’s see what Mr. Reich has to say about President Obama’s economic program: Is Obamanomics Conservative or Revolutionary?

Prior to delving into my thoughts and commentary on Reich (or anybody), I always find it useful to consider the perspective of the writer. In regard to Mr. Reich, let us not forget that Robert Reich Excludes White Male Construction Workers from Obama Stimulus Plan. Utilizing that perspective, Mr. Reich would be considered to be more than slightly left of center. Additionally, in considering the Obama economic plans, I think it is critically important to incorporate the economic plans and agenda of the Democrats in Congress. These Congressional leaders have a major influence in this process. These Democrats, including David Obey (D-WI), Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), Harry Reid (D-NV), Barney Frank (D-MA), Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Chris Dodd (D-CT), and Steny Hoyer (D-MD) amongst others are major players in the stimulus, budget, and Omnibus bill that have come down from Congress. It is not totally clear where the lines are drawn between the White House and Congress on all the economic issues. That said, let’s see what Mr. Reich has to say and then critique his assessments of Obamanomics. (more…)






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