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11-year-old Jeff Greenaway hears his mom and dad argue one night after an office Christmas party. He infers from their garbled squabble that he is an orphan, found in a willow basket on the welcome mat outside their New York apartment. Thinking now that his parents are imposters, he steals away to Grand Central Station and buys a train ticket to Drakesville, Vermont, where he intends to start life all over again.
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Must Be the Season of the Witch

A s the Governor goblins at the Federal Reserve whistle past the graveyard of dead Quantitative Easing, and the US dollar magically expands like a prickly puffer fish, and Mario Drahgi does what it takes with Euro duct tape to patch all black holes of unpayable debt from Athens to Dublin, and Japan watches its once-wondrous economy congeal in a puddle of Abenomic sludge (with a radioactive cherry on top), and China chokes on its dollar-peg, and Russia waits patiently with its old friend, Winter, covering its back — and notwithstanding the violent chaos, beheadings, and psychopathic struggles across the old Levant, not to mention the doubling of Ebola cases every 20 days, which the World Health Organization did not have the nerve to project beyond 1.2 million in January (does the doubling just stop there?) — there is enough instability around the globe for the gentlemen of Wall Street to make one last fabulous fortune arbitraging the future before the boomerang of consequence circles this suffering planet and finally accomplishes what the Department of Justice under Eric Holder failed to do for six long years.

It’s the season of witch and you should be nervous. Especially if you live in part of the world where money is used. Pretty soon nobody will know what any currency is really worth — at least for a while — or what anything else is worth, for that matter. Perhaps the fishermen of India will start using their worthless gold for sinkers. Jay-Z and Diddy will gaze down on their bling in despair, thinking, perhaps, they should have invested in Betamax players instead. In the time of anything-goes-and-nothing-matters, it’s dangerous to expect anything.

Here’s what I expect: the surge of the dollar is the crest of an historic Great Wave. A Great Wave is an awesome event, and its crest is a majestic sight, but soon the foam spits and hisses and the wave breaks and crashes down on the beach — say, out at the Hamptons — where hedge funders stroll to catch the last dwindling rays of a beautiful season, and all of a sudden they are being swept out to sea in the rip-tide that retracts all that lovely green liquidity, and no one is even left on the beach to weep for them. Indeed their Robert A. M. Stern shingled manor houses up behind the dunes are swept away, too, and the tennis courts, and the potted hydrangeas, and the Teslas, and all the temporal bric-a-brac of their uber-specialness.

And, of course, it being the season of the witch, that’s where the zombies come out for real — the tattooed savages who all this time have been stewing in their own rancid juices awaiting their turn to get jiggy with the nation that left them restlessly undead. I don’t think you can overestimate the depth of ill-feeling that the American public harbors for the cravens who engineered their USA into the biggest booby-trap the world has ever seen. The trouble is, they lost their humanity in the process, so when they have their way with the feckless folks tweaking the dials, you might want to contemplate moving to Finland.

Who can feel confident about the tending of things just now? The diminishing returns of the Information Age are about to bite our collective ass like an army of Orcs. The sum of all that digital magic is a nation completely incapable of telling itself the truth or acting honorably. Unemployment is down without employment being up. Candy Crush is making the world safe for democracy. We have the finest health care system in the world. ISIS is trying to compete with our homegrown videogame industry for supremacy in porno-violence (actually, I thought we already won that) but now we will obliterate all the bad guys in the world by remote control from the drone bunkers of Las Vegas, and that will show them. Thank goodness the long holiday season is almost upon us to juice the so-called economy ever-higher.

There has never been a crazier moment in history. The weeks before the outbreak of the First World War seem like a garden party compared to the morbid antics of these darkening days. America, you’ve been wishing fervently for the Zombie Apocalypse. What happens when you discover you can’t just change the channel?

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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.

357 Responses to “Must Be the Season of the Witch” Subscribe

  1. Smoky Joe October 6, 2014 at 9:52 am #

    Jim, I presume you read in the NYT that Ben Bernanke was turned down for a refi on his mortgage. He’d changed employment status recently.

    That proves that the robots (or at least the risk-assessment algorithms) are in charge. Strange days, indeed.

  2. cowboy October 6, 2014 at 9:54 am #

    Another great message, Jim. To see how we have prepared for whatever go to http://www.collierdiamondcranch.com . Pull down our infrastructure under todays Diamond C. I look forward to your futre writings.

    • progress4what October 6, 2014 at 9:16 pm #

      Hey Cowboy! Good to see you back here.
      I wrote you a whimsical message back in early September.
      Here it is again, in case you missed it.
      kunstler.com/clusterfuck-nation/busybody-nation/#comment-181537

      • cowboy October 6, 2014 at 10:36 pm #

        Look forward to seeing you all. Be sure to wave a white flag with those gloves since you will probably be in our cross-hairs by that time. We do have satellite phones that would be working. Get one and we will communicate with them.

  3. seawolf77 October 6, 2014 at 9:54 am #

    Ah yes the zombie apocalypse. What is the medium of exchange in such a pickle. Food and water? Silver and gold? Guns and ammo? Life or death? Historically, did the Germans or French think that they would never return to gold and silver as real money at the heights of their paper, ponzi schemes? i would venture a guess yes. Did they return to silver and gold? Again a vengeful yes. Will we be any different? Remember the scariest words on Wall Street are “It’s different this time.”

    • chipshot October 6, 2014 at 12:14 pm #

      Believe the medium of exchange will ultimately be Mother Nature’s currency: Food & water.

  4. earltwitty October 6, 2014 at 9:56 am #

    One of your best ominous rants !!! I can’t really argue with any of it.

  5. RobH October 6, 2014 at 10:03 am #

    Superb! Poetry in fact

    And Betamax VCRs were so much better than VHS; that’s gotta be faced

    • Ghung October 6, 2014 at 3:22 pm #

      I still have our old Betamax, but the only tape I could find was “Tattooed Grannies Go To Gomorrah”. This madness didn’t start yesterday.

    • Grunt October 10, 2014 at 8:39 am #

      Only Grandpa has to face that issue, as it is three generations old. DVDs and streaming have made the video cassette crisis irrelevant.

  6. Dean October 6, 2014 at 10:03 am #

    I think the U.S. Should build a fence across the Northern border. Maybe it”ll keep you guy’s out of Canada for a bit longer!

  7. pequiste October 6, 2014 at 10:04 am #

    Trick or treat time it is Jim. And like the three witches in MacBeth said “double double toil and trouble” ’cause that’s what what we are, and have been, doing; all of our constant and vigorous stirring of the cauldron of geopolitics, economics and warfare ammongst other pathological pursuits. We live in stupendously psychotic times and I personally cannot wait for the dennoument.
    Please advise us, the CFN (Cluster-fuck Nation:) what, if any, palliative you are taking while soaking in this gestalt of cosmopolitan bizarreness?

    • James Howard Kunstler October 6, 2014 at 10:14 am #

      What palliative? Well, I’m raising chickens and making my own kimchee. Maybe not as spectacular as you wanted — but it works for me. JHK

      • BioWebScape October 6, 2014 at 10:29 am #

        Good Kimchee is hard to get at times, Glad you are doing good with the farm you set up.

      • Superfishal October 6, 2014 at 10:57 am #

        And tattooed souls with firearms will come take your chickens and the fruit of your garden when they get hungry enough..that is a guarantee if it goes as you prophesied.

        • Helen Highwater October 6, 2014 at 12:00 pm #

          But would they know how to gut and pluck and cook a chicken, after only ever eating McNuggets? And would they be able to figure out that potatoes, beets, carrots and other root crops are underground?

          • russ October 6, 2014 at 1:18 pm #

            No, they wouldn’t. They would expect you to do that at gunpoint. That is where you get creative with some of the Jimson weed and nightshade berries that might have grown elsewhere in the garden, and work those into the recipe.

          • Janos Skorenzy October 6, 2014 at 2:18 pm #

            Oh Hel! You think rural White savages don’t know how to pluck a chicken – even though they raise them and hunt wild game? Or the tattooed Hispanic savages who are the sons of peasants?

            Your comment only has validity in regards to urban gangs.

        • Karah October 6, 2014 at 3:57 pm #

          Have you not seen his 8′ fence??

        • Petro October 7, 2014 at 8:24 am #

          Or if they’re hungry enough, they’ll just eat it raw, and risk getting salmonella.

          This issue is why I don’t bother with more than a couple weeks’ supply of food and water, for cases of short-term emergencies. No way I can fend off a scared, hungry group with just a .22 plinking rifle.

      • ghostlimb October 6, 2014 at 5:26 pm #

        The tragi-comically flawed film from last year, “Goodbye World” does make a point often overlooked… that in a world in contraction under siege, with the grid down, food shortages and self-sufficiency highly prized – the thugs and marauders come in and take it all anyway.

  8. Neon Vincent October 6, 2014 at 10:06 am #

    You’re doing a fine job of turning phrases today. I’ll start with “Candy Crush is making the world safe for democracy.” That beats my previous favorite line about Facebook games: “While the world burns, Farmville thrives.” Farmville isn’t a thing any more, and I’d always rather tend a real garden than a virtual one, but the desire for escapism is a great one. America demands its entertainment, and will take all manner of social, economic and political abuse, but will rise up with righteous fury when you disturb its entertainment.

    Speaking of entertainment…

    “America, you’ve been wishing fervently for the Zombie Apocalypse. What happens when you discover you can’t just change the channel?”

    The Archdruid and his readers have been having conversations about that topic for seven years. I documented the first one of those in More from the Archdruid and his readers on zombies, part 1 and the most recent in The Archdruid and his readers on zombies. Greer acknowledges the trend, yet finds it baffling. He would like to understand what it represents, but he’d rather people prepare for the real disaster that the zombie apocalypse is a metaphor for, instead of the fantasy where one can safely kill what once were ones fellow Americans.

    Speaking of the zombie apocalypse, The Walking Dead returns this Sunday. My wife and I can hardly wait.

    • Ghung October 6, 2014 at 3:11 pm #

      You can change the channel, but they’re all showing pretty much the same thing. It’s sort of like Max Headroom though; you can’t turn it off without becoming a Blank.

  9. PeteAtomic October 6, 2014 at 10:08 am #

    This reminds me of a Bugs Bunny cartoon where Wily E Coyote runs off the cliff, but his legs are still moving furiously and he has a look of desperation on his face. It seems that that is what the US economy is doing right now.

    Those who have been living on the gravy train for a while now, are looking for “something” to provide that structural flooring of an economy– but EBT cards and PS3 purchases don’t make an economy., they are side effects of a mass of state-dependent unemployed.

  10. goat1001 October 6, 2014 at 10:10 am #

    “What happens when you discover you can’t just change the channel?” Well for us, we will just unplug the set and switch on the solar, tend the garden, hold on tight and ride the wave out to the future….

    • TravisB October 6, 2014 at 11:04 am #

      That’s awesome, and all do respect. What happens when that “wave to the future” is a horde of ex-zombies who forgot to tend their garden, and set up their solar, and are now heading towards your gardens moaning squuaashh…..

      • Helen Highwater October 6, 2014 at 12:08 pm #

        Most of them wouldn’t have the faintest idea how to turn a squash into something to eat.

        • MisterDarling October 6, 2014 at 4:01 pm #

          With all due respect Helen, that’s where *YOU* come in…

          ;))

      • Greyghost October 6, 2014 at 1:34 pm #

        Lock & Load ! Engage and go for Center Body Mass ! Remember, if you aren’t prepared to do this you will die. It will be that cold ! But most importantly PRAY that none of this happens.

      • goat1001 October 6, 2014 at 4:44 pm #

        We’re a packin’

  11. George October 6, 2014 at 10:18 am #

    “There is enough instability around the globe for the gentlemen of Wall Street to make one last fabulous fortune arbitraging the future before the boomerang of consequence circles this suffering planet and finally accomplishes what the Department of Justice under Eric Holder failed to do for six long years.”

    Well, of course!

    And while they’re at it, let them make enough in fees brokering the liquidation of the Ukraine’s last state-owned assets to pay for one more weekend of conspicuous consumption out in the Hamptons before the weather turns blustery. Meanwhile, offstage, the Fed’s jugglers are trying to gracefully taper Q.E. while frantically short-selling gold to prop up the dollar index.

    Maybe it’s best to maintain a developer’s “business as usual” outlook until business is no longer possible?

  12. Neon Vincent October 6, 2014 at 10:20 am #

    On the topic of plagues that could turn ones neighbor into a source of death…

    “[T]he doubling of Ebola cases every 20 days, which the World Health Organization did not have the nerve to project beyond 1.2 million in January (does the doubling just stop there?)”

    I was wondering what it would take for you to mention Ebola in your essays. Your readers, including me, have been taking up the slack for the past two months. The answer turned out to be the first Ebola case diagnosed in the U.S. That had an interesting effect on the markets, which fell more than one percent on Wednesday as anything involving transportation got clobbered. The only stocks that did well seem to be the ones of companies that could make vaccines for Ebola. Despite the exhortations of authority figures, including physicians, politicians, and the press, not to panic, investors did exactly that. I don’t blame them.

    As for the latest news, the Ebola update–Dallas patient is in critical condition, the authorities are talking containment, and there are false alarms. The epidemic led “This Week” on ABC and was the most read story on Reuters last night. One story that didn’t make those sources was a false alarm here in Grand Rapids. It turned out to be Dengue Fever. That’s still a serious disease, but it requires mosquitoes to spread it. It won’t leave the hospital. Also, it looks like the U.S. was unlucky to be the first “First World” country to have Ebola. France, the U.K., and Belgium all have very high risks to have cases by the end of the month. It looks like this fall and winter will be the season of the Masque of the Red Death.

    • BioWebScape October 6, 2014 at 10:38 am #

      Hello Neon,

      Yes the yahoo news threads ahve huge numbers of people just foaming at the mouth to put a fence around Africa and let it die out there. It seems that they hardly understand the reality, from just listening to the 24 hours of news that might not be news, just rehashing of the same tid bit over and over again.

      That one (1) case could send everyone into a shear panic is news enough, it seems humans really really fear death. All the while ISIS and the Ukraine matters seem to be slipping out of the news frame and People have to be reminded that soon it’ll be time to buy presents for the loved ones all decked in hazmat gear.

      Which reminds me, Hazmat gear the newest Holloween kit to be decked out in this year, would be great fodder, protect and get candy too, or are we just going to hand out Alcohol Swabs and hand cleaners tis year and forgo the candy-corn?

      • Janos Skorenzy October 6, 2014 at 2:21 pm #

        In other words, it’s only fair if we get Ebola too because of slavery and shit. Not to get Ebola is White Privilege.

        • alphie October 6, 2014 at 5:40 pm #

          “…because of slavery and shit”. It’s like a knee-jerk response isn’t it? honey we’re out of milk. Janos: “that’s because of slavery and shit”. you just can’t seem to get over your own whiteness can you? doesn’t it get boring? it’s like staring at your belly button.

    • MisterDarling October 6, 2014 at 4:19 pm #

      Hello NV,

      re | “I was wondering what it would take for you to mention Ebola in your essays. Your readers, including me, have been taking up the slack for the past two months.”-neon-v.

      I was wondering that myself. It’s all a matter of priorities, I suppose.

      Meanwhile, there’s always the ‘AlphaPapa’ of Aggregators to fall back on: Reddit.

      reddit.com/r/ebola/search?q=ebola&sort=new&restrict_sr=on&t=all

      Say ‘hello’ to ebola-update highway…

      In my research travels I came across this little ‘ditty’:

      npr.org/blogs/health/2014/10/02/352983774/no-seriously-how-contagious-is-ebola

      The article compares Ebola (infecting 2 for 1) to Measles (18 for 1) and tries to downplay the threat by showing that it’s less contagious – as if there were any comparison between something that kills 70-80% of it’s victims and a case of the measles…

      Well, thank God that America “has the best healthcare system in the world!”…

      /s

      pSyChe!

      😉

      • Ishabaka October 7, 2014 at 1:24 pm #

        All rapidly infectious agents with a high mortality rate in humans have an animal host which either does not get sick at all, or gets only mildly ill. All of them. With the Black Death (Pasturella Pestis), it was fleas. With SARS, it was the civet cat. The reason there were only small outbreaks of SARS in the US and Canada is because we don’t have thousands of civet cats. With Ebola, it is likely an African fruit bat. Unless a North American bat can host Ebola – without dying or getting seriously ill, Ebola will be limited to sporadic outbreaks involving people traveling from Africa, and their health care workers/immediate family.
        All infectious agents which has only human beings as a host have low mortality rates. The common cold is a triumph of human infection – humans feel mildly ill, but not so ill they stay home from work and school, where they infect others. In order to have an epidemic, the infection must either be not so severe that people stay home – such as colds, or kill SLOWLY, such as the HIV virus. The reason this Ebola outbreak is so bad is the LOW mortality rate of this strain – 70%, versus 90% in prior outbreaks. For a human-based epidemic to occur, a mortality rate of less than 50% – probably considerably less – is necessary.

        I find it interesting that the “discovery” by the National Institutes of Health of three vials of live Variola (smallpox virus) went virtually unnoticed in the media. Variola has been eliminated as a human disease by vaccination (the very word vaccination comes from the Vaccinia virus, which is used to convey immunity to smallpox). Worldwide, smallpox vaccination ceased in the 1970’s. People such as myself, who were vaccinated as a child, have been found to have lost their immunity. This means that virtually the entire human population of Planet Earth are susceptible. Smallpox has a mortality rate of 30% – just low enough that it does not need an animal host. It is EASILY spread via the airborne route. Furthermore, those who survive tend to be very ill for at least a week – making it impossible for them to work. Think no police, health care workers, nuclear power plant workers, fire fighters, etc.. My best estimate, based on additional deaths due to fires, nuclear reactor melt-downs, lack of farming/food/water workers ability to function, is that the release of Variola would result in the death of 75 – 90% of all human beings. We would be LUCKY if our species were able to maintain a Dark Ages level of civilization. The Spanish flu of 1918 reached every corner of the world – from Eskimos to denizens of remote Pacific islands – when there was no air travel.

        But let’s all panic over a disease that has been present for decades in Africa, from which there has been not one single death in the US – ever – (although I think the Liberian gentleman, who has multiple organ system failure, is doomed), and which has infected not one single person living on North American soil (although again, I expect some health care workers will become infected).

        If you are serious about protecting yourself from viral boogeymen, it’s time to get an influenza shot – thousands of Americans die of influenza every year – always have, always will.
        Now let the anti-vaccine hysteria begin. Honestly, if an Ebola vaccine were perfected tomorrow, I suspect the anti-vaccine crowd would try to have it banned.

        • MisterDarling October 7, 2014 at 2:13 pm #

          re | “If you are serious about protecting yourself from viral boogeymen, it’s time to get an influenza shot – ishabaka.

          Nope. I’m focused more interested in Risk Management at the moment… Risks can be from real threats both real *and* perceived. Plague-panics have an impact.

          Thank you very much for this feedback. Kudos to you!

  13. stelmosfire October 6, 2014 at 10:22 am #

    The world goes to S*** and so my world grows smaller. Garlic goes in today. I hope to be around next summer to enjoy it. JHK, thanks for a good Monday rant!

    • SteveO October 6, 2014 at 10:55 am #

      Thank you for reminding me. I want to make another attempt with garlic this year.

      • abbybwood October 6, 2014 at 3:27 pm #

        Not sure if fall is the right time for planting, but growing your own shallots is a great idea!

        Makes a nice addition to the saute pan for just about any fish or chicken or vegetarian dishes.

        • WW October 6, 2014 at 6:07 pm #

          Garlic is always planted late fall. There are different strains for different climate but if you suffer with it rotting put a inch of sand under the clove as you plant it. The extra drainage will cure the problem.

  14. Greg Knepp October 6, 2014 at 10:27 am #

    My daughter tells me that the newest smart phones are so thin that their aluminum casings “bend in your pocket when you sit down”. Apparently they are making the overall screen areas larger in order to accommodate the human eye and hand (a good thing) but failed to take into account certain engineering factors: i.e., the thickness of the product must be proportional to its overall area for said product to maintain proper dimensional stability under normal conditions.

    Somehow I think this fits nicely into JHK’s article today; we can’t seem to get anything right – not a damn thing. The Smart Ape is over his head.

    • Smoky Joe October 6, 2014 at 10:30 am #

      Derek Jeter’s final time at bat was right. I know you skeptics at CFNation will say it was rigged. As for the new phone? Who cares? My old one still works fine.

  15. SW October 6, 2014 at 10:36 am #

    You might be interested to watch the current interview with William Black on Bill Moyers who was the special prosecutor of the S&L criminals in the 80s. He has quite a bit to say about the current fraud, Eric Holder and the apparent deal-making of Obama prior to the 2008 election with the financial sector. Here’s the link:

    billmoyers.com/episode/full-show-big-jail/?utm_source=sidebar&utm_medium=banner&utm_campai…

    • SteveO October 6, 2014 at 11:28 am #

      Thanks for the link. It sounds like Black is confirming what Jim and so many others have said that the next crash is already “in the cards”. It’s really just a question of when and how bad and how far down the “rule of law” falls.

    • St. Roy October 6, 2014 at 12:02 pm #

      I also thank you for the link. Missed it before. A good addition to Jim’s post today. How long can the government of the FSoA (RE’s proper acronym for fascist America) composed of criminals, psychopaths, hegemonic lunatics, banisters, sociopaths, etc. keep going? Yea Jim, the end or apocalypse is near. I’m glad I moved to Mexico and thankful that the country to the North is building a fence to prevent its peonage from emigrating South.

    • abbybwood October 6, 2014 at 3:34 pm #

      Here’s a good speech by William Black, “How to rob a bank and get away with it”:

      youtube.com/watch?v=-JBYPcgtnGE

  16. BioWebScape October 6, 2014 at 10:51 am #

    I say we all should get the hazmat gear ready for trick or treat time, and not give out candy, but hand wipes and hand cleaned, and the rare 2 dollar bill to the kids, it might be worth something as a collectors item with that nice picture on the back like it has.

    My bank of which I use their coin counting machine the most, has 2 dollar bills in stock, so I get some with each coin drop. I am a coin collector and go through a lot of people’s pocket change and mint boxes of things for the odd bits of goodies hidden in there. Got to have a hobby while I prepare for winter.

    My one chicken which arrived via a God send. Literally showed up in the area, and was shoo’d into the back yard by my dad, and we got about a dozen eggs out of her, then we had a turn for the hot weather and now, she’s wondering who turned on the cold stuff. Free range yard rearranger, Make a pile of straw, watch her knock it about and spread it for you. Though she ate my seed wheat mostly, or it was the bad weather that hit right after I planted the experimental plot. We got a touch of droughty dryness a while in Sept, but are up overall in water supplies.

    Trim the Mulberries, plant the Garlic and See if there are any strawberries left from her digging for food in the bed, and Off to see if I can get myself a dozen brand new hazmat gears, So I can sell them High to needy fearful people…. LoL.

    Charles.

  17. russ October 6, 2014 at 10:59 am #

    Jim – You didn’t miss the good news, did you? That the U.S. Secretary of Energy awarded the James Schlesinger medal for contributions to U.S. energy security to – ta da –

    Daniel Yergin

    press.ihs.com/press-release/energy-power/us-secretary-energy-presents-ihs-vice-chairman-daniel-yergi…

    In making the award, Secretary Moniz noted “…that Dr. Yergin ‘has made unique contributions to the energy sector debate’…”

    Well, that part is true, isn’t it?

    Grim things going on out there – but we shouldn’t miss such a gem of shining light.

    • ozone October 6, 2014 at 11:16 am #

      russ,
      Wow, that just about says it all, doesn’t it?
      “I done been hyp-no-tized by the shining light of Deluuuuusion!”

