The Incontiguous Brick

May 3, 2008

We’ve got rice!

Filed under: Warnings — iknowkeith @ 11:02 pm

Is it just me or does this make the hair on the back of your neck stand up?

I took this picture today.  I am worried.

Since when, in America, is the availability of a basic staple a hook to bring in customers?

Be afraid.



  1. I’m not afraid (yet). We’ve got plenty of neo-cons we can cook up for dinner.

    Comment by Jack Alexander — May 3, 2008 @ 11:24 pm | Reply

  2. “Since when, in America, is the availability of a basic staple a hook to bring in customers?”

    Since we started agreeing with environmentalists that ethanol production is a great idea.

    Comment by Sisyphus — May 4, 2008 @ 5:53 am | Reply

  3. This is simply an example of a firm taking advantage of the latest new cycle, not an indication of an inherent shortage or pending shortage in rice. If anything, be afraid of the media’s power to manufacture a news story.

    Here’s an alternative view.

    Comment by cadpi — May 4, 2008 @ 7:47 am | Reply

  4. Rice is NICE!

    Global Warming Alarmists Beware…

    Comment by Evil Carbon — May 4, 2008 @ 12:02 pm | Reply

  5. I thought that was a faked image… 😯

    Comment by legoless — May 4, 2008 @ 1:38 pm | Reply

  6. In all fairness, you have to remember the target audience for the Navy Exchange. How many Sailors do you know that have American wives?

    I’m not trying to be offensive, just real. I can say that because I am in the Navy. 🙂

    Comment by walterbean — May 4, 2008 @ 4:14 pm | Reply

  7. #2’s got it right.

    Regardless of the merits of Global Warming and other environmental issues, implementing a policy that brings two basic needs of people (food and energy) into direct competition with each other is just plain stupid (if I were in a more delicate and diplomatic mood, I’d say “bad policy” or something like that).

    To wit: Man has some very basic resources to build and maintain his civilization: water, food, and energy being the top three. Food and energy are two of the more conspicuous factors, since they are notoriously limited with our historical and (even) current technologies. There is a finite amount of arable land and a finite amount of energy resources. Instituting a policy that now makes us use land for energy that would otherwise be used for food is a bad idea.

    Why? America can produce enough food for its people, for sure. However, other countries can not (and most of those countries are among the poorest). Surely, rising demand for food will cause supplies to tighten and prices to rise. At the same time, some of the other countries “on the edge” that are ruled by less than savory regimes or individuals will see that they can get X price for a bushel of (crop) on the world market for energy production or they could give/sell it to their own people for Y price (X>Y). Which do you think that a lot of them will do: enrich themselves or help their people?

    Meanwhile, as the ethanol project continues and expands more and more, American food will effectively be taken off the market, leaving less for aid or sale to other countries. People/countries will attempt to use other crops that are not efficient for ethanol production as substitute staples, but pressure on LLC will effectively limit expansion of production.

    Finally, as pressure on both basic inputs into the economy (food/fuel) increase, the price of both will rise causing severe inflationary pressures.

    The end result will be inflation, stagnation, and starvation (in the most vulnerable parts of the world), while neither energy independence nor real environmental progress will be achieved. What a farce and disaster!

    That being said, before someone takes a flamethrower to me, I agree that we should be responsible environmentally, but we also have to be pragmatic. People respond to incentives, but the curent policy allocates incentives in a way that invites catastrophe. There are ways to create biofuels without causing massive damage to the environment and without putting more pressure food production (ex. using previously classified “non-arable” lands to produce crops [sawgrass, et. al.]) that can be used to produce alt. fuels. This, along with using “non-competitive” renewable energy resources, is the way to go IMO.


    Comment by Bill — May 6, 2008 @ 8:31 pm | Reply

  8. […] long ago I posted a pithy picture of an advertisement for rice. Although the photo and my comments were exaggerating the reality […]

    Pingback by Food vs. Energy: The Fight we all Lose « The Incontiguous Brick — May 15, 2008 @ 7:41 am | Reply

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