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Gassy Politics

      First: Paul Sabin’s stupid op-ed in The New York Times Saturday shows how intellectually bankrupt and pusillanimous the “newspaper of record” has become, in step with the depraved and decadent empire whose record-keeper it supposedly pretends to be. Sabin is flame-keeper for the theories of the late cornucopian demi-god Julian Simon, a business school professor whose great idea stokes the wishful thinking that has overtaken a class of American leaders who ought to know better, and spread through the public they serve like a fungal infection of the brain. The core of Julian Simon’s great idea is that material resources don’t matter; human ingenuity will overcome all limits.

     Maybe that’s a temporarily comforting thought for leaders in business, media, and politics, who don’t want to face the realities of peak resources and climate change, but it guarantees a harsher economic outcome since the wishful public will do nothing to prepare for the very different terms of daily living that are already shoving them into hardship and desperation.

     Julian Simon, who died in 1998, is best remembered now for a bet he made in 1980 with biologist Paul Ehrlich, author of The Population Bomb. The bet was supposed to determine whether the converging difficulties of our time should be taken seriously. The two men picked a menu of commodity metals and bet whether the price would rise or fall by 1990. Ehrlich bet that scarcity would drive the price up; Simon bet that they would go down. Simon won the bet only for temporary circumstantial reasons, namely that the last great discoveries of cheap, easy-to-get oil ramped into full production by the mid-1980s and pushed a final orgy of global industrial development until 2008, when things really started falling apart. By then, Julian Simon has been dead for a decade.

     Simon’s idea lives on in the wishful thinking around shale oil and gas, which have led the American public and their leaders to believe that we’re in an “energy renaissance” that will lead to “energy independence.” Just the other day, Senator John McCain made the inexcusably dumb remark that the US is now a net oil exporter. This is a man who ran for president five years ago, talking completely out of his ass.

     Now oil is well over $100 a barrel, a price that the American economy, as currently configured, cannot endure. That price is crushing the kind of activity we have depended on lately: the house-building and lending rackets associated with the creation of suburban sprawl. $100 oil is especially corrosive to the problems of capital formation, because without more racket-driven “growth,” we can neither generate new credit, nor pay the interest on old credit. We’ve used accounting fraud in banking and government to cover up this failed equation. But it has only led to greater deformities in markets and a general fiasco in the management of money all around the world, and it is spinning out of control right now. If these conditions were to crash the global economy and the price of everything fell in a deflationary depression, with oil back under $60 a barrel  — then it would not pay enough to frack the shale rock, or drill miles under the ocean, or do any of the very expensive operations of what’s called unconventional oil recovery.

     For The New York Times to keep hauling out the sorry-ass figure of Julian Simon to “prove” a specious and dangerous point surely shows the limits of one thing: intelligence in the media. Because of that and other related failures in the transmission of ideas, this is now a nation that cannot construct a coherent narrative about what is happening to it.

     Now, second: Syria. The world has pretty much lined up against President Obama’s proposal to issue a cruise missile spanking to Syria for supposedly gassing its own citizens. Nobody thinks this is a good idea, some for reasons of tactical advantage and some on the idea’s basic merit, or lack of. Mr. Obama pulled his punch over a week ago by standing down and taking the issue to congress for approval. I’m convinced he did that because he would have been impeached for launching an overt act of war — despite similar actions by his recent predecessors. The proposed spanking was a bad idea from the start. There was no visible threat to the national interest from Syria’s bad behavior within its own borders. The gas attack was a terrible act of depravity, but firing missiles into Syria wasn’t going to bring back the dead. It was only going to cause more death. There’s no advantage to the US for supporting either side in the Syrian civil war. The spread or deepening of any kind of disorder in that region will threaten a critical portion of America’s oil imports.

     In the background of this, things are becoming unstuck in the seriously ill and constipated realm of international banking. The aforementioned deformities caused by central bank interventions, market manipulations, Too Big To Fail carry-trade rackets, and misreporting of financial data have begun to shred currencies in nations at the margin (India, Brazil, Indonesia) and that illness may prove contagious. The global economy depends on some basic faith that major financial institutions are sound, and that they trade in sound instruments that represent real wealth. That is all being called into question now, and how long will it be before a general paralysis freezes the entire letters-of-credit system that underlies global  commerce?

     The Syria soap opera has also managed to upstage the imminent mud-wrestling match between congress and the executive branch over the national debt limit and related matters of government spending. These problems appear for now to be completely intractable.  If the government overcomes the latest version of this recurring dilemma, it will only be due to generating even more layers of accounting fraud to an already well-papered piñata that is just waiting to be smashed. While this goes on, the American public gets pushed deeper and deeper into a financial abyss, haunted by re-po men, lying bank officers, verminous lawyers, and chiseling hospital administrators.

      All this is a recipe for a political explosion. What happens if the US Government starts gassing its own citizens? It happened in 1967. That one only made people cry. Maybe next time, they’ll use a different kind of gas.

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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.

239 Responses to “Gassy Politics” Subscribe

  1. ThomasPatrick September 9, 2013 at 9:46 am #

    ” All this is a recipe for a political explosion. What happens if the US Government starts gassing its own citizens? It happened in 1967. That one only made people cry. Maybe next time, they’ll use a different kind of gas. ”

    That’s exactly why some of us “crazy” preppers have been buying gas masks, just call me crazy, I wont be the one choking to death

    • K-Dog September 9, 2013 at 12:08 pm #

      I hope you remember where you put it when the time comes to use it!

    • Karah September 9, 2013 at 1:20 pm #

      It must be a very expensive gas mask that’s hard to breath through without an oxygen tank. Don’t forget you have to wear a non-porous suit with it for six hours depending on weather conditions and how widespread the contamination. This is why warfare is so expensive; all the accoutrements required to just move around the areas of dispute.

      Atropine is about 2$ per ml and the biggest size sold over the counter is 15ml in an eye dropper. This has to be constantly administered for hours after exposure to Sarin.

    • caseyf5 September 10, 2013 at 7:45 am #

      Hello ThomasPatrick,

      Have you ever seen military NBC protective gear? It covers the person completely. A gas mask will not protect any form of gas that can enter the body through the skin. You really need to upgrade your protection if you want to survive. The gases used will most likely be persistent and attack through any exposed skin. Good luck on your survival!

  2. ozone September 9, 2013 at 9:59 am #

    JHK sez:
    ” Maybe ["they'll think of something" is] a temporarily comforting thought for leaders in business, media, and politics, who don’t want to face the realities of peak resources and climate change, but it guarantees a harsher economic outcome since the wishful public will do nothing to prepare for the very different terms of daily living that are already shoving them into hardship and desperation.”

    Thank you for reiterating this point. The public is being pushed toward the brink faster and faster, and in greater and greater numbers as the clock ticks.
    When things get desperate, the desperate lose their thin veneer of civility. Then, anything can happen. Plenty of historical evidence to support this. Why is no one acknowledging this salient fact? I just don’t get it, I guess.

  3. George September 9, 2013 at 10:01 am #

    Regarding Syria and that Assessment posted on the White House website: though they claim that assessment was based upon declassified evidence, no evidence was included within the assessment or made available elsewhere on the White House website. If this is what has presented to the world, including President Putin of Russia, any resulting incredulousness in understandable. We need to see transcripts of intercept complete with operator/analyst comments that identify units, times, and key personnel before we commit to this as any harm done, assuming there’s an end game, will not be enduring.

    More importantly, omitting evidence and pertinent facts seems more and more to be the way things are done in official circles these days. Apparently we’re now expected to take things on mere faith alone?

    http://www.thesisa.org

    • Neon Vincent September 9, 2013 at 10:08 am #

      Thanks for posting your link. I’m finding your serialized book fascinating reading. I’m considering reviewing it on my own blog.

    • caseyf5 September 10, 2013 at 7:48 am #

      Hello George,

      It is tough to provide the documents when the source is being pulled out of someone’s anal orifice! In other words made up shit!

  4. mow September 9, 2013 at 10:02 am #

    the masses are asses

    • fashinrashin September 9, 2013 at 11:07 am #

      “Ours is not to reason why,
      Ours is but to drink and sigh…”

      Did this so much I had to go to A.A.
      I dont subscribe to too much “the sky is falling cant”, but there are many signs that the global teeter totter, wibbly wobbly of international financial smoke and mirrors is upon us.

      The biggie is what Congress will do with the debt ceiling. If the GOP and TeePee people blink in the House of Reps it could be “52 pickup” for the rest of us.
      Just grow your gardens people…..

  5. Neon Vincent September 9, 2013 at 10:06 am #

    “The core of Julian Simon’s great idea/ is that material resources don’t matter; human ingenuity will overcome all limits.”

    That is not new. That’s what I told my students last week when describing the attitude of mainstream economists of all types to resource depletion. When the supply drops, people will move on to a substitute or a means of increasing the supply will arise. That’s been the case throughout most of the history of economics since Adam Smith, particularly with energy. Wood and whale oil were replaced by coal and petroleum, with natural gas coming along later. Unfortunately, nuclear, solar, and wind don’t seem up the task of replacing them. The cornucopians would append “yet” to that sentence.

    In contrast, I presented the views of ecological economists who consider issues of resource depletion and pollution central to their analysis and who also think the system is unreformable. You were the first example I used, and your essay today presents that view well. My students know who you are.

    “Now oil is well over $100 a barrel, a price that the American economy, as currently configured, cannot endure.”

    The question becomes whether the economy can restructure itself before it collapses of its own weight to accommodate this price. So far, it’s coping, as auto sales returned to pre-recession levels last month. Of course, it took more than five years, also, let’s see how long that lasts, as happy motoring has peaked, even if it’s not dead yet.

    http://crazyeddiethemotie.blogspot.com/2013/09/august-good-month-for-business-as-usual.html

    “What happens if the US Government starts gassing its own citizens? It happened in 1967. That one only made people cry. Maybe next time, they’ll use a different kind of gas.”

    Gas us? They were already doing that to the people in Occupy the past two years, so that’s nothing new. A different kind of gas? I doubt they’ll spray us with “insecticide for humans,” which is what nerve gas is. Tear gas, rubber bullets, and tasers will be sufficient, unless people take the idea of “second amendment solutions” seriously enough to start a full-on civil war of our own. As long as the circuses keep coming, I doubt that will happen.

    http://crazyeddiethemotie.blogspot.com/2013/09/the-science-of-sarin-gas-from-discovery.html

    • Neon Vincent September 9, 2013 at 10:09 am #

      Ugh, a misplaced slash. I’ll be more careful next time.

      • K-Dog September 9, 2013 at 12:06 pm #

        I did it too. A a few comments down from here I wound up with too many italics just like you. It happens. Try to be perfect and accept that you can’t. I had the same reaction when I saw mine.

        Ugh

    • lsjogren September 9, 2013 at 1:11 pm #

      It was ridiculous that law enforcement chose in some instances to use heavy-handed tactics on such an ignorant and politically impotent band of losers as the occupy demonstrators were.

      Some threat to the status quo! Folks who probably have a hard time tying their own shoelaces.

      • caseyf5 September 10, 2013 at 7:53 am #

        Hello lsjogren,

        As opposed to you that when you are walking upright your knuckles are dragging on the ground!

  6. Eric Engelmann September 9, 2013 at 10:24 am #

    Many extremists argue that the 1993 gassing of Branch Davidian Christians was a massacre. Thankfully, there was only a domestic response (Oklahoma City), and no international military response to save women and children from a rogue government.

  7. wardoc September 9, 2013 at 10:28 am #

    The only concept that explains the gullibility, wishful thinking, and pure delusionality of the amerikan people is “idiocracy.” Watch the movie if you haven’t already. Its’ not really about 500 years in the future; its’ about NOW.

    The solution to all of our problems is Brawndo !!!! We can not only use it on crops, but we can drink it, and burn it in our vehicle engines. Don’t worry, be happy. The Brawndo corporation will take care of us all.

    • sitka1721 September 9, 2013 at 1:55 pm #

      “It’s got electrolytes!” Yes, 500 years from now seems awfully optimistic. I see evidence of “Idiocracy” all around me.

  8. BackRowHeckler September 9, 2013 at 10:40 am #

    And just a few minutes ago, on CNBC, listening in on XM Radio, I heard an economist predict ‘robust growth’ thru the end if 2013, and the US growing perhaps 4% by the end of next year. Also there will be very little inflation and an unemployment rate of below 5%. What this was based upon I do not know.

    –BRH

    • K-Dog September 9, 2013 at 12:01 pm #

      Maybe the memo that got shoved under his nose?

    • caseyf5 September 10, 2013 at 7:56 am #

      Hello BackRowHeckler,

      He was just pulling it out from his ass. He is most likely a paid in full (30 pieces of silver) economic whore who writes what his masters tell him to write!

  9. Greg Knepp September 9, 2013 at 10:56 am #

    We are certainly not an exporter of oil, though we do export some refined petroleum products. The real misunderstanding, though, has to do with this concept of ‘American Oil’.

    With the exception of the national oil reserve (a drop in the bucket in the grand scheme) there is no such thing as American Oil. Domestically extracted oil is owned by corporations – the leaders of which are answerable only to stockholders. Patriotism and politics play no part; it’s all about profit. Some of the stock in these corporations is controlled – either directly or indirectly – by foreign interests. But even American stockholders will put the purse before the flag. And the price will always be determined by what the the world market will bare.

    No value judgement here – this is just the way it is.

    • routersurfer September 10, 2013 at 10:53 am #

      I fear the day “The World Market” looks at the US dollar like Confederate script. Worthless to anyone but collectors. Say,did Saddam not want to price oil trades in something other than US greenbacks?

  10. Sunflower September 9, 2013 at 10:56 am #

    Whenever I read this blog, I always hear in the back of my head Jim Morrison singing that this is the end, my friend, the end?

  11. James Kuehl September 9, 2013 at 11:23 am #

    This one-two punch of an essay leaves me a little queasy. Might just be a little gas.

