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Homeless

H istory is moving the furniture around in the house of mankind just about everywhere but the USA. Things have changed, except here, where people come and go through the rooms of state, and everything looks shabbier by the day, and lethargy eats away at the upholstery like an acid fog, and the walls reverberate with meaningless oratory. The USA is going nowhere because it doesn’t like the new place where history wants to take it.

That is, first of all, a place of far less influence on everybody else, in a new era of desperate struggle to remain modern. That fading modern world is the house that America built, the great post World War Two McMansion stuffed with dubious luxuries in a Las Vegas of the collective mind. History’s bank has foreclosed on it and all the nations and people of the world have been told to make new arrangements for daily life. The USA wants everybody to stay put and act as if nothing has changed.

Therefore, change will be forced on the USA. It will take the form of things breaking and not getting fixed. Unfortunately, America furnished its part of the house with stapled-together crap designed to look better than it really was. We like to keep the blinds drawn now so as not to see it all coming apart. Barack Obama comes and goes like a pliable butler, doing little more than carrying trays of policy that will be consumed like stale tea cakes — while the wallpaper curls, and the boilers fail down in the basement, and veneers delaminate, and little animals scuttle ominously around in the attic.

Everybody I know is distressed by this toxic languor, this sense of being stuck waiting in a place they want desperately to move on from — like the prison of elder-care where so many find themselves hostage to the futility of staving off a certain ending, while all the family resources drain into various bureaucratic black holes. Do we care that the generations to come will have nothing left, nothing at all?

This Memorial Day the usual pieties are noticeably muted. Few politicians dare to utter sanctimonies about our brave soldiers maimed on far-flung battlefields, when so many of them are stuck waiting alone in dark rooms with only their wounds and phantom limbs for company. If regular civilian medicine is a cruel, hopeless, quasi-criminal racket, imagine what medicine for army veterans must be like — all that plus an overlay of profound government ineptitude and institutionalized ass-covering

Even the idle chatter about American Dreaming has faded out lately, because too much has happened to families and individuals to demonstrate that people need more than dreams and wishes to make things happen. It’s kind of a relief to not have to listen to those inane exhortations anymore, especially the idiotic shrieking that “We’re number one!”

Others have got our number now. They are going their own way whether we like it or not. The Russians and the Chinese. The voters in Europe. The moiling masses of Arabia and its outlands. The generals in Thailand. Too bad the people of Main Street USA don’t want to do anything but sit on their hands waiting for the rafters to tumble down. My guess is that nothing will bestir us until we wake up one morning surrounded by rubble and dust. By then, America will be a salvage operation.

There’s a long and comprehensive To-Do list that has been waiting for us since at least 2008, when the nation received one forceful blow upside its thick head. We refuse to pay attention. First item on the list: restructure the banks. Other items: reinstate the Glass-Steagall Act; disassemble the ridiculous “security” edifice under the NSA; upgrade the US electric grid; close down most of our military bases overseas (and some of our bases in the USA); draw up a constitutional amendment re-defining the alleged “personhood” of corporations; fix the passenger railroad system to prepare for the end of Happy Motoring; rebuild Main Street commerce to prepare for the death of WalMart and things like it; outlaw GMO foods and promote local food production; shut down casino gambling.

That’s just my list. What’s yours? And when will you step out of this rotting house into the sunshine?

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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.

261 Responses to “Homeless” Subscribe

  1. charlesbasak May 26, 2014 at 9:40 am #

    Hi Jim and audience, I do believe where we live in the northeast is especially vulnerable to the coming “contractions” . We better leave the furniture behind – http://subversesjournal.wordpress.com/

    • MisterDarling May 27, 2014 at 12:56 am #

      Interesting blog entry. Thanks Charles!

    • orbit7er May 27, 2014 at 8:45 am #

      Pete Seeger sang years ago:
      “God bless the grass, that grows through the cracks
      they roll the concrete over it to try to keep it back
      But the concrete gets tired of what it has to do
      It bends and it buckles and the grass grows through
      God bless the grass”

      there are little fragile seeds of change sprouting far from the chaotic malestrom of Corporate media propaganda.
      For example last year my little 19th Century Transit village had about 20 households sign up for Community Supported Agriculture locally grown fresh veggies, fruit & eggs delivery. This year there are 30 members.
      Last week “Farmer Kurt” spent half of his weekly news update extolling and encouraging the use of a new shuttle service from the
      Gladstone train station to his farm and the rest of Chester on weekends! Alstedt Farms, Historic Chester and the Chester Mall is paying for it themselves to advance the CSA mission of sustainability!
      As I testified to the New Jersey Transit Board 2 weeks ago, the “development” part of “Transit Oriented Development” is happening all over New Jersey not just in the 28 official “Transit Villages” but with new townhomes going up next to many train stations like Dunellen, Bound Brook, Denville, Morris Plains.
      But what is missing from the equation is the TRANSIT part – tens of trains have been cut along with shuttles and buses since 2008.
      How can you have “Transit” oriented development with infrequent train service?
      The whole point is for people NOT to need cars, not to be stuck in their local community but able to get to other towns for movies, restaurants, concerts, other stores via the train tracks running right next to them. 50% of New Jersey lives within a mile of a train station…
      But things like the CSAs are promoting change…even while Gov Christie continues to waste billions on endless road widening…
      There are even serious rumors of an increase in the New Jersey gas tax, now the 2nd lowest in the nation after Alaska.
      Even Wyoming, home to Dick Cheney, increased their gas tax!
      I a more optimistic about New Jersey than Charles…
      change WILL come!

      • dweebus May 27, 2014 at 10:38 am #

        orbit7er-

        “Even Wyoming, home to Dick Cheney, increased their gas tax!”

        Do not look to WY my friend, for State sanity. Having lived their for years, I can say that the people are basically “live and let live” and quite cooperative. So at the local level, you may see a great many green shoots sprouting in the cracks of the pavement. But get into politics and they are nutty. Stark raving mad.

        A major gun dealer in Casper used to host “militias” to watch for “black helicopters”. Bananas, I tell you. Now the fools in Cheyenne have rejected basic science standards, particularly ACC, despite the fact that CO2 has been known as a climate forcing since Fourier discovered the greenhouse effect in 1824. I think Upton Sinclair said something about men not understanding shit because their paycheck was dependent on their willful ignorance.

        This State is entirely dependent on fossil fuel revenue, and would go instantly and irrevocably broke if the permanent mineral trust were to lose value. Powder River coal, oil, fracking, and coalbed methane prop up a State with no other job opportunities for young people. Transit? They have none. The average drive time between towns of any size is four hours. There is no water. The soil is sandy and rocky. If we hit a net energy cliff, WY is toast.

        It reminds me of a bumper sticker I once saw whilst fishing on the North Platte. “God, give me one more Oil Boom, I promise I won’t piss it away.”

        Regards,

        dweebus

    • routersurfer May 27, 2014 at 10:50 am #

      Nice read. Thanks. Living in the “Deep South” I fear the landing will be a bit harder. It will not be easy for anyone. Best wishes!

  2. Neon Vincent May 26, 2014 at 9:53 am #

    “There’s a long and comprehensive To-Do list that has been waiting for us since at least 2008, when the nation received one forceful blow upside its thick head. We refuse to pay attention. First item on the list: restructure the banks. Other items: reinstate the Glass-Steagall Act; disassemble the ridiculous “security” edifice under the NSA; upgrade the US electric grid; close down most of our military bases overseas (and some of our bases in the USA); draw up a constitutional amendment re-defining the alleged “personhood” of corporations; fix the passenger railroad system to prepare for the end of Happy Motoring; rebuild Main Street commerce to prepare for the death of WalMart and things like it; outlaw GMO foods and promote local food production; shut down casino gambling.”

    That’s a familiar list. It looks a lot like the one from “My Tea Party” back in 2010. I liked most of that list, and I said as much in “Happy 4th of July from James Howard Kunstler’s Tea Party!” back in 2011, when I wrote that the Coffee Party would like most of it, too.

    http://crazyeddiethemotie.blogspot.com/2011/07/happy-4th-of-july-from-james-howard.html

    However, I like this one better. I’m down with all of it, not just most of it. I’ll pass it on to my students when they ask what you favor, not just what you oppose. I’ll also pass it along to my colleagues in the Coffee Party, where I’m now on the Board of Directors.

    Speaking of banning GMOs, did you know there was a March Against Monsanto on Saturday? I haven’t seen any news coverage yet, but last years was fairly well covered. Even CNN got in on the action.

    http://crazyeddiethemotie.blogspot.com/2013/05/cnn-and-russia-today-cover-march-on.html

    • routersurfer May 27, 2014 at 10:54 am #

      I wonder how much food we can grow without Monsanto ? Trust me I want to try:) Hate want Monsanto stands for: Corporations, the New Monarchy.

  3. ubs May 26, 2014 at 9:53 am #

    Abolish
    the fed
    income tax
    social security
    medicare
    public education
    department of energy, agriculture, education
    CIA, NSA, FBI, DHS
    the military
    replace the second amendment with a duty to bear arms
    for all males age 18 or higher

    • Helen Highwater May 26, 2014 at 2:39 pm #

      Just curious what you would like to replace medicare and public education and social security with? Home schooling? Church-run schools? Private schools? No medical care at all for people who can’t pay for it? Euthanasia for the poor, perhaps? And you do know that social security is something people pay into all through their working lives, right? So you don’t think they should be able to make any claim on it when the are too old to work anymore? I don’t think I’d like to live in the kind of world you are thinking of.

      • MisterDarling May 26, 2014 at 2:52 pm #

        Helen,

        Good News! You won’t have to because the place that ubs describes is taken over by warlords before ‘libertarian utopia’ can spontaneously break out.

        Then, the warlords get invaded by a group of people with their collective ‘stuff’ even modestly more together.

        PS; scratch any veneer off of a libertarian and you’ll find a rich-kid (or someone with delusions of same) desperately trying _not_ to be just like their old-school republican dad.

        • James Levy May 26, 2014 at 3:08 pm #

          I think Libertarianism is normally either an understandable if childish desire to be left alone, or a belief that if all those rules and laws and blacks and Jews and women were just put back in their place or gotten rid of completely, then the sky would be the limit for me. Because I’ve never met a Libertarian, big L or little L, who thought through what would happen to those old people without Medicare and Social Security. What would happen if we did away with the Food and Drug Administration and the CDC? Where would the poor go if we closed down the public hospitals and clinics? I guess their deepest response is a resounding “I don’t care! Just leave me free to do what I want and when I get old or sick I’ll take care of myself!!! And if I eat contaminated food or the MERS virus goes wild because there is no central government to monitor or control it and no public health system to contain it, well, that’s the price of true liberty!” That these are the responses of petulant children and not responsible adults really doesn’t bother them.

          • Helen Highwater May 26, 2014 at 3:15 pm #

            No, I don’t think they’d say “that’s the price of true liberty”. They’d probably be the first to sue somebody if they got sick from contaminated food, or if there was an epidemic and nobody did anything about it.

          • BackRowHeckler May 26, 2014 at 7:09 pm #

            Yes, yes these libertarians need to grow up, become responsible adults, and in their maturity, join the Socialist Party.Their slogan “Free shit for everybody”. How to pay for it? Tax the Koch brothers, the root of your discontent. Above all, pay off the student loans of freeloading college students, even the ones who majored in ‘Queer Studies’ at NYU.

            –BRH

          • MisterDarling May 26, 2014 at 7:33 pm #

            “That these are the responses of petulant children and not responsible adults…” – J L.

            And some of them are just sociopathic ice-holes.

            About those ‘holes: the seemingly intractable problem of their proliferation really used to bother me. What controls their numbers? Something must, because the rest of us are still here, so there has to be something that gets used on a really bad f*ckh34dfestation.

            And then it came to me: THEY do.

          • MisterDarling May 26, 2014 at 7:49 pm #

            And here’s another thing that amuses me about the libertarian crowd – the lack of imagination and intellectual daring. Not only is it not rooted in the pragmatic nitty-gritty details of the world as it is, not what it ‘should be’, it lacks daring.

            One example of some ‘daring': the recent book _Sex at Dawn_.

            Say what you want about the author(s) conclusions, at least it encourages thought outside the Fascist vs. Communist vs. Democracy vs. Socialism Ouroboros, and encourages re-thinking the Patriarchy/Matriarchy neurotic fear-fest.

            Humanity spent it’s formative years in a state of “rugged egalitarianism” something freer and more ‘immediate’ than any utopia I’ve heard about lately. That’s a matter of supported fact, not fantasy.

            It’s invigorating to revisit that.

        • orbit7er May 27, 2014 at 8:57 am #

          Most of those who call themselves “Libertarians” are actually “Propertarians” ie they extoll property rights over all other rights.
          The classic case is what happened to the former publicly open Sand Key island South of Clearwater Beach.
          It had been the less domesticated beach with people bringing their dogs, frisbies, dune buggies (well it was another era!) on an open beach. Then US Steel which had divested its actual steel manufacturing in an early manifestation of the financial casino approach, went into the Condo business. They erected giant fences around an expensive private Condo, of course subject to Hurricanes, so nobody was free to use the beach anymore.
          When you already have the situation where a few billionaires own as much as the bottom 40% of the world’s population when you take Propertarianism to its extreme you wind up back in monarchy or feudalism. When peasants could only hunt on the “King’s Land” with permission. So the names are changed to billionaires like the Kochs, the Waltons, IT tycoons like Larry Ellison who ironically made most of their money on the Fed and Bell Labs and opensource created Internet.
          A fence is NOT freedom my friends!
          As Woody Guthrie put it years ago:
          “As I went walking I saw a sign there
          And on that sign said “No trespassing”
          But the other side of that sign said nothing
          THAT side was made for you and me!”

          We need to rollback the billionaires privatization and looting of the whole planet to restore public shared libraries, beaches, schools, transit, parks, arts and music!
          Or we will not survive…

    • routersurfer May 27, 2014 at 10:58 am #

      Sorry ubs but with no government you get plain old corp mafia. A smaller government? It will have to be. We are going to need a few of those things on your list just to land with any type of society. Why have a Second Amendment if you have no government?

  4. Greg Knepp May 26, 2014 at 9:54 am #

    We need a return of listenable music.

    As Louis Armstrong quipped in The Five Pennies, “Put Liszt on that list!”

    • MisterDarling May 26, 2014 at 7:06 pm #

      When I first read “World Made by Hand” I thought that the elimination of electronic music (et al.) was a far-fetched – given that it persists even in savagely disconnected hinterlands [*]…

      But, after the two-minute mark I saw that it really was not… And I was a little bummed…

      A couple months later while weeding out my music (multiple formats), I realized just how little I would miss, and how much more might be interesting to hear without the aid of an amp’ or an IC.

      “Time makes more converts than Reason” I suppose.

      [*] I’m going to eschew referring to certain countries from here on out as ‘developing’. That nomenclature belongs in the bygone era of economic hit-men.

    • routersurfer May 27, 2014 at 10:59 am #

      Works for me! Nice post. Off to practice my bass after a few more posts.

  5. Being There May 26, 2014 at 9:57 am #

    Thanks for a great post today, JHK
    And a very happy Memorial Day to you too. You covered the problem pretty well and I couldn’t agree with you more.

    The status quo is on a kleptocrat spree and we continue slip-sliding away in all the wrong directions. We all audibly ask how much further can this descend? We all hear something off-tune, even those who don’t normally discuss this. I mention things to people who totally agree with me in all walks of life and yet we all hang on, wondering what is the future of our collective illusions?

    Globalism has been nothing more than a theft from the public ownership into riches into the hands of a few, while driving down the cost of labor.

    I love your description: Barack Obama comes and goes like a pliable butler, doing little more than carrying trays of policy that will be consumed like stale tea cakes — while the wallpaper curls, and the boilers fail down in the basement, and veneers delaminate, and little animals scuttle ominously around in the attic.

    I read on yesterday’s post from Paul Craig Roberts
    [To summarize, when Washington orchestrated in 2004 the “Orange Revolution” and the revolution failed to deliver Ukraine into Western hands, Washington, according to Victoria Nuland, poured $5 billion into Ukraine over the next ten years. The money went to politicians, whom Washington groomed, and to non-governmental organizations (NGOs) that operate as educational, pro-democracy, and human rights groups, but in fact are Washington’s fifth columns.]

    This means that Obama is just a continuation of already prescribed neocon/neolib policies. It’s proof to me that he is just stewarding what those in deep state want. Let’s just say t hat nobody gets to even run for office unless they’re on board with the program. And that program is not good for anyone but a few.

    Your suggestions are well conceived. I doubt when these movers and shakers get through with their work there will be any way for anyone to survive on a destroyed landscape.

    • James Levy May 26, 2014 at 10:38 am #

      That 5 billion number staggers me. From what bipartisan slush fund did they get their hands on 5 billion? I mean, we can’t find the money to take care of disabled Vets, but the Republicans and Democrats can stealthily find 5 billion to pay off Ukrainian Quislings. How much is going to pay off rulers, and rulers in the wings, and, hell, in Greece and Italy probably both? We don’t want to pay for rural postal delivery that provides jobs to people in places that need it, but we’ve got money for this nonsense. And we can devote bandwidth and spies to keep an eye on Angela Merkel, but when the Russians warn us about two Chechen brothers with dangerous connections to radical nut-jobs it slips through the cracks. The drive to control everything leaves us floundering and weaker than we’ve been for over a century. The blind hubris of the men in charge–Obama, Cheney, the Clintons, the Bushs, it doesn’t matter–beggars the imagination.

      • Being There May 26, 2014 at 11:25 am #

        That’s the galling part. That one-sided, we have a great deficit, stop government from spending money, but only in one direction. They want to end the social contract with the folks who pay taxes and those who are too poor to do so, and create a super gravy train for privatized war interests on all levels.

        • MisterDarling May 26, 2014 at 2:44 pm #

          It’s all a matter of _priorities_ you see. . .

          ;)

          In our collective case;

          Gap financing for financial parasites?

          “Of course! How many trillions would you like?”

          A useful level of investment in the collective project known as a nation or civilization?

          “Please Leave! Someone call Security!”

      • Janos Skorenzy May 26, 2014 at 4:22 pm #

        Lev, you really think they are in charge? It’s like really thinking that Magic Johnson could buy a basketball team and not the Guggenheim group. Of course he would be a useful front man.

        Good points on Libertarianism btw. You can’t change one major thing without changing everything. And obviously, people like this don’t want to take care of their own sick or tithe 10% to their church to do it. The Satanist Anton LaVey admitted that his Satanism was just Libertarianism with dress up. Both he and Rand were Jewish I remind you.

      • Lisa May 26, 2014 at 6:37 pm #

        Big deal, 5 billion!
        They plan to spend 30 billion to do the same with Russia as they did with Ukraine (though I don’t remember where I have read it, if I find I will post the link)

    • Helen Highwater May 26, 2014 at 2:41 pm #

      And it’s interesting that the impoverished Ukrainians elected a billionaire to run their country.

  6. Cold N. Holefield May 26, 2014 at 10:01 am #

    We like to keep the blinds drawn now so as not to see it all coming apart. Barack Obama comes and goes like a pliable butler, doing little more than carrying trays of policy that will be consumed like stale tea cakes — while the wallpaper curls, and the boilers fail down in the basement, and veneers delaminate, and little animals scuttle ominously around in the attic.

    That’s why it’s The Long Emergency. Long means long as in a long time as in so long no one really notices and no one really cares. It happens so slowly, yet ever so deliberately, most everyone with the exception of the few here at CFN is inured and desensitized to the tragedy (or is it a blessing?).

    But just because The Long Emergency is hardly noticeable in an age where spectacle reigns supreme, it doesn’t mean there aren’t a host of spectacular Little Emergencies along the way that comprise it. And those do get attention and are milked for all they’re worth in a myriad of creative, or not so creative, ways.

    What’s Your Emergency

    Satire On

    And I’m not the only one who knows that Sesame Street, and public television in general, are Soviet/Communist propaganda. There are others who have wizened to it. Cliff Kincaid knows it and has reported on it per this link to Accuracy In Media. Even though it’s right out in the open in plain sight now, the idiot American dolts can’t comprehend it. So they ignore it. Just as the Soviets intended. These conditioned once potential American but now Soviet minds will ignore everything and anything — especially their own obvious conditioning. They have been socially engineered to resignation. Mission Accomplished.

