The Moment of Convulsion


     A little ways off the curb on the Boulevard Henry IV here in Paris, you can see the memory of the Bastille outlined by a course of masonry in the pavement, in particular one of the bulbous towers of the old fortress-prison. It marks one of those threshold moments in history when things got out-of-hand - in the late afternoon of July 14, 1789 - and by the time a mob had detached the head of Warden Bernard-René de Launey from his shoulders and paraded it around on a pike, everyone in the city knew that they had crossed into the politically unknown frontier of Revolution.
     Seeing this residue of history put me in mind of a riddle that one of my college professors presented to us one day years ago: why did Achilles drag Hector around the city of Troy three times? We came up with dozens of reasons ranging from conjectures out of the text of The Iliad to lame bits of Hippie numerology, but nobody could furnish the answer that the prof was looking for, which was eventually revealed: Because he [Achilles] was just that pissed off
     This was the idea that dogged me in the winter twilight of Paris late on Christmas Day as I pondered the fate of my own country back across the cold cold sea. A lot of Americans are beaten down and discouraged these days. They've lost not only jobs, incomes, and houses, but also a sense of purpose, and perhaps faith in the essential fairness of the American venture - as the propane runs out, and families try to subsist on Froot Loops, and the re-po squad turns up to haul away the Ford F-150 Raptor. Meanwhile, in their last remaining refuge from harsh reality, TV, they glimpse the likes of Jamie Dimon, Chloe Kardashian, and Jay-Z emerging from limousines looking hopelessly bored with wealth beyond imagination. When will the folks out there move from shame and despondency to being really pissed off about the disposition of things?
     Isn't that a question, though?
     The French Revolution arose first from a financial crisis that turned into a political crisis. The rule of law had been vested in a class of pampered imbeciles while the price of bread doubled, and sometimes there was no bread at all for the growing masses, or functioning law to govern the country. This was where the rising middle-class of the dawning industrial-commercial age stepped in to straighten things out - people such as Jean Paul Marat the itinerant physician (ahem), thief, sewer rat, and newspaper columnist, and Maxmilien Robespierre, lawyer. They had the example ten years earlier of the successful American Revolution, which Louis XVI had helped finance, and which helped bankrupt the French Treasury. But the new French political class botched the crucial part: a constitution that actually worked. The whole enterprise sank into a morass of absurd utopianism and, finally, paranoia. The guillotine turned out to be the perfect machine for that dark moment: efficient, elegant, and terrifying. The bloodthirsty competed with the incompetent for the soul of the nation until finally a twenty-eight-year-old artillery officer said (in effect), "Look here, fuckers! This will be quite enough of your shenanigans." After Monsieur General Bonaparte entered the scene, that was all she wrote for the revolution....
     Which brings me to the subject of our own financial crisis, soon to mutate into a political crisis. There really is no "solution" to our problem of debt except to become a less affluent society. You can get there via the path of compressive deflationary depression (no money), or hyperinflation (plenty of worthless money), but the destination is the same. In the meantime we're stuck with the extremely uneven distribution of hardship and luxury. Whole classes of formerly working people face the prospect of genuine ruin while an ultra-pampered class of celebrity clowns and professional swindlers fob off with whatever's left on the national buffet table. The real politics of all this are so far from being sorted out that sheer contemplation of what lies ahead leaves the mind harrowed and feeble.
     The Jacobins of 1793 France were basically the Left. It took only five hundred or so of them to bully a nation of 30 million. The Jacobins of the USA in 2011 are basically the Right Wing, followers of Senator Jim DeMint, the mind-slaves of Rush Limbaugh and "students" of Prof Glenn Beck, and, of course, the worshippers of Sarah Palin.  Their brand of politics might be labeled Nostalgic Sentimental Paranoid Know-Nothingism. They're proud and loud, pious and ignorant, so deeply insecure that they depend on flag lapel pins to remind them to care about their country, full of righteous anger about their own sexual impulses, the religious notions (or not) of other people, and the possible introduction of the rule of law in banking matters. They pretend to represent the folks freezing in their mobile homes who subsist on Froot Loops, but they're really protecting the country clubbers, the corporate poobahs, the fraudsters on Wall Street, and every other racketeer in the land - including their own class of political grifters.
     The Obama Democrats, the putative Left Wing, are analogous to the pro-monarchy center of revolutionary France. Their ethical sanctimony is fake while they do everything possible to keep the rule of law out of money matters. They are most of all ineffectual and impotent, capable only of grandstanding hyped up Great Compromises that accomplish nothing, and probably doom the party to be chewed up by the machinations of their bloodthirsty adversaries on the right. It's hard to shed a tear for them, their performance has been so purblind and wimpish.
      History has its own momentum and it is carrying the psychotic Right Wing into power. Fear not. After they stomp the moderates and the Left, they will themselves end up in an orgy of political cannibalism before somebody as yet unknown - perhaps some field brigadier just now in Afghanistan - steps up to say, "Look here, fuckers...." Meanwhile, America may have its own Bastille moment when something goes too far, some poor functionary at the Treasury Department gets scalped by a gang of 99ers, or a distressed physician goes after Glenn Beck in the student union of a Bible college, or... Gawd knows what.
     Meanwhile, you are sleeping and it's morning here in Paris. I get the feeling that we're at the end of the great era of tourism. Europe has been the world's premiere tourist theme park for half a century. Given Europe's bloody, riotous history, it's been a remarkable period of peace and affluence. Since the 1960s, everything here in Paris got buffed up to perfection. Notre Dame's white stone façade gleams in the winter sunlight. The Louvre, the Opera, the Conciergerie, the Tomb of Napoleon are all fixed, re-pointed, re-gilded. The café and restaurant scene operates like one great gastronomic machine, effortless and masterful. I'm already nostalgic for it.
     In the background, Europe's money situation is disintegrating, and with it probably the easy order that has reigned in this period. They are going broke, too, just as surely as America is, and they are responding in pretty much the same way: a game of extend and pretend (with some prayer as the cherry-on-top). Meanwhile, the price of oil has breached the $91 dollar line. If it goes just a little bit higher, and the winter weather stays harsh, you can bet that some airlines will be going down the drain. Combine that with the vanishing disposable incomes of the middle class and you get an ill-fated recipe for the tourism business - with perhaps some home-grown mob action waiting in the wings around Europe, not to mention friction between age-old enemies.
     I was fortunate to see Europe at its best in my time, and now we are entering a new time of great uncertainty and travail. I'll be back home next week with the usual gruesome forecast for the new year. And yes, I am aware that the Dow Jones Industrial Average did not settle around 4000 points, as I predicted a year ago. Obviously 2010 was a year of fabulous prosperity in the USA - just ask the people running out of propane with their bowls full of Froot Loops.
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My new novella, A Christmas Orphan, is available for purchase through Northshire Bookstore.  

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548 Comments

I'm reminded of an saying that was popular about 10 years ago, "... some people are only alive because it is ILLEGAL to kill them!"

Fast forward about 10 - 20 years, many common folks may not care about the legality of certain actions, especially when 10's of millions of people are starving to death and the Power Elites think they are safe behind their hedge rows in the Hamptons.

Only time will tell.

However, if violence does come to the PE's I will not shed one tear, nor have one ounce of pity, nor once of compassion for these bastards, which I hold in the highest of contempt.

However what I do fear is, if we drink of the intoxicating beverage of violence we will destroy our own soul and nation in the process and become no better than the bastards we curse.
Hence the dilemma we face.

An equitable system of rationing while we reduce our world population is the only hope we have as there is no solution to the issues we face.

Am I actually first? Miracles never cease!

Intead of having tossers sign in 'first' all the time why don't the first come last (as in YouTube comments for instance). That way a meaningful discussion can ensue.

As it is unless you are 'first' (or somewhere near it) you might as well not bother to write anything - since it will be 'buried' at the end of the pile.


Perhaps it's instructive to compare budget deficits (as % of GDP) in Europe and the US:

Ireland 32%
Greece 13,6%
Spain 11,2 %

Compare this with the US:
Nevada 54.5%
Illinois 40.4%
New Jersey 38.2%
Arizona 36.5%
Maine 34.7%

The professor knew the correct answer.
I've been saying for years that there is only one
rule: BE CAREFUL WHO YOU PISS OFF

Now for a multiple choice test.

What do you see in the future?
(A)class warfare

This question has a value of 100 points.
Let me know how you score.

That'll be the Sacre Couer that's glowing white, not Notre Dame! Yeah, things in Europe have been good since '45. I do wonder what will happen when my parent's generation dies off (I'm in my 40's) as they lived through that conflict & that hardship that came with it. As my friend's dad says here in Berlin 'You never vote for war when you have the memory of the smell of blood, rotting meat & explosives & of eating dead dogs, as that was my childhood in Berlin in '45'. But be in no mistake, the great decline started here after the fall of communism. Ex-East Germany is the Michagan of Europe, but with prettier towns & added neo-nazi goons. Come to think of it, when I see my nose in the mirror & think of the blood of my ancestors, `I start to get a little nervous...

Revolution can be quiet, and non-violent. Mini-farms, relocalization, community reconnection. "Let them eat cake" is the message of the elite. Let us eat, and learn to feed ourselves again is the message that will save us from the oligarchy.

Please see our website, for our commitment in action to these worthy goals, www.friendlyaquaponics.com.

And http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bAKtufVLRko for a short video on how to get there from here.

10 years ago, on Bill Clinton's last day in office, and on Herr George Busch's first, on 21 January, 2001 the DJIA opened at 10,587 points.

Today, with Friday's close of 11,573 points it's a scant 1,000 points above that.

A 10% gain in 10 years, 1% a year. Even CDs pay better.

Now if you look at the Dow Jones Industrial Average over the course of the last 10 years and then factor in the 1/3rd loss of value of the US $ Dollar has had vs. the € Euro since then, and the overall rate of Domestic Inflation in the USA in that same period at 25%, and that brings it to just over 5,000 points, which is in perilously close enough range in both horseshoes and cigars to your projected 4,000 point range for the DJIA.s

That's just two variables. I'm sure if a couple more were tossed in we could get that to 4,000 points, or below, and not even break a sweat.

Conversely, had the DJIA increased in value by the oft touted NYSE stat of 10% a year, then today the Dow Jones would be closing in on the 30,000 point range.

Instead, it's been languishing at a third of that.

For a decade.

And is highly unlikely to make up for that in this ensuing year of 2011.

Unless, of course, if pigs can fly.

Living here in Munich, I am amazed at the ubiquitous ignorance and cluelessness of humanity in general. I always enjoyed the thought while in San Francisco for 10 years prior to taking up the expat lifestyle again, that Americans were worse than the rest. Well, the US has its own brand of ignorance, and certainly more hostile by the look of it,but I suspect thats because we are more transparent and unrepressed in our expression of our various forms of malcontent. Folks here have as many ridiculous ideas and omissions and expect their government to take care of them.
I dont know if the culture has learned anything of intrinsic value to its citizens from the War. And thats a scary thought..

My husband and I laugh about this, and admittedly Donald Rumsfeld is a putz, but he really did have something when he spoke of 'old Europe'. We were in Krakow recently, and Id take the people there over these clueless insulated Germans any day. The Poles know what its like, living in a giant suck, they are realistic and aware of the world at large, and have just the means required to create something better in the future. Unless of course one of those pesky madmen come along, traipsing across them on the way to Russia, or back like others from Russia, maybe this time to conquer Paris for croissant and espresso. (Not as so many Americans call it-'EXpresso' :)

Ant any rate, heres an image for you. We live a few minutes away from the poshest street in Munich for high-end shopping. Hermes just opened a store, there's a Bulgari, Ralph Lauren, Chanel, etc called Maximillianstrasse.
Somewhere along this short stretch is where Hitler had his apartment, bought for him on his rise to power by a rich supporter. I found a photo of it, but not the actual address, and its hard to tell from the architecture of the day and now which it is. Im dying to know which ridiculous brand to associate with him and his palatial home.
Im sure some fine journalist could pull some wit and wisdom from the absurdity of that one.

And PS, the guy form Shadowstats believes hyperinflation will hit 6-24 months out. I recommend anyone with a pet to stock up on pet food just in case. At least you wont have to chose whether your animal eats or you do. I mean, whose gonna eat cat kibble? That would have to be really bad...Just ask the Poles..

Jim -

If I never make it back to Paris, will you wander over to the Rue de Parchimenerie for me? I loved my little hotel there, with its view of the rooftop pots and the grand monuments....

I am wistful about the world as the year winds down. The deaths of three friends and close relatives has made me care less for the commonweal and look more inward. And perhaps there is a lesson in that, as I really don't see anyone stepping up to the plate and batting cleanup for the Revolutions Raiders. Americans have learned, when the going gets tough, to simply drink or divert themselves into inaction....

Bon chance....

Jimbo! Since governments are failing, how about we try a radical new idea: Let people run their own lives with minimum interference. Oh wait, that was tried in America and was crushed.

We must protect ourselves; it's only going to get worse. Some tips at The Nothing Store

Another fine piece of writing today. Kunstler understands better than most that story arcs can predict human behavior. More average Americans are starting to see through the mythology that we are somehow special and exempt from the forces of history and nature. The young people I talk to understand this and ready to deal with whatever’s next. It’s the fat cats who are clueless and bereft of any frame of reference for scaled-back living. Think of the shocked look on the British Royals’ faces as the mob pelted their limo a couple weeks back. I wonder if they realize how close they came to being hood ornaments on their own Bentley.

So maybe we really need to be working on what is important.
Get the body healthy, Get the mind clear, and be ready to react and adapt to the fulid changes that are taking place. It is going to take wisdom and a lot of luck.

http://wanderingsagewisdom.blogspot.com

If there is a revolution in America at this point, it will be unorganized and ineffective. The people who once were in the middle class and now face poverty still don't blame the right people for their fate. Many do blame the government, correctly, but still overlook the big bankers and other undeservedly wealthy people in our country who have stolen and hoarded most of the money. But, mostly, I think middle classers blame themselves for their fates - because that's how we've set up our country. We are responsible for our fates. I know people who are laid off who won't file for unemployment or who are worried about losing their homes but won't file for food stamps or other aid to assist them. Most people I know who have been laid off are growing depressed about themselves - after numerous interviews - as if it has to do with them and now the current economy, etc. Propaganda is a powerful tool - and the propaganda in this country says the economy is getting better.

I think any form of rioting in this country will be spontaneous - like a black Friday riot. It will be messy and unorganized. Our current police state is ready for it. Already the government has convinced most Americans that we should submit to serious invasions of privacy in order to fly on a plane - even though this "security" isn't keeping us any safer at all. It won't take much for Americans to allow further invasions of privacy (we already accept government tracking on cell phones, cameras in downtown areas of many cities, Internet monitoring, etc.). With this kind of security in place, it won't take much to quell an unorganized mob. They're ready for it.

My prediction is that ultimately, the current situation will lead to some right wing nutjob in the White House in 2012 and perhaps eventually some of us wimpy left wingers will organize and revolt. But, that's a ways in the future. When some nutjob like Sarah Palin gets into office, we will be in a scenario like The Handmaid's Tale, in my opinion. I mean, that's an extreme, but we'll find many of our rights gone, that's for sure. Things will get way worse before they get better, but I think it's the average Joe who will suffer first.

It's tough to know, as an Average Joe (or Josephine, as in my case), what to do right now. Lay low, stock up on food, think of how to protect my kids? I don't know, but I agree with Mr. Kunstler - we just don't know what's going to happen here, but I hope everyone realizes that things are not going to be the same as they always were around here.

You won't see revolution until there are no more fruit-loops to be had. Then, ten days later, without food, and it's over, too weak to fight over scraps most people will just die.
Those who can make hard choices and have already alligned themselves with the one's who have made plans, like me, will survive on the fringes until a crude order can be maintained. The dangers the remnants face will be manifold and will range from inter-regional conflict to avoiding the poisonous remains of toxic modern civilisation; you don't want to live too near nuclear power plants that have been left to rot by escaping technicians, for instance.

I think 2011 is going to be the year of the big crunch as too many forces of disruption are occuring at the same time, way beyond the control we've seen over the last year. There's no way out of the unfolding economic disaster and there's no chance any miracle will suddenly bring forth the fuel needed to power the world for another industrious and hopeful year. I suggest any new year resolution includes stocking up on food and water, while keeping a secret stash, and preparing to fight to keep your corner safe until the dust settles. Good luck.


Jim,

Remember the first rule of CNBC when giving predictions : If you give a number, never give a date and if you give a date, never give a number.

A boutique hotel in the Paris 7eme for Christmas! You lucky mug! At least the French were able to do something about their predicament. We Americans seem so content to just let the ruling elites keep running the show sans souci. Though a revolution is abundantly justified, I doubt we’ll ever do anything.

http://www.gwabert.com/

A great American once said...."predicting the future is easy, it's being right that's the hard part."

Examine your zest for doom!

The ghosts of history

Nothing like being in a city like Paris looking at the way history and the present exist in parallel time in the form of architecture. These monuments of past and present represent centuries of history - a fabric that lends historic context. What emotions they evoke while we contemplate this slow motion collapse for the West as we look for parallels to the situation we now face.

For the past few decades we have had a civics war between the extreme right and the moderate left with all the trappings of revanchism and an attempt to revise history for the sake of getting the low information folks into the program. They'll be angry at someone, but not the right someone, thanks to the Faux news.

The DNC business folks have not helped themselves by buying into the same economic and global framework as the right. They all walk in lockstep to the globalism that has destroyed the American workforce and chose to commit to Trillion dollar ongoing wars. Now we see Obama becoming a good Republican as Clinton had during his stay in the White House.

On 911 we watched in horror at the twin towers of the World Trade Center buckle and fall apart. There was this illusion that they could stand up to the damage, still standing behind billowing smoke, but it was a gestalt moment when your mind filled in the blank. In the stillness of that moment, one could see blue sky behind the smoke where a building once stood and then it was suddenly clear that we were watching a collapse but somehow missed it at the same time as we watched with so much concentration.

It was a watershed moment and since then everything has gone in the wrong direction. From the Supreme court appointing the mediocre "W" President ten months earlier to the engagement in longest wars we have ever fought.
They borrowed huge monies using China in the grandiose scheme of Chimerica, no one would have voted for if given t he choice.
As our economy was stolen right in front of us in broad daylight, trillions of dollars went to the international banksters.

The stock market was the key to the illusion that our global enconomy was still functioning--like the gestalt of the building being there when it wasn't. Rule of law can't be applied when you need the illusion of a functioning economy for the world market. How fragile it is will be anyone's guess.

I'm in Munich as well and I find it metaphorically telling that the Maximilianstrasse shopping district begins with Tiger Wood's old firm of Accenture right on the corner leading to all those high end shops.

The rot truly does begin at the head of the fish.

Here's a photo of Hitler's old place that I took on passing by last year http://tinyurl.com/2vqwh47 the street address is Prinzregentenplatz 16 and if you're so inclined you can get there by the U4. Not much there as the lower floor is now a police station.

If Adolf was alive today I'm quite certain he'd be wearing a Burberry® trenchcoat and matching scarf.

After all the Burberry Nova pattern, (much favored by today's ruling elite), uses the Nazi Swastika's same exact red, white and black colors, and Hitler did wear khaki.

If anyone doubts the power of Glenn Beck’s version of insanity, I invite you to spend two hours with my 80-year old father, as I did yesterday. The fear and hate he spewed was a mirror of what he has heard from Beck in these latter days. Dad used to listen to Rush Limbaugh, who is too tame for him now, I guess. He is buying more ammunition and composing a list (hopefully only in his head) of those who will need to be purged in the next Revolution. It is a damn good thing his mobility is challenged. Too bad Beck’s is not.

The key place where JHK's comparison of modern America to pre-Revolutionary France breaks down is that the French Revolutionaries did not see themselves as being part of the establishment, as the class system in France clearly divided the nation into the monarchy, nobility and clergy on one hand, everyone else on the other. The Glenn Becks and Rush Limbaughs, and their followers, view themselves as being integrated fully into the nation's governing apparatus even as they use rhetoric to worm themselves into power. It would be impossible for them to lead a truly revolutionary charge against all the institutions that they themselves worship (police, military, etc). Imagine the guys waving American flags burning American flags. Not going to happen. If anything, they'll become the new SA, the new Brownshirts.

The most likely scenario is still just people waking up one day to find out that the lights aren't ever coming on again and that the world has become a much bleaker and hungrier place overnight, without them truly realizing it.

Visit http://leibowitzsociety.blogspot.com for one response to the accelerating decay of our modern society.

I have no idea of what is in the future, but I have a feeling that we are reliving the Great Depression. I try to put myself back 80 years in time. Next year, it will be 1931!

I just received a calendar with pictures of motor coaches for each month. (I have an obsession with buses!) Anyway, for the month of October, the picture is of a new Twin Coach in Akron, OH, loading passengers on a sunny day in 1931. The people are very well dressed and there are plenty of shiny automobiles on the street. The downtown seems vibrant with large department stores and lots of smaller stores. I'm sure that no one aqt that time was calling the times, the Great Depression. Yet, now as we look back, 1931 wasn't such a great year for a lot of people! I'm also sure that the governments, local, state, and Federal, were all telling the same tale...Things Are Going To Get Better...just be patient, prosperity is just around the corner.

Yes, I've read that revolution was being bandied about, but as we can note today, it didn't happen (at least, in a violent way). Day in and day out, life will go on. Most people don't take in the whole picture until they or their children read about it in a history book!

I think it is wise to prepare for a long bout of this continuing nonsense as more QEs are poured onto the flames of a burning economy. As long as the bread and circuses keep coming the masses will refuse to look up and see what is really before them... until they have to.

We have become a nation of lazy, pampered TV slaves who have been so long on our back sides that even if we did wake up we would die of a coronary while running for our fire brands and pitch forks.

And the PE know it!

The analogy to the French Revolution is appropriate but I see it more along the lines of the Russian Revolution....albeit a reverse revolution....

You have the Great Czar and his land who so nobly went off in the early years of the 20th century to subdue those insurgent Japanese who DARED invade Manchuria....and what did you get? The Russians went home, a LOT of men fewer, their navy SUNK and a territory lesser. The people of the Russias did not forget. Reminds me of Iraq.

A few years later Pan-Slavism rears its ugly head and forces the hand of the Czar to fight against his "dear" Cousin Willy of Germany in WWI. Well we all know how well THAT turned out for the great Russian Empire....Reminds me of Afghanistan...

Wars, rumors of wars these are the destroyers of Empires. And our wee shenanigans in the mountains of Afghanistan - the very setting to the end of the USSR, have us running around protecting the narco-dollar trade in a last-ditch effort to try and save the dwindling value of the dollar...because our stronghold of trading oil in dollars is beginning to weaken...for what oil we can still haul up from the ground. You could say that hoping to hold onto it is a pipe dream...*ahem*

Anyways - unlike the French, the Russians were industrialized....industrialized for the 1880's not the 1900's....they hadn't caught up to Europe...hadn't invested in manufacturing infrastructure...and what does that remind you of? I see the rust-belt of the US decaying further today...we exported our manufacturing overseas leaving shells of factories to rot here at home. And the people either move to a sunbelt town hoping for some semblance of a job, or they stay put and watch their past income decay while they put in triple shifts at Wally-world just to afford that value meal at McD's and get the kiddos another Pixar new-release.

As for the People...well, before the Russian Revolution the people saw their Czar as their "papa" sent down from heaven above to rule them under God's rule. Revolution did not arise from the plebes' ranks but from the middle-class college/university students and PO'd aristocracy. The rabble-rousers if you will....the people were not inclined to rise up alone. They were led by those hell-bent upon destroying the current state of affairs and rulling in their stead. Can anyone say tea-party?

There is so much more to mention; so much more I am leaving out...but in comparison today we are recovering from the cornholing of Iraq. We are still paying for a narco-racket in Afghanistan with cash and blood. We have the neo-anglo-pan-american hordes who have gotten an even stronger foothold in our government with the intention of making our conversion to fascism complete despite the suffering of the people at the hands of their corporate masters.

And from all of this....what was the outcome and what will ours be? The russians rebelled, the Bolsheviks trounced the Mensheviks. New School vs. Old School & old school lost. And who rose up to lead this new land? A humanitarian? No...Lenin died and Stalin took over. In comparison, What does that mean for us????

I can only speculate that no great American revolution will take place. The people are too busy watching TV and being soothed by it to get up off their la-z-boys to do anything. They would be much more content for a revolution to take place that they do not have to take part in, but benefit from. They will sit and freeze in their dwellings - from trailer to near-empty mcmansion happy to have a roof over their heads and get whatever meager crumbs they can from their employers to afford cable, fast-food, gas for the car, and hand over what's left to the religious vaccum of their choice. The revolution the "people" seem to want is for the "conservative right" to exterminate the Left. And they will sit by their TVs and cheer it on like a NASCAR race or the Super Bowl. Because that is what they have been told to do. Hence why I call it a reverse-revolution...The people do nothing while those in power duke it out for THEIR own benefit. And the one cheering them on to "WIN" is too obtuse to even know he is the biggest loser in the game.

The only way to get people to get off their expanding @sses would be to take away their TVs. Do that and you may very well see some action from the common man. YOu can take food, heat and home away from him, but nobody d!cks around with Faux Noise and Monday Night Football....

Time for a nice, hot war! One where we (I mean civilians) get to directly participate. Mostly as collateral damage, though. This will solve many of our problems. Those problems that remain will not be seen as problems when we face the burdens of wartime. Maybe war is not being actively considered as a solution to our woes. Nevertheless, it can be brought about by the overwhelming hubris of our elites. In any case, those of you have have such, enjoy your food on the table and your warm houses - it may not last much longer. I have this nagging feeling that heartache and woe of a greater sort is headed our way. As another CFNer wrote earlier, just ask the Poles. Or the Germans. Or the Russians.

So what is all this talk?

Journalism is about events that have
taken place; advocacy is about what should
be tried. If you're only going to talk
about something because it might happen,
then, I ask you, be more definite about
whether it makes you happy or afraid.

There are solutions. Start with a
Constitutional Convention.

Jim,
out of curiosity, do you own a gun?
thanks,
GP

One thing I learned in 2010. The stock market is perfectly capable of having a great year while Main Street persists in a state of recession. This is wonderful news for the Wall Street mavens as they no longer have to deal with that messy little detail called the economy any more. Apparently, Jim made the same mistake I did and, henceforth, should be rather cautious about making pronouncements about the stock market. As I will as well.

There are so many factors destroying America that is difficult to decide where to start. Anyway, I suggest we start with Wall Street and then move to the obscene military expenditures. Not a bad start and plenty to occupy us during 2011.

“A specter is haunting Europe,” Karl Marx once wrote. He wrote these words on the eve of revolutionary outbreaks that began in Italy and France in 1848 and soon engulfed much of the Continent.

Unbeknownst to most Americans, Europe is again engulfed in revolt, which threatens to spread. The financial crisis that started in the USA and swept the globe, along with the sovereign debt crisis that was inflicted upon the European Union as a result, has ignited the passions of strangled and enslaved masses everywhere. People have recognized their enslavement and have put a finger on their slave-masters. The largely capitalist regimes are no less affected than are the socialist, communist, or theocratic ones, for they all have the same owner.

On the heels of 2009 civil unrest that had swept through Latvia, Lithuania, Ukraine, Bulgaria, Montenegro, Poland, Germany, Hungary, Greece, Portugal, Russia and the Czech Republic in response to diverse austerity measures implemented by the ruling elites, a full-force revolt has broken out in France. Much like the political protests following the Iranian elections in 2009, months of protests and street demonstrations across France have taken a more violent turn, and signs of an armed insurrection continue to mount. Across the Atlantic, even the Canadians have taken their eyes off the puck long enough to become enraged, staging protests at the G-20 meeting in Toronto that would make a Frenchman proud, protests that have prompted one of the tamest looking of political beasts to bare its tyrannical fangs.

The American middle class is still preoccupied with gazing at the shadows cast upon the walls of its cave (or is that prison), preferring to go on believing what we are told by our owners and handlers: that all will be right with our little world, provided we keep our heads down and work hard (at trying to find a job). Political hucksters like Obama reassuringly tell us that “Yes We Can” survive this crisis and go on begging for a piece of the American Dream. The man behind the curtain is imploring us to go on ignoring what is plainly before our eyes. He tells us that their world is intact and will continue to prosper. And we dutifully listen, and willfully refuse to see. But the disillusioned among us can no longer ignore the mountain of evidence to the contrary that is before us. The show is coming to an end, and it promises to be an inglorious one. The wave of extinctions, peak oil, peak water, economic and financial crises worldwide, political unrest abroad that is about to spread to the homeland—are these not signs of immanent collapse?

But even our European brothers and sisters do not understand the magnitude of this seismic event. It is neither a fiscal nor an economic problem. It is not a matter of having the wrong political leadership, nor is it the result of confused or misguided personal priorities. It is a crack in the dome of the theatre of the Spectacle that began with the advent of human history, of civilization itself. It is the endgame of the human evolutionary dead end that has pathologically sought artifices of manipulation and control at all costs.

As Thomas Hobbes proleptically though unwittingly stated centuries ago, this will be a “Warre of all against all.” But this will not be the war that he mistakenly assumed would have occurred among our pre-civilized ancestors had it not been for our constituting the social contract. Rather, it is a war resulting from that very contract, grounded in cold and calculative thinking, and from the momentum it imparted to civilization for these last six thousand years of recorded history.

The specter Marx was referring to was Communism: his contention was that it would and should be the final stage in the dialectical movement of history to a civil but classless society. He was mistaken: the communist experiment failed. The real ghostly apparition, the unpleasantness that is haunting us now is a natural reflection of the fundamental lethality of industrial civilization itself and the systems of hierarchy and domination it has spawned, all based upon the power of the syllogism. This is the logic of objective science, the principle of our legal systems, the rationality behind our social contracts, the anonymity of our civil politics, and the narrative framework of history itself. It is this logic that binds us to hierarchies that have worked to empty the world of all its resources and life, of all its significance, replacing them with impersonal systems that vainly attempt to control and manage all affairs, human or natural.

It is the inevitable culmination of six thousand years of unnatural, human history that began with the first urban empires emerging in and around Mesopotamia's once fertile Fertile Crescent. People can still sense this basic lethality, though many have themselves become empty parts of emptying hierarchical institutions—an emptiness expressed most baldly in the following formulation: If A is a B, and B is a C, then A must be a C. Whether to control nature or our fellow humans, in this view we are all interchangeable cogs, commodities within the single logic of control – a composite of test scores, job functions, marketable fashions and other objective criteria. Herein lies the reason for our emptiness, our sense of alienation from one another, from nature, and from our own natures. Compensating for this emptiness, we have sought to acquire other commodities to make us feel whole again—televisions, cars, laptops and other gadgets. But flashy cars and big screen televisions are not a replacement for happiness, and they will not save us.

America is the most rationally conceived of all modern, civilized societies. We have more science and technology, more laws and lawyers, more prisons and prisoners, more military bases—in short, more and larger systems of domination than any other country on the planet. We also have more money managers and swindlers, more rat race, more mental illness and more lone gunmen acting out against whatever they perceive as an injustice in their world. And yet we keep marching straight ahead to the precipice. We are a nation of rule-followers, not a community of free persons—and we are committed to the syllogism as no other. There is no dignity in our enslavement; we have become the emptiest of souls.

What is haunting the globe today is the specter of primitive anarchy, a feral tendency buried deep within the marrow and musculature of the human species. It is a powerful instinct, an irrepressible will to survive the artfully constructed but cold hierarchical systems of domination that have been enslaving the planet for six millennia, and which are now failing. It is anarchic in the truest sense of the word: it seeks to be leaderless not merely in a political sense, but to be free from the tyrannical hegemony imposed by the civilizing logic of syllogistic reasoning itself. It seeks to make each person, each interaction, each moment unique, unclassifiable, open to will and chance. It seeks freedom in the polysemy of the senses, of the physical body—not the body politic. This specter is not imaginary: it is real, and it is upon us. It is now everywhere and has a will of its own. It can no longer be brought under control, through force or through reason, and there will be no escaping it. It is not interested in you; it is coming after who you are.

My father made it from D-Day to Dortmund. He once commented that the trouble with war movies is that there's no way to include the stench of rotting meat.

Monday Night Football might be preferable to a stench in one's lawn...

Doesn't matter if it's Left or Right: Government's primary goal is the extension of power over the populace. Government is not going away, nor will it cease its efforts toward that goal...

Nobody in the USA will revolt while there is:
1) Cheap food (Bread)
2) Cheap entertainment (Circuses)
3) Cheap psychoactive drugs (Alcohol, pot, etc.)

When that all runs out (and it will, by and by), revolution won't be effective until it's focused on eliminating both the local, and the transnational wealthy by whatever means necessary. If we allow these leeches to survive and breed, they will do so, and come back to suck the lifeblood from the masses again.

I'm not optimistic about this happening. People are too stupid, and the Fox news propaganda machine too effective. More than 60 years after WWII, there are still neo-nazis. 60 years from now, there will be neo-conservatives.

Let's face it - America for the most part has become a nation of obese, purblind, moronic half-wits.

And much of the proof of that statement is evidenced in JK's descriptions of news-makers and entertainers above. I mean, if these are the people that are passing for "leadership" - then what do you think as a basis for "followers?"

To objectively analyze the fomenting of any social unrest someone will have to study that nature of political subdivisions that can self identify and unify their collective anger and mission into a singular focus.

People - its not enough to be "pissed off."

You have to be pissed off for identical reasons with identical needs to be fulfilled.

So far, it is more likely that Rush Limbaugh will rally thousands of "ditto heads" to the defense of the Hampton Estates than it for any armed insurrection to change the status quo.

This is why I have such an abstract approach to discussing Peak Oil. Like the fuck-heads that came up with the War On Terror - what is now needed is a fucking WAR ON STUPID-FUCKING -WASTEFUL PETROLEUM CONSUMPTION

What we NEED is a way to get Americans to give up their wasteful energy usage the way they gave up their liberties after 911.

The trouble with that - no "profits" in it.....

Today's blog reminds me of a conversation with an Argentine expat. We were talking about why Argentines put up with a chronically corrupt political cultural where so many in office steal as if it is their right to do so. Why don't Argentines revolt I asked. The simple answer was that there is always enough beef and wine.

I have not studied revolutionary histories in Europe, but I think attempting to draw too much from examining French or Russian experiences ignores that there are powerful technological forces in play that didn't exist in the 18th and 19th centuries . Widespread possession of handguns and automatic and semi-automatic rifles in many states, social medias, and a population never before so dependent on cheap energy and technology are just a few things that muddy our ability to appreciate the course of things. Uncharted waters indeed.

Not to worry, Jim. The Detroit Tigers, in perhaps the most distressed city in North America, recently tendered a 160 million dollar contract to Victor Martinez, a fair to middling catcher. How bad can the situation be if dough like that is being passed out?

Incidentally, I didn't see much in the news about the 114 billion dollars in bonuses given out on Wall Street this week ... swag extricated from the U.S. Treasury and the Federal Reserve!

I think those sites are bass ackwards.

Plenty of money left down here in south Florida. Also plenty of empty boat slips, homes for sale, and casinos. Good to be out of the snow, but the fact that I (Cracker) am a minority down here, is rather depressing.

Meanwhile over in La La Land, the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills are having a grand old time playing real life.

I'd like to see us muddle along for another couple of years, at least long enough for the Republicans to regain the White House. It would be nice to see those truly responsible for this debacle be in charge when TSHTF.

Not that I am not an equal opportunity blamer of course...

Aimlow Joe was here.
http://www.aimlow.com

"An equitable system of rationing while we reduce our world population is the only hope we have..."


Me thinks you have a little more than I. I will be by shortly to "equitably redistribute" some of your more.

Actually, Rumsfield referred to France and Germany as "old Europe", because they refused to back the US invasion of Iraq.

"New Europe" was Poland and the rest of the old Soviet bloc, so proud to be part of US imperialism that they participated in the invasion AND provided black sites for the torture of prisoners of the US.

They were also paid handsomely for their participation, in valuable US dollars.

Glen Beck takes alot of abuse on this site, but it needs to be pointed out that Beck is a fan of James Howard Kunstler. I've heard him discuss, in glowing terms, both "The Long Emergency" and "World Made by Hand". Peak Oil affects all of us, and it is a mistake to assume that Jims' books appeal to those only on the left. They appeal to people on the right as well.

"Am I actually first? Miracles never cease!"

No. You were second. There are no miracles.

Everyone waited and watched for convergence to take place between Communism and Capitalism; none to realize that both systems would collapse and both models of society would devolve into plutocracies.

Anyone wonder what would have happened if we had not ventured down the 'Extend and pretend' road? The wealthy had a choice between collapse and revolution and they chose the latter; which in itself is only a delaying tactic which will only drag out the collapse to buy time for their own selfish interests at the expense of the long term stability of society.

We could have had a gentle collapse of confidence at the end of 2008 which would have led to a 5-10 year resetting the social fabric to zero, where the wealthy would have been wiped out with the rest of us. But, no, we had to have 'extend and pretend'.


Jim's books may appeal to Glen Peck er I mean Beck, but Glen does not appeal to us.

See, it's people like jimjim who make me despair of making a better world.

Others have pointed out that Americans are so brainwashed that they are unable to see who is profiting from the impoverishment of the vast majority of Americans.

There will be no pitchfork-wielding peasants storming the Hamptons. As someone pointed out, there is more likely to be deluded jimjims, organized by Beck, protecting the Hamptons, and then rushing off to slaughter black people, or muslims.

Extreme inequality of wealth makes for unpleasant societies, complete with unpleasant people.

"Think of the shocked look on the British Royals’ faces as the mob pelted their limo..."

The mob was protesting tuition hikes, not a lack of food. Fuck the pampered mob AND the royals. Entitlement to a cheap education has merely spawned a plethora of imbeciles. Let them eat cake and pay for their own fucking books.

"Glen Beck takes alot of abuse on this site, but it needs to be pointed out that Beck is a fan of James Howard Kunstler"

Not only that but Jimmie agrees with much of what Beck talks about on his program.

Jimmie was wrong about the Tea Party and his equating them with corn pone nazism. The Tea Party was and is about fiscal responsibility, nothing more, nothing less. Every single issue that Jimmie has, relating to the sad current state of the world, can be traced back to fiscal irresponsibility, He and Beck are on the exact same page but Jimmie is too myopic to realize that.

" When some nutjob like Sarah Palin gets into office..."

I ain't a fan of Palin but I find it hard to believe that she could fuck things up any worse than our current administration.

Thanks, Jim, for a clear statement of where we are, in the repetitive cycles of history. I, too, am struck by the fascination and material support those who have next-to-nothing give to their heros and heroines, the Jay-Zs, Kardassians, et al. -- who have absolutely no concern for their fans. It is sick.

Violence begets violence, though. I don't doubt there will be violence in the States and elsewhere, but I think it's wiser to withdraw our energies from the State by expatriating and renouncing citizenship, so that we no longer help fund our wasteful and inept government.

Eventually, my hope is that the US government will soon lose its ability to borrow any more money and will therefore be unable to oppress its own people with no-win, endless wars, a huge debt and tax burden, and laws favoring corporate agriculture and making it harder for the small farmers to prepare to take up the slack when the SHTF. (I'm talking about the passing of S-510 and the corresponding bill in the House.)

I side with the folks working on real solutions, such as the Friendly Aquaponics folks and those who are simply taking themselves to safer locales.

Americans, on the whole, have been very slow to learn about the futility of wars and revolutions solving anything.

We've got work to do to 1) Re-establish a culture that values work -- not luck or grifting -- as the way to get goods; 2) To get back to being happy with sustainable energy sources and natural foods (Good-bye Hostess Twinkies!); and to learn to treat each other equitably, even if the external rule-of-law no longer exists.

In the near future, without much help from the Medicare and Social Security we have paid for, we need to learn how to protect our own health by weaning ourselves away from the food offerings of American Agribusiness.

The time to prepare is now.

http://www.healthyplanetdiet.com

Another nice examination of possibilities, JHK
And I hope that all of us, including our host, understand that negating one idea does not negate the whole thesis.

For example, another American revolution has exceedingly high odds against it. Viewed through the lens of history, never have the old (middle aged?) and the well-fed instigated a revolution. Revolutions are the province of the young and the truly hungry. And note that their is more to hunger than a momentarily empty stomach.

The revolutionary anger in these United States has found itself marginalized into the middle aged and well fed. The fact that many of them are on government unemployment insurance, government social security, or government medicare - while calling for a revolutionary downsizing of government and the taxes that feed government - only points to the absurd illogic of the "revolution" to date.

We may yet have a revolution - centered around some unlucky month where the young get hungry, BUT first we are more likely to endure this:

American..."History has its own momentum and it is carrying the psychotic Right Wing into power. Fear not. After they stomp the moderates and the Left, they will themselves end up in an orgy of political cannibalism before...."

Even my own sad and distorted crystal ball is beginning to predict something in the future like this -

"what is now needed is a fucking WAR ON STUPID-FUCKING -WASTEFUL PETROLEUM CONSUMPTION"

No need for a war. $4.00 per gallon will achieve the same effect, without the carnage.

"See, it's people like jimjim who make me despair of making a better world."

Ah, am I preventing you from making a better world? Fucking quitter.

More than pissed off they were starving and facing death.
When you lost everything you are the winner, because you have nothing to lose.
Dying for starving or killed doesn´t make any difference when you are dead.
The middle class makes a revolution for having the power, the working class for surviving.
Revolutions happen when too much is too much.
Are we at that point?

What's with the Froot Loops? Are that many people really eating that product?

It is interesting that so many who wish for a change, are indeed angry at the lower classes rather than having any hope in them. It is a telling shift from "power to the people" of the 1960s to "#*@&@ the people." However, there are good reasons for this dislike of the semi-educated masses (college yes, thinking no). The middle class (and formerly MC too) of today are crushed by two sides.... the ruling class who pushes down, and the lower class that drags further down. There is no help by empowering "the people." If there is a revolution, it will need to be a war on two fronts.
http://schwerpunkter.wordpress.com/

so we've had little Government interference? What planet are you living on? They've increased it more and more, since the the Fed came to be and tax and regulate EVERYTHING!!! WE DO NEED LESS GOIV'T...FOR REAL!!

He only appeals to those who want to know the truth

"jimjim" wrote:

"The Tea Party was and is about fiscal responsibility, nothing more, nothing less."

Ah, the blissful ignorance of the abjectly uninformed. Or purposely uninformed...to even pretend to write such a statement is the act of a psychopath.

and:

"No need for a war. $4.00 per gallon will achieve the same effect, without the carnage."

Right...I saw zero change in the vehicle choices or driving choices last time oil flagrantly peaked above the current "price" per barrel. Indicating the lack of value of our worthless paper "money" backed by nothing except the mass delusion of the populace.

There will be no revolution of any kind. The slow dissolution of society will continue unabated. Hopeless people will simply become homeless and depending upon their savvy or lack thereof will be rounded up and sent off to camps for disposal. Too many people is the one and only problem. Every other thing attached to an unsustainable populace is but a symptom of beyond-horrible over-population.

Jim,

I know you are a savvy enough observer of things to know that this recurring fantasy of yours - the public rising up and overthrowing the fools in charge of our affairs - leaves out one important crucial item. The public of the 21st century is not what it used to be. We have surrounded ourselves with the rich shit of our new Golden Age and fear is the new order. Can you imagine someone angrily turning off 'Wipeout' or 'Minute to Win it' and taking pitchfork in hand head toward East Hampton?
No, we do what we are told - just look at this year's frantic Holiday Buying Season.

There is a lot of insight and wisdom to be found in this comment thread.

The opposite of insight and wisdom can also be found, but it's rare. Tzatza, lingling, and jimjim - all are apparently the same commentator - all seem to brainwashed bootlickers for our corporate and undertaxed elite.

But back to wisdom, Ozone posted this link late last week. It fits into this week's piece by JHK quite well.

http://firedoglake.com/2010/12/26/wealth-inequality-produces-rotten-government/

The comments are as worthwhile as the original web post.

Wealth inequality produces rotten government.

Rotten government produces wealth inequality.

Wealth inequality produces greater inequality.

No mention yet of the extraordinary column this morning by Paul Krugman! The Nobel Laureate's latest column in the nation's newspaper of record basically admits what economists have been unwilling to admit: that the world is finite and there are limits to growth. He even implies that peak oil has been reached. This is astonishing! It's tantamount to when the Vatican finally admitted that the earth goes around the sun. I encourage everyone to read it and marvel.

This has got to been seen as sime kind of vindication for people like JHK, as well as all the people who have argued the same, from the Club of Rome to Herman Daly to Charles Hall. If the solid mainstream is finally willing to listen to the 'heterodox' economists, then we may finally start to see a constructive dialog in 2011 about our limited and finite resources and how best to deal with them. I hope this is not a fluke, and that finally we are on the verge of the 'peak everything' narrative starting to become accepted, because it's true. This will have profound implications.

Of course, the wild card is the right - comment number 13 is indicitave of what the reaction will be. They will see Krugman as yet another 'leftist' and never accept any limits to growth. Their alternative media lets them know that climate change is a hoax, the world is full of abiotic oil, Wall Street is a productive enterprise, and the problems with the country stem entirely from the greedy poor and too much 'Socialism'. They will see it as the beginning of the socialist plot to destroy capitalism (it looks like capitalism is destroying itself just fine, but whatever). I've long since written off this country, but my hope is that other nations will see the light, and begin to fashion sytem without us. We're already seeing the beginnings of it in places like Brazil and China. Of course, with the war machine at our disposal, I'm sure we will make things difficult for them, probaly launching an all-out was for the last remaining resources.