    Reminded me of presidential candidate Rick Santorum holding a chunk of shale rock and declaring it, “light, sweet, crude.” I wonder how the IRS would react if we sent them coal in April and said, “Here you go: diamonds!”

  12. K-Dog September 9, 2013 at 11:37 am #

    Gassy it is. From Sabin’s piece.

    “Setting aside the vagaries of market forces, can we continue to increase resource production and adapt to unprecedented environmental changes like global warming? Our past experience should give us some hope, but that hope should be greatly tempered by the realization that climate change is an unprecedented threat, and we really might not keep pace. “

    Always trying to wrap hard truth in a pretty cornucopian candy wrapper does nobody good. It will not make the bitter sweet.

    That our past experience should give us some hope is wishful thinking. On the contrary past experience shows clearly that we won’t do anything until it is far too late. Past experience has not prepared us for any ‘unprecedented’ threat, it can’t. An elliptical reference to our future like Paul Sabin’s does nobody any good. By trying to make everyone happy he winds up writing as you say ‘a stupid op-ed’ that blurs our resource depleted future behind a layer of false hope cheese cloth.

    “We face choices about our future direction.”

    No we don’t. Not many people ask what kind of world do we want to live in? Those who do assume incorrectly that others ask this question too. The truth is they don’t; only a very small minority of people ever asks this question and when they do some of them wind up bringing trouble to themselves.

    Our future is not a choice. We should be so lucky but the hubris of industrial society prevents sufficient self-examination to provide any choices and we suffer the constipation of denial. Our future suffering will be of a much different kind. A kind the right kind of intellectual Beano could have prevented. – K-Dog

    • Janos Skorenzy September 9, 2013 at 1:14 pm #

      Yes, now go further. If so few people ever ask where we are going, why on Earth do we let so many people vote? High IQ, owning property, and being financially solvent don’t guarantee vision, but they do kind of anchor any such vision in reality. In other words, they are necessary but not sufficient. Only such people would be capable of voting in people who do have real Vision – as opposed to people who promise them food stamps and phones.

      Woodrow Wilson estimated a mere 120,000 voters in a Colonial American population of 4 million. How can we get back to this?

      • BackRowHeckler September 10, 2013 at 6:34 am #

        The whole system is based upon voting for foodstamps and free cell phones. How else would democrats get elected? And don’t forget section 8 housing vouchers, free medical care, and low interest college loans (the biggest scam of all).

        • caseyf5 September 10, 2013 at 8:06 am #

          Hello BackRowHeckler,

          You are some piece of work. You better hope karma gets you!

      • routersurfer September 10, 2013 at 11:07 am #

        As a whole people can think if given correct information. We can kiss that idea goodbye! We have a ” Market Place” of ideas. READ the truth costs. You need money or time to find it. Why does the Insurance Industry buy into Global Warming? Because they have the facts & numbers. Bought fair & square. Our News services: Lame Stream just put out crap. Unless Mass Media becomes more open to reality the mass of over stressed, overworked CAN NOT get a grip on the world around them. People with real Vision tend to see the little people as servants. So, sorry. Not the path we should take. No rulers for me.

      • K-Dog September 10, 2013 at 2:49 pm #

        You say a high IQ does not guarantee vision? You are scaring me. I agree with you.

        I think the Diebold company is getting you back to your 120,000 number. That number works out to just a few percent of the ‘one percent’. Once e-voting is fully up and running only about 120,000 will be casting any votes that count. Everybody else will just be casting votes that don’t count. Your dream of ‘getting back to this’ is almost here.

  13. nsa September 9, 2013 at 11:40 am #

    Jimmie……you are wrong again…….our energy analysis crew here in Langley researched this subject thoroughly. Cheap, greenie electricity will be provided by LFTR thorium reactors…..which are very clean, safe as the reaction is self-limiting with respect to heat, and thorium reactors are not suitable for producing weapons grade materials. And thorium is plentiful and everywhere. This abundant supply of electricity will be used to create hydrogen for the new fleet of cars and desalinization plants to provide abundant fresh water to arid locales. The oil is to be preserved for the planets elites, and of course our valiant military……with control of the main puddles used as a leash around the neck of our upstart competitor, China.
    Oh, and Jimmie, watch what you say about the NYT, one of our prop-info assets……the editor has a predilection for very very young shicksa if you follow my drift and prints anything we want…….

    • K-Dog September 9, 2013 at 11:53 am #

      Just a thought. – Not knowing details I’ve read our undeveloped domestic supply of rare earth metals is contaminated by radioactive thorium. I wonder if fascination with thorium reactors actually comes about because of this fact. A bit of creative marketing ahead of the prospectus? Do you know?

      • ozone September 9, 2013 at 12:15 pm #

        They joke with us yet again (in an Orwellian sense).
        It does lighten the mood, does it not?

        • K-Dog September 10, 2013 at 2:53 pm #

          With radioactive thorium the mood isn’t just light. It’s positively glowing.

        • K-Dog September 10, 2013 at 3:04 pm #

          “Logic comes in many degrees, my friend. If I hold a stone in one hand and you guess that hand correctly, the following time I may switch hands. Or I many retain it in the same hand, calculating you might think I would switch. Or I might switch hands on the basis that would expect me to reason as I did. Or…” - Robert L. Fish.

          A quote ending in “…” what could be better than that for an inside joke.

          • K-Dog September 10, 2013 at 3:07 pm #

            I guess just dot dot.

    • jdcandon September 9, 2013 at 11:55 am #

      Yes,NSA

      But we still need the light water reactors to brun up the weapons

      grade material.

      Dynan

  14. jdcandon September 9, 2013 at 11:44 am #

    In the Gospel last Sunday, an historical figure from 2000 years ago

    advised that before you build a tower, have a complete plan and

    enough money to finish the job. A great teaching that should apply

    to ALL state and federal programs. In one of the readings from the

    Book of Wisdom, it was suggested that one ask God for help when

    anxious or uncertain. I do daily and God’s answer is always germain

    and comforting.

    Dynan

    • djc September 9, 2013 at 6:32 pm #

      I agree with your post and Sunday’s Gospel is a perfect roadmap for returning sanity to our insane world.

      djc

  15. edr September 9, 2013 at 11:47 am #

    Economics assumes unlimited resources and adequate time frames for all that assumed human inventive ability to work with which amounts to a whole lot of hand waving over a substantiation of it all. The claims are religion not science.

    But since economists tell us this, and they must know (right?) so we ignore that perfect storm resource depletion, out of control population growth and climate chaos coming over the horizon.

    • K-Dog September 9, 2013 at 11:59 am #

      Mainstream economists do. There actually are economists that deal with the workings of steady state (non-growth) economies and resource depletion scenarios but they are uncommon. The perfect storm of resource depletion, out of control population growth and climate chaos is not ignored by them. Unfortunately they themselves tend to be ignored.

  16. johannus September 9, 2013 at 12:14 pm #

    Yiddish spellcheck time.
    According to the Leo Rosten International Dictionary of Yiddish and Jokes, it’s SHIKSA or SHIKSEH.
    Another interesting aside: the correct spelling of shlub is actually ZHLUB or ZHLOB. I wonder if that’s where the anglicized word slob came from? Anybody?
    A well-educated populace is a happy populace, no?

    • Janos Skorenzy September 9, 2013 at 1:32 pm #

      And tell them what shiksa means too. You aren’t embarrassed are you?

      • johannus September 9, 2013 at 7:02 pm #

        Shiksa defined by the Standard Wagnalls & Funk Yiddish Dictionary is a non-Jewish woman or a non-Orthodox or pious Jewish woman woman who does not keep a kosher household.

        Yes, I AM embarrassed for omitting this definition, please forgive me. I was trained to give readers the benefit of the doubt. Thus I doubt you won’t forgive me.

        • Janos Skorenzy September 10, 2013 at 12:51 pm #

          It’s a pejorative for Gentile Women meaning whore. I don’t forgive you because you are a liar.

    • caseyf5 September 10, 2013 at 8:10 am #

      Hello johannus,

      Probably from some shlub! lol

  17. pequiste September 9, 2013 at 12:20 pm #

    Thanks for addressing the gas problem Jim. It’s a win-win for all the troublemakers as Barry O. has painted himself into a “red line” corner with no way out. If he attacks he will be shown to be the Nobel Peace Prize president par excellence and would help that firm U.S. ally Al Qaida. If he doesn’t attack he loses all street cred with those other neighborhood bad boys: Vlad Putin, Iran’s mullahs, and the various and sundry other Izlamik extremists with Hezbollah and Palestinian varietals popping immediately into mind. With a prime- time address tomorrow night I think the E.B.I.C. ( evil bastards in-charge) controllers want a show down so bad he will somehow make the case that that attacking Syria ( with a limited 90 day mandate bien sur) will be an act of U.S.self -defense. As a sidebar to this WMD mess – it proves again, apodicticly, that the United Nations is just a Manhattan -based county club for well placed international political hacks, technocrats, bureaucrats and family members, not an organization that can actually make a difference when it comes to the use of punitive force concerning international criminal behavior (also see Tibet occupation, Palestine issue and many other chronic abcesses.) Time to close it down and make room for the homeless or better yet provide a 99 year lease ( at one dollar a year) to Mike Bloomberg as a retirement gift from NYC.
    I think the NY Times is perfect for birdcage liner – one Sunday issue covers the whole year.
    Regarding the pataphysical pronouncements from the economic pundits: its just that – imaginary solutions from people not getting out enough. Give these types of experts a two day vacation to say Newark, Camden, Detroit or St Louis and they might get an inkling of whats going on and, by extension, what’s coming.

  18. ZrCrypDiK September 9, 2013 at 12:51 pm #

    OMG! I whuz watching Book TV all weekend on CSPAN2, and they kept playing this commercial about a book called “The Bet,” an interview that aired last night at 9PM. It sounded interesting to me, so I tuned in. Sadly to say, it made me cringe horribly the entire hour – in the rare instances that resources were even discussed, no mention whatsoever of fossil fuel depletion or our complete dependency on it.

    It turns out this book is written by the very same Paul Sabin above, about, “:Paul Ehrlich, Julian Simon and Our Gamble over Earth’s Future.” I have a funny feeling I know what JHK whuz watching last night!!!

  19. K-Dog September 9, 2013 at 12:52 pm #

    Jim sez:

    Mr. Obama pulled his punch over a week ago by standing down and taking the issue to congress for approval. I’m convinced he did that because he would have been impeached for launching an overt act of war.

    And in in the Washington Post from Saturday:

    “The Obama administration secretly won permission from a surveillance court in 2011 to reverse restrictions on the National Security Agency’s use of intercepted phone calls and e-mails, permitting the agency to search deliberately for Americans’ communications in its massive databases, according to interviews with government officials and recently declassified material.”

    The approval rating of Mr. Obama is currently around the fifty percent mark. I wonder if had it not been for the revelations by Mr. Snowden would Syria have already been droned? If Mr. Obama’s approval rating were higher would more Syrians already be dead?

    • K-Dog September 9, 2013 at 1:07 pm #

      Monday, September 09, 2013

      The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Monday shows that 45% of Likely U.S. Voters approve of President Obama’s job performance. Fifty-four percent (54%) disapprove.

      I checked my fifty percent figure. It is a bit lower now.

  20. lsjogren September 9, 2013 at 1:06 pm #

    The notion that resources could become scarce has now become an inconvenient truth to the progressives.

    Thus they are now aligned with the right wing cornucopianists on issues like energy and immigration.

    Energy scarcity is an inconvenient truth because it suggests that we may not be able to fry the planet from fossil fuels simply on account of the fact that we will run out of fossil fuels before we will have been able to do it. Thus it sheds doubt over whether AGW is going to be as bad as those most vociferously concerned about it claim it will.

    Resource scarcity is an inconvenient truth because the only rationale by which we can have mass immigration and retain something more than a stone age standard of living is if there are no limits to natural resources.

    • sitka1721 September 9, 2013 at 2:13 pm #

      Your second stupid comment so far today. First, you claim that OWS folks needed help tying their shoelaces as well as being a bunch of hapless fools and now you claim that progressives are aligning themselves with right-wingers about resource issues and immigration. Where do you get this crap? Are you some paid troll? Either way, you are just embarrassing yourself.

      • lsjogren September 10, 2013 at 8:26 am #

        My comments may have been derisive, but at least I did include some substantive assertions, whereas your comments are pure ad hominen commentary devoid of any substantive content.

      • Janos Skorenzy September 10, 2013 at 1:21 pm #

        What, the Left and the Right are united on mass immigration, one for ideological reasons and the other for economic. Some of the Republicans have rebelled realizing (very late in the game) that mass 3rd world immigration means the end of them.

        And Democrats and Liberals are well represented in corporate board rooms. Our “Socialism” is going to be a very strange one, one lead by Billionaires. Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged is proving prophetic.

  21. Janos Skorenzy September 9, 2013 at 1:31 pm #

    Ed Asner says Hollywood is quiet on the coming Syrian war because they don’t want to be seen as racists for being against Obama. A confession of moral corruption is ever there were. So much for the contents of character and being color blind. Compare their muted grumbling now with their strident activism against Bush’s War. Idolatry is never consistent with morality. They’ve made a god out of Blacks in general and Obama in particular, and now they are too spiritually weak to throw it off.

    http://www.newsmax.com/Newsfront/asner-hollywood-syria-obama/2013/09/08/id/524400

    • sitka1721 September 9, 2013 at 2:20 pm #

      Glen Ford, an African-American and writer for “Black Agenda Report” (which I recommend) has no such problem criticizing Mr. Nobel Peace Prize. He has stated that Barry Obmber is the “more effective evil”. The continued support or lack of justified criticism of this betraying scoundrel from “Liberals” is further evidence that the “It’s not evil when WE do it” still exists among the people who voted for him. Chris Hedges has also written extensively of the failure of liberals to make genuinely moral choices and work against these elites just because they have a “D” after their name.

