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Disasters Far and Near

     As the disaster in Haiti moves into its “Katrina” phase of organizational chaos, relief effort failure, and public health calamity, the world will get another lesson in the dangers of techno-triumphalist posturing. American authority pretends to be in flawless control of a situation that by the minute crumbles into anarchy and death as the generals strut their stuff and the CNN crews broadcast yet another feel-good segment about adopted orphans. At this point, one rainstorm is all it will take to kill what is left of the Haitian social order.
      It’s a tragedy for the ages, and tragedy is a fulcrum of the human condition that techno-triumphalism pretends to have vanquished. All the meals-ready-to-eat on God’s green earth won’t add up to a happy ending for everybody. Haiti was a disaster waiting to happen every bit as much as the Federal Reserve is for us. For decades, the USA’s policy (and the UN’s too) was just to stuff more food aid onto an island already so far beyond its carrying capacity for human existence that every new birth certificate was a death warrant in disguise. But free people are free to do what they will do, and in Haiti there was not much more to do than make more people.
     Now the USA will also pretend that there is a Haitian government in charge — as in the pathetic grandstanding of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton the other day — though the Haitian government was a fiction for decades before the earthquake struck. The recent blatherings of Bill Clinton would have us believe that Haiti is poised to become an exemplar of economic development for the Caribbean once things are tidied up there. What planet are these people living on? (Answer: Planet Limousine.) Rather Haiti is the example of what life may become in nations bethinking themselves developed further along in The Long Emergency. If the figures on world crop failures for 2009 are relevant, even places like the USA may get a taste of this before the end of 2010.
      On the home front we have President Obama’s announcement last week of a tax on banks that received bailouts of one kind or another.  This tax, he said, would amount to $90 billion over ten years. That’s pretty funny, since there is no shortage of opinion to the effect that ten years from now $90 billion might buy you a box of Little Debbie Snack Cakes — if the means of production are even there to make the darn things. Here’s an idea: if the USA is going to backstop companies that are not allowed to fail, then maybe these companies should fork over hefty premiums for what is, in effect, an insurance policy. For instance, those billions now slated to be paid in in bonuses to the likes of Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan / Chase, Citibank, et cetera ad nauseum. Let them just pony up these bonuses to the taxpayers every year as long as they enjoy backstop insurance. (They’ll still have very hefty salaries.) And, by the way, those bundles of money don’t even cover these bank’s off-balance-sheet liabilities.
     I raise these indelicate points to argue that the stories we are telling ourselves these days do not reflect the real circumstances we find ourselves in, and will not help us to get through the difficult times ahead.  In fact, they amount to an invitation for more tragedy. The more the USA imagines itself to be too big to fail — and immune to the mandates of reality — the more likely we are to fail massively. The more we indulge in techno-triumphalism and organizational grandiosity, the more chaos we invite. The signal failure for the moment is the Obama regime’s unwillingness to imagine that the old economy is dead and that no amount of financial mortician’s wax and rouge will bring it back to life. Stunts such as so-called Financial Crisis Responsibility Fee (the $90 billion tax over ten years) will only corrode what is left of Mr. Obama’s authority as its meaninglessness reveals itself.
     In the meantime, no one with any real authority has asked figures like Hank Paulson, Lloyd Blankfein, and Tim Geithner under oath exactly how Goldman Sachs managed to get paid 100-cents on the dollar for derivatives bets from the foundering AIG; and how come in the first place Goldman Sachs was short-selling the fraud-riddled derivative securities it was packaging for sale as AAA-rated paper to credulous investors; and many other pertinent questions of the day that ultimately must be answered and settled within the rule of law. Funny, too, that our constitutional law professor president hasn’t demanded this from his own Department of Justice. I maintain that it’s crucial to settle these matters if we don’t expect to become an entirely lawless nation.  It’s necessary to break up the TBTF banks.  It’s necessary to investigate their officers, and prosecute them if the facts warrant it.  It’s necessary to open up the dark vaults of off-balance-sheet liabilities and dispose of them at their true value. 
     It’s necessary to start telling ourselves a different story about where we are going. We’re destined to become a different kind of society and economy. If that future economy is not based on real productive activity conducted at a scale consistent with resource realities, then we will starve to death, or watch our infrastructures of daily life crumble away to nothing, or hack each other to pieces as the the people in Haiti may do before the end of this week. Goldman Sachs and its cohorts are not necessary for the future economy of the USA.  In fact, they’re already dead. The real zombies of this world stalk the sidewalks of Wall Street, not the swamps of Port-au-Prince.

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About James Howard Kunstler

View all posts by James Howard Kunstler
James Howard Kunstler is the author of many books including (non-fiction) The Geography of Nowhere, The City in Mind: Notes on the Urban Condition, Home from Nowhere, The Long Emergency, and Too Much Magic: Wishful Thinking, Technology and the Fate of the Nation. His novels include World Made By Hand, The Witch of Hebron, Maggie Darling — A Modern Romance, The Halloween Ball, an Embarrassment of Riches, and many others. He has published three novellas with Water Street Press: Manhattan Gothic, A Christmas Orphan, and The Flight of Mehetabel.

553 Responses to “Disasters Far and Near” Subscribe

  1. nothing January 18, 2010 at 8:49 am #

    Jim, don’t forget the zombies in Washington. See the Obamatron at http://www.thenothingstore.com

  2. Chris Lawrence January 18, 2010 at 8:49 am #

    Haiti’s history is a sad and depressing one. It is a tale full of genocide, slavery, extortion, invasion and occupation, resource theft, and severe repression. It is a cruel joke that a country that has endured so much, and has so little ability to deal with catastrophe, must endure even more suffering.
    http://www.watchinghistory.com/2010/01/haiti-long-tragedy.html

  3. Cussin' Jack January 18, 2010 at 9:03 am #

    Americans have NEVER been good at telling and hearing the true stories (a la Native Americans, Philippines, Hawaii, Vietnam — now a “trading partner” … how ironic — Central American CIA influencing, and on and on and on. Why should the “unpleasantries” of the banking/finance/housing fiasco be any different? Or the energy mess, too, for that matter.
    We’ll continue to tell ourselves and our children the myths that make us feel all warm and cozy inside. I hope those stories bring us comfort on the cold, hungry, dark nights ahead.

  4. 3rd Generation January 18, 2010 at 9:07 am #

    The United State IS today A LAWLESS CRIMINAL NATION, and the tectonic shifts in Haiti may be the best thing that ever happened for many of its darling model citizens. I would imagine they have images of safe permanent passage to an empty FEMA trailer or abandoned home in Florida, only to perpetually feed from the tit of what’s jokingling referred to as the Federal Government. Screw Haiti and everyone in it, including past Prsidents Lewinski, who looks remakably like WC Fields and dumbo 43 who looks like he need a vodka transfusion quickly. I particularly enjoy seeing the starving children with flies in their eyes with a reporter dangling a candy bar in front of them just off camera.. . true poetry.
    Yawn. Pass the cheese doodles and 5 gallon drum of Cola… Now, the US just a ‘terror’ attack from becoming Haiti West….
    Currency Crisis, Riots, Death and Food Shortages. 2010 is shaping up nicely, eh?

  5. Al Klein January 18, 2010 at 9:13 am #

    What aphorism from the past best describes Americans’ attitude regarding the devolution of our culture (ultimately) into a hell on Earth? Suggestion: “Experience keeps a dear school, yet Fools will learn in no other.”
    Thanks to Ben Franklin for this prescient observation.

  6. Lynn Shwadchuck January 18, 2010 at 9:13 am #

    Yes, if only the news organizations would spin Haiti as a wake-up call. An earthquake on a small island with lots of people is a particularly extreme example of a natural disaster finishing off an economically failed nation. It’s unfortunately too much of an imaginative stretch for most North Americans to put together the creeping effects of climate change or a spike in the price of oil on farming, and the erosion of our mad money. This would be a very good year to plant food, even if you only have a balcony or a friend’s back yard. A good year to practice eating simply, before the grocery price war ends, leaving fewer retail chains vying for our business. A good time to support a local farmer who grows grain – find a place to get flour before the artificially low price of bread ends. Can some fruit. Peaches are coming from China these days! It’s up to us, there’s no ‘them’.
    Lynn
    http://www.10in10diet.com/
    Diet for a small footprint and a small grocery bill

  7. Neon Vincent January 18, 2010 at 9:23 am #

    Meanwhile, concern over the environment is becoming a relationship issue. From the N.Y. Times.
    Therapists Report Increase in Green Disputes
    That certainly puts things in perspective. *rolls eyes*

  8. Puzzler January 18, 2010 at 9:28 am #

    PEAK IRONY
    There’s some kind of cosmic joke being played out in Bush helping to head up Haiti relief efforts — he’s spent more time on Haiti already than all of New Orleans. Still got that deer-in-the-headlights look — what a waste of electrons putting him on TV.

  9. Freedom Guerrilla January 18, 2010 at 9:40 am #

    Maybe today is a good day for a revolt.
    http://freedomguerrilla.com

  10. Jim from Watkins Glen January 18, 2010 at 9:40 am #

    The people with means in Haiti, just like New Orleans in 2005, high-tailed it to high ground. It’s an old story about the power of self-interest and privilege over altruism and justice. Will Americans be able to write our new story honestly? When Dee Brown wrote “Bury My Heart At Wounded Knee” in 1970 I was among many who realized we’d been lied to all our lives about how Europeans took over North America. My teachers reinforced the lie that Roy Rogers and Sitting Bull fired a few shots at each other, then together wrote today’s happy ending. They failed to mention the genocide, and did not recognize the destructive path we are on. It’s time to see who has the courage to face the truth, and the strength to speak and act accordingly. Those who’s world view is informed from the back of the limo will have the hardest time.

  11. grey7beard January 18, 2010 at 9:43 am #

    Jim,
    Enjoy your blog very much and want to thank you.
    One thing I find very annoying are the freeloaders who spam you site to promote their own sites, which apparently can’t draw viewers based on their content. I see adversing, in whatever form, as one of the many cancers in our society.

  12. JustAnotherParasite January 18, 2010 at 9:54 am #

    The Haitians were warned this would happen to them in September 2008 (see http://www.lematinhaiti.com/Article.asp?ID=14646) and again in October 2008 (see http://www.haitixchange.com/index.php/hx/Articles/possibilty-of-earthquake-in-port-au-prince/). If YOU knew you were sitting on a time bomb with a very short fuse, would you just sit there and wait for it to explode under you? The people of Istanbul have also been warned of the same thing but when interviewed they simply replied “But where would I go? I cannot leave here, it’s my home!”

  13. diogen January 18, 2010 at 9:59 am #

    And what are France and Spain doing to help the dysfunctional country they created and doomed to failure? Haiti exists as a sad vestige of inane colonial policies driven by greed, stupidity and arrogance. France benefited hugely from the slaves it brought to Hispaniola for production of sugar, and therefore it has a responsibility. United States paid a high price for French colonial abuses in Indochina, which brought chaos and ruin to Vietnam and were the main ingredient in the conditions necessitating the U.S. to become involved militarily (seemed like a good idea at the time), with the French washing their hands off. Is France washing its hands off Haiti as well leaving it for the U.S. to tidy-up the mess it left behind?

  14. zxcvbnm January 18, 2010 at 10:02 am #

    I watched Jessie Ventura’s sensationalist TV show “Conspiracy Theory” the other day. It was the episode about underground bunkers being built feverishly by the wealthy and power elite to survive the coming “cataclysm of 2012″. The thing that cracks me up the most about the whole idea is that these people honestly believe that they can ride out a disaster underground then come back up and continue life as it was before the disaster. I’d like to see these Washington or Wall Street types start digging in the dirt to plant and grow and tend to their own food. What a comical show that would be. It just proves how out of touch they truly are. And the sad part is that they all think it will be some natural disaster, rather than fossil fuel depletion and complete economic collapse, that they need to worry about most.

  15. willow January 18, 2010 at 10:13 am #

    The comments of Pat Robertson et al could only have arisen in a land of dreams where–we make our own luck; and God is in control.
    Luck is the free will of the universe–no one controls that Lady, not every god we naked apes have conjured.
    The scariest thing about the future? Our brothers and sisters who pretend they don’t need the tribe; these are proud “lone wolf” pathetic creatures, who live by the ethos, “Because you deserve it” and nestle the thought to their bosom of their little cabin in friendly Telluride, CO where they will run on Bug-out Day.
    Poor lonely children in your shaggy lone-wolf coat! We are in the same boat brother, and I wish that Tiger Woods would get off his fattening ass, get into that big yacht of his, and bring a few Haitians to the Land of More opportunity. And a bunch of other Floridians too–a Haitian “Dunkirk” where we show the rest of the world our minds haven’t completely fled, nor our humanity.
    thank all of you here–esp. the Kunstlermeister! and good luck with your gardens. An old electric blanket from the goodwill makes a cheap, adequate wrming mat for those little seeds you hopefully have planted.

  16. Onthego January 18, 2010 at 10:36 am #

    Planet Limousine has another international leader: Sebastian Piñera, a conservative billionaire businessman, who won the presidency of Chile yesterday, ending a generation of rule by a center-left coalition that had overseen the transformation of the country of 17 million into Latin America’s most politically stable and economically dynamic.
    The Oligarchs are buying their way to the top of the political order everywhere, and not because they want to help the “little people.”
    Here at home, would anyone care to estimate – on a percentage basis – how much bad (which I will define as short-term) public policy will be made between now and Election Day 2010 in order to create “jobs” and “fix” the “problems” in the current economy? As opposed to examining the far more difficult question – what do we replace the current economy with that is sustainable and fair and shares the pain (because there will be pain) as equitably as possible?
    There is the “how do I get re/elected” solution and there is the “long-term” solution, which may or may not work of course, but does it meet the three tests above?
    We are “governed” by a political class that has made the calculation that letting problems get worse is more in their best interest than working on solutions. The only conclusion one can draw is that the opportunities for enrichment are still greater inside government than without; nothing else explains why they keep running for office.
    In Haiti the roving gangs are mostly armed with machetes, which will deliver the horror up close and personal, one victim at a time. Here at home, the gangs will have better weapons than the forces of law and order, not to mention more bullets.
    Time to build that sense of community right now, right where you are. If we don’t hang together, we will surely hang separately.

  17. draffen January 18, 2010 at 10:37 am #

    The elites have a plan. Its called the “New World Order”. They will not be digging in the earth themselves, they will get it all done with slave labor.

  18. budizwiser January 18, 2010 at 10:38 am #

    Yeah – Haiti – the place that was always just about ready to turn the corner. While operating on far less than 1% of US petroleum consumption – its a tropical paradise. Where’s the unobtanium?
    I’m glad I could jog my history studies – another western Colonial success story -oh me, oh my!

  19. k-dog January 18, 2010 at 10:41 am #

    Haiti, It’s a terrible tragedy, so many lives cut short.
    It would suck to live in a place where all the infrastructure has fallen apart, is in decay and where one can’t count on a working government to help the suffering in need.
    I wish them well and hope any help they receive is the help they need.

  20. not mommy January 18, 2010 at 10:42 am #

    “Screw Haiti and everyone in it…”
    No FUCKTARD, screw you. And the horse you rode in on. And after you and your horse have screwed each other, may the wolves move in, beginning with your nuts. Then upwards towards your gizzard. May they nip gently, removing organs delicately, while all the while you remain conscience with the crystal clarity of all your senses. Until the point where when the wolves are just about to go for the jugular, your horse takes a big, diarrhetic dump on your opened eyes.
    Other than that have an exceedingly nice day.

  21. The Mule January 18, 2010 at 10:44 am #

    Well said. A few prosecutions would got a long way to restoring some measure of faith in the government. Spot on Jim.

  22. not mommy January 18, 2010 at 10:44 am #

    “Like the detail that hurricane katrina was no “natural” disaster.”
    Riiiiight. That was caused by George Bush when he had his generals and the geniuses at Haliburton flip the “go” button on their hurricane machine. (Fucking MORON.)

  23. not mommy January 18, 2010 at 10:49 am #

    “My teachers reinforced the lie that Roy Rogers and Sitting Bull…”
    Roy Rogers? Roy-Fucking-Rogers? They did not occupy the earth at the same fucking time, you imbecilic, FUCKTARD. STFU.

  24. not mommy January 18, 2010 at 10:51 am #

    “I see adversing, in whatever form, as one of the many cancers in our society.”
    Hey, moron, did you notice that Jim advertises products and services on his site? Sweet Jesus the idiots are out in droves this morning.

  25. diogen January 18, 2010 at 10:53 am #

    Mommy, the comment that “hurricane katrina was no “natural” disaster” may be referring to the disaster of the criminal mis-management of the relief efforts, the mis-management indeed the responsibility of Bush and Co.

  26. Vlad Krandz January 18, 2010 at 10:58 am #

    So you want to take in millions of Haitians? How many in your house? I thought not…
    Look, we’re not even able to house our own homeless and find jobs for the unemployed we now have. And it’s only going to get worse as more of the unemployed become homeless. We just can’t take in any more immigrants. Millions of more Haitians will just create more Haitis wherever they go and speed us towards our own well deserved destruction.
    This kind of over the top charity is just techno-triumphalism with a human facade. A debased, worldly imitation of Christianity that thinks man can create the Kingdom of Heaven right here on Earth all by himself – without God.

  27. not mommy January 18, 2010 at 10:59 am #

    “Mommy, the comment that “hurricane katrina was no “natural” disaster…”
    Mismanagement (after the fact) or not, Katrina remains the largest natural disaster in our nation’s history, a little fact that is all too conveniently forgotten.

  28. Martin Hayes January 18, 2010 at 11:05 am #

    No one’s mentioned it so far, so here goes: to me the most sobering detail JHK has mentioned is that Haiti is far beyond its carrying capacity. I invite y’all to Google Earth the border between Haiti and the Dominican Republic.
    I absolutely guarantee that all shall become plain: many parts, particularly in the highlands dead in the middle going north and south, are denuded of trees on the left (Haiti), but untouched on the right (Dominican Republic). I don’t know what has prevented Haitians from crossing the border (often a shallow river) to avail themselves of the lush woodland on the other side. Any ideas?

  29. rpavellas January 18, 2010 at 11:18 am #

    The banking and money information is very credible and useful. I will send it to others. As for Haiti, I checked with the CIA World Factbook (a very useful source) and find your summary history of Haiti is reflected exactly, if a little more politely and not quite completely. What I learned in a addition from the Factbook is that Haiti is about the size of Maryland with a population (9 million) approximately that of Sweden which has an area 10% larger than California. The fertility rate (births per woman, counting all women) is 3.81 in Haiti, confirming your observation that there is little interesting and useful to occupy the citizens except to make more of themselves. Nonetheless, the population is declining due to high death rates in various categories and to emigration (the ‘population maintenance’ fertility rate for any given country, without referencing immigration and other factors, is 2.1 births per woman).
    I have now signed up for your articles.
    Ron Pavellas
    http://pavellas.com

  30. hugho January 18, 2010 at 11:28 am #

    Jim: today is the day you need to move to either remove comments portion from your web site or approve comments. I know, it’s work, but if you delete the blathering trolls and spammers and out and out doomer nutboxes and permit sensible spirited discourse, you will have a website worth visiting. It is becoming a chore to try to sort through the garbage on kunstler.com.

  31. Martin Hayes January 18, 2010 at 11:31 am #

    Vlad, I’ve seen at least one proposal that the entire population of Haiti should be removed to the US indefinitely, and meanwhile for Haiti to be rehabilitated thru reforestation and the like – by US technicians – and then, when the time is right, for Haitians to be reintroduced to their homeland armed with an American education in such matters as civil engineering and organic-based agriculture.
    What say you?

  32. The Mook January 18, 2010 at 11:35 am #

    To Not Mommy, Advertising does suck! Jim advertises to support his work, Chevrolet advertises because it works in this yeast infected society. How many times can one take Howie Long pushing those piece of shit cars. The only thing he says that is correct is the part about GM not being able to compete with the foreigners making lawn mowers! GM would have to hire a million dollar design engineer and be backed financially by the government to make one that would not fall apart within five years.

  33. draffen January 18, 2010 at 11:38 am #

    Hey Budizwiser, a good point! The good news is that we as an industrial society are presently building up huge stockpiles of unobtainium!!!
    Thanks to globalization and unprecedented resource extraction techniques, we in the USA are loading up on unobtainium. When all the oil, gas, wood, water, land, air and everything else is gone, in 20 years or so, we will be sitting on the largest stockpile of unobtainium the world has ever seen!
    Everything will be unobtainable – from sea to shining sea!
    Has anyone checked the commodity price of unobtainium recently? I think the banks have loads of this stuff sitting in those cold, dark vaults!

  34. dale January 18, 2010 at 11:51 am #

    JHK can often remind me of the traders who “know” where the stock market is headed next. Even when they are right, they often go broke waiting for their forecast to come true. Again and again, it’s always about 6 months out for him, fortunately for him, he makes money when he’s wrong! But no matter, in affairs of the apocalypse what’s a few months one way or the other, as many here are quick to point out?
    Clearly, the structural problems within the American and global economy have not been addressed (or even mentioned) by our leadership, and it’s becoming increasingly obvious they are incapable of such action, even when it’s need is so apparent. When money talks, status quo runs at the mouth.
    So, in terms of “forecasts”, what will happen next? I hate to disappoint our doomer cadres but it will most likely be disappointingly dull. Many months and years of tipid cycles of “growth” followed by “recession” while the middle class gets ground down to a permanent underclass. That should take care of our problems of “over consumption”,at least in the near term. Don’t loose a lot of sleep waiting for the “tea party” knuckleheads to erupt in revolution. Right now they are doing exactly what the powers that created them want, and revolution certainly isn’t in their vocabulary, (see status quo above).
    It took a hundred years for Galileo’s discoveries to be widely appreciated, but it looks like it happened overnight in the history books. Fortunately or unfortunately, depending on your POV, life is seldom revolutionary, at least from the standpoint of those living it. So……gird your loins for……slow change.

  35. heckler January 18, 2010 at 11:54 am #

    Now the USA will also pretend that there is a Haitian government in charge — as in the pathetic grandstanding of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton the other day — though the Haitian government was a fiction for decades before the earthquake struck. The recent blatherings of Bill Clinton would have us believe that Haiti is poised to become an exemplar of economic development for the Caribbean once things are tidied up there.

    Jim gets a boner bashing Hillary and Bill but he doesn’t understand that the n-word in the cracker house is just recycled clinton. Poor Jim is so terrified to admit that he was duped by the n-word from ILL-ANNOY that he blames the Clinton’s for the n-words actions. Poor Jim is afraid he’ll explode if he admits he was duped into being a cheerleader for recycled clinton disguised as mlk. ha ha ha. poor jim.

  36. Vlad Krandz January 18, 2010 at 11:54 am #

    Come, come now my fine fellow – we’re long past the point of things like that. We don’t have the strength anymore. Everyone of them would have to either work or go on welfare. And everyone that worked would take a job away from an American. No, they sink or swim where they are, just like everyone else. Send money like President Bush said or honey and grain like Trip is going to do. This is reasonable charity and no more can be expected from any person or people. If some specially trained individuals have the freedom in their lives to go down there and do more, that’s fine. But creating more dollars out of thin air to make them over in our bloated and corrupt image? No.

  37. jerry January 18, 2010 at 11:57 am #

    President Obama cannot believe that many Americans with brains have embraced his $90B clawback program spread out over 10 years. HA, HA!! The bonuses have amounted to more money over the last 10 years.
    When Obama stands up and says such ridiculous things, all I can think about is how stupid Bush was. Now, I have to question Obama’s legitimacy and competency. He has to be so clueless to understanding what he has to do to set the country straight, or he believes that we are stupid voters, or he knows he has to do what the puppet-masters tell him to do. Which ever it is, we won’t see anything change.
    I agree that TBTF Must be broken up into smaller units, and if any investment bank is to continue to get socialized cash rations, then they must pay hefty fees and taxes. How about taxing every market transaction?
    There are many ways to fix the problems, and the Justice department MUST investigate with indictments as an serious option. It sure looks like Geithner, AIG, Paulson, and Bernanke were engaged in a conspiracy to hide the names and amounts paid to counterparties at 100 cents on the dollar. I believe Geithner’s insistence on 100 cents on the dollar was a bribe to keep the names from the SEC. The thieves must be jailed, and the banks restructured to do what they were originally intended to do. This is required if the country is to ever right itself.
    Haiti—what a horrible situation. The self-righteous do-gooders associated with hyper-religious mission groups should be refused passage to Haiti. Many of these idiots feel they can help when in reality many look like they need help tying their own shoes. There are professionals over there helping out, and don’t need do-gooders getting in the way.
    http://eye-on-washington.blogspot.com

  38. insanity shelter January 18, 2010 at 12:08 pm #

    Pic #2 on today’s NYtimes view slider shows not one but two Haitian children in a tent city wearing their pants down around their mid-thighs.
    If it were just one, you might suppose hey they’re lucky to have any cloths at all. But with two, you know that the need to keep on the hip-hop cool doesn’t rest even for a natural disaster.

  39. Cash January 18, 2010 at 12:10 pm #

    Jim talks about Goldman short selling securities which they peddled as gold-plated investments.
    Capital F fraud? So what, this is nothing new. It’s the stock in trade of the most polished con-men in the greatest, most spectacular, most corrosive, economy destroying criminal enterprise in history, collectively known as “Wall Street”.
    You want to mess with that crew? They are backed by the power and might of the Government of the United States of America and aided and abetted by its Treasury and Federal Reserve. Wall Street alumni infest government institutions like ticks. They have the ear of those in power. Uncle Sam may be a shrivelled, insolvent remnant of what he once was but his clammy fist is more than big enough to deal with the likes of you and me.
    Remember the dot-com bubble? Trillions were lost, right? Wrong. Trillions were ripped off. Skimmed from the Wall Street casino and laundered through mansions and yachts and burned on wine, food, drugs and the best-looking “escorts” on the planet. And how many went to prison? A pissant few.
    Did we learn anything from that debacle? No. A few short years later Wall Street charlatans and mountebanks peddling garbage paper suckered everybody again.
    A 9 billion dollar per year tax, to that gang, is so many nickles and dimes. Don’t even bother.
    Does Wall Street need regulation? No. Wall Street needs to be locked up like the dead eyed psychos they are.

  40. ozone January 18, 2010 at 12:16 pm #

    JHK-
    “Funny, too, that our constitutional law professor president hasn’t demanded this [bankster fraud investigation] from his own Department of Justice. I maintain that it’s crucial to settle these matters if we don’t expect to become an entirely lawless nation.”
    It’s my contention that this lack of justice is one of the larger black swans darkening the skies. TPTB seem to believe that it’s all well in hand, and that there’s plenty of para-militarized police and combat veterans with nowhere else to get their bread and butter than by gov’t largesse. I think they’ve miscalculated by a loooong shot. It won’t be so easy to get the “troops” to kill and incarcerate half of their countrymen (Goebbels’ dictums aside). Take a little peek at Afghanistan, shall we? The “Taliban” “insurgents” are now your run-of-the-mill resistance fighters. The bulk of them are p.o.-ed nationalists who get no justice from their so-called “leaders” in Kabul. (…And you know how those hardcore ideologues will fare, once the occupiers and puppets are driven out. Want to try and get between the warlords and their opium profits? Good luck with that, Chumley; just when everyone’s gonna a need some soma-fying.)
    Just how do “those of little imagination” think this is all going to turn out? Ouch.
    Oh, and this: “It’s necessary to open up the dark vaults of off-balance-sheet liabilities and dispose of them at their true value.” -JHK
    I guess by “dispose of”, he means: lift the lid and flush ‘em down! Ah, “true value” indeed. ;o)

  41. insanity shelter January 18, 2010 at 12:29 pm #

    Grey7beard, I don’t find them distracting at all, as typically they’re in the same vain as this site.
    I think this. You never tried to get off your ass and DO anything on your own initiative, so you have no clue how hard it is to get eyeballs.
    For the record, I have never put a link of any kind on this site.

  42. zxcvbnm January 18, 2010 at 12:29 pm #

    Don’t doubt the ability of the military to manipulate the weather

  43. diogen January 18, 2010 at 12:33 pm #

    The world, especially certain parts of it, are full of failed states whose people (who in many cases created, tolerated or were otherwise complicit) want to move to more hospitable shores. While I understand their desire, this helps neither those failed states nor the host countries. It serves as a safety-valve to relieve the pressure on the failed state and removes the urgency of reform, and it hurts the host country by burdening it with, in many cases, unproductive and dependent residents. Once we (the U.S.) thought we were rich enough to absorb unproductive immigrants and provide for them. Now we’re only delusional about being rich. My point is that although we think of ourselves as a generous people, it’s harmful to both the failed state and the U.S. (or European countries) to allow willy-nilly immigration policy. Another point — when immigrants from low-energy consumption societies come to the U.S. they become high energy consumers (even if they are indigent and on the dole), further tipping the global energy consumption toward collapse, contributing to the global climate change, etc.

  44. Hoping4bestpreparingforworst January 18, 2010 at 12:41 pm #

    For the miscreants who’ve expressed ill will for the Haitian people. Be very careful because you will most likely find yourselves in the same situation one day sooner rather than later. The US is not exempt from natural or man made catastrophes. In fact, if anyone has noticed, disastrous events seem to be happening at a sequentially faster pace. No sooner than we stabilize from one mess do we find ourselves in another. It all started with oil prices lurching to an historic $150.00 per barrel in 2008 which led to an historic financial disaster which led to an historic economic crash. The Haitian earthquake was another historic event.
    I fear before the year is over we will have several more disastrous historic events – man made and natural.
    That’s why I’m hoping for the best, but preparing for the worst!