Hey, Jim - how about writing a book about the French Revolution? I love your take on history. And all the books I've read on the subject get lost in minutiae.

In your opinion, what is the best book about the French Revolution? Is there one that makes the parallels with the current situation in America most clearly?

Thanks...

There are some interesting similarities and contrasts between Jim's "A Moment of Convulsion" and Frank Rich's Op-Ed, "Who Killed the Disneyland Dream". Frank Rich seems to predict that we might learn helplessness in the face of "the outrageous gap between this country’s upper class and the rest of us." On the other hand, Jim Kunstler is predicting that we might get "really pissed off", and "America may have its own Bastille moment."

Truckee writes:
"A great American once said...."predicting the future is easy, it's being right that's the hard part."

Examine your zest for doom!"
----------------------------------------
Well said; "Examine your zest for doom" indeed.

For centuries mankind has had groups of people who would remove themselves from the "mainstream" of society due to revulsion, fear and one form or another of religious or quasi-religious fervor. The only thing that changes is the object of fear/revulsion. JHK is the virtual leader of a virtual group doing nothing different from countless other nameless groups forgotten by history because history has proven them wrong (or at least early!)in their predictions of apocalypse.

The only prediction I will make for the New Year is that it will come, and that prediction with only a high degree of probability.....ain't nothing for sure.

Live in the moment as best you can, that's all you can really be sure about.

hey everyone, there has been a lot of back and forth here lately, about population issues. I found a Wilson Quarterly article, from 2009, about the topic. It says some surprising things, about old trends fading away, new trends emerging, etc. Interesting.
http://www.wilsonquarterly.com/article.cfm?aid=1408

Regarding:
"Too many people is the one and only problem. Every other thing attached to an unsustainable populace is but a symptom of beyond-horrible over-population."
=============

You are aware, JC, that legal immigrants continue to arrive into the United States at approximately 100,000 new souls per month.

Illegal immigration may have slowed - who's really counting?? - but any sort of economic upturn is bound to increase the illegal immigration as well.

Yet even here, on a peak oil website - we can't get consensus that all these immigrants are bad for the US - and bad for the countries from which the emigrate.

The Sierra Club and the Green Party of California are pro-immigration - legal and illegal.

Liberal orthodoxy does trump common sense.
Conservative orthodoxy trumps common sense.

What's wrong with the sensible middle?

A lot of the sensible middle donates to the Sierra Club or the Republican Party!!

Wow!

It's amazing how much less time it takes for the comments to turn ugly on here, than it used to. Admittedly, I have only enjoyed Jim's columns for about 6 months now, but I have noticed much more tension, in the past 2 of them. This is my first effort at a post and I do so, as I have found myself talking back to the computer. That gives me no relief at all. Unlike many who post here, I have nothing to sell, except my perspective. And I really don't care if anyone buys, as that does nothing for me.

First, I want to say that I thoroughly enjoy the vast majority of Jim's weekly writings, simply for their quality, even though I do not always agree. Nor do I agree with many of you, who subsequently comment on said writings.

Those of you who spend their time and energy slamming the left or the right or the current nit-wit in charge (regardless of which position they hold) I say enough. As long as you play the blame game and look to government, whose ever it happens to be at the moment, for ANY answers, you are doing yourselves a disservice.

The solutions for what is wrong, with the U.S. and also the rest of the world, will not come from government or "industry." It will come from people making the choices that will influence the changes that will push the rest forward. I had the opportunity to spend some quality time with my Dad, this week. He is 81 and grew up during the great depression. His depression experiences were far overshadowed by the influences of his alcoholic Father and the ways he and my Grandmother dealt with him. Yes, they had lower expectations than we do today. Like how will we eat, tomorrow or pay next month’s rent. Bottom line, they focused on the problems that they COULD influence, rather than those that were out of their reach.

This country was designed for the PEOPLE to do what is right or wrong and drag the government along, usually kicking and screaming. As the planet continues its long slide into the pit, what are YOU going to do to try to change the direction? How are YOU going to change your life to become more self sufficient and less of a burden on the planet? What steps will YOU take to ensure you can feed your family, if the entire system collapses?

Our "leaders", whether they be government, industry or from other institutions, have convinced too much of the populace, that they are helpless and can do NOTHING, without the "leaders" help. Oh really? YOU do at least a dozen things every day, that have more influence on your life, health, families and communities, than anything the federal or state governments do. Start DOING the right things, no matter how small they are. Your actions will have influence.

If more of YOU and of course, I, take this approach to the 'solution' the rest will feel the current and begin to come along. It all happens locally and it really IS that simple. Notice I did not say easy. -Ragtop

Week after week, we have essentially the same post with just a different cleverly worded spin: we are truly fucked, and cornpone-right wing-nascar-lay-z-boy-fat-ass americans are to blame. The exact same broad brushings of what and who we are as americans and who is to blame. of course nobody in HERE is ever a fat-ass car driving football watching schmuck.

its been fun, but so long CFN! Good Luck, and thanks for all the fish.

Bon Courage!

GhostofGreed,

Respectfully , I found your post to be most revealing and insightful. You write:

“It's tough to know, as an Average Joe (or Josephine, as in my case), what to do right now. Lay low, stock up on food, think of how to protect my kids?”

And there you have it. The short sweet answer to the when’s and how’s is contained within the umbilical connection of progenitor to offspring, that inexorable sense of felt duty and responsibility to the most innocent and vulnerable. Revolutionaries and the imprisoned make bad family providers.

In other words, the "Forces of Evil" have the decent and conscientious gripped hard and firm by the short and curly.

Only when the children begin to die and suffer…and not a moment before.

Why talk of Right Wing Nut Jobs who might come to power? We already have a Left Wing Nut Job already IN POWER. In Truth, it doesn't matter: the same people fund both the Right and the Left at the highest level. The paradigm of Left and Right is moribund; it obfuscates far more than it illuminates.

So Americans will lose their soul if they turn to violence? Did the Founding Fathers lose their soul when they did? Or did they gain it? It's like saying there is no difference between a sugeon and a thug since they both wield a blade.

Greetings from Canadaland! I'm happy to say that Santa (girlfriend actually) got me The Long Emergency for christmas and I'm enjoying it immensely. I'd been trying in vain for the last year to locate it at the local Chapters and Indigo outlets to no avail. Seems almost impossible to find a "current political affairs" book in brick-and-mortar stock if it's a few years old. Seems even here in Montreal the political science/History sections have been largely subsumed by the remarkably numerous tomes of Glen Beck, unfortunately.

Anyway, just wanted to wish you a merry christmas and a tolerable new year. I'll continue to observe what I can of the fascinating disintegration of my neighbours to the south from my relatively comfortable (at least for now) home of Montreal. It's a city that, while plagued with eventually unsustainable gigantism, does possess many of the qualities you have written about European cities possessing. We have suburban sprawl here but Montreal was not gutted as a result. There's still plenty of history, life and viable, vibrant culture in the old girl yet. Plus (thank god) a massive investment in hydroelectric power. Maybe in a few years if things do not get too disorderly and violent I and those close to me will be tilling crops on Mount Royal or one of the other dozens of parks. Until then, best wishes and good luck to all!

Beck also implores people to refrain from violence. Was the son really listening to his Father or just projecting his own liberal fantasies onto him?

Beck has alot of great, postive ideas which liberals will tend to discount because of who he is and where he comes from. Yes, Liberals are consumate snobs. For my part, I'm appreciative but wary. I'm not sure he understands the necessity of tariffs and of cutting off all foreign aid including Israel. Nations have to go back to standing alone - of being Nations. Those that are not viable will fall. Globalism has failed just like Communism (an earlier form of Globalism) before it.

I would not be surprised if the government began to subsidize the cable TV companies, just to keep the propaganda pumping into the heads of the unemployed.

An armed struggle would play right into the hands of the neo-con/fascist forces. Then they could ramp up the repression, sell more military hardware to be used against the domestic population, and employ many more of the working class into goon squads. It would be a circular firing squad.

My hope is in the gentle, goofy, young ones who have stretched out their earlobes to an alarming extent, have tribal tattoos (as much as you despise them, James), get their news from Comedy Central, and download their music for free. Although they don't say much, they are quietly shunning the corporate paradigm and they are not impressed by the bullshit from either the "Right" or the "Left." They are like the little rodents scurrying around the dinosaurs just before the asteroid hit. They survived. The dinosaurs didn't.

Kulturcritic, unless you are actually Sandy Krolick, you plagarized this entire comment. If you are going to use verbatim someone else's writing, please have the decency to attribute it to the person who wrote it. The original posting can be found here: http://cluborlov.blogspot.com/2010_10_01_archive.html

"The paradigm of Left and Right is moribund; it obfuscates far more than it illuminates."

Exactly. It works for the great men, and that's why it's been left in place. If the PE could come up with a cheaper way than funding the two ring circus to make us believe everything is ok "because we can vote for president" we'd see it in a New York minute.

I don't know RT. I am amazed by the large number of recurrent posters on here who ARE attempting to do something on their own.

There are owners of small cars, efficient cars, and no cars at all. There are locavores, herbivores, traditional farmers, and permacultrualists. There are solar power installers, reducers, reusers, and recyclers all over the thread. There are many who have a good relationship with parents and the elderly and share their wisdom on CFN frequently.

But I'm afraid that none of this - laudable though it may be - means much without group and collective action. That means politics. That gets us to the left vs right vs sensible middle that you seem to deplore.

There are exceptions, but most of CFN has some conception of the problems and some sort of approach already in place.

So what do we do after that, to save whatever is left of - ?

@Helen Highwater- If you click on "kulturcritic" you will get to Sandy's website.

Well why didn't he say so? I don't usually click on somebody's name when reading these comments. I just noticed that what he wrote was something I had already read several times in other places.

Re: "A 10% gain in 10 years, 1% a year. Even CDs pay better."

Anyone who started with zero invested in the stock market and who invested say $500 per month in an index fund (instead of blowing the money on high-octane toys) during the period you specified would be vastly better off than if they invested in CDs.

Alternatively, a person who started with a mound of cash in CDs at the begining of your time frame, then transfered 1/120 of that amount monthly from the CDs into index funds during your ten years would also be WAY ahead.

Firstly you write:

""jimjim" wrote:

"The Tea Party was and is about fiscal responsibility, nothing more, nothing less."

Ah, the blissful ignorance of the abjectly uninformed. Or purposely uninformed...to even pretend to write such a statement is the act of a psychopath."

Then you write (In response to what I wrote):

"No need for a war. $4.00 per gallon will achieve the same effect, without the carnage."

Right...I saw zero change in the vehicle choices or driving choices last time oil flagrantly peaked above the current "price" per barrel."

So you are agreeing with the psychopath? So, what the fuck does that make you, numbnuts?

And pray tell genius, what the fuck IS the Tea Party about?

Americans have have little appetite for revolution while the TV still sparkles. The shadow of the coup d'etat of 1963 still dims the spirit in 2010. We learned to brown nose to the new corporate regime - don't ask too many questions or you will suffer the same fate as the patsy and the eye witnesses. It was an implied threat against all of us and we chose the 2nd prize payoff: bigger cars, bigger meals and bigger TVs, never mind your lost freedom and the death of hope. Then with 9/11 came the sucker punch: its a global war, be very afraid, give up some more freedoms, don't ask too many questions, just pay the man and keep on shopping. Remember we can blow you to bits or grind you to dust without a backward glance.

What would revolution really mean, in practical terms? Driving down to the Hamptons on Long Island, blowing up some Bentleys, burning down mansions and sinking Billy Joels Yacht. Count me out. "You go around with pictures of Chairman Mao, You're not going to make it with anyone anyhow" Plant you garden, take care of your family. That's the revolution.

Mr. Kunstler, you often criticize Krugman. These criticism always struck me as pretty ad hominem -- you rarely enumerate what part of his reasoning you believe to be fallacious. Yet today he states in the opinion page of the New York Times that the re-rise in commodity prices validates peak oil theory. Do you agree with his column? Were your previous criticisms wrong?

Thanks!

:s/criticism/criticisms/
:wq!

another week, another finger of blame at the WASPs down there in the south...as opposed to the ethnic group that dominates Wall Street and the media.

Calling vast swathes of people who disagree with you "nazis" is really counterproductive. This forum and this blog is, more and more, filled with a classic form of hate. It's really not so much about productive change as it is the desire to FUCK those evil rightwingers with their audacity to believe in things you think they shouldn't. They like things you don't, they worship a God you don't believe in, so really you'd rather see them screwed than ever change anything in a substantive manner.

You're all exactly the same. Both sides would vote for the Devil if it antagonized the opposition sufficiently.

Thank you for learning about the 100,000 from me. It's amazing but almost no one knows it. Yet it destroys any hope for an economic recovery - even if such a thing were possible.

If you would check out the other things I say you would learn even more things that most people don't know. But alas your ego gets involved and you don't want to get too far from the herd - which gives you your warm fuzzies.

When the "sensible middle" gets this crazy and imbalanced they are no longer either sensible or the middle - they become merely a majority of warm bodies programmed in the same way. The truth is somewhere else, something radically different. Surely you can understand this intellectually if not emotionally. The first battle is always within oneself. You may have "killed your father" but you haven't slain your dragon (overcome the lower emotional nature as an identification at the level of being).

And what about me and my "fear" that you always talk about? Dude, if you aint scared by now you are even more confused than I think you are. In reality I think you know based on things you have said in general. You just bring that up as something to throw in my face. A defence mechanism.

MarlinFive54 wrote: "...Driving down to the Hamptons on Long Island, blowing up some Bentleys, burning down mansions and sinking Billy Joels Yacht."

Yes, burning down mansions is a start. More importantly, you would have to kill any and all financial oligarchs and their families in whatever country they exist. In the long run, there's no other way for the rest of us to protect ourselves from fatal parasitism. They must go. Their genes must go.

JHK said: "Obviously 2010 was a year of fabulous prosperity in the USA..."

Yes, 2010 was a good year, with six consecutive months of increased private sector employment.

And 2011 will be even better, with working folks getting a tax cut and taking home more money with each paycheck.

All the economic indicators are consistently improving, slowly but surely. The Obama economic recovery is for real.

There will be no re-enactment of the French Revolution, no rioting in the streets, and no social chaos.

There will be steady economic improvement for all citizens, much to the chagrin of the doomsters. Pretend and extend can go on for decades. QE3, QE4, QE5, etc.

The crash landing from peak oil is at least 46 years away. It is likely a replacement for fossil fuels will be developed in the meantime. No need to do mountaintop removal when cheap, clean, and readily available Thorium reactors have already been built in the 60's and field tested successfully. They can easily be embraced again.

Excellent JHK. Even if it's 'bad' news, and reality is not so 'safe' anymore. I prefer the Real Thing to Denial.

This post is very good. I don't get to go around the world, that's ok, and so when people write about it I get a better understanding of things.

I've enjoyed your writings for many years, and hope to for many more.

Rock On ! Happy New Year !
Take Care

I haven't read the responses yet, but I love that it will take me all week anyway. I recently had surgery, nothing serious, except surgery is Always serious if you ask me.
So I have the time to take more time to read.
That's what I'll be doing next few days.

XOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXO

As an aside, Achilles had PTSD, which occurred because his CO betrayed him and his best friend bought it on a patrol he should've led. That's the conclusion of VA psychiatrist Dr. Jonathan Shays, who wrote "Achilles in Vietnam." The moral here is that extended trauma that overwhelms the soul's ability to cope with it can produce eruptions of uncontrolled rage - such as dragging a KIA enemy officer around the walls of his city while his mother wails in grief from the walls above. Such, I hope, is not the fate that awaits Americans when they're pushed beyond whatever their limit is.

PC, certainly you know these folks better than I do, so to them I say "Keep moving forward."

I am not pointing a finger at the group, here, as being somehow to blame or saying that they may not already be doing something. I also don't deplore politics as it is necessary, under the system in which we live and there are LOCAL politicians who could possibly help. I am making the point that we should not expect bureaucrats to find solutions to these problems. They haven't the capacity and we've seen time after time what effects well intentioned meddling have on already serious problems. They either exacerbate that problem or create many more, i.e. Ethanol. This isn’t left, right or center; just fact.

The cure, if there can be one, will be for each of us to determine what we need and then figure out how WE can create it. Many will fail, but I personally would prefer failure, in an attempt, to inaction. I believe that the small, sustainable community will save many of those who are to be saved. While this will not save everyone, it would be a far less bloody and painful than the revolution that many discuss. Any violent revolution will only place us in a more severe position of subjugation, which will make those small sustainable communities more difficult to establish.

Certainly an active interest or even participation in the political process can help, if that help is meant to keep the government out of the way. Unfortunately, I don’t see that my possible solution offers anything for any political party. There are no headlines or big government projects or heroes riding in on a white horse, to save the day. It’s just individuals and families assessing their own needs and skills and matching them up with other individuals and families, whose skills compliment their own and who wish to live the same way.

I know this sounds overly simple and even I believe it may be naïve, humans being what humans are. I do believe in the inherent good in most people, though and if this is done on a very small and local level, it can make a difference. The alternative is just more of what we already have, which is proving to be completely UNsustainable. -ragtop


Yeah I love this site, just not the long layout.
scrolling scrolling scrolling, keep them doggies' scrolling comes to mind. remember "rolling rolling rolling, keep them doggies' rolling Rawhide" goes thru my mind. does anyway.
have to be kinda old to remember this I don't think you are, but don't know why I think that.
Internet is a strange place.

Wish it were laid out different, but really GLAD JHK even takes his time to have this here at all.

The way I remember, now, is by date, but the scrolling is a pain in the rear.

and hey you weren't first ! haha. I've thought how cool it would be to be first. sorry, someone got in before you. Ya shoulda wrote First ! then posted. then finished. every millisecond counts, like on ebay. I would have to SCROLL all the way to the top to see.
Maybe later.

Seasons Greetings !

how bout them cowboys ?

lmao


I am thinking the brand associated with the real estate of Hitlers' past is NOT WALMART.

We are in for Rude Awakening. Most of 'US'.
Here I go to scroll to review your post back in a few....back....

Living here in Munich, I am amazed at the ubiquitous ignorance and cluelessness of humanity in general.

Living here on West Coast California I say same thing, cluelessness. Scares the hell out of me.

Thanks for posting!
Take Care

Jimjim said: "Entitlement to a cheap education has merely spawned a plethora of imbeciles."

On the contrary, the thirty countries providing free education, like Denmark and Costa Rica, are countries much better off than the USA.

BETTER ADVICE WAS NEVER GIVEN. FOR REAL. SERIOUSLY.
I HOPE TO TAKE IT.

LOVE THE TEST & FLUNKED BTW !!!!!

Happy New Year 2u

MisterUsername said: "Mr. Kunstler, you often criticize Krugman. These criticism always struck me as pretty ad hominem -- you rarely enumerate what part of his reasoning you believe to be fallacious."

Maybe JHK doesn't, but here is a very detailed criticism of Krugman by the BEST economist out there with the biggest picture of what's going on, Michael Hudson:

http://www.counterpunch.org/hudson11222010.html
"Why Paul Krugman Waves the Flag for Uncle Sam"

BTW, Hudson does not mention peak oil. However, his overall view/analysis applies regardless of the realities of peak oil

I was thinking that what I will do from now on is read like alot of posts and then reply to several at once. As if anyone actually reads my responses. haha.

Also thinking that if this page were laid out different it would probably be a Real Big Mess with ALOT more posts on it.

Probably laid out the best way it could be. Take One day at a time of responses and work thru them that way.

Hey maybe they could be laid out by 24 hour time blocks ? I don't know how to do it.

I LOVE THIS PAGE ANYWAY, IT'S MY FAVE SITE.

Great link, erikSF99; many thanks!

Asoka said: "All the economic indicators are consistently improving, slowly but surely. The Obama economic recovery is for real."

Asoka, all the 'economic indicators' are consistently jiggered by the government to give the appearance of improvement. John Williams of the now well-known shadowstats.com site provides consistent anlysis and explanation of this jiggering: http://www.shadowstats.com/

The government consistently under-reports inflation--which means that 'economic growth' is reported as higher than it really is because you're taking less inflation out of the 'inflation-adjusted GDP'.

This cheating on inflation also is a way to keep government expenses down in one area: Social Security. By changing the way inflation is reported Soc Sec increases are minimized and we starve our retired people. Per John Williams: "The difference that it makes is significant: if the same CPI were used today as was used when Jimmy Carter was President, Social Security checks
would be 70% higher."

Here are a couple worthwhile interview with him:
http://www.eastbayexpress.com/ebx/john-williams-believe-him-or-not/Content?oid=1725205

http://www.shadowstats.com/pdf/779-626538446.pdf

http://coyoteprime-runningcauseicantfly.blogspot.com/2010/08/economics-interview-john-williams_06.html

John Williams also shows how the real unemployment rate is 22.5%. The industrial unemployment rate in the 30's was 35% or so. Farm unemployment then was in the low 20s.

One site that keeps up with the statistical lies on a daily basis with further analysis and confirmation of managed perceptions of economics is http://jsmineset.com/

Asoka, there is NO Obama recovery and his government is lying about it through manipulated statistics just as Bush did before him and Clinton before him and so on. American wages have been flat since the 1970's while the workers' productivity is way up. The difference going to the Ruling Elite.

Things are at least as bad as JHK presents them. Jim Willie who does economic/political analysis in his Hat Trick Letter likes JHK and quotes him but considers JHK "too optimistic"!!!
http://goldenjackass.com/

Progressorconserve said: "The Sierra Club and the Green Party of California are pro-immigration - legal and illegal."

And the Sierra Club and Green Party have no capacity to understand economics and the environment at the same time. To support immigration is to have no idea of what the earth can support. Here is a great article titled: "The Environmental Argument for Reducing Immigration to the United States" http://www.cis.org/EnvironmentalArgument

The author points out that all those people coming to the U.S. are not coming here to be poor! They are coming here to lead the life of sprawl! Its ludicrous that the Sierra Club and Green party support immigration. The churches in my area have started the New Sanctuary Movement to put their energy into supporting illegal immigrants--while their own parishioners are losing their jobs. It's nuts.

And speaking of where I live: the west and southwest where we just don't have that much water for our population. Well, we don't have it for new immigrants either. Here's an article on that.

"Population, Immigration, and the Drying of the American Southwest" http://www.cis.org/southwest-water-population-growth

It's hard to imagine what kind of environmental analysis the Sierra Club and Green Party have done!

I've been on the sidelines for a while now but thought I'd be inclined to actually register and leave a comment. So here I am with my first comment on this blog.

You mat be correct in that crude oil will drive up the cost of everything we buy in this country. As a researcher I have already made the correlation between crude oil price surges and steep declines in the DJIA leading into recessions. I don't usually like to quote mainstream media as sources but here's one that may prove that 2012 may be as dramatic as all the apocalyptic Mayan soothsayers claim.

http://money.cnn.com/2010/12/27/markets/oil_commodities/index.htm

Basically, the price of gas will reach over $5 a gallon in the US in 2012. Additionally, I am inclined to believe the Saudi's do not have the pumping capacity to flood the market and lower the price of crude, as they have in the past.
So if you were thinking of ditching that gas guzzling suburban for a more economical mode of transportation, 2011 may be a good time to make the switch before the proverbial "all hell" breaks loose.

JHK,

What are you doing in Paris?

I always enjoy JHK's column and the comments it brings are a good croos section of opinion.

As a long time RN I still have a job...I work in a small rural ER where we see a cross section of people from different backgrounds and ethnicities. Relatively few have actual jobs and insurance. Usually self pay means no pay. Medicaid and Medicare reimbursements do not cover the cost of providing care many times. In the ER we have to see everyone regardless if they can pay and evaluate them for an emergency condition. This is a federal law and a good thing.

Clinics on the other hand can turn peolple away if they can't pay.In the meantime the only clinic in the area that actually provides treatment for the uninsured and poor has lost a huge chunk of funding. So many more will be heading to the ER for "free" care. Charity care will spiral. Er's will become even more overwhelmed as they are required to provide care for everyone.

The next big bubble to go will be healthcare. Our government did nothing to fix it when they had the chance. (if they truly did have a chance?) Here in Washington State our entire health care safety net is ready to be dismantled. Voters did not approve measures to help balance the budget here. So the ax is out. Nurses are losing their jobs and can't get a new one.

Healthcare has been the only sector to be relatively unaffected by the economy. Well guess what? That is over. No business can survive without money to feed it. I would advise anyone that currently has a payment source -if you have a problem - get fixed now...your local healthcare facility may be gone soon. How are the masses going to react to that?

Jeff G says, "However what I do fear is, if we drink of the intoxicating beverage of violence we will destroy our own soul and nation in the process and become no better than the bastards we curse.
Hence the dilemma we face."

The "bastards we curse" are the next-door neighbors. Its the people walking around on the street. Its our boss, our coworkers, and people on internet message boards. Our wives, husbands and children. Politicans? Yeah, those too. And athletes. And moviestars. And last but not least, ourselves. Americans hate themselves. Self-loathing is a huge part of being an American.

People can in fact tell the difference between "the intoxicating beverage of violence" and real intoxicating beverages. The latter is a path of least resistance- and allows them to heap the abuse where it belongs- on themselves.

The daily repeats of "COPS" on TV has had the effect of showing the citizens of America that any dishonorable activity will result in swift reprisals. People with low self-esteem don't revolt- they vote and fantasize about how much that matters. LOL. Fat people don't revolt. And women, who control this country, when depressed, get fat and/or go shopping. There will be no revolutions forthcoming. Its foot soldiers polish their guns and imagine their fat asses standing shoulder to shoulder- but that is a pure mental construct.

So where is the soul under threat here? It is not. This is not Rome, it is not Serbia, or Mozambique. It is McDonalds and Burger King. We are an emasculated population. Hence our desire for a dickhead to lead us. That is indeed possible. Popular revolt is not. All this dickhead needs to do is wrap himself in the flag and get (s)elected.

Electric Shave says, "
In this second Dark Ages, science itself
has devolved and we look to it as our new
God ... including worship of pseudo-sciences
like MEDICINE."

In addition Triplicate said, "I am a scientist, how 'bout you? I studied tons of biology, chemistry, physics, and anthropology in college - fairly well rounded you might say. Which admittedly could have something to do with my belief that the future belongs to the generalist. Me!"

Here displayed for the layman is the lost wages of science spurned... Wherever I find the former scientist, I find this phenomena. The spite and ridicule heaped on the former vocation. The dismissal of logic and reason. Quasi-religious conversion follows.

Scientists without philosophic reasons for being scientists usually end up this way. They take their training and use it to determine, through observation, the gleaming social and emotional success of being an irrational, valueless fool. They are as subject to failure of rationale as anyone else, frequently, as even logic is not prerequisite to science. Just as 2 + 2 = 4, being an oblivious idiot seems to derive happiness. Therefore, they discard logic, and discard science, because as helpless emotional primates we crave happiness more than logic, especially when the latter delivers nothing but bad news.

The joke is on these poor fools who will sooner or later realize that the happiness of perfect idiots is in fact a facade concealing from observation the bottomless pit into which their psyches are sliding, however pleasing the view on the way down is.

And modern medicine is a popular whipping boy for idiots world-wide. Like a car mechanic, people bring their abused vehicles into the shop and then expect miracles. What is the herbalist equivalent for cars? I suppose that would be the vendors offering the snake-oil additives to increase cooling efficiency. Or the magnets for your fuel line. The equivalent of the Herbologist is a mechanic who overcharges you for work not done (placebo!). And of course, is nowhere to be found when catastrophic failure occurs.

A medical doctor in the US. has completed enough course requirements for a bachelor of science, passed an MCAT which is a pile of organic chemistry, physics and biology, has taken 4 years of Med. school, an additional several years in residency. They are experts. And only fools throw darts at experts. Medicine, a science, has its own self-correcting structure. As much as things can go wrong in medicine, they will be corrected. Science in 2050 will be utterly more reliable than herbology in 2050- because herbology disrespects results and logic, confuses cause and effect, and just doesn't fucking work most of the time. People are likely to stay the same in 2050, though. Irrational and stupid. Therefore there will always be Herbologists.

Beantown pointed out the efficacy of the placebo effect. Unfortunately there are real chemicals attached to such placebos and they have discrete effects. My dear sister whom I visited this Christmas has been seduced by the "Herbalife" cult. She takes a daily supplement of "Chromium Chloride" to "control cravings for food". Incredible, how a toxic metal is substituted for the innocuous piece of fruit, and how ordinary that, even faced with facts and expert knowledge, nothing will change the perception that facts and expert knowledge are entirely optional things. Harbalife comes with a brochure! They have a website! My friend Cindy-loo is an independent distributor! Ergo, it must be good! Even if it is Chromium- which is what exactly? Ah, she has no clue what it is. Which is kind of prerequisite for ignorant enthusiasts.

Needless to say, my sister is being an idiot. She performs her job competently, and is a nice person, and of average intelligence, but she does not understand how to think about things. She does not understand how to evaluate knowledge. She went to college, but she never learned logic. She didn't study science. She studied the soft prejudice of achievement. She believes a grade or average or degree is the point of the thing. Education as a means to an end, without regard to means generally. And she is happy as a clam.


Some newbie says, "Let them eat cake" is the message of the elite. Let us eat, and learn to feed ourselves again is the message that will save us from the oligarchy."

"Let them eat cake" is popularly misconceived. It made perfect sense when Marie Antoinette said it. At the time, bread required a high-quality flour, and was therefore rarer and more expensive than Cake. Even today, Cake is a mixture of the lowest-quality ingredients. You could blow pure sawdust into a chocolate cake and not be able to tell the difference coming out the other side. So when food was running out, the low-cost option was cake. Most people ate cake, primarily, and not bread in revolutionary France, particularly the lower classes. Only later was the connotation added. Which is ironic since it remains the perception today that cake is a higher quality product. Take a look at the profit margins of cake vs. Bread. It is absurd. It is the worst quality ingredients. If it is chocolate flavored, that is even more profitable as chocolate flavoring allows you to use the low-grade fats as well as the lowest grade flours.

Only the ignorant without regard to health would eat chocolate cake, but then again, there are a lot of ignorance in America. Millions of children will have chocolate cake served to them in days and years to come on their way to obesity and liver failure. As long as their parents are ignorant, I suppose they can blame medical science for their poor health outcomes, or something.

London and Paris inhabitants were equally abhorrent of another war in the early months of Nazi invasion of Poland. Parisians decided to fraternize with the Nazis rather than have their dear city bombed the city they'd Bastilled a century and half earlier.

Londoners refused to be invaded and had many sections of their precious city leveled. Could it be that Parisians have become frozen in time with their worldview and that they'll sell out to anyone - Chinoise? - to preserve the alabaster and gold-leaf - living to fight another day and return to Gallic beauty & aesthetics - in amber glow for the ages.

I looked forward everyday to reading the news in Lifeaftertheoilcrash.net. He has now stopping with the daily news.

Is anyone aware of any website that has daily news that isn't all right or left wing bunk?

Mark, I don't think there's anyone quite like Matt Savinar at LATOC when it comes to putting together a reading list everyday that really illuminates what's going on globally like that site did. I recently emailed him a big thank you for what he has done, as he really warned me in 2007-8 about the mortgage debacle, CDOs and derivatives and I got a lot of money out of my mutual funds before they crashed. He will be missed.

Rice Farmer is still pretty good:http://www.ricefarmer.blogspot.com/


The part of this week's CFN missive by Jim
featured a turn of phrase about the radio
Republikooks that I loved when he called
them "nostalgic, sentimental, paranoid
know-nothings".

It's dead on because the America that
Limbaugh, Beck, Palin, and their ilk
speak of HASN'T EXISTED FOR TWO DECADES.
They just rehash the incantation of the
USA being a "great" country. Yet one
asks ... BY WHAT METRIC? We have the
largest prison population in the world.
Our income disparities and CEO/bottom
pays are the worst in the G20. We're
17th in longevity and 45th in Math and
Science achievement test scores. And
we're the biggest HOGS in the world
using 25% of the energy with only 6%
of the population.

Personally, I think the worm turned
around 1995 when the something-for-nothing
stock market mentality mesmerized the
entire populace with subsequent bubbles
in real estate, junk bonds, and every
financial dusty corner you can imagine.

I just figure that our standard of living
is going to drop to the level that these
mentalities always lead to.


E.

CheeseMoose,

I enjoyed "The Terror" by David Andress and "Fatal Purity" by Ruth Scurr. There are a zillion books on the french revolution but these are two I picked up at a used book store. I think they are pretty good.

I'll take issue with comparing our current right wing to the Jacobins. The Jacobins were the intellectual vanguard of their times, full of vigor and new ideas. Men and women of great courage, men and women who loved country more than self. Comparing our right wing to them insults their memory.

Plutôt la mort que l'esclavage

We need a Danton.

E, you wrote, "They just rehash the incantation of the USA being a "great" country. Yet one
asks ... BY WHAT METRIC?"

Just so. Before anyone argues whether or not America is great, we must arrive at a consensus as to what "great" means in the context of a country.

From your post, you are stating (or implying) only the ratio of CEO/bottom pay ratio, longevity rank, math and science test scores, and energy use vs. population percentile rankings are enough evidence to determine a country's greatness or not.

I know you'll say that you just were using these factors as examples, but shouldn't you acknowledge there are many other determinants to national greatness, in order to bolster your argument that Limbaugh et al are living in fantasyland?

Wonderful comments from a lot of posters, too numerous to mention, although I don't agree with everything stated (obviously).

Just one further comment for Asoka:

I agree with ErikSF99's point that economic statistics as presented by the government are jiggered - or at the very least, certainly questionable when government definitions are used.

I do agree with you on your optimism for the future, at least with regard to new energy sources, a position that is anathema to many on this website. You should know by now I'm a techno-optimist. My main concern is whether or not we can last as long as it will take to put future innovations to good use.

Interesting ideas, Vlad.
You are correct that the FACT of 100,000 legal immigrants to the US per year came from you. Without JHK, CFN, and you, Vlad, I would have no knowledge whatsoever of this planet destroying fact.

- Note to CFN readers - This is a fact, impossible to deny. It is easily verified from US.gov websites. - Check it for accuracy, if you have any doubt. Then call your congressperson - and work for change.

So you have supplied this fact, along with a FACT equally important - though more nebulous - that being - that modern "multi-culturalism," as we use the term in the US - will generally not survive in an energy descent world.

So for those two FACTS, along with other thought provoking bits of "truthiness," - well, I'm honest enough to give you public thanks on CFN.
------------
Now let's address fear, as when you say:

"And what about me and my "fear" that you always talk about? Dude, if you aint scared by now you are even more confused than I think you are. In reality I think you know based on things you have said in general. You just bring that up as something to throw in my face. A defence mechanism."
=========

We could go back and forth analyzing each others *fears* or *tolerance* or *acceptance* of various things - like homosexuality, for example.) Generally, I think that's a waste of other reader's time - and of JHK's bandwidth.

(I'm saying that I don't find men who touch each other's penises as scary as you do on ANY level, BTW - and that's all. No amount of dialog is gonna change that, so we can let it rest - please.)

But you have one fear, that I have referenced before, that *marginalizes* the thoughts you express.

This fear manifests itself in you as a desire for separate White and Black Nations inside these United States. You consider *Blacks* so fearsome that it is impossible for you as a *White* to live in the same REGION OF THE COUNTRY WITH THEM.

This is fear, man. You've got to get over it.
A separate black nation in Mississippi is a non-starter, a interior Washington/Oregon fantasy.

(If you think it's even a dreamlike possibility - you need to talk to some Mississippi white supremacists. I can put you in touch if need be.) ;-)

And it's an impossible dream, at any rate, for practical reasons related to government power and energy descent that I have given in other weeks.
========

I do learn from you, Vlad. I had no idea that South Africa was still +/- 10% pure white Afrikaner.

If I had been born Afrikaner in South Africa and with the financial means to escape - I'm afraid my white ass would have been out of there when apartheid ended. And THAT's fear - I don't mind admitting it.

But it also shows courage and Faith - of persons who were born in that troubled land, black and white - who call it Home - and want to live there for a better day.

Something like that future - is what all of us, of all melanin levels and genetic endowments, must embrace on this Earth.

What I'm saying is that we're all stuck here. If you look at demographics, birth rates, climates, and levels of solar radiation -

We better all learn to get along, one way or another - and not just in separated fantasy lands.

Tomorrow would not be too soon.


NOT 100,000 per year.

Legal immigrants to the US are 100,000 per month.

1,200,000 LEGAL immigrants per year.
Regardless of available jobs.
Regardless of economic conditions.
Regardless of Peal Oil.

They just keep coming and coming - like a thermostat someone set to 90 degrees - on an empty building - in February, and then forgot!

This is TRULY not sustainable - going forward - into the indefinite and endless future.

It is time to pick an issue and get involved.

I choose this as very important for the FUTURE of all of us!

Having a peculiar habit of reading from the bottom up, my interest began to perk up at paragraph number four and something about an ‘idiot’ sister‘. Continuing the long scroll up Rowdy Yates style--right around paragraph fourteen and the woman/fat /shopping sentence to be exact--and all mystery was vanquished. Yep, Bustin J, one of my favorite posters, was making his first post of the week.

Not that I get off on the misogynistic tirades, in fact, I think all that is just foil in order to present a comedic signature--kind of like Belushi going berserk over “the luck of the Irish”. Plus I like the expressive writing--it reminds me of Kunstler.

This is just a personal story:

As you know, Boston got socked with a winter snowstorm. It wasn't quite a blizzard, as far as the definition goes, but my back yard got 17" of snow, That's a lot for an urban, densely populated area.

This morning at 11:15, our electricity went out for 52 minutes. I know that seems hardly worthwhile mentioning when we routinely contemplate the unthinkable on this website, but I am a real typical cityboy. How I reacted to this very short blackout is pretty instructional, I believe.

My home is all-electric. When the electricity went out I was making pancakes on my electric stove. Coffee was beginning to brew in my electric coffee-maker. My electric heat shut off.
The lights were out, and because it was still pretty cloudy outside, my home was dark. It was difficult to use the bathroom because we couldn't see in there.

I hadn't showered yet, and realized that might be problematical because my hot water heater is electric.

My wife remembered we had a small propane camp burner which we could use for the pancakes, which were half-done on the kitchen stove. I suppose I could eat pancakes without coffee, but I grumbled about it.

Our camp stove was stored in our garage, across the way from our house. Ok, so I went to put on my winter boots, but my boots were in the garage.
So I put my regular shoes on, zippered up my winter jacket and started to leave for the garage. Oops. We have an electric garage opener.
I had to go back and get the garage lock key and manually lift up the garage door.

Once back home, we got the camp stove working. Soon, I realized we had no phone service because... guess what? All our phones were cordless, synched to the home base unit - which was electric (luckily we have 2 cell phones, but I almost never give out that number).

As I was eating my pancakes and sipping lukewarm coffee, the electricity came back on. Really, the whole incident was minor, but it got me thinking. What would have happened if the electricity stayed off? How would I react? Me, who knows about peak oil and it's consequences, was already grumbling after about 10 minutes electrcityless. How would people react who had no idea about peak energy? How would they cope?

Scary thought.

So I was

I've noticed a lot of remarks about overpopulation lately. Is anyone else familiar with Garrett Hardin and his book 'Living Within Limits'? His hard-nosed, tough-love approach is a welcome relieve from the 'let's make room for more (misery)' crowd. We should have to look at how many people a certain territory can support, and at what living standard. Each country should have it's own debate about how many people it wants and how many amenities (such as many of the freedoms that we take for granted and are now losing)we are willing to give up for a larger population. And countries that opt for a larger population would have to deal with the consequences instead of using emmigration.
Of course this will never happen because if we don't look, maybe the problem will go away.

Good story, Bean, thanks for sharing!

Same thing happens down here from time to time, except the well water stops flowing, too.

And, if it's at night, I can look down the mountain about a mile and see if the nearest cell tower is not flashing. This tells me it's not just my little corner of paradise that's out of power.

Then - if I can get the angle right between the trees - I can see if the next cell tower, four miles down the mountain toward town - is out of power as well. If it's out also - then it is freakin' 19th century dark up here!

And I have to wonder for a second at least, if TS has finally HTF!

==========
Two practical notes:
1. NTAM - maybe it's a Georgia thing. Back-up generators on cell towers don't run the strobes and lights, only the wireless.
2. I always have at least one old-fashioned phone in the house, without wireless or batteries.
Phone networks are more robust than the power grid - at least so far! ;-)

Good luck up there, Bean!

=========
And Jill - well stated!! I see this as the defining issue for the next decade. If we get this correct, then the US might be OK - and we may yet save the world.

If we screw it up - humanity and civilization may be toasted.

With all the gloom and doom of the predictions in this blog and comments section, it makes me wonder what could stave off the worst of the results of a total depletion of oil in the world, forecast for sometime in the next few decades. Politics seems to be a lost cause, as the left and the right are both fighting the wrong fight, in more ways than one. Revolution, as Jim has written about during his stay in France, might be the answer but, like every new situation, would come in a new form. Perhaps we should each do everything in our power to advance the cause of a sustainable USA, a cause that will be composed of many contributions. For example, a famous maxim states that what the mind can conceive, so it can produce. With a horrendous future ahead in terms of everything we take for granted, if we believe that the oil will run out and on the way there our country and world will suffer convulsions never seen, would it not be in our BEST interest to start retooling our housing and transportation infrastructure so that when the price of gas goes through the roof because supply goes down, we will be prepared. With a comprehensive train system, at every local, regional, and national level (high-speed rail, heavy rail, light rail, street-cars, monorails, etc), and a totally new real-estate policy favoring urban infill and suburban retrofitting, it has been argued by some of the country's leading minds that we can actually create a new economic base. A base that would create jobs at all levels of society for decades to come, and dramatically reduce our dependancy on oil. A good article on this is at www.brookings.edu/urban. It seems to me revolution in this country, with the impossibility of fast and comprehensive government action at the federal level, would entail each citizen interested in a better future doing his or her individual best toward that end. For example, JHK does his best through his writing style and his large following, and there are railroad visionaries like Christopher Swan of Suntrain USA who writes about a national, sustainable rail system for the new century. If we get enough bright people, and not-so-bright, to contribute toward the goal of making the USA environmentally sustainable, through each person's gifts we might be able to do what the government doesn't seem to be able to do: protect us from a dubious future.

www.americancities21.typepad.com

Hey Jim,

Great article, once again. I have to say some of the comments today were very good, and insightful. But I think they missed your overall point. Which was pissed off!

Where I live, in a so called well to do suburb of Chicagoland, and no I'm not well to do at all. Most people I know, wannabe rich, think they're rich, and the other middle, middle class folks that I know are not pissed off either! Of course they are very ignorant as to the train wreck that's coming. But, they are not pissed.

Saying that, I don't travel much anymore, but I used to love traveling abroad, and within the states. The point is, I know a lot of people just in the states, who are not pissed. Which is why there has been no Revolution yet. In my opinion TV is only part of the problem, hence no Revolution yet. You can blame the Web too for that matter. The real problem is that, yes the real unemployment rate in this country is around 22+%. But, for some reason they're not pissed off either. I have friends who (out of work) fall into this category, yet they're not pissed off. My take is they still own their house, and have some resources to fall back on, for at least awhile. Though, as Nicole Foss as stated, this Depression will last for decades, if not longer.

So for a revolution to happen here, the people I know need to loose their net worth. The DOW at 4,000 or 1,500 would be a good start. And based on sites I follow, it will happen.

In a nut shell, pissed off people are desperate people. And the people I know who still have jobs, or some resources left, are not yet desperate. Give it time, the revolution will happen. Keep in mind, the shit is still hitting the fan, it hasn't stopped or broken the fan yet, it will.

BTW, someone asked if Jim owned a gun. No, but he owns gun license.

Thanks JHK!

I am Sandy Krolick, thank you for recognizing me Helen Highwater!!

JHK said,

"When will the folks out there move from shame and despondency to being really pissed off about the disposition of things?"

I say,

When the folks no longer get that gubmint check in the mail in the form of food stamps, social security, and unemployment the "pissed off" mobs will be visible to all. In fact, the 99ers aren't getting that gubmint check any more. I predict the mobs will start to be visible by spring time!

The way forward to popular revolt is simple.

It is called a "general strike".

The movement will have to be prepared for government retaliation, and be prepared for an enduring, long-term general strike. But I think America represent's one of the best hopes in the world of being a country that could achieve this without bloodshed.

As for how we get this to happen, here is part of the solution: the internet.

As far as what terms are offered, I can suggest only

E-democracy to ensure the rights gained by the strike are retained by the people- ATM voting, in other words.

I think we can't move forward without a change in governance structure.

For a general strike to be effective as a means for social change, it cannot be stopped by negotiation. It cannot be stopped by promises to legislate "in the future".

To the extent that people are poor is to the advantage of the ruling system, since, it is a harder bargain to gamble a job you could punitively lose.

On the other hand, the strength and probability of the general strike improves as long as everyone including all employers as well as employees, agrees to strike in solidarity.

The goals of e-democracy is a universal one, across party lines, liberal or conservative. It is merely the right to participate. The time has come for the American electorate to leverage technology to achieve parity with representative democracy- and surpass it. We have the capability to be a true democracy- a democracy of individuals, not representatives- but ourselves. If you believe in the people and in democracy as a path to a better world, choose e-democracy. Choose a general strike. Lets put the power where it belongs: in the hands of the people. Today, not tomorrow. For the future.

