Among the issues most commonly discussed are individuality, the rights of the individual, the limits of legitimate government, morality, history, economics, government policy, science, business, education, health care, energy, and man-made global warming evaluations. My posts are aimed at intelligent and rational individuals, whose comments are very welcome.

"No matter how vast your knowledge or how modest, it is your own mind that has to acquire it." Ayn Rand

"Observe that the 'haves' are those who have freedom, and that it is freedom that the 'have-nots' have not." Ayn Rand

"The virtue involved in helping those one loves is not 'selflessness' or 'sacrifice', but integrity." Ayn Rand

29 December 2018

Let's do follow the climate money! by Paul Driessen

Climate Crisis Inc. gets billions to promote imaginary manmade cataclysm – but attacks realists  

The climate crisis industry incessantly claims that fossil fuel emissions are causing unprecedented temperature, climate and weather changes that pose existential threats to human civilization and our planet. The only solution, Climate Crisis, Inc. insists, is to eliminate the oil, coal and natural gas that provide 80% of the energy that makes US and global economies, health and living standards possible.
Failing that, CCI demands steadily increasing taxes on carbon-based fuels and carbon dioxide emissions.
However, as France’s Yellow Vest protests and the latest climate confab in Poland demonstrated, the world is not prepared to go down that dark path. Countries worldwide are expanding their reliable fossil fuel use, and families do not want to reduce their living standards or their aspirations for better lives.
Moreover, climate computer model forecasts are completely out of touch with real-world observations. There is no evidence to support claims that the slight temperature, climate and weather changes we’ve experienced are dangerous, unprecedented or caused by humans, instead of by the powerful solar, oceanic and other natural forces that have driven similar or far more serious changes throughout history.
More importantly, the CCI “solutions” would cause unprecedented disruption of modern industrialized societies; permanent poverty and disease in poor countries; and serious ecological damage worldwide.
Nothing that is required to harness breezes and sunshine to power civilization is clean, green, renewable, climate-friendly or sustainable. Tens of billions of tons of rock would have to be removed, to extract billions of tons of ores, to create millions of tons of metals, concrete and other materials, to manufacture millions of wind turbines and solar panels, and install them on millions of acres of wildlife habitats – to generate expensive, intermittent energy that would be grossly insufficient for humanity’s needs. Every step in this process requires fossil fuels – and some of the mining involves child labor.
How do CCI alarmists respond to these points? They don’t. They refuse to engage in or even permit civil discussion. They rant that anyone “who denies climate change science” is on the fossil fuel industry payroll, thus has a blatant conflict of interest and no credibility, and therefore should be ignored. 
“Rebuttals” to my recent “We are still IN” article cited Greenpeace and DeSmogBlog as their “reliable sources” and claimed: I’m “associated with” several “right-wing think tanks that are skeptical of man-made climate change.” One of them “received $582,000 from ExxonMobil” over a 14-year period, another got “$5,716,325 from Koch foundations” over 18 years, and the Koch Brothers gave “at least $100,343,292 to 84 groups denying climate change science” in 20 years, my detractors claimed.
These multi-year contributions work out to $41,571 annually; $317,574 per year; and $59,728 per organization per year, respectively – to pay salaries and overhead at think tanks that are engaged in multiple social, tax, education, medical and other issues … not just energy and climate change.
But let’s assume for a moment that money – especially funding from any organization that has any kind of financial, regulatory or other “special interest” in the outcome of this ongoing energy and economic battle – renders a researcher incapable of analyzing facts fairly and honestly.
Then apply those zero-tolerance, zero-credibility Greenpeace-DeSmogBlog-CCI standards to those very same climate alarmists and their allies – who are determined to shut down debate and impose their wind, solar and biofuel policies on the world.Where do they get their money, and how much do they get? 
Billionaire and potential presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg gave the Sierra Club $110 million in a six-year period to fund its campaign against coal-generated electricity. Chesapeake Energy gave the Club $26 million in three years to promote natural gas and attack coal. Ten wealthy liberal foundations gave another $51 million over eight years to the Club and other environmentalist groups to battle coal.