      • seawolf77 October 6, 2014 at 12:01 pm #

        George Tenant got the Medal of Freedom or something like that after 9/11.

      • russ October 6, 2014 at 12:41 pm #

        Yup. Which as the song from the 80s reminds, is about on a par with “being blinded…by Science!…”

        • lsjogren October 6, 2014 at 1:14 pm #

          Nothing wrong with science. It’s economists who think you can grow corn on an Excel spreadsheet that are the problem.

          • russ October 6, 2014 at 1:24 pm #

            True. And the economists who think that the market will easily find a substitute for oil. And these days, water too, for that matter.

  18. ozone October 6, 2014 at 11:12 am #

    JHK,
    I really enjoy your vision of our collective (and self-made) predicaments as a tsunami-like Great Wave. (Perhaps its a genetic stamp of my sea-going, fisherfolk forebearers to see this so vividly in my mind’s eye?)

    For a look at a few gallons of this briny beast, what’s propping up the good ol’ fraud market might be of interest:

    zerohedge.com/news/2014-10-06/why-stocks-just-wont-drop-companies-spend-almost-all-profits-buybacks

    Thanks for another excellent essay as we trundle down the road to Perdition and Comeuppances. Have fun where you find it!

  19. K-Dog October 6, 2014 at 11:20 am #

    A heavy glob of glutinous gooey doom for breakfast that sticks to the spoon in a cohesive blob. I like the “The sum of all that digital magic is a nation completely incapable of telling itself the truth or acting honorably.” He’s right, but I wonder if he can say why it is so. Maybe a bit prolix but overall a satisfying serving curbing ones morning appetite for doom.

    • russ October 6, 2014 at 1:04 pm #

      I like the rhythm and pacing to your opening sentence, K-Dog. I could almost see Rod Serling continuing the narrative, and saying something about ‘a dimension not only of sight and sound but of mind’, and then welcoming us to the “Twilight Zone”.

      • K-Dog October 6, 2014 at 1:47 pm #

        A journey of not just sight and sound but the dimension of imagination. As timeless as infinity and as silent as eternity. It is that dimension which sits between the pit of mans fears and the summit of his knowledge.

        And indeed this vast dimension is our next stop. – The Twilight Zone

        You are standing on a lonely street. The place Any-town U.S.A. The man you are about to meet is Jack Cooper who by all accounts is an ordinary man. But unknown to Jack he has a special talent that is about to take him on a strange journey to an unimaginable place where his world is about to be turned upside down. And you can go with him. Because:

        Your next stop………………………………………………………….

        • Janos Skorenzy October 6, 2014 at 2:28 pm #

          Incredible that the whole System has to crash in order that Willoughby can begin again. A place where a man (and that includes women in Willoughby) can take full measure.

          • K-Dog October 6, 2014 at 3:50 pm #

            You are just trying to trick me in stepping off the train. He got his full measure all right. A dirt nap where it is 1880 all the time. I remember the episode well. The dude in the episode needed to man up and start running his own show.

            Remember at the end when the conductor was standing over the body and the hearse showed up. There never was a place named Willoughby. It turned out to be Willoughby and Sons Funeral Home. When his harpy of a wife got the bill I’m sure she paid it full measure.

  20. BackRowHeckler October 6, 2014 at 11:27 am #

    Jim you obviously haven’t heard about the $30 billion all sports stadium about to be built in Tokyo. Yes it reminds one of the coliseum in Rome, but the coliseum was built when Rome was flush and strong. To get this stadium built Japan is required to marshall all available remaining resources, and put them to work, like the doomed toiling inhabitants building those mysterious statues facing seaward on Easter Island.

    I was talking with this guy last nite in Hartford who used to be in the middle class but no longer is. He was at the back dock at the newspaper plant picking up bundles which he now delivers for a living. He had owned a string of laundrymats, unfortunately they were located in urban areas near public housing projects. He’d open up in the morning and find bullet holes thru the front doors. Drugs were openly dealt in his parking lots. He was burglarized more times than he could count. Finally he just walked away the night he was attacked by 2 Hispanic fellow American Citizens; he broke one of their noses in the melee. The assailants were caught shortly after; then the cops showed up and arrested him, too, because “We just can’t arrest Hispanics, we have to arrest white guys too.” There was a lot of bitterness in his voice when he told me this story.

    –brh

  21. seawolf77 October 6, 2014 at 11:42 am #

    String of laundromats. That must be like owning a string of pay phones. Creepy story. Everyone thinks starting your own business is walking down the yellow brick road.

    • vengeur October 6, 2014 at 12:32 pm #

      Starting and owning a business is hard. Starting and owning a business in a third world country is [insert Laundromat story here].

  22. rollie October 6, 2014 at 12:02 pm #

    LOL… “get jiggy”

  23. chipshot October 6, 2014 at 12:26 pm #

    In every train wreck, there is a moment when the train has lost contact w the tracks (meaning a wreck is certain), but no damage has occurred. It appears this world is at that moment.

    How much longer will that moment last?

    • seawolf77 October 6, 2014 at 12:32 pm #

      I watched a show “Airplane Crashes” and the worst airline disaster of all was outside Tokyo in 1986 I think. The back bulkhead blew out, taking out all the hydraulics. For 32 minutes the pilots struggled with the plane. Onlookers said it looked like a drunken behemoth staggering through the air. After 32 minutes (imagine the passengers), it nosedived and crashed into a mountain, killing all 500 aboard. That is the world right now, a drunken behemoth staggering through the sky.

      • BackRowHeckler October 6, 2014 at 3:10 pm #

        Hey seawolf what about when those 2 loaded 747s crashed into each other in the Canary Islands … over 800 dead. That was a bad one too. I thought is was the worst considering the loss of life.

        –brh

    • MisterDarling October 6, 2014 at 4:36 pm #

      When it’s happening, it feels like an *e t e r n i t y*…

  24. pkrugman October 6, 2014 at 12:38 pm #

    One of your most optimistic titles ever (and your gardening message is positive also).

    The word “witch” is a beautiful word. It means a wise woman. One can only hope you are correct that this is the season of the witch. The season of the patriarchy has been disastrous for the planet. The divine feminine will be our saving grace.

    • Janos Skorenzy October 6, 2014 at 2:33 pm #

      Throughout all of history, a Witch meant an evil individual, particularly a woman. Your meaning reflects our disconnect from reality. Being stuck in nice is our condition, and it’s a fatal one.

      I certainly don’t mean to imply that you are stuck in nice of course. You are just trying to strengthen our delusion to insure our downfall.

      • Helen Highwater October 6, 2014 at 10:50 pm #

        You’re wrong. It was only the patriarchy that considered witches to be evil. They were actually healers and wisewomen and were revered by their communities. Learn a bit of real history, why don’t you.

      • seawolf77 October 7, 2014 at 9:39 am #

        A witch is a sorcerer and by definition is a student of perception. She is also a sworn enemy of the Catholic Church, and concomitant an enemy of the governments she controls. One man’s evil is another man’s good. Evil depends on context. Even the human sacrifice of Jesus Christ was upended and turned into something good. Moral Jui Jitsu can be applied to any act, thought, or word.

  25. Malthus October 6, 2014 at 12:38 pm #

    “And, of course, it being the season of the witch, that’s where the zombies come out for real” I was in Wally world yesterday and thought I was hell surrounded by the walking dead.

    • BigT October 6, 2014 at 5:03 pm #

      And with all the troubles going on, I hope they were not shopping for “silver shamrock” masks.

      “Season of The Witch” was also the subtitle of a B movie years back about a warlock novelty tycoon with near extinction ambitions.

  26. And So It Goes October 6, 2014 at 1:06 pm #

    Magnificent

  27. Cold N. Holefield October 6, 2014 at 1:09 pm #

    Where are all the Africans getting the dough to fly? I thought flying was a rather expensive endeavor for the privileged of the 1st World, yet these son-of-a-bitches are flying all over the place with just the shirt and the cell phone on their backs and Ebola coursing through their veins and permeating tissues clamoring to jump to the next host — and unlike White men, Ebola can jump like a jack rabbit. Or maybe that’s hop, but either way, it’s pretty impressive.

    Maybe there is some kind of Ebola Points program. You can trade in your Ebola Points you’ve accumulated using your American Express card and fly for no charge when you trade the points in for a ticket in an effort to conjure a global pandemic that’s proving difficult to kick start. Capital One — what’s in your blood sample?

    The names they choose for these lead Ebola stories crack me up. The Dallas guy’s name is Duncan. Remember Sandy Duncan and her annoyingly healthy wholesome image? So much so Nabisco used her for the Wheat Thins commercial when they introduced that “healthy” product in the 70’s. Now another Duncan has been chosen to convey a health image that’s a polar opposite. Quite a juxtaposition off the same name.

    Clean Living

    • Beryl of Oyl October 6, 2014 at 1:28 pm #

      I was wondering that myself. I have visitors here from a far-off First World country, and they can only afford to come every other year.

  28. Beryl of Oyl October 6, 2014 at 1:25 pm #

    “All that digital magic” resulted in a man with Ebola getting sent home from the emergency room with some antibiotics. Or so we’re told. There are a lot of conspiracy theories around about the Ebola virus, America, and big profits by Big Medicine. It is almost easier to believe the theories than to believe that “the finest health care system in the world” broke down because of “bad software”.
    Not knowing how to treat an African man with flu-like symptoms is the more educated version of not knowing how to turn a squash into something to eat, isn’t it?

  29. Janos Skorenzy October 6, 2014 at 2:37 pm #

    A heard an news advertisement: Is America ready for Ebola? Her voice was concerned but upbeat – the same tone that would be used to ask if America was ready for winter or the flu season. The Elite want this disease here. There is no doubt about that. The only question is why.

  30. volodya October 6, 2014 at 2:45 pm #

    TO UFIA,

    … but where were all the other intelligent, informed citizens? – Unstoppablefarceimmovable abject Oct 4/14

    Extremely good question. You might have asked that question for all the calamities that engulfed the world since the year 1900. It’s not like nobody foresaw the bloodbaths of 1914-1918, 1939-1945 and others ie the Iraq War. It was the same with the economic and financial disasters of the 1920s-1930s and the nasty stuff that immediately preceded WW2.

    A lot of people saw what was in the cards. So where were the Responsible Men of those times? There were some. A few dared to speak up. And those that spoke up were scoffed at. The superbly self confident intelligentsia of the time shouted them down.

    Same thing with the era of off-shoring. Quite a few people saw what was in the works. One business man and politician talked about the giant sucking sound of jobs being sucked out of the US to low wage jurisdictions. He was laughed at. And lot of the predicted sucking happened during the time of the internet, the time of easy communication. So what was the excuse?

    Well, this was the time of credentialization. The shills demanded: what’s your area of expertise? Are you a credentialed economist? From where? From Harvard? Or from some dirt-bag college? Are you steeped in the arcana of finance and economic history? Are you Alan Fucking Greenspan? No? Then shut the fuck up, what the fuck do you know.

    And the shills came out in force. You can also see their arguments on this site whenever this topic comes up. Distractionary bullshit pointing this way and that. You’ve probably read some of it..

    And, as Mister Darling pointed out, a lot of shillery drawing false parallels with other periods in history. You brought up one of the arguments: that, like previous times, this recent era was an era of automation, that AUTOMATION accounts for the collapse of bread-winner incomes, that offshoring, as an explanation, is a canard.

    And, if you WERE a credentialed objector, well then, from the shills there would come the derisory laugh, the sigh, the exasperated roll of the eyes. You just didn’t get it. You see, you were hopelessly out of step, uselessly pining for the past, and a time, by the way, that didn’t even exist.

    And then, bizarrely and illogically, the shills would do a 180, the shills would insist that the credentialed objector get with the program, that he face up to the new reality. The NEW NORMAL they would bray. But, you might ask, what “new normal”? If, according to the shills, the past era of prosperity, of mass employment, of bread-winner incomes never existed, if it was all illusory or just a myth, then WHAT “new normal” are they talking about?

    Some of the shillery was along the lines of don’t believe what’s in front of you. Don’t believe what’s plainly visible. Believe, instead, these charts here. The charts say everything is a-ok. So what exactly is your problem dick-head? Don’t you believe objective facts and evidence?

    And if the “facts and evidence” argument failed to sway, well, that book was slammed shut. The shills would quickly pivot and abandon that line of attack. Look, the shills would snarl, the fault is with the people suffering, the failure is their own, their own inadequacy, their lack of ambition and initiative, their own failure to prepare themselves.

    The broken down towns, the boarded up Main Streets were laughed at by bi-coastal elites (that is, the same people that inflicted this disaster) and offered up as a symptom of American working-class degeneracy. No, it WASN’T off-shoring that destroyed these places, no, it was the fault of the tattooed, under-skilled, under-educated Nascar Nation good-for-nothings. These fat-asses fucked up those places, this was THEIR doing and if they HAD once enjoyed a decent living, well, that was then. And so another diversion: to sneer at America’s economically ruined heartland as Fly-Over Country, the Land of the OBESE.

    Of course, the shills’ arguments and braying were just a smokescreen for one of history’s most mind boggling and under-handed and destructive acts, that of an elite that looted and gutted their own country. The gang that pulled off this heist held positions of power at the Fed, Wall Street, Washington and C-suites in America’s largest and most powerful businesses.

    Were there ANY Responsible Men? Like previous periods in history there were some. But not nearly enough of them.

    As for yourself, in your studies and career, I wish you luck. As for picking up the pieces, as you suggest, don’t leave it to the Elites.

    • Janos Skorenzy October 6, 2014 at 3:05 pm #

      Yes, the Anglo-American Elite will go down as the worst in human history. And yes, tragically many still identify with them and act as their enablers by turning on their brothers and sisters – as if since they aren’t perfect, they deserve to be destroyed. The “Market” must be allowed to do as it wills – no matter how savage. The Market dictates that if a main crop fails and famine threatens, the farmers and distributors must raise their prices on everything else to cash in. People can’t get that the Market is just the Law of the Jungle – something to be worked with not surrendered to.

      Why does someone want to be a cop? Or a “manager”? Very few have the personality to do such a job well. These positions often attract the very people who shouldn’t be allowed anywhere near them.

      • MisterDarling October 6, 2014 at 6:29 pm #

        J.,

        re | “People can’t get that the Market is just the Law of the Jungle – something to be worked with not surrendered to.”-Janos.

        This is the kind of line that will get you somewhere. Keep this up.

        • Janos Skorenzy October 6, 2014 at 8:30 pm #

          Now that you like me again, are you ready to talk about your Bible, Zinn’s “People’s History of the United States”? It means so much to Liberals that it seems to be too sacred for them to talk about.

          Or dare I ask about your feelings about the inheritance tax?

    • Buck Stud October 6, 2014 at 3:29 pm #

      It’s pretty obvious who the irresponsible are in this day and age. In the case –linked below–the chief financiers of the GOP/Right Wing agenda. And yet those who fancy themselves responsible are meek as a lamb and quiet as a mouse when it comes to cleaning up their own mess never mind the country. After all, they hate the president who obliterated pre-existing medical condition clauses that benefit Main Street Americans more that they hate the pure greed and diabolical motivations of their own GOP.

      And yet many on the right still ask with palms facing upward who are/were “the Responsible Men”? And they frequently can be heard uttering or typing inanities such as ‘there is not a dimes worth of difference between the political parties’. Of course the discerning eye that peers a little deeper into this myth discovers a mantra meant to demoralize potential voters because that’s the only way the GOP/Right Wing can win going forward: If Dems/Progressives turn out to vote the GOP loses and will increasingly do so in the future due to demographics. Hence, we see the blatant outrageous and unethical voter suppression tactics of the GOP. Tactics such as fraudulent ballots mailed out by right wing slime in places such as North Carolina.

      Well if cleaning up the country is the goal then first cleaning up your own house/political party And right now there is nothing more corrupt and EVIL than the modern day GOP:

      billmoyers.com/2014/10/03/koch-brothers-war-transit/

      • BackRowHeckler October 6, 2014 at 5:16 pm #

        How about the DNC?

      • Janos Skorenzy October 6, 2014 at 5:58 pm #

        Most people here have transcended partisan politics and its illusions. Corporate America is Liberal not Conservative in any traditional sense. The economic elite are just as likely to vote Democrat as Republican. And the Republicans often believe the same things as their opposite numbers – hide it as they will.

        But the illusion of two parties is valuable so it’s maintained. So the two parties cater to different audiences and cater their message accordingly. But at the higher level they are united as the immigration issue clearly shows.

        • Buck Stud October 6, 2014 at 7:40 pm #

          Did you even read the link? The big bankroll for the GOP is attempting to squelch public transportation in this country. And let’s be real here; the D’s are far more amenable proponents of public transportation than the GOP — just investigate the liberal/progressive cities to verify. So you’re comment regarding the ‘sameness’ of the two parties is wrong in this particular instance and generic in overall vision.

          And interesting that on a blog that has had considerable peak oil discussion along with JHK’s laments regarding quality public transportation that you wave aside the issue of the link with no comment whatsoever.

          I can only conclude that you’re not really interested in things like public transportation or walk around cities or any of the architectural/aesthetic issues and qualities that really do comprise the positive aspect of JHK’s larger message. No, you latch onto ‘collapse’ because in your mind it will mean race segregation and to leap into a more sinister projection, ethic subjugation.

          Face it Janos, you could care less that the Koch Bros/GOP are actively seeking to undermine public transportation in this country.

          • Buck Stud October 6, 2014 at 7:46 pm #

            not care less…Q is lurking 🙂

          • Janos Skorenzy October 6, 2014 at 8:33 pm #

            No I take the bus and I do care. And I’m not a Republican. I could say that you don’t care about the invasion of the United States – and I’d be right.

          • Therian October 8, 2014 at 4:42 am #

            I think Janos’ message was general and yours, Buck, is obsessionally directed at public transpo. I doubt Janos is against a good transportation system.

            One post does not delineate a person’s entire belief system. Not Janos’, not yours, and generally, not anybody’s!!

    • MisterDarling October 6, 2014 at 5:02 pm #

      Hello V.,

      One of your better posts, I must say. Nicely done.

      As I was saying regarding the same question:

      “but where were all the other intelligent, informed citizens?” -UFIA.

      —snip—

      They kid themselves about not being next on the hit list – until it’s too late.

      We’ve seen several iterations of this already: the ‘intelligentsia’ shook their heads the blue-collar job losses in the Steel Belt, and the first wave of finance-driven lay-offs back in the 80’s… Until it was middle-managements turn in the early 90’s.

      Now it’s people in the tech industry acting as if they are immune – while H1-B visa people displace every viable position in sight, industry leaders (Google, Microsoft, Facebook, Apple, etc.) get caught red-handed wage-fixing and the DoD puts out a $5M RfP to produce a system to automate sys-admin positions.

      The writing is on the wall in 16pt Blue Helvetica.

      —snip—

      And yet if you point this out, you’ll hear something like:

      “The charts say everything is a-ok. So what exactly is your problem dick-head?”-v.

      😉

      It’s especially bad when you see this happening in a place where there is literally NO time or place for it… Like a combat-zone.

      You’d think that the whiff of cordite and rotting bodies would switch off the reflexive b-s and switch on the critical-thinking but, alas, that is not the way it works.

      There are far too many people out there who are perfectly okay with being totally wrong, for the all the ‘right’ reasons…

      Cheers!

  31. Janos Skorenzy October 6, 2014 at 2:54 pm #

    Meanwhile, the forces of evil have gathered and are planning a counter strike.

    thejc.com/news/uk-news/123231/web-giants-unite-%EF%AC%81ght-online-hate

    Think that “hate” doesn’t apply to you – but just right wing Whites? Think again: it means whatever they want it to mean. Jim’s whole essay could be called hate if they didn’t like it.

    • MisterDarling October 6, 2014 at 6:32 pm #

      re | “Jim’s whole essay could be called hate if they didn’t like it.”-Janos.

      This is true.

  32. goat1001 October 6, 2014 at 4:46 pm #

    Ebola = major extinction event

  33. BackRowHeckler October 6, 2014 at 5:14 pm #

    Here’s a headsup to CFNers who are not paying attention to events in the ME:

    Kabani, a predominately Kurdish city in N Syria, is about to fall to ISIS militia. From what I can tell from Al Jazeera and BBC look for a bloodbath to occur the likes we haven’t seen since Babi Yar in the Ukraine in 1941. My only question is will the massacre be streamed live video or will an attempt be made to cover it up, so far as is possible?

    brh

    • Cold N. Holefield October 6, 2014 at 5:56 pm #

      I think it’s time to drop a Hiroshima-size nuke here and there on these bastards. Lure them into the city or town, evacuate the refugees and then drop the nuke and fry their asses from here to kingdom come.

      Remember what Malkina said; “Nothing is crueler than a coward, and the slaughter to come is probably beyond our imagining.”

      The slaughter to come can be minimized and maybe even neutralized if, and only if, we’re not cowards. You don’t negotiate with these Orcs and you don’t fight them. You eliminate them. We have the ability to do it, we just need to quit being such cowards. Nuke every town IS controls just as the Viet-Cong lopped off the arms of those who received American vaccinations.

      We need to become Colonel Kurtz. When we do, they will fear us and worship us, but not until then.

      Our potential’s been patiently waiting but it won’t wait forever. It’s now or never.

      • Janos Skorenzy October 6, 2014 at 6:06 pm #

        No, Nay, Never. No Nay Never no more. You have to fight your own mind. You have been conditioned by John Wayne movies and Military Funerals so all they have to do is tweak a string and you are frothing at the mouth like an enraged Pit Bull. You are being played like Guit-tar.

        May I suggest you read the classic “Spiritual Combat” by Lorenzo Scupoli? And remember what Confucius said, “The Superior Man is not an instrument.”

        • MisterDarling October 6, 2014 at 6:39 pm #

          OR, what Sun Tzu wrote in The Art of War:

          “Victorious warriors win first and then go to war, while defeated warriors go to war first and then seek to win.”

          Since he’s right [*], what does that say about our entire Middle-Eastern approach over the past two decades?

          Does anyone really think that throwing more firepower into the mix is helpful?

          — — —

          [*] He’s got a 2300+ year winning and re-printing streak, and he’s going on 2400 now… ;]

      • BackRowHeckler October 7, 2014 at 7:43 am #

        Love that reference to the Heart of Darkness, as important today as 1984 and Journey to the End of the Night.

        brh

  34. sethinthebox October 6, 2014 at 6:47 pm #

    Jim, not sure if you’re following this, but they just changed rules for Credit Default Swaps from 2003 to 2014 definitions. This is in an effort to mitigate the risk for investors who have seen poor repayments on some recent defaults.

    Due to issues with implementation they pushed the roll over date to 10/06. Note this article:

    bloomberg.com/news/2014-09-18/isda-delays-overhaul-of-18-trillion-credit-derivatives-market.html

    Two more:

    mobile.bloomberg.com/news/2014-10-03/traders-wipe-1-trillion-from-credit-swap-market-before-overhaul…

    bloomberg.com/news/2014-10-06/credit-swap-indexes-trade-after-overhaul-of-17-trillion-market.html

    Can’t say somebody isn’t trying to do something…but reducing global debt risk by $1 trillion is both staggeringly huge (compared to my bank account) and frustratingly pathetic (compared the the outstanding $17 trillion (probably underestimated)).

    Thought you’d be interested in this.

  35. MisterDarling October 6, 2014 at 7:07 pm #

    On a Lighter Note:

    Kim Jong-Un hasn’t been seen in public in a month, and his 2nd-in-Command suddenly flew into Seoul for high-level talks last week:

    theguardian.com/world/2014/oct/06/kim-jong-un-north-korea-asian-games-athletes

    I’ve been quietly hoping that there’s been a palace coup in northern Korea. If anyone could really use a break right now, it’s the people stuck in that time-warp north of the Korean DMZ…

    Cheers!