You can google E-democracy. Also, wikipedia: "http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/E-democracy"

I think you'll find it a better alternative to thinking your vote counts.

Viva la America!

It is called a "general strike".

EXAMPLE:

Seattle General Strike

There is a third alternative to Kunstler's choices. Debt-free money. It existed in the original colonies, and Lincoln printed debt-free Greenbacks to pay for the Civil War. Debt-free money was the subject of much public debate prior to the passage of the Federal Reserve Act in 1913, and was raised by such stellar Congressmen as Jerry Voohis in the 1940s and Wright Patman up until the 1960s.

Now almost no one knows that Congress does not live up to its Constitutional duty to "coin money and regulate its value," having abdicated this job and illegally handed over to private banks, forcing us taxpayers to pay interest on every dollar created by the private bankers.

Read more about this and what can be done to fix the situation in Ellen Hogdson Brown's phenomenal book, "Web of Debt." The movie version ("The Secret of Oz," free on YouTube) is great, but the book is even better.

Debt-free money is not hard to create, and if it were created not just in the USA but in all countries where it does not exist, prosperity would be possible worldwide.

Before you start claiming that debt-free money would cause inflation, do your homework for at least a few weeks. Check out Malaysia. Check out China. Dig deep into the history of the IMF. Read about Jamaica and see the movie about the IMF in Jamaica, see the movie about Mali called "Bamako." Study Argentina. Look at Japan. Get the true details about Weimar Germany. Find out what happened when the Soviet Union collapsed. And Yugoslavia.

The destruction of many economies worldwide in recent years is, in most cases, not the result of their governments' incompetence. The groundwork was laid in 1910 at J.P. Morgan's estate at Jekyll Island, Georgia, and the international banking cartel has been moving forward with their plan with steady, single-eyed persistence ever since. As far as they are concerned, the US and its citizens are just another colony and its natives to plunder. Politics is the puppet show to distract us.

Bustin J, you said...

"Science in 2050 will be utterly more reliable than herbology in 2050- because herbology disrespects results and logic, confuses cause and effect, and just doesn't fucking work most of the time. People are likely to stay the same in 2050, though. Irrational and stupid. Therefore there will always be Herbologists."

Bustin, you understanding of mainstream medical science is narrow & flawed.

While I agree with your assessment of Herbalife, there are many herbs and plants that are highly effective for treating and/or curing medical conditions.

A common example is St. John's Wort, which is prescribed in Europe for depression far more frequently than pharmaceutical antidepressants.

Another example was given in that week's comments - licorice. Licorice DGL is used to heal the GI tract.

Pharmaceutical companies only spend money on studies for patented drugs. Herbs & plants - can't be patented. Medical schools only teach about treating symptoms with pharmaceuticals.

Just because it's not funded, doesn't mean it doesn't work. It just mean it's not funded.


I guess the only problem I have with
your theory, Observer, is that I think
the USA has become so STUPEFIED that
it's not capable of being diabolical
enough to pull off a conspiracy.

Yes, I've read the "Creature of Jeckyll
Island" and it's interesting but, like
an Alex Jones film, asks the reader to
"connect the dots" between facts in a
way that implies an amazing level of
coordination of the "evil doers".

I don't doubt, however, that central
bankers and their Too Big to Fail
front men are maleficent influences
at best.


E.

Fine column, comments, and give-and-take!
Nothing to add; just reading along and absorbing.

As was stated early; careful who you piss off! ;o)


I'll admit, Bill, that my list of metrics
for the downturn of America is incomplete
but I hope you admit NO set of metrics can
be complete. My list showed that we're
getting dumber, have low longevity and
high infant mortality, use way too much
energy relative to population, and its
prison population indicates a POLICE
STATE and not the "freedom" that Hannity
and Limbaugh would have one believe.

And as for "land of opportunity" ... for
WHOM?? Our concentration of wealth in the
top one percent of population is OBSCENE.
So ... our economic opportunities for average
people, the intellectual acumen of average
citizens, the HEALTH and healthcare opportunities
for average citizens, and the true freedom of
the sovereign individual are so horrid that
the Framers would roll over in their graves
if they could witness what we've BECOME
relative to what we WERE.

We also share aspects of European egalitarianism
that, to me, are stupid ... like bending over
backward for all immigrants instead of making
THEM bend over backward to join our culture,
language-wise and social-wise. Britain and
France, for example, ought to tell the Muslims
to join the culture of get the fuck out ... but
they won't because they're the "bleeder" type
of liberal.

So whether one looks at America from a
conservative slant or a liberal slant, I
think we've decayed ... fatally.


E.

I hope to just make it to London, Paris or Rome before it all goes to hell, but I've never been lucky enough to set foot outside North America. In the meantime, I at least have New York . . . and its bedbug infestation. Of course, if anyone comes out of this crisis relatively unscathed, it will be the European countries, most of them anyway, because they spend more money on mass transit and health care (i.e., the greater good) and less money on highways and "defense." The combined military budgets of Europe are dwarfed considerably by one nation - our own.

Jared M. Diamond in his book "Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed" identifies five factors that contribute to societal collapse: climate change, hostile neighbors, collapse of essential trading partners, environmental problems, and failure to adapt to environmental issues.

Shouldn't we also include "complexity" and "corruption" as important factors leading to the collapse of societies? Although I suppose that corruption would seem to be a symptom of complexity since corruption would tend to flourish under conditions of hyper-complexity?

And what about just plain, good 'ole "Stupidity"?

Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed (also titled Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Survive) is a 2005 book by Jared M. Diamond, professor of geography and physiology at University of California, Los Angeles.

Nice Video, it kept stopping on my computer tho, but I got the gist of it. Will check into this,
live on the west coast of ca. doable for sure, wish i owned some land, don't even have a yard, live in an apt. and we all know how important a fucking lawn is ! No common sense. waste o time and water. love the trees tho, and the pool here is WARM.

AQUAPONICS. THE FUTURE IF THERE IS ONE.

I love her red flowery top.
I've been to HA 2x. Very nice. Especially big island.

You lucky bums.

Pigs can fly, but only if you very very High !

couldn't help it, it's New Years !

$4.00 gas? That's the most you can endure? Most of the rest of the world pays $6.00.

Damn mollycoddled candyass.

"$4.00 gas? That's the most you can endure? Most of the rest of the world pays $6.00.

Damn mollycoddled candyass."

Hardly, fucktard. My point was that higher gas prices tend to curb spendthrift usage of gas.

As for the rest of the world paying $6.00 they have their wonderful government officials to thank for that. Its called taxes and as the rest of the world is finding out, what they get in return for higher taxes is fuckall.

Thank you for the link to the great Michael Hudson piece. He is one of Ellen Brown's sources. I'm glad to see how many countries are standing up to the banksters.

Why is it so hard for people to live without a TV or without being glued to it ?

Why is it so Easy for so many people to live in Denial ?

True a computer is similar to TV in a way. But I am not on it all day, I wish I was, selling on ebay, but don't know how. Yet.

Our TV broke, don't ask me how !!!
It's so nice to not have it droning in the background, my 'roommate' needs to have the fucking thing on ALL THE TIME when awake. ASLEEP AT THE WHEEL I MEAN.

Well, at least Kunstler acknowledges that he was a wee bit off in his prediction of a Dow 4,000 at the end of this year. At 11,555 (as of today), he's only off by, oh, nearly 300%, but I guess we all make mistakes, eh? ... on the other hand, we don't make them perpetually, year-in and year-out, with little sense of embarrassment. Kunstler seems to have mastered that routine. I can hardly wait to his uncannily accurate predictions for 2011 ...

Fortunately, my financial-forecasting head is screwed on a bit tighter than Kunstler's, and I've reaped equity profits of many tens of thousands of dollars since the stock market swoon of early 2009. (If I'd listened only to Kunstler, I'd still be sitting in my bomb-shelter basement eating nuts and berries and waiting for the "all clear" signal to sound.)

Not to say I'm an optimist -- far from it. I think Kunstler is dead-on with his following comment (so much so, I'm likely to cut and paste this quote -- with attribution -- to a number of other sites, as this is so well said):

"There really is no "solution" to our problem of debt except to become a less affluent society. You can get there via the path of compressive deflationary depression (no money), or hyperinflation (plenty of worthless money), but the destination is the same. In the meantime we're stuck with the extremely uneven distribution of hardship and luxury. Whole classes of formerly working people face the prospect of genuine ruin while an ultra-pampered class of celebrity clowns and professional swindlers fob off with whatever's left on the national buffet table."

Spot on. Well said, James!

Finally, I concur with Madcat (see post immediately above): if you think $4 a gallon gas is gonna freak people out, wait till $6 or $8/gallon. That's really not very far away. I predict we'll have $4/gallon gas in the U.S. by 2013, and $6/gallon gas by 2017, if not sooner. A more reasonable prediction than Kunstler's perpetual "Dow 4000".

By the way, IEA stats show that global petroleum production reached a new peak in 2011. So we're not at peak yet, for those of you actually paying attention. Regardless of what Kunstler says.

FreeCatBeMe agrees with You.
take their fucking tv's away.
I put my hand thru this cheapo flat
screen TV 'we' have just the other day.
Had, I mean !

hahahahahahaha you shoulda been there.
It's weird now, I think about I should turn the
TV on. I never did watch it that much, but my room
mate house mate had to have it on constantly.

not so much anymore. shit it felt great !
it no work no more. in garbage.

hahahahahahaha

Whoops! -- make my last paragraph above say 2010, not 2011. You know what I meant ...

I must add from my AM post and from some comments here....

First: While Glenn Beck and his unbridled appetite for drama and revision may lull the masses into a hateful sleep...when he quotes JHK, does he do it in his revisionist fashion like he does with US history and how we are all a Xtain Gawd-fearing nation at heart seized by those damn Liberulllz? Or does he purposely misinterpret JHK's works to suit his own need? I would imagine a world (town in this case) dominated by religious stupefied mouthbreathers as referenced in "A world made by Hand" as glorious to him and he cannot wait for it to happen...whereby JHK uses it as a possible case-scenario as to what COULD (and might) happen if the jesus-jihadist delusionals would have their way....

Second - the internet IS a big key as an aside to TV in manipulating the masses. I debate with old friends on current events and to "prove" they are right they quote me gobbledygook from evangelical sites, Faux Noise or World Nut Daily...the same goes for those who quote me AlterNet, HuffingtonPOst, etc. Whom ARE we to believe? As a grad school professor once said in exasperation at her students.."ALL SOURCES HAVE A BIAS! IT is Impossible to be without bias for every man has one!" But since some read the right, others the left...the story comes out muddled and only rumors of revolution are the ONLY revolution we have. ONce the PC is turned off, the TV as well...people take comfort in their bed and sleep. Hoping some greater person will come and make it all better as mommy did...and the next day the news is still the same regardless of which side you sit...and so sits revolution among the masses despite the foreclosure, 30K in debt, early diabetes, spiraling medical bills and what is new in people magazine and various tabloids.

Frankly, thinking about it, if TV and internet were to disappear and the masses wake up from their slumber the ONLY revolution that would take place in this country would not be against the elites who run this sh!t, but against neighbor vs. neighbor...those commies down the block who voted for Obama...the neo-facists down the street who proudly fly the "don't tread on me flag"... Bosnia-Herzogovenia(sp?) the US version. The Elites??? Sh!t, every American thinks he/she has a chance at the house on the hill and THEY wouuldn't want some mob coming after THEM. They all dream of winning the lottery and how many toys they could then purchase at Wally World.

Unlike the French and Russian revolutions, during times of new political and philosophical thought (enlightenment, Facism, Communism) of their era, we have ZILCH. Taking the educational level of the MAJORITY of Americans (shudder), they would rather sit home and wait for someone else to do it....and if it never came they would still be happy to sit and wait and do whatever they could. Their church would tell them what to do....their employers would. The free-thought of man is gone.

You know before I moved to the country to prep for doom, a neighbor home schooled her kids in what I call "organized-insanity living en masse." Very devout christian Rick Warren followers...she said she home schooled and taught her kids geography and such...I told her where I was from...Buffalo, NY. I told her it was near Niagara Falls...she asked me if it was anywhere near NYC. I told her, NO...that was on the OTHER side of the state. Niagara Falls...you know on the border of Canada.... Her reply, "Oh I thought Canada was much further NORTH" Yeah, these are the people who will be out in droves...and we expect a revolution for the better if it were to ever happen??? Sh!t and fall back in it.

*IF* a revolution comes it will be broadcast prime-time and available on the internet for download only because it has been sanctioned by the higher-ups as necessary for their complete seize of power. And the lowest common denominators will be at its beckon and call.

"By the way, IEA stats show that global petroleum production reached a new peak in 2011. So we're not at peak yet, for those of you actually paying attention. Regardless of what Kunstler says."

Well the IEA is ONE source and a happy puffy source it is. MY sources stated the peak occured (yes, past tense) in 2006-2008. Various sources...The End of Oil, Twilight in the desert, etc among others...some even stated it happened in 2005.

Damn if only more people thought like you and me.
STUPID FUCKING WASTING CONSUMPTION.

I get it. Gets tricky tho.
I said to ME when young that I am never going to commute by car long way to work, so I didn't. Always seemed like a huge waste to me. etc.
I always preferred things close to home, and while I love driving itself, driving on the road with lunatics is a whole other story. Not so much fun.

We were brainwashed to Waste, throw away OUR money to THEM. Too many people fell for it.

It's better when mixed in with Coco Puffs !

God I never ate that shit.
Not even One MacDonalds' burger ever.
I should get something for that !
I ain't young.

Q. And you predict its ruin?
A. It is a prediction which is made by mathematics. I pass no moral judgements. Personally, I regret the prospect. Even if the Empire were admitted to be a bad thing (and admission I do not make), the state of anarchy which would follow its fall would be worse. It is that state of anarchy which my project is pledged to fight. The fall of Empire, gentlemen, is a masssive thing, however, and not easily fought. It is dictated by a rising bureacracy, a receding initiative, a freezing of caste, a damning of curiosity - a hundred other factors. It has been going on, as I have said, for centuries, and it is too majestic and massive a movement to stop.

"Foundation" by Isaac Asimov

Many believe that the machetes will come out after Mandella dies. Despite being a terrorist, he has been a voice of moderation since the turnover. In any case, the Boers are well prepared and heavily armed. Whatever their confusion before, NOW they know after bitter experience, that there can be no peace with Blacks. And if the World stays out of it (unlike last time), they will win themselves a Home.

Blacks would love to enact the same thing here but don't have the numbers. But that hasn't stopped them from wreaking havoc. So they have been placated - bought off with welfare, affirmative action, set asides, and academic pandering. None of this solves anything. It is not enough for them - no amount of pandering will ever be. The inevitable battle is just delayed, nothing more.

Am I obnoxious? Undoubtedly. You have to understand Prog, that I'm a Doctor of the human soul. In your case I had to do some cutting. Believe me, it hurts me more than it hurts you (a lie).

Sorry folks; you may want to start the Hedges article on page one!!

http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/2011_a_brave_new_dystopia_20101227/

"I would not be surprised if the government began to subsidize the cable TV companies, just to keep the propaganda pumping into the heads of the unemployed."

The government doesn't have to subsidize TV companies. That's taken care of by those who control the government...

"As if anyone actually reads my responses. haha."

I read your responses! (I read everybody's responses - they're often as insightful as the JHK article, only rarely written with as much finesse)

Of course. Most people are naturally peasants. Not only College but even High School is a waste for these people. Revolution? They seldom do it unless agitated, organized, drilled, and funded my powerful outside interests. And if they do revolt on their own without this, they are quickly crushed as were the Irish time and again. So the question then becomes: who did the funding and training of the French and Russian Revolutions and WHY?

Whatever his limitations, Glenn Beck knows at least some of the answers to this. He describes the process very well: revolutions are top down and bottom up; a vise in which the middle class is caught and crushed. Or the Aristocracy displaced by a new industrial Elite in the case of the French and Russian Revolutions.

"As a researcher I have already made the correlation between crude oil price surges and steep declines in the DJIA leading into recessions."

Yep, it's an interesting exercise to plot the DJIA against the price of oil and note the point at which stocks cease riding up with oil and suffer crashes and mini-crashes.

I'm a self-confessed oil freak who has a few Excel spreadsheets that do exactly that - you can pick an impending stock correction far enough ahead to jump out of the market at the top if you're clever.

You can also see the effect of QE2 and the latest extension of tax cuts/unemployment benefits on the true value of the dollar. Oil at $85 a barrel was enough to drive a 2-3% correction in stock markets two months ago, now oil at $91 isn't quite enough, but a correction will come.

"Additionally, I am inclined to believe the Saudi's do not have the pumping capacity to flood the market and lower the price of crude, as they have in the past."

That action was conspicuously absent in 2008 also, despite pleas from GW Bush. I'm inclined to believe they couldn't back then either - why would they cripple themselves in a recession caused by driving the prices to a crash?

Muslim savagery. Vidi well, litte brother, vidi well.

http://www.wvwnews.net/story.php?id=9656

Yes so many are going to have A Rude Awakening, Completely Clueless. You aren't clueless. Some really are. The youngins'.

It's amazing how people don't think of common sense things. Even at any age some of them.

For instance I recently had surgery and needed to rehab at my sisters'. after a few days she and her boyfriend left me alone, both are in their 60's, older than me, and I wasn't even close to being 'better.' Left me without thinking on a stormy day, when we usually would lose power, left me without any flashlight, or any thought of consequences of what I may have to had gone thru had the power went out and alone, in the dark. Left me anyway I guess that's another story, it WAS Christmas, time to drive to the rest of the family. Thank God she did ! haha.

Shit I realized I didn't even know the damn address, after 2 trips to the E.R. in one month it was possible to have to go again, I drove myself the first 2x. but I had the recommended surgery so to avoid that FUN haha FIASCO for the 3rd time. Cell phones are great IF you know where you are.... and in CA if you are in a car you get the Highway Patrol. We are supposed to know that. We don't. I do now as I call in Rude dangerous drivers. ALOT.

Anyway yes you / we have to start thinking about the other way of doing things. For now. Without electricity. Even for a few hours is hard. days.
I can't imagine weeks.

If you live on the same street as Police Station City Hall and Fire Dept. you are the First to get it turned back on. Excellent info for City Dwellers. My little secret.

Funny story. Thanks !

A poster above was writing about Herbalists and Science:

P.S. I was considering the Herbal Cure, but after 4 bouts of gallstones passing in one month, and the unbearable pain, I figured get it done. A stone passing can kill ya. It's all gone, had the surgery, getting better now. Plus I currently have Health Insurance. Lucky Me. It is true to get done what ya can while you can. I am doing that.

HNY everyone ! Here it comes.......

I agree that both demand and supply destruction are inevitable due to declining resources and the need to end a growth policy. Looked at a different way, though, this could be a positive development. Obviously, we need to live smaller.

Global warming impacts will dominate economies within the next two decades. Climate Progress or Skeptical Science have published good summaries on risk assessment here lately.

I don't know about you, but I remember when gas got to $4.00/gallon in Northwest Indiana.

The year before that, I noticed that most of the vehicles on the road were either SUVs or Trucks. Oversized, gas draining, gleefully polluting behemoths that were making me feel claustrophobic on the road. Not only that, but I remember Tonka Toys...er, I mean Hummers here and there. Even on the streets of Chicago, struggling with right turns (or trying to run over liberals, who knows...).

The summer of $4.00/gallon gas saw a lot of trucks and SUVs disappear from the streets, replaced by cars and "crossovers" (wagons with higher roofs, but who's complaining...); with even the SUVs changing to smaller versions. And I've yet to see that pattern reverse itself. (And last I remember, Hummer no longer exists as an active brand. It was destroyed BEFORE the bankruptcy of the Car Company that owned the brand name, if I remember right.)

Now we're seeing electric cars (with or without gas engines, Volts and Leafs) making their debut in American markets.

Things are changing. Too late if you ask me (also too slowly and not far enough in the right direction), but things are changing.

"As the planet continues its long slide into the pit, what are YOU going to do to try to change the direction?"

A good start, and Mr. Kunstler is doing that since long, is talking about, explaining what happens, proposing solutions.
But writing is not enough, to say the truth you need two persons, the one who talks AND the one who listens.
The main problem of today is that there are too many talkers and too few listeners.
They say that for going better you must reach the bottom.
We already have, but instead of trying to go better it looks that people are digging furher, may be they think it is easier to reach the other side of the globe digging, or they think going on digging they will find the solution, or, which is more likely, they are TOLD that the solution is going further down.
How can you dream to solve your problems going on the same direction it created them?
Or may be it is right.
Cristoforo Colombo went West to arrive East.
He didn´t know that he would have found America and stop there.
But he was right.
Earth is a globe and going in one direction you can find yourself in the opposite.
May be the same applies to life.
Life is a circle, you go in one direction and you find yourself in the opposite.
If you do not, as Colombo did, find death (America) in between.

The Green Party of California is not THE Green Party.

To extrapolate from one state's platform to the entire Green Party is wrong.

I am a Green and I can see that immigration benefits the corporations who need cheap labor to drive down every workers wages, and to profit from the vulnerable.

This is why the corporate media plays up uncontrolled immigration as a good thing.

It is to the ruling class.

It isn't to the working class.

Don't assume that the California Green Party speaks for all Greens.

"More importantly, you would have to kill any and all financial oligarchs and their families in whatever country they exist. In the long run, there's no other way for the rest of us to protect ourselves from fatal parasitism. They must go. Their genes must go."

This comment really shocked me.
There was somebody not so long ago that had in mind the same solution.
Understanding what you say is understanding Hitler and why he was so successful.
In a moment of extreme poverty, unemployment (much worse than today) the Jews in Germany were outrageously rich, bankers in first row (not much different from today) and they HAD TO GO. THEIR GENES HAD TO GO.
Say to a starving population that the Jews or the oligarchs are the guilty of their misery, that you will rebuild a new world without parasites and in order to do so you have to exterminate their genes, and if you are able to say it loud and in a convincing way, History will repeat...

Free the Weed

USA most likely will just break apart, instead of revolution, first unofficially, then some day officially.

Red/blue-division is as strong as before civil war and the federal government is impotent to deal with problems. At best half-solutions, at worse making problems even bigger problems.

Military spending is bankrupting the nation and now they are already printing money to cover the expenses. Many cities are experiencing very bad cash crisis, beyond bankruptcy.

I think American municipality bond crisis will be the main thing next year, the way Ireland and Greece were this year. Except the crisis will be much more severe.

Nothing moves people faster than total lack of money. When you spend your last 10 dollars, then you have to do something. A lot of people without money is a dangerous thing and a lot of Americans are getting there, slowly but surely...

"Blacks would love to enact the same thing here but don't have the numbers. But that hasn't stopped them from wreaking havoc. So they have been placated - bought off with welfare, affirmative action, set asides, and academic pandering. None of this solves anything. It is not enough for them - no amount of pandering will ever be. The inevitable battle is just delayed, nothing more."

WOW..can you say stereotyping and cramming all of one group of people into a mold?

Blacks have been placated....yep. I never see a black person working...never see one in a class or trying to better their job prospects. Must be because they're all at home being placated.

As for affirmative action, NOTHING works perfectly. But the only ones who I hear screeching about AA are white, middle-class men who think that THEY should be given privilidge because....they are white middle class men and it is within THEIR rights to be given opportunities first.

And academic pandering....What? You think that by pushing kids through school in economically depressed areas - kids who can barely read or write - is PANDERING to them??? Yeah, they sure do come out of school spoiled rotten from all the breaks they got

Did it ever cross your mind that Whitey McPasty might be living off welfare too? That Whitey McPasty gets a leg up from the ol'boys network because he attends "Gawds Woyd Babble Chuch" - the "church" that will help anyone in the community find a job, but takes into account its own parishioners FIRST and steers them to the front of the line ... maybe passing up better candidates?

You speak of blacks as if they are all collectively lazy, obtuse and expecting a handout. I am surprised you didn't just come out and call them welfare kings and queens...because they are *ALL* like that, right?

You say you are a MD to the soul.....heal thyself doctor, heal thyself. Step 1 is to turn off your boob tube tuned on Faux Noise and Glenn Beck. They do nothing to support your "arguments"

My above post was in response to Vlad's earlier illuminating commenatry on Black People....


As I scrolled through the comments this morning I thought Observer and E are ripe for reading Naomi Klein's "Shock Doctrine", a must read. I recommend it to all on this site.

The book takes you through the philosophical construct of Milton Friedman from torture to create the new man to the ongoing architecture of destroying economies starting with Chile when they toppled Allende in favor of Pinochet. She illustrates the Chicago School of Business and how students from South America were put in place to further the "experiment". It goes on to illustrate the collapse of economies in Asia, Russia etc.

It will change the way you see our leadership and the global economy. Trust me, you won't like this system one bit.

I think it's no longer "Capitalism" with competition and the desire to make the best product on the market. This monetarism is designed to create massive debt and destroy economies across the board.

In the US it took a long time to hit critical mass because we were once so wealthy, but we getting down to bare bones.

It's anyone's guess what happens next. Be assured though the new talk on austerity is part of the Shock Doctrine and it's important to interpret the lingo and signs that you are now a victim of this economic theology as in real time.

"I ain't a fan of Palin but I find it hard to believe that she could fuck things up any worse than our current administration."

My comment on Palin really wasn't meant to imply that I think President Obama is doing a good job. He's a corporate tool.

However, I think our next step (unfortunately) will be that the masses elect someone they think of as a messiah, in a way. I'm not sure if Palin will fit that bill or not, but she and her corporate sponsors sure are trying to set her up to be one. Either her or Glenn Beck.

The danger in electing someone like Palin is that she isn't the bumbling fool that the left would like to pretend she is. If she were, she wouldn't be where she is today.

The "mistakes" we see Obama making are the first steps - He screwed up the left's dream of universal health care. He's furthered our involvement in endless wars. He's put more money into hands of the wealthy. But, these aren't mistakes - he and his administration never intended to do anything else.

The next steps will be to continue the removal of our rights, which is what a right wing administration will accomplish in the name of protection and morality. The "morality" aspect is what frightens me, and it will be the final blow to all our freedoms.

But, no, the current situation isn't good at all. It's a path, though, to further tyranny and lack of freedom.

read it...it reminded me of "Confessions of an Economic Hit Man" by John Perkins. If you liked Klein's academic work, read Perkins....he worked IN the machine for many years...and what he says will make even more sense as to where this country is going. For in the capitalist/oligarch's world, nationality/patriotism mean NOTHING. You move and follow and make money. That is all...and if it means turning our nation into a complacent drooling lump of consumers who will have no choice when the day comes to abolish all unionization, all benefits and living wages so be it...so WE can become the new crop of laborers for their profit.

Buck,

Well said, and I completely agree. It's what I think about every day. I can't regret my children, but I also realize that my power to stand up to tyranny has diminished greatly as a result of my need to protect them.

To be honest, deep down, I believe that the next years will be bleak. I believe it will be my children who are the revolutionaries.

ElleBeMe ---Yes indeed.
I was thinking of Perkins after I posted and I agree. Both books work well together to illustrate the way this system operates. Both are must-reads. For me Klein gives us the better glimpse into the philosophical construct and implementation and shows how academia works into this. When JHK asked where are the intelligencia who should know better? Klien will tell you they made 300% on the privatization of the public held resources in Russia.
They are in fact dedicated to the ideology of free trade and globalization--money talks--its the only thing that does today and as we lose more ground economically it will be king!

"However, I think our next step (unfortunately) will be that the masses elect someone they think of as a messiah..."

That already happened. His name is Obama. Electing another messiah will not happen on the heels of just having elected one.

Think of someone along the lines of Chris Christie. A bearer of bad news, that is pragmatic and unapologetic about doing what needs to be done. In short, an adult.

Even the dullest in out midst are beginning to realize that we stayed too long at the punch bowl. We don't need no stinkin' messiahs.

I couldn't agree more. I have read both and both reads are extremely disturbing.

You stated:

"Klien will tell you they made 300% on the privatization of the public held resources in Russia.
They are in fact dedicated to the ideology of free trade and globalization--money talks--its the only thing that does today and as we lose more ground economically it will be king!"

You know they are already here in the US. When the markets melted down back in 2007/8 I remember hearing on the news that the World Bank was coming to the US to intervene on "our" behalf. Right then and there I knew what they were going to do...the same they have done elsewhere...sell off US assets. And those who do the selling will..."oooh oh take the $$$ and run...." and then what is left? Leave the people in poverty while the higher ups run and control everything. Feed them religion, give them nothing else....no medical care, no state services, hell...no maintained roads or water sources!

Funny the teabaggers seemed to arrive hot on the heels of the World Bank's arrival...

NOTHING is accidental.

The US has been bought and sold. Now it's time to break it to the people...and them? Revolt? Just make sure it is amongst themselves, not directed at those controlling the strings.

"God I never ate that shit.
Not even One MacDonalds' burger ever.
I should get something for that !"

It sounds like you did get something...gullstones. ( The gull!)

ElleBeMe

We are of the same mind, here. I've been on this blog since May warning about the neoliberal agenda and you, my friend are the first person who really has showed you know what I mean.

Thanks for that.

"You know they are already here in the US. When the markets melted down back in 2007/8 I remember hearing on the news that the World Bank was coming to the US to intervene on "our" behalf. Right then and there I knew what they were going to do...the same they have done elsewhere...sell off US assets."

What the fuck does the above gibberish even mean? Could you please cite some examples of members of the World Bank who sold off our assetts. For fuck's sake this generalized horseshit is the fodder of the imbecilic.

YOu're right, I have no concrete proof and suspicion of a conspiracy is not evidence of a conspiracy. *HOWEVER* if you have read the Shock Doctrine, Confessions of an EHM and other sources, the repeated pattern of what happens when the World Bank comes on in is to give the nation in need HUGE sums of $$$. The nation accepting the funds uses itself as collateral in case they should default on the loans. In case of default, the WB comes in, PRIVATIZES everything, slashes ALL social and infrastructure programs and assists in placing in a new governemnt sympathetic to its goals.

In south America where the WB came in and gave huge sums of cash...to improve ???, the elites jumped ship (politicians, ruling families) and the nation was left with a crushing debt it had to repay. So in order to repay it, all natural reserves were privatized....got oil fields? Well, they belong to Shell...BP....Exxon...etc. now. Got fresh water reserves? Well, we'll be sure to seal them off and export them to help pay off the debt at our leisure. Thing is the amount earned from the seizure of assets went towards profits for the private firm rather than that of the nation's debt. So the people are left in squalor. And in order to keep THEM in line, religion is mandatory. The Catholic Church fills this capacity with enthusiasm. Also make sure that the government in place expresses more concern for the companies gorging themselves than the people. A Reactionary government serves this purpose quite well.

So you see....I may not have proof of what US assets are on the table for seizure, but knowing what I do about the track record of the WB....let's just say that when they stepped in it was a very BAD omen for the US.

Keep/toss... Your mileage may vary on how you see things.

Hey at least someone understands me and I them :>) Good to know that other people still read.

Neo-liberal...neo-conservative...who the hell cares what it is called, in the end we're all screwed by it!

"YOu're right, I have no concrete proof and suspicion of a conspiracy..."

Then shut up. You only make yourself sound like some sort of moron.

"why did Achilles drag Hector around the city of Troy three times?"

So it would make a great painting on the walls of Greek restaurants, Jim.

Happy New Year, you bunch of lovable grumps.

JimJim, Don't be too quick to call people morons just because they don't have proof of something. Wikileaks is all about the blackout of info.

Oh, what perfect timing I just ran across a John Perkins spot form yesterday:
Monday, December 27, 2010
John PERKINS : HOW WE DESTROY SOVEREIGN COUNTRIES LIKE IRAQ
http://geraldcelentechannel.blogspot.com/2010/12/john-perkins-how-we-destroy-sovereign.html

"Parisians decided to fraternize with the Nazis rather than have their dear city bombed the city they'd Bastilled a century and half earlier. Londoners refused to be invaded and had many sections of their precious city leveled."
--------------------
Bad read of history. The inhabitants of both cities had no choice (or decision to make); their governments made the decision for them. If your post was meant to be French-bashing, then you should explain the almost 100,000 French soldiers killed in action in 1940.

Vlad, old bean, thanks for the Kipling. A good read. Hope you had a good Christmas.

BTW did you see the movie "My Boy Jack"? It's about the son Kipling lost in WW1. Stars Daniel Radcliff (Harry Potter) and Kim Cattrall (Sex and the City, no less, as his mom). Both actually did a not bad job of it. Same with the actor that portrayed Kipling. And IMO not a bad movie either.

J,

There was actually one other poster that said maybe a year ago that they never had a MacDonalds burger. You're not missing anything. The humblest burger you do in a frying pan on your stovetop is orders of magnitude better.

Well who died and made you forum God? Just because you haven't read the books dealing with what we were discussing is not my problem. So if you can't keep up with a conversation because you lack the wherewithal to understand it...here's some advice for you...stay the fu*k out of it and STFU.

Three cheers for you Caliope.

In oh so hip and intellectual European capitols and in here in Toronto people dismiss Americans as ignorant buffoons.

It's not so. IMO if Americans are ignorant then everyone else is hugely worse. Americans spent millions of man years in western Europe keeping Germany down and Russia out, millions of man years in Japan and Korea keeping Japan down and North Korea out and millions more man years in Indo China and Iraq and Afghanistan messing up. Plus you have multinational companies that span the globe.

Americans came out of those experiences with a collective well of understanding and knowledge of the world. Even where they screwed up. At least as compared to everyone else especially my compadres in Canada, who know absolutely beans.

So many comments, so little time. First, Happy New Year to all you CFN'ers! Now, from my own little corner of heaven on Earth. Last week, after a short trip to the supermarket, returned home to find THREE policemen on the front lawn of my city condo building. Asked them WTF was going on (politely, of course). Seems someone scaled the SECOND story balcony of my condo, opened the (unlocked - yeah, stupid, I know) french door. Now, I live in a southern city on a quite busy street. Long story short, they escorted me into my apartment. Nothing (visibly) out of place. Later, hubby found that someone got into our bedroom and removed some very expensive weed (shit, EVEN I didn't know where he kept it)! Turns out, the little shitheel we almost certainly know did it lives in the building. It was the toothless guy I fed over the summer, feeling sorry for the bastard. So, yes, the S is indeed hitting the fan at an increasingly high velocity. I went over the edge mentally for a little while. Hubby "visited" the creep in his apartment, and I gather made some unspecified threats about having Irish Mafia family members in North Jersey ready, willing, and able to outfit him in cement booties, ready for a dip in the ol Hackensack. Merry Freaking Christmas, right? Enough of my troubles, though. Serves me right for being a compassionate person.
Beantown Bill, I lived in Boston during the 1980's and worked for a small S&L there. Bostonians, I found, were the most disciplined (financially) people I'd ever met! You couldn't get them to part with a nickle! Thrifty and smart, their expression remains with me still: "Make it do, wear it out or do without." Something like that. Anyhow, you guys are made of some strong stuff. I don't worry too much about you guys in New England getting by when TSHTF. You're about as tough as they come! Come on down to Dixie to seem some real basket cases when the lectrictee goes out. (Apologies to you Southern boys who work their farms...you know who you are!) I be talkin bout the NASCAR (yep, I said it), bible thumpin, confedrit flag wavin bunch who still can't comprehend how deeply they are getting corn-holed from every single possible possible direction. Sad.

Talk of revolution is interesting, but I think that American dislocations will take a different path. As things get more stressful, and hope for a resurgence of the good old days dissipates, I expect that areas of the country, like western South Carolina, and Eastern Tennessee will will localize, and become de facto theocracies. Already, some christianist dominionist organizations are, and have been for a few years, focussing on taking over county governments, school boards and have as published goals, the creation of a dominion of christian (read taliban) government.

In addition, Washington DC is not remotely like Paris in 1789, or Moscow in 1919. Washington is largely a government compound, and all real economic activity and social cohesiveness arises from and is dependent on the federal government, and thus has not effective base for revolution. Instead, I would expect that the federal government will stand silent and counties quietly go their own way, with state governments having neither the money or resolve to challenge this development, while cities, in the manner of Detroit, but with different details, will relax the governmental presence, public facilities, and leave the burbs and outer city residents to either move out and further empty the disintegrating areas, or create their own methods of security and public health arrangements.

The question arises whether these areas of central government disengagement will become centers of enterprise and creativity, or become the tobacco roads of the 21st century. Or one or the other depending on location and culture. In any case, in the absence of the US withdrawal from the southern Asian adventure in empire, there will be no resources to hold the center, and no nationally adopted sense of revolutionary purpose to generate the kind of eruptions that occurred in France or in Russia. But hopefully, the Banksters and
Wall Street crooks will be destroyed by this devolution, as there will be no plastic, TV driven "consumer economy" to support their predations.

Couldn't possibly agree with you more! Spot on!

"That's the revolution."

And for most of us it will be a long, slow process, learning what needs doing and getting it done. Do not allow optional entrainments to pull you away from job one.

These should be measured by milage from home {rather than ground zero} as you will be walking or expending energy unwisely to chase phantoms. Let not your heart be troubled, {if} you believe [by-live] in God. "No Fear Lives Here".

I think you nailed it head-on. Tho in reference to the dominionist colonies....they are NOT peaceful people. I can still envision bloodshed if they think they have been given divine providence to rule as they see fit....

"Their genes must go."

It's not just their genes that did it. Nature/Nurture = better training in the way they should go {and when they are old they shall not depart from it}.

Heinlein used to say, "You can judge the quality of a civilization by the training received by it's leaders". Better training would lead to a better civilization.

The Kingdom of God is a form of government. We have a king, a law, citizens and territory. After the perversions of good government, insituted by men, have all been tried and found wanting, we can repent {change our minds} and recover to the old ways. Leaders of Tens. Each family picks a leader, usually the oldest member, and go from there.

"I can still envision bloodshed if they think they have been given divine providence to rule as they see fit...."

Sovereigns can rule themselves. Those that do not support the Covenant are free to leave, having the right of Free Association. Private Property supports this, as does Christian Liberty. Anything else is tyranny and oppression, usually forced by a man-made government, at gunpoint. Nicolaitanism has no place among God's people.

"...the Banksters and Wall Street crooks will be destroyed by this devolution, as there will be no plastic, TV driven "consumer economy" to support their predations."

God speed the day. Devolution can be good.


Yeah, I tell my co-workers that it's our turn to be IMF'd, and none of them know what I mean.

So I tell them.

But the US government and Federal Reserve won't go down without trying to steal more from other countries.

Someone upthread (I think, couldn't find it again), linked to Michael Hudson, and these 3 paragraphs say a lot. I recommend the entire article.

The Fed and Congress have told China to revalue its currency, the renminbi, upward by 20 per cent. This would oblige the Chinese government and its central bank to absorb a loss of half a trillion dollars – over $500 billion – on the $2.6 trillion of foreign reserves it has built up. These reserves are not merely from exports, much less exports to the United States. They are capital flight by U.S. money managers, Wall Street arbitragers, international speculators and others seeking to buy up Chinese assets. And they are the result of U.S. military spending in its bases in Asia and elsewhere – dollars that recipient countries turn around and spend in China.

Chinese authorities have tried to make it clear that what they object to is the U.S. policy of creating “electronic keyboard credit” at one quarter of a percent (0.25 per cent) to buy up higher yielding assets abroad (and nearly every foreign asset is higher yielding). The Group of 20 in Seoul Korea last week accused the United States of competitive currency depreciation and financial aggression, and countries stepped up attempts to shun the dollar and indeed, to avoid running trade and payments surpluses as such.

The bottom line is that there is no way that the United States can defend depreciation of the dollar on terms that oblige other countries to take a loss on their holdings. Investors throughout the world have lost faith in the dollar and other paper currencies, and are moving into gold or simply closing off their economies. Over the past year – ever since the BRIC meetings in Yekaterinburg, Russia, in summer 2009 – their response has been to avoid using the dollar, to protect themselves from aggressive U.S. capital flight seeking to raid their central banks, buy out their companies, raw materials and assets with “paper credit” and indeed to step up military spending.

http://www.counterpunch.org/hudson11222010.html

"The Revolution Will Be Televised" (Gil Scott Heron), and we will watch Glenn Beck U get torched and it's Guru will be stoned with eggs and Cheez Curls.

The revolution will be televised as the sub-literates get off their Lazy Boys and waddle into the streets like zombies looking for fatcat bankstas to trample.

The revolution will be televised from portable turrets filled with gun toting private cops and young, innocent t.v. telereaders filming the lyra tights-wearing obscene sub-literates who lean on their shopping carts as they storm Walmart stores looting and crashing aisles with their steel clad junk receptacles . Shot dead are the Great Unwashed as they lay twitching and lunging upon the blacktopped parking lot of China's company store feeding the wanting needs of super dooper bargain shoppers waiting for the next shipment of Asia's sweatshop products.

The revolution will be televised as hoards of destitute unemployed Wall Street paper-pushers in their tattered, Good Will purchased Brooks Brothers clothes raid the offices of their Washington representatives receiving bundles of campaign cash contributions from the elite's 1% tax cuts.

The revolution will be televised as the cable companies find their HD boxes smashed upon the sides of their service vehicles filling the neighborhoods streets with their worthless plastic wage draining programming machines.

The revolution will be televised!

http://eye-on-washington.blogspot.com

Ellebeme,I hope you realize you are wasting your time with the "fucktard",formally known as tza tza.
He is the guy that heard the bells ringing,but don't know where in hell they are hanging.

I was horrified by "Shock Doctrine." The idea that natural disasters should be seen as opportunities for economic profit. Suddenly what happened and is happening in New Orleans made sense.

As the infrastructure falls apart and the weather gets wilder, the predators will be out to wring the last drops of profit out of the populace.

P.S. Did you get to wax your skis?

Maybe Flaubert had it right:

“One mustn't look at the abyss, because there is at the bottom an inexpressible charm which attracts us."

"Someone upthread (I think, couldn't find it again), linked to Michael Hudson, and these 3 paragraphs say a lot."

Is this:

http://www.yesmagazine.org/issues/living-economies/532

the same Michael Hudson?

Hi LLB
When I read the "Shock Doctrine" I was more horrified than I was when I read "1984" at the age of 12. Why---Because it's real!!

Skiing was great.
In the 1970's I bought waxless cross country skis. I love that they've lasted all these years and that I can just put them on in the right conditions right outside my building and ski around the neighborhood. When I lived uptown I would go to Central Park which was fantastic.
I skied inside and outside Washington Square Park. I find there are others out there doing the same and lots of people want to take a pic!
Love the fact that I can ski on pretty deep snow without sinking.

"The Obama Democrats, the putative Left Wing, are analogous to the pro-monarchy center of revolutionary France." Maybe I'm being overly naive here, but I think Mr Obama is the best candidate to lead America into the post-oil future, though he may need a brutal bitch-slap from national and international events to get him acting. While I admire JHK's cogent and inciteful analysis of our national predicament, I hate to think that the Obama who wrote "The Audacity of Hope", electrified the delegates at the 2004 Democratic convention and made that brilliant speech on race during the 2010 campaign, a speech that political analyst Jack Lessenberry called the best speech on the subject since the late Robert Kennedy's on the eve of Martin Luther King's murder, was just another political cipher like George W, Bush or Bill Clinton,

Michael Hudson's site is:
http://michael-hudson.com/

About: Michael Hudson is President of The Institute for the Study of Long-Term Economic Trends (ISLET), a Wall Street Financial Analyst, Distinguished Research Professor of Economics at the University of Missouri, Kansas City and author of Super-Imperialism: The Economic Strategy of American Empire (1968 & 2003), Trade, Development and Foreign Debt (1992 & 2009) and of The Myth of Aid (1971).

ps there is another Michael Hudson who also writes about economics I think he's a journalist.

Ang conveyed, "Pharmaceutical companies only spend money on studies for patented drugs. Herbs & plants - can't be patented. Medical schools only teach about treating symptoms with pharmaceuticals.

Just because it's not funded, doesn't mean it doesn't work. It just mean it's not funded."

As far as I know, medical schools teach about treating conditions with herbs if scientific studies show they are effective. Scientific studies are funded and pursued at institutions using scientific techniques.

As for the question of funding, I think it is fair to say that if it is developed, it was funded, if it was funded, there was profit potential, if there was profit potential, there was demonstrable need (patients with symptoms). There are unsuccessful drugs that have been pushed on the market for many conditions where there is clearly a fraudulent motive. I can't recall specific names of these drugs but there are examples. For-profit companies have incentive to glean profits over significant costs of development. So there is possibility not only of fraud, but patient harm. When a physician takes into account the indeterminate nature of symptoms and claims by manufacturers, he is taking an educated guess.

For herbologists, obviously there are no patent medicines, but there are secret formulas, and processes. The FDA does not inspect or evaluate these products. The possibility of contaminants and sub-par quality are a real, proven danger.

Moreover, many herbs are indicated for a great many symptoms. And who checks if anyone ever tested their effects? Who checks for cross-reactivity with existing diet, supplements, or pharmaceuticals.

The supplement market is a wild west where causes are divorced from effects. Treatments are based on intuitions and salesmanship.

Beantown mentioned the efficaciousness of the placebo effect, further complicating the veracity of claims. Yet claims are made and evidence circumstantial.

I am reading Nassem Taleb's work on Black Swans, specifically, the fallacy of survivorship bias. In the biomedical sense, this is certainly apropos for the Homeopathic field.

