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Shake me, wake me!

     The rot moves from the margins to the center, but the disease moves from the center to the margins. That is what has happened in the realm of money in recent weeks due to the sustained mispricing of the cost of credit by central banks, led by the US Federal Reserve. Along the way, that outfit has managed to misprice just about everything else  — stocks, houses, exotic securities, food commodities, precious metals, fine art. Oil is mispriced as well, on the low side, since oil production only gets more expensive and complex these days while it depends more on mispriced borrowed money. That situation will be corrected by scarcity, as oil companies discover that real capital is unavailable. And then the oil will become scarce. The “capital” circulating around the globe now is a squishy, gelatinous substance called “liquidity.” All it does is gum up markets. But eventually things do get unstuck.

     Meanwhile, the rot of epic mispricing expresses itself in collapsing currencies and the economies they are supposed to represent: India, Turkey, Argentina, Hungary so far. Italy, Spain, and Greece would be in that club if they had currencies of their own. For now, they just do without driving their cars and burn furniture to stay warm this winter. Automobile use in Italy is back to 1970s levels of annual miles-driven. That’s quite a drop.

     Before too long, the people will be out in the streets engaging with the riot police, as in Ukraine. This is long overdue, of course, and probably cannot be explained rationally since extreme changes in public sentiment are subject to murmurations, the same unseen forces that direct flocks of birds and schools of fish that all at once suddenly turn in a new direction without any detectable communication.

     Who can otherwise explain the amazing placidity of the sore beset American public, beyond the standard trope about bread, circuses, and superbowls? Last night they were insulted with TV commercials hawking Maserati cars. Behold, you miserable nation of overfed SNAP card swipers, the fruits of wealth and celebrity! Savor your unworthiness while you await the imminent spectacles of the Sochi Olympics and Oscar Night! Things at the margins may yet interrupt the trance at the center. My guess is that true wickedness brews unseen in the hidden, unregulated markets of currency and interest rate swaps.

     The big banks are so deep in this derivative ca-ca that eyeballs are turning brown in the upper level executive suites. Notable bankers are even jumping out of windows, hanging themselves in back rooms, and blowing their brains out in roadside ditches. Is it not strange that there are no reports on the contents of their suicide notes, if they troubled to leave one? (And is it not unlikely that they would all exit the scene without a word of explanation?) One of these, William Broeksmit, a risk manager for Deutsche Bank, was reportedly engaged in “unwinding positions” for that that outfit, which holds over $70 trillion in swap paper. For scale, compare that number with Germany’s gross domestic product of about $3.4 trillion and you could get a glimmer of the mischief in motion out there. Did poor Mr. Broeksmit despair of his task? 

     Physicist Stephen Hawking declared last week that black holes are not exactly what people thought they were. Stuff does leak back out of them. This will soon be proven in the unwinding derivatives trades when most of the putative wealth associated with swaps and such disappears across the event horizon of bad faith, and little dribbles of their prior existence leak back out in bankruptcy proceedings and political upheaval.

     The event horizon of bad faith is the exact point where the credulous folk of this modern age, from high to low, discover that their central banks only pretend to be regulating agencies, that they ride a juggernaut of which nobody is really in control. The illusion of control has been the governing myth since the Lehman moment in 2008. We needed desperately to believe that the authorities had our backs. They don’t even have their own fronts.

     Is the money world at that threshold right now? One thing seems clear: nobody is able to turn back the plummeting currencies. They go where they will and their failures must be infectious as the greater engine of world trade seizes up. Who will write the letters of credit that make international commerce possible? Who will trust whom? When do people seriously start to starve and reach for the pitchforks? When does the action move from Kiev to London, New York, Frankfurt, and Paris?

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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.

283 Responses to “Shake me, wake me!” Subscribe

  1. iL355C4r February 3, 2014 at 9:28 am #

    Just a quick note:

    I think one reason folks aren’t all that wound up about “$MONEY$” is because there isn’t anything any one of us normal people can do about any of it, and quite honestly, a whole lot of us are pretty well sick and tired of hearing about it, as it’s a pointless, and meaningless exercise to even waste any emotional energy on it.

    I, -for one- would really love to see folks talking about what real people are doing and a whole lot less whinging about what ‘the fed’ is doing, because honestly, up there at that stratospheric level, ‘the fed” et al, cares not a damned thing about anything other than this fiction called “$MONEY$”. And telling us that they dont’ care isn’t really telling us anything we don’t already know.

    Just say’n.

    Keep up the good work, I do enjoy this blog.

    • CancelMyCard February 3, 2014 at 11:34 am #

      Throughout history, money, in whatever form it takes, has always been a matter of faith . . . faith in its imputed value. Whether seashells, tally sticks, wampum, metal coinage, or whatever, the imputed value of the money is completely dependent upon the public’s belief of its worth.

      When this belief is tied to objects of scarcity (gold, and to a lesser extent, silver, are rare and expensive to mine) there is at least a presumption that they cannot be devalued simply by replication. However, when paper representation of those objects came into existence, those constraints were removed, and paper could be printed at will. Numerous examples exist where entire nations’ economies have been destroyed by exactly this methodology.

      However, now, even tangible paper currency has been virtually supplanted by electronic data . . . as ephemeral as an illusion. Nothing backs any currency today other than a belief in the “full faith and credit” of the sovereign issuer.

      And, with a sufficient tipping point, beliefs can be destroyed overnight. The worlds currencies have become bloated balloons, with nothing more than lukewarm air support them, and the tiniest of needles is all that is needed to collapse the entire scheme.

      That needle is approaching with relentless determination.

      • pigfarmer February 3, 2014 at 3:17 pm #

        What you say:

        http://www.macrobusiness.com.au/2011/05/overruled/

        • jimofolym February 3, 2014 at 5:07 pm #

          I noticed today that a year ago the Canadian dollar was ‘worth’ $1.01 US. Today it’s around$1.11. Evidently we are slipping in comparison with our northern neighbor. Canadians are traveling to the Northern US to buy groceries and gasoline. Interesting, no?

    • Tim February 3, 2014 at 5:45 pm #

      Please check out Mike Maloney’s Hidden secrets of Money video series, especially episode 4. Some of the things he suggests are things that you can do.

      And Jim has suggested a thing or two too.

      For now we’ll likely have to do those things largely on our own, though, it seems.

    • BDI February 3, 2014 at 9:31 pm #

      So what do you propose? Burying your head in the shifting grains of deceit until all the sand caves in your face?

  2. rube-i-con February 3, 2014 at 9:30 am #

    Before too long, the people will be out in the streets engaging with the riot police, as in Ukraine.

    major LOL, how many times have we heard this from you, jimmy?

    greece
    france
    brasil
    sweden haha

    jim, for such a smart guy, you’re batting .063 at the predictions plate

    peace peaceniks

    • K-Dog February 3, 2014 at 10:14 am #

      Last night in Seattle people out in the streets did not engaging with the police. They were happy. But the crowds were large and the riot gear was at the ready, tucked away just outside of view. Nobody on the force had the day off. Good news bad news. Good news did not bake the riot cake but all the ingredients were ready. Your cornicopian delusions cannot last forever. Someday that gear will be used. America can’t live in its parents basement forever.

    • BDI February 4, 2014 at 8:49 am #

      Time is on his side…………..we don’t all live for immediate gratification…………..get real.

  3. Neon Vincent February 3, 2014 at 9:39 am #

    “Before too long, the people will be out in the streets engaging with the riot police, as in Ukraine. This is long overdue, of course, and probably cannot be explained rationally since extreme changes in public sentiment are subject to murmurations, the same unseen forces that direct flocks of birds and schools of fish that all at once suddenly turn in a new direction without any detectable communication.”

    It’s been a while since you mentioned murmurations. The last time you did so, you also mentioned trust horizons, which made me recall black holes, something you also mentioned this week. While I wonder what connection you might see between the two concepts that prompted you to use them together, I can’t help but praise you for doing so. As I’m an environmentalist, I’ll recycle what I wrote two years ago.

    “I like the concepts of trust horizon and murmuration, as they connect me to my scientific roots. Trust horizon recalls event horizon, something that marks the surface of a black hole. If we hit the event horizon, then we’ll be sucked into the black hole with no escape. Of course, the center of a black hole is a singularity, so I suspect you don’t want to extend the metaphor that far! As for murmuration, that’s an even better one, as I’m an amateur astronomer, but a professional biologist who has studied animal behavior. Since humans are just a very smart social mammal, we shouldn’t be surprised at how our behavior reflects that of other social animals, including coordination of group behavior by murmuration. Thanks for adding those concepts to my vocabulary. I’ll be sure to blog about them and credit you for inspiring me.”

    You did inspire me, as I found a good example of a murmuration in the American public–doomsday prepping. Both Reuters and National Geographic found the topic worth covering then, and PBS found it worth covering again on the anniversary of Sandy’s landfall last year. The fake Mayan Apocalypse may have come and gone, but the preppers are still with us.

    http://crazyeddiethemotie.blogspot.com/2012/01/preppers-in-reuters-and-national.html

    http://crazyeddiethemotie.blogspot.com/2013/11/pbs-newshour-on-preppers.html

    Speaking of doomsday preppers, The Walking Dead returns this coming Sunday. I can hardly wait.

  4. devon44 February 3, 2014 at 9:46 am #

    Last week I found it interesting to read the earnings releases for Shell, Exxon and Chevron.

    In all three, their profits were down and they all but admitted that they are having a hard time keeping production at its current rates, much less increase it. They used somewhat opaque language, but it’s also clear that they aren’t discovering the ‘new deposits’ like they used to.

    The Crumble continues to accelerate!

  5. K-Dog February 3, 2014 at 10:02 am #

    We look upon the conspiratist as a madman but if wishing could make it so then I’d have us all go mad. Rot from the outside in, disease from the inside out. If there was a trembling maniac drooling and spinning a globe somewhere lost in childish dreams of grandeur somewhere perhaps we would all be better off for it. The sad truth of it all is that we are flotsam on a troubled sea and the rocks draws near. Soon the whitecaps will smash us to slivers and we have no captain to guide us away.

    Same as its always been some will say. But things never really stay the same. When we think things stay the same we are senseless to the slow rot that slowly takes away who we are and without us knowing changes us forever.

    Last night it was dancing in the streets in the emerald city, blue and green everywhere. The Sea-Chickens had the ass of the Denver Donkeys and the MVP got the keys to an enormous white Chevy truck. A short almost inconsequential moment in the circus, a mere formality of excess. Pioneer square was packed with people climbing on everything they could to wave 12th man flags and blue and green American flags. Young women screamed like Viking women a millennium ago screamed at hearing the news of a successful raid.

    Distraction from the rot. A first citizen will bring home the trophy Wednesday. It will be a day of mirth. Exuberance shall warm and drive away the chill of an advancing cold snap. More drinking and more rapturous shouts of joy from young women will ensue. But by week’s end the entropy of the all the released energy will dissipate and eventuate a feeling of chill as the frosty air wraps around bodies. One can’t party for ever and soon enough the furniture burned last night in the University District street bonfires will be seen as a foolish waste of treasured firewood.

  6. Greg Knepp February 3, 2014 at 10:05 am #

    “Murmurations” – a gem! The book of Exodus records God’s anger toward the Children of Isis-Ra-El due to their incessant “murmuring”. Apparently the authors(s) understood the potential destructive power of this “murmuring among the people” if left unanswered. The same murmuring appears in other sections of the OT – notably in Joshua – and always prior to some dire social discord. It can be likened to the low hiss of a lit fuse…not much in and of itself, but a portent of oncoming shock.

    “Murmurations” – a remarkable insight.

  7. Warren February 3, 2014 at 10:39 am #

    Mr. Kunstler:
    How about the proposed MyRa that will only buy T-BillsThis shows that the jig is up Obama is so desperate to sell government paper that no one else will buy, he is willing to sell out to the lemmings and sheeple who voted for him.
    And now the Dow is down again, the CBNC talking heads are (except for Santelli) talking about how it is a wonderful buying opportunity.

    • Warren February 3, 2014 at 10:46 am #

      That is sell out the lemmings, It will not be enough, too little too late,

      Next the Obama will offer a Tax “free” transfer from traditional IRAs into ROTH style MyRas, of course there will be a requirement that the IRAs will have to sell Stocks and Corporate Bonds and be solely invested in T-Bills, and this will probably proposed after a big drop in the DOW, so people will be encouraged to invest in the “safety” of T-Bills/

  8. Being There February 3, 2014 at 10:42 am #

    3 bankers found dead in a week. Is it suicide or is it retribution?

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-01-31/third-banker-former-fed-member-found-dead-inside-week

    • Warren February 3, 2014 at 10:47 am #

      It is a good start.

      • TravisB February 3, 2014 at 11:14 am #

        Not good. Good would be they see that they are living without integrity, on paths without heart, and then start.

  9. James Kuehl February 3, 2014 at 10:43 am #

    Another sharp essay today. Who would have thought our Rube Goldberg contraption of a culture could still chug along this far? Whatever is on the Internet is soon to be part of a pile of sparking rubble that was once a dazzling display of electronic wizardry collapsed under its own weight.

    Direct your affections elsewhere. I’m mocked as a Luddite because I don’t have a Facebook page, preferring instead to spend hours with tools, books, and music. By music I mean a 1910-era upright grand piano, a guitar, banjo, ukulele, set of harmonicas, and any number of percussion instruments. The digital world is a fart in the breeze. Gather up stories and songs while surrounding yourself with things you admire and care about. We’ve forgotten many of the great truths from the Paleolithic world. Maybe we’ll relearn them when all our precious wires go cold.

    • K-Dog February 3, 2014 at 2:39 pm #

      ” Who would have thought our Rube Goldberg contraption of a culture could still chug along this far?”

      Rubber cement, tire patches and chewing gum. We run out of natural gas so we frack. We use up the light sweet crude so we frack. We run in place doing the “Alice in Wonderland” red queen shuffle and leadership becomes an exercise in keeping things as they are without change regardless of cost or practicality. Our motion begins to recede as we try and run forward. And all this is seen as normal.

      • James Kuehl February 3, 2014 at 4:27 pm #

        Our new normal. I watched Sidney Lumet’s brilliant film “Network” a while back and it hit me how outrageous the portrayal of the reality TV looked then. Were we just oblivious, or have we become used to a new vulgarity?

        • jimofolym February 3, 2014 at 5:18 pm #

          Not only ‘used to a new vulgarity’ but probably a part of it, in spite of ourselves. Glad I killed my Tee Vee a while back. Things are rather peaceful around here, except that Kunstler guy keeps intruding into my mind….

          • K-Dog February 4, 2014 at 7:10 am #

            One of the best moments of my life (when I lived alone and had the freedom to do so) was to take my portable T.V., the only one I had and wrap the power cord vertically around it. Over the top, down the screen, across the bottom and up the backside. Looped around itself on the top and pulled tight. Then I put the thing on the floor of my bedroom closet screen against the back wall and said to myself. ‘I have a T.V. and if the president gets shot I know where it is.’ After that I proceeded to have a life.

            *****

            Program Director: Take 2, cue Howard.

            Beale: I don’t have to tell you things are bad. Everybody knows things are bad. It’s a depression. Everybody’s out of work or scared of losing their job. The dollar buys a nickel’s worth; banks are going bust; shopkeepers keep a gun under the counter; punks are running wild in the street, and there’s nobody anywhere who seems to know what to do, and there’s no end to it.

            We know the air is unfit to breathe and our food is unfit to eat. And we sit watching our TVs while some local newscaster tells us that today we had fifteen homicides and sixty-three violent crimes, as if that’s the way it’s supposed to be!