  45. ozone January 18, 2010 at 12:43 pm #

    Martin sez:
    “I invite y’all to Google Earth the border between Haiti and the Dominican Republic.
    I absolutely guarantee that all shall become plain: many parts, particularly in the highlands dead in the middle going north and south, are denuded of trees on the left (Haiti), but untouched on the right (Dominican Republic). I don’t know what has prevented Haitians from crossing the border (often a shallow river) to avail themselves of the lush woodland on the other side. Any ideas?”
    Hmmm, kinda hard to say, but did you get a good look at that border road there? I’ve driven a good portion of it, in a little cracker-box rental car, no less! We had to get express written permission from the Dominican military before they’d allow us to attempt it. Quite the crawl; I think the fact that we had such a tiny vehicle is what permitted us to go around (and over) a lot of ruts and rocks. (‘Course that was the whole road.) When we came “back out”, they were kinda shocked, and told us that tanks have a difficult go of it on that road sometimes.
    Military presence, with good visibility; I believe that’s your answer.

  46. willow January 18, 2010 at 12:44 pm #

    reply to comment by vlad kranz:
    the haitians are hard workers, and surprise! they could teach us fat white slug americans a thing or two about survival.
    Haitians are 1% of the black population in America, yet 11% of the physicians.
    My prediction: in the years to come, we will need people who can do something–besides pontificate.
    My wish to make our own Miracle of the little boats–[the Brits saved the doomed soldiers on Dunkirk that day]–my wish is strictly of the self-preservation type, not the bleeding heart do-gooder whirled peas.
    Bringing in the Haitians would be a salvation, not a doom!
    And to the fella who asked, “Why did they stay in an earthquake zone?”
    Hmmm. The human mind has not yet reached the stage of evolution where we can answer “why” questions. . . . .

  47. The Mook January 18, 2010 at 12:44 pm #

    You gotta love these people who keep faulting JHK for not being timely with his predictions. The only reason the banks haven’t collapsed yet, is the fact that the Americans who still hold wealth and/or jobs have fallen into the lure of easy money since March. With their support, stock prices are at bullshit levels and record company profit reports are fraudulent and just a figment of Wall Street’s imagination. The next bank crisis will be the big one. Buy gold, seeds, land (with water), and fertilizer while you can.

  48. insanity shelter January 18, 2010 at 12:49 pm #

    >the haitians are hard workers, and surprise.
    With all due respect Willow, you don’t know a damn thing about Haitians except what you’ve read in the msm this week.

  49. The Mook January 18, 2010 at 12:53 pm #

    To Cash, Goldman short selling their own securites had risk, I heard it in the testimony last week. I also want to let you know that I am going out for the paper soon. I will also be at risk as there was a lightning bolt seen in the area in late November. Lock them all up!

  50. Qshtik January 18, 2010 at 12:59 pm #

    “Roy-Fucking-Rogers? They did not occupy the earth at the same fucking time, you imbecilic, FUCKTARD”
    ========================
    Hey Mommy, Roy R is a metaphor … not intended literally. How you sometimes fail to notice things like this boggles the mind especially since you’re usually quite peceptive.
    In like vain I would say that Diogen’s interpretation of the Katrina remark made by F. Kahn is probably correct. Namely, that Kahn means the mis-management of the relief effort. However, I’ll grant that with all the grand conspiracy nuts around it is possible he does think bad people threw the hurricane machine switch.

  51. Anne January 18, 2010 at 1:04 pm #

    Overpopulation in Haiti was not the primary problem. There are islands in the UK that have a higher population density. The primary problem was an incredibly impoverished population fucked over and over by the US and France.
    As for us, we should take a good look at it, because that’s our future, 20 or 50 years down the line. Obama won’t do anything about the situation with the banks and insurance companies because he was brought in to head the transition to a third world country. So far things seem to be progressing very nicely if you realize that’s their agenda. I don’t think the administration’s actions make sense in any other context.

  52. not mommy January 18, 2010 at 1:07 pm #

    “Hey Mommy, Roy R is a metaphor … not intended literally.”
    No it isn’t FUCKTARD. The moron that posted that was obviously referring to Buffalo Bill Cody, as Sitting Bull joined his wild west show for a period. But he is so fucking stupid he believes his teachers taught him that Roy Rogers and Sitting Bull traded “play shots” with each other. Now YOU shut up before I have to jump ugly with your stupid self.

  53. Cash January 18, 2010 at 1:13 pm #

    You could get hit by a bus too which is what happened to someone this morning not far away.

  54. Jim from Watkins Glen January 18, 2010 at 1:13 pm #

    Dear not mommy,
    I apologize for the oblique Roy Rogers and Sitting Bull reference. I was attempting to make a point about how popular culture and the history we were taught contributed to perpetuate untruths.
    Please also consider less confrontational language. Insults do little to elevate the conversation.

  55. insanity shelter January 18, 2010 at 1:16 pm #

    Martin Hayes, there is a huge mountain range between Haiti and DR, and the passes are road blocked by DR.

  56. ozone January 18, 2010 at 1:20 pm #

    Anne sez:
    “As for us, we should take a good look at [Haiti], because that’s our future, 20 or 50 years down the line. Obama won’t do anything about the situation with the banks and insurance companies because he was brought in to head the transition to a third world country. So far things seem to be progressing very nicely if you realize that’s their agenda. I don’t think the administration’s actions make sense in any other context.”
    Anne,
    This is also my [fearful] suspicion! Geez, it’s either that, or amazing (and absolutely deadly) delusion. The front cars are just starting down that first plunge, while we’re being dragged up to the top edge…

  57. Cash January 18, 2010 at 1:27 pm #

    You know what’s as scary as Wall Street is the fact that something like 2% of the population of N. America are farmers and a lot of those guys are getting old. So where does our food come from once they’re too old to work? Those guys are a really thin line between us and starvation.
    I saw a stat a while back that claimed that productivity-wise an American farmer can do in 10 minutes what it takes an Indian farmer a week to do. Are any other farmers remotely as productive as those in the U.S.? Once American farmers stop producing who will take up the slack?
    So as you say, buy seed, land, fertilizer plus a big mean dog and a gun. This is bound to get ugly. No doubt Trippticket will want to get in on this. What say you Tripp?

  58. willow January 18, 2010 at 1:36 pm #

    re cash and the Mook–
    I think we may rest assured that the Haitians we will welcome into our homes to prove to ourselves and the world that we are not the selfish self-indulgent slow-witted leviathans that we have up until now given an excellent imitation of being, will know quite a bit more than any of us about how to survive on a shoestring. If we are lucky, they might give us some pointers.
    and as for the person who said I “knew nothing about Haitians”, I say, “J’etre une Haitian!” proudly, as Kennedy said, “Ich Bien un Berliner!”
    and as for the person who didn’t think i would take a Haitian family into my own home–if you could see the orphans and homeless i have welcomed and fed, and if you could see the sweet blessing of understanding they have given me in return, you would not have said what you did.

  59. diogen January 18, 2010 at 1:48 pm #

    re: Obama “was brought in to head the transition to a third world country. ”
    So, who do you think “brought” him in, and why?

  60. diogen January 18, 2010 at 1:50 pm #

    Jim, thank you for demonstrating how reasonable adults respond to petulant children.

  61. Cash January 18, 2010 at 1:54 pm #

    You say:
    “I think we may rest assured that the Haitians we will welcome into our homes…”
    I say: Let me know how it works out. As for me, right now I live in a tiny apartment. No room.

  62. diogen January 18, 2010 at 1:56 pm #

    re “So where does our food come from once they’re too old to work? ”
    Why, corporate farms of course. They were successfull in getting cows to eat a food that’s not natural to them (corn instead of grass), perhaps they’ll succeed in getting us to eat food not natural for us but which gives them a great profit margin… wait, they did that already (high fructose corn syrop anyone?)

  63. suburbanempire January 18, 2010 at 1:58 pm #

    Haiti was a disaster long before 1/12…
    The country has suffered and suffered for centuries and only now are we noticing their plight……
    http://www.suburbanempire.com/front
    In order for the same suffering to be felt here it would take a lot more than natural disaster… it would take fifty years of Tonton Macoute… the Duvalier’s, and a rich neighbor who ignores us for a century (except to meddle in our affairs with a secret rogue agency)

  64. asoka January 18, 2010 at 2:13 pm #

    suburbanempire, in the places you were not paid to endorse you have mispelled James Howard K’s name.

  65. badnewswade January 18, 2010 at 2:39 pm #

    “It’s necessary to break up the TBTF banks. It’s necessary to investigate their officers, and prosecute them if the facts warrant it. It’s necessary to open up the dark vaults of off-balance-sheet liabilities and dispose of them at their true value. ”
    Never happen, pal. What Bush was to Halliburton and the military industrial complex, Obama is to Wall Street.

  66. suburbanempire January 18, 2010 at 2:40 pm #

    We are now responsible for Haiti because… We invaded it most recently… in 1915 and occupied it until 1934…. it’s like “hot potato” and we were the last ones to invade…..
    Technically right now most of the damage should have been confined to the Port au Prince “Beaches” Resort, as the rest of the island should have been constructed in hurricane/earthquake resistant housing that holds the large middle class population….
    obviously that isn’t the case… so the U.S. fucked up their nation building of 1915…….
    yup…. our problem…. Just like Iraq will come slap your great grand children across the face a hundred years from now….
    http://www.suburbanempire.com/front

  67. not mommy January 18, 2010 at 2:41 pm #

    Jim from Watkins Glen sez:
    “I was attempting to make a point about how popular culture and the history we were taught contributed to perpetuate untruths.”
    And to do this you perpetuate an untruth by stating:
    “My teachers reinforced the lie that Roy Rogers and Sitting Bull fired a few shots at each other, then together wrote today’s happy ending.”
    Your teaches taught no such thing. You sir are a liar.
    Then you say:
    “Insults do little to elevate the conversation.”
    Insults are not nearly as damaging as lies. I throw insults at those deserving insults, more often than not… the liars at this forum.

  68. grey7beard January 18, 2010 at 2:44 pm #

    There is a difference between paying advertisers who help support the site and freeloaders who do nothing, add nothing, but spam the site every week.
    As far as your thoughts on what I’ve done in my life, you would be very wrong, but since you’ve made grand conclusions based on zero information, it’s not surprising. I guess I could attack in kind with what a loser you must be because you disagree with me but I feel no need.

  69. Qshtik January 18, 2010 at 2:50 pm #

    Apparently you were right Mom. My bad.
    Jim from WG said: I apologize for the oblique Roy Rogers and Sitting Bull reference.
    It never occurred to me that someone old enough to be familiar with Roy Rogers could mix him up with someone from an entirely different era more than 50 years earlier.

  70. not mommy January 18, 2010 at 3:22 pm #

    “It never occurred to me…”
    Piss off, pants-load. There is so much that never occurs to you that you are laughable.

  71. diogen January 18, 2010 at 3:29 pm #

    Is Mommy’s in-your-face-rudeness just an act, you think? I think he may be a nice guy/gal posing as a raving maniac…hmm, but why?

  72. Qshtik January 18, 2010 at 3:54 pm #

    “… you are laughable.”
    ====================
    Thanks Mom … I try to get a laugh when I can.

  73. Dr. Doom January 18, 2010 at 4:02 pm #

    Bravo to “not mommy”/OEO for weighing in here and addressing the newbie and regular morons like so many brush fires. It’s a sort of community service as I don’t think Jim K. pays for it (but perhaps he should).
    Drinks are on me should we ever meet, not mommy.

  74. Donny-Don January 18, 2010 at 4:04 pm #

    I stopped into my local ARC used-clothing store today to pick up a shirt and a pair of gym shorts. Both are quite nice, and together they set me back all of $6.
    It occurred to me as I walked out of the ARC that this kind of activity — buying lightly-used clothing from a ginormous selection available at a tremendously reasonable price — barely registers on my nation’s (i.e., the United States) GNP.
    Unlike producing, shipping, marketing, and selling a brand-new shirt & shorts made by underpaid workers 6,000 miles away, my purchase today did not require additional jobs to pump and then consume additional fossil fuel for new clothing production, it did not employ a Madison Avenue advertising dude to convince me I needed to buy his/her hyped product, and it kept “waste” out of the waste stream (thereby reducing the business for our local trash hauler). No attorneys were employed to defend or challenge the trademarks or logos involved with the clothing or the retail establishment itself.
    So, in traditional terms, my purchase barely registered on the GNP scale. In contrast, if I had driven 15 miles further to my local shopping center to buy a brand new overpriced version of the same clothes, spewing out pollution along the way, the GNP would have been goosed by a factor several times greater than my meager effort.
    Though I note the profits wouldn’t have gone into helping the local disadvantaged-citizen community. Most of it would have gone to some corporate headquarters with off-shore accounts.
    What a mess. Think of how we calculate GNP and “economic health” in this country. No wonder things in the U.S. are a mess.
    We need new metrics. That would at least start to illustrate why America is no longer the ‘shining city on the hill’ compared to many of our international friends who, among other things, somehow get by just fine consuming less than we do.

  75. Dr. Doom January 18, 2010 at 4:05 pm #

    Attention CFN blog parasites using it to shamelessly promote your own web sites, and on a regular basis: Get Lost. Thank you.

  76. Grouchy Old Girl January 18, 2010 at 4:14 pm #

    This new poster, Not Mommy, reminds me of a guy who infects a local blog here. After lots of experience dealing with him, I have some advice.
    JUST IGNORE IT! The purpose of these bullies is twofold: to get attention, and to derail the discussion entirely. If you just ignore it, then it will eventually go away.
    By responding, we just make it worse.

  77. insanity shelter January 18, 2010 at 4:15 pm #

    >American farmer can do in 10 minutes what it takes an Indian farmer a week.
    I moved to Kansas two years ago. You don’t realize until you see it first hand, those tractors put out some SERIOUS horse power.
    I mean, they’re really a site to behold.

  78. Qshtik January 18, 2010 at 4:24 pm #

    “With all due respect Willow”
    ======================
    As noted last week there are certain words and phrases that sound polite but we all know are intended otherwise. Listed were:
    ilk
    crowd
    Good day, sir

    Today I am reminded by Insanity Shelter to add the classic:
    With all due respect

  79. Puzzler January 18, 2010 at 4:26 pm #

    Qshtik said: “In like vain I would say….”
    Try “vein” I say in vain, nitpicking the nitpicker.

  80. Puzzler January 18, 2010 at 4:30 pm #

    “…they’re really a site to behold.”
    They are a “sight” — site means a location.

  81. insanity shelter January 18, 2010 at 4:42 pm #

    Ok, I stand corrected.

  82. Grouchy Old Girl January 18, 2010 at 4:48 pm #

    People would utterly panic if Obama told us the truth, and I think that’s the reason he doesn’t. They have calculated that the truth would rip society apart and they would lose what nominal control they have.
    Far better to let folks float along in their fantasy balloons until they slowly deflate and reality is finally revealed. Or so they believe.

  83. abbeysbooks January 18, 2010 at 4:50 pm #

    As for Jim’s essay today: He is campaigning for a change in the Dominant Discourse. It’s about as effective as trying to change the Dominant Discourse about the assassination of JFK or 9-11. I wish him luck. He is rowing with a very small oar against the tide of a tekkie empire.

  84. Vlad Krandz January 18, 2010 at 4:51 pm #

    Your hatred for your fellow Americans is obvious – as is your obsession with Haitians and/or Africans. So here’s a better idea: you go live over there with them. Why should we have to suffer because of your needs and obsessions?

  85. abbeysbooks January 18, 2010 at 4:54 pm #

    I suggest you read Cormac McCarthy’s Blood Meridian as it is worse than Dee Brown’s book. Planned and willful horror.
    Then read his The Road and or see the movie. No denial in his books and no happy endings.

  86. abbeysbooks January 18, 2010 at 4:56 pm #

    Good on you. I now check the dumpsters behind these places and get it free. Let’s see, what does the universe have for me today?
    Don’t forget yard sales.

  87. Vlad Krandz January 18, 2010 at 5:08 pm #

    Wouldn’t it be great if Obama was replaced by Tiger Woods? And all the staff and reporters just pretended nothing had happened? Tiger is apparently quite a bright man. Obama’s IQ is more shadowy since all his records have been sealed. We do know that he once read someone else’s speech off a teleprompter and didn’t realize it. That happened to Clinton once – he immediately stopped, and recited the speech almost word to word from memory.

  88. Qshtik January 18, 2010 at 5:32 pm #

    “In like vain I would say….”
    “…they’re really a site to behold.”
    ==========================
    I’ve created a monster … in my own image. It’s alive, it’s alive, it’s uh-liiiiive.

  89. not mommy January 18, 2010 at 5:54 pm #

    “I’ve created a monster … in my own image.”
    No, in your own mind, numb-nuts.

  90. Pangolin January 18, 2010 at 6:00 pm #

    Find me a place that is exempt from disasters. I grew up less than three miles from the San Andreas Fault. Then I moved to a fire country. The local weather in California is fire, flood, mudslide and earthquake. Hawaii and Alaska have volcanos. The East Coast gets hurricanes. The Midwest tornadoes, drought, dust storms and earthquakes also if you look at history carefully. It’s a tough planet.
    If the New Madrid fault rips loose with the strength of the 1812 quake a lot of smug Teabaggers are going to be sitting under piles of loose brick. If such a thing should happen during your six-month winters the death toll would make Haiti look like a pre-school dodge-ball game. Don’t get smug. Nature bats last.

  91. insanity shelter January 18, 2010 at 6:31 pm #

    >Then read his The Road and or see the movie. No denial in his books and no happy endings.
    I read the road, and thought it was pretty lame. Oh, and it Did have a happy ending.
    Let me give you a little advice that won’t just sing in tune with what “everyone else” in the neighborhood is saying.
    See the movie An Education. It is going to produce the 2009 Best Actress, Carey Mulligan. She will be one of the greatest acting talents of the next half century.

  92. Brian Rodgers January 18, 2010 at 6:39 pm #

    Thank you Mr. Kunstler for telling it like it is.
    You are a very funny man. Your ability to entertain while delivering dire warnings as always, amazes me. I hope with all my heart that your eloquent writing inspires more people to take heed to what you say.
    Brian Rodgers in New Mexico

  93. Pangolin January 18, 2010 at 6:41 pm #

    The american “farmer” is usually a heavy equipment operator. Take away their diesel fuel and those $250K, eight wheeled tractors become so much useless scrap metal. The US was inches from losing the bulk of it’s dent corn crop in 2009 due to wet fields. We weren’t going to empty Chicago and hand out bushel baskets to pickers either.
    The orchardists, vintners and the olive growers exercise their pointing fingers as mexicans do ALL the heavy work and have their wages stolen by false-front labor contractors. Don’t think you can eat due to american labor unless you’re the rare intensive organic grower.
    Most of us, 99.99%, don’t know a damn thing about the true labor it takes to get food to the table 12 months of the year. A bunch of keyboard commandos mouthing off isn’t the same as being a farm worker.

  94. Vlad Krandz January 18, 2010 at 7:08 pm #

    It’s exraordinary that the people who hate Western Civilization the most often believe completley in the White Man’s Burden. If we are that messed up, if all we ever did was destroy Haiti, then why would you want us to go back a third time?
    Obviously, the burden of failure lies with the Haitian People. Again and again, we have gone in and put it back together for them, again and agian they have knocked it all down.
    They have spat in our face too many times – it is time for the White Man to cut his losses and tend his own garden. They will entreat and then beg for us to return – as Mugabe has already done – but we must turn a deaf ear to it all. The truth is bitter no matter what we do or don’t do. All these Third World Children are going to die. But we still have a chance to save our own children. That should be our focus.

  95. asoka January 18, 2010 at 7:33 pm #

    donny-don said: It occurred to me as I walked out of the ARC that this kind of activity — buying lightly-used clothing from a ginormous selection available at a tremendously reasonable price — barely registers on my nation’s (i.e., the United States) GNP.
    This is why I think we are going to have a soft landing, and why we have 47 years before TSHTF. This country contains “ginormous” wealth and so much “stuff” that we can live for decades on the crap that is stored in people’s garages, attics, and mini-self-storage facilities.
    Garbage is what we have. Soon we will stop buying new garbage and start recycling old garbage.
    This will lead to less emphasis on acquisition of material things and more emphasis on quality of life: what Tripp has been talking about as a permaculture principle: maintenance.
    For example, we will no longer buy new cars. We will follow Cuba’s example and maintain cars in good service for 47 years.
    Of course, judging by the number and frequency of advertisements for new cars, we are quite aways from the point of no longer buying new cars.
    It is going to be a Loooooooong Emergency.

  96. Shakazulu January 18, 2010 at 7:49 pm #

    First time commentor. Vlad said: “Wouldn’t it be great if Obama was replaced by Tiger Woods? And all the staff and reporters just pretended nothing had happened?”
    And what if Rahm Emanuel and the rest of the bunch were replaced by Tiger’s bimbos? And Goldman Sachs CEO was replaced by Rin Tin Tin and Lassie replaced CCO Todd Genger?
    http://tinyurl.com/lgzrap
    And the Federal Reserve became the Folies Bergère? And there really was a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow?
    I liked life better when I still believed in Santa Claus.

  97. georget January 18, 2010 at 7:52 pm #

    YO! Watch out for that “no “natural” disaster”, kind of commenting. It borders on the dreaded
    idea of a !!!conspiracy¡¡¡.
    There are many here among who don´t comprehend the following:
    “When a well-packaged web of lies has been sold gradually to the masses over generations, the truth will seem utterly preposterous and its speaker a raving lunatic.” – Donald James

  98. messianicdruid January 18, 2010 at 8:02 pm #

    JHK said, “I maintain that it’s crucial to settle these matters if we don’t expect to become an entirely lawless nation.
    Well echoed sir. Eccl. 8:11, 1John 3:4

  99. georget January 18, 2010 at 8:03 pm #

    Ditto for you too
    YO! Watch out for that “no “natural” disaster”, kind of commenting. It borders on the dreaded
    idea of a !!!conspiracy¡¡¡.
    There are many here among who don´t comprehend the following:
    “When a well-packaged web of lies has been sold gradually to the masses over generations, the truth will seem utterly preposterous and its speaker a raving lunatic.” – Donald James

  100. DeeJones January 18, 2010 at 8:05 pm #

    The ‘Americans’ were warned this would happen to them in September 2008 If YOU knew you were sitting on a time bomb with a very short fuse, would you just sit there and wait for it to explode under you? The people of Istanbul have also been warned of the same thing but when interviewed they simply replied “But where would I go? I cannot leave here, it’s my home!”
    Same-o-same-o. Nothing changes, its still the same.
    As I mentioned last week, if the edifice you are living in is on the verge of collapse, isn’t it time to think about getting out? The building is starting to tremble and shake pretty badly now, those on the rooftop must surly notice. Those in the basement with all the guns and ammo will just get crushed. Those in between, watching the cracks grow bigger better make a choice: Get out while the getting is good, or end up as so much mulch.
    I made the move, its still not too late for those of you with your eyes wide open to bail out. If you just sit there with your fingers crossed, you are doomed. Then only slavery or death will be your options.
    As I said, if the US is heading for third world status, why not just skip the whole downfall and misery there, and go somewhere that is already third world. Believe me, you will end up better off than in the good ol USA.
    Or not…. its your own choice.
    DJ

  101. Mike Hicks January 18, 2010 at 8:11 pm #

    The situation in Haiti is window into what we would be looking at in say LA, if the San Andreas fault decided to really move big time. Say about “8” on the old Richter scale. Even with the building codes that have been implemented the damage would be huge. For us older people that remember the “8” quake that hit Alaska in the 60’s, buildings toppled, huge cracks in the ground, roads heaved 8 – 10 feet high. If something like this hits a large city, you will see some of the same things that your seeing in Haiti.
    I agree with Jim on our slow Government response. I have watched with disbelief how slow we have been to get ramped up in Haiti. My God, the Chinese dam near beat us there and they showed up with a plane full of Search & Rescue in addition to supplies. Maybe after the earthquake in China last year their better prepared.
    I just can’t understand how our Air Force can fly to the other side of the planet almost on a moments notice and bomb some dusty village, but it took almost 24hrs for them to take control of the Haiti airport. The dam journalists beat them there.
    We all need to learn to take care of ourselves. We will not be able to wait on our Government.

  102. Vlad Krandz January 18, 2010 at 8:13 pm #

    Certain parts of the world are failed states – like the Black parts you mean?
    Sir you have alot of commonsense and its obvious to anyone so equipped that mass immigration to the United States should end. But what you have that we don’t, is your age and background. It give you a unique perspective. Why don’t you tell us the stories your Father and Grandfather told you about how the People of the South suffered after the Civil War under Black Terror. It’s been written out of history and these poor people don’t know a thing about it. And oh is it relevant. The Carpetbaggers and Scalawags are gone, or to put it another way, they triumphed in the end. But the Black Terror is an ever present danger until these people are, as Jefferson put it, “removed beyond the danger of mixture.”

  103. georget January 18, 2010 at 8:16 pm #

    Are we to assume that you´ll be OK with the deletion of your ´thoughtful´ comments if they are deemed inappropriate, for whatever reason?

  104. georget January 18, 2010 at 8:21 pm #

    Heh, wasn´t something similar tried in the US itself when American Indian children wre sent to Indian Schools (without their parents´ consent) for regrooving?

  105. Mr. Purple January 18, 2010 at 8:22 pm #

    “What planet are these people living on? (Answer: Planet Limousine.)”
    Classic, true, and revealing.

  106. georget January 18, 2010 at 8:26 pm #

    Your soon to be surprised.
    Hold onto your hat!

  107. Mr. Purple January 18, 2010 at 8:29 pm #

    “hurricane katrina was no “natural” disaster”
    Indeed, the engineers with the French expedition that founded the place knew it was a bad idea. ;^)

  108. Mr. Purple January 18, 2010 at 8:38 pm #

    I believe Jared Diamond mentioned this in Collapse: during the 1950s, the Dominican dictator at the time cleared out the illegal loggers from a national forest with the army. And not in the way that liberals like: in a brutal and highly effective manner (hint: it involves many bullets, and no lawyers.)
    Not really more drastic than the Tokugawa era Japanese executing those who cut trees without permission (also in Collapse). Which is why Japan still has ~70% of its forests, and imports wood from dumber countries.

  109. georget January 18, 2010 at 8:38 pm #

    Would´nt it be better to start with the folks that made the recent heist possible, the Federal Rreserve and Treasury along with their Congressional cohorts?

  110. Mr. Purple January 18, 2010 at 8:42 pm #

    “But creating more dollars out of thin air to make them over in our bloated and corrupt image? No.”
    I wish more people understood this about immigration. If you complain about American resource use (or “carbon footprint” for the Al Gore worshippers out there) then you don’t want the American population to increase at all.

  111. georget January 18, 2010 at 8:45 pm #

    Heard any news lately about the massive amounts of poppy crops that have been destroyed by the freedon fighters in Afganistan? I didn´t think so, since thre isn´t any. Remenber Iran Contra.
    The game goes on.

  112. Mr. Purple January 18, 2010 at 8:46 pm #

    “My point is that although we think of ourselves as a generous people, it’s harmful to both the failed state and the U.S. (or European countries) to allow willy-nilly immigration policy.”
    Well put. I wish more people understood this.

  113. georget January 18, 2010 at 8:49 pm #

    YO! Watch out for that “no “natural” disaster”, kind of commenting. It borders on the dreaded
    idea of a !!!conspiracy¡¡¡.
    There are many here among who don´t comprehend the following:
    “When a well-packaged web of lies has been sold gradually to the masses over generations, the truth will seem utterly preposterous and its speaker a raving lunatic.” – Donald James

  114. Mr. Purple January 18, 2010 at 8:54 pm #

    “the haitians are hard workers”
    Many immigrants are: they came from a worse place and want to succeed. Of course, the question remains: what about the 10% (officially – in reality it’s more like 15%) of the U.S. population that is presently unemployed? I don’t see much political gain for any politician from bringing in more workers to further depress the wage market. I doubt the unemployed Mexicans* in the U.S. (nationally, Mexicans are ~80% of illegal immigrants) would welcome them with open arms. And besides, menial workers who don’t speak Spanish are basically unemployable in the U.S.
    *No, not all of them are moving home.

  115. georget January 18, 2010 at 8:55 pm #

    So how many people have stayed in California earthquake zones?

  116. georget January 18, 2010 at 9:03 pm #

    How come you´re stuck on the hurricane switch idea? Oh I get it, if it´s too uncomfortable, be sure to grab onto the most outrageous option possible. That way it´s easier to dismiss the whole idea.
    “When a well-packaged web of lies has been sold gradually to the masses over generations, the truth will seem utterly preposterous and its speaker a raving lunatic.” – Donald James.

  117. georget January 18, 2010 at 9:17 pm #

    Heh, are those tractors running on cowshit or fossil fuel? Uh OH!

  118. georget January 18, 2010 at 9:31 pm #

    And what prey-tell is the ´Dominant Discourse´ concerning the JFK assasination and 911?