1. Who remembers the patient who died because her symptoms were misdiagnosed and given medication that didn't address the cause?

2. Who remembers the patient who died because her herbs didn't address root causes and the placebo effect was not present or did not make a difference?

3. Who remembers the patient who was "diagnosed" by folklore and took medicine that injured or killed her based on an ambiguous diagnosis?

4. Who remembers the vendor who made sugar pills for $1.10/lb. and then sold it in a bottle with a label listing ingredients not contained in the pills and marked up the price by 3000%, when assured that the placebo effect would prove efficacious for a great percentage of buyers. (Who offers a generous "money-back guarantee" or "no hassle return policy")

5. Who profits when desperate people with real needs and medical conditions are easily convinced to part with their money for products that offer no proven results yet are allowed to claim any effects on their labels?

The global pharmaceutical market is worth somewhere north of $700 billion/yr. The size of the counterfeit drug economy is about 10% of that size.

America does increasing business with Mickey Mao's China Emporium which is quite literally filled with counterfeit manufacturing. Counterfeit pharmaceuticals are on drugstore shelves in the United States. What ends up in those pills? Anything.

Step outside the U.S. and the chances increase exponentially that you will be eating fake drugs.

On St. John's Wort,

"Conclusions: Current evidence regarding Hypericum extracts is inconsistent and confusing. In patients who meet criteria for major depression, several recent placebo-controlled trials suggest that Hypericum has minimal beneficial effects while other trials suggest that Hypericum and standard antidepressants have similar beneficial effects." - http://bjp.rcpsych.org/cgi/content/abstract/186/2/99

This result is not a slam-dunk proving the efficaciousness of St. Johns Wort in treating Depression. But it is not a condemnation that SJW isn't effective either. What it says simply is that, if the Herbologist gave you a sugar pill that cost $0.02 to make and charged you $0.25 for that same pill, he made a scadload of money, and you might feel better for placebic reasons.

Now, to my mind, I see the vendor as a crook, preying on the desperation of vulnerable people. But most hippie chicks shelling out dough at the Herbologist tend to have a high confidence in their own ability to evaluate the truth and falsehood of claims, or the motivations of people. In other words, they are easy prey for victimizers in the process of a crime in which causation is difficult to prove.

So when weighing relative risks between going to a board-certified, accredited physician, who has scientific training, and expert knowledge of biochemistry and physiology, who works in conjunction with similarly educated, board-certified pharmacists, who deal with USP-certified drugs which are vetted by the FDA and subject to clinical trials....

...weighed against going to the guy on the corner (or the website) who is not necessarily certified, who will diagnose and recommend drugs, which are not certified, which may or may not include active ingredients or labelled ingredients, not subject to clinical trials, may be contraindicated toward a patient's condition or medical history, based on circumstantial claims, folklore, general belief, even psychic energy, testimonies, blessings by neighborhood Monks, or similar.

That said, personally I believe in the homeopathic effect of ingesting random raw plant pieces. I would not say this is a sound logical practice. And I would not suggest it is necessarily safe.

Now a few words on hypobhondriasis because of its correlation to herbology:

Once a person has the erroneous belief that substance X will treat symptom Y for , it becomes ever more possible for someone (the herbologist) to convince the person on other treatments or cures. As the illogic toxicity of bad reasoning takes hold, a person becomes a hypochondriac. Every symptom a mystery, every random claim of treatment equally valid given establishment of the fact that proof is not required.

An herbologist's best friend is the hypochondriac. I would suggest this occupation and practice as highly unethical. But, it is commonplace. Hypochondriacs are handicapped mentally by their faulty thought processes. Which is in itself a symptom. What is the poor soul to do? Well, she goes to the herbologist. She says, "I got fuzzy thinking disease, what works for that?" And the herbologist smacks his lips and runs his forked tongue across his teeth and pulls a bottle of sugar pills from behind the counter and proceeds to make all sorts of claims about it.

Meanwhile, the cops are down the street Tasing a homeless man for stealing food from the Grocers.

----

There are two worlds:

One, where the truth doesn't matter, reasons don't matter, and there is a high concentration of fraud because the system allows for it.

Two, where the truth matters, claims are tested, and there is a low concentration of fraud because the system doesn't allow it.

Take your pick.

If there is one issue I see possibility for mass action is participation in democracy.

It doesn't matter if you're left or right, Obama or O'Reilly, the fact of the matter is your vote doesn't count; it never counted; and the powers that be piss on us all and we call it rain.

The fact is that this (quote/unquote) "representative democracy" is anything but; There never has been democracy in America, much less the World.

Further, the politicans do not act in their constituents' best interests, the election process is unfair and exclusionary.

There are all sorts of issues that, decade after decade, voters polled say are "very important" and politicans do nothing.

Why?

It is because the system is nothing but graft. Corruption long ago hollowed out the system. Its bureaucratic nature cannot be reformed.

Legislation will never produce any meaningful change.

Overthrowing the government is an American birthright even if it is officially illegal.

The fact is that Americans, perhaps more so than anywhere else in the world, have the common values and traits necessary for revolution.

Even if people appear to be complacent or even complicit, we should remember that revolution is taught systematically in the schools. We should remember that the default attitude is entitlement to rights under the constitution, which is not the body of government. And integral to the teaching of history and politics is democracy- which is the belief that people are the best determinants of policy, not lobbyists or even representatives.

Further, we should also realize that politics is still a highly activating force. The system is rigged in such a way as to blunt participation and effectiveness. But as long as independent spirit exists there is the possibility that people can force change against the system.

The most vital part of the system that needs change is the participatory part.

When government was created as a representative body, its architecture was perhaps appropriate to a time in which information travelled by horse, and people perhaps couldn't be expected to read or write or understand issues or be trusted to expand liberty.

Over time, the participatory aspect of government was only changed by fighting tooth and nail for it. For the fact being that our government was usurped by elites over a hundred years ago. And its structure gives ground unwillingly.

However, as technology increases, the rationale for the 2 or 4 year election cycle breaks down.

We are a nation lulled to complacency only by habit, not instinct. This makes me optimistic. Americans share a general desire for personal participation in politics. In other words, we trust the judgment of a democratic body to make decisions that are in its best interest. So no one should object to an expansion of democracy. no one should fear a tyranny of mob rule.

I think we are close, because of the internet, to a critical point where it is possible to dramatically overthrow an existing power structure and move it toward realization of original ideals.

As it stands, Americans have political views and are committed to argument and rhetorical and philsophic debate. You might think the recent (30 yr.) "polarization" of American politics is due to the constituency. I don't think so- I think it is the grinding reality of a body politic with no power to participate. As such, arguing policy is an exercise in frustration.

As we move into 2011, the effects of the massive fraud that American governance represents will start hitting rank-and-file Americans in the gut. If America cannot move forward in a productive sense toward a form of government which reflects their interests and values, it will be susceptible to Kunstler's prediction of dark-horse fascist movements led by charismatic figureheads (which is to say not much different than now).

The problem for the establishment is that economic implosion is going to de-legitimize their form of government. And in this breach is enormous potential to move America out of its 200-year old rut, and deliver on the promise made by the founding fathers 236 years ago. The invention of democracy was great- it has never been fully implemented- we now have the technology and knowledge to make it happen.

And in the desperation and turmoil of collapse, there will be great disillusionment which can be leveraged for the benefit of all. As was predicted by the founders, such action will likely be revolutionary in nature and as issue of continuance of the federal government will be at question.

---

When I think about solutions, I tend to believe that the ones with the least ill effects and maximal results should be considered.

1. There is no revolutionary path via legislative or conventional channels; therefore the movement will have to be anarchic in nature and distributed widely throughout all strata of public life. Its aims will have to be singular and non-partisan or ideologic- the aim is technical in nature: to force fundamental change in the administrative structure of the democracy.

The general strike has the maximum amount of coercive power with the least destructive effect. There are no points at which a paramilitary force can concentrate suppressive power and destroy a small block of resistors.

It will require the stoppage of the entire economic system. People will have to support each other through the change for as long as necessary. If government retains fascist elements, they will be unmasked by this action. But there is no way their power is greater than the whole of the people.

I really see this as America's only hope- to continue America as the collection of these states. Who else is going to liberate Americans? When will America fight for its rights? Whatever you have to say about the complacency and ambivalence of Americans toward their own rights or liberty today, economic downturn can only strengthen that value.

So why wait for the strike to commence? Actively refuse to participate. Refuse to recognize this kleptocracy. Cease the veneration of incumbent ideologies. Admit that nonviolent dissent and mass action are the prerogative of the people. If you do not believe in the righteousness of democracy, of the power of the individual in the act of voting, if you believe that the executive, judicial, and legislative branches no longer form a balanced or fair process that acts in our best interests, we don't have to blow up planes to get our way. We don't have to storm capitol buildings, or seize the airwaves. All we have to do is organize a collective moment and enact mass action.

Like many of the other posters here, I don't see any revolution coming. Americans are too fat and lazy to do anything about the huge gap between the super wealthy and the rest of us. As long as there is junk food and TV on 24/7 most of us will sit back in our Laz-e-Boy and be grateful for whatever scraps the master CEOs throw on the floor.
Gas is definitely going to be $4 a gallon by 2011 Memorial Day Weekend. That will make the price of ALL commodities rise. Saw Oscar Meyer bacon in the local supermarket for $7.49 for one pack. Between the rising cost of oil and the ecological disasters i.e. droughts in Russia and elsewhere, things are getting mighty expensive. Even Froot Loops are expensive.
We've been stuck at the Jersey Shore in the wake of a huge snowfall (about 24" to 30"). Abandoned cars are all over the place. Snow plows come only to major streets. December has been abnormally cold but the newspapers say 2010 will be one of the warmest years on record. What are we doing about that? Nothing. What are we doing about the $4 a gallon gas? Nothing.
The American Democracy is gradually coming to the end. Greed, selfishness and stupidity have ruined it. Everyone thinks they are going to be in the top 1% when they don't even have the education to be a door greeter at WalMart. But somehow they want tax breaks for the rich because one day they too will be the rich. The delusions continue.
In order to survive in this new, gas deprived future we are going to have to learn to adapt. Things we counted on like a two week vacation to Disneyland will be just memories we tell our grandchildren. Unless the economy really picks up soon, things like regular meals may become memories too.

Have to say that, although thoroughly depressing, I am very encouraged by the astute observations thus far! Some of you are showing signs of "waking up and smelling the coffee". I'm not condescending here, btw. I'm years older than most of you, and have shamefully been hoodwinked for far, far too long. Our "non-negotionable way of life" is rapidly being seen by EVERYONE (not just those outside of amerika) as the absolute fraud it truly is. The future some of you so clearly envision recognizes the total reckless disregard our country has with respect to its place in the modern (post l940) world. I respect that! The links to Orwell and Huxley chill me to the marrow (thanks, Carole King - saw the lovely lady in concert years ago - what a dame!) Between Mr. Kuntsler and (almost) the lot of you, somehow, some way, a return to a "normalcy" will ultimately prevail. It is, for me, perhaps too late. It gladdens my old heart to hear so many people wanting to affect change. Many cheers to you posters, too numerous to mention, so I'll not even try. The future will, I believe, be back-breakingly hard and painful - but so well worth it. To those of you who share this vision, I humbly salute you! Oz didn't give nothing to the Tin Man, that he didn't ALREADY have!

I just went outside, the sky is falling!.....no really the sky is falling! I enjoy reading Cunnnslahs wit every Monday but the comments here are even more entertaining. Some of y'all gotta be the most pastey face pussies on the face of the earth.

Bustin J, I agree with much of what you say re: those who are essentially snake oil salesmen.

And when I refer to St Johns Wort being prescribed in Europe, it is by medical doctors.

(I'm not going to take the time to dig up supporting studies. But they are out there.)

However, I think you missed the essence of my point.

You said:

"As far as I know, medical schools teach about treating conditions with herbs if scientific studies show they are effective. Scientific studies are funded and pursued at institutions using scientific techniques.

As for the question of funding, I think it is fair to say that if it is developed, it was funded, if it was funded, there was profit potential, if there was profit potential, there was demonstrable need (patients with symptoms)."

My point is that drug studies are funded by pharma companies. Big pharma is FOR PROFIT.

So they are not going to fund a study on whether or not Herb X is going to work for Condition Y, because they cannot patent the formula. Even if someone thinks Herb X will work. So no study means it doesn't work? I don't think so. No study means no one funded the study.

Drug companies/drug sales & profits are ALL about the patent. When the patent runs out and generics can be made, the drug company stops spending marketing dollars on that drug.

So ALL marketing happens during the period from drug launch until end of patent.

Therefore, it is LOGICAL that other non-patentable remedies MAY work, however, there is no research or studies to support that - or they are very limited - because there is no incentive to spend the dollars on the studies if they aren't going to bring in significant income.

In fact, there are several drug companies whose studies aren't panning out for drugs in their pipelines (ie, drugs don't work or side effects are too bad), and they are currently scrambling to figure out what to do (ie, buy smaller companies with drugs with good results in preliminary studies).

It's a case of apples & oranges. And unfortunately, the public isn't gaining access to the full spectrum of possibilities for treatment and/or cure of their diseases.

Same goes for CURING disease. But Big Pharma's goal isn't to cure. Their profits would dry up. But that's a discussion for another day.

You sure are critical of a lot of people. How does your choice of Obama fit in? Did he do what he promised? Did he change anything? Is your country better off since his election? I do not believe that there is any difference between Obama and the people you like to ridicule.

I think it is the same guy.

He was also economic advisor to Dennis Kucinich.

Not sure why anyone thinks the masses will rise up and revolt. The latest example I see that America is just going out with a wimper was the supposed moral and constitutional indignation about airport scanners and pat downs. Lots of talk but in the end no one dared speak out except for a few who got their 15 nano seconds of fame parading around airports in speedos. This is just more proof that America is dying the death by a thousand cuts. Another point; 2 months ago the USGS announced previously predicted oil reserves were being reduced by 90% in Alaska. Never heard any furor over that one. Kind of important you might think?. I might of missed it but that wasn't even covered on the Oil Drum web site.

I was listening to NPR and they were bemoaning the fact that houses are cheaper to buy now.

WTF?

And then they cheered the fact that Americans spent billions last month.

But it wasn't all trinkets and toys. Some of those billions went to food and gas.

Whatever. Americans spending more money - good.

Americans spending less money (on houses) - bad.

The real world, the small limited planet that we live on - not even considered in the "news".

It's a wonder that any of us are sensible, with the constant propaganda we live in, telling us that we must grow forever, or die.

"Sovereigns can rule themselves. Those that do not support the Covenant are free to leave, having the right of Free Association. Private Property supports this, as does Christian Liberty. Anything else is tyranny and oppression, usually forced by a man-made government, at gunpoint. Nicolaitanism has no place among God's people."

Well see, with all due respect....with the way things are going nowadays, and getting WORSE...do you think those who do not abide by the covenant will be able to call Allied Van Lines and pack up and move to a more tolerant place? Just leave....yeah, that has worled SO WELL in theocratic societies. I mean the Sunnis and shias....well if they don't like each other why don't they just LEAVE? Same with those pesky Israleis and Palestinians...why can't they just LEAVE? I'll tell you why, because if it is ONE THING a man/woman has that keeps them going it is their home. Do you really think that when TSHTF somebody is just going to be compliant and walk away from what they have held onto?

And please, spare me the God's People line. Every religion thinks it is descended from God, but man IS MAN and it is man who interprets the scriptures...man who creates and runs church....man who leads and influences the congregation. Only if Christ himself came down each sunday and delivered each and every sermon could one say God led the church.

I see nothing but hatred and intolerance from so many groups who call themselves christian, I have yet to see one stand apart. Not god's way....well the holy christians on Nazi Germany thought nothing of sending people off to exrtermination camps. The Poles were more than happy to hold the doors open of the ovens for the Jews...without being aware they were slated next for extermination. And what about that Catholic Church, you know with Popey as the Prince of Heaven on Earth....why just outside the Vatican walls in WWII jews were slaughtered in Rome. In fact Popey Pius (oh the irony of THAT name) KNEW what was going on and did nothing for fear the church would fall. Riddle me this....if the church is all-powerful then why worry about its destruction?

What about this country you ask? Well there were witch trials and BURNINGS...religious intolerance is alive and well today and just because you claim that "god's people" wouldn't be meanines and violent does NOT make it so when these so-called peace-loving christians wish to live in a theocracy and shove it down the rest of everyone else's throats. If those are god's people, send me straight to hell where I don;t have to deal with homicidal douchebags like that.

NPR pisses me off. In fact most mass media does. I may catch a movie to veg out....I may catch an episode of Jeopardy...but I find it best for my sanity and well-being to ignore the rest of it. I read for my news and I don't frequent sites that have chewed up and pre-digested information they want me to swallow and accept.

"If those are god's people..."

Why do you say "If"? If you know they are not you should confront them with their own rules. If their own rules do not support their actions, neither you, nor they should call themselves God's People. If they say they follow the Bible, you can use it to make them admit what they are doing is sin {if it is}.

"I'll tell you why, because if it is ONE THING a man/woman has that keeps them going it is their home."

What basis would you use to enter into a covenant, that reserved your right to be a Sovereign on your own property?

http://adask.wordpress.com/2010/12/16/god-given-unalienable-rights-individual-sovereignty/

To me its a failure of character on the part of everybody.

PEOPLE WERE A LOT TOUGHER 3 GENERATIONS AND MORE AGO.
People did not borrow money until the last fifty years, it was tantamount to a sin, and the very notion of even having a mortgage was dubious.
Anyone ever hear of a layaway plan, ie, if you dont have the money, you dont buy it.You save up and pay cash.

My father had a diners club card , the first card, back in the 50s, and handled it like it was radioactive.Was it ever, it bred like a breeder reactor and destroyed a society.

What was it for, not really sure, but would it be paying for restaurant meals? How brilliant.

A mortgage was the stuff of terror, down payments were massive, the whole idea was to move heaven and earth and pay the wretched thing off.

If someone suggested that you refi a mortgage and blithely take out and spend the cash he would be smacked upside the head. or institutionalized.

So its a complete failure of values by a country of fat dumb spoiled brats with no value system.
Dont borrow. Dont owe, is this so difficult. pay as you go.

What in the world happened, well, the phrase shirtsleeves to shirtsleeves in 3 generations comes to mind.

We did this to ourselves, the banksters a re pigs for sure, but so are we.

Do not borrow money. Do not owe money.

We were incalculably dumb, and seek scapegoats.

The enemy is us guys and gals.

Yes! The other guy is a New Yorker. Just sayin.

Me, too. I just happened to be driving and my community radio station had a baseball game on, so I turned to NPR.

And, boy, was I sorry! Instant anger!

"Why do you say "If"? If you know they are not you should confront them with their own rules. If their own rules do not support their actions, neither you, nor they should call themselves God's People. If they say they follow the Bible, you can use it to make them admit what they are doing is sin {if it is}. "

Do you have any clue how many times I have had it out with a Bible-thumping christofascist? They make up their own rules and then conform THEM to the Bible. And GOOD LUCK getting a devout to admit they or their god-like idol of a preacher to admit they have got it WRONG...they misinterpreted it. You have a better chance of getting cheap, majestic oceanfront views from a hillside retreat in Iowa.

Thing is religious interpretation, bible interpretation is like an a-hole. Everyone has their views. Who is RIGHT? Well now therein lies the pickle...considering everyone thinks they are right. And what perchance would happen say you, if a town is divided between two DIFFERENT sects of xtianity? Who is MORE right...the Baptists? The Methodists? The Jehovas? I'll wager you a million each one says THEY have the authority. Hell, just this past week or so a ueber conservative from Texas, a real GOP dandy, was called out and CRITICIZED by his own party for being of the WRONG FAITH...he was Jewish.

http://thinkprogress.org/2010/12/06/texas-christians-best-jobs/

Oh Eric Cantor your pandering may have been for naught....

Yeah, god's people. Each one thinks he is because his church tells him so. A small reality break would be nice.... Doctrine re-interpreted 1000X of The tempermental sky fairy is no way to govern a people. If it works such wonders, why cannot the people of Israel, Iraq, Palestine, etc not just Get along?

"What basis would you use to enter into a covenant, that reserved your right to be a Sovereign on your own property? "

I am a soverign on my own property. I don't need to enter into any covenant to get it - and nor would I...ESPECIALLY if it were run by a bunch of closet-homosexual, mysogynistic, plastic-haired Pastors/priests who think they have the market cornered in morality and spirituality.

OOPS ! I wonder where I got doggies'.
Well I just hear the tune kinda. Am kinda young to know it.

Thanks tho. Keep them cowboys' rolling. I always wondered what keep them doggies' rolling meant !

Really.

LOL. Shows how behind the times I am. Wonder if they still was surfboards? Life is getting so complex, sometimes even big developments get by me.

Oh, 20 years ago, I suppose, I was working in a big mall at a B. Dalton's. We had heard for months that a music store was going to open across the way from our store. On opening day, I ran through the door, looked around and said "Where's the records?" The very young clerk gave me a blank look and I'm going, "Ya know, about this big? Made of vinyl?" Somehow or another, I had missed the whole CD thing.

Lbendt. I'm agonizing over which calendar to get this year. Momentous decision, I know. But, ya live with the things for a year. Magritte? Or stick with what I had last year, Edward Hooper? There are plenty of other choices, but those two come to mind first when I think about it. I'd go for a Grant Wood, John Stewart Curry or Thomas Hart Benton (Oakie Baroque ... I love that phrase) but haven't run across any of those. No Cadmus, either.

homicidal douchebags. imho that is EXACTLY WHAT SOME CHRISTIANS' ARE.
In my life it is self proclaimed Christians' that are beyond a doubt seriously MEAN AND NASTY and JUDGEMENTAL AND EVIL. And delusional. WICKED.

FUCK YOU AND YOUR GODAMN RAPTURE.
If you are there that is THE LAST FUCKING PLACE I WANT TO BE.

Oh btw does your **** stink or what ? just like everyone elses ?

I seriously mean this.

GOD HELP US. religion really is strange.

does anyone remember shit I can't seriously, DAS ENERGI ?
I really like that book.
yes I might be an old hippie. not sure.

I believe in God or not but I DO NOT BELIEVE IN THE BIBLE STORY. NEVER DID NEVER WILL.

I am going to read some serious books mentioned above here. here I go scrolling, keepin' those COWBOYS ROLLING.....

Good call on Christofascism. Since right-wing ideologues won't refrain from refering to Islamic terrorists as Islamofascists, it seems reasonable at least as a matter of parity to refer to the 700 Club, Sarah Palin and fellow-travelers as Christofascists.

I don't know where I stand on the inherent propriety or accuracy of Christofascism in reference to American theocrats, or of Islamofascism in reference to Islamic terrorists. Terms like these are of course recklessly abused by ideologues who want to take cheap shots at their enemies, since the notoriety of Hitler's evil deeds has rightly put Nazism beyond the pale of polite society.

Hence references to "econazis" and Rush Limbaugh's favorite bugaboos, "feminazis." To anyone interested in keeping the horrors of the Third Reich in perspective, these last terms should be unconscionable. Their very use implies that minor disputes over culture and the regulation of private property are as serious as the fight against a regime that coldbloodedly murdered and enslaved over ten million people.

In modern parlance, fascism has widely come to be conflated with Nazism. This is an imprecise use of language grounded in historical ignorance. Mussolini's version of fascism, which predated Hitler's, was one of the least brutal and most conciliatory forms of tyranny in human history. Two of the greatest oversights in modern historiography are the implication that Mussolini was a monster by virtue of his association with Hitler (a relationship in which Mussolini played second fiddle and was chronically trying to placate or impress an often annoyed Fuhrer) and the moral pass given to Stalin for murdering, starving and enslaving tens of millions of his compatriots.

It is telling that Stalinism goes almost unused as an epithet in modern political mudslinging. There are plenty of disreputable mudslingers careless enough with their language to use it as a slur, but it doesn't occur to them because Stalin hasn't been made into a personification of evil. Likewise Mao Zedong and Pol Pot, who were also murderous psychopaths (the latter more purposely so).

Communism and socialism are often conflated into a popular enemy, but rarely on account of gulags, reeducation camps and killing fields. More often, the alarmist rhetoric seems to be about high gas taxes that will inevitably kill the economy, or single-payer insurance plans and government hospitals that will inevitably ruin health care.

Despite all this, my sense is that Christofascism is not a serious exaggeration, if it is an exaggeration at all, of the American religious right. It certainly seems to be a much more apt term than Islamofascism, which ignores the Middle Eastern origins of Jihadi philosophy, especially the intention to establish a new Caliphate. This goal is at most tangential to Western political thought, and it tends to put Jihadis at loggerheads with the more arguably fascist regimes in the Middle East (e.g., Saddam Hussein, the Assads, and the Egyptian government).

The militantly statist saber-rattling and jingoism coming from large parts of the American religious right is a lot closer to fascism. It gives tremendous cover to attempts to set up a repressive police state and unmanageable overseas empire. The right sort of religious and quasireligious leaders could severely undermine the philosophical basis for a police state, but that leadership has been absent since Jimmy Carter left office.

Went to the Safeway grocery store last night to get bananas. There wasn't a banana to be had in the entire place. Just that big stepped table, usually heaped with bananas ... empty! I'm sure there's a simple explanation, but I forgot to ask when I got to check-out.

But it gave me such a queasy feeling. That great expanse of empty. I'm sure they'll be back, tomorrow. But some day, they won't.


Why are there so many people like you
on blogs who flaunt their gains in the
financial markets? Are you bragging?
Are you trying to induce envy? I can't
think of a positive slant on talking
about one's crowing about financial
market gains.

I've seen and heard so many "geniuses"
since the 1970s whose primary "genius"
is that they made money in a rising
market. It's like saying that you
CAUSED the tide that lifted your boat. :-)

At least you partially make up for it by
agreeing that it might just be that JHK's
timing is off. However, that point can
be made quite well without using one's
own case as a "refutation" of the author.

You're not the only one who does this DD
but it never "smells" good when anyone does
it. Your personal finances are not germane
to this site. Your stances on issues are.


E.


I agree with you, Patrizia. Even though
I detest Lloyd Blankfein, Jamie Dimon,
and the other financial oligarchs, I do
not think that committing an even MORE
heinous crime (the mass murder of them)
is a "refutation" of their crimes.

That kind of thinking is much like the
thinking of all those "people's revolutionaries"
that dominated Latin America during the
1960s and 1970s who generally ended up
becoming as greedy, power-mad, and
corrupt as the regimes they ousted.

Sometimes I think that excessive, even
murderous RAGE is itself a symptom of
the "green-eyed monster" ... ENVY.
Honest disdain for the financialization
of America and its aftermath would be to
choose a life that DEFINANCIALIZED ONE'S
LIFE by focusing on producing, creating,
contributing, relating to people, and
forming communal relations with family
and friends.

I don't envy those rich bastards for a
minute. Ever think about their lives??
They work 14 hour days, have microphones
and cameras stuck in their faces constantly,
go to boring meetings, and they have to
get all worked up about product lines
that are about as enticing as a sharp
stick in the eye.

I think a life where work is in balance
with play, where one has fulfilling hobbies,
where one has interesting associates, and
where one's friends are REAL ... and not
just trying to suck off of one's money
or glamor ... that's the good life to me.

I think America's great acquisition of
wealth after WWII was a mixed blessing.
The stock market bubble that started in
1982 was really the beginning of the end
of our time of innocence and we've NEVER
recovered from it. And that's why you
can hardly find people who want (or who
are knowledgeable or passionate enough)
to talk about music, science, politics,
the current social milieu, or anything
that might involve CONTROVERSY.

Our country, as currently constituted, has
a very downbeat cast as witnessed by all
the skull tattoos, "tough guy" looks, and
serious disrespect for anything but partying
and sports. Gee, I like to party and I like
to watch a good game as much as anyone but
I'll go to my grave without being one of
these codgers and geezers who are "retrofitting"
their social personae by wearing pro sports
jackets and uniforms to "belong".

Americans can and WILL become Nazi-like if
you just deprive them of more jobs, take
away their homes, and sell their jobs to
Asians just a bit more. It's on its way.


E.

As a Roman Catholic, I disagree with the broad attack on Christians, Christianity, and religion in general. That said, there are plenty of batshit crazy religious people. I've met some who scare me, and many more whose ideologies scare me.

I'm not a blind, dogmatic follower of the Catholic Church. I have qualms with some of its black-and-white teachings on sexual morality, for instance. I believe that it acted immorally in the Crusades and by harboring pedophiles in the priesthood. I was disturbed when Church officials tried to exercise what appeared to be a corporate franchise through the faithful in the 2004 presidential election.

I could go on at length with examples of my disagreements with the Church. In short, I have placed some faith in what I recognize to be a human institution because I believe that it is doing God's work by carrying on the apostolic tradition. This is a paradox, although an inconsequential one as Catholic paradoxes go (I'll be up all night if I start exploring that rabbit hole).

That said, the most thoroughly batshit crazy rhetoric that I've heard from Christians in recent decades has come from Protestants and nondenominationalists. In particular, sola fide and sola scriptura are two of the most pernicious teachings ever espoused in the history of Christianity.

Especially since Vatican II, the Catholic Church has toned down its more extreme rhetoric to the point that it can't hold a candle to non-apostolic extremism. Instead, historically, apostolically, and liturgically unmoored zealots with a fire in their belly over Satan and his minions have dominated the public conception of theology, while those denominations with a sense of history and holy tradition (including many Protestant demoninations) preach to the choir, as it were. Pat Robertson and John Hagee have well-organized, widely promoted, nationally syndicated television broadcasts. Meanwhile, the broadcasting ministries of the Catholic Church, which is the largest religious denomination in the United States, are small, discreet and haphazard.

This is a perennial problem. Around the turn of the Twentieth Century, Protestant zealots were able to redefine temperance to mean teetotalism, and some years later usher in the disaster of nationwide alcohol prohibition. The Catholic Church's response to this misleading, hysterical campaign was too modest and reserved, and consequently lame.

The Church has made a similarly lame effort to reclaim the Book of Revelation from thundering Bible-thumpers who have a studied, willful ignorance about its historical context and use it to justify all manner of amoral and immoral behavior. This is not because the Church doesn't teach Revelation in a reasonable historical context; as it happens, many of the liturgical readings during Advent are from Revelation. Rather, it is because Catholic teachings on Revelation rarely escape parish grounds. They are effectively limited to mass and occasional Bible studies, which are generally low-key environments with little publicity.

It may be crude to say, but Catholic theology has a longstanding marketing problem. Strike up Tom Lehrer's "Vatican Rag" if you wish, but it's a shame for a church with such grounded theological teachings to abandon the public debate to a bunch of noisy yahoos.

Judging Christianity on the basis of five-point Calvinism or any other shrill sola fide confession is equivalent to judging all children on the basis of a handful of schoolyard bullies who disturb the neighborhood with their yelling at recess.


As an addendum to my previous post ... the
"tough guy" looks that dominate today ...
the bald pates with goatees, the skull
tattoos, the watch caps in 90 degree
weather are ... paradoxical. The kids
with all their ghetto-wear and Bro-World/
Dude-World speech mannerisms are the biggest
PUSSIES in the history of the United States.

I know a lot of "tough guys" and "tough broads"
in California who've spent the better part of
their 20s or even 30s in Mommy's bedroom because
they can't be a CEO and being a janitor is
"beneath" them.

As this GRINDING Depression proceeds, these
people, in fact, have NO survival skills.
They've seldom done manual labor. They've
never grown food in their lives. When you
deprive the most spoiled generation in history
you're going to get ANGER rather than a joining
of ranks to solve problems. So those who think
that Naziism or its lookalike cannot happen here
are dreaming.

E.


Religion is always a delicate subject ...
especially to religious people. :-) :-)

To us agnostics, this "delicacy" is a
topic of amusement. If people's strength
of conviction was a tenth of what their
stridency of belief would infer, the
barbs of disbelievers would hardly ruffle
their implacable calmness. Yet this is
almost NEVER the case.

I think religion is a net force of EVIL in
the world. The human race will never emerge
from its adolescence until we can get past
this idea that some guy in the sky has an
interest in our puny little lives. The
universe is huge. "God" is busy. Till
your own garden and let the reward of that
be good enough. If it's NOT good enough
then you (the royal "you", not you personally) expect way too much of God.

Otherwise, I see religions as just being an
extension of TRIBALISM and its primitivism.


E.

Religion is a touchy subject in my family. We just returned from Salt Lake City to spend Christmas with my mom, since my father died last May. My angle on the bible is that it is an important piece of cultural literature/history. But of course my Mormon mom/brother see it very differently. My mom insisted that we read the birth stories from the New Testament on Christmas Eve. When she read the words "A virgin hath conceived," I gave my kids the evil eye in case they were planning to snicker."

All the patriarchal crap in the Mormon church makes me crazy. When I boy turns 12, he automatically gets the priesthood. No girls allowed. Glen Beck is a demigod in my mom's house. She has all his books laying around. She's pushing me to read "Atlas Shrugged." She's alarmed that my son is applying to a Buddhist University. I learned many years ago that there is no point in arguing religion or politics with my mom. It's as productive as banging your head against the wall.

Religion creates this big underlying tension.

SJmom

Jimjim can't post without calling people names. Vlad is scared of black people. Pathetic.

Religion is one thing and church (any church) is something else.
Religion is what you turn to when there is nothing else anymore.
I am not a religious person, but sometimes I envy the ones who really believe.
Because it is much easier to endure your pains if you believe that there is a purpose and someday, somewhere, there is a better life after death.
What I hate is the fact that there are, as usual, the ones who took advantage of the need of the people and in this case of the weaks and poors to suck from them the last cent.
And I fully agree with you Eleuthero.
Last night I was looking at the movie about the Bilderberg society.
First I was asking myself what that bunch of old and decrepit people could think of themselves.
If they only could see themselves through my eyes, a bunch of people ready (if not already) to be toiled trained, whose only future is a very close death, what do they want?
If they could understand history.
The deserts are full of the bones of the ones who believed they could rule the world.
Yes, I fully agree, it is better to be a young bug of May than a Bird of Paradise, the problem, the big problem of men is that the young bug of May doesn´t understand it...


Atlas Shrugged? Oh gawd. That book
appeals to the naive minds of teenaged
nerds who think that an ideal libertarian
world CAN exist.

Libertarians look at the regulation of
the flow of financial "transactions" as
a grievous loss of liberty. The problem
is, in the REAL world, in, alas, far too
many cases, one side of the transaction
has shady ethics.

Randian Libertarianism would only work in
a world where people all had uniformly high
ethics. It's a utopian view of the world
that's as crazy as Communism.


E.

Pius the 12th wrote several encylicals against National Socialism. He also provided refuge to thousands of Jews inside Vatican City. What more do you expect - for him to run outside with a pistol? You don't know what you are talking about. You have fallen for a campaign of slander perpetrated by the Jews for reasons of their own.

For the record: the Nazis considered the Church a deadly and formidable enemy. They planned to phase Christianity out over the long term - and devout Christians could see the writing on the wall despite the press releases to the contrary. I remind you that a number of Priests died in the concentration camps. Also I remind you that the plot to kill Hitler was perpetrated by Catholic Officers.

Why the slander? Never waste a crisis. The Jews were and are indignant that Catholics believe that the Jews crucified Christ and then tried to stamp out the new Religion. The apostle John and the Virgin Mary had to run for their lives to Asia Minor. The problem is that these things really happened and no amount of sacharine smiles and ecumenical conferences can undo them. Of course you can create a fake Church - and that basically is what Vatican Two was all about.

Evangelicals were corrupted in the early part of the twentieth century by Darbyism and Dispensationalism which teach that the Jews are still the Chosen People. Thus people like John Hagee have become basically second class Jews. He wont even let his people preach the Gospel to Jews anymore because he doesn't want to offend them. The rest of the Protestants have been mostly liberalized just like Vatican Two Catholics: ministers who don't believe in God but only in social activism, gay marriage, gay priests, gay bishops, gay bishops leaving their wives to marry their boyfriends, women priests, lesbian priests, etc. Madness in other words.

Whitey Mc Pasty huh? Congratulations, you're an anti-White White racist. Check up on your facts: Black crime rates are thru the roof and Black test scores are down in the gutter. It's always been that way - nothing can make them even with Whites. Generations of idealistic White Teachers have tried and failed miserably. Blacks have their talents - but they are not the stuff that high tech civilizations are made of.


Those who believe that the Bilderbergs,
the "Illuminati", and so forth are not
considering one idea: The idea that
we live in such a stupid era and that
everything is simply going to tend
towards disorder and NO "society of
elites", secret or otherwise, can
save us from it or even save THEMSELVES
from it.

There are too many people in the world.
They all want a piece of the pie but the
population is growing and the pie is
shrinking. You don't need more than
grade school arithmetic to figure out
that this does not turn out well.

The world is engaging in schizoid "magical
thinking" i.e., the idea that our new
"religion" (technology!!) is going to
magically create enough oil for another
100 years, enough copper, enough nickel,
enough freshwater ... it's pre-adolescent
thinking like a belief in Santa Claus.

Incidentally, I think JHK is correct in one
of his more provocative predictions ... there
will be NO COMMERCIAL AIRLINE INDUSTRY IN TEN
YEARS. If the International Energy Agency
tells us that in 13 years we won't be able
to heat all the homes or fill all the gasoline
tanks, I doubt they're using scare tactics.
Air travel will be limited to military
personnel, rich people, and sick people.
We'll be down to a few total airlines and
that "daily nonstop from NYC to LA" will be
a twice-a-month flight.


E.

I missed that movie somehow, old man. I have to give it a whirl. I say now, you really are a good fellow if you like Kipling. I will use him against you in the future you know. He was a red faced racist like all good Englishmen. But fair's fair - a Christmas Truce like the one during WW1 when Germans and Englishmen sang carols together. The Brass on both sides hated that. After that they made sure to have heavy bombardments on Christman Eve.

"Randian Libertarianism would only work in
a world where people all had uniformly high
ethics. It's a utopian view of the world
that's as crazy as Communism."

Are you sure? I think it makes communism look positively sane myself. I don't assume for a split second that I always behave in my own rational self interest. Plenty of scientific evidence in the last thirty years shows people are anything but rational actors who operate according to principles of enlightened self interest.

To be fair scientific evidence wasn't around to disprove the assumptions Ann's philosophy is built on when she wrote her trash. Fortunately it is now. A science of human self deception has emerged.

Oliver Stone’s documentary, “South of the Border.” sure backs up what you are saying about the WB in south America. What Bechtel tried to do in Bolivia is beyond criminal.

I watched the documentary earlier tonight, I think you would enjoy it.

FYI

I got this from WIKIPEDIA

Neoliberalism seeks to transfer control of the economy from public to the private sector, under the belief that it will produce a more efficient government and improve the economic health of the nation.

How the economic health of a nation could possibly be improved by transferring ownership of natural resources and public commons to multinational corporations is beyond me.

"We'll be down to a few total airlines and
that "daily nonstop from NYC to LA" will be
a twice-a-month flight."

I still remember when it was like that, when using a plane was very expensive, nevertheless I do not remember that we lived so much worse for that.
We are too many, I agree.
But the solution IS NOT killing the people.
In the West world we already have growth zero, the East, I am sure will follow.
Technology never did any magic, but surely helped people to progress.
The fact that progress doesn’t bring happiness or a better life doesn’t mean that we do not need it.
We are here for one reason, I do not know what exactly, but I can guess we are here to make a certain progress and that progress is achieved thanks to the fact that we need to survive.
The survival instinct, the reproduction instinct, those are the engine of our life, the purposes.
All the rest is created to make life more endurable.
The world in order to progress needs individuals who think, more than robots that work.
If the second was the need, then we wouldn’t need a brain.
Whoever tries to brainwash your brain, to reduce you to a number, to a slave, is a criminal who doesn’t even do the right thing for himself.
I can imagine what a bore would be a world where few idiots who believe to be Gods are ruling millions of robots.
The world as it is, is much better than what would be a world ruled by anybody.
What good can do to you having tons of gold and not knowing what to do with it?


"Well who died and made you forum God? Just because you haven't read the books dealing with what we were discussing is not my problem."

Hey...fucktard. Yeah, you. You made a moronic comment.
You said:

"I remember hearing on the news that the World Bank was coming to the US to intervene on "our" behalf. Right then and there I knew what they were going to do...the same they have done elsewhere...sell off US assets."

I called you on it asking for details (aka proof). Then you babbled something along the lines of "...well it happened elsewhere. And and and ,,,ah, it could happen here."

But it didn't.

Now you want to credit your stupid statement to some book you read and admonish me for not having read the book. I DO NOT have to read a book to recognize the stupid statement you made. If you wish to credit the sources that have led you to your nincompoopery be my guest.

Like I suggested before. Shut your fucking headhole as you are continuing to make my case.

"What are we doing about the $4 a gallon gas? Nothing."

Don't you remember when gas was $4.00 before. What did we do then? We used less. And what happened? Gas went down. That is what we have and what we will do regarding $4.00 gas.


So many great postings last night since I turned off my computer, but this morning reality hit me in the face again.
With all our understanding of what's wrong with the picture, the further breakdown of the once great nation is taking place. My MediaBistro newsletter had a post about Comcast who is trying to buy GE's interest in NBC. They will not be interested in paying millions to cover the Olympics when they run NBC. This merger is pretty assured. Once more example of how Sherman anti trust laws are being enacted. Just another one of the laws that are being circumvented as the greedy take more and more from us.

I have been writing feverishly to the FCC to stop this further destruction of independent media to take place, but the momentum for takeovers continues unabated. Just one more frustration at how things are not turning back to any sane rethinking of where we are going. Of course, it's no accident. We observers of the destruction of the US can just fume in the privacy of our homes as we read more bad choices--with no interest at what is best for the country. Only what's best for the transnationals our new world-wide royalty.

The banksters are crying that Obama doesn't love them enough--imagine the gall!

As we all point out the problems of the Neoliberal agenda here, the destruction continues. I would call this Corporate Communism as dangerous as Soviet -style monopoly of the most important aspect of a free society: Independent media and lots of different sources for news.
The state will no longer have any power, but to further the interest of these concerns. These interests can come to our government for handouts of the taxpayers money while the people who pay taxes are told they must now live in an austerity era. All the taxes you paid through the years for social security and medicare will be used in other ways, They will try to privatize it and put the money in jeopardy for the next bubble to pop. They call them "entitlements" while the special interests are the real entitled.
Get ready to pay big increases in local taxes as they reduce Fed taxes and lots of privatized contractors for the government a la carte since they are profit centers.

With a dwindling job market where the stimulus packages go to US companies abroad, more jobs where created overseas than here. 1.4 million abroad to 1 million here!! And Obama wants to get re-elected? How will we be able to pay for all these high-priced services--I ask you?

Yes, they acted immorally in the Crusades.

On the other hand there's a school of thought that sees the Crusades as pushback. First this: I'm not a historian nor a philospher. So my analysis on this issue is not what you would call deep or well considered. But here it is anyway.

Western Europe was under seige after the fall of the Roman Empire on multiple fronts, from the north by the Vikings, from the east by Magyars, from the south by Islamic civilizations. Europeans withdrew into their hilltop forts and castles.

So maybe the Crusades were immoral. On the other hand who invited the Muslim powers to conquer Spain, North Africa, Southern Italy and Sicily, the Balkans and the Holy Land?

Muslim armies took a shot a taking France in the Dark Ages and in the late 1600s Muslim armies were banging on the gates of Vienna. Do you ever hear a squeak about the immorality of all this? What about the conquest and Islamization of Asia Minor and Constantinople and the appropriation by Muslims of the Hagia Sophia? Have you heard one complaint about that? Have you ever heard anyone say that they want that awesome Church back in Christian hands and in its original condition?

Look at how far Islam spread. Was it all done by Muslim missionaries with good works and acts of kindness or was it done at the point of a sword? I tend to think it was done by force. Yet all you hear about is the evil of Western imperialism and not one peep about Muslim imperialism.

Seems to me the Holy Land was Jewish and later Christian or at least Christianity had its roots there. Maybe nobody invited Crusaders to the Holy Land but then again who invited Muslims?

What I'm saying is that if we're going to harshly judge Western civilization and its deeds then apply the same standards to others.

Khloe (NOT Chloe) Kardashian has a somewhat different role in the big show than pampered rich. She's part of the "people with no class or talent can randomly become rich & famous" dodge that keeps the turnstiles clicking.

James really should pay closer attention to the random details he throws in to appear on top of things.

I know he was a racist. I'm not worried that you use him against me.

I think I said once before: compare the great achievement of Stonehenge versus its North African contemporary, the Pyramids. The great building of white skinned Europeans against the great building of contemporaneous (more or less) brown skinned Africans.

Vlad, I know what you're going to tell me, that black Africa is in a calamitous condition and you know that my reply will be that there was a time when white Europeans were in an equally calamitous and primitive state compared to their non white contemporaries in the middle east, Africa, China and India ie these non Europeans lived in magnificent walled cities with temple complexes, they used money, they wrote, developed mathematics, cultivated irrigated fields while illiterate white Europeans were living in semi settled villages just learning to grow food.

You could argue that sub saharan Africa is to western/European civilization as Europe was to the middle east/India/China/Egypt 4 thousand years ago. It was Rome that civilized western Europe and Constantinople that civilized eastern Europe.

The clock doesn't stop ticking old man and we don't know what the future holds. Those whom the gods would destroy they first make proud.