            We all know things are bad — worse than bad — they’re crazy.

            It’s like everything everywhere is going crazy, so we don’t go out any more. We sit in the house, and slowly the world we’re living in is getting smaller, and all we say is, “Please, at least leave us alone in our living rooms. Let me have my toaster and my TV and my steel-belted radials, and I won’t say anything. Just leave us alone.”

            Well, I’m not going to leave you alone.

            I want you to get mad!

            I don’t want you to protest. I don’t want you to riot. I don’t want you to write to your Congressman, because I wouldn’t know what to tell you to write. I don’t know what to do about the depression and the inflation and the Russians and the crime in the street.

            All I know is that first, you’ve got to get mad.

            You’ve gotta say, “I’m a human being, goddammit! My life has value!”

            So, I want you to get up now. I want all of you to get up out of your chairs. I want you to get up right now and go to the window, open it, and stick your head out and yell,

            “I’m as mad as hell,

            and I’m not going to take this anymore!!”

            *****

            And yes, part of the new vulgarity in spite of ourselves. But we try as hell not to be. And that makes all the difference.

          • K-Dog February 4, 2014 at 7:24 am #

            And that speech was from 1976 and now finally I pray we find the wisdom to get mad as hell and do something constructive with our anger. In the 80′s Reagan began micturating all over us. Greed became good and love of fellow man and any respect for our relationship to a greater whole went down the tubes. It is time to leave that era behind. get mad as hell, and put Bonzo to bed.

  10. George February 3, 2014 at 10:47 am #

    “The illusion of control has been the governing myth since the Lehman moment in 2008.”

    Was there ever any control, at least in any deterministic sense? The overriding myth is that there ever was any control. It’s rather like urban place making, at best you can set aside areas for those inhabitants who care enough about a place to trouble themselves to build a school or a public library at some distant point in the future. An urban planner who designates a plot for a school may be surprised years or decades later to see a notable civic structure wholly dedicated to some other function instead. You can’t determine the future but with care you can at least give it some space to happen.

    http://www.thesisa.org

  11. ozone February 3, 2014 at 10:48 am #

    ” Who can otherwise explain the amazing placidity of the sore beset American public, beyond the standard trope about bread, circuses, and superbowls? Last night they were insulted with TV commercials hawking Maserati cars. Behold, you miserable nation of overfed SNAP card swipers, the fruits of wealth and celebrity! Savor your unworthiness while you await the imminent spectacles of the Sochi Olympics and Oscar Night! Things at the margins may yet interrupt the trance at the center. My guess is that true wickedness brews unseen in the hidden, unregulated markets of currency and interest rate swaps.” -JHK

    One of the distractionary tactics of late (that I find just as insulting) is the blaming of “the poor” for all our troubles. (I’m reasonably certain that “the poor” are not directing the activities of behemoth container ships cruising the oceans on promises of payment at journey’s end.) If the american populace is stone-stupid enough to fall for this (and it is, I assure you; I hear it almost daily), then we deserve the further weakening that will result in wasting energies on goading one half of the disenfranchised to pounce on the other half. Please remind me: Just how many people now work for the government for their bread and butter, thus effectively neutering them, or worse yet, making them into cookie-cutter attack dogs?

    aside #1: Another shoe is shortly about to drop. This is predicated directly on the amount of troll traffic that blogs are becoming clogged with. We see this phenomenon on every step downward to the next “stable plateau” [for a few months] of the Great Crumbling. Specifically designed to erode trust among the open-eyed and aware who would wish to have their observations verified and pick some directions toward more resiliency and mitigation of centrally controlled failures.

    aside #2:.”My guess is that true wickedness brews unseen in the hidden, unregulated markets of currency and interest rate swaps.” -JHK

    To my “ear”, that sentence is deserving of the wierd, but pleasantly quirky phrase, “instant classic”. Good one.

    aside #3: It looks as though trust destruction is going to go hand-in-hand with wealth destruction as the energy supplies that define it become realistically comprehended. Confidence games are called as they are for a very good reason…

    • K-Dog February 3, 2014 at 3:27 pm #

      “The trance at the center.”

      “The rot moves from the margins to the center”

      And the question is will the trance be disturbed by the rot?

      Jim says the financial apparatus will fail and possibly disturb the trance. Is this hoping for too much? Probably, with financial breakdown a disturbance is inevitable but the trance may wind up being replaced with nothing more than a stupor of uncomprehending misery sans enlightenment. Why should the next step downward in the great crumbling be any different from the last?

      Who but you and I and a few others here notice the changes in troll traffic and the sham manufactured news. The volume of orchestrated distractions makes us a tiny minority.

      The poor? Gather the usual suspects it must all be their fault, and make sure they all blame each other. That’s the plan, same as it ever was.

      At what point will trust destruction make the distraction of Sea-hawked Maserati cars ineffective? For that one it is now game over, so what will be thought up to take over from that.

      Will Sochi Olympics and Oscar Night be enough or will something more dramatic be demanded?

    • devon44 February 4, 2014 at 1:51 pm #

      Ozone – “The Great Crumbling?”

      You are getting close!

      The Crumble!!!

  12. TravisB February 3, 2014 at 11:08 am #

    So here’s the deal (in my opinion) though we need to keep talking, spending energy on those who refuse, or just can’t see the forest for the trees, is wasted energy that would be much better channeled towards those who are paying attention, and getting together with them to start building the world we are talking about. There will always be something to focus on and shake ones head at. I know personally when feelings of doom start pulling at my stomach, I go outside and turn the compost, or build a couple more beehive swarm traps for the coming swarm season, or help my neighbor get in their raised beds, gotta get the rest of my grape cuttings in buckets of sand, just got five more chickens, now we have ten. Instant relief! Instant body and emotional remembrance that, “oh yeah I’m supposed to be living and enjoying life.”

    • K-Dog February 3, 2014 at 2:23 pm #

      I think your attitude is pretty good. Channel the energy to those who are paying attention and to a few who have not yet seen the forest but who have an inkling that there just, just might be more than only trees about. Attempting to talk sense into those who only follow the pied piper is a waste. The siren song of the status-quo speaks so much louder and followers can only follow the louder voice. In time the followers will come around when the voice of reason speaks loud enough, for then it will become the status-quo.

      Until then:

      After his long journey across Europe and Asia Minor, Voltaire has his hero Candide settle down on the outskirts of the Muslim city of Constantinople to “tend his own garden”, in other words “to mind his own business.” After witnessing horrifying episodes of religious intolerance and political oppression Candide decides that the best thing to do in the world is settle down, live peacefully with his neighbours, and produce something of value to others which he can sell in the markets.

      But with a touch of strategic evangelism that brings no threat to the garden. For unlike Candide we can’t count on being left alone to mind our own business. In our finite world without some strategic evangelism our garden will soon be threatened. Some evangelism then becomes part of tending our garden and without it the garden will die. A balanced approach is needed.

      • Janos Skorenzy February 3, 2014 at 4:09 pm #

        Oh you think his attitude is pretty good, huh? Will you listen to yourself? How many swarm traps do you have? This Man is a God, the poor man’s Tripp. Why do you have to try and get above him?

        • Janos Skorenzy February 3, 2014 at 4:15 pm #

          I practice shooting wamp rats from the glider on the way to resetting the dew traps. Could Kdog even get one?

          • devon44 February 4, 2014 at 1:53 pm #

            I could bullseye a womp rat in my T-16 better than any of you!

        • K-Dog February 3, 2014 at 7:02 pm #

          I thought pretty good was a complement. I’ll clarify. He has an excellent attitude. A top notch bright and shiny attitude. But you, all you have is attitude.

  13. troutbum2 February 3, 2014 at 11:09 am #

    Jim,

  14. orbit7er February 3, 2014 at 11:15 am #

    Pete Seeger’s passing is of note and interest to this group.
    Way before Millenials starting returning to farming or some Hippies
    tried to go back to the Land in the 60′s in the fabled song of Woodstock, Pete Seeger built his own log cabin in the 40′s and 50′s.
    He rigged up his own electric truck some years ago and powered it
    with solar panels. Pete Seeger advocated returning to smaller self-supporting shared communities and actually lived his principles.
    At the Clearwater Festival just a few years ago when Pete Seeger was
    already 89 or 90 because his voice was failing he did a workman’s chant instead. As he was swinging a hammer on a stump he was
    calling out a working chant.
    According to his grandson Pete Seeger was still chopping wood with an old-fashioned ax just a few weeks ago before his death last Monday night.
    As much as Pete Seeger was an optimist he still gave humanity only a 50/50 chance of survival given our Environment conundrums both resource shortages and polluting wastes unless
    we simplified our lives and shared what resources we have.

  15. troutbum2 February 3, 2014 at 11:16 am #

    Jim,
    You are correct about the derivatives in the US banking system. The largest 4 banks ( Chase, Citi, Goldman and BoA) hold a combined total of $223 Trillion ( yes, Trillion) in Derivative paper.

    Go here for the data, see table # 5 – http://www.occ.gov/topics/capital-markets/financial-markets/trading/derivatives/dq313.pdf

    Of course, those are gross numbers, the net numbers are a fraction. But, the gross becomes the net if your counterparty can’t write the check. What could possibly go wrong??

    • Florida Power February 3, 2014 at 11:29 am #

      The chance exists that Mr. Bernanke has successfully re-defined money and banking, and the derivatives will be monetized at their absolute value (i.e., “it’s all good”) by those with the Power to create units of account. Heck, if they can monetize MBS and the federal deficit what difference do a few more zeroes make? So long as all believe in the Power $1.4 quadrillion is but an abstraction represented by a minor stained-glass window in the Cathedral of Central Banking.

  16. charlie foxtrot February 3, 2014 at 11:34 am #

    I m just glad to see that I am not the only one who noticed and was insulted by the maserati commercial…to quote our esteemed host, anything goes and nothing matters…

  17. sevenmmm February 3, 2014 at 11:42 am #

    Heck no. Some say we are 9 meals away from anarchy, but with nutritious food in short supply, Americans don’t have any rioting energy in them with or without these meals.. The country’s population will just sit on their front porches and whine about their growling bellies, filled with hope the government check will come early.

  18. ThomasPatrick February 3, 2014 at 12:21 pm #

    I liked the Maserati commercial. I think I will buy 2, gotta get a loan first though. Don’t worry, Im good for it, Promise

  19. shabbaranks February 3, 2014 at 12:57 pm #

    Jim,

    Dylan sells out for Ford. I can’t believe you as a former Rolling Stone staffer wouldn’t take a swipe at that one. Then again, a lot of folks said Dylan sold out when he went electric.

    Oh well, America, just like Ford Motors, is shrinking and no amount of celebrity endorsement will save happy motoring. It’s all over now Baby Blue.

    • Casualty09 February 3, 2014 at 4:16 pm #

      Ah, but here at CFN, nothing really matters much – it’s doom alone that counts.

    • homesteader February 3, 2014 at 6:28 pm #

      It was Chrysler, which to my mind is even worse than Ford.

    • hineshammer February 3, 2014 at 7:48 pm #

      Dude, Dylan sold out to Cadillac (GM) way back in 2007. See here:

      No embed videos allowed — JHK

    • Bobs been selling out for years, and he wasn’t saying anything that wasn’t true. “Detroit made cars, and cars made America… we believe in the zoom, the roar, and the thrust.”

      And then, “When its made here its made with something you can’t import from anywhere else: American pride.”

      Pride, pride, pride. Its been the ceiling we can’t break through as a country. Its kind of sad.

  20. budizwiser February 3, 2014 at 3:18 pm #

    Dear Gentle Readers,

    Who knew that Denver could suck that badly. I mean c’mon, who would think the the Broncos would trail from the first play of the game and then fail to score for an entire half?

    Clearly, this exhibition game may stand up to be the least-competitive, least interesting football game of the entire 2014 season!!

    In any case– fans of America and football can take heart that the NFL still knows how to put on a light-show and a groovy fireworks display.

    James, I guess you may have heard that the average ticket for the Superbowl this year costs $3,200?? I’m pretty sure most of the people who attended the game have little interest in “credit swaps” or Peak Oil.

    As I repeat so many times – America runs on discretionary energy consumption. -check out last night?

    And many western governments are running on discretionary credit creation. (a.k.a. QE)

    As long as as these pipes keep flowing – it’s all good – there’s a powerful well-off – and totally complacent segment of the population that assures no meaningful attempts to challenge the corrupted, corporate/political oligarchy will succeed. (see OWS)

    Big business – by the way…….is “proving the economic recovery” – is NOT -http://www.nytimes.com/2014/02/03/business/the-middle-class-is-steadily-eroding-just-ask-the-business-world.html?hp&_r=0

    The answers my friends – are blowing in the winds – all bought and paid for by corporate America.

    With regrets,
    Robert Zimmerman (sell out since 2009)

    • Janos Skorenzy February 3, 2014 at 4:12 pm #

      When you said Gentle readers, did you mean Gentile? We are the Gentry, the good people. Remember, a Gentleman is one who can ride and shoot.

  21. Smoky Joe February 3, 2014 at 4:32 pm #

    We’d best hope that Turkey does not go out of control. I’d not checked what has been going on, since the uprising in Taksim Square and elsewhere in the cities.

    If their economy tanks, the whole region may go up into chaos. As if Syria were not spark enough. If Turks start killing Turks and the secularists and Islamists start fighting, the lid will be off at the border, the Syrian refugees will flood in, and the Kurds declare an independent state within NATO’s borders.

    What a friggin’ mess we may see in 2014.

  22. BackRowHeckler February 3, 2014 at 5:53 pm #

    What’s happening in Argentina?

    Last week their pesos tanked. This week no news whatsoever.

    Here’s hoping Janet Yellin, new Chief of the Fed, has some answers, or at least a few tricks up her gilded sleeve.

    –BRH

  23. BDI February 3, 2014 at 9:58 pm #

    My Latest Tome………..for James.

    http://slopeofhope.com/2014/02/spiked-super-bowl-shuffle-bdi-style-ep-xlvii.html

  24. chipshot February 3, 2014 at 10:16 pm #

    Surprised there’s been no mention of the NFL’s status as a non-profit,
    tax free enterprise.

    Tax exempt status for a league that serves as an exclusive hobby for a few members of the richest %.01?! With a commissioner being paid $30 Million a year??! What an insightful example of how mis-guided we, and our capitalism system, have become.

    Imagine the back room deals between congressmen, NFL higher-ups and Billionaire owners to get this status and keep it in place for so many years.

    Then consider all the tax money used to pay for the multi-million dollar stadiums and your head feels like it might explode.

    Does it get any more heinous than that?

    • beantownbill. February 3, 2014 at 11:18 pm #

      Heinous is too strong a word. Misguided is more accurate. What’s heinous is drone warfare killing hundreds of innocent people, taking money from the middle class to pay the 1% and those that don’t want to work, and letting bankers and CEOs break the law with impunity and no punishment.

    • BackRowHeckler February 4, 2014 at 12:07 am #

      Owner of the Sea Hawks, Paul Allen, is worth $60 bil.

      Clearly a 1%er, however, he didn’t make that money in coal, oil, or with a hedge fund. Plus he plays guitar and is down with the struggle.

      All is cool!

      ==BRH

    • K-Dog February 4, 2014 at 10:03 am #

      But NFL teams are owned by rich people and rich people don’t pay taxes. Kind of goes with the territory that the NFL would be a non-profit, tax free enterprise does it not?