    • Janos Skorenzy October 6, 2014 at 8:37 pm #

      Some say his little body ate too much cheese and got very constipated. His dad kidnapped a movie maker so he could make a Korean horror film. That’s hard to beat but lil Kim did call Obama a monkey recently so he has potential at least.

      • James Howard Kunstler October 7, 2014 at 9:27 am #

        That’s just nasty. Warning….

        • Janos Skorenzy October 7, 2014 at 2:29 pm #

          Sorry. It was on SNL so I thought it was alright.

          • alphie October 7, 2014 at 3:35 pm #

            by all means janos, use snl as your moral compass

  36. edward4432 October 6, 2014 at 7:33 pm #

    How long have the tin foil hat gang been prophesying the end times? What is the attraction of disaster? Jimbo is in his element when he lays out the disaster ahead. No, we will muddle through. With our little plots of land we can grow victory gardens even if no one bothered during the second War. Those that don’t will perish. Gather ye rosebuds while ye may.

  37. UnstoppableFarceImmovableAbject October 6, 2014 at 9:16 pm #

    V, thanks for the meaty breakdown. This too:

    “As for yourself, in your studies and career, I wish you luck. As for picking up the pieces, as you suggest, don’t leave it to the Elites.”

    I’d love to find more than a handful of like minds with not just the brains but also mettle to mount a real response, but after digging deeper into these issues for three years and scopin’ the generations behind and ahead of me, I’ve drawn the conclusion that it’s too late. People suck too much. The once believable future to which automation may have led was lost entirely to patent law and the American Horror Story a long time ago. (New seasons of The Walking Dead and AMHS: Freak Show begin soon, btw ;>) ).

    To this:

    “So where were the Responsible Men of those times? There were some. A few dared to speak up. And those that spoke up were scoffed at. The superbly self confident intelligentsia of the time shouted them down.”-V

    Wholeheartedly agree here. Such voices and any emerging social themes therefrom were and are today quickly co-opted, stifled, derailed, mutated, and bastardized beyond recognition – effortlessly – at every turn. Are the Elites responsible for meddling, sure. Are the masses more responsible for believing it over and over again? Absolutely..

    But now the meddlesome blow-back is outta control. Some combination of a shit storm is comin’. The collective poor saps who were swindled and lied to since 1900, as you refer, should have caught on and risen up by now. I don’t differ significantly from what you’ve explained. The excuses are legitimate, but now what? Was/is there a solution?

    “You brought up one of the arguments: that, like previous times, this recent era was an era of automation, that AUTOMATION accounts for the collapse of bread-winner incomes, that offshoring, as an explanation, is a canard.” -V

    Pointing out that rather it’s automation which has made, or will make, most “bread-winning incomes” unnecessary is a canard in itself. .

    The circumstances of advancing technology and off-shoring, unfortunately, worked in unison against, instead of for, the commoner under the guises of: Efficient Market Theory and Politics. Bread-winning, however, and automation are indeed mutually exclusive ideas, but only IF we were smart enough to re-organize ourselves accordingly. We weren’t. Aren’t.

    Regardless, you seem to be simply saying that technology is the Big Lie that was told to the shitizens.

    Yet technology can’t sincerely be a culprit or a villain, can it; automation in itself isn’t a debate between Capitalism or Communism or Socialism or off-shoring or whatever the fuck – automation simply meant better tools. Better tools require better minds and fewer bodies to utilize. There are no peculiar promises behind automation, UNLESS its use is intentionally dressed with political lies. Let’s not conflate the two things.

    And I’m trying to think of anywhere I’ve read or heard in either marketing halls or in political science auditoriums that Free Market Capitalism and Americanism guarantee one’s right to a paycheck. I’ll work on that, as I sincerely don’t know if there ever were any such promises made.

    So let’s talk about easily identifiable empty and sinister promises then.

    The only promise that was ever made to a shitizen of the U.S. was that “you” will bust your ass like a slave, and, only if butt-fuckin’ lucky, you might become tenuously rich; therefore, doin’ whatever else it may take to keep your place at the table is implicitly advised and justified. The Elite did catch on to this fairly quickly, and we see the result.

    No, to your point, I think there were numerable indicators of the forced evolution of these -isms along the way; most shitizens simply failed to see them for what they were instead of what they wanted them to be, to this day no less, despite easy access to the real-time info.

    Mentioned earlier, we were asked frequently in our history to become Polymaths and instead remained “Americans.” Moral platitudes and slippery slopes ran rampant.

  38. progress4what October 6, 2014 at 10:01 pm #

    “What palliative? Well, I’m raising chickens and making my own kimchee. Maybe not as spectacular as you wanted — but it works for me. JHK”

    I’ve got to admire a man who, not only, hosts this Wild West of a comments section – but occasionally wades out into it himself to offer perspective. Very cool.

    And you’re taking a lot of grief from posters who are telling you that various brigands will eat your squash while you and Helen Highwater conduct a quick stress-filled lesson on how to dress a chicken for the pot.

    And everybody needs to chill about that, I’ll say. I suspect you’re getting to know your neighbors pretty well, JHK. How’d the book signing go last week, by the way?

    Knowing your neighbors is an essential strategy. I know all of mine. A few of them have tattoos, and a few of them probably have sketchy backgrounds, but I’m not holding that against them, especially if hard times hit us. And I would never expect any of my neighbors to repel a brigand or take a bullet for me – at least not on purpose.

    But a mix of good luck and good planning has given my family control of most of the high ground in our rural, large acreage subdivision. And I know the neighbors well enough to be pretty sure none of them will ever be sending bullets in my direction on purpose.

    We’ll all build on that, if and when the need arises.
    And we’ll hold on to our best laying hens until the bitter end!

    • Buck Stud October 6, 2014 at 10:50 pm #

      Speaking of palliative are you stocking up on pain killers for those inevitable days without modern medicine? I recall Illargi from the Automatic Earth stating that morphine might come in handy to ease the pain of dying a slow agonizing death.

      Put another way, collapse scenarios won’t all be Saturday night hoedowns after a productive week of planting/harvesting crops or patrolling the spread like a trench coat laden Clint Eastwood in High Plains Drifter inhaling delusion and maschismo like it was a Spaghetti Western cigar.

      No, most of the romantic delusions will be replaced with a far more somber reality. The swollen prostate will keep on swelling and the out of control Crohn’s disease will double too many over in agony. And the most in demand person may not be the productive farmer but the one who stocked up on Viagra in better days. Because a good fuck will be one of the few remaining activities to make life worth living.

  39. Q. Shtik October 6, 2014 at 10:40 pm #

    That’s awesome, and all [do] respect. – TravisB
    ==============

    due

  40. Q. Shtik October 6, 2014 at 10:51 pm #

    brokering the liquidation of [the] Ukraine’s last state-owned assets – George
    ==============

    It’s just plain old Ukraine. Language authorities declared nearly 25 years ago that “the” Ukraine was not correct.

  41. Q. Shtik October 6, 2014 at 11:00 pm #

    put [a] inch of sand under the clove – WW
    ==========

    an

  42. Q. Shtik October 6, 2014 at 11:24 pm #

    these [son-of-a-bitches] are flying all over the place – Cold N.
    ===========

    sons-a-bitches

  43. Pucker October 6, 2014 at 11:44 pm #

    Dmitry Orlov has an interesting rant this week on his blog about how dumb people are.

    Why are people stupid? I thought that God created man in his own imagine? If that’s true, then how do we explain Chris Hedges’ observation regarding the very high percentage of American males who watch professional wrestling? Does God watch professional wrestling?

    • seawolf77 October 7, 2014 at 10:51 am #

      I am coming to the conclusion that televised sports is akin to pronography. Both generate huge profits for its owners, the stars are really no more than pieces of meat who are discarded when they get old and ususally wind up broke, homeless or suicidal. Who they play is almost always a lie, from the female porn star who never gets made love too off screen, to the pro footbal player who has to beat up his girlfreind to feel powerful. these industries are essentially glorified slavery, and lest we not forget, the 13 amendment did not outlaw slavery, it outlawed involuntary slavery.

      • Pucker October 7, 2014 at 7:51 pm #

        In one of his books, Chris Hedges has a very graphic description of the porn industry.

        US soldiers are basically porn stars. They’re used for corporate profits and then discarded. Held up as propaganda role models.

  44. Pucker October 6, 2014 at 11:45 pm #

    Did God create the Neanderthals in his own imagine?

    • Greg Knepp October 7, 2014 at 10:30 am #

      Pucker: I suggest that you read ‘The Old Testament’, at least thru the book of ‘Daniel’. You may want to skim ‘Leviticus’ and ‘Deuteronomy’ – the former being bizarre in the extreme and the latter being bogus. Also, you may omit entirely both books of ‘Chronicles’ as they repeat the ‘Kings’ writings but are less interesting (in my opinion).

      There are about 300 chapters involved (with suggested omissions) and you can complete the task in less than a year. But take your time!

      You’ll thank me.

      Oh yes, you will note that the hunter-gatherer Cro-Magnons are referred to in a few passages (though not by name) and there are oblique references to more primitive types as well, though I doubt that the European Neanderthals were known to the authors.

      • Pucker October 7, 2014 at 8:04 pm #

        Didn’t the Neanderthals get their name from a valley in Germany where their remains were discovered?

        How did the N,,a, zi,s explain the Neanderthals?

        I always thought that the Austrian-born Arnold Schwarzenegger looks a bit like a Neanderthal? Arnold Schwarzenegger later became the Governor of California. I understand that he often referred to his political opponents in the media as “Girlie Men”.

        When asked on 60 Minutes about his affair with his fat, ugly Mexican cleaning lady who bore him a Love Child, the former Mr. Universe quipped: “i’m not perfect.”

        • Greg Knepp October 7, 2014 at 10:13 pm #

          Yes, the Neander River and the valley – ‘tal’, auf Deutsch, which we spell and pronounce as ‘thal’ – is where the first remains of Neanderthal Man were found. His range extended into western and perhaps central Asia.

          Schwarzenegger is a fully modern Homo Sapien. His strong build is most likely the result of steroid use and body building – nothing more exciting than that.

  45. Q. Shtik October 6, 2014 at 11:46 pm #

    and to leap into a more sinister projection, [ethic] subjugation. – Buck
    ===============

    ethnic, perhaps?

  46. Q. Shtik October 6, 2014 at 11:56 pm #

    With our little plots of land we can grow victory gardens even if no one bothered during the second War. – Edward 4432
    ===========

    Our family had a V-garden during dubya dubya 2.

    • Janos Skorenzy October 7, 2014 at 4:52 am #

      How did you manage to get back on? Did you unplug as Prog suggested?

  47. FincaInTheMountains October 7, 2014 at 7:20 am #

    “Pretty soon nobody will know what any currency is really worth — at least for a while — or what anything else is worth, for that matter. ”

    According to Jim Willie Chinese are planning to do something about it – like raising the Gold price to $2,500 – $3,000 an ounce unilaterally on Shanghai’s Metal Exchange.

    To any objections from Comex or LBMA they would simply say: Don’t pass that wonderful arbitrage opportunity, buy it on your markets for $1200 an ounce and sell it to us for $3000, but METAL ONLY, no paper please.

    I know Jim Willie is kinda hysterical guy and plays same record regarding “gold is only money” over and over again, but he may have some point.

    Chineese and Russians definitely want more fair pricing for vast gold reserves they have accumulated and this time around they may have some mussels to do just that.

    • BackRowHeckler October 7, 2014 at 8:28 am #

      When will this happen, gold at $3000 per oz?

      • Cold N. Holefield October 7, 2014 at 9:54 am #

        When Soros contracts a case of nostalgia.

      • FincaInTheMountains October 7, 2014 at 11:02 am #

        We probably need to watch for November Obama’s visit to China if he’ll be able to strike some deal with the Chinese.

        I am pretty sure that neither China, nor Russia want uncontrolled demise of USD or of USA – it would be too dangerous and extremely painful for majority of world’s population, they’d rather have new Breton Wood conference and come to some kind of reasonable agreement that will protect their interests and give US a chance to do a soft landing – it would probably mean 30 to 60% gradual, but rapid, devaluation of USD in several steps.

        The alternative is Ebola amidst WWIII.

        US just went too far in their fin-control games after 2008 crisis, nor did they even tried to consult with anybody.

      • FincaInTheMountains October 7, 2014 at 11:10 am #

        Bottom line, the best way out of the mess we’re in is to try to save as many lives worldwide as possible, in US, Ukraine, Russia, China. everywhere.

        Example – the way Putin is handling the Ukraine’s West offensive on Russian borders. He always leaves room for negotiations.

    • seawolf77 October 7, 2014 at 10:38 am #

      That’s as good as a way as I’ve heard. Witholding oil from world markets is another way. Barter is another. The true value of something can no longer be measured in currency. The distortion runs the gamut of facebook being worth the same as GE to bottled water costing more than gasoline at the convenient store. It is insanity.

      • FincaInTheMountains October 7, 2014 at 11:17 am #

        Even barter would require some way of fair pricing, or how the hell anybody is supposed to run the business? Advanced civilization requires advanced labor separation and fair and reliable financial system.

  48. BackRowHeckler October 7, 2014 at 8:25 am #

    A little 4 year old New Jersey boy, Eli Waller, has died from entrero virus 68. He went to sleep and never woke up, his only symptom a case of pink eye. Why is so much being made of Ebola when, as far as I know hasn’t killed anybody in the USA yet, but here we have a disease paralyzing and killing kids across the country and not much is being made of it? Also, why is it known the exact place and time this Ebola outbreak emerged, in some squalid African sh-thole, but nobody is saying where this killer virus, now linked to polio and meningitis and influenza, came from. Is the CDC looking into it? Is there a political reason, perhaps linked to La Raza and the planned amnesty for millions of illegals by presidential fiat? Maybe the White House, LaRaza and DHS can pay for the funeral for the little American boy in New Jersey, use some of the billions in the fund to house, educate and provide free medical care for people who shouldn’t even be here.

    –brh

    • FincaInTheMountains October 7, 2014 at 11:33 am #

      “some squalid African sh-thole”

      Africa will remain a “sh-thole” as long as enlightened European whites are willing to bomb the shit out of it’s infrastructure, like they did in Libya, destroying the “Great man-made river”.

      • Janos Skorenzy October 7, 2014 at 2:24 pm #

        No we built whatever infrastructure they have. You are still laboring under the misconception of racial equality. This no proof of such a thing and much much proof against it. Kind of like OJ’s innocence….

  49. budizwiser October 7, 2014 at 8:55 am #

    I used to share the “grand big-time” TSHTF scenario viewpoint.

    But these fuckers have been making up so many paper constructs for so, so , so, so, long – that I figure there is no other reality.

    C’mon. Walmart is never going to accept gold – and like many of you understand – when and if we ever get to that point, – when paper won’t work – you’d better be young, healthy, well armed, and good at just about everything.

    My own perspective suggests that we will ample have “test zombie” scenarios when differing natural disasters put the grid down or short the sheeple of their heats and eats.

    We need a couple more Katrinas or Sandys – but more timely, more powerful – see which roaches thrive…….

  50. Cold N. Holefield October 7, 2014 at 9:39 am #

    Does anyone think some “Lone Nut” will get to Obama before his term expires? They seem to be telegraphing that. He’s vulnerable and unprotected far too often. One of these times, it’s going to be the real deal. Can Obama make it to the finish line unscathed? Or will they sacrifice one of their chosen ones for some unfathomable greater good? We’ll see. Time, as it always does, will tell.

  51. contrahend October 7, 2014 at 9:48 am #

    Pretty soon nobody will know what any currency is really worth

    oh man, another precisely dated prediction by jimmy – “pretty soon”

    gets tiresome making predictions that never pan out.

    and as for the chinks doubling the gold price…lol, like, the finance boyz don’t have a plan to deal with them if they do that?

    what, are they gonna read about it in the NYT?

    this is old news to the people in charge pulling the levers.

    i love gold, and have bought it by the pound, but anyone who thinks they’re “all set” for the apocalypse because they’re holding gold and silver is in for a rude surprise. food and water and fuel will be the new reserve currency.

    btw how many decades have we been waiting for the endtymes to arrive now?

    it must be horribly maddening to be part of the apocalyptic gold crowd and watch as technology improves and things get better.

    i agree it’s great fun though and gives you a sense of being special, i.e. you’re in the know, but it’s….not happening.

    How long have the tin foil hat gang been prophesying the end times? What is the attraction of disaster? Jimbo is in his element when he lays out the disaster ahead. No, we will muddle through. With our little plots of land we can grow victory gardens even if no one bothered during the second War. Those that don’t will perish.

    yes brother, sock it to me baby. muddle through is what’s been happening since time immemorial.

    kontrahend

  52. Cold N. Holefield October 7, 2014 at 9:51 am #

    But these fuckers have been making up so many paper constructs for so, so , so, so, long – that I figure there is no other reality.

    I think it’s that they/we can make up infinite realities — and do. There’s no such thing as Peak Reality. There is an endless supply. All you have to do is think it, and truthfully, that’s not even a requirement any longer.

    New realities now roll out on their own of their own volition. It’s like a perpetual motion machine rolling one out after another of its own accord at breakneck speed.

    The new realities keep coming so plentifully and rapidly, it’s difficult not to be stuck in one light years back trying to make sense of the new realities mired in the constructs of some jettisoned, long-forgotten reality.

    It’s near impossible to keep up and yet people are still citing Sun Tzu and Clausewitz as though these relics of some past reality could possibly have any relevance.

    • MisterDarling October 7, 2014 at 2:32 pm #

      re | “It’s near impossible to keep up and yet people are still citing Sun Tzu and Clausewitz as though these relics of some past reality could possibly have any relevance.”-cold.

      It’s clear that you don’t have a grasp of what Strategic Thinking is… It’s not a fad, it’s a skill.

  53. volodya October 7, 2014 at 11:56 am #

    UFIA

    Pointing out that rather it’s automation which has made, or will make, most “bread-winning incomes” unnecessary is a canard in itself. . – UFIA

    Yet technology can’t sincerely be a culprit or a villain, can it; automation in itself isn’t a debate between Capitalism or Communism or Socialism or off-shoring or whatever the fuck – automation simply meant better tools. – UFIA

    Exactly. I couldn’t have said it better.

    Automation could work for the benefit of average American joe just as it had in the past. If you build a machine to replace line workers, you still have to have people to build the machines, to maintain them, to program them, to operate them, to monitor their output – all of which creates an economic foodchain of employment and incomes. It may happen in some cases but I don’t think it’s necessarily a forgone conclusion that automation will necessarily kill jobs and bread-winner incomes.

    Fork-lift trucks: you can have a bunch of guys breaking their backs carrying 100 pound sacks of flour from point A to point B in a production facility. OR you can get a forklift to carry a skid-full. Those guys with herniated disks will be replaced by one forklift driver and also by the guys needed to build and service the fork-lift.

    For most of the 20th century, the machines the American worker worked with got better and better. In many cases there was a process of consolidation of businesses over the decades as industries scaled up.

    And some jobs were lost in the process. But others were created to compensate. New automated production methods created new industries to build the new machines. Consumer products got cheaper and cheaper in REAL terms. And the majority of ordinary guys had steadily rising REAL incomes. People’s nutrition got better, their living conditions got better, their sanitation and cleanliness got better, their health got better. I was there and I saw the process up close and personal.

    The problem is WHERE production takes place, WHERE the machines are built, WHO maintains them and WHERE these people come from.

    If newly automated production takes place on home soil, if the machines are built on home soil, if machines are maintained on home soil, if the machines are maintained and operated by people that we live cheek-by-jowl with, then there is a process of elimination of jobs of one kind, a creation of jobs of another kind. At least, that’s what I saw happen for much of the 20th century.

    But if all this happens overseas, then the average American is screwed. He no longer has the income to buy the products he used to make. Which is what we’ve been seeing with increasing intensity and especially over the last generation.

    • Janos Skorenzy October 7, 2014 at 2:20 pm #

      A robot factory (mostly automated!) decided to come back to America. This was touted as good news for us. Is it really?

      At my local supermarket, one checker watches over 12 automated self checkout machines. So that’s eleven jobs gone to automation. And that’s small compared to industry where there are whole factories and a couple of men watch over machines building new machines. That’s hundreds of jobs per factory that people no longer do.

      You’re a smart guy but you’re kidding yourself. Modern technology takes jobs. That’s the whole point in Capitalism. It save money. The point was never to serve the worker pain or trouble. That was just a detail. Since the worker is just “capital” who cares if it helps him or not except insofar as it speeds him up?

      A world made by hand is a saving grace. Pray for it, because the future they have planned for us is no future at all.

  54. volodya October 7, 2014 at 12:15 pm #

    Mister Darling,

    I’ve seen some of what you talk about, that is, departments of highly skilled and highly educated people turfed and replaced by people in India who are paid a small fraction of the previous wage bill.

    And, most horrendously, I’ve seen people who were told to go to India for months at a stretch to train their own replacements. Can you imagine? I don’t know of any case where the individual refused, probably to keep a good employment reference from his soon to be former employer. Maybe in hope of finding alternate employment within the company.

    As you say, the tech industry has been in the process of offshoring to India and China. But not only IT but also finance and tax.

    Have you heard any screams of outrage from Congress or the White House? I haven’t.

  55. volodya October 7, 2014 at 12:48 pm #

    Buck Stud, you’re right, there ISa dimes worth of difference in the parties. But I suppose it’s a question of who you think is the lesser of the evils.

    OK, you hate the GOP and I’m with that, their obstructionism in Washington, their refusal to be governed by duly elected authority, going as far as denying the President is even American and I see the case.

    You look at Paul Ryan talk about – cough – tax reform, by which he means tax cuts for the rich and you feel nausea. This is the party that has a fighting chance of holding both the Senate and the House. Give me strength. And the Koch Bros? God help us.

    OTOH, look at the alternative. Mary Jo White? Jesus H Christ, how do such things pass muster? Giving a job as chief regulatory enforcer to a person who spent a career and earned who knows how much defending and advising the same banks she’s now entrusted to regulate? And let’s not fart with definitions, the banks are a criminal syndicate.

    So what’s next? A Mafia Don as Solicitor General? Well, after the Mary Jo caper, why not? I mean, it makes sense, don’t you think, only such an individual would know the inside workings of the Mob and literally, would know where all the bodies are buried. I’ll bet Putin raised a glass: a toast to mind-boggling corruption from one who knows how it’s done.

    And Eric effing Holder: too big to jail? WTF? You hear this shit and you cannot believe it’s for real. I’ll point out the obvious, no big-time Wall Street prosecutions after a tsunami of Wall Street fraud. Not like you even have to dig too deep. What do you make of that? Well, I’ll tell you, it sounds to me like the highest levels of government are hopelessly compromised.

    And Clinton: he listened to the big swinging dicks Rubin, Greenspan and Summers on the issue of bank de-regulation instead of the voice of common sense and reason, Brooksley Born. And look at what happened.

    I guess you get down to the absurd, we can map out the mind blowing sins of each party on a piece of paper and argue over relative magnitude. But what’s the point?

    • MisterDarling October 7, 2014 at 2:47 pm #

      re | “I guess you get down to the absurd, we can map out the mind blowing sins of each party on a piece of paper and argue over relative magnitude. But what’s the point?”-v.

      This is what Collapse looks like.

      Collapsed Leadership is a critical part of the process. Our problems weren’t insurmountable, and they still are mitigate-able. Assuming that anything could get around the main issue in *HR*… at the top.

