Author Topic: Politics, Religion, etc. etc. 2/16/11 - 5/9/13  (Read 44880 times)

Jes Beard

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Re: Politics, Religion, etc. etc.
« Reply #15 on: April 17, 2011, 04:50:36 pm »
What I recommended was that at the end of a period of time, the lease ends, and the land, now with proven oil reserves, is put up for bid.  This gives the company a very strong immediate incentive to drill quickly, and to produce massive amounts of oil from that land before they either lose it or have to pay a much increased lease cost for the land.

Yes, and it was as misguided an idea then as now.

companies always have to balance the desire for immediate profits with the need for long term benefits.  In a time of rising oil prices, there is a strong incentive to restrict production in order to be able to produce in the future at a higher price.  Why produce more than necessary today, merely reducing prices without increasing profits.

This is what illustrates that it is misguided.

In a properly functioning economy, where profits are not the result of theft, or slave labor, or government regulation which distorts decision making or grants a monopoly, or the failure of an economic activity to internalize all of its costs, profit is a measure of how valuable a particular activity or good or service is to society.  Forcing business (or even pressuring business) to make decisions which reduce the total profit, even when that is by reducing the price (at the moment) which consumers pay for the activity or good or service, reduces the total benefit to society.

Wen an oil company delays production because it anticipates greater profit in the future, it is assuring that future demands are going to be met.  Creating pressures to coerce oil companies, or ANY company providing any good or service, to bring a product to market now, when society does not value it as much as society will value it later, is misguided.

CurtOne

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Re: Politics, Religion, etc. etc.
« Reply #16 on: April 17, 2011, 05:28:20 pm »
Scoop, JR is that guy over at World Crossing that was always bragging on how he owed thousands in taxes because of his gambling gains, but that he was never going to pay.  Remember now?

davep

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Re: Politics, Religion, etc. etc.
« Reply #17 on: April 17, 2011, 09:40:31 pm »
"Forcing business (or even pressuring business) to make decisions which reduce the total profit, even when that is by reducing the price (at the moment) which consumers pay for the activity or good or service, reduces the total benefit to society."

What I recommended does not force a company to do anything.  But no company has the right to decide what to do with land that belongs to the Federal Government.  The various companies can decide, each for themselves, how to maximize their profits within the structure of the lease.  They have the choice to enter into a contract with the Federal Government, or not to do so.  Just like any transaction, they have to proceed in accordance with the strictures of the leasor.  The strictures I recommend may not seem reasonable to you, but that is because you, not the recommendation, is unreasonable.

Saying that the government should not have rules that affect the marketplace is meaningless, since the government, as the landowner, IS a part of the marketplace and any action, or for that matter any inaction, has an effect on the marketplace.  The only thing left to be decided is what effect that government should have.


davep

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Re: Politics, Religion, etc. etc.
« Reply #18 on: April 17, 2011, 10:01:38 pm »
After all the fuss about Air Traffic Controllers falling asleep on the job, another one did so yesterday.  I don't know if he should be fired, but anyone that stupid should certainly be sterylized.

Jes Beard

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Re: Politics, Religion, etc. etc.
« Reply #19 on: April 18, 2011, 07:13:20 am »
What I recommended does not force a company to do anything. 

"Forcing business (or even pressuring business)....

Dave, the part in parenthesis is still part of the sentence.

But no company has the right to decide what to do with land that belongs to the Federal Government.

At no point have I suggested that the Federal Government lacks the right to impose the lease restrictions or requirements which we have been discussing.  My comments have focused instead on whether such restrictions or requirements are good or bad for society, which is why I wrote that it "reduces the total benefit to society."

The various companies can decide, each for themselves, how to maximize their profits within the structure of the lease. 

That is true even when the mineral rights are leased from a private property owner.  Government certainly has the power to impose such use restrictions on leases from private property owners, or to require all owners of property to use the land instead of leaving it fallow, or to use the land for agricultural purposes instead of any other purpose, and even require that the crops are planted the first day of January each year.

Now, every one of those things would be foolish and misguided and reduce the total benefit to society.  But government could certainly do so.  I would hope that if someone pointed out to you that such restrictions were misguided and reduced the total benefit to society you could get beyond the question of whether government has the power or authority to impose such restrictions.