      The historic pergola in Pioneer Square has 17 cracked and broken glass panels due to being climbed on by exuberant Sea Hock fans the night of the superbowl. The cost to taxpayers to replace the glass is estimated to be $20,000.

      I’ll post an addendum if Paul Allen decides to pick up the tab.

  25. ajmuste February 4, 2014 at 12:06 am #

    What I think is heinous is Bush sending 1.5 million young soldiers into wars of choice in Iraq/Afghanistan and having 500,000 of our soldiers become casualties with injuries that change their lives and will cause them untold suffering.

    Then we will have to pay for their treatment with our tax dollars, for the rest of their lives in many cases, when Bush’s wars were both illegal and immoral and unnecessary. Heinous is not a strong enough word.

    The suffering of the veterans is immeasurable. The wars’ costs go into Trillions of dollars (Trillions with a “T”) and we will continue paying the veterans’ medical expenses for decades after the wars end. And none of it should have happened.

    Don’t believe there were 500,000 USA war veteran casualties?
    Check this out:

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dan-froomkin/iraq-soldiers-wounded_b_1176276.html

  26. ajmuste February 4, 2014 at 2:15 am #

    “My guess is that true wickedness brews unseen in the hidden, unregulated markets of currency and interest rate swaps.” — JHK

    Hmmm. My guess is we are going to see capital flows start going the other direction.

    Men Fed chairman have made a mess of things. This year things are going to change for the better.

    With a woman in charge for the first time, the Fed will very slowly put on the brakes this year. Nothing drastic. A gentle reversing of things.

    Money will then come back to the USA to profit from rising rates. The value of emerging market currencies will thereby be depressed. The trend of the last half-decade will thereby be reversed. Go USA!

    Here are the results of Obama’s efforts, which he related in SOTU:

    “The lowest unemployment rate in over five years; a rebounding housing market — a manufacturing sector that’s adding jobs for the first time since the 1990s — more oil produced — more oil produced at home than we buy from the rest of the world, the first time that’s happened in nearly twenty years — our deficits cut by more than half; and for the first time — for the first time in over a decade, business leaders around the world have declared that China is no longer the world’s number one place to invest; America is. That’s why I believe this can be a breakthrough year for America. After five years of grit and determined effort, the United States is better-positioned for the 21st century than any other nation on Earth.”

  27. ajmuste February 4, 2014 at 2:32 am #

    BRH, World War I was mayhem and death, a struggle between competing capitalist countries. The numbers you provide indicate the failure of capitalism.

    In World War I capitalist states were killing for the profit interests of the bourgeoisie of each country.

    World War I signaled the end of the progressive historical role of the capitalist economy. The system of private property and the consequent struggle for markets and profits threatened the very future of civilization.

    The war of 1914 is the most colossal breakdown in history of an economic system (capitalism) destroyed by its own inherent contradictions.

    Thanks for pointing out the brutality of capitalism, BRH.

    • Florida Power February 4, 2014 at 7:08 am #

      Hey AJ — just curious — following the dictatorship of the proletariat how long before that withering away of the State thing happens?

  28. BDI February 4, 2014 at 8:47 am #

    Purposely degrading the Nation’s hard earned reserve currency status delivered to you by previous generations, who so honorably built this great country from the ground up through their virtuous and industrious blood, sweat and tears, only to deliberately steal from future unborn generations, in order to continue living beyond your means, so as to maintain an unearned, undeserved and unprincipled grotesque culture of vulgar over-consumption, is a deplorable and unconscionable disgrace of Biblical proportion…….

    BDI

    • K-Dog February 4, 2014 at 9:54 am #

      Biblical proportion…….

      Egads nooooooooo because that would make a smite right.

  29. rube-i-con February 4, 2014 at 11:25 am #

    Your cornicopian delusions cannot last forever. Someday that gear will be used. America can’t live in its parents basement forever

    i live in any one of 3 houses on 2 different continents, and soon to be 3. you seem to know about living in a basement, though.

    you are right about one thing , tho , your and kunstler’s blowhard predictions will be correct ‘someday’.

    ‘you wait, you just wait!’ – kdogs/jhk’s words to live by

    good thing you dont ever have to be correct

    while you moulder in your patmos pathologies, the brilliant Western world advances into abundance on all fronts…..

    peace peaceniks

    • K-Dog February 4, 2014 at 3:42 pm #

      Patmos pathologies, not me. I accept that the book of revelations was written around AD 95 and accepted at the Council of Carthage of 397 AD. I reject that it was divinely inspired. I don’t believe in the fairy tale visions of madmen, you do.

      You indulge visions of technical wonders the world can’t support and which reject physical laws of cause and effect and which are mathematically unsustainable. In your world you think if you believe in something hard enough it must be true. The pathology is yours. Three houses, you say. That says there is something wrong with your right there!

  30. rube-i-con February 4, 2014 at 12:00 pm #

    meanwhile, london is making great strides to put fossil fuel usage behind it. this is just a foretaste of all our infrastructure generating much/all of its own energy in the future, and the future has already started:

    http://www.smartplanet.com/blog/bulletin/london-opens-worlds-largest-solar-bridge/

    dont come back with lame eroei, stanford university has already put that canard to rest

    peace peaceniks

    • WW February 4, 2014 at 3:20 pm #

      And yet others disagree…http://www.off-grid.net/2014/02/04/climate-deniers-greens/#more-49004.

      • WW February 4, 2014 at 3:24 pm #

        Without the heavy government subsidies the UKs solar industry is dead in the water. Payback on an installation is almost double the life of the panels!

        • K-Dog February 4, 2014 at 4:02 pm #

          Nothing wrong with green energy. I advocate it. But the delusion that we can maintain anything like what we currently take for ‘normal lifestyles’ with it is crazy as your article suggests.

          • K-Dog February 4, 2014 at 4:13 pm #

            The whole picture needs to be considered.

          • WW February 4, 2014 at 5:06 pm #

            Green energy is great, we generate our own power using hydro as I have stated before. However to pay £9000 to install solar panels that will net £4500 over their lifetime is idiocy cubed.

    • K-Dog February 4, 2014 at 3:28 pm #

      Currently the U.S. per capita miles driven in a month is 800. A Nissan Leaf uses 34 kWh to go 100 miles and an average citizen would consume 272 kWh per month if they owned a leaf. Taking a reasonable charge efficiency of 70% for Lithium batteries and ignoring transmission losses an average monthly kWh requirement increases to 389 for our average Nissan Leaf owning citizen.

      Your bridge is expected to yield 75,000 kWh a month so your bridge would support the driving needs of 193 U.S. citizens.

      How much did that bridge cost?

      • WW February 4, 2014 at 3:52 pm #

        Precisely. The money in solar and wind generation is made in the feed in tariff which is considerably higher than the unit cost out. The difference is made up partly from increased costs to domestic consumers and from government subsidies which are raised by taxing those same consumers.
        That bridge is going to make someone a lot of money, sadly the taxpayer will be the ones forking it out!

        • K-Dog February 4, 2014 at 4:08 pm #

          And the environmental cost of building green is often not considered at all. How many kWh equivalents were used to build that bridge before the first kWH was drawn from the panels.

          • hineshammer February 4, 2014 at 5:20 pm #

            Hey rube, all I hear right now are crickets.

          • WW February 4, 2014 at 5:20 pm #

            A perfect example is going on in Wales at the moment. They are building a huge windfarm. The roads to take these behemoths are having to be constructed as the existing roads have too many bends for the lorries to negotiate. Now the new roads will pass through several Site of Special Scientific Interest destroying the habitat and animals that depend on it. If you or I cut down a tree in those areas a warm cell would await. But such is the flood of subsidies that law has been trashed and bought off. They are even having to install a new network to carry the power.Despite being an area of outstanding natural beauty and protected by law they are using pylons not burying the cables, which would cost more.
            It’s a huge subsidy scam that is blighting the countryside and emptying the taxpayers pockets!

          • K-Dog February 4, 2014 at 5:33 pm #

            Rube? Rube I am not.

          • K-Dog February 4, 2014 at 5:37 pm #

            ahhhh Never mind that hineshammer. My original response to Rube was incorrectly posted to the to level and your response to him is understood.

          • K-Dog February 4, 2014 at 5:40 pm #

            Top level

    • K-Dog February 4, 2014 at 5:46 pm #

      Stanford university has already put that canard to rest

      They did?

      PROCEEDINGS, Thirty-Sixth Workshop on Geothermal Reservoir Engineering Stanford University, Stanford, California, January 31 – February 2, 2011

      ARE GEOTHERMAL ENERGY RETURNS ON INVESTMENT HIGH ENOUGH?

      canard – A false or unfounded report or story. A fabricated report, groundless rumor or belief.

    • K-Dog February 4, 2014 at 6:02 pm #

      Lame EROEI my ass. Doing things which don’t make economic or pysical sense (violating the laws of mathematics and physics) is not going to save the world.

      That situation will be corrected by scarcity, as oil companies discover that real capital is unavailable. And then the oil will become scarce. The “capital” circulating around the globe now is a squishy, gelatinous substance called “liquidity.” All it does is gum up markets. But eventually things do get unstuck.

      As WW has pointed out:

      Without the heavy government subsidies the UKs solar industry is dead in the water. Payback on an installation is almost double the life of the panels!

      Attempting to do the mathematically impossible will eventually crash the system resulting in pestilence war famine and death as the word economy suddenly starts to quake from low blood sugar.

      You are like the old man in “World Made By Hand” Rube who stubbornly can’t accept the truth of reality and who drives a car down a road with nowhere to go and who upon finally having the truth of his futility pointed out to him can’t deal with it and puts a gun to his head.

  31. BDI February 4, 2014 at 12:25 pm #

    Note to the Federal Reserve:

    Purposely degrading this Nation’s hard earned reserve currency status, honorably delivered to you by previous generations who built this great country from the ground up through their virtuous and industrious blood, sweat and tears, with the continued and deliberate implementation of lamentable and disgraceful monetary policy measures which steal from future unborn generations, in order to continue living beyond your means, so as to maintain an unearned, undeserved and unprincipled grotesque culture of vulgar over-consumption, can only be characterized as a deplorable and unconscionable abomination of Biblical proportion…….

    Respectfully yours,
    Le Baron Bruno Camille Soucanye de Landevoisn

  32. BDI February 4, 2014 at 12:33 pm #

    Note to the Federal Reserve:

    Dear Janet; February 4th, 2014

    Purposely degrading this Nation’s hard earned reserve currency status, honorably delivered to you by previous generations who built this great country from the ground up through their virtuous and industrious blood, sweat and tears, with the continued and deliberate implementation of lamentable and disgraceful monetary policy measures which steal from future unborn generations, in order to continue living beyond your means, so as to maintain an unearned, undeserved and unprincipled grotesque culture of vulgar over-consumption, can only be characterized as a deplorable and unconscionable abomination of Biblical proportion…….

    Respectfully yours,
    Le Baron Bruno Camille Soucanye de Landevoisn

  33. ajmuste February 4, 2014 at 12:40 pm #

    “Hey AJ — just curious — following the dictatorship of the proletariat how long before that withering away of the State thing happens?” — Florida Power

    LOL!

    Florida Power, we are not in the realm of theory here. Socialism has already demonstrated its superiority. Socialist countries like Russia, Hungary and Poland recorded some of the lowest measures of inequality in the post-war era. Meanwhile, during the same time period the capitalist USA has created the worst record of income inequality in the developed world.

    While capitalist USA was increasing the gap between rich and poor to historic levels, to create the 1% and the 99%, the socialist countries were reducing the wealth and income of the richest people and implementing full employment policies, free education, and other transfers to level incomes among people.

    This is not pie-in-the-sky economic theory. It is reality. Socialism won.

    The European democratic socialist countries provide a higher standard of living, a better quality of life, than the USA. Free education, instead of graduating with a large debt that creates indentured servitude. Free health care for all instead of millions without any healthcare insurance. Six weeks paid vacation per year, instead of … well, you get the idea.

    Just read what JHK is posting about the capitalist bankers and their “$70 trillion in swap paper” … capitalism FAIL. Capitalism just encourages human greed and excess. Go watch the movie Wolf of Wall Street (watch the whole movie), Florida Power. Report back.

    • WW February 4, 2014 at 3:46 pm #

      Lowest measures of inequality, mmmmm what nice warm sounding phrase. However in plain english it means the vast bulk of the population is poor and therefore equal. Anyone who took statistics from Russia on face value btw needs serious help! Poland, yes poland is doing sooo well that over 1 million of them have moved to the UK to work because the pay and conditions are so awful there! Hungary, yes we’ve tons of them too, they’re all over europe fleeing the ‘equality’.
      Poland has 140 ish state run universities, yet it has 300 odd private ones. Guess what, education is only free at the state run ones. The state run ones are the lowest performing and underfunded.
      This asoka or whatever you want to call yourself this week is why no one takes you seriously. You cut, paste and crib of websites without checking the information or opinion and it makes you look a fool.
      Polands finances are in disarray , as are Russias, Hungary but then so is most of the world.
      There is no rosy picture, no utopia other than the one you are painting on the wall of your mud hut.
      You should of stuck to pretending to be a muslim, you were more convincing lol!.

    • Florida Power February 4, 2014 at 6:15 pm #

      I have heard that there are no more ruthless capitalists than Hollywooders at contract time. I haven’t seen a first-run movie in a theater in maybe 5 years, and that was after a hiatus of maybe 10. I have no intention of feeding that beast. When it shows up in the budget used dvd section of my local (I repeat: LOCAL) used cd,vinyl. and dvd store I’ll gladly plunk down the $3.99 plus tax. I think DiCaprio is a good actor even if he is a typical Hollywood hypocrite.

  34. volodya February 4, 2014 at 1:24 pm #

    A modest proposal for a modest societal undertaking: that banks be required by force of law to remove from their books shit like the 70 trillion in hazardous waste that’s sitting in D Bank.

    I would require ALL banks with derivative garbage festering on their balance sheets to do the same, that is, not only in the US but in Europe, China, S. America etc. So that would require laws from multiple jurisdictions.

    But it’s not so hard. No really, it’s just a book-keeping exercise. Seriously, the stuff got on the books by way of book-keeping entries and so it can be removed the same way. Kids’ stuff.

    But there’s lots to do, no time to waste.

    I can hear the howls. Simple minded, can’t be done they’ll scream. The lawyers will be appalled, there are binding contracts they’ll scream.

    Binding contracts? Blow me. What about common sense? These contracts would never have seen the light of day in the first place had law makers, regulators, bank board members been doing their jobs. But they weren’t doing their jobs and now we have a mess.

    Of course what that 70 trillion represents is the work of a generation of bankers scaling the Everests of idiocy. Were these assholes smoking crack?

    Now just imagine, D Bank is just one bank. Do your sums. Look at the books of the ten largest banks in each of the G20 countries, tally up the trillions on each balance sheet. I’ll bet you’re talking numbers normally used only by astronomers.

    The wealthy, the scholarly, the greatly experienced (this is, the perpetrators and enablers of this calamity) will scoff. I would expect nothing less.

    They’ll say that the suggestion to unwind is in no way practical, is too complex, is too dangerous to the world financial system, that it will have all sorts of unintended consequences, that it has the fingerprints of an intellectual light-weight all over it, that nobody reputable would ever come up with such an outlandish notion. Only cranks and crack-pots would advocate it.

    Again, I say blow me. If the dick-heads running things were so damn smart, then how did something like this happen?

    I say that the numbers, like that 70 trillion, represent nothing that nobody on this planet will ever need. Does anyone hear Black Swans flapping?