  22. Karah September 9, 2013 at 1:44 pm #

    “…the American public gets pushed deeper and deeper into a financial abyss, haunted by re-po men, lying bank officers, verminous lawyers, and chiseling hospital administrators.”

    A list of jobs NOT for the pusillanimous. The people described here support economic warfare: make it impossible for other countries to function by buying out their suppliers.

  23. Janos Skorenzy September 9, 2013 at 2:25 pm #

    Whose war? The American Jewish Establishment has thrown their weight behind it. Abe Foxman of the ADL and Marvin Hier of Wiesenthal said that not helping the Syrians is like not helping the Jews back in ’42. Utterly shameless. Obviously this is the first step in taking down Israel’s main enemy, Iran.

    http://buchanan.org/blog/just-whose-war-5852

  24. Smoky Joe September 9, 2013 at 2:31 pm #

    JHK writes about $100/barrel oil:

    “That price is crushing the kind of activity we have depended on lately: the house-building and lending rackets associated with the creation of suburban sprawl.”

    I’ve come to disagree with Jim about this. I think the shale boom is real, though how long it endures is another matter. These wells play out fast.

    As for crushing anyone, that price get ignored by the upper class who drive $50,000 SUVs. Others with more sense who hold jobs have replaced their land-forts with sensible vehicles as soon as the old dinosaur wore out. That’s what I see on the roads here: more Ford Focuses and fewer Expeditions.

    We’ll see where it leads. For now, anyway, there is renewed interest in sprawl and motoring. And the poor, who cannot buy new cars or afford long commutes? They are screwed and in this political climate, they won’t get any help from their states, let alone from a President who has forgotten his environmentalist supporters and any concept of scarcity.

  25. wrolley September 9, 2013 at 3:03 pm #

    As for the NY Times, I see little difference between the writer cited and the Times resident Nobel economist. Both accept the general premise that growth is the Holy Grail of economic objectives. That means Krugman differs little from Larry Summers. They should all be put on suicide watch because all that growth is suicide for humanity.

    Like to see the Times offer Krugman’s space to Brian Czech or Herman Daly.

  26. James Howard Kunstler September 9, 2013 at 3:05 pm #

    I never said shale oil/gas was not real. I said it would prove to be hugely disappointing and short-lived.
    –JHK

    • Smoky Joe September 9, 2013 at 4:47 pm #

      We’ll see if shale has a 20-year play or a 5-year one. I wish we’d use this as a “bridge fuel” to something that might keep civilization going with some technologies we enjoy. But as drillers for oil FLARE OFF the extra gas, rather than capture it, it’s like the 50s all over again.

      Does not bode well for long-term planning for a crisis.

      • Karah September 10, 2013 at 10:50 pm #

        Whatever plans are made now to avert a particular economic crisis in the near future (because the NEAR future is all men have been able to effectively plan for) are futile. We are witnessing the pillaging of the Earth under the guise of “progressive prosperity”.
        The time factor is important in determining if the initial players feel the pain within their lifetime. Madoff had over twenty years before his bluff was called. After the first 5 or 10 years of mining people’s wealth, you have to wonder what was going through his head.
        Did he actually believe he was going to be able to just will it over to his sons? Have all the movers and shakers in the shale oil bonanza taken any time to think about there being enough income on which to build a civilization? What are these people’s definitions of “civilized”? So far civilization as we know it is being defined as a few people with all the money and authority who distract the plebes from their ever sinking low station by gifting them theater in various “hi-tech” toys (i.e. cheap cars, phones, t.v., movies). Look at any website commentary or youtube contribution and our culture is manifest in the ignorant, violent, absurd and uncontrollable.

  27. Danny Martin September 9, 2013 at 3:11 pm #

    Wow. It’s just so amazing.

    When the newsmedia talks about the topics on which JHK has expertise — peak oil, suburbia, banking and finance — it gets everything, and I mean EVERYTHING, wrong.

    But, then, when it’s a topic on which JHK shows little interest or curiosity — gay marriage, women’s rights, black youth culture (as epitomized by Trayvon Martin) or military intervention in Syria — JHK’s opinions could have come straight off the transcript of a Mike Huckabee taping at Fox News.

    I love this blog, and I read every update and listen to the podcasts, so I say this to Jim as some one who I respect:

    GET A CLUE. The newsmedia is being as truthful about Syria as it is about peak oil.

    * They say the rebellion is dominated by bin Ladenists. This is about as truthful as the Bakken being a domestic Saudi Arabia. (The FSA, not Al Nusra, is the natural choice to lead a post-Assad Syria. This will only change if the West allows a long war of attrition to improve al Nusra’s fortunes and discredit the FSA.)

    * They say airstrikes won’t change the equation on the ground. This is about as truthful as saying we can run WalMart and Disneyworld on corn ethanol. (The destruction of Assad’s ground attack aircraft would shift the balance strongly towards a more level playing field for the rebellion. It would very likely change the outcome of the war and it would most definitely improve the humanitarian situation, since aerial terror-bombing is a key tactic of the regime.)

    * They say we will get dragged into an Iraqi-style quagmire. This is as true for Syria as it was for Bosnia, Kosovo, and Libya, and is about as true as saying that the Fed can restore the suburban-sprawl economy to full employment and rapid growth with loose money and the repurchase of its own bonds. (America’s standoff weapons give it a capability to strike with impunity, indefinitely, anywhere in Syria. This may not be sporting, but war is no sport, and no one promised Assad a fair fight.)

    • hillwalker September 10, 2013 at 9:10 am #

      Just a quick question/observation:

      Have you ever seen ‘the media’ (whatever that is) cover a story about which you have first-hand knowledge, and get the facts straight?

      I haven’t. what I have seen is the media use time-honored methods of reductive reasoning to remove as much ambiguity as reasonably possible.

      Which of course, means the result is wholly lacking in any substantive information.

  28. toktomi September 9, 2013 at 3:22 pm #

    On Syria…

    To me the elephant in the room is the exceptional level of public dissent over Obama’s desire to initiate another unprovoked war against a sovereign nation.

    Just as the overwhelming [western] public support for past U.S. military aggressions was scripted and choreographed from the highest levels, so too is the dissent now being scripted and choreographed.

    What’s up with that? What’s up with the soap opera theatrics?

    ~toktomi~

  29. debt September 9, 2013 at 4:16 pm #

    You’re so pusillanimous, oh yeah
    Nature’s callin’ an’ I must go, yeah

    – the Rutles

  30. sevenmmm September 9, 2013 at 5:10 pm #

    I half wonder if the military itself took an accounting of armaments inventory and concluded this country can’t afford to restock. And then there is half cocked Lindsey Graham hoping for a “see I told you so!” moment.

    • ozone September 9, 2013 at 5:55 pm #

      …Or perhaps the US military’s foreign creditors said:
      “You’re impinging on our INTERESTS. If you continue on your present course, we will no longer buy your country’s debt (Treasury paper). Mind your business or your so-called globalist economy will be a dim memory in about a month. Thank you for your understanding.
      Sincerely,
      BRICS, (etc.).”

      As far as the honorable Mr. Graham goes, he’s been handily elected and lustily cheered by the well-informed and luminously enlightened denizens of South Carolina. No more need be said.

  31. rube-i-con September 9, 2013 at 8:25 pm #

    Julian Simon is correct – when faced with so-called or actual shortages of material resources, we invent our way out of the predicament. All of Western European history and US history bears out this fact. Someone show me where we’ve backpedaled in our living standards due to a shortage of any resource, or failed to meet the challenge it posed by becoming smarter and inventing.

    Now oil is well over $100 a barrel, a price that the American economy, as currently configured, cannot endure

    Yep, seems we’ve been hearing this crybaby kunstlerism for, oh about a half decade at least, yet onwards chugs the economy.

    The newest studies of harnessing tropospheric winds show that they can be easily used to produce energy at sub-fossil fuel prices. And the blow continually and can provide MASSIVE amounts of high-efficiency, clean energy. Enough to easily run cities.

    Check out Kitegen.

    So, it seems the much maligned Julian Simon is spot on. It is ever-dark-seeing non-experts like kunstler that are constantly proven wrong by innovative risktakers employing and inventing new TECHNOLOGY, which is saving us, along with kunstler’s hips.

    You IQ 80 followers of his remind me of the guy that can’t see the wind, so it’s not there. We’re swimming in energy in the atmosphere, in space, in geothermal. We are only beginning to tap these literally unlimited energy sources.

    We salute you as we leave you behind.

    The great Charlton Heston: “I leave the 20th century with no regrets, but…one more thing, if anybody’s listening, that is. Nothing scientific. It’s…purely personal. But seen from out here, everything seems different. Time bends. Space is…boundless. It squashes a man’s ego. I feel lonely. That’s about it. Tell me, though, does man, that marvel of the universe, that glorious paradox who sent me to the stars, still make war against his brother…keep his neighbor’s children starving?”

    peace peaceniks

  32. Pucker September 9, 2013 at 8:27 pm #

    If they have to relocate 40 million people that would mean the end of the Japanese government and the Japanese system, and maybe the US system as well as everyone would lose faith?

    “Helpless Japan is on the verge of being destroyed by the Fukushima nuclear disaster, for which it has no solution. As the radiation leaks spread into the aquifer upon which Tokyo and surrounding areas rely, Japan is faced with the possibility of having to relocate 40 million people.”

  33. progress4what September 9, 2013 at 8:43 pm #

    Nice week’s work, JHK. And I’m beginning to think a “coherent national narrative” is genuinely up in the air right now.

    “For The New York Times to keep hauling out the sorry-ass figure of Julian Simon to “prove” a specious and dangerous point surely shows the limits of one thing: intelligence in the media. Because of that and other related failures in the transmission of ideas, this is now a nation that cannot construct a coherent narrative about what is happening to it.” …jhk…

    Dr. Sabin wrote an entire book on Erlich vs. Simon, so it’s a shame he has a negative impact on the coherent narrative.

    “Instead of using science as a resource for human betterment, conservatives who reject the evidence of human-caused global warming prevent the very creative problem-solving that Mr. Simon advocated. And if environmentalists like Mr. Ehrlich hadn’t urged action back in the 1970s, would all that creativity have been channeled into the cleaner air and water that we enjoy today?”
    ….sabin….

    So to Dr. Sabin, “conservatives” “reject evidence,” while “environmentalists” are of use only when they “urge action.”

    So, presumably, Dr. Sabin is a “liberal,” one who knows all truth
    and will, therefore, save us all.

    And it’s good to know that Sabin and those of his ilk can teach humanity to break the “iron laws” of physics, chemistry, biology, even “nature.”

    “Ultimately, humanity’s course will be determined less by iron laws of nature….” …sabin…

    Wow.

  34. progress4what September 9, 2013 at 8:54 pm #

    Speaking of coherence, and speaking of Syria, has there ever been an administration with a LESS coherent message about the use of US military force?

    “Kerry said the strike would be able to harm Assad without putting American troops on the ground and with a “very limited, very targeted, short-term effort.”

    “That is exactly what we are talking about doing, unbelievably small, limited kind of effort,” Kerry said.

    The comments, which dismayed even supporters of an attack on Syria, added fuel to the debate as Obama launches a full court press 48-hour media and political blitz to try to sell the plan to a skeptical American public and Congress.”
    http://www.politico.com/story/2013/09/syria-john-kerry-unbelievably-small-comment-96461.html Wow.

  35. Pucker September 9, 2013 at 9:18 pm #

    Nuclear energy was supposed to be a propaganda showcase showing how the government can control nature and wield the godlike power of the atom. Now, like some Michael Crichton novel, the government appears weak, feckless and losing control. No wonder they’re trying to make war and appear strong.

    If they have to relocate 40 million people that would mean the end of the Japanese government and the Japanese system, and maybe the US system as well as everyone would lose faith? Obama said that Fukashima is not a problem because by the time the radiation reaches California it will be diluted. I’m not sure that I’m convinced. No wonder they’re trying to distract everybody.

    “Helpless Japan is on the verge of being destroyed by the Fukushima nuclear disaster, for which it has no solution. As the radiation leaks spread into the aquifer upon which Tokyo and surrounding areas rely, Japan is faced with the possibility of having to relocate 40 million people.”

  36. Calico September 9, 2013 at 9:20 pm #

    Interesting link here:

    http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Middle-East/2013/0909/Leaked-Iranian-letter-warned-US-that-Syrian-rebels-have-chemical-weapons

    If it is true, then Obama is to blame for the chemical attach by his support of the Syrian rebels, despite Iran’s warnings.

  37. Pucker September 9, 2013 at 9:45 pm #

    Nuclear power is a rather tragic story. They never had to use nuclear power to generate electricity as alternatives were available. Hell, one can burn garbage and poop to make electricity. Making electricity is easy as you’re just converting from one form of energy to another. They did the Nuclear Power gig just as a propaganda show. Tragic…..

    • hillwalker September 10, 2013 at 9:13 am #

      actually, ‘they’ did the Nuclear Power gig to sell the people on nuclear technology, which they desperately wanted for their beautiful bombs.
      The people (that’s us) were rightfully horrified by this technological advance, hence the ‘Atoms for Peace!’ programs.

      Also, it was yet still another way for private weapons manufacturers to enrich themselves at public expense.

      After all, the highest and best use of public utility nuclear fuel is the management of weapon fuel.

  38. Pucker September 9, 2013 at 9:59 pm #

    What if They think that They’re not really making war in Syria, but rather just pretending to make war in Syria, like in the Michael Crichton movie Westworld”?

  39. BleatToTheBeat September 10, 2013 at 12:34 am #

    In our modern era, there is a king who has decided to use internationally denounced weapons to quell a popular uprising against his monarchy. There are treaties and historical precedent for acting against these humanitarian crimes.

