UN Marxist Calls for Food Uprising When UN is at Fault

Jean Ziegler UN “special rapporteur on the right to food” blasts the developed nations and blames globalization for the coming starvation, neglecting the fact that the forces of globalization have kept the world out of famine the past two decades. Millions have lived who would have died without the efforts of the west and the growth of Capitalism throughout the globe, that’s easy enough to see in the presentation embedded below. Here’s what Jean said:

Ziegler said he was bound to highlight the “madness” of people who think that hunger is down to fate.

“Hunger has not been down to fate for a long time — just as (Karl) Marx thought. It is rather that a murder is behind every victim. This is silent mass murder,” he said in an interview.

Ziegler blamed globalisation for “monopolising the riches of the earth” and said multinationals were responsible for a type of “structural violence”.

“And we have a herd of market traders, speculators and financial bandits who have turned wild and constructed a world of inequality and horror. We have to put a stop to this,” he said. 

Ziegler said he believed that one day starving people could rise up against their persecutors. “It’s just as possible as the French Revolution was,” he said. [ editor: yes, the French Revolution was so wonderful, it brought “The Terror” and “The Great Terror”, and let’s not forget Mao’s famines, he was a follower of Marx. ]

Jean’s spinning the line right now that the genocidal tyrants and failed governments across the world will use as they put down their food riots with brutal murders and suppression. In reality any nation can feed itself no matter how dense the population if they can reach the farming efficiencies achieved by 16th century Japanese peasants. Using more modern techniques and reasonably priced energy, there isn’t an excuse for a country who is unable to feed its people.

If he feels the need to blame someone the guilty parties have been named here: OPEC, Al Gore, Kyoto, the UN IPCC.

Here’s a wonderful presentation that demonstrates the effects of Capitalism and Freedom and how it pulled so many nations out of the ditch of third world poverty and chronic hunger the past three decades:

.

To demonstrate the effect of Energy on the ability to grow sufficient crops once more, we have this report * from IAASTD (International Assessment of Agricultural Science and Technology for Development ) Scroll through it — you will find that energy is the key component even though the report leads with climate change as a factor. Energy is needed for fertilizer, transport, cultivation, and improved water resources. You can see the effects of “small is beautiful” farming in income, mortality rates, and production numbers in several charts – small scale low-energy farming is ugly and deadly. In a low energy future the world faces chronic famine, in an abundant energy future the world is fine and wealth grows across the board. 

* apparently all the historic PDF”s at the IAASTD are now offline for some reason. I hope they are burying data because it doesn’t support current political theory.

Marines Turn Tables on Code Pink

flagTest

Ok I’ve been fiddling with my server, WP 2.5.1 (with the new patches) and .htaccess files for hours now trying to get the gallery and pic upload features of wp to work, all to no avail.

So I might as well make this test post useful, Please stop by Zomblog to see the latest in the ongoing Code Pink vs. the Marines saga from Berkeley.

 

Test of Gallery Embed

Haystack Beach Sunset

I’ve just patched up to the beta 2.5.1 fix for the gallery, and I’m trying out a gallery embed with a few random pics.

 

Al Qaeda on the Ropes

The Khyber pass battles continue, and along with that the agit prop is continuing from all sides. There are a few things that are clear however. The first is that there aren’t many foreigner fighters, or Arab Al Qaeda, left alive in Pakistan – their numbers are thinning as is pointed out by this Asia Times article. The second is that they are beginning to run out of benefactors and supplies.

The AQ spokesmen wants to paint the tribal resistance in the Khyber pass as “US paid for” resistance, however I already pointed out in past articles that the resistance would come regardless. This is the traditional battleground between Afghanistan and Pakistan, and many wars have passed through. The tribes there have held fast against all comers and endure past all belief. There’s a long tradition in the pass, and they aren’t going to put up with much interference in their lands from AQ/Taliban and Kashmiri Jihadi forces or the army. The smack down is coming, and the US doesn’t need to pay a nickel.

Both sides are pimping Nawaz Sharif of PML-N as the great savior for peace, but really  it was under Nawaz Sharif that the Jihadi groups who slipped the leash were expanded and set loose against India. It was also under Nawaz that Pakistan had their first nuclear test, and under Nawaz that the AQ Khan network worked with Iran. (Ali’s article is good, but realize that it does have a political angle. It’s also good that he’s pointing out that these groups all change their names frequently, wearing the one that fits the occasion, political or armed.)

Now follows some analysis, this is purely my speculation and you will receive the usual warning : this is unsupported by fact, it’s pure speculation

The Taliban no longer receives funding and supplies from Pakistan, so they are desperately seeking another benefactor. They don’t care if that’s Iran, or China, or Pakistan again if they can pressure it, and they will play any part needed to gain supplies and armaments. Add that with today’s strange news regarding the kidnapped Pakistani ambassador to Afghanistan, the recent move to give AQ Khan more freedom, and you get some pretty wild probabilities. From the tape:

But his reference to having been held for 27 days suggests that the video was made more than a month ago.