Oh Vlad, PIus did NOT shelter Jews in the Vatican. Pius cozied up to the Nazis...ever read Hitler's pope: The secret of Pope Pius XII? Pius was more interrested in preserving his beloved church than he was Jews, gypsies or other undesirables of the Reich.

"They planned to phase Christianity out over the long term - and devout Christians could see the writing on the wall despite the press releases to the contrary. I remind you that a number of Priests died in the concentration camps. Also I remind you that the plot to kill Hitler was perpetrated by Catholic Officers."

I know their plans to eliminate Xtainity, mainly catholicism. They saw the Vatican as a political entity - one that had to be gradually subdued...and Pius in order to avoid the destruction of his church cozied up to his Nazi pals. He turned his head FAR away from the suffering of the MANY. And yeah, he might not have been able to run out in the streets and shoot at Nazis, BUT other than writing about his contempt he and the church could have done MORE to prevent the Holocaust. The oh-so-catholic Poles were hardly opposed to the extermination camps in their country...like the church they were slated for extermination, but like the church those catholic Poles just sat and idled. Hell even AFTER the war they still hunted down Jews. Nice Christian people...

"The Jews were and are indignant that Catholics believe that the Jews crucified Christ and then tried to stamp out the new Religion. The apostle John and the Virgin Mary had to run for their lives to Asia Minor. The problem is that these things really happened and no amount of sacharine smiles and ecumenical conferences can undo them. Of course you can create a fake Church - and that basically is what Vatican Two was all about."

WHAT? Are you drinking? The jews DID crucify Christ with the approval of the Pagan Romans. Funny, when I converse with my jewish friends about theological matters I have NEVER heard of what you claim come from their mouths. Like your dislike for Blacks you hate Jews too. Do you like to don your sheets from time to time?

"Vatican Two Catholics: ministers who don't believe in God but only in social activism, gay marriage, gay priests, gay bishops, gay bishops leaving their wives to marry their boyfriends, women priests, lesbian priests, etc. Madness in other words."

Sweet Jesus, either you are drinking or you are Mel Gibson posting online....while drinking. Funny, the catholic priest near where I live is anti-gay, anti-female priesthood, anti-abortion, anti-birth control....I know this because friends of ours go and listen to his horseshit sermon.

I'll give your comments all the attention they are worth from now on....

"Whitey Mc Pasty huh? Congratulations, you're an anti-White White racist."

Really? I didn't know you could see through your screen and see what I actually look like. Some neat-o new technology you have there. Does it come with a crystal ball too?

I am bigoted towards BIGOTS...be they (insert color, religion, creed, etc HERE). That may upset you, but when I smell BS I call it out instead of swallowing it.

"Check up on your facts: Black crime rates are thru the roof and Black test scores are down in the gutter."

Oh so because blacks get convicted of more crimes than whites, they are inherently bad? Might want to check out the amount of domestic violence, white-collar and hate crime stats and tell me which race is more offensive there....

"It's always been that way - nothing can make them even with Whites. Generations of idealistic White Teachers have tried and failed miserably. Blacks have their talents - but they are not the stuff that high tech civilizations are made of."

Okay this is where I end my dialogue with you, troll. Peace out.

"Now you want to credit your stupid statement to some book you read and admonish me for not having read the book. I DO NOT have to read a book to recognize the stupid statement you made. If you wish to credit the sources that have led you to your nincompoopery be my guest.

Like I suggested before. Shut your fucking headhole as you are continuing to make my case."

.........................

Yes, I would like to admonish YOU for being so fucking OBTUSE to butt into a dialogue between two posters who were discussing events as related to the two BOOKS they had read.

Hey, it's not my problem if you haven't read them. Seems to me others were able to follow along our discussion without getting all bellicose. And shitforbrains - get this, if you scroll back you can easily see that peole knew what I was talking about and agreed with me. See they had reference because they read the books and were prepared to comment without jumping in head first with no foreknowledge whatsoever. Do you often comment on books you haven't read?

Like I said, don't blame me for your ignorance because you stuck your ass/face into a dialogue without the knowledge of to what we were referring. That makes you look really DUMB, and from the other posts on here, let me give you some free advice....calling people fucktard in every other paragraph doesn't make you look like an Einstein....as much as you think you are. It just makes you look like the internet expert at name-calling that you truly are. Seems as if others know your reputation on here...and would probabally agree with me on your demeanor as well. In fact...some have. And that dearie, is a freebie for you...for you don't have to read a book to see and have reference as to what I am saying.

Now go wipe the spittle up off of your keyboard...I am sure your mouthbreathing leaves quite a mist....


Cash, have you ever read ReORIENT: Global Economy in the Asian Age by Andre G Frank? I think you may enjoy it for it covers much of what you said in regards to comparing Asia and the West from 1400-1800....

You may like it.

"I am a soverign on my own property."

Do you live by yourself?

LLB: Just caught your calendar question for me:
Lbendt. I'm agonizing over which calendar to get this year. Momentous decision, I know. But, ya live with the things for a year. Magritte? Or stick with what I had last year, Edward Hooper?

Strange that you should ask. Around the same time last night a photographer friend was asking me whether I thought a typographic illustrator Marian Bantjes new book "I Wonder" was too glitzy.She's created a 21rst C. illuminated manuscript. See for yourself:
http://www.bantjes.com/i-wonder/about-book

So in answer to your question, can you just not get enough of Hopper?
Change is good. A new year, a new vision thing...
Even though Magritte is old at this point he still has you look at things outside the box.
---LBendet

Messian...with all due respect, the site you referred me to was that of Jehovas Witness orientation.

If you wish to have a rational conversation without the religious gobbledygook, I am all eyes. But I am not playing the "my religion sez...." game with you.

And FYI, The Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense founded on the Christian religion (George Washington)...despite the thumpings of some people who want a theocracy.

Don't you remember when gas was $4.00 before. What did we do then? We used less. And what happened? Gas went down. That is what we have and what we will do regarding $4.00 gas.

Gas went down, unemployment doubled and a recession without end began. 12 trillion dollars of wealth is wiped out. To maintain liquidity massive debt is transferred from the upper to lower classes.

Tell me is ignorance bliss? You should know.


"But I am not playing the "my religion sez...." game with you."

That's a relief. What kind of game are you playing?

I saw that documentary on Bolivia I believe...did it have anything to do with Bolivia not wanting to import Bechtel's corn seed for growth? Resulting in all Bolivia's neighbors importing the bad seed and bolivia being forced eventually to buy Bechtel's seed because tehir own natural crops were mutating so horribly whole crops were being lost? If that is it...yeah...I've seen it...I've seen far more than I ever thought my eyes would.

Monsanto is the evil terminator seed company. Bechtel tried to buy the water works in Bolivia so they could charge people who make two dollars a day 50 cents a day for water. Collecting rainwater in open containers on rooftops was to be made illegal because that would cut into Bechtel profit.

I love a charbroiled on the bar b que at home hamburger. yummy.

Hey that 'other' poster was me.
I know this isn't important, just goofy.
I was MeLinda, then somehow cuz I forgot a password, rare that I don't, I got to be jackieblue on here. That's ok, not intentional. no biggie

But I think I may be a rarity in that fast food dept.

Years ago I was baby sitting my friends 3 little girls and we were taking a nice drive thru A small Northern Cal city. It was nice UNTIL we PASSED a Mac D's. It was the playground I think. All hell broke loose in that Van full of Brats ! Oh they were Brats back then ! I HAD to turn back and go there. No way around it.

But still even back in my younger years I always knew 'they' were brainwashing 'us.'
Most of Us.

anyway,to make eating at those places as a lifestyle is just plain stupid on every level.
I will say tho when I used to take road trip they are great for Pee stops. But not much else.
There needs to be better Pee stops. anyway here I go scrolling onto the new posts.

It's always exciting when someone responds to yours posts UNLESS they tell you to FUCK OFF RETARD or something like that. I think it's funny to read those sometimes when they are for the 'tards. haha.

You know this is my biggest Fear, but it's becoming Reality here in the Central California Coastal Cities. Been here since 78 and born in N Ca.
anyway, there was one small area that you had to stay away from, now it's the whole mid and south county. Downtown in what used to be a and still is a College Town and Tourist area. Major gang Violence. It's cool to kill a white person to
get into a gang or something I guess.

I don't have the answer all I can say is they are everywhere here. A 20 yr old girl was thrown to the ground and her purse stolen, in The Parking Lot.
and then broad daylight robberies at the drugs store.
But parking lots are not safe now. Pisses me off.

god damm idiots with their fucking Hoodies on and their baggie fucking jeans. they all look the same can't identify, etc.

I really don't have the answer, I wish a bunch rednecks from Auburn and other areas in CA would come and take 'em out. They won't stand for that shit up there. That is what I believe.

Yes we are in for more violence for Sure. Need to watch out for eachother and maybe don't go alone so much to places.

TIMES HAVE CHANGED and ARE already worse, and going to get even worser. worser. you know what I mean.

I am kinda stuck in this used to be Paradise for real.

IF ONLY.
I don't think enough people are gonna look, I mean have they yet ? Look around. I never had kids.

I studied a little on the Over Population Issue, but see the thing is part of it anyway is that If you are a Christian / Muslim / or Mormon / then the idea is to make more of such.

It seems to me that it's the least intelligent ones who produce more and more BABIES. and I like kids,
but enough is enough.

It said that the most intelligent usually have like one or two children. Probably true.
But there ain't enough smart people around.

I wish it could be the way we want it to be, but I don't think it's gonna come down that way.

Hope for the best plan for the worst is true. and right. best screen name.

I suppose if you are way up there in $$$ and life style maybe you are isolated from the mess down here and maybe you really don't know what a fucking mess it is becoming, and if you do know you don't care. I ain't one of 'them'. I know rich people, and the are all republicans ? so there is something up there. $$ does seem to matter much more than people to them as a rule.

Wonder how I'd be if I HAD alot a ton of $$$.
Well I don't wonder for long. But I am wondering now.....

We were one number off from winning a big lotto ! We would have got 2 out of 89M it was a Pool.
89 M would be big money. 2M would have been big enough to MAKE MY DAY / LIFE and a few others.

I think your right. I've got two Hooper calendars I've saved AND a portfolio of his prints (seascapes.) Or, I can step out on Tower Avenue at sunrise or sunset and see "Hooper" in 3-D. It's the idealized Main Street JHK always gets rapturous over. Too bad there's no business and it's dying.

The Bantjes book is beautiful. What a piece of design and binding. And I think the price VERY reasonable.

There are so many books I've read that I wonder what you think about them. "Hubert's Freaks," "Aesop's Mirror" and the DVD "Who the *$&% is Jackson Pollock." If you've read or seen any of these you can figure out that I'm fascinated with the machinations of the art "establishment." Waaay off topic, I think.

Right now listening to an interview I got to through Energy Bulletin with Robert Hirsch by Carl Etnier [about the first study funded by the US government on peak oil and its consequences. The experience of writing that report left him shaken at the consequences of peak oil. Now he says that in the next 2-5 years we'll see world oil production permanently decline, a phenomenon "unlike anything faced by modern civilization."] and his new book, The Impending World Energy Mess: What it is and what it means to YOU! http://www.energybulletin.net/media/2010-12-27/robert-hirsch-impending-world-energy-mess

Bumpersticker many here might Love/Hate/Need/or be confused by:

"YOU DON'T HAVE TO BELIEVE EVERYTHING YOU THINK"

OMG WELL PUT. Wish I could print, or hay I will write that one out.

I once read that if you could see far enough ahead you would see the back of your head.

Tripeeeeeee, Yipeeeeee..........

Thanks

ps and it reminded me of when my twin bro and me would be digging for China (the other side of the world) with a spoon in our huge back yard with the veggie garden and trees.
damn wish I had that land now. it was a medium lot but we had it all.

HNYear

Possible explanation for the continued presence of "Zha Zha" or "Whack Whack" or "OEO" or whatever he is calling himself this week/day/hour.....he's getting paid for it:
-------------------------------------
". . . The trainer, Austin James, was instructing Tea Party members on how to "manipulate the medium". This is what he told them:

"Here’s what I do. I get on Amazon; I type in "Liberal Books". I go through and I say "one star, one star, one star". The flipside is you go to a conservative/ libertarian whatever, go to their products and give them five stars. ... This is where your kids get information: Rotten Tomatoes, Flixster. These are places where you can rate movies. So when you type in "Movies on Healthcare", I don’t want Michael Moore’s to come up, so I always give it bad ratings. I spend about 30 minutes a day, just click, click, click, click. ... If there’s a place to comment, a place to rate, a place to share information, you have to do it. That’s how you control the online dialogue and give our ideas a fighting chance."

Over 75% of the funding for American Majority, which hosted this training session, comes from the Sam Adams Alliance. In 2008, the year in which American Majority was founded, 88% of the alliance’s money came from a single donation, of $3.7m(13). A group which trains rightwing libertarians to distort online democratic processes, in other words, was set up with funding from a person or company with a very large wallet."

alternet.org


ever hear the term 'compensation'?

There is so much I don't know. I love your posts for real.

'rightwing libertarians'

many of us will take them over g. soros and his endless organizations any day.
are you aware of the propostion he funded ..in california..was it in 2009. every DA in the state opposed it?

If your conspiracy theory is valid no doubt three thousand word mind farts sans paragraph breaks must pay extra.

LLB, Or, I can step out on Tower Avenue at sunrise or sunset and see "Hopper" in 3-D. It's the idealized Main Street JHK always gets rapturous over. Too bad there's no business and it's dying.
Lot's of things we know are going to be on the decline. The interview I just heard was with Robert Hirsch. In Sept. I posted story that he was told to "shut up" about peak oil during W. admin. He said Obama's not much better.--Listen to it!

Anyway I haven't read the books you mentioned,
but I am very familiar with the manipulations that go on in the art world for marketing specific works and directions. Anyway that's all academic, now. Lately I've been reading Matt Taibi's "Griftopia".
_____
There's a good reason why we're all on this blog and the interview will bring the message home loud and clear.

Ang says, "It's a case of apples & oranges. And unfortunately, the public isn't gaining access to the full spectrum of possibilities for treatment and/or cure of their diseases.

Same goes for CURING disease. But Big Pharma's goal isn't to cure. Their profits would dry up. But that's a discussion for another day."

You are correct that Big Pharma requires a considerable proof of efficaciousness as their development costs run into the billions of dollars for many drugs. Critics have contended that this leaves out patients who have rare conditions, or where alternatives exist that are effective and cheap. They say that the treatment of symptoms over the long term is more profitable that one-time cures. These are valid points.

Consider some of the insanity expressed on this message board: the question of tetanus shots. Actually, I can't define the positions because I tend to forget idiocy rather quickly. But the basics are that, since "Pharma" might bring ya to "Harma", screw "Pharma", I'll take my chances with "Dharma" & his hippie friend "Karma". (forgive this paraphrasing)

The problem, as I see it, with Dharma/Karma vds. Pharma is that the latter is not allowed to prey upon the hopes and desperation of its "victims". In fact it is required to get right out in front and enumerate all the side effects one could get. This is a transparency not frequently found in Herbology. Since most of its products are in fact placebos or dependent upon placebo effects, of course there aren't any side effects. (In the case of homeopathy, there isn't even any active ingredients).

To me, the two arenas are characterized ethically by the standards that are upheld in each. In medicine, peer-reviewed science and rigorous controls are the standard. In the other arena, well, just pick up any homeo/naturopathic medicine journal and you'll find all sorts of fantastic claims with circumstantial or no proof offered. And of course, criticism of Pharma.

Pharma has its inherent drawbacks and its failures. Large multinational chemical corporations should not be trusted carte blanche, and the rigor of standards enforcement reflects that fact. When pharma makes criminal moves by pushing their expensive products into ancillary markets through deception and fraud, they should be held liable and perhaps this liability is not enforced as much as it should with patients taking large out of court settlement against damages.

But what about a field of "medicine" where liability nowhere to be found? All the more often the lure of the cure is used. The perpetrators get away with literal murder.

Ang says "My point is that drug studies are funded by pharma companies. Big pharma is FOR PROFIT.

So they are not going to fund a study on whether or not Herb X is going to work for Condition Y, because they cannot patent the formula. Even if someone thinks Herb X will work. So no study means it doesn't work? I don't think so. No study means no one funded the study."

The reality is that if there is a profit potential, effective molecules are isolated and synthesis is analyzed to determine efficaciousness and then a process is created and studied as to its efficiency and only then is the process patented, or, if the molecule can be modified and qualified as novel, itself patented, or its processes patented. The accusation that Pharma doesn't push effective herbal alternatives because there is no money in it falls flat. If it was effective, and it was cheap and plentiful, then whats the difference. And studies are performed all the time on natural product isolations in labs and research institutes around the world, papers which can frequently be found online, or referenced by peer-reviewed websites and journals.

Face it, herbology is just a bias toward folk wisdom, a wild ass guess, and making a choice not based on facts, but ignorance of facts. A contention that a placebo effect is as good as a real effect pulls a person dangerously into a realm where they are likelier to place their reliance in the wrong places. It is a poor mental environment for making informed choices. It is a poor mental practice for making critical health decisions.

My personal view on the general condition of illogic, irrationality, the phenomenon of people not seemingly acting in their best interests, or purely short-term interests- is connected to a general acceptance that ignorance is a prerequisite for happiness. That the illogic of mere belief is more reliable that proven facts. People don't know who to trust, so they ruminate on their considerable guts.

The reality is that there is nothing much to "women's intuition". Psychological studies prove that, without attention to the fundamentals of the logic of cause and effect, people tend to confuse the two. They remember only good effects, not negative ones.

And since the mind is a cumulative construct of patterns of thought and behavior over time, this kind of illogic is like pouring sand into a building foundation.

When people like Trip back their dump-trucks of stupidity up and pour it all over the foundations of their young American's minds, that is child abuse, even if their parental privilege will conceal and diminish their act in the eyes of social justice. The commonality of this act, across all strata of the population constitutes a domestic Auchwitz of immense and pervasive scale.

Big Pharma isn't the solution. I would say it is a hypochondriac culture that seeks external "cures" and confuses causes and effects that is at fault. At least in western medicine children are shielded to some extent by guidelines for prescriptions for children.

I once attended a talk by a recruiter from a naturopathic school of medicine. He plainly admitted to a room of pre-meds that conventional medicine "knows what its doing in terms of acute care" but waxed eloquently on the harmless efficaciousness of naturopathy. Then he talked about how he cured his cold by wrapping his feet in wet socks and taking a nap as if he had experienced a personal miracle.

We may see a shake-out process in naturopathy as the more scientific schools outmaneuver and out-succeed the irrational elements that currently exist side by side. I hope that is the case, and it comes sooner rather than later. I know that there is no "cure" for the pandemic of idiocy currently afflicting the human race.

Chinese medicine, in particular, deserves particular derision, as its billions of practitioners rape and destroy the environment to manufacture their placebic drugs.

I trust the truth to rise to the surface eventually. Every one of my beliefs about this issue are confirmed month by month as studies are released delineating rational causes of observed effects. Humanity is in the process splitting from its dark ages of fire-worshipping, cave-living, and communal bugger-picking into a paradise of stuff that makes rational sense. Hallelujah for me, not so much for those that prey on the irrational and disempowered (children).

Okay...nope haven't seen it. Will definitely check it out. I had heard however from reading that collecting rainwater is illegal in some S. American cities...sh!t and fall back in it....what is next...it's illegal to cook over a fire unless that fire is supplied by Cocksuckercorp & Subsidiaries Inc?

"Anyway that's all academic, now. Lately I've been reading Matt Taibi's "Griftopia".
...........

Good :>) I am always looking for something to add to my reading list!

I just hope my socialist-communist run library has it! LOL.... (Seriously, I love my library....)

One book I recently read and finished within a day was "How to Rig an Election"....the memoir of the guy who clogged NH's phone lines on election day 2004.... Cannot say it was TOO eye-opening, but how it was just brushed off....well that is.

jimjim says "Don't you remember when gas was $4.00 before. What did we do then? We used less. And what happened? Gas went down. That is what we have and what we will do regarding $4.00 gas."

No argument here. Personally, I'm recovering from a long summer of bicycling.

If anyone thinks bicycling is going to resurge as renaissance is sorely (literally) mistaken.

Cycling is an uncomfortable, tedious, and difficult activity. It does not make civic life better, in fact, it renders the civic environment in even bleaker terms. The distances between things become longer, and this does not make them more inspiring- it makes them less inspiring. It aids the more realistic impression of the scale of our mistake. Spending 20 minutes in a car, traversing a familiar route for 15 miles in comfort is exactly two worlds away from spending an hour griding the biomechanical advantage of the body to throbbing inflammation. As we go from the 1st-world to the third. If and when gas prices force people onto bicycles, I think depression will really settle in.

I saw True Grit yesterday, a real masterpiece, which made me realize a horse is far superior to a bike, especially the scene where it swims across a river.

HEY I AM really pissed off. Just got it.
Listen the woman the GANSTERS knocked down in the parking lot was 80 not 20. Lovelier.

It's organized, the getaway car was waiting in the alley and they got away.

Now if you are the one lucky enough to stop them, even with a bullet you also are going down because they were being 'covered' by other gangsters. I don't have the answer except taking the law into our own hands and I like my 'freedom'. and I do not have a gun.

It's wrong what's going on in the world, and the U.S. but what can we DO DO DO ? That is legal and will change things ?

Cocksuckercorp & Co. sadly it seems to be true.

You can find out about the attempted theft of the Bolivian water supply in THE CORPORATION documentary.

THE CORPORATION

Makes me think. That business about Thomas Jefferson and blood of patriots being needed to be spilled every generation to renew freedom or whatever he said seems to make sense.

Rights and freedoms are becoming targets of corporate takeover, now worth money to the highest bidder. When all has been taken from Mother Earth perhaps a tax on the air you breath will be next. Far fetched you may think and your right about my air tax but loss of rights is always money to someone else.

Private prisons anyone?

I love your little lyric quotes.

"Oz didn't give nothing to the Tin Man, that he didn't ALREADY have!"

Just guessing, but is this by the group America? From Ventura Highway? Early 1970's (I was still young then).

Hey Beantown Bill,
Just verified with hubby that he thinks it was America as well. More his generation than mine! Thanks. Sometimes this stuff pops into my head (can you say flashback?)

But ya know,

Cycling might have given your head enough oxygen so you could rub a couple of brain cells together and post here. Cycling is exercise and exercise fights depression and strengthens body and soul. It can be fun.

From Wikipedia:

When Bolivia sought to refinance the public water service of its third largest city, the World Bank required that it be privatized. Which is how the Bechtel Corporation of San Francisco, (California, U.S.A.,) gained control over all of Cochabamba's water; even that which fell from the sky[citation needed], i.e., rainwater. Bechtel was granted the power to seize the homes of delinquent customers. In response, Bolivians took to the streets.[6]

This post may seem redundant since I already cited the Corporation as a source for the Bolivian Water Issue but since the above citation is in dispute (hmmmmmm - who would do that?) I decided to augment my other post.

about 15 years ago I said to my friend 'we are turning into a third world country' even me at that time 'knew' that the elites think of the WORLD without boundaries, just all about what can they take and get resources money etc.
They don't want boundaries they don't SEE boundaries, shit I knew it then. Now I guess I know more facts.

But it's already DONE.
And I married someone who doesn't get it.
We are totally broke, when it didn't have to be.
He still thinks it's going to 'come back.'

I am out. anyway, I suppose like I said before if you are one of the Elite, and there is at least one on the page, then you really don't experience the world the way the others 99% of the world do.

I will never know what it's like to be one of the others'.
Heather Nova sings a song "IT'S EASY WHEN YOU'RE BLESSED WITH MONEY LOVE AND SEX".
I could go for the last 2 without the first one.
More attainable for me.

It probably isn't even easy then.
Just more betta, in a way.
maybe.
If you have alot of $$$ don't flaunt it. I suppose the rich and smart know this. The rich and narcissistic Have to flaunt it otherwise what would the point be ? anyway getting way off topic.

I just got done listening to the radio cast you provided. Thanks. Well worth the time. I managed to clean the bathroom while listening. BTW, I think it was LLB cfn'er who gave me the idea to iron, clean, etc., while listening to podcasts, instead of just sitting on my ass. Mr. Hirsh speaks very coherently and in a way that folks like me can understand. Personally, I was a bit surprised that he invested in a Prius after dumping his SUV. I think someone on this sight, perhaps the Almighty Kuntsler himself, mentioned the fact that energy descent wouldn't keep electric cars running in any reliable form in the future, at least in the form and fashion America drives today.
What really freaked me out was the mention of Rex 84 and FEMA camps, by one of the listeners calling into the program, I think. I googled both and saw a shocking Youtube video about internment camps nestled into towns all over America just for us folks who might rise up in high numbers shortly after TSHTF. If anyone else wants a case of the "Oh Mys!", I'm sure they can find it (sorry, I am not good at providing links, unfortunately). But hey, if an old broad like me can find it, anyone can. The whole thing really just made my day! LOL to avoid crying out loud! Is it cocktail hour yet?

The Truth In A Nutshell. hey that could be a great title for a book.
a small book.

really tho yep. that's the way it IS.

we are screwed and being screwed.

for sure.

Thanks it will take me awhile to get thru this but I will.....I never meant to attack 'christians' as a whole.

I came on strong because in my personal life and it's christians' attacking me personally, I married into a family of them and until never really even thought about any of that. I thought a Christian was a person who did the Right thing. There is right and wrong. So I called the pastor at Their church and we talked. He said Oh anyone can be a Christian, they are just BAD REPRESENTATIVES OF CHRIST ! WTF? I thought that in order to be able to call or consider yourself a Christian You Treated People With Respect.

Not so sure now, seems you can disrespect and be mean and cruel and nasty and STILL call yourself a Christian, go to Church and slander me all over the place.

You I guess would be called a Good Representative of Christ. This church they go to is THE Church.
but I tell ya, they have no clue.
I am sure some do. You do.

I guess I am not even sure what a Christian is according to this pastor.

anyway I will study your post, I am slow and busy, but I love this thread and will try and understand what you took the time to write.

thank you. but then if you called me a f******* watch out ! pretty sure you didn't !

Myrtlemay,

Don't know if I buy into the fema camp thing, certainly Hirsch wasn't. There have been many people that make that claim including Alex Jones.
Don't think I'd get too upset by that.

Are you talking about San Luis Obispo?

BTW, I just got back from intergalactic Mormon headquarters-- Salt Lake City. I was born there -- couldn't help it, my ancestors crossed the plains with Brigham Young. (If you've ever read Mark Twain's, "Roughing It," he tells a tall tale about visiting Brigham Young and giving out hundred whistles to all BY's kids. Got himself kicked out of Utah! His review of "The Book of Mormon" was simply "chloroform in print." He,he.

Thankfully, my family has for generations used the good sense God gave them and had very few children. I have two cousins, that's all. I have Mormon friends who have lots of grandchildren already. The friend with 9 grandchildren has two families living WITH her, because her kids didn't get their shit together and get an education before spewing out kids. What torture that must be. I have two kids...but I never want to change another diaper in my life. If they don't want to have kids, that's fine by me.

My mom's next door neighbor has 10 kids. The good news is that as she is a widow, those kids always shovel her driveway and sidewalk...just to be nice.

SJmom

Comments on stuff from several posts (I was away yesterday and most of today. Dang, I missed some good conversations.

The founding fathers were into American independence from Britain, not democracy - which we've never had here.

Extreme civil unrest occurs only when people have nothing to lose*, like not having food or adequate shelter. Lord knows the founding fathers had a very tough time starting a revolution, especially since people were relatively well off. Kudos to 1770's-style public manipulation.

* "Freedom's just another word for nothing left to lose" - from Me and Bobby McGee.

Speaking of the Lord, there ain't any. Sorry, but a written 2000-2,500 year old, logically inconsistent screed (bible) is not the final say on the nature of existence. And I agree with E. Religion has perpetrated a lot of evil. And Pius (the WW2 one) was a real shit. I feel bad to think most of mankind resorts to comfort from a hypothetical supernatural being no sane person's ever seen, to cope with what life throws at them, rather than stand on their own two feet.

The thing about bicycling is to not start with 10 mile trips. Shorter trips are better until your body acclimatizes. Many times I force myself to go to the gym - then I walk out of it and realize how wonderful my body feels and I'm glad I went. If you are basically healthy and feel bad or very sore after exercising, you are overdoing it.

"I came on strong because in my personal life and it's christians' attacking me personally, I married into a family of them and until never really even thought about any of that. I thought a Christian was a person who did the Right thing. There is right and wrong. So I called the pastor at Their church and we talked. He said Oh anyone can be a Christian, they are just BAD REPRESENTATIVES OF CHRIST ! WTF? I thought that in order to be able to call or consider yourself a Christian You Treated People With Respect. "

Well, I live in the Babble Belt where religious fervor and superstitious ignorance abound...I don't hate REAL Christians - those who live by the GOOD model of Christ... BUt down here it is neo-xtianity...the new breed where christ is eternally pissed off at everyone except his "chosen few" and all else will go straight to hades...never mind Christ supposedly crated all those souls and sent them here - if they eff it up on earth by choosing the wrong church, christ will happily send them off to be burnt in the concentration camps of hell (quite a bit of irony there now that I think about that and HIstory...). Yeah who wouldn't want to worship such a swell guy like that??? I would deny myself my life and try to live to please him? TYVVM...but no. I would rather be married to an unemployed, illiterate drunk who beat me...than spend eternity with Jesus on Crack.

I believe in a god, but I have no faith whatsoever in religion or any of the so-called dieties who have appeared on Earth to save us all. And for their followers to dictate how I can and should live??? Oh HELL NO.

One more excellent post today on OpEdNews
Paul Craig Roberts on 2011. roberts almost gave up lst spring and didn't want to post anything on the web anymore. Lucky for us he changed his mind and posts regularly on this site.
He was once assist. Treasurer to Reagan and has been outspoken on our loss of liberties and our economic fundamentalism and where it's all leading:


http://www.opednews.com/articles/2011-by-paul-craig-roberts-101228-479.html

What's wrong?

Whats wrong is that there has never existed in the history of civilization a social consciousness that accepts that there are limits to the earth's resources.

What's wrong is there has never been counter balance to a global culture of greed, consumption, short-term profit taking and simple selfishness.

Now it is quickly being realized the "crazies" that there in fact be an "adjustment" made in consumption - and it had better be somewhat measured of many will simply have to go without.

End of story. We ain't "seen it before" - so we have no vision to deal with it.

"End of story. We ain't "seen it before" - so we have no vision to deal with it."

Exactly. Humans are very short-sighted. I'm thinking it's akin to a person who overeats regularly and becomes fat. Just because there's a quart of ice cream in my freezer doesn't mean I should eat it all in one sitting. Savor a small spoonful once in a while. Part of Kuntsler's message seems to me that we do not heed the fact that the Earth is a very dynamic place with limited resouces. Just because we get a good year of rainfall doesn't mean that there won't be a long drought in the future.

During the war, we were forced with rationing - I mean EVERYTHING: cloth, gasoline, sugar, chocolate, nylon, rubber, you name it. After 1949 or so, people started right back to their excessive, wasteful spending. Think of all the material ladies needed back then (I was one) to achieve Dior's "new look". Skirts flowed full and fell just an inch or two above the ANKLE! A few oldsters who knew better chastised us for over consumption, but we didn't listen...just had to have the newest Studebaker, Pontiac, Caddy, etc. Point being, 1943 looked absolutely NOTHING like 1950 - night and day. Giddy fools gulping down martinis and passing out on lawn furniture during neighborhood barbeques. That's one reason why it amazes me that people worship that series on television, Madmen. I think I got through an episode one night and literally felt sick to my stomach. We NEVER freaking learn and so easily forget. End of sermon :) Just got laughed at AGAIN by hubby! I kinda made a promise to spend less time on this site so I'll make like a banana and split...(sorry, couldn't hap it - memberin the old days. Later, Gators!)

"One more excellent post today on OpEdNews
Paul Craig Roberts on 2011. "

...........................

Wow. Thank you for posting that. You know I post much of this stuff to my FB page and discuss it with close friends and relatives - people I care about...to get moving, get prepping, get READY. I have handed my copy of The Long Emergency to close friends....closer family...and not one of those asshats has "had the chance" to pick it up or even start reading it...and if they DO...their reaction? "I really don't like depressing end of the world books....or that is all a bunch of paranoid doom..." Fine. Don't say I didn't warn you....I have given away countless copies of my peak-oil books...to make people aware. And NOBODY even pauses for a second and thinks...."wait, what if there really IS something in this???"

All I have to say is that when the day comes when teh world we once knew and thought was still there is GONE...when down is up and white is black...don't come a knockin on my door looking for a handout or a free ride because you were too lazy to read a book...or didn't like unpleasant things.

I miss Matt Savinar's site....not so much the forum, but the news... ONe thing I do tell people however is from his site...deal with reality or reality will deal with YOU.

It was pure luck I came by Kunstler's book...I needed reading material for a flight to Vegas for a trade show. It was 2005, I was beyond pissed there was a 2nd bush term and I wanted something to think about...and the idea of peak oil....WTF was THAT? Needless to say, it made a lot of sense and I did more reading on the subject. I learned how to compost....we sold our home in the bottom of the market last fall and got full asking price (we didn't use it as an ATM when the cash was cheap)...we got a home on a few acres in the country away from the organized insanity of the burbs. We're really prepping now....because things have really started to accelerate from our perspective.

Vern, my grandpa, always said the bankers would bring us back to the 1930's again...he could see it on the wall back in the 80's. I am so glad I listened to his stories...he wasn't as crazy as the rest of the fam would have made him out.

Thats cause yer so much smarter than everone else!
Thank goodness your genes are in the pool....whoops ...better get out cause yer all wet.

"I believe in a god, but I have no faith whatsoever in religion..."

We have more in common than you know. Your misgivings are toward idols of God rather than God Himself.

And I don't know where you ended up but I did't link to any JW stuff.

And I don't hold to the eternal BBQ pit stuff either:

http://www.gods-kingdom-ministries.org/COLDFUSION/Chapter.cfm?CID=69

Musings on Religion

Long term readers of these threads know that I was born into a Southern Baptist family in Georgia in the 1950's. I could no more not have been a Christian from birth - than I could have avoided breathing from birth.

And now, over five decades later, I've got a slightly different view of religions, having tried them All, including Atheism. (atheism?)

My default setting is now a relaxed, revised modern version of Thomas Jefferson's Christianity. (For those unaware, TJ created his own New Testament - containing only the verified words and acts of JC - and none of the miracles or Pauline stridency.

But I do believe the average human still has a place in his or her spirit where faith (Faith?) belongs. Just looking around this site, you will find posters who put their faith in all manner of things.

Vlad has Faith in White Supremacy.
Asoka has Faith in a Mystic Future.
Tripp has Faith in permaculture.
Many have Faith in Conspiracy Theory.
Others have Faith in Atheism. (atheism?)
Some have Faith in JHK!

And this is just an abbreviated list.

I'm suggesting that if religion does not fill this spot - in the average human's spirit - where Primitive Faith once aided the survival of our caveman ancestors - that SOMETHING will.

Could be something better or could be something worse - that depends on luck, circumstances, or fate. (Fate?)

If I Agree with a Racist - Does That Make Me One?

Vlad can be an annoying single issue jackass.
But sometimes he gets something right.

Over one million LEGAL immigrants come into the United States every year. This has been going on since the 1990's. It continues in spite of the bad economy, no jobs, peak oil, and an unsustainable future. Simple mathematics says that this can not go on forever.

There is general agreement on this website that excessive immigration is not a good thing. Three posters disagree, to my knowledge.

Asoka has stated his case and his views are known. I would still like to hear BeanTown and (I think it was?) Mila51 explain their reasons for desiring high levels of immigration going forward.
And, of course, all others are welcome to enter this debate.

This website tilts left. Some say that is because reality tilts left.

Yet a right wing fascist first pointed out that immigration needs to be reduced going forward.

I agree - does this mean I am racist?

I can agree with a black man and not be black.
I can agree with a homosexual and not be gay.

My wife can agree with a bisexual woman and not be bisexual - though I might wish otherwise!

OK, I'll stop now. That was supposed to be a funny little joke to end this post.

But IMO, this is an important issue for discussion. (Immigration! - not my wife's orientations)

PoC

Pro, I didn't say I wanted more immigration. What I think I said, if I remember correctly, was that I was conflicted about it.

What I am against is us having to pay for social services for illegal immigrants. What I am for is the idea that people have the right to want to live in a place they feel is better than they are living now, and make the effort to emigrate.

I suspect that posted immigration figures are not accurate. In fact, we don't know the level of immigration we can economically bear. Maybe that's where we ought to start - finding out what that number is.

The Tea Party is about getting wingnut Republicans elected. If you think they're all about fiscal responsibility, you're a fucking sucker.

"...the entire thirty-year history of the Chicago School [of Economics] experiment has been one of mass corruption and corporatist collusion between security states and large corporations, from Chile's piranhas, to Argentina's crony privatizations, to Russia's oligarchs, to Enron's energy shell game, to Iraq's "Free Fraud Zone." The point of shock therapy is to open up a window for enormous profits to be made quickly---not despite the lawlessness, but precisely because of it."

(Naomi Klein, "The Shcck Doctrine", p. 241.)

Point out to your mom that Rand was a rabid anti-Christian. You'll blow her mind.

Hey Progressive -

I will not dispute with you teh fact that illegal immigration is one of this nation's biggest problems. I lived at one of the EPICENTERS of the mortgage meltdown...my neighborhood went from military families to immigrants (I cannot prove they were illegal, but they didn't speak english, they housed up to THREE families in a 4-BDR home on a 5600 sq/ft lot and all drove maintenance/lawn care vans. They were pimped to buy by thier own communities' real estae firms (I'll leave the name out...the owner bought three high-priced homes, refied immediately and booted for Bolivia leaving the homes in foreclosure)...what lawn care maintenance man can afford a 300K mortgage for a town home? When my county passed what is known as "The Resolution" they left in droves...seems as if a minor traffic incident would land them in jail and the INS...next stop wherever the hell they came from.

Local builders could NOT compete with others who were building McMadnessMansions and using illegal labor to build. Many businesses had to adopt or die. I see it as rather instead of blaming the immigrants as the problem...what about those who employ them. The south once was a HUGE employer of native african Americans who worked in the chicken processing industry. Once they unionized...they were replaced with very cheap, inexpensive foreign labor from S. America. They had to deal with a few INS raids, but no worries, another truckload would soon arrive to take the deportees stead. Look at the Beef industry. Rural towns in Kansas and Oklahoma have been converted to shantytowns that surround beef processing plants. The unionized workers, AMERICAN workers who worked those plants for decades have been replaced with disposable labor. Read Fast FoodNation, Food Inc, Omnivore's dilemma...etc... The fact is profit is teh ultimate king...and our obsession with meat at every meal that has turned once US-held jobs into a job for a foreigner who is eager to send their $$$$ back home. Going to the mattresses is no longer a mob term...many move into a home that has been purchased by a 3rd party and sleep there only...only to return to a job that was once an American's. It is easy to blame an American for this...they had a job, they left...but when you look at it, when wages fell, benefits slashed...what choice did they have? A single illegal can bank what he earns and send the bulk of it back home without threat to the employer without threat of benefits or working conditions!

Illegal immigrants are a problem, but they are here because someone is paying them, and Americans cannot (at this time) work for less.

Frankly, if a horde of Canadians came down and did the same, it would not matter - race wouldn't matter. It is WHY they are here that we should be worried about. Look to your businesses...those that haven't sent our jobs overseas are bringing foreigners in to do the dirty work they claim "no american wants to do"...and yet the people sit by idly and do zilch. They bitch and moan, sure. But their finger is pointed in the wrong direction...

And what of the consumer/client that does business with them? Do YOU want to pay more for a new home? More for Meat? More for produce? More for anything??? Hell no...so we find the people to do the work for us at the cheapest cost possible and then bitch and moan that we cannot find the jobs to pay for the BIGGER life. The American public is (for the most part) a bunch of whiny toddlers who want to eat their cake and have it too. There is no such thing as a free lunch and the system in which we live is designed to placate us as much as possible until we become slaves to it.

I pity the immigrants...to come here and work for nothing, have few rights and face the hatred of the people the very people who they provide for. At the same time, I pity the bludgeon-headed american who cannot see the difference because they are either too stupid to know that the steak they enjoy so much does not come from some beef wellspring in the midwest automatically pre-packaged and ready for sale at the local bargain-mart. We are equally responsible.

And as the oil dwindles in supply as consumption increases, the people from abroad will look to our shining wal-marts and palaces filled with plastic dog-crap in shiny wrappings and think.."I want that too." We are the integers in our own formula for destruction.

Forgive my typos in the above post. I am tired and must go to bed. BUt I hope you get my point :>)

I'm looking forward to listening to that interview. I'm casting about for some long tedious task to listen to it.

I've read large chunks of Taibi's book "Griftopia" on the Web. Rolling Stone magazine had coverage and over at www.alternet.org they've had several articles about it. I've got my eyes open for a good used copy of it so I can sit down and read the whole thing from cover to cover.

Re books: I know what you mean.

In my little bookstore, I have a shelf of books on peak oil and climate change. Priced cheap, too! All of JHK's books. Orlov's books. They sit ... languish ... swoooon! :-). I keep hoping for that one or two customer's that I can have a conversation with on these topics. Connect with some locals.

I recently stumbled across a book called "A Reasonable Life; Toward a Simpler, Secure, More Humane Existence" by Ferenc Mate. I don't know how I had never heard of it. It came out in 1993 and apparently sank like a stone. It talks about a lot of the things we are concerned with, here at CFN. From the dust jacket...

"This is a rabble-rousing, darkly humorous, straight from the heart look at our hectic, and often out-of-control modern lives. Not since Lewis Mumford or even Thoreau has a writer taken such a giant step off the beaten path to see where our technology-obssessed, depersonalized society is hurtling at this frantic pace.

Ferenc Mate sounds the alarm that with our single-minded emphasis on economic growth we are not only devastating not only our cities, our economy, and our very planet, but also our communities, families and even friendships. We are allowing the fraudulent and fake: advertising and television, and the impersonal and uncaring: Big Government, Big Money, and Big Business, to destroy the things honest and humane - to degrade the individual and the society of man."

An interesting read if you happen to run across it.

There is so much good "doomer" stuff to read out there.

books:

Overshoot, William Catton
Geodestinies, Walter Youngquist
Resource Wars, Michael T. Klare
The Ingenuity Gap, Thomas Homer-Dixon
The Oil Age is Over, Matt Savinar
Chalmers Johnson's trilogy
Killing Hope, William Blum
books of Peter Dale Scott

websites:

dieoff.org
fromthewilderness.org (Mike Ruppert's old website)
theolddrum.com

Like all Liberals you have a bee in your bonnet about Blacks since they are the chink in your armour and the obvious anamoly in your world view. So lets approach it round about. See how Asians took what the White Man gave them and made it their own. Do you see any similar evidence that Africans have done this? They had the same opportunity but they just didn't. Likewise look at ancient Europeans: did they not admire Rome? Make it their own? Transform it into a new civilization in time? No similar such appreciation can be seen in our immigrants be they Muslims or Mexicans - just a sickening arrogance and smarminess that comes from the knowledge that the Elite and their police on their side.

You have no evidence on your side and lots of evidence against you. An odd individual here and there is not evicence btw. So I'm not really arguing with your mind but with your will. You will that all be equal because that's your godless religion.

Ah, you know that Blacks are more violent! You just can't deal with what you know - it doesn't fit in with your college/media programming. So you attempt to delete it to relieve the pressure of cognitive dissonance. They are also dumb as door as doorknobs - both in terms of IQ tests and performance in school. And don't say culture - the same thing holds true in all Black Cultures both in the Carribean and in Africa.

Does that make them "bad". Well kind of, certainly you don't want to do the Long Emergency near them. From another point of view: are rattle snakes bad? No, just bad for us. They are what they are. Just so, Blacks are bad for Whites.

Yes I've seen it: a work of Zionist Slander from the same people who said the Palestinians didn't exist. Do you really believe the Jews never do anything evil? Are you that programmed? That's why they bought up the media - to program gullible people like you. And that's why they want "net neutrality" - to end all free speech.

The Chief Rabbi of Rome, Israel Zolli, was so inspired by Pius the 12's actions during the war, that he not only converted but took Pius's birthname Eugenio in his honor. He was reviled by his former friends and family needless to say. So much for open mindedness from the advocates of liberalism. He felt that a fund should be started for other Jewish Converts would suffer this same persecution.

http://www.catholic.com/library/HOW_Pius_XII_PROTECTED_JEWS.asp

That was a good post bud. I think you inspired me.

My primary way of looking at world history is that the rich western countries have established and continue to maintain empires for control of access to vital earth resources: arable land, real estate, sea ports, forests, fossil fuel deposits, water, etc.

There is a vast disparity in the allocation of resources per human on this planet. I am not passing judgment. It is a fact. America alone consumes something like 25% of the earth's TOTAL energy budget each year. It is hard to wrap your head around that fact. And the income disparities are quite mind-boggling, from those within America to all countries comparatively.

We in the West are from 20-80 times more wealthy than typical Africans (Kenya, etc.).

Military, economic, and cultural empires are used to control access to resources and capital. That's really what civilization has really been all about, mass control of things like next years grain crop, that gigantic forest over there, these houses, the temple and that which surrounds it, the gold store, etc.

Human civilization probably started getting real interesting when agriculture was developed about 10,000 years ago. That's when there was a vital resource (large stores of food) connected to a certain geographic region in an explicit enough way that the inhabitants decided to stay rather than endlessly "hunt and gather."