    There it is. The death of NATO. If I could talk to Kurt Vonnegut, I would tell him that people have finally figured out a way to get past the Second World War.

    Never mind that the eastern Soviet satellite nations were allowed into NATO….
    (we swore that we wouldn’t)

    Never mind that tactical nuclear weapons have been deployed in these same countries….
    (we swore that we wouldn’t)

    WE are upset about the use of some modern military technology because….

    Why?

    It gets in the way of our righteous legalese?

    It’s a cheap and effective way for King Bastard to kill people?

    If these are satisfactory explanations, then all of the materially privileged people of this planet can shelve any further discussion of Rwanda and the Congo.

    Right?

    I’m kinda diggin’ the U.N. Solution. Inventory and Destroy.
    Sort of like Search and Destroy, but with a twist.

    There’s only one man for this job. Ya know him…..ya love him…..the inevitable

    Hans Blix

    CONCERNING THE U.S. MARINE CORPS:

    Jeezuz.

    After being aboard for this long, I’m pretty sure that they have had their fuckin’ fill of pinochle and swabbies.

    Do ya really want to turn them loose now?

    Banjo on deck!

    Get up there Sal
    We passed that lock
    Fifteen miles on the Eerie Canal

    And we’ll reach Rome
    Before six o’clock
    Fifteen miles on the Eerie Canal

    We’ve hauled some barges
    In our day
    Filled with lumber, coal, and hay

    And we know every inch of the way
    From Albany
    To Buffalooooooooo……..

  40. Arn Varnold September 10, 2013 at 1:02 am #

    Testing; error 404 WTF?????

  41. Arn Varnold September 10, 2013 at 1:07 am #

    One of my favorite quotes;
    “We’re all of us children in a vast kindergarten trying to spell God’s name with the wrong alphabet blocks.”
    Edwin Arlington Robinson

    The play acting I see going on, would shame an 8th grader off the stage.
    Infants all; my pet theory is; Americans do not mature after their senior year of high school; which would go a long way towards explaining this inane and immature charade called coalition building.
    Gods be good, where is Klatu…

  42. BleatToTheBeat September 10, 2013 at 1:46 am #

    Play Acting?

    Soldiers are still taught how to use bayonets.

    I’m submitting my nomination to the WTO.

    That’s right!

    You’re a candidate for the Douche of the Year Award!

    Congratulations!

    • Arn Varnold September 10, 2013 at 1:56 am #

      So, you think Obama and Kerry are not acting like douche bags?

      • Arn Varnold September 10, 2013 at 1:57 am #

        Oh, and I like your name calling; so, erm, mature…

        • BleatToTheBeat September 10, 2013 at 2:01 am #

          It’s me Crank that that desires your attention and wishes to be named.

          Maybelline?

          Arrrrrrgh….

          That’s it.

  43. BackRowHeckler September 10, 2013 at 5:55 am #

    Speaking of ‘Chemical Warfare’, I picked up this new book, ‘Napalm, An American Biography’, by Robert M. Near, 2013. What a remarkable substance! It was cooked up by the President of Harvard University, a Chemist, and a few of his Chemist friends, on Campus in a shed behind the old Harvard Football Stadium. This was in the late 1930s, when shade tree mechanics still held sway. Its like Hiram Maxim inventing the automatic machine gun (another prodigious killer) in his private library in Brooklyn in 1880, or the Wright brothers building a flying machine at their bicycle shop in Ohio in 1900. Really there wasn’t much to it: Gasoline, Aluminum Naphthenate, Coconut Oil (yes, Napalm is organic) and here you have a compound that burns a 2000dF, sucks up all oxygen, sticks to the skin and burns to the bone. First it was used in flamethrowers to great effect. Then, on March 9, 1945, it was deployed on Tokyo, incinerating 87,500 human beings in a single night and destroying the whole city. In the next 6 months 62 of the largest cities in Japan were Napalmed, liquidating 330,000 people. Chemical warfare was banned by WW2, but napalm was the chemical that did not dissipate upon detonation, but set everything on fire.

    I picked this book up by accident in a bookstore in a small town west of here. To me it seemed it might be relevant to what is happening now in regards to Syria.

    BRH

    • James Kuehl September 10, 2013 at 7:10 am #

      Napalm is amazing stuff, isn’t it? My child was watching a marine blow up a cave entrance after we invaded Afghanistan. “Wow, that was —- ”

      She paused and felt bad when it hit her that the people in the cave were killed. I told her not to feel guilty about her initial glee, because killing one another is one of the things we’re best at.

      I worked on weapons that fire depleted uranium bullets. The entire round is the size of a Coke bottle, most of which peels away after it leaves the gun barrel. What’s left is a pencil-sized rod so heavy and going so fast it can put a hole through a tank barrel.

      I want to puke when I see that horse’s ass John Kerry lecturing the world about the rules of war.

      • Arn Varnold September 10, 2013 at 7:45 am #

        Yeah, it’s called a sabot round; shedable jacket so as not to wear out the barrel’s rifling.
        Been used for more than 50 years for anti-tank rounds made of tungsten carbide; but depleted uranium is far more effective…

        • James Kuehl September 10, 2013 at 12:36 pm #

          You know your bullets. I used to write about this stuff for contractors. Technically, the sabot is the part that sheds away like a banana peel after guiding the depleted uranium rod down the barrel. There’s hardly enough radiation left in the D.U. to classify it as a dirty weapon. The D.U. is about the mass in the equation.

          Even as I bellied up to the trough, I was stunned at the amount of money and talent that goes into this technology. And this is the dumb stuff.

    • Janos Skorenzy September 10, 2013 at 12:58 pm #

      Napalm wasn’t used since then? Interesting. The Byzantines had a version of this called Greek Fire which was a their secret weapon against the Muslims.

      There really are some weapons too terrible to use. But they will be used sooner or later. I wonder if all that nerve gas is still being held underwater of the East Coast.

      • BackRowHeckler September 10, 2013 at 1:29 pm #

        Large amounts of Napalm were used in Korea and Vietnam. In fact I never knew the extent it was used in Korea 1950-53. According to the author, more napalm was used in Korea than in both theaters of WW2. He claims the entire Korean peninsula was incinerated, north and south, from the Yalu River to the Pusan peninsula.

        A program on the History Channel made the claim that if the A Bombs proved not to work in 1945, plan B was to inundate Japan with phosgene and mustard gas. The gloves were off by then, I guess.

        BRH

  44. BackRowHeckler September 10, 2013 at 6:43 am #

    Hey, Jim, if you’re looking in here, what do you make of Tokyo being awarded the 2020 Olympics? From what I understand Fukushima is still leaking radiation like hell. Maybe the Olympic Committee and Japanese Government figure they’ll have it all cleaned up by then. If nothing else its a vote of confidence for Japan and its ability to once again bounce back from, shall I say, things Nuclear.

    –BRH

    • Janos Skorenzy September 10, 2013 at 1:01 pm #

      Watch Repo Man. The idea that radiation is bad for you is a vicious lie.

      I once met a nut who was incensed at the idea that dead people were taken away to mortuaries. He felt if you Just Left Them Alone they’d be alright and get up after awhile.

      You must be disappointed that the War may not happen. It’s not going to be a very good year….

  45. budizwiser September 10, 2013 at 9:40 am #

    As far as the NY Times article goes – maybe us “visionaries” must concede even acknowledging a possibility of future calamity is better than no vision at all.

    For those readers -that have read the “times” essay and understand the reference to the bet about raw metal prices – I would offer another “bet” for future readers to ponder.

    My “bet” on technology would read as follows:

    As of the year 2020 – will there exist more factories producing precision ball bearings? Will there exist more factories producing diamond-tipped precision machining devices?

    I guess my point would be that we may still have resources available long after our centralized financial system and regional energy scarcity “crash” our ability to use them…..

  46. jdcandon September 10, 2013 at 11:20 am #

    Dear djc,

    Thank you.

    Until God destroys all the egos in Washington, the world will

    continue to be insane.

    I apologize for misspelling “burn” in another post.

    Dynan

  47. Mike Roddy September 10, 2013 at 11:31 am #

    There was another chemical weapons attack in the US in 1970 in Berkeley, when I was going to school there. Cops and Guardsmen cordoned off the campus, and helicopters dropped dozens of tear gas canisters. Students ran around screaming helplessly, since it got inside the classroom buildings, too.

    Result: Governor Reagan became even more of a hero, for “standing up to demonstrators”. It helped propel him to the presidency, since every hate filled right wing nut in the country lined up behind him.

    • Janos Skorenzy September 10, 2013 at 1:03 pm #

      And every hate filled left wing nut lined up behind Obama. Bet you did too.

  48. Cavepainter September 10, 2013 at 12:26 pm #

    Wait, wait, wait,……..no one here seems to understand that the US is no longer a sovereign nation, but instead is a colony of global finance (has been for………how long?). Citizenship is vacant of meaning, we’re now valued only as human capital against the whole of global population which explains the H1-B immigration clause. Why educate Americans when across the globe there are already well qualified professionals anxious to come here then “chain” in their relatives. Of course, those who’ve acquired advanced education in the over human capitalized (over populated) nations across Asia and the Middle East were able to do so only due to being part of the very, very slim wealthy minority of those nations. Still, because those nations are of such massive general population their “slim wealthy minority” of advanced education measures gigantic against the whole of America’s population. That being so trans-national corporations (which is what all big corporations are) steer our government – which they own – away from taxation for funding education in our nation.
    Too, our immigration policies have been juggled to influx vast numbers, bringing us ever closer to the desperation of the already over populated nations, making us ever more willing to surrender so called “bottled up” resources in public lands on justification of creating jobs – need for which grows with the ever growing population. That in addition to allowing our immigration policies to default to however many foreign nationals choose to ignore them.
    Try this; imagine all the service men returning from liberating nations abroad during WWII to find that the US had itself been invaded by illegal entry of 12 – 20 million foreign nationals who are demanding to be considered legitimate political force, campaigning for access to social and physical infrastructure benefit.
    I know, I know; rather than the US citizenry being seen as victims of global finance for having had their sovereignty and government sold out from under them they are to be judged by our beloved Liberal wing as “getting their due” (as though we as a people have been willingly and with full knowledge complicit in victimizing other peoples).

    • Janos Skorenzy September 10, 2013 at 1:10 pm #

      Yes the Leftists are thrilled at the idea of White Americans getting what’s coming to them. And to the extent Liberals are Leftists, they share this feeling. And that’s a lot of them since the Democratic Party has basically been co-opted by the Left. Of course most of them don’t realize that “our” Communism is going to be a very strange one lead by the super rich. They haven’t attained the Great Realization that Communism per se doesn’t exist, has never existed, and never will exist – since human beings are unequal. The whole thing was always just a means of the super rich to destroy the Aristocracies and now the Republics and their middle classes. Jacob Schiff of Kuhn, Loeb, and Co was one of the prominent money men behind the Russian Revolution.

  49. Janos Skorenzy September 10, 2013 at 1:41 pm #

    Get to the Back of the Retrogressive Stack – Owsers!

  50. Cavepainter September 10, 2013 at 2:13 pm #

    The anthropological record shows that sustaining social cohesiveness militated economy of the many (that is, within any discreet identity order), not just an over privileged, tiny minority, otherwise the many would cease cooperating for the “common good” — which often as not involved fending off others of different tribal order.

    Common identity whether of beliefs, values, language, etc., etc. (restricted diversity, in other words) was also essential binding aspects of “nationhood”. Here in America though we’ve been “politically corrected” to accept the false notion that there is no relevant contentiousness between cultures, whether one has a 11th Century perception of reality as opposed to one more aligned to a 21st Century European scientific perception.

    Well wha’ta hell though, Liberalism has come to be nothing more than religious like belief in secular ideals that are just as obtuse to reality as any doctrinal religious fundamentalism, hence the nonsensical belief that if America simply absorbs unlimited numbers and surrenders eating grass fed beef for minimum calories through a straw then 8 billion people can be sustained. Bullshit!

  51. bob September 10, 2013 at 6:55 pm #

    Human ingenuity is a double edged sword. If ingenuity could creatively function in a reality based system; which is one based in scientific principles .then it leads to greater sustainable functionality.
    When ingenuity functions in a high entropy environment as in our political / economic corporate state it has devastating consequences .
    It is now directed to feed the bottom line and maintain the status quo power structure.

  52. Pucker September 10, 2013 at 7:40 pm #

    [Communities that Abide]

    Did you know that the word “Apache” means “enemy”?

    That’s a bit odd….

    “Who are you?”

    “I’m Apache, your enemy….”

    Now there’s a tribe that can’t get along with its neighbors. “Those fuck’n Apaches. It’s always those fuck’n Apaches!”

    How would you like to have a family of Apaches move in next door in the suburbs? Rather than stealing your horses, they’d steal your car, or your lawn mower.

  53. Pucker September 10, 2013 at 9:02 pm #

    Do you remember Michelle Rhee, the Time magazine acclaimed DC school superintendent who claimed that she had found a way to solve the collapse of DC public school system? She is alleged to have dramatically raised the standardized test scores of students basically by firing all of the teachers.

    As it turns out, it appears that there may have been cheating on the standardized test scores. She may have just been pretending in the face of collapse.

  54. progress4what September 10, 2013 at 9:04 pm #

    Heck of a good website. JHK and several of you CFN regulars may already be aware of Gail Tverberg, but I was not.
    The following is from only one link. The “home” or “about” pages on the main website may be well worth a bookmark.

    Budizwizer, you especially will appreciate this article and this referenced comparison graph:
    “This comparison shows that in the competition for world oil supplies, the “All Other” countries are outbidding the OECD, where consumption has been declining since 2005. On a per-capita basis, the decline in OECD consumption would be greater, since population has been growing.” http://ourfiniteworld.com/oil-supply-limits-and-the-continuing-financial-crisis/

    • ozone September 11, 2013 at 9:42 am #

      Thanks for the link, Prog. Bookmarked for perusal…

    • budizwiser September 11, 2013 at 12:23 pm #

      I read most of the article -but I think the author should have narrowed focus and expounded thoroughly on a single aspect of the relationship of energy and economy.