“We don’t have any problems, but I suffer from health issues such as hypertension and heart pain,” the white-bearded Azizuddin said.

He urged Pakistan’s ambassadors in Iran and China, as well as the country’s Foreign Ministry, to comply with Taliban demands. He did not elaborate.

Now what is up here? Are the Taliban looking for supplies and armaments by acting as some odd middle-man in a new nuclear ring?  Are they pressuring Iran to supply them through blackmail? If so then how and why does China play into this? (Note the recent Sunni Jihad mosque bombing in Shiraz, Iran – the government in Iran has characterized it as accidental, and not terror even though SJ has claimed the terror event.)

The other potential is that both Iran and China are holding jihadi prisoners that AQ wants release of. We will have to let this play out to see what is going on. If you have any guesses as to what this means, please feel free to drop a comment.

Update:

From a more detailed story at The Nation, it appears that the demands on China and Iran are for prisoner releases. See story here.

Also note that the Khyber pass has re-opened, as I predicted the Taliban can not win there and had to make a face-saving truce before tucking tail and running.

Huffpo on Hunger

The left has begun to notice the hunger, but it took riots and multiple articles to get them there. At Huffpo Richard Walden wants to obfuscate the real issues with Global Warming — right on cue. You see, Global Warming has somehow screwed up “farmer’s intuition”…. Oh, and there’s not enough money in UN aid programs, he wants us to give more.

So there you have it – the eco-boogey man that’s driving the policy creating the current shortages and inflation is at fault, not the policy itself.

As I pointed out we already are giving more, and the shortage in aid money is due to two things: the inflation in prices, and the devalued dollar now buys less.

In articles over the past weeks I’ve spelled out what created the problem, and backed it up with proof in the form of news articles, UN reports, World Bank reports, and some pretty solid logic and history. You can choose who you wish to believe, but again I believe the main factors to be:

  1. Sustained high energy prices (transport, fertilizer, irrigation, processing.)
  2. Croplands (all, not just corn) converted to fuel
  3. Low dollar 
  4. Cold Weather and or Drought in some regions
  5. Rising Demand from India and China

Put those together and you have the perfect storm for famine in some regions.

If you lower the price of energy, some of these factors go away for they are symptiomatic of the first. Cheap abundant energy (in terms of real dollars) was a factor in the green revolution that ended famine in our lifetimes, however with energy prices at sustained highs even Norman Borlaug’s great work is not going to be enough.

So it is the last-century eco-luddites who have put us here, remove any two of the factors above and I would have nothing to write about here. The most easily fixed is the energy problem. There are untapped natural gas reserves in Alaska, there are unbuilt nuclear reactors, there are untapped reservoirs of oil off the north slope, and off shore.

Low energy in a world with 6 billion people leads to massive pollution, starvation, and unending turmoil. An abundant energy future takes care of most problems of pollution as well as hunger.

There is enough food out there right now to feed everyone – just barely, as the surplus has shrunk the past seven years as croplands converted. The problem is buying at the inflated cost that has spiked from shorter supply, higher cost to produce, and higher costs to transport.

More on the burgeoning problem at NYT. Please note that right now you are only going to see issues and problems with food in countries with bad Governance, and low energy societies. That would be spots like Haiti and Egypt as examples of the first, and most of sub-saharan Africa as well as the Eastern Islamic nations in the Sub-continent of Asia as examples of the second.

Barack’s a Liar Again

Please stop by Hot Air for the latest prevarication.

Biofuels Under Debate

Government “subject matter experts” attempting to plan the future often create unintended consequences through heavy-handed regulation. They sometimes attempt to solve problems that don’t exist, and sometimes offer solutions in search of a problem while ignoring the truly pressing issues before us this century.

Having not learned from nearly a century’s worth of Soviet Five year plans, they still think they can not only predict but also plan the future.

The future can’t be predicted or planned, the future happens, and it can only be prepared for. This decade driven by Global Warming and the Kyoto treaty, they’ve gone beyond the pail. This year people will be dying of starvation as one of the unintended consequences.

The mandated use of biofuels as well as government subsidies for them is under stiff debate at the present due to the problems now becoming evident. See here, and here.

I’m going to state that biofuels do have a place in our energy mix, but right now the heavy hand of worldwide government mandate has created crisis and issues where none should exist. A balance can be struck between croplands for fuel, forest, and homes. A balance can be struck between fuel and food. It will never happen however if techocrats continue their hubris of trying to mandate it. 

It’s a rush to subsidize, a quaqmire of regulation, and a lie to drive it all.