Most of Africa was until recent history (1960) under colonial domination of one sort of another, often under brutal conditions as in the Congo rubber plantations. That was all about access to resources like rubber, precious metals, and stones, and it is not at all a unique type of brutality in human history.

That's what people of different races and cultures have done for thousands of years: kill and/or control/coerce each other en masse for access to resources, plus as a (primitive) population control mechanism (only so much food/water to go around).

I'm not blaming any one race especially for this. Most races do it and have had to do it in order to exist.

We're like insects that way when push comes to shove.

What happens to the ants that lose the war?

Killed, territory conquered, or maybe even enslaved (or eaten).

It reminds me of ancient human history.

I read about a battle on the Eastern Front between thousands of heavily armed, politically ideological soldiers which came down to...

Assault the water hole.

And that's really what everything is about for biological organisms, access to water and food. Then there's the male procreation drive, with the other people's women if you don't like yours or don't have any handy. Civilization seems to me to be an expression of a sublimated human sexual drive. And I haven't even read too much Freud to back this up but it is somewhat obvious.

It seems to me that civilization is by nature quite violent. Initially nation states and empires were won from overt violent conquest (war), colonization (economics in its modern form), or coercion (e.g. ethnic resettling). This is what happens when political entities become quite large (encompassing many millions of people each or even a couple thousand). Sometimes there were land-for-money deals but rather rarely.

I would like to see a study of insect behavior applied to human societies, because I often think we've based a lot of our structures on that of insect hives and colonies: bees, wasps, ants, etc. That is probably the best model that nature provides for that many large(ish) organisms.

Colonization of space is like the spores being sent out or the new queen ant.

Everything isn't finance/economics/civilization. Sometimes that's just what is on top. There are some very primitive, weird behaviors embedded into humans. By our DNA structure we are still a kind of ape.

Obama is the queen bee. Boehner and those guys are the locusts. The Democrats are the ladybugs.

Human war reminds me of an alien bug battle, especially the German invasion of the Soviet Union in WWII.

Now that we're in William S. Burroughs territory, I'm going to explore this people as insects theme further because I think there's a lot of there there.

Have a nice evening and don't feed the trolls.

For the umpteenth time: I'm not a White Supremacist. How could I be since I acknowledge both the Ashkenazi Jews and East Asians have higher IQ's than Whites? Please get this into your mutton head.

Vlad, you're like the guy wallowing in the sewer saying that everyone else stinks.

What's that Vlad, the scary black people are more violent than the white people or some other race X?

Didn't you count WWI, WWII, The Holocaust, Nam, Iraq/Afghan, etc. in there for the white man?

Or what about the Congo rubber plantations.

Jeez man, I think the 19th and early 20th century empires of Belgium, France, Spain, and Germany would all have take you up on that "blacks are more violent" argument. They always prided themselves in being more violent and ruthless (and cunning) than them.

Heck, what about some good old white religious war.

Or how many modern arms manufacturers are based in predominantly black societies?

Alexis Carrel said much the same thing long ago - always building things that had no relation to who or what we are. Not even valuing simple comfort and convenience much less aesthetics or real human utility. Money and the drive for Power, "the Myth of the Machine, the Pyramid - that's all. And for the person, nothing. They promised us techno paradise and tricked us into leaving the farms and small towns. Now their lies are unveiled too late to do much of anything but wait for the unraveling.

Point well taken about the sugarcoating of Islamic imperialism.

There is a tendency in modern historiography, especially in the basic histories produced for general audiences, to summarize Medieval history by declaring that Europe was a mess and that the Arabs singlehandedly preserved classical Greco-Roman culture for posterity. My sense is that this generalization isn't very far off base, but that it also smacks of political correctness. It's just a gut feeling; I know a fair amount about Medieval European history, but very little about Medieval Arab history.

I can say that I'm very skeptical about much of the recent historiography about Islam. Around 2004, I noticed a surge of popular interest in the Barbary Pirates as a means for understanding modern jihadi terrorists. Activists on the right were waxing eloquent about what a threat the Barbary Pirates were in their time, activists on the left were waxing eloquent about American diplomatic negotiations with the pirates as a precedent for negotiating with modern terrorists, and both sides sounded like shrill ignoramuses who were cherrypicking the historical record because they had axes to grind. A similar dynamic often creeps into discussions of the Crusades, although in that case the revisionist efforts that I've noticed have been lower key and more protracted.

A lot of the fighting in Medieval Europe was between rival bands of feudal thugs or else between some assembly of feudal Christian thugs and some Muslim imperial army. Rarely was a warring party on the side of anything remotely resembling human rights or political freedom.

There was at least one major advance in human and civil rights in that period, the Magna Carta, and there were incremental improvements, including migrations of serf populations into cities where they were able to join the free bourgeoisie after a statute of limitation for their reenslavement. For the most part, though, Europe was ass-backwards and despotic.

It is foolish and misleading to try to understand any of this in the black-and-white terms that most curriculum planners and other public historians tend to favor. The fundamental problem seems to be one of arbitrarily picking winners and losers, heroes and villains, in battles between unsavory factions that no one can put into a proper historical context. Ideological axe-grinders have a field day in these circumstances.

I thought it was the Irish that saved civilization.

AMR,

Most Islamic people (I think) would say the medieval world was the Golden Age of their civilization. It is even referred to this way in the scholarship.

By contrast, I don't think most westerners (i.e. Europeans and their descendants) would consider that period their finest historical hour.

Learning and the reception and sustaining of knowledge is a complicated business, and I wouldn't place that total burden on any one empire or civilization, nor is this what history suggests.

The Chinese, Mesopotamian, Egyptian, and Islamic cultures all had long-lasting influence as well as the Roman and Rome's break-up entities (Holy Roman Empire, Byzantine Empire, etc.).

Now Western European civilization has indeed had a huge influence on the technological development of civilization, but then again you are talking about the combined efforts, experiments, developments, etc. of a wide variety of people and races (British, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Greek, etc.) generally much different from each other than most Islamic (e.g. Arabic speaking) Muslim nations.

I think maybe some Islamic historians overstate their case because it has been long held in basic western history texts that they were nothing but bloody-thirsty conquerors during that time and they want to turn the tables on Westerners and accuse them of the same thing. So I agree that it is sometimes a rhetorical dog fight out there.

Islam was so powerful from its inception that it soon threatened to topple and engulf Western Europe. There were a few battles that probably determined the outcome of the political situation in Europe for 100s of years. Islam almost conquered Western Europe during the Middle Ages early in its history. From then the Europeans have fought like dogs to keep their territory (witness massive ant invasion to defend the Holy Land).

The Moors got as far as Burgundy.

The biggest threat to modern civilisation operated by Muslims was the mentality change.
South of Italy is in that way very similar to Spain.
What is urgent today will be even more urgent tomorrow, so why bother?
Women are inferior creature, when you come back home beat your wife, you do not know why, but she does.
The worst is the vision of a society as a feudal state where few "elected" "illuminated" people have the right to dominate.
This sense of importance of the "family".
This was the birth of the Mafia that not only survives, but has spread on every level of our society, has created the Bilderberg family that is nothing else than legalized Mafia.
What was done then with weapons and terror is done today with psychology.
You do what they want not because you are obliged, but because you are willing to do it.
This is the worst type of dictatorship, because it is a willingly accepted one.
You can fight a dictator, you can fight for freedom, you NEVER fight something in which you are a part.
Our body has wonderful resources; I would say that a healthy person can heal from most of illnesses.
It cannot heal from cancer, or a virus attack, because it is willingly accepting them, they are A PART of the body.
That is the best way to kill an "enemy" or to enslave somebody.
Hitler was a stupid compared to them, a naive, who thought that to dominate the world it was enough to be the stronger.
Arabs didn’t only create the numbers, they created the society of today.


Didn't JHK once say that he wants to receive payment in real commodities, like chickens?

"Medical marijuana food drive for free pot in California. Medical marijuana food drive in California offers free pot, if you can believe that. Each patient was limited to a maximum of three cigarettes a day.

The Granny Purps dispensary in Soquel (soh-KEL'), about 60 miles southeast of San Francisco, offered a complimentary marijuana cigarette for every four cans of food a patient brought in this holiday season.

The dispensary took in 11,000 pounds of food and handed out 2,000 marijuana cigarettes between November and Christmas Eve, when the promotion ended.

The food was donated to the Second Harvest Food Bank.

Second Harvest spokesman Danny Keith says Granny Purps, which only has eight employees, contributed the amount of food that would normally come from a business with 30 to 40 workers."

Some very thought provoking stuff tonight, ladies and gents.
==========
Regarding:
"The fundamental problem seems to be one of arbitrarily picking winners and losers, heroes and villains, in battles between unsavory factions that no one can put into a proper historical context."
===========

No one should EVER forget that the winners write the History. That is one of the lessons of the Civil War that native southerners know (knew) in a visceral way.

And you will see it operating on a daily basis if you only know how to look for it.

===========

On another note, consider my post regarding how the immigration debate gets conflated too quickly with racist posturing (from both racial sides!) -

my post specifically did not mention ILLEGAL immigration - yet that's what you respondents choose to mostly consider.

This proves a point - though what it is, is as yet uncertain.

But it justifies further discussion, IMO.

- Vlad -

"muttonhead"

That's the best you've got, beefforbrains? ;')

Seriously, don't try to compete with TzaLingJim in the name-calling department.

==========
I more or less outgrew my vocabulary of white racist theorizing when the civil rights act was passed and I had to move into the real world.

So help me out. If you're not a "white supremacist," just what the heck are you?

Let me point out that you can admire the high IQ of "Asians" while still thinking your "whites" are superior - culturally or otherwise.

In the same way that one can admire the physical strength or athletic abilities of "blacks" while still thinking "whites" are superior.

But would you prefer the term "white separatist?"
I can use that if it will make you happy.

Your happiness, after all, is one of my considerations.

"And you will see it operating on a daily basis if you only know how to look for it."

Should have been:

And you will see it operating - Globally and Everywhere - on a daily basis if you only know how to look for it.

I know the South lost.
And yeah, I've pretty much gotten over it!

On another note, consider my post regarding how the immigration debate gets conflated too quickly with racist posturing (from both racial sides!) -

my post specifically did not mention ILLEGAL immigration - yet that's what you respondents choose to mostly consider.

This proves a point - though what it is, is as yet uncertain.

But it justifies further discussion, IMO.

..................

The amount of LEGAL immigrants to the USA is far below the numbers of people who enter ILLegally. So what then are you trying to say if you are worrying about the number of legal immigrants?

A thnunderstorm is a whole different ballpark from that of a category 5 hurricane.....

Maybe you should clarify what you mean then about immigration being a problem...start the discussion you state is justified.

I've never heard of it. Sounds like it might be a good read. Thanks for the tip.

Asia comments:

'rightwing libertarians'

many of us will take them over g. soros and his endless organizations any day.
are you aware of the propostion he funded ..in california..was it in 2009. every DA in the state opposed it?
======================================

No actually, and nor do I care. The term 'rightwing libertarians' was not mine but in the quote I posted. I would only criticize it for being obviously redundant.

As I've mentioned, I don't like to make predictions, but I would suggest that you might find, as I have, that the less time you spend listening to cable "news", (which is nothing but politics 24/7, simply because that is cheap to produce) the better informed and happier you will be. Give it a try.

Yeah but I'm not a liberal, not even close. And I'm not a conservative either.

But anyway, what you call the chink in my armour you might say is the chink in your own. How do you account for the long, long delay (thousands of years) in getting European civilization on a similar level to non Europan civilization? The city of Jericho had stone walls and stone guard towers ten thousand years ago and it wasn't atypical for the region or so I've read. So what held Europe back?

You know what I think? The thousands of years it took Europeans to get their asses in gear compared to other parts of the world had nothing to do with any lack of brainpower in white people, the condition of their advancement or lack thereof was a result of their physical environment.

Pure and simple it just took time for the idea of civilization to sink in, for European tribes to adopt new forms of social organization, to learn new types of technology in a part of the world far less amenable climatically to growing food than other areas. Things don't happen in a straight line in human affairs.

So black Africa is thousands of years behind other parts of the world. I would argue that the same environmental factors apply to them. Just one example: diseases like malaria, sleeping sickness impose a huge load in those climes compared to more temperate places.

So what accounts for the catastrophic state of blacks in the US? I've read and I'm sure you have too that a huge proportion of black men in the US (one quarter I think) at any given time are somewhere in the justice system in the US, either in jail, awaiting trial, on probation, on parole or some such. And that two thirds of black babies are born out of wedlock. It doesn't take a genius to see that there are some pretty deep problems in the black community. I would say this: for four centuries this community was brutalized by white people and I don't need to belabour this. They endured monumental levels of shit. So big surprise that a lot of them are really fucked up. These things take a long time to heal up.

One other thing: a lot of this has economic roots. As industries offshore and throw white men as well as black men out of work you're seeing rising levels of fatherless families in the white community also. What does woman want with an unemployed man anyway? He's a burden to her so hit the road Jack. Blacks got there first but whites are not far behind at least in my opinion.


Turkle,
Your post points in a direction that I think is valid, if not ESSENTIAL.

The natural species of humankind means more than the slicing and dicing of its' supposed "racial" components. Those who will take the philosophical leap to working WITH [and being part of] their life-support system (the Earth, doncha know) will live. Those that continue the consumerist/religionist/dominionist mindset will die. (I'll just call these folks "THE USERS")

Should the USERS overcome all others, total destruction of our environmental support will ensue. Slow suicide for the ENTIRE human race.

To distill further: There are those that believe we are PART of nature (with all its' strictures and wild abandon of genetic variety); and those who believe nature is for their USE, and truly believe we are above it and in "control" of it.

Nature is about to deliver a deadly serious lesson. ...And, yes, even those of us trying to jump off of the runaway, hellbound train of the "users" are going to get smacked too; it's all about interconnections.

Pro

I look at the American Civil War or the War Between the States as a foreigner. So I don't have an axe to grind in that issue.

A couple of points. I think sometimes the losers write the history. Like the Japanese. From what I've heard Japanese textbooks on WW2 bear little resemblance to US, Brit or Canuck histories.

The second is that the academic community seems to me to be "liberal" (for lack of a better word) in their orientation. So is there not a tendency to take adversarial positions against your country, actively siding with avowed enemies, being useful idiots (in Stalin's words) to foreign powers and foreign interests? Blame America first, Amerika the evil, Amerika the fascist empire. Cast Amerika in the worst possible light.

So I'll bet there are "histories" but then I wonder if there aren't also other "histories" the validity of which depend on your place on the left/right political spectrum.

I had a brief discussion with my niece over Christmas. She's a first year university student, very hip and with it and she was complaining about white man centric history as it's taught in school. My wife saw me turning red and started kicking me under the table. My sister knows my "retrograde" views and was watching with great amusement. I said to my niece if she didn't like white man hegemony she didn't have long to wait before it was supplanted and that she would like Chinese hegemony a whole lot less. She would get a good look at a really nasty regime. And I left it at that. I didn't want to go to war over Christmas dinner.

Cash, you make some very good points about the climes of Africa contributing to comparative backwardness. I heard some years ago that during the period of early European colonialism in Africa, a stint of duty for a white soldier to Africa was the effective equivalent of a death sentence. I believe the average length of duty there before death was something like seven months. This was the result of both disease and lethal flora and fauna. What a place! No surprise the locals didn't have much technology! Who lived long enough, and if they did, who would have the energy for capital formation? The effects of this linger for generations. After the German tribes were exposed to Roman civilization, it took them a good 500-600 years to get up to even a moderate level of indigenous advancement. And that estimate is quite liberal. Some would say more like 800 to 1200 years.

Okay then,
So I'll add to, "Be careful who you piss off", another kernel that's popped up in the threads, namely, "Be careful what/who you exploit".

As always: "Be careful what you wish for; you just may get it."

After the German tribes were exposed to Roman civilization, it took them a good 500-600 years to get up to even a moderate level of indigenous advancement. And that estimate is quite liberal. Some would say more like 800 to 1200 years. - Al

Interesting, I'd never read that. What knocked the Germans off the rails? Wine, women and song, learning corrupt Roman ways, urban diseases?


I will amplify and clarify.
============
You state:
"The amount of LEGAL immigrants to the USA is far below the numbers of people who enter ILLegally. So what then are you trying to say if you are worrying about the number of legal immigrants?

A thnunderstorm is a whole different ballpark from that of a category 5 hurricane.....

Maybe you should clarify what you mean then about immigration being a problem...start the discussion you state is justified.
==============

You may be correct that there are more illegal immigrants than legal ones being allowed into the US. Nevertheless, there are roughly 100,000 LEGAL immigrants admitted per month. That's over one million new humans in the US - going back to the mid 90's.

That's a lot of people.
And they are legal, meaning they can *mostly?* obtain jobs, apply for AFDC, et cetera.

If you look at the growing consensus regarding peak oil, peak coal, and resource depletion - at some point the US WILL grow beyond a population number that is *sustainable.* (Leaving aside questions of quality of life, etc.)

Illegal immigration is already illegal.
Fixing that is a matter of techniques and enforcement.

Legal immigration is something else. Bringing legal immigration numbers down to levels that are "sustainable," going forward is going to take national debate and action by Congress.

That takes time. I say it is time to begin considering the issue.

I'm writing my congressman.

"Possible explanation for the continued presence of "Zha Zha" or "Whack Whack" or "OEO" or whatever he is calling himself this week/day/hour.....he's getting paid for it:"

Though my postings are worth millions, alas, I remain unrecompensed. Why are you still hanging around here, fucktard?

"... get this, if you scroll back you can easily see that peole knew what I was talking about and agreed with me..."

So, there are people who read this blog who are as stupid as you? Hey, there's a fucking surprise!

"Gas went down, unemployment doubled and a recession without end began. 12 trillion dollars of wealth is wiped out. To maintain liquidity massive debt is transferred from the upper to lower classes.

Tell me is ignorance bliss? You should know."

Chicken or egg, fucktard? Gas prices caused recession? Twas a factor but the price of gas didn't tank the real estate sector. Fanny/Freddie and social engineering on the part of Bahnee and Chrissie was a much larger factor.

Besides, all you "greenies" should be thrilled with $4.00 gas. Am I not always reading how Europe pays so much more than us and we greedy Americans don't know how good we have it? Wait till Obammy jacks the taxation portion of gas and see where we end up. Of course all of those additional taxes will be used every bit as wisely as our current tax dollars.

What if the South had won? What do you think the world would look like? I think another poster here was saying something to the effect that the civil war is still going strong and the forces of regionalization are tearing apart the US federation.

Maybe formal or defacto independence for different states or regions as the federal govt becomes more and more bankrupt and unable/unwilling to extend its authority. I think the game is up when people in a state/region stop filing federal tax returns.

HAPPY NEW YEARS


anyone have a crystal ball?
whats america going to be like in 2011?

as brimelow noted 'immigrants are negatively selected'
meaning...those with $, a job, college degree stay in mexico or whereever.

gawd...in 2011 how about an end to the 'inter tribal warfare'

'We in the West are from 20-80 times more wealthy than typical Africans (Kenya, etc.)'
i cant find the above post this is from....
yes 'we' are richer....'we' may [gasp] be able to read! that makes for productivity.

I think there's something to that. If you have money you can make a life anywhere. People having a hard time are motivated to take a chance to try to make a new life somewhere else.

Yes, since 1 in 4? in mexico lives on a dollar a day but the population continues to explode.

however 'making a new life' consists of foodstamps,
crime,
public housing
filling the emergency rooms.
filling the prisons too.

Dale,
for the 2nd or 3rd time..i dont 'watch the news'
i do listen to am and fm radio.


RE:
' listening to cable "news", (which is nothing but'

happy holidays!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

K-dog, it sounds like it wasn't made illegal ? Is that right ?

I remember seeing a video on that subject a few years ago and really getting angry and scared.

YNY

Al Klein and Cash

Great interchange about how the climate of Africa impacted the evolution of civilizations (or lack thereof?) in Africa. Very thought provoking; and I like my thoughts provoked!

And Cash, regarding how the winners write the History of the conflict. Good points; I had not considered that the *internal?* history taught to German or Japanese children might differ radically from the History (intentional capital H) taught to US children and the children of the other winners.

But of course it naturally would be expected to differ. And while I accept the US version of WWII as Truth - I don't doubt that the losers would have a different version of their own Truth.

For example, we consider victory in the Pacific Theater as inevitable - viewed today. The Japanese are certainly entitled to a different view. Just as an example, had the Japanese not attacked Pearl Harbor and thus pissed off the US Navy and US citizenry - they might well have achieved a negotiated peace with the US. This was their only logical hope for the ending of a US/Japanese conflict.

Your points are noted concerning my views concerning the US Civil War, AKA the War for Southern Independence.

I appreciate your views as a foreigner, with no ax to grind. Wage pointed out weeks ago how that particular War continues to reverberate in our politics - and how all other countries outlawed slavery by legislative action. Only the US killed 1 million men in a war - VIEWED IN HINDSIGHT - that was ONLY about slavery.

There are many other forums where I can re-fight the Civil War to my heart's content. I will try to refrain from doing it on CFN, in honor of you and other international visitors. Thanks! ;-)

"If you want a vision of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face - forever." -George Orwell

Nope not SLO. Closer much closer. 2 U that is.
You can figure it out with this info. I hope.
I don't get around much. Stay on 'this' side of the hill. Occasionally I go north and see the 'real' world.

People like Mormons live such Isolated lives, that's what I think. Narrow minded and isolated.
Probably beautiful there tho.

My ex lives in Cupertino.


The "real world" huh? Yeah right. The world of affirmative action, forced bussing, pandering to minorities, the end of freedom of association, the fudging of test scores to hide the fact that the Blacks are a bunch of yahoos, incredible levels of rape and crime, etc. And all of this made right in one stroke by "The Civil Rights Act". Bow down and worhip pagan.

Yes, White Separatist will do. Otherwise you are misrepresenting me in an important way. We don't seek to rule other peoples anymore - been there, done that. We always end up getting absorbed by them or getting our throats cut. And now we hate ourselves for doing it on top of all that.

Whites have grown morally, but let's be clear: the people we conquered we're not better men than us. They conquered weaker peoples just like we did. We were stronger than them - nothing more. But Whites can't forgive themselves for their history and engage in incredible levels of moral masochism. They then seek salvation by projecting hatred onto Whites who don't feel this guilt - and by working with gleefull minorities to overthrow White, Western Civilization. A moment's observation and objective reflection reveals that the other races of the World have not undergone the moral revolution that Whites have. Thus our position is perilous indeed. We are savagely beset from without and ignobly betrayed from within - both in Europe and America and Australia as well. Thus Separation is the only path left to us - the Path of Life.

My annoyance stems from the fact that I have repeatedly made clear that I am not a White Supremacist. And I have told you specifically more than once. Do I personally think Whites are superior? In some ways yes and in other ways no. From another angle: all peoples feel they are great or even superior. If a people do not feel this, they are headed for extinction.
Blacks naturally have alot of self esteem - it seems to be built into the genotype. They suffer immensely having to associate with us because they naturally feel inferior. So they overcompensate and become arrogant and angry - and seek payback. Nothing can be done to aleviate this as Blacks cannot compete with us intelectually. So even they know that the things they are good at such as sports or the performing arts, are just not as important as the things we are good at. The Universe is hierarchically structured and sports are well below intellectualism. Thus in their madness, liberals seek to dumb down Whites and corrupt academia - make us all equal, all one. Egalitarianism is a sin, a violation of the most basic Law of Nature and Nature's God. Hierarchy is True Diversity.

Thank you again for taking legal immigration seriously. You are now on the cutting edge. Beyond the crazy numbers, the 1965 reform spearheaded by Kennedy is also unjust in that it discriminates in favor of non Whites. Kennedy said it wouldn't change our society's ethnic makeup! A liberal liar told his liberal lie. For a little more background, check the articles of Pat Buchanon. He is advocating for a moratorium on legal immigration - to my knowledge he is the only national figure who is addressing this.

I hear ya ! It's his daughters' that are so called self proclaimed Christians'. Not him. Or I would have been gone long ago and should be for other reasons anyway.

I "made a wrong turn and I just kept going" I'll tell ya right now who sang that
Bruce The Boss Springsteen. I am a generation under you, probably closer to BTBill. Think he is younger than me.

I believe in God Just not the Holey Toast and all that crap.

No kids for me, never had 'em.

BTW I never had a flashback. Yet anyway ! I keep waiting.

HAPPY NEW YEAR 2 U ! XOX

Where was I. I'm not saying it didn't happen, oh I had surgery. Was out to lunch for a few.

Soquel is more like 90 miles South and it Borders' Santa Cruz, Capitola and Aptos.

It actually is BEAUTIFUL and warm. just a couple miles inland from the bay, like 2 miles. makes all the difference tho.

On the Ocean is almost always COLD.

Soquel is Redwoods and Wineries.
It is AWESOME.

I missed out on the Pot Drive for Food. I actually don't smoke, but know for a fact that is DOES help with certain Pain conditions. Personal experience. I just got paranoid and didn't like that part.

Much better for U than Opiates, not so hard on the Liver etc. anyway.....

The West Coast and the Congo are very difficult - even for Africans who have the sickle cell and the dark skin. But not all of Africa is jungle. Much of East Africa stretching from Kenya down to South Africa is a high temperate plateau with good soil and adequate rainfall. The sun is still strong so Whites are at a bit of a disadvantage, but the Blacks have no excuse. They could have devoloped a Civilization. The other famous excuse is isolation. Well they weren't. They had long eposure to Ancient Egypt and also to the Arabs across a narrow sea.

And even the jungle thing may not wash: the Hindus, Southeast Asians, and Central Americans erected cities in the Jungle. No maybe those jungles are less hostile than Africa's - I don't know.

I've heard the price of houses is plummeting. Do you think the price of land will do likewise? Or will it stay high as more people flee the coming doom. Not academic: I want to buy a few acres and wonder is I should wait or move.

E.O Wilson is you man, bub. He describes in one book how an alien queen can adjust her scent to that of another colony, walk right in past the guards and assasinate the queen while her attendants just watch. An even more bizzare scenario: some new ant queens seem to actually "hypnotize" the workers to kill their own queen and save her the trouble. This a perfect model for a Communist Revolution in which the proletariat are seduced into changing thier masters.

The micro world is fascinating. The Black Man's sperm may run faster than a White Man's just as the Black Man does in the Macro World. Sperm cells also work together like a football team to block other men's sperm cells and allowing a couple of wide recievers to get to the goal/egg. I'll never forget the look of disgust on the faces of the girls in my class when they heard about all this. The Princesses! They don't like to think of war in their vaginas and that they're part of a biological process. They want money and glamour and to feel special and superior.

who says:
"Though my postings are worth millions, alas, I remain unrecompensed. Why are you still hanging around here, fucktard?"
===============================
Someone is PAYING me, of course.

Firstly, my main argument you ignore - namely that Asians took to our technology like ducks to water and the Africnas did not/could not.

Secondly, you are making far to big a distincion between Northern and Southern Europeans. Many of the Greeks and Romans looked just like modern White Americans. Same for the ancient Middle East. We built some of those cities, Cash. Gradually, the Semites came to dominate and the rise of Islam clinched it. But history tells another story. You are projecting current conditions into the past far to much.

The Dark Ages? Betrand Russel said the dark ages weren't so dark and that much useful intellectual work was done. Could the Cathedrals have been built by ignorant Whites? Of course that is the High Middle Ages. The Dark Ages are usually said to be from the Fall of Rome to about 1000. I might be off a few centuries or so. And were the Vikings savages? In some ways, but they were also master craftsmen. Look at some of the artifacts. Or look at the work of ancient Irish. Masters not savages. Even in a general Dark, there are pockets of Light. Less than a Civilization, but perhaps a good polity or nation.

Marriage ties in Black Africa have always been weak. Quite common for Mother and children to move back to her parents and not see the husband/father very often. Typically he does not fully support the children either. Also there was alot of polygamy in old Africa. That may be frowned upon now because of Christianity and secular law, but it was not an organic change is the point. So the falling apart over here might be just Blacks assuming their natural communal pattern. I have no problem with that since I think Whites should do similar (but not the same). The problem is that they are doing it on our dime and thus the process is stopped from completing itself. Welfare maintains Blacks in an unnatural lifestyle. If they had any real nobility, they would have said no to all these special privledges decades ago. And yes, Whites are seriously corrupting now too. The glorification of Black Thug Culture is but one of the reasons for this, but there is no excuse. There never is an excuse. A reason is not an excuse.

Same question as I put to Messi: what do you think the price of land is going to do? It's so expensive, but is it a bubble like so many other things? Or an ever more precious commodity like the metals?

"Chicken or egg, fucktard? Gas prices caused recession? Twas a factor but the price of gas didn't tank the real estate sector. Fanny/Freddie and social engineering on the part of Bahnee and Chrissie was a much larger factor."

Yes gas prices triggered recession, The whole mess was fine as long as everybody made mortgage payments but the extreme leveraging of years of refinance cased the housing bubble to burst when people could not make mortgage payments. Money got tight from rising gas prices. The house of cards fell when gas prices pushed it. Rising gas prices caused layoffs which caused people to miss mortgage payments.

I do not evaluate the strength of this rather obvious cause and effect relationship other than to admit it's existence. JimJim however proclaims the obvious does not exist. I claim the obvious but admit I'm not sure how strong the connection is.

A man who who will deny the obvious is insane. Call me crazy but I think JimJim is insane.

This all means that if I feel like I don't want to admit an obvious fact asking myself why would be a good idea. It might be that I have an agenda I'm not fully conscious of and thinking about my motives would be a good idea in this situation should it arise.

Thank you for the lesson grasshopper.

Have you ever been to Colorado City/Hillsdale on the Arizona/Utah border between Grand Canyon and Zion Nat. Park? My girlfriend and I did last October on our way back from SE Utah. It's a community of fundamentalist Mormons who are still polygamous. The women all dress like late 19th century pioneer women. A woman will come in to the supermarket with several children in tow all more or less the same age and who are obviously not all her children. The polygamous homes are huge with multiple bedrooms to house each wife and her brood. In shorts and t-shirt I felt like I was from another planet. At the same time they were quite friendly to outsiders, to us anyway.

Anyway, a fascinating place and since they have a strongly independant do-it-yourself mentality they will do quite well during the tough times ahead. Must be some pretty weird shit living there though.

Then again, as a recovering Mormon you may not want to go there.

Neckflames

Given that "jimjim" is now on his (her?) ninth account or so after the others were banned, and also supposing that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result, you could very well be right that she is crazy.

Or maybe she wants to get her accounts banned because of trolling, like some kind of demented internet badge of honor. Who really knows what thoughts are going through that dull mind.

"Though my postings are worth millions"

Who would buy them?

Ah, yes, the real estate crash was all caused by Fannie and Freddie and the evil gubment. Haven't we heard this before?

Even though real estate also tanked in countries that Freddie and Fannie didn't cover at all.

Right, I'll buy that...

Some little pissants can't wrap their small brains around the idea that the government and the banks colluded with each other to package high risk mortgages into salable bundles. The idea that the government "forced" this on the banks is ludicrous and inaccurate. The government has NO power to force banks to make loans. Just look at the current situation where credit is tight even after the banks received billions in bailout money along with a "pretty please lend this money" post-it attached that the banks promptly ignored.

All the government do is make requests or facilitate. The banks originate all the loans. If the government is pressuring the banks to make bad loans, they can simply tell them to piss off (as they often do).

So did Fannie and Freddie facilitate the issuing of high risk loans by their behavior? Sure. I have no problem saying yes to this question.

But so did a lot of other entities all across the planet. Fannie and Freddie weren't the only ones putting the chicken shit into bundles and calling it chicken salad, not by a long shot.

The real estate crisis was caused by typical bubble economics, e.g. a speculative frenzy, that occurred across the entire planet. Real estate was looked at as a very safe investment that was always increasing in value. Hence massive amounts of capital were invested in real estate and a speculative asset bubble was formed. Queue Savings and Loan Crisis Part II.

Hey, dale, how's the skiing these days?

Even Chris Mathews is now calling for the release of Obama's birth certificate. Boy, is Christine going to be pissed if and when the truth comes out. Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned. Don't get me wrong: a woman can be a fine person; a living work of art even. But men who are like women are neither good men nor good women - male bitches are hell creatures.

http://www.newsmax.com/InsideCover/Obama-birth-certificate-Matthews/2010/12/29/id/381362?s=al&promo_code=B604-1

Hi Neckflames,

I haven't been to Hillsdale/Colorado because my head might possibly explode given the religious climate.

Nevertheless, Utah has some fabulous scenery and National Parks. I've been to Bryce Canyon, Zion, Dead Horse Point, Canyonlands and Arches numerous times. Did you see any of these parks?

Jen

"Have you ever been to Colorado City/Hillsdale on the Arizona/Utah border between Grand Canyon and Zion Nat. Park? My girlfriend and I did last October on our way back from SE Utah. It's a community of fundamentalist Mormons who are still polygamous. The women all dress like late 19th century pioneer women."

I suppose we know know where Vlad Krantz is moving. Do they have a casino and trailer park?

The real estate crash was caused by big banks lowering their underwriting standards. People who couldn't afford to purchase a home got qualified by lenders. The banking industry says it was forced by the government to lower these standards. Then the banks created securities out of batches of mortgages and sold them to investors. The banks knew the loans sucked, but they didn't care. Rating agencies rated the securities at the highest level, when they should have known they were crap. People should have known they couldn't afford their mortgages, but took them out anyway in their ignorance.

So different groups of people were responsible for the tanking of the real estate market and several factors came into play.

Obama's birth certificate...wow.

newsmax, now there's a reputable internet news organization if I've ever seen one.

So what if the dow goes to 20,000 the value of those American dollars will be handy to wipe your ass with-maybe. The Federal Reserve(private banking cartel) has looted and run America into the ground. Gives me a headache just to think about all the corruption in high places.
The lies are just so bold and in open.
Light will still somehow win over the Darkness.
Have a happy new year.

So you think Chris Mathews didn't say what they said he said? Or are you just frightened that you don't know what's going on? Turk, your whole trip is guilt by association and innuendo. You can't honestly look at or discuss anything. You already "know" all the right answers. And you only want to talk to people who "know" exactly the same things. It's like belonging to a Cult. Like? Hell, it is.

Be that as it may, the dingding attack does bring something out.

Bubble smubble, talk about the bankers all we wish. It's all true no doubt bankers are the new colonials.

Regardless, the prick of this recession was an oil shock. I could say 'gas price rise' but that is PC bullshit. I was an Oil Shock: a limit to growth.

It happened before in the seventies. Texas was dry and could not save the day or it would have. Getting the tap back on saved the day then, there was one to turn on.

This time is going to be different. We need to talk about the financial mess yes, it is all horribly true. But, not seeing the forest through the trees is a common human failing and their may be trolls posting here who's sole purpose is to deny the clusterfuck. Cybervandalism to let one know one's alive.

It is possible.


The Mormons are great Prepers though. You could do worse than be around them when it all goes bad. I've heard that they consider non Mormons "Gentiles" and talk us down a bit when they're by themselves. Well, it's probably true but I'd take that anyday over armed assault and robbery. However they feel and however they talk, they want to maintain good relations with their non Mormon neighbors. And they are heavily armed -another really big plus in the days that are coming. Law abiding, heavily armed, well prepared neighbors? Sounds good to me. Of course if someone is looking for charity - they should understand that they will have to stand at the back of the line after all the Mormons.

"Do you think the price of land will do likewise?"

This depends, of course, on what you will use for money. Land will eventually trade for an ounce of silver per acre. Trade your filthy rags {FRNs} for silver, now. Then wait.

This will also help bust the banksters who have been manipulating the silver market:

1 – JP Morgan has a huge short position in Silver – estimated to be 3.3 billion ounces – tied to an enormous, extremely precarious $65 trillion derivatives position.

2 – Various exchanges around the world have been caught manipulating the price of Silver using ‘naked’ short sales i.e., counterfeiting.

3 – Of all the actively traded commodities traded around the world, Silver is one of the least plentiful and its supply is shrinking, but its industrial uses are multiplying. The ‘networked’ age of global communications is built with Silver.

4 – Hedge funds are taking physical delivery of Silver – adding substantial demand as well as exposing these exchange’s naked short positions – who are already scrambling to deliver – jacking prices up to multi-decade highs – and inspiring these predatory funds to buy more Silver.

5 – There are billions of people around the world who are aware that banks have been committing fraud and embezzlement who are upset that their politicians seem only interested in helping the banks commit more fraud – who are looking for a cheap way to non-aggressively fight back and decapitalize these banks.

6 – Many of these people have the access and wherewithal to purchase 1 ounce of Silver – thus removing hundreds of millions of ounces of Silver from the ‘paper’ market – forcing additional scrambling by dealers to fill orders by buying back short positions – inspiring the funds to buy and take physical delivery of even more Silver – creating a colossal short squeeze – in which JP Morgan stands to be the biggest loser.

7 – Buying Silver is how the world is monetizing its anger at the banks who stole their wealth.

http://gold-silver.us/forum/general-discussion/max-keiser-launches-campaign-to-crash-jp-morgan-buy-silver!/

They do make great neighbors. And yes, they are armed to the teeth. My mom inherited her grandfather's gun collection (she is his only heir). It includes some Turkish guns from the 19th century, Civil War guns -- about 25 total. Her favorite is the German Luger (sp?), which she would use for self-defense. She's going to take shooting lessons this year.

My disaster plan is to get the hell out of California and head for Salt Lake City. Gas availability willing.

Jen

We floated one of them there rivers that joins the Colorado in Canyonlands NP. The green one. We've been out there several times in the Fall. San Juan River is also a great trip. Lots of amazing stuff; I'd live out there but the summers are too hot and the winters too cold.

Come hell or high water, or both, you can do worse than California. Long growing season, great weather, lots of food grown here. My brother lives kind of near you I think in Almaden. San Jose is a rather alienating place to hang out in. I usually end up getting lost there. Big box stores everywhere, 8 lane roads. He grows a fair amount of food in his backyard though.

Right now I have this image in my mind of your mother staring down someone with her Luger saying,
"Do you feel lucky today, Punk?"

Is it really that bad in CA, Jen?

Time for name that tune, another song.

EVERYBODY KNOWS that the good guys lost
that's how it goes, everybody knows.

I think Leonard Cohen wrote it, many have sung it.

gold “is a soft, semi-useless metal with very few industrial applications,” and “Ultimately, this gold bubble ends in tears.”
A vital observation of the fun-starved Austrian school of economics is that investors err together, so unanimity of opinion is a danger sign

SOURCE: "Gold: The Ultimate Fiat Currency" by Richard Wiggins, chief investment strategist for First Michigan Bank, a private bank that is purchasing failed banks from the FDIC.

In the history of failed fiat currencies, when a collapse happens, the substitute currency is never silver or gold. Silver and gold do not work as mediums of exchange in daily economic life.

Barter works, until a new fiat currency gains stability.

This has been true for thousands of years.

Sell your gold and silver before the precious metal bubbles burst (unless you bought the soon to be completely useless metals at prices less than one tenth of current price)

Manfromnowhere said:

So what if the dow goes to 20,000 the value of those American dollars will be handy to wipe your ass with-maybe.

Exactly.

The American dollars will be useful forever. You can also start fires with them.

Try wiping your ass or starting fires with useless gold coins or silver coins.

Jen pick me up on the way hey ?
I know we have a better growing climate for food, but the people and the amount and the KIND are so strange.
Scares me.

BJ, it is that bad in certain areas.
Gangs abound. Just disrespect and rude inconsiderate me me me me me.
all about me. get out of MY way.

and the pace of life is so fast.
unless you step out of the way
which i do on a daily basis.

well I'll let Jen speak for herself, she has a better way with words, everyone on here has a better way with words than me.

"I guess we know where Vlad K is moving."
cracked me up. I personally don't follow all the drama just sometimes remarks are so funny. Some on here really can't stand others.

I think calling someone a fucktard is uncalled for, but It's between them.
I don't even know the 2 it is between, I'd have to SCROLL some more.

H A P P Y N E W Y E A R !

You've got to try harder, Soak. You can't be this dumb! You just can't be!!

(Thanks for the quote, Vlad.)

K-dog knows, "Cycling is exercise and exercise fights depression and strengthens body and soul. It can be fun."

Yes, just think of all the inflamed joints afterward.

You've got to stop being mesmerized by shiny, durable, yet useless metals.

Hey Neckflames,

Almaden is just down the road a few miles. The growing season is indeed long here in California.

No one in their right mind would want to mess with my mom. But it's my sister who is a force to be reckoned with...her nickname is Annie Oakley. Before she moved to Durango, CO, she managed a camping park for the Mormon church way off the grid in the Santa Cruz Mountains. Some of her neighbors were certified wackos. (Whenever helicopters circled about the mountains, her kids would yell, "The neighbors are getting busted.")...for growing pot, of course. Also there was some meth kooks. When certain neighbors came by -- apparently wanting to use her phone -- she'd answer the door with her rifle in hand.

She would shoot whatever happened to be annoying her -- wild pigs rooting thru her amazing garden? Kaboom. Raccoons dancing on her roof at night-- Blast them to kingdom come. Rattlesnakes near the house -- easy targets. She has plenty of that Mormon pioneer blood in her veins.

As for me, I have a shotgun hidden in the attic.

Jen

You and your family sound insane. FYI

A bit of herbal medicine can do wonders for that.

I just watched a documentary of what China has been doing in Tibet since the invasion. What I saw in the documentary is so horrible I can no longer wear any clothes made in China.

I am doomed to walk the streets naked.

To my cyber-friends on CFN: Taking stock of the year 2010

They say bad things come in threes. Since September we were taken by surprise by the untimely deaths of friends and family.

In August I had just rekindled a friendship with a former Time photo editor and photographer who I had lost contact with over a long span of time. We started working at Time Inc years ago and were the same age. In June he invited me to view a gallery show of his magnificent silver tint photography of "Kashi, city of light", the birthplace of Buddha.
I couldn't attend the opening, but when I finally found the time to go, I was wowed. I was moved by the timelessness of the images. Typical of Asia, the farthest points in the background are shrouded in mist. The technology of everyday life has not changed in centuries, but there are little tell tale signs of the contemporary. A scrap of paper with an ad thrown into the mix.

We got together for lunch and went up to his loft to share our work with each other. It was truly a great renewed connection. He was a most generous and inspirational person who helped young photographers. To that end just five weeks after our meeting he was attending a photo expo in Sao Paulo, reviewing portfolios. He had suddenly taken ill and died. He left behind a wife and son and many admiring friends.--A creative spirit is gone, but won't be forgotten.

Peter lost his best friend from elementary school in a misdiagnosed condition at a hospital that never should have happened. I won't speak much about him except he was a filmmaker, actor and altogether creative and kind person. Two weeks ago friends and family got together for a memorial where we looked at his high school and college films and had some good laughs remembering this special friend and husband.

Of course, as I have mentioned I lost my mother this month. She has always been a model to me, an avid tennis player for many years, who kept in shape both physically and mentally. She remained an active and vibrant woman at 90. I had imagined she had a couple of years still ahead, but at that age, it's all a delicate balance. Maybe that's true at any age and we just don't want to see how fragile we really are. I'm left with memories of a beautiful and loving parent who's common sense and total acceptance of me will continue to give me strength and guide me in troubled times.

When we lose people our own age and the generation before us, we face our own mortality. I'm now on the front line.

As my mother always said, you have to take the good with the bad. On a more positive note, I renewed a relationship with a gallery and worked for some good new clients. When I posted some artwork on facebook, I got a huge surprise from someone I hadn't seen in decades. A Poet and former college boyfriend who loved my work and asked if he could use three images of mine for his book which just came out. I had the opportunity to work on the cover as an artist as well as prepress specialist. I just received some copies in the mail! ---What a great way to end a year such as mine.

Taking stock or 2010 part II

Now for a less personal take on where we find ourselves of the eve of the new year.
When I think of where we are heading I see no positive change from the course we have been taking. That wonderful Milton Friedman and globalism fundamentalism is going full steam on both sides of the aisle. In fact, I see us moving at a more accelerated pace toward the brink of untenable.

Most of us have recognized that the economic model of continued growth in the peak oil reality is not sustainable, nor can anyone but the top 2% afford to continue paying the rising costs of the profit centers.
According to Robert Hirsch, senior Energy Advisor at MISI and a consultant in energy, technology, and management,it will become very apparent to all that we are in Peak oil in 2-5 years. There is no time to move into new technologies on a mass scale as JHK points out.

The BP oil spill made it abundantly clear to all of us that we are but a colony of the transnationals and it is for their benefit that we fight the liquid wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Nato will be the big beneficiary of full spectrum power in the near future, as they oversee the oil and gas transport from central and south Asia to Europe, etc. See:

http://www.atimes.com/atimes/South_Asia/LL23Df05.html

But here we are, looking at less taxes to support ss and medicare, raising retirement age when there's no employment. Absurd compromises for W's tax breaks for the wealthy to expire in 2 years---during an election year, yet. As if...
Oh and the corporations will say they still don't have a stable tax environment to hire Americans.

Well the stats just came out that our wonderful stimulus package created 1.4 million jobs in China to our 1 million here. Obama could have won the midterms for Democrats if all those jobs were created here. Now look where we are going!

An activist conservative Supreme Court gave carte blanch to the richest corporations to fund elections to their own agenda without exposing who they are! That's how they define free speech.