    Satire Off

    • Janos Skorenzy May 26, 2014 at 4:24 pm #

      The Soviets massively infiltrated America. Simple fact. That you Liberals were willfully unaware of it changes nothing. Nor does mocking it now. You were wrong. As is your home grown Communism, Political Correctness.

  7. Paulo May 26, 2014 at 10:03 am #

    It all seems like slow motion as these events unfold. I suppose there will be a black swan which will be noticed after-the fact, but meanwhile today seems much like yesterday. Another day…another mass shooting, another day…..record profits, another day….no banksters jailed, another commencement speech and stupid political discussions.

    Personally, I think absolutely nothing will change until some kind of ‘event’ happens. No, not change, but rather nothing will be noticed or acknowledged to need change. People are too busy with their noses in their ipods and their heads full of glue.

    Paulo

  8. doc May 26, 2014 at 10:06 am #

    Perhaps a good chaos will lead to a much better order of things. The entire complex of governance is over and we can surely come up with something better than countries and states. It is time for a new weigh of looking at things, measuring twice and then cutting away the decayed layers of obsequity. Anything that comes from DC has to be tainted – sovereignty on a local basis is where things can be created. Any uber-structure is bound to fail as too big institutions which pretend to represent us fail badly.

    Do we really need an economic system? Perhaps we should rethink the whole basis of what we have. Do we need public education? A standing military? A congress? Franklin might not recognize this republic- perhaps we shouldn’t either.

    What if accounting functions were taken up by the field of chemistry, and other functions of the banking system divided up amongst other professions. Can we form councils with representation from all interest group at the table? Watershed councils appear to work well in oregon, the salmon are getting back to places that have been cut off for almost a century.

    Nature plays by a whole different set of rules. Animals cannot count, do not legislate, yet seem to survive in the wild. Perhaps rethinking the system with new boundaries is not as difficult as it may appear. Thank you, Jim, for being a voice in the crowd – it is not time for the rest of the crowd to engage, as individuals, working to determine if our differences are really different at all. thyme for change!

    namaste’ … doc

  9. B9K9 May 26, 2014 at 10:14 am #

    He who complains has already lost. If wishes were horses, beggars would ride. Power comes from the barrel of a gun.

    Pining for the fjords of sensible public policies as solutions to real challenges makes as much sense as waiting for Godot. Nothing is going to happen until something happens.

    That something is when the US dollar loses its reserve status. Until then, the show continues its endless looping re-runs. Afterward? Not so much.

    So, have patience grasshoppers. Not for superficial, political change, but real change; the kind that will define future generations.

    • MisterDarling May 26, 2014 at 2:38 pm #

      “Pining for the fjords of sensible public policies as solutions to real challenges makes as much sense as waiting for Godot. Nothing is going to happen until something happens.” -B.

      All too true… But ‘nobody’ actually _knows_ that until something does. [*]

      ;)

      “He who complains has already lost.” -B.

      That is correct. If the only point of discussing something is to ‘vent’ then the result is to hand power (real or perceived/political power) to someone else. They have the initiative then, you see ;]

      I’m not interacting with this community to vent or commiserate.

      Nice points, all.

      — — —

      [*] and by ‘nobody’ I refer to a statistically minute portion of the population.

    • godozo May 26, 2014 at 7:56 pm #

      “Nothing is going to happen until something happens….That something is when the US dollar loses its reserve status.”

      Already happening piecemeal as nations make deals to treat each other’s currency as worth taking on without the USA $$$ as an intermediary and places (from nations to tourist attractions) that once took $$$ now just take the local currency. And we’re already experiencing the results of this in crappier and crappier products that we have no choice but to import and a nation that can only improve the infrastructure that promises to export useable stuff to China (probably thanks to our government debt and unwillingness/inability to do anything to fix it).

      My guess is that, when the final changes develop (Seattle becomes a Chinese entry point and New Jersey becomes the seat of an expanding Islamic Caliphate) we’ll have learned to settle comfortably in our prisons, becoming gay because we haven’t seen someone from the opposite sex in years and becoming vegan because animal products don’t belong in our “enclaves.”

  10. Florida Power May 26, 2014 at 10:31 am #

    We were forced to remove our dying Meyer lemon tree this week owing to the citrus greening that represents an existential threat to the Florida citrus industry. We replaced with 80 sq. ft. of raised bed gardens. Erected trellises for Bougainvillea to block the house right next door where the tenants scream at each other at 6:30 in the morning. The owner, no rainbow himself, caught up in the post-2007 housing bust, rented to low-lifes who publicly inflict their misery and incompetence upon others. Pinellas County at last responded to requests to haul away the wrecked F-150 that sat in the driveway for three months; now all that’s left there is a license-plate-less SUV with deflating tires and a jet ski that both sit unused. The garage is full of the stuff that collects around low-lifes, leaving no room for vehicles they could never have afforded. Sooner or later the ac unit will fail and the roof will collapse. We will raise the volume on Bach’s Goldberg Variations on our mobile audio devices and tend our garden.

    • stelmosfire May 26, 2014 at 12:28 pm #

      Hello Florida Power, I recently spent close to a month in FL. I don’t mean to denigrate the area but I personally can’t stomach the place. I consider it a sand bar thumb stuck into the Atlantic! Heat, humidity, bugs and the worst soil I have ever seen. Add on the 20 mile strip malls and crappy housing built to last 20 years and the list goes on. People living AC house, to AC car, to AC store, to AC work. Rant over!

      • Warren May 26, 2014 at 11:05 pm #

        In my lovely little corner of Florida the only new businesses are thrift stores, the selling of the detritus of post affluent America is becoming the predominant business model within a few miles are at least two dozen Thrift stores, including two in one of our local strip malls, where there once was a walmart and a publix they ply their trade in second hand goods amongst the rent to own store, the wig shop and the Dollar store and the Savealot market (the one I avoid like the plague on EBT day because of the gaggle the SNAP card users turn the place into a crowded whose who of the clients our local tattoo parlors) next to the former Internet Cafe that closed after its form of online gambling was banned.

        But I am sure that everything will be fine,after all in a state where a third of the population is on government assistance and where there are more guns than people what could go wrong when there is an economic collapse and the power goes out rendering all the housing built after 1966 uninhabitable; there is no food coming in and even if there is, inflation has renders government food assistance worthless

        FP As for your unruly neighbors, well if some August night their AC does “accidentally” go kaput, they will be gone pretty quick, you can count on that.

  11. bob May 26, 2014 at 10:38 am #

    The Buddha’s teaching was centred on the insight that the root of human suffering is attachment, as the reality of existence is change.
    The changes that that should have been made as we entered the techno- industrial world were never made. The old political economic power structures remain.

    • Greg Knepp May 26, 2014 at 11:45 am #

      Interesting observation, bob. But I believe that the Buddha recognized the symptom without understanding the nature of the problem.

      The phenomenon of ‘Cultural Lag’ is ever at work. Technological change usually outpaces the ability of its host culture to absorb (or internalize) same. This is why mantel pieces were built into homes long after central heating had replaces fireplaces, and why television cabinets were laminated with printed wood-grain sheeting for decades after plastic had replaced wood as industry’s preferred material for cabinet making. People need the familiar – or at least the illusion of such.

      Pattern recognition is everything to the human creature – in fact to all creatures! Individuals and societies can adjust to new patterns, but it takes time. Technological progress unhinged form the norms of the greater culture can often wreak as much havoc as war itself. Consider the interstate highway system or the smart phone…dreadful, fucking dreadful.

      The only succor for many in this age of ‘Future Shock’ is the maintenance of such mildewed delusions as ‘America is the greatest country on earth’ and ‘Jesus is coming back in a cloud’. These are two of a handful of Master Delusions from which countless others have been birthed.

      • bob May 26, 2014 at 5:23 pm #

        I appreciate your insights. The Buddha did achieve what has been called enlightenment. Enlightenment from the perspective of attachment ,I would suggest is freedom from ego . From a depth psychological perspective ego has its’ genesis in fear. Ego is an imaginative construct . The beliefs in a saviour ,who came to save us from sin and death is an imaginative belief system that makes life possible in our ego centric consciousness. Nationalism is grounded in our socialization in the paternalistic family structure with the hierarchy of God King and country and the father. Family values really mean paternalism.
        We live in a matrix of duality in which the various institutions religion economics politics law medicine education are self reinforcing.
        The ego finds meaning and affirmation in antagonism in being for or against . As the Zen master so aptly remarked good and evil and the mind is lost. We are part of the whole and should use our techno know how in accordance with the truth of existence ,which is dynamic balance. Keep on the ego path of ever more ,unsustainable growth and you end up where you are going.
        In my understanding Christ was teaching the way of this understanding referring to it as the Kingdom of God, the kingdom within the kingdom at hand. When the dots are connected from ancient times and depth psychology ,particularly the works of Carl Jung and Wilhelm Reich we get a clearer picture of our situation and our potential.

        • Greg Knepp May 26, 2014 at 7:36 pm #

          “Ego is an imaginative construct.” True enough. But then imagination is the mechanism we humans employ to work out the ways and means by which we may satisfy our immediate physical needs, as well as our deeper instinctual predispositions – such predispositions having been evolved over countless millennia to service the survival needs of what started out as a group of hapless ground monkeys. New arrivals they were, back in the Mid-Pliocene, scratching about on the African savanah, and forced to compete with fanged brutes of daunting strength, speed and mindless savagery. But they survived and eventually prevailed because some of them were slightly more clever than the creatures native to the plain.

          The ground monkeys developed the ability to think in ‘images': images that were not always immediately before them – images not only in the here-and-now but also in the there-and-then. The seeds of abstract thought were so planted.

          Imagination became vital to survival, and created tool use, language and even intelligence – at least as we experience it now. What you are now reading, bob, is a work of imaginative construction. You will likely reply with an imaginative construct of your own – hopefully one that is better than this one. We shall see. There is competition afoot here. There always is where life forms are involved…especially humans. This is what we do; this is natural.

          Yes, the so-called ‘ego’ is an ideation – an imaginative construct. But it’s an ideation representing a crucial instinctual drive – one that involves an individual’s dominance within a group, gene proliferation and like matters. Self-preservation and the preservation of one’s gene pool are at stake in what we call ego, and it seems unlikely that such deep-seated drives can be dismissed by a few ragged ascetics who, from time to time, make names for themselves by pointing out the obvious – that the instinctual framework of the human animal is ill suited to social organizations approaching the scale and complexity of what we call ‘civilization’.

          What the Buddha, Jesus, Chuang Tzu, Jung and the others failed to realize, though, is that the human animal will NEVER be so suited!… As I said, they understood the symptom, but not the problem.

          • bob May 26, 2014 at 10:52 pm #

            I would disagree that they did not understand the problem,otherwise what would be the point of any of it . Fear splits our consciousness ,that is the intellectual and the instinctual aka. as the mind body split. Consciousness being incomplete leads to self doubt and the ego gives meaning as we get a pseudo love from those who think or believe as I do.
            We project our ego onto our hero. This love often turns to hate,when the ego is no longer satisfied. When you walk down the street and someone you know doesn’t acknowledge you, your imagination and with it your emotions start to go into what is termed as an imaginative emotive state,what did I do to offend him etc. etc. I think you are looking at imagination from a different context ,imagination that leads to creativity.
            The myth of the garden of Eden is actually about this consciousness split and the subsequent fall of humans.
            There is a lot in the myth but simplistically eating from the tree of good and evil would lead to an ego centric consciousness and the return to the garden would be possible only with the eating from the tree of life which would heal this mind body split,and a consciousness of self doubt.
            If you understand the problem then it is quite easy to manipulate the human especially if if you control the system ,the media the economics religious beliefs etc. The American mythologist Joseph Campbell had some great insight into our situation in closing let me quote ” The gate guardian is a symbol of your own fear and holding to your ego,which is what is keeping you out of the garden ,where the Buddha sits under the tree, and his right hand says, Don’t be afraid of those guys ,Come through.”

      • Janos Skorenzy May 26, 2014 at 5:57 pm #

        Yes, Buddha called it clinging. Buddhist cultures often do value simplicity, even if they don’t always live up to it.

  12. Petro May 26, 2014 at 10:59 am #

    The local municipality organizes a Memorial Day parade every year, and a large group of people walk with signs plastered with the photos of soldiers from our state who’ve died in Afganistan/Iraq in the last 12 years. There are 50 – 60 people carrying these signs, but never enough, so some carry two. It’s meant, I suppose, to put faces to the statistics of wars (these failed occupations) which are mostly hidden from our society and personally felt by very few. I’m sure most in the crowd would call them heroes, but I can’t. To me, they are sorry victims of these wars of choice, wars for resources, wars for empire, pushed for by corporations who have profited mightily from them.

    Of course, there are very few people I could say this to without raising an outraged response.

    • MisterDarling May 26, 2014 at 2:21 pm #

      “To me, they are sorry victims of these wars of choice, wars for resources, wars for empire, pushed for by corporations who have profited mightily from them.” -P.

      And I think Americans knew that the latest round of wars were BS from the start. Once again… look at the numbers:

      12.6% active participation rate for WW2 (the all-time high).

      0.5% active participation rate for post-9/11 conflicts.

      “Of course, there are very few people I could say this to without raising an outraged response.” -P.

      I’m an OEF veteran & for it’s worth, that’s fine in my book.

      Cheers!

  13. budizwiser May 26, 2014 at 11:00 am #

    JK,

    I am shocked. I am shocked, I tell you.

    C’mon, its 2014 and – “the crash” – it hasn’t happened…..

    Even the Hirsch Report seems to have been a little overly pessimistic.

    Anyway – the big elephant in the room is “disposable energy consumption.” A concept, it appears, that the Long Emergency failed to fully account for.

    As we can now start to understand – being “too prescient” about our future predicaments is interpreted as being “wrong.”

    No doubt at some point in the future the “T-Bill” will lose its significance – and the diesel will quit flowing. How and why – and most importantly “when” either of these things come to pass will mark the new age you long for.

    But bear in mind my phrase – disposable energy consumption – there’s a lot left to spend.

    Don’t worry be happy this day of remembrance….

    • MisterDarling May 26, 2014 at 2:07 pm #

      People that are “too prescient” are generally have the requisite conceptual models, tools and techniques allowing them to mentally fast-forward scenarios incorporating more than 2 critical data sets. [*]

      Of course, this might not make a lot of friends.

      It’s like using Earned Value Management in an organization run by people with a ‘seat-of-the-pants’ approach to decision-making.

      If a project consistently accomplishes less actual work than required and spends more than it was supposed to, month after month, that pretty much means that without some ‘last minute heroics’ [**] the project is _already_ late and over-budget… Even though nobody *sees* the empty account and *hears* folks yelling “W T F!” yet.

      In honor of this fine holiday, I’ll provide another example:

      The US military/ NATO-ISAF has a project underway to evacuate Afghanistan by the end of the year.

      According to the kindest open-source figures available, the number of shipping containers of equipment, vehicles and persons removed from that country is woe-fully behind what it needed to be to make the _year-end_ deadline. And this was BEFORE the reigning president made a command decision to require that ALL (including the 10k residual force troops) GTFO of Afghanistan. [***]

      So at this point, without last minute heroics which pretty much won’t solve a thing, it’s going to be up the US press-corp to save the day – once again – by lying, obfuscating and faking their butts off pretending that all the stuff and possibly people captured by the new masters of Afghanistan have nothing to do with the USA (‘we don’t know WHO those people are!’ )… And put the US public back to sleep.

      But that’s the way ‘we’ like it don’t we? SN, AFU?

      ;)

      Cheers!

      —– —– —–

      [*] Some are more articulate than others.

      [**] which overwhelmingly tend to do more harm than good.

      [***] this would be the practical side of the POTUS’s surprise weekend visit.

  14. contrahend May 26, 2014 at 11:04 am #

    We will raise the volume on Bach’s Goldberg Variations on our mobile audio devices and tend our garden.

    Now there’s a man and woman after my own heart. I am so heartened to learn there are others wandering at the end of the tracks reciting A Tale of Two Cities and Ecclesiastes.

    Try the French & English Suites as well, as you no doubt have. I taught myself to play a few of them on an electronic harpsichord, I have endless hours of mental (even metaphysical) delight in between suffering through the deranged monotony that bombards the senses in the form of popular music.

    There are many more ‘outsiders’ than people think – and thank God for the internet to connect them all.

    james is correct in this week’s post. Except the part about the generals in Thailand having our number. That one’s is a stretch. Those generals would love nothing more than a McMansion in some Florida burb, along with all the rest of the superfloua, so to speak.

    kontrahend

    • Florida Power May 26, 2014 at 4:43 pm #

      Well to be honest I was thinking more of Voltaire but Dickens and Ecclesiastes are fine company. I awakened on Glenn Gould’s Goldberg and by now probably have at least four readings by others. The latest is by Jeremy Denk, whose CD with DVD liner notes is not to be missed. Regarding our Memorial Day garden project, now in lieu of our prize lemons we have eggplant, lima beans, field peas, borage, basil, thyme, okra, peppers, dill and others growing. Have to wait for Fall for tomatoes. Too hot. Have been rescuing native apples up at the place in Alabama. Grafting scion wood onto root stocks.

      We beat on, boats against the current , borne back ceaselessly into the past.

  15. aka_ces May 26, 2014 at 11:25 am #

    Potemkin nation.

  16. noel bodie May 26, 2014 at 11:36 am #

    That list pretty well covers it.

  17. debt May 26, 2014 at 12:00 pm #

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OAzbxFQ30Ss

    Jim Willie at his best. Listen.

  18. Phutatorius May 26, 2014 at 12:45 pm #

    I think that Herman Melville’s little novel “Israel Potter” describes pretty well how our veterans will be cared for. I myself am a Vietnam-era veteran. My service wasn’t exactly voluntary. Yesterday I used my veteran status to get a 10% discount at a big box home improvements store on a new dehumidifier that, according to most reviews, will work for just one year and then fail.

    • MisterDarling May 26, 2014 at 12:55 pm #

      I enjoy using that 10% ‘discount’ myself on occasion… It’s amusing.

      For the rest of you, that pretty much means that you’re paying at least ten-percent more than you should, on any given day.

      ;)

      Cheers!

      • godozo May 26, 2014 at 8:01 pm #

        You gave for your nation in that way, I’ll pay so that you get that discount. Deal?

        Besides, even if we’re talking 10% having served in a war, a 10% increase in prices for your 10% discount seems a bit too much. 1% should actually cover it, although I wouldn’t be surprised if 2% was a more accurate description of the hit us non-vets take for you.

  19. MisterDarling May 26, 2014 at 12:50 pm #

    The __J H K ‘To-Do List’__ is great, and would make a great political platform – if we lived in a place with democratic access to the levers of political power… Which we do not.

    This is not the fault of the boomer generation (or any others still living, for that matter). When you’re running your decision-making inputs through a Presidential form of democracy with a First-Past-the-Post election system, the possibility of populist reform occurring is greatly diminished – as intended from the start by the Founders and Framers, apparently.

    This not a matter of unsupportable opinion. It is math… or as we mere mortals end up calling it, History.

    On the brighter side, every other democracy with the same configuration rapidly devolved into an outright dictatorship. Ours spent most of it’s life-cycle as a corrupt oligarchic plutocracy with brief interventions from political realists. Eventually we got there, but we took a long time doing it (to our benefit).

    The critical factor seemed to exploitable resources. When the teat of Capital runs dry, power ‘consolidates’.

    The ‘good news’ take-away from all this is: dictatorship is an inherently weak, unstable and incompetent form of governance… So, ‘Take Heart’.

    Cheers!

  20. St. Roy May 26, 2014 at 12:56 pm #

    Doc

    I agree. The US government serves no useful purpose anymore and should be abandoned. Breaking up the land mass up into smaller polities and ending global trade would make life much better for everyone but those connected with the deep state. Let’s get on with it! Maybe Texas will take the first secessionist steps and get the movement going.