  119. trippticket January 18, 2010 at 9:37 pm #

    “So as you say, buy seed, land, fertilizer plus a big mean dog and a gun. This is bound to get ugly. No doubt Trippticket will want to get in on this. What say you Tripp?”
    Yeah, alright, what the hell.
    “I saw a stat a while back that claimed that productivity-wise an American farmer can do in 10 minutes what it takes an Indian farmer a week to do.”
    An American farmer’s diesel-powered TRACTOR can do in 10 minutes what it takes an Indian farmer a week to do. An American FARMER would play hell keeping up with the Indian. One of these is sustainable, and the other is not. And so we find ourselves in a rather precarious situation, don’t we?
    “So where does our food come from once they’re too old to work? Those guys are a really thin line between us and starvation.”
    If we collapse, we starve. There just isn’t enough small-scale sustainable ag going on today. If, like I tend to believe, this is going to be a long, drawn-out, steady descent from the great energy mountain, no problem. The old conventional farmers aren’t being replaced. But that’s fine. What’s replacing them (slowly) is organic or biodynamic or permacultural producers on smaller local polycultural farms and market gardens. The days of growing No. 2 field corn in 1000 acre swaths are drawing to a close. But I think that’s a GOOD thing because it means the days of Cheez Doodles, Little Debbie snack cakes, and insulin dependency are drawing to a close as well.
    “Are any other farmers remotely as productive as those in the U.S.?”
    Not many. But then, most other farmers aren’t wiping out New Jersey-sized expanses of major estuaries either. I used to do a lot of shallow saltwater fishing, and have a professional background in estuarine ecology, and I can’t even fathom the previous species richness and density of the Gulf estuary south of New Orleans, now a hypoxic death zone. These food chains matter. They matter a whole lot actually. Energy descent can’t happen fast enough for them.
    “So as you say, buy seed, land, fertilizer plus a big mean dog and a gun.”
    One last encouragement on this thread: learn to grow your food organically. Stocking up on fertilizer only postpones the inevitable. Fertilizers are SALTS – as in Ammonium Nitrate, Magnesium sulfate, etc – derived from petroleum and natural gas, and what does salt do to moist living things? It dessicates and kills moist living things. Osmotic shock. Soil, and the unbelievably vast microbial populations that make up healthy soil, are moist living things. Fertilizers kill your fertility in the long term. They’re not designed for building fertility; they’re designed to be sold every year. The invisible hand of the free market loves to sprinkle 10-10-10 all over creation.
    The fertility in my permaculture garden kicks the crap out of chemically-fertilized garden soil. And it gets better every year. Fertilizer is the worst crutch you could adopt. When you run out, the few remaining resident soil biota are on life-support, and in order to return to fertility they all have to come back in teeming numbers. Might as well just learn to do it right from the start.
    Just my .02
    Tripp out.

  120. georget January 18, 2010 at 9:51 pm #

    Jim, ran into this quote today and thought you´d like it:
    “The danger to America is not Barack Obama but a citizenry capable of entrusting a man like him with the presidency. It will be easier to limit and undo the follies of an Obama presidency than to restore the necessary common sense and good judgment to a depraved electorate willing to have such a man for their president. The problem is much deeper and far more serious than Mr. Obama, who is a mere symptom of what ails us. Blaming the prince of the fools should not blind anyone to the vast confederacy of fools that made him their prince. The republic can survive a Barack Obama, who is, after all, merely a fool. It is less likely to survive a multitude of fools such as those who made him their president.” — Author Unknown

  121. Kryo January 18, 2010 at 9:52 pm #

    I’m often amused when an intentionally nasty boor jumps down the throat of someone who has simply made a reference that goes over his too-inflated head, and compounds it with obscenities.
    I had no problem “getting” the Roy Rogers/Sitting Bull metaphor. Did you know that Roy Rogers PLAYED Bill Cody in a 1940 movie (“Young Buffalo Bill”)? In other films, during that era, he also played Billy the Kid, Bill Hickok, Jesse James, a Pony Express rider, and other real and fictional characters that “LIVED” contemporaneously with Sitting Bull!
    And that’s the point, as far as I got it… in the public “rear-view mirror” (see McLuhan) fantasy of the West, actors and fictional characters blend with real persons into a phony pastel version of the real history. Was the concept of an ACTOR playing characters who lived (or at least fictionally-lived) during the second half of the 19th century, when Sitting Bull lived for real, beyond you?
    As for Katrina being described as “no ‘natural’ disaster”… again, I had no trouble with that one either. It was generally conceded that the passing hurricane itself did not do the major damage to New Orleans, but the broken levees that let Lake Pontchartrain flood the city did.
    From Wikipedia: “Katrina’s storm surge led to 53 levee breaches in the federally built levee system protecting metro New Orleans and the failure of the 40 Arpent Canal levee. Nearly every levee in metro New Orleans was breached as Hurricane Katrina passed just east of the city limits. Failures occurred in New Orleans and surrounding communities, especially St. Bernard Parish. The Mississippi River Gulf Outlet (MR-GO) breached its levees in approximately 20 places, flooding much of east New Orleans, most of Saint Bernard Parish and the East Bank of Plaquemines Parish. The major levee breaches in the city included breaches at the 17th Street Canal levee, the London Avenue Canal, and the wide, navigable Industrial Canal, which left approximately 80% of the city flooded…
    A June 2007 report released by the American Society of Civil Engineers states that the failures of the locally built and federally funded levees in New Orleans were found to be primarily the result of system design flaws. The US Army Corps of Engineers who by federal mandate is responsible for the conception, design and construction of the region’s flood-control system failed to pay sufficient attention to public safety.”
    So, even ignoring the conspiracy theories that the any or some of the levee destruction was deliberately caused by explosions, the conclusion *I* came to from the original post is that the worst damage in the aftermath of Katrina was not the “natural” impact, but the result of MAN-MADE error, incompetence, short-sightedness, political expediency, or cheapness.
    I could call you the same names you employed, but that would be childish, as was later pointed out. The facts are far more damning than mere vitriol.

  122. georget January 18, 2010 at 10:02 pm #

    “the result of MAN-MADE error, incompetence, short-sightedness, political expediency, or cheapness”
    Wow! Do you mind if I use this line for any disaster or event that occurs which could have been avoided or prevented.
    Oh wait, it´s already been used many times before and most recently by the CEO´s of the big banks.
    Are you swallowing that one by the way, along with all the others?

  123. Laura Louzader January 18, 2010 at 10:42 pm #

    You could insert the name of McCain, Bush, Clinton, or most of the other people we’ve nominated or elected to the office since the inception of the Republic.
    Do you seriously believe that weak McCain and ditzy Palin, or even the bright and talented Clinton would have done better?
    The problem is not who we elect, but what we expect them to do. We have burdened our national, state, and local governments with too many jobs, like the management of our money supply and economy, not to mention the creation of multi-decade plans for the management of all areas of our lives, like our healthcare and where and how we will live and spend and make a living for decades down the road, that are simply too big for any group of human beings.
    We have made the job too large and too powerful. Nobody is going to do it justice, especially when we insist that our leaders stand in as substitute father and mother figures.

  124. diogen January 18, 2010 at 10:42 pm #

    To add to Trip’s thoughts on chemical fertilizers, while they do feed the plants, they kill the micro-organisms in the soil, turning the soil into sponge-medium for fertilizer. This method of growing things is barely 60-70 years old, and it did wide-ranging damage to soils. The age-tested method is to feed the soil (not the plants) with compost and other organic materials, which in turn will provide complete nutrition to the plants. This turns soil into a living organism, myriads of colonies of living things, which promote a healthy environment and replenish the nutrients for sustainable agriculture. Fertilizers provide and instant fix and a long-term damage, compost provides slow and steady health for the soil, it takes more care, planning and effort, but the results are good for years, not just one grwoing season.

  125. diogen January 18, 2010 at 10:45 pm #

    re “But what you have that we don’t, is your age and background. Why don’t you tell us the stories your Father and Grandfather told you about how the People of the South”
    You are clearly mistaking me for someone else.

  126. diogen January 18, 2010 at 10:53 pm #

    “The danger to America is not Barack Obama but a citizenry capable of entrusting a man like him with the presidency. ”
    There is some truth in that thinking, but the only thing it proves is how dismal the alternatives were.
    Is it possible that the problems facing us so enormous that no one of sound mind and character will be willing to volunteer his/her leadership for this failing enterprise?

  127. Kryo January 18, 2010 at 10:55 pm #

    When I read this quote, something didn’t seem “kosher” about it. First, that every search engine version had the same “author unknown” and not one could I find with attribution. Second, I was reminded of those Dan Quayle quotes that got recycled into everyone from Al Gore to Sarah Palin. I mean, just substitute “George W. Bush” into each Obama reference and it makes as much, if not more, sense. (That Bush wasn’t actually elected, but stole the presidency, doesn’t excuse the roughly 50 million who still voted for him.) I wouldn’t be surprised if this turned out to be older than Obama (and I am no fan of him OR Bush).

  128. Elizabeth January 18, 2010 at 11:02 pm #

    RE: Haitian Immigration
    Get ready for big-scale Haitian immigration as a result of the earthquake. Plans are being readied. For the record, I feel sorry for any people who experience natural disasters and the bad human interventions or lack of good interventions that invariably follow.

  129. diogen January 18, 2010 at 11:12 pm #

    “Certain parts of the world are failed states – like the Black parts you mean?”
    Not only. Also many (maybe most) parts of the Islamic world, certain parts of Asia (think Burma, for example). Lilly-white Iceland is a candidate to the club. Then there are other kinds of states, not quite failed but ruled by organized-crime syndicates: much of South America, Russia and some of its former vassal colonies, etc. A successful nation-state with liberty and respect for human rights is a rarity, maybe a blip on the timeline of history…

  130. Kryo January 18, 2010 at 11:24 pm #

    As I didn’t endorse the conspiracy theory extreme position, I didn’t say this was MY position, or that I could PROVE it to be the reason(s) for the failure of the levees, but only that this was MY interpretation of what the original poster likely meant when he put “natural” in quotes. I’m only guessing, but it seems the logical inference.
    Of course, you can use the line for any instance where it seems that the likely cause was not an “act of God” but the failure of Man… IF error, incompetence, short-sightedness, political expediency, or cheapness could be shown to be applicable. Why would you use it otherwise?
    If it has been used before, such as in the reason the Titanic sunk, or the Tacoma Narrows bridge collapsed, so what, IF one or more of those reasons WERE the causes?
    I don’t recall any bank CEO’s using any of these excuses; can you cite some examples? Why would I swallow THAT claim… it’s YOUR strawman example, not mine!

  131. Mr. Purple January 18, 2010 at 11:29 pm #

    “Get ready for big-scale Haitian immigration as a result of the earthquake. Plans are being readied.”
    Not surprising. The illegal aliens will be upset, but their opinion matters little to the government of the U.S. (or Mexico*, for that matter). The citizens of the U.S. will be upset, and will get ignored almost as much as the illegal aliens. Of course, if the Haitians want jobs here, they will have to learn English (or Spanish, if they are aiming for the menial labor market). And the underlying population problem** will go on being ignored.
    * Again, not all illegal aliens are Mexicans… just most of them. Fun side project: ask a Guatemalan (or Honduran, or Nicaraguan, or …) what he or she thinks of Mexicans. Nationalism is funny.
    ** That problem being: the world’s population is beyond sustainable without fossil fuel inputs.

  132. george January 18, 2010 at 11:34 pm #

    The really tragic thing about the crisis in Haiti is that once the media whores get tired of the whole mess and move on the more urgent matters, like who Paris Hilton is dating and when will Brad and Angelina finally call it quits, Haiti will go back to being a failed state and Haitians will starve to death because nobody wants to help out a nation that’s no longer in the news. You hit another one out of the ballpark JHK with your excellent observations.

  133. asoka January 18, 2010 at 11:37 pm #

    RE: Haitian immigration.
    I am ready for big-scale Haitian immigration and I welcome it. Haitians will be an asset to this country, a country which was built by immigrant labor from Europe, Asia, Mexico, and the Americas.
    Many influential early American settlers and black freemen, including Jean Baptiste Point du Sable and W. E. B. du Bois, were of Haitian origin.
    People are too quick to blame “the other” and ignore or willfully neglect to mention the many contributions made by immigrants, who are NET ECONOMIC CONTRIBUTORS to the economy, not drains on the economy.
    There is a lot of fear mongering going on here.
    Immigrants, both documented and undocumented, contribute to the American economy “in very close proportion to their share of the population,” in the 25 largest metro areas, says a study published Monday.
    The Fiscal Policy Institute, a group studying taxes and public policy, wrote the report with funding from the 32BJ SEIU service employees union and Carnegie Corporation of New York. After looking at Census economic data from the biggest cities (which produce over half of the nation’s GDP), it found that immigrants “are responsible for 20 percent of economic output and make up 20 percent of the population.”
    “Immigrants are an important part of our economy. This valuable report provides a solid basis for understanding the impact of immigration on our country’s metropolitan areas,” former Secretary of Labor Ray Marshall, part of an advisory panel to the institute’s Immigration Research Initiative, said in a press release.

    On our way to becoming a third world country (which seems to be the consensus opinion on CFN) we can learn much from third world immigrants; they have skills we need and they have a work ethic we have apparently lost … we will benefit from their presence.
    Open your arms and embrace immigrants … stop trying to get them deported … legalize the “illegals” with a blanket amnesty so the underground economy is taxed and further fuels and sustains the economic life of the USA.

  134. trippticket January 18, 2010 at 11:46 pm #

    I was hoping we would get around to exploring the topic of soil health in more depth, especially as fertility becomes increasingly important in a descent future. Others please jump in as well. There is so much to learn about soil, but what it is NOT is simple. It most certainly is NOT a sterile medium for holding a plant’s roots in place to await a fertilizer application. Well put, Diogen.
    There are as many micro-organisms in a teaspoon of healthy soil as there are animals above ground on the planet. They feed, excrete, reproduce, form symbiotic relationships, mine minerals, provide nutrients to plant roots (N, P, K, Ca, Mg, Se, Fe…) in exchange for sugary exudates, bind soil particles together with their metabolites, improving soil structure, convert organic waste into humus, and so on. The commerce going on underground puts the global economy to shame.
    In Avatar, Sigourney Weaver’s character talks about the forest on Pandora being interconnected by 10 ^12 synapses, more than the human brain. That’s not far-fetched, even on Earth. There is even one respected mycologist here in Washington State who suggests that a biological internet of fungal mycorrhizae could possibly be tapped with the technical knowledge we have, in an ecologically sound world. We could communicate by mushroom! I don’t know, but I think that’s pretty exciting stuff!
    There’s a spiritual aspect to building healthy soil too, and it lifts the gardener right along with it. Like a positive feedback loop. Not to wax esoteric, but you have to feel it for yourself. There’s no way to describe it.
    Once you begin to plug into these natural, increasingly fertile cycles, you begin to wonder what all the fuss was about. Australian permaculturist Geoff Lawton says, ‘you can solve all the world’s problems in a garden. A lot of people don’t actually know that, and it causes a lot of uncertainty and anxiety.’

  135. Vlad Krandz January 18, 2010 at 11:49 pm #

    Well you are conflating the idea of a failed state and that of a bad state. Failed state means a weak or non-existent central state with the country in chaos or ruled by warlords. Bad States are always very strong in their central organization. After all, that’s the point. Such states are the majority needless to say. Only the White Man has had the independence to demand his rights and to shoulder the burden that those rights entail. The East Asians are more law abiding that we are on the average. But they have never trusted themselves enough to let their citizens be armed. And only recently, and under our influence, to vote. Thus Eastern Man, being hard working, highly intelligent, and very compliant, has traditionally produced large, prosperous, and powerful States. And always despotic to some degree. As one Chinese Scholar said of China: outwardly Confucian but in reality Legalistic. Legalism was a Chinese version of Machiavellianism complete with torture and terror to keep the people in line.
    Obviously we didn’t keep it in balance. As Martin Hayes said, we have blown it. The very trait that was our unique glory, our independence, has become our ball and chain as it has degenerated into anti-social practices such huge third world immigration. But don’t worry about the Icelanders. They will reorganize into a new Republic. The process there hadn’t gone far enough to ruin their social fabric. Their rise and fall were swift, just ruining their economy. Proof of this was the fact that they felt free to attack the banks. They were outraged and the police obviously sympathized with them. If someone did that here, they would be beaten to a pulp and go to prison. And with a record, be ruined for life.
    The most precious asset a nation has is its blood. The Icelanders are still the people they were. If they sucuumb to third worldism and nice guyism, then they will become nothing. And their fall will be complete with no possibility of a future renaissance.

  136. asoka January 19, 2010 at 12:02 am #

    Vlad said: “Thus Eastern Man, being hard working, highly intelligent, and very compliant …” As one Chinese Scholar said of China: outwardly Confucian but in reality Legalistic. Legalism was a Chinese version of Machiavellianism complete with torture and terror to keep the people in line.
    Come on Vlad, make up your mind. Were they compliant?
    Why do compliant people need torture and terror to “keep them in line”?
    How about those Japanese soldiers we talked about last week? You remember, the evil soldiers without a soul who were on a rape and murder spree; compliant?
    Me thinks you are overgeneralizing just a wee bit.

  137. Vlad Krandz January 19, 2010 at 12:14 am #

    I was righter than I knew to call you nematode. Terrence McKenna said that the spores may have come from another world as an emissary of another civilization. I felt this too one summer long ago. As an initiate, I have the right to emmigrate to either Cascadia or Ecotopia. If quesioned at the gateless gate, I will use you as a reference.
    Did anyone ever find out which caused which as far the fungus and the nemadotde?
    Now onto more unpleasant subjects: your post where you described Whites as Monsters on Sunday. Google the Knoxville Horror or Witchita Massacre. In the Knoxville case, several Black Males and one Black Female raped and tortured a White Couple for 48 hours. To try to hide the evidence they poured cleaning fluid into her cavities (a common practice of Black Monsters) before dumping her body. The first animal has already been put away for life. His only defence: they came to his house to buy drugs.
    Believing that only Whites are serial killers or do the worst crimes is what the Elite want you to believe. And you bought it because it reinforces your political correctness. Be fair and check out the Truth.

  138. trippticket January 19, 2010 at 12:14 am #

    “And the underlying population problem will go on being ignored….That problem being: the world’s population is beyond sustainable without fossil fuel inputs.”
    Maybe. Certainly within the current cultural paradigm of consume, consume, consume. But I’m unconvinced that population is the 800 lb gorilla in the room. If the first world fell to the consumption level of the third, (not terribly fond of those terms), the vast majority of activity leading us into a crash course with destiny would be avoided altogether.
    Is it fair to talk about the billion new Africans or billion new Asians when combined they account for a tiny fraction of the resource consumption of the developed world? Seems to me a sleight of hand when a wealthy Baby Boomer on her motor yacht complains about “the population problem” while burning more fuel in an hour than entire African villages do in 50 years. So is the problem population? Or consumption?
    No doubt we got in this mess because of the fossil fuel subsidy. But I don’t personally think our population is unmanageable. I just think that people who are used to eating pizza delivery and watching the Super Bowl on a 50″ plasma are scared shitless that the answer to the population question might have more to do with them eating eggs and potatoes by the fire all winter than it does with handing out condoms to sub-Saharan Africans.

  139. warmed-up leftovers January 19, 2010 at 12:15 am #

    The biggest tragedy is, they didn’t have universal health coverage; that would’ve prevented all that death. Also hollywood actor Danny Glover mentioned the failure to act at the Copenhagen global warming summit caused that big earthquake, in the first place.

  140. Qshtik January 19, 2010 at 12:21 am #

    “I am ready for big-scale Haitian immigration and I welcome it.”
    ========================
    Good. Maybe you can shoe-horn a few of them into that 6’x10′ Sears utility shed you live in. And you can teach them how to pay zero taxes (like you) so as not to support “the man’s” war machine — not to mention, his humanitarian efforts in Haiti. Then when the weather turns warmer you can show them all how to build their very own adobe huts and permaculture gardens. It’ll be great.

  141. Vlad Krandz January 19, 2010 at 12:23 am #

    In other words, the White Man at his best, cannot be kept in line even with torture and terror. But the Asians can, at least up to this point. You have to paint with a broad brush if you are going to talk about big things. If your’re not willing to generalize, then get out of the kitchen so to speak.
    Well another MLK Day has come and gone. At least the Haitian Tragedy spared us from hearing more garbage about this guy. Probably the only good thing that will come out of all this.
    Hopefully tomorrow the People of Massachusetts will elect Scott Brown and begin the fall of Obama, the False Pretender and True Fake.

  142. warmed-up leftovers January 19, 2010 at 12:24 am #

    The zany shit that flies in Jim’s comment sections cracks me up. Dailykos is just too humorless to slog through regularly.

  143. Mr. Purple January 19, 2010 at 12:25 am #

    “I am ready for big-scale Haitian immigration and I welcome it.”
    Yup, in a couple generations they will be overweight American consumers. That’s a win, right? And it’s not as if Haiti will keep overproducing Haitians, right?
    Giving ANY nation an overpopulation safety valve in the form of mass emigration is a recipe for the status quo: too many people.
    Trying to boost the American population via immigration is what the growth economy wants: more consumers and more taxpayers to continue the Ponzi scheme that is modern America. Congratulations, Asoka, you are now a sock puppet of Wall Street. I hope they used some lube before they shoved their arm in.

  144. Vlad Krandz January 19, 2010 at 12:32 am #

    An addenda, Asoka: The Chinese have known rebellion against Tyranny, that credit should be given to them. But then historically, they would just set up or succumb to another Emperor or Dynasty. No Republicanism or Democracy that I am aware of. Except at the local level perhaps. One of my old professors made a point of that, saying that Democracy did exist in many places at the local level in terms of the Village Elders electing a Headman or sometimes a Woman.

  145. Mr. Purple January 19, 2010 at 12:33 am #

    “I was hoping we would get around to exploring the topic of soil health in more depth, especially as fertility becomes increasingly important in a descent future. Others please jump in as well.”
    OK, here’s my input, in the form of questions: Is Haiti a viable place to practice ecological restoration and permaculture? What can be done to get the Haitians* to invest their efforts into rebuilding in a way that is more permaculture and less agribusiness?
    * Because if the Haitians aren’t doing the work, the work will not last past the departure of the foreign aid workers (who will eventually leave, for one reason or another.)

  146. asoka January 19, 2010 at 12:36 am #

    Vlad said: “Well another MLK Day has come and gone.”
    Thanks for reminding me about MLK Day.
    Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy continues to be an inspiration to people of all colors and creeds who still believe in the American dream and who continue to fight for equality, civil rights and the basic human dignity they deserve.

  147. trippticket January 19, 2010 at 12:37 am #

    I feel like I left some ambiguity dangling for Vlad to latch onto in that last post.
    Third world population booms are also caused by the fossil fuel subsidy. The charity of the first world, say through CCF, Heifer, or whatever, is put to extremely efficient use by individuals in the third world. An extra chicken and pound of rice per week might translate into another child for a Moldovan. But Americans hem and haw about a baby until they have a college fund in place, an SUV in the driveway, and the nursery fully decorated. A quarter of a million bucks to raise a child? That’s like the GDP of Lesotho.
    When the industrial world can no longer afford to ameliorate their consumptive guilt by adopting a child in Vietnam, second and third world growth will also be modified accordingly.

  148. Vlad Krandz January 19, 2010 at 12:39 am #

    Are you saying that Permaculture can sustain current levels of world population if it was to be applied world wide? That’s a pretty daring assumption – one that most Eco-People would not make in my experience. I surprised because you seemed to go along with the Eco-Nihilist, Dave Mathews when he posted his Everyone must die stuff.

  149. trippticket January 19, 2010 at 12:51 am #

    “Is Haiti a viable place to practice ecological restoration and permaculture?”
    I honestly don’t know enough about the population density in Haiti, or the extent of ecological wreckage there, to comment on specifics.
    What I can say is that if there is any chance that Haiti can be repaired, and inhabited sustainably, permaculture can do it. To my knowledge there is no more efficient system in our arsenal.
    Check out “Greening the Desert” when you have 5 minutes to kill:






    Cheers!

  150. asoka January 19, 2010 at 12:55 am #

    Just for the record, I am in favor of reducing the world’s population through birth control, abstinence, vasectomies and tubal ligations, family planning, abortion, empowerment of women, sex education, etc. Whatever works.
    I am not in favor of nations or national borders. Arbitrary national definitions and borders limit freedom of movement around the planet earth based on invisible lines which the NASA astronauts did not see from space.
    No one I know agrees with my position. I have absolutely zero power to eliminate national borders … so personal insults aren’t necessary. I am a harmless idealist … and happy.

  151. asoka January 19, 2010 at 1:06 am #

    Tripp, thanks for that video! Best 5 minutes I have spent for understanding the amazing potential of permaculture.
    There was also a nice earthen building in the video and the ending had some nice doumbek playing.

  152. trippticket January 19, 2010 at 1:09 am #

    “Are you saying that Permaculture can sustain current levels of world population if it was to be applied world wide?”
    Yep.
    If we had the equipment and the cooperation we could pull 100 ppm of CO2 out of the atmosphere per annum too…
    I don’t have much in common with nihilists, or the green tech fantasy folks. I like Dave’s pictures and his idea that the world would be better without us. Because it probably would. But I ain’t going anywhere. Not without a fight.
    I just fight in different ways these days.

  153. asoka January 19, 2010 at 1:35 am #

    Tripp, someone here recently said “Nature bats last”
    This seems to be our predominant (and need I add, Christian) attitude toward the earth: we are separate from nature (“be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue and have dominion over [creation, the earth, nature]
    For permaculture to triumph we may need to change the Christian dualistic paradigm of separation, control & exploitation (even Matthew Fox’s creation spirituality is dualistic) with a nondualistic view that is harmonic, and embraces the sacredness of all life.
    Meanwhile, permaculture rocks!
    Keep up the good fight!

  154. Mr. Purple January 19, 2010 at 2:01 am #

    “Check out “Greening the Desert” when you have 5 minutes to kill:
    http://WWW.YOUTUBE.COM/WATCH?V=SOHI6VNWZMK
    Thank you for the link to the fascinating video. The conditions in Haiti can’t be much harsher than just north of the Dead Sea. The problem will be getting the locals to buy into the project. One bribe-seeking official or superstitious voudoun could be a considerable monkeywrench.

  155. ffkling January 19, 2010 at 4:59 am #

    What happens when overpopulation and ecological collapse combine? Haiti. Less than 1% of Haiti’s original forest cover remains. As a consequence the aquifers are unable to recharge and the soil’s fertility erodes into the ocean thereby resulting in the death of the corral reefs, which in turn deprives the population of ocean protein. Only when Haiti gets control of its population will the people have any opportunity for an improved life. Further, as pointed out by Jim, Haiti should serve as warning to the rest of the world, but will the people listen? Highly doubtful.

  156. ffkling January 19, 2010 at 5:32 am #

    “RPAVELLAS” states: “Nonetheless, the population is declining due to high death rates in various categories and to emigration.”
    From what ass did you pull this entirely false information? For your information, Haiti has an exceptionally high natural population growth rate of 2.17%. I suppose you will now say 2.17% is nothing to worry about. In truth, this rate of population growth means that Haiti’s population will DOUBLE by the year 2042.
    The vast majority of Haiti’s endemic plant and animal life has been driven extinct and the country is an ecological disaster. Thanks in large part to OVERPOPULATION.

  157. ffkling January 19, 2010 at 5:38 am #

    Wrong, wrong, wrong.
    Where did you pull this information? Haiti has an exceptionally high population growth rate of 2.17%, which means the human population of this ecological wasteland will double by the year 2042.
    No need to worry about endemic plant and animal populations as the vast majority have already been driven extinct by the fools.

  158. ffkling January 19, 2010 at 5:55 am #

    Willow, Vlad was indeed correct in his statement that your suggestion is nothing more than ” techno-triumphalism with a human facade.”

  159. ffkling January 19, 2010 at 5:59 am #

    Population is always the primary problem- too many people and too few resources. If Haiti’s population is not a problem now, than just wait until 2042 when the country’s population will have doubled. Double the fun and double the opportunity!

  160. ffkling January 19, 2010 at 6:08 am #

    American farmers are productive not because they are working sunrise to sunset, but due to fossil fuel based machines (complete with AC, televisions, and cd players), fossil fuel based fertilizer, fossil fuel based herbicide, fossil fuel based insecticide, fossil fuel based fungicide, fossil fuel based rodenticide. Your romantic, rose-colored perception is so archaic.
    Modern agriculture is simply the transformation of fossil fuels via land/sunlight into food.
    Save the BS for someone who is buying.

  161. Jim from Watkins Glen January 19, 2010 at 7:47 am #

    I’m going to forgo some good advice to ignore insults and defend myself against the charge of being a liar. My public school teachers taught us that westward expansion in North America was “manifest destiny” and was an entitlement bestowed on the European settlers by divine providence. The popular cinema and television culture of the time, including stars like Roy Rogers and John Wayne, reinforced this view, and our teachers did nothing to point out that this was genocide against the native culture. We were taught that after a savage and misguided resistance effort, the surviving Native Americans were happily settled on reservations.
    The durability of such mythology is an impediment to our ability to recognize our predicament, and thus to improve ourselves. The myth today is that our dazzling technology will rescue us from two centuries of painting ourselves into a corner. Windmills and solar panels cannot power cars or industrial production. Guitar Hero is not musical ability. There are no useable calories arriving in your life through the screen you’re staring at.
    As for being called a newbie, guilty as charged. I’ve hesitated blogging because of the coarseness of the discussion on this platform. I wonder if you would angrily call me names if we accidentally bumped into each other at the store. Do you have children, and if so, are you raising them to respond with violent rage to anything with which they disagree?
    Insults and anger often mask an inability to articulate thought and then argue in a civil manner. I’ll continue to see what I can learn here, and may chime in if so moved. But I also intend to maintain standards of respect in discourse.

  162. Lee January 19, 2010 at 8:53 am #

    Well said Jim :-)
    Some of the replies left here remind of the playground.
    Perhaps JHK should introduce some “house rules” regarding the type of comments being made or replied to.
    By all means people have the right to disagree and critique whatever is said but calling people F**TARD (as i’ve seen on a reply above)…..come on!