    • Buck Stud October 8, 2014 at 1:45 am #

      volodya,

      I agree that there is much similarity and sentiment between the two parties. After all, they are both being illuminated by the same ‘light key’ in the same nation of laws, culture etc. So there will be an overall sameness and harmony. (And some argue that the true “Sun” in our country is the big banks and they wouldn’t be wrong IMO.)

      But variety does exists within harmony and I’ll toss my hat in with the party that does not vote to raise student loan interest rates or refuse to overturn Citizens United. These are issues that still affect the lives of ordinary Americans.

      So I get the your point. After all when The Dems had the opportunity to overturn the Bush bankruptcy bill they sat silent. But it doesn’t mean I won’t still look for differences in tone and hue. As the great colorist once said to his painting student: ‘the world is more colorful than you what paint;don’t you wish you could see it?’

      • Buck Stud October 8, 2014 at 2:08 am #

        and evidently. I still need to learn to see all my typos before hitting the submit button 🙂

  56. Cold N. Holefield October 7, 2014 at 12:54 pm #

    The distortion runs the gamut of facebook being worth the same as GE to bottled water costing more than gasoline at the convenient store. It is insanity.

    Conflating the price of an equity investment, in this case stock, with the price of a tangible good such as water or gasoline is comparing apples to bean sprouts.

    Not to mention, none of that has anything to do with the dollar as the denomination of measurement.

    If fact, bottled water is a better deal in America than it is in Russia in comparison to gasoline, proving it’s not about the dollar or the Fed, it’s about the malleability of perception.

    Gasoline per gallon for regular is approximately $3.30/gal in America and bottled spring water is $1.20/gal.

    Per the link below, gasoline in Russia is 33 rubles per liter and bottled water is 38 rubles per 1.5 liters meaning they’re priced approximately the same whereas in America, gasoline is nearly three times more expensive.

    numbeo.com/cost-of-living/city_result.jsp?country=Russia&city=Moscow

  57. wayfarer October 7, 2014 at 1:05 pm #

    “a nation completely incapable of telling itself the truth or acting honorably”. – Very true

    I fear that only pain and suffering point the way toward dignity, truth, and honor once lost. Woodie Guthrie and other societal miscreants suffered the pain and pointed the way in the 1930’s.

    I fear we are entering something worse this time because of the much smaller resources/population ratio.

    Recently re-read ‘The Road’ by Cormac McCarthy for which he received a Pulitzer in 2007. We all better hope/pray it doesn’t go that far.

    • MisterDarling October 7, 2014 at 2:39 pm #

      re | “Recently re-read ‘The Road’ by Cormac McCarthy for which he received a Pulitzer in 2007. We all better hope/pray it doesn’t go that far.”-wayfarer.

      ‘The Road’ scenario is what lies at the end of Stage Five Collapse, in the Orlovian scheme of things.

      If it ever comes to that, We have truly failed as a species. Must avoid at all conceivable cost.

  58. progress4what October 7, 2014 at 2:39 pm #

    “And the most in demand person may not be the productive farmer but the one who stocked up on Viagra in better days. Because a good fuck will be one of the few remaining activities to make life worth living.”
    – buck –

    You know, buck, at first I was touched by your concern for my preps for pain relief and disease control. But then I realized that you were just expressing a resounding vote of “NO” against collapse.

    OK – duly noted. Buck opposes collapse. Takes a big load off our collective minds – knowing that Global Economies and the Universe @ Large will certainly honor BuckStud’s fervent request. (sarc on/off)

    And to elaborate on a point raised last week – humans were living long and productive lives long before modern society came along. One of my ggggrandfaters fought in the Revolutionary War. He died in 1818 at age 92. How did he die, you ask? He was napping in his chair in front of his open fireplace. A spark jumped out, caught the blanket on fire, and he died shortly thereafter presumably of smoke inhalation.

    Not the most terrible ending to a life quite well lived, hey?
    I just wish he’d made my own goal of age 100 before dying in bed after a good day of work, an evening of partying, and a night of sex.

    Would have made a better story.
    It’s oral history – maybe I’ll tweak it a little when I tell it to my own ggrandkids.

    I can hear it now, “EWW, Greatgranddad Prog, is that really how you want to clock out???”

    • BackRowHeckler October 7, 2014 at 5:34 pm #

      P2C do you have any Confederate Ancestors?

      Up here in New England we think of the Revolutionary War is something we won all by ourselves, with a little help from the South.

      brh

      • barbisbest October 9, 2014 at 9:51 am #

        The north won the war of independence, with a little help from the south! Right! Who do you think won the war, the bare footed southern hillbillies. Get real

    • Buck Stud October 8, 2014 at 2:04 am #

      prog,

      I’m sure most will agree that collapse will mean and end to the largesse of modern medicine which is a scary pill to swallow in many ways.

      But as the dude in your linked article wrote last week, maybe having the results from a PSA test is not always the best thing either: the false positives, unnecessary procedures and accompanying anxiety as a result of the false alarm.

      And of course, become more accepting and less fearful of of death.

      But even something as relatively benign such as a routine root canal procedure will far more complicated and potentially ominous in a future societal collapse and not a few will be gumming corn cob pipe’s for their entertainment.

      So when people ask how they–TPTB– manage to keep kicking the can down the road it is because there is a huge consensus to do so. The alternative is simply too horrific to contemplate for those who have invested thousands in a nice white smile and plastic surgeon makeover.

  59. Cold N. Holefield October 7, 2014 at 2:39 pm #

    A world made by hand is a saving grace. Pray for it, because the future they have planned for us is no future at all.

    You and Ezekiel Emanuel have more in common than you care to acknowledge. In fact, I’d say you’re more bold than he is — using your logic, 45-50 is a good age to die.

    Coal miners were lucky to make it past 45-50, or no, I should strike that, they were unlucky to make it past that age because it meant their suffering from occupational diseases was prolonged.

    Many of those jobs were shit — an existence simply not worth living. Same goes for steelworkers. So many lived shortened lives because of diseases directly related to their crappy occupations.

    And don’t give me this garbage that you prefer a world made by hand, meaning you’d prefer to live in a pre-industrial community. What would you do with yourself without an internet to harangue so many at one time? You’d go nuts. Maybe you already are (nuts), but in those times, they would have burned you at the stake by now and I would have been the only one to object — ever so delicately.

    • Janos Skorenzy October 7, 2014 at 7:46 pm #

      So what is your alternative? Everyone to die on the streets since they have no jobs? I’m trying to match your bull doggishly aggressive style here. Remember, you’re against welfare and big government I assume.

      Of course industrialism was brutal – it was Capitalism after all. The worker is just a machine to be replaced by a better machine as soon as possible. Ned Ludd is one my heroes. The Luddites weren’t anti-technology, they just objected to being replaced. They said, rent or sell us the new machines and we’ll make your clothes as we always have. The were Weavers and had their own way of life and tended to marry other Weavers. Nothing doing of course. They were told to go to hell and were beaten, imprisoned, and killed when they took action.

      So in conclusion, I agree with the main part of your comment, but it has nothing to do with the World Made by Hand or my comment. Have you read any of the World Made by Hand novels? You can probably get them at your local library if you don’t want to buy them.

  60. progress4what October 7, 2014 at 2:54 pm #

    Also, buck, I read your link about mass transit – the one you accused janos of not reading, and I’ll tell you – –

    There was a day when massive mass transit would have been of use in the US. That day ceased to exist sometime during the Carter administration, at the latest. IOW, mass transit for a relatively prosperous, relatively homogenous population who had real productive jobs – might have worked.

    And as usual, one of the commenters to your link elaborated on the idea as well as I could have:

    “I’ve worked as a transportation planner for over 40 years. While I deplore the Kochs’ attempts to halt transit projects, I also deplore a lot of the rail projects that are planned or have been implemented. Rail only works where there are high residential and job densities — especially job densities. Very few cities in the US have sufficient density to support rail The LA rail investments have improved service for a few higher income people while resulting in less bus service to low-income people who desperately need transit.

    That said, there’s something basically wrong with a country where those who have money can muscle their way into the political process everywhere. What we need is a wealth tax. The founding fathers made a big mistake when they didn’t put into the Constitution a limit on how much wealth one individual could have.”
    – commenter @ billmoyers.com.

    And I’ll add that the muscle money in politics is working against US citizen interests on immigration policy – regardless of where the national Dems and Repubs place the deck chairs for public consumption on our listing Titanic.

  61. UnstoppableFarceImmovableAbject October 7, 2014 at 3:21 pm #

    V thanks for giving your time in this conversation. Allow me to quibble with my own phrasing a bit, pointless though it may be:

    “Pointing out that rather it’s automation which has made, or will make, most “bread-winning incomes” _collapse_ is a canard in itself. . –Me me mee meeee

    Trying to be more clear, I’m of the opinion that money and incomes became obsolete with the rise of automation, but this is an admittedly controversial opinion which gets distorted and written off without consideration. Whether automation did or didn’t collapse Incomes doesn’t really concern me.

    I just don’t see how anyone can view the tremendous surpluses squandered in the open market these last couple hundred years and believe that the monetary paradigm i.e., the drive for profits and paychecks and etc. was necessary. The models of economy demonstrated within any system we can name have proven defunct at various pints in history, yet the public continues to sit down and watch as the Elite discard any contrived economic principle that no longer suits THEIR interests and make shit up as they go.

    Ask any of these constantly bewildered and paranoid gold shills about it… they’re wannabe master economists and reincarnates of Nostradamus every one. And their sites are laden with failed economic predictions.

    *********************************************************

    I remember another conversation with an instructor who insisted that ideology drives social evolution as well as the implementation and evolution (not to be confused with innovation mind you) of technology. I really struggled with this at first, as I was always of the opinion that pure scientific research alone had the power to shatter ideological belief, that the product of technology would ascend the human race and not just bloat it.

    I was so wrong.

    I once thought that the fruit of such research would step in to reconcile the shortcomings of social philosophy. What I discovered, and where my prof. was proven accurate, is that _applied science_ and advancement is coincidental to societal hierarchies, where the benefit of tech becomes hopelessly lopsided. It turns out that technology has mostly only exacerbated the failings of every social construct ever known, as I perceive it.

    Anyhow, thanks again. My downtime is over for the next coupla months. You guys have fun and take care.

    • progress4what October 7, 2014 at 4:15 pm #

      “… I discovered, and where my prof. was proven accurate, is that _applied science_ and advancement is coincidental to societal hierarchies,…” – ufia –

      It’s been a pleasure jousting with you, ufia. Some very thought provoking stuff, and the idea above goes to a conversation beantown bill and I were having – concerning how sociopaths always seem to be in charge. My question remains – do sociopaths always rise to leadership because they are sociopaths to begin with – OR – is there a tendency toward sociopathy that is present to some extent in most human beings, which tendency only manifests when a human rises into leadership. (and I’m using “leadership” and “sociopathy” as relatively vague/undefined terms deliberately)

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

      Concerning gold – and also something that you up and comming youngsters? seem not to understand about assets generally – is that one finally reaches a station in life, with luck, where he has all the education and other “soft?” assets that he needs.

      Then comes the time to accumulate other assets. IMO, a man is a fool if he doesn’t have the broadest possible portfolio, which should include stocks and paper assets, productive real estate, farm or timber land, secure food and water sources – and yes, some gold.

      How much gold is an open question – but everybody needs a couple of old gold stud earrings around at the minimum. (grins!)
      Just in case, you know?

      Y’all come back now, ya’ hear?

      • Janos Skorenzy October 7, 2014 at 8:01 pm #

        cassiopaea.org/cass/political_ponerology_lobaczewski.htm

        Here’s an article about psychopaths – who are five percent of the population. They can recognize each other and cooperate. In simple societies, they are restrained by the high visibility of communal restraint. In complex societies they can rise to the top with their ruthlessness and high IQ. They make society over in their image. Can someone rise to the top now and not be one of them?

        The closest America ever came to an income limit was a plan put forward by Huey Long. He was gunned down by a Jewish dentist. I wouldn’t take this tack myself – I’d merely insist that they big boys play ball with the nation. That and pay their share of the taxes.

        • Janos Skorenzy October 7, 2014 at 8:06 pm #

          Some may rise to the top and not be complete psychopaths – they just need to check their morality at the door. So they just act Like psychopaths while at work. Look at how many politicians and government workers tell the truth after they retire. There’s really something wrong here don’t you think?

        • Helix October 8, 2014 at 10:41 am #

          Re: “I’d merely insist that they big boys play ball with the nation. That and pay their share of the taxes.”

          Which is why you’ll never be elected…

  62. nsa October 7, 2014 at 4:27 pm #

    We here in Ft. Meade rule your existence with an invisible hand….you are as docile as so many lambs entering the abattoir gate chute. We invent, supply, train pathetic rabble joohadis and then present them as the equivalent of Hannibal ravaging the Roman countryside on your 54″ flat screens……and you buy it. Full spectrum dominance and total info awareness….we are laughing our asses off here in Ft. Meade and Langley….

    • Helix October 8, 2014 at 10:39 am #

      Really? “Abbatoir” and “Ft. Meade” don’t really go together, if you know what I mean.

  63. edward4432 October 7, 2014 at 7:22 pm #

    We are going to muddle through this thing Jimbo no ,matter what you say. I know that will disappoint you, but history says otherwise. We will adapt.

  64. contrahend October 7, 2014 at 7:59 pm #

    At my local supermarket, one checker watches over 12 automated self checkout machines. So that’s eleven jobs gone to automation

    That’s 11 jobs that require little to no skill.

    ON the flip side, it makes for lots of work for technicians and programmers and engineers (= a high amount of skill/education).

    Computers will one day program computers and there won’t be a need for programmers…I’ve been hearing that since at least 1995, when I became a programmer. I’m busier than ever.

    kontrahend

    • Janos Skorenzy October 7, 2014 at 10:27 pm #

      In other words, you’re saying it employs just as many workers or almost as many? And at a higher pay grade so the stores actually lose money doing it? So they’re just doing it as a service to their customers because they’re really nice guys?

      Is all this really likely? Think it through and you’ll see I’m right. If not, then I urge you and Cold to go in to business together with a chain of automated car washes. No more grease monkeys. Let them eat mayonnaise like in Crumb’s cartoon.

  65. Janos Skorenzy October 8, 2014 at 12:19 am #

    The CDC has a patent on one strain of Ebola. Is this why they want the disease here? And how can one patent a living organism? Did they invent it? And I thought they were a government agency. Are they in fact a private for profit group like the Federal Reserve? If so, we are in even more trouble than we knew. What if someone else patents another “brand” of Ebola and “gets it out” first to we the consumers. Does the CDC have any legal recourse in such a case? If they have spend billions of vaccines that is.

    naturalnews.com/046290_Ebola_patent_vaccines_profit_motive.html#

    • Karah October 8, 2014 at 1:35 am #

      The clock is ticking for the close family members and inhabitants of that apartment in Dallas. Their blood has more than likely been sampled and is being processed in a lab or multiple labs from here to Atlanta. They may or may not have already volunteered to be guinea pigs for a vaccine. The scientists may be checking to see if the strain of Ebola is the same one they found in the two other U.S. citizens.

      It’s highly suspicious to me why a man would travel back to the U.S. after KNOWINGLY being exposed to the Ebola virus in Africa. What was he doing there? Do we know anything else about him and his family? Is he a fanatical Muslim?

      Does anyone in that household work for a fast food joint? or the healthcare industry? How do they make a living?

      What is going through the minds of those people who came in contact with the sick man at the hospital? Did he fill out paperwork by hand or did someone else fill it out for him? How long was he sitting in the waiting room or emergency room with a bunch of other people and did he use the restroom facilities? Did he stop to fill up his car with gas? Did someone else drive him to the hospital? Really, people might have been seconds from being exposed to a live virus all that time he was symptomatic.

      “viruses do not survive long on porous surfaces, such as fabrics for example. They can live longer on hard surfaces, such as metal and glass. As well, there have been lab studies showing that dried samples of Ebola virus can survive for days; but other studies have found the virus doesn’t survive more than a few hours outside of a host.
      It’s important to note that in the tests where the virus lived for days, they were kept in the dark, at low temperatures, around 4 degrees Celsius, which helped the viruses survive.
      In real life, the Ebola virus is sensitive to light, heat and low humidity, so it’s less likely to live long in environments such as brightly lit airplanes or hospital waiting rooms, both of which are scrubbed down regularly.
      How easy is it to kill the virus from surfaces?
      Relatively easy. In the Ebola-affected countries, health teams are using bleach to disinfect surfaces and bed sheets. But good hospital-grade disinfectants will”

      Read more: ctvnews.ca/health/ebola-how-long-can-it-live-on-a-surface-what-if-it-mutates-1.2041584#ixzz3FWkQIDO2

  66. FincaInTheMountains October 8, 2014 at 8:10 am #

    Is US war against its Frankenstein’s monster ISIS similar to “Strange War” of 1939-1940 of UK and France against Hitler?

    Retired U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen Tom McInerney went yesterday on Fox News blaming Obama administration of not doing nearly enough in its bombing campaign against ISIS.

    Tom McInerney says the U.S. has no strategy yet in the fight against the Islamic State, is about to arm the wrong people in Syria and its efforts are headed for disaster if President Obama calls the shots on when and where to bomb.

    I think that US administration is still hoping to Re-Direct crazies towards Assad in Syria and Russia, just like UK and France did in 1939-40 in case of Hitler.

  67. FincaInTheMountains October 8, 2014 at 8:16 am #

    Ebola Danger: US Needs 50% Increase in Available Beds in 1,000 New Hospitals To Reach Minimum Preparedness as of 1946 Hill-Burton Act; 250,000 More Doctors and Biomedical Crash Programs Required to Stop New Pandemics; Austerity Ghouls and Killer Cuts by Sequestration Threaten the Lives of All Americans

    tarpley.net/ebola-danger-us-needs-1000-new-hospitals/

  68. FincaInTheMountains October 8, 2014 at 8:55 am #

    Number of hospital beds per 10,000 population:
    kff.org/global-indicator/hospital-beds/

    US – 30
    United Kingdom – 30
    Germany – 82
    Russia – 97
    Belarus – 111

    Of course does not say anything about the bed quality, but during the pandemic it is going to be less important.

  69. BackRowHeckler October 8, 2014 at 9:22 am #

    Jeez, 43 students were murdered last week in Tixtla Mexico by a combined Cartel/Police hit squad, shot down, their bodies thrown in a pit, doused with gasoline and set afire, and it hardly made the news. Its not even worth mentioning.

    News here seems politically driven, in that whatever would make the current group in power look bad is not reported, or under reported.

    To me this seems like a pretty important story, considering we have imported tens of millions of these Mexicans into the USA, and if you believe what you hear, the whole future of our political system hinges on securing their votes once they become citizens, which is going to occur by all accounts after the mid term election next month.

    I don’t think anything like this has happened in the history of the World. This is what Commy play write Bertold Brecht must have meant when he talked about replacing the electorate until you get one amenable to a Marxist Government.

    When the massacre begins in Kobani, maybe today, I was wondering if the US will stand by and let it unfold? It might make for some bad press, not easily forgotten or forgiven.

    –brh

    • stelmosfire October 8, 2014 at 12:09 pm #

      Wow Marlin, I never saw anything about that on the MSM. Of course I tend to stay away from that crap anyway. You probably see the wires at work as they come off the printer. Outrageous.

    • Buck Stud October 8, 2014 at 12:25 pm #

      BRH,

      So you think mass Mexican immigration is a Communist plot? I’ve talked to a lot of Mexican immigrants and frankly they are not that politically involved or active. If they were, the leftist candidate in recent Mexican presidential elections would have been elected. And I also suspect that you believe that native Mexicans share the same political sentiments as La Raza Chicanos’. In fact, most don’t and consider a Chicano tag to be derogatory.

      I’m right smack in the middle of the influx where entire school districts are now filled with Spanish speakers and the primary reason for this is jobs. So who is doing the hiring? An honest answer to that question conforms the old adage that capitalism eventually consumes it’s own tail. And just to ironically punctuate, it was Dems who pushed for worker identification laws and Republicans who opposed them.

      Do you know how many middle aged white Republican businessmen sing the praises of ‘The Mexican Worker’? It’s all bullshit of course as ‘good worker’ is code word for cheap labor.

      Today’s ‘cheap labor’ will be tomorrows replaced worker who will then vote in their own self-interest. Perhaps when you point to the voting booth and see a Communist plot you’re only seeing the tail end of a Capitalism dynamic.

      • BackRowHeckler October 8, 2014 at 1:05 pm #

        Good post Buck.

        Actually i didn’t realize that most Mexicans did not identify with the Chicano movement or especially La raza, who purports to speak for all Hispanics everywhere. That’s good news.

        –brh

        • Janos Skorenzy October 8, 2014 at 2:14 pm #

          They get radicalized here in America. Especially the second generation. America provides no identity anymore so they will affirm the Mexican identity with a vengeance, all the more so because they don’t live there.

          Same thing in Europe with the Muslims. Exactly the same in this sense. Obviously in other ways it’s different because Islam makes its own demands.

          • Greg Knepp October 8, 2014 at 3:14 pm #

            “America provides no identity anymore” – this is no throwaway line; it is an essential truth that stands at the heart of the American dilemma.

  70. dweebus October 8, 2014 at 11:42 am #

    “The diminishing returns of the Information Age are about to bite our collective ass like an army of Orcs.”

    And the army asks “Yeah! Why can’t WE have some meats?”

    youtube.com/watch?v=dY4V3UUY95A

  71. selaretus October 8, 2014 at 12:15 pm #

    I was vacationing with friends in a South Carolina beach house last week. Six of us rented the $1.7MM joint. The owners live in Indiana or some crazy shit. It was decoroated like a midwest farm house, too, which was really really creepy. Anyway, there we were surrounded by multimillion dollar vacation cottages, whose owners only show up a couple times a year, leaving po ‘renter folk’ like us to pay the taxes for them with our one week ‘vacations’ from our shithole jobs in the economic recovery and renewed ‘growth’ Oboob is always taking about. Well good for him……now he’s off on his own Mideast war of American hegemony and arrogant hubris. Something he can now cross off his ‘to do’ bucket list.

  72. pkrugman October 8, 2014 at 12:41 pm #

    “Jeez, 43 students were murdered last week in Tixtla Mexico by a combined Cartel/Police hit squad, shot down, their bodies thrown in a pit, doused with gasoline and set afire…” –BRH

    Thanks, BRH, for defending Mexican immigrants.

    If police in your town were doing what you report, don’t you think you might consider moving to a place where police did not act that way, even if it meant crossing a border?

    And once you are safe and working and contributing in your new country, as millions of Mexican immigrants here are doing here, how much do you think it would matter whether you are considered “legal” or “illegal”? Wouldn’t you just be thankful you were alive and not subject to police/cartel massacres in your new country?

    Or would you bravely stay at home and change the police/cartel practices… at a risk to your own life? I don’t think so. You have not been able to change things in Connecticut. You have not moved to Hartford to have influence. Mexicans in Mexico who are victims of police/cartel violence feel just as powerless as you would in Hartford.

    Let’s welcome the Mexican immigrants here. They are good people who have left violence and want to live in peace.

  73. volodya October 8, 2014 at 1:06 pm #

    Modern technology takes jobs. That’s the whole point in Capitalism. It save money. The point was never to serve the worker pain or trouble. That was just a detail. Since the worker is just “capital” who cares if it helps him or not except insofar as it speeds him up? – Janos

    And there is a lot of that.

    OK, let’s try to look at it from the view of someone 200 years from now, that is, someone who has distance between themselves and the times we’re talking about. After all, I’m not exactly objective, I think we’re all self-interested observers, I watched and benefited from a lot of the stuff that happened in the 20th century ie the stuff I’ve been talking about.