      From “gailtheactuary”

      http://gailtheactuary.files.wordpress.com/2013/06/oil-consumption-by-part-of-the-world.png

      the chart says all I ever wanted to say about “peak oil” – and that is that rich people think the global market place will buffer discretionary consumption of petroleum” to the point that alternative resources will become available to maintain “their” standard of living. (not so much for me or you)

      It is already becoming evident that six-figure incomes are necessary to raise a family. In another decade – it may take a six-figure income to own and operate two or more motor vehicles.

      There is so much wasted energy among western nations -there is no way of mapping the geography of nowhere – at least not yet.

  55. Pucker September 10, 2013 at 9:09 pm #

    I can envision a tipping point in society when because of the collapse in ethics in society that the system is simply overwhelmed by fraud. The system is unable to prosecute fraud such that the overall risk of prosecution of fraud becomes quite small. At this tipping point, given the lack of ethics in society, it becomes a free-for-all to scam as much as possible and to abscond with the money before the Shit-Hits-The-Fan. Then society collapses.

    • ozone September 11, 2013 at 9:56 am #

      Looks to me like that overweighting of the scales has already been reached.
      As is mentioned above, the Syrian ‘issue’ is just another forwarding of carefully concealed motives covered with an entirely fraudulent ethical veneer. (Mostly banking and resource control, while trying to give the elbow directly to Russia and China. Remind me again who is behind the application of the might of the american military? And please don’t make anyone laugh by implying that it’s the representatives of the People. You have more integrity than that. :D)

      It’s all of a piece.

      • ozone September 11, 2013 at 9:59 am #

        Sorry, that would be “Newfie”, below…

  56. progress4what September 10, 2013 at 9:17 pm #

    BTW, I found “ourfiniteworld” courtesy of a blogger named Juhana who posts comments occasionally over at the ADR.
    http://thearchdruidreport.blogspot.com/2013/09/the-next-ten-billion-years.html And, also BTW, this week’s ADR is filled with some original thoughts.

    Back to Juhana, He’s a native of Finland, and writes based on his own life experiences and his study of the collapse of the USSR. Well worth consideration, and here’s a sample:

    “It seems to me that people who are aware about hard resource limitations facing us right now, but have strong New Left or neoliberal ideology as framework of their minds tend to think that after sudden resource crisis enlightened minority shall lead survivors into some kind altruistic version of sustainable society.”
    ….juhana @ adr….

    • Arn Varnold September 11, 2013 at 2:29 am #

      Your supplied link was a fun read. Thanks.

    • ozone September 11, 2013 at 9:58 am #

      I liked that one too.
      Consider me in the “delightedly intrigued” camp.

  57. Newfie September 10, 2013 at 9:37 pm #

    Is it possible the rationale for regime change in Syria is to facilitate the construction is a pipeline to ship natural gas from Qatar to Europe ? That would potentially replace Russian gas currently sold in that market, reduce their revenues and hence diminish their power and influence. There has to be an ulterior (economic) motive for US involvement. Nobody believes it’s about bringing democracy to the Middle East (the military just staged a coup in Egypt and the West quietly let it stand). Follow the money. It usually explains a lot.

  58. Pucker September 10, 2013 at 10:24 pm #

    Don’t you think that it’s a bit weird that the then existing DC Mayor, a young black dude like Obama, appointed an ethnic Korean with no education administrative experience to be the DC school superintendent? They obviously don’t know what They are doing, and, consequently, are grasping desperately for easy, simple answers.

    “Do you remember Michelle Rhee, the Time magazine acclaimed DC school superintendent who claimed that she had found a way to solve the collapse of DC public school system? She is alleged to have dramatically raised the standardized test scores of students basically by firing all of the teachers.

    As it turns out, it appears that there may have been cheating on the standardized test scores. She may have just been pretending in the face of collapse.”

  59. Neon Vincent September 10, 2013 at 11:54 pm #

    “The spread or deepening of any kind of disorder in that region will threaten a critical portion of America’s oil imports.”

    WNWO in Toledo had an “economic expert”–the CEO of the largest local credit union (what do you expect? Toledo)–who calculated the Syria fear premium cost the average driver $8/tank. That’s a concrete price for for saber rattling to “happy motoring.” Fortunately, the likelihood that cooler heads will prevail has reduced the fear premium already.

    http://crazyeddiethemotie.blogspot.com/2013/09/the-syria-fear-premium-continues-slowly.html

    • Arn Varnold September 11, 2013 at 3:00 am #

      Hm, I wonder…
      Obama seems to think we’ve reached some level of oil independence; which is pure hyperbole, IMO.
      But it might explain his hubris, no?

  60. Pucker September 11, 2013 at 12:11 am #

    If Sadaam was still in power, the price of oil would probably be much cheaper, right?

    Switching gears a bit:

    One thing that has always fascinated me about “public education” is that people don’t know shit about education. The proof-is-in-the-pudding, as they say.

    Somewhere along the line people have come to equate fun with learning.

    By some estimates as many as 50% of the graduates of private for-profit colleges in the US may be in default on their federal government school loans. There’s nothing “fun” about that.

  61. Pucker September 11, 2013 at 2:30 am #

    They also always say that “Education is an investment.”

    Like Options trading, or something…..

    • James Kuehl September 11, 2013 at 6:40 am #

      I recently worked for an architect who specializes in schools. Chalkboards and books have been replaced by big computer screens called a “smart boards.” They’re anything but.

      A home-made video shows two students and a teacher at one of these things, and the teacher is saying, “The purpose of these devices. . . ”

      One of the kids cuts him off and says, “To keep us entertained!” No one contradicted her. They are intellectually subservient to technology.

      It’s making us fat and stupid. The army says recruits can’t do the mandatory one pull up. They can’t find north on a map, and don’t know how conduct research in a library. Kunstler is prescient in forecasting a career tending crops n the fields for many of them.

      • Arn Varnold September 11, 2013 at 8:51 am #

        Ah, your feeding the trolls.
        Think about it…

        • Arn Varnold September 11, 2013 at 9:07 am #

          Actually, that should have been, “you’re” feeding the trolls…
          Sorry…

          • ozone September 11, 2013 at 10:48 am #

            Looking at the time-stamp on this reply, you can see their approximate time of arrival! ;)

          • James Kuehl September 11, 2013 at 1:21 pm #

            Arn,
            No foul on the typo–I had an extra “a” somewhere.

            Guilty on the troll-feeding charge.

            In an attempt to redeem my soul, I used to tell groups of students that it was time to outgrow the constant encouragement and prepare to find themselves facing the limits of their talent. Coach’s advice that, “quitters never win” doesn’t apply to everything. People who can’t sing on key make the choir sound awful. Sorry.

            I found with kids that most parental guidance is an irrelevant overlay. Kids sort things out, including most bullying we never hear about. Most bullies get set straight by other kids. Give me sandlot over Little League.

      • Neon Vincent September 11, 2013 at 10:11 am #

        “It’s making us fat and stupid.” Educational devices don’t have to be high-tech to do that. One teacher asked the following question over at Scientific American and I boosted her signal.

        http://crazyeddiethemotie.blogspot.com/2013/09/do-blackboards-make-teachers-stupid.html

        Of course, the high-tech equivalents may not be any better. I’m sure people here have heard of “Death by PowerPoint.”

  62. BackRowHeckler September 11, 2013 at 6:53 am #

    Not to belabor the point, but we’re 1/3 thru Sept. and there is no sign of economic and social collapse predicted earlier this summer. Right now its just the customary swindles and subterfuge we’ve all grown used to and take with a grain of salt. This whole Syria business is proving to be yet another dog and pony show … on an international scale! Why anyone would take that BS seriously, and, say, go out marching in the streets over it as occurred in New Haven a few days ago, is beyond me. There is always trouble brewing overseas, there always have been good times and bad times, markets and oil prices have always gone up and down, some politicians and business leaders have always been scumbags looking for the main chance since the days of Aaron Burr and James Wilkinso in 1805. I don’t know what is different now, except the fact we are here, this is our time,and, of course, we’re the most sensitive, fairminded, farseeing, eclectic, tolerant, wise, best educated, non racist human beings ever.

    BRH

    • Arn Varnold September 11, 2013 at 6:58 am #

      LOL, I like your closing sentence; very astute and ironic…

    • James Kuehl September 11, 2013 at 7:53 am #

      Good points here. For days after I read “The Long Emergency” I woke up surprised that the lights came on. The forces are glacial, in spite of leading up to a Seneca Cliff.

      Living in upstate New York provides many visible signs of economic and social collapse. Cities I recall as vibrant are decaying hulks of their former selves. Local governments are dissolving or combining to stay afloat. Closed bridges and abandoned manufacturing facilities abound.

      Travel to places where money still flows shows the startling difference between places enjoying an influx and those suffering from overshoot.

      • ozone September 11, 2013 at 9:37 am #

        “Travel to places where money still flows shows the startling difference between places enjoying an influx and those suffering from overshoot.” -J. Kuehl

        That would be places local to BRH and myself, such as Farmington, CT and Great Barrington, MA. These are conclaves of solidly wealthy folk (and of course, their not-so-wealthy servant class, whose various livings and businesses depend on them that’s got). However, we should consider what most of that wealth might be based on. Rather than hard assets (aside from inherited lucre), most of this is assorted extortions of insurance scams (backed by law, of course) and paper and electronic-byte trades. Further consider that these ‘industries’ are going to have a limited shelf life as we go forward. Hard assets and the extortion business will be transferred to those who have firsthand knowledge of the measured application of violence and its’ benefits and costs. Trust will be the order of the day, as in,”we say what we mean and we mean what we say; you’d be wise to do the same and honor your contracts with us”.

        For a little slice of life o’ the few and bestest in these parts:
        **I’m well-acquainted with Deercliff Road, having built a couple systems for shit-storage and filtering there. (Ah, the things one never sees… that shit just ‘goes away’ when flushed! It’s like magic.)

        http://www.luxuryhomesinct.com/results.php?county=hartford

        Think of the view! Well worth it at twice the price! Buy now!

        • BackRowHeckler September 11, 2013 at 12:50 pm #

          Hey Oz you know everyone in Great Barrington and Farmington not everybody is rich or a servant of the rich. And what wealth that is here is not based soley upon scams and financial swindles. There is value in these beautiful towns, the surrounding farmland, the forests, the industry, and hardworking everyday people. People like yourself, for example.

          –BRH

          • BackRowHeckler September 11, 2013 at 12:51 pm #

            I bungled that 1st sentence. Sorry.

          • Janos Skorenzy September 11, 2013 at 2:23 pm #

            Why not consider the Citadel as a retirement home? Walled villages are the future….

            http://www.iiicitadel.com/index.html

          • ozone September 11, 2013 at 6:02 pm #

            I fugger’d it out, and I do take your point.
            Perhaps one day a true accounting of “value” will return, and all this extraneous bullshit (swapping paper and legalized extortion*) will be seen as the [valueless] absurdity that it is.
            …Just because we happen to see what’s really valuable ’round these parts, certainly doesn’t mean the local movers and shakers do; they’re at too far of a remove, either by choice or hyper-specialized, educational niche-molding.

            *Although I must say that ACTUAL/criminal extortion is based on real value; nothing applezy-orangey there!

      • ozone September 11, 2013 at 9:38 am #

        …And I would agree that everything is a matter of perspective.

        • Janos Skorenzy September 11, 2013 at 2:26 pm #

          And all perspectives are equally valid? Comedian Cho is as beautiful as Michelle Kwan? Jackson Pollock is as good as Leonardo Da Vinci? Blacks are just as smart as Whites because they say so? Or because paid hacks say so? Or sentimental fools say so?

    • stelmosfire September 15, 2013 at 9:55 am #

      Mornin’ Marlin. It’s a beautiful day in the neighborhood. I dun ya proud. I just picked up a Collins ax at a local garage sale! Three bucks! how’s that for a sweet deal? Economic collapse? I’ll say you can’t make a sweet tool like this for three bucks. She has seen some use and is good for much more.

  63. Arn Varnold September 11, 2013 at 6:55 am #

    @ JHK who said, ” All this is a recipe for a political explosion. What happens if the US Government starts gassing its own citizens? It happened in 1967. That one only made people cry. Maybe next time, they’ll use a different kind of gas.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~
    I think our politicians have found a more effective “gas”; the gas is a government compliant media, constantly bombarding the people with a barrage of government supplied bullshit.
    It used to be called propaganda (and actually, it still is) but it’s been sanitized by the MSM; NYT, WAPO, WSJ, CNN, NPR, etc.; need I go on?
    No need for chemicals as long as mind control works via the compliant media….

  64. rube-i-con September 11, 2013 at 10:21 am #

    Not to belabor the point, but we’re 1/3 thru Sept. and there is no sign of economic and social collapse predicted earlier this summer.

    welcome to the realisation that jhk is just a never-ending wrongsayer who’s got things backwards. while there are tough times everywhere – when have there never been tough times everywhere? – the beat of progress goes on.

    kunstler never stops claiming the high price of oil will do us in. we’re switching to alternative clean energy while he gnashes his teeth, and are highly successful at it, even on country scales.

    the DOW keeps rising against his 4,000 prediction.

    anytime a leaf drops anywhere in the world kunstler screams “see! everyone must be quaking in their boots now!”

    it would be interesting to draw up a list of all his failed soothsaying, it would fill reams of space out here.

    but….if i were you i would take his advice, buy a mule and 40 acres and learn to plough, boy, because THAT’s the future kunstler ‘sees’.

    we’ll be populating the stars, literally, while jimmy k. continues to bleat his tired shtik about the end ‘o the würld.

    theory works very well in theory but not so much in reality.

    reality has one direction, and that’s forward, it’s called progress, and it won’t be stopped, at least not in the Western World.

    there are many more good people, intelligent people, inventive people than kunstler can imagine, many of them even in the South, that have produced real-world results that successfully addres so-called shortages of resources. all these make his foretellings a well-deserved laughingstock.

    dustbin of history, together with y2k, mayan calendar, etc.

    peace peaceniks

  65. ozone September 11, 2013 at 11:05 am #

    “First: Paul Sabin’s stupid op-ed in The New York Times Saturday shows how intellectually bankrupt and pusillanimous the “newspaper of record” has become, in step with the depraved and decadent empire whose record-keeper it supposedly pretends to be.” -JHK

    Here’s another blatant example of just such complicity with the puppet-masters:

    http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article36192.htm

    This time, lies about Syrian WMD.

