Insty is tracking the green energy collapse. It’s the filling in a bubble sandwich, falling between the crippling of the housing market and higher education’s reckoning-to-come.
(Let’s leave the “money bubble” out of this discussion, on account of it being too scary to contemplate.)
Doesn’t the collapse of these three seem odd? After all, the federal government took special interest in each, constantly stepping in and regulating and re-regulating and…
…oh. No, it won’t seem odd. It won’t even be news.
But I was also hit with an epiphany. “Lightbulb over the head” moments are the opposite of odd. Instead of muttering “Weird” you exclaim, “of course!”
Well…of course! THAT’S what’s causing these bubbles. Not government subsidies and regulation. Government favoritism.
Consider farming and the oil bidness. America has all kinds of farming subsidies. I oppose almost all federal farm aid. But American farming isn’t on a bubble. The government can’t just “declare” that farms have abundant energy and water. You can’t pencil-whip a turnip into being two turnips or a truffle.
And sure, petro-chem industries have their little subsidies from Uncle Sam. “Little” being relative to the size of their business. But the current Administration hates oil and has made it nearly impossible to expand production.
The result? Record profits. Well, of course they saw record profits. Demand outstripped supply but they weren’t allowed to invest revenue in new production. The natural gas boom might curb Big Oil, but the government sure didn’t.
I’m no trained economist, but…does that sound about right? I suppose with PhD’s we could argue the exact opposite with authority and conviction. But we’d still be wrong.
Final example: the recreational chemical business. Do you agree that pot/coke/ meth/X/etc. are not government-approved products? Drugs dealers aren’t regulated, they’re prohibited. So when does that bubble burst? When did Prohibition burst the booze bubble?
Apparently the government can only kill an industry by accident. And that’s because it can only eliminate things the public finds boring. The public didn’t care about having fewer renters and more home owners. But the government did. And so…poof! Housing bubble.
It favored “green” energy over all others so…poof! Solar bubble.
It favors “college” over “no college” and “for-profit education” so…soon…poof! Universi-bubble.
The explanation is so obvious, it’s very embarrassing to have taken this long to see. If you’re trying to make healthy legs stronger you don’t want a crutch, you want ankle weights. And if you want your legs to die off entirely? Ask for a wheelchair.
So, want to destroy your business? Turn it into the government’s pet. This truth is a silver bullet to shoot at every statist calling for government “investment”:
“Why do you want to explode the housing market?”
“Why do you want to cripple solar power development?”
“My God, you really hate higher education, don’t you?”
How is the Chevy Volt doing, BTW?
Here’s a final question, for extra credit: what year did the “African-American” bubble burst? For nearly half a century the government has provided crutches, wheelchairs, beds, fluffy pillows, sedatives, pain relievers, etc. At the start of this treatment the symbol for black people was Martin Luther King.
And today it is…Trayvon Martin. So obviously the bubble burst. But when? I go with 1995. For the obvious reason.