    So what might this future observer say? He might say that, looking at 20th century Europe and North America and the widespread prosperity of the times, the likelihood of it all happening the way it did was as likely as throwing dozens of eggs off of bell towers and not one of them breaking.

    And yet, despite the extreme unlikelihood, it happened. As you said, the point of the exercise was to make money. And the elites of the times DID become exhorbitantly wealthy. As UFIA pointed out in his last post, the benefit of tech becomes hopelessly lopsided. In the 20th Century the benefit of tech WAS lopsided, a few benefited much more than the rest.

    Yet, the benefit, either by design or by chance, was widespread enough that large numbers of people who were one generation removed from Dust-Bowl starveling forebears had more than enough to eat, drove around in cars and had comforts their parents wouldn’t have dreamed of. From stick-thin to well muscled in one generation. That would be someone like me. I saw with my own two eyes and I experienced year by year, decade over decade improvements. And I was nothing unusual.

    How did it happen? Was it by design? Was it the wisdom of the elites of the times? Maybe it was. You could probably come up with evidence to support that view. Or was it blind luck, a confluence of social, technological and political factors, unique in history and never to be repeated?

    Are we regressing to the historical mean as far as elite behavor goes, that is, murdering bastards that rip off all they can and consequences be damned? As UFIA contends, and I agree, every construct we come up with eventually fails.

    • Janos Skorenzy October 8, 2014 at 1:52 pm #

      Yes and to take a cue from Erich Fromm: the point of Capitalism is to profit as much as possible and pay as little as possible. The point of Communism is for workers to do as little as possible and still get paid as much as possible (or so the Proles think – the actual ethic of Communism is different). Thus these two opposing groups must either destroy the other or compromise at some point. In America the unions have obviously been globalized and now actually welcome the illegals. In other words, they’ve just become an adjunct of the Democrat Party. Capitalism has triumphed and is even confidant enough to allow its opposite number a provisional existence, like a termite eaten chair that looks fine but will take no weight. In fact, Communism was funded by the Capitalists in order to destroy traditional non-Capitalist societies. The two work together, but make no mistake – Capitalism is the senior partner and will ultimately be the only one as Labor Leaders are allowed into the ranks of the Elite.

      And here we part company I fear. The only way to stop them is Nationalism and the Nation State. And that means Fascism though you could call it Real Conservatism a la Edmund Burke. Third Way economics are all very fine – but they need to be established and protected by the Sword. Wait and see: if any European Nation wises up and tried to save itself by opting out of the EU and Africanization, they will be attacked by both the Liberals and the so called Conservatives – not to mention the Left as well. That’s what happened in WW2 and that’s what will happen again. Capitalism is heads and Communism is tails. Fascism is something altogether different.

      The only other alternative? Collapse. And then it will all start again. And History operates in cycles and I think the very same thing could happen again if cheap energy was found again. Perhaps the waste of fossil fuels will turn out to have been a blessing and this nightmare will just be a one off. But it could happen in a smaller sense like the Roman Empire of course.

      In any case, businessmen are never to be trusted. They are always to be watched and kept in line by the two higher castes, warrior/administrators and priest/intellectuals. Their greed driven creativity must be made to serve the Nation and the People. Because left to its own path, it will only destroy in the end. The Right has often condemned Corporations and extolled small business. But that is existentially not accurate: the little guy dreams of becoming the Corporate Mogul. In his heart, he is often no different. I wish that this wasn’t true, but alas it is. They would open up a hot dog stand on top of the Great Pyramid or inside Notre Dame Cathedral. That’s what the are. They must be controlled since they can’t control themselves.

      People don’t like this kind of control. They want to be light, humorous and “free”. So they chain the hands of the watchers and society is allowed to drift. Or so they think. The Capitalists are always waiting and immediately begin to direct society along the paths they desire.

      • AKlein October 8, 2014 at 4:05 pm #

        Janos, the early republican Romans would agree with you 100%. Merchants and moneylenders were looked upon by the patriarchs as a necessity, but an odious one. Who were considered to be at the top of the sociological ladder? The farmers. Iconic example; Cincinnatus. There is a famous dialog involving Cato the Censor where Cato equates moneylending with murder. Mercantilism would likely have been considered slightly better, but only slightly.

        • Janos Skorenzy October 8, 2014 at 6:49 pm #

          Yes, the early Romans were Soldier/Farmers, a spade in one hand a sword in the other. Even in the Days of the Empire, the Legions kept up this Tradition with each man carrying a little shovel. They could erect an impenetrable camp complete with moat and palisade in an amazing short time.

          Greece was also ruined by commerce – and the Aristocratic disdain for it. Thus the well to do Greeks let Traders and Artisans from the Levant flood in. Between them and the slaves, the ordinary Greeks were ruined.

          Our own Jefferson was in this tradition, considering the rural way of life as supreme. The Southern Agrarians fought to keep the post-war South from going down the same fatal road as the North.

          We are in desperate need of Plato’s “Night Court”. If it is not instituted for real, then it will be as a reality show – perhaps with ultimate penalties as in Richard Bachman’s (Stephen King) story “The Running Man”. White Nationalists and Muslims will be hunted down by Bounty Hunters, Minorities, and perhaps Robots for an excited multi-cultural America.

  74. Janos Skorenzy October 8, 2014 at 2:01 pm #

    Go to Baseball Game. The bleacher seats used to be just a dollar. Wear you wife beater tshirt only if you don’t tan and will turn red. Better red on the outside than on the inside, mac. Buy yourself a dog and a beer. Your’re free motherfucker. Your team is going to win and America is the best country in the world.

    This is my version of Jim’s Nascar rant. An Urban Northern version.

    • barbisbest October 8, 2014 at 2:51 pm #

      Wear your wife beater t-shirt. Now that’s nasty.

      • Janos Skorenzy October 8, 2014 at 3:23 pm #

        I love the White Race. We must purge ourselves of the disease of fandom. Look at our European Brothers: they don’t buy into endless spectator sports yet they are in better shape and health because they walk more and eat better. Also many of them engage in active sports like hiking, skiing, climbing, biking etc.

        Many countries go crazy for soccer and bike racing. A few weeks a year. The rest of the time they are at peace. It never ends in the Anglo-Sphere. Now they want us to adopt soccer too. What next, Gaelic Football? Rugby? Cricket?

  75. contrahend October 8, 2014 at 2:08 pm #

    whose owners only show up a couple times a year, leaving po ‘renter folk’ like us to pay the taxes for them with our one week ‘vacations’ from our shithole jobs in the economic recovery and renewed ‘growth’

    why dont you rent a room in your house/apartment on airbnb? or buy an apartment and rent it out?

    if u have a shithole job, why dont you do something to get a better one?

    like, are you in a caste whose destiny is to suffer?

    open up a food truck man, people love to eat and the profits are ginormous.

    kontrahend

    • Janos Skorenzy October 8, 2014 at 2:43 pm #

      Yes, people love to eat and therefore become ginormous. In some eating establishments, they have Heart Attack triple decker burgers. And sho ’nuff, people have had heart attacks trying to eat them. Finally truth in advertising, eh?

      But hey,you got your seat in the game of musical capitalist chairs so what do you care. Survival of the fittest, mac. So what if there aren’t enough chairs for everyone. That’s how the game is played.

      The Market is the Jungle. The old Robber Barons were correct in their equating what they did with Darwin’s discoveries. You’re just a little robber baron playing musical chairs on the Titanic. Or playing shuffle board on the Lusitania. Or cribbage on the Maine. Or backgammon on the Pueblo.

  76. contrahend October 8, 2014 at 2:17 pm #

    The diminishing returns of the Information Age are about to bite our collective ass like an army of Orcs.

    how many decades is “about to”, jimmy?

    meanwhile, technological progress marches on and on.

    we salute the ever depressed naysayers as we bound into a future of megaopulence and cornucopia.

    (we know you hate the fabulous progressing world)

    kontrahend

  77. Cold N. Holefield October 8, 2014 at 2:56 pm #

    dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2779257/NBC-cameraman-Ebola-reincarnation-Tibetan-teacher-mother-marrie…

    NBC cameraman Ashoka Mukpo, 33, has been infected with Ebola in Liberia

    He is the son of Buddhist monk Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche and Lady Diana Judith Mukpo

    However, his biological father is Dr. Mitchell Levy, whom Lady Diana had been sleeping with at the time

    Ashoka’s mother married the Tibetan Buddhist lama when she was just 16

    Trungpa identified Ashoka as a ‘tulku’, a reincarnation of a Tibetan teacher

  78. barbisbest October 8, 2014 at 2:58 pm #

    All this really begs the question, what civilization. We would appear to be a very loose interpretation of the term.

  79. contrahend October 8, 2014 at 3:18 pm #

    But hey,you got your seat in the game of musical capitalist chairs so what do you care.

    glad to know i’m in the ranks of the robber barons.

    i retrained at more than 30 years of age and went into a much better career. i started at the bottom again, after having previously started at the bottom.

    i work 60+ hrs a week at 2 different professions. i made an effort to learn a few languages.

    like j. paul getty said, you tend to have more luck when you work all the time.

    i am taking care of a brain tumor patient as we speak…and took care of another for 2 years, until she died in front of me as i slept.

    i have no qualms helping people out that want to help themselves, financially and with my time.

    re the food truck – who says you can’t sell healthy food on a food truck?

    you people here are so one-dimensional, you just assume and assume and try to buttonhole people, it’s really amusing the lack of depth.

    kontrahend

    • Janos Skorenzy October 8, 2014 at 6:33 pm #

      There are different kinds of truth and they require different kinds of thinking. A watched pot never boils is not true in terms of physics but is true in terms of psychology. So I criticize the social effects of the free market and your commitment to it. Your response? What a hard worker and wonderful person you are. A non-sequitur in other words. Both of these statements may well be true – but it has nothing to do with my statements. And it does not refute my charge that you believe exactly what the robber barons do.

      Many wonderful people believe things that condemn society to ruin. So you can take comfort in numbers perhaps.

      Lovecraft, in his wisdom, was for a shortened work week. He didn’t lie to himself that machines create jobs. He knew they did the opposite. Nor did he expect people to compete for the scraps or with the machines. No, he wanted everyone to benefit from the increased prosperity. And for most that means working less and getting the same or more in return. It’s so simple for a clear thinking person. Note: that doesn’t mean self employed people who love to work can’t work as much as they like. Your work is your play? Good for you. Most people don’t have that experience – and that doesn’t mean they are horrible people as People Like You so love to imply. Seriously, I don’t begrudge you your good fortune or the fruits of your labor – only your lack of humility and compassion that you share with the Robber Barons and their modern day descendants, both spiritual and actual.

      IF, and it’s a big if hence the caps, you are interested in real economic and social thought, you have to stop starting with yourself. The more exceptional you are, the more true this is. By definition – get it? – by definition, most people are not exceptional. Maybe some are in other ways, ways that don’t lead to making money. In any case, to do real thinking in this subject, you deal with ordinary people as they really are, not as you are or as you would like them to be.

  80. PeggyOCO October 8, 2014 at 4:41 pm #

    I am 68 years old, still working, not intending to stop until I can’t. I was in the grocery line and got into a conversation with a 75 year old, still working, not intending to stop, also. I said my retirement plan is to declare bankruptcy. He said oh my so is mine!

    There are huge numbers of old folks like us with the same exact retirement plan. The bankruptcies are coming as boomers age out of the workplace. Maybe the government can wiggle around this. Maybe not.

    • Janos Skorenzy October 8, 2014 at 6:36 pm #

      Yes some elderly people have to resort to dog food. In England, thousands of elderly people freeze to death every winter. Whites of course. The coloreds are the darlings of Labor and have been elected by the Elite to replace the real English people.

    • Karah October 8, 2014 at 7:44 pm #

      How can one declare bankruptcy when you get every kind of financial assistance available to mankind after 65.

      I assume most 65 plus workers are only working part time in order to keep their Social Security Benefits.

      If you pay for all the comforts of Middle Class America, you are already bankrupt…all it takes is one overnight stay in the hospital to send you in the red. Or one natural disaster including the ones that come in the form of drought.

      Mr. Kunstler is getting on in years and it will be interesting to see and hear what he has to lend to this conversation you have started about working until you can’t work anymore or “declaring bankruptcy” at which time you are forgiven all debts and you can still keep your house and car.

  81. Janos Skorenzy October 8, 2014 at 7:40 pm #

    Isis fighters caught coming over the border into Texas. How many more are coming? How many have already made it through without being caught? How many Ebola carriers have already come over? Or will come over when Mexico gets infected? Imagine how much better we’d be now if we have built an honest to goodness wall and they were all on the other side of it.

    infowars.com/report-feds-arrest-four-isis-terrorists-in-texas/

    • Karah October 8, 2014 at 8:41 pm #

      The ZOMBIE metaphor is good for infections of mind and body.

      We have the infected minds of a small minority of radicalized Muslim brothers who will stop at nothing to harm the GREAT SATAN. They are looking for any way to penetrate the walls of defense like a virus trying to penetrate a host cell. It’s not that difficult under certain circumstances and the U.S. is a culture medium of militaristic solutions to just about EVERYTHING going on anywhere. What they should be doing is targeting the hearts and minds of these guys.

      Did the Sheriff think he was just going to avoid contamination from sheer will power? Is every ones brain so one tracked that all they can think about is what they want, need and have to do, not what is best for ALL? Another breeding ground for all sorts of disgusting behaviors and results.

    • Buck Stud October 8, 2014 at 11:45 pm #

      Here’s what I think and I do pray that I’m right. One would think that any ISIS fighters sneaking into the U.S. would be their best and brightest. And yet these best and brightest were somehow apprehended on a border so large and porous (according to border security critics) that Juan and Maria can usually walk across at will –does this really smell right to you?

      And these stone cold killers just gave up without a fight to border patrol agents? Not even an attempt to behead an evil American -does this really smell right to you?

      The rolling out of ISIS midterm political ads by the GOP along with stories like this being leaked –does it really smell right to you?

      And why would a political figure come out and make noise about this when discretion would be a far better strategy in nabbing other suspects who may have entered the country and not yet been caught–does this really smell right to you?

      No, it just doesn’t smell right but if it is true then all these right wing leaks are diabolical and evil because they do not help in preventing an attack. In fact, it would be aiding the enemy to divulge that their comrades have been nabbed. Comrades who could fave been strategically placed by U.S.officials to thwart a potential attack if not for a spilling of the beans by these right wing “news sources”.

      • Janos Skorenzy October 9, 2014 at 12:21 am #

        Are you trying to think in terms of Conspiracy? Bravo, better late than never.

        We are funding ISIS in some sense, be it either direct or indirect. And we seek to use them against our Shiite enemies, Iran ultimately. But none of this means that ISIS is unreal per se or that they are just actors. They obviously really believe in what they are doing and intend to use us even as we use them.

        You seem to think that this is a made up story? But why wouldn’t ISIS take advantage of our open border to cause mayhem here – as they have promised to do. Or do are you taking the hard core postion that ISIS is a complete illusion? Even Alex Jones doesn’t believe that. You’ve overshot the Conspiracy mainstream into extremism. Try to find some balance, willya? Your open borders policy is a disaster obviously. God knows what you’ll say once Ebola patients start streaming in.

        A nation is an organism. The border is the skin of the nation. No organism can survive losing its skin and no nation its border. Wake up.

        • Buck Stud October 9, 2014 at 1:42 am #

          Oh, the Ebola patients will start STREAMING in and millions of Mexicans have already streamed in but somehow, someway, those brutally vicious ISIS fighters just so happened to be nabbed when they tried to cross the border.

          Moreover, they were taking alive seemingly without a fight and putting future operations at risk. Maybe it was so hot in the desert that a little water-boarding sounded refreshing.

          You post and cite from that site and I’m the conspiracy extremist–you make me laugh at times.

          I don’t doubt that it could happen but I somehow doubt that lunatic web sites will be getting the lowdown scoop from ‘government officials’.

          • Janos Skorenzy October 9, 2014 at 3:49 am #

            No Buck – what’s lunatic is the way our government is letting the Ebola virus establish itself in America and the Western Hemisphere. And what’s sad is that you can’t even see it and call people who do lunatics.

          • Buck Stud October 9, 2014 at 11:34 am #

            Janos,

            Now we’re talking about the Ebola virus? I thought the link I specifically responded to was about ‘the ISIS fighters’ who crossed the border.

            Obviously you did not ask yourself some critical questions concerning that link otherwise you would not have posted it. Basically those sites cater to drama queens and hysterical types–just go back through the archives to witness all the dire warnings and predictions that did not come true.

            In many ways, speaking of ‘fandom”, it’s not unlike the hyperbole of the World Wrestling Association. Alex Jones and Vince McMahon in the center ring fighting over the microphone and Janos Catering Service slopping ketchup on the hot dog spectacle.

            Just because you despise professional sports does not mean you lack the groupie mentality. Your Marshawn Lynch just happens to be named Limbaugh and Jones.

          • Janos Skorenzy October 9, 2014 at 2:16 pm #

            You are so crazy that it’s difficult to communicate with you. Do you want the borders open or not? You do. Therefore all kinds of undesireables can came thru, right? How did they catch the Isis people? Maybe they were tracking them even though they don’t track anyone else. I admit I don’t know. If you are suggesting that Isis doesn’t exist at all, well as I said that is an extreme idea by anyone’s standards.

            But you don’t want to take these points one by one and have a real discussion. Rather you take one of my points, mock it and hope to discredit me thereby. That’s shameful Buck. Right out of the Alinsky playbook. Go to hell.

          • Buck Stud October 9, 2014 at 4:30 pm #

            Point by point? You hardly consider my thoughts on the ISIS crossing but dive right into Ebola. Recall, I was simply telling you why I doubted the story. I was not talking about ‘millions of Mexicans’ or ‘Ebola streaming across the border’. So when I go south of the subject at hand just like you did, I am the crazy one incapable of staying on topic.

            Nice try Janos but no cigar.

            Anyway, I can see why you’re peeved. I poked fun at your ‘hot dog stand on the Pyramid’ comment from yesterday. A really funny and good piece of writing by the way; apologies for the late compliment after the ‘crazy’ metaphor.

            Oh and have you heard, the GOP Senator from Oklahoma has squelched funds for fighting Ebola..

          • alphie October 9, 2014 at 4:40 pm #

            the queen of mockery doesn’t like to be mocked. she can dish it out but can’t take it in. “Do you want the borders open or not? You do. Therefore all kinds of undesireables can came thru, right?” i’ll overlook the spelling errors and just say at some point your ancestors crossed the border into this country. but that was ok because they were white. with you janos it’s always a xenophobic fun fest. in fact you so can’t contain your hatred that JHK gave you a warning this week. and you told buck stud to “wake up”? I think he has: “Janos Catering Service slopping ketchup on the hot dog spectacle” buck stud, high five for that!

          • alphie October 9, 2014 at 4:54 pm #

            buck stud you let me down dude. as soon as I posted my congratulatory comment about how you handled janos I see you kowtowing to her. I really need to find another hobby

          • Buck Stud October 9, 2014 at 7:32 pm #

            Come on now Alphie, Janos’ post on Capitalism had a lot of truth to it.

            Beyond that and to use an art/literature term I’m more of a formalist when it comes to these debates/jousts. That is to say, if somebody expresses something in an admirable, artistic manner then I cannot help but to be impressed in a certain sort of way.

            I know, if the message/content is so abhorrent it will undoubtedly soil an completely spoil the form/container. For instance, on an aesthetic listserv that I frequent there was a debate on the merits of Nazi art: should it be tossed in the dustbin even if some of the artists were nothing less that extraordinary, or at least from a technical aspect?

            The true connoisseur often looks past the narrative content in order to arrive at the visceral visual dialogue. IOW, the narrative aspect can never carry the day in visual art, although so many post modern art hacks have tried.

            In the past Janos has come down on the narrative side which is ironic given that his formal aspects are quite good at times despite of his message. And I think that is why he is allowed to hang around as far clumsier and dull racists have been sent packing.

            But speaking of Nazi art here is one of Janos favorite Nazi art pieces by Arno Breker; notice the amazing facility displayed in this marble carving of “Teutonic God”:

            upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/9/9a/Arno_Breker_Der_Sieger_(1939).jpg

          • Buck Stud October 9, 2014 at 7:36 pm #

            This should work:

            upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/9/9a/Arno_Breker_Der_Sieger_(1939).jpg

  82. Karah October 8, 2014 at 7:47 pm #

    Meanwhile, back at the ranch…

    A Sheriff who entered the Ebola victim apartment is being hauled off to the hospital in full gown and mask.

    If he does test positive then we can start the Ebola clock back to 42 days.

    Any retirees need a job at the airport checking people’s temperatures?

    • Karah October 9, 2014 at 12:50 am #

      “since so many problems with our everyday environment are caused by the over-specialization of trained specialists unwilling to look at the bigger picture beyond the narrow purview of their specialty.”what kunstler lives for 1996 archives

  83. alphie October 8, 2014 at 9:49 pm #

    Jim, I really would like some of your predictions to start coming true. Not the part where the tattooed savages find me and my loved ones huddled in a corner of the basement but the part where the price of gasoline gets to a point which precludes all travel except for food and drink. You said , “the trouble is, they lost their humanity in the process…”. I believe we can gain much of it back if we’re forced to get the fuck out of our cars, if we’re forced to move around this world outside of the insulating albeit comfortable confines of our escape pods which has become, I am convinced, their primary purpose. We would have to come out from under the tinted glass and look at each other. We would have to learn how to live right where we are not somewhere in between some fantasy life and a place of misery, not careening back and forth between the place where human lives are sacrificed for a paycheck and the dormitories we call the suburbs.

    I believe we can be freer than we’ve ever imagined. The trouble is nobody’s imagining it. We toil beneath the castle wall trying to scrape up some happiness yet all the while feeling the invisible weight of servitude. The men and women in fine clothing on capital hill are paid actors. In the hallowed halls there’s something rotten. There’s a scene in Monty pythons holy grail where two peasants are on a hillside collecting mud. One calls to the other saying, “there’s some fine filth over here” They could have been referring to the U.S. government.

    We have been bent over beneath the castle wall for too long. When will we learn to stand upright again. In the movie 2001 Space Odyssey there’s a computer named Hal aboard the space station. The crew decides they must shut Hal down but Hal is aware of this and begins killing the crew one by one. There’s a lesson here. Anyone who truly threatens the power structure in this country won’t be around long

    We have to decide whether we want a world made by our own hands or one handed down to us. Transformation is going to take courage and could get ugly. But I like the line by James Joyce: “Better pass boldly into that other world, in the full glory of some passion, than fade and wither dismally with age”

    • barbisbest October 9, 2014 at 9:26 am #

      Reply to Alphie. I like your thought process. And I agree, our vehicles are our escape pods, so we don’t have to look at eachother or ourselves. OUr vehicles are our means of escape, as you say, escape from everything and everyone that bothers us. We are our own god, with wingless chariots. Keep up that way of thinking, you’re on the right track.

      Interesting quote, “Community ties and family values are a barrier to the commodification of people and resources. Therefore, industrialization always lead to the breakdown of community and family ties and values”.

    • BackRowHeckler October 9, 2014 at 6:28 pm #

      But Joyce lived a long time.

    • Janos Skorenzy October 9, 2014 at 7:05 pm #

      And we’re going to have to fight the Orcs before we can get to their lord, Sauron. Are you up for or are you going to Eloi out? Real Elves are magnificent, strong as well as beautiful. You are more like one of Shakespeare’s Elves, small, fey, even furtive and strange.

  84. Janos Skorenzy October 9, 2014 at 5:28 am #

    https://gma.yahoo.com/family-dallas-ebola-patient-died-upset-over-unfair-191800328–abc-news-wellness.html

    They expect the best of treatment of course! Here’s the Negro entitlement mentality on display. It’s built in – comes with the hardware. Jesse is on the spot too. He’s going global. There’s a whole continent of Blacks who have to get brought over here. And if those experimental treatments don’t work, Jesse will get them to sue.