  66. Rube, classic Cassandra story. The deal is Cassandras appear the fool: their predictions must be discredited. There is no ego-massaging justice for the Cassandras. Their stories are tragedies.

    By the way, there isn’t anything wrong with the Mayan calendar; it was quite accurate. Y2K was a huge boon-doggle, and only the efforts of countless computer guys from such companies as Initech prevented the toll booths from breaking down.

  67. beantownbill. September 11, 2013 at 11:47 am #

    Did anyone see Obama’s address to the nation last night? I didn’t because I can’t stand anyone lying to my face. It’s scary to me that we’ve placed our lives and our futures into the hands of incompetents. Never have I seen such inept geopolitical game-playing.

    First, Obama tries to get us involved in attacking another sovereign country, even though that country hasn’t attacked us or our allies. This alone is morally repugnant. Then he announces in advance to the world that in the very near future he’s going to “cruise missile” Syria, apparently without considering the consequences. When called on it by powerful countries with opposite stakes in Syria, his own allies demonstrate his lack of stature in the international communmity by not backing him, and making him appear like a fool.

    Then, he backs off his moral stance by stating all America is going to do is “punish” Syria by launching a very limited attack, as if he was a parent telling his kid there’s a time out. Next, his Secretary of State accidentally shoots his mouth off giving Putin the opportunity to come across as a statesman while backing Obama into a corner such that he now has to back off completely from any attack on Syria.

    • Janos Skorenzy September 11, 2013 at 1:03 pm #

      The Truth will Out. Vladimir the Great has defeated the Community Organizer. The Russians have a real Leader; we have a pack of traitors and time servers in charge. This was Putin’s Cuban Missile Crisis – and he and Assad came through with flying colors. I doubt if Barack even knows he came close to starting WW3 – nor would he care if he knew.

      The Zionists must be seething in fury. The whole purpose of this was to start breaking down Iran.

    • ozone September 11, 2013 at 6:46 pm #

      Did anyone see Obama’s address to the nation last night? I didn’t because I can’t stand anyone lying to my face. It’s scary to me that we’ve placed our lives and our futures into the hands of incompetents. Never have I seen such inept geopolitical game-playing.

      Beans,
      I emphatically agree, and personally, I’d prefer it if they’d desist with the geopolitical game-playing. Simply because I don’t think they realize how difficult it’s going to be to hold this diverse collection of states’ interests together in only a few scant years. Proper focus is required; looking stupid on the world stage reduces credibility in the “Homeland”/Faterland, if it should get bandied about enough by even a compliant and subservient press. (BRH would know.)

      • ozone September 11, 2013 at 6:55 pm #

        Pardon me, “Vaterland”.
        (Hope that brings back fond memories of successful putsches and eternal utopias.)

        • Janos Skorenzy September 12, 2013 at 12:38 pm #

          How will we ever know since the nascent New World Order felt it imperative to destroy it before other countries realized that you didn’t need the Bankers. You could have a flourishing economy without them and only without them long term. Why does a Nation have to borrow from them in order to create a currency? That’s like paying rent to live in your own paid off home.

    • Arn Varnold September 11, 2013 at 7:33 pm #

      I can no longer bear to hear, let alone look at, that lying bag of shit.

  68. Janos Skorenzy September 11, 2013 at 1:04 pm #

    Wisdom, Attend. http://www.barnhardt.biz/2013/09/05/a-muggeridge-quote/

  69. progress4what September 11, 2013 at 9:00 pm #

    “Then, he backs off his moral stance by stating all America is going to do is “punish” Syria by launching a very limited attack, as if he was a parent telling his kid there’s a time out. Next, his Secretary of State accidentally shoots his mouth off giving Putin the opportunity to come across as a statesman while backing Obama into a corner such that he now has to back off completely from any attack on Syria.”
    …beantown…

    It’s a mess, Bill. It is truly the most incompetent and PUBLIC bungling that a POTUS has ever done, ever in the history of, well, ever.

    And not to make you paranoid – but isn’t there a saying “There are no accidents in politics.” Supposedly either FDR or LBJ said this. They both certainly governed as though it was true.
    But I digress – –

    Is it possible that this whole stumbling, fumbling, flopping Obamazaster (sorry,JHK :-) ) was deliberately and brilliantly organized toward some goal?

    Stand by.

  70. progress4what September 11, 2013 at 9:12 pm #

    But what goal, you ask?
    Is it possible that Obama wanted to take Israel or AIPAC down a peg.
    As Janos says, “The Zionists must be seething in fury. The whole purpose of this was to start breaking down Iran.”

    Going to Google News and typing in the single acronym “AIPAC” returns some interesting news perspectives. But, I picked this one because it’s most relevant to comment threads and trolling of comment threads – which makes it relevant of the old CFN.
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dennis-santiago/did-aipac-punt-for-obamas_b_3884526.html
    “I am rather thankful for the duality of regular media and social media that we have today. It’s empowering for the people. It makes shadow attack methods far more transparent than they used to be. AIPAC may be one of those feared organizations offline, but online this old school caricature gaming is just comical when you see it plain as day on the Internet. Make that bumbling comical. These divisive methods only work if Americans are truly isolated from each other. My argument is we don’t have to be and we have the tech not to be. Look what we’ve already done just around this topic of Syria. We’ve united a nation.”

    BTW, if there’s anything anti Semitic about posting this – somebody is going to have to explain why it is, to me.
    It’s Huffington Post, for Gawd’s Sake!

  71. progress4what September 11, 2013 at 9:39 pm #

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/09/11/monsanto-protection-act-extension_n_3908249.html

    So, speaking of Huff Post and comment threads, Wagelaborer and I used to have some nice wrangles over GMO agriculture. I’ve seen her commenting over at the Archdruid.

    If she would come back to CFN, maybe I could tell her she was right about a couple of things.

    Just a couple, though. hah!

  72. Arn Varnold September 12, 2013 at 6:57 am #

    Observing the last couple of weeks; it would appear the post count is halved after “the cleansing”.
    The quality would seem to be the inversely proportional to the quantity; which shouldn’t come as a surprise.

  73. ozone September 12, 2013 at 9:47 am #

    The short time window before the shock and awe must be exploited, while State is flailing about for the next justification/excuse:

    The Washington Times — Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered his government on Wednesday to send five high-tech surface-to-air missile defense systems to Iran, a move intended in part to put a stop to Tehran’s $4 billion lawsuit over a contract dispute.

    The shipment includes five S300VM Antey-2500 missile systems, United Press International reported.

    Iran’s ambassador to Russia, Seyed Mahmoud Reza Sajadi, welcomed the announcement and said his country now will drop its lawsuit, which stems from a 2007 agreement. Then, Russia promised to give the country five missile defense systems that were modified versions of the S300 types. After Russia reneged, Iran sued.

    On Wednesday, Mr. Putin also said Russia will honor its previously forged deal to help construct a second nuclear power facility in Bushehr, UPI reported.

    The announcement comes on the heels of Russia’s recent transfer of several S-300 missile defense systems to Syria.
    *************************

    Anything surprising in the above? …I thought not. Mr. Putin no longer believes Obama and crew are going to leave this alone (militarily). Goose? Meet gander.

  74. ozone September 12, 2013 at 9:59 am #

    Off-topic, I think. (Although this could have something to do with all that black, gooey stuff beneath their neighbors’ sandboxes, I’m not sure how it would tie in.)

    Whose Stasi is this anyway?? (Agreement circa, 2009)

    “The five-page memorandum, termed an agreement between the US and Israeli intelligence agencies “pertaining to the protection of US persons”, repeatedly stresses the constitutional rights of Americans to privacy and the need for Israeli intelligence staff to respect these rights.

    But this is undermined by the disclosure that Israel is allowed to receive “raw Sigint” – signal intelligence. The memorandum says: “Raw Sigint includes, but is not limited to, unevaluated and unminimized transcripts, gists, facsimiles, telex, voice and Digital Network Intelligence metadata and content.”

    http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article36200.htm

    In moments of fevered paranoia, I ask: “Is the Mossad now going to be our government’s private hit-squad, targeted inside the states, proper? Convenient erasures, done by pros, and no messy squeamishness about “fellow citizens”… (Yes, you’re correct; I have lost my freakin’ mind! ;))

  75. ozone September 12, 2013 at 10:01 am #

    (Sorry for the above from way out in the outfield. It IS interesting though, isn’t it?)

    • Arn Varnold September 12, 2013 at 10:26 am #

      Well, it’s at least relevant to the present.
      I see no way out of the fog of bullshit; too thick, and too persistent…

  76. ozone September 12, 2013 at 10:36 am #

    Here’s one for Arn and James K.
    Has now acquired “maneuvering room” and is designated flagship of Russia’s Mediterranean fleet. (Known in sloppy parlance as a “carrier-killer”.)

    ‘Moskva’ weaponry

    -16x SS-N-12 Sandbox anti-ship missiles
    – 8×8 (64) S-300PMU Favorit (SA-N-6 Grumble) long-range surface-to-air missiles
    -2×20 (40) OSA-MA (SA-N-4 Gecko) SR SAM
    -1x twin AK-130 130mm/L70 dual-purpose guns
    -6xAK-630 close-in weapons systems
    -2x RBU-6000 anti-submarine mortars
    -10x (2 quin) 533mm torpedo tubes
    Armor: Splinter plating
    Aircraft carried: 1 Ka-25 or Ka-27 helicopter

    That is all.
    End transmission.

    • Arn Varnold September 12, 2013 at 11:05 am #

      Where did you source that info; attribution is very important for verification.
      Over to you…

      • Arn Varnold September 12, 2013 at 11:08 am #

        It’s late here and I’m going to bed; look for this in the morning…here…

      • ozone September 12, 2013 at 5:26 pm #

        Sorry, forgot where I initially got the info, but here’s an overview from RT with weaponry listed and nice pictures as well!

        http://rt.com/news/russia-moskva-cruiser-mediterranean-720/

        • ozone September 12, 2013 at 6:35 pm #

          Don’t forget, this is a ship that was commissioned in ’83, so the missile retrofit was probably comparatively “cheap”. (Yes, perspective.) Where does one launch one’s fancy planes from when the carrier sits, quiet and comfortable, on the seafloor?

        • Arn Varnold September 12, 2013 at 9:55 pm #

          Thanks, RT is pretty good.

    • James Kuehl September 12, 2013 at 1:04 pm #

      Sheesh! Imagine the infrastructure this expense could have funded.
      Most of this stuff is available at Jaynes All the World’s (fill in the weapon).

      I used to write things like, “This weapon system is capable of rendering ineffective hard and soft targets in the conventional ground warfare environment.”

      Translation: “This gun blasts holes in armored vehicles, which kills all the people inside.”

      • Janos Skorenzy September 12, 2013 at 3:04 pm #

        Jaynes’s got a gun….

  77. Janos Skorenzy September 12, 2013 at 12:40 pm #

    The Words of Vladimir Putin. Here indeed is Worldly Wisdom.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/12/opinion/putin-plea-for-caution-from-russia-on-syria.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

    • Arn Varnold September 12, 2013 at 9:57 pm #

      Yeah, I thought Putin’s speech was very good. I also agreed with most of his points; including America IS NOT exceptional, except in their own deluded minds.

  78. Janos Skorenzy September 12, 2013 at 1:09 pm #

    Anne. Coulter? No, Barnhardt. http://www.barnhardt.biz/2013/09/07/on-poland-and-detroit-not-for-the-faint-of-heart/

    Anne was a Commodities Trader (cattle) but after Corzine got off free she realize the whole game was corrupt and one ought to get out for both moral and financial reasons before losing both ones soul and wealth. Now she is happily living in a trailer and scrubbing floors for a living.

  79. BackRowHeckler September 12, 2013 at 2:23 pm #

    This whole Syria story is fizzling out. Most likely to be forgotten in about 2 weeks. Still, WTI Crude stands at $108 per barrel. I notice along US 4, along the Farmington River, a bunch of McMansions going up like it was 2003. This was the last stretch of forests on that part of the river and i was hoping it would hold out. But no. When I saw the yellow tape tied around oak and maple trees last April I had a pretty good idea the jig was up.

    A young Air Force soldier form New Fairfield was killed last week in the Central Asia, age 22. He was a reservist, and a student at Western Conn. State U.

    BRH

    • ozone September 12, 2013 at 5:37 pm #

      I certainly hope you’re right. Having all the dailies to hand, you generally have a good sense of these things.

      On the McMansion front? As soon as one of those flood control dams lets loose, it’ll be ‘clean slate’ time for those foolish enough to build on those ancient floodplains. Too bad about the tree murder thing. That’s why I try to be judicious with it here.

      (Did you mean Afghanistan by Central Asia?)

      • BackRowHeckler September 12, 2013 at 7:46 pm #

        Yes, Afghanistan, Pete. These kids being killed in that theatre now are like the casualties in Viet Nam in ’72 and ’73, a complete waste of life.

        How about those storms rolling thru this evening? Really something, huh?