Over a 12-year period, the Environmental Protection Agency gave its 15 Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee members $181 million in grants – and in exchange received quick rubberstamp approvals of various air quality rules. It paid the American Lung Association $20 million to support its regulations.
During the Obama years, the EPA, Interior Department and other federal agencies paid environmental pressure groups tens of millions in collusive, secretive sue-and-settle lawsuit payoffs on dozens of issues.
Then we get to the really big money: taxpayer funds that government agencies hand out to scientists, computer modelers and pressure groups – to promote global warming and climate change alarmism.
As Heritage Foundation economist Stephen Moore noted recently, citing government and other reports: 
* Federal funding for climate change research, technology, international assistance, and adaptation has increased from $2.4 billion in 1993 to $11.6 billion in 2014, with an additional $26.1 billion for climate change programs and activities provided by the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.
* The Feds spent an estimated $150 billion on climate change and green energy subsidies during President Obama’s first term.
* That didn’t include the 30% tax credits/subsidies for wind and solar power: $8 billion to $10 billion a year – plus billions more from state programs that require utilities to buy expensive “green” energy.
* Worldwide, according to the “progressive” Climate Policy Initiative, climate change “investment” in 2013 totaled $359 billion – but this “falls far short” of the $5 trillion per year that’s actually needed.
The UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change echoes those greedy demands. It says the world must spend $2.4 trillion per year for the next 17 years to subsidize the transition to renewable energy.
Bear in mind that $1.5 trillion per year was already being spent in 2014 on Climate Crisis, Inc. research, consulting, carbon trading and renewable projects, according to the Climate Change Business Journal. With 6-8% annual growth, we’re easily looking at a $2-trillion-per-year climate industry by now.
The US Government Accountability Office puts United States taxpayer funding alone at $2.1 billion per year for climate change “science” … $9.0 billion a year for technology R&D … and $1.8 billion a year for international assistance. Total US Government spending on climate change totaled $179 billion (!) from 1993 through 2017, according to the GAO. That’s $20 million per day!
At the September 2018 Global Climate Action Summit, 29 leftist foundations pledged to give $4 billion over five years to their new Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming campaign. Sea Change Foundation co-founder Nat Simons made it clear that this “is only a down payment”!
And I get pilloried for working with organizations that received $41,571 to $59,728 per year from fossil fuel interests … questioning claims that fossil fuels are causing climate chaos … and raising inconvenient facts and questions about wind, solar and biofuel replacements for coal, oil and natural gas.
Just as outrageous, tens of millions of dollars are squandered every year to finance “studies” that supposedly show “surging greenhouse gases” and “manmade climate change” are creating dangerous hybrid puffer fish, causing salmon to lose their ability to detect danger, making sharks right-handed and unable to hunt, increasing the number of animal bites, and causing US cities to be overrun by rats.
Let’s apply the Greenpeace-DeSmogBlog-Climate Crisis, Inc. standard to all these organizations and researchers. Their massive multi-billion-dollar conflicts of interest clearly make them incapable of analyzing climate and energy matters fairly and honestly – and disqualify them from participating in any further discussions about America’s and the world’s energy and economic future.
At the very least, they and the institutions that have been getting rich and powerful off the catastrophic manmade global warming and climate hustle should be cut off from any future federal funding.

Paul Driessen is senior policy analyst for the Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow (CFACT.org). He has written numerous studies and articles on energy, climate change, human rights and other topics.

Note by Charles R. Anderson:  I am a donor to CFACT, SEPP, The Heartland Institute, The Competitive Enterprise Institute, and the Capital Research Center, all of which are catastrophic manmade climate change skeptical organizations.  I support these groups because, as I have explained in many ways through the years, the physics claimed to support catastrophic warming by man's emissions of infrared-active (so called greenhouse gases) is crazy wrong and not even applied consistently by the climate alarmists.

