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If you're so smart...

10 Apr 2024 | OP ED Watch

The world is full of people telling you how to beat the stock market, make a fortune in real estate and other such feats. But the odd thing is that if they really knew, they’d be doing it not selling you the knowledge for a paltry sum. (Which is why in real life so many financial advisors wear cheap suits and put the “broke” back in stockbroker.) As is surely also true of the person in The Atlantic who confidently earns pennies a word telling us “America’s Climate Boomtowns Are Waiting” instead of selling all that he has and purchasing a rusty-looking chunk of western Michigan in advance of what will shortly be umpteen wealthy climate refugees bidding for bits of it. Or so the models say.

Oog, you may say. Western Michigan? Or “models say”? Yup. See “In a world running short on fresh water in its lakes and rivers, more than 20 percent of that water was right here.” Which is crucial because of course climate change will make it drier. No, wait. It will make wet places wetter and dry places drier. Or something. But still, it’s the place to be going to be since:

“From a climate standpoint, there couldn’t be a safer place in the country – no hurricanes, no sea-level rise, not much risk of wildfires.”

Now it may be that models say if temperatures go up another 0.1376 degrees Michigan will become the new Kansas, Florida, California or all three. For instance “Beth Gibbons, an urban planner and specialist in climate adaptation… who now works at the climate consulting firm Farallon Strategies, sees Michigan’s future in the Californians unsettled by wildfire.” People may be fleeing California but it’s not because of climate change and they’re not driving their U-hauls to Michigan.

The author of the piece, Abrahm Lustgarten, states as if it were sober fact anchored in the present that:

“As climate change brings disasters and increasingly unlivable conditions to growing swaths of the United States, it also has the potential to remake America’s economic landscape: Extreme heat, drought, and fires in the South and West could present an opportunity for much of the North. Tens of millions of Americans may move in response to these changes, fleeing coasts and the countryside for larger cities and more temperate climates.”

Oh really? It’s bringing increasingly unlivable conditions to growing swaths of the United States? Can you name such a swath? Especially as Americans continue to migrate from colder to warmer places like the chumps the elite thinks they are.

It’s amazing how detached from reality it all is. For instance:

“Temperature will also make Michigan an attractive destination for climate migrants. For the coldest places, global warming promises newfound productivity and economic growth. The research connecting economic activity to cool temperatures suggests that there is an optimum climate for human productivity, and as ideal conditions for humans shift northward, some places may soon find themselves smack in the middle of it. The same research suggests that when that happens, people are bound to follow. These are the findings of Marshall Burke, the deputy director of the Center for Food Security and the Environment at Stanford University. A notable 2015 paper he co-authored in the journal Nature earned international attention for predicting that most countries will see their economies shrivel with climate change.”

A notable paper indeed, namely for bad science based on “shallow and misleading” statistics and cherry-picked results. And while we can’t think of any countries whose economies shriveled due to climate change we are seeing quite a few that have seen theirs shrivel due to climate change policy, as unaffordable energy guts manufacturing and creates not opportunities in the rust belt, but a rust belt.

Meanwhile this Marshall Burke person lives in… yes, California, home of the raging wildfire.

The projector babble continues. It’s supposedly taboo to mention that a place like Canada might prefer global warming, even as a snowstorm engulfs our capital in early April of the Hottest Year EverTM, to follow California getting so much snow in early March that ski resorts had to close. But Burke foresees an upside:

“Incredible growth could await those places soon to enter their climate prime. Canada, Scandinavia, Iceland, and Russia could see their per capita gross domestic products double or even quadruple.”

Could, mind you. Though to get all technical, Canada is currently experiencing a multi-year economic decline due in significant measure to, uh, that’d be the Prime Minister’s obsession with “carbon pollution”, and trendy economic theories untethered from market logic or historical knowledge.

Pass the eye of newt. According to Lustgarten, who holds “a master’s in journalism from Columbia University and a bachelor’s in anthropology from Cornell” and is “an investigative reporter with ProPublica” and author of On the Move: The Overheating Earth and the Uprooting of America:

“Proprietary climate models from the Rhodium Group, an environmental- and economic-research firm I collaborated with for this book, forecast that even as commercial crop yields free-fall across the Great Plains, Texas, and the South, those closer to the Canadian border will steadily increase. By as soon as 2040, yields in North Dakota could jump by 5 to 12 percent. In Minnesota and Wisconsin and northern New York, the rise could be closer to 12 percent.”

Could be. Unless it’s not. But if you believe your model half as much as you want us to, feel free to short-sell commercial crops in the South, and go long on Michigan orange trees. And let us know how it turned out in 2040, if you can still afford an Internet account.

One comment on “If you're so smart...”

  1. There are wealthy West Coast Liberals who heard the siren song of climate catastrophe and began snapping up properties in.....wait for it.....Duluth Minnesota! They came roaring in on their private jets in September of 2022 and hunkered in their luxury pads to await the end, Then winter arrived, 25-40 degrees below zero Fahrenheit, 3-6 feet of snow, dubious roads and those expensive jets were stranded for days at a time, even Arnold Schwarzenegger had a cliff top redoubt overlooking Lake Superior near Two Harbors MN....all gone now, one winter in the Arrowhead region produced more enlightenment than 1000 climate conferences! My daughter is a Doctor in Duluth, it was all very exciting, then it was even more amusing! She loves cross country skiing!

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