  163. diogen January 19, 2010 at 9:02 am #

    Asoka, your post on immigration reflects only a part of the whole picture. Some immigrants do contribute to the productive economy, but other immigrants become a drain on the economy (sometimes for generations), and further fracture cohesiveness of American society. It all depends on which one of American cultures they choose to join, or are compelled to join. If they seek education and/or skill acquisition for themselves and their children, they fall into the categories you mentioned. But many do choose the path of isolation into their own subculture, dependency on the tax-payer, etc. We already have a large underclass in this country, it seems reasonable that we should be reducing it, not enlarging it thru mindless open-door policy. It’s bizarre that well-educated and trained folks from other countries, some with assets to invest, who would be net contributors to America can’t obtain U.S. visas, but others who have nothing to contribute and go straight to the ghettos and on public support are admitted in huge numbers. WTF? To really understand the insanity of mindless immigration policy, I recommend that you read a book by Ayaan Hirsi Ali called INFIDEL:
    http://www.amazon.com/Infidel-Ayaan-Hirsi-Ali/dp/0743289684
    The key thing is this: I don’t think there’s anything wrong with REQUIRING potential immigrants to accept the predominant quintessentially-American values which serve as the foundation of the American Democracy, and reject any potential immigrants who bring with them and want to live according to values which are contrary/subversive/destructive. Read INFIDEL and you will know what I mean.

  164. Semper Infidel January 19, 2010 at 9:59 am #

    I am sure there are many on this blog, like me, who completely ignore the nasty comments and nitpicking. Life is simply too short, and the issues before us too sobering, to waste that kind of time.
    Always appreciative of substance,
    S.I.

  165. not mommy January 19, 2010 at 10:00 am #

    “By all means people have the right to disagree and critique whatever is said but calling people F**TARD (as i’ve seen on a reply above)…..come on!”
    Quit fucking whining, FUCKTARD.

  166. not mommy January 19, 2010 at 10:04 am #

    asoka-himself sez:
    “I am a harmless idealist … and happy.”
    …and moronic.

  167. diogen January 19, 2010 at 10:25 am #

    Well, there’s a good chance comrade Mommy is a communist. His intolerance of others’ views and obvious fear is a clear give-away. Outside of cyberworld, he’d go with assasinations, torture and executions. Good-bye comrade Mommy.
    :)

  168. Cash January 19, 2010 at 10:33 am #

    Don’t get all holy with me. I grew up in farm country, I worked on a farm, 13 hour days for $20.00/day. I replaced a young guy that lost an arm in an accident on that farm. I got home every night dead tired, dirty from head to foot, stinking of manure. I’ve run farm machinery, mucked out stalls and shovelled an ocean of shit. Sound romantic to you?
    Now, it may have been unsustainable, run on fossil fuels, chemical fertilizers and all that.
    But that farm had 50 cows and that farmer put milk on a lot of tables. Did your mommy give you fresh cold milk in your cereal in the morning? Where did you think it came from?
    And yeah, asshole, farmers work sunrise to sunset.

  169. asoka January 19, 2010 at 10:38 am #

    diogen said: “Some immigrants do contribute to the productive economy, but other immigrants become a drain on the economy (sometimes for generations), and further fracture cohesiveness of American society.”
    Change the word “immigrants” to “legal citizens born here” and your statement is equally valid.
    There are people born here who are a drain on the economy. It has nothing to do with citizenship status.
    Stop attacking immigrants.
    Everyone who lives here, everyone who buys anything in a store, is paying taxes.

  170. Cash January 19, 2010 at 10:41 am #

    And no the farm machines weren’t comfy, cosy with TV, AC and CD players. Working in those machines was hot, noisy and dusty as hell. And did I mention dangerous?

  171. Evelyn Victor January 19, 2010 at 10:52 am #

    @not mommy
    Do you ever encounter a yappy or snapping snarling mutt impounded in a parked car in a supermarket parking lot? As you pass it goes into a frenzied slobbering fit. Kind of reminds me of you.
    “Profanity is the effort of a feeble brain trying to sound more forceful.”
    My guilty pleasure is that sometimes I’ll return and tap the glass just to set off another berzerker frenzy in the dog. I wonder if it’ll work this time?

  172. ffkling January 19, 2010 at 10:52 am #

    I know firsthand how hard farm laborers work, but I was referring to the farm owner/operators. I grew up on a 718 acre Missouri farm West of St. Louis and my father sold the farm to a subdivision development company for a ton of money. Any farmer (i.e. owner/operator) who is tired of farming can sell their farm for a shitload of money and retire to Florida in comfort for the rest of their life. That’s a fact.

  173. asoka January 19, 2010 at 10:53 am #

    cash, I am glad you survived the dangerous farm machinery intact.
    You are a walking advertisement for permaculture benefits.

  174. ffkling January 19, 2010 at 10:56 am #

    And virtually all farmers inherited their land. Today it’s impossible for any young person interested in agriculture to buy his own place unless he comes from an extremely wealthy family. That’s a fact.

  175. Cash January 19, 2010 at 11:07 am #

    You say:
    “A bunch of keyboard commandos mouthing off isn’t the same as being a farm worker.”
    Thank you Pangolin, excellent point.
    I would say, yes, the N. American farmer uses a lot of heavy equipment. But the amount of manual labour the farmer does is still massive. The farmer I worked for was a scrawny looking little guy. Let me assure you, because of a lifetime of manual work he was as strong as an ox.
    The farmer I worked for had 400 acres. He didn’t use imported 3rd world labour, he used local fellas like me. There was just me and an older guy as hired hands plus the farmer and his wife. His own kids moved away, wanting nothing to do with farming.
    Us hired hands didn’t have the expert knowledge he had, were not remotely as adept in using tools or performing repairs as the farmer and his wife. So while we certainly helped, the farmer and his wife did the bulk of the work.

  176. wagelaborer January 19, 2010 at 11:10 am #

    I don’t know about dairy farming, but I work with farmers and farmer’s wives.
    With machinery and chemicals, they don’t put in the time they used to.
    That’s why they can have full time jobs off the farm.
    You can spray Roundup and plant at the same time.
    Months later, you harvest with a giant combine.
    Done.

  177. diogen January 19, 2010 at 11:15 am #

    “Change the word “immigrants” to “legal citizens born here” and your statement is equally valid.”
    True, but they have a right to be here and you can’t very well ask them to leave and go to Haiti or Cuba.
    “Stop attacking immigrants. ”
    I’m an immigrant, so I have no bias against immigrants. My reason for choosing America (and I could’ve chosen any European country or Canada) was my belief in the values and principles on which the U.S. was founded (“We the People…”, “When in the Course of human evetns…”, etc…). My point was that some immigrants do not value these principles, their personal values are shaped by other philosophies.
    The fact that we can engage in the free discourse here without any gov’t sensorship is the result of those values. I don’t want my children and future grandchildren to live in a place like Lebanon, Afghanistan or Somalia, and some immigrants actually believe that those places are superior to the American Democracy. As I said, read INFIDEL.

  178. Cash January 19, 2010 at 11:23 am #

    Asoka, you say:
    “cash, I am glad you survived the dangerous farm machinery intact.”
    “You are a walking advertisement for permaculture benefits.”
    Yeah maybe I am.
    Working on that farm and later working in a dairy gave me an appreciation for where food comes from and how hard a thing it is to get it from the fields to the store.
    I’m not going to crap on farmers. I depend on them. I live in an apartment in a city so I have no land. What farmers do is unsustainable for sure but what kind of hypocrisy is it to go to the grocery store a couple times a week and then criticize the people that bust their asses to put product in those stores.

  179. Frotteur99 January 19, 2010 at 11:31 am #

    Why am I sceptical when three presidents get together and ask us to send them lots of money so they can help Haiti?
    The foxes are calling a press conference in front of the hen house asking for money to buy dessert after they have eaten all the chickens.
    DynCorp(another Blackwater/Xe)has been on the ground in Haiti since Aristide was removed by the CIA in 2004 and is in charge of training the Haitian National police and is perfectly positioned to make lots of money from the current chaos:
    http://www.crocodyl.org/wiki/dyncorp_international
    Dyncorp has contracts in Columbia as well and the air connection between Columbia, Haiti and US is to convenient to ignore.
    The only drawback to the current situation is the global attention Haiti is getting suddenly. And only one runway usable. Oh dear. How are they going to manage all those drug planes when world leaders come for their photo op?
    Do your homework before you send any money!

  180. diogen January 19, 2010 at 11:36 am #

    “hypocrisy is it to go to the grocery store a couple times a week and then criticize the people ”
    Not necessarily. We grow most of our vegetables, preserve a lot, and buy much of the rest of the food we eat at a local farmer’s market from local organic producers. Yes, we do consume some industrial food, but not much. The farmer who emloyed you also employed lots of other people (just not in the local cummunity). He indirectly employed all the people who were involved in petroleum exploration, development, extraction, shipment, refining, distribution. Also farm equipment design, raw materials mining, manufacturing, marketing, sales and service. Also shipping his final products great distances. Not to mention the military that defends our access to petroleum, and the folks who are involved in mitigating environmental damage. That can add up to a lot of people who are helping your farmer.

  181. trippticket January 19, 2010 at 11:39 am #

    “The problem will be getting the locals to buy into the project. One bribe-seeking official or superstitious voudoun could be a considerable monkeywrench.”
    Fortunately, permaculture has had a broad-acre project presence in Haiti since 2003. This disaster will just draw more attention from gung-ho permie types looking to make an international name for themselves in the community. Like Geoff Lawton did with “Greening the Desert”. I’m not quite there yet…and we have a baby on the way.

  182. trippticket January 19, 2010 at 11:43 am #

    “The conditions in Haiti can’t be much harsher than just north of the Dead Sea.”
    And, unlike that dead flat 10 acre project in Jordon, Haiti has beautiful terrain, one of the permaculturist’s strongest allies.

  183. not mommy January 19, 2010 at 11:57 am #

    “My guilty pleasure is that sometimes I’ll return and tap the glass just to set off another berzerker frenzy in the dog.”
    So you like to torture little dogs? Uh, whatever…

  184. Cash January 19, 2010 at 12:20 pm #

    Re Haitian Immigration
    Sometimes immigrants can make positive contributions but sometimes they don’t. I think the best integrator of immigrants is good paying work alongside native born co-workers.
    My parents came from post war Europe. Their home villages were fly blown, impoverished little holes and the people were at best semi literate. When they came here my home town had a lot of job openings in local industry. Those plants and refineries are long gone having closed or been offshored.
    So while the immigrants of my parents’ generation had decent paying jobs ie dad worked, mom stayed home and took care of us, that situation no longer exists. Here in Canada, and I suspect it’s proportionally the same in the US, we have around 200,000 immigrants per year. Many have a really hard time getting jobs here as industries pack up and move to China.
    Accepting so many immigrants when the economic opportunities for them do not exist is cruel and idiotic on our part. Most do not come to start businesses, they want to find a job. But many end up working in family owned restaurants and shops because that’s their only option.
    Many end up underemployed in crappy below minimum wage occupations often exploited by people of their own ethnicity.
    Thing is, as Diogen says (I’ve seen it myself), many will not accept the dominant Anglo culture. But if they want to make it here, as a minimum, they have to become fluent and literate in English.
    We’re not that demanding, an immigrant making an effort to integrate will be accepted as one of us. It shows to us that we’re liked and respected. Be seen to salute our national flag, get involved in local clubs, dress like us, wear the local team jersey and cheer like hell for us in international matches. Appearances matter.
    But that means the immigrant has to get out of his comfort zone and learn new ways and new customs. I’ve seen it, I’ve worked with many immigrants in high paying occupations so I know it can be done.

  185. Pangolin January 19, 2010 at 12:31 pm #

    Permaculture is largely mythical and unexamined. The “Greening the Desert” clip shows the the land was graded with a scraper and chip mulch was imported before drip irrigation was installed. Come again? Try that on the budget of a Haitian rural villager. Where would the chip mulch come from? Or the drip lines?
    I went to a permaculture workshop that was so sad I was embarrassed for the guy giving it. He had spent thousands of dollars on his “certificate” and the grapevines in his backyard garden were years overgrown and fungus infected for lack of air movement. They were all eager to cut swales in a little 1/8th acre backyard while they guys compost pile consisted of a plastic box of dried grass. It’s multi-level marketing for greenie-weenie gardeners who are too lazy to read back issues of Mother Earth News or Organic Gardening.
    Farming is a technology. Doing it right takes instruction, observation, skill and practice. The perma-weenies don’t have that. There are solid organic farmers out there but they tend not to be permaculturists. They don’t have the time to waste.

  186. willow January 19, 2010 at 12:39 pm #

    It’s amazing how hostile one can become, when faced with the suggestion that it might be possible for them to Do Right. And share. and remember the Golden Rule.
    I was thinking of some shabby lone wolves today–and how, wouldn’t it be funny if that lone wolf jacket they bought on ebay from china, was really rabbit?
    And BTW, could anyone explain to me what a fucktard is? I looked it up in my dictionary, and the closest definition i could find described a small medieval weapon.

  187. diogen January 19, 2010 at 12:51 pm #

    Willow, in the politburo from which comrade Mommy hails the word fucktard must mean “the enemy of the people”, this is what they call people who they disagree with. It’s usually followed by an arrest in the middle of the night, a period of torture, an extracted confession of crimes against the people, and a bullet in the back of the neck. But do not fear, comrade Mommy can’t do it over the internet.
    Heh heh heh
    :)

  188. CaptSpaulding January 19, 2010 at 12:55 pm #

    Hi Kryo, I happen to agree with you about the boorishness of not mommy and the way he runs his mouth (from the safety of his keyboard). If the long emergency were ever to develop, He’d be about one “fucktard” away from becoming fertilizer. Regards to you.

  189. Puzzler January 19, 2010 at 1:11 pm #

    Yes, well said: “Insults and anger often mask an inability to articulate thought and then argue in a civil manner.”
    The best response to this childish behavior on the internet is no response. It cuts off the attention they seek.
    However, it’s also amusing to “tap the glass just to set off another berzerker frenzy in the dog” as Evelyn Victor describes it.
    I try to stay on the first path, but confess to tapping the glass on occasion. It’s most satisfying when you can cause the little dog to piss the seats (both in real life and on the internet).

  190. Cash January 19, 2010 at 1:14 pm #

    I think our social contract has to start with personal responsibility: carry your own weight, don’t be a free loader, don’t impose on your neighbours.
    We have an obligation to relieve suffering. Especially we have an obligation to the “cannots”. But what about the “will nots”? You cut people some slack because we are all human and we all mess up but at a certain point you have to say enough, you make your bed you sleep in it. Maybe I’m mangling what Jesus said but I am not my brother’s keeper.
    Sharing? Admirable, but there has to be some reciprocity otherwise you feel like a fool.
    Golden rule? I hate to be cynical but too often the golden rule is he who has the gold makes the rules.
    Is there any other way to explain the bail out of Wall Street and their continuing depredations?
    I think the rot starts at the top. People see how our so-called leadership is behaving and they follow along.
    Nobody knows what a fucktard is. Maybe short for fucking retard? I don’t know.

  191. Puzzler January 19, 2010 at 1:15 pm #

    Willow, I think you’re close to what a fucktard is, but more of a weapon of small medieval brain.

  192. Qshtik January 19, 2010 at 1:15 pm #

    “could anyone explain to me what a fucktard is?”
    ==========================
    I asked Not Mommy* that question 5-6 months ago but got no reply. I speculated it was short for “fuckin retard.”
    *his handle was Zzzzzz at the time I think; he’s had to change names several times as a result of being banished by Kunstler

  193. diogen January 19, 2010 at 1:19 pm #

    “Modern agriculture is simply the transformation of fossil fuels via land/sunlight into food.”
    Completely accurate when applied to Industrial Agriculture. In the same vein, the Industrial Economy producing most consumer goods is the transformation of fossil fuels into piles of trash in the landfill. Virtually everything in the landfills was produced using fossil fuels, lots of it.

  194. Kryo January 19, 2010 at 1:25 pm #

    Back at you.
    I’ve been online since the 80s, and the existence of rude potty-mouths who spew bile and phlegm instead of reasoned rhetoric and support evidence for their blatant assertions seems as unchanging as the side of the moon we can see.
    I have particularly dealt with this regarding local issues, where the nameless ciphers lob ad hominem grenades from behind the wall of anonymity, unaccountable and smug and cowardly. I have fought my local paper to improve their online forum to require sign-ins and abuse boxes and terms of use, which they did after three years (and a threat of a lawsuit), albeit with allowance for made-up user names (I’m one of the few who use me REAL name there), which still lets some cowards sneak through, although the volume of posters is much reduced.
    The decision to ignore them or respond calmly and dispassionately, in order to show them up for what they are, is a tough one, and each case requires its own judgment.
    BTW, I can guess that “fucktard” is short for “fucking retard,” which is already a bizarre concept and image.

  195. wagelaborer January 19, 2010 at 1:26 pm #

    I think JHK mentioned this in one of his posts – that soon the American economy would be based on people selling the contents of their garages to each other. Pretty funny.
    Until it’s real.

  196. Cash January 19, 2010 at 1:27 pm #

    “Farming is a technology. Doing it right takes instruction, observation, skill and practice.”
    Well said. I’ve worked with city slickers that figure that, because they work in an air conditioned office, have a university degree and use high falutin words, they’re mighty superior to those dumb hicks in the sticks that grow stuff for a living.
    If only the slickers knew what a narrow margin there is between them and starvation. It’s those hicks that stand bewteen them and a miserable death.
    I spent my life screwing with numbers on spreadsheets. If you ask me who does more good, the hicks shovelling shit in their fields or the fancy pants back office bullshit artist like me shuffling papers and dicking with numbers I’m with the hicks.

  197. Mr. Purple January 19, 2010 at 1:28 pm #

    “farmers work sunrise to sunset”
    I once heard it said that farmers don’t get vacations, just days with less work.

  198. diogen January 19, 2010 at 1:33 pm #

    Don’t forget that in the all-service economy we will also have to make a living by selling insurance to each other.

  199. asoka January 19, 2010 at 1:36 pm #

    “Dyncorp has contracts in Columbia as well and the air connection between Columbia, Haiti and US is to convenient to ignore.”
    Actually, there is no country called Columbia.
    There is a beautiful country called Colombia.
    This may seem minor and nitpicky, but I know several Colombians and, to them, it is important that their country’s name be spelled correctly (and not be confused with a university, a river gorge, or a brand of clothing).

  200. diogen January 19, 2010 at 1:45 pm #

    “farmers work sunrise to sunset”
    A few years ago before our garden took off we signed up with a local CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) farmer for a few months in the winter, and went to see his operation. He and a few helpers were growing enough veggies in the middle of Ohio winter to feed at least 50 people, in a few high tunnels using no propane, no synthetic inputs. They gave care and attention to each individual plant to nurture it to harvest time. After seeing that, I could not in good conscience leave uneaten any greens on my salad plate to be wasted, it made me appreciate more than i did prior to that every forkfull of food.
    Once a hard frost damaged everything in one of the tunnels, ruining 3-4 weeks of his work, and reducing the veggies for a few weeks; this made me more aware of the incredible food security we’re enjoying and hardly ever giving a single thought to.

  201. Qshtik January 19, 2010 at 1:46 pm #

    When you’re new at this blog the verbal abuse (such as Moron and Fucktard) can be off-putting and there’s a tendency to make it your mission to stop it. I know because I tried. Then, as time goes by, you realize nothing you say will change anything. As more time goes by you start to see a certain art in the insults — like when Mommy called me “squished dik.” Ultimately, some clever freshly worded insult will make you laugh till you cry. I loved a retort to Not Mommy, by Dale if I recall correctly, that began “Hey, poop stain…..”

  202. Cash January 19, 2010 at 1:47 pm #

    “I once heard it said that farmers don’t get vacations, just days with less work.”
    Pretty much.

  203. asia January 19, 2010 at 1:51 pm #

    Planet Limousine…I like that jim….
    MAKE MINE A GREEN LIMO..there are a few in LA!
    and according to the radio..sauds will maybe give a million and china the same.
    Why is it the US always is stuck with the bill, the immagrants and the illegals.
    what you didnt note Jim is the US already has much of the haitian pop. here now.

  204. Qshtik January 19, 2010 at 1:52 pm #

    “who use me REAL name”
    ======================
    Are you Irish?

  205. Agriburbia January 19, 2010 at 1:55 pm #

    The best idea of 2010 so far – the President of the African nation of Senegal has stated that his nation (which is the size of South Dakota) would be willing to receive potentially millions of refugees from the Haitian earthquake.
    Why bring thousands of even potentially millions of Haitian refugees to the USA when they are being offered land back in their African motherland (Senegal) by an African head of state? They were taken away from Africa by slave-traders, and now this is their chance to return to their home continent. – http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100116/ap_on_re_af/af_senegal_haiti
    + “Senegal offers land to Haitians that want to come”
    DAKAR, Senegal – Senegal is offering free land to Haitians wishing to “return to their origins” following this week’s devastating earthquake, which has destroyed the capital and buried thousands of people beneath rubble.
    Senegal’s octogenarian President Abdoulaye Wade told a meeting of his advisers that Haitians are the sons and daughters of Africa, because the country was founded by slaves, including some believed to have come from Senegal.
    The president is offering voluntary repatriation to any Haitian that wants to return to their origin,” said Wade’s spokesman Mamadou Bemba Ndiaye late Saturday following the president’s announcement.
    “Senegal is ready to offer them parcels of land — even an entire region. It all depends on how many Haitians come. If it’s just a few individuals, then we will likely offer them housing or small pieces of land. If they come en masse we are ready to give them a region,” he said.
    He stressed that Wade had insisted that if a region is handed over it should be in a fertile area — not in the country’s parched deserts.
    Senegal, a nation of 14 million roughly the size of South Dakota, is considered one of the most stable and developed in the sub-region. Still nearly half of working-age adults are unemployed and the country has been burdened by high food prices, frequent blackouts and spiraling energy costs.”

  206. asia January 19, 2010 at 1:55 pm #

    could you go the way of dale?
    which is to say byebye baby???

  207. Qshtik January 19, 2010 at 2:00 pm #

    “I know several Colombians and, to them, it is important that their country’s name be spelled correctly”
    =====================
    Well fuck you and your “columbian” friends. If there’s one thing I can’t stand it’s fuckin spelling nitpickers ;)

  208. asia January 19, 2010 at 2:01 pm #

    ‘we expect them to do. …’
    Isnt it a self reinforced feedback loop? Dont the schools/media/etc program children to ‘expect’ much from the govt?
    it was the banned Js who said ‘i saw college students yelling we want green jobs’

  209. asia January 19, 2010 at 2:02 pm #

    A HUGE THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    noam chomsky was on public radio..he blamed much of the haiti mess on bill clinton.

  210. trippticket January 19, 2010 at 2:03 pm #

    “Farming is a technology. Doing it right takes instruction, observation, skill and practice. The perma-weenies don’t have that.”
    Wow, there you have it, folks. Thirty years of the most brilliant land and cultural development flushed away with one swoop of the magic wand.
    I’m sorry you had a bad experience with permaculture, Pangolin. I usually enjoy your contribution to the discussion.

  211. Mr. Purple January 19, 2010 at 2:05 pm #

    “Permaculture is largely mythical and unexamined”
    Translation: I like my Cheezy-Poofs, so don’t mock my unsustainable lifestyle, and don’t try to fit in with your local environment.
    “The “Greening the Desert” clip shows the the land was graded with a scraper”
    No, that was a mention of how neighboring agriculture was done, not how the permaculture project did it. It helps to listen to the words while looking at the pictures.
    “and chip mulch was imported before drip irrigation was installed.”
    Imported from neighboring farms. Oh, no, that might have taken hours of travel!

  212. Kryo January 19, 2010 at 2:05 pm #

    Chuckle!
    Sure an’ begorra, me bucko, I HAVE kissed the Blarney Stone THREE times, and hold an Irish Social Welfare Insurance card (An Roinn Leasa Shoisialaigh) from when I worked at Thomas Dockrell Sons and Company Hardware Store on South Great George’s Street in Dublin back in 1969…
    but, alas, it was simply a typo, a slip of the fingers, that substituted “me” for “my”!

  213. asia January 19, 2010 at 2:06 pm #

    the US has no borders, hence folks like Janet N are picked to run the asylum.
    If we dont do the right things haiti is the Us future…crowded, dirt poor and deforested.
    and nitwits like ashok cheer the destruction!

  214. Mr. Purple January 19, 2010 at 2:06 pm #

    “I try to stay on the first path, but confess to tapping the glass on occasion. It’s most satisfying when you can cause the little dog to piss the seats (both in real life and on the internet).”
    Well said. And so true about the seat-pissing.

  215. asia January 19, 2010 at 2:08 pm #

    the french expression is:
    YOU BELIEVE IN CHRISTMAS

  216. diogen January 19, 2010 at 2:08 pm #

    from what little i know of Permaculture, it also requires “instruction, observation, skill and practice”, so where’s the contradiction?
    I think both methodologies offer good ideas, why not accept the ideas that improve both the farming and permaculture?

  217. Cash January 19, 2010 at 2:10 pm #

    You say: “this made me more aware of the incredible food security we’re enjoying and hardly ever giving a single thought to.”
    Amen. We do not appreciate it at all. It’s like turning on the tap and getting clean drinkable water. We take it utterly for granted.
    I think that part of a good education, besides the three r’s and learning a second language, is requiring people to spend time breaking their backs in a farmer’s field.
    We think that beating a keyboard is “work”. We have no idea what work really is. After a twelve or thirteen hour day on a farm you are sweating, dirty, stinking, parched, hungry as hell and bone tired. I promise you will respect the people that work on farms and you will never again take for granted that produce or meat you get in a supermarket.

  218. asia January 19, 2010 at 2:14 pm #

    JUST READ A TOM SOWELL BOOK.
    While i disagree with much of what he said he pointed out that it was Chicago that had little damage during the black riots of yore. why?
    because daly said ‘ SHOOT TO KILL RIOTERS’

  219. Qshtik January 19, 2010 at 2:15 pm #

    “but, alas, it was simply a typo”
    ========================
    Oh, OK … I thought maybe you were channeling Frank McCourt.

  220. asia January 19, 2010 at 2:16 pm #

    Bringing in the Haitians would be a salvation, not a doom!
    MORON..we have 1 in 3 here now..or is it 1 in 4.
    how do you think a place that the population doubles with frightening regularity has any thing to offer? cept more peeps..ill educated and white hating?
    or do you think?

  221. asia January 19, 2010 at 2:19 pm #

    Everyone who lives here, everyone who buys anything in a store, is paying taxes.
    asok the govt lover whining on bout ‘ taxes’ and ‘ economy’……life is more than ‘economy’ and news reports.
    a nation is more than an ‘ economy’..despite what the news says.

  222. willow January 19, 2010 at 2:19 pm #

    The one who asked, “Am I my brother’s keeper?” was Cain talking–right after he had killed Abel.
    We will soon get a real-world experiment in what works in hard times. I’m betting on community, cooperation, and the human touch. And most of all, love.

  223. asoka January 19, 2010 at 2:22 pm #

    digogen innocently said: “My reason for choosing America (and I could’ve chosen any European country or Canada) was my belief in the values and principles on which the U.S. was founded (“We the People…”, “When in the Course of human evetns…”, etc…).”
    Diogen I hate to break the news to you, but you may have chosen the wrong country.
    Law enforcement agencies in the United States can now can monitor, collect, and share phone calls, e-mails, and records without suspecting criminal activity.
    Unchecked political surveillance harms free speech rights by allowing innocent people to be targeted because they have unpopular beliefs.
    They have already gone after dangerous groups: like the pacifist Quakers and librarians who read! (librarians can be visited, library reading records can be requested, and the librarian cannot, due to a gag order in the Patriot Act, even reveal to anyone that the records were requested.)
    In many countries there are protections in place for citizens, but not in the USA, not since the George W. Bush presidency eroded our legal rights.
    In the United States you can be kidnapped (they call it “extraordinary rendition”), never be given a lawyer, be held indefinitely without charges, or sent to a secret prison, tortured and then disappear (by dying during what they call “enhanced interrogation”).
    Good luck to you in the USA!

  224. Agriburbia January 19, 2010 at 2:22 pm #

    Cash:”And yeah, asshole, farmers work sunrise to sunset.”
    Only some farmers (such as dairy farmers) do.
    If you own a farm growing crops, it often just runs itself. Since it is winter-time in the northern hemisphere, crop farmers all over the northern hemisphere do not have to work much at this time assuming their other affairs are in order.
    The busiest times for crop farmers are at planting and harvest – during the off-season many crop farmers have a TON of free time, enough time to take other jobs and so on.
    Dairy farming and livestock farming is different though since it is more high intensity and the cattle need constant care…but with crops after the planting is done there is plenty of time to sit around and twiddle ye thumbs.

  225. trippticket January 19, 2010 at 2:25 pm #

    “No, that was a mention of how neighboring agriculture was done, not how the permaculture project did it.”
    Actually, they did use a bulldozer for that project. Lots of permaculture projects use dozers and backhoes to terraform the land for water capture. Which then supports plants, which then sequester carbon… (Although it seems radically inappropriate on an 1/8 of an acre. As does calling a box of dried grass “compost”. I have a yard of nearly finished black gold ready to go most of the time. Will post some new pictures in a bit.)
    The relative question in permaculture is, ‘are we designing a system that will recover the energy invested to create it, and then continue functioning as it was designed with only human labor to maintain it?’
    What kind of Luddite would try to repair a badly broken planet with shovels when we have backhoes that can do the work in no time? And when compared to knocking down a forest to build another strip mall, is this not a monumentally better use of our remaining fossil fuel?

  226. Agriburbia January 19, 2010 at 2:31 pm #

    asoka:”Just for the record, I am in favor of reducing the world’s population through birth control, abstinence, vasectomies and tubal ligations, family planning, abortion, empowerment of women, sex education, etc. Whatever works.”
    Ah, so you are an ECOFASCIST, eh? –

    The video cannot be shown at the moment. Please try again later.