19 December 2018

Stephen Moore asks if the Climate Change Industrial-Scientific Complex is Biased

Actually, both Stephen Moore and I are very convinced that the Climate Change Industrial-Scientific Complex is biased.  An impending doom justifies their income as experts and as green energy companies.  Questioning whether a mere 1.5°C temperature increase would represent a catastrophe for the world is met with outrage by those raking in the money on the basis of the Great Scare.  I have experienced this and Stephen Moore noted the outpouring of anger after comments he made on CNN about how the income stream based on catastrophic man-made global warming alarm caused bias on the part of its supporters.  The left always believes that money causes bias unless that money is spent by the government for purposes with which they agree,.  So, the trillions of dollars spent on the basis of the catastrophic man-made global warming hypothesis cannot create bias in favor of the hypothesis.

Moore says:
This tsunami of government money distorts science in hidden ways that even the scientists who are corrupted often don't appreciate. If you are a young eager-beaver researcher who decides to devote your life to the study of global warming, you're probably not going to do your career any good or get famous by publishing research that the crisis isn't happening.
He goes on to say:
Now here's the real scandal of the near trillion dollars that governments have stolen from taxpayers to fund climate change hysteria and research. By the industry's own admission, there has been almost no progress worldwide in combating climate change. The latest reports by the U.S. government and the United Nations say the problem is getting worse, and we have not delayed the apocalypse by a single day.
Has there ever been such a massive government expenditure that has had such minuscule returns on investment? After three decades of "research" the only "solution" is for the world to stop using fossil fuels, which is like saying that we should stop growing food.
Really? The greatest minds of the world entrusted with hundreds of billions of dollars can only come up with a solution that would entail the largest government power grab in world history, shutting down industrial production (just look at the catastrophe in Germany when they went all in for green energy), and throwing perhaps billions of human beings into poverty? If that's the remedy, I will take my chances on a warming planet.
Stephen Moore is absolutely right.

17 December 2018

Contrary to the Washington Post, a Company Should Spend its Hard-Earned Income Based on its Own Judgment

The Washington Post's top of the Business Section article on Sunday, 16 December is headlined "How have corporations spent their tax cut windfall?"  Thomas Heath, the author, notes that many experts believe that corporations should spend the money no longer taken from them by force to build new facilities, buy equipment, invest in R&D, hire more employees, and pay their employees more.  Stock buybacks and higher dividends for stockholders are rather immoral and not in the spirit of the tax cut law.

You see, the government taxes a business, forcibly depriving it of the income it worked hard to earn in a competitive global economy.  The government thereby gains the moral right to expect the company upon the government's graciously deciding to take a bit less of the company income to spend that income according to the government's wishes.  Those wishes require that the company creates more and better jobs and does so in a way that is as obvious to the voters as possible.

What has become of the money that companies are now able to keep since the tax cut last year?  Business investment by Standard & Poor's 500 largest public corporations on new equipment and factories is up 19% in the first three quarters of 2018.  Research and development spending increased by 34%.  A Federal Reserve statistic shows that independent businesses in general increased business investment by 16% so far this year, which is the highest increase since 1993.  For years, capital expenditure by business has been very weak and productivity growth has been less than 1% per year.  Private sector employee average earnings are up 2.8% in 2018, after many years of stagnation under the Obama Regime.

The 2018 increases in business capital expenditures, R&D, employee earnings, and the expected increases in productivity should make Americans very happy.  Unless you are a Democrat socialist, in which case you bemoan the fact that stock buybacks cost companies $579 billion in the first 3 quarters of 2018.  This will set a new record for a year, replacing the record of 2007, just prior to the Great Recession.  Wisconsin Senator Tammy Baldwin says "It's just wrong for big corporations to pocket massive, permanent tax breaks and reward the wealth of top executives with more corporate stock buybacks, while workers are given pink slips and face layoffs."  Never mind that unemployment is at a record low, that millions of open positions cannot be filled with qualified workers, and that average employee earnings are up 2.8% this year.  Never, ever allow the facts to get in the way of a very emotional argument for the villainy of businesses.