    • Janos Skorenzy February 4, 2014 at 2:30 pm #

      Great folk song: Jump you Fuckers. Do not pass Go. Do not collect your golden parachutes.

      http://westernrifleshooters.wordpress.com/2014/02/03/problem-or-solution/

    • beantownbill. February 4, 2014 at 3:47 pm #

      Your idea was posed as a question by several people back in 2008 or 2009 at the time of the Mafia-like extortion of Congress when the banks were bailed out. Every so-called expert said that couldn’t be done because it would be a major loss of credibility, and the banking system would crash.

      We couldn’t have that, now, could we? It’s ironic that the very thing everyone was afraid of happening by not bailing out the banks will happen because we did.

      In astronometric terms, there are 20 light years worth of derivatives on the books of the 4 largest banks.

    • K-Dog February 4, 2014 at 4:19 pm #

      Of course what that 70 trillion represents is the work of a generation of bankers scaling the Everests of idiocy. Were these assholes smoking crack?

      No they were doing the real thing.

  35. Janos Skorenzy February 4, 2014 at 3:24 pm #

    Resist Poverty Porn. Don’t give another penny to Africa – they’re hopeless and doomed. If we feed them, they’ll have even more kids and immigrate to White Countries and doom us as well. Let’s keep it contained!

    http://westernrifleshooters.wordpress.com/2014/02/03/africa-the-continent-of-the-apocalypse-now/#comment-65866

    • beantownbill. February 4, 2014 at 4:18 pm #

      Since I am a tribesman myself, I’m aware of how we ought to allocate our resources: first they go to our family, then our friends, then our neighbors, and then, if we have a good-sized surplus for the long-term, and only then, could we give to strangers. I’m not against giving aid to Africa in principle, but only after we, ourselves are provided for.

      Personally, given how Machiavellian our government is, I used to wonder why we never used food as a diplomatic tool, considering that climate change and overpopulation are upon us, and soon food may well be much more valuable than any precious metal.

      • K-Dog February 4, 2014 at 6:10 pm #

        Many lost in religious rapture often invert your pyramid of concern.

      • Janos Skorenzy February 5, 2014 at 1:45 am #

        Yes, charity is a White thing far more than a Jewish one. We need to become more like you guys.

    • BackRowHeckler February 4, 2014 at 4:21 pm #

      Too late! Fat too late!

      –BRH

  36. ajmuste February 4, 2014 at 6:49 pm #

    “Poland’s finances are in disarray…” — WW

    Look at the actual data on income inequality and you will find the European countries, including Eastern European countries have less income inequality than the United States of America. Even using different methodologies, such as: the ratio of the average income of the richest 10% to the poorest 10% or the ratio of average income of the richest 20% to the poorest or the Gini index (a quantified representation of a nation’s Lorenz curve) or UN data (from the United Nations Development Programme) or the CIA data (from the Central Intelligence Agency’s The World Factbook) or the GPI data from the Global Peace Index. No matter what source you look at, my position is supported because all the data sources agree with me. Just as I am not a fool, none of the data reporting agencies are fools either. Accept reality.

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

  37. K-Dog February 5, 2014 at 2:31 am #

    When do people seriously start to starve and reach for the pitchforks? When does the action move from Kiev to London, New York, Frankfurt, and Paris?

    Some insight into this question is on the boards at Club Orlov right now.

    After reading the missive there I think timing a U.S. collapse is a bit more difficult. The idea is that as hydrocarbon costs increase in the U.S. the people iwill have to be squeezed to make up the difference and when they can’t be squeezed any more the party gets raided and the orders come down to turn off the music and everyone go home. That there is nowhere to go is irrelevant. Ugo Bardi and Dmitry Orlov banter back and forth on the different ways countries can be squeezed to make up for the loss of cheap fossil fuels to postpone collapse and it gets complicated. I think the idea needs to be restated in simpler terms before returning to the U.S. issue.

    Cheap fossil fuels fed the economy like food feeds any animal. With cheap fossil fuels gone a countries economy like an animal will starve. But an animal can keep going for a while by living off its fat cells. In our American economy you and I are the fat cells and the American Body will deplete us of nutrition and only when it has finished doing that will it die. By figuring out how long it will take for an economic body to use up its fat cells collapse can be timed. That is the idea at Club Orlov right now.

    The American situation is a little more complicated as we are not a homogeneous society. We are diverse; essentially are a country composed of many different kinds of fat cells. Some kinds of our fat cells (citizens) are already used up. The poor have already been pretty much depleted with some ethnicities suffering more than others. But they in turn are subsidized by middle class fat cells which are currently being used up but who still have a bit of nutrition remaining. Collapse can’t happen until the affluent fat cells feel the pinch and we have a lot of that kind of cell. As they control medial they can keep the American animal standing up for quite a while. Most other fat cells will be dead and the American animal will from outside appearances continue to look healthy until the affluent cells begin to be consumed. Then the American animal will begin to shake.

    When the affluent fat cells have robbed all the other fat cells of nutrition then and only then will it be possible to time an American collapse in the way Ugo and Dmitry describe.

    • K-Dog February 5, 2014 at 2:57 am #

      Much easier to leave a clean comment at Club Orlov. I have a rewritten version there (if Dimtry approves it). The preview function at Club Orlov makes detecting grammatical errors and typos a breeze.

    • Being There February 5, 2014 at 9:09 am #

      Good point K-Dog, I like you analogy

      This is where the financialization kicks in because those on top have rigged the money game by introducing supply side and trickle down. The end of the gold standard and the introduction of arcane financial bets and games. Not to mention all the laws that protected the citizenry.

      They are in full force to continue the asset stripping of whole populations to keep their fat cells expanding. Those who are not in the first circle could be culled, even if they have money. But that international first circle can keep this thing going for a long time.

      So either fossil fuels will run out or civilization will break up in wars and dissolution.
      Have a happy day.

      • K-Dog February 5, 2014 at 12:50 pm #

        Those who are not in the first circle could be culled, even if they have money.

        Yes, the difference between old money and new money has always been a feature of the upper crass.

    • ozone February 5, 2014 at 10:16 am #

      K-dog,
      Excellent conversation you’ve linked to! I’ll do ‘er again:

      http://cluborlov.blogspot.com/2014/02/how-to-time-collapses.html#more

      Every country has different ways of financing their bureaucracies/governments, but I think they’ve nailed the salient points with which to time an imminent collapse.
      (Here comparing USSR to the future comeuppance of Italy.)

      ” I think that when it comes to the actual collapse, when it finally comes, there will still be identifiable similarities. Financial collapse always comes first: all sorts of financial arrangements unravel as the center becomes unable to float the periphery, and in response the periphery starts to withhold economic cooperation. The result is a breakdown in supply chains, shutdown of production, and, shortly thereafter, shutdown of commerce.” — D.O.

      Exactly what Kunstler keeps saying. It’s all about promises unkept (or outright broken) leading to loss of faith in a centralized authority that is revealed to be little more than a hive of minions serving a den of thieves, who then dole out just enough goodies to keep the disgruntled from starving, while the rest of the herd is steadily disenfranchised until their is no more left to extract. (Blood from stones and all that…)

      Now, if you happen to be one of the comfortably gruntled, a dewy-eyed cornucopian, one of the denialist they’ll-think-of-something’s, or a paid/unpaid [very deliberate] distractionist, this missive is too dangerous/painful an idea to contemplate. IOW, don’t bother.

      For the rest of us who are keeping our eyes open for predictive indicators, these are illuminating metrics and parameters that may save a few pelts…

      • ozone February 5, 2014 at 10:38 am #

        BTW, seen any gray-market exchanges or commerce lately? (These would be bargainings where the government is denied its’ “cut”.)
        Look for these to increase exponentially as well.

        When a government is more interested in perpetuating itself rather than serving the commonweal, we begin to smell Fear [emanating from "the top"] and see the attendant tightening of control of the messaging and common liberties. Then there gradually follows an increasingly onerous extraction (legalized strong-arming) of any remaining stores of wealth. (The Unaffordable Care Act would be a case in point.)

      • K-Dog February 5, 2014 at 1:16 pm #

        Dmitry – All sorts of financial arrangements unravel as the center becomes unable to float the periphery, and in response the periphery starts to withhold economic cooperation.

        JHK – The rot moves from the margins to the center, but the disease moves from the center to the margins.

        Ozone – It’s all about promises unkept (or outright broken) leading to loss of faith in a centralized authority that is revealed to be little more than a hive of minions serving a den of thieves.

        William Butler Yeats – The falcon cannot hear the falconer; Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold; Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world.

        • Janos Skorenzy February 5, 2014 at 2:05 pm #

          Until you hear my Word, you remain the Falcon, and I, the Falconer.

    • Janos Skorenzy February 5, 2014 at 2:01 pm #

      So you’ve just admitted that ethnic homogeneity is strength and that ethnic diversity (or at least multiculturalism) is weakness. Hold onto this insight – it’s the beginning of Wisdom.

  38. James Kuehl February 5, 2014 at 8:06 am #

    Does anyone see the occupy movement returning with horns this time instead of a halo?

    Ted Rall, an unflinching journalist like Kunstler, was encouraging occupiers to put a brick through a window or light some tires on fire. They just hung out and were shooed off by fat cops like so many loitering teenagers.

    Are we still too well fed?

    • K-Dog February 5, 2014 at 1:07 pm #

      Taking my animal body analogy a bit further you could say our immune system has been compromised.

  39. ajmuste February 5, 2014 at 10:42 am #

    “Ted Rall, an unflinching journalist like Kunstler, was encouraging occupiers to put a brick through a window or light some tires on fire.” — James Kuehl

    Ted is an idiot to provoke violent response. The state loves violence; it is a language they understand. The only way forward is nonviolence.

    The small business store owner whose window would be broken is also part of the 99%. The police are also part of the 99%. Mr. Rall is advocating a stupid response to income inequality, one TPTB would welcome.

    • K-Dog February 5, 2014 at 12:47 pm #

      Yes, lets all put a candle in a cup and stand around hugging each other and singing Kumbaya. That will change things.

      Kumbaya, my Lord, Kumbaya,
      Kumbaya, my Lord, Kumbaya,
      Kumbaya, my Lord, Kumbaya, oh, Lord, Kumbaya.
      Someone`s singing, Lord, Kumbaya,
      someone`s singing, Lord, Kumbaja.
      Someone`s singing, Lord, Kumbaya, oh Lord, Kumbaya.
      Someone`s praying, Lord, Kumbaya,
      Someone`s praying, Lord, Kumbaya.
      Someone`s praying, Lord, Kumbaya, oh Lord, Kumbaya.
      Someone`s crying, Lord, Kumbaya,
      someone`s crying, Lord, Kumbaya.
      Someone`s crying, Lord, Kumbaya, oh, Lord, Kumbaya.
      Someone`s sleeping Lord, Kumbaya,
      someone`s sleeping, Lord, Kumbaya.
      Someone`s sleeping, Lord, Kumbaya, oh, Lord, Kumbaya.

      I have a new word for you I just made up.

      Torportude

      And I don’t mean turpitude. That is not a misspelling. Turpitude is what you are.

    • James Kuehl February 5, 2014 at 2:05 pm #

      Must be I hit a nerve.
      Rall is an avowed provocateur, decidedly not an idiot.
      He was talking about lobby windows at Manhattan banks and investment firms.
      The police are the paid muscle of the power elite.

  40. volodya February 5, 2014 at 11:38 am #

    Baron Bruno C.S. de L.

    Re your note to Janet.

    Couldn’t have said it any better than that.

    • K-Dog February 5, 2014 at 3:38 pm #

      The heart of the matter:

      Disgraceful monetary policy measures which steal from future unborn generations, in order to continue living beyond your means, so as to maintain an unearned, undeserved and unprincipled grotesque culture of vulgar over-consumption.

  41. beantownbill. February 5, 2014 at 12:02 pm #

    JHK’s whole thesis is based upon peak oil and/or cheap energy. It assumes that cheap enough alternative energy either can’t be developed in time to prevent collapse, or is impossible to achieve (negative EROEI). Anyone who doesn’t agree with this assessment is considered a “cornucopian”, a polite term for a blind idiot.

    I find the use of this word a little smarmy – like we who disagree with you are smarter than you and we know better. That being said, I have no problem with those who believe the first basis of peak oil: alternative energy can’t be developed in time. I don’t sense any feeling of panic as I look around at our society. Whether or not we do develop sufficient alternative sources is a matter of opinion; that’s why I say it is reasonable to accept the claim we will never get it together enough to use other resources.

    Where I do have a problem is with the second basis: that no other form of energy can be developed with a positive EROEI. The reason I have a problem with this assumption is because I can’t verify any EROEI numbers. It is NOT just plugging numbers into an equation; many assumptions have to be made about their mathematical value, and we are expected to believe the numbers without judgment. How were the values of these variables determined? We don’t even know which variables are used or neglected, and we don’t know which of them can be improved.

    And finally, we don’t really know how society will react to the sacrifices needed to move forward.

    I felt somewhat compelled to post this comment, but I didn’t know why. Now that I’ve finished, I do know. I guess I don’t like being dismissed as a “cornucopian” because my opinions may differ from others here.

    • K-Dog February 5, 2014 at 12:36 pm #

      “That being said, I have no problem with those who believe the first basis of peak oil: alternative energy can’t be developed in time. I don’t sense any feeling of panic as I look around at our society. Whether or not we do develop sufficient alternative sources is a matter of opinion; that’s why I say it is reasonable to accept the claim we will never get it together enough to use other resources.

      It comes down to the affluent elite class not giving a shit about those at the bottom of the pile and their incapacity to see that by not concerning themselves with the disadvantaged and the overall long term health of the country they soiled their own den.

      We will not get it together in time. Perhaps we could have, perhaps not. That is a matter of opinion and a question about the past. But the evidence is clear we won’t. A significant moment occurred in 1986 when Reagan took Carter’s solar panels off the White House Roof. That was a sea change in concern for the American people. A course change in the wrong direction.

      Now our disingenuous have his cake and eat it too president after promising for three years to re-install them finally gets around to doing it a few months ago. His three year delay says as much as Reagan’s removal.

      We have a government committed to maintaining the life style and health of the affluent class at the expense of the rest of the country. It is their government. Their decision to do so will be the death of us.

      Could it have been different? Maybe so, maybe not. We never got the chance to find out and we are not going to get that chance now.

      • beantownbill. February 5, 2014 at 4:17 pm #

        But you didn’t comment on my second point about problems with EROEI.

        • K-Dog February 6, 2014 at 4:27 am #

          Well I don’t think you want me to.

          I’m not going to agree that it is not about just plugging numbers into an equation. That is exactly what it is. I get your point about assumptions but the type of assumptions needed to come up with reasonable mathematical values for EROEI are well understood. Far simpler assumptions than those needed to put a man on the moon for instance. And only basic algebra is needed. We have put men on the moon. We will never put men on the moon again but we have already done it.

          My interest in, and understanding of, the madness in our current living arrangements comes as a result of understanding science and mathematics exceptionally well. I arrived at my position because I am quite comfortable understanding equations and their proper use. Assumptions can be refined and margins of error calculated.

          My points of view come from a firm understanding of how the world works from a physical point of view. I wish I could be blissfully ignorant but it is too late for that.

          Conservation of energy considerations actually make EROEI calculations a snap. EROEI calculations are not rocket science.

