• Net zero is a new, secular religion
  • Putting on my rational investor’s hat
  • Seeing through the net zero matrix

Emotion is the enemy of the rational investor. Indeed, it is frequently claimed that the best traders are those who manage to completely disassociate themselves from market price action and the positions they take.

While that might be true, many investments are intimately linked to the world in which we live. If and when our world improves, so do the opportunities for profit. If, on the other hand, things deteriorate, then mere wealth preservation can become a challenge.

As a father of four, I’m deeply, emotionally invested in the future. My primary goal in life is to provide what I can for my children and that includes whatever small contribution I can make to improving the general state of our community and country of which they are a part.

When I was young, I was taught to “think globally and act locally”. It was a generally positive call to action, trotted out to support local efforts to clean up old industrial sites, reduce waste and pollution, improve local recycling and provide support for those less fortunate in our area. The idea was that if we improved our local patch and others did too, then the entire world would be able to enjoy the benefits in future.

Today, our youth seem to be receiving a highly sinister variation of that message, one that strikes me as almost religious in tone. They’re being told that they are guilty of harming – destroying even – the planet they inhabit.

It’s even worse than guilt by association. It strikes me as a perverted form of original sin. Our youth today are being told by those in authority that their very existence is evil. That they are somehow to blame for the so-called “climate emergency”, however nebulously that is necessarily defined.

There are, generally speaking, two natural reactions to original sin: resignation, or anger. Both are, from a social perspective, potentially devastating in their effects.

In the former case, those affected are likely to throw their hands up. “What’s the point?” they might ask. “Why even try? We’re guilty as charged and condemned to inhabit a doomed planet. Why bother to fix anything at all?”

To make matters worse, they’re told that it is wrong to have children; to form families to raise them; to teach them the traditions handed down from generations prior that only contributed to the escalating devastation of what used to be an earthly paradise of noble savages running around carefree in sustainable green forests.

If that resigned mentality strikes you as sick, at least it isn’t violent. Not so for those who become angry. Young, angry people, especially young men, can become a serious social problem.

They’re bad enough as petty yobs, disrespecting law and custom. But when an aspiring demagogue finds a way to appeal to their anger and channel it to whatever nefarious ends, then you’ve got a far more serious problem. Think Mussolini, Hitler, Stalin and others who, each in their own sinister way, exploited the angry young, to devastating effect.

Net zero has been labelled a new, secular religion. But it is far, far worse than that. Here at Southbank Investment Research, we have spent a great deal of time poking holes in all manner of fatuous net zero claims and ludicrous prognostications. We have relied on rational, researched, informed argument to do so.

Sadly, however, reason is no match for a misguided, weaponised religion. There is something in human nature that so deeply desires to belong, to be part of some greater thing, that absent anything meaningful it will embrace whatever is offered, however irrational, abhorrent or downright evil.

As I started out, I have trouble not getting emotional about certain things, hence my emotive language just above.

It is, however, my responsibility to my readers to offer some rational guidance. And when I wash the emotion right out of my hair and put on my rational investor’s hat, I see opportunity.

In the incipient devastation unwittingly promised by net zero I see investment opportunities aplenty. From energy, to materials, mining and technologies of all kinds, net zero is a blessing in disguise; a gift that will keep on giving.

Here at Southbank Investment Research, we came to that realisation over a year ago. We’ve already offered a number of ways to profit, some of which have already worked out rather well.

Yet we’re only just getting started. Now, we’re taking things to the next level. For us, net zero is no longer just an idea. It is an investment theme that can be taken in many different directions, each of which might offer multiple opportunities to profit handsomely.

But that’s not all. Net zero will ultimately fail. It is a pipe dream. But as Charles MacKay taught us in Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds; or as Felix Somary explained in his autobiographical Raven of Zurich, physical reality will one day come knocking and sanity will prevail.

What a blessing to have the ability to see through the net zero matrix; to have the opportunity to profit from the madness knowing full well that it will ultimately dissipate. Looked at in this way, not only is the future bright, but the detour to net zero and back again just might make us personally all the richer.

As you probably already know, Nigel Farage sees things in much the same way, and he’s leading the UK’s charge against the net zero cult. I recommend you listen to what he has to say about it. He led the charge for Brexit and delivered. He’s going to deliver for you again.

Until next time,

John Butler
Investment Director, Fortune & Freedom