  227. Qshtik January 19, 2010 at 2:34 pm #

    There’s been much discussion about the density of population in Haiti, relating it to deforestation and other ills. I find it interesting that NJ, where I live, is the most densely populated state in the US and 37% more dense than Haiti. Unless I’ve done some math wrong, the most current figures are:
    NJ…….1171 per sq mile
    Haiti…. 855 per sq mile
    Haiti is only slightly more densely populated than Mass (822) which is third on our density list.

  228. asoka January 19, 2010 at 2:35 pm #

    asia unchaitably said: “and nitwits like ashok cheer the destruction!”
    What you call “destruction” I call enrichment by the infusion of diverse cultures; enrichment both culturally and economically.
    The cities which have had the highest levels of immigration (Phoenix, Houston, etc.) have the highest economic growth rates. No coincidence there.
    Immigrants are positive for our economy. I cited the report earlier. I gave the data. I supported my assertions with evidence.
    Immigration reform and a blanket amnesty for illegals was one of the things Ronald Reagan got right according to a recent report, “Raising the Floor for American Workers,” which was written by Dr. Raúl Hinojosa-Ojeda, a professor at UCLA.
    Americans ignore immigration at the peril of their pocketbooks: passing reform would usher in $1.5 trillion in economic growth. Conversely, we’d see a net drain on our economy of $2.6 trillion over 10 years if we decided to simply deport all undocumented immigrants currently here.
    The report examined the impact of the 1986 immigration bill and used economic modeling to make three key findings:
    *Comprehensive immigration reform generates an annual increase in U.S. GDP of at least 0.84 percent. This amounts to $1.5 trillion in additional GDP over 10 years. It also boosts wages for both native-born and newly legalized immigrant workers.
    *A temporary worker program with proper labor protections generates an annual increase in U.S. GDP of 0.44 percent. This amounts to $792 billion of additional GDP over 10 years [...]
    *Mass deportation reduces U.S. GDP by 1.46 percent annually. This amounts to $2.6 trillion in lost GDP over 10 years, not including the actual cost of deportation.
    You can call people “nitwits” for being pro-immigration, but the data speak for themselves.

  229. asoka January 19, 2010 at 2:39 pm #

    I once lived in New Jersey. They don’t call it the Garden State for nothing.
    Who’s afraid of the big bad population density numbers? Check out New Jersey’s greenery to see how that density feels.

  230. trippticket January 19, 2010 at 2:54 pm #

    So I’ve said before I’m not a techie, right? Don’t know why I can’t get a dedicated link to the photos in question; I’m just not that guy. But if you click on the set entitled “chicken tractor” you’ll see what I did this weekend.
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/organize/?start_tab=sets
    Pangolin, organic waste is one of the easiest things in the world to come by. Americans will usually even bag it for you…

  231. Agriburbia January 19, 2010 at 2:56 pm #

    asoka – you drone on and on about immigrants are great for “economic growth,” yet in some previous posts you bemoaned economic growth as unsustainable and called for a major reduction in population?
    Too much economic and population growth, too much consumerism, too much business, too much trade, too much consumption is the main reason why the USA and other nations are in such trouble – why do you seek to further these trends by flooding the USA with even more immigrants-citizens-consumers?
    What we need right now is a reduction in economic growth and consumption, not an expansion of it.

  232. Vlad Krandz January 19, 2010 at 2:58 pm #

    They stand condemned by your own words: 11 percent of the Black Physicians in America are Haitians you said. So why are they serving their own people in Haiti? Because they want an easy life and a good lifestyle in America. This is the African Model. The few that can learn, work hard, and be sucessful only do it for themselves and their family. As Albert Schweitzer said, the spirit of service is almost unknown to the Black Man. He was famous, the Mother Theresa of his day, but now he’s banished from the history books because he told the Truth about Blacks.
    The travel writer Peter Mathieson found out much the same thing when he went back to Africa after many decades. He spent time there growing up and then later in the Peace Corps if I remember correctly. The school he had worked at was in ruins, hadn’t been kept up at all. The founder’s grave overgrown with weeds. He complained to his host who just brushed it off saying we don’t have the equipment to do it. Mathieson replied, “You mean like a broom?” Later his host tried to jolly him asking when his kids would be coming to Africa to serve. This just further infuriated Mathieson since his Host’s children were practicing medicine in Europe. So he replied, when are your children coming to back to serve. It’s been a while since I read it, but that’s the gist of it. Called the “Dark Continent” or something like that. Just search for it under his name. I’ll track the exact info down if anyone is really interested in reading it and needs help finding it.

  233. budizwiser January 19, 2010 at 3:00 pm #

    Something worth discussing – understanding the complexity and inherent subjectivity regarding any societies’ attempts to discern discretionary consumption of resources from that of necessity.
    Submitted for examination; the current massive effort to deliver rudimentary supplies of food and comforts to the impoverished people of Haiti as a result of an earthquake while ignoring the several hundred years of degradation the general population endured that resulted from human interventions.
    Is it appropriate to draw parallels to our own futures? Is it our own “discretion” that guarantees an acceptance of the inequality of resource consumption as long these inequalities are of man-made consequence?
    It’s an age-old question. Are the rich different from you and me?

  234. diogen January 19, 2010 at 3:00 pm #

    “I hate to break the news to you, but you may have chosen the wrong country. ”
    First, that was back in the 1970’s. I agree with you that there some erosion of civil rights during the Bush/Cheney era, but I think you’re exaggerating the extent of the erosion. Let’s hope that the principles of the American democracy are sufficiently resilient to deal with the threat of terrorism without it being used by the ruling elites to suspend the Bill of Rights.

  235. trippticket January 19, 2010 at 3:01 pm #

    “You can call people “nitwits” for being pro-immigration, but the data speak for themselves.”
    Love the proper grammar, Asoka!!

  236. asia January 19, 2010 at 3:03 pm #

    ‘he told the Truth about Blacks.’
    which is what? yve been banned here once i believe for alleged ‘ racism’..so tone down any answer if you choose to give one….THANKS!

  237. asia January 19, 2010 at 3:05 pm #

    for those who read his posts..i mostly avoid them..youll find someahem…inconsistencies..
    heres a recent gem:
    ‘You can call people “nitwits”
    NO I CALL HIM A NITWIT

  238. asia January 19, 2010 at 3:08 pm #

    Here in Canada, and I suspect it’s proportionally the same in the US, we have around 200,000 immigrants per year
    ADD A ZEOR AT THE END OF THAT #
    we are at the mill or 2 or 3 mill a year …no one knows..not even ‘ thats our janet’ napoilitano
    one year under clinton i believe it was a record..maybe a million + legal turd worlders getting citizenship..even convicted murderers!
    i figure usa has 40? million illegals…and thats since the last..ahem…’ amnesty’

  239. asia January 19, 2010 at 3:11 pm #

    its been called ‘ the issue attention cycle’ and its been known for a long time…a variation on that id be:
    IF IT BLEEDS IT LEADS.
    and when its bled dry the corps. will run a different headline.

  240. asia January 19, 2010 at 3:12 pm #

    what the f do you expect from a nitwit who doesnt like facing the truth?

  241. asia January 19, 2010 at 3:13 pm #

    woops..i meant ZERO
    as in 2,000,000 a year.

  242. asia January 19, 2010 at 3:16 pm #

    perhaps…and will the coin be the new ‘ amero’?
    i read a spooky piece in the ny or la times..all these broke tatooed addicts and folks
    it may have been the ‘1 in 8 is on foodstamps’ piece…..one couple offered their chihuaua on craigs list as a stud dog…’ his breeding services’ in hopes of some easy $$$.
    ONE IN EIGHT ON FOODSTAMPS…yuk
    but the 60 billion a year ‘industry’ didnt exist 50 years ago…its a growth industry…as is all govt!

  243. trippticket January 19, 2010 at 3:28 pm #

    “There are solid organic farmers out there but they tend not to be permaculturists. They don’t have the time to waste. ”
    Nor do they apparently care about long-term sustainability. Let me be first to admit that permaculture wrestles with the concept of “commercial production” and “profit”. How do we design a system that is self-sustaining AND commercially viable?
    The answer is, it’s pretty tough. Organic farmers may work harder than conventional farmers, but they also DEPEND on conventional farmers for organic material! What would it mean to the precious organic label if people knew that their organic veggies were fertilized with manure from a conventional feed lot? I’d wager it wouldn’t sit well at all.
    Organic, or what’s left of it after the corporate co-opt last year, is a transitory demographic. Getting stuck in organic is only marginally different than getting stuck in line at McDonalds. It makes a lot of people feel good to eat organic, so they hang out there for good, celebrating their eco-piety.
    But the SPIRIT of organic inevitably leads one into the garden, into a local food shop, and onto nearby farms. The SPIRIT of organic isn’t an agricultural label, it’s a community in constant motion towards horticulture, put very simply.
    2% of our population working the fields, and 9% of our income spent on the most important thing in our lives. That’s what’s known as a very brief and perverse blip on the radar of human history.
    Want some investment advice? Every year from here on out more people in the industrial world will be growing their own food. Interpret that in whatever way you like. But permaculture is the most efficient way I know of to do that. It’s perhaps the ONLY chance we have of being able to engage in anything OTHER than food production in the future. If you can’t sustainably feed the masses with it, that should inform your ideas about how many of us will be growing our own food in the end.

  244. asoka January 19, 2010 at 3:32 pm #

    agriburbia said: “…you seek to further these trends by flooding the USA with even more immigrants-citizens-consumers…” What we need right now is a reduction in economic growth and consumption, not an expansion of it.
    What we need right now is a massive FDR-style WPA/CCC program to rebuild infrastructure, convert multinational agribusiness to localized permaculture, rebuild manufacturing capacity, build a smart grid, build alternative, sustainable, zero-carbon-emission energy infrastructure, etc.
    We have done work similar to this before in our history, and it has always been done with the help of immigrants.
    Though we tried to throw the Chinese out after they helped build our railroads, it is not a good idea to throw people out. It is better to welcome people in, and work together to build an even better country, to realized an even more perfect multicultural union.

  245. Qshtik January 19, 2010 at 3:58 pm #

    “Love the proper grammar, Asoka!!”
    ==========================
    Tripp, see below from Dictionary.com — bolding mine.
    Usage note:
    Data is a plural of datum, which is originally a Latin noun meaning “something given.” Today, data is used in English both as a plural noun meaning “facts or pieces of information” (These data are described more fully elsewhere) and as a singular mass noun meaning “information”: Not much data is available on flood control in Brazil. It is almost always treated as a plural in scientific and academic writing. In other types of writing it is either singular or plural. The singular datum meaning “a piece of information” is now rare in all types of writing. In surveying and civil engineering, where datum has specialized senses, the plural form is datums.
    Q’s Prediction: In 10 years the first definition for data will say it is singular and its second definition or a footnote will mention it’s plural usage as archaic.

  246. trippticket January 19, 2010 at 4:01 pm #

    “We have done work similar to this before in our history, and it has always been done with the help of immigrants.”
    You’re right, BUT, this was always in the context of massively INCREASING energy availability. That won’t be the case this time around. From here on out we’ll be adapting to life with LESS energy for each succeeding generation. I actually can’t see how a higher population density helps in this case.
    Long-term, the resources of this country (and more specifically, your bioregion) are what we got. Up ’til now we’ve been living in large part off of the resources of other countries. Time to bring it home now. I’m all for sharing, and we have lots of room in the US, but every soul that enters the country from here on out adds to the number of people supported by our ecosystem. If they add to the knowledge base, say, expert permaculturists from Australia moving here because their rain is disappearing back home (real example), then great! That improves our chances. But if they are just coming to (any industrialized nation to) get in on the easy consumer lifestyle, that’s a problem.
    Whatever color their skin is. That’s actually THE problem from what I can tell. An expanding middle-class consuming culture. The very wealthy are so few, and the very poor consume nothing. It’s the billion or so middle-class folks that are the real issue in my mind. And that includes me, or did until recently.
    But it doesn’t give us the right to curse the new-comers for ruining our party. It gives us a mandate for radical change in the way we inhabit the landscape.

  247. trippticket January 19, 2010 at 4:13 pm #

    I think I was quick to mention that only science dorks like me ever call that one out. I thought I was fairly generous about the whole thing.
    And I admit to wondering if the more common (even if originally incorrect) usage as a singular term had made it into the dictionary. I didn’t check.
    Ebonics works the same way, just for the record. They just have a lot more people fighting admission.

  248. george January 19, 2010 at 4:27 pm #

    The Toronto Globe and Mail, in a front-page feature on the continuing crisis in Haiti, confirms what JHK said in his latest blog. To put in plain English, the overwhelming majority of Haitians have absolutely NO faith in their government, viewing it as nothing more than a ruthless collection of ruthless thugs and criminals, and are quickly losing faith in international aid organizations. Most international aid ends up on the black market where unscrupulous individuals charge a premium for food, water and medicine. As one Haitian put it, Haitians are on their own and have no friends in the United States, Canada or the U.N.

  249. trippticket January 19, 2010 at 4:32 pm #

    Asoka et al,
    Here is the second part of my friend’s tour of Cobville, just posted to YouTube:






    I think the house they tour beginning at 1:40 is pretty sweet.

  250. trippticket January 19, 2010 at 4:36 pm #

    Not the same filmer, but this one has some really beautiful cob buildings in it:






    Cheers!

  251. trippticket January 19, 2010 at 4:39 pm #

    “As one Haitian put it, Haitians are on their own and have no friends in the United States, Canada or the U.N.”
    Haitians have friends in those places, we just choose to focus on the bad apples instead.

  252. asoka January 19, 2010 at 4:45 pm #

    “But it doesn’t give us the right to curse the new-comers for ruining our party.”
    “Ruining our party” is pretty much the sensation I have about a lot of the comments critical of immigrants: “I want to slam the door shut… now that my German/Irish/English/Scandinavian/Polish/Greek/etc./etc/etc. parents/grandparents/great-grandparents/etc. have made it here.
    Yet, in their day, those European immigrants were also discriminated against.
    It’s a big planet. If you don’t like the population density where you are, feel free to move. But don’t try to shut out others who also have a right to move where you are now.
    I feel I can speak on this because I did my part by having a vasectomy early, before having any offspring. Population control is crucial, but should be voluntary.
    For me, freedom of movement is a value. I do not appreciate living inside a giant prison called a country. You “feel free” as long as you don’t try to cross the border… then you realize you need permission to leave one country and enter another. I would like human beings to have freedom of movement. No countries. No borders. Just one big planetary party.

  253. trippticket January 19, 2010 at 4:58 pm #

    PeakInterest,
    I tried to attach several videos for you, per your request last week, but for some reason the post was sequestered by the site administrator.
    I hope you’re catching some of these videos as I add them!

  254. asoka January 19, 2010 at 4:59 pm #

    Qshtik, I made two posts. Both posts contained data. Are you saying the word “data” could be used in that case?
    I said “the data speak for themselves” because I made more than one post.
    Could “The data speaks for itself” be properly used in that context of multiple posts?
    I don’t think so. So, your dictionary definition does not apply in this instance, although language is dynamic and meanings evolve and usage is formed by us. (Remember Safire’s fourth rule.)

  255. trippticket January 19, 2010 at 5:14 pm #

    “I feel I can speak on this because I did my part by having a vasectomy early, before having any offspring. Population control is crucial, but should be voluntary.”
    Well said. It HAS to be voluntary. Anything else is elitist and inappropriate.
    On the other hand, I’m recalling your words from last night about the need to remove the Cartesian dualism of humankind if we are to ever function as part of nature again.
    As a biological organism, I can think of nothing so contrary to my nature as not reproducing. My wife and I have replaced ourselves, or will here shortly!, and out of respect for the planet that’ll have to do.
    It must require a monumental sacrifice, not to mention probably subconscious mental anguish, to make a decision like that. Even if the sacrificer doesn’t realize it until it’s too late to do anything about it…

  256. abbeysbooks January 19, 2010 at 5:22 pm #

    And Schweitzer also said, “The only things that make up for the misery of this world are music and cats.”
    Vlad is the religious spouting parrot in David Foster Wallace’s The Broom of the System.

  257. trippticket January 19, 2010 at 5:25 pm #

    I thought I was done for a while, but I have to pass this one on:
    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100119/ap_on_go_ca_st_pe/us_military_weapons_bible_passages
    What did I say about war always being about resources and religion?
    Does anyone think this is OK??

  258. Qshtik January 19, 2010 at 5:30 pm #

    “yet in some previous posts you bemoaned economic growth”
    ===========================
    Ag, faulting Soak for his inconsistency is a waste of keystrokes. He has taken some words from Walt Whitman — I am large. I contain multitudes — and for reasons beyond my understanding uses them to justify flipping like a freshly caught perch. And never mind that maybe Walt was full of shit.
    I have vague negative feelings about Whitman, roughly as tenuous as Tripp’s guilt over the nuking of Japan — he used to drift, thinking, in a little boat in the same lake where 75 years or so later I used to swim, and caught polio. Or so my Mom used to tell it.

  259. asoka January 19, 2010 at 5:32 pm #

    No, I do not think it is OK to have verses from the Koran printed on USA weapons, or from the Gita, or from the Bible.
    Of course, my preference would be to use the money for USA infrastructure, job creation, K-12, health research, permaculture education, etc. and not make weapons at all.

  260. asoka January 19, 2010 at 5:36 pm #

    Life is not logical. Life is poetry.
    Rather than being consistent, life is constantly flipping, rather like “a freshly caught perch”… life is large, life contains multitudes.

  261. Qshtik January 19, 2010 at 5:49 pm #

    Nice try but I don’t buy it.

  262. Mr. Purple January 19, 2010 at 6:04 pm #

    “Actually, they did use a bulldozer for that project.”
    On a rewatch, you are correct. I missed that the first time. They we making contours, as opposed to level grading, which is what the neighboring farms were doing.

  263. Puzzler January 19, 2010 at 6:06 pm #

    Every shell could bear a reference to Deuteronomy 10:16:
    “Circumcise therefore the foreskin of your heart, and be no more stiffnecked.”
    I was wondering about that pain in my neck.

  264. Mr. Purple January 19, 2010 at 6:12 pm #

    Correction to my previous post:
    They were making contours

  265. asoka January 19, 2010 at 6:50 pm #

    Q said: “Nice try but I don’t buy it.”
    I am not selling anything. Life is a gift. I give you this poem by Krisnamurti:
    An Old poem of J. Krishnamurti:
    I have no name,
    I am as the fresh breeze of the mountains.
    I have no shelter;
    I am as the wandering waters.
    I have no sanctuary, like the dark gods;
    Nor am I in the shadow of deep temples.
    I have no sacred books;
    Nor am I well-seasoned in tradition.
    I am not in the incense
    Mounting on the high altars,
    Nor in the pomp of ceremonies.
    I am neither in the graven image,
    Nor in the rich chant of a melodious voice.
    I am not bound by theories,
    Nor corrupted by beliefs.
    I am not held in the bondage of religions,
    Nor in the pious agony of their priests.
    I am not entrapped by philosophies,
    Nor held in the power of their sects.
    I am neither low nor high,
    I am the worshipper and the worshipped.
    I am free.
    My song is the song of the river
    Calling for the open seas,
    Wandering, wandering,
    I am Life.
    I have no name,
    I am as the fresh breeze of the mountains.

  266. georget January 19, 2010 at 7:02 pm #

    The semantics aren´t worth debating, but you may enjoy this:
    http://www.colbertnation.com/the-colbert-report-videos/261785/january-14-2010/the-word—honor-bound

  267. Miss Gayle January 19, 2010 at 7:03 pm #

    Someone said: “For example, we will no longer buy new cars. We will follow Cuba’s example and maintain cars in good service for 47 years.”
    I doubt that very seriously. I’m no expert, but my grandfather was – he ran guns and shine in the prohibition era and they did all their own repair and maintenance on the cars (these guys were the forerunners of the nascar racers, I believe). The cars and engines made in the 30s, 40s, 50s, etc. were all made with parts that any skilled metal smith could make out of scrap. Cars are now made with lots of plastic parts and have numerous microchip components – none of which are repairable over the long term. My grandfather who was a master boiler maker and mechanical engineer, gave up even trying to maintain the newer cars back in the 90s. It just can’t be done with the materials you’re likely to have available in hometown machine shops. They will be useless piles of rotting junk, for the most part.

  268. trippticket January 19, 2010 at 7:10 pm #

    Since it seems to be poetry day, how ’bout one for energy descent?
    . . .There is a river flowing now very fast.
    It is so great and swift that there are those who will be afraid. They will try to hold on to the shore. They will feel they are torn apart and will suffer greatly.
    Know the river has its destination.
    The elders say we must let go of the shore, push off into the middle of the river, keep our eyes open, and our heads above water.
    And I say, “See who is in there with you and celebrate. . .”
    “We are the ones we have been waiting for.”
    Hopi Elder

  269. Robert January 19, 2010 at 7:23 pm #

    I really wish more people would study an idea before defining it as what they THINK it is. The overall situation in Haiti is NOT anarchy, it is the collapse of whatever sort of control was in place, however weak and insufficient it was. Anarchy is something completely different. People really need to know what they’re talking about before talking. Read Emma Goldman for example. It’s sort of like scientists thinking the universe has multiple dimensions just because their “math” says it can. Saying something doesn’t make it so. Do your research.

  270. messianicdruid January 19, 2010 at 7:33 pm #

    “…I’m recalling your words from last night about the need to remove the Cartesian dualism of humankind…”
    That was blamed on churchianity, instead of “I type, therefore I am”.

  271. Miss Gayle January 19, 2010 at 7:55 pm #

    Jim said: “Insults and anger often mask an inability to articulate thought and then argue in a civil manner. I’ll continue to see what I can learn here, and may chime in if so moved. But I also intend to maintain standards of respect in discourse.”
    Of course. Insults and profanity are just violence in verbal form, and violence is always the last refuge of the incompetent.

  272. diogen January 19, 2010 at 7:59 pm #

    Trip, I don’t know if lasagna gardening is within Permaculture parameters, but perhaps you may know the answer, which so far has eluded my Google searches for a definitive answer. We’re converting another part of the lawn to a vegetable garden, and are going to use layers of newspaper and mulch to eliminate lawn grasses and establish a seedbed. Do you know if newsprint contains any toxins? A friend tells me that dioxins are used to bleach paper, but another fiend tells me that dioxins break down in the soil very quickly. Then there’s a question about the inks and the chemicals in them. Any ideas or websites with reliable info?

  273. diogen January 19, 2010 at 8:06 pm #

    Kunstler says “It’s necessary to break up the TBTF banks.” It’s been done with the Bell system back in the old days, why not the banks? The break-up of Ma Bell resulted in a whirlwind of innovation and price cuts, something that would benefit the customers of the banks. The first step would be to stop new mergers/acquisitions, and establish realistic criteria for anti-trust examinations of new bank merger requests. This would hopefully save my small local bank from the sharks.

  274. CaptSpaulding January 19, 2010 at 8:06 pm #

    Hello Qshtik. Not mommy has had many aliases since he is constantly being booted off this blog. Might I suggest that to avoid confusion as to who he is, in whatever incarnation he presents himself, it would be simpler just to refer to him all the time as the Pissant. As defined in my slang dictionary, Pissant: Used as an insult in the United States. Refers to an inconsequential, irrelevent, or worthless person, especially one who is irritating or contemptible out of proportion to his or her significance. It’s origin is with pismire, a 14th century word for ant. As I said, I think that if everyone simply refers to him as the pissant, it will save a lot of confusion and, I feel, accurately reflects the quality and impact of his posts on this blog. Regards, The Captain

  275. asoka January 19, 2010 at 8:08 pm #

    messianicdruid said: “That was blamed on churchianity, instead of “I type, therefore I am”.
    No, that was blamed squarely on judaeo-christian holy scripture, The Holy Bible. To be precise: Genesis 1:28
    And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.
    It’s not the church that is the problem. It is not wanton interpretation that is the problem. The problem is the Christian God who clearly says to create a burgeoning population and “have dominion over” it — a clearly dualistic setup bound to lead to an environmental crisis.

  276. asoka January 19, 2010 at 8:39 pm #

    diogen said: “It’s been done with the Bell system back in the old days, why not the banks?”
    We have that power within our hands.
    Don’t keep your money in the big banks.
    http://moveyourmoney.info/

  277. RubberToe January 19, 2010 at 8:43 pm #

    Wow,
    Haven’t been commenting much lately, but this jumped right out. Kunstler has been calling for an investigation into AIG. Looks like he just got his wish. Bernanke is asking the GAO for a full investigation concerning the $182 billion bailout:
    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Bernanke-asks-GAO-to-review-apf-415528277.html?x=0&sec=topStories&pos=main&asset=&ccode=
    RT

  278. asoka January 19, 2010 at 8:57 pm #

    In response to the tragedy in Haiti, several organizations representing ‘non-believers’ and others have set up a disaster relief fund called ‘Non-Believers Giving Aid’. In an appeal for donations, the website of the Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science states (http://givingaid.richarddawkins.net/):
    Spurred by the horrific suffering in Haiti, the Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science (RDFRS) has set up a dedicated bank account and PayPal facility to collect donations to non-religious relief organizations. This new account is in the new name of Non-Believers Giving Aid, with all of the money donated being distributed to disaster relief.
    Clearly the immediate need is for the suffering people of Haiti, and all the money raised by this current appeal will go that cause, but the new account will remain available for future emergencies too. There are, of course, many ways for you to donate to relief organizations already, but doing it through Non-Believers Giving Aid offers a number of advantages:
    100% of your donation will be go to these charities: not even the PayPal fees will be deducted from your donation, since Richard will personally donate a sum to cover the cost of these (Capped at $10,000). This means that more of your money will reach the people in need.
    When donating via Non-Believers Giving Aid, you are helping to counter the scandalous myth that only the religious care about their fellow-humans.
    It goes without saying that your donations will only be passed on to aid organizations that do not have religious affiliations. In the case of Haiti, the two organizations we have chosen are:
    Doctors Without Borders (Médecins sans Frontières)
    International Red Cross
    You may stipulate using a dropdown menu which of these two organizations you want your donation to go to; otherwise, it will be divided equally between them.
    Preachers and televangelists, mullahs and imams, often seem almost to gloat over natural disasters – presenting them as payback for human transgressions, or for ‘making a pact with the devil’. Earthquakes and tsunamis are caused not by ‘sin’ but by tectonic plate movements, and tectonic plates, like everything else in the physical world, are supremely indifferent to human affairs and sadly indifferent to human suffering. Those of us who understand this reality are sometimes accused of being indifferent to that suffering ourselves.
    Of course the very opposite is the truth: we do not hide behind the notion that earthly suffering will be rewarded in a heavenly paradise, nor do we expect a heavenly reward for our generosity: the understanding that this is the only life any of us have makes the need to alleviate suffering even more urgent.
    The myth that it is only the religious who truly care is sustained largely by the fact that they tend to donate not as individuals, but through their churches. Non-believers, by contrast, give as individuals: we have no church through which to give collectively, no church to rack up statistics of competitive generosity.
    Non-Believers Giving Aid is not a church (that’s putting it mildly) but it does provide an easy conduit for the non-religious to help those in desperate need, whilst simultaneously giving the lie to the canard that you need God to be good.

  279. messianicdruid January 19, 2010 at 9:11 pm #

    “It is not wanton interpretation that is the problem.”
    It is your interpretation that is the problem. Replenishing the earth is a good thing. Destroying habitat, poisoning the environment and basically crapping in our nest are not the goals of good stewardship.
    Putting living things in arrangments that allow them to thrive according to their nature and to benefit one another are what good stewardship does, not sacrificing one for another or one group for another, or allowing things to go extinct just because we are too stupid or ignorant to appreciate them.
    Own your rebellion.

  280. trippticket January 19, 2010 at 9:35 pm #

    Hey Diogen,
    Use the hell out of newspaper. The ink is almost exclusively soy-based these days, and I’m pretty sure if there is any dioxin it will be taken care of by the new thriving microbial population. Is there a better use for newspaper? (Definitely not reading it.)
    I think lasagna gardening is really just sheet mulching, so very much permacultural. And I had good luck with it a few years ago. At least with a new tomato bed.
    My preferred method for bed development is with chicken tractor though! 4’X9′ at a time. No ecological garden would be complete without egg-laying migrant workers.
    I’ve attached the photos of the new chicken tractor I built over the weekend, in case you didn’t see them. (You may have to click on the set labelled “chicken tractor”.
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/organize/?start_tab=sets
    Hope that helps!

  281. asoka January 19, 2010 at 10:15 pm #

    Own your rebellion.
    Own your prideful stewardship.
    allowing things to go extinct just because we are too stupid or ignorant to appreciate them.
    What arrogance! We don’t get to make such planetary decisions about living things.
    Genesis 1:28, or Total Planetary Control, cannot be maintained over the Earth’s inherently wild, naturally unstable, and dangerous evolutionary process. The world is changing from one moment to the next.
    Judaeo-Christian “stewardship” be damned.
    Ecology cannot be based on trying to preserve ecosystems at some particular stage of their evolution, no matter how beautiful that stage may have been. This is like trying to prevent our children from growing up, or our old people from dying. It is a form of materialism and is doomed to failure.

  282. trippticket January 19, 2010 at 10:19 pm #

    Thanks, Asoka, for the Non-Believers Giving Aid info! I’ve been impressed with the church’s outpouring of aid for Haiti, but I also understand that many times they are the ONLY easy medium through which to donate, further skewing the amount of aid apparently given by the church.
    I’m sure they appreciate any and all help!