  21. K-Dog May 26, 2014 at 1:09 pm #

    That’s just my list. What’s yours?

    A good list I’m also down for.

    Closing down most of our military bases shuts some of the open windows that were letting home heat outside yet bigger defence spending cuts than that are needed to stop the chill miasmic draft. Annoying drips also leak water from the tap so its time to change the faucet washers. Lobbyists have rotted away the rubber with their excessive pressure and now the tap does not do the job it was originally intended to do. Everyone now fears using the water because it is so hard to shut off all the way once turned on.

  22. BackRowHeckler May 26, 2014 at 1:26 pm #

    Just back from local Memorial Day Services, speaker said this is 144th year in a row ceremonies have been held in the same spot (The town green).Lots of flags and little kids, patriotic music and speeches. I love that stuff.

    Hey Jim, you must have not been listening to national syndicated real estate program on AM radio last nite, sponsored by some realtor association, host claims real estate has come back strong, exceeding records of ’07, ‘leading the recovery’, also ‘million dollar houses’ are selling like hotcakes, in fact buyers are bidding against one another to get these houses. It was all good news; nothing bad. Happy days seem to be here once again, at least as far as real estate is concerned (which is ‘leading the recovery’)

    –BRH

    • Janos Skorenzy May 26, 2014 at 9:10 pm #

      You realize that all men died for nothing, right? They were sacrificed for the nascent New World Order – not America. So they were tricked and died for people who despised them.

      You have the right instincts up to a point. You would have made a good Fascist. It all can go too far of course and just become jingoism that feeds on itself. The more men who die, the more who must die to assuage the guilt of being alive.

      It must be faced that a small minority of men love war despite the horrors. Robert E Lee and Patton are two such. The Nazis had this extreme ideal as well – openly. Robert E Lee had to hide it in Christian America, revealing it only in his letters. America was militant enough that Patton could reveal himself at some point. This kind of Man should be honored if a hero, but not allowed into political office. You see the problem? Honor and psychological need take the place of wise policy.

  23. contrahend May 26, 2014 at 1:29 pm #

    close down most of our military bases overseas (and some of our bases in the USA)

    The one in Iceland was shuttered several years ago. An eery ghost town, likely will be used (or is used) to house domestic and foreign IT operations powered by geothermal and hydroelectric power, as is the entire country, save its cars.

    kontrahend

    • MisterDarling May 26, 2014 at 2:56 pm #

      I must admit that I like Iceland’s direction, since 2008.

      Cheers!

  24. Newfie May 26, 2014 at 2:04 pm #

    What, no mention of the Kardhasian wedding ? ;-)

  25. BatMastersonJr May 26, 2014 at 2:16 pm #

    The to-do list in this blog entry seems a reasonable one. Unfortunately, it turns out that we have crossed the Rubicon:

    http://www.globalresearch.ca/near-term-human-extinction-a-conversation-with-guy-mcpherson/5373909

    Call the end the line 2030. Depending on your outlook, this may be a tad optimistic or pessimistic, but now we are merely quibbling. It turns out that anybody’s to-do list is the existential equivalent of arranging the deck chairs on the Titanic.

    • dweebus May 27, 2014 at 11:21 am #

      Bat-

      Guy, whom I respect, may well be right about NTE. It mostly depends on whether we have pulled the trigger on the hydrate gun.

      But, it seems to me, the trick is to pretend as if the human project has a future. Accepting NTE as a dead given tends to lead to nihilistic and self defeating nonsense such as the “grief rituals” that apparently infected the 2013 Age of Limits conference.

      Even if the hydrate gun has fired, Jim’s list makes some sense. It would lead to a more livable world during the wind-down.

      • BatMastersonJr May 27, 2014 at 4:38 pm #

        dweebus,
        It is looking like the Clathrate Gun has been fired. We should know with certainty within the next two years. If that turns out to be the case, anybody who can understand exponential growth and feedback loops knows that we’re done.

        I’m not sure that pretending is a good answer. The analogy that Guy makes is to a patient with terminal cancer. You want to know, because it could profoundly affect your choices of what to do with the time that you have left … or not, depending.

        At that point, however, I agree with you that we all have the option of making the best of that time. Guy himself has said that we can choose to be the best versions of ourselves that we can imagine being. The to-do list in this blog could be a good start for some.

  26. Karah May 26, 2014 at 2:23 pm #

    If regular civilian medicine is a cruel, hopeless, quasi-criminal racket, imagine what medicine for army veterans must be like — all that plus an overlay of profound government ineptitude and institutionalized ass-covering

    1. extricate politics and its factions from the necessary business of life.
    every house needs a toilet and a roof, so make sure there is money to maintain and repair them (insurance) by a reputable professional, joe plumber and manuel labor. its time to live within our means, no more kickbacks.

    2. control residential development and thereby make insurance more affordable by not just declaring protected lands, automatically stop rebuilding where there have been multiple natural disasters within a five year window due to landslides, flooding and tornadoes/hurricanes.
    the people who lose their homes and the value of their property must be bought out by the county auction and/or given land/property of equal or more value that is not under threat.

    3. the age of huge institutions like universities and hospitals is over. no more one giant blding for everything. most kids will stay home with mom and dad and learn on their iMacs or in real life internships (work). there will be a different surgical center/college for every specialist: eyes, hearts, limbs, organs and cosmetic where the docs office is also located.
    intensive care units are the real hospitals within a hospital. everything else is just an overpriced resort hotel.
    mayo clinics must be located in every state and required to have at least a third of their patient load be veterans/military.

    4. guests. maximum stay for tourists is one weekend a month. thats all we can afford. we do not have the resources anymore in this country to house them as long as they want, including illegals and visa holders.
    most of the dream and vegas mentality is fed by their money. its over, wake up. no more foreign investment. bye bye. see you next yr.
    airports must be closed to tourists during the week monday 12 am to friday 12 am and only domestic and business travel allowed during that window of time. u.s. citizens traveling to other countries will do so at their own risk, passports will no longer be issued to them for travel overseas by air or boat. paper tickets are the passport for all travel. it is a temporary license subject to revocation at the termination of the trip. if someone decides to be an expatriot, they will really be one. they will have to write the usa to get permission to come back into the country legally if they want to stay here for more than two days after living overseas for any reason other than business of state or commerce. so make sure its a roundtrip ticket to britain, paris, nigeria or uruguay. people need to realize what they are really doing to this country when the retire in mexico or set up a clinic in nigeria. wake up.

    5. recycling. anything mass produced or sold in this country must be reclaimed by the seller or producer. that means cocacola and dixie and mac and ibm will buy back empty and used materials for recycling/reuse. this goes for the automobile, too. dealerships must be required by law to buy back their cars even when you do not trade in for a new one.

  27. LewisLucanBooks May 26, 2014 at 2:40 pm #

    Prepare 8 Wyandotte chicks to move from brooder to henhouse.

    Spray something non-toxic on 5 dwarf apple trees.

    Clean out another section of the blackberry patch to plant 2 heirloom tomatoes.

    Mow another section of the lawn.

    Clean out more blackberries to plant pumpkins, corn, beans and sunflowers.

    Clean out two unused planting barrels to transfer rosemary and mint.

    Etc.

    Or, since it’s raining like hell, maybe I’ll just read more of “How to Manage Your Money When You Don’t Have Any.” Got it from the library.

    • Karah May 26, 2014 at 2:48 pm #

      blackberries are way more desirable, nutritious and easier to grow than those tomatoes. i will buy your blackberries!

      6. gambling. cash only, no credit. must show latest bank statement with minimum balance of 10, 000 dollars every month before you can play. casinos will no longer be open to general public and classified as family friendly.

    • stelmosfire May 26, 2014 at 4:32 pm #

      LLCB, Where the heck have you been, I hope the relocation went well, Ripped.

      • LewisLucanBooks May 27, 2014 at 3:17 pm #

        Yo, Ripped; Yeah, things got to nuts and toxic, here. So, every monday I just read JHK’s post and the first morning of comments and that’s it. But, things seem more … calm here, now. But, I see some of the trolls are still with us, under other names. But, better behaved :-).

        Two and a half year out here in the boonies. Paradise! The pluses still outweigh the minuses. Have learned and done things I’d never done before. Process chickens? Check. Helped some friends do theirs. I didn’t faint, close my eyes or hurl. Now I can do my own when the time comes.

        I only go to town, once a week. Go for days without ever seeing or speaking to another human being. Wonderful!

        I have three varieties of potato. See what I like. I’m using the heavy plastic bag, method. They’re up and looking healthy. Will probably be way more than I need. I’ll give some to the neighbors. Build that social capital. :-). I got an asparagus trench dug and planted. Spring after next, maybe I’ll be able to harvest a few.

        To quote an old wildlife show “Vast panorama of nature”, here. Hummingbirds are back. Lots of deer and elk, around. Coyotes got most of my chickens. Sad, but that’s life in the country. The run has been re-inforced. A flock of wild canaries passed through. Big Foot paid a visit the other night. Didn’t see him, but he was hooting down in the woods and later in the yard. Tipped over my burn barrel and almost ripped the bumper of a neighbors truck.

        Karah – Still plenty of blackberries, around. Enough to put up several gallons in the freezer and make a bit of jam. Will get some blueberries started this year. Raspberries, next.

  28. Piper Michael May 26, 2014 at 2:52 pm #

    Good Day James,
    Excellent post, and list… but, our problem as a species, is our failure of imagination, and our fears overriding our common sense, that makes us always ride the tide of cycles, repeating our failures ad nauseum as our primary problem is that we forget to tell our children to not trust the rich and powerful, because we want to be like them… THE DREAM of riches, that is sold to us, so that we will work to enrich the rich even further, allowing the Phoenix to rise from its own ashes, only to be destroyed again, and again. This is because we cannot see the Truth, that materialism and ‘progress’, is a religion, and all of our institutions support and defend that religion. The religion always fails, because it is always a false doctrine, designed around centralized power, the head of gold that walks on the two legs of ideology, held in place by the breast and arms of true believers, maintaining power by the division of the toes, us.

    In history, whenever great powers or empires collapse, their founding documents/culture/moral base, is destroyed and seen as the enemy. In our case, our constitution was flawed, we threw off an aristocracy of royalty, and simply replaced it with an aristocracy of money.

    Whenever an aristocracy is allowed, things will just go back to the way they were, exchanging masters of one kind, for even worse masters of another kind. So the trick then, is to eliminate masters, representatives, republics, democracies, in favor of a modified Castle Confederation, where no one can ‘own’ land. If you think about it, no one CAN own land, we are all merely stewards on loan temporarily. But, this requires the elimination of the basic ideologies of materialism. (It will happen organically, might as well embrace it, expand on it, and make it work for all the people, not just The Few.)

    To eliminate capitalism, and collectivism, and replace it with no isms at all. If you think about it, both ideologies are two legs of the same problem, ending up the same way(organically, not by conspiracies, although, that is a part of the organism…)

    Both ideologies, end up the same way, because they are geared towards a few guys OWNING everything, and pronouncing themselves to be BOSS. And since absolute power corrupts absolutely, centralized power corrupts whole nations… so power should be decentralized completely.

    Thus, it is the centralized BOSSES, that must be eliminated as an ‘idea’, to only be as local as possible. This stems from the first rule, the rule that overrides all other rules and moralities; The Rule of Gold… That he who has the gold, makes the rules. It is a basic tenant of this rule, that he who owns, always wants MORE.

    Regardless of ideology, ownership and power is built into the human condition. Greed, power and control over others, must be eliminated, in favor of the smallest unit of governance possible. The local Council, and a hierarchy of councils. Each council is composed of the heads of Houses, or castles. Each house is responsible for stewardship of their little piece of Earth, and production of products, by the ‘pounding our swords into plowshares’, as you yourself say.

    We must unify under an idea, no more. To re-purpose, renew, recycle, return to the land, and nature, or nature will have its way with us, as it has with all the empires of the greedy bastards that built them.

    What we must prevent, is, the Phoenix of Gold, that rises from its own ashes to pronounce itself BOSS again.

    Everything is negotiable after that. But instead of lists, we must reexamine our basic ideas and ideals. We must see the future, and make a plan, because those who fail to plan, plan to fail…

    • Janos Skorenzy May 26, 2014 at 6:02 pm #

      Your anarchism is only for the golden age. Man is too flawed in general to live without law and the guidance of his superiors. But yes, to the extent people can mind their own business they should be allowed to so. As Barliman said Aragorn, “We want to be left alone.” Aragorn answered, “You will be.”

      • Piper Michael May 27, 2014 at 9:06 am #

        Anarchism? You add to what is not there.
        The Rule of Gold, must be put down by the Golden Rule.
        The Golden Age, is within you, only you are too weak minded to see it, feel it, know that it is there, and it will be.

        The only one who is flawed, is you. The statue of gold, must fall, by the simple power in a rock. This is NOT the church, for the church maintains the statue of the head of gold, does it not? So, what is the rock? The Knowledge of God, that conquers the MYSTERY of God.
        The Age of Churches, is what must fall first. That is already happening, as the Great Falling away has been happening for a century, as science and knowledge cause a spiritual evolution, and man is lifted to the place, where now, your ‘superiors’ dumb down the last generations(for the purpose of power), and they, will tear it all down.
        Brother against brother, ethnos against ethnos(nation against nation), and the cycle is completed when earthquakes are everywhere(not ‘diverse’, that, too, was a mistranslation).

        The Knowledge of God has been revealed, again. When the teachings come, is that not, the same as a New Revelation? That the teachings of Enoch and Gnosis, have been revealed again, and lead to the understanding of global destruction of your corrupt ‘superiors’, that only a Remnant of man is left… again.

        The only difference this time, is that The Elect will overcome The Elite, and shall be worthy of a golden age.

  29. MisterDarling May 26, 2014 at 3:00 pm #

    “we must reexamine our basic ideas and ideals. We must see the future, and make a plan, because those who fail to plan, plan to fail…” -P M.

    Couldn’t agree more.

  30. toktomi May 26, 2014 at 3:42 pm #

    I threw my list [http://seemstometobe.blogspot.com/2009/02/toktomis-economic-recovery-plan.html] away many years ago.

    It’s way too late for repairs.

    It’s time to “hasten the collapse and mitigate its severity” [http://realitysandwich.com/8855/money_and_crisis_civilization/].

    ~toktomi~

  31. gnarly May 26, 2014 at 3:49 pm #

    Here in suburbia the gas fueled riding mower, grass trimmer, and leaf blower have been polluting the sound for the past two hours. And that is just the guy next door…you should hear it when the landscaping truck pulls up…double the noise of everything…for what? Went to the supermarket earlier…those who were not away at their second homes were stocking up on bubba burgers and mega packs of hot dogs to further pad their ample backsides. I feel like a stranger in a strange land more and more…

  32. Smoky Joe May 26, 2014 at 4:12 pm #

    My list is close to JHK’s:

    “reinstate the Glass-Steagall Act; disassemble the ridiculous “security” edifice under the NSA; upgrade the US electric grid; close down most of our military bases overseas (and some of our bases in the USA); draw up a constitutional amendment re-defining the alleged “personhood” of corporations; fix the passenger railroad system to prepare for the end of Happy Motoring; rebuild Main Street commerce to prepare for the death of WalMart and things like it; outlaw GMO foods and promote local food production.”

    I’d keep the casinos open, however. Let those fools who think they can “beat the house” remain fools and fill the tax coffers.

    Legalize and tax recreational cannabis, too. Also cut all subsidies for oil and gas production and shift them to renewables, in the name of long-term energy security.

    The only one I see happening is Pot. We’ll be mellow at least, as things fall apart around us.

  33. lateStarter May 26, 2014 at 4:26 pm #

    What about one of your old favorites – rule of law? When in your opinion was the last time the US had an Attorney General (I actually typed Gerbil before edit, maybe the same) that actualy prosecuted anyone? Not counting Lance Armstong…

  34. contrahend May 26, 2014 at 4:31 pm #

    So the trick then, is to eliminate masters, representatives, republics, democracies, in favor of a modified Castle Confederation, where no one can ‘own’ land.

    Man oh man, that was tried & failed miserably, it’s the old so-called Communist countries. Soviet Union and decrepit Cuba come to mind, check out those two paradises for yourself and report back to reality.

    Eliminate healthy self-interest and you’ll get the shabbiest has-been of a country you ever wanted to see.

    Are you gonna tend to that piece of land you don’t own, make sure it’s nice and pretty and producing plenty, so your neighbors can eat everything you produce?

    Didn’t think so.

    If you want Section 8 Nation, go for it, I say. Just stay far away from me.

    That said, I do abhor the yard fanatics in the suburbs. Stupidest thing ever, too, since composting in place & letting a wide variety of plants and weeds grow is the best for the environment, not sterile monoculture degradation.

    But you can’t beat common sense into the heads of grass phreaks, they are beyond help with their idiotic grass and lawn care products that actually harm the environment instead of helping it.

    kontrahend

    • Janos Skorenzy May 26, 2014 at 6:05 pm #

      Yes, leave the “lawn clippings” where they lay. Let sleeping dogs lie and lying dogs sleep deep. deep where the earthworms sing.

    • chipshot May 27, 2014 at 9:44 am #

      What I look forward to more than anything in the collapse is the end of our obsession with lawns and all the watering, chemicals, and ear shattering lawn “care” equipment.

      Second would be the end of the monster trucks so many insist on driving around.

  35. MisterDarling May 26, 2014 at 4:56 pm #

    A report for “The Future is Now” file;

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-05-26/retail-death-rattle-grows-louder

    Excerpt:

    “The entire engineered “recovery” since 2009 has been nothing but a Federal Reserve/U.S. Treasury conceived, debt manufactured scam. These highly educated lackeys for the establishment have been tasked with keeping the U.S. Titanic afloat until the oligarchs can safely depart on the lifeboats with all the ship’s jewels safely stowed in their pockets. There has been no housing recovery. There has been no jobs recovery. There has been no auto sales recovery. Giving a vehicle to someone with a 580 credit score with a 0% seven year loan is not a sale. It’s a repossession in waiting.”

    Ringing Denunciation and Scorched-Earth Screed? Yeah, you could say that. But also Actionable Intelligence and Fair Warning.

    • ozone May 27, 2014 at 9:22 am #

      Thanks for the link, M.D.
      I happen to appreciate Actionable Intelligence and Fair Warning, and have been harkening for some time. It’s allowed me a much larger window of resilience and experimentation to share and pass along to others. Who knows, we may just have a slim chance of supporting each other without a Fuhrer creaming off the best of everything! …Mainly because there will be no visible surplus to skim, I’d realistically guess. (I’ve learned that through hard-won practice and its’ accompanying failures.)

      Hey, perhaps I’m not employing enough hi-tech gadgetry! ;-)

  36. MisterDarling May 26, 2014 at 5:23 pm #

    A n d… all hell breaks loose. Another quagmire for Foggy Bottom’s mercs and proxies to get lost in;

    http://www.aljazeera.com/news/europe/2014/05/ukraine-troops-attack-donetsk-airport-rebels-2014526142059732379.html

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/world/europe/10087867/Rebels-seize-Ukraines-Donetsk-airport?

    + six other source links…

    Just In Time for Memorial Day! So thoughtful!

  37. MisterDarling May 26, 2014 at 6:16 pm #

    “remarkable and regrettable”;

    http://i.imgur.com/lMLZDFc.jpg

    and also *inevitable*…

    J H K’s mentioned this.

  38. islander800 May 26, 2014 at 8:54 pm #

    I experienced an Interesting contrast between the deteriorating state of affairs here in North America and elsewhere last month, and it was eye-opening.

    Having just spent three weeks in France (yes, yes, I know – those “cheese-eating surrender monkeys” and all that other G.W. Bush bullshit), it was absolutely jaw-dropping what a contrast daily life is there compared to here.

    Impressions? Well, we travelled from Paris to rural Provence, and the first one was that there were no – as in NONE – homeless people to be seen. Anywhere. And even though cities, towns and villages were 1,000 years old or more, they were all sublimely beautiful. No garbage, no delaminating crap siding, no empty mini malls, or infrastructure falling apart. The contrast between beautiful medieval villages, vineyards and 300 km/hour passing TGV super trains was jarring.