Saying that the government should not have rules that affect the marketplace is meaningless, since the government, as the landowner, IS a part of the marketplace and any action, or for that matter any inaction, has an effect on the marketplace. 

Dave, you spent time in the military, so I will use a military example.  Saying that a military action should have as little effect as possible on civilian populations is meaningless, since the military, drawing its members from the civilian population and any military action, or for that matter inaction, therefore has an effect on the civilian population.  And, therefore, Dresden and Hiroshima are fine and not even worth discussing.

Yes,  The very existence of government effects the marketplace.  A good government, which allows unrestricted marketplace choices, enforces contracts, prosecutes fraud, provides a stable currency, borders secure from military invasion, unrestricted international trade, a system of resolving disputes, rule of law, and an orderly transfer of power from one regime to another, effects the marketplace a great deal.  Such a government allows the market to flourish, and that is certainly influencing the market.

That is quite difference from government actions which are designed to influence or produce a particular result, such as taxing the consumption of alcohol (though no other beverage or food)  in order to discourage consumption of alcohol.  Folks are still allowed to drink, though the goal is to get them to drink less.

You are right that to the greatest extent reasonable, government should reduce its role as a player in the marketplace, such as by selling government owned land, but that is not even close to the idea that government should decide how it wants to influence the market and then should set about doing so.

Ownership of property, even real estate, is not static, permanent or immutable.  Not even for government.  The United States has owned more land in the past, and it has owned less land in the past.  You, seemingly, think that should not be a concern, despite the fact that it is a tremendous intrusion in the marketplace, and frequently results in government policies, or property use restrictions which, just like the one we are discussing, reduce the total benefit to society.

davep

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Re: Politics, Religion, etc. etc.
« Reply #20 on: April 18, 2011, 02:39:26 pm »
 "Government certainly has the power to impose such use restrictions on leases from private property owners, or to require all owners of property to use the land instead of leaving it fallow, or to use the land for agricultural purposes instead of any other purpose, and even require that the crops are planted the first day of January each year."

Just out of curiosity, which part of the Constitution would give the Federal Government the power to require all owners of property to use the land?

"
Dave, you spent time in the military, so I will use a military example.  Saying that a military action should have as little effect as possible on civilian populations is meaningless, since the military, drawing its members from the civilian population and any military action, or for that matter inaction, therefore has an effect on the civilian population.  And, therefore, Dresden and Hiroshima are fine and not even worth discussing."

That goes beyond a stretch.  It is totally irrelivant.

Any landowner has the right to place whatever restrictions upon use by a leasee, and a potential leasee has the right, in fact the obligation to decide how much to pay for the lease, including it's restrictions.  If the government gives 5 year leases without right of renewal, it us up to potential leasees to decide whether or not to enter into such a lease.  The Federal government has no obligations to do what is "good" for society when deciding upon those restrictions.  Or more accurately, by it's action of putting those restrictions in the lease, they have made the decision that it is good for the society.  You may not agree with those restrictions, but have given no pursusive reasons why the particular restrictions would be bad for the country, the economy, or even for Jes.


Keysbear

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Re: Politics, Religion, etc. etc.
« Reply #21 on: April 21, 2011, 01:02:43 pm »
http://www.drudgereport.com/flash8.htm

uh oh...protesters inside an Obam fundraiser. I guess the days of fainting upon seeing the messiah are over. I love the part where he didn't even recognize that it was a protest song.

davep

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Re: Politics, Religion, etc. etc.
« Reply #22 on: April 21, 2011, 02:46:18 pm »
Key - did you see the segment on Fox the other day that was talking about the recent strong turnabout in real estate values in central and south Florida?

Keysbear

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Re: Politics, Religion, etc. etc.
« Reply #23 on: April 21, 2011, 03:17:10 pm »
No, I missed it. Would certainly be good news. It's been brutal where I live.

Jes Beard

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Re: Politics, Religion, etc. etc.
« Reply #24 on: April 22, 2011, 11:42:09 am »
"Government certainly has the power to impose such use restrictions on leases from private property owners, or to require all owners of property to use the land instead of leaving it fallow, or to use the land for agricultural purposes instead of any other purpose, and even require that the crops are planted the first day of January each year."

Just out of curiosity, which part of the Constitution would give the Federal Government the power to require all owners of property to use the land?