Lobbyists continue to go in and out the revolving door of government and private corporations, making and diluting our laws, undermining the middle class further.

More bailouts for smaller banks, now. More corporate communism through bad trade deals, new bubbles for the stock market and the continuation of a debt-based neo feudal system. Lookin' good folks, we just can't seem to come up with anything better.

There is further consolidation of the table for media. Comcast and GE! It looks imminent. Now the next issue is net neutrality.

Runaway costs of the privatized security apparatus in this country that nobody seems to be overseeing. Your tax dollars at work going going gone...
Check out Frontine to see when "Top Security America" is going to air.

There's been some crazy talk by some of our newly elected teapartiers. One thinks that unless you own land you should not be given the right to vote---oh boy. There are others who are fighting for flat taxes--great for the wealthy, very tough for the rest of us. That's why we had a very successful progressive tax that built this country into a superpower. With a direction like this expect to devolve.

There's so many issues undermining us from our poorly instituted educations system down the line. One can only think this whole culture is based on how money can be syphoned-off in the process of administration. We can't seem to get out of this paradigm of greed before it's too late.

The only option we have is to make a realistic assessment on where things are going and try to make plans. Our voices are not being heard.

Jesus H Christ Pro I didn't intend that you shouldn't re-fight the Civil War on this forum. As far as I'm concerned I think you should re-fight it to your heart's content. One of my favourite things is what coulda been, what shoulda been, what mighta been. Or what could be, what should be, what might be.

I see the Civil War in a different light than Wage. She apparently thinks it's deplorable that the US should have pissed away a million lives over slavery where other countries managed to legislate slavery away. And that's fair enough.

But, to me, if you're going to fight a war what issue is more important? The north could have done the easy thing and capitulated to the south's demands and to southern secession. But they didn't do the easy thing. Slavery could have persisted for generations.

But I doubt that slavery was the only issue. Maybe the most important issue but not the only one. The most basic question in the matters is who do people see as their fellow citizens? Who gets to decide what issue? As a southerner might say it is a question of state rights or local rights.

I have some sympathy for the local rights point of view. Our own federal govt up here is monumentally incompetent. I view our provincial govts as less incompetent and our city govts as the most competent. So with me it's a matter of practicality ie what works best rather than strict ideology.

I think that slavery and the oppression of blacks would have gone away eventually. Maybe the Civil War just moved the process ahead by a few generations. Maybe a tipping point would have arrived where white southern society would see the light and done the right thing. As it is blacks were "emancipated" but still suffered for 100 plus years. If the war hadn't happened maybe slavery might have gone on longer but the post emancipation suffering might have been shorter. Re-writing history as might have beens is really interesting (at least to me).

I'm so sorry you've had a mostly tough year. I know how you feel. I came from a fairly large extended family, but now many of them are dead, including my father who died at 96 in May. I've lost at least 3 cousins this year, and several others have serious illnesses. Some of my friends are having a lot of difficulties dealing with their very old surviving parents, and a lot of these friends have their own ailments.

It seems that I have reached the age where most of the main topics of conversation between me and my friends are who died and what body part isn't working right.

I picture myself like one of those little moving wind-up car toys. I just go until I hit the wall, then I keep banging into it until I wind down, but I don't stop until then. We got no choice but to keep going. I'm not depressed, I appreciate all the beauty around me. And I am grateful for whatever I do have. EXCEPT(in a telling reference to my age) when I was a boy, I had a wicked crush on Marilyn Monroe, but for some strange reason, never got to go out with her. And in another strange way, I don't think I've ever quite gotten over the fact she died young.

Jackie, I like your posts, your way with words is unique, you have your own rhythm and your own poetry.

Sorry that you've had a sad year. :o( (Yes, I'm seeing that all around, regardless of what might consider the "proper" age; lots of younger people shuffling off the mortal coil.)

"What ifs" are always fascinating. According to some theories of physics we live in one of an infinite number of universes, and every instant of time branches off into an infinite number of realized possibilities. Perhaps there's a world just like ours in which the Confederates won at Gettysberg and won the war; or John Wilkes Booth's gun jammed at the critical moment; or the bomb planted underneath Hitler's conference table in 1944 was placed eight inches to the right; or better yet, a bullet moved a foot to the left and nailed an unknown German corporal in the head in WWI.

But we live in our own universe where these things didn't happen, and we got to deal with the way things are in it.

My own viewpoint on the Civil War is that it was a clash of two cultures. The North, cold and heavily industrialized, the South warm and agricultural. Their interests, when dealing with Europe, clashed. Slavery was a side issue, but popularized by the media and activists. Lincoln himself really didn't want to free the slaves, and in fact, didn't do so until two years into the war, when it became tactically advantageous.

Firstly, my main argument you ignore - namely that Asians took to our technology like ducks to water and the Africnas did not/could not. - Vlad

Did not could not: sometimes they have, sometimes they haven't but in any case the clock hasn't stopped ticking. Don't forget it took thousands of years for white Europeans to get with the idea of civilization. And it's not like "civilization" was a big secret. It was in the air all over the world. But things take time.

Things move at a different pace in different places for different reasons. Would you say that northern plains Indians were/are genetically inferior to Central and South American Indians that built those magnificent temples and cities? Northern plains Indians and people in general do things that suit them in their own circumstances. They didn't build pyramids? Maybe they didn't want to. Maybe they figured life was good enough the way it was without spending decades busting their asses to put up a pile of stone.

Who really knows why people do what they do. Sometimes ideas catch fire in a population and take on a life of their own. And sometimes they don't.

And the technology flow wasn't all in one direction ie from whites to asians. Paper and gunpowder are the two obvious items.

What will the price of land do? It depends. Real estate prices are a local or regional thing. I think it's hard to generalize. People say that house prices came down by one third on average in the US. I don't get why people say that. In some places they came down by a whole lot more, in some places a whole lot less. I'll bet in a lot of places they didn't come down at all.

Vlad, I'll say it again: I think you put way too much on skin colour and "race". I don't think it makes much sense to talk about "blacks" or "races". I've read, and I'm sure you have too, that sub saharan Africans are the most genetically diverse group on the planet. The darkness of their skin is just an adaptation to sunlight. Given their genetic diversity does it make sense to talk about them as a uniform group or "race"?

Same thing with white people. Europe and western Asia has been subject to invasion and settlement from all over since time immemorial. There's the genetic endowment of ice age hunters, Middle Eastern farmers, Asian horsemen, northern European tribesmen and on and on. And according to current thought, we all descend from a few African migrants that made their way out of Africa somewhere around 75,000 years ago.

As a practical matter I would be really careful with racial theorizing. We have recent historical evidence as to how these things go. What if someone came up to you and measured the length of your cranium, the width of your nose, the tint of your skin and the colour of your eyes or they took mouth swabs and did DNA tests on you and decided that based on the criteria determined by some group or other that you don't meet their racial standard? And therefore you will be denied your liberty, your employment, your property and maybe your life? The Nazis did it. Really bad ideas have a way of taking root and really bad stuff has a way of repeating.

BTW, seeing that one is [in actuality] quite mortal, allows us to face some truths that others enjoy remaining oblivious to. (Sorry for the convoluted sentence there.)

To take a candid look at PEAK EVERY-FREAKIN'-THING, I highly recommend a movie I just saw last night. "Blind Spot" -2008
Lemme find a synopsis and paste 'er in... (brb)

From the rotted toe-mah-toe...

Synopsis: Blind Spot is a documentary film that illustrates the current oil and energy crisis that our world is facing. Whatever measures of ignorance, greed,... Blind Spot is a documentary film that illustrates the current oil and energy crisis that our world is facing. Whatever measures of ignorance, greed, wishful thinking, we have put ourselves at a crossroad, which offers two paths with dire consequences. If we continue to burn fossil fuels we will choke the life out of the planet and if we don't our way of life will collapse.

****They left a little sump'm out; not just "our way of life" will collapse, idjits; our EXISTENCE will be in serious question! (I guess they didn't dare to mention the population bomb, which does feature prominently in the film.)

Here's the "cast":

Richard Heinberg
William R. Catton
Kenneth Deffeyes
Joseph Tainter
Bill McKibben
Dr. Albert Bartlett
Matt Savinar
Lester Brown
Jason Bradford
Max Fraad Wolff
James Hansen
Mary Anne Hitt
Rep. Roscoe Bartlett
David Pimentel
Terry Tamminen
Elke Weber
David Korten
Derrick Jensen

Now... who's missing on that list? Aha!, your friend and mine, JHK. He would've fit right in. Nevertheless, this film is information DENSE, but faaaar from boring, as they don't let anyone ramble too long at a time. Watch it, you'll see just what I mean. (I'm going to have to watch it a few more times myself, 'cause I'M a little dense. ;o)

Those whose purpose/belief is to continue BAU, please continue your self-buggery. Irrelevance and marginalization await... Please try not to drag the rest of us under as you go (even tho' you probably will, just for spite).

Their interests, when dealing with Europe, clashed. - Bean

That's really interesting. I'll bet that was the real problem.

I'm off to go buy a pork roast for New Years Eve dinner. On special today at $1.49/lb.

Happy New Year to all.

No problem, Cash.

When I talk about refighting the War between the States, I'm thinking in terms of arguments about the minutia of battles. That I can do in other forums; so that's what I will try not to inflict on the readership of CFN.

I agree with you that the broad sweep of history and the "what-ifs" of history are worthy topics for this forum. So here goes:

Remember that the American Civil War occurred only 80 years after the American Revolution. The men who *instigated* it, North and South, were no more than the grandsons of the veterans of the Revolution.

They grew up on the glory of warfare and "The tree of liberty must be watered with the blood of patriots." - type statements.

The US Constitution was deliberately designed to favor the rights of states over the Federal govt.
Slavery was legally codified into the Constitution.

Yet, viewing primary source documents from the time, the war was not about slavery. That may have been a trigger issue used to rally the troops - perhaps in the same way that "GAY Marriage is from Hell" is used to rally a faction of voters today.

Civil War was inevitable - had it not been over slavery - it would have been over tariffs, or some other more important national policy.

I agree with you that slavery would have died out WITHOUT a war. It was already on its last gasp due to economic forces. There is ZERO doubt that declining soil fertility and the cotton boll weevil would have ended slavery.

At this point I will pause to honor the words of an unknown and hypothetical Southern colonel:

"Daamnn, if we had known it could have avoided all this trouble, we would have picked our own damn cotton."

============

This next will be apostasy for an American to articulate. The US is too strong.

The US is too strong BECAUSE of the resolution of the War for Southern Independence. Had the South peacefully (or not) been allowed to split away, then the US would not have had the strength to fight with Britain against the Germans in WWI.

Thus, the European powers would have been even sicker of industrial warfare. The peace imposed on the Germans would not have been so draconian.
Hitler would not have come to power because German society would not have degraded so much.
WWII would not have occurred.

===========

If you believe in a God who guides the affairs of men - then victory of the North was God's will and all of the rest followed.

If you do not believe in such a God (god), then the North won because of industrial might and free flow of immigrants into Northern armies.

And all the rest of history has been a dreary measuring of natural resources and industrial power.

Which leads to Overshoot - in one or another of its terrifying permutations.

This is getting depressing.

Happy New Year, though, to all the world, and all of CFN!!

Ah, yes. Alternative universes. Check out the movie "Sliding Doors." A woman in London is fired at work and heads home early. On her way down the stairs to the subway, she drops her earring, stops to retrieve it and misses her train. Flashback: She doesn't drop her earring, makes her train and arrives home early.

In one universe, she catches her old man in bed with another woman. In the other universe, she doesn't. And, the film follows both universes. Luckily, in one universe, she changes her hair style early on, so you can pretty much tell which "time" she is in.

Sometimes, usually when napping I have odd dreams that I think are perhaps a look at some of those alternatives.

"The US is too strong BECAUSE of the resolution of the War for Southern Independence. Had the South peacefully (or not) been allowed to split away, then the US would not have had the strength to fight with Britain against the Germans in WWI." -PoC
===================

Yes; we no longer have the resource availability to "refight" WW2. Can you dig that? Pretty telling of where we are.
(Sorry, that's from "Blind Spot"; can't get this great film out of my head just now.)
=====================

"Which leads to Overshoot - in one or another of its terrifying permutations.

This is getting depressing." -PoC
======================

I disagree (though not "strenuously" ;o).
This is a true moment of heroes and villians; and an admixture of both, of course.
The struggle for our existence begins now. Contraction is the only possible direction to assure that. How we "manage" that will be interesting and exciting (in more ways than a million). That's the ultimate in challenges; depression cannot be considered. Sadness for losses and stunning reversals, yes.

(BTW, if we do not "manage" this challenge, it will certainly MANAGE us.)

The Year is a'changin' over;
Grab your favorite consciousness warper and give 'er a hoorah!
Paste on a smile and sally forth! :o)
(....and don't call me Sally. ;o)

Neat-o, keen-o. (I enjoy stuff like that as well.)
Lessee:
Run, Lola, Run
11:14

11:14 "becomes" a hilarious black comedy as it moves through cause-and-effect. Somebody's been taking lessons from the Coen Bros.

In turn, you should stop being mesmerized by green pieces of paper.

Tell you what - I'll make you a bet that gold goes to $2500 before it goes to $300. I'll bet you one crisp $100 bill. Are you in? A hundred bucks ain't what it used to be.

Gold has yet to become a mania, like real estate was recently, or tech stocks in 1999. When Suze Orman gets around to doing a show called "Empowering your Inner Woman with Gold" - or something like that - we will then be in a bubble.

Neckflames

Also, someone (maybe Cash again) mentioned the fact that the civilization that black society might have created can not yet manifest itself because of
"400 years of oppression," or words to that effect.

And I won't ever attempt to argue that horrible degradations were visited on blacks because of slavery and its aftermaths.

But horrible things have been visited on any of our ancestors - if you go back far enough into history.
But that's not what I want to argue.

================

I remember black society from the 1950's and very early 60's quite well. Blacks and whites lived in separate neighborhoods, but physically they lived very close together. This is part of what upsets me with Vlad and his separate White nation theorizing - it's not possible in the US, but more importantly - IT IS NOT NECESSARY for peace and tranquility between and among the races!!

And blacks did live then in a separate society with their families, their churches, and their free-time type activities. Cities all over the south (including sections of New York and Chicago, and maybe other cities) had separate intact black communities that had evolved over time.

And I mean COMMUNITIES in the true sense of the word that many on CFN wish we ALL had - walkable communities, with all the necessities of life located IN the community - and a huge extended family located IN the community.

Blacks had this until Urban Renewal and the development of the Interstate Highway System overlapped in time to DESTROY these communities.

Urban renewal moved the former black *community* into NICE NEW housing - totally at government expense.
Out of their former Community, many blacks lost their livlihoods - so government welfare and AFDC filled the gap for them.

Looking back on history, we see that things did not work out so well for these black communities and ESPECIALLY for their children.

This leads to three possible interpretations of what happened:

1. A thinking black man - with only a twinge of paranoia, if any? - might think that the destruction of his wonderful old intact walkable community was the DELIBERATE WORK of society to push the Black Man down, push him away from his community, and keep him down forever.

2. A white supremacist (or separatist, I do understand the difference, Vladdie) might point to the NICE NEW HOUSING constructed in the 60's for the blacks and say, "See, we gave the blacks all new housing - better than a lot of whites - and they found a way to screw themselves anyway! Blacks must not be as smart and civilized as Whites. I knew it all along."

3. A logical pragmatist, (red or yellow, black or white) might look at the whole urban renewal and welfare thing and say, "The Powers that Be (TPTB) were well intentioned, but in hindsight Urban Renewal was a stupid idea that screwed sustainable black communities right into the ground with no hope of escape."

"Boy, we in TPTB sure are too stupid to lead a world conspiracy! I think we better stop conspiring and work on tax reductions, high CEO salaries and stopping gay marriage."

OK, now that last paragraph or so was an attempt at humor and a gentle little poke at my friends and their various conspiracies. :-)

Best regards and best of New Year's Wishes to All!

I'll be back on the thread Sunday. GLWATCDR!

That is, "Good Lord willing and the creek don't rise!"

Thanks ! yep I still don't know how to make a proper complete paragraph or even a sentence !

If I tried it would take too long and then I'd forget the point of the whole thing, or maybe remember it ? And actually MAKE a point ?

I love it when people do tho. Even when they don't.

Today is the day to be The Last Poster not the first but it won't be me.

Enjoy the big Night.
I am laying low.
Flying under the Radar.

In a good way tho. and Actually to me she sounds very 'sane' in a good way.
Yes there are some real crazies' in the Santa Cruz Mountains. Been there, done that.

There are alot of decent people also. The Redwoods Forest is One of My Favorite Places on Earth, well it IS my favorite place around.

If I wasn't so White, I'd spend more time in a warm water spot. Tropical. Except for the Big bugs, not so much fun. Spiders, snakes, etc. No Thanks.

SLC sounds good, like neighbors with AMMO idea.

Alrighty then........

HNY

Yes that I've seen also. And read about.
Vandana Shiva is the expert on seeds. She writes books, I read one but can't remember the name.

If you have a Organic Farm, and there is a Monsanto Seed Farm close by, or wherever, and your O Farm gets contaminated by Their Seeds, You can no longer claim to be Organic.

I saw it also.
It should be called BIG BULLIES / BIG BROTHER
They are BULLIES, and sick twisted ones.
for sure.

HNY

Hope you don't lose power ! tee hee !

HNY

Jackieblue...

May the coming year bring you health and happiness.

Jen

oh oh I meant that for BYBill, cuz of the story about when he lost power.

silly me. so much scrolling.

HNY Cash !

Like your post alot. Thanks. William S. Burroughs, made a note of that.

I agree with you, makes sense.
Looks like we are on our way to hunting and gathering again. It isn't going to work for so many tho.

Count me out I am stuck in a city (by the sea, tho).

HNY

Thank You for posting this.

I've read Bill McKibben. Excellent stuff.
Something for me to do while after surgery. (now)

HNY

One ounce per acre? Is that the traditional ratio? I've heard that one ounce of gold could traditionally buy a good suit or a good rifle - and that that is still the case. So when silver breaks free, this ratio will resume? It makes sense - after all, at one point gold was constained at 35 dollars an ounce. At that price obviously it couldn't purchase a good rifle or suit.

Thank you. The information is very important.

Kashi is Benares I believe - not the birthplace of the Buddha, but where he preached his famous "fire sermon" that initiated his teaching career. He was born in Kapilavastu, a vanished kingdom in what is now Nepal. His people the Sakyas were slaughtered during his lifetime. Buddha was himself a White Man and his people had migrated from central Asia which once had large White populations. Buddhism has flowered the most among the Yellow Race however - it was wiped out in India by the Muslim Invaders.

Thanks Vlad for the correction and very intersting. I must have read that Kashi was the birthplace of Buddhism, not Buddha.
My friend was half Japanese and half Caucasion, he was a dedicated buddhist and lived the life and ideals of his belief.
----------
Just want to thank those who responded to my earlier posts and hope all the best for CNFers in the new year.

oops CFNers (sorry)

You really are a dark spirit aren't you? You can't stand the idea of people gaining their freedom - you'd rather the White Middle class stay as peasants toiling for the Feds and their minority clients.

So the North fought for the Slaves? Sure just like we're figthing for the "proud Iraqi people". Sure some people felt that way...Lenin called them useful idiots. The Elite always make USE of idealism. They certainly don't believe in it. They want to impose Democracy and Capitalism on an utterly alien people. And now they want to impose multiracialism on Whites. They have no moral right to either. Universalism is a lie, a destructive Lie that will destroy all cultures and peoples. How any decent person agree with it or support it?

"This time is going to be different. We need to talk about the financial mess yes, it is all horribly true. But, not seeing the forest through the trees is a common human failing..."

BINGO! Ding, ding ding! I've just about given up talking about this to anyone (we've all been down this path before).

Today I spoke with a neighbor who was concerned about the real estate mess. He told me he didn't think it would "come back" for five years. I told him, in effect, it's NEVER coming back. Period. End of story. He and wifey just purchased another house in town and are renting their condo out. So he says to me, "At least you have your equity!" So I respond, basically, "Look, a house to me is a roof and four walls, not an investment." In other words, something to keep the rain and snow off my head while I'm on this side of the sod. I don't think he got me. :(

A good point about the Northern and Southern Indians. And yes, there is more to life than cities and technology - this I firmly believe. The Sioux hated the Pawnees who were building large, fetid towns. They hated the stink and also the human sacrafice the Pawnee engaged in. So it is a blind spot to traditional anthropology who would say that the Pawnee were more advanced. As you say, maybe the Sioux just didn't want all that. Of course the "new" Anthropolgy thinks everyone is great except Whites - they have no wisdom at all. Needless to say they desperately try to hide the widespread cannibalism of Africa, Oceania, and the Americas.

And yes, certainly there is the mystery - no one knows what will come and much that has been is forgotten. But our record of achievment is clear and that of the Blacks is mostly absent. Who knows? Maybe someday Blacks will found a great civilization. Maybe and maybe not. In any case, I'm not willing to jepardize my race and culture on something so amibiguous. And that's what we are doing right now by mixing with them. Cities can be rebuilt and cultures reborn - from miscegenation there is no return. It is the death of peoples.

Chiming in about religions. I have been anti-religion most of my life, since my folks were athiests and raised me with strong cynicism that way. I found many problems with organized religion throughout my life and stood my ground when confronted with true believers.
A few years ago, my dear Grandmother was of failing health at 87 and invited me to start attending her weekly church meeting (Seventh Day Adventists).

They were describing what they had accomplished that year, and one of the things was a summer camp for the kids that included representatives of manylocal religious groups. They had booths that were manned by Rabbis, wiccans, baptists, Muslims and others. Ethnic foods were served, and tenets of their belief systems were told to the kids. The idea was kids made up their own minds about what spirituality to sign up for.

After a few meetings, and seeing how these folks took care of their own who were in distress- I started watching more closely. I saw a threat to large government, since these folks were somewhat capable of both guiding and supporting their own flock without the parasitic losses that an complex system carries.

Fast forward to last year- traveling across the country by land (anti you-know-who) and I stop in SLC to see old friends (progressive, athiest) and we were discussing peak everything and spirituality. This couple was considering joining a church. I said that we need spirituality as humans, and it doesn't have to make scientific sense in order to be good for you-so why not choose one that has a realistic set of working tenets such as food storage, cohesiveness, and hate to say it- ethnic cohesion if you are of that ethnic group when the chips are down.

I myself am favoring the SDA church here. Churches serve as an important check and balance to government power if done correctly. You don't have to have fricken halos shooting out of your head to be a part.


Here's a video. Check out the themes and the ending. http://vimeo.com/7703592

Neil


K-dog says, "I just watched a documentary of what China has been doing in Tibet since the invasion. What I saw in the documentary is so horrible I can no longer wear any clothes made in China."

I read a summary of a book ("2045") about the future extrapolating current and past trends and it envisions a world ruled by consolidated corporations. I knew as early as 1990 that this trend was accelerating. News the other day showed tremendous profit and growth for US companies, but the demand is not in the US- it is in developing countries. As the developing world clamors for cars and hamburgers this is where all the development will be. The U.S. is finished growing as far as they are concerned, and it will be by their grace alone that they remain chartered in the US.

If the government, however dire the straits, or deaf the leopard, or even the people of the villages desire more tax revenue, they will simply say "bye-bye" and move offshore (if they are not bought outright by foreign corps, ie. China).

China has just turned off the rare-earth metal spigot. I see this as a clear sign that they have determined they are past the "tipping point"- they no longer need the west- and will now go it alone toward the end-game.

From here on out, 2010-? will see the rise of China technologically and militarily. They will push a regional hegemony.

The world is going to be unable to stop them as things fracture post-peak. Any hope of stopping climate change is going to go in the toilet. This will likely spark vigorous opposition environmentally, but those intiatives are too little, too late.

The technology doesn't exist to mitigate climate change and never will. Politics and business will conspire to push the Earth well beyond the point of no return.

Already massive methane releases are occuring in Siberia, accelerating the trend. The permanent loss of permafrost will begin in earnest from here on out. At 390ppm CO2, we are closing in on 450 at a perilous rate. Add the methane release and we are well and truly fucked.

I won't explain why, in a physical science sense, to laypersons why these effects cannot be reversed. Why explain effects that people won't understand from causes that people won't understand? Its enough to say people are stupid- future generations, if they survive will think people today are simply wicked. Isn't that funny? From a future perspective, there is usually the perception that people of an age should have known better, in order to levy a moral judgment. If those people are anything like us, they will in the same breath say we were completely ignorant. Its my conviction that perhaps it is accurate that modern people are both ignorant and wicked.

Anyway, as the ice melts, methane will be released, add to the accelerating CO2 from modernization and deforestation, and start destroying the global ecosystems from the bottom up. We'll see the death of coral reefs first, then a new dust bowl in the former deserts. Then the pest and disease plagues will sweep north and south from the equator. Trip's family will be beset with malarial mosquitoes. The Mormons will not be happy about Jen & her Cali cohort knocking on the compound doors with an empty cup.

Massive crop loss will compete with genetic engineered crop seed to maintain some kind of parity. I don't see fuel problems interfering with food production, but certainly $10/gal gas will mean no one will be driving personal vehicles much.

India hits a brick wall. Climate change turns its sandal-beaten landscape into a mineralized dust bowl, and economic advance is stalled by mass starvation and extreme privation. China may try to backpedal its CO2 production, but the fact is commercial imperatives will continue to outstrip humanitarian or political initiatives. China will, like other capitalist countries, just turn up the A/C.

The world's governments will try and ameliorate some damage with their clean energy projects and direct attempts to regulate climate, with limited success, probably. There will be algal-bloom feeding in open oceans, Sulphur dioxide sprinkled in the stratosphere and various other attempts but, as with most government projects, it will probably fail.

Lets be frank, though, I can't predict the future. We cannot count out such things as genetic engineering, nanotechnology, and so forth. But my instincts are at heart, Lovelockian. We will destroy everything that makes this planet special by 2050. It will be unrecognizable, and, speaking purely mathematical, most of you reading this message board will have no children to survive you. Humans will exist, but they will be much diminished.

Post-carbon party Earth will be a mortally wounded planet for thousands of years. During this time it is a serious possibility that biological conditions could conspire to evolve new regimes of bacterial or fungal life that accelerates some critical trend in atmospheric composition, and further decimate any human survivors.

I wish I could say that there are some current trends which make such a scenario implausible but I'm afraid that the trend clearly shows that all the environmental initiatives have had a negligible effect on the trend. The cities are filling with climate refugees already.

If I had a magical control of reality I would use the US military to destroy China's ability to produce CO2, for starters. Of course this would mean world war. US unilateral eco-fascism starting today might be effective at averting destruction of the world. A Fortress North America unilaterally acting with military force to reduce the world's carbon footprint is a complete fantasy. But so is the thought that voting or the UN will reverse carbon trends.

The world's governments are insane, and the corporations that control them equally insane. A Fortress America interested in preserving the world and is own national security would be drawing up battle plans right now, and planning to drop a cruise missile of every Chinese coal-burning power plant. Something the enviros could applaud if it weren't for their rejection of violence. I would suggest the general strike and nonviolent resistance but that would be too much to ask.

Its a curious thing, to have one's government pulling one's future over into the abyss.

The most difficult thing to come to terms with is the fact that nothing anyone can do will ever matter. Jen can have her plans to drive to SLC, but then what? The mormons have 2 years of canned food in their garages and attics- but then what?

The near-future 2010-2050 is nothing but an endless rain of privation and migration. The great political battles will involve governments trying to wrestle some modicum of power from corporations. All the while the visible ecosystems will disappear and be replaced by pestilent scenes of absolute degradation (even worse than today!).

As far as black swans, go I think the following are unlikely: 2012, aliens, asteroids, volcanoes, enlightenment, democracy, revolution, climate mitigation, renewable energy, commercial tech. revolution.

More likely black swans I think would be: WWIII with nuclear weapons, sudden famines, "eco-terror" acts such as global man-made pandemics as a last-ditch attempt to stop humanity's appetites.

As far as a corn-pone dictator taking control of the US, I can't really imagine it for some reason. Probably because I already believe that we have been colonized thoroughly by a kleptocracy that controls the outcome of (s)elections. Comymercial interests will trump all other considerations as the economic system continues its transition to a post-abundance age.

Domestically, Mexican immigration will flood the Southern US. In the climate change 2010-2050 Mexican populations will concentrate in the highlands as long as they can, but the trend will be a wholesale migration. Unless the US creates a defensible wall, eventually all of central America will migrate north. And likewise, there will be an American invasion of Canada, if not outright colonization by America or foreign interests (such as China with a massive resources and land grab).

China will face massive problems with water, housing, food, sanitation, and the rest on its way to a stratified modern economy. Its overpopulation and nationalism will likely transform into a military adventurism and move into north korea, mongolia, and possibly clash with Russia. As climate change really turns up the heat, 2030-2050, there will be balls-out panic worldwide.

If the mormons are still around 2050-on they will probably be living in underground complexes and have their own nuclear power plants.

The future looks awfully dim for humanity.

"This time is going to be different. We need to talk about the financial mess yes, it is all horribly true. But, not seeing the forest through the trees is a common human failing..." (k-dog?)

BINGO! Ding, ding ding! I've just about given up talking about this to anyone (we've all been down this path before).

Today I spoke with a neighbor who was concerned about the real estate mess. He told me he didn't think it would "come back" for five years. I told him, in effect, it's NEVER coming back. Period. End of story. He and wifey just purchased another house in town and are renting their condo out. -MM
============================

Jesus, these idiots are still thinking house-flipping??? Egads!
Speaking of stupid neighbors (and various other willful dumb-fuckery [tm MM]) here's a good way to introduce them neighborly tree-peepers to the BIG PEOPLE'S fucking FOREST. ;o) Subject-changing, obfuscation and mis-direction time over, ladies and germs; get off the fence and outta the way... if youse's is stuck on the "denial" side, toobad.

http://www.snagfilms.com/films/title/blind_spot/

(I knew I'd find it online fer free if I scratched around enough!)

A howling good New Jeer to ya MM.

HNY says, "In a good way tho. and Actually to me she sounds very 'sane' in a good way.
Yes there are some real crazies' in the Santa Cruz Mountains. Been there, done that."

There is nowhere to run. That is what people don't understand.

"There are alot of decent people also. The Redwoods Forest is One of My Favorite Places on Earth, well it IS my favorite place around."

I totally agree, but most people care more about their own A/C and cars and TV than trees or forests. No clean air laws are going to stop the temperature rise putting pressure on these forests and by 2050 they are going to be very large matchsticks feeding some very large wildfires.

"If I wasn't so White, I'd spend more time in a warm water spot. Tropical. Except for the Big bugs, not so much fun. Spiders, snakes, etc. No Thanks."

That climate is coming to a longitude near you. Critters too, ugly ones. Probably attracted to the rotting human carcasses.

Happy new year

It is said that the holiday season brings on depression - plus lack of adequate sunlight. To this add a negative world-view, and voila!, we have today's CFN postings. I understand the end of the year may make us somewhat maudlin, but really!

Doesn't anyone here feel grateful to be alive, to have a roof over their head, to have food on the table, to have someone to love and be loved?

Where's Asoka when you need him?

I never implied that he didn't understand the difference - I just asked you not to misrepresent me. What's in a word? Sometimes everything. Superiority leads to imperialism and subsequent resentment and war. Separatism is the path of life for both Blacks and Whites. But it is better to make it absolute - different Nations. Because within a given polity, one will have to dominate culturally - otherwise there is just chaos and ultimately civil war. Let's avoid it this time and go our separate ways peacefully.

Happy New Year right back attcha, Ozone! Saw about the first 10 minutes of your clip...LOVE IT! Can't wait to see the rest (alas, real life once again intervenes)!
To be fair, these folks I spoke of are otherwise quite intelligent (college, grad school educated, the man works for a FREIGHT SHIPPING CONCERN, LOL!) I have to ask you and others yet again: Don't you feel like your hitting your head against the wall when talking about peak oil with everyday associates? I mean, I know sooo much better than to bring this up at dinner tonight with company, polite conversation and all. But everything everyone seems focused on NEGLECTS the basic premise your clip shares. Whether it be money, jobs, the economy, world economics, China, education, - OH NO, we'll not go THERE! - people just can't or won't consider it. And I'm not being "superior" either. I find myself often trying not to fathom peak oil, even after reading books by Kunstler, Jane Jacobs, et. al.
Some folks on this thread mentioned the value of land...hell, I don't know. If you know how to work it without oil, grow things, and shoot straight, you MAY have a snowball's chance in..well, you know. Anyhow, thanks so much for the thread. I'll keep peak oil's dirty little secret from the dinner table conversations tonight - not that anyone freaking cares! : 0

"Doesn't anyone here feel grateful to be alive, to have a roof over their head, to have food on the table, to have someone to love and be loved?"

Yes

Have a realistic new year, people.

Try to avoid any "moments of convulsion" tonight.

take care

Neil

LLB - A Reasonable Life; Toward a Simpler, Secure, More Humane Existence" by Ferenc Mate

I just ordered it off of Amazon Marketplace. One cent plus three ninety-nine shipping for four busks total. Quite a few copies available.

Still traumatized from my recent viewing of "CRY OF THE SNOW LION" but as far as I know the Peoples Liberation Army will not be making any money from Tibetian slave labor in my transaction since this book is coming from Oregon. If I thought they would I'd get it elsewhere.

Free Tibet and free the weed.

As one Misanthrope to another - I share your joy. The destruction of the Serengeti just for cell phone metal is truly sad though. Why don't they just build the road around the migration and the park?

As the Ice Age comes on, the Elites will shift southwards causing war and displacement of whole populatios in some cases. Not in our's of course: our Elite wont be taking us with them since they are just an Economic Elite.

Ha!
Just give 'em that link (in a couple of days), and keep yer yapper shut for tonight about the scary woods and the things that lurk therein! ;o)

Have a fun New Year's bash!

No worries, Beans!
Still un-depressed and havin' revels of all shapes and descriptions.
Enjoy yourself tonight and every dawning and dusking. :o)

Bill said: "Where's Asoka when you need him?"

LOL!

I am here. I am positive about the future. I just being judicious about posting so as not to be an impediment to discussion of issues. I don't feel I need to comment on every post made.

As ProCon said: my views are well known.

As ProCon correctly identified, I am confident of a positive mystic outcome re: QE2, peak oil, immigration (which cannot and must not be stopped), the four immeasurables, etc.

Many times I tried to explain the difference between prices going up as opposed to our currency deflating. In general it was no use. Within the first half of sixty seconds, their eyes would begin glaze over. People really have changed - people used to read long novels. Debates in the 19th century went on for hours. The media has changed our brains shortening our attention spans and thus lessening our humanity.

We read over here in the UK that your President went to visit a friend in Hawaiii and it necessitated 10 car loads of people.

Please tell me that's not true. If our PromeMinister needed that we'd get rid of him rapido. No politician is worth half that effort.

10 car loads? Jesus. Was that his ego?

http://smallbatchgarden.blogspot.com/

New post about New Year's Visioning. I'll catch up with you guys next week. We're finally in the new house and loving it. Things will hopefully start to settle back down now.

Happy New Year to you all!

Tripp out.

The benchmark is asking people to watch Dr Zhivago ( a 3 hour film that you actually have to concentrate on for the whole 3 hours) . The minute they say it's to long, or to complicated, or they just dont understand it then you know you are dealing with crap.

Happy New Year from an austere UK

I just being judicious about posting so as not to be an impediment to discussion of issues.

Thats either enlightenment or too school for cool.

Happy New Year

Well, CFNers, I'm signing out for the rest of the year. Got a nice dinner party to go to. Quoting Mr. Spock, may all of you live long and prosper.

Now is the time to let the old year expire and look forward to a great new year, peak everything or not.

Fond wishes to some of the posters:

May Q not have to correct anyone, because we all find grammatical perfection.

LLB, may people throw out their Kindles and other e-readers and re-discover their love of paper books.

Asoka, may Obama balance the budget, unemployment drop to 4% and new social programs come into existence.

Bustin, may a beautiful woman totally bedazzle you to the extent that you reconsider your female viewpoint.

Myrtle, may the Chippendales bus break down in front of your house.

MDruid, may God come down from the heavens and save the world.

Tripp, may your gardens grow profusely and your pastures overflowing.

SJMom, may you never have to use that shotgun.

E, may you wake tomorrow to find the world has gotten very simple.

Vlad, may YOU waken tomorrow and find your world is bright and white.

Cash and Procon, may the discourse and ideas keep flowing.

And to all the others I could have mentioned but didn't because my wife insists we leave for the party NOW: May you all have the best New Year's eve ever, and may 2011 be memorable for you (in a good way).

When the Bush infected our sweet land I encountered his presidential motorcade while he slinked around a tiny war protest on his way to a Republican Party fundraiser at a west coast timber magnates home.

Only two protesters got close enough to encounter his motorcade, a ten year old boy with a sign and myself with an appropriate t-shirt.

I would say the number of cars passing me as I flipped him the bird easily exceeded 100.

They live in a bubble, kind of like Louis XVI of France did 218 years ago.

Happy New Year

Hope you like the book. Let me know. The guy goes on a real rant. I keep wondering if he's related to the other Mate who wrote "In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts." Odd how they both landed in my reading pile at the same time.

Think I'll skip the DVD. It sounds just too grim. I did see "Blind Spot" a couple of weeks ago. I, too, just hate to buy stuff "Made in China." But don't go naked (It's 19 here tonight and tomorrow night). Just buy from you'r local thrift so the money doesn't go direct. I really like our Visiting Nurses Thrift. Money goes to hospice.

Yup. Free the Weed. Even if I've been one of those squeaky clean and sober guys for 20+ years, I still believe in legalization. A quick funny story. I was about 3 years sober and was hangin' with my friend Bob watchin' the tube when he preceded to roll a real B-52. He takes an enormous toke and passes it to me. I say "Now, Bob, you know I don't partake, anymore." Bob gets this incredulous, horrified look on his face and goes "Man! I knew you gave up booze, but I didn't know you gave up EVERYTHING!"

Well, it's NYsEve and I'm settling in with some hot homemade Whores d Ouvres and some DVDs from the library. Netflix did NOT deliver. Nostalgia for the present. I'll miss Netflix. The drunks started howling in the streets at 9pm. I'd rather deal with a mellow stoner, any day. My New Years wish is that my front windows see the light of day.

Looking forward to interacting with most of you in the coming year. May ya'all be safe, happy, healthy and prosperous, whatever your idea of all the above may be.

Ahhh. You mentioned that once before. Way back when, Nixon resigned and headed for the "Western" White House at San Clemente. He landed at Nellis Air Force Base in S. California ... which was right across the San Diego freeway from the Laguna Hills Mall where I worked in a Walden Bookstore. We had been following it on the radio all day.

I stepped out the back door into the parking lot which overlooked the freeway as his motorcade sped by, shot him a few one finger salutes and waved him an un-fond farewell.

Thank you Leftist Santa, thank you. And may you awaken in a world where everyone looks like Barack Obama!

Do I feel grateful to have a home? Oh yes - the colder it gets the more grateful I feel. Gratitude is so important - it's a sign of that one's experiences have been digested well. Sometimes I'm even grateful for boredom - it's a sign that I'm up to date and ready for something else. Not exhausted, overwhelmed, or stuck in the past in any sense.

Sorry folks, the Great Depression was much more forgiving and survivable than what we face today – believe me, I was there.

Back then the footprint of practically any city you can name was so small that the downtown skyline was visible from the agricultural/woodland outskirts. Believe me when I tell you that it was customary for the unemployed, underemployed or just underpaid city dwellers to augment household larders with game and fish from those outskirt lands and waters, easily accessible even on foot and rarely posted with “no trespass” signs because there just wasn’t that much economic or population pressure upon the land.

What I’m telling you is that there were natural “fallback” resources back then that don’t exist today. The studies I’ve seen indicate that if another depression occurs and as little as 12% of our current national population has notion of surviving a Jeremiah Johnson existence in what remains of “wilderness habitat” it will be completely depleted (wiped out) in as little as several weeks. Government agencies have owned that they wouldn’t be able to field enough agents to prevent it because they would always be outmanned and out gunned. So there!

Different too is the fact that back during the last depression most city dwellers weren’t even a generation removed from rural/agricultural life so most yet had relatives no great distance away still occupying family farms from which flowed regular supply of food stuffs.

These city “newbies” hadn’t yet lost their animal husbandry and gardening skills so made good use of back yards which were spacious compared to today – not just larger but also not taken up by footprint of preposterously outsized houses.

Lastly, most builders of houses were small contractors who rarely had more than one or several houses under construction at a time; altogether different from the big “track home development” by corporations that change horizons within a few months. Because of this difference city and suburb landscapes were a patchwork of vacant lots amidst the homes, affording additional space for gardens, poultry runs and often even animal husbandry.

So,…..sorry again. We’ve allowed ourselves to be entranced with the notion of American exceptionalism. That is, we still embrace the notion that our vaunted “Can do” and “American ingenuity” exempts us from the zero sum game of population/resource ratio.

Clusterfuck Nation? It's all good!

Food for thought for all you CFNers.

Happy New Year.

I think this was written in the 1920's



Shine, Perishing Republic


While this America settles in the mould of its vulgarity, heavily thickening
to empire
And protest, only a bubble in the molten mass, pops and sighs out, and the
mass hardens,
I sadly smiling remember that the flower fades to make fruit, the fruit rots
to make earth.
Out of the mother; and through the spring exultances, ripeness and deca-
dence; and home to the mother.

You making haste haste on decay: not blameworthy; life is good, be it stub-
bornly long or suddenly
A mortal splendor: meteors are not needed less than mountains:
shine, perishing republic.
But for my children, I would have them keep their distance from the thick-
ening center; corruption
Never has been compulsory, when the cities lie at the monster's feet there
are left the mountains.
And boys, be in nothing so moderate as in love of man, a clever servant,
insufferable master.
There is the trap that catches noblest spirits, that caught--they say--
God, when he walked on earth.

Robinson Jeffers

Unlike Clinton who did not inhale (wanna buy a bridge) I never exhaled but that's not the point.

I simply realize that the opponents of freedom, are rather unilateral in maintaining their narrow minded ignorance. Now with mountains of evidence showing cannabis to be a harmless and highly useful plant I'm taking Nixon's stance.

Nixon realized all his enemies got high. I realize my enemies, champions of ignorance as they are generally don't. It does not figure champions of the status-quo would partake of a substance that enhances the thoughtful peaceful side of so many people. A substance that actually fights ignorance.

Freeing the weed will not save the world however it can help. The mindset which will make it free, an attitude embracing enlightenment and knowledge most certainly can save the world. To develop this mindset and to give it momentum I promote freedom of the weed more than I would otherwise.

While I like to partake personally, my motive to free the weed is quite ulterior. I see weed liberation as a way to raise national consciousness so that we as a people might face the problems ranted on about here daily. It could actually get the real change ball rolling. Opponents of real change will give themselves away by their opposition.

Not to mention that there are a hell of a lot of things hemp can offer to an oil starved world.

it is now 11:11 1/1/11

the time stamp on this site is off by 4 minutes, Obviously this is a sign of troubling times. Happy New Year and new decade! I truely hope things improve in the next ten years. I have doubts,however.

"This all means that if I feel like I don't want to admit an obvious fact asking myself why would be a good idea. It might be that I have an agenda I'm not fully conscious of and thinking about my motives would be a good idea in this situation should it arise."

That might be so if you fact was obvious but what if you only thought it was, were afraid to question the "obviousness" of your incorrect fact and got your head stuck up your ass looking for the light of your ill conceived, unenlightened view. What then, asshopper?

"If the government is pressuring the banks to make bad loans, they can simply tell them to piss off (as they often do)."

Hey dicklips, we went over this already. Paulsen got all the bankers in a room and said you WILL take bailout money. Thats a fact jack. Now shut the fuck up, tardboy.

"Any hope of stopping climate change is going to go in the toilet."

No shit. Its a stupid goal. The climate changes. Always has. Always will.

"Only two protesters got close enough to encounter his motorcade, a ten year old boy with a sign and myself with an appropriate t-shirt."

Hmmm. You and a ten year old boy. Sounds mature.

I sense sarcasm. Did someone not have a good new year?

The link below demonstrates how Peak Oil will eventually affect many first-world countries but will go largely unnoticed in poorer countries.

http://www.theoildrum.com/files/energyuse.png

The way I "see" the chart suggests that the US and Canada, and perhaps Japan are positioned to endure the largest cultural shocks as declining per-capita energy consumption falls into line with the rest of the world.

Skipping over some of the mid-eastern nations, the rest of the "big hurt" will transpire across Europe and eventually even Russia.

I doubt one can compare the declines in quality of life in these "energy hog" nations, to the stalling and eventual contraction of per capita consumption that India and China will experience.

Bottom line, my perspective suggests that the rich and powerful have no problem with letting the quality of life of Americans descend to energy consumption levels on par with poorer western nations like Mexico or Cuba.

Of course, this is less feasible then one might think, since these low-energy-use locales are often sub-tropical.

In any case, the fix is in, there is no turning back the six-trillion dollars of influence recently extended to several international banking operations. They will mange the "markets" to their own ends, whatever they may be.

Expect more of the same, dealing with less while being told you are luckier than most.

Best wishes for safe and sane and prosperous NewYear. Or at least believing its possible.



Bottom line, my perspective suggests that the rich and powerful have no problem with letting the quality of life of Americans descend to energy consumption levels on par with poorer western nations like Mexico or Cuba.

