If we are not yet at Peak Debt, we are getting close, and that means we are also getting close to Peak Government.
Have we reached Peak Government? That is, a structural point beyond which government can no longer grow sustainably?
To help answer the question, I’ve assembled charts of the foundations of growth: population, gross domestic product (GDP), private employment and output per person (i.e. productivity). These have grown 28%, 75%, 28% and 58% respectively. (I have used 1990 as a baseline, as the past 23 years gives us a reasonably accurate clue as to the long-term trendlines of the current economy.)
In other words, if growth depended entirely on population growth, the real (inflation-adjusted) economy would have grown 28% since 1990. Instead, the GDP rose by 75%. This is the result of rising output per person, i.e. an increase in productivity.
- Want to see what’s ahead for America’s young? Pay attention to what’s already happened in Japan (dangerousminds.net)
- Population growth increases climate fear (sfgate.com)
- The Government Shutdown Looms: A Q&A On What Happens Next (financialsurvivalnetwork.com)
The Bank of Canada signalled Tuesday that it’s lowering its forecasts for economic growth in the second half of 2013 and possibly for next year, citing a more prudent consumer and an export sector that has yet to fully recover.
Senior deputy governor Tiff Macklem said the central bank no longer expects the July-September period to grow at a rate of 3.8 per cent as previously forecast.
Instead, the bank says the third quarter will likely show an economy that advanced at a more moderate pace of 2.0 per cent to 2.5 per cent, the same speed it now expects will continue in the fourth quarter. Previously, it had penciled in a 2.5 per cent expansion for the last three months of the year.
The Canadian dollar dipped on the news and was selling nearly a quarter of a cent lower in early afternoon trading…
- Economy not growing as quickly as thought: BoC (cp24.com)
- Bank of Canada Sr. Dep. Governor Macklem Toronto Speech (Text) – Bloomberg (bloomberg.com)
- Bank of Canada shaves growth forecast for economy (metronews.ca)
It wasn’t a tsunami but it had the same effect: A huge cluster of jellyfish forced one of the world’s largest nuclear reactors to shut down — a phenomenon that marine biologists say could become more common.
Operators of the Oskarshamn nuclear plant in southeastern Sweden had to scramble reactor number three on Sunday after tonnes of jellyfish clogged the pipes that bring in cool water to the plant’s turbines.
By Tuesday, the pipes had been cleaned of the jellyfish and engineers were preparing to restart the reactor, which at 1,400 megawatts of output is the largest boiling-water reactor in the world, said Anders Osterberg, a spokesman for OKG, the plant operator.
All three Oskharshamn reactors are boiling-water types, the same technology at Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi plant that suffered a catastrophic failure in 2011 after a tsunami breached the facility’s walls and flooded its equipment…
- Wave of jellyfish shut down nuclear power plant… (nypost.com)
- Large wave of jellyfish forces shutdown of Swedish nuclear reactor (ctvnews.ca)
- Oskarshamn Jellyfish: Swedish Nuclear Plant Swarmed (+Photo) (theepochtimes.com)