        • ozone September 12, 2013 at 8:29 pm #

          …Nothing sadder or senseless than a waste of human potential. And in the service of greed and expeditions of hubris it becomes infuriating. Is anyone answerable for this anymore??

          (The intense thunderstorms have a cleansing and calming effect. Reminds me of how little influence I really have in choosing ANY way ahead. Circumstance will dictate. That’s a ‘good’ thing.)

          • ZrCrypDiK September 13, 2013 at 6:36 am #

            Did U say, “Disclosure Project?” I thought *NOT*!!!

  80. nsa September 12, 2013 at 9:43 pm #

    Seven countries to be obliterated in five years……we here in Langley are slightly behind schedule…….. but on the cusp of achieving full spectrum dominance in every aspect of human existence…..resistance is futile……..we are now as gods……..

  81. progress4what September 12, 2013 at 9:51 pm #

    Cavepainter – I almost missed your comment at the end of the first page of comments. Having seen it, you are 100% correct.

    Will the word get out in time? There is progress. Common sense might defeat big money and impossible humanitarian goals IF people are willing to speak out for US citizens and the US environment. One environmental mag is taking up the cause.

    “Environmentalist cheerleaders for the Senate immigration bill talk only about supposed social justice benefits for those in the US illegally. They overlook the impacts of population growth and bite their tongues on the ecological disaster of expanding the border wall. A comprehensive immigration EIS would bring such issues to the fore.

    It should be clear enough: Twice as many people in little more than one human lifetime is not a sane person’s notion of progress.”
    http://www.earthisland.org/journal/index.php/eij/article/foreman/

  82. Cavepainter September 12, 2013 at 10:31 pm #

    The altruism preached by the so called progressive/liberal left is really just a ruse argument exploited by vested interests for continued suicidal immigration rates. Deindustrialized American has been left with an economy based almost exclusively on property values. That property value bubble couldn’t be sustained if was withdrawn the demand for housing units that high rates of immigration support. Lacking that all the sub-code housing in the older parts of our large cities would become abandoned (appropriately) as unsuited for habitation – hence, valueless. Of course that’s the purpose; keep increasing population to tip us ever closer to the degraded quality of existence as the already overpopulated countries. The more desperate our circumstance the more easily manipulated.

  83. Arn Varnold September 13, 2013 at 4:12 am #

    Here’s a link to an interview with Rania Masri and Chris Hedges on the president’s speech and the Syrian situation.
    http://therealnews.com/t2/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=31&Itemid=74&jumival=10703&updaterx=2013-09-11+13%3A07%3A59

    I was especially interested in what Rania Masri had to say. It’s an earful…

    • ZrCrypDiK September 13, 2013 at 6:43 am #

      Nice link, *soker*. Epitome of our tragedy…

  84. WW September 13, 2013 at 8:42 am #

    Yes a wonderful speech by Putin. Now if he could just address the little matter of the Russian government s arms dealing we might actually start to believe him.
    Both Assad and the rebels are carrying Russian made weapons, Iran uses Russian made weapons, the weapons given to the north sudanese militias used to murder 250,000 christians and animists and displace 2 million more, Russian.
    Look at every sh@thole in the world where civillians are routinely murdered on a large scale and the equipment used will be from the Russians or at best their democratic buddies in China.
    It makes me want to hurl listening to simpletons praising a ruthless warlord like Putin as a peacemaker. He has done more to foment war and hatred than most of his predecessors and banked the cash to boot.
    Maybe Obama should start supplying heavy weapons to the chechens that way old vlad could feel what its like to be a syrian civillian.

    • Arn Varnold September 13, 2013 at 9:04 am #

      That’s complete bullshit! America is the biggest arms merchant on the planet.
      To answer any more would be to give your post far too much credit.

      • WW September 13, 2013 at 10:04 am #

        Actually all it says is that, like most simpletons ,you take the overall value of arms sales not the content. For example the US can sell sophisticated weapons platforms such as the F18and the Russians would have to sell a couple of million AKs and its variants to equal the dollar sale. Now compare how many of those F18s were used to kill people last year and how many of those AKs were. It’s a frighteningly simple equation but one well beyond people like yourself. Russian cheap rifles, land mines, RPGs, and LMGs kill far more people per year than US built weapons do. And that’s a fact!
        Even relying on the figure for arms exports is farcical especially when the old USSR was caught out repeatedly supplying arms in massive under the counter sales. They make the yanks look like rank amateurs.
        Since you believe that the US supplies various despots that us US built weapons to kill its citizens,please list them and the sales and the civillian deaths caused by them. I will reply with a list that, at minimum, doubles the civillian death at the hands of users of Russian weapons.
        Or will you just hide behind some haughty reply.

        • WW September 13, 2013 at 10:14 am #

          To make it even easier for you to compare. By your standards a FFL dealer is worse than a ghetto gangster selling saturday night specials to wannbe hit men because the FFL dealer has higher sales figures! It’s farcical.

          • Arn Varnold September 13, 2013 at 10:28 am #

            Are you for real? I’m not saying any of those things.
            You brought up the arms sales by the Russians; as though that in and of itself is significant. It’s not!
            The U.S. is bullying the weak nations and arming the hell out of it’s allies; Israel being a major player in this.
            Yeah, and you answer me in a most condescending way; you come off sounding like an arrogant prick!
            Troll?????

          • WW September 13, 2013 at 11:07 am #

            Oh dear you can tell the quality of your opponent in a debate by the language they use. Yours is of the gutter Van Arnold. Yet you call me a troll. If you can’t stand the heat old boy and all that!
            l pointed out that Russia is the number one supplier of arms in the worlds troublespots. Your reply is that the US supplies more. I point out the fallacy and stupidity in that argument. You then have an attack of verbal bull of epic proportions and try to rope the Israelis into your argument. Just how dumb are you?
            When tactically the Israelis have far more to lose by Assad falling from power, it beggers belief that even you think that the Israelis would benefit from having an al queada controlled Syria armed with chemical weapons as a neighbour.
            Assad and his sponsor Iran are relatively tolerant of the jews compared to AQ. You might want to compare how many jews live in Iran compared to Afghanistan and Pakistan. I could accuse the israelis of many things but being dumb is not one of them!

    • BackRowHeckler September 13, 2013 at 11:25 am #

      Much truth in what you say, WW. The machetes used in the Genocide in Rwanda (900,000 slaughtered in 90 days) came into that country on a ship from China, a single ship. And since 1948 at least 150 million AK47s have been manufactured and distributed throughout the world (see RL Cheever, “The Gun’). JHK addresses this in one of his books: how a readily available, cheap automatic weapon gave irregular troops the ability to take on, and even defeat, well trained modern armies.

      –BRH

      • WW September 13, 2013 at 11:54 am #

        This my point exactly BRH. The US does have huge arms industry. But its weapons are rarely found in the world’s trouble spots. The Russian arms industry, however, never has any compunction about who it supplies as long as it was not its direct enemies.
        The fact that people, many of whom are bright enough to know better, are lauding Putin as some kind of heroic statesman is enough to make a cat vomit.
        If they didn’t sell the stuff to every tinpot dictator and revolutionary to start with there would be a heck of a lot more people alive today.
        I believe that even in the USA one of the cheapest rifles in a large calibre is the Russian made SKS which they made by the millions.

        • WW September 13, 2013 at 12:06 pm #

          Another item to look is landmines. Have a look at the millions of landmines that need clearing. Over 70 per cent originated in the former USSR or Russia.
          Most of the cash for clearing them up comes from the west though!

        • Janos Skorenzy September 13, 2013 at 3:34 pm #

          How bout the Israelis?

  85. Pucker September 13, 2013 at 8:50 am #

    How ’bout this for a business concept?

    “Reality Tours”….You take the tourists on vacation to see the local native Reality….

  86. progress4what September 13, 2013 at 1:15 pm #

    Most of us run some sort of “reality filter” on the way we analyze news and information.

    For example, WW and BRH filter information such that the United States is always correct and the Russians are always wrong.

    Many Muslims filter information such that Israel is always wrong, and any opponent of Israel is always right.

    One should always be careful when the word “always” is part of his view of events in the World.

    ==========================

    Now – on a humorous note – if one is always sure that he has heard enough information concerning Miley Cyrus – – –

    There’s a filter for that. No, really.
    http://entertainment.time.com/2013/09/13/how-not-to-see-any-miley-cyrus-news-ever-again/

    • WW September 13, 2013 at 2:34 pm #

      Erm actually I dodon’t I think you lot have made a god awful mess of things, particularly since 9/11. However that does not change the reality of the situation or the facts therein.
      The simple fact is that the Russian arms industry which, like it or not, exists to serve the will of the Russian government. And they have exported massive amounts of arms that they knew would be used directly against civilians.
      The fact that your reality filter, to quote you, coupled with the pathetic attention span of the western media leads you to be unaware of the millions of deaths per year caused by the Russian’s willy nily exports.
      Unfortunately or possibly fortunate for you, most Westerners and particularly Americans lead safe sheltered lives with comfort zones you rarely venture from.
      For the record I don’t think that intervention by the US in Syria will fo any good either. Putins rule will be over the moment he loses the only influence he has in the Med. It would also cripple the Russian navy and make them fully dependent on resupply ships. Not a sound tactical position. He has too much to lose to let you succeed and I expect the game would play out accordingly .

      • WW September 13, 2013 at 2:36 pm #

        Oops typo…..that should read “I actually think you lot have made a god awful mess of things “etc. …….

  87. progress4what September 13, 2013 at 1:30 pm #

    And I suppose one can also run a filter that actively seeks a certain type of news or information.

    For example, I’ve been actively looking for ANYTHING good about high US immigration rates that does not involve the assertion that:
    1. More economic growth is always good
    2. More diversity is always good
    3. It is racist and non-humanitarian to oppose immigration.

    So far, everything I find is in one of these three categories.
    I’m beginning to think that’s reality.

    Some times our filters need to be recalibrated by reality.
    =============================

    On a completely unrelated note, to anything at all, this guy was forced down in Iceland. But the pictures of the launch prep are pretty amazing. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2418598/Jonathan-Trappe-IT-manager-attempts-cross-Atlantic-simply-clinging-helium-BALLOONS.html

    • ZrCrypDiK September 13, 2013 at 2:51 pm #

      I’ve been actively looking for any good signs – alas, we got fukushima, remnants of depleted uranium warheads, and *ALL THAT*. Let’s just *pretend* “they” didn’t all die in *VAIN*!!!

  88. Cavepainter September 13, 2013 at 3:05 pm #

    Yes, I hear regularly of how Western nations have shaped world conditions in the past two centuries and how conscience demands remedy of wrongs apparent from contemporary perspective. I hear no acknowledgement that history shows intrinsic human nature would have played the hand no different had the players been positioned opposite — power in the hands of non Europeans with Europeans the victimized. All that’s moot now due to the exigencies imposed by overpopulation, leaving only smidgeon prospect for human survival, and that only among people of 21st Century grasp of reality and occupying area yet sustainable for residing, extant population . Even at that those of us in such favored areas face having to cut back more than half resource usage — there are no surpluses — no more thinner pieces of the pie. Not a pretty picture but that’s the reality.

    • Janos Skorenzy September 13, 2013 at 3:40 pm #

      Yes. The Liberals and Feminists always have the presumption of paradise in their rhetoric – as if it actually were and would have remained so but for our unique and utter evil. Classical Marxism eschews this position but pop University Marxism has piled on with everything it has – and its influence is still great despite what Being There says, or because it now calls itself “Progressive”.

  89. ozone September 13, 2013 at 6:15 pm #

    BT Bill,
    Since neither of us could stand to watch, here’s what could be a fairly accurate analysis of Obama’s televised one-man show of belligerence and pretending:

    http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article36208.htm

    Looks like the author was paying close attention and had a collection of information to hand to counter/refute the official story.

    Slightly out of context, but pressing the same irrefutable point, JHK writes:

    “…this is now a nation that cannot construct a coherent narrative about what is happening to it.” (He speaks to the reportage/opinions of the NYTimes of course, but you understand the frightening possibilities.)

    And that extends to the pronouncements of its’ President. That is not a good state of affairs.

    • ZrCrypDiK September 13, 2013 at 6:42 pm #

      WoWzerZ!!! U just keep linking *informationclearinghouse,* as if it’s the cure for over-population, over-consumption, and over-pollution. They got NE-thang to say about the *Disclosure Project*? (I thought not)

      I do *STILL* look forward to you poasting your music video of *your* band. I still dig that diddy in deliverance, with the *banjo man* (child?).

      • ozone September 13, 2013 at 11:20 pm #

        Take it easy ix! You’ll hurt yourself! ;)

        • ZrCrypDiK September 14, 2013 at 6:11 am #

          Too late for that (ALREADY *HURT*). I deleted my Faceplant account about 1.5 weeks ago – tomorrow is the *FINALE*…

          FB and YouTube R now asking for new account names (namely, email accounts). FB pissed me off, and that sh! is *GONE*. YT getting on my last nerves too – I had accounts with both those *SH!tters* for a couple years, and now they ban me too (2)!!! As if these asshatz can’t trace IP addresses. I *LAUGH* (cry).

          I’m still jammin’ that big country concert from *BEN BER* 2 weeks ago (ahaha youtube poast not deleted?!?)…

          Over-consumption, over-pollution, and over-population? Fukushima’s a pipe-dream…

    • beantownbill. September 14, 2013 at 12:01 pm #

      O3, I do agree with the author on most of what he said, but to be fair, he never gave documented proof for some of his statements, just like Obama didn’t, e.g. claiming there were credible reports rebel troops were told to prepare to go on attack after the US bombed Syria. Ok, he says the reports are credible? Who gave the reports and how did they get the info? I agree that that may have occurred, but it still bespeaks of the sad state of journalism in today’s world. Really good journalists like Matt Taibbi go to great lengths to describe their sources.

      I’ve become a real cynical bastard in my old age.