  42. rube-i-con February 5, 2014 at 12:20 pm #

    Now that I’ve finished, I do know. I guess I don’t like being dismissed as a “cornucopian” because my opinions may differ from others here.

    those who cant , teach, those who cant find a counterargument , call you names.

    now you know their level.

    the whole, entire planet is working on massive gains in alt energy, yet they are ALL WRONG.

    just ask the tenured experts here.

    look to them to show everyone the way forward.

    together, their arguments cant lift a flea.

    peace peaceniks

    • K-Dog February 5, 2014 at 1:03 pm #

      tenured experts

      Your ridiculous expression that established powers that be will lead the way forward allows me to provide Ugo’s perspective. Look at his graphs.

      Italy’s slow collapse: how declining energy consumption affects GdP

      The other side of the peak: Italy’s collapse of oil and gas consumption

      The decline in hydrocarbon use in Italy is not being taken up by massive gains in alternative energy. It is being replaced by poverty because candle in a cup holders like you assumed things were fine long after they should have known better and that you continue to hold your position in the face of firm evidence to the contrary is a crime.

      • Janos Skorenzy February 6, 2014 at 3:47 am #

        So you’re saying that the Hippy Movement was a fraud perpetrated on the American People by the Elite?

        Jerry Garcia didn’t have much respect for the music his band played. His real love was Bluegrass and his banjo.

  43. BackRowHeckler February 5, 2014 at 1:32 pm #

    Some posters criticized Bob Dylan for his Chrysler ad super bowl sunday. I believe this is off target. Dylan’s dad was an oil company executive and his mom’s family owned a successful department store. He was solidly midwestern, and upper middle class. Thru out his life his main priority has been protecting his family, heightened after Frank Sinatra’s son was kidnapped and held for ransom in Nevada. His 2nd priority was investing in real estate. Dylan was close to the police and sheriff’s dept in his hometown in NY State; they helped him get an M1 carbine and trained him with it. He would carry it around his estate with him.

    When Dylan found out about Woodstock, not far from where he lived, and he lobbied hard to stop it, not wanting any hippies or lunatics coming around. When he couldn’t stop it he took his family to Europe for the summer.

    Dylan has consistently been the hardest working man in show biz, until recently doing 70 shows a year. That Chrysler as is totally within character for him.

  44. rube-i-con February 5, 2014 at 2:08 pm #

    tenured experts

    you are the expert i was referring to

    tongue in cheek

    peace peaceniks

  45. volodya February 5, 2014 at 2:43 pm #

    I read the back and forth between Orlov and Bardi. Brilliant stuff. Some observations;

    Bardi says that taxing houses as if they were revenue is truly evil. Hear, hear! You bet it’s evil. For all the reasons Bardi outlined.

    Evil conceals itself. It comes cloaked as sweetness. Like a stone-cold killer with a smiling baby-face. Evil comes showing itself as reasonableness escorted by well-dressed, well-groomed people with credentials.

    A house represents “wealth” doesn’t it? So isn’t it therefore reasonable that a home owner pay a portion of his “wealth” for the good of all? If someone is a home owner they must have had good fortune? Surely some of this good fortune should be shared? Isn’t it only fair? Surely home ownership confers benefit? Surely some of this benefit can be transfered to government coffers for worthy purposes?

    Bardi is right, this will be a disaster.

    But to be fair, such make-believery has deep roots. How many times did we hear in the lead up to ’08 debacle that household debt was truly stratospheric but that it was ok because it was offset by increasing wealth courtesy of the housing boom?

    Didn’t you hear economists talk about the “wealth effect” from sky-rocketing house prices?

    This “wealth effect” idea is as comically illogical and full-of-shit a concept as there is. How it got any traction is beyond me. And it’s a concept that was destined to leave a smoking hole where there was once a functioning economy. Which it did.

    The true measure of the full-of-shitness of an idea is whether it squares with common sense. Try it sometime.

    So now that the real-estate scam is revealed for what it is, what’s next? As Orlov said, expropriation. To those of us less inclined to use polite terminology, THEFT. Capital T. They’ll give it some other name. Like “tax”. Or “QE”. But it’s theft just like a hacker emptying your bank account.

    Theft? You bet. What would you call it? That is, always was, always will be the wealthy and the powerful ripping off those that aren’t. If you are for now comfortably gruntled (tm Ozone), enjoy your gruntlement.

    And don’t feed the trolls.

    “comfortably gruntled”. Ha! Love it.

    • K-Dog February 5, 2014 at 3:27 pm #

      The idea of tax is interesting.

      In “World Made by Hand” Albany warlord Dan Curry, holds six of Stephen Bullock ‘s Union Grove boatmen captive for failure to pay an ‘excise tax’. The reality is that the boat the boatmen were piloting has been stolen along with its cargo and they are being held for ransom.

      A reasonable tax enables the function of society. It takes but gives back and it gives back more in value than it takes. It provides a service.

      In the book Dan Curry perverts the idea to steal river boats. His scam is to claim his ‘tax’ pays for a small water system he has set up on the waterfront. Dan Curry’s 100% ‘tax’ is totally unreasonable and evil. In the book Dan Curry got what he deserved.

      As you say:

      The true measure of the full-of-shitness of an idea is whether it squares with common sense.

      Taxes can be legitimate, but they can also disguise theft.

      &

      Comfortably gruntled is comfortably numb. Like in the song.

    • beantownbill. February 5, 2014 at 5:18 pm #

      Taxes are immoral. Forcing one to give up part of their wealth is wrong. Taxes should be a right given to the state by the people to be used judiciously for their physical protection in times of internal and external conflict, and to maintain and provide adequate infrastructure. Paying taxes should not be an obligation, but a permission to allow an elected government to spend money on items the public deems desirable. By making people pay taxes for things they don’t want through force – try NOT paying taxes and see what happens, all the way to imprisonment and/or death – the government is running an extortion racket just like the Mafia.

      I don’t want my hard-earned money to give to those who want to be supported for free. How difficult could it be to distinguish whether someone is trying to be responsible for their own support, but can’t, from those who want a free ride?

      I don’t want to pay for people to be killed in immoral wars – any war is immoral unless we are attacked. I don’t want to pay for someone else’s children’s education. I’d pay for my own child’s, though.

      An adult member of society should pay their own and their children’s Freight. If they can’t for a legitimate reason, they could receive charity. If there isn’t charity available, then something is fundamentally wrong with our society. But we shouldn’t be forced to provide it through taxes. Wrong, wrong, wrong!

      • beantownbill. February 5, 2014 at 5:26 pm #

        And I sure as hell don’t want to pay out of my accumulated wealth for someone else’s poor business decisions (bankers).

      • Looongerbeard February 6, 2014 at 4:37 am #

        So, let’s say that you chose to have no children. By your reckoning, you should not have to pay for the education of other people’s children.

        But you, in all likelihood, benefitted from a publicly-funded education yourself.

        Can you not see the hypocrisy?

        There are some things in a culture, such as road maintenance, emergency services, and education, that rise to the level of a public necessity, and are best paid for by all.

    • ZrCrypDiK February 6, 2014 at 3:41 am #

      d00d, I pay almost $3k every year in property taxes – *WHAT’S YOUR POINT*.

  46. piltdownman February 5, 2014 at 4:56 pm #

    Dylan blew smoke up everyone’s ass from the start. He pretended to be Guthrie’s buddy, but it was a sham to help further his career. He sang “protest songs” when they would pay the bills. When that time was over, he looked for the next paycheck. I don’t deny his talent, but he’s been nothing more or less than a complete showman. So no, seeing him film in for Eminem doesn’t shock me at all. But don’t pretend that being on the endless tour somehow conflates to this bullshit “renaissance” of MoTown. He just wanted to cash another check….

  47. ajmuste February 6, 2014 at 2:22 am #

    “He just *WAVED* his hand!!! Master-magician!!! And we’re all *SAVED*!!! Salvation is at *HAND*?!?… — ZrCrypDiK

    Bush just sent 1.5 million troops into two wars!!! Master-magician!!! Spent TRILLIONS of taxpayer dollars! *SAVED* us from Al Qaeda!! Salvation is at *HAND*?!?

    http://www.cbc.ca/news/world/iraq-s-fallujah-violence-heartbreaking-for-u-s-veterans-1.2496015

    I’ll take Pete Seeger’s nonviolence (with no taxpayer money involved) as the way to a peaceful world, not Al Qaeda’s violence or US Marines’ violence. War is stupid, no matter which side is doing the killing, and violence does not work. See link above.

    • ZrCrypDiK February 6, 2014 at 3:35 am #

      Soker – don’t forget, *HIS* lil’ daughter, up in Vancouver, Wa – Gordon Lightfoot (INJUN)…

      I know, you got both files from both sides *OPEN*, U mastah-debatah!!! Feeling *LUCKY*?!?

    • BackRowHeckler February 6, 2014 at 3:47 am #

      Pets Seeger’s non-violence?

      Seeger spent half his life running flak and covering up for the most violent, repressive, bloody regime in the history of the world. You can’t help but wonder if characters like Seeger, as well as Paul Robeson and Will Durant …, if they at least told what they knew, maybe a stop could have been put to the enormous crime of Stalin and Beria. Like I said before these people have blood on their hands, and have a lot to answer for. Why should he be given a pass? Because he could carry a tune?.

      –BRH

      • Janos Skorenzy February 6, 2014 at 2:31 pm #

        The Durants too? They wrote some fine books. I would have thought they had a lot more wisdom than that.

  48. BackRowHeckler February 6, 2014 at 3:58 am #

    What a PR coup it must have been for North Vietnamese Communists when Pete Seeger came a calling in 1972. A man of his stature! What was he doing there? What did they talk about? Bringing the war home to America? Putting the screws to the American POWs being held in the camps?

    Why didn’t I see any of this mentioned in the obsequious Pete Seeger eulogies in Time Magazine or slate last week?

    –BRH

    • ZrCrypDiK February 6, 2014 at 4:22 am #

      You’re spamming a *HAPPY* happy!!! NE-thang to *ADD*?!?

  49. rube-i-con February 6, 2014 at 8:49 am #

    Regarding the alleged inability of solar to overcome the dreaded EROEI of kdog and other bucktooth techno ingrates:

    The rapid growth of the solar power industry over the past decade may have exacerbated the global warming situation it was meant to soothe, simply because most of the energy used to manufacture the millions of solar panels came from burning fossil fuels. That irony, according to Stanford University researchers, is coming to an end.
    For the first time since the boom started, the electricity generated by all of the world’s installed solar photovoltaic (PV) panels last year probably surpassed the amount of energy going into fabricating more modules, according to Michael Dale, a postdoctoral fellow at Stanford’s Global Climate & Energy Project (GCEP). With continued technological advances, the global PV industry is poised to pay off its debt of energy as early as 2015, and no later than 2020.

    so says stanford university.

    sorry, technology trumps your shallow visions of apocalypse.

    Regarding “Italy’s slow collapse: how declining energy consumption affects GdP”

    reread the article, there’s no associated loss of quality of life.

    the only negatives in it are the doomer author’s typically weak conclusion that “just wait, bad things will happen, its going to collapse”

    meanwhile, everyone adjusts to less use, smarter use, more free time, less congestion, etc. in other words, theres great upside to reducing petrol use. haha, you doomers just dont get it, things will turn out precisely the opposite to what you predict.

    a case in point from the italy article:

    So, it seems that the main factor in counteracting the decline in oil consumption, up to a certain point, has been an increase in natural gas consumption. That has been a historical trend not just in terms of vehicle fuels, but for a variety of applications.

    precisely what i have been stating ad nauseum here, that people adapt by finding other sources of energy when one dries up. obviously this isnt limited to fossil based fuels. see next comment

    in other real news of precisely this nature, wind power is the number ONE electricity supplier in spain:

    Wind power was Spain’s top source of electricity in 2013
    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/jan/06/wind-power-spain-electricity-2013

    you end of worlders would do much more good by planting a tree than spouting this inane never-to-be-true gospel of doom.

    we nevertheless salute you as we soar high above you, in your slough of despond, into our glorious future of superabundance and cornucopia.

    peace peaceniks

    • K-Dog February 6, 2014 at 9:49 am #

      I’m actually impressed. Your criticism approaches validity this time but you are still extrapolating the ridiculous and you cherry pick your points. Manufacture of solar panels still depends on fossil fuels and puts CO2 in the air. You are logically flawed on that one. Some of the drop in oil use in Italy is the result of using natural gas (another finite resource) and your point that lifestyles have not suffered has a certain validity, so far. That is a temporary situation due to the result of financial manipulation.

      The DSM-5 needs to have a classification for people like you who worship technology like it is some kind of magic without being able to acknowledge its limits and negative consequences.

      And planting trees without a program to produce biochar and enrich depleting soils does not solve anything. When trees die they release all their sequestered CO2 back into the atmosphere through decay.

  50. Arn Varnold February 6, 2014 at 9:28 am #

    My god, the stupid here just boggles the mind.
    Which is what’s most missing here (mind/thinking).
    The rattle prat is just amazing; it just goes on and on with no link to reality or reason.
    Do any look back at their posts and consider? Anything?
    Rattle prat; do carry on; it’s just so amazing when one considers the wonder of the world at large. And then encounters rattle prat.
    It’s almost enough to consider a hermitage as refuge.

    • nsa February 6, 2014 at 9:59 am #

      So do something about it….stop posting.

  51. rube-i-con February 6, 2014 at 10:33 am #

    And planting trees without a program to produce biochar and enrich depleting soils does not solve anything. When trees die they release all their sequestered CO2 back into the atmosphere through decay.

    its a cycle, you keep planting them. there are already co2 sequestering technologies out there that can extract the gas from the atmosphere. the gargantuan money prize involved to the inventor of a cost effective co2 extractor is huge. dont think corporations arent working on it. too much gold is involved.

    Manufacture of solar panels still depends on fossil fuels and puts CO2 in the air. You are logically flawed on that one.

    you are ignoring the tipping of the scale effect – now that all solar panels are producing more energy than it took to fabricate them, they will displace current fossil fuel usage well above levels that were used to produce them.

    tipping point, critical mass, geometric growth, exponential, factors of ten

    thats whats making solar and wind and alt energies the victors in the ring. 50 years of development and massive efficiency gains is not a random occurrence.

    and your point that lifestyles have not suffered has a certain validity, so far. That is a temporary situation due to the result of financial manipulation

    i use very little fossil fuels, since i havent owned a car in years, though of course i do travel by air at times, and i can say that my quality of life has improved since ive been working at home the last several years.

    lets look at the equation: less fossil fuel usage = better quality of life

    just the opposite of what is being touted on this board as ineluctible.

    The DSM-5 needs to have a classification for people like you who worship technology like it is some kind of magic without being able to acknowledge its limits and negative consequences.

    whoever said theres no negative consequences to technology? at the same time, its gotten us a long, long way from dirt poor destitution over the past 20 centuries.

    btw, what are some limits to technology? i’d be interested in knowing, since i see advances on all fronts

    peace peaceniks

    • ozone February 7, 2014 at 8:50 am #

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

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

      To those who wish some further discussion on the topics that JHK has touched upon in this week’s essay, your wish will not be granted beyond this point. (Take a cue from the post just above.)

      Go to the bottom of this page of comments and click on the “older comments” (just above “trackbacks and pingbacks”) and return to the first page of comments, which can be identified by the date stamps on the postings. I realize it’s a pain, but that’s where the on-topic comments [for the most part] are.

      Best of luck, things are becoming more serious than these piffling distractions would imply. Facing our predicaments is a holistic exercise, not single-issue whingings that will do nothing to change the way we’re “inhabiting the landscape” [tm JHK].