Like it or Not We Live in a High-Energy Society

Now that the whole world knows about the food crisis, and moves are afoot to help stave that off, it’s really time to talk about how we got here. Here’s part of what will be happening to alleviate the current issues:

President Bush has responded to a World Bank warning on the dangers of soaring food prices by ording the release of $200 million in emergency food aid for the worst affected countries.

Robert Zoellick, head of the World Bank, this week urged rich nations to “put our money where our mouth is” and act urgently to help people in need. He cited an appeal by the UN’s World Food Programme to raise $500 million by May 1, which had received commitments for less than half of that total…

…The United States is already the largest provider of food aid in the world, delivering more than $2.1 billion to 78 developing countries last year. Officials and aid groups meeting at the US Government’s annual convention on global food aid in Kansas City, Missouri, said that more funding would be needed – including long-term investment to improve agricultural productivity.

“This is an increasingly difficult time. We need to get the right food to the right people at the right time,” said Jeffrey Borns, director of the largest US food aid programme. As important, he said, was the need to support agriculture in the Third World and lower trade barriers.

Yes, the evil imperialistic United States is going to go extend their hegemony by feeding the world again. (That’s sarcasm folks, I don’t use it often so I point it out when I do.) That said, how did we get here — we’ve had famine beat for almost 20 years? The problem is that this crisis isn’t sexy, and has potential to harm both liberals and conservatives, for both have colluded in creating it. The crisis will get a lot of press, but cause and potential solution are going to get short shrift. Embedded energy, ecology, and farm lobbies will likely see to that.

The title for this post comes from Jerry Pournelle, who coined the statement in a series of essays he wrote in response to the the global crisis eco-scare of his day, The Club of Rome Report. The clothing of the scare has changed but the neo-luddite soul of the beast is impossible to slay as today’s eco-crisis takes the philosophy of the 60’s movements and makes that the goal.

The Club of Rome, Jeremy Rifken, E.F. Schumacher, and Rachel Carson’s philosophies are now the goal, rather than real results. Now we have “Pop Environmentalism” — where energy use in itself is the evil, rather than a symptom or solution. Because of this people like Patrick Moore have turned from the movement they helped create as noted below:

Speak No Evil

One of the co-founders of Greenpeace, Patrick Moore, says that the environmental organization is wrong for calling nuclear energy “evil.” He says, “We made the mistake of lumping nuclear energy in with nuclear weapons, as if all things nuclear were evil.”

Moore, who left the organization in 1986 after 15 years of service, also lashed out at the movement he helped create saying, “That’s why I left Greenpeace: I could see that my fellow directors were taking the organization into what I call ‘pop environmentalism’ which uses sensationalism, misinformation, fear tactics to deal with people on an emotional level rather than an intellectual level.”

FOX News Channel’s Martin Hill contributed to this report

The food crisis is a combination problem caused by a variety of factors, but we would not be here talking about this without large-scale eco-meddling from Governments. I’ve been picking on Al Gore simply because he is the most visible face of the Euro-technocratic ecology movement. Also at fault in this food crisis are the energy-tyrants who keep prices high by artificial controls on output, protectionist governments who protect their farming through tariffs and controls, and the governments who subsidize ethanol and other fuel crops. (Yes, that’s us and Archer Daniels-Midland)

The energy moguls in the mid-east have a policy that’s created starvation in their own countries, and through Kyoto The EU technocrats have created a solution in search of a problem – and their assumed problem is that the world uses too much energy. They attempt to attack the problem of energy use with carbon caps and transfers. While attempting to bite the hand that feeds them, the foolish EU technocrats and the energy tyrants have pushed the world into this crisis.

Like it or not we are a high energy society – the world is too much with us for we are billions in number. Those billions of humans and ecology are mutually exclusive in a low-energy world. In a low-energy society their waste can’t be cleaned, clean water won’t exist for them, their air will not be clean, their food will be scarce, and their work will be scarcer. Life will be brutal, grueling, and short.

The inflation we are seeing now manifested in food prices tracks back to sustained high energy prices coupled with croplands set aside to create new sources of energy. (see here, here, and here.)

There are two things demonstrated to reduce birthrate, hunger, disease, poverty, and unemployment. Thing one is cheap, plentiful energy; thing two is freedom. Given both any nation will thrive.

Given cheap plentiful energy all things are possible – those farmlands suffering from drought in Australia as one factor of the current food-crisis could use desalinated or pumped water for irrigation – but that takes energy and infrastructure. Producing infrastructure also takes energy if you want it reasonably priced then the energy to produce it needs to be reasonably priced as well.

The sewage from 7 billion human beings can be cleaned given cheap plentiful energy – without energy it’s an Augean task that will remain un-accomplished through most of the world, creating more disease, impure water, and noxious gases. 

