Tuesday, January 30, 2007

el nino, drought, inflation and other monsters

jan 30th, 2007

the extreme cold weather that hit california recently is supposed to be el nino related. and we know from good old mike davies (late victorian holocausts: el nino and the making of the third world) that the result is drought in the deccan.

what does this portend for the indian stock market? a sharp drop in 2007 as the rains fail?

with inflation already shooting up, this is a scary prospect.

if stocks are going to drop, have to abandon the equity mutual funds. if inflation is going up and interest rates too, then have to abandon the bond mutual funds.

if both are happening, then cash is king, i suppose. this might also burst the real estate bubble. i hear prices have stabilized in bangalore and delhi after shooting through the roof recently.

3 comments:

Ghost Writer said...

Rajeev,
The first thing we have to do is to get water harvesting going in a big big way in India. It's not just El Nino thats the threat - the Hans are about to divert all major rivers starting with the Brahmaputra, thus reducing us to a wasteland. Imagine all those Bangladeshi refugees pouring in because there is no more food left in their country - one shudders at the mere thought.

On another note - this one in the Pioneer today got me laughing till I fell off my chair.
http://www.dailypioneer.com/indexn12.asp?main_variable=front%5Fpage&file_name=story2%2Etxt&counter_img=2
Now the Comrades are calling the Mohd.'s "communal". Well - cest la vie Comrade - you thought that by registering all those illegal Mohammedans on the electoral rolls you could actually hold on to them forever? That was only until they formed their own "Muslim league" party, and voted themselves in (and you out). You heard it first here - Muslim League Part Deux - coming soon to West Bengal

san said...

Here's an article about a recent invention that purports to extract water from the air using windpower:

A Windmill That Makes Water

The benefits of wind power as an alternative energy source have been discussed on this forum before. I find a certain amount of energy self-sufficiency to be attractive for reasons ranging from money savings and helping the environment, to simply providing more choices in building a home away from the power grid and the already built-up areas with their available infrastructure.

But this is the first time I'd heard of a device tailored to generating a water supply by using windpower, so I thought I'd post it up here. Again, it's nice to be able to reduce one's environmental footprint, but I also once again find the idea appealing of being able to build somewhere that regular reliably clean water supplies aren't necessarily available.

I think we all know that far too many Indians rely on polluted wells, and that water supplies on the subcontinent are being outpaced by the burgeoning population needs.
The inventor himself is in Australia, another land of vast desert expanse. Paharis may be better off than most, having access to the rivers and mountain streams coming from unspoilt glaciers. But not everyone is so lucky.

There are plenty of places in the developing world where water hygiene may not be dependable, or where pollution is unchecked.

Also, in the aftermath of a natural disaster, where water source purity may have been compromised, inventions like this could be life-savers.

But I still entertain the fantasy of building totally away from already built-up areas and having maximum self-sufficiency without sacrificing comfort and convenience. Who knows, perhaps new ultra-modern technologies and trends may make it happen.

nizhal yoddha said...

ghostwriter, that *is* funny. this fits with my hunch about marxists and mohammedan-love: if marxists have a choice between their wallets and their mohammedan-love, the wallet wins every time! the chinese have demonstrated this too, by regularly shooting mohammedans in xinjiang when they threaten their extraction of minerals.

apparently, 'secularism' stops when their pocketbooks are at stake :-)