  85. barbisbest October 9, 2014 at 10:08 am #

    Boil bubble, toil and trouble,
    Helter Skelter, Shiver and swelter
    There’s more than one witch stirring the cauldron
    We may become isis, if we’re lucky. Meanwhile
    the butler is vacationing in the Hamptons, I got my
    You are Fd too t-shirt, all will be well.

  86. Cold N. Holefield October 9, 2014 at 11:55 am #

    First, they came for the dogs, and we said nothing. When do they start euthanizing humans as a prophylactic measure?

    Ebola Patient’s Dog Excalibur Euthanized Despite Outcry

    That name is metaphorically significant — a metaphor as metaphor.

  87. Cold N. Holefield October 9, 2014 at 12:23 pm #

    One thing fortunate for the now-deceased Liberian Ebola patient in Dallas, Sandy Eric Duncan is he was medically sedated meaning he was rendered unconscious so he didn’t have to mentally and emotionally anguish when the disease entered its most torturous phase. Most Liberians in Liberia who contract Ebola and die from it don’t have this humane option — and yet his family complains he was treated with prejudice. In a sense he was — he was treated better than any Liberian treats other Liberians in Liberia, so perhaps they should shut the fuck up or at least think before they talk and quit listening to the likes of Jesse Jackcrap.

    If this thing breaks lose in the Americas, medical sedation won’t be available to all because there will be a run on it. If and when that time comes, perhaps we should revisit these superstitious dimwits that are Duncan’s relatives and ask them to comment on Eric’s treatment again considering events since his passing— if they still consider he was not treated well … or well enough? If they’re still alive and continue to claim he wasn’t treated well at that point, they should be shot for obstinate stupidity along with the entire CDC and everyone inside the Beltway.

    Who will be the first VIP (Elite or PTB) to die from Ebola, or will it be a disease of and for the Small People?

  88. progress4what October 9, 2014 at 1:25 pm #

    “The north won the war of independence, with a little help from the south! Right! Who do you think won the war, the bare footed southern hillbillies. Get real!” – barbisbest at expressing PC prejudice –

    You know, barb, that hate, fear, and prejudice can be VERY real – regardless of the group against which they are expressed. I’ll show you what I mean by taking your statement and changing the context and the out-group.

    “Who do you think is responsible for progress on Civil Rights in the United States, a bunch of useless Negroes? Get real!”
    – barb, edited to expose prejudice –

    “Who do you think runs the best Mexican restaurants, a bunch of dirty Mexican immigrants? Get real!”
    – barb, edited to expose hate –

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

    And to answer your prejudice, there were important Revolutionary War battles fought in the southern end of the British colonies. As importantly, men from the southern colonies volunteered freely to fight against the British up in New England. You ought to study some American history.

    And backrowheckler – I’ll try to get back to you concerning my various ancestors Revolutionary and Civil War services. There are many.

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

    And oh yeah, backrow, while I’ve got the channel open – – I heard tell of a man who died from being too open minded.
    How, you ask?
    His brains fell out! Haw! Haw! HAW!

    Seriously, though, I’d like to hear your ideas about why today’s high immigration rates are a positive thing for the US, especially if your ideas don’t involve the necessity of economic growth or any of various moral platitudes.

    The channel is clear.

    • Janos Skorenzy October 9, 2014 at 2:06 pm #

      Quite true about Southerners. Court or Mainstream Historian David McCullough speaks of this in detail in his account of the early days of the Revolution, 1776. Boston Common was full of Crackers.

  89. Janos Skorenzy October 9, 2014 at 2:10 pm #

    Mindless Liberals are turning the Liberian Gate Crasher into a Christ figure. “He came in hope”. Check out the picture. There is simply no limit to the sentimental delusion these people are capable of. All on cue. They are dogs responding to whistles.

    Rush says nothing will be done because to close the borders to them would nix Amnesty. In other words, if sanity is allowed even for a moment, the whole house of dirty cards might fall.

    news.yahoo.com/ebola-patient-thomas-eric-duncans-love-story-162328179.html

    • alphie October 9, 2014 at 2:48 pm #

      still letting rush breast feed you aye janos?

      • Janos Skorenzy October 9, 2014 at 3:28 pm #

        So if Rush said 2+2=4, it therefore become untrue because he said it?

        Truth is Truth, Alph. It’s no respecter of persons. Rush is very sharp and makes great points on a regular basis. He is also very limited – seldom talking about the evils and limitations of Capitalism. I didn’t get my 3rd way economics from him obviously. So I take the good and leave the rest.

  90. nsa October 9, 2014 at 2:20 pm #

    We here in Ft. Meade not only weaponized the ebola virus…our labs also morphed it into a more antiseptic killer……have you noticed? No more messy hemorrhaging gore from every orifice…no more protoplasm dissolving into a red slime goo. No longer quite so scary….

  91. MisterDarling October 9, 2014 at 3:45 pm #

    Hello V.,

    re | “Are we regressing to the historical mean as far as elite behavior goes, that is, murdering bastards that rip off all they can and consequences be damned? As UFIA contends, and I agree, every construct we come up with eventually fails.”-volodya.

    It’s interesting to see how long this thread has gone on… And encouraging, actually.

    We’ve discussed the process of Automation and it’s results. Some time ago & in another forum, I went a few rounds with an ardent and blinded (though intelligent and well socialized) technophile.

    It brought out what I consider the real meat: The Results…

    —snip—

    [MrD.]

    “This reply will have two segments: a review of my examples (and what they meant), and a review of what is apparently your current belief about impact of technological change on job-market.

    [technophile]

    Just because you assert something, doesn’t automatically make it true. Your claims would be more credible if you actually made a case why my points are “false equivalenc[i]es”. Instead you ramble on about not being in the Renaissance anymore, and unexportable jobs, clearly confusing the decline of your own country with the decline of the world as a whole, and ignoring the fact that all evolution implies winners and losers.

    The case is simple: no civilisation ever replaces tech back for manpower. Instead, tech is used to leverage manpower. When manpower is leveraged, its value in the production equation is regained. It’s a process Buckminster Fuller called “ephemeralisation”: doing more and more with less and less, until you end up doing everything with nothing. Nobody is going to replace their tractors with oxes, nor replace their Caterpillar diggers with spades, just to “keep more people in a job”. Rather, the manpower released through the mechanisation of agriculture and manufacture is made available for new, tech-leveraged production.

    Read some Schumpeter, you’ll get the hang of creative destruction soon enough.

    [MrD.]

    Perhaps I assumed too much tacit knowledge and so it’s necessary to explain at greater length.

    The analogies you made in your first message are false because the underlying assumption is: that the percentage of workers displaced by printing presses, telephones and sewing machines is comparable to that which would be displaced by self-driving vehicles.

    In Pre-Industrial societies >90 % of the workforce were engaged in agricultural work, so the percentage of workers adversely impacted was insignificant.

    As things industrialized, agricultural jobs were wiped-out (97% in some cases [1]) an even larger proportion of the workforce became vulnerable to job-elimination. This occurred even as the interval between job-field phase-outs (or off-shorings) decreased. The result is what you see today in America and elsewhere.

    Please note that the process of “ephemeralisation” did not lead to an efficient transmission of “manpower” into “tech-leveraged production”. Quite the contrary, it resulted in a backlog of un- or under-utilized workers.

    The case against Schumpeter’s theory is simple: it does not work in the real world. That’s part of why there are Depressions. [2]

    You wrote:

    As for Walmart’s claims, you’re confusing the decline of Walmart – one player in the market – with the decline of the market system itself. clearly confusing the decline of your own country with the decline of the world as a whole, and ignoring the fact that all evolution implies winners and losers.

    Walmart is not just “one player” in the market. Walmart is the largest private employer in the world and the largest retailer in the world. The example was given because it’s THE #1 bell-weather business to watch for market indications about the US consumer. . . I thought that was obvious, that’s why I understated it.

    Since the US economy is still more than 70% driven by consumer activity, and since it is still the biggest source of global consumer demand, this is not a trivial example, nor are the implications.

    The second example I gave were a few tame observations about the ludicrous level of corruption in the US real-estate market.

    Why? Because it is another major factor in job-creation (and therefore wage creation) in the US, and a counter-example to your belief in the way the job market works. The examples are relevant not only to the US, but to all G20 nations by extension. Now more than ever. It’s a global market, after all.

    By the way; I thought that it was odd that you brought up Schumpeter. After all he wrote that capitalism could not survive because: “its very success undermines the social institutions which protect it, and ‘inevitably’ creates conditions in which it will not be able to live.”

    In other words; capitalism tends to eat itself alive (unless prevented from doing so 😉

    Did you ever think that there might be a reason for that tendency? That nothing about markets are reliably efficient or self-correcting? Or that evolution – technological or otherwise – is not efficient, continuous or uni-directional?

    — — —

    [1] Mechanizing agriculture has repeatedly been the cause of major social disruption. It’s easy to talk about “winners” and “losers” of the process, but “losers” don’t always quietly crawl off into the bushes and die. Nor or are they smoothly transitioned. There are externalities. To trivialize that is irresponsible.

    [2] Expanding the critique to Marx (on whom much of Schumpeter’s work was derived) : According to the way Mr. Marx thought, wealth was accumulated through asset inflation by a tiny elite until the market crashed.

    At that point, he supposed, sufficient wealth was invested back into the system by the economic elite, to restart the cycle. This is of course not the way things happen. There’s a mad-dash for the exits and the economy remains in a deflationary down-spiral.

    The problem with the whole idea is that Mssrs. Marx & Engels – like Mr. Schumpeter – were very rational men. The markets of the world are not.

    —snip—

    Volodya, we often overlook the impact that predatory capitalism – via automation, labor-arbitrage and overt forms of slavery – has on the strategic, LONG-TERM outlook.

    Every step along the way has reduced the labor-utilization rate overall, making an ever-greater percentage of the human population ‘surplus’ and accelerating the process of ‘overshoot’.

    The process itself is its own worst enemy.

    I think its funny that there are still insisting that we’ll “muddle through” just like we ‘always’ have… When every aspect of that statement is self-evidently untrue. Yes, it’s tough to face facts as we all get older, but do we have to be completely chicken-s**t about it?

    😉

    At one time I wondered what controlled the numbers of congenital sociopaths. If nothing did, then none of us would be here. In the past decade I have learned the answer: They Do.

    Well Done, Volodya, Janos and UFIA!

    • Janos Skorenzy October 9, 2014 at 8:51 pm #

      Let’s keep it going – to make up in some small measure for how much this issue has been ignored or silenced. The ancient Greeks defended slavery saying that they needed to be free to think; and that they would free their slaves when the wheels turned by themselves. Some of the Old Southerners were savvy enough to quote this – and to suggest that Northerners free their slaves first.

      Well how now, now that the wheels do turn by themselves? Have the slaves been freed? Is Freedom being extended to more and more people? Or is poverty – and therefore slavery – being extended to more and more people instead? Clearly the latter. Technology is one thing and its use is quite another. The Romans did understand basic mechanics such as the use of water wheels. They chose not to use them and to keep relying on slavery instead. In other words, technology per se doesn’t free, but rather only the correct and virtuous use of it.

      Put down thy Schumpeter and open thy Schumacher. The second title clause of his classic Small is Beautiful is “Economics as if People Mattered. Mumford saw the disaster before us long ago: that technology would replace man. If something could be done, it would be done – even if it didn’t serve man in the fullest possible sense, in preserving and enhancing his humanity. What is profit in the face of this? Crush the merchants if they would dare to infringe on this.

    • MisterDarling October 9, 2014 at 6:10 pm #

      He’s the poster-child for ‘Z P G’…

      😉

      • Cold N. Holefield October 9, 2014 at 7:14 pm #

        Or ‘N P G’ … one nano peek (and nano-quick, slack-jawed averted gaze) at those massive, honking man boobs is enough to make people want to off themselves.

        He does like kids, though, so he can’t be all bad. Plus, he’s writing childrens’ historical education books now. Kathryn Rogers has reformed him. Next thing you know, he’ll self-declare as a Feminist. “Some say a woman’s soul was created below.”

        Lush Blimpblow Making Some Catholic Priests Fretfully Jealous

  92. BackRowHeckler October 9, 2014 at 5:16 pm #

    P2C I was just bustin yer balls about the South and the Revolutionary War.

    Basically after 1777 the whole thing was fought South of the Mason Dixon Line, which didn’t exist yet.

    We have a lot of well maintained graveyards around here full of Rev. War Veterans; even French and Indian war graves. You read: Sgt. Isiah Brown 1755-1825, Connecticut Line, Lexington Alarm, 1775. Many like that.

    –brh

    • progress4what October 9, 2014 at 7:44 pm #

      Hey backrow –
      No probs as regards the “north won the Revolutionary war with a little help from the south,” comment. Your comment was funny. And I know that you know enough history that you knew you were being funny/sarcastic.

      Barb’s comment, otoh, was not funny in the least. And I consider it to have mean spirited and prejudiced against the South, as well as showing a certain ignorance of American history.
      More about that in a minute.

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

      I am concerned though, backrow, that you’re still willing to listen to pk’s comments about immigration with an “open mind.” Maybe you’ve heard him say something besides “growth is good,” and “accept all comers always,” moral platitudes. I must have missed it if there’s some other reason that pk has ever stated for his extreme pro-immigrant views . That’s why I asked you to elaborate on your “open mind” comment.

      • BackRowHeckler October 9, 2014 at 9:28 pm #

        That was in response to PK/Asoka.

        I just don’t want to be arguing with people on here, over nothing really. Besides, I’m on thin ice. One false move and Jim will kick me out.

        Sometimes its best in certain situations to be conciliatory.

        brh

  93. barbisbest October 9, 2014 at 6:45 pm #

    Reply to Progress4what on Barb Is best. I am not prejudice and hateful Progress4what, quite the opposite. How dare you imply that by my comment!! That is nasty! I was only commenting on Back Row Hecklers statement that the North won the War of Independence with a little help from the south. That is a misstatement about the War of Independence I do know a quite a bit about history. As you recall, there weren’t that many colonies at the time of the War of Independence, so the south must have offered some assistance. I’m yank by birth, but so many of my ancestors fought in that war, it’s incredible how many survived and they were southerners. That doesn’t make me a darn bit better than anyone else, what it may mean is that I love my country and its people, no matter what color they are sir or maam. Thank you.

    Anyway, I don’t think the past and mulling it over and over will help us with our present predicaments. Just last nite a racoon freed itself from a very complex cage on my back porch, (and no, i didn’t intend to eat it, although I might if i was hungry) and we can’t even figure out how to get ourselves out of the corner we’ve painted ourselves into. Writing and fighting about the past isn’t much help to us, is it?
    Thank you for letting me clear myself here. Thanks Mr. K for the post!

    • barbisbest October 9, 2014 at 6:59 pm #

      And furthermore Progress4what, I know too, many African Americans or let’s say americans of color, however you want to word it to make it politically palatible, fought in the Civil War. I have a muslim nephew by marriage and he’s one of the kindest people you’d ever meet and i love him.

      I am not prejudice. Not even against racoons, of which i may have eaten, being a backwoods hillbilly, if I had been hungry!!

      • Janos Skorenzy October 9, 2014 at 7:13 pm #

        Principles have to become before Persons. That’s how civilization is maintained. If a family member marries a minority or Muslim, they are to be disowned.

  94. progress4what October 9, 2014 at 8:04 pm #

    Nice raccoon story, barbisbest. Apparently I hit a nerve. That’s not always bad. And you express your love and admiration for your muslim family member and for many other peoples, but you don’t see any prejudice being expressed in a comment such as this:

    “The north won the war of independence, with a little help from the south! Right! Who do you think won the war, the bare footed southern hillbillies. Get real!”

    Barb – maybe (repeat, maybe!) you could say a thing like that if you really were a “barefoot southern hillbilly,” and you were making a sarcastic statement as an oblique way of acknowledging the importance of southern fighters to the American side of the Revolutionary War.

    But that’s not what you are, and it’s not what you were doing, as you have already admitted. Therefore your “barefoot hillbilly” comment is evidence of prejudice. You just don’t recognize the prejudice because you’re directing it against a group that’s Politically Correct to hate on.

    Prejudice is bad, OK. Even if you only direct against barefoot Southern hillbillys, prejudice is not a good thing.

    • Janos Skorenzy October 9, 2014 at 8:27 pm #

      Except when it’s not prejudice but postjudice.

  95. progress4what October 9, 2014 at 8:15 pm #

    Here you’un go.. Edumacate yo’self. I gots to go find me shoes.
    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Southern_theater_of_the_American_Revolutionary_War

  96. Janos Skorenzy October 9, 2014 at 8:24 pm #

    beforeitsnews.com/immigration/2013/07/disturbing-chinese-signs-and-emergency-stations-along-us-mexic…

    So many Chinese illegals are streaming in along our Southern Border that there are aid signs in both Spanish and Chinese. People like Buck don’t seem to know that people other than Hispanics are coming in. People from the Middle East as common too. How do we know the latter are just coming for jobs or a better life? Isn’t it better to err on the side of caution – especially since we have been threatened with massive violence by groups from this area?

    Open borders is a disastrously stupid idea on any number of levels – including the spread of disease. The Entero virus has been traced to Central America. It is probably being spread to our children by illegal Central American children being warehoused in our schools sans any medical screening.

  97. Frankiti October 9, 2014 at 8:25 pm #

    There have been far crazier moneys in history. Many more. We are merely accustomed (this generation) of not having to, nor expecting to, confront any major calamities (war, pandemics, senseless violence, etc.) We are a product of post WWII pax americana… an entitled lot that thought humanity had willed and reasoned its way from human evil.
    This is nothing but our failure to accept the 84th problem.

  98. MisterDarling October 9, 2014 at 9:12 pm #

    re | funny, fancy finance.

    The curious case of GTAT:

    zerohedge.com/news/2014-10-09/curious-why-you-lost-all-your-money-gtat-sorry-bankrupt-company-wont-t…

    Synopsis:

    GTAT is a vendor with a very *close* relationship with __Apple__.

    GTAT suddenly declared bankruptcy (it had market-cap of $1.5B & went to Zero in one day).

    GTAT was supposed to say why it went bankrupt when it went to court today. GTAT refused, and the reason (apparently) is that Apple will not let them…

    😉

  99. pkrugman October 9, 2014 at 9:24 pm #

    P4W, it’s not just moral platitudes or growth. Immigration helps us just sustain what we have. CFN is always saying the U.S. is broke, that social security is broke. Immigration is needed just to save social security.

    Baby Boomers are retiring in droves and many will receive full Social Security retirement benefits. The last of the Baby Boomers will not turn 67 until 2031, meaning that the Boomers will be collecting benefits for roughly the next 36 years, from 2013 through 2049 (assuming that, on average, people receive benefits for 18 years). The retirement of Baby Boomers over the next few decades explains why the number of workers paying Social Security taxes per beneficiary will fall from a ratio of 2.8 workers to beneficiary in 2013 to 2.1 workers by 2050.

    The evidence is clear that the newly legalized will have a positive effect on the solvency of the Social Security system. As these three scenarios illustrate, as fewer undocumented immigrants are eligible to apply for legalization and citizenship, the gains to Social Security solvency decline dramatically. On top of the many other positive impacts of bringing the undocumented out of the shadows, these results indicate that providing legal status and a pathway to citizenship to the 11 million undocumented immigrants currently in this country would have a sizeable impact on the ability to provide full pensions to the Baby Boomers in the years to come.

    In other words, many on CFN who receive social security will benefit by legalizing immigrants.

    • MisterDarling October 10, 2014 at 12:24 am #

      Hello Rugman,

      re | “CFN is always saying the U.S. is broke, that social security is broke. Immigration is needed just to save social security.”-r.

      Indeed it could – if payrolls were increasing, instead of net _losing_ since 1999…

      re | “The evidence is clear that the newly legalized will have a positive effect on the solvency of the Social Security system.”-r.

      The evidence is clear that they cannot have a “positive effect” on social security, b/c average wage/job is decreasing and number of jobs is decreasing, therefore immigrant paycheck contributions cannot increase the amount in the social security fund.

      By the way, this whole argument about social security being ‘broke’ is a *McGuffin*. Taxes were raised in the early 80’s for the very purpose of covering the Boomers retirement.

      The problem is not lack of ‘funds’ (who could possibly think that when The Fed can write trillion-dollar checks for crooks at the drop of a hat?). the problem is financial sleight-of-hand by the Federal Government.

      • MisterDarling October 10, 2014 at 2:24 pm #

        CLARIFICATION for last paragraph: The Dept. of the Treasury supported by the “The Fed” wrote the initial (overt) bailout check back in ’08.

        The Federal Reserve (imagine semi-quotes around each word) simply goes much farther than that by funding the cash-trash pipeline and myriad other programs to keep top-shelf white-collar crime alive and declaring ‘profit’.

        Regarding the state of the labor market, there’s simply no room to declare that things are ‘better’ when labor participation is at an all-time low, warehousing the citizenry in prisons and college (at high cost in both cases) is at an all time high.

        The best news of this Fall was the drop in initial unemployment claims, but that is lot like saying that the victim of a machete attack is ‘better’ b/c blood-loss had stopped – b/c the heart has…

        Oh, but don’t we have so much to thank President Obama for, considering all the leadership that he’s shown?

        /s

        I try to picture a time when being *The President of the United States* really meant something… And I can’t anymore.

        I can’t even picture || American Leadership ||, tragically. Being a eager, nimble little __manager__ for a random assortment of oligarchs is not the same thing.

  100. pkrugman October 9, 2014 at 9:27 pm #

    Ooops… forgot the source citation.

    Improving Lives, Strengthening Finances: The Benefits of Immigration Reform to Social Security

    americanprogress.org/issues/immigration/report/2013/06/14/66543/improving-lives-strengthening-financ…

  101. progress4what October 9, 2014 at 9:56 pm #

    “In other words, many on CFN who receive social security will benefit by legalizing immigrants.” – pk –

    So, what you’re saying is that we need growth in the number of people who pay into social security, right?

    Sorry, pk, but thats another “growth is good” argument – slightly camouflaged and repackaged.

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

    Furthermore, what happens when all these hypothetical new citizens who have grown today’s SS payer rolls finally retire themselves?
    I know what you’ll say. It’s what you always say about immigration.

    More immigrants, more growth!
    IOW, growth is always good. Growth solves all problems for pk.
    Is the Earth, being a sphere, a finite space?
    Just asking.

  102. pkrugman October 9, 2014 at 11:39 pm #

    “So, what you’re saying is that we need growth in the number of people who pay into social security, right?” — P4W

    Yes, because millions are retiring and payments into social security are declining, growth is needed just to maintain viability. If your monthly income declines and you want to continue eating, growth in your income is needed just to survive. Growth in the face of decline is good, just to sustain an equilibrium.

  103. Janos Skorenzy October 10, 2014 at 12:35 am #

    Mainstream radio talk show host takes apart “Hey, White People” – which has to be the most obnoxious video ever made. If you find this moving or informative, you are at the level of alphie – a terminal case of political correctness and self loathing.

    Good news in any case. And very funny. We are now at Peak Negro. Whites are sick unto death of listening to these self righteous savages and know nothings. Gonna be a real Planet of the Apes scene when Darrin Wilson is let go.

    youtube.com/watch?v=nhr0nyZGGvY#t=181

    Apparently there was another justified shooting just yesterday. Black kid criminal fired at cop and got killed for his trouble. Just a few miles from Fergusson.