  283. messianicdruid January 19, 2010 at 10:36 pm #

    “This is like trying to prevent our children from growing up, or our old people from dying.”
    Another failed interpretation.
    “We don’t get to make such planetary decisions about living things.”
    Explain what happened to the passenger pigeon if it wasn’t a choice.
    “Some reduction in numbers occurred because of habitat loss when the Europeans started settling further inland. The primary factor emerged when pigeon meat was commercialized as a cheap food for slaves and the poor in the 19th century, resulting in hunting on a massive scale. There was a slow decline in their numbers between about 1800 and 1870, followed by a catastrophic decline between 1870 and 1890.[6] Martha, thought to be the world’s last passenger pigeon, died on September 1, 1914, in Cincinnati, Ohio.”
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Passenger_Pigeon

  284. Qshtik January 19, 2010 at 10:47 pm #

    “Judaeo-Christian “stewardship” be damned.”
    ========================
    Soak, sounds like you’re turning your non-belief into a religion. What comes next, The 10 Commandments of Atheism? Or maybe a book, Spiritual Agnosticism for Dummies.

  285. asoka January 19, 2010 at 10:52 pm #

    messianicdruid said: Explain what happened to the passenger pigeon if it wasn’t a choice.
    messianicdruid, I have some questions for you:
    Do you believe in God? Is God all knowing? Is God benevolent? Is God all powerful?
    Do you think the fate of passenger pigeons was out of God’s control?
    This is God’s world, not ours. It is a perfect world, as is. Maybe it’s none of our business what God cares or doesn’t care about. Maybe we should spend more time trying to find out what God’s Will (i.e. His World) is, and paying attention properly to That.
    God’s will, incidentally, is no mystery. Just look at the world in this moment, everything included. That is God’s will. What is.
    God got tired of passenger pigeons … it was God’s will that passenger pigeons became extinct.

  286. asoka January 19, 2010 at 11:37 pm #

    Q said: “Or maybe a book, Spiritual Agnosticism for Dummies.”
    Q, that is an interesting idea, but, unfortunately I do not know enough to write such a book.

  287. abbeysbooks January 19, 2010 at 11:44 pm #

    Before the old days before Bell was a monopoly it was pure chaos with all the different phone companies. When Bell uled a phone bill was about $4.00 or so for local calls which were unlimited. Long distance was 3 cents a minute and the egg timer was used to keep people from talking too much about nothing. Just important communications, just the facts ma’am. The Bell Research Labs were a wonder of new info.
    Now we have connections that get dropped, huge bills, gabbing all the time about nothing.
    But international capitalism required this so we got it.

  288. trippticket January 20, 2010 at 12:21 am #

    “Putting living things in arrangments that allow them to thrive according to their nature and to benefit one another are what good stewardship does…”
    Messi, are you starting to feel the permaculture groove too??

  289. trippticket January 20, 2010 at 12:25 am #

    “but another fiend tells me that dioxins break down in the soil very quickly.”
    Did I just make myself a FIEND?

  290. cowswithguns January 20, 2010 at 12:43 am #

    So the Democrats lost the Mass. US Senate race. I bet they’re breathing a sigh of relief, for they now have political cover to not do the things they weren’t going to do anyway.
    Democrats=Republicans armed with lube, candles and pillow talk.

  291. Qshtik January 20, 2010 at 12:45 am #

    Possible Headlines:
    Brown wins, Dems groan, GOP smirks
    or
    Brown takes MA, Ted spins in grave

  292. Mr. Purple January 20, 2010 at 2:00 am #

    “Brown takes MA, Ted spins in grave”
    gets my vote

  293. Vlad Krandz January 20, 2010 at 2:39 am #

    Do you really want to know is the real question. Do you want me to quote the man or “tone it down”? Look Asia, Liberals are BS artists as you well know. So what makes you think that there right about this when there so wrong about everything else? You can be a man of knowledge or you can be PC. To the extent you’re one, to that extent you’re not the other. The ideal is, as one scientist once put it, “to sit down before the facts like a littel child”. Everyone has a hard time doing this at times – depending on the issue. Your background makes this a hard one for you. So – decide if you want the Truth at all costs, even if it makes you uncomfortable.
    Asoka published some basic crime statistics at the end of last week. I’m the only one who even tried to interpret them correctly. Blacks are 13 percent of the population and kill slightly more people than Whites do. Now what do you make of that? Asoka didn’t think it made any difference to which community is safer, Black or White. Qshtk seemed to know more than he was willing to say. I trust you will see the significance. Now let me inform you that these statistics are world wide: Blacks commit these levels of crime, 5 to 6 times the White average, in every Black Country on Earth. If the reason for this was just cultural, than there would be Black Cultures where it wasn’t so. But there aren’t. So sure it’s cultural, but it’s genetic first.
    Again the question come back to you: are you willing to follow where the evidence leads? Were the Founding Fathers prejudiced against Blacks, or are modern Liberals prejudiced in favor of them?
    If you can follow me that far than read the “Bell Curve”, the best introduction to this subject for the layman. The math is not too hard to follow and their reasoning is quite clear. And their practical conclusions are quite compassionate – too much so in my book but that’s neither here nor there right now.

  294. Vlad Krandz January 20, 2010 at 2:50 am #

    When Truth shows its face, you trivialize and change the subject. Think of all the hideous things you liberals have said about Whites – surely you don’t believe that such “pleasure” comes cheap? That there will be no price to pay for all that? Just kidding, I know that’s exactly what you believe, but you’re wrong. You’re like the old lady in that Flannery O’Connor story, except your “pickaninnies” are White. And I’m the crazed young drifter who tries to wake you up.

  295. Vlad Krandz January 20, 2010 at 3:03 am #

    Scott Brown beat Coakley even in Kennedy’s own home precinct of Hyannis. What poetic justice. The people have spoken what they think about Obama. But is there a deeper significance? Is it possible that people are awakening from the Liberal Dream/Nightmare that has entranced them for generations now? What can only hope, for Liberalism is the Death Song of the West as James Burnham so aptly said. And any Country that dissolves its own Hierarchy will then be ruled by another one – even if the other denies that it is that. The trade off is usually not in the People’s favor since the whole thing is a cover up from the begining. In fact, such things are never spontaneous but the result of careful planning and decades of execution.

  296. Shane January 20, 2010 at 4:03 am #

    “Democrats=Republicans armed with lube, candles and pillow talk.”
    Very amusing. But you do realize the opposite is true as well, right?
    Republicans=Democrats pimped with viagra, cruise missles, and USA hoo-ra.
    “they now have political cover to not do the things they weren’t going to do anyway.”
    The GOP uses that trick all the time too. Not to beat up on the poor fools who believe in the GOP, they’re just as much victims as the true believers in the Obama Cult. Truly, the two official parties are just puppets masking the right and left fists of the Pathocracy….

  297. messianicdruid January 20, 2010 at 6:55 am #

    “md, are you starting to feel the permaculture groove too?”
    Truth is where you find it. The fate of the passenger pigeon is the tragedy of the commons. Everyone “owns” it, so nobody “owns” it, so nobody cares for {takes dominion of} it. Dominion is authority and responsibility. In a perfect world these are in perfect balance. In man’s systems far too many do what they want with no accountability; eat {consume} it and walk across the next ridge and find another {which no one is guarding = gardening = dominioning}.
    If God didn’t care about what goes on here, He wouldn’t have put us in charge and made us accountable for everything we do and every word we say. All events contain information for the attentive.

  298. Martin Hayes January 20, 2010 at 7:46 am #

    After a drought, comes the rain. Dmitry Orlov has posted not one, but two articles on his blog.
    If, like me, you have a weakness for polemics, follow the link provided by a commentor to The Coming Insurrection.
    Better than Zerzan.

  299. not mommy January 20, 2010 at 10:29 am #

    Squished-dik sez:
    “Then, as time goes by, you realize nothing you say will change anything.”
    Too true. So shut the fuck up.

  300. not mommy January 20, 2010 at 10:49 am #

    “Might I suggest that to avoid confusion as to who he is, in whatever incarnation he presents himself, it would be simpler just to refer to him all the time as the Pissant.”
    Wow, man. This coming from a guy (?) that takes his handle form a Rob Zombie film. Aye, aye cappy. (Fucking MORON.)

  301. Qshtik January 20, 2010 at 11:10 am #

    “the Obama Cult
    ======================
    “Cult” is another word used almost exclusively in a negative sense yet Dictionary.com doesn’t get around to mentioning the negative sense till its sixth definition of the word. For some reason lexicographers are loathe to bring their dictionaries in line with reality too quickly.

  302. Vlad Krandz January 20, 2010 at 11:20 am #

    “God is Good” they cry when their loved ones are found in the rubble, even though God has just killed 200,000 people. One poor American Slob was yelling this and then found out that the information was wrong. So is God no longer Good or even good? Apparently so, now he and other bereaved parents are putting their faith in Obama and “America”.
    Christians are so afraid of death as to make the whole thing a mockery to Unbelievers. If God is so Good, why are they so unwilling to go to Him? Why so attached to this world if they know where they are going? In fact, real Christianity is rare and difficult to practice. You can petition God but you can’t demand. And even if you grants your petiton this time, He will not grant you a final stay of execution. You will die, if not today then tomorrow. And it is not His Will that Death came into the World but He allows it for our purification and as the just fruit of our sin.
    The fear of Death is both a natural one common to all creatures and a supernatural one that comes from our higher nature. It feels so wrong to die because we are meant for eternal life. But nonetheless, a Christian must try to overcome an excessive and unseemly fear of death by living a Godly Life and attaining a Communion with God and the intimation of immortality that comes with that.

  303. Qshtik January 20, 2010 at 11:43 am #

    “by living a Godly Life”
    ======================
    Today’s homily from Vlad.

  304. asoka January 20, 2010 at 11:52 am #

    Vlad asked: “So is God no longer Good or even good?”
    I asked messianicdruid if God is benevolent, all powerful, all-knowing, and messianicdruid did not answer. Instead messianicdruid wants to shift all blame to mankind by pretending we have free will, like the most important thing is to somehow exercise “dominion”
    Yet humans don’t send the tsunamis or earthquakes to indiscriminately murder* unbelievers and believers alike. That’s God’s dominion in action.
    *To kill with premeditated malice.

  305. Martin Hayes January 20, 2010 at 11:54 am #

    “For some reason lexicographers are loathe to bring their dictionaries in line with reality too quickly.”
    “For some reason lexicographers are loath to bring their dictionaries in line with reality too quickly.”
    As happened to me the other day, when I was so bold as to get “purist” about these things, I succeeded in embedding a mistake of my own in my comment.
    Observe how often this happens!

  306. Qshtik January 20, 2010 at 12:10 pm #

    “An Old poem of J. Krishnamurti”
    =====================
    Nice poem but in no way does it support your notion that inconsistency is okay.

  307. Martin Hayes January 20, 2010 at 12:14 pm #

    My goodness, Vlad, you sound alarmingly like a believing Christian. And here I thought that you were only pretending, as with your undoubted intelligence and devotion to Truth (your capital), you would have acquainted yourself by now with the veritable truckloads of modern scholarship that show decisively that Christianity cannot be taken at its own estimation of itself, to put it mildly, and had therefore abandoned it.
    Up till now, I had assumed you support the faith because you recognize its social utility: it might not be true, but it keeps societies together, and we’re going to need that as we enter the new Dark Age.
    You know, something like Edward Gibbon’s famous line: “The various modes of worship which prevailed in the Roman world were all considered by the people as equally true; by the philosopher as equally false; and by the magistrate as equally useful.”

  308. Qshtik January 20, 2010 at 12:45 pm #

    “Observe how often this happens!”
    ========================
    So true.
    I wish there was (were?) a more convenient way to switch from the Leave A Comment block to Dictionary.com and back again without screwing up something else such as the identification of whose quote you’re replying to. Opening a second browser dedicated to Dictionary.com may be the answer.
    In the case of “loath” and “loathe” both are words but the first is an adjective (that I should have used), the second a verb.
    In any case I’m glad you brought loath to my attention. I learn things here at CFN as I go along.

  309. trippticket January 20, 2010 at 12:59 pm #

    “Up till now, I had assumed you support the faith because you recognize its social utility: it might not be true, but it keeps societies together, and we’re going to need that as we enter the new Dark Age.”
    I hate to rain on this little god-fearing parade, but since that’s all that’s on the menu this morning, what the hell.
    So it goes like this: John Doe believes in God. John has a nice job, a substantial 401(k) package, a lovely wife, and a strapping young lad in his “quiver” (see Psalms 127). But John works as an urban planner, and unfortunately due to the “economic downturn,” no one is willing to propose any more urban plans for John to review. John gets laid off, and spends the next six months interviewing for jobs that are beneath him. He finally lands a job making pizzas to try to keep the heat on at home – it’s January after all, but the savings have run out and he has no idea how the mortgage will get paid this month.
    He briefly considers taking out a Craigslisting offering stud services from his pure-bred Chihuahua, but dismisses the idea just as quickly as retarded. So he finally breaks down and files unemployment and gets on food stamps, shopping in the middle of the night to avoid the disdain of onlookers and potentially friends from church.
    And speaking of church, he and his family have stopped going. ‘Why has god forsaken me?’ he cries. ‘I did everything right. I went to the right university. I married my first love. Never drank or did drugs. And I honored god every week at church. Why is he punishing me?’
    ‘To hell with god!’ he screams one morning on his way to the health and human services department, ‘and damn am I glad these social safety nets are in place. It’s apparently what separates us from “the other folks.” I did my best not to use them, but in the end it was food stamps or homelessness.’
    Well, by now John’s lovely wife has hit the road, looking for greener pastures, only to find out that every fifth person is in the same boat, and “marryin’ types” are damn hard to come by. Her faith in god is dashed as well.
    The son, the real victim of divorce and two parents who were too proud to change their ways, (or who were completely mislead by the media to think that “recovery” was right around the corner), has found hope in a movement called permaculture, that seeks to right the ecological injustices perpetrated on the planet for the last 10,000 years or so, and in the process realign the human spirit with nature.
    So husband, wife, and son have now left the church, as have a substantial portion of the total congregation world-wide, under the assumption that god has forsaken them. We see this trend quite clearly in countries that are farther along the energy descent timeline, as well as amply documented in human history.
    The people will turn to god en masse at first to ameliorate the pain, but once it becomes clear that god has no interest in returning things to “normal,” the numbers will slowly fade away.
    I’m not suggesting that permaculture and god are incompatible. It’s a rare combination, but it exists, and permaculture welcomes biodiversity in all forms. Nor am I suggesting for one second that any of you should turn your back on god. That’s not my place, and it carries no weight anyway.
    I’m just attempting to bring a little logic and leavity to this discussion. In my opinion we’re leaving the “Dark Age” of fear and disconnection from nature, and stepping into the light of balanced living and cooperation. Not that it doesn’t require a monumental shift in thinking.
    Tripp out.

  310. asia January 20, 2010 at 1:25 pm #

    indeed peeps can be short sighted…i recall in the 1970s sally struthers in the ads for ‘ save the children’…40 years later theres billions more children!

  311. asia January 20, 2010 at 1:26 pm #

    its last years fact! hopefully what JHK called the ‘ suburban project’ is slowed or finished.

  312. george January 20, 2010 at 1:26 pm #

    The problem with Haiti is not whether we should help out this nation, it is how. Do we keep pouring billions of dollars in misdirected aid to prop up a dysfunctional social structure or do we use our resources wisely to make sure that Haiti becomes self-sufficient? Case in point: Detroit, Michigan. You would think that with all of the federal aid that has poured into the Motor City since the 1960’s, Detroit would have had the best chance of thriving in the post-industrial age. Instead, the city is a social, economic and physical wreck that boasts Third-world infant mortality rates, the highest unemployment numbers in America, epidemic numbers of teenage pregnancies and enough vacant land to create a city the size of Boston. Enough said?

  313. asia January 20, 2010 at 1:28 pm #

    baaa.there are millions of haitians in the US …and they have ‘thats our janet’ napolitano to work for them.

  314. messianicdruid January 20, 2010 at 1:31 pm #

    “I asked if God is benevolent, all powerful, all-knowing, and messianicdruid did not answer.”
    If you want to trade answers, ask better questions.
    “…wants to shift all blame to mankind by pretending we have free will…”
    You believe in free will {which, if possible, would lessen God’s omnipotence and omniscience}, and attribute this to me, so I will argue with you in defense of “free will”, so you can attempt to make me appear an idiot and blame God for something else you don’t like about the way He is doing things {giving you “free will” and yet holding you accountable}.
    God takes the “blame” for everything that happens, and has promised to make it right in the end. People without faith {a gift} can’t conceive this because their concept of God is way too small. He is the only one that can use evil to bring about good.
    “…like the most important thing is to somehow exercise “dominion”.
    Dominion is not about exercising “free will”. It is about following simple instructions. Often, very difficult for smart people.

  315. asia January 20, 2010 at 1:32 pm #

    You nailed it!!!!!!!!!!!!
    any cars in cuba must be pre fidel..hence 1950s vintage or earlier.
    what i wonder about is since china now buys the most cars and it uses so much coal why chinese cars arent electric?

  316. asia January 20, 2010 at 1:34 pm #

    tokyo…15,000 per mile..
    however how many miles of farm to feed those 15,000..its in carrying capacity not just how many japs can be squeezed into a tokyo subway car.

  317. Martin Hayes January 20, 2010 at 1:34 pm #

    Thanks, Tripp, nice to hear from you at last. That statement was pure conjecture of what Vlad might hold, it doesn’t mean I share it.
    I don’t.

  318. asia January 20, 2010 at 1:40 pm #

    bell curve,i did read
    i had asked about al schwietzer…………..
    was he JEWISH?????????? if so does his opinion count?

  319. asia January 20, 2010 at 1:48 pm #

    ‘The people will turn to god en masse at first to ameliorate the pain, but once it becomes clear that god has no interest in returning things to “normal,” the numbers will slowly fade away.’
    Indeed, desperate peeps do desperate things. The la times had a story that was suppose to be heartwarming..a christmas tale of the poor in La…illegals workin fast food. a fellow who had a biz that employed 20…now he counts chips at a casino for 10$ an hr…….. ad neausem..
    but the story was suppose to be heart warming!

  320. trippticket January 20, 2010 at 1:56 pm #

    “the highest unemployment numbers in America, epidemic numbers of teenage pregnancies and enough vacant land to create a city the size of Boston. Enough said?”
    And yet, Detroit is being reborn from the ashes as we speak, leading the charge into the urban farming future…

  321. asia January 20, 2010 at 1:57 pm #

    Martha Moxley..killed by ethels brother!
    martha coakley?…i read the piece in the WSJ..how she kept the innocent guy in jail on pedophile charges..BUT IS HORRIFIED BY GITMO!!!
    the piece should get a pulitzer but wont..by d. rabinowitz.
    so teddys not around to drive his car into the river..with a pregnant woman in it.
    he who wanted any caldean in the world to be able to move to the usa as a refugee.
    he who got his health care not from the govt but from the mayo clinic.
    and he did what he could to keep infanticide safe and legal..as left dems oft do!
    ted wrong way kennedy..gawd what a thing from hell!

  322. trippticket January 20, 2010 at 1:59 pm #

    “That statement was pure conjecture of what Vlad might hold, it doesn’t mean I share it.”
    I didn’t think you did. Thanks for letting me use your post as a springboard into story time!

  323. asoka January 20, 2010 at 2:12 pm #

    Asoka: “I asked if God is benevolent, all powerful, all-knowing, and messianicdruid did not answer.”
    messianicdruid: “If you want to trade answers, ask better questions.”
    If everything that exists needs a creator, and if God exists, who created God?

  324. trippticket January 20, 2010 at 2:29 pm #

    “If everything that exists needs a creator, and if God exists, who created God?”
    At the risk of piling on to this boorish conversation, I would answer thusly:
    MAN
    Why is it that there are so many ways to interpret the “word of God”? Because there are so many different humans molding god in their own image.
    What baffles me is why women buy into it at all. ‘God says we are to be subservient to our husbands.’ Sounds reasonable. But we want to be equal in every OTHER way.

  325. Cash January 20, 2010 at 2:40 pm #

    I’m religiously uneducated so someone please enlighten me:
    Why are we required to take the existence of God on faith? Instead, why can’t he materialize himself to each and every one of us and explain to each of us the meaning of life, why we are here, how we should live etc. These are big questions after all.
    Instead we have to trust that whoever wrote 2,000 – 3,000 year old accounts about Jesus’ resurrection or Moses and the burning bush weren’t smoking something nasty when they wrote them.

  326. asia January 20, 2010 at 3:13 pm #

    The Dems….also want felons to have the ‘ right’ to vote! presumably so the felons can vote democrat!

  327. trippticket January 20, 2010 at 3:19 pm #

    “Why are we required to take the existence of God on faith? Instead, why can’t he materialize himself to each and every one of us and explain to each of us the meaning of life, why we are here, how we should live etc.”
    Wouldn’t it be funny if I get struck down by lighting right now, while I was ty

  328. messianicdruid January 20, 2010 at 3:29 pm #

    “If everything that exists needs a creator, and if God exists, who created God?”
    No part of creation exists alone {of itself} including your assumptions.

  329. Martin Hayes January 20, 2010 at 3:32 pm #

    Very roughly speaking, the Gnostics of late antiquity, particularly the Christian Gnostics like Valentinus and Basilides, maintained that each person would be ministered to by the divinity (not the creator of the Earth; he’s a lesser god) according to his lights, that is, what they were ready for, in order to help each out of the predicament of this material life into which each of us has been thrown.
    The proto-orthodox Christians ridiculed them, when it became apparent in their writings and teachings that the gnosis (knowledge) granted was a rich diversity rather than a single narrative.
    Proto-orthodox Christianity, always putting political expediency ahead of anything else, began to persecute the Gnostics and suppress their teachings. Thus what was to become the Catholic Church started on the path of institutionalizing the faith, deciding matters of doctrine, and which writing could be accepted as canonical by a show of hands, as happened at the Council of Nicaea, and erecting a “politically-ordered cosmology”* with the Demiurge (the false creator god) at the top, and the clergy below.
    The Matrix trilogy is in part informed by the Gnostic suspicion that we’re being gamed somehow.
    * Thanks, Alan Watts!
    As for trusting the accounts, you might enjoy this rant by US anarchist Fred Woodworth:
    “If he [God] is wise, why did he not compose a coherent account of what he wanted mankind to do? No, the Bible is not such an account; nobody can agree on what it says. The very god who, according to those who believe in him, made every last electron spin in its orbit everywhere throughout the universe, still cannot write a clear, unmistakeable volume of instructions to human beings who are supposed to follow his wishes. Instead, he allegedly gives us the Bible or the Koran, or some other jumble of ridiculous and ancient superstitions.”

  330. Kryo January 20, 2010 at 3:37 pm #

    Chuckle. Nothing funnier than someone getting all obscene and acting superior in the midst of actually trumpeting his own ignorance!
    As before, with his ignorance of Roy Rogers’ roles AS characters co-temporaneous with Sitting Bull, and thus representative of a phony mythology of the West, the culturally-ill-informed pissant seems unaware of the 1930 film, and previous stage play, “Animal Crackers” that introduced one of Groucho Marx’s signature characters, Captain Spaulding! Indeed, the musical theme that welcomes him — “Hooray for Captain Spaulding / The African explorer / ‘Did someone call me schnorrer?’ / Hooray Hooray Hooray!” — became the theme for his famous quiz show of the 50s, “You Bet Your Life!” and Spaulding’s smooth-talking huckster was a template for some of his later characters, like Dr. Hackenbush, Rufus T. Firefly, and Otis B. Driftwood.
    Now, Spaulding might not be the greatest role model to aspire to, but he was quick-witted, sarcastic, a hustler, and didn’t stand for pompous fools like pissant here.

  331. asoka January 20, 2010 at 4:13 pm #

    messianicdruid answered: “No part of creation exists alone {of itself} including your assumptions.”
    Earlier messianicdruid answer: “God is the only one that can use evil to bring about good.”
    I have no more questions. You have confirmed my assumptions.

  332. Qshtik January 20, 2010 at 5:07 pm #

    “If everything that exists needs a creator, and if God exists, who created God?”
    ============================
    Every Catholic knows the answer to this question, viz. “It’s a mystery.”

  333. Puzzler January 20, 2010 at 5:09 pm #

    Tripp, have you recovered from that flash of lightning yet?
    I bet it was a collect call from God, asking “OK Tripp, what the hell do you want to know?”

  334. asoka January 20, 2010 at 5:39 pm #

    OK, Tripp, no more boorish God talk. Back to permaculture. Have you seen this book?
    Big Gardens in Small Spaces: Out-of-the-Box Advice for Boxed-in Gardeners
    From Amazon.com review:
    At last count, Martyn Cox had more than 250 different plants growing in his 600-square-foot garden in London. He knows from experience that you don’t need a lot of space to have an exuberant garden. Big Gardens in Small Spaces provides boundless inspiration and ingeniously practical solutions for taking advantage of every square inch of a small space — including gardening in shady corners, on rooftops, around doorways, and in the cracks of pavement.
    His ideas are stunningly simple to follow: squeeze as many plants as you can into your garden by any means possible; grow your own fruit, vegetables and herbs; seek out rare, unusual and bizarre plants; don’t pay for something you can make or do yourself; learn from nature; welcome change, and most of all enjoy the garden.

  335. asoka January 20, 2010 at 5:41 pm #

    “It’s a mystery” ding ding ding ding
    “Have faith” ding ding ding ding

  336. Shane January 20, 2010 at 5:59 pm #

    “Cult is another word used almost exclusively in a negative sense… For some reason lexicographers are loathe to bring their dictionaries in line with reality too quickly.”
    A lexicographer would be conservative about such matters by definition. As for almost everybody else in the English-speaking world, they seem to be unconscious about the sects they worship in as well as the language they speak.

  337. Qshtik January 20, 2010 at 6:31 pm #

    “about the sects they worship”
    =========================
    I used to worship sex when I was younger.

  338. trippticket January 20, 2010 at 6:47 pm #

    “Back to permaculture. Have you seen this book?
    Big Gardens in Small Spaces: Out-of-the-Box Advice for Boxed-in Gardeners”
    Don’t know that one. Sounds good though. Are you on pretty limited space? I find that when you start a permaculture garden, you quickly figure out just what an amazing amount of plant material you need to fill in a 6-7 story garden. As Asia said, ‘all that on 1/7 of an acre??’ Yep, and lots of room left too.
    Begin to think like a damaged ecosystem. What kind of plants do you need to bring in to repair/prepare the soil? Nitrogen fixers should be size-appropriate – locust, alder, or acacia trees in large garden; goumi, pea shrub, or sea buckthorn in medium; and lupines/peanuts/clover in small. Always aim for a food yield from any element, no matter what its primary purpose is. I feed high-protein pea shrub, honey locust, and lupine seeds to my chickens.
    In addition to N-fixers, you need groundcovers – Nature will usually send the right weeds as you disturb the soil and enrich it. All of these are miners, and (left in place) their death delivers valuable mineral loads to the topsoil for more desirable plants. You can also add white
    clover, peanuts, potatoes, etc. Overlapping functions is encouraged. Shade your soil with plants and mulch. Nature abhors bare soil.
    You’ll need mulch generators too – comfrey, artichoke, cardoon, sunchoke, ferns, nasturtium, etc. Nasturtiums make prodigious amounts of soft biomass when left in place, and I can’t sing enough praise for comfrey. We use comfrey medicinally, and eat all parts of nasturtium, although it is pretty peppery, so small quantities.
    A weird thing for traditional gardeners is that you shouldn’t expect all of these plants to exist in your mature garden. A lot of them have pioneering roles and actually don’t do well in lush, fertile, moist environments. Like I tried to explain to my neighbor who hates dandelions – if you let them do their thing they’ll mostly leave you alone after a few years. And the ones that stick around should be counted as allies.
    I like to get my trees in ASAP too – hazels, cherries, apricots…they say the best time to plant a tree was 10 years ago. In really tight spaces, a 4-in-1 type dwarf or semi-dwarf fruit tree is the way to go. You can actually have a tree that produces plums, cherries, peaches, and apricots on different branches! (Learn to graft scion wood too; what a valuable skill that will be in the future!)
    Other skills that will re-emerge: working dog training, falconing, small scale plant hybridizing, brewers, bakers, potters, smithies, and so on. I think there will be plenty to do after oil, just not the same stuff. Not much sit in cube, stare at computer stuff.
    Books I recommend to budding permies:
    Gaia’s Garden – Hemenway
    One Straw Revolution – Fukuoka
    Earth User’s Guide to Permaculture – Morrow
    Permaculture: Principles and Pathways Beyond Sustainability – Holmgren (theory)
    Edible Forest Gardens – Jacke
    Perennial Vegetables – Toensmeier
    The Barefoot Beekeeper – Chandler
    And that will perpetuate itself obviously. As I said, my reading list is 90 books strong, and growing every week.
    Sorry for the length of this post, but I just can’t help myself…

  339. ozone January 20, 2010 at 6:53 pm #

    Martin sez:
    “After a drought, comes the rain. Dmitry Orlov has posted not one, but two articles on his blog.”
    Yow! Thanks, Martin; I iz there…
    (Crowded in here, ain’t it?) ;o)

  340. asoka January 20, 2010 at 7:24 pm #

    Today is the end of Obama’s first year and he still hasn’t ended all of America’s problems.
    Just a minute… What? I’m getting a message… really? Oh… what? … seven more years?
    Turns out Obama is elected for four year terms. Never mind.

  341. CaptSpaulding January 20, 2010 at 8:18 pm #

    Kudos to you KRYO. You described the Captain’s character perfectly. I confess that I started laughing as I read the Pissant’s oh so scathing reply. I look forward to future correspondence with you. Regards, Captain Geoffrey T Spaulding (the “T” stands for “Edgar”)

  342. diogen January 20, 2010 at 8:18 pm #

    asia said “the piece should get a pulitzer but wont..by d. rabinowitz.”
    asia, rabinowitz is probably a jew, still think she’s credible? Does “conservative” trump “jew”?