      (A surge in troll-traffic speaks for itself. Things are not “getting better”.)

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

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

  52. progress4what February 6, 2014 at 11:26 am #

    JHK – Another fine piece of writing this week, but you have explored the topic of looming financial collapse so thoroughly and for so many months and years – that I couldn’t find any words of my own to add to yours.

    I was surprised that you did not mention the Super Bowl. Because if one ever wanted to find a metaphor for an over-hyped, over-leveraged, and overly-unequal crisis situation – -

    One could certainly find it in the defeat of the Broncos by the Chinese Seahawks. (yeah, OK – seattle Seahawks – just to veil the metaphor a bit)

    I was also surprised that you did not mention Clusterflake 2014, as the overgrown , auto-dependent, and multicultural Atlanta, South was made completely helpless for 48 hours by 2 inches of snow.

    Thanks for the week’s work, though.

    And now – Rubi-i-con will tell us that traffic really was moving in Atlanta during that winter weather.

    And – AJSoaker will tell us that Atlanta needs more people.

    BAU at CFN.

    • ZrCrypDiK February 6, 2014 at 12:11 pm #

      O-bomber hyped up the annual auto show like a dream had come to fruition! Can you belieb (ahaha, the epitome of the tough guy with tats – bieber, getting the pilots stoned as well) that the top selling autos are still the 2 ton death metal coffins? Well, let me state that they skimmed a good 400lbs off the weight, making them all aluminum (WTF?!?) – and pumping up the MPG from 16 to *18*!!! WOOOOOO!!!!!!!!

      I actually got behind one of those Tesla cars, while going to Costco. Me, in my 43MPG motorcycle (used to be 65 MPG – gotta rebuild the carb/new rings on the pistons), them in their *TOTALLY SILENT* electrical monstrosity. I’d guess that thing costs $100k+? I dunno – it looked like a poorly made Oldsmobile (Buick?)…

    • Neon Vincent February 6, 2014 at 6:00 pm #

      “I was surprised that you did not mention the Super Bowl.”

      Oh, yes, he did, if only to mention a particularly galling commercial.

      “Who can otherwise explain the amazing placidity of the sore beset American public, beyond the standard trope about bread, circuses, and superbowls? Last night they were insulted with TV commercials hawking Maserati cars. Behold, you miserable nation of overfed SNAP card swipers, the fruits of wealth and celebrity!”

      One of the observations I’ve made repeatedly is that Americans will take all manner of social, economic and political abuse, but will rise up with righteous fury when you disturb their entertainment. That’s why it will take a huge outcry to get Sea World to not use orcas as trained performers…

      http://crazyeddiethemotie.blogspot.com/2014/01/blackfish-unexpected-sustainability-at.html

      …and why it was relatively easy to get foundations to front the money to save the collections at the Detroit Institute of Arts so they wouldn’t be auctioned off to pay for some of the city’s pension liabilities.

      http://crazyeddiethemotie.blogspot.com/2014/01/looks-like-good-news-for-dia.html

      The former will definitely interfere with people’s entertainment as well as Sea World’s bottom line, while the latter preserved people’s entertainment, especially the educated and well-off suburbanites who might visit Detroit but never live there.

  53. beantownbill. February 6, 2014 at 11:30 am #

    @ Looongerbeard, re education:

    I’ve noticed there’s something about the subject of education that makes normally rational people think emotionally. Your statement that I am hypocritical because I had a public school education (forgetting the fact you’re assuming I didn’t attend a private school or was home schooled. I didn’t and wasn’t, but that’s beside the point), doesn’t take into account I was only 6 years old in first grade and had no idea about public education issues – and I graduated at only 18, too young to understand there had been other options available to me.

    If I had a 6 year old child now, I probably wouldn’t let her attend public school, knowing what I now know. However, I always knew that I didn’t like attending school, but I liked learning, and always resented that a public education was not about it. I just never realized I had options.

    My parents paid for most of my college education and loans and summer jobs paid the rest.

    • Janos Skorenzy February 6, 2014 at 2:25 pm #

      Your post was nothing but raising questions and creating loose ends. You people did nothing for decades but question the legitimacy of ALL our institutions and ways of life. Now after this – and opening the borders – we don’t have a culture anymore. So OF COURSE no sane person wants to pay for things they aren’t going to personally use. And OF COURSE no sane person would send their child to public school.

      It need not have been this way. It wasn’t always this way. But it is now.

      Even before Jewish power, a lot of people questioned the creation of a public school system. Literacy was far higher in New England then than it is now. And people feared the quality would be low and that there was an agenda. All their fears turned out to be legitimate of course. Big Industrialists weighed in and said they didn’t want dreamers but practical people. Catholics created their own system to avoid the propaganda.

  54. progress4what February 6, 2014 at 11:35 am #

    Rub, I couldn’t resist this one:

    “….precisely what i have been stating ad nauseum here, that people adapt….” – rube-i-vomit -

    Yeah, people adapt allright. In Atlanta, people adapted by spending 36 hours in their cars, finding snow to eat that hadn’t been p*ssed on yet, and sleeping on the floor at Home Depot.

    Because this webspace is essentially unmoderated – you and the soaker are able to call JHK and those who agree with him – deluded liars – over and over week after week for ever and ever, amen.

    It grows tiresome..

    • ZrCrypDiK February 6, 2014 at 6:02 pm #

      “you and the soaker”

      Him and @$$-soker? How can you be so naive. He *IS* soker – you haven’t figured that 1 out yet? Them and their mud huts in South America?!? Pretty obvious sock to me.

  55. progress4what February 6, 2014 at 11:40 am #

    Bill – you’ve made some good comments this week. I’ll get back to you on a couple if I can find them.

    Janos – “Yes, my son.” That was the funniest thing I’ve seen on CFN in weeks.

    It was too late for coffee and too early for wine -

    Otherwise you’d owe me a keyboard.

    • Janos Skorenzy February 6, 2014 at 2:29 pm #

      Thanks Prog. I thought so too. You have good taste in humor. You like your coffee Black I assume – like your women.

  56. rube-i-con February 6, 2014 at 12:22 pm #

    yeah progress??4nothing, i knew youd stoop to that, thats all the ammo you got.

    as far as calling people deluded liars over and over, those are your own words. i cite link after link and real world fact after fact, something your ilk out here are fairly unable to do. or refute.

    i just did it with span and wind energy. and then with stanford’s monumental study on solar eroei.

    here is another one for you ever-challenged folks. notice its solar AND wind that are breaking records:

    Germany just broke its monthly solar power generation record once again. In July, the grey-skied country logged 5.1 terawatt hours (TWh) of electricity from solar power, slightly better than the 5 TWh of electricity generated by wind turbines it produced in January.
    As Inhabitat points out, “The accomplishment proves once again that a lack of sunshine is no obstacle to scaling up solar energy — and if the Teutons can produce record amounts of solar power under grey skies, then the potential for countries with sunnier weather and more land mass (like the United States) is limitless.”

    yes i know it grows tiresome, your being pointed out how shallow and incorrect your stances are.

    you prefer to trot out the worlds corniest puns. what, are you in 7th grade, like kdog at times?

    keep up the great rational thinking and juvenilian retorts, they’re so informative, and say lots about you and your cohorts.

    the future has arrived, we are better off than at any time in our past.

    we salute you as we soar high above your tribes of despair on wings of endless plant-based, solar, wind and other alt energies, into our future of abundance and cornucopia.

    peace peaceniks

    • ZrCrypDiK February 6, 2014 at 12:29 pm #

      Yo, ‘soker! So you still doing the pig roasts with the locals, and picking fruit from the trees in your front yard? Or R U the 1%’er, building up your fortress, unassailable from any frontal (rear) attack?!?

      Your storyline is sad, and pathetic – and obviously *fraud*. GO AWAY, *SOCK*.

  57. ajmuste February 6, 2014 at 12:37 pm #

    I was surprised that you did not mention the Super Bowl. Because if one ever wanted to find a metaphor for an over-hyped, over-leveraged, and overly-unequal crisis situation — Prog

    Hey, Prog, don’t you know you look like an idiot by bringing up Asoka every week, even though he was banned and has not posted here for months? Give it a rest. There is no “AJSoker” and there is no Soker. He’s gone.

    About the Super Bowl: there were two adds I liked: Coca-Cola singing the national anthem in all languages and representing various religious groups; and Cheerios (first GMO-free cereal) showing an interracial couple explaining to their daughter that she’s going to have a little brother.

    I’m going to buy some Coca-Cola and Cheerios now, and write letters of support to them explaining why I was pleased with the ads and will be buying their products.

    • ZrCrypDiK February 6, 2014 at 12:42 pm #

      Hahaha *SOKER*!!! Can’t reply to that *WELLES* (your) dribble?

      OK, I get it – but I’m guessing you’re one of those idiots who watched the shows that premiered *SUPER BOWL COMMERCIALS*. (interlaced [tm] with sh!t commercials)…

      So, which ones were the *BEST*?!? Wondering minds must *KNOW*!!!

  58. rube-i-con February 6, 2014 at 2:08 pm #

    it’s so telling on this board that 3/4 of the comments relate to who is really who, and if they are paid to post, and that this and that person is a fraud. such matters of importance!

    the world made by hand may be able to use your minimal talents planting corn or driving a pickup, but not the real world progressing nicely thanks to technological progress.

    wheres your replies to Spain+Germany getting massive alt energy inputs? can’t bear to hear real, good news, can you?

    btw, whats wrong with pig roasts and naturally growing fruit? i thought you were all ~in favor~ of going back to farmish roots. isnt that what kunstler keeps bellowing about?

    shows just how shallow you are.

    i will be working-vacationing in greece in short measure, learning my 5th language there, living in an energy self-sufficient building with a solar-heated pool, while you all talk about the ….superbowl.

    ugh, good riddance to most of you, you can’t hold a candle to informed, rational people.

    we salute you as we soar high, high above your dirt dwellings and mental jails of scarcity as we rocket into our wonderful future of abundance and cornucopia.

    peace peaceniks

    • ZrCrypDiK February 6, 2014 at 6:08 pm #

      “it’s so telling on this board that 3/4 of the comments relate to who is really who, and if they are paid to post, and that this and that person is a fraud.”

      So you’re finally going to *COME CLEAN*?!? Your sock puppetry is getting old, real fast. In fact, slowly as well…

      Didn’t you state about 2 month ago that you fortified your adobe dwelling in the South American vista, being a 1%’er? I THINK *SO*!

      What R U so afraid of? I’m glad I don’t have similar *fears*…

  59. Janos Skorenzy February 6, 2014 at 3:01 pm #

    Americans are incapable of tragedy. We’ll bright side anything. If anyone else had a retarded kid, they’d consider it an affliction or curse. But American Women will work themselves into saying they’re glad or they prefer it, or it’s a “blessing”. Saw a clip of a Downs Syndrome girl saying, “I love being Downs”. It’s better than persecuting them of course. But it can lead to some odd situations.

    One of my professors told us he had a tard in one of his classes. This girl told him very firmly that she couldn’t be tested because she had “issues” with testing. She had a whole bag of little euphemisms that had gotten her into college. People were probably afraid of her because of the reign of Political Correctness. Never heard how it turned out. She’ll probably end up with a six figure salary. As the the mutant said on Dr Who, “All Norms must die”.

    • ZrCrypDiK February 6, 2014 at 6:15 pm #

      You and your cra-Z catholics can test fetuses for such downs *disease*, yet *YOU* let them live (good form of torture, I guess).

      And yet, now you come here wimpering about how that downs person has left you in a *conundrum* (and blame it on women – how *gauche*).

      I know you read – you quote the most obscure literary references. Why R U so stupid when it comes to *COMMON SENSE*?!?

      • Janos Skorenzy February 6, 2014 at 8:34 pm #

        Are you still dating that Black “Downs” RuPaul imitator? Does your family know or are you on the down Downs down low?

  60. volodya February 6, 2014 at 3:53 pm #

    Beantown,

    The problem of how to finance public projects is one for reasonable men behaving reasonably. But we don’t have that.

    And you also have the problem of innumerate and illiterate citizens that couldn’t tell you their take-home pay or that don’t do cursive. You might ask, after the torrent of public monies burned on 13 years of state provided “education”, is this the result? How do you have a functioning tax system in these conditions?

    An average citizen ought to be able to fill out his own forms, that is to say, accurately and honestly self assess. After 13 years of education this isn’t asking all that much. And the people that devise tax laws ought to know to set up a system such that the average joe can deal with it. Not just mega-buck CPAs and tax lawyers.

    A long time ago I would have disagreed with your views on public education. State provided education OUGHT to help level the playing field between kids from various economic and social strata. I WAS a believer in the idea. No more. Because, in my estimation, it’s now doing the opposite. And it’s no longer educating kids. Good intentions are worthless without results.

    If I was to point the finger I would blame a disengaged and complacent citizenry that assumed they didn’t have to worry, that the kids’ education was being taken care of by professionals.

    And so, bit by bit, year by year, the quality of instruction declined, the interests of teachers and their unions won out over the interests of students, proven workable methods were displaced by fantastical, pie in the sky educational fantasies.

    We have a more general problem of which education is just a subset. We put aside our plain common sense, we let social “scientists” with their various ‘ologies talk down to us, we listened when they say that they KNOW, that they have these degrees you see, that they studied the issues scientifically and that the data shows this and the data shows that. See, it’s in the charts.

    But the mess speaks for itself. After generations of entertaining quackery, we ought to know the “data” is shit, the studies nonsense, the theories crap, that “academics” who pretended to be practitioners of rigorous science were actually purveyors of junk that would get laughed out of reputable laboratories.

    Stories came out of Cuba a while back. Seems that the govt there took on the responsibility for feeding kids school lunches. And school lunch was a plate of beans. And Cuban mothers saw the dietary inadequacy and gave their kids a banana or a hard-boiled egg to take to school. And you know what? The bananas and eggs and whatever other little extras were confiscated by school official-dom. All the kids have to be equal the officials said.

    And the mothers were seriously pissed. They said to officials if you say you’re going to feed my kid, then feed my kid. Because if you won’t then I have to.

    The point being that sometimes, just like those Cuban mothers, you’re facing a non-functioning government that says they’ll do this or they’ll do that and they don’t. And so you have to take matters into your own hands. If the govt says they’ll educate your kids and they don’t then you have to deal with it.

    • Janos Skorenzy February 6, 2014 at 7:44 pm #

      You’re growing bro – but you have only just begun to see. Is it just education that is a joke? Or in fact everything Liberals touch? Check this out: Trans-Men Activists condemn Feminist for using the word vagina even after she’d been told how exclusionary and hurtful it is. It’s like she thinks that having a vagina has anything to do with being feminine or female. Internal organ is the proper word apparently. Needless to say, I love it. Now that the Evil ones have won, they are turning on each other.

      http://www.the-spearhead.com/2014/01/30/intersectionality-feminism-as-mexican-standoff/

      The same thing applies to the Race hustle, the Global Warming hustle, the IQ scam. Despite the overwhelming evidence, people continue to insist that Blacks are equal to Whites in IQ. They tie themselves into knots trying to explain away decades of research. And if they admit the obvious, they attempt to blame Whites – and typically White teachers and politicians accept the blame!

  61. ajmuste February 6, 2014 at 4:07 pm #

    Volodya, you are giving up on public education before the fight is won.

    You also seem to be ignoring the data showing improvement in public education in the last decade, even in the worst school systems.

    Take, for example, the Hartford Public Schools. Our beloved BRH always posts about how bad things are in Hartford, and Connecticut in general. Things are just terrible there, including in public education. Right? Wrong.