  104. Q. Shtik October 10, 2014 at 1:43 am #

    They would open up a hot dog stand on top of the Great Pyramid – Janos
    ===========

    Speaking of the great pyramid, During August and Sept I built another pyramid on my property. It is 6 ft square at the base and made of treated lumber and a fine piece of carpentry if I say so myself. As I worked on it daily for a period of 7 weeks passers by on River Road shouted out their praise and gave me a thumbs up (even the local police). As the work progressed I documented the entire experience by writing “My Summer Art Project, Building The Great Pyramid of Highland Park.” The final piece, the Pyramidion, or capstone (a 1.5 inch square of wood, one inch thick), was screwed into place (all screws in the pyramid are unseen) at 11AM on Sept 22. I went inside to my man-cave to rest. At 3 PM the phone rang and a detective in Florida informed me my brother had been found dead in his home (of natural causes). He had been on the floor of his bedroom 6 days. My wife and I are still in Florida trying to unravel and take control of his estate. I am his sole heir and will become a modestly wealthy man…able to pay off the debts of my children and still never worry where my next meal will come from.

    In its dimensions my pyramid is actually a replica of the second largest of those 3 famous pyramids at Giza (Kahfre’s pyramid). It is based on a 3-4-5 triangle. My wife took many pictures on her cell phone as the work progressed and if I can figure how to enter them as a link in a CFN comment I will do so at some point.

    The pyramid is hollow and I made it so the top 10 tiers can be removed in one piece exposing an 11 inch square opening through which mine and my wife’s urn’s of ashes will one day be inserted. Sorry if this is a bit off topic.

    Someday when time permits I’ll tell you about my experiences here in Miramar, Florida which has become vastly black and Hispanic yet I have not encountered even the slightest rudeness from anyone.

    • Janos Skorenzy October 10, 2014 at 4:04 am #

      Originally, the Great Pyramid was known as the Light because of its white limestone covering that shined so brightly that it could not be looked at directly at mid-day. The Limestone was taken off during the centuries and used as building material for local villages.

      Your pyramid doesn’t sound big enough for a hot dog stand. Perhaps you could sit on top and ladle out lemonade if you could find a long enough ladle.

    • Cold N. Holefield October 10, 2014 at 6:54 am #

      Careful with Pyramid Power — that which brings seemingly serendipitous fortune can also bring seemingly serendipitous calamity. Fortune has visited you, but that won’t always be the case. In the meantime, use your pyramid to sharpen your razor blades and preserve and grow plucked roses as a party favor.

      Hopefully your pyramid is portable like a potty, otherwise the next owners of your home may not consider it aesthetically pleasing and worthwhile to maintain your hand-built tomb, and I doubt your daughter will want to plop it down in the middle of her Manhattan apartment since she has no backyard to speak of. As for the tech son, suburban subdivision regulations will prohibit him placing Satanic structures in his backyard and as for your youngest son, well, he’s not reliable enough and too transient to entrust with the responsibility of being the caretaker of your final remains.

      It was not only limestone that made the pyramids shine, but also alabaster.

      For your next Project, Q, you should construct a miniature Pentagon and fly a model plane into it (the section that holds the accounting department) for retirement kicks. Please film your demonstration for our edifying entertainment.

    • Buck Stud October 10, 2014 at 11:21 am #

      Sounds like a fun project Q and no exposed screw holes!

      I’ve always wondered about the symbolic shape of a pyramid. The apex becomes the smallest point, just as the pointy KKK cap symbolizes the small, closed mind that dons it.

      Perhaps we humans should construct reverse shaped pyramids with the widest point at the top of the structure and in the form of a funnel so as to ‘open our collective minds’ to knowledge from above.

      Instead, we construct the apex as a point: small and unreceptive; a puncture into the great sky above.

      And if there is indeed some greater and higher force, power–“GOD”– I have to think that status is not the didactic explanation point as symbolized by the pyramid point, but, rather, recursive receptivity symbolized by the upside down shape of the pyramid that continually funnels knowledge.

      • Janos Skorenzy October 10, 2014 at 2:14 pm #

        If thine eye is single, your body will be full of light. But you already have two eyes, you cry. But those two can’t see the light – you need the higher third, the narrow gate that can trace the golden thread that leads out of the bodily cave.

        I hope that clears up your darkness. The Pyramid is just a representation of this in three dimensions. And certainly is stable structure. And one who sits at the top – because of its very narrowness – can see all the points of view of people on all four sides of the pyramid, though those people can’t see each other. Need I say it? Based on past experience, yes: such a sitter is the Philosopher King. There are many people at the base. The base are many after all. Fewer at each higher level. Few at the top – one of these is elected to be at the very top. Perfection. Can you deal? It’s is what you have been looking for thru your arts and energy work. It is not beyond our ken, just beyond our calculation and modern cynicism. Surrender to it and you will be raised up. You too can attain the unblinking gaze of the Pharaohs, the gaze of those who have still minds and still hearts. The thousand yard stare of the war weary is like a photographic negative of this.

  105. contrahend October 10, 2014 at 8:15 am #

    In the meantime, use your pyramid to sharpen your razor blades and preserve and grow plucked roses as a party favor.

    Here here, Sir, and add spices to leaven the fringes too. Lemons are highly vogue for this & can be canned in a pinch.

    Btw, it’s ‘favour’, ask Q.

    Yes, because millions are retiring and payments into social security are declining, growth is needed just to maintain viability.

    What a joke. The Fed can print any amount of money to ‘cover’ social security at the drop of a hat. There is a malicious plan behind your ‘need’ for immigration, and we all know what that is. Grow up.

    I’d laff but it ain’t particularly fanni.

    kontrahend (welles)

    • Cold N. Holefield October 10, 2014 at 8:59 am #

      Btw, it’s ‘favour’, ask Q.

      I don’t need to ask Q., I know it’s either depending on your nationality.

      Although, there are some Brit and Aussie wannabes in America, like K-Dog, who will add the superfluous “u” in an effort to make themselves appear sophisticated. Instead, it makes them look silly and trite. Proud, and not so proud, Americans don’t use the unnecessary and inefficient “u.”

  106. contrahend October 10, 2014 at 9:20 am #

    I know, I was just joshin’ ya.

    kontrahend

  107. BackRowHeckler October 10, 2014 at 9:46 am #

    Ok, so there’s an an article in today’s WSJ titled ‘Price Drop Tests Oil Drillers’, claims at Bakken fracked oil is no longer profitable at about $80 per barrel, but down in Texas at Eagle Ford the price per barrel could drop to $53 and mining it would still be economical.

    Today a barrel of WTI crude is about $86.

    Article also says this:

    “The fundamental problem is that the world is awash with oil, but demand for energy is growing more slowly amid tepid economic growth around the globe, especially in China”.

    –brh

    • MisterDarling October 10, 2014 at 5:59 pm #

      Hello BackRow,

      re | “but demand for energy is growing more slowly amid tepid economic growth around the globe,”-wsj.

      The price of oil has plunged b/c Aggregate Demand fell off of a cliff.

      Whenever I want to establish something firm about what ‘demand’ actually is, I check the Baltic Dry Index (BDI).

      As usual, ZeroHedge is on the case:

      zerohedge.com/news/2014-10-10/worlds-busiest-freight-route-rates-plunge-2014-lows

      They can talk all they want about projections, and lie their butts off in their quarterly reports… But shipping empty containers is expensive.

  108. BackRowHeckler October 10, 2014 at 9:53 am #

    Hey Q is that Pyramid of yours anything like William S Burroughs Orgone Accumulator he used to keep at his house in Texas and Kansas with all the revolvers and semi autos?

    –brh

  109. Cold N. Holefield October 10, 2014 at 9:56 am #

    Perhaps you could sit on top and ladle out lemonade if you could find a long enough ladle.

    That sounds like it would be painful and more than likely would result in anal fissures. I’d advise against it.

    While it awaits your incinerated remains, perhaps you can also use it to cook oatmeal and heat up frozen burritos — or maybe if it’s large enough, you can sit in it as a form of Ebola therapy when the Pandemic reaches Highland Park … which won’t be long now all things considered.

    Where’s Q.? He’s in a pyramid down by the river.

    A Pyramid Down By The River

    • Janos Skorenzy October 10, 2014 at 6:55 pm #

      You are about as useful as a fat, half drunk, half gay, shirtless Puerto Rican riding a giant tricycle.

  110. LLPete October 10, 2014 at 11:10 am #

    I thought JHK said he was going to moderate the comments section. It’s his blog and he can do what he wants and it does take a lot of energy but in my opinion he should do it. Otherwise you get what you see above, describe it how you will but to me it seems a free for all food fight with a heavy dose of ideological and racist stupidity. JHK might take a cue from John Michael Greer, who won’t allow that shit and consequently has a comments section that enhances his posts.
    LLP

    • progress4what October 10, 2014 at 1:18 pm #

      “…a free for all food fight with a heavy dose of ideological and racist stupidity. JHK might take a cue from John Michael Greer…”
      – llpete –

      OK, LL, whose free speech would you like to abridge?
      And why don’t you try to counter that speech with facts, first?

      Greer has been noted to “ban” posters after a couple of posts with which he does not agree. For example, he apparently banned me for seconding Juhana’s posts concerning the inevitability of tribalism post-collapse. Juhanna may eventually be allowed back in, but I’m done trying to post ANY ideas over there. It’s too much trouble to reach too narrow an audience, IMO – especially since that audience may not be allowed by Greer to comment back to me in the affirmative.

      As you say, it’s greer’s blog and he can do as he likes. And what he likes is posts that fit his specific view of the future – quite specifically.

      JHK doesn’t swing that way. And JHK also acknowledges that a collapsed future will have a certain tribal look to it – whether we modern Americans approve of that idea or not.

      As nearly as I can tell – JHK will ban posters for stupidly repetitive levels of vulgarity, and for stupidly excessive anti-semitism. That and for posting embedded YouTubes. I’m not quite getting that YouTube thing of his, but I don’t bitch because there are good work-arounds for posting videos.

      Nice responses to pk rugman BTW, from both Mister Darling and contrahend, concerning reducing US immigration. Thanks for saving me the trouble, gentlemen.

      • Janos Skorenzy October 10, 2014 at 6:50 pm #

        Did I not tell you as much? But I remember you went into your “Now Janos” mode.

        • progress4what October 11, 2014 at 9:19 am #

          Yeah. I was wrong. I still can’t believe that SB (the adr) deleted 3 posts and one personal request to him without a word of comment.

          But that’s apparently what he did.
          So much for the illusion of encouraging free thought over there.
          I worry about some of his “followers.”
          Some of them seem near to suicide, sometimes.
          At least social and economic suicide – if not the literal version.

    • Janos Skorenzy October 10, 2014 at 2:22 pm #

      Have you read the Long Emergency? Near the end he spends a few pages on the Negro problem. His conclusion? Black criminality and welfare mongering will not be tolerated during the Long Emergency. We are at the beginning of the reset. Enjoy but be careful. A lot of Whites are going to get killed until we teach them to respect us again. And a lot of them are probably going to get killed learning this lesson. Call it the classroom of the streets.

      • BackRowHeckler October 10, 2014 at 2:37 pm #

        More unrest in St. Louis this week. (riots and street disturbances)

        Recently read an article stating St. Louis is the most dangerous major city in the United States.

        Hard to believe at one time St. Louis was at the center of International Trade, a very prosperous place, second only to New Orleans in North America. Spain, France, Netherlands, Russia, Great Britain and the nascent US had interests there.

        Not even Nostradamus could have predicted the sad destiny of St Louis and dozens of other North American cities like it. How could anybody have known what they would become?

        –brh

    • Janos Skorenzy October 10, 2014 at 7:01 pm #

      Greer doesn’t believe in freedom of speech. Evidently neither do you. Where did you get the idea that Democracy was supposed to be easy, smooth, or painless? It’s the opposite of all that – so much so that it isn’t a viable form of government in general unless the population is small and very well educated.

      Who can forget Ullyses beating the uneducated commoner with the flat of his sword for daring to speak to Kings? His job was to listen. Perhaps Greer is like Ullyses? Better the flat of his sword than the edge. If he would just admit as much I would forgive him. Just admit that he’s not a Liberal but an Elitist and all is well.

  111. contrahend October 10, 2014 at 12:53 pm #

    Kunstler doesn’t have/want to spend the time moderating the comments section. He’s veered wildly off course from energy memes, in any case, and only passingly dishes out predictions any more, for obvious reasons.

    This blog has everything backwards – it’s adherents believe we’ll go back to the plow, like elton john, while we’re barrelling ahead with technological marvels like never before.

    Re the ongoing debate over solar and other renewables, see technologyreview.com/news/523251/new-battery-material-could-help-wind-and-solar-power-go-big/

    kontrahend

    • Janos Skorenzy October 10, 2014 at 2:23 pm #

      Yes, but will those marvels be open to all? Will the wealth be shared? It doesn’t seem like they will be. What kind of person doesn’t have a problem with that?

  112. contrahend October 10, 2014 at 12:54 pm #

    er, “its” (yeah, Q, i know)

    kontrahend

  113. BackRowHeckler October 10, 2014 at 1:23 pm #

    OK then, stick to the subject.

    But what about the absolutely fab Dem Fundraiser at Gwen Paltrow’s house in Hollywood last night, $15,000 per plate, guest of honor President Obama himself.

    All the beautiful people were there, luminaries from the world of film and theatre. Oh, to bask in the presence of these Gods for just one moment.

    The President gave his little talk at just about the exact moment ISIS forces broke into the center of Kobani, raising the Black Flag and claiming the city as their own.

    A cynic would say why wasn’t he back at the White House monitering the situation in that beleagured city — after all we are at war — and maybe at the same time keeping an eye on the Ebola and virus 68 epidemics? Isn’t that the job he campaigned for, and what his is paid to do?

    –brh

  114. Janos Skorenzy October 10, 2014 at 3:05 pm #

    Ebola will spread all over the world unless travel from those West African countries is curtailed. But that would be raciss because those people are Black! And it’s also raciss to close the borders ever for any reason whasoever.

    Does reason and commonsense have a chance against these toxic memes and the maniacs who chant and scream them? We’ve become a Civilization of bug chasers, no better than those poor souls who try to get AIDS.

    • Cold N. Holefield October 10, 2014 at 3:15 pm #

      I’m waiting for Rug a dug dug three men in pub man to come along and tell us Ebola is a disease of peace like Islam is a religion of peace. If he does, he has a point about Ebola at least. If the majority of the human population perishes, peace will reign.

      Maybe Ebola is the vaunted and long-awaited Second Coming. Who said Christ had to come back as a human? It is said we wouldn’t know the time and place (he would come like a thief in the night), but perhaps we also wouldn’t, and won’t, know the form.

      • BackRowHeckler October 10, 2014 at 5:21 pm #

        Yeah, the more heads that get cut off and the more Christian women raped and eviscerated, the more I hear about the Religion of Peace. It never fails.

        And I’d like to take this opportunity right now to tell Ben Affleck to shut the f-ck up. Nobody gives a shit what you have to say you stupid son of a bitch. Let somebody else write your lines; just read the gaddam script.

        brh

      • Janos Skorenzy October 10, 2014 at 7:05 pm #

        Ebola as Christ? Your conservative values overwhelm me. Evidently the Free Market is your god – and what a fickle god it is.

  115. pkrugman October 10, 2014 at 4:04 pm #

    “There is a malicious plan behind your ‘need’ for immigration, and we all know what that is. Grow up. I’d laff but it ain’t particularly fanni.” –Contrahend

    What “malicious plan”? What “need”? It is not about “need” or “want”; it is about acknowledging the reality of 11 million illegal immigrants.

    How you react is up to you: CFN can rant and rave about “open borders” (without offering any proof).

    I welcome all immigrants, legal and illegal. I enjoy their cultural diversity, eat the ethnic food at immigrants’ restaurants, feel Christian moral platitudes, and give thanks for immigrant growth contributions to our society, our economy and to the millions on social security.

    I choose to accept reality. I don’t dream about closing the borders (which is impossible and unreal) or deporting 11 million immigrants (which is impossible and unreal).

    I accept reality and welcome immigrants.

    In fact, accepting reality and making the best of what reality presents could be considered a sign of being grown up. Live and let live. Stop worrying about others. Stop worrying about where others choose to live.

  116. contrahend October 10, 2014 at 4:23 pm #

    Yes, but will those marvels be open to all? Will the wealth be shared? It doesn’t seem like they will be. What kind of person doesn’t have a problem with that?

    I’m open to sharing all the wealth with everyone, even well behaved minorities.

    kontrahend

    • Janos Skorenzy October 10, 2014 at 6:43 pm #

      Great! That means an end to the way our Industries are structured. Either we choose full employment and/or people get a stipend, a share in the wealth of the nation as Switzerland was contemplating. Don’t know how the vote went though.

      In some ways, I’d prefer a World Made by Hand to this kind of lotus eater life. But of course it’s better than starving on the streets and again, people will still be able to work if they can find it. And a job will be more of a status symbol than ever in addition to the extra income. The best of all possible worlds would be a combination of these as some science fiction stories have portrayed. A star ship comes to what seems to be a fairly primitive place. But the longer they stay, the more they realize that the natives are very sophisticated and have advanced technology for certain purposes. They merely choose to live simply because it’s more pleasurable, healthier, and easier on the planet.

  117. MisterDarling October 10, 2014 at 5:36 pm #

    re | Ebola

    ‘Nutmegger’ Panic:

    zerohedge.com/news/2014-10-10/public-health-emergency-declared-connecticut-over-ebola-civil-rights-s…

    It’s on… ;]

  118. Q. Shtik October 10, 2014 at 10:41 pm #

    It is said we wouldn’t know the time and place (he would come like a thief in the night – Cold N.
    =========

    That’s death, not Christ.

    • Cold N. Holefield October 10, 2014 at 11:08 pm #

      I think you need to go back and consult your pyramid again — it’s not perfect.

      biblehub.com/1_thessalonians/5-2.htm

      1 Now as to the times and the epochs, brethren, you have no need of anything to be written to you. 2 For you yourselves know full well that the day of the Lord will come just like a thief in the night. 3 While they are saying, “Peace and safety!” then destruction will come upon them suddenly like labor pains upon a woman with child, and they will not escape.…

      ~1 Thessalonians 5:2

      New Living Translation

      For you know quite well that the day of the Lord’s return will come unexpectedly, like a thief in the night.

      Methinks you need to head back to St. Joe’s for a refresher course. You should know better than to mess with me. You will always lose.

  119. Q. Shtik October 10, 2014 at 11:14 pm #

    or maybe if it’s large enough, you can sit in it as a form of Ebola therapy – Cold N.
    ============

    When I had built about 25 tiers I climbed inside thru the open top to take a picture of the inside. I could easily lie down with my feet and head at opposite corners (like NW to SE or SW to NE). The diagonal distance of a 6 ft square is about 8.5 feet.

  120. Q. Shtik October 10, 2014 at 11:26 pm #

    Brit and Aussie wannabes in America, like K-Dog, who will add the superfluous “u” in an effort to make themselves appear sophisticated. – Cold N
    ==========

    Cold, apparently you forget that when you appeared on the CFN scene as Carol Newquist you were affecting a Brit persona by consistently using the word whilst rather than while.

  121. Q. Shtik October 10, 2014 at 11:33 pm #

    Perhaps we humans should construct reverse shaped pyramids with the widest point at the top – Buck
    ==========

    I actually considered this but there are obvious stability issues.

    • Janos Skorenzy October 11, 2014 at 1:59 am #

      That’s what Democracy is: the complete reversal of all order and the maximization of instability. The upright Pyramid is the most stable of structures and logically, turning it upside down is the least stable.

      Kudos on you ID of Cold. I’ve been thinking the same – especially once he compared Christ to Ebola. He’s been posing as a Conservative up to this point.

      Maybe they were leaving room for a group of Leaders at the top. The Pyramids of Central America were flat topped.

  122. Q. Shtik October 10, 2014 at 11:53 pm #

    Janos, I forgot to say ditto to Buck’s praise of your line: “They would open up a hot dog stand on top of the Great Pyramid”
    =========

    Kudos on a really great line, assuming you are its author.

    Speaking about the top of the Great Pyramid………that pyramid today has 201 tiers of stone block. Scientist have concluded that to come to a nice sharp point it should have 210 tiers but 9 tiers are missing. They are unsure if the pyramid was, in fact, completed. If it was, what became of those last nine tiers of huge stone blocks? So anyway, the Great Pyramid is somewhat flat way up there at its peak and could easily accommodate a hot dog stand. How the customers would get to it is another question.

    • Janos Skorenzy October 11, 2014 at 2:04 am #

      Thanks. I am the author and I’m surprised people like it. It seems to me like a throw away.

      Have you thought of writing a eulogy for your brother? It might help you deal with your grief and/or guilt. Or just a celebration of his life.

      Southern Blacks may be much better. Some have said as much. It might explain why Prog is so sanguine and intolerant of my intolerance. He hasn’t had to deal with our Northern (Midwestern, Western, Southwestern) Blacks.

    • BackRowHeckler October 11, 2014 at 2:12 am #

      Islamists in Egypt are seriously considering blowing up the Great Pyramids as well as the Sphinx. Its true. You didn’t hear about it on PBS? Over in Timbukto a bunch of historical stuff got blown up last year by raging muslims until French Paras came in and stopped the destruction, and ISIS has blown up sites in Iraq and Syria. Remember when the Taliban set explosives in that 1500 year old Buddhist statue carved into the side of a mountain in Afghanistan. It was a world historical site.

      –brh

      • stelmosfire October 11, 2014 at 8:55 am #

        Hey Marlin, I think I read somewhere on the internet( always true of course) that we want to rebuild those stone carvings that were destroyed. , on your dime !. After that we can use the “Sphinx” for target practice and rebuild that also! (Urban Legend).

        • BackRowHeckler October 11, 2014 at 9:39 am #

          Rip it was Napoleans troops who shot up the Sphinx.

          Hard to believe but the French took over Egypt for a little while at the beginning of the 19th century. They didn’t stay long.

          Just the boys having a little fun. Back in the day we used to hook up night vision to powerful binoculars while cruising off the coast of Havana, trying to see into windows.

          I’d like to actually visit Havana once the sclerotic Castros bite the dust and all the commies get booted out. How much longer can they last?

          –brh

    • stelmosfire October 11, 2014 at 9:01 am #

      I suppose the uber-rich could land a drone on top of the Great Pyramid of to pick up a Coney-Dog with chili after leaving the 200 ft. yacht in the Med.

  123. Cold N. Holefield October 11, 2014 at 8:19 am #

    Scientist have concluded ~ Q. Shtik

    That would be scientist’s, not scientist.

    Enjoy your window of opportunity to post here — when you get back to Jersey, if your story is true, you won’t be able to log on even using the method suggested.

    Maybe as your next project, you can construct a mud hut in honor of your nemesis. When should I expect my check in the mail? Janos indicated you should share the wealth — so we’re all waiting.

    • Q. Shtik October 11, 2014 at 8:58 am #

      Wrong Cold, it should have been scientists (plural) not scientist’s (possessive).

      Are you sure that Prog’s suggestion to unplug the modem for a day would not work to get me a new IP #?

      • stelmosfire October 11, 2014 at 9:02 am #

        Hey Q, unplug the modem, You will pick up a new IP address.

      • Cold N. Holefield October 11, 2014 at 9:35 am #

        Good catch, we were both wrong.

        I’m not certain it will not work, but I highly doubt it. It depends on your ISP. It doesn’t work with my ISP — I’ve had to find other ways. If you want to know those ways, email me and I will avail you of the tricks of the trade. I won’t cast pearls before eavesdropping swine.

        • progress4what October 11, 2014 at 9:55 am #

          There are also IP spoofer programs. They look a little complicated.