  343. diogen January 20, 2010 at 8:30 pm #

    “”If everything that exists needs a creator, and if God exists, who created God?”
    I’m no expert on god, but i once saw a bumpersticker that i liked, it said “God, please save me from your followers”.
    Still, as Q said, it’s a mystery. Science can explain what happened 1/10000000000000 second after the Big Bang, but it will never know what happened before, or where did all that energy came from. So, everything in the Universe was created by that mysterious energy. We can call that mysterious energy Creator. Whether it has supernatural powers or not, we don’t know, but anything that the Science has no explanation for, is pretty supernatural to my mind. Anyone who claims to KNOW THE ANSWER is a Charlatan (with a capital C) and most assuredly has some motive (money? power? ego? control? delusion? )
    Atheism is just another religion, a secular one. Atheists take it on faith that there’s no god, so by definition it’s a religion.
    Another question that bugged me forever — if god is OMNI-everything and ALL-everything, why does he/she/it want to be WORSHIPPED by worms like us?
    So, my friends, god is more complicated than any mere human will ever know. If you think you know god, it’s not god you know. In my opinion. Like Trip, I may be struck by a bolt of lightening while I’m ty

  344. diogen January 20, 2010 at 9:03 pm #

    One more thought — GOD may just consist of all the atoms in the Universe, and planet Earth just happens to be some vital part of His Being, like His cerebral cortex, or something. So every time we humans fire or explode weapons we’re giving God a major headache, a very bad strategy for going to Heaven. Or when we pollute the Earth it just may be giving God a bad hangover, and you never know what someone with a hangover may do to you, so just in case I’m trying to be really good at recycling and not polluting. Never know.

  345. trippticket January 20, 2010 at 9:14 pm #

    “Another question that bugged me forever — if god is OMNI-everything and ALL-everything, why does he/she/it want to be WORSHIPPED by worms like us?”
    Hello? Dio? If by chance you’re still out there, unharmed by the rampant sinner-seeking lightning today, surely the answer is (s)he/it doesn’t. The universe is chock full of far more interesting things than a congregation caught up in the spirit. And if (s)he/it does, what an ego!
    I know, I know, someone’s going to come back and say that we do it because we love god and WANT to do it, whether it registers with her/him/it or not. It means that much to us. Sounds great. I’m open to ideas about the supernatural that I don’t feel personally in touch with. But are Christians?
    If I were to say that something really big and benevolent happened to me a year ago tomorrow that absolutely wasn’t god, would that draw anything but the ire of the God crowd?
    Just wondering. I mean, if someone asks me to swallow a mighty big pill, I want to know that they are willing to do the same for me.

  346. messianicdruid January 20, 2010 at 9:22 pm #

    “I have no more questions. You have confirmed my assumptions.”
    It was predestined. Now what about my questions?

  347. diogen January 20, 2010 at 9:57 pm #

    “someone’s going to come back and say that we do it because we love god and WANT to do it, ”
    Wanting to be worshiped is a purely human desire, an insecure/self-aggrandizing/egotistical one, so it’s very presumptuous of humans to think that god will accept being worshiped. What if he’s insulted by all this worshiping going on by a bunch of sinners? This just may explain why unfortunate things befall us all the time. I’d be really pissed if a bunch of people decided to worship me. I’d sue them and demand them to cease and desist. On the other hand, guys like Stalin and Hitler wanted to be worshiped, and many people did worship them. Surely God doesn’t want to be in that company…

  348. Vlad Krandz January 20, 2010 at 10:33 pm #

    Children think that their parents are monsters for not giving them what they want. I dimly remember feeling this about my parents.
    No, we are not immortal as we are now or as we percieve ouselves to be. That would be truly cruel – an immortality of veniality, egotism, and ignorance. Asoka, you are not condemned to be “Asoka” forever – thank Him for that. Perhaps Death is a great friend to man – as discipline is to children.

  349. Vlad Krandz January 20, 2010 at 10:38 pm #

    Emerson said “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds”. But if you take away all consistency, all you have left is the fool himself.

  350. Vlad Krandz January 20, 2010 at 10:47 pm #

    You did read. Ah, so why then are you not a believer? Talk to me Asia. What are your doubts. Let me clear them up for you.
    Schweitzer was a Christian and not a Jew as far as I know. He attained a high level in both philosophy and music before giving them up to study medicine and to go to the Congo to help the Blacks.
    Even if he was a Jew, so what? What are you prejudiced or something? Jews feel they are superior to everyone – even Blacks! The sinister music swells – how can anyone think such blasphemous thoughts – superior to Blax!

  351. Qshtik January 20, 2010 at 11:06 pm #

    “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds”.
    =======================
    If you remove “A foolish” from the above sentence what you are left with is precisely Asoka’s view on consistency.

  352. Vlad Krandz January 20, 2010 at 11:30 pm #

    The best argument for God is the one from Design. Do you really think the Universe is the result of chance? That you are the result of blind molecules bumping against each other? That the incredibly complex ecosystems that Trip loves so much, are just by chance? Talk a walk in the night air, man, and cool thy brain.
    Now all this is from the Traditional point of view, just Human Reason working correctly. Revelation is something else again and proving Christianity is THE true religion is much more difficult if not impossible.
    And no, from a point of view the traditional argument are not iron clad, do not “prove” in a mathematical sense. They are convincing to those on the verge of awakening, not to the skeptics. But science has given us a new arrow or two. Someone said during or around the time of the Scopes Trial, that if you had enough monkeys hammering away on enough typewriters you’d eventually get the complete plays of William Shakespeare. No that might be true in a mathematical model that allowed for infinite time, but that’s the catch: the hasn’t been infinite time. The universe started around 15 billion years ago, the Earth around 5 billion, and life on earth around 1 billion. There just hasn’t been enough time for Darwinian Evolution to do what it has done. And so to save the paradigm of scientism, they yell out “random mutations”. Sorry, no such luck. There hasn’t been enough time for random mutations to get us to where we are now. Mutations or Leaps there have been, but they have been anything but random or blind.
    Design is different from Creationism. There are no mock ups of Adam riding a dinosaur here. Many of the scientists have advanced degrees and some are unabashed to call themselves Christians. And yes, the Creationists may use Design to get their foot in the door, but that’s another question. Don’t judge something by it’s misuse. (Aquinas)
    Christianity brought in the dark ages? Bertrand Russell didn’t think so. He said much useful intellectual work was done. The foundations for a new model of Western Civilization were being laid. We believe in a good God who rules by Law – and thus creates an orderly universe that can be studied. Thus we are the heirs to Aristotle and Christianity lead to the growth of Science. That the Church tried to stop it was a mistake. But don’t judge something completely by its mistakes or bad days. (variation of Aquinas from above)
    Ben Stein made an excellent documentary two years ago about the Design Movement and its persecution by the high priests of PC. They can’t find those primitive cells that scientism needs for its blind chance/just chemicals hit by lightining theory. Of course, maybe they just don’t exist anymore. But perhaps they never did!
    Anyway, it’s called “Expelled”.
    I like Stein, but he recently called Ron Paul an Anti-Semite just because Paul wants us out of the Middle East. Came out of nowhere. The curse of Zionism that makes nice, reasonable men into Assholes. There’s more to the Middle East Wars than just the oil.
    But what are all these arguments to one who sees? As the Sufi Bayzaid Bistami said, “Morning has relieved me of the need for a lamp”.

  353. donhynes January 20, 2010 at 11:35 pm #

    Jimmy, you’ve got great style, especially:
    What planet are these people living on? (Answer: Planet Limousine.)

  354. trippticket January 20, 2010 at 11:53 pm #

    “I’m no expert on god, but i once saw a bumpersticker that i liked, it said “God, please save me from your followers”.”
    By any chance was that in Gainesville, FL, about 5 years ago? Red 1992 Ford Ranger extended cab with sweet full moon hubs?

  355. trippticket January 21, 2010 at 12:31 am #

    “If you remove “A foolish” from the above sentence what you are left with is precisely Asoka’s view on consistency.”
    Meta-Q, did you read my piece on the Paradox of the Radical and the Conservative? I think it had something interesting to say on this topic.

  356. Vlad Krandz January 21, 2010 at 12:33 am #

    Forget about Haiti – send money to people living in Tent City Hoovervilles here in the United States. Shall we call them Obamavilles? Yes, let’s!

  357. Qshtik January 21, 2010 at 12:38 am #

    “did you read my piece on the Paradox of the Radical and the Conservative?”
    =========================
    Point me back to the date and time and I’ll re-read it.

  358. asoka January 21, 2010 at 12:47 am #

    Vlad, 12T of the 13T deficit came from Bush years. Shouldn’t we call them Bushvilles?

  359. asoka January 21, 2010 at 1:16 am #

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Bank of America Corp. said Wednesday it lost $5.2 billion during the final three months of 2009
    Move your money to a credit union that did not lose $5.2 billion last quarter, managed by competent people like Q’s sister-in-law.
    http://www.moveyourmoney.info

  360. Martin Hayes January 21, 2010 at 2:46 am #

    Vlad, thanks for the reply, but I decline to answer to any “argument” framed in the way that you just did, as though it is settled that there is only one god and that the word is capitalized. Even people like Richard Dawkins, whom I dislike, by the way, and who ought to know better, falls for this old Indian rope trick.
    As Allen Ginsberg once wittily asked, “Why does there have to be one?”
    It’s an important question and the answer, to my mind, is bound up with the political discourse that is concerned with the history of power and its trajectory toward monolithic dominance and control. Not that, as is commonly supposed, the Hebrews invented monotheism; they got it from the Egyptians, which ought to tell you something.
    Though I rely on authorities with a scientific training, it does not mean that I think matters of the heart can be sifted and weighed in a laboratory, and I am not so impudent as to think that the vast subject of Christian life, mystery and thought, and its many cultural fruits, can be cast away. As for the idea that I’m an atheist, as the professor said to Terence McKenna, “You’re not even wrong.”
    When Albert Camus was asked if he believed in God, he replied no. Then, when he was asked if he was an atheist, he replied no.
    For the record, I’m disappointed that someone who has said he has read Jung seems not to have grasped the vital distinction between the god-image and god in his various guises and forms as he has been known to diverse people down the ages. Christianity is true, just not in the way that is commonly supposed.
    As for the antics of the New Atheists like Dawkins, I do not share their delusion that the destruction of the institution of Christianity is anything to be hoped for. If it is gone, with what shall it be replaced?

  361. diogen January 21, 2010 at 8:20 am #

    “Then, when he was asked if he was an atheist, he replied no”
    The fundamental flaw of atheism is that it’s based on a logical impossibility. You can prove the existence of something by its evidence (e.g. a shiny new car in your driveway or God). But you can never prove non-existence, because it’s impossible to know whether the evidence doesn’t exist or you just haven’t discovered the evidence. So atheism is just a faith based on a flawed premise, one without any social utility, and one with sinister implications for humanity (hitler, mao, fidel and stalin, nuff said).

  362. diogen January 21, 2010 at 8:23 am #

    “By any chance was that in Gainesville, FL, about 5 years ago? ”
    Nah, somewhere in the Midwest, maybe Chicago. It had two other stickers on the same bumper:
    1. put something exciting between your legs, a harley-davidson
    2. life is uncertain, eat your dessert first
    I thought THAT was a guy (or gal) with a happy attitude toward life

  363. diogen January 21, 2010 at 8:28 am #

    “feel they are superior to everyone ”
    is there ANY ethnic group that DOESN’T think it’s superior to everyone?

  364. diogen January 21, 2010 at 10:05 am #

    “Asoka, you are not condemned to be “Asoka” forever ”
    Hmm, how many of us want to be condemned to be Hugh Hefner forever…

  365. asoka January 21, 2010 at 10:48 am #

    messianicdruid asked: “Now what about my questions?”
    messianicdruid, the goose is out!

  366. Cash January 21, 2010 at 11:19 am #

    MH,
    That Woodworth rant was good. I unerstand where he’s coming from.
    A few years ago I read some interesting books on cosmology written by scientists for laymen like me. What I got out of them was that time as we understand it does not exist. Rather everything that ever was in the universe, that is at the present and that ever will be all exist simultaneously in what they call the space-time continuum. I not a scientist, far from it, but I think it started with Einstein and his theories of relativity and gravitation.
    So you and I exist in this continuum as embryos, six year olds, twenty year olds, as old men remembering this exchange and as mouldering bodies or ashes blowing in the wind.
    So essentially if this understanding of “time” is correct we are like 4 dimensional insects embedded in this amber we call the space time continuum.
    From the perspective of anybody at any point in the continuum we have memories of things we’ve done, we have present day concerns, we have plans for things we’ll do in the future. But from the point of view of someone outside the continuum all events in the universe co-exist simultaneously like a four dimensional diorama. Makes you wonder about the idea of “free will”.
    Also, makes you wonder, if there was a creator god, what he was thinking. What is the point of creating such a thing? No suspense about the future is there? It’s all there in front of him from start to finish ie from the Big Bang to whatever end the universe comes to if there is one.
    Have you ever heard this view of “time”?
    Anyone else out there have an opinion?

  367. Semper Infidel January 21, 2010 at 11:49 am #

    Sounds like stuff I’ve read coming out of the Soto school of Zen Buddhism. Vlad , I think , could describe it better because I think he once quoted some words from the Prajna Paramita Heart Sutra ( “…Form is exactly emptiness, emptiness exactly form…”).
    Everything that ever was and is and ever will be exists all at once. So they say.

  368. Qshtik January 21, 2010 at 12:13 pm #

    “Move your money to a credit union that did not lose $5.2 billion last quarter, managed by competent people like Q’s sister-in-law.”
    ===========================
    I have to admit Soak, when I read the above I laughed right out loud.

  369. Qshtik January 21, 2010 at 12:20 pm #

    “Shouldn’t we call them Bushvilles?”
    ==========================
    The new tent cities, bound to appear beneath bridges throughout our land, teeming with Haitians will be known as Asokavilles.

  370. Cash January 21, 2010 at 12:39 pm #

    Or maybe the evidence for God is all around us but we are cognitively blind to it. I had a budgie that loved to play with a small mirror I hung in his cage. We both saw his image in the mirror. My budgie interacted with it as if it were another budgie ie he was cognitively blind as to the true nature of the image. He could never understand the idea of “reflection” or “mirror”. He just believed what he saw. It looks like a budgie, it must be a budgie.
    Maybe our brains/minds are similarly not capable. Maybe we see images we are unable to comprehend or we have a suface understanding of them or we just misunderstand what we see. Maybe our understanding has to wait for the next step in human evolution.

  371. Qshtik January 21, 2010 at 12:48 pm #

    “time as we understand it does not exist”
    =======================
    I agree with the statement above but I don’t agree that “everything that ever was in the universe, that is at the present and that ever will be all exist simultaneously in what they call the space-time continuum.”
    I believe time is an illusion (and, of course, I’m not the first to believe this). Motion (the flow of events) tricks our minds into thinking time flows. Our language is built with this concept imbedded — past, present and future. We can’t escape it.
    I picture time as the brightly lit-up lens of a movie projector. Events are pulled across the motionless lense like frames of film. It is events that are moving, not time.

  372. Funzel January 21, 2010 at 1:12 pm #

    to Diogen
    Fidel?? ridiculous!!
    how about Rothchild,Goldman,Sachs,Greenspan?
    these Characters have caused more wars,death and destruction,than even the KGB.

  373. diogen January 21, 2010 at 1:16 pm #

    “Or maybe the evidence for God is all around ”
    Lots of people believe so. Partly it depends on one’s conception of God. If God=Creator of the Universe, then Universe=Evidence. If there are multiple Universes as Cosmology allows, does that mean there are multiple creators? I guess that would depend on whether the physical laws are the same or different in different universes. Maybe.

  374. Funzel January 21, 2010 at 1:32 pm #

    Creation?God?
    things were probably pretty peaceful before “God”decided to mess around with stuff he,she,it knew nothing about.
    That’s when the big BANG occurred and the World as we know it has been fucked up ever since.
    So it is really useless to trouble your feeble mind with matters of eternity.

  375. asia January 21, 2010 at 1:48 pm #

    the piece was in WSJ…i dont consider that a ‘conservative’paper anymore..just corporate!
    whats a jew?
    is she a jew? i dunno..ask her!

  376. asia January 21, 2010 at 1:50 pm #

    TV is scary! i avoid it cept when i cant..at the gym when on the bike.
    rachel maddow/ msnbc!!
    obamanation talking about how angry ‘we’ [ leonas little peeps] are.
    then theres the drug ads…some drug to lower cholesterol…high C isnt a disease its a condition.

  377. asia January 21, 2010 at 1:55 pm #

    Im not sure what the term is in psychology babble…spoke with a PHD in psych recently who also has a strong interest in anthropology. groups..not just ethnic..can be political/work/religious..often feel superior to the other…and that ‘we’ are ‘diverse’..they are all alike.and ‘we’ are superior to ‘they’
    since shes a college teacher she used the example of ‘ students are like this/ treachers are like that’ or vice versa!

  378. asia January 21, 2010 at 1:57 pm #

    the peeps hes paying off now. they paid and paved his way after his ‘ stunning’ 150 days in the [state?] senate.
    see SOLARI.COM

  379. asia January 21, 2010 at 1:58 pm #

    THANKS

  380. trippticket January 21, 2010 at 1:59 pm #

    “Point me back to the date and time and I’ll re-read it.”
    Took me a bit, but January 15 at 12:55.
    Thanks.

  381. asia January 21, 2010 at 2:07 pm #

    o bum a villes!
    there was a really predictable letter in the NYTimes..someone who bemoaned that the supply plans arent returning full of refugees.
    so i called someone in miami who says haitians have ruined miami….i told him about this site and that he can share his experiences in miami here if he wants.
    i wonder if the misguided zealot who wrote the letter knows anything about carrying capacity and how many haitians are already here. like whoever said 11% of us MDs are haitian..maybe maybe not.
    i doubt it but maybe.
    haiti continues to explode population wise and this earthquake made HAITI BIG NEWS…i read the 50 page newsweek
    WHY HAITI MATTERS ..by obama
    newsweek is down to 50 to 65 pages….YAAAAY!!

  382. trippticket January 21, 2010 at 2:09 pm #

    “So atheism is just a faith based on a flawed premise, one without any social utility, and one with sinister implications for humanity (hitler, mao, fidel and stalin, nuff said).”
    Not disagreeing with your analysis of atheism, but Hitler was an openly professing Christian. Everything he did was ordained by the bible in his mind.

  383. asia January 21, 2010 at 2:11 pm #

    Were in the era of CULTS..witness the deaths in sedona …james ray…named as one of the fastest growing businesses in USA!
    or see rick ross cult busting site..PSI!!!
    you think yr buddists in colorado are nuts..i know someone who spent 8000$ on PSI.
    and theres NLP…i read yday the founder of that was tried for murder.,,,,richard bandler.

  384. asia January 21, 2010 at 2:13 pm #

    The problem with Haiti:
    is how close it is to the USA and how JanetN will further weaken our borders…rememeber ‘the shock doctrine’…never let a crisis go to waste!

  385. Vlad Krandz January 21, 2010 at 2:19 pm #

    I’d say your image is in accord with the idea that everything that ever was still is – somewhere and somehow. St Augustine said the same in a Theological way – that past, present, and future are all one to God who is outside of time.
    Who created God? None. He is Self Existent. If He were not, He would not be God.
    A wit once said that Time is Nature’s way of making sure that Dean and Frank aren’t still playing Las Vegas five hundred years from now.

  386. asoka January 21, 2010 at 2:21 pm #

    diogen said: “”So atheism is just a faith based on a flawed premise, one without any social utility, and one with sinister implications for humanity (hitler, mao, fidel and stalin, nuff said).”
    Although Communism typically touted itself as anti-religious and pro-science, it was, in fact, deeply anti-scientific and clearly a religion.
    One of Communism’s hallmarks in the Soviet Union and China was its aggressive and violent suppression of other religions. Communism was “anti-religious” only in the sense that it forcibly suppressed all religions other than itself.

  387. Qshtik January 21, 2010 at 2:24 pm #

    “did you read my piece on the Paradox of the Radical and the Conservative?”
    ==========================
    I re-read it but still don’t see the connection to the consistency discussion. Remember, my IQ is only 112 per a test I took in third grade.
    And while we’re at it ….. I read the entire, rather lenghty, definition of Meta and I’m still trying to figure in what sense you refer to me as Meta-Q. After you explain it to me please point to something I’ve written that is a good example of me being Meta.

  388. asoka January 21, 2010 at 2:25 pm #

    asia said: “Were in the era of CULTS… and theres NLP…i read yday the founder of that was tried for murder.,,,,richard bandler.”
    Were in the era of CULTS … And there’s Christianity … i read yday the founder of that was tried, convicted, and crucified.,,, JC!!!
    Stay away from cults!

  389. asoka January 21, 2010 at 2:27 pm #

    Vlad said: “Who created God? None. He is Self Existent. If He were not, He would not be God.”
    Who created Earth? None. Earth (aka Gaia) is Self Existent. If Earth were not, Earth would not be Earth.
    Any more nonsense to contribute, Vlad?

  390. Vlad Krandz January 21, 2010 at 2:34 pm #

    Comrade in the House! Yes, and the Jew Volker said decades ago that the wages of the American Worker must fall. They have been conspiring against us for a long time.
    From a recent biography of Stalin: Stalin ran down the street yelling Yipee,I just got a job with the Rothschilds.
    The rest is history. You are right and Diogen is right. But you are more right – these people funded the Great Revolutions and thus are more than a little responsible for what the Monsters did. If anyone doubts, let them explain the bizzare exclusion of Chiang Kai Shek from the conference at Tehran. And the subsequent cut off of all aid and funding. And the report that Mao was just an agrarian reformer, no big deal. The same would be said about Castro a few years later.
    Not that Stalin was a great employee. Once he acieved absolute power, he stopped taking direction from the Jews, nor would he take any shit from them. He was grossly offended when he came to realize that they obviously felt that their identity was more important than the Revolution – which in theory was supposed to subsume all ethniity and nationality.

  391. asoka January 21, 2010 at 2:39 pm #

    Vlad said: “and thus are more than a little responsible for what the Monsters did.”
    Let me correct the above sentence, Vlad, since we are speaking of Hitler and Stalin and Lenin and Trotsky and all the other communist butchers.
    “and thus are more than a little responsible for what the White Monsters did.”
    Your whole anti-Semitic shtick is tiresome and baseless.

  392. Vlad Krandz January 21, 2010 at 2:44 pm #

    God doesn’t exist, He is Existence. Thus never was there a time when He was not. The Earth didn’t exist at the begining and may not exist at the end of universe; in any case the Earth will end when it end if not before.
    Your equating of God and the Earth is ridiculous Soak. Even the primitives usualy have a Supreme God who created the Earth and the Sky.

  393. diogen January 21, 2010 at 2:45 pm #

    “Communism was “anti-religious” only in the sense that it forcibly suppressed all religions other than itself.”
    Right. No religion tolerates competition very well, God help the poor bastards when they allow their religion to take over their gov’t. State power is dangerous on its own, but combined with the power of the monopolistic religion — it’s murder! Literally.

  394. Vlad Krandz January 21, 2010 at 2:58 pm #

    Remember what you said, Soak – whaterver Whites do, Blacks can do better. Give Blacks Atom Bombs and they will destroy the Earth.
    You forgot Mao. Oh that’s right, you’re not trying to be accurate, you’re just trying to condemn Whites.
    Don’t be angry at me for insulting the Goddess. I know that you long for Pandora, the Mothr’s Womb. People go that movie and that cannot deal with ugliness of our present world. I know the feeling. There are support sites for people who saw the movie and now can’t deal with life anymore. You might want to check them out. I’m going to see it soon. Maybe I’ll be in the same boat with you soon. Get out of my boat Asoka.

  395. diogen January 21, 2010 at 3:01 pm #

    “God doesn’t exist, He is Existence. Thus never was there a time when He was not.”
    Interestingly, if you substitue the word “God” with word “QWERTY” (which I just made up and which means “the unknown and unknowable energy that powered the Big Bang) in Vlad’s sentence above, it’s probably consistent with Physics/Cosmology.

  396. trippticket January 21, 2010 at 3:35 pm #

    “I read the entire, rather lenghty, definition of Meta and I’m still trying to figure in what sense you refer to me as Meta-Q.”
    meta-?
    1. a prefix appearing in loanwords from Greek, with the meanings “after,” “along with,” “beyond,” “among,” “behind,” and productive in English on the Greek model: metacarpus; metagenesis; metalinguistics.
    In my experience with statistics, “meta” is often used in the sense of “meta-data”, as in the data behind the data, or the data about the data. Again, kinda dorky, but makes me smile to call you Meta-Q, the commenter commenting on the comments. A lot of your posts are about other people’s comments, rather than an original train of thought. Hence, Meta-Q! But it’s your shtik; I get it.
    As far as the paradox, maybe I’m an outlier in all this, but I see what’s going on today as the most monumental occurrance in human history. An event that will change the very foundations of the way we think and interact with our environment. And not just like going back to living a horticultural indigenous-type life either, I mean fundamentally novel. Mind bending. That Holmgren piece was meant to call into question the assumption that the world will function in any recognizable way. And that consistency itself could in fact be the hobgoblin of little minds. Or the mental norm of the growth paradigm anyway. Not that I’m defending obvious self-contradictions.
    And I think you ought to have your IQ retested. I think they sold you a crock o’ shit.

  397. asoka January 21, 2010 at 3:36 pm #

    Vlad said: “Your equating of God and the Earth is ridiculous Soak.”
    You are correct. My error. I should have said:
    “Who created the Universe? None. The Universe is Self Existent. If the Universe were not, the Universe would not be the Universe.”
    In other words, the Universe always has been and no creator is necessary. If God can exist without a Creator, then the Universe can, too.

  398. Vlad Krandz January 21, 2010 at 3:39 pm #

    Martin, I wasn’t trying to goad you by capitalizing God. It’s just an expression of my natural piety. I have more sympathy for your position than you may think.
    The most famous of the polytheists are the Hindus and they aren’t. They hate the term and utterly deny the charge that they are polytheists. They believe in One God with countless manifestations. The manifestations or gods are like federal employess who work for the President. Like Angels in Christianity. Missionaries have always found something like this: countless gods, some of them very strange and some very sinister. But beyond all that, there is almost invariable the belief in supreme god whom the people know little about. This can be said to come from Natural Reason or a dim memory of Eden for orthodox Christians – who would not see a contradiction here in the case of Eastern Orthodoxy.
    You are right that the politics of monotheism are often sinister – I left Christianity for many years partly because of this and I still have trouble with many things the great religions do. Islam is obviously the worst now, but Northern Europe was converted to Christianity with extreme brutality. The die hards fled Germany for Scandanavia. And then people wonder why the Vikings hated Christianity so profoundly – because they say what had been done to their kinsmen. The greatly learned monk Alcuin implored Charlemagne not to convert by force and once done, implored him to have no more of it. But there was much more later by others.
    Yes, I still struggle with the One True Faith thing. I find great good in many traditions. But a man must choose and I choose the Tradition of my Birth. And yes, here my psychology and politics come into my choice. I could not choose Islam for it will kill the West. And Mohammad seemed half crazy sometimes. Plus, I feel the burden of the past, I would keep faith with my ancestors if I can do so without completely denying myself. As you say, if it is not THE true religion, it is nonetheless a true one. And I do love Christ, I am not ashamed of that altho I often am ashamed of his Churches and his followers.
    I like the Eastern Orthodox way of National Churches. That puts a check on the danger of absolute power and can limit corruption if it breaks out. The Catholic Model has proven its weakness with the disaster known as Vatican 2-basically a communist insurection within the very bossom of the Church.
    Yes religion is good for the State. But I think Cato would have said that such a cynical policy is far from the ideal state for the State. Real piety moves mountains – and builds roads. Cynical piety by the Elite goes along with gross superstition by the masses. Washington himself said that only deeply learned men, strangely formed, can be virtuous without religion. And the higher religions at their best promote virture. Cato’s paganism did as well altho it was ugly from a Christian perspective. But as Chesterton, Lewis, Tolkien and that whole school say, there is no going back. I do admire the great Julian the Apostate in his heroic effort to do so though. A soul of fire.
    The popular science writer Martin Gardner was one of my favorites. He could not accept any revelation, certainly not an exclusive one. He admired some of the arguments for God especially Anselms Ontological One – but he did not find them convincing. He realized Atheism was irrational for the reason Diogen gave. And that it became a substitute religon for mad dogs like Madeleine Murray O’Hare. Her son write a book about what a maniac she was. So all that remained form a purely intellectual viewpoint was agnosticism. But he just didn’t believe it. He said that when he checked his heart, he believed in God despite everything. And he could not disbelieve. He termed his position Fidelism. And he found other men who had felt/thought the same, like the early Pascal.
    Again, from a Christian perspective, this is simply natural reason doing it what it is supposed do: discovering Natural Law. Along with his belief, came a conviction of immortality and of course, a universal golden rule type morality. Beyond that, he didn’t know but he seemed very grateful for this much at least.

  399. asoka January 21, 2010 at 3:39 pm #

    Vlad said: “Get out of my boat Asoka.”
    If we just both calm down, if we just both stop rocking the boat, we can co-exist in the same boat… as equals… cause I ain’t gonna go back to segregation times. The way is forward.