The left also complains about the fact that dividends to shareholders this year will set a record previously set in 2017. 

There is a very unrealistic expectation in the criticisms of the Democrat socialists which we are not supposed to notice.  The management of a large corporation now able to keep enough of its earnings to contemplate building a new facility first has to evaluate a number of purposes for that facility, where it will be built, design it, get building and environmental permits, find and hire the people to build it, evaluate and purchase the equipment to put into the facility, and find and hire the people to be employed in the facility.  If you have just had a substantial change in the parameters under which your business operates, you are also likely to have to hire more managers to make all of these decisions and kick this whole process into gear.  How much of this process can be accomplished in the first 3 quarters of operations under the new tax conditions?

Consider R&D.  You have long been doing less R&D than your company should have been doing because too much of your company earnings were taxed away and the regulatory environment was too expensive.  During the Great Recession and the numbingly glacial recovery, you released many company scientists and engineers or did not expand their numbers.  Your company did not invest much in analytical equipment, your laboratories, the training of your technical experts, prototyping capabilities, and your forward-looking plans for R&D were scaled to your very modest means to do R&D.  Now conditions have changed.  You want to invest in R&D, but you have to figure out what directions to explore and develop with your greater R&D effort.  You consult with your technical people, make decisions on new directions based on evaluations of markets and technical possibilities, figure out what laboratory equipment is needed, evaluate the instruments available from vendors, prepare facilities for their installation, and hire more people to operate the equipment and to solve the technical problems.  By the way, the people with the brains, the dedication, and the training for these R&D tasks are hard to find.  What fraction of this process is likely to be completed within 9 months of a changed tax environment?

So, while your company is trying to become more productive and to offer new products and services, but is limited on the rate of its spending by these limits of time and resources, what do you do with your suddenly increased available funds?  Rationally, you use it for some combination of paying back debts, buying back stock, and offering improved dividends to your shareholders.

Not only is this rational from the company viewpoint, but it is hardly bad for the economy.  Lower company debt makes companies more able to weather future downturns and to minimize the layoffs of valuable employees when a downturn occurs, as they always will.  The buyback of stock, puts more money in the hands of investors who will then either spend that money or invest it in other firms that need that investment.  The increases in dividends help many investors to be able to spend more money in the economy and helps pension funds to be less unstable, as so many of them are.  To be sure, some of this money will go to foreign investors.  Some of these foreign investors will put their money back into US investments because our economy is about the best in the world.  Some will leave our economy.  But, if we suppose that money had been left in the hands of the government, what fraction of it would have been utterly wasted and gone to not only unproductive use, but to uses that cause our national productivity to have negative components?  Yes, the Democrat socialists believe that government spending is the Gold Standard for the good use of our money.  But you have to be loony to think that is the reality.

10 December 2018

Climate lunacy takes center stage in Poland by Paul Driessen

IPCC Poland conference presents fictional climate chaos and fake renewable energy salvation 


The unwritten rule seems to be that each successive climate report and news release must be more scarifying than any predecessors, especially during the run-up to international conferences.

Thus Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Special Report 15 claims governments worldwide must make “unprecedented changes in all aspects of society,” spend $40 trillion by 2035 on renewable energy, and impose carbon taxes that climb to $5,500 per ton of carbon dioxide (CO2) by 2030. Or temperatures could climb another 1 degree F (0.5 C) and bring utter cataclysm to human civilization and our planet.

Not to be outdone, the 1,700-page 2018 US National Climate Assessment wailed that failure to eliminate fossil fuels and roll back American industry and living standards would send global temperatures soaring 15 degrees F by 2100! Chaos and food shortages would ensue; US economic growth would plummet.