  90. orionoir@gmail.com September 13, 2013 at 7:05 pm #

    fuck yeah

    • ozone September 13, 2013 at 11:18 pm #

      Whoa! Tis really youse. I like the way you’ve done the postings by picture selection. Very cool.
      Good to “see” yez…

      • orionoir@gmail.com September 16, 2013 at 1:50 am #

        hey o2. as would dorothy with the scarecrow, i’ve missed you most of all. well, actually i miss buck stud even more, but who’s counting. and women with cute screen names who say fuck alot, i love them the best. but you’re up there. and who could forget vlad?

        i still don’t understand this new format. this so reminds me of joing aa just before all the really cool craft beers and fruity mixed drinks in cans hit the market. always a bridesmaid, never a bride.

        i refuse to share my dandy wit and wisdom here unless qshtik is reinstated. you can take that one to the bank.

        why am i here at this godforsaken hour? it’s a time zone thing. i’m somewhere in uzebeckystan.

        i’m telling everyone i know to read my blog, which coyly is saying that i might be not just manic per usual but also once again hanging out on the cancer ward. this is a craven ploy for sympathy beneath even me.

        truth is, i’m just palin crazy, but with nasty symptomology which i like to believe portends the worst, because that’s so much better than thinking re the mental hosp copay, which would break my personal bank and heart too.

        l,m

  91. Pucker September 13, 2013 at 8:02 pm #

    Today’s word is “Congress”.

    The pre-fix “Con” means together….

    The root “Gress” means “to walk”.

    Congress = To Walk Together….

    NOT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  92. Pucker September 13, 2013 at 8:26 pm #

    “Gassy Politics”?

    Is JHK referring to “chemical weapons”?

    Or is he referring to something more “organic”?

    I understand that human sludge from the water treatment plant contains roughly 40% organic matter after the water is removed.

    What’s in the rest of it?

    Do you remember the X-Files TV episode wherein Mulder corners the shit monster late at night in the town sewage treatment plant? And Skully’s always give’n Mulder shit….

    • ZrCrypDiK September 13, 2013 at 9:23 pm #

      I’ll reply, just to keep you from *SPAMMIN’*. I liked your CON GRESS poast, but this latest is nothing but *INORGANIC*. U membaz the x-files episode, where Scully weighs intestines!!! Best 1 evah, I think they called it “Bad Blood.”

      • Arn Varnold September 14, 2013 at 8:32 am #

        Pucker is an attention seeking troll or sock. Likely Carol or Janet.
        Do you really want to feed them?

        • Janos Skorenzy September 15, 2013 at 1:17 pm #

          Not so. The Funny Man became enraged (along with many other green gnostics) when Rube suggested that Doomsday is not coming. The Asoka Entity was always radically pro-technological salvation.

  93. W H Martin September 14, 2013 at 8:47 am #

    Check out this from NYT: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/14/opinion/overpopulation-is-not-the-problem.html?_r=0

    Another of the same ilk as Julian Simon

    • Arn Varnold September 14, 2013 at 9:15 am #

      I would be greatly interested to know how this is relevant to the subject of this thread. Off topic 100%…

      • progress4what September 14, 2013 at 10:43 am #

        Population questions are part and parcel of “peak everything.”

  94. volodya September 14, 2013 at 10:00 am #

    Your national institutions, and I would include some of the press in that category, are creatures with uncomplicated aims, that is, to perpetrate a system dedicated to the enrichment of the rich, to sustaining the unsustainable and to protecting the interests of the few against the encroachment of the many. That isn’t saying anything that any reasonable person doesn’t already know.

    Sometimes, when I need a laugh, I read Krugman’s stuff in the NY Times. He says more stimulus and more debt. More debt? If debt derived stimulus was the answer then every American would have two great paying jobs. As it is, after all these years of debt and stimulus, you have a collosal, 16 trillion dollar financial asteroid catapulting towards Planet USA directed in its path by the cold, impersonal laws of financial physics.

    And to fend off this impending impact you have a Federal Reserve with its high priest Ben Bernanke conducting rituals and muttering incantations. And we laugh at village shamans placating volcanoes. I mean, who has better odds? Bernanke or the shaman? No, seriously. Bernanke’s spells look more likely to attract the asteroid than ward it off.

    And when it ends with a smoking hole where the economy used to be, and it will, what lunacies will the high priest advocate next? Conventional lunacies didn’t work. So then what? Something unconventional maybe? What would a village shaman say? Animal sacrifice? Human sacrifice? Er, no. How about theft of bank accounts? Oh wait, that’s been done.

    Does anyone seriously dispute that the 2008 panic was spawned by fires in those giant, global garbage dumps of no-hope debt? Many examples. An exuberant abundance of facts and evidence. USA, Ireland, Spain, Greece, Cyprus, Italy, Merrill, Bear, AIG, Lehman. The financial dead and walking dead infested and swarming with Wall Street vultures and maggots eating what’s left. And more debt is the answer?

    If those pungent varieties of fact and evidence wrinkle Dr Krugman’s nose, well, we have others. Like 16 trillion in debt and what is there to show for it? A sad sack collection of wrecked cities and states, broke and broken families, a huge cohort of unemployed, a sizeable subset of which are armed and dangerous young men.

    So what should we have learned? That you can’t run companies and economies based on debt and fraud and make believe, specifically and ludicrously in the case of Greece and Cyprus, on tax evasion and taxi driving.

    But the prescription, generally accepted by experts supposedly “in-the-know”, is more deception and fraud, that is to say, more so-called “easy money”, legally counterfeited through the conjurations of the world’s central banks and especially the US Federal Reserve, cheered on by the charlatans managing the world’s biggest, most disastrously run financial institutions.

    So what else did 2008 tell us? It told me that, for a brief time, after decades of deceit and delusion, Wall Street smarty-pants came to their senses. And for those brief, shining days of rationality they drew the only conclusion that any rational person could, that is, that things are monumentally and irretrievably fucked, unworkable and irreparable, a state of affairs that the passage of time would not make better, in fact, that left to itself, the relentlessly ticking clock would only make worse. In which case they did what any normal and sane person does. They shit themselves.

    BTW, talking about infestations, I noticed that JHK cleaned out the trolls. Good job.

  95. progress4what September 14, 2013 at 10:41 am #

    “There is no environmental reason for people to go hungry now or in the future. There is no need to use any more land to sustain humanity — increasing land productivity using existing technologies can boost global supplies and even leave more land for nature — a goal that is both more popular and more possible than ever.

    The only limits to creating a planet that future generations will be proud of are our imaginations and our social systems.”
    ….nytimes editorial flagged by martin….

    Translation: Move to the cities. Become completely dependent.

    Further Translation: “They’ll think of something.”

  96. progress4what September 14, 2013 at 10:54 am #

    Speaking of irrational ideas – This guy takes a nice swipe at JHK and JMG. Apparently, he is of the belief that contemplating a possible future is the same as causing that future to occur. Or something.

    “But most Doomers are steeped in Masculine Egotism. Jim Kunstler and John Michael Greer, two of the most important Doomers, both advocate a return to a semi-medieval social order that would make men essential once again. And as such reveal fully from where their unabashed hatred of Modern Technological Civilization truly originates. Such a civilization has no real need of males; it would actually be better off without them.” http://nebris.livejournal.com/5526647.html

    • ozone September 14, 2013 at 11:38 am #

      Interestingly enough, the blog author and the commenters both write as though they’ve been ‘victimized’ by JHK and JMG; as though by their writings, they’re PERPETUATING the coming collapse! I’ve seen this a lot in ‘modern society’ and it’s a symptom of a deep-seated wishful thinking and powerlessness encapsulated in petulant whinings. “Look what they’ve done to me; they’ve broken my cornucopian dream of constant comforts and endless entertainments. Waaaaah!”

      My response would be:
      Not really, pud-pullers; it’s simple end-result entropy, and you just picked the wrong dream to dream… If you’re gonna pretend, at least pretend with some imagination instead of the store-bought, ready-for-mass-consumption product.

    • beantownbill. September 14, 2013 at 12:39 pm #

      Procon, where the heck did you pick up

      • beantownbill. September 14, 2013 at 12:45 pm #

        The guy is a self-described madman. I don’t have any patience with magic-minded, pseudo-intellectual people such as him.

  97. BackRowHeckler September 15, 2013 at 10:41 am #

    I was listening to one of those gabfests on XM Radio, POTUS Channel. The guests were various silicon valley executives and columnists who cover tech issues. Needless to say they presented a pretty rosy view of the future. One interesting topic was automobiles, which in the near future will drive themselves.

  98. progress4what September 15, 2013 at 12:48 pm #

    “….a self-described madman. I don’t have any patience with magic-minded, pseudo-intellectual people such as him.”
    ….bill of bt…

    Yeah, understood.
    I found him from a reference at ADR. Because he also attacks our host here AND claims to have known JHK as a camp counselor – – I thought it relevant to post it here.

    And the psychology of divergent thinkers fascinates me. How does this referenced male come to believe that males represent all that is wrong with humanity (and therefore blocking “progress?)?

    Because from there his next step is – logical.
    Males SHOULD be eliminated, only to come back as lesbians through reincarnation.

    And I’ll remind you that most of the mayhem (and most of the societal advances as well) have come to us courtesy of “madmen,” whether self-described, or other-described.

    ———————–

    • Janos Skorenzy September 15, 2013 at 1:19 pm #

      Yes, if it was up to women we’d still be living in huts. And who does the heavy, dangerous work? Men. Women do the PR releases.

      Just a few short years ago you wanted half of our politicians to be women. You’ve come a long way in a short time.

      • progress4what September 15, 2013 at 7:41 pm #

        I still think 1/2 or more of politicians should be women. They couldn’t screw it up any worse.

        Of course, successful politicians tend to think and act like men, so we’d be no better off.

    • Janos Skorenzy September 15, 2013 at 1:21 pm #

      Oh and take that insight and apply it to the White Race – the “cancer of humanity” according to the deceased Jewish pundit Susan Sontag. What does one do with cancer? Eliminate it. It wouldn’t matter if she was the only one to feel that way, but many do – including many hopelessly sick liberal Whites.

  99. progress4what September 15, 2013 at 1:01 pm #

    WW and BRH –
    No offense intended guys – I’m just poking at you to point out some “binary thinking.” Stark black/white decision making usually leads to a bad place.

    For example, if Putin and the Russians are all bad – doesn’t that mean the United Stated and Obama are all good?

    And I get your point about the SKS/AK type weapons.
    We’ve made the 7.62X39 our standard-family-weapon-platform.
    Tough guns. You can be pretty rough with them and feed them crap for ammo – and they are still accurate enough to get the job done.

    I can’t imagine using NATO 5.56 around here – in these woods and mountains, for hunting OR home defense. Too small a caliber and too high velocity, IMO.

    • Janos Skorenzy September 15, 2013 at 1:28 pm #

      You go hunting with automatic rifles? Where’s the sportsmanship in that?

      • progress4what September 15, 2013 at 7:46 pm #

        Semi-automatic, Vlad, SEMI. Only the uninformed and the “gun-grabbers” confuse these terms.

        I don’t hunt that much anymore – but I definitely believe in having enough gun for the job. And where I hunt, if the animal doesn’t drop on the first rifle shot, you’re probably not going to get a second shot, whether your weapon be bolt action, pump, or semi-auto.

  100. Janos Skorenzy September 15, 2013 at 1:24 pm #

    Looks like Q didn’t make the cut. Too many emails to the Boss and the webmaster probably. As the old Eastern adage goes, “Beware of getting too close to Kings and Fire.”

    • progress4what September 15, 2013 at 7:49 pm #

      Yeah, maybe. Q’s been known to vanish for weeks at a time.
      I don’t see why Kunstler would have banned him, although he (JHK) did delete a post of Q’s where he reproduced a email from JHK.

      • Janos Skorenzy September 15, 2013 at 9:04 pm #

        Sorry about the automatic comment. A low blow. What was the gist of JHK’s email?

  101. ozone September 15, 2013 at 7:05 pm #

    Larry Summers talked to me in private about withdrawing his name from nomination for Fed Head.
    He grumped, “Bottom line? I didn’t return to this stinking town to be abused.”
    To which, I quipped, “Well, Larry, where do you usually go?”

    (Thank you, Groucho.)

    Probably, after his multiple disasters, missteps, unmitigated bungling and skid-greasing for his pals, he doesn’t want to be cap’n when “this sucker” finally goes down. He’s got a career to think of as he’s a few tens-of-millions short of the ready cash he needs to buy a small country to retire to.

    • orionoir@gmail.com September 16, 2013 at 1:56 am #

      just for the record, i’ve had a lifelong correspondence with alan greenspan. the story’s in my blog. he’s actually a deeper thinker than many would have so credited him, but he’s quite crippled by sexual inadequacy and thus given to counter-cyclical expansionary policies in the face of ominous fiscal disintegration.

  102. progress4what September 15, 2013 at 7:52 pm #

    And good to see you again, orionoir.

    Janos, I left responses at the tail end of the previous page for you.

    • orionoir@gmail.com September 16, 2013 at 1:39 am #

      hey, thanks for remembering me, progress. i’m assuming you’re the former procon? he was a mensch.

      seems i only stop by cfn when i’m in some kind of mental/health crisis, this time around would be no different. if anybody here recalls my blog, the last entry explains why i’m planning to shut up internet-wise pretty soon. although, of course, true to my nature, i have to thoroughly announce to the world first how i'[m planning to be quiet.

      anyhow, i got a sweet email just now from the former qschtik, i can’t tell you how refreshing it was to sample his distinctive grammar once again. let me quote below:

      … Re CFN, kindly advise the commentariat that JFK shot the messenger. I was banned. It’s OK though. Jim did such a good job of cleaning up the site that now I miss all the rich insults.

      Q. Shtik …

      ——–
      the new format here is very pretty and cool, jim. but i’m totally confused. are you being advised by the same people who came up with windows 8?

      l,m

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