  400. asoka January 21, 2010 at 3:58 pm #

    Vlad said: “Vatican 2-basically a communist insurection within the very bossom of the Church.”
    Translation:
    Vatican 2 actually took seriously Jesus teachings about the poor, i.e., Liberation Theology

  401. Vlad Krandz January 21, 2010 at 4:04 pm #

    Now that is a valid, rational viewpoint. But now the problem becomes: what of God? As the philospher Santayana said, the universe gains nothing by calling it God. The Taoists would not recognize this either – the Tao is not separate form the physical universe but by no means is it limited to it. And what become of the mystic’s vision? Just a psychological state, a tic that feels good but gives no truth.
    This is the problem with pantheistic msyticism like Trip’s – it lacks a valid metaphysic (meta meaning beyond, so literally an explain beyond physics or matter) so that it attributes to matter or bio-matter states that come from beyond matter and bio-matter. But these states come through meditation on or contact with these two. Thus the conflation and thus the confusion.
    I have no problem believing Trip when he talks about the upliftment he feels by enriching the soil. I have felt my own version of this as energy rising up from the ground into my body. And also the forest – many a forest grove has been a Church for me. The air assumes a nectarean quality that suffuses with joy. And the beauty outside of me seems to enfold me and I have no inside at all. I merely differ with Trip in my explanation of these experiences. He thinks they come from the soil or the forest. I say they come through them from a higher source. But I do honor the soil and the forest as blessings from God.

  402. Qshtik January 21, 2010 at 4:32 pm #

    “Meta-Q, the commenter commenting on the comments”
    ========================
    OK, got it … and for the most part true. Not only commenting on the comments but primarily concerned with form rather than substance. After all, what has been accomplished today with all the discussion about the existence or non-existence of God/god? But yesterday I learned the subtilties of loath and loathe. And last week Vlad saw the light regarding the hyphen. These are REAL accomplishments. I still await a breakthrough with Asoka … where he understands Emerson did not mean that ALL consistency is foolish.

  403. asoka January 21, 2010 at 5:23 pm #

    Vlad writes: “But now the problem becomes: what of God?”
    What problem? If “God” can exist without requiring a Creator, then the universe can exist without requiring a Creator. There is no problem.
    The problem has been solved. God is nothing more than an unnecessary hypothesis
    This, incidentally, is exactly the position of some of the world religions which have no need of a Creator.

  404. Vlad Krandz January 21, 2010 at 5:27 pm #

    Since the birth of the modern Conspiracy, sometimes called Freemasonry, the Church has condemned Communism which lead to the terror of the French Reolution, and of course ultimately to horrors of communism in the 20th century. The best protecton against these and any local garden variety oppression is the ancient institution known as private propery. As St Paul said, if you don’t work, you don’t eat.
    Closely allied with this, is of course the Nation State – also a valuable check on the Global Slave State that the Jews and their servants the Freemasons want to impose on us under the modern name of Globalism. Asoka wants us to go back; he would reverse evolution and have us go back to mono-cellular structures. Away with complexity, one race, one state, one world, one fuhrer, one leader – Obama. Well, we know better. If Asoka wants to be an Amoeba or a Paramecium, that’s his problem. I have a skeleton with a good backbone. And my skin is like the borders of a nation: a semi-permeable membrane. It keeps me inside me and the not me outside me. Sure it lets some things in and something out, but for the most part, it provide a proper divison. After good fences make good neighbors. And if God didn’t love diversity, He wouldn’t have created it and if He didn’t love individuality, He wouldn’t have allowed it. When we go back to Him, then we realize our Oneness with others via Him. All are his Sons and Daughters and therefore our Brothers and Sisters. To try to realize this oneness without Him is the Blackest Tyranny and the very epitome of Evil.
    Asoka has been decieved by Evil into believing an imitation, image, or Idol of the Real Truth. This counterfeit is deadly, Asoka. Repent of it or die in your sin.

  405. asoka January 21, 2010 at 5:28 pm #

    Q said: “I still await a breakthrough with Asoka … where he understands Emerson did not mean that ALL consistency is foolish.”
    This is really unfair, Q. You have switched authors on me, and switched quotations as well. I am not quoting Emerson. Does your prejudice against Whitman go so deep?
    “foolish” and “hobgoblins” were not in my quote.
    Need I remind you of my quote: “I am large. I contain multitudes.”
    Get it right, Q, you, who are so concerned with form. You are putting St. Josephs to shame.

  406. asoka January 21, 2010 at 5:31 pm #

    Vlad said: “This counterfeit is deadly, Asoka. Repent of it or die in your sin.”
    Globalism is the way forward. Think globally and act locally in your tribes and families. The seventh generation is counting on it.
    I regret that I have but one life to give for my permacultural vision.

  407. trippticket January 21, 2010 at 5:34 pm #

    “I merely differ with Trip in my explanation of these experiences. He thinks they come from the soil or the forest. I say they come through them from a higher source.”
    Actally, I’m not sure this is an accurate dichotomous key. I DO feel the energy of the soil and the forest, but not in and of themselves. To start at “soil” or “forest” is to overlook the better half of the construct. The soil is a universe of its own, composed of a number of life forces that would asymptotically approach infinity, and the forest would only add another few layers to that gathering.
    Perhaps the difference lies in which direction of scale we connect with the infinite. Once we give them their due respect, I feel the power of soil and forest as embedded within – pandemigods in their own right perhaps – the larger self-organizing energies of the universe.
    But I’m a bottom-up thinker. (Top-down would be like believing that the federal government, or an omnipotent god, will save us from ourselves.) I think that the wonderful complexity and (perhaps mystical) connectivity of the whole is simply a synergistic cooperative of its infinite parts, all the way back down the line to bosons and fermions. Greater than the sum, but accounted for by it nonetheless.
    And if, at the top, or, the composition of the whole, is some sort of god, in the religious sense, it doesn’t seem to mind that I don’t call it Yahweh or Allah.

  408. Mr. Purple January 21, 2010 at 5:48 pm #

    Interesting piece in the New York Times about people who go through winter* with minimal to nonexistent heating in their dwellings. Ahead of the curve?
    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/01/21/garden/21cold.html
    *Not Florida or Southern California winter, either.

  409. trippticket January 21, 2010 at 6:49 pm #

    Wow! That’s some hardy stock. Not sure I could do sub-freezing in the house all winter!

  410. asoka January 21, 2010 at 7:56 pm #

    Thanks for that article, Mr. Purple. It confirms the value of having a meditation practice for when TSHTF.
    From the article:
    Focusing on survival is right up there with a Zen retreat when it comes to clearing the mind.
    Now, that is the right attitude!

  411. Laura Louzader January 21, 2010 at 8:12 pm #

    People who can live like those in the NYT article are just plain a different breed of cattle. Different genes than the rest of us.
    But I suppose learning to live with deep misery is an art form like any other.

  412. diogen January 21, 2010 at 9:05 pm #

    Very stoic, but unnecessary. We built a 1,400 sq. ft. cabin and super-insulated it (9″ walls). Even on the days when it’s 10F outside, we heat it just with an air-source heatpump for about $2-$3 per day, with 60-65F inside, up to 70F inside when it’s above 40F outside. I’m now installing a super-clean woodburning stove (Morso), just a few logs per day and we’ll easily have 70F+ inside, even on the coldest days. And other than electricity, no direct use of fossil fuel. Eventually hope to use wind and solar. So perhaps their suffering is noble, but hardly worthy of imitation (IMO). Even when the SHTF, sunshine and wind will be available.

  413. diogen January 21, 2010 at 9:13 pm #

    “But I suppose learning to live with deep misery is an art form like any other.”
    I’d say it’s irrational. Our healthy instincts are to maximize pleasure and minimize pain, and these folks pursue the reverse. Should we be content with “deep misery” in the Long Emergency? THAT will never sell :)

  414. messianicdruid January 21, 2010 at 10:17 pm #

    If God could save everyone – would He?

  415. trippticket January 21, 2010 at 10:56 pm #

    “just a few logs per day and we’ll easily have 70F+ inside, even on the coldest days.”
    I think Diogen brings up a crucial point in this post. We are all going back to a wood-based economy for the most part. And there are a LOT more of us than there were the last time we were wood-based. Lots of trees for firewood, and for building materials to replace energy-intensive ones like concrete and foam.
    (I personally don’t think solar and wind in their current iteration scale very well on an energy budget based in real-world physics, but get them now if you can and want.)
    I also don’t think the planet will let us hurt it too bad in the global warming department before it employs whatever measures it needs to to correct the trend. (Ice Age perhaps? We are overdue.)
    But a real problem that IS rearing its ugly head is global DRYING. I have Australian permie friends who are looking for new homes because their rains back home are more sporadic and unpredictable than ever.
    Forests are responsible for the bulk of rain, and we’ve cut down about 30% of the world’s forests, I believe. Logically we can assume that annual rainfall has dropped by an equivalent amount.
    Wood will have to be used very wisely in the future. We need to be planting trees, trees, and more trees at our earliest convenience. I personally think that this sort of natural capital will be the difference in comfort and merely surviving. I’ve set a goal to plant 10,000 trees in my lifetime, but I have a long way to go.
    Efficient stoves will be paramount. EPA high-efficiency stoves, rocket mass stoves, lots of room for inventive people in this arena.
    Tripp out.

  416. Laura Louzader January 21, 2010 at 11:24 pm #

    Learning to accept extreme physical discomfort is an art form I hope I never have to cultivate. But folks who can surely have an advantage over cosseted couch potatoes like myself.
    I really can’t think how I’ll cope without central heat. Better learn how to insulate the shell of my apt or condominium bldg and educate the neighbors and landlords to do that and save up for a geothermal system for when the gas pipelines start to cough.

  417. asoka January 22, 2010 at 1:15 am #

    Here is a YouTube video on “How to Build a Rocket Stove”
    http://bit.ly/8Dvvs1
    Of course, a well-insulated, or small earthen thermal mass structure (adobe) utilizing passive solar will require much less energy to heat.

  418. Vlad Krandz January 22, 2010 at 1:50 am #

    Very interesting understanding of Mysticism. You approach shamanism from from the point of view of permaculture. Shamanism deals with a multiplicity of energies and thus is a kind of esoteric polytheism. It’s different that the esotericism of Monotheism or Non-Dualism. Esotericism meaning to have an actual experience of things the believed not just talking about them. I’m more interested in Monotheistic Mysticism now, but I still love Nature Mysticism to the extent I have experienced it.
    I hope you realize that you and Asoka are an odd couple. He does expect the Federal Goverment to save people. And he thinks money is real – just print up as much as you like. You really are closer to my point of view. Although you don’t gloat about it, you clear see a massive die off coming for humanity. The Planet is going to kill us like any other creature who exceeds its environmental carrying capacity. Thus you are no pollyanna like our inconsistent friend. And when TSHTF, I trust your down to earth wife will block your path when you go to display your produce on the front lawn. If you persist, I’m sure she will threaten you with a rolling pin. The idealistic man needs a wife like this – it is a good match as long as the woman shares her man’s idealism and thus finds him inspiring.
    About the soil: I went to the Northeast Organic conference two summers ago. Everyone was excited about the keynote speaker, Arden Andersen. He said some fascinating things about the soil namely that high quality soil is in itself a fine defense against insects. That they have a different and simpler biochemistry than mammals and in fact are attracted to plants grown in acid soils. Have you heard of him and does this thesis make any sense to you? He is also a doctor and said that he has seen a tremendous growth in allergies since they started growing GMO corn around his town.

  419. asoka January 22, 2010 at 2:04 am #

    In response to the Earthquake destruction in Haiti, Builders Without Borders would like to recommend these avenues to contribute:
    Solar Cookers for Haiti: One of Haiti’s most serious problems in the coming months will be access to safe drinking water. This combined with a serious and growing shortage of fuel has now reached crisis proportions. With a solar cooker it is possible to pasteurize several liters of drinking water every day using only the light of the sun.
    Friends of Haiti Organization is working with U.S.-based Sun Ovens International to provide the people of Haiti with solar cookers. Sun Ovens Intl has been operating in Haiti for the past eleven years. Donations marked (For purchase of Sun Ovens) will be used only to buy solar cookers that will be distributed in Haiti.
    On January 28, 2010 FOHO in partnership with Feed My Starving Children will be sending a shipping container with 270,000 meals and Sun Ovens to Port au Prince Haiti. There is room for additional Sun Ovens to be included with this shipment and additional shipments are being planned. Contributions to Friends of Haiti can only be sent by check. (FOHO is a 501C3 nonprofit organization so all donations will be tax deductable. 100% of the donation will go directly to sending Sun Ovens to Haiti no administrative expenses will be deducted.
    FOHO has been working in Haiti for 45 years and has sent over 1,400 Global Sun Ovens and 12 Villager Sun Ovens to Haiti.) Checks should be made payable to the: Friends of Haiti Organization, PO Box 222, Holland, OH 43528 (Please note the donation is for the Sun Oven project.)
    If you prefer to give on line, you can send a donation to Solar Cookers International’s Haiti Project. Our colleague Patricia McArdle has served on SCI’s board of directors for the past three years. SCI is collecting funds for solar Cookits, pots, and reusable Water Pasteurization Indicators that will be added to this month’s and future shipment of Sun Ovens to Haiti.

  420. Vlad Krandz January 22, 2010 at 2:04 am #

    The Evil Grows. The Nine are again abroad in the Land and with a stroke of five pens have undone a century of attempts to regulate campaign contributions. Putin dealt with this a few years ago banning any foreign money. He said that the Russian elections were for the Russian People. The Jews hate him profoundly. They want to take over again, this time peacefully by a colored revolution orchestrated by George Soros. Now they can’t so they fund the Chechen Terrorists.
    Scott Brown is already beholden to the big Republican Interests. His mentor is McBrainless himself. Also known as McAmnesty or Mad Dog or Mad Dog McCain. We can expect nothing from this man but more of the same. But oh what a great image. This guy looks like a president. And he has a caution and a canniness about him. In him the Republicans have found what they were looking for in vain in Sarah Palin.

  421. diogen January 22, 2010 at 9:03 am #

    “You approach shamanism from from the point of view of permaculture. ”
    Interesting thought. As amply confirmed in these comments, humans need a belief system, and most of these are based on a worship of a deity. Trip shows us another way — a belief system based on Permaculture!!! The High Priest will wear overalls and a straw hat, and the key religious symbols will be a pitchfork and pruning shears.
    The object of worship will be fertile soil and whatever grows in it. The rites can adopt ancient harvest cycle fests (from seedtime to harvest).
    Hmm, a rational religion with lots of food, how can one NOT want to join!!!
    Trip, I’m ready to convert, and lots of other Unitarians I know will come along :)

  422. diogen January 22, 2010 at 9:14 am #

    “I’ve set a goal to plant 10,000 trees in my lifetime”
    You win. I lost count somehwere around 300+, and will be lucky to get to 500. This Spring we’re planting 20-30 mostly fruit trees. We have herds of deer roaming around and destroying everything in sight, not sure how I’m going to protect our young fruit trees from the rascals… I’ll plant one in your honor, and your day to water it is every third Monday :)

  423. Pangolin January 22, 2010 at 9:32 am #

    Trip_ I have to admire your enthusiasm but your penchant for ignoring facts destroys your arguments. For starters the bulk of the rainfall comes from oceans and also lands on oceans since that’s the bulk of the planets surface. Forests recycle rain but cannot generate it where they do not get ocean moisture in the first place. See Nevada, Utah, New Mexico for examples.
    Planting trees in dry soil is a waste of goddamn time as the Chinese had to learn the hard way. If the soil is good and moist and there isn’t heavy predation a tree is already growing in the spot. If you want to improve the soil add charcoal as in biochar or drop rocks on level lines to slow water movement and trap organic matter. “Planting trees” as vs. orchards or woodlots is one of those bullshit hobbies well meaning fools do.
    If you REALLY want to do some good learn what trees will coppice in your area and start a coppice so that you can teach others later. Or maybe fence off a riparian area so cattle don’t eat the young trees that get started. Starting a hedgerow would be a good idea also.
    I still think that permaculture is crap not that I don’t agree with it’s goals. It’s just lost in a bunch of woo-woo hand waving and faith in authors and lacks honest field trials with input, output and labor logs. I read a permie board the other day where the idiots were against pruning fruit trees ignoring the fact that that’s how you get fruit from them.
    Nobody who promotes permaculture is an atheist because that sure as hell isn’t science. That leaves faith.

  424. diogen January 22, 2010 at 10:07 am #

    Pangolin, although I’m not a Permie practitioner, some of its ideas make good sense: catch and store energy, use and value renewable resources, produce no waste, integrate, use small and slow solutions, etc. These ideas have proven successfull in other kinds of gardening/agriculture. It doesn’t have to be all-or-nothing, does it? I have experience with fruit trees, and you’re correct — regular pruning is the key to productivity. I think you’re unnecessarily harsh on “Planting trees”. Drive around Ohio and elsewhere and you’ll see vast lawns with few, if any trees. Any trees planted in empty lawns would benefit the property and, collectively, the environment.

  425. DeeJones January 22, 2010 at 10:57 am #

    “One more thought — GOD may just consist of all the atoms in the Universe, and planet Earth just happens to be some vital part of His Being, like His cerebral cortex, or something.”
    Not vital. More like gods anus. So I guess we are just a hemorrhoid on gods ass. Or even less, a dingle-berry.
    Oh no! Here comes the Holy Toilet Paper to wipe us off the arse of the universe!!!

  426. Qshtik January 22, 2010 at 12:13 pm #

    “Our colleague Patricia McArdle.”
    =======================
    Mr. copy-and-paste is at it again. Asoka would have us believe he’s intimately connected with, and active in, every goody-two-shoes outfit in the world. I for one would like to know in what sense Soak says “Our colleague Patricia McArdle.” What exactly, Asoka, is your association with Solar Cookers International? Or is it just something you stumbled across on the web?
    My suggestion: Put your cursor on that button in the lower left corner of your screen, clk on it, then clk on shut down. Then buy a ticket to Haiti and go lend an actual hand.

  427. asia January 22, 2010 at 12:48 pm #

    you can google pics of chinas trees on sand…not a pretty picture..trees need water!

  428. asia January 22, 2010 at 12:51 pm #

    ‘Feed My Starving Children will be …’
    Feed those Starving Children and babies will soon be makin babies!
    WHY DO YOU THINK HAITI IS SO Ffed up pal?

  429. asia January 22, 2010 at 12:57 pm #

    Of Course..remeber the songs in WESTSIDE STORY?
    Think about the lyrics for a moment!

  430. asoka January 22, 2010 at 1:00 pm #

    pangolin said: “I still think that permaculture is crap not that I don’t agree with it’s goals. It’s just lost in a bunch of woo-woo hand waving and faith in authors and lacks honest field trials with input, output and labor logs.”
    Pangolin, permaculture’s design principles are modeled on interactions seen in natural ecosystems, and on achieving maximum gain for minimal energy expenditure.
    Contrary to being woo-woo, each design element – orchard, dam, vegetable garden etc – has its needs, outputs and properties analysed.
    These design elements are then assembled in relation to one another so that the products of one element feed the needs of adjacent elements, reducing energy consumption all round.
    Permaculture borrows techniques from organic agriculture, sustainable forestry, and indigenous land management systems from around the world.
    Its key design principles are as applicable to suburban backyards and eco-villages as they are to rural properties. Based on interactions seen in natural ecosystems, permaculture’s principles provide an efficient way for people to live in towns and cities where the production of food can be organized cooperatively.
    The elements of permaculture have been studied and confirmed scientifically.
    For example, in pest management there have been scientific studies of permacultural alternatives to chemical pesticides. A recent article reviewed the various methods (physical, chemical, and biological) for termite control.
    Recent advances and past research done on termite control emphasizing biological methods are reviewed in the article. Biological methods described include botanicals (essential oil, seed, bark, leaf, fruit, root, wood, resin), as well as fungal, bacterial, and nematode approaches.
    The relationship between chemical structure of active components responsible for termite control and termiticidal activity is discussed in the article. The plants reviewed show good insecticidal properties against termites. These botanicals can be used for termite control singly and in combination. The active component from biomass can be extracted to prepare efficacious and potent biocidal formulations.
    ARTICLE REFERENCED: Verma, M., Sharma, S., & Prasad, R. (2009). Biological alternatives for termite control: A review. International Biodeterioration & Biodegradation, 63(8), 959-972. doi:10.1016/j.ibiod.2009.05.009

  431. asia January 22, 2010 at 1:05 pm #

    ‘Permaculture’ is a word .I went to a workshop on such where the leader, who is indeed a farmer, had us do games that i think should be left to kindergarten! ‘sensitivity training’

  432. asia January 22, 2010 at 1:07 pm #

    ‘As I said, my reading list is 90 books strong, and growing every week.’
    CAN YOU LIST THEM HERE?
    I doubt that many people will be scrolling to the now bottom of this…JHk will post again monday.

  433. asia January 22, 2010 at 1:08 pm #

    As I said, my reading list is 90 books strong, and growing every week.
    can you list them?
    sorry for the doubbble post!

  434. asia January 22, 2010 at 1:10 pm #

    To my knowledge not 1 BIG newspaper or mag has talked about the impact of the 100 million + that are now here due to the democrats and their need to keep themselves in power!

  435. asoka January 22, 2010 at 1:11 pm #

    Q said: “Mr. copy-and-paste is at it again. Asoka would have us believe he’s intimately connected with, and active in, every goody-two-shoes outfit in the world. I for one would like to know in what sense Soak says “Our colleague Patricia McArdle.”
    Guilty as charged. It was my intention to cut and paste to share with CFN.
    I have no association with Solar Cookers International.
    My colleague, Patricia McArdle, has common organizational affiliations.

  436. asoka January 22, 2010 at 1:17 pm #

    Q said: “My suggestion: Put your cursor on that button in the lower left corner of your screen, clk on it, then clk on shut down. Then buy a ticket to Haiti and go lend an actual hand.”
    You must be using a Windows operating system.
    And thank you for the compliment… that I could somehow be of help in Haiti, and not just be a “do-gooder” creating more work for the 82nd Airborne.
    Semper Fi.
    (yes I know semper fi is marines and the 82nd is army. save your electrons.)

  437. ozone January 22, 2010 at 1:43 pm #

    Lessee…
    Xenophobia, God-ism, and now Ben-fucking-Stein??
    BEN-FUCKING-STEIN?? Gee-zuz jumped-up keerist on a friggin’ crutch, save us from true-believers; I guess the narrowing of the American mind has been a stunning success!
    Good Luck with that… that’s the only [benevolent] wish a delusion-ista/o gets from me. Times are about to get too tough to be wasting valuable time on navel-gazing, non-productive persons.
    (BTW, I consider hate and exclusion a huge waste of talent and innovation, but blockheads need not apply. Think that’s hateful and exclusionary? Tough shit. I’ll own my pecadillos, as you must own yours. We’ll just have to see who’s best served, eh?)

  438. Puzzler January 22, 2010 at 1:43 pm #

    So now we’ll be faced with Peak Dingleberry.
    ———————-
    PS: I used to live in Iowa City, IA, where they actually named a road “Dingleberry Road.”
    I’m not kidding — Google Map it and see.

  439. CaptSpaulding January 22, 2010 at 2:06 pm #

    I can’t help but wonder where the Pissant went. No doubt off somewhere licking his wounds after being “hoisted by his own petard” by KRYO. Perhaps that should be changed to “hoisted by his own FUCKTARD”. I for one, applaud KRYO for attempting to expand the pissant’s intellectual horizons beyond a knowledge of Rob Zombie movies. Regards to all, The Captain.

  440. asoka January 22, 2010 at 2:23 pm #

    Writings about permaculture go back as far as 50 BCE.
    In the first century, Columella wrote, “The earth neither grows old, nor wears out, if it be dunged.” He also recommended grains in rotation with legumes and fallow. Cato, Varro, Palladius, Vegetius and Pliny the Elder also wrote about soil building and conservation techniques.
    So, we’re supposed to think it is woo-woo until “science” pronounces on it in peer-reviewed journals?
    The USA National Agricultural Library has put together a nice bibliography called, Tracing the Evolution of Organic/Sustainable Agriculture, which you can view at:
    http://www.nal.usda.gov/afsic/pubs/tracing/tracing.shtml
    Definition of Permaculture
    Permaculture:
    A contraction of “permanent agriculture,” the word “permaculture” was coined by Australian Bill Mollison in the late 1970s.
    One of the many alternative agriculture systems described as sustainable, permaculture is “unique in its emphasis on design; that is, the location of each element in a landscape, and the evolution of landscape over time.
    The goal of permaculture is to produce an efficient, low-maintenance integration of plants, animals, people and structure… applied at the scale of a home garden, all the way through to a large farm.”
    [John Quinney, "Permaculture in the United States," The New Alchemy Quarterly (Spring 1986) 23: p. 3.]
    [See also, Andrew Jeeves, Introduction to Permaculture and Bill Mollison, The Terrible Time of Day (Pamphlet I in the Permaculture Design Course Series, published by Yankee Permaculture). Available at Barking Frogs Website: http://www.barkingfrogspermaculture.org/PDC_ALL.pdf

  441. asoka January 22, 2010 at 2:26 pm #

    messianicdruid said: “God takes the “blame” for everything that happens, and has promised to make it right in the end.”
    Of course God takes the blame. God created it. God allows the earthquakes to destroy infants, even infants still in the womb.
    “and [God] has promised to make it right in the end.”
    Promises, promises.
    There is no end.

  442. trippticket January 22, 2010 at 2:34 pm #

    “These botanicals can be used for termite control singly and in combination.”
    Permaculture would ask,’Instead of finding a better way to do this we should ask the question, “do we need to do this at all?”‘
    Think those earthen Nubian vaults you love so much have problems with termites?

  443. trippticket January 22, 2010 at 2:36 pm #

    While we’re on the subjects of Asoka and permaculture, and although it’s obvious that his knowledge of the subject is increasing rapidly, “globalisation” and “permaculture” have nothing to do with each other…
    Just for the record.

  444. asoka January 22, 2010 at 2:43 pm #

    Tripp,
    points noted.
    Earthen structures have no trouble with pests.
    Globalization can be defined in many ways but is primarily thought of as economic.
    My use of globalization is referring to the transnational circulation of ideas, languages. The Web is furthering globalization by facilitating transnational communication.
    In the case of permaculture, through globalization we benefit by knowing what New Zealand and Australia have done in permaculture.
    Think globally, research globally, act locally.
    Que viva permacultura!

  445. trippticket January 22, 2010 at 2:50 pm #

    “So, we’re supposed to think it is woo-woo until “science” pronounces on it in peer-reviewed journals?”
    Pangolin had a bad experience with permaculture. That’s all. (S)he is not alone. There ARE woo-woos in the movement. Lots of ‘em. And some of them are even instructors. Ever heard the term “due diligence,” Pangolin? You don’t buy a car without researching its pros and cons; why would you try to learn permaculture without researching the instructor?
    And some trees that are planted should’ve never been planted where they were. They will die. That’s how it works. But if I plant 10,000 trees based on my knowledge from a career in ecology, before I even get to permacultural wisdom, how many more living mature trees will I have planted than someone who didn’t bother?
    Pangolin can view the world however Pangolin wants. That’s Pangolin’s perogative. I wasn’t requesting help with planting my 10,000 trees.
    Although I wasn’t necessarily looking for obstacles and detractors either.
    But permaculture would say that the problem is the solution. And a Zen master might add that the obstacle is the path.

  446. Qshtik January 22, 2010 at 3:06 pm #

    “hoisted by his own petard”
    ======================
    OUCH!! I’ve never been hoisted by my own petard but I’ll bet it hurts like a bitch.

  447. trippticket January 22, 2010 at 3:07 pm #

    “My use of globalization is referring to the transnational circulation of ideas, languages. The Web is furthering globalization by facilitating transnational communication.”
    Indeed it is! I discovered permaculture through its Australian co-originator on the web. And good on you (as they would say) for pointing that out.
    We might add to this thread that one of the benefits we’ve experienced to date through physical globalization is something akin to “hybrid vigor” (or “hybrid vigour” to Cash) for our species. We see clearly what generations of race breeding does to dogs and horses. I think we can assume the same for humans.
    And here, before we settle back down into our local village economies, we get to enjoy the genetic and cultural benefits of hybridizing with humans from remote parts of the world. (If nothing else, pasta and pad thai;)

  448. trippticket January 22, 2010 at 3:15 pm #

    “I went to a workshop on such where the leader, who is indeed a farmer, had us do games that i think should be left to indergarten! ‘sensitivity training'”
    Asia, I think you and Pangolin need to do your homework! There are tons of phenomenal permaculture instructors who disdain what you are both talking about more than you do…

  449. trippticket January 22, 2010 at 3:24 pm #

    “Nobody who promotes permaculture is an atheist because that sure as hell isn’t science. That leaves faith.”
    No, “atheism” requires faith. God’s NON-existence can’t be proven any more than his existence can. Most permies are GOOD scientists; you know, the kind who leave certainty in the realm of the religious where it belongs.

  450. asia January 22, 2010 at 3:38 pm #

    ‘through globalization we ‘
    globaloney…..thru communication people can know what theyve done…globalizations dying!

  451. trippticket January 22, 2010 at 3:40 pm #

    “For starters the bulk of the rainfall comes from oceans and also lands on oceans since that’s the bulk of the planets surface.”
    Doesn’t have much to do with growing human food though, does it? Trees are the primary transpiration vessels for rain on land…where we grow crops. Where I live in Washington (near the ocean’s influence respectively) is far drier than where my father lives in Iowa, or where my mother lives in Georgia.
    I think you’re just being argumentative for argument’s sake. Most of the stuff you listed – contouring, biochar, coppicing – is all explicitly part of the permaculture apparently not taught by your woo-woo instructor, and all practiced by me.
    Again, I’m sorry you didn’t get a good instructor. It DOES make all the difference.

  452. Qshtik January 22, 2010 at 3:41 pm #

    I am quite tired of hearing about permaculture and God/god. Starting right now, and extending till this craze peters out, I’m going to speed scan all comments from Tripp, Asoka, Vlad, Pangolin, Messi, Diogen, et al and if I spot either friggin word I’m skipping the comment.

  453. asoka January 22, 2010 at 3:47 pm #

    Tripp said: “leave certainty in the realm of the religious where it belongs.”
    Right on! Science is not about certainty! Scientists recognize a range of degrees of certai