The hyperbole continues in Katowice, Poland – where 30,000 activists and bureaucrats (and a few scientists) are meeting to finalize regulations to implement the 2015 Paris climate treaty and compel wealthy nations to give trillions of dollars in “adaptation, mitigation and compensation” money to poor countries that have been “victimized” by climate change, even as the rich nations de-industrialize.

All of this certainly plays well with those who orchestrated these reports and programs, are ideologically opposed to fossil fuels, or get paid to advance climate chaos and renewable energy narratives. However, a very different response among other audiences is increasingly evident around the world.

People look out their windows and realize the “unprecedented climate and weather chaos” isn’t actually happening, is little different from what they and previous generations experienced, and cannot possibly be attributed solely to fossil fuel use. They know the sun and other powerful natural forces have driven frequent climate changes throughout history, and play equally important roles today.

They understand that the scary headlines are the product of “scenarios” conjured up by computer models that blame climate change on greenhouse gases. They see the boy who cried “fifty 20-foot-tall wolves” far too often. They don’t buy the notion that today’s incredibly wealthy, high-tech, energy-rich societies are somehow less able to deal with climate change than those that lived through the Little Ice Age, for example. They typically put climate change at the bottom of any list of pressing concerns.

More and more people understand that fossil fuels provide 80% of US and global energy – and are essential to lifting billions more people out of crushing poverty. They see Asian and African countries building thousands of new coal- and gas-fired electrical generating plants, and making and driving millions of new cars. They know even Germany and Japan are burning more coal, as they realize that wind and solar subsidies and facilities raise energy costs, kill jobs and hurt poor families the most.

People resent being scammed and get angry when they realize their taxes and energy payments often line the pockets of climate activists, scientists, bureaucrats, politicians, and wind, solar and biofuel cronies.

Above all, a growing number see the proposed solutions as far worse than the wildly exaggerated and even fabricated climate disasters. They won’t tolerate having their livelihoods and living standards disrupted or destroyed by carbon taxes, even higher energy prices or fossil fuel bans – especially when the antipathy toward those fuels is combined with plans to terminate nuclear and even hydroelectric power.

In recent weeks, millions of mostly poor, working class and rural French citizens have joined the Gilets Jaunes (Yellow Vests) movement, protesting and even rioting against President Macron’s proposed carbon tax hikes on their driving and living standards. Even a French police union has sided with the protesters. A shaken Macron finally postponed the tax for six months, then scrapped the plan entirely.

The protests are the first serious backlash against international eco-imperialism. They won’t be the last.

In Africa alone, twice as many people as live in the USA still do not have electricity, or have it only rarely and unpredictably. Can you imagine your life without electricity? And yet they are told by the EU, environmentalists, the World Bank and others that they must restrict their ambitions to what is possible with wind, solar and biofuel energy. Would you accept such carbon colonialism? Can actual, real-world climate risks possibly be worse than the horrid poverty, deprivation and disease that afflicts them now?

The World Bank recently said it would kindly give poor countries $200 billion during its FY2021-25 cycle, for “adaptation and resilience” in the face of manmade climate change. But still nothing for fossil fuel or nuclear power. The White House should read it the riot act, especially if US money is involved.

Poor countries don’t need climate cash. They need to develop: energy, infrastructure, factories, jobs, health, living standards. They need to do what rich countries did to become rich – not what (some) rich countries are doing (or at least saying) now that they are rich. Thankfully, many are doing exactly that.

Abundant, reliable, affordable electricity, motor fuels and factory power creates its own prosperity; its own ability to improve roads, hospitals, schools, homes and so on; its own “drop dead money” to tell carbon colonialists to take a hike. “Green” energy is insufficient, unsustainable and ecologically harmful.