I agree:

"Jake turned the globe again and pressed his blunt grimy thumb on a carefully selected spot. 'Here. These thirteen states. I know what I'm talking about. I read books and I go around. I been in every one of these damn thirteen states. I've worked in every one. And the reason I think like I do is this:

We live in the richest country in the world. There's plenty and to spare for no man, woman, or child to be in want. And in addition to this our country was founded on what should have been a great, true principle - the freedom, equality, and rights of each individual. Huh! And what has come of that start? There are corporations worth billions of dollars-- and hundreds of thousands of people who don't get to eat. And here in these thirteen states the exploitation of human beings is so that--"

These words come from a novel published in 1939. Carson McCullers "The Heart Is A Lonely Hunter"

Almost my entire post above was meant to be like this. Italics

I don't think weed is harmless. There are studies (which I can't source right now) that show it linked to lung cancer and permanent changes in the brain. These appear logical because weed contains some powerful chemicals, and like tobacco cigarettes, when you inhale hot gases into your lungs, you damage sensitive lung tissue.

I used to smoke weed years ago, but it got me very paranoid, so I had to stop. When I was stoned, I got very, very mellow and silly. I couldn't imagine being active or caring about world issues in that condition.

All that being said, I'm not a holier-than-thou person who wants to impose my morality upon others. Making weed illegal is stupid and anti-freedom. I'm all for legalizing its use (as well as all other drugs). We shouldn't get involved in other people's personal choices - as long as they don't harm anyone else.

I'm delighted.

Cannabis has been scientifically proven to be atoxic to humans and no long term adverse affects have been established in spite of 20,000 studies.

Cannabis has absolutely been shown not to cause cancer. There are safe ways to ingest it although the smoke has been demonstrated to cause none of the major ill effects of tobacco smoke, Emphysema being one. A Vaporizer eliminates all smoking danger.

"When I was stoned, I got very, very mellow and silly. I couldn't imagine being active or caring about world issues in that condition."

You is you and me is me. And k-dog cares about world issues no matter my condition.

I am not for legalizing harmful drugs. And I respect the right of anyone to remain as pure as the driven snow should they desire.

only wanted 'not' to be bold

On this New Year I'm reminded of the reputed Chinese curse "May you live in interesting times."

These times are awfully damn interesting!

For a few posters here I wouldn't piss on their heads if their hair was on fire. But to the rest of you Clusterfuckers -- I wish you have an even more interesting New Year.

I don't think weed is harmless. There are studies (which I can't source right now) that show it linked to lung cancer and permanent changes in the brain. These appear logical because weed contains some powerful chemicals, and like tobacco cigarettes, when you inhale hot gases into your lungs, you damage sensitive lung tissue.

Seriously, BEANTOWNBILL I am in no way calling you an ignorant slut, you are one of the good guys but everything you said is false. There are studies which show danger yes, but it turns out they were sponsored and have been debunked.

I was worried about brain damage myself so I made a study of the issue. The rabbit hole is amazing and deep and the best word I can think of is 'harmless'.

Actually 'harmless' is not fair since it shows promise as a treatment for Alzheimer's and has been demonstrated to stimulate brain cell regeneration. It is clearly is a treatment for many neurogenic disorders among other clear medical benefits.

The California Growers don't want it leglized - it would cut into their profits. So the sacred weed hasn't liberated their consciousness.

I knew a self righteous old hippy once - he didn't want it legalized either. He loved the feeling of transgression and the self image of being a rebel. Very immature and I intimated as much to him.

I did it for a while back then. But I got into a law of decreasing returns with it. Great at first, then good, then just ok, then one bowl would make me sleepy for two days. Some people metabolize it well and don't get into that - but it can't be good for anyone to use heavily.

Does it expand it consciousness? For some. Depends what a person is to begin with; whether there was any consciousness there to be raised at all. Wine does it for others - but no one would make the carte blanche statement that wine raises consciousness. Of course, the usual or negative effects of pot are far less socially destructive than the effects of alcohol. Alcohol puts the higher centers of the brain to sleep and lets the animal out in general. Mohammad let one of his disciples drink because when he drank he recited enraptured, spontaneous, praise poetry to God. Very unusual indeed.

My intent is not to debate the benefits of weed, I don't have JHK's permission to do that, but the requirement of the present is the same as the failure of the past, it stems from how we treat each other. Over 800,000 people were arrested last year for marijuana related offenses. How we treat each other is going to be crucial to our survival. Having something illegal which in fact poses no danger to society is madness. We are all in this together, we can't fight our evil corporate overloads when we ignore the brutalization of our own citizens no can we.

True, some growers are only into it for the profit.

Ok I surrender. I still don't KNOW if you're right, but I'll have to admit I'm not up on the latest info, and I don't want to spend my time researching the matter, so I'll give you the benefit of the doubt - you seemed to have done the research yourself, and I'll take your word on it.

But as far as legalizing all drugs, particularly the harmful ones, what right do we have to take away someone's inherent right to choose for themselves whether or not to ingest or inject these substances?

Oh, but I forgot about many studies that shows cannabis lowers the immune system, and this is especially dangerous for those with AIDS. I'm not arguing with you, but I'm curious about your opinion on this.

Reply to Turkle on "How's the skiing?
============================
Excellent, Bogus had 24" last week, probably 12-15 at Sun Valley. I'll go to Bogus again next week at least once, never anyone there mid-week outside of vacations. Not unusual to look down a run and see no one there at all. Idaho.....just like it use to be.

I remember you saying something to that effect last week, or was that zsazsa? I can't keep your user names straight, because you get a new one every few months.

jimjim or zsazsa or OneEyeOpen or whatever her name is this week is really full of beans. Our own little internet Hannity is going to take you all down. Get ready to be thrown out of the studio.

"tardboy"

I'm really hurt by that absolutely devastating insult.

Thought I'd weigh in on the pot argument. Naturally it should be legalized. Alcohol is much, much more devastating. If one has an addictive personality, he or she should stay away from all mind-altering drugs. If ingesting a foreign substance becomes a driver to a person's behavior, affecting their responsibilities to society, it should be a red flag, signaling an immediate stop to getting high - kind of like the addict that got into my stash on the 22nd.

"Any hope of stopping climate change is going to go in the toilet."

No shit. Its a stupid goal. The climate changes. Always has. Always will."

Business, politics and warfare are ecosystems that compete with the natural ecosystem. A fifth element could emerge and tip the balance. That would be the ascension of the hyper- or super- individualist. That could develop through an evolution of natural tendencies, making an end run around the axiom that none of our individual choices will effect change. An eventual global levelling of incomes and exponential technologic effects could make this fifth element possible. When and How this fifth element influences the 3 horsemen (politics, warfare, commerce) in regard to the fourth, natural ecosystem, remains to be seen.

Self-interest as always will be the pivotal motivator in the future. As climate change, or carbon pollution, as such, represents a clearer and more present threat to such groups, they may be in a position to act. The singularity is near.

BB says, "Bustin, may a beautiful woman totally bedazzle you to the extent that you reconsider your female viewpoint."

Yeah, I hope so. But I am realistic. There is little hope from my perspective of becoming either rich or dumb for the foreseeable future so, I will remain primarily celibate. There is precious little time remaining for fantasies.

Jen says, "As for me, I have a shotgun hidden in the attic."

This is a good example of women's intuition. Lets work backward.

Jen doesn't like guns.

If she thinks about having to use it it upsets her.

Therefore, she hides the gun in the attic, so it will be unlikely she can get to it to use it in case of an emergency.

But she enjoys the belief that she is a total badass who owns a gun, and she will enjoy thinking that.

And she will also enjoy never having to shoot someone, because that would be bad.

Kdog sed, "Over 800,000 people were arrested last year for marijuana related offenses."

Almost all people smoke pot. Another plank in a universalist platform.

I have the shotgun in attic -- unassembled and with a lock on it -- because I have kids. They don't even know about it. Under present conditions, I don't plan to use it. We have an alarm system on our house that would alert us to any intruder. But if the SHTF, I might need it. No power, earthquake, major social uprising...it might come in handy and I don't to have to wait two weeks to get it (California laws). Actually, I have no clue how to assemble it, but my husband, the fabulous electrical engineer and all-around-great-guy, can figure it out.

I have a lovely, brilliant, blonde 15-year-old daughter and some of the men in the neighborhood leer at her. If they bothered her under difficult circumstances (no power, food) I would happily blow their private parts to smithereens.

Mama bear


"I'm really hurt by that absoulutely devastating insult."

No shit. Thats because you are a fucktard.

Pat Robertson (700 Club) is also concerned about the marijuana arrests:

http://bit.ly/eR6tcu

When evangelist Christians get on the pro-legalization bandwagon, it shouldn't be too long before the pot laws are changed.

"If one has an addictive personality, he or she should stay away from all mind-altering drugs."

Would that be a majority of posters here on CFN?

Maam Bear says, "I have a lovely, brilliant, blonde 15-year-old daughter and some of the men in the neighborhood leer at her. If they bothered her under difficult circumstances (no power, food) I would happily blow their private parts to smithereens.

Mama bear"

Hey, mama bear. Let your lovely, brilliant, blonde 15 year-old read our posts on CF Nation and ask her to respond to next week's column, we'd love to hear ALL about it.

Ciao! 1/1/11!

Maam Bear says, "I have a lovely, brilliant, blonde 15-year-old daughter and some of the men in the neighborhood leer at her. If they bothered her under difficult circumstances (no power, food) I would happily blow their private parts to smithereens.

Mama bear"

Hey, mama bear. Let your lovely, brilliant, blonde 15 year-old read our posts on CF Nation and ask her to respond to next week's column, we'd love to hear ALL about it.

Ciao! 1/1/11!

Oh, but I forgot about many studies that shows cannabis lowers the immune system, and this is especially dangerous for those with AIDS. I'm not arguing with you, but I'm curious about your opinion on this.

I don't not know of studies concerning lowered immune systems in AIDS patients but since AIDS patients don't have immune systems to begin with I smells a rat.

Aids and Marijuana do have an interesting history. The federal government was quietly providing free marijuana to medical patients for years, Glaucoma and such. The weed was and still is grown in Kentucky. Aids patients needed it to stop nausea and were making noise asking to be allowed into the federal program. It is no secret that Ronnie Ray Gun did not care for rump riders and the answer was a big NO. The federal program was terminated to new applicants. Those already in the federal program were allowed to continue receiving a sealed metal can of Kentucky rolled joints once a month.

Last I heard their were still eight people alive still getting free weed from the guvmment. I also understand the AIDS patients did not miss out much since the Kentucky swag is not good shit.

With a swipe of the pen the nightmare could be over. Three people have the power to end cannabis prohibition in the country with the swipe of a pen. Michele Leonhart, Eric Holder and Barack Obama. I find it odd these two men do not act since Black Americans are incarcerated at a rate more than double that of whites.


The final chapters of the U.S. economy have yet to be written and realized but it's clear: the American worker has been marginalized and destroyed in the interests of banking, Wall Street, and our government. Now the insidious part is: it's not ALL American workers, just about 20% of them---the unemployed, the underemployed, the ones who have become homeless, or who hav jumped into a marginal retirement income to save themselves.

But for the other 80%, things are still clicking along. Look at the happy talk news shows, look at the happy talk car commercials ('only' $359 a month for 72 months!). For these 80%, everything still works--credit cards, installment credit, mortgages (since home prices 'will never be lower!'), and in this group are the attorneys who go after those who default on debts, state workers who sit at desks in 'human services' departments talking snarky about those people in the waiting room just outside their offices, government agency workers, including TSA, IRS, DHS, DEA the list goes on.


And, as if we're in Mexico, our elite president and wife vacation in paradise, and back home, he cannot get his telemprompter to tell the public that he and Congress are working on the growth of the U.S. economy---a plan to recover that is. No, his teleprompter just refuses to say that and so our president won't be heard to utter those words.


A friend recently was compelled for the first time in his working life to seek county services for a small heat problem---there was no heat and he went to ask for help to get his bill paid and the heat restored. 43 degrees in his apartment he told me. He waited an hour or so, was asked into an office, and while the woman helping him typed on her keyboard, she happened to say 'we really hate seniors around here,' And he, being a senior, asked, 'why?' 'they act so ENTITLED,' she answered. Fortunately, apparently she did not dislike HIM for somereason, and soon, he had the help he had asked for, and left. But, seniors act so ENTITLED rang in his ears for a while. We discussed it. He paid his taxes for decades, never sought help, always worked, but this economy finally smashed through his wall of protection--savings gone, etc. Out of pride, he was just going to tough it out in a 43 deg apartment until the weather warmed up. I convinced him to go to county services, and he learned how much they hated seniors there.


Folks, this is what we face ahead. Vilification of certain groups, minority in age, skin complexion, religion, and it's just starting.


And it will get worse. Wait until you personally get one of those Fox News moments played on you--e.g., the reason you're unemployed is because you want to be, or get a TSA physical exam infront of 100's of onlookers, and then it will have come home to you too. Right now, we're still thinking 'I'm safe from that, and what happens to those people is an aberration.'


No, it's not an aberration. It's a disturbance in the force, and there will be more to come for all of us, even the 80% who feel so safe and possibly smug right now.

Hello,hello, is there an echo in here?

Hi Mama Bear, Keep the shotgun handy. I also have a beautiful daughter. you should at least learn how to use that shotgun, in case the need arises. stock up on 00 buckshot. You really can't blame the guys for eyeballin' your girl. It is in their nature and they can't help themselves. 99.9% are harmless. it is the 0.1% animals that the shotgun is for. They should be shot like vermin if the need arises.

"And, as if we're in Mexico, our elite president and wife vacation in paradise, and back home, he cannot get his telemprompter to tell the public that he and Congress are working on the growth of the U.S. economy---a plan to recover that is. No, his teleprompter just refuses to say that and so our president won't be heard to utter those words."

You had me LOL there. The teleprompter thingy is something hubby pointed out to my naive self pretty early on in the obama "presidency". I never really knew what a teleprompter was until this administration. Christ, I think even "W" was more convincing when he stumbled over adverbs and adjectives! At least he was being honestly stupid. This runt of a coward makes my blood boil. I try (unsuccessfully) to bite my tongue whenever we listen to Katie Couric (okay, it's a habit - give me a break on this one).

I guess what's interesting to me is that during the next 20 years, those "annoying seniors" will be poop-ulating the United States. What, oh what shall we do with these annoying people who really should just shut up and die anyway?

Let the Civics Wars Ensue

Ready to Rumble?

As I barrel on through my annual 3-day mercury bender, starting with the New Years Omakase dinner with great Saki through two days of brunches including Norwegian Nova and sable I continue to look over predictions and other bad news of the day. Just to add balance to my New Years reverie.

This morning as I perused the Huffington Post, the big article of the day was that Tea Partiers are furious with the Republican leadership for working out a compromise with Obama in the lame duck session.

According to Matt Taibbi in "Griftopia" the Tea partiers are a throwback, or anachronism to the '60's world view before globalism took place and they are still fighting as if the conditions were the same as it always was.

I agree with this perception of the know nothings who have an oversimplification of the issues, unaware of just how complex this state really is or what is really happening. Who is pulling their strings to the detriment of the many. They still think the banksters make money the old fashioned way....

I can only expect that things are really going to fall apart as they see their election (40 of them)as a mandate to shut down government if they can't get the spending and QE series to stop.

Some other interesting on-line articles I recommend today are on Zero Hedge: TrimTabs: "No Amount Of QE Will Be Able To Keep The Current Stock Market Bubble From Bursting"
and "Sailing to Disastrium: What’s Past, Passing, or Yet to Come, Max Keiser interview with Ellen Brown and Karl Deninger and for laughs, Charles Hugh Smith 2011 predictions.

Nobody can see how this charade in the stock market can continue and the covering up of huge debts in the banks in the US and Europe can continue on its course. All parties made the decision to pay no attention to the over-arching banking problems.

How many bailouts can dance on the head of a pin?

Most probably - not that anyone cares, really. As I sit here and type, I cannot help but thinking to myself, "Jesus, what a lonely, fucked up life you lead, spending precious time reading this thread and responding. For this I spent almost a decade getting my bachelor's and master's degrees?" Pretty sorry, but I've been called that and much worse for years! I get a kick out of reading the comments posted here (oh, I DO mean MOST of the comments - god invented the scroll key for a reason).

"How many bailouts can dance on the head of a pin?"
-lbendet

============
Probably enough of them to push that pin deeply enough to kill the ever-lovin' empire (through the eyeball and far into the brain). Did they see it comin' [MUCH]?

Girding my loins to read some Charles Hugh Smith... I would venture that this ain't gonna be pretty! ;o)
Thanks for the info[s]; I'd rather know what's killin' me than howl for relief via witchcraft. Vengeance will be a strange and curious undoing.

"I get a kick out of reading the comments posted here (oh, I DO mean MOST of the comments - god invented the scroll key for a reason)." -MM

Me too. I think that many of the nastier [and extremely TANGENTIAL] comments are designed to put one OFF of reading the blog, not to add anything useful. I'm sure you've noticed that they tend to shear FAR away from topic and into their own sphere of bile-spewing and authoritarian sycophancy. (Probably just my paranoia talking, but there may be something to it.)

Can't say I blame the younger generation for feeling seniors are entitled. After all, they probably realize they ain't gonna get what we're getting now, when they get older, yet they're still paying into the system. When I go for a week or so to Florida (I couldn't stand being there longer) to give myself a break from the cold, I see how terrible the seniors act - they really expect to get served hand and foot, and are often rude - and I'm a senior myself.

The 80% you speak of is 80% today. That number will go down as time goes by, as more people become marginalized through job loss, underemployment and loss of their homes.

Girding my loins to read some Charles Hugh Smith... I would venture that this ain't gonna be pretty! ;o)

The 2011 "predictions" are, in fact, very funny

Oops, didn't paste that example correctly. Here ya be.

7. Markets in precious metals, oil, commodities, stocks and bonds will rise and fall in an unpredictable fashion. Every analyst, pundit and commentator will be right about the movements, but at the wrong time. Most players will lose money while convincing themselves they made a killing. Bat guano and 'roo innards will emerge as the "hot commodities" of the year, as both will go parabolic.

Everyone betting on the oil futures contango will be wiped out.

-Charles Hugh Smith (2011 Predictions)

Ozone,

We all need a little intelligent comic relief!!!

One more point, Beantown and Antimatter:
If the people of this country recognized what is going on with the dwindling of the public sector and understood that the real Entitlements are going to the top echelon of this country, maybe we could all make it clear that ss and medicare should be protected against the privatized interests. We directly toward it in every paycheck we earn and nobody should be able to borrow from it or bankrupt it.
Whatever the other issues of large baby boomer population etc, our collected public sector has been taken from the coffers.

If anyone talks about shared sacrifices, all you have to do is point out how the banksters and other corporate socialists have taking more and more for themselves as we lose ground.

Just another shock doctrine ploy. Learn to recognize the lingo.

I’m not sure about god( David Duke to Vlad Krantz)and the scroll screen; I kinda liked the Rawhide/Rowdy Yates thing!

I'm one of the 80% that is safe for now.

And I am the one who feels uneasy more than ever.

Not because I'm afraid for myself. My retirement is about to start, and my retirement income will be pretty decent for a modest life, my mortgage is paid off, my health is good for my age. The reason for my fear is my children and grandchildren. One of my sons in law lost his job for the second time in one year. He - who was a tea party patriot and was so loud about the government, socialism, freedoms and constitution before - is silent now.

We used to have heated discussions about politics: I insisted that health coverage and good education is everybody’s right. They called me a liberal and socialist. I was against the war, torture, the patriot act; and they called me non-patriotic.
I voted for Obama, they voted for McCain.

And now their savings are almost gone; one income barely covers basic necessities. My daughter asked me if I would take the children when things get worse.

What do I tell them? Maybe that it is their own fault, that they should work harder and rely on themselves, save more for the unemployment?
What do I tell them?

Antimatter,

You’re absolutely right. All those “Losers” will be exactly where they deserve to be. In America the lone deserving individual can leap tall buildings in a single bound, negotiate global wage arbitrage with a wave of the hand, and pay hundreds of thousands out-of-pocket when the insurance company and dog-eat-dog capitalism comes-a-knocking. I know this is true because Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity told me so. And who would argue that those two are not faster than a speeding bullet--especially when their mouths are moving!

But as a wise man recently wrote, why would the slide halt at 20%? Sooner or later Tom Joad will touch all of our lives, and how hallow and blank the ethos of ‘only the strong must survive‘ economic barbarism will feel then.

Ozone,

One more thing concerning contango. On 8/4 I entered this in this blog after hearing a segment on Max Keiser, I remembered some other stories I read in Bloomberg:
-----
Anyone Contango
No not really, if you try you lose. Can you hear the music?
I just wanted to call attention a commodity game practiced by our very "innovative" power brokers referring to pre-rolling of commodity pricing causing ETFs (derivitaves on commodities) to lose money. You learn something new every day in the world of rigged manipulations by the players that can wipe out investors. There is a case that caught my eye, thanks to economic commentator, from my hometown Max Keiser, who now resides in Europe.

"Jan. 8 (Bloomberg) -- Citigroup Inc.’s commodities-trading unit followed BP Plc and Royal Dutch Shell Plc in anchoring a full oil tanker offshore northern Scotland to profit from higher prices later this year.Citigroup’s trade shows how the contango, caused by an inventory surplus onshore, is attracting more traders to hoard oil. Brent crude for January 2010 settlement sells for $58.97 a barrel, 30 percent above the contract for next month. Stockpiles surged as recession reduced demand, while forward prices remain higher on forecasts OPEC cuts will start to curb excess supply."

Bloomberg 7/22/10 well worth reading. Article describes an individual who invested in U.S. Oil Fund and how he lost 50% on his investment even though the price of oil climbed 11%. If he tries to sue, the committee it comes before is rigged with cronies from the industry.

"When the futures contracts that commodity funds own are about to expire, fund managers have to sell them and buy new ones; otherwise they would have to take delivery of billions of dollars’ worth of raw materials. When they buy the more expensive contracts -- more expensive thanks to contango -- they lose money for their investors. Contango eats a fund’s seed corn, chewing away its value."
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-07-22/etfs-imperil-commodity-investors-when-contango-conspires-with-pre-rolling.html

Lisa,
I really don't know what to tell you.
Personally? I would take the kids and tell the "adults" that they're on their own. What else can you do? The kids certainly aren't at fault; they didn't have any control of the purse strings. They might have to change their diets a bit and get the idea that "you can't have anything you want at anytime you want it", but that's not a bad thing.

(I've lived on 2 "meals" a day since I was 18; not sure I'd recommend that, but I never did find that to be too skimpy a'tall. I mean, look at how often people have to shit these days; do you think they're actually absorbing all the nutrients from the massive quantities they're stuffing down their gullets?? Sorry for the crudity there, but I think you get my drift. Caloric intake just doesn't have to be as high as it is [in 'Murka] for fully-grown people. Just one corner to be cut.)

Sigh, I guess it's Nemesis time; it always follows the Hubris, doesn't it?

Lisa V,

Your kids have put you in a tough situation. I'm sure that taking responsibility for grandchildren wasn't what you'd had planned for your retirement.

Sending good thougthts your way.

SJmom

Addressing the pissant only serves to give him validation to a certain degree. Even negative attention is desired by him, since in real life no one will allow him in their presence or pay attention to him. Through the internet, however, he is able to inflict himself on others and sniff the hem of his betters even after having been booted off the forum however many times for his boorish behavior. It is impossible to insult a pissant because the miserable life he lives is insult enough. Tantamount to being a dried piece of shit on the ass hairs of life.

What can you do? For starters, just be there for them. If you can, offer to watch the kids. Make a low calorie dinner for them once in a while. Listen to them bitch and try not to judge. Emotional support can be worth more than you might think. Realize that when people get stressed they sometimes make bad choices. Learn to anticipate this because it will happen. As a mother, you cleaned and bandaged scraped knees, offered tissues during crying spells, offered sage advice when asked. It (life)really won't change for you. Once a mother, always a mother. Patience will be a virtue they will see and learn from you.

Antimatter patter: "He paid his taxes for decades, never sought help, always worked, but this economy finally smashed through his wall of protection--savings gone, etc. Out of pride, he was just going to tough it out in a 43 deg apartment until the weather warmed up. I convinced him to go to county services, and he learned how much they hated seniors there.

Folks, this is what we face ahead. Vilification of certain groups, minority in age, skin complexion, religion, and it's just starting. "

What sort of un-American douchebag goes his whole working life, spending his money on tattoos and beer, and fails to properly insulate his house when energy was inexpensive, and then turns around and feels "vilified" when a government agent points out quite accurately that many seniors like him feel entitled to a government bail-out.

Paying taxes goes to pay for government services. Whoever thought taxes were a guarantor against high energy prices was and is wrong.

Now, they ask for services they are not entitled to. Somehow, it remains possible to get the heat turned back on, even for deadbeat neckflame morons who didn't feel like acting prudent and economical when "times were good".

I think there are productive functions in American life that the government can be good at and is preferable to a purely commercial interest.

For instance, the government would be a good agency to enforce quality standards on manufacture of "Known" ie. unpatentable or common prior inventions.

For example, our civilization can make a perfect hammer, that will last, for all intents and purposes, an entire human lifetime. Yet of the world yield of hammers, a huge proportion are intentionall made so cheaply that they manage to fail before that time. And this is true for all tools and things generally. America is a giant market sopping up all the lowest quality, shortest-lifetime goods and equipment.

Contrast this with UL:

About UL
A name you can trust.
UL is a global independent safety science company offering expertise across five key strategic businesses: Product Safety, Environment, Life & Health, University and Verification Services. Our breadth, established objectivity and proven history mean we are a symbol of trust and enable us to help provide peace of mind to all.

Mission
Our mission: Working for a safer world since 1894
The following principles drive every decision we make at UL:

UL's global conformity work in 2009

20 billion UL Marks appeared on products
66,149 manufacturers produced UL certified products
84,994 product evaluations were conducted by UL
570,088 follow-up services inspection visits were conducted by UL
19,597 types of products were evaluated by UL
120 UL inspection centers in service
102 countries with UL customers
1.5 billion consumers were reached by UL with safety messages in Asia, Europe and North America
1,420 current standards for safety published by the UL family of companies (1,122 for UL; 298 for ULC)
68 laboratory, testing and certification facilities in the UL family of companies
6,921 employees in the UL family of companies ready to serve UL customers

----

As wonderful as a private sector organization like UL, crap still floods the world.

And the highest degree and amount of waste in an industrial process is product creation.

In other words, commerce and corporations aren't solving the problem. Nations need laws and laws need government. The government should stop crap at the border. Further- they should use their trading power to influence markets against creating crap as a chief diplomatic issue.

That is, if America cared about stopping crap.

Maybe I was not clear enough in my previous comment.

I’m not an average American mom. I not only watched my grandchildren whenever my daughter asked me, I even did it when my daughter and her husband went to a tea party meeting, even though I deeply despise this party. I not only helped with an advice (which they did not want to listen to), but also took my 401(k) to help with their first house (which they gladly accepted)

My point is that my family is just one example of how utterly brainwashed most of the people are. How they don’t see through the bunch of lies, how “outfoxed” they are. The word UNION became almost a swearword, those who are for health insurance for everyone and good education for everyone are labeled enemies of the Constitution.
They are blind to the facts and think they would never be in the 20% because they are better than others.

Then it hits them…

The echo is jimjiminy cricket.

LisaV, my first instinct was to say, "get them a copy of Germinal and make sure they read it", but it probably won't make a difference.

There must be something to those research studies which report that conservatives' and authoritarians' brains are materially different than other peoples'. I've had a rude awakening of this sort, as well, to find that my heretofore-seemingly-intelligent sister is now similarly brainwashed, an ardently vicious and bloodthirsty sort of Tammy Bruce / Laura Ingraham / Ann Coulter / Michael Savage, etc. Teabagger. She sides with the proudly, defiantly, ignorant, brain-damaged, and cruel. She sides with the bullies and plutocrats (Citizens United was a great blow struck for freedom!). She sides with the private prison magnates, the Taser®™ers and the torture weenies.

I feel like Alice through the Looking Glass when I talk to her. It's hopeless. You've done what you can, now take a page from their book and cut your losses and save yourself… or they will drag you down with them. IMHO.

"My point is that my family is just one example of how utterly brainwashed most of the people are. How they don’t see through the bunch of lies, how “outfoxed” they are. The word UNION became almost a swearword, those who are for health insurance for everyone and good education for everyone are labeled enemies of the Constitution.
They are blind to the facts and think they would never be in the 20% because they are better than others.

Then it hits them…" -Lisa
============================

Yes, that did come through in your first posting.
You asked what you might do.

I'd still say that the grandkids are innocent in this; but I have no sympathy [either] for deluded, willfully ignorant fools and followers that your children have DECIDED to become.
I hear you, and would have to say, "Cut 'em loose". They picked a side to be on; wash your hands of the whole affair and grieve later.

Life's gonna get a lot harder, so I guess we're going to be forced to make some heartbreaking decisions.
All the Best.

I am on the same page. I naively thought that a house was supposed to be your HOME. NOT, I married a guy who sounds like your neighbor.
I tell him the same thing, it's OVER, IT'S NOT coming back.
He doesn't get it.
Consequently I am in the middle of going down with the ship, he took us both down.

It's a long fucked up story. Makes me sick.
When I get my strength back I AM OUT. And that will be fairly soon. Oh and unneccesarily BANCRUPT. FUCK !

JHK I am probably more pissed than YOU !

I been Living in Denial Long Enough, because my husband is.

Greedy fucks. So many homeless, is a Heinous Crime what went down here. I don't GET how so many can be so god damn Cruel. To others. When it comes to a roof over our heads.

I don't get it and never will. Or I do get it,
but can't do anything about it. Well I never had children.

I am pretty negative lately. How could one not be ? Oh yeah the $$$ Repubicans who actually think they earned what they have ! Very few probably actually did. In an honest way, seem to Care the Least about others, even family members, so yeah I am SICK over it all.

anyway just need to stop now and clean the place up around here.

Damn! That's weird that you should post that.
I hadn't read yours before posting mine. It's starting to all come home, isn't it?

(Geez, you said it a lot better and your advice is much clearer; I'll shut up now. ;o)

Me too !

Wikileaks continues to uncover government conduct through release of government communications. Wikileaks is practicing journalism and is publishing information previously unknown.

Wikileaks continues unabated, revealing the role of government diplomats as salesman for private corporations.

Wikileaks confirms how USA diplomats and officials sucked up to foreign royalty to the benefit of some private companies over others.

WASHINGTON — The king of Saudi Arabia wanted the United States to outfit his personal jet with the same high-tech devices as Air Force One. The president of Turkey wanted the Obama administration to let a Turkish astronaut sit in on a NASA space flight. And in Bangladesh, the prime minister pressed the State Department to re-establish landing rights at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York.

In 2006, President George W. Bush urged King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, right, to buy as many as 43 Boeing jets to modernize Saudi Arabian Airlines and 13 jets for the Saudi royal fleet.

Each of these government leaders had one thing in common: they were trying to decide whether to buy billions of dollars’ worth of commercial jets from Boeing or its European competitor, Airbus. And United States diplomats were acting like marketing agents, offering deals to heads of state and airline executives whose decisions could be influenced by price, performance and, as with all finicky customers with plenty to spend, perks.

This is the high-stakes, international trading bazaar for large commercial jets, where tens of billions of dollars are on the line, along with hundreds of thousands of high-paying jobs. At its heart, it is a global wrestling match fought every day by executives at two giant companies, Boeing and Airbus, in which each controls about half of the global market for such planes.

To a greater degree than previously known, diplomats are a big part of the sales force, according to hundreds of cables released by WikiLeaks, which describe politicking and cajoling at the highest levels.

Yes, if you 'take the kids' for and from your daughter that isn't fair, your daughter needs to help out. not just put it all on you. For sure.

I myself never had children. But your daughter needs to take responsibility here as much as she can.

yes I also agree with Myrtlemay.

Thank you, Ladelfina.

I don't know if they would read Germinal, my daugther might, and yes, ir would not matter

I gave them copies of THE LONG EMERGENCY and REINVENTING COLLAPSE. They did not read them.

My 11 years old grandson asked for Sarah Palin’s book for Christmas. I only would be happy to take in him and my granddaughter and teach them to think for themselves, to look around and see what is going on in real life, not only on Fox channel

Thanks for expanding on that! What a friggin' shell game; I'm not gonna feel too sorry for these schemers when the whackings begin.
"Free" markets, my ass; it's all about who can fuck whom first. Gawd-a-mitey

A few posters here seem to be heartless bastards.

If he exists, God is the only entity who's perfect. Humans aren't. People make mistakes, make poor decisions, don't act logcally many times. So what? That's part of the human condition. I find people who castigate others for doing what they think is wrong or foolish often have little self-esteem themselves.

I try not to be too hard on others. When I reach the level of perfection, then maybe I can be be smug (NOT).

Lisa V, I've had to watch my daughter make some very serious errors. But you know what? I always felt I did a good job as a parent teaching her how to cope in the world, and I had the faith in her that she would come out ok. And she did. It's one of the hardest things to just stand on the sidelines when your kid displays bad judgment. But they have to learn fom their mistakes, and you have to have faith that despite fumbing around, they will eventually be in a good place. It's just horrible havng to watch your kids screw up, but persevere.

And which goes to show that our high-level government officials and our corporate CEOs are, in the true sense of the word, fascists.

Bill said: "If he exists, God is the only entity who's perfect."

God does exist. And she is Black, and perfect.

"A few posters here seem to be heartless bastards." -BTB

Beans, I take your point.
It may seem that way at times; but nobody gets helped by letting people wallow in bullshit without consequences. I reiterate: Times are going to get a LOT harder, very soon; there isn't "time" to have faith in people "eventually" coming around to realities. The saddest words in the English language? "Too late".

(Plus, you don't think the delusional are going to be "heartless bastards", when they feel you've got something they need because they didn't prepare, or were too busy hanging on Glen Beck's every word?)

Bill said: "It's one of the hardest things to just stand on the sidelines when your kid displays bad judgment."

Kids are not possessions. They do not belong to the parents.

For Lisa V., in answer to her question about what to tell her kids:

On Children
Kahlil Gibran

Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life's longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.

You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,
which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them,
but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.

You are the bows from which your children
as living arrows are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite...

I think if God exists he/she/it would be ineffable. So how do you know it is a she and black? Do you have some inside info?

I hear you, but this isn't about "time", it's about employing the best options available to benefit your children. We are not able to control our adult children if they are emotionally healthy, so all we can do is suggest the right course of action and hope for the best.

In a case where adult children need financial assistance, consider what the airlines tell you, as an analogy: If the cabin loses air and the air masks deploy, put your own mask on first, then affix your child's. You can't save your child if you are unconscious.

The same principle applies when an adult child is in financial difficulty: Give them as much money or assistance as you can without endangering your own financial health, or else both you and your child will fail.

Bill said:

So how do you know it is a she and black? Do you have some inside info?

Yes.

SOURCE: Mrs. Asoka

Ah, of course.

Isn't an economic recovery when people go back to doing what they did before the economic crisis hit?

More confirmation of an economic recovery is to be found in the fact that investors are beginning to get comfortable with risk again. Not only are they pulling money out of bond mutual funds at the fastest pace in two years, but they're slowly starting to embrace stocks again. The shift in sentiment comes as positive economic news and robust corporate earnings lift stocks, which have risen 20 percent since the start of September.

Now, is there a complete disconnect between Wall Street and Main Street? Really? No connection at all?

Or do you just not want to face the fact that Obama has successfully engineered an economic recovery which will lower unemployment, get people off the government safety net entitlements, and expand private sector economic growth? ... as in the last seven consecutive months.

Housing, manufacturing, service industries, etc. are not there yet, but all are on the way back to normal.

This is not the moment of convulsion.

This is the moment of resuscitation, the moment of recovery, after Bush near-death tasering of the economy.

Mmmmm,
Perhaps it's the moment of gov't. propaganda bullshittery! (tm MM) ;o)

"The same principle applies when an adult child is in financial difficulty: Give them as much money or assistance as you can without endangering your own financial health, or else both you and your child will fail." -BTB


Yep,
Been there, and got the t-shirt too! ;o)

Hi Asoka,

I am wondering what Asoka is? I mean is it a nickname or a last name ? of course you don't have to say.

A SO Ka ? just different.

Great week's discussions, CFN; several of which I'd like to see continued in coming weeks.

A few parting comments from me for the year, assuming JHK posts on schedule on Monday:

1. SJMom - It is admirable that you understand the need for a weapon and that you have prepared for bad eventualities by purchasing one. (A two week waiting period for long guns in CA?? What a goofy state!) And in choosing a shotgun you have, IMO, picked the best all purpose firearm for home defense.

But please, lady - unless your husband is already a shotgun expert - get some training with the thing. Learning to use a firearm is not a do-it-yourself sort of skill, especially if you are under stress.

Shotguns are not complicated weapons, by any means. But the fact that the learning curve for a shotgun is short does mean that the learning curve is not steep and potentially deadly. One single hour with an instructor at a range could literally save your life - in various possible ways. ;-)

2. K-dog and others on legalized marijuana.
I'd like to see it, myself. But I'm afraid I just don't see it happening. There are too many powerful forces that have too much invested in the status quo. Someone mentioned that if the Christian organizations got involved with the unfairness of drug laws that they could change quickly. I can wish!

I just want one of my raised garden beds to be planted with about 1/4 ounce of quality seed. Coupled with some aged horse manure, some water, and some of God's sunlight - I could easily produce 50 pounds of quality leaf and bud - enough for a year, even if I sprinkled it on my cereal every morning.

Of course the way law enforcement calculates things in my little rural county, that would make the local paper as a $15,000 drug bust. Plus they would try to seize my house, my vehicles, and all of my assets - to buy more aviation fuel to fly more helicopters - to find more pot - to rinse and repeat endlessly.

3. JimLingTza does not know what a complete caricature of an unthinking right wing jackass/Limpbaugh he really presents himself to be. If he did, he would stop posting - or at least stop the counterproductive invective and cursing. We could use a good spokesperson for the right wing on here. Unfortunately, LingJim just isn't doing very well thus far.

4. Similarly, we need a good spokesperson for the mystical left. Asoka, you will have to do, though. I do appreciate your new efforts at impeding less. Jury is definitely still out on Obama and the economy. I'd say we'll know more by mid-summer. Now is way too soon to be making predictions based on the chicken entrails known as government statistics and the US stock markets.

Last time I'm going to say this for 12 months;
Happy New Year to ALL you CFN'ers!!

And hey, SJ. I'm not intending offense, by any means. And maybe you already know all about firearms - in which case, don't lose the keys to the attic, and keep on keeping on!

And a shotgun would, INDEED, be a great tool for removing the gonads from some errant male who tried to misbehave without your daughter's consent during a time of societal stress!

You will be glad to know that I've been a'skeerred of 15 year old girls since I turned 18. And that's been a few years, now.

Best regards, dudette!

My dad once said to me that sometimes the worst things that happen to you can turn out to be the best things in the long run. Try not to despair. Get your health back and then worry about the other crap - and it's all crap. Material possessions are only good insofar as they serve YOU, you don't serve them. This is something I think our society has backwards. Try not to be too hard on yourself. People make poor choices. Me? I make my share of fuck ups, and they're often not very pretty. I do try to learn from my mistakes, though. I think that's why we're all here. ;-)

You mentioned your husband and his family. Don't let them "rent" space in your head! Let them go on to whatever they think is bigger, better, etc. Give yourself some room to grow. I have a feeling we're all going to have this opportunity in the not-too-distant future.

oooooooooooh !
La. La.
It's only money.
Happy New Year.

Everyone who believes the "government" is secretly manipulating statistics on employment, housing, etc. to make Obama look good should, by JHK's criteria, be booted out of CFN since JHK does not cotton to conspiracy theories.

I guess some must resort to conspiracy theories because they can't accept the data showing improvement and they won't come right out and say Obama has done a good job of bringing the country back from the economic abyss that JHK said (two years ago) we were at the edge of.

If all the predictions two years ago had come true we would have 75% U6 unemployment now, the banks would be closed, martial law would have been declared, guns would have been taken away, the internet would be dead, loose nukes would be exploding in the USA wiping out cities, grocery shelves would be empty, and we would be facing death.

Instead, Obama did a good job his first two years and we are not in a dire situation. (Except for the loose nukes going off in the future, none of that scenario is likely to happen.)

Thanks to the Nov. 2 elections that put Republican and Tea Party candidates in the position to actually have to govern (which they are incapable of doing), Obama will waltz back into the White House in 2012.

Asoka said: "Obama has done a good job of bringing the country back from the economic abyss that JHK said (two years ago) we were at the edge of. "

I distinctly remember JHK saying he doubted we would even make it to the Obama inauguration in Jan. 2009 because the economy might collapse before then with massive bank failures and the doomsday litany we all know on CFN.

Didn't work out that way. Obama was inaugurated. Things have actually gotten better.

Unless you refuse to accept the data... in which case you are a conspiracy theorist.

Asoka is also the name of a gay porn "star." :D

Somehow “King Asoka “doesn’t have a very mystical ring to it.

The American Revolution represents the greatest redistribution of land and resources the world had ever seen. It stoked many romantic and ideological fires in Europe. It was not easy to replicate in Europe: land had been parceled up amongst feudal landlords for a thousand years or more. the peasant classes were living in shit compared to American colonists. but they wanted what American colonists had: a shitload of land. with a shitload of land the power of old landlords, professionals, the trade guilds, and the clergy greatly diminishes.

"Unless you refuse to accept the data... in which case you are a conspiracy theorist."

Still preferable to "coincidence theorist" who refuses to examine the QUALITY of the data...

"The problem with this seemingly endless supply of "free money" is that there truly is no such thing as free money, as responsible economists have understood for many centuries. If you could just create trillions out thin air and pass it around to politically favored special interests like it was candy – common sense would indicate that every government in the world would be doing it as a matter of official policy. If governments could skip the unpleasantness of having to pay for spending through taxation, and instead just spend free money at will with no devastating side effects - then every government on the planet would have been doing this exact program for centuries. The fact that responsible governments don't do this is a very simple reality check on the irresponsibility of the Fed and the US government's attempts to hide the true state of the economy through deficit spending that is funded by the reckless creation of vast amounts of new money."

http://danielamerman.com/articles/Hiding.htm

"The worst of the current policy is that it provides political cover for extending failed policies, which gives little incentive for finding the desperately needed alternative policies that might actually work." as opposed to appear to work.

Asoka, you need to get on this debt ceiling bandwagon right away. Tell them: "Why not just go all out and increase the "debt ceiling" to 100 quadrillion? Let's just skip the formalities that we are dealing with "real money" since we are not."

And since you have no aversion to spending money that isn't yours, why pretend to have a debt ceiling? Would that make you like the Republicans, or something? Should it be considered insane to act like one has a debt ceiling. What a joke!

"Unless you refuse to accept the data... in which case you are a conspiracy theorist." -Asoka
====================
That is the kind of backhanded insult that pisses me off.
YOU sir, are the one engaging in fantasies of the solvency of the USofA.
To the highest levels of this administration (just as the last) there has absolutely been a conspiracy to mask the credit-unworthiness of this house-of-cards economy. (Based on nothing BUT debt and credit.) Let's just call it a "conspiracy fact".

Shall we simply "extend and pretend" until some spurious savior rises up to say, "Look here, fuckers! This will be quite enough of your shenanigans."?
=================
"I distinctly remember JHK saying he doubted we would even make it to the Obama inauguration in Jan. 2009 because the economy might collapse before then with massive bank failures and the doomsday litany we all know on CFN." -Asoka
==================
Guess what? JHK was correct; it's all been smoke and mirrors since then to keep up the confidence game. Why do you think they call it that?

Here's something I hope you would find a little sobering, as you seem to be drunk on cooked stats via cooked books:

http://theautomaticearth.blogspot.com/2011/01/january-1-2011-us-housing-story-of-2011.html

The banks are toast, boys and girls; start clicking the heels of your ruby slippers together.

i read this just after eating a nice lunch of generic brand froot loops - dry - heh heh

TR wrote -----:
Now for a multiple choice test.

What do you see in the future?
(A)class warfare

This question has a value of 100 points.
-----
HAHA. But I thought the PTUA's Pass-the-transport-buck effort was better.

Go to http://www.ptthatworks.org.au/buck.php and get to the fifth question ("your Oyster card has stopped working").

Unfortunately, you have to answer the four previous questions (just give random - most of you won't know).

Questions 8, 15, and 16 are outrageously similar.
-----
Those interested in public transport issues may wish to pay attention to the correct answers disclosed when you move onto the next question. They show a true silliness in the bureacracy.

Nick.

Ovaj svet upada u sve veću konfuziju sam da su cinjenice Koje niko ne moze da ospori. Koje je bio u pravu i kako ćemo izaci iz cele cena CE Vreme pokazati.

When I was in Paris in the 1980's I was sitting on the Champs de Elysses at 2am) and giant tanks started rolling through the Arc de Triumph. My friend and I laughed at the thought that maybe the Germans were invading again. (It turned out to be practice for a Bastille Day Parade the next day)Now with the world in such upheaval anything is possible. I miss Europe and was envious reading your column. I still have hope to visit Europe with my family (I was single when I was there last). However for me the security of our country is so invasive and intrusive that I am boycotting the airline industry to see if they lighten up a bit. But if they don't this summer I play to spend at least a week in Italy.


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