Casaubon's Book

Demand is the Real Issue, Right?

The always-brillliant and funny Christine Patton aka The Peak Oil Hausfrau, in the latest Peak Oil Review Commentary, has turned her sights to the IEA’s recent predictions, managing to properly skewer both the IEA’s predictions and the predictive value of economic modelling (two great tastes that taste great together!):

The International Economics Agency today released its World Income Outlook, which predicts a 564 percent increase in the median world income over the next three months. IEA Chief Economics Officer Brandon Blighted explains, “Our meticulous research clearly shows that an overwhelming majority of people, especially the Chinese, want more money – a lot more, in fact. With demand for income rising, it appears that the economy has little choice but to produce more well-paying jobs and excessive bonuses. That’s what we’re assuming, anyway.”

According to IEA’s projections, and despite a combined under- and unemployment rate of 17.6 percent in the US in October, the yearly median world income will increase from 5,000 to 27,500 in the next three months, with the median income for American households increasing from 30,500 to 167,000. When asked what currency the figures are in, IEA spokesperson Hope Hillston laughed. “Dollars, yuan, pesos, euros, what’s the difference? It’s all money.”

IEA authors divided the skyrocketing income gains into several categories. The “Existing income from existing jobs” category has been steeply declining for the last several years, with average continuing declines projected at 8.3 percent. The largest category, “Projected income from currently non-existent jobs,” steadily increases to compose an astronomical 90 percent of income by the year 2020, when the average Chinese peasant will be making 95,000.

Some people reported confusion surrounding the charts. “I don’t get it,” engineering student Jon Sherwood said. “Are they saying that cushy jobs will magically appear just because people want money? Did they take their methodology straight from The Secret, or has someone been dropping a few too many hits of acid before work?”

However, economic experts were confident in the Outlook. “Your average schmo on the street doesn’t appreciate the intricacies of economic forecasting, especially the part where we examine bloody eviscerated pig entrails,” commented Economics Professor Phillipson Lumpy Jr., of Wharton University.!

Like all of us, I could use more money – heck, I’m buying in. From now on, this blog will work entirely from the “we wish it was true, therefor it is” modelling strategy taken on by both IEAs. I’m predicting 4 kids per goat, 15 ears of corn per stalk and a husband who (along with the cushy salary increase the state of New York will inevitably offer him) wants to clean the barn every single day!



  1. #1 annie
    November 23, 2010

    ha! yeah, I’m predicting 2 eggs per chicken per day, no squash vine borers this summer, and perfectly pollinated beans.

  2. #2 Greenpa
    November 23, 2010

    Ridiculous! The entire thing is thrown into question by the reference to consulting “bloody eviscerated pig entrails.” Absurd. No one in the history of scientific economics has ever consulted pig entrails, and to anyone actually familiar with the topic, this is very well known.

    Chicken entrails are the standard. The advent of industrial poultry manufacture has been a huge boon to the economic prediction industry. Tyson Premium FlashCrashFrozen Entrails are critical to the daily prognostications demanded by the press. As you’ve surely noticed, the opinions of individual economists are given little weight these days; it’s been statistically proven that polls of “120 certified economists” are far more accurate. This is really only made possible by the great abundance of chicken entrails now produced by our thriving modern agriculture.

  3. #3 Greenpa
    November 23, 2010

    Worth adding,perhaps, that the result of polling 120 economists on the question of “will the sun come up tomorrow” is a the useful number “0.7265”.

  4. #4 roundbelly
    November 23, 2010

    I wish, therefore it will be? isn’t that what credit cards are all about? and oil futures and elections?

  5. #5 DennisP
    November 23, 2010

    @Greenpa – “Tis not: the correct number is 0.8763. They are smarter than you give them credit for.

  6. #6 Greenpa
    November 24, 2010

    DennisP – sorry, but you’re confused. That is their answer to a different question; “Will The Bubble Gum Up Tomorrow?” (I’ve been saving that one for a while; thanks for the opportunity… makes a good song, too; but we need more lyrics. Though some work fine; “Betcher bottom dollar that tomorrow, there’ll be gum…”)

  7. #7 Claire
    November 24, 2010

    Whatever happened to tea leaves? I thought tea leaves were the only certified future-predicting substance.

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