There are plenty of croplands even for energy fuel crops if infertile regions could be fertilized — but making high nitrate fertilizer is highly energy-intensive; if you don’t believe then go price some Scott’s grow this year.

Indeed if you track the inflation in most goods, whether that be food, fertilizer, or fungicide you will find that the inflation we see lately is not for want of labor or capital, but rather energy. Even the byproducts of energy production like plastic, have increased in price: Starbuck’s now serves drinks in thinner mil plastic cups than they did in years past.

In low-energy areas even the simplest thing like cooking dinner creates terrible pollution. In Sub-Saharan Africa a large percent of meals are prepared over wood fires. I’ve detailed in the past how terrible that is, but people have to eat and if there aren’t electric ranges and cheap electricity then wood is their answer.

The Euro-technocrats start with a view that energy is limited and finite, and therefor energy use in itself is bad. They believe that if you reduce energy consumption that pollution will go down, but the obverse is true, the obverse is the reality.

The cleanest streams in your state are not the high mountain streams, for even they have dissolved toxic minerals and fecal coliform in them. The cleanest streams are the outfall pipes of modern sewage treatment plants, and it takes high energy use to make water nearly atomically pure.

Aversion to energy use is really the driver behind the Kyoto treaty and Global Warming crisis-mongering. By capping carbon, by reducing emissions, by artificial government constructs they increase the price of energy world-wide and think that’s a good thing. They will start learning a very harsh lession this year as thousands to millions of humans across the planet starve, and as countries leave the treaty because they cannot afford to be in it anymore.

The answer stares us in the face at Yucca moutain, and at our aging nuclear reactors as well as at our nuclear regulatory bodies. Nuclear energy policy is a key question to ask of every Presidential candidate this year. They all pay lip service to clean energy, but we are past the point where we can allow the neo-luddite anti-nuclear crowd to continue to starve people in third world countries to death. We need to throw the buzz words “energy-independence” out the window and instead ask them the following:

Which candidates have a clear position on new Nuclear Energy? Which candidates want a clean energy abundant future for your children and the world?

This century a noble task lays before us, we can quail or we can take it on: we must lead the world to clean energy abundance. If we fail to do so we will face unending famine, strife, poverty, disease, war, and destruction. It’s pretty simple and clear when you boil it down to essentials and actually do the math needed to calculate requirements for survival on a planet with 9 Billion humans.

We can have a wonderful future, or we can live in ignomy and shame – that choice is clear and doesn’t take questionable computer models to project.

More on the the problem, and the attempts to ignore this problem at Jammie Wearing Fool  (remember: people are eating grass, belts, and shoes tonight while this ninny commiserates with Gaia.)

9 Officials Kidnapped in Khyber Agency; Operation Mounted

The papers are saying that there will be an operation in the Khyber Agency after 9 Khassadar officials were kidnapped. Right now it appears to be the usual gunship drive, but without a campaign such as the one mounted in Swat, this won’t accomplish much.

If they are going to use ground troops to pursue, then they better team with locals and send regular army, not Frontier Corps. From the Daily Times:

Security forces are planning to conduct a military operation in the Khyber Agency, after militants kidnapped nine security personnel of the Khasadar Force on Wednesday.

According to a Dawn News report, helicopter gunships took to the air in the area after unknown militants kidnapped a line officer and eight other Khasadar Force security personnel, along with an official vehicle, in the Khsar Khor area of the Khyber Agency. The security forces were ready to act against the militants and contingents of the Frontier Constabulary had also been ordered to arrest the kidnappers.

Also in the news:
A most Wanted Jaish-e-Muhammad terrorist was arrested in Lahore. (Where they also got Muhammad Rahim last year.)
After a peace Jirga, four Taliban Commanders responsible for burning the tankers in Torkham a couple of weeks back were released on bail.

Code Pink ‘Bama Bundler

Friends
Frontpage is reporting that one of Barack Obama’s big bundlers is Jodie Evans, one of the founders of Code Pink. From Frontpage:

According to Ralph Nader’s Public Citizen, Evans has bundled “at least $50,000” in donations for Barack Obama’s 2008 campaign. “Bundling” is a process in which people turn over a large number of “individual” political contributions as a group, in the hope of exerting greater influence if their candidate is elected.

According to Human Events reporter Catherine Moy, “Evans and her son, a student who lives at her Southern California address, each also gave the maximum individual allowable donation of $2,300 to Obama’s campaign.”

And who is Jodie Evans? A former political appointee of Jerry Brown during his tenure as governor of California and his presidential campaigns, Evans briefly made headlines in 2003 by arranging for women to claim Arnold Schwarzenegger groped them. However, she has kept lower company for the last few years. Her official biography states “her life has been consumed with Codepink: Women for Peace since September of 2002.”

Of course if you’ve read this blog any time at all or just look at the picture, then you know who Jodie’s good friends are.