Government is not limited to the federal government.

Any landowner has the right to place whatever restrictions upon use by a leasee, and a potential leasee has the right, in fact the obligation to decide how much to pay for the lease, including it's restrictions.

We have not disagreed about that point.  Our disagreement is over whether government SHOULD impose such restrictions on land it owns, whether such restrictions benefit society (they tend to be imposed either to create political talking points or to distort the cost benefit analysis of current use as opposed to future use in order to make current use more attractive, which will marginally lower current prices and marginally increase current employment, both helping the office holder at the moment, in part by eliminating from the table the question of whether society would benefit more by delaying extraction and use until some later date), and whether government should be owning and therefor absolutely controlling as much land as it does -- in many western states the Federal government owns more than 40% of all of the land in the state.

You write that I have given no reason to believe that having government decide how land is used is a mistake, specifically writing that I have "given no pursusive reasons why the particular restrictions would be bad for the country, the economy."

Do we really need to debate whether with regard to the use of land or other resources, the government is more or less likely to make good decisions regarding the use of land or other resources than the free market is likely to make good decisions?  Is that really something which needs debate?

If government can in fact be counted on to make better decisions, then by all means let's put more control of the economy in the hands of government.  Despite the fact that politicians routinely complain that the marketplace fails to adequately account for future needs and will not invest or conserve resources for future use, that criticism is actually far more applicable to government.

davep

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Re: Politics, Religion, etc. etc.
« Reply #25 on: April 22, 2011, 04:57:16 pm »
"Government is not limited to the federal government."

In fact, Government is not restricted to the United States.

But we were talking about whether or not the United States Federal Government should take a specific action.  I believe that, as a property owner, the Government has the right to put their land to any use they wish, and right now I believe that increasing the output of oil from Federal land will benefit our society much more than the various alternative uses or non-uses of that land.

You said that the Federal Government should not do as I said because the Federal government should not do anything to affect the market.  But the fact that the action of the Federal Government in this instance will affect the market is irrelavent, since any action, or any lack of action, will affect the market.  Nor is there any way to tell at this point that the action of the Federal Government would have a greater affect on the market than no action whatsoever.

Jes Beard

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Re: Politics, Religion, etc. etc.
« Reply #26 on: April 22, 2011, 09:55:21 pm »
right now I believe that increasing the output of oil from Federal land will benefit our society much more than the various alternative uses or non-uses of that land.

And "right now" you are a good socialist.  Now, you may well come to your senses tomorrow, but right now you believe it is best for government to control and determine how land, one of the most basic of resources and components of production, is used.

But the fact that the action of the Federal Government in this instance will affect the market is irrelavent, since any action, or any lack of action, will affect the market.

What government should do is as quickly as is practical get its ass OUT of the market so it does not distort it and so the free market is allowed to function.  Until that is accomplished, it should conduct itself as a property owner in the manner likely to alter the market decisions of others as little as possible.... which, in this case would mean having few to no restrictions on those leasing the property, at least regarding the timing of the extraction of any resources.

davep

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Re: Politics, Religion, etc. etc.
« Reply #27 on: April 23, 2011, 01:49:43 pm »
Wrong.  I am making a recommendation on what a the Government should do with it's property.  The issue of whether or not the Government should own land might be a socialist question, but owning the land, the question of what to do with it is a legitimate policy decision.

craig

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Re: Politics, Religion, etc. etc.
« Reply #28 on: April 24, 2011, 08:14:33 am »
Jesus Christ is risen.  Heh, it's easter morning, and I have a week of crucifixion and resurrection passages and songs in my head and heart.  Love's redeeming work is done.

Easter morning, it's warm and bright and beautiful with springtime out here in Minnesota.  A reminder of the goodness of God's purposes and the new life that comes each spring and that is available through the redeeming promises and work of God. 

I don't visit the politics/religion board often.  But I'm grateful for all the diverse and interesting Bleacher Bums friends whose thoughts and humor and Cubs stuff and passions I get to share. 

I pray that many of you may already know the grace, forgiveness, and love of God.  Happy Easter everybody!


Robb

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Re: Politics, Religion, etc. etc.
« Reply #29 on: April 24, 2011, 09:34:44 am »
Great stuff Craig.  Thanks for sharing that.