    The pace of life was human, the people were extremely friendly (no psychotic road rage driven by a gut feeling that the world is going to hell) and the priorities seemed to be on human concerns like great food, wine, cheese, etc., all done at a human speed.

    How can this be? Well, the history of France is quite a roller coaster ride, including, ahem, “taking care” of the ruling classes when they got out of hand, whether regal or religious, and more recently, viewing the (gasp!) common good as a priority for the nation. As in, investment in infrastructure that benefits all. The map of the TGV network in the country looks like the interstate layout in America.

    Health care? It’s “free”. Education, including university? It’s “free”. They seem to realize that the entire nation gains when the population is healthy and educated. In America, the attitude is, for the bottom 60% of the population, we don’t care what inherent talents you have, if you don’t have the money to pay for it, bugger off. What a total waste of potential! The rest of the world must be literally laughing at us.

    How do they pay for this? Well gee, they have progressive tax rates like America had in – horrors! – the Eisenhower administration. And the vast majority realize that taxes pay for a civil society. And instead of encouraging tattooed mullet heads to drive 4×4 Hemis with ridiculously low fuel costs, they set prices at a level that encourages – once again, HORRORS! – conservation.

    For someone who never set foot in Europe before, it was a mindbender. More Americans should travel to France, a republic created in the mold of the American Revolution (with the official national standard of “Liberty, Equality, Brotherhood”) and see what other paths are possible, and what the end results can be.

    We are in such deep do-do here….

    • Janos Skorenzy May 26, 2014 at 9:00 pm #

      Don’t forget the hidden cost: the people are numb with the birth rate below replacement. Some can’t afford children, others have no interest, satisfied with mere “relationships”. So naturally others step into the abhorred vacuum. The future of France is Muslim. “France” per se, has no future at all.

      • islander800 May 26, 2014 at 9:15 pm #

        I wouldn’t count out a nation with over 1000 years of history just yet.

        • MisterDarling May 27, 2014 at 1:21 am #

          “Fluctuat nec Mergitur”… ;]

      • Karah May 26, 2014 at 9:44 pm #

        romanticizing things is not going to make it all better or make people deal with changes easier.

        the bush administrations were/are neo nazis in their view of the coming muslim takeover.

        people do not realize how close we come all the time to rhyming with recent political catastrophes.

        basically every nation is fated for one major civil war.

      • K-Dog May 27, 2014 at 12:56 am #

        Why is everyone pooping on someone who is only sharing his impressions of a place he just spent three weeks at.

        • ZrCrypDiK May 27, 2014 at 3:07 pm #

          Maybe because he’s a mindless Nazi? Why you love Janos is *WAY BEYOND* me. You impress me less and less – and that’s a *GOOD* thang.

    • beantownbill. May 26, 2014 at 11:36 pm #

      France is in deep do-do. It is bankrupt, like most of the rest of Europe, like Japan, and like the U.S. Socialism just doesn’t work. Oh, for a while, it seems like a great way to run a country – citizens get great bennies. But inexorably, reality takes over and things fall apart (with apologies to Chinua Achebe). Le Pen’s far right’s party just gained many seats in the election there, in effect repudiating Hollande’s government. There has to be a lot of dissatisfied and angry Frenchmen in France.

      • MisterDarling May 27, 2014 at 1:00 am #

        “There has to be a lot of dissatisfied and angry Frenchmen in France.” – beantownbill.

        There are. This election result has been a long time coming.

        Still… If you ever get a chance to visit (or revisit) ‘The Hexagon’, do it. They got a great way ‘o’ life over there… ;]

      • ZrCrypDiK May 27, 2014 at 3:34 am #

        Lists kinda deform this into a fightin’ match… I’ll give you a list – fracked aquifers almost empty, forests already clearcut – nothin’ but empty promises of water and *life*.

        I see U agree, with the *NO GASOHOLICS*. Unfortunately, they are *OUR* progeny…

        Sux to be caught up in all this – I need a *DAY JOB*… Or to enter the *OTHERWORLD*… (credit?)

    • MisterDarling May 27, 2014 at 1:16 am #

      I’m glad you had a great experience… I’ve mentioned it to people (‘mericans mainly) and their eyeballs glaze over. Really too bad.

      So much that happened on American shores was culturally determined.

      “The French want no-one to be their superior. The English want inferiors. The Frenchman constantly raises his eyes above him with anxiety. The Englishman lowers his beneath him with satisfaction” – Tocqueville.

      There’s a strange expectation and acceptance in the Anglo-dominated world, of a supposed ‘inevitability’ of subordination. [*]

      They don’t know what they’re missing… ;]

      — — —

      [*] speaking as a member of that world…

  39. contrahend May 26, 2014 at 9:48 pm #

    Well, underpopulation is a very real threat to the both Western and Eastern Europe, and offsetting that with alien and meanspirited cultures is not in their best interests.

    Let’s face it, radical Muslims have shown us all we need to know in the UK and elsewhere in Europe. Little to no desire to fit in, and cesspools of hatred.

    Ditto that for much of the African population and Caribbean population.

    Ask any European. Sure there’s integration to an extent, but a very small extent.

    I reserve the right to be wrong.

    kontrahend

  40. beantownbill. May 26, 2014 at 11:58 pm #

    The way I look at it, we’re never going to change our nature ourselves, so either the issues facing us will end civilization and/or the species, or it won’t. We live in interesting times, and it could go either way. I’m very curious to see how the future plays out.

    • ZrCrypDiK May 27, 2014 at 3:38 am #

      You’re such a *SUCKER*

      • beantownbill. May 27, 2014 at 11:15 am #

        ?????

        • ZrCrypDiK May 27, 2014 at 12:55 pm #

          You actually believe all these overconsuming brainwashed buffoons might actually change their behaviors? No question marks about that – they *WON’T* – they’ll continue overconsuming, overpolluting, and overbreeding until Jerry Springer has to tear their wall down and haul them off their bed with a crane…

          We’re talking sub-85 IQ levels – much like your hero, Dumbya, the last president who totally WARMONGER spent us into our graves over 8 years. Sure, 100 IQ is supposed to be the median – but that includes all the brainiacs from India/China (all 3 billion?). These inbred white Amerikans are dumb as fsk’n stumps – totally worthless pathetic b00b-tube brainwashed eaters.

          The fact that you actually think it’s a toss up, or 50/50, is ridiculous. These morons couldn’t find their own @$$holes from an anthill… Issues? All these supposed “issues” are man made – Mother Earth wouldn’t have any problems if mankind weren’t here. Lists? Stop guzzlin’ the gasohol, stop living beyond your means, try to control your waste products (“weekly” garbage collection), and try to get in touch with Mother Earth by planting a garden to feed yourselves.

  41. sevenmmm May 27, 2014 at 6:26 am #

    There are big profits to be made in bankruptcy for those with the cash.No surprise those having accumulated the cash did so by causing these conditions to begin with…

    • lsjogren May 27, 2014 at 9:39 am #

      Too much of a generalization. Many did get rich simply pocketing their “commissions” on the phantom “wealth” of sliced and diced toxic financial waste.

      However, the investors who made out well in the crash were the very ones who saw it coming and warned about it, and invested based on the expectation of the crash.

  42. seawolf77 May 27, 2014 at 7:51 am #

    America has been lied to for so long and so well that it is oh so difficult to contemplate let alone accept the truth. There is an army of Americanites out there, sure that everything will be fine if they keep reliving their championship season. They cannot and will not accept the fact, and fact it is, that America is great because we came to oil first. They believe in their heart of hearts it is because they run a tight ship, that they punish with passion less impunity, that everything that comes out of their heads and mouths is golden, and if we just listened and lived correctly i.e. their way, everything would be fine. This will never be overcome; consequently America is doomed to die a slow, rotting death. America as a country is in an old folks home. Those of us screaming “WE HAVE TO CHANGE,” are dismissed out of hand, with the callous impiety of a dismissing hand. Amazing as it seems, they could not have been more wrong.

    • lsjogren May 27, 2014 at 9:36 am #

      seawolf: To compound the problem, even a good share of those who recognize the need for change still cling to much of their “progressive” or “libertarian” policy beliefs, despite the fact that such policies are incompatible with the future that they know full well is coming.

    • ozone May 27, 2014 at 9:45 am #

      I agree with your analysis, which is why Jim’s excellent list of items to just START needed change will be ignored til the vinyl siding fades, loses its’ structural integrity due to U.V., cracks and begins to slough off the McMansion of State’s edifice…. but for perhaps one item:

      Food. It’s finally filtering through to the benighted denizens of America the Convenient that the crap they’re ingesting could be what is actually causing much of their illness! (Well, duh.) Can you imagine what will happen to “market share” if [honestly] labeling foodstuffs non-GMO were to come about?

      Why do I see expensive, protracted litigation with corporate-compliant judges in our future?

      • beantownbill. May 27, 2014 at 10:57 am #

        Hey, don’t say that! My condo is putting on high-end vinyl siding – an $8 million project. Vinyl today is not like it used to be. The material used is much better than in the past. And it’s cheaper. We could no longer afford to keep replacing rotted cedar clapboards. I suppose this is a reflection of our miserable economy. Of course, vinyl is a result of petroleum processing, and that’s bad in a world of diminishing resources.

        • ozone May 27, 2014 at 11:11 am #

          Beans,
          You’ll get no scolding from me; you do the best you can, with what you’ve got; for the time being.
          As JHK has pointed out before, making things that have a real chance of being around for many generations is an expensive project. (Though very likely a “savings” in the end, due to very prolonged utility.)

      • stelmosfire May 27, 2014 at 2:57 pm #

        O3, it’s happening in VT but will end up being fought in the courts for years.

        http://www.iowafarmertoday.com/news/crop/suporters-of-new-vermont-law-requiring-gmo-labels-on-food/article_2a4b9608-e297-11e3-9ede-0019bb2963f4.html

    • MisterDarling May 27, 2014 at 9:20 pm #

      “There is an army of Americanites out there, sure that everything will be fine if they keep reliving their championship season.” -seawolf.

      Nicely put. As are the subsequent comments regarding the pervasive self-serving nonsense.

  43. Arn Varnold May 27, 2014 at 8:54 am #

    @ bob
    May 26, 2014 at 10:52 pm #

    You cast pearls before swine…
    Surely you know this by now, yes?

  44. lsjogren May 27, 2014 at 9:32 am #

    Just one thing I feel I need to question.

    In a more agrarian society which Kunstler believes is the successor to our current, unustainable society, there is not going to be the large concentrated urban populations necessary to support the large infrastructure spending in order to expand passenger rail service.

    I do believe that expanded passenger rail probably would be beneficial to society, but it would be predicted on the continued existence of large, densely populated cities. And I happen to think that big cities will be part of our future, short of a mass die-off of the population, in which case we may indeed become a more agrarian society, but it will be a grim future, one in which people survive by hard physical labor, and those unable to perform such labor will quickly die.

  45. Peter May 27, 2014 at 9:33 am #

    Wow! Lots of comments this week, maybe the holiday has left a lot of people with extra time.

    “Barack Obama comes and goes like a pliable butler, doing little more than carrying trays of policy that will be consumed like stale tea cakes — while the wallpaper curls, and the boilers fail down in the basement, and veneers delaminate, and little animals scuttle ominously around in the attic”

    – sounds like something from “A World Made by Hand”, I guess no surprise there. Some might see the image of “Obama as butler” as a tad racist, but it’s really apt. In his quest to be the “anti-Bush” he’s become totally ineffectual, perhaps the most useless president since Jimmy Carter, or worse. I’m just counting the days until he’s gone. Reagan managed to accomplish a lot while appearing calm. Obama has accomplished almost nothing (and that bad) while running around like a chicken with its head ciut off.

  46. routersurfer May 27, 2014 at 11:15 am #

    Howdy Jim & crew!

    Nice list. How about using education to train for the “Real Work” that is coming? Also, we need to think about what can we power down while it is safe. Medicine will be a major issue. I do not think the rest of the world will let us go softy into the dark. So let us not throw government away as a bad idea. The problem was never government it was corrupt government with a side order of Ayn Rand style delusions. Wall-mart will not be the only loss to cheap energy. Many work are in the same line of no return. We will have a better world for it. Or will can go back to dog eat dog. For those against socialism or other isms what world do you want? I vote for 1776 minus Slavery, Sexism,and the Church involved in government. Sounds nice to my ears.

    • Karah May 27, 2014 at 11:53 am #

      1776 would not exist without slavery. slavery is seen as a bad thing because men have abused slaves. that has not been the case with every owner. slavery has always been necessary to any civilization and has been the solution to the end of poverty. we have slaves today. there has been and still are happy slaves. you could define it as those who do physical work and those who do cerebral work – equitable division of labor. jhk has defined debt slavery and wondered why young people endure it. he goes on to relate how we are slaves of the system with its torturous apathy for human suffering. also, how mechanical slaves have and will fail us. also, he bravely points out how feminism ignores the natural order of servitude, or women happily slaving for their families because that is what they are best at doing. men are best at physical labor while elderly and the physically weak are best at management and education.

      • ZrCrypDiK May 27, 2014 at 12:59 pm #

        Did *SHE* really say this, “slavery … has been the solution to the end of poverty.” OMG talk about contradictory – I like the lack of CAPS too. *SHE* must be the cerebral one…

        This one did make me laugh, though – “that has not been the case with every owner.”

        Sock.

  47. dweebus May 27, 2014 at 12:58 pm #

    JHK-

    Thanks for another pithy post that gets straight to the “short and curlies” as my Dad would say…

    You write, “Everybody I know is distressed by this toxic languor, this sense of being stuck waiting in a place they want desperately to move on from — like the prison of elder-care where so many find themselves hostage to the futility of staving off a certain ending, while all the family resources drain into various bureaucratic black holes. Do we care that the generations to come will have nothing left, nothing at all?”

    The collective atmosphere reminds me very much of 1979-80. There is a pervasive “malaise” that is metastasizing throughout the country (to throw out a Carterism). At least Carter tried to tell the truth. Who do we have now? Clowns such as Hillary and Chris Christie. (or their Corporate clones) Neither of whom is facing up to the realities bearing down upon us. We will be faced with a choice of more “extend and pretend” or “Morning in America 2.0″, meanwhile clouds gather on the horizon.

    And no, we do not care about future generations. As Lawrence Wilkerson put it in the “Four Horsemen” film, we have forgotten that part of our Constitution “and to our Posterity”. The inter-generational injustice is staggering.

    As to a collective “honey-do” list, yours is perty darn good. Although I would change the priorities just a bitsy.

    Number 1: An Article V convention to address de-fanging the “corporate person”. As long as you live under a Corptocracy, nothing else can be accomplished.

    2: Nationalize and then break up the banks.

    3: Glass-Steagall

    4: GMOs. Monsanto, ADM, ConAgra is Enclosing the Commons of Life.

    5: contract the military. (can’t do much whilst throwing our money down the rat-hole of Khost or Kiev)

    6: de-fang DHS, et.al

    7: grid

    8: rail

    9:: local economies/food- they will take care of themselves emergently.

    One point of contention- outlawing casino gambling. I am not a gambler, and am opposed to it on principle. But Prohibition never works, and all you do is feed a Mafia black market.

    My personal list:

    1: Again, my wet-dream is a Article V convention on corporate personhood.

    2: De-constructing the stranglehold that the two-party-system has on electoral politics.

    3: Focus if not locally, at least at the state level, politically.

    As the first two are non-starters and therefore, so is the third-

    4: Join your community. Practice your religion. Join gardening clubs. Hang out with the neighbors. Build connections and friendships.

    5: Secure your heat and H2O. Wood burning stoves, insulation, passive solar, rain barrels.

    6: Improve your soil.

    7: Collect and save back open-pollinated heirloom seeds.

    8: Consider an apiary.

    9: Make some beer, cider, or dandelion wine. All the better to hold off the hordes of zombies and libertarians with. Get ‘em tipsy and listen to some tunes!

    10: Should the proper “tipping point” arrive, de-construct the capitalistic/hierarchical/patriarchal dominant paradigm. Take down Industrial Civilization.

    “The task of an activist is not to negotiate systems of power with as much personal integrity as possible–it’s to dismantle those systems.” -Lierre Keith

    Regards,

    dweebus

  48. progress4what May 27, 2014 at 12:59 pm #

    Thanks for the week’s work, JHK. And nice list, btw. I’ll repeat it here for those who need a reference. Maybe it will hit the top of the second page of comments:

    “First item on the list: restructure the banks. Other items: reinstate the Glass-Steagall Act; disassemble the ridiculous “security” edifice under the NSA; upgrade the US electric grid; close down most of our military bases overseas (and some of our bases in the USA); draw up a constitutional amendment re-defining the alleged “personhood” of corporations; fix the passenger railroad system to prepare for the end of Happy Motoring; rebuild Main Street commerce to prepare for the death of WalMart and things like it; outlaw GMO foods and promote local food production; shut down casino gambling.” – jhk –

    Very nice list, indeed. I would add to the list that we should reduce ALL incoming immigration to genuine “replacement level,” to engineer a soft landing on US population growth.

    Of course, that won’t happen either. Nor will any of the things on your list – not until reality slaps us so hard that we are forced to make these changes. At which point it will likely be far too late.

  49. progress4what May 27, 2014 at 1:07 pm #

    Almost hit the top of the second page, didn’t I.

    Regarding near term human extinction (NTHE), I agree with the commenter who suggests that accepting this thesis (even if true) leads to nihilism or suicide.

    And, even if most of the scenarios of NTHE do come to pass, I doubt that the human species will truly go extinct. A remnant is quite likely to survive, maybe eventually thrive, by moving underground. That this remnant is likely to be heavily endowed with the genes that encode for sociopathy, which caused the whole disaster in the first place – – That is going to be one of those ironies that make the Gods (gods?) laugh.

    Also, be looking for planet-scaled climate engineering to begin to be proposed and implemented over the next couple of decades – as the reality of sea level rise, drought, and worldwide crop failure begins to really bite down on the “first world.”

    • dweebus May 27, 2014 at 2:25 pm #

      Progress-

      Thanks for the kind words, man.

      The “pretense” I suggest is rather like the “pretense” that C.S. Lewis advocates in “Mere Christianity”. Act as if the human experience has a future- act as if you will live forever. Do to others as you wish to be done by. That by itself would accomplish miracles.

      “A remnant is quite likely to survive, maybe eventually thrive, by moving underground. That this remnant is likely to be heavily endowed with the genes that encode for sociopathy, which caused the whole disaster in the first place – – That is going to be one of those ironies that make the Gods (gods?) laugh.”

      Not really. What are the energy requirements of a self-contained homo-troglodytis? Hydroponics, aquaponics, climate control, etc., etc. IMHO this is just as much a fantasy as infinite growth, moon colonies, or returning to living off the land as a neo-hunter-gatherer. The human animal requires habitat. That is the bottom line.

      The problem, we have conflated habitat with civilization and technology.

      Like I say, I respect Guy. IF we have triggered a hydrate bomb, we are fucked. Treat people with love and compassion as Industrial Civilization falls. If we haven’t, Peak Oil, Climate, and Finance ensure the current system won’t last. Treat people with love and compassion as Industrial Civilization falls.

      Nevertheless, falling into a masturbatic spiral of despair is counter-productive to say the least.

      BTW, I prefer NTE. Near-term extinction, if accurate, implies the 6th mass-extinction, the Anthropocene. So in each ELE (extinction level-event) the Alpha-life form went down, with most of the rest. Humans won’t be the only casualty. And to imply that we are somehow more important, than say, phytoplankton, is well, a bit like Icarus tryin’ to fly.

      -d

  50. progress4what May 27, 2014 at 1:21 pm #

    Almost at the top of the new page. Maybe this will do it. I sure would like to know what algorithm controls this.

    Regarding vinyl siding, bill and ozone. –

    The new stuff is better. But it’s still vinyl. I built a house with it about 6 years ago, now. I wouldn’t do it again. The stuff is beginning to fade on the south side of the house. (It’s a passive solar house with a perfect north/south alignment. The first winter I noticed that the snow never melts on the north side. Now I find the southern drawback. Why don’t they tell you these things more LOUDLY in design classes?)