    A review of data from both Hartford Public Schools and the Connecticut State Department of Education shows that Hartford students now have more quality school options, have increased test scores, and are graduating at higher rates. Students are performing better on state assessments than they were 10 years ago and even 5 years ago. The performance gap between Hartford students and students state-wide has declined by 10 points – one third – since 2006- 2007.

    You can ignore the data, but you abandon public education at your own risk.

  62. BackRowHeckler February 6, 2014 at 4:46 pm #

    A few months ago our EPA Commissioner abruptly quit and returned to his teaching job at Yale. His signature accomplishment was getting electric power production switched from oil and coal to natural gas. (to fight global warming, which is the modern version of we’re doing it for the children). (You should’ve been here that day, the self congratulatory back slapping, hand shaking, butt kissing; In short, our energy future was secured) I was wondering why he quit so suddenly.

    Now I think I know. We learn today that Natgas is facing critical shortage; Electric bills may double, as well as gas bills for home heating. Seems like not as much fracked natural gas is available as once hoped. We might not the ‘the Saudi Arabia of natural gas’ after all.

    That lie didn’t last too long, only about 2 years.

    –BRH

  63. ajmuste February 6, 2014 at 5:14 pm #

    “The graduation rate in the 3 Hartford public high schools is 29%” — BRH

    More disinformation from BRH.

    Eight years ago Dr. Christina Kishimoto took over the Hartford Public Schools. Her daughter is enrolled in there, so it’s personal for her.

    In the last eight years Dr. Kishimoto has achieved the highest graduation rate since the start of the Hartford Public Schools reform at 64.8% in 2012 compared to 34% in 2006 and the highest number of students (89%) taking the SAT in 2012 since the start of reform. Got that, BRH? 64.8% graduating, not 29%. Kishimoto has more than doubled the graduation rate. Give the woman some credit.

    Things are getting BETTER in public education. Graduation numbers are proof. SAT scores are proof. Students are learning more in Hartford Public Schools, as evidenced, for example, by significant increases in Reading in grades 4, 5, 7 and 8 in 2012 and by improved scores on Connecticut state assessment tests, showing significant performance gains.

    It takes time, but Kishimoto is “gettin’ ‘er done” to paraphrase W.

    • BackRowHeckler February 6, 2014 at 6:35 pm #

      Reading has improved? In what language?

      If you have any school age kids, by all means, move to Hartford.

      Let us know how it works out.

      A few years ago there was a story about the one white kid at Weaver, just 1, and he was getting the shit beat out of him every day. I don’t know, maybe theyll recognize your inner goodness and let you live.

  64. ajmuste February 6, 2014 at 5:15 pm #

    CORRECTION

    Kishimoto has more than doubled the graduation rate from when it was 29%, BRH.

  65. K-Dog February 6, 2014 at 5:54 pm #

    There are already co2 sequestering technologies out there that can extract the gas from the atmosphere.

    This is a mendacious lie. There are no co2 sequestering technologies out there that can extract the gas from the atmosphere.

    You can’t name one.

    You are disingenuous. By blatant lies you make a case for David Holmgren’s Crash on Demand scenario and validate his position.

    • ZrCrypDiK February 6, 2014 at 6:21 pm #

      Hey *woof woof*, actually I have a *millionaire* friend, who used to be my manager, who is doing CO2 sequestering from the atmosphere right now. It’s a pittance, compared to the CO2/Methane hydrates that escape into the atmosphere every day – but it’s a *START*…

      I’d go to work for him, but he’s in Hawaii (and I’m freezing up here in ORY-gone)…

      • K-Dog February 6, 2014 at 6:40 pm #

        An experimental pittance. Could you link to the project?

        Biochar experiments are also under way but without government and social support efforts in sequestering CO2 are wasted efforts. Nothing happens for free. What technology is he using?

      • K-Dog February 6, 2014 at 6:44 pm #

        And whacha doin hepin the rube-i-con out of this pickle. He needs to account that whopper.

      • Janos Skorenzy February 6, 2014 at 8:31 pm #

        There was far more carbon dioxide in the atmosphere back in the age of dinosaurs – before man. Are you suggesting that Dinosaurs had industry and pollution? Interesting.

      • Janos Skorenzy February 6, 2014 at 8:39 pm #

        Love is the warp and woof and the woof and weft of Existence. But woof woof? The very definition of unbalance. Fuck woof woof.

  66. ajmuste February 6, 2014 at 6:48 pm #

    C’mon, K-Dog, Rube-i-con is right that atmospheric sequestration of CO2 is possible. It happens every day. Photosynthetic removal of CO2 from the atmosphere is an important planetary carbon dioxide removal mechanism. All by itself, Nature removes an amount equivalent to all atmospheric carbon which passes through the coupled plant-soil system within 7 years.

    We can aid in this process, as Rube-i-con does, by planting fast-growing species, such as willow and poplar, which are not only producers of biomass for fuel, but also as C sinks.

    But we don’t have to rely solely on plants. Through technology we can remove CO2 directly from the atmosphere. Humidity swing driven atmospheric sequestration, under humid and windy conditions, allows collection using air capture. There are plenty of remote and environmentally secure locations for CO2 sequestration using renewable energy. A large fraction (over 1500 Gt CO2) of 21st century emissions can be sequestered and held in regional reservoirs.

    Check out this 2013 article: “Co-Location of Air Capture, Subseafloor CO2 Sequestration, and Energy Production on the Kerguelen Plateau.” Environmental Science & Technology 47, no. 13

    K-Dog, it’s time for you to start thinking outside the kennel. Woof!

    • K-Dog February 6, 2014 at 9:00 pm #

      You are not telling me anything I don’t already know and you can’t take credit for natures work. You are dogging the question photosynthetic removal is not a carbon sink, it is a reservoir. Big difference. I’m a reservoir dog myself and have a huge redwood I planted next to my doghouse. My tree dies and the tons of CO2 it has sequestered goes right back into the atmosphere.

      I looked at this :

      “Co-Location of Air Capture, Subseafloor CO2 Sequestration

      What is this . That is no article it is an abstract for an article that does not exist. Produce the article. I have no more time for your bullshit.

      All this is a speculative theory anyway.

      I already know the Kerguelen Archelpegalo is the windiest place on earth and I know it is owned by France!

      The efficiency of humidity swing driven air capture under humid and windy conditions is tested in the laboratory.

      I don’t know what that means and either do you! I challenge you to define it.

      Think outside the box. You belong in a box. A box closed and taped tightly shut. You are sinking to new lows.

      Humidity swing driven atmospheric sequestration my ass.

  67. BackRowHeckler February 6, 2014 at 6:54 pm #

    The big thing now in education with democrats — Bill deBlasio and Governor Malloy — is ‘full time Pre K’. Malloy gave a speech about it today. Its this year’s panacea. You’re talking about taking 3, 4 year old kids away from their mothers and into a classroom all day.

    Its supposed to ‘close the gap’ by which they mean the high achieving white suburbs and the abysmal cities.

    I’ve been hearing about ‘closing the gap’ for as long as I can remember. Its been the main focus of our local newspaper, the one I work for, for the past 40 years. There have been all kinds of different plans; they come and go, so many I can’t name them. What they have in common is in the end they all fail.

    –BRH

    • Janos Skorenzy February 6, 2014 at 11:18 pm #

      We cannot allow a mine shafp gat.

  68. ajmuste February 6, 2014 at 8:23 pm #

    “You’re talking about taking 3, 4 year old kids away from their mothers and into a classroom all day.” — BRH

    Wow, BRH, this is outrageous. You mean they go into people’s private homes and rip the kids out of the parents’ arms? Do they kick down the doors to get to the kids? Goddamn immoral democrats! /sarcasm off

    Actually I know lots of parents of 3 and 4 year olds and they are eager to get them into a classroom where they can both learn something and develop social skills. No one is “taking” the kids away from them.

    Your bias is incredible. Your language inflammatory.

  69. progress4what February 6, 2014 at 9:14 pm #

    ” You have good taste in humor. You like your coffee Black I assume – like your women.” – vlad/janos -

    Hah. hah.

    There is a chain of restaurants in the South called Waffle House. It’s what you’d expect, given the name – good food fast, with a breakfast orientation. The chain is open 24/7/365, except for Christmas. Even the upper class and glitteratti like to go there – except usually at 3:00 in the morning to get some eggs and fat, to sober up and ward off a hangover.,

    Good folks. Competent cooks. Friendly businesslike waitresses.
    Bottomless cups of excellent coffee.

    There can NOT be a Waffle House waitress who has not heard, on an almost daily basis from various male customers, “I like my coffee like I like my women – Hot, Black, and Sweet.”

    Anyway, years ago – I was having a cup of coffee, killing time with a co-worker while we watched it rain.

    And he came up with, “hot, black, and sweet,” for his coffee order.

    And our waitress managed a grin, like she’d never heard THAT one

    “How about you,” she asks me.

    “Yeah, me too,” I said deadpan. “I like my coffee like I like my women, too.”

    “Hot, white, and bitter.”

    She cracked up laughing. I’m lucky she didn’t spit her gum in my hair.

    Or maybe – I’m lucky she didn’t run out to my work truck, buckle herself in, and scream at me –

    “Take me HOME, sweetheart. You’re my kind of guy!”

  70. rube-i-con February 6, 2014 at 9:25 pm #

    amjuste, i am impressed by your knowledge on co2 sequestration. thank you very much, south american expat brother (possibly).

    just another techno-failure tho, right? cuz we all know technology dont get us nowhere, cuz dat oil be runnin’ out.

    kdog, so what if the co2 goes back into the atmosphere when ur tree dies. ever thought of KEEPING ON PLANTING MORE FUCKING TREES?

  71. rube-i-con February 6, 2014 at 9:25 pm #

    PEACE PEACENIKS

  72. progress4what February 6, 2014 at 9:36 pm #

    “I’ve been hearing about ‘closing the gap’ for as long as I can remember. Its been the main focus of our local newspaper, the one I work for, for the past 40 years. There have been all kinds of different plans; they come and go, so many I can’t name them. What they have in common is in the end they all fail.” -brh-

    You know, backrow, I’d never realized this until just now, which is somewhat amazing.*

    But – like our “war on communism,” morphed into the “war on terror,” to become a 40 year endless war. So it is with “closing the gap,” on education. The gap remains as elusive and “unclosed” as it ever was.

    The elite don’t have to worry. They send their kids to private school

    Amazing. And amazing* that I’d never realized the truth of your statement. Doubly amazing since I come from a family with a bunch of career educators in it. And I spent enough time teaching one thing or another, public/private/industrial – to know my way around a classroom – although I never really made a career of it.

    One more thing – to Valodya, especially.

    Georgia doesn’t have “teacher unions,” not as you’re using the term. And education here seems just as fouled up as it does anywhere else.

    It’s the whole apparatus that’s to blame – from the politicians, to the Superintendents, to the parents, the students, and yes, to the teachers -

    There’s plenty of blame to go around. You’re way out of line placing blame primarily on teachers, IMO.

  73. progress4what February 6, 2014 at 9:59 pm #

    “amjuste, i am impressed by your knowledge on co2 sequestration.”
    - rube-i-con crossing aj-must-e-

    Ix-no-more*, I’d considered the possibility that ajsoaker and welles/rube were one and the same. I’d argue that rube’s dyslexic misspelling of “amjuste,” argues against it. Could still be a subterfuge, I suppose, but that seems needlessly complicated and far fetched.

    And, ajmustbe – what, exactly, is the problem with admitting who you are?

    You have the EXACT same typing style, beliefs, and use of plagiarized unattributed quotes as asoka. You’re him. What’s the problem with admitting it?

    Vlad/Janos – can you shed any light? You’ve never admitted (to my knowledge) that Janos is the old Vlad. Yet you obviously are. And to your great credit – you’ve never DENIED that you are one and the same. Any insights concerning these matters will be appreciated.

    Similarily, zrcrypdik, you and Ix-no-more are the same, right?

    Panic and anti-soak, both the same, right?

    Backrow and marlin, also, right?

    What would make someone completely DENY a previous posting identity – yet still keep posting here as the same underlying individual?

    • Janos Skorenzy February 6, 2014 at 11:30 pm #

      You refuse to talk to me about Elizabeth Warren or Jews, but you want to talk about this? What is there to say? You’re right: he’s Hive. There are several others who may be or may be other identities of the same Entity.

      But what interests me is what you are feeling. Is it shock, outrage, or just neutral amazement? These are all good in that they are signs of life. These are more important than what causes them frankly. If more people had retained access to these we might not have lost our country. Shock and Outrage are a bit misplaced though – almost as if you are still just realizing how bad things are.

      Why? Evil is a negation, but even so it has its own nature. It hates to be uncovered first and foremost. And it cultivates inconsistency – since logic and causality are also the Robes of God it love to spurn these. And more, always dispersal, away from the main point, away from the Centre – thus pettiness, pettiness, and more pettiness. The Entity dearly loves the petty feminine self righteousness of the PC school marm. Thus even as it makes a point it is mocking itself at the same time. Blabby loved to do this as well though he did it from the opposite point of view.

  74. progress4what February 6, 2014 at 10:51 pm #

    “I really liked two SB commercials”
    - aj must perpetuate stereotypes -

    You are aware that, in the Cheerios commercial, the (black) husband kept himself completely immobile on the sofa – while the (white) wife did all the work of caring for the child and the house.

    Apparently, you were unaware of this. Which means that you were also unaware that the purpose of the Coca-Cola advertisement was to encourage the consumption of a brown liquid, sweetened with high fructose corn syrup – especially by vulnerable minority group members.

    Here’s a good takedown of the Coke ad. Funny stuff!

    “Coca-Cola’s diversity ad wasn’t purposed to celebrate the reality of a multi-ethnic America. It was to sell soda to rapidly-expanding but vulnerable populations, even if that means contributing to serious health problems, exploiting divides in class and education, and exacerbating racial inequality.”

    (snip)

    “Coke’s targeting of Latino and other immigrant populations is about as progressive as RJ Reynolds marketing menthol cigarettes to African-Americans or Phillip Morris hawking Virginia Slims to women – that is, not very. Before we applaud Coke’s advertising diversity, we should ask: do we really want Coke to diversify?”

    http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/feb/03/coca-cola-america-is-beautiful-ad

  75. ajmuste February 6, 2014 at 11:51 pm #

    “the purpose of the Coca-Cola advertisement was to encourage the consumption of a brown liquid, sweetened with high fructose corn syrup – especially by vulnerable minority group members.” — Prog

    Prog, are you saying no minority group members drink Coke Zero?

    Or are you saying all Coke products are sweetened with HFCS?

    Either way you are wrong and seem oblivious to minority preferences in drinks.

    What would make someone completely DENY a previous posting identity – yet still keep posting here as the same underlying individual?

    I am ajmuste, not asoka. I remember asoka, the dude who used to post crazy shit every hour, like 80 posts a day.

    My question for you: why do you care so much who is who? Rube-i-con is right that 3/4 of the posts here are about poster identity… which in fact distracts from the purpose of this blog and makes you a resident impediment…

    LOL! what irony! … that is what you used to call asoka. There must be a moral, but hell if I know what it is.

    All I know is your constant distractions add nothing and impede the serious conversation some of us are engaged in about topics like CO2 sequestration.

    • K-Dog February 7, 2014 at 12:36 am #

      serious conversation some of us are engaged in about topics like CO2 sequestration.

      ha

      I am still waiting for someone to explain what, “humidity swing driven air capture under humid and windy conditions” is!