With America likely being joined soon by Brazil in rejecting the Paris climate trap, poor nations are on firm ground. Ontario (Canada), Poland. Australia, China, India and other countries have also rejected carbon taxes and coal use restrictions. The Paris deal is fast becoming a climate Potemkin Village.

But what about that National Climate Assessment? Wasn’t that a Trump White House document? It certainly needed some adult supervision, to ride herd on the 1,000 Deep State scientists and bureaucrats who prepared it. However, the White House let them prove how loony climate alarmism has become.

Indeed, as Nick Loris, Roger Pielke, Jr. and other experts have pointed out, the NCA was based on absurd assumptions (eg, vastly increased coal use and no energy technology advances over the next 70 years) and a ridiculous worst-case global temperature increase of 15 degrees F by 2100. That’s twice as high as even the IPCC’s worst-case projections, and far worse than Garbage In-Garbage Out climate models are predicting. It’s more than 15 times the total warming our Earth has experienced since 1820!

The NCA is also based on rampant cherry-picking of data, to wildly inflate climate risks; an almost total failure to factor in the incalculable benefits of fossil fuels; and a refusal to consider the plant-fertilizing benefits of more atmospheric carbon dioxide. It just depicts the CO2 we exhale solely as a dangerous climate-changing pollutant. The NCA also ignored the fact that actual observations show no increases in drought, no increases in the frequency or magnitude of floods, no trends in the frequency or intensity of hurricanes. It didn’t mention the 12-year absence of Category 3-5 hurricanes making US landfall.

Just as egregious, the Deep State NCA claimed continued fossil fuel use would hit the United States with $500 billion in annual climate related costs by 2090. That’s more than twice the percentage lost during the Great Depression. It’s 10% of the US economy in 1971. Even with modest economic growth, it’s likely to be a trivial 0.6% of America’s GDP in 2090. The NCA bogeyman is a little stuffed bear.

But based on IPCC and NCA fear mongering, America and the world are supposed to keep their fossil fuels in the ground – including what the US Geological Survey says is the “largest continuous oil and gas resource potential ever assessed!!” Over 46 billion barrels of oil, 280 trillion cubic feet of natural gas and 20 billion barrels of natural gas liquids in just part of the Texas-New Mexico Permian Basin.

No one denies that the climate changes, or even that human activities have some effects on climate and weather. But there is no real-world evidence that human CO2 emissions have replaced the sun and other natural forces; that another degree of warming would be cataclysmic; or that humans can control climate changes and weather events by tweaking the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

Want some facts and common sense? See what CFACT and Heartland have been saying in Poland, and read books by Dr Roy Spencer, Marc Morano, Anthony Watts and others. They’ll be a breath of fresh air.

Paul Driessen is senior policy analyst for the Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow (CFACT) and author of books, studies and articles on energy, climate change, the environment and human rights. 


My Comments:

Dr. Roy Spencer and Anthony Watts are luke-warmers who believe that CO2 causes less warming than the alarmists say it does and that the warming is less than catastrophic.  They both hold the consensus view of thermal radiation, which is seriously in error.  Dr. Roy Spencer engages in discussions with great patience, but some critical physics he just does not understand.  Anthony Watts has called me nasty names because I advocate that the temperature increases caused by additional CO2 in the atmosphere are insignificant and much lower than than what he thinks they will be.  Despite their limitations, however, both of these men have played major roles in opposing the excesses of the global warming alarmists.  So be nice to them.

I am a supporter of and donor to the Heartland Institute and CFACT.




06 December 2018

Posts Evaluating Earth Energy Budget Problems

Here is a list of some of the posts in which I discuss some of the many problems in the Earth Energy Budgets put forth by the advocates of catastrophic man-made global warming:

Using Heat Transport Powers of the NASA Earth Energy Budget to Prove that Carbon Dioxide has an Insignificant Effect on Surface Temperatures, 15 June 2018
















05 December 2018

Changes in the Relative GDPs of the G20 Nations over the Last 25 Years

The American Enterprise Institute has an interesting graphic on the relative GDPs of the G20 nations over the last 25 years.  Who's GDPs increased as a relative percentage of the total GDPs of the G20 nations and who's fell over that time?