    Anyway, I was attracted to the alleged zero maintenance of vinyl. I wasn’t cheap. (8 million though, bill?? damn.) If I had it to do over I’d use one of the concrete siding products like HardiPlank. That has to be painted eventually, but only if you want to keep it looking nice. Eventually it would weather to bare concrete and probably last for 100 years or more in that state, especially if you kept water off of it.

    One bullet I dodged was building with logs. Would have been a maintenance NIGHTMARE, especially on the south side.

    • ZrCrypDiK May 27, 2014 at 2:11 pm #

      Hahaha!!! It whuz on the 2nd page b4 you *POASTED*- the mod musta modified it so y’all can *reply*…

      “Flyin’ so high, tryin’ to remembah – how many “cigarettes” did I bring along!!” GHAD damned best album evah (Benefit – Jethro Tull [who is he?])

      I got a bunch of those concrete siding panels – man, they R *heavy*!!! I’m sure they the best thang now, to “weather teh storm.”

      I had an urge to link Paul Simon’s song Homeless – but hey, I can’t get away with youtubez…

    • stelmosfire May 27, 2014 at 4:51 pm #

      Howdy Prog, My house is from the pre-20’s, that’s 1920 to all you young whippersnappers. It has cement-asbestos siding. Don’t let the asbestos part scare ya.The asbestos is a small percentage and only acts as a binder similar to the aggregate in concrete. Don’t mess with it and it won’t mess with you. Better than Hardi-plank in my opinion. I see the next big environmental disasters to confront the building industries are fiberglass insulation ( read the warning label) and older pressure treated decking leaching cupro-arsenic residue into the ground. Imagine trying to sell your home and having to cart away and pay for disposal of yards of dirt. Notice I call it dirt and not soil because the stuff is poisonous. I am not even gonna mention the formaldehyde off gassing of all the carpet and upholstery.

  51. volodya May 27, 2014 at 1:57 pm #

    You can make a do-list and try to get out in front of events. Or not.

    No do-list? That’s ok, reality will impose its agenda. Like oil. It’s up over 100 USD. At this point we’re trying to squeeze it out of sand so I’d say there’s serious trouble. And food prices are going nuts.

    You can’t wish away resource depletion, nor drought, nor over-population. But you can’t have a reasoned public discussion on any of this because, as soon as you try, flacks for Wall Street and agri-biz and commodity speculators jump in. They lie most reasonably, lies being their stock-in-trade. And so people come to see their view on things, that you can’t do this or that because of this or that un-intended consequence. Or because it’s un-American and you’re a proud, patriotic American. Are you not?

    Besides, politics always follows the money and agri-biz and Wall Street has money. Learn to feed yourself because you are on your own.

    As for alternative energies (nuclear, wind, solar), don’t be fooled, at best these are fantasies. At worst they’re mis-direction (don’t worry, be happy) designed to buy the elite some time.

    Regardless, these power sources require an advanced industrial infrastructure (itself dependent on cheap fuel for its existence) to enable the extraction and distribution of such energies. Going nowhere. You’re on your own on this too.

    • Neon Vincent May 27, 2014 at 3:19 pm #

      “And food prices are going nuts.”

      Just last week, a professor from Texas Tech was on Lou Dobb’s program on Fox Business predicting more increases in food prices because of the drought in California and the rest of the West and Great Plains, diseases going through our pigs, and contamination of beef. As you wrote, “you can’t wish away resource depletion, nor drought, nor over-population.”

      http://crazyeddiethemotie.blogspot.com/2014/05/texas-tech-professor-predicts-rising.html

    • MisterDarling May 27, 2014 at 3:45 pm #

      “No do-list? That’s ok, reality will impose its agenda. Like oil. It’s up over 100 USD. At this point we’re trying to squeeze it out of sand so I’d say there’s serious trouble. And food prices are going nuts.” -v.

      Personally, I love lists. Lists are the literature of People Who Get Stuff Done. However, mine are for internal distribution only, and I cannot afford to prioritize action items that assume there is a collective ‘us’ in the US gov’t anymore. Clearly that time is past, if it ever was.

      That being said, I can see why J H K might publish his.

      Regarding the rest of this post volodya: Agreed, 100 percent. I believe that we’re seeing eyeball-to-eyeball on these issues.

  52. volodya May 27, 2014 at 1:59 pm #

    Kunstler says restructure the banks? You have the weight of Wall Street money arrayed against you. Wall Street buys congressmen like cattle.

    But yes, break up the banks. There’s way too much destructive power in way too few hands. I’d make a whole bunch of stuff they’re doing illegal.

    Re-instating Glass Steagall is just the start. I’d declare the trillions and quadrillions in derivative contracts that sit on bank balance sheets like cancerous lesions to be null and void. I’d make those contracts unenforce-able and I’d make it illegal to enter into new ones subject to long periods of incarceration.

    The Federal Reserve is a mess, at best a clown act with crack-pots in the employ of Wall Street. And, at worst, a pernicious institution dedicated to the looting of America. It’s time is up, shut it down. We can’t have this nonsense.

    Talking about nonsense, you might also abolish economics as an academic field. We’ve had two hundred years of pondering and theorizing and observation and measurement. And where are we?

    If economics was merely useless that’s one thing. But it isn’t. It’s a calamity, a masquerade full of baffoons and fraudsters pretending to be respectable scholars and stinking with bought and paid for propagandists. Time’s up on this one too.

    • ZrCrypDiK May 27, 2014 at 2:16 pm #

      OMG, the truth(sooth)-sayer!!! I almost spewed brew out my nose reading this! *NAILED IT*!

      • ZrCrypDiK May 27, 2014 at 2:18 pm #

        Oh, and I checked the MAJIKAL spell checker – it’s buffoons…

        • beantownbill. May 27, 2014 at 3:36 pm #

          This is in reference to your reply to my earlier post yesterday.

          I don’t drink excessively, at least not regularly, and I don’t do drugs because I decided a long time ago I wanted to max out my lifespan (after all, we don’t know what the alternative is like), so to make it through the day, my only choice is to be optimistic, albeit with a fair amount of cynicism.

          It irritates me greatly when people tell me something can’t be done. Tell me the probability of success is not high, but never say never. Don’t be a if-God-wanted-us-to-fly-He-would-have-given-us-wings type of guy. Me, you and everyone else doesn’t know the future.

          Look, I ain’t stoopit. I know we’re in a lot of trouble. I’ve always said we are at a crossroads. Soon, one of those roads will be closed off. If that happens, then we are done. But it’s still not too late. We have options. In my post I said either we will collapse or we won’t. I never said it was 50-50. Actually, civilizational collapse is a binary choice. It happens or it doesn’t; those are the alternatives. I’m a gambler and I’ve put in all my chips on the survival side.

          C’mon, X, embrace life. No matter what happens, it’s been a real trip, ya know?

          • ZrCrypDiK May 27, 2014 at 6:50 pm #

            “I don’t drink excessively,”

            Not sure what that means – neither do I – just a beer-equivalent every hour, for hours on end (14 hours Sunday). I smoke “roll-yer-own” pure tobacco, organic and chemical free (3-4 cigs a day tops). I’d smoke weed, if’n it whuz legal (I should really see a doc and get my card), but it’s been nearly a year since I did that. Pushing 50 – I really don’t see the need to bother with coke/crank/smack/etc (I’d argue Opium is a great pain killer – but all prescription drugs now employ that fact)…

            I embrace life – I don’t embrace our mankind who destroys every last living thing – there’s a *BIG* difference. I used to pray to *GHAD*, hoping every other human would become even smarter than me (with consciences). That never faired well, so I became a Mother Earth worshipper (agnostic). I watch the mankind poison every last living aquifer through fracking, and clearcutting all remaining forests, and killing predators that come into suburbia.

            I see no hope for this mankind you speak of – they just kill, destroy and pollute. We’re out of Iraq, yes? How many troops R still deployed there (75k)? I heard we gettin’ out of Afghanistan in 2015 – no wait, now it’s 2016… How many troops will remain to keep those pipelines safe?!? Shellshock? PTSD? What’s the price for stealing assets from Arabia?

    • MisterDarling May 27, 2014 at 4:32 pm #

      “Wall Street buys congressmen like cattle.” -v.

      You know that you’re going to get some laughs with a line like that. Not that it isn’t (figuratively) true ;)

      “Re-instating Glass Steagall is just the start. I’d declare the trillions and quadrillions in derivative contracts that sit on bank balance sheets like cancerous lesions to be null and void. I’d make those contracts unenforce-able and I’d make it illegal to enter into new ones subject to long periods of incarceration.” -v.

      The situation back in 2008 was so blatantly grotesque that it would not have been necessary to reinstate ‘Glass-Steagall’ (ie., The Banking Act of 1933, specifically Section 20).

      All that was necessary was let Sheila Bair at the FDIC do her job and liquidate the firms impacted (b/c they weren’t actually banks when Lehman was collapsed, but they hurriedly filed as such to make themselves eligible for TARP funds).

      To Sheila’s credit she repeatedly requested – then demanded – to be able to take out the financial trash. And she was duly denied.

      The Travesty of 2008 was useful. It dispelled any illusions about The Fed, IMF and BIS-affiliated financial apparatii being **in any** way fair and impartial arbiters or managers of risk and capital.

      It de-legitimized the WashingtonWall St. ‘consensus’ in the eyes of relevant parties overseas… The creation of the BRICS-bloc from the SCO, the removal of authority from the G7 and G8 to the G20, the increasing calls for a ‘multi-polar’ world are concrete results.

      These are some of the better upshots of the financial fiasco of 2008.

      It is of course understood that the *relevance* of global finance itself has been placed in question – by itself – but opportunities to diversify our survive and (to some extent) __thrive__ tactics and strategies is greater than pre-2008. [*]

      In a weird way, they did us a favor. We saw what kind of creatures they are, and who is beholden to them.

      — — —

      [*] once again taking note of the way that sociopaths regulate their own numbers… ;]

  53. MisterDarling May 27, 2014 at 3:22 pm #

    Apropos of our ongoing negotiation with the ‘new reality';

    http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2014/may/26/glenn-greenwald-publish-list-us-citizens-nsa-spied/

    Wondering if the NSA ever spied on you? Well, now you’ll be able to find out.

    The Tofflers posited that Power takes three forms: Power to Punish, Power to Reward and Power to Inform.

    Of the three, Power deriving from Information (with a capital ‘I’) is the most versatile… Because it has the ability to re-write the rules, or to end the game.

  54. BackRowHeckler May 27, 2014 at 5:02 pm #

    Well, here’s one category that has improved over the years:

    Memorial Day traffic fatalities in Connecticut,1927 — 11 dead

    Memorial Day weekend traffic fatalities in Connecticut 2014 — 0 dead

    Cars are much safer without question. I just wish there weren’t so many of them.

    The spring offensive continues in Hartford, Bridgeport and New Haven; bunch of people shot, arson fires and plenty of stolen cars. Here is one fact I ran across recently. Hartford white population 1950: 90%. White population 2014: 8%. i guess it was Hartford’s destiny all along to become a dystopic third world sinkhole. Incide intally, there was a notable shootout in the Dollar Store in Hartford the other nite. Don’t know what it was all about. Casualties low only 1 dead

    –BRH

  55. progress4what May 27, 2014 at 7:43 pm #

    “Not really. What are the energy requirements of a self-contained homo-troglodytis? Hydroponics, aquaponics, climate control, etc., etc. IMHO this is just as much a fantasy as infinite growth, moon colonies, or returning to living off the land as a neo-hunter-gatherer. The human animal requires habitat. That is the bottom line.” – dweebus –

    We used to have a poster named Turkleton who argued persuasively that only simple fungi and bacteria would be living on Earth within 50 years. I understand the arguments, but I’ll let you work to convince me.

    I have looked at the climate parameters of major extinction events since the Cambrian. Unless I’m mistaken – human life would have been possible during any of these. IOW, as long as O2 remains between 15 and 25% and the atmosphere is non-toxic to mammals – then an adaptable, intelligent species of naked apes could have survived.

    And, to answer your question, the energy supply for Mr. and Mrs. Troglodytis would be plain old sunshine – channeled underground to whatever depth climate required, by means of mirrors, tunnels, or other necessary inventions.

    I did take a look at this, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_extinction You may find that it relaxes you. The clathrate gun is only one of several things that might cause human extinction.

    For example, the wiki tells us, “U.S. officials assess that an engineered pathogen capable of “wiping out all of humanity” if left unchecked is technically feasible and that the technical obstacles are “trivial”.” This has the bonus of leaving the rest of Earth’s lifeforms intact, I will suggest.

    If one prefers to think of Earth as a sterile wet rock in space, though, there is the possibility of “Gamma-ray burst in our part of the Milky Way. (Bursts observable in other galaxies are calculated to act as a “sterilizer”, and have been used by some astronomers to explain the Fermi paradox.) (snip) Wolf-Rayet star WR 104, which is 8000 light years from the Sun, may produce a gamma ray burst aimed at the Sun when it goes supernova.”

    Fascinating stuff!

    • MisterDarling May 27, 2014 at 10:41 pm #

      “I did take a look at this,

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_extinction

      You may find that it relaxes you. The clathrate gun is only one of several things that might cause human extinction.”

      +

      “If one prefers to think of Earth as a sterile wet rock in space, though, there is the possibility of “Gamma-ray burst in our part of the Milky Way. (Bursts observable in other galaxies are calculated to act as a “sterilizer”…” -Prog.

      This was an amusing post.

      Material like this *does* actually regulate a certain kind of person well. For example, I found myself quietly aspirating the soundtrack to “Sleepy Hollow” (Danny Elfman, 1999) whenever there was no one in ear-shot when I was down-range… It was my ‘war-track’ so-to-speak. It really helped take the edge off, while at the same time keeping me focused.

      Thank you for the humor!

      Cheers!

      • K-Dog May 28, 2014 at 3:51 am #

        But of all the ways humans might go extinct I pertinaciously prefer that it not be due to idiocy. Directly or indirectly.

    • K-Dog May 28, 2014 at 3:37 am #

      As I recall some of the geologic eras would have put humans in distress if they were suddenly dropped from of a time machine. But generations could adapt and adjust via natural selection if O2 levels moved slowly enpugh back to prehistoric levels.

      The Great Suffocation

      • K-Dog May 28, 2014 at 3:39 am #

        Perhaps I need a bit more O2 myself or it is late to be here because ‘enpugh’ should have been ‘enough’.

    • dweebus May 28, 2014 at 12:42 pm #

      Progress-

      TY for the reply. Perhaps I was a bit misunderstood. I do not think NTE is a given, just a possibility. IF it is baked in the cake, there is not a dang thing that can be done anyway, so “why worry” as Alfred E. Newman might say. There is work still to be done.

      I am not convinced that O2 is the main issue (although I dig the stuff- who doesn’t?), the issue to my way of thinking is that our food system has evolved over a 10,000 year period of climate stability. De-stabilize the jet-stream, precipitation patterns, average temps, etc and you have major problems.

      The farmers around my area have to get the corn and bean crop in by early June at the latest. Two years ago, they got the crop in fine, but then it quit raining by the end of June and they had massive losses.

      The year before that, we had a cold wet spring, they couldn’t get out in the fields, and large losses.

      This year, perty good so far. 90% of the corn and most of the beans are in, so far. We will see.

      But farming is predicated on a fairly predictable weather pattern. Lester Brown posited that for each 1c rise in temps you have a 10% loss in yield. That is flat scary, particularly since 2C is now considered unrealistic, 4C is likely, and 6C possible. So yield reductions in the range of 20-60% ought to be considered. Wow, feed Bangladesh, much less the US, with a 40% reduction in yield (still dependent on nitrogen fertilizer). So we are dependent on habitat, in other words, we need six inches of topsoil, rain, and reasonable temps.

      As to the cave-dwellers- when I was a young lad, I went spelunking in abandoned missile silo complexes. Some kid wrenched open the emergency escape hatch with a winch and propped it open with a cinderblock. Word spread amongst the teens, and on any given Saturday night, 30 cars would be parked up top and us young fools would descend below to party.

      It was where I first discovered the glory of ganga, music, and the greatest Mystery of all…girls.

      With all due respect, I think you would need more than a mirror system. The temp is about 50f year round. Good in winter, but shitty for gardening. There is problem of pumping out ground water, artificial lighting, decent nutrients for plant growth, ventilation and an industrial base to maintain all the shit to support this. We are evolved for terrestrial life, not subterranean, don’t you think?

      BTW, I am already relaxed.

  56. progress4what May 27, 2014 at 7:47 pm #

    I don’t know if this is true or not. It sounds like something from the Onion, but it has the “look” of real news. Certainly, the US government has probably done worse things, at one time or another.

    http://www.naturalnews.com/045318_fake_vaccines_DNA_harvesting_White_House.html

    What do you think, fellow ClusterFuckers?

  57. MisterDarling May 27, 2014 at 9:27 pm #

    Freedom Tower is going to be half-vacant at Opening Day…

    http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_slatest/2014/05/27/one_wtc_half_full_erstwhile_freedom_tower_still_having_trouble_finding_tenants.html

    Something about this story just puts the figurative ‘cherry on top’ of the whole ‘post-9/11′ experience…

    You might find it as ironic as I do.

    Cheers!

  58. MisterDarling May 27, 2014 at 9:30 pm #

    Where america’s immigrants come from [the article]

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-05-27/where-americas-immigrants-come

    shortcut to the chart;

    http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2014/05-overflow/20140527_pop.png

    . . .Let the numbers do the talking.

  59. cwb0711 May 27, 2014 at 10:06 pm #

    Motoring in The Motor City is getting a lot harder. Making a living in The Car Business, as I have done for more than 30 years, will not be the same. There is no room for competing narratives, even mild ones that call for more transit, less personal mobility as we’ve come to know it, and transportation generally becoming more difficult and expensive. And it’s amazing how the “leadership” at the multi-billion dollar enterprises act like it’s the dawn of a new golden age for Happy Motoring. With only two steps between me and the CEO of one of those multi-billion $$$ global outfits, my job is make sure that no matter how things go, it will turn out OK. It won’t. Our technologists talk of driverless cars, intelligent transportation systems, and other miracles, while ignoring the reality of a crumbling surface transportation infrastructure. Smart cars for dump people, that’s what we need!

    • MisterDarling May 28, 2014 at 7:42 pm #

      Hello cwb!

      What’s your take on this:

      http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-27587558

      ?

      And this?

      http://harpers.org/archive/2007/07/detroit-arcadia/

      • cwb0711 June 3, 2014 at 7:43 pm #

        The work that google is doing is a fraction of what’s been going on with ITS (Intelligent Transportation Systems); the goal suits them fine: when the driver doesn’t have to drive, they have more time for “content”. As a life-long auto enthusiast (including racing & rallying), I’m looking forward to seeing what kind of algorithms will be incorporated to handle other vehicles, driven and “driverless” alike. It’s coming. Some days I welcome it, others, not so much.

        Thank you as well for the article on Detroit…one can see the decay…and signs of life…from the freeway I drive twice a day. We support the idea of the city generally and some of its cultural institutions. It’s a laboratory, if nothing else. Lived, worked, and went to school in the city; most of the time when we’re taking roads less traveled, we’re speechless.

  60. progress4what May 27, 2014 at 10:10 pm #

    “. . .Let the numbers do the talking.” – mr. darling –

    Those numbers tell me that the US is egregiously overpopulated and getting more so all the time. I don’t believe the countries of origins matter one bit.

    What do the numbers say to you?

    • MisterDarling May 27, 2014 at 11:12 pm #

      At this point I’m interested in which foreign nationals are most interested in immigrating to the USA.

      Secondarily, I’m interested in utilizing the immigration figures as a ‘pressure-valve’.

      Mexico towers over all others due to proximity (of course) and but also pressure to do so – in spite of the decreased incentive and increased peril.

      Mexico is sliding out of 2nd-Stage Collapse into 3rd-Stage a fact that is being elided, avoided, ignored and covered-up as much as possible on the US side of the border.