      There is only one serious way to sequester CO2 that I know of. There are many books on the subject. This is only one.

      The Biochar SolutionAlbert Bates

      Everything else is science fiction.

      I need to remind myself that you are a sock-puppet troll and I should not be feeding you.

  76. ajmuste February 7, 2014 at 1:13 am #

    K-Dog, the topic raised by Rube-i-con is atmospheric sequestration and you are distracting from the topic by raising “biochar” which makes you a troll.

    First, Bates book is 2011 (with studies even earlier than 2011) and does not include recent advances in atmospheric sequestration of CO2.

    Second, biochar is charred organic matter that could be used for agricultural soil enhancement or bioremediation, but is not a major component of mitigation through the sequestration of carbon in soil (the major terrestrial sink).

    Third, we weren’t talking about soil enhancement. We were talking about atmospheric sequestration of CO2, so the Bates book is not even relevant. Which is why you are a troll.

    I tried to tell you nicely that your science is out-of-date and you are off topic, but in response you insisted on trolling.

    I’m done with you on this subject. No need to reply.

  77. Pucker February 7, 2014 at 1:17 am #

    There used to be a huge, crappy, gas guzzling car that targeted black consumers called “The Lincoln”.

    • Janos Skorenzy February 7, 2014 at 2:37 pm #

      My Black son is named Ford Lincoln Mercury Continental.

  78. Pucker February 7, 2014 at 1:55 am #

    What is the relationship between fossil fuel consumption and water consumption?

  79. Janos Skorenzy February 7, 2014 at 2:37 am #

    The damage Israel has done to America is beyond calculation. The angels weep at what could have been if only we had listened to the Founders and stayed true to their vision.

    http://www.veteranstoday.com/2013/07/17/how-much-does-israel-cost-the-average-american/

    How do you like them beans Billy Backrow?

    • BackRowHeckler February 7, 2014 at 7:08 am #

      Vlad, why do you always have to be hammering Israel?

      The one decent country in that part of the world — one of the few in the entire world — is the one you don’t like!

      What’s that say about you?

      –BRH

    • beantownbill. February 7, 2014 at 12:15 pm #

      Janos, why don’t you run for president on an anti Jew/Israel platform? Let’s see what percentage of the votes you get. You could win, you know. It already happened in a European country in the 1930′s.

      I’ve been posting on this blog going on 4 years, and in that time you’ve blamed the Jews for almost every conceivable event possible. Your creativity is a thing to behold. Hitler succeeded, so maybe you could, too.

      • Janos Skorenzy February 7, 2014 at 2:30 pm #

        So in other words, the suck must continue….

        • Janos Skorenzy February 7, 2014 at 2:31 pm #

          I thought you were for fiscal responsibility. But no when it comes to Israel evidently.

  80. BackRowHeckler February 7, 2014 at 7:28 am #

    I mean, there are countries and organizations — NKorea, Iran, Al Quada, who threaten us with destruction all the time; you never say squat. After 9/11 and OK City Israel sent teams over to locate survivors; Israel works closely with our intelligence community; Israel has been attacked many times and never asked for help from US Marines or the Army.

    • Janos Skorenzy February 7, 2014 at 2:28 pm #

      Yes Israel has attacked us repeatedly – as you well know. Yet you sleep on. Ultimately, America’s fall can be pinned on people like you just as much as the Pete Seegers.

      We shouldn’t be giving money to ANYONE at this point. In fact, it was always illegal even when we could afford it. It’s just the Elite using America as their own personal ATM.

    • Janos Skorenzy February 7, 2014 at 2:36 pm #

      Wait a minute – you really believe that Israel never asks for our military aid? The mind boggles.

      Remember, the article was from a veteran’s organization. Even military people can wake up. You can too, but it wont be easy. You have to brain wash yourself.

      You think Israel has the right to all of our secrets. But they don’t share everything with us – remember the dancing Israelis of 9/11.

  81. rube-i-con February 7, 2014 at 11:45 am #

    K-Dog, the topic raised by Rube-i-con is atmospheric sequestration and you are distracting from the topic by raising “biochar” which makes you a troll.

    i raise atmospheric sequestration, show successful solar and wind on the scale of entire nations, cite studies showing some alt energy is net energy plus, demonstrate net energy plus homes, how hydropower provides up to 84% of huge countries’ electricity supplies, and new technological advances that are making a very credible dent in fossil fuel usage.

    what do we hear back from the doomboys? youre a paid govt hack, youre using someone else’s name, and other non sequiturs.

    I tried to tell you nicely that your science is out-of-date and you are off topic, but in response you insisted on trolling.

    yes, see point one above.

    thats all the ammo they have, i.e. none.

    waste of energy trying to reason with third graders that insist on calling you names.

    in real world news, solar is at or cheaper than coal-produced electricity prices:

    A new study suggests that wind and solar plants are already competing economically with fossil fuel in Europe. Soon, even household rooftop solar PV systems will generate electricity more cheaply than coal.
    The study from Germany’s Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems says the cost of rooftop solar in the southern parts of Germany is already as cheap as €0.08 per kilowatt-hour. Even in northern Germany, where there is little sun, solar can be generated at €0.14 kilowatt-hour, half the cost of grid-based electricity.

    By 2030, the study says, the levelized cost of energy (LCOE) from rooftop solar PV will have fallen to around €0.06 per kilowatt-hour. In sunnier regions, such as Australia, the Middle East, southern Europe and the western U.S., not to mention Africa and Latin America, the cost of solar will be lower still, at around €0.043 per kilowatt-hour.

    peace peaceniks

    • K-Dog February 7, 2014 at 1:44 pm #

      Repeating yourself under a different name is childish and transparent. Get a real job.

  82. ajmuste February 7, 2014 at 12:50 pm #

    Israel has been attacked many times and never asked for help from US Marines or the Army — BRH

    LOL!

    Nope, no US Marines. No Army.

    How about the Navy? How much does it cost to move aircraft carriers into place to provide a threat to Israel’s enemies? Isreal does not request boots on the ground, but the US military has its back, at US taxpayer expense.

    Also Israel is the largest cumulative recipient of U.S. military assistance since World War II. To date, the United States has provided Israel $118 billion (current, or non-inflation-adjusted, dollars), most of it is military assistance, at US taxpayer expense.

    • BackRowHeckler February 7, 2014 at 12:57 pm #

      So what? How much has France cost us? We bailed France out when, in the 1890s, their attempt to build a canal across Panama bankrupted the whole country; in 1918 when the AEF pushed the Germans east back into Germany, again in 1944, and bailed ‘em out once again when they got their asses kicked in Vietnam.

      Tally up that bill. Yet I don’t see any complaints about it.

      –BRH

  83. K-Dog February 7, 2014 at 1:41 pm #

    Concerning,

    Recent advances in atmospheric sequestration of CO2.

    There aren’t any!

    This is the story of the King’s new clothes:
    Now there was once a king who was absolutely insane about new clothes and one day, two swindlers came to sell him what they said was a magic suit of clothes. Now, they held up this particular garment and they said, “Your Majesty, this is a magic suit.” Well, the truth of the matter is, there was no suit there at all. But the swindlers were very smart, and they said, “Your Majesty, to a wise man this is a beautiful raiment but to a fool it is absolutely invisible.” Naturally, the King not wanting to appear a fool, said,

    “Isn’t it grand! Isn’t it fine! Look at the cut, the style, the line!
    The suit of clothes is all together
    But all together it’s all together
    The most remarkable suit of clothes that I have ever seen.

    Now concerning:

    The sustained mispricing of the cost of credit by central banks, led by the US Federal Reserve. Along the way, that outfit has managed to misprice just about everything else — stocks, houses, exotic securities, food commodities, precious metals, fine art. Oil is mispriced as well, on the low side, since oil production only gets more expensive and complex these days while it depends more on mispriced borrowed money. That situation will be corrected by scarcity, as oil companies discover that real capital is unavailable. And then the oil will become scarce…

    This led me to investigate mispricing caused by keeping a dozen economic growth plates spinning on thin long sticks by the central banks. There were guys who would balance plates on the ends of sticks in vaudeville and then keep the plates spinning so they wouldn’t fall off. It was a performance not unlike the performance of government and banking now.

    And I found this (from 2009) :

    Peak Oil and Other Mispriced Risks, When the Unexpected is Certain

    Running back and forth between the sticks eventually the performer gets tired. And when that happens the consequences of mispricing will be known.

    If you read the linked article you come across this:

    Overpriced suburbs of McMansions will be abandoned if they remain dependent on car travel. The nouveau riche of places like Orange County will go back home and live in their parents’ basement in Cleveland, or buy a $15,000 house in some small outpost of North Dakota, and try to live on a whole lot less. I call it the Dust Bowl Migration in reverse.

    The point is that mispricing does not prepare anyone for the future. Mispricing due to not dealing with reality will cause collapse. It will not prevent it and get the economy growing again. Our sycophantic wall street worshipping government is going to bring us down hard. It is going to bring us down in a crash and not in a slow guided crumble we should be preparing for. The economics of unbridled growth finance is dead and attempts to get the economic growth engine going again is draining the battery of human potential on an empty gas tank. We are not going to go and we are not going to grow.

    Home buyers may come in for a round of bargain hunting if we have a strong economic recovery and bona fide job growth circa 2011, but that will quickly fade as declining oil production begins to bite.

    Because then the homes become useless because there because reasonable transportation to and from them becomes impossible.

    The madness of mispricing to keep an defunct system plodding along is going to bring on immense pain and suffering.

  84. ajmuste February 7, 2014 at 2:10 pm #

    K-Dog, if you believe anyone who offers a different opinion is a govt paid sock puppet, why are you feeding them? Oh well, don’t look a gift dog in the mouth, so to speak.

    You are wrong that there is no atmospheric sequestration.

    Air capture machines suck CO2 out of the atmosphere to be stored or reused in industrial processes. Many air capture machines deployed in remote locations, where there is an abundance of renewable energy and infrastructure for carbon capture and storage, create “negative emissions”. Such machines are used to offset the greenhouse gas emissions of sectors that are hard to mitigate otherwise, such as aviation.

    In other scenarios, the air capture machines sited adjacent to factories and in industrial parks can capture CO2 and release it for use in manufacturing processes, such as making synthetic fuels. Such “closed-loop” systems stabilize emissions, rather than decrease them, but they could buy time as more environmentally friendly technological alternatives are developed.

    Air capture and synthetic fuels can be used to power transport, sucking up the emissions from vehicles and using the CO2 to produce fuel in a closed process. In the meantime, electric vehicles are being developed en masse.

    http://www.imeche.org/news/engineering/air-capture-could-result-in-lower-global-carbon-price

  85. rube-i-con February 7, 2014 at 2:55 pm #

    ajmuste, it is so refreshing to see a sane voice out here.

    remarkable what that old technology stuff can do for us all.

    rather than the end of the world, we are on the threshold of a wonderful new one.

    here is some info on co2 sequestration

    http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/prospects-for-direct-air-capture-of-carbon-dioxide/

    we salute you as we soar high above you on our way into a world of abundance and cornucopia.

    peace peaceniks

  86. ajmuste February 7, 2014 at 3:24 pm #

    “Who is feeding whom. Think about it.” — K-Dog

    So you are admitting you are a govt paid stalker? Are you Asoka?

    • beantownbill. February 7, 2014 at 4:08 pm #

      C’mon, AJ, stop mocking K-Dog. He is a very smart dog. And has access to the same info as you. He just comes to a different conclusion. What’s so bad about that?

      And what’s with mocking Marlin? He is on the opposite side of the political spectrum from you, so big deal. He, too, is entitled to respect.

      Did you get up on the wrong side of the bed today? Are you a woman and it’s that time of the month?

      Regarding cost of aid to Israel, think about this (and this is for Janos as well:

      Who’s to say there should have been created a Jewish state after WW2. Jews certainly would say, but regardless, the State of Israel

      • beantownbill. February 7, 2014 at 4:26 pm #

        …..the State of Israel exists and that can’t be changed now. So suppose the US makes a policy decision to stop all aid to Israel, and declares its neutrality with regard to all Mid-East states. What would happen?

        Naturally, Israel would immediately come under attack by most, if not all, of its neighbors. Israel, totally surrounded, and with no protector would feel it had no choice but to unleash its doomsday scenario and nuke all attackers. Because of the US’s neutrality, there’d probably not be a WW3, but all the Mideast oil fields would be rendered radioactive and useless to the world, which would ruin our modern day civilization – not to mention cause major damage to the biosphere, perhaps fatally.

        So you see, once Israel obtained a nuclear arsenal, America really had no choice but to continue as Israel’s ally and walk a tightrope in the area. This is not Israeli blackmail but a consequence of our nuclear world. To prevent a destroyed world, 118 billion dollars over 65 years is a bargain.

        • Janos Skorenzy February 7, 2014 at 11:06 pm #

          Oh how convenient! And how did they get a nuclear arsenal? How did they get the materials? And all of it in violation of the Non proliferation treaty. And how they squawk about Iran which has not one. The World is a vast den of Hypocrisy to even entertain such drivel.

  87. ajmuste February 7, 2014 at 4:32 pm #

    “C’mon, AJ, stop mocking K-Dog” — BTB

    OK, I am going to let it drop and let the sleeping dog lie.

    BTW, I respect you and Marlin … and the truth.

    Of course, it is OK to have differences of opinion. That’s what it’s all about. It would be a boring world if we all agreed on everything. But to say a graduation rate is 29% … when it has improved to 64.8% … is playing fast and loose with the truth. Facts are facts. Marlin can continue to believe Hartford is a shithole, that’s an opinion, but he cannot pull graduation rates out of his ass and expect to be taken as a credible source of information.

  88. BackRowHeckler February 7, 2014 at 5:41 pm #

    WTI crude is back up to $100 per barrel!

    I notice on the chart WSJ publishes on thursdays the US still imports 9 million bpd.

    So much for being a net oil exporter.

    That lie didn’t last too long either.

    –BRH

  89. ajmuste February 7, 2014 at 6:08 pm #

    “WTI crude is back up to $100 per barrel!” — BRH

    I sense a quickening of events. The indicators are the crash is near.
    I can almost hear the rumble in the crumble.

  90. progress4what February 7, 2014 at 7:33 pm #

    “You refuse to talk to me about Elizabeth Warren or Jews, but you want to talk about this? What is there to say? You’re right: he’s Hive.”
    - janos -

    umm, you OK? You’ve never once mentioned Elizabeth Warren to me. I’m not sure you’ve ever mentioned her at all. Is she Jewish? My exhaustive, 30 second, internet research – returned a charge of anti-semitism against her, as one of the first hits.

    “he’s Hive,” as regards aj muste soak – please elaborate.

    And as far as talking to you about “Jews,” there are two problems:

    1. You seem to consider “Jews” to be a monolith, responsible for most/all of the problems associated with the decline of Western Civilization. This is unreasonable – all the more unreasonable considering that JHK expends a lot of effort every week pointing out a variety of logical reasons for this decline.

    2. JHK is Jewish. He’s got pretty good tolerance for extremely wide-ranging discussion. I admire that. Maybe if you’ve got a specific issue, I’ll try to engage, and encourage Bill and others to do the same. But I’m not going to try to talk specific issues if all we’re doing is circling around and around your generic anti Semitism.

    • Janos Skorenzy February 7, 2014 at 11:11 pm #

      I posted an article by Elizabeth Warren but since you make a big thing about pages, evidently you didn’t go back and find it.