          If that’s really you, Q, you could consider writing JHK and asking to be readmitted to this “inner sanctum of wisdom,” also known as the CFN comment thread. (minor sarc on/off)

  124. Cold N. Holefield October 11, 2014 at 9:43 am #

    I actually considered this but there are obvious stability issues.

    You should have done some more research and put the pyramid to productive use until it came time to sprinkle your remains as fertilizer.

    Raised Bed Pyramid Planter Garden

  125. progress4what October 11, 2014 at 9:48 am #

    “Southern Blacks may be much better. Some have said as much. It might explain why Prog is so sanguine and intolerant of my intolerance. He hasn’t had to deal with our Northern (Midwestern, Western, Southwestern) Blacks.” – janos –

    Yeah. You may be onto something. I’ve been all over the world, and in all sorts of crazy situations. More to the point, I’ve been all over the southeastern US. And I’ve been all over Atlanta all my life, often with my wife and kids in tow.

    And I never worried about trouble or crime from blacks – certainly not any more than I did from any other group. But then, sometime in the 1990’s I realized that it was time to start to be more cautious. If I had to give a date when things turned wrong for inner city blacks it would be the time of the Reginald Denney/Rodney King riots.

    I guess everyone has seen the American flag being burned in St. Louis/Ferguson. We may be heading to a bad place.

  126. themisanthrope October 11, 2014 at 9:55 am #

    “There has never been a crazier moment in history.”

    I’m sure there must have been, but this one is quite likely in the top ten. And my, what a mountain of defecation is about to hit the ventilation when the smoke clears and the mirrors crack.

  127. progress4what October 11, 2014 at 10:05 am #

    If the US has widespread race riots, history will show that the Worst President in American History directly contributed.

    He could have said to Trayvon’s supporters, “We don’t always like the results, but we will accept this jury’s verdict, because we are Americans.”

    He could now be saying, “The US DoJ under the personal supervision of Eric (he’s black, you know?) Holder has investigated, and we expect ALL the American people to peacefully respect the rule of law in Ferguson, St. Louis, and America – especially if the grand jury fails to indict.”

    Instead, Pres. Obama is giving us a simpering sort of race baiting.

    Yeah – this may not end in a good place for anyone.

    • BackRowHeckler October 11, 2014 at 11:48 am #

      This is what everybody voted for.

      What the hell did they think was going to happen?

      Unbelievably Al Sharpton seems to be the main consultant on issues of race and never ending grievances.

      brh

      • Therian October 12, 2014 at 2:17 pm #

        Sharpton has lost half his body weight but still has a gigantic head leaving him with the appearance of a space alien. Al “I’ll let you wire me if I narc on my friends in exchange for dropped charges” Sharpton is a whore.

        The government let Sharpton off re his mafia ties when they wired him when he met with his Italian friends.

        As Peter Sellers once said: “You can get anyone swim in shit if you throw a few bob in it.” The ethos of the day is to be a crook and to sell out your crook cronies for a suitable price.

    • Buck Stud October 11, 2014 at 2:47 pm #

      I’m pretty sure the person presiding over a current 5.9% unemployment rate and 250,000 plus additional jobs a month is not “the Worst President in American History.” That tag might be better applied to the person who presided over 500,000 job losses per month right before “The Worst President in American History” put a stop to massive job loss and near catastrophic economic collapse.

      Yes the current president is dealing with the Iraq/Afghan mess but he also orchestrated legislation that makes it illegal for medical insurance companies to enact cap limits and per-existing condition clauses on American citizens.

      In other words, President Obama has lifted America into the lofty company of more civilized and advanced countries despite the protestations of right wing barbarians and their philistine foot soldiers who never view defense budget as too inflated but always a social safety net as too high.

      • Janos Skorenzy October 11, 2014 at 3:02 pm #

        Delusion of extraordinary vintage and purity. Buck: the economic figures are complete fantasy. They don’t count people who have been unemployed for a long time. The work force has been shrunk so the unemployment figure is kept under 8%. The real figure is well over 20%. As Mr Kunstler said, unemployment is down but employment isn’t up.

        Meanwhile Republicans envy the Bucks of the world – they want to have the Black Prince experience too! They want to prove that they can be cool kids too. Enter Dr Ben Carson. They have to vote for him to prove they aren’t Raciss.

        A plague on both their houses.

        • Buck Stud October 11, 2014 at 7:05 pm #

          Back in the Fall of 2008 a certain blogger predicted that we ‘wouldn’t recognize our towns by Christmas”, that’s how bad and dire things looked.

          And here we are in the Fall of 2014 and things look quite good in many places, in fact too good.

          Take Denver, for example. Real estate/the housing market has exploded to the point that only a certain class of people can afford to live in the formerly charming working class neighborhoods.

          The gentrification dynamic is in full swing and the scum architects/developers are tearing down old Victorians and replacing them with George Jetson condos and selling them for big bucks. Ugly boxes and people are buying them.

          The point being that only a completely delusional type believes that 2014 is in the same state of utter decline as Fall 2008. Or that unemployment is basically worse or the same.

          Even with an overall decline there will be upswings and once again to deny movement in this regard is to willingly wear blinders and engage in generic, cliche analysis.

          The major problem with the economy now is the result of the Reagan Revolution:money pooling and stagnating at the top (hardly an economic pyramid dynamic). And people like you and BRH sanctioned this reverse trickle up by virtue of the politicians you supported . In your delusional world it’s the ‘minorities on welfare’ who are bleeding the country dry.

          People like BRH want George C. Scott as Patton at the helm. They want Knute Rockne and Vince Lombardi pep talks couched in the posture of American Exceptionalism. In other words, stereotypical American bombast symbolized by the ‘free swinging’ American Olympic team running riot in the Opening Ceremonies. They want THEATER.

          They didn’t then and don’t know, want the considered and constrained mentality of a Jimmy Carter; those guys are weak, wimpy losers.

      • BackRowHeckler October 11, 2014 at 5:04 pm #

        Oh ya, all the disasters are someone else’s fault, not the Messiah’s fault. Don’t blame him.

        Let’s see, when’s the next $50,000 per plate celeb showbiz DNC/LBGT fundraiser? Unfortunately they seem to be scheduled on the day an airliner is shot out of the sky, when American Citizens are beheaded, when major ME cities are overrun by ISIS fanatics. Again, not the fault of the Messiah, who is blameless.

        brh

        • Buck Stud October 11, 2014 at 6:36 pm #

          Lol. It’s amazing how some people –you BRH!–will twist statements/points completely out of context.

          If you’ll carefully read what I read I simply stated that President Obama is not the worst president ever; that that distinction could be better applied to his predecessor: you know that person presiding over 500,000 lost jobs per month and the one who set the whole Iraqi thing in motion—recall those missing WMD’s BRH?

          But from that you leap into the assertion that I think Obama a messiah, which is patently ridiculous.

      • Therian October 12, 2014 at 2:23 pm #

        The U3 unemployment rate isn’t the stat that even BLS officials believe in … i know one. The Labor Force Participation Rate just made a fresh 37-year low.

        Obamacare, even to its supporters has proven to screw as many people as it helps.

        Meanwhile, unlike any recession in US history, there’s been virtually zero debt unwinding: a trivial positive improvement among consumers and staggering increases in debt at the municipal, state, and Federal levels.

        You can’t cherrypick any old phony stats you feel like just because you actually think the guy is a good President. He’s another mediocretin in a long line of mediocretins.

  128. Q. Shtik October 11, 2014 at 10:11 am #

    Have you thought of writing a eulogy for your brother? – Janos
    ==========

    Yes, I have. It would be the 3rd eulogy I’ve written this year. My M-I-L died 4/30/14. I delivered a 20 minute “brief history” of her life at a memorial service. I wrote another one for my S-I-L who died on the 4th of July. My wife and one son felt it was far too caustic and demeaning so I turned the project over to my son who used only “the good parts” of it and delivered the speech. My brother is an entirely different matter. He has lived like a hermit doing all in his power to make himself invisible to the world. His death certificate says he died on Sept 22nd (the day his body was found) but I am able to say with certainty (because of his meticulous record keeping on his computer and other personal habits that were as regular as the movement of the planets) that he died within an 8-hour window either late on 9/16 or early on 9/17.

    • Cold N. Holefield October 11, 2014 at 10:34 am #

      Is Ebola a “natural cause?” Are you certain he didn’t have Ebola? Did he have a Liberian housekeeper? Did he play chess? Inquiring minds want to know.

      • Q. Shtik October 11, 2014 at 7:23 pm #

        An external only autopsy was performed. In layman’s terms he died of hardening of the arteries. Odd since he

        • Cold N. Holefield October 11, 2014 at 7:38 pm #

          Is this a complete the sentence exercise? Good, I like these kind of games. I’ll give it a shot.

          Odd since he … was a vegan and was fastidious about his health.

        • Q. Shtik October 11, 2014 at 7:57 pm #

          continued:

          thought of himself as a health nut, took all sorts of vitamins etc (but got next to no exercise over the past decade or so).

          As to a Liberian housekeeper…he had no housekeeper Liberian or otherwise. When the detective called me I asked about the condition of his home. He said it was extremely dusty, cobwebs etc. Well, that was an understatement. When my wife and I entered the home we were appalled to see what I estimate to be 20 years of dust settled on everything. This would coincide with the period in early 1995 when my/our mother fell and broke her hip (she lived with him) and spent 7 months in a nursing home where she eventually died. I think my brother ceased all effort at maintaining a clean house. Everything was exactly as it was when I was last there 19 years ago except it was covered in a two-decade layer of dust. Even his plush desk chair was covered in dust except where his body touched the chair.

          Re chess, about 10-15 years ago he went through a fanatical chess phase, playing against the computer. Why do you mention chess??

          My brother had two obsessions, the stock market and health. Virtually every book in his possession was on these two subjects. Concerning the market, I would guess his purpose was to run up the largest net worth figure he could without a care in the world about actually spending the money on something (although earlier this year he spent $5,500 on dental work and over $400 on new glasses). I think he knew that one day it would all fall into my hands and by extension the hands of my kids and grand kids and this would be his legacy.

          • Cold N. Holefield October 11, 2014 at 8:35 pm #

            I think to honor his generosity, you should place his ashes in the pyramid to await your’s and your wife’s. It’s the least you could do.

            How come your mother didn’t stay with you in her latter years/days? Your M-I-L did.

            It was probably your children he was thinking about more than you. The dental work tells me he thought he still had plenty of life in him — another ten years at least. That would put you in your mid eighties and approaching death if you didn’t pass before then, so it couldn’t have been you he was thinking of but rather your children. It’s still a sweet gesture either way.

            I wish I had an uncle like that — one I didn’t have to ever see or visit, but he left me a fortune. Perhaps you can honor the sentiment of his gesture by not spending it all in Vegas and leave the majority of it to the kids. You made it this far happily without it, so you can make it the rest of the way happily without most of it.

            Instant wealth can unravel relationships quickly. Hopefully you don’t find yourself divorced in several years and estranged from your children because of this small fortune. Just ask some big lottery winners, they’ll tell you.

    • Janos Skorenzy October 11, 2014 at 2:49 pm #

      You might want to read this Tom Wolfe novel about race in Miami.

      counter-currents.com/2014/10/tom-wolfes-back-to-blood-2012/#more-50086

      Wolfie knows that the White Race is dying, but as a Bush style Republican, it doesn’t seem to bother him too much. As long as you have money you can stay above the fray. And any lingering guilt is easily dealt with by a drink or two. And besides, the White lower classes were horrible anyway. So what if they all turn brown? It will make them dumber and easier to deal with. The top 3% are the real Whites.

  129. Cold N. Holefield October 11, 2014 at 10:32 am #

    Instead, Pres. Obama is giving us a simpering sort of race baiting.

    Obama is certainly playing his part as is/was Holder but it’s all part of The Game. The Game involves unleashing the hounds of chaos and running with them for as long as you can. It’s great fun, unless you’re the one in the path of those hounds, then it’s not so fun (think the people of Liberia, Eastern Ukraine and Kobane).

    When I was a young experimental arsonist, some neighborhood friends and I used to like to start forest fires and see how far we could let them burn before putting them out in the nick of time. One time, it went too far, and we were not able to put it out in the nick of time. The fire department was called out and had to extinguish the fire before it engulfed the entire woods and neighborhood. I got my ass beat, rightfully so. I didn’t do fires after that — I/we learned my/our lesson.

    When we lit the fires, we were running/dancing with chaos and the thrill of danger and testing boundaries of control was thrilling and exhilarating. You never felt more alive. We learned there were severe implications and consequences to that behavior, and modified it accordingly. We became our own prison wardens and guards as we acquiesced to the ball and chain that is Civilization. The primal beast within us was smothered, and forever thereafter we’ve increasingly lived in the abstract.

    With The Game, there are no lessons learned because The Game must go on. The key is to keep playing for as long as you can, but chaos has a way of turning on you and biting you on the ass or smashing you into the pavement eventually. Those who play The Game well, are adept at avoiding the worst implications of chaos unleashed, so it begs the question; Will their lucky streak ever run its course? If it does, the rest of us will be collateral damage as always for we are mere game pieces despite our delusions about our place and purpose to the contrary.

  130. FincaInTheMountains October 11, 2014 at 5:00 pm #

    Three Russian Ebola vaccines ready within six months

    news.yahoo.com/three-russian-ebola-vaccines-ready-within-six-months-161606916.html

    Moscow (AFP) – Russia expects to produce three Ebola vaccines within the next six months, Health Minister Veronika Skvortsova said on Saturday.

    “We have created three vaccines… and we think they will be ready in the next six months,” the minister said on Rossiya 1 television.

    “One of them is already ready for a clinical trial,” she said.

    • Cold N. Holefield October 11, 2014 at 7:43 pm #

      Wow, wouldn’t it be an honor to line up to be the first one or one of the first ones to try out these new Russian vaccines? I mean, what could go wrong, right? Ever heard of Thalidomide? These experimental vaccines could make the Thalidomide experiment look like a walk in the park. In several years there could be Russian babies born with hands growing out of their heads and heads growing out of their asses.

      • FincaInTheMountains October 11, 2014 at 8:48 pm #

        As usual, you always look at the bright side, Cold. Thanks for your optimism.

        But actually, Russia has a successful track record of fighting various pandemics.

  131. FincaInTheMountains October 11, 2014 at 5:22 pm #

    Old school friend of mine, phd in microbiology, during the US shock-therapy of Russian economy (looting) during 90s was forced to make his living as a cab driver in Moscow, until he got a job in National Institute of Health (NIH) in Maryland.
    He came visit me in Chicago in early 2000 and I could never understand his bitterness regarding US. Now I do.

  132. BackRowHeckler October 11, 2014 at 7:48 pm #

    Earlier today Secretary Hagel, in a speech in Chile, stated to his audience that Baghdad is in no danger of falling to ISIS, who right at this moment are operating in the near suburbs and launching attacks on the airport.

    I think its time to begin worrying about Baghdad.

    –brh

    • Cold N. Holefield October 11, 2014 at 8:23 pm #

      I think they’re banking on the Shia majority making a strong stand. We’ll see. Don’t forget, the Sunni IS/ISIS/ISIL hates the Shia and will destroy them if they can. If the Shia don’t make a stand, they will be slaughtered. That slaughter could be in the tens of thousands and perhaps the hundreds of thousands.

      As far as worrying, I have no worry left for that part of the world, if I ever had any worry for it. Let’s say Baghdad falls to IS/ISIS/ISIL and there is a significant slaughtering of the Shia — what effect does that have on our daily lives? No effect, really. Iraq’s oil production has never reached its full potential and has always been paltry. As I’ve mentioned, it’s as though it’s a giant strategic reserve, and it would appear it’s plausible that’s been by design.

      This is interesting and it hasn’t gotten much Western media coverage. I wonder why?

      Saudi Arabia bans Ebola-stricken countries from hajj pilgrimage

      • BackRowHeckler October 11, 2014 at 10:14 pm #

        CH, don’t you think if Baghdad went down it would have a similar effect as the ignonimous retreat from Saigon in1975? We have a lot invested in Iraq, like it or not. It took a long time for this country to recover from Viet Nam, if it ever really did.

        Also, if a genocide should begin, would the US stand by and let it happen? There would be tremendous pressure to intervene. I recently watched the film, Hotel Rwanda, with Don Cheadle.

        –brh

        • Janos Skorenzy October 11, 2014 at 11:28 pm #

          We have to stop investing in losing propositions like this. If they wont even defend their own country, why should we? Obviously what we built in South Vietnam and Northern Iraq wasn’t viable at all.

          If a genocide began, perhaps it would finally awaken people to what Islam is.

          • Being There October 12, 2014 at 10:08 am #

            We will never stop “investing” in these losers because there’s a handful of gainers for whom this is being done. They are the privatized war contractors and monopolies who are waging a financial war with no competition throughout the world.

            Vietnam was a good model for Monsanto, GE, Dow and many others….

            Why do you think I hate globalism?

            It’s a war by other means. I always say this system is neoliberal and neoconservative offering the world the one-two punch of military and financial destruction to syphon the money out of all nations.

            We are in a world war whether people understand that or not and it goes round and round. Whenever an economy looks strong, we get them into borrowing and then we use the IMF to collect on the debt.

            We do regime change using the “humanitarian bombing” from the Dems and the Neoconservative bombing from the Republicans. In the end it’s all the same regardless of the magic words and set-ups they use to get their agenda in motion.

            All our endeavors using the tax mules for money are designed to be losers. They don’t think more than 3 months ahead, cuz we’re all on Wall Street time.

        • Buck Stud October 12, 2014 at 11:08 am #

          Yes just like some fighters never recover from being knocked out: Mike Tyson by Buster Douglass for example.

          But the hubris and delusion is on full display when the BHR school of foreign policy asserts that there is no war the U.S. cannot win. But some some wars are not winnable and the Vietnam conflict was one of those wars. Ditto for Iraq.

          Yes our military is dominant in actual battle but the occupation phase is the fly in the ointment.

          Why don’t you comprehend that? For instance, do you really think the U.S. could invade Russia and carry the day? I know, you believe we might fail because of limp-wristed gay military members. But that’s delusional bullshit too.

          How long do you think the U.S. military would really last patrolling the streets of Moscow, or god forbid, Beijing?

          Just as so many here cite the limitations of resources there are also military limitations and yet you seem to believe there is an endless supply of military capability and will to be imposed on the rest of the world

          Yes defeat can be devastating and the aftermath equally lingering. Unfortunately and now more than ever, war is about business and profit for the weapon makers and private contractors. Thus the pragmatism of choosing one’s battles wisely is thrown out the window. Until of course, the Mike Tyson of Nations steps into the ring once too often and gets tagged with a career ending punch.

  133. contrahend October 11, 2014 at 9:36 pm #

    I think its time to begin worrying about Baghdad.

    Man oh man, why the hell would you worry about that? It doesn’t exist for you, for all intents and purposes.

    That part of the world is a piece of worthless shit, if you discount oil. What have those motherfuckers contributed to humanity, besides nothing (don’t tell me about the 1300s)?

    There are cultures that are worth something, and there are cultures that are worth very little, perhaps virtually nothing.

    kontrahend

    • nsa October 11, 2014 at 11:37 pm #

      There are 196 countries on the planet. We here in Ft. Meade overtly rule about 160 of them. Hell, the PM of our canadian colony can’t flush his toilet without calling us for permission. We here in Ft. Meade achieved full spectrum dominance some 20 years ago……which should be evident to even the dimmest of you sheeple……

  134. progress4what October 12, 2014 at 4:01 pm #

    “If you’ll carefully read what I read I simply stated that President Obama is not the worst president ever; that that distinction could be better applied to his predecessor:” – buckstud –

    Buck, you misread my original post that started all of this. I’ll repeat:

    “”If the US has widespread race riots, history will show that the Worst President in American History directly contributed.” – p4c –

    I made no mention of economics, military force projection, or anything else of any other nature. My post concerned Pres. Obama and race riots – and that alone.

    He (Obama) was elected by many hopeful and well-intentioned people (including yours truly in ’08, not ’12) to be president of ALL the people.

    I believed the hype at first, about a post-racial president for a post-racial America. What a bunch of lies and bull SHIT. No president EVER, in the history of ever, has done more to emphasize his own race and to exacerbate racial tensions in the US.

    If Obama cared about race relations, he would have spoken to the fact that the US had elected a black pres. and that the backers of Trayvon and the black residents of Ferguson should learn to accept jury verdicts and (future) grand jury decisions NOT to indict.

    If Obama cared about the economic fate of native born African-Americans he and his democrats would be doing something to reduce numbers of illegal AND legal immigrants who directly compete with that demographic for jobs and housing.

    Sounds of crickets from Obama. Worse than that, active killing of crickets before they can chip, to torture the metaphor.

    Maybe we won’t have race riots after Ferguson that set the country back 20 years so that it never recovers. I truly hope not.

    But, if we do – Pres. Obama will go down in history as the ONE president who deliberately lit the fires.

  135. pkrugman October 13, 2014 at 1:09 am #

    “No president EVER, in the history of ever, has done more to emphasize his own race and to exacerbate racial tensions in the US.” –P4W on Obama

    ”I think one man is just as good as another so long as he’s not a nigger or a Chinaman. Uncle Will says that the Lord made a white from dust, a black from mud, then He threw up what was left and it came down a Chinaman.” –Harry Truman

    • progress4what October 13, 2014 at 8:30 am #

      Wow, RI, you’re outdoing yourself.
      Harry Truman said that in 1911 – I didn’t bother to check the context.
      It showed up on a website dedicated to dumb things Democrats say.

      Wasn’t Truman the guy who desegregated the armed forces?

      Obama is the guy spreading mistrust of the legal system in the Ferguson and Trayvon cases.

      New post up from JHK. Why don’t you stay on this one this week?

  136. Civility118 October 13, 2014 at 6:04 am #

    Jim – Your links are broken to your archived articles.

    One of my favorites is History Is Not Your Therapist (8/2011). That and many others which I tried today and a month ago lead to a message like:

    Fatal error: Unknown: Cannot use output buffering in output buffering display handlers in Unknown on line 0

    or if I’m logged in, “Error 404 Page Not Found

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    […] Must Be the Season of the Witch youtube.com/watch?v=Nm3yKy1hL1M "The color in which the whole of the 'Modern Mind' is dyed is essentially stupidity." Hilaire Belloc Reply With Quote […]

  6. "There Has Never Been A Crazier Moment In History" - Techhic - October 7, 2014

    […] Submitted by James H Kunstler via Kunstler.com, […]

  7. Wall Street National | Short people cash in as Apple beckons ahead of the ‘Zombie Apocalypse’ - October 7, 2014

    […] “There has never been a crazier moment in history. The weeks before the outbreak of the First World War seem like a garden party compared to the morbid antics of these darkening days. America, you’ve been wishing fervently for the Zombie Apocalypse. What happens when you discover you can’t just change the channel?” — James Howard Kunstler, in an epic rant of a blog post. […]

  8. 2014.10.08 the season of fading light | Brain Noise - October 8, 2014

    […] It’s more than being unfortunate that as we get into the autumn season of 2014, we’re in circumstances where it seems like as a whole, we’re a people incapable of telling ourselves the truth, to borrow a neat summary from James Kunstler. […]

  9. Need to Know: Short people cash in as Apple beckons ahead of the ‘Zombie Apocalypse’ - October 9, 2014

    […] “There has never been a crazier moment in history. The weeks before the outbreak of the First World War seem like a garden party compared to the morbid antics of these darkening days. America, you’ve been wishing fervently for the Zombie Apocalypse. What happens when you discover you can’t just change the channel?” — James Howard Kunstler, in an epic rant of a blog post. […]

  10. Kunstler on the Coming Rage | Under Siege - October 12, 2014

    […] From James Howard Kunstler: […]

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