      I find this worth keeping an eye on… ;]

      To paraphrase William Gibson; “The Future is here. It’s just not evenly distributed”.

      • MisterDarling May 28, 2014 at 12:37 am #

        EDIT: ‘pressure-valve’ = a demographic pressure valve **metric** = something to indicate the amount of push behind a surge of people.

        For example:

        Demographic Pressure to leave a country grappling with an economic depression = moderate.

        Pressure to exit a country with a civil-war where ‘ethnic-cleansing’ is a frequent feature = high

  61. Florida Power May 28, 2014 at 8:33 am #

    Another day, another development in grid-scale renewables, (of which I remain skeptical) this time pilot deployment of “flow” battery technology:

    “EnerVault has officially dedicated its EnerVault Turlock demonstration project, the first grid-scale iron-chromium redox flow battery deployed in the world. The long-duration energy storage system, which was developed using private and public funding, will help stabilize the grid and hold energy from a solar photovoltaic plant to power an industrial irrigation system in Central Valley, California.
    The U.S. Department of Energy and California Energy Commission both provided research and development grants for the EnerVault long-duration storage system, which is designed as an efficient and cost effective solution for resilient grids as the nation increasingly generates energy from renewable sources like wind and solar.
    EnerVault’s innovative energy storage system is based on the company’s patented Engineered Cascade™ technology that transforms inherently safe redox flow battery chemistry into highly economic and reliable storage solutions. EnerVault CEO Jim Pape likened the technology to a regular battery turned inside out. Further, EnerVault’s flow batteries are manufactured with iron and chromium, which are both extremely abundant and therefore cheap to utilize.”

    The same issue of PennEnergy discusses quantum dot solar cell technology breakthroughs at MIT. The advantage of this technology is that it takes far less energy to produce the cell. The disadvantage at present: 9% efficiency.

    Mama don’t let your babies grow up to be cowboys. Let ‘em become chemical engineers.

  62. BackRowHeckler May 28, 2014 at 9:18 am #

    What’s this? Edward Snowden is claiming to have been a full fledged spy, a CIA Agent, all along, not some low level contract operative.

    Now some comrades are saying Snowden is a double agent in the employ of Russia, or even a triple agent, with additional allegiances to China.

    What of it?

    –BRH

  63. Karah May 28, 2014 at 10:00 am #

    7. it is illegal for any institution to issue unsecured credit and charge more than 18% interest and for anyone other than a fed insured bank or union to offer financing on any product or service.

  64. Karah May 28, 2014 at 10:11 am #

    8. anyone who applies for welfare benefits are tax exempt from ALL taxes and fees including all sales tax anywhere during their aid and must report for some kind of civil service a min of 20 hours per week.

  65. seawolf77 May 28, 2014 at 11:04 am #

    The thing about unsound money are the fecundity of profoundly incorrect valuations. Cable bill more than electric bill. Water more expensive than gasoline. Student loans higher than credit cards. Everyone has cellphones.WIFI free. Investment bankers make more than engineers. Professional sports teams worth a billion dollars. 30 year mortgages. CEO’s make 400 times a line worker. When money is sound, you can’t play games with value. Bubbles don’t grow. Gold supply grows at 2% a year, a doubling of the economy every 36 years, or nearly 2 generations. Perfect. Through most of the 20th century oil supply grew at 7%. That is why we went off gold standard. It constrained growth. Not no more. Oil supply is growing less than 1% now worldwide. We are now in a managed contraction. Oh how we miss blowing them bubbles. They sure were fun. Not no more.

    • MisterDarling May 28, 2014 at 8:01 pm #

      Yes… also: excellent.

  66. BackRowHeckler May 28, 2014 at 1:07 pm #

    Ukraine is out of the news, but the fighting is pretty hot. What’s the use of NATO? What’s NATOs mission?. What kind of fight could NATO troops put up? Some in the east don’t respect NATO, think its a PC organization, raising LGBT Battalions in Holland and Denmark — The Fighting Trannies — to stop tough Russian Soldier-Peasants on the Dnieper.

    If Snowden is what he says he is, a trained CIA agent, imagine the intell he has turned over to the Russians. Could this explain Putin’s insouciance and boldness toward the west? Did you see Brian William’s face when Snowden told him about being undercover for both the CIA and NSA? It looks like he just swallowed a mouthful of manure.

    –BRH

    • ozone May 28, 2014 at 6:15 pm #

      When the Brookings Institute has waved the white flag on their rock-solid ‘positions’ regarding Ukraine (which they have) you know that an onrushing Bay or Fundy riptide of ass-coverings is about to begin! (It’s going to be fun to see how this is all spun…. and spun again.)

      [Vewy Wecent] History Revisionism…. HO-ohhhh!

      • ozone May 28, 2014 at 6:16 pm #

        Bay “OF” Fundy

      • BackRowHeckler May 28, 2014 at 6:36 pm #

        Its a Triple Cross, Oz, the classic Triple Cross.

        I just thank God I’m alive to witness all this sh-t. It just keeps getting better and better. And all i have to to is sit back, pop a cold one, throw another steak on the grill, and enjoy the show, that’s all.

        –BRH

        • ozone May 29, 2014 at 9:03 am #

          BRH,
          You got that right. (And in no way can we “da people” do a durn thing about it but observe and [hopefully] learn as hands are shown.)
          Howsomever, as another neo-con grand plan sluices down the porcelain contrivance, I think we all can figure that it will be the proxies and pawns who will have a firm grip on the shit end of the stick. We should probably take a lesson there as well; these kind of triple crosses could be coming to a locale near us with the right timing and true privation. (Lack of cable doesn’t count. ;-) )

    • MisterDarling May 28, 2014 at 8:16 pm #

      The Ukraine ‘situation’ is worth keeping an eye on.

      Regarding Mister Snowden: whatever he appears to disclose about himself to the US press should be taken with more than just a grain of salt.

      This is the same press-corp that bends over backwards (and every other direction) to cover the butt of an administration that arms and trains Al-Qaeda (in Syria) while hunting/killing Al-Qaeda everywhere else, and persecuting American citizens on the merest suspicion that they are connected to said organization.

      “Show me who your friends are and I’ll show you who you are”…

      Nothing that they say, display or present can be taken at face value.

  67. volodya May 28, 2014 at 2:01 pm #

    To Mister Darling,

    2008 did clarify matters. So did the years subsequent. For me suspicion became certainty.

    Every time I walk into a bank I get a greasy sales pitch about this fund or that fund. It sounds like hey sucker, wanna buy a sure thing? Gives me the creeps. Sometimes it’s a glossy chick with leg and cleavage and the pitch sounds more like hey baby wanna spend some money, pant, pant. Yeah, sure sweetheart, what’s money for?

    So this is the next big thing in financial innovation: banks with lounge areas with strippers, banks as houses of ill-repute, banks as opium dens.

    And why not, if banks are gangster-run anyway and if banks are dens of greed and vice and corruption why can’t banks just outwardly be what they actually are, why can’t you go to your bank and get a drink etc…

    • K-Dog May 28, 2014 at 3:33 pm #

      “lounge areas with strippers”

      Free toasters not bringing in the crowds apparently. As far as being houses of ill-repute; should they start charging for making deposits I think they will qualify.

    • MisterDarling May 28, 2014 at 7:21 pm #

      “So this is the next big thing in financial innovation: banks with lounge areas with strippers, banks as houses of ill-repute, banks as opium dens.” -v.

      If you go to their parties they are exactly that. If you’re a prospective ‘client of stature’ the level of service FAR exceeds anything that you could’ve imagined in any bordello. We are talking about top-shelf dream-achievement here…

      ;)

      In point of fact, the wall-street financial sector is consuming the lion’s share of cocaine and escort-servicing in Manhattan. They’ve become an officially sanctioned criminal enterprise which breeds and gives aid & succor to more.

      In addition, that sector depended on drug-money laundering during those first touch-and-go months of the ’08 Crisis (court documentation from the HSBC and Wachovia proceedings substantiate this). Unfortunately – for them – this eliminated the insulating distance they needed to survive the next Season of Excuses.

      They are a lot closer to perdition than they know. They aren’t the only ones being manipulative. Their words and actions are bespredel. At some point someone will decide that they are otmorozok. . .

    • ozone May 29, 2014 at 9:14 am #

      V.,
      “2008 did clarify matters. So did the years subsequent. For me suspicion became certainty.”

      My suspicions were also confirmed. Most turned their faces from the scene for fear of upsetting the disintegrating apple cart, but, lordy, there was/is much to be internalized about a kleptocracy’s methods and luminaries, going back a goodly number of years and “administrations”.

  68. K-Dog May 28, 2014 at 3:27 pm #

    “That last one bears repeating. The EU and the US are currently trying to impose a trade deal on us in the name of growth that would take away our basic democratic rights. Monsanto will be able to sue your government if they decide to ban roundup. Big pharma will be able to take your country to court if it tries to protect children’s health by, say, reducing the availability of sugary drinks.”

    Our corporations which art everywhere,
    Hallowed be thy logos.
    Thy Kingdoms have come.
    Their will is done on earth.
    As they would have it done in heaven.
    Give them this day your daily bread.
    And forget us our poverty,
    As we forget all those we make poor.
    And lead us not into thriftiness.
    But deliver us from equality.
    For theirs is our kingdom.
    The profits and greed.
    For ever and ever.

    Amen.

  69. contrahend May 28, 2014 at 5:28 pm #

    “Flyin’ so high, tryin’ to remembah – how many “cigarettes” did I bring along!!” GHAD damned best album evah (Benefit – Jethro Tull [who is he?])

    please forgive me for anything bad i ever said about you. i now know you are extremely intelligent and worthy to be saved.

    “When I get dow-own/ I’ll jump in a ta-xi ca-aa-ab / driving through Lon-don town to cry you a so-ong”

    is that you, j _ _ _?

    kontrahend repentant

  70. ozone May 28, 2014 at 6:05 pm #

    So, Obama needs ‘credibility’ and turns to West Point commencement-time, plunging into the most blatant oration of jingoism that his handlers could possibly produce. It was a particularly pandering and disgusting spectacle capped with the “indispensable nation” crap and a gob-smacking assertion that the USA must lead [I kid you not] because no one else will!

    He also promised that NOW is the time to really, really (and I mean, really) do something!
    You got about 2 years, good buddy — better get busy and see if you can come up with a list that even proposes a vague shadow of JHK’s. (Betcha can’t! We’ll be watching with mild, un-hopey interest.)

    • MisterDarling May 28, 2014 at 7:39 pm #

      The POTUS is in lame-duck territory now. Barring the highly unlikely, his legacy is set. He’s welcome to talk any smack he wants at this point. History is draining it’s glass, turning away and fixing its gaze on the next alluring backside…

      Over the weekend he managed to drop in on Afghanistan – and get publicly snubbed by a tin-pot president who can no longer afford to be seen with him.

      Before he even arrived his people managed to compromise the identity of the CIA’s station-chief in Kabul (and they never get tired of blaming Julian and Edward for violating OpSec?).

      He left and had his minions put it out that the troops will be out by “2016”… But that is only IF the Bilateral Security Agreement gets signed. Without that, whoever we can’t afford to have perp-walked in front of Al Jazeera and RT multimedia better be gone.

      Oh, foolishness of these fin-de-siècle folk.

      “…first as Comedy, then as Farce?”

      Cheers!

      • MisterDarling May 30, 2014 at 9:53 am #

        to clarify: I’m adapting and paraphrasing naturally… I just don’t see the point in drawing attention to the “tragedy” in these events at each every turn. we’re well aware of how utterly avoidable it was, and is.

        ;]

    • BackRowHeckler May 29, 2014 at 7:03 am #

      Incidentally, Oz, as a sidenote, got the garden in, 5 different plots now, tomatos, cukes, peppers, mustard, radishes, eggplant, zucchini, lettuce, to stand along the previously planted asparagus, peas and green beans. So what happens last night temp. goes down to 35dF. It even felt colder. And we’re just a few days short of June.

      –BRH

      • ozone May 29, 2014 at 9:36 am #

        Yikes! All transplants? Give ‘em a couple days before calling the M.E., they may recover okay.
        Got my tomatoes in Sunday, but I tented them with heavy plastic, 3/4 open on just the SE side, so I don’t worry about the young’uns and they get a good start without getting too cold or wind-beaten.

        Good luck and good eatin’!

  71. Being There May 28, 2014 at 6:42 pm #

    Remember Lawrence Wilkerson, he was Colin Powell’s asst.
    This is a great interview. Takes 1.25 hr., but well worth your while. It covers everything:

    http://www.opednews.com/populum/podcasts/Lawrence-Wilkerson-2014-02014_05_28_14_31_02-0.mp3

    • volodya May 29, 2014 at 2:23 pm #

      I listened to the whole thing. Wilkerson was close enough to the center of power to know what he’s talking about. But nobody at the center of power will listen to him.

    • MisterDarling May 30, 2014 at 1:47 am #

      Thank you for bringing this out Being There,

      Clear eyed and bluntly honest on most subjects, Mr. Wilkerson has useful input.

      He uses the UN’s population growth figures early on. I’m not sure how much faith he put in them, but if it’s a lot than I disagree with him.

      He seems to be aware of the front-end effects of global warming and resource depletion, but he’s being (intentionally?) inconsistent about applying them.

      Does he really think that India and Pakistan are going to be the fastest growing populations circa 2030?

      I’m picturing something more like _The Road_ , but with the dialogue (such as it is) in Hindi and Urdu…

    • Florida Power May 30, 2014 at 8:25 am #

      BT– thanks for bringing this to our attention. I had hoped to cure my insomnia with it at 3:30AM but listened to every word. My only dispute with Wilkerson’s analysis is that he seems not to view “Government” as having morphed from the arbiter between Capital and Labor to the post-WW2 seif-interested entity, now referred to as the Deep State. He appears to veer toward this acknowledgement at times but, perhaps since his career was in government, still seems attached to the Arthur Schlesinger mythology of American history that was taught back when I was in college. He appears unwilling to grapple with the reality that the government regulators become captured by the interests they are sworn to regulate. This is the mechanism enabling predatory capitalism. As Karl Denninger points out the various anti-trust acts that date back to the Robber Baron days are still on the books, but are not being enforced. Wilkerson instead says regulation has been stripped away beginning with Nixon and culminating with W. Bush. I think this ignores the fact, not only that Nixon created the EPA, but the spectacle of SEC lawyers just putting in time awaiting their plum jobs on Wall St.

      Having said all that it is encouraging that there are people out there who share his analysis and are actively seeking solutions at the macro/policy level.

      • Being There May 31, 2014 at 5:31 pm #

        Some good points, Florida

        Thanks for your comments. I thought over-all he made some emphatic points on a number of issues that people in govt. would be privy to but would never say publicly.

        Very telling was when he described the former administration and how crazy and serious they were.

        Nobody has a perfect view of a very complicated set of conditions, but I give him kudos for trying.

    • MisterDarling May 30, 2014 at 9:58 am #

      A follow-on thought: Mr. Wilkerson is voicing the consensus view of those who advise the people at the Cabinet Level and above. What he’s saying really isn’t that out of line with the way things are discussed away from the general public.

      Which, if you think about it for less than a minute, is pretty creepy. There’s an enormous disconnect between what is understood to be true and what gets sold to the public.

      • Florida Power May 30, 2014 at 5:02 pm #

        MD — I doubt he or others sharing his views advise Holder. And he professes horror and disgust with the neo-con world view, which appears to inform the actions of this administration.

        However the foundation he mentions is headquartered in Washington DC, which is somehow shielded from reality, and it looks like a lot of the usual suspects are involved with it. He believes a bit too much in government and policy-as-solution, which is a disease contracted by too-long contact with those types.

  72. JB May 29, 2014 at 7:14 am #

    Well, I do not expect this government to do much from the to-do list you have presented. It is more probable that we will end up living in off-the-grid conditions, probably in any ascetic form of shipping container housing. And we can still be happy. Imagine living in the world Cormack McCarthy described in his fabulous The Road…

    • Karah May 29, 2014 at 10:15 am #

      jb, that book describes a house fit for demolition.

      9. all forms of temporary housing (trailers, rv, tents, apartments, hotels) are subject to a yearly inspection by the county property manager. he will be issuing citations and fines to the owners and have the power to condem, shut down and evict their tenants.

      work camps are subject to monthly inspections and permanent houses must be provided for workers after 8 months of commercial activity. no work camps will be allowed to exist past 12 consecutive months.

      hotels are banned from housing industrial workers. no one may stay at any hotel for more than two weeks at a time. hotels must register and pass inspection for ‘extended stay’ status in order to avoid ban.

      all apartments must be registered and licensed and rent paid by check, card or wire transfer. cash payment is banned for apartments. rent will be set by county inspectors and owners must apply to county for permission to raise rent. renters will not be allowed to make more than 40% profit after paying ins., maintenance and any other expenses due to fed mandate.

    • MisterDarling May 29, 2014 at 1:20 pm #

      “Imagine living in the world Cormack McCarthy described in his fabulous The Road…”-JB.

      Okay, so how about ‘No Thank You?’.

      Thanks for bringing Cormac McCarthy up though… That is one talented author.

      Cheers!

      • BackRowHeckler May 29, 2014 at 5:46 pm #

        The film, with Viggo Mortensen, didn’t do too good, tho. In theaters a week or two then gone.

        You have to admit, it was pretty grim. And we never did find out what caused the world to end as it did.

        That reminds me. there was another book titled ‘The Road’, by Jack London, pretty grim too, about the depression in the mid 1890s, (a real bad one, worse than 1932, read ‘Wisconsin Death Trip’) and London joining Coxeys Army, and ending up in jail in Buffalo, NY. Jack London, now that was a writer, and a man. Does anybody read Jack London anymore? Maybe not. Too white, racist, hates women … you know the drill, by now. What’s the use?

        –BRH

        • MisterDarling May 30, 2014 at 1:01 am #

          “You have to admit, it was pretty grim. And we never did find out what caused the world to end as it did.”-BRH.

          My sense of it was that their apocalypse was nuclear war and resultant nuclear winter (in the book The Man and his son push the cart past miles of people barbecued in their cars when they were caught by the flash during rush-hour… The line about their “crozzled hearts” stuck with me).

          On the other hand, whatever the cause was, it mattered less than what people turned into as a result of the never-ending winter.

          Cormac has a firm grasp on how to write about human darkness and evil.

  73. volodya May 29, 2014 at 12:09 pm #

    I mean, what’s the difference between pimps and bankers? Both are money-sucking parasites, both exploit people, both ruin lives.

    The differences? Bankers crash the economy, they are an economic leukemia. Bankers have the cover of the law, they buy themselves immunity from prosecution. Do pimps have this power? Who has worse ethics, pimps or bankers? Who does more damage?

    I’m not making excuses but at least pimps give small, lonely men what they can’t otherwise get. Someone tell me, what is it again that bankers provide, what socially redeeming qualities do they have? I’m having trouble seeing it.

    Especially since their mouthpieces in the economics profession were recently talking negative interest rates.

    No joke, not only were they not talking about ZERO interest on deposits, they were talking about charging suckers for warehousing their savings.

    “Bespredel” you say. You have exploiters highly adept at expanding the legal boundaries of acceptable behavior. If some money-making activity is outside the line of the law, they make it their goal to bring it inside. Is there any outrage that’s out of bounds? Not with this gang. They’ll bring it IN bounds.

    If bankers are explicitly in the business of screwing people (and they are), why can’t you go to your bank and get that service? No, seriously…

    Give it time. There are synergies and if we see synergies then I’m sure Wall Street thought of it.

    Maybe some female posters would strenuously object, but in moral terms, it might be a step up.

    • BackRowHeckler May 29, 2014 at 6:40 pm #

      You know V, people have lived in this town since 1640, but we didn’t have a bank until 1852. And that first bank was a strongbox inside a guy’s house. There was still an economy here, farming, mining and manufacturing. And the manufactured goods were shipped to China and the east, to be traded for tea and porcellan from ports in New London, New Haven and Boston. And the fine home down along main street were built before any banks existed. All this without a bank. This tells me banks, in their current form, might not be necessary.

