7 Matching Annotations
  1. Last 7 days
    1. Keenan, though, had a bigger point: All the structural disincentives that had built Americans’ irrational response to the climate risk were now reaching their logical endpoint. A pandemic-induced economic collapse will only heighten the vulnerabilities and speed the transition, reducing to nothing whatever thin margin of financial protection has kept people in place. Until now, the market mechanisms had essentially socialized the consequences of high-risk development. But as the costs rise — and the insurers quit, and the bankers divest, and the farm subsidies prove too wasteful, and so on — the full weight of responsibility will fall on individual people.
    2. Under the radar, a new class of dangerous debt — climate-distressed mortgage loans — might already be threatening the financial system. Lending data analyzed by Keenan and his co-author, Jacob Bradt, for a study published in the journal Climatic Change in June shows that small banks are liberally making loans on environmentally threatened homes, but then quickly passing them along to federal mortgage backers. At the same time, they have all but stopped lending money for the higher-end properties worth too much for the government to accept, suggesting that the banks are knowingly passing climate liabilities along to taxpayers as stranded assets.

      We need better ways of making valuations and assessing risk so that these sorts of dangerous debt can't be passed along.

      These sorts of sales should have long term baggage clauses built into them to prevent government "suckers". If they fail within x number of years, the original owners and their investors are held liable for them.

  2. Sep 2020
    1. It did not have to be this way. But as Trump aptly said of himself and his policy, “It is what it is.” He accepted more disease in hopes of stimulating a stronger economy and winning reelection. He’s waiting now for the return on that bet. As so often in his reckless career, his speculation seems to be that if the bet wins, he pockets the proceeds. And if the bet fails? The losses fall on others.

      A very apt description of Trump's life philosophy. Also a broad perspective at how many Republicans and Libertarians seem to view the world economically: privatizing profits and socializing losses.

  3. Aug 2020
  4. Jul 2020