TED Conversations

Lindsay Newland Bowker


This conversation is closed.

Commodities Speculation: A Cause of Food Crises? A Crime Against Humanity?

An important and credible new study, discussed at length in a recent Scientific American Article, seems to have penetrated all the hype and confusion about derivatives and about the causes of the food crises world wide that have caused famine, death, and revolt.:


The study concludes that ethanal has indeed been a major factor but also that the role of commodities market speculation is undeniable.

American and EU central banks and the biggest EU and American Banks are firmly commited to derivatives and resolutely opposed to any regulation, to any clearing houses or any changes that would fundamentally alter the current global free market in derivatives. Derivatives are an essential tool in global risk management, but if this studyis true are we allowing a systemic crime against humanity in not making least those corrections that would remove price distortions.?

Recently 10 ordinary game geeks with no background in scince and medicine solved a very complex problem in the study of HIV. . Can we do that here a TED conversations with this very important question?
Can we go beyond opinion, go beyond what we each already possess in expertise and knowldedge and become together here a global citizens collaborative seeking to understand and offer meaningful solutions to this truly critical global problem?

Can we become a collaborative of investigative journalists seeking the truth and bringing it here via links with commentary?

I think we can and I am proposing that we try. A monumental undertaking for anyone person but I believe the answer is out there in work that has alreday been done and published on the web. I think we as global citizens without a clue about global markets and murky mysteries of derivatives can penetrate this truly critical question. Can offer solutions the experts haven't come up with . I think its a great way to support Occupy Wall Street and use TED.


Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.

  • thumb
    Oct 3 2011: Today I ran across an article aboutU.S. Fed Chair Ben Bernankes comments on the idea that speculation caused high food prices.

    :"One questioner focused on the Fed's possible role in driving food prices and whether those rising prices have fueled social unrest in the Middle East Bernanke said that factors other than food prices may be playing a role in the protests in Egypt and elsewhere, and that global food prices are rising mainly because of trends in emerging markets. Those emerging economies, and the richer diets that go along with rising prosperity, are driving the rise in food prices, Bernanke said. He called it "entirely unfair" to blame the Fed's loose monetary policy, including the recent program of Fed bond purchases known as QE2."

    The remarks were made at a February 2011 meeting at the Washington Press Club


    Collecting and documenting what central banks in the US, EU and elsewhere, those of regulatory agencies have gone on record saying/writing about the effect of speculation on food prices is key so I am stratingthis thread to capture other links and commentary which memeber sof the TED community might offer here via link and analysis/comment.

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.