      –BRH

      • MisterDarling May 30, 2014 at 12:53 am #

        Well said BRH,

        Colonial economies functioned perfectly well on a barter basis, didn’t they?

        _A Midwife’s Tale_ (an actual journal of a midwife living in post-revolutionary Maine) delivers the details on how her population 1500 settlement got by just fine with trade/barter, backed by keeping a ledger when necessary.

        Orlov’s book _Five Stages of Collapse_ discusses a number of ways that economic activity carries on in absence of (or freedom from) banking.

        Nicely!

      • Being There May 30, 2014 at 10:49 am #

        The big lie in 2008 was to say that everyone would fall into an abyss if they didn’t bail out the banks.

        All O had to do is say Reagan, Reagan,Reagan,Reagan and hire Wm K. Black to handle the details and break up the monopolies. Instead, he hired the globalist Clintonistas.

        The key to our inability to take control of finance and corporate monopoly is globalism in who’s name they use to destroy the checks and balances that worked so well before we went on this destructive trip. The TPP and TIPP just brings us closer to self-destruction while the top eschelon parties on.

        • MisterDarling May 30, 2014 at 7:33 pm #

          “The TPP and TIPP just brings us closer to self-destruction while the top eschelon parties on.” -BT.

          Both are tools to end any interference from the public sector via elected officials, impartial judges, uncorrupted law-enforcement people, etc. The world will be ruled from behind closed doors by people that the public never hears about or sees… It will be the situation we already have on steroids.

          The only thing really interesting about this is: what do the politicians that are enabling this process think that they are going to get out of it in the long run?

          They remind me of the gay camera-man in Boogie Nights (played by the late Philip Seymour Hoffman). They will get to watch, I guess.

    • MisterDarling May 29, 2014 at 8:44 pm #

      ““Bespredel” you say. You have exploiters highly adept at expanding the legal boundaries of acceptable behavior. If some money-making activity is outside the line of the law, they make it their goal to bring it inside. Is there any outrage that’s out of bounds? Not with this gang. They’ll bring it IN bounds.” -v.

      I say _bespredel_. There are time-honored reasons why continually expanding debt doesn’t work, requires regulation, is in constant need of stern correction – as do the dealers in it.

      In Ancient Mesopotamia kings often started their reign by wiping out debts incurred during the previous regime.

      Usury laws have been on the books for two and a half millennia in both eastern and western civilizations, with the maximum rate of interest set *low* by late-stage global civilization standards.

      Medieval Korea (Yi Dynasty) was torn with such discord and strife that they – as a nation – repudiated and burned all pre-existing debts and written obligations. It was considered the critical turning-point… [*]

      In modern times who takes the strongest stance against debt-creation? The Islamic nations. Charging a rate of interest is against sharia law… Funny how they never get any rest from nations dominated by central bankers, isn’t it? And why the “freedom fighters” of the recent Libyan ‘revolution’ set up a central bank before they’d even advanced from Benghazi.

      Weaving this back into all things Kunstlerian… [**] where we are now is the collapse of global civilization’s ability to raise capital to improvise, innovate and implement it’s way out of collapse, and we have the velocity of money figures to prove it.

      At the end of the masquerade, the masks come down…

      — — —

      [**] did Tyler Durden’s spiritual ancestors speak Hanggul?

      [*] if I may be so bold. yes, I do realize that I’m taking liberties, but I do so in the name of the cause ;]

    • ozone May 31, 2014 at 10:00 am #

      V., you sez:
      “You have exploiters highly adept at expanding the legal boundaries of acceptable behavior. If some money-making activity is outside the line of the law, they make it their goal to bring it inside. Is there any outrage that’s out of bounds? Not with this gang. They’ll bring it IN bounds. ”

      Very true, we’ve beheld it with our own unbelieving eyes.
      And, lest we forget, “legally” making outlaws of the general population expands at exactly the same rate! We’re all [unwitting] felons now, which will make it handy for issuing arrest warrants for anyone deemed to be an annoyance. Just ask the average schlub on the street if he thinks he’s got a right to due process, and protection from indefinite detention and summary execution. Go ahead, the majority will bleat an instant, “Yes, of course, this is America after all…”. It’s pretty clear that most of us don’t care to understand that our rights have been (and continue to be) legislated away while the powers of oppressors and kleptocrats have been frightfully expanded.

  74. MisterDarling May 29, 2014 at 1:15 pm #

    Meanwhile, in Thailand;

    http://imgur.com/hVwAf67

    Priorities are very important…

    ;)

    Cheers!

    • Karah May 29, 2014 at 1:38 pm #

      Playing dictator is sooooo much fun!!!

  75. Pucker May 29, 2014 at 5:46 pm #

    I just finished Chris Hedges’ book “Empire of Illusion”—a good book….
    Chris Hedges seems like an inspired person.

  76. volodya May 30, 2014 at 11:48 am #

    Wilkerson talks about blood in the streets.

    I’ve read that the US militia movement re-surged during the Obama era. New groups proliferate. The difference between the militias of the 1990s (until Tim McVeigh) and today’s is that the 1990s militiamen were middle-aged. Today’s militia are young men. Much more dangerous IMO.

    What’s behind it? I don’t think it’s rocket science. A lot of disgruntled, un-employed, under-employed dudes plus the many vets from Iraq and Afghanistan.

    A lot of these guys are wrecked from what they saw and did much like earlier generations that fought. The difference being that, post-WW1 and post-WW2, the returning soldiers found jobs and wives to keep their psychic miseries at bay.

    Today’s young vets have no such salve for shattered nerves. Without work they are un-marry-able. Young women have options besides motherhood and housework not available to earlier generations of women. And they look at the disturbed young guys coming back and they say thanks but no thanks.

    The oligarch class are so obsessed with their own money that they see anything else as an irrelevant distraction. Maybe the situation isn’t as certain as a time bomb ticking down. But let’s just say there’s a combustible situation with a country awash in fire-arms, a youthful cohort trained in their use, that saw combat up-close, that have literally nothing to lose and nothing to look forward to.

    I think that the common element in the various militia groups is the notion of a federal government that works against the interests of the American citizen. In this the militias aren’t far wrong. Not that the oligarchs would listen to a nobody but I would urge them to wake the fuck up.

    Or maybe they have. Maybe the NSA is onto it thanks very much, maybe government surveillance isn’t about Islamist terror but rather supression of domestic dissent, heading off and putting down insurrection.

    Wilkerson talked about American leadership/oligarchs getting a big, fat fucking surprise if they try to use American troops against Americans. I see the US military as disproportionately poor/working class. Like Wilkerson I doubt that impoverished white, trailer-park or black or hispanic boys have any taste for levelling their rifles against their fellow poor-boys.

    I’ll bet that even at the general staff level you wouldn’t get buy-in. Much more likely IMO that if insurrection breaks out there will be a lot of senior officers taking sides with the insurrection.

    I don’t think the officers are blind. Like Wilkerson they see what’s happening and I’ll bet a lot of them are every bit as appalled and disgusted.

    • MisterDarling May 30, 2014 at 6:43 pm #

      >>Wilkerson talks about blood in the streets. [volodya]

      Yes, he certainly does.

      >>I’ve read that the US militia movement re-surged during the Obama era. New groups proliferate. The difference between the militias of the 1990s (until Tim McVeigh) and today’s is that the 1990s militiamen were middle-aged. Today’s militia are young men. Much more dangerous IMO.

      Yes, they are. Less FAKE, more DO. Operant conditioning and hands-on experience pays off.

      >>What’s behind it? I don’t think it’s rocket science. A lot of disgruntled, un-employed, under-employed dudes plus the many vets from Iraq and Afghanistan.

      Hmmm… volodya? When was the last time that a lot of soldiers returned from ‘the front’ with no prospects to speak of to an economy in a shambles? Wasn’t it after WW1? In Russia?

      That was the last time that an empire tried to expand by riding a tide of exploding debt.

      >>A lot of these guys are wrecked from what they saw and did much like earlier generations that fought. The difference being that, post-WW1 and post-WW2, the returning soldiers found jobs and wives to keep their psychic miseries at bay.

      Well, right now a lot of them (not the ones that I’m in contact with, mind you) are still trying to figure out what to do with the rest of their lives, or if they should off themselves, or off selected other people and then themselves (so as to ‘make it count’)… variations on that theme, etc.

      Hey, they just spent a lot time fighting suicide bombers. It’s what they know. It’s on their minds… ;]

      >>Today’s young vets have no such salve for shattered nerves. Without work they are un-marry-able. Young women have options besides motherhood and housework not available to earlier generations of women. And they look at the disturbed young guys coming back and they say thanks but no thanks.

      And who can blame those marriageable women? When the average wage of jobs being created right now is $13.87 (which is only enough money to go broke on, in those places that have jobs) what possible use is another person to look after?

      Women have a right to make realistic choices and not be blamed for that. No man worth his weight looks for others to pull his weight for him, outside of a medical emergency.

      >>The oligarch class are so obsessed with their own money that they see anything else as an irrelevant distraction.

      Well, sociopaths are a lot like meth-addicts. Disintegrating in the fire-ball of an explosion would only be a ‘speed-bump’ to them – if they had anything left to think with, which they wouldn’t.

      >>I think that the common element in the various militia groups is the notion of a federal government that works against the interests of the American citizen. In this the militias aren’t far wrong. Not that the oligarchs would listen to a nobody but I would urge them to wake the fuck up.

      As Thomas Paine said: “Time makes more converts than Reason”… And he knew what he was talking about. There was a lot of willful ignorance to deal with in his day as well.

      >>Or maybe they have. Maybe the NSA is onto it thanks very much, maybe government surveillance isn’t about Islamist terror but rather supression of domestic dissent, heading off and putting down insurrection.

      If you look at the way that these wars were conducted, there’s not a lot there to suggest that the military was actually in charge (at the strategic level). The mission kept changing. After awhile you got the feeling that the actual mission was to keep the mission going. Everything else was con-artistry and set-dressing.

      >>Wilkerson talked about American leadership/oligarchs getting a big, fat fucking surprise if they try to use American troops against Americans. I see the US military as disproportionately poor/working class. Like Wilkerson I doubt that impoverished white, trailer-park or black or hispanic boys have any taste for levelling their rifles against their fellow poor-boys.

      I’m a person that knew the US military in the pre-Desert Storm days, and who went downrange in the Post-9/11 era. I will tell you that there’s been a big culture-change in the barracks. Things are not the same, and it mainly has to do with the disappearance of the middle-class. This shows in everything.

      For instance, the combat-unit part of the military loved rock-and-roll music back in the day (80’s and early 90’s). Not anymore. There isn’t a consensus now. It splits between Country/Western and Hip-Hop/Rap with a small side-order of ‘Latino’ music (but even that has its tensions between Norteno, Sureno and Isleno ;)…

      That being said, there are certain base-line realities that cut through the fragmentationist B-S.

      When you get downrange and look to your left and your right, you see who’s there with you at the “tip of freedom’s sword”. It is a small club.

      That cuts through a lot of mental fog…

      >>I’ll bet that even at the general staff level you wouldn’t get buy-in. Much more likely IMO that if insurrection breaks out there will be a lot of senior officers taking sides with the insurrection.

      >>I don’t think the officers are blind. Like Wilkerson they see what’s happening and I’ll bet a lot of them are every bit as appalled and disgusted.

      There are a lot of lieutenant-colonels fully aware that they will never be allowed to advance because they lack a certain ‘mindset’. They are the pissed-off but capable, secretly disgruntled mid-level managers of an imperial killing machine, and they know it. They are also close enough to the rank-and-file to connect with them, and they know that.

      I don’t need to draw pictures… ;]

      Cheers!

  77. metaforge May 30, 2014 at 12:23 pm #

    I find it odd how you talk about going into a world made by hand (correctly, in my opinion) but yet still have big government baloney talking points on your “to do” list. Imagine us in the world made by hand described in your novels – at that point, who cares whether Glass Stegal is brought back? Or whether GMOs are banned? There will likely be little federal government at all remaining anyway.

    • MisterDarling May 30, 2014 at 5:53 pm #

      “Imagine us in the world made by hand described in your novels – at that point, who cares whether Glass Stegal is brought back?” -meta.

      In _A World Made by Hand_, ‘the government’ has dwindled down to a lone bureaucrat with self-appointed authority hiding out in the dilapidated remants of a government office building.

      The only reason he’s still alive is that he’ll whip out a .45 caliber semiautomatic pistol from under his desk, and pop you full ‘o’ holes quicker than you can say “holy-sh*t!”.

      The only reason he seems to persist at pretending to run something is that there’s nothing left to keep his sanity with.

      This is a metaphor that becomes more true by the day.

      Really, there’s not a lot that a president or a supreme court, the dept. of the treasury or even ‘the fed’ can do to reverse the trend… They’re on a runaway train at this point. The only reason they haven’t been chucked out of the nearest window is that the passengers think that there’s someone in control.

      At the end of empire, all that’s left is inertia, learned helplessness and operant conditioning.

  78. volodya May 30, 2014 at 3:17 pm #

    BeingThere, let’s say that they were right, that the economy would’ve slid into the abyss without bank bailouts.

    Maybe that might’ve been a salutary thing, there might’ve been a great purging of the economy, it might’ve been the beginning of a movement to sustainability.

    There’s so much happening that can’t go on. We spend a lot of time talking about it week in and week out so I won’t go into it again.

    I’m not in any way minimizing the misery of the 1930s great depression. The best thing you can say about it is that the collapse of the 1930s stopped a lot of dysfunctional stuff in its tracks. The pity is that when the banks went down they took a lot of innocent people with them. But a lot of lessons were learned that stuck for decades until there was a determined push recently to un-learn them.

    Maybe we need for people and especially the oligarchs to re-learn the lessons.

    • MisterDarling May 30, 2014 at 5:40 pm #

      “Being There, let’s say that they were right, that the economy would’ve slid into the abyss without bank bailouts.” -v.

      Anyone regurgitating that line at this point is being willfully ignorant, and we are awash in bright people in complete denial about that issue… But that is understandable, no?

      Who wants to believe that 20-40 years of hard & not entirely dignified work is adding up to no retirement, nothing to pass on loved ones (except debt), ‘nothing’ in the financial sense. Worse than zero. Leaving a crater. Negative wealth…

      But that’s only looking at it from the viewpoint of this terminally ill financial environment. Where we are headed ‘debt’ in the sense that we’ve come to know and acquiesce to does not exist.

  79. MisterDarling May 30, 2014 at 8:51 pm #

    Look at this & ask yourself if there’s any coming back;

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-05-30/us-gasoline-consumption-plummets-nearly-75

    So tell me; if global production has plateaued and the above is true, why are we paying as much as we are at the pump, again?

  80. MisterDarling May 30, 2014 at 9:07 pm #

    “I’m not in any way minimizing the misery of the 1930s great depression. The best thing you can say about it is that the collapse of the 1930s stopped a lot of dysfunctional stuff in its tracks. The pity is that when the banks went down they took a lot of innocent people with them. But a lot of lessons were learned that stuck for decades until there was a determined push recently to un-learn them.” -v.

    Another thought occurs: The only reason that we aren’t experiencing poverty as deadly as the ‘Great Depression’ of the 1930’s is *because of* the very programs put in place to mitigate the effects of the depression of the 1930’s.

    If you subtracted the street-level economic stimulus of social-security, unemployment (along with food-stamps and medicare) from the picture you wind up with a depression far deeper & severe than we’ve ever seen… [*]

    And don’t forget, our strategic positioning is nowhere near what it was then. We are no longer a nation of farmers and factory workers with our oil-fields less than 30% exploited [**]. We are people trying to suck oil out of rocks while frackin’ things up in the process.

    — — —

    [*] a quick way to instigate nationwide, chaotic, bloody insurrection: give the red states what they claim they want: ‘freedom’ from government’s ‘interference’. cut big-government’s assistance, grab a bowl of popcorn and watch the figurative feathers fly…

    [**] channeling J H K here… ;]

  81. cable guy May 30, 2014 at 10:12 pm #

    I’m not sure that the “happy motoring” is really going to disappear. I’m sure the “happy” part will go, but it seems like more men are going homeless rather than live with out the motor car.

    I was getting ready to sell my gas guzzling cargo van, when I realized what a wonderful abode it would make. It gets lousy mpg for a commuter car, but it does well for a small house.

    I could migrate north in the summer and south in the winter picking up odd jobs here and there: Live like a bird or an Indian.

    • ozone May 31, 2014 at 8:40 am #

      Well hey, as long as gasoline remains cheaper than beer, why not?
      There’s a thought; a currency based on comestables and ammunition!

      • ozone May 31, 2014 at 8:44 am #

        cable guy,
        Here’s the theme song:

        http://youtu.be/kDDnkQQyzQU

        (I copied the imbed code from the “share” button. I don’t think the video will appear here…. fingers crossed.)

        …And that should be, “comestibles”.

    • MisterDarling May 31, 2014 at 1:39 pm #

      “I could migrate north in the summer and south in the winter picking up odd jobs here and there: Live like a bird or an Indian.”- cable guy.

      They call it “rubber-tramping”… It’s a way of life for some…

      Cheers!

      • BackRowHeckler May 31, 2014 at 2:05 pm #

        Hey MD, you’ve got a pretty good storehouse of knowledge in that head of yours. Very Impressive. Same with Vododya. Interesting conversations in this CFN Blog.

        –BRH

        • MisterDarling May 31, 2014 at 10:50 pm #

          Thank you BRH. I hope that some of it is helpful. Also: feel free to question my numbers, I won’t fussy about it.

          During the research process I will sometimes come across a range of figures for the same thing and I have to review the sources, take a three-point estimate or resort to bottom-up estimation. The numbers are important. Additional input helps.

  82. ozone May 31, 2014 at 9:29 am #

    “Too bad the people of Main Street USA don’t want to do anything but sit on their hands waiting for the rafters to tumble down. My guess is that nothing will bestir us until we wake up one morning surrounded by rubble and dust. By then, America will be a salvage operation.”

    I’ve found another un-noted provision for the ossification of the status quo. (These small items have become more common as time moves on.):

    “Directive No. 3025.18, “Defense Support of Civil Authorities,” was issued Dec. 29, 2010, and states that U.S. commanders “are provided emergency authority under this directive.”

    “Federal military forces shall not be used to quell civil disturbances unless specifically authorized by the president in accordance with applicable law or permitted under emergency authority,” the directive states.”

    http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article38645.htm

    …But surely, the president would never authorize such a thing, would he?

    To Do —
    If a Constitution were to actually still have any “applicable” meaning after such collapse (which is probably unlikely), directives such as this one should be codified as treasonous to the commonweal and punished according to the casual violence that will become expected after the predations of the former “authorities”..

    • ZrCrypDiK June 1, 2014 at 2:26 am #

      OMFG! Is it just me, or are there no longer any OLDER POASTS? I click on the link, and it just scrolls to the top of (this) second page! (I can take you there – took a bit of time to find it: kunstler.com/clusterfuck-nation/homeless-2/comment-page-1)

      Wow, nice code edit there (HOT PATCH!!!)! Anyone catch Eddie Snowden’s interview? THEY’re all up in arms about it – complete traitor. Hell, the NSA even released all of his email (bullsh!t), to “prove” he never tried to escalate the problem in-house (har-dee-har-har). Notice they said NOTHING about the content of his discourse – only tried to show he “lied,” via the “eschelon” logs…

      6-fig-salaried-govt-stalkaz – I’ve been harping that since about 1999… (It’s all a) Total farce. Only 8k troops remain in Iraq, because the other 100k are mil-ind-govt contractors (can we say Xe/Ze[Blackwater/Academi?!? lulz]/Wackenhut/Halliburton?). Joke’s on us – we are gunna have a real hard time continuing to steal that *black gold*…

      Keep the blinders on tho – there’s no clearcutting anymore (it only accounts for over 20% of the annual global CO2 outgassing). Who needs to drink the last of the Tejax aquifers anywaze – may as well just drain/frack them into toxic impunity for centuries (the sludge is way more IMPOTENT).