Note that the European Union as a whole has a membership in G20, but not being a nation is excluded from the chart above.

What I am interested in is the change in the relative percentage of the GDP of the G20 nations over the past 25 years.  Let us look at the fraction of the 2018 percentage divided by the 1992 percentage beginning with the nations that had the highest percentages 25 years ago:

USA, 30.90/31.96 = 0.9668
Japan, 7.77/19.11 =  0.4066
Germany, 5.86/10.38 = 0.5645
France, 4.12/6.85 = 0.6015
Italy, 3.08/6.43 = 0.4790
United Kingdom, 4.18/5.77 = 0.7244
Canada, 2.63/2.90 = 0.9069
Russia, 2.51/2.25 = 1.1156
China, 19.50/2.09 = 9.3301
Brazil, 3.28/1.96 = 1.6735
Mexico, 1.83/1.78 = 1.0281
South Korea, 2.44/1.71 = 1.4269
Australia, 2.11/1.59 = 1.3270
India, 4.14/1.39 = 2.9784
Argentina, 1.02/1.12 = 0.9107
Turkey, 1.36/0.77 = 1.7662
Saudi Arabia, 1.09/0.67 = 1.6269
South Africa, 0.56/0.66 = 0.8485
Indonesia, 1.62/0.63 = 2.5714

If an underdeveloped nation is not determined to shoot itself in the foot, it can commonly make easy gains on its share of the world's GDP over time.  Similarly, the lesser developed nations of the G20 could easily have done so over the last 25 years.  Some of them have, the most remarkable one being China.  India has had the second greatest GDP surge among the G20 nations.  Third place belongs to Indonesia.  Turkey, Brazil, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, Australia, Russia, and Mexico have improved their relative positions in that order from more to less.  The gains of Russia and Mexico are actually very unimpressive.  The losers among the smaller economies of the G20 nations from biggest loser to smaller loser are South Africa and Argentina, though both were at one time relatively leading economies in the world.

Japan and the major nations of the European Union have suffered huge reductions in their significance, while the USA and Canada have seen relatively minor reductions in their relative economic significance.  The least bad performer of the major European Union nations has been the United Kingdom.  France has been the distant second least bad.  The former Axis nations of WWII have done relatively poorly with Germany being only 0.5645 as significant and Italy becoming only 0.4790 as significant.  Japan has many anti-competitive restrictions in its home economy and has a rapidly aging and shrinking population among its problems.

Both Canada and Australia have done far better than the United Kingdom, which I believe has been held back by its membership in the European Union.  If the United Kingdom simply makes a break from all of the European Union's collectivist requirements and bureaucracy, while it will likely do worse for a while as it adjusts to the new reality, it will do much better in the long run.  The United Kingdom should aim to be more like the USA as a dynamic economic power in the world and increase its trade with the USA, Canada, Australia, and India especially.  These are all nations doing comparative well, while France, Germany, and Italy are sinking rapidly.

The EU has smothered itself with many largely irrational safety and quality control policies, which I can see as such from the standpoint of being active in materials analysis and testing.  They are using these policies to suppress goods and services from outside the EU, but the effect is to increase costs and to make local companies lazy and unresponsive in an anti-competitive environment.  In addition, the EU has been following very foolish energy policies and has swallowed the catastrophic man-made global warming fraud hook, line, and sinker, with disastrous economic results.  The inability of the bigger economies of the EU to keep up in economic growth is the result.  The USA, for all of its increased regulations and the many anti-business policies of the Obama regime, has performed much better in comparison.  With Trump decreasing the burden of unreasonable regulations and following rational energy policies, the USA is improving its relative position in the world economy.  We can do even better to the extent that we can arrange truly free trade agreements with nations around the world.