      I love all the shows I’ve seen lately, concerning global warming and supporting data – they’re still using 6 year old data – sub-400-ppm CO2. One show, called Years of Living Dangerously, actually tried to convince evangelical (mega-church) “skeptics” that it is human made, with tons of data from hundreds of different scientific sources. No need to guess – they weren’t convinced.

      I’m not sure why those zealots don’t apply that same skepticism to their own religion, where the only “facts” are words (non-apocryphal, TO BE SURE) written in a SINGULAR book thousands of years ago, by desert dwelling cultist doomers. Evangelicals believe (87%? higher?) that the world is only 5k years old, and it was created in 7 days, and women (you know, those “lowly subservient beasts”) were created from a rib, Noah packed 2 of each species onto a boat, man rode on the back of dinosaurs, etc, ad-nauseum…

      85 IQ? I’d argue these brain donor zombies barely have an IQ of a rat/gnat. *GHAD* musta just upgraded them to human status from amoeba…

  83. volodya May 31, 2014 at 11:37 am #

    To Mister Darling

    Hmmm… volodya? When was the last time that a lot of soldiers returned from ‘the front’ with no prospects to speak of to an economy in a shambles? Wasn’t it after WW1? In Russia? – MD

    Yes and Germany: historians say that post WW1 German economic troubles provided fertile ground for the Nazis. A lot of hungry, unemployed young Germans, many of them battle-hardened and, like Hitler and company, angry.

    I know, the U.S. isn’t Germany and 2014 isn’t 1918 and history never repeats exactly. But people are people and so history has recurrent themes.

    The oligarchs have no patience for frivolities like history. Such stuff isn’t for men of action and gigantic, never-to-be-satisfied appetites. How much is enough? It’s never enough.

    A very rich man said that history is bunk. Well, a non-rich man – me – disagrees. History isn’t bunk.

    However, the fact of pervasive government surveillance tells me that, maybe not the oligarchs, but their henchmen, are onto this, that maybe the henchmen have what the oligarchs don’t have, that is, an appreciation for subject matter the oligarchs themselves can’t be bothered with ie the lessons of history. Draw me and quarter me but still I won’t believe that the NSA stuff is all about “terror”.

    As you say, you don’t need to draw pictures. Who will be the leaders? Maybe some “stone-walled” lieutenant colonels? Maybe a renegade general whose “bad attitude” wasn’t recognized?

    • MisterDarling May 31, 2014 at 1:09 pm #

      “I know, the U.S. isn’t Germany and 2014 isn’t 1918 and history never repeats exactly. But people are people and so history has recurrent themes.”-v.

      Yes, and of course Weimar Republic Germany is a useful example… But I didn’t want to go directly to that… ;)… Simply because it’s getting used a lot more these days.

      “As you say, you don’t need to draw pictures. Who will be the leaders? Maybe some “stone-walled” lieutenant colonels? Maybe a renegade general whose “bad attitude” wasn’t recognized?”-v.

      I used lieutenant-colonels (or O-6 equivalents) as an example talent-pool because; there are a lot of them, they have the requisite experience and access to sensitive data, many have trained and are capable of doing the job of someone two ranks above them (which means that they can lead regimental and brigade-sized combat units) and if they aren’t tracking for full-bird colonel (or it’s O-7 equivalent) then their post-war disgruntlement will be peaking.

      In the financial world there’s another under-utilized but capable talent pool: the women of finance. There were and are a lot of women close the financial ‘throne’ yet never fully accepted and trusted by the inner-circles. Brooksley Borne, Sheila Bair, Elizabeth Warren, Ellen Brown, Pam Martens are examples that come to mind. They knew and know what they’re talking about and where the figurative ‘bodies’ are buried.

      The one thing that surprised me about the collapse of 2008 (and it was, nothing was fixed, only delayed at best) was the lack of a sense of self-preservation.

      There was and is NO incentive in assisting incompetent sociopaths in completing the destruction of a political entity that politicians, law-enforcement officials and bureaucrats depend on for a livelihood. But – as we saw – rather than seize the day and cast off their chains, these people checked the fit on their (figurative) slave-collars and hunkered down behind their masters… What an utterly bizarre and disgusting spectacle.

      As the situation deteriorates we can expect more people with leverage to ‘go rogue’ in constructive (which in this instance means _de-constructive_) ways. If not out of a sense of nobility, then out of self-preservation.

  84. contrahend May 31, 2014 at 12:36 pm #

    To zkrypdick: this should make yer day….

    http://www.cupofwonder.com/01martinstune1969.mp3

    kontrahend

    • ZrCrypDiK June 1, 2014 at 2:31 am #

      I wish I knew how to *PREDATE* my poasts liek dat!

      • K-Dog June 1, 2014 at 4:40 pm #

        What? you don’t have special powers too? I know it is annoying. It makes me wish I could be Underdog too sometimes!

  85. volodya May 31, 2014 at 12:45 pm #

    And, lest we forget, “legally” making outlaws of the general population expands at exactly the same rate! We’re all [unwitting] felons now, which will make it handy for issuing arrest warrants for anyone deemed to be an annoyance. – Ozone

    Yes indeed, excellent point, no less so for being obvious and therefore so much more likely to be overlooked.

    Re civil disturbances: are they expecting civil disturbances? Maybe they are. Have you heard of any? Was there something I missed?

    How disturbing does a disturbance have to be (and to whom) before it’s within the parameters of the law and how lawyered are all the terms going to get before it all means whatever they want it to?

    How much more of this crap is there going to be before the country starts to look and sound like a greaseball, third-world crap-ocracy.

    Oh, but wait, there’ll be a lot of due process window-dressing, you know, all designed to give the appearance, with weighty sounding opinionating, administration by august sounding boards and panels all staffed by grey-haired and impeccably and impressively credentialled men, congressional oversight, all under-pinned by legislation duly examined and debated and voted on by elected representatives.

    And, after all that, what really is there to worry about? It was all done democratically with all the checks and balances and spell-checked with superfluous commas deleted.

    Oppressive? Sez who? You? Who are you? The best and the brightest minds worked on this. GET OVER IT, it’s the NEW NORMAL the apologists bray.

    • BackRowHeckler May 31, 2014 at 1:57 pm #

      Speaking of ‘Due Process’, this character Don Sterling, owner of the LA Clippers, is he entitled to any sort of due process, or at least a sober investigation on what was said, or whether or not he was taped illegally and the victim of an extortion attempt, before his property is stripped away from him? Can your property be expropriated for what you say in a private conversation? I’m no lawyer, but this case seems to be breaking new ground.

      =BRH

      • Karah May 31, 2014 at 7:03 pm #

        Property

        People are not property. The matter with the bball club is a contractual matter that was agreed to when Sterling bought the team. That issue is completely separate from what happened between him and his “employee”. The club was compelled to respond because of pressure from the team and the media (including past hall of famers).

        Sports is not that complicated. They incur expenses and need sponsors to support their activities. Investors, like Sterling, pump money into teams like they would horses for races. They may or may not get a big return.

        As far as what Sterling said, there’s a lot going on in those recordings that have to do with how he treats people. He is a married man. He is not free to have relationships with other people. As an employer, he is not free to discriminate or sexually harass. I don’t know what jurisdiction they’re under. I have no clue why he talks the way he does and if it is a result of alcohol or mental illness. Only his wife would have access to his true character and development over the years. She’s not going to testify against him and is responsible for whatever he acquired during their marriage. Most people are aware of these basic legal principles and nothing presented has challenged the basic tenants of law.

        • Karah May 31, 2014 at 7:16 pm #

          tenet not tenant…OOPS.

          • ZrCrypDiK June 1, 2014 at 3:39 am #

            This, from the sock puppet who claimed the following (verbatim – 1st page):

            “slavery … has been the solution to the end of poverty.”

            “that has not been the case with every (slave) owner.”

            Sarah Palin JR., in the makings?!? (QUIT half-way through?!?)

            Or a simple sock puppet *TARD*.

  86. MisterDarling May 31, 2014 at 11:22 pm #

    This is something for the _Too Much Magic_ file:

    1st see this:






    Then check this:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H901KdXgHs4

    This is an example of how very ‘cool’ seeming next-gen ideas come apart in the light of day.

    solar! freakin’! roadways! ;]

    • K-Dog June 1, 2014 at 4:35 pm #

      Interesting, Another way to blow it up is to look at the energy requirements and raw materials needed to make it so. The economic breakdown captures this but too abstractly and leaves out the externalities. Looking at the system inputs we can bring in pollution and environmental consequences which a simple money based economic analysis leaves over the hill out of mind and around the next curve in the road.
      The cad software laying out the circuit boards is fun to use but the end result is a lot of copper foil etched off a glass composite substrate. Cool but environmentally costly.

      • MisterDarling June 1, 2014 at 7:10 pm #

        Hello K-Dog,

        I used “solar freakin’ roadways!” as an example of the disconnect that many techies have between the world of project development and implementation (which in their experience happens in a cyberspace realm of ones-and-zeroes and/or personal dysfunction), and the world where technology is implemented on a scale large enough to be a national or international game-changer.

        Personally I like a few things about the idea. It has it has a certain sexiness, but it’s weaknesses are a perfect example of the creative myopia of late-stage techies.

        Where do their ideas generally fall apart? Material science and logistics. The grittiest, meatiest parts of ‘meat-space’.

        “The cad software laying out the circuit boards is fun to use but the end result is a lot of copper foil etched off a glass composite.” …K-Dog.

        Nice detail K-Dog.

        Cheers!

        • K-Dog June 2, 2014 at 4:41 am #

          Its totally sexy. Perhaps the Greys can cruse in on one of their intergalactic jaunts and build it all for us without dropping us over the oil price and copper ore concentration event horizon.

  87. K-Dog June 1, 2014 at 5:34 pm #

    Anybody know if this is true:


    The pretend “tapering” being trumpeted by the Federal Reserve (and its pets in the Corporate media) is merely a minor reduction in the money-printing via the visible lever. The Federal Reserve continues to refuse to disclose what it is doing with its invisible lever, and the bubble-prices in U.S. equities markets (in particular) continue going higher.

    Clearly the money-printing via the invisible lever has increased at least as much as the publicly-hyped “tapering”, and likely substantially more – as evidenced by the exponential explosion in the previous chart. This reasoning is supported by the Fed’s own, serial boasting.

    Does this explain the recent $140 billion Belgium treasuries laundering?

    I’m finding no joy living in a world with a secret government of half-educated elite bozos screwing things up and I’m even more disgusted living in a world where the greater ocean of humanity does not even care that this is so; or even apparently is cognizant of the fact.

    Other than that it’s a great day!

    • Being There June 1, 2014 at 5:52 pm #

      Paul Craig Roberts reported on the Fed using Brussels as a money laundering of more QE and that the amount of money is way too large for their economy to absorb if it wasn’t part of a money laundering operation.

      Let me just say that these people are not half educated and their not idiots, that would presume that they give a hoot about being part of a modern nation state.

      They don’t.

      This is what globalism and the new economy that makes a killing for a tiny coterie of people to make every penny possible in so many ways, it can’t all be counted in this quickie answer.

      Every way national economies can be privatized, monetized, corporatized and sold for pennies on the dollar they will be mined just like any other resource by this globalist group and the system they are creating.

      Just think that all of us and the earth itself represents a gold mine for these people. So don’t worry about their stupidity. That would only be stupid and reckless if the lives of billions actually mattered to these sociopaths.

      • K-Dog June 2, 2014 at 5:03 am #

        To me they are half educated idiots. Half educated for they concern their lives with shallow misleading and false values which have been programmed into them without self reflection. Self reflection is a capacity their arrogance and narcissism prevents them from cultivating. Robots without their own minds.

        But I do appreciate what you say for we often associate a steel cold mastermind resolve with sociopaths. As you say they don’t give a hoot, and we all too often spin our wheels endlessly wondering why this is so. Like they are some kind of superior life form when they are not.

    • MisterDarling June 1, 2014 at 6:40 pm #

      Hello BT,

      The lever isn’t “invisible” it’s an undisclosed buyer in Belgium (who is almost certainly a financial partner fronting for The Federal Reserve).

      Chuck Butler goes off about the ‘Belgium Connection’ at the _Daily Pfennig_… And bear this in mind: this is _Chuck Butler_, a politically conservative, supply-siding bond trader.

      Chuck Butler does the math here:

      http://www.dailypfennig.com/2014/05/21/fuzzy-math/

      [*]

      The resultant distortion in the financial market is making every responsible player – regardless of political affiliation or tribal bias – very uncomfortable.

      The Fed (through the NY Federal Reserve’s offices) seems to be running a number of market-manipulating projects. And not just bonds but gold as well. Who could possibly afford to dump enormous amounts of gold since Spring 2013 in order to suppress the gold price? Someone who prints money, that’s who.

      The spooky thing is that instead of tapering they’ve actually been increasing QE to keep equities puffed.

      There is a fear that when this unwinds there’s no fall-back position, and no way to re-start the market. Within this community there’s sense that ‘we could be screwed for a generation’.

      Do CFN people think that we have “a generation” to recoup?

      Our global financial situation is completely off any map and in unknown territory in every quantifiable way. This is why I don’t have time left to engage people who discuss current events as if there were a “free market”… They clearly haven’t been keeping up.

      Cheers!

      — — —

      [*] look toward the bottom of the column. He prefaces it with an appropriate amount of butt-covering, but Chuck’s health is not good and he’s close to retirement, so who can blame him?

  88. MisterDarling June 1, 2014 at 6:50 pm #

    “Paul Craig Roberts reported on the Fed using Brussels as a money laundering of more QE and that the amount of money is way too large for their economy to absorb if it wasn’t part of a money laundering operation.” -BT.

    Mr. Roberts has a respectable resume in finance – as it applies to national issues.

    And let us also recall that P C R has been spot-on about most things since at least 2004. He and Mike Whitney were calling shenanigans on the Housing Bubble years before in became fashionable.

    Some of us have little time for his histrionics about ‘moral degeneracy’ of our elites, yada!yada!/etc./blah…blah…blah, but it’s worthwhile taking a small amount to extra time to filter out the way he says things & get the stuff we need.

  89. MisterDarling June 1, 2014 at 6:54 pm #

    Here’s a Small-Farming & Gardening question for the C F N community:

    Where can cassava/yucca plants (the crop) be obtained? I’ve called and emailed around & I seem to need help?

    Is there an ban on cassava importation and cultivation?

    The few sources that I have been able to locate start acting strangely when I discuss the specifics of getting cuttings.

    • K-Dog June 2, 2014 at 5:33 am #

      Cassava’s pseudonyms include yuca (with one “c,” NOT two – “yucca” is a completely unrelated species), manioc, the tapioca plant, and manihot. In Latin science-speak, it’s “Manihot escuelenta.”

      This from a quick web search. I don’t know anything about them.

      http://www.tropilab.com/manihot-esc.html

  90. beantownbill. June 1, 2014 at 7:41 pm #

    I don’t read PCR very much because I think he has some agenda in writing what he does. I don’t trust conservatives and liberals. He’s a has-been long past his days of influence, and he resents it.

    That those in power are running our country and the world into the ground, there can be little doubt. My experience has informed me that it is because they are psychopathically greedy and power-hungry, not because of the existence of some vast conspiracy.

    We are heading straight as an arrow into a one world government, not because of the CFR, the Bildenburgers, the Illuminati

    • Being There June 2, 2014 at 8:31 am #

      Well bean

      Sometimes when someone has little to lose, they talk……

  91. beantownbill. June 1, 2014 at 8:04 pm #

    I don’t read PCR very much because I think he has some agenda in writing what he does. I don’t trust conservatives and liberals. He’s a has-been long past his days of influence, and he resents it.

    That those in power are running our country and the world into the ground, there can be little doubt. My experience has informed me that it is because they are psychopathically greedy and power-hungry, not because of the existence of some vast conspiracy.

    We are heading straight as an arrow into a one-world government, not because of the CFR, the Bildenburgers, the Illuminati or any other esoteric group, but because technology is shrinking the world. I don’t like a NWO as it is now developing because TPTB are interfering with natural social evolution for reasons of power and greed, as I just stated.

    Over the years I’ve learned that humans are, along with other things, hard-wired for paranoia. Evolutionarily speaking, if one is always worried there’s a lion or tiger lurking in the bush, one tends to survive longer. Unfortunately, this tendency can blind people to what is really going on. That shadow in the bushes might be an antelope, not a big cat.

    I should qualify my one-world government theme. We’re going down that path, but only if we don’t collapse first. If we do, then we could regress to a localized set of small civilizations.

    In theory, the optimum path would be to develop into a no-world government, with wide-ranging limits on corporate size and power. This can only happen if we squeeze through the keyhole.

    • beantownbill. June 1, 2014 at 8:05 pm #

      Sorry for the partial double post.

      • MisterDarling June 1, 2014 at 9:36 pm #

        ” My experience has informed me that it is because they are psychopathically greedy and power-hungry, not because of the existence of some vast conspiracy.” -Bill.

        I agree with you – in principle. But conspiracies do exist in a very real and concrete sense because people go to jail for taking part in criminal conspiracies, and whistle-blowers get persecuted for revealing them

        One high-profile example: the NSA and a wide-ranging group of collaborators have conspired to violate the rights of law-abiding citizens and members of government, worldwide. When the conspiracy was uncovered they immediately attacked the whistleblower(s), and the MSM is assisting the perps in swaying the opinion of the American public (the rest of the world: not so much).

        This is just one example of a large (some might even say ‘vast’) criminal conspiracy.

        This does not mean that this and other conspiracies like it are running the world or threatening to end us all every day. Not even close.

        Generally they are poorly conceived and executed (for instance,, the hubristic over-reach of the NSA et al. is absurd).

        It has a lot to do with the type of person that would conceive of and actually try to carry them out. They strongly tend to be sociopaths, with all the cognitive issues that go along with that [*]. As a result they have a hard time with _SCOPE DEFINITION_ and _SCOPE CONTROL_ of their projects.

        This means that they suck at running things, basically.

        They do manage to cause a lot of damage and make extra work for the rest of us, though.

        Cheers!

        — — —

        [*] the non-sociopathic planners of this world strongly tend to succeed because they clearly define limited objectives, and they control scope-creep. We call the results of their plans ‘History’, not fiascos, debacles, cluster-fucks, etc… But people like this don’t prosper and proliferate in late-stage organizations.

        • K-Dog June 2, 2014 at 4:33 am #

          “One high-profile example: the NSA and a wide-ranging group of collaborators have conspired to violate the rights of law-abiding citizens and members of government, worldwide. When the conspiracy was uncovered they immediately attacked the whistleblower(s), and the MSM is assisting the perps in swaying the opinion of the American public (the rest of the world: not so much).”

          And if they want to fuck with you weak minds are easily crushed for they can make strange things happen to you. I can only speak for myself, but I imagine most are easily derailed. It gets pretty intense.

  92. MisterDarling June 1, 2014 at 10:09 pm #

    I’m posting this link because it’s precisely the kind of fear-driven, counterproductive nonsense that happens at end of the line.

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-06-01/new-massive-federal-database-hold-financial-information-100s-millions-americans

    Counterproductive? Yes, it is precisely that. Who will get caught in the net? The people with the least financial activity to report and the least sway on financial events.

    “Over the years I’ve learned that humans are, along with other things, hard-wired for paranoia.” -Bill.

    And no one is more paranoid than the despot feeling his grip on power slipping from his grasp.

    In words of The Bard:

    “Send out more horses; skirr the country round;
    Hang those that talk of fear…” -Macbeth, Act 5.

  93. BackRowHeckler June 2, 2014 at 3:30 am #

    Meanwhile, on the US-Mexican border, tens of thousands of teenagers and children stand poised to cross into America, encouraged by the ‘Dreamer’ act, LaRaza members appointed by Obama to US Embassies in Latin America, and the collapse and failure of their home countries. Similarly, in Mallila, in Spanish Morocco, thousands of black Africans who have fled places like Congo and Sudan try to scale a 20 ft fence and break their way into the European Union. They are also comings by the thousands on unseaworthy vessels across the Med. headed for Italy.

    Has there ever been a novel more prescient than Jean Raispail’s ‘The Camp of the Saints’, who predicted all this way back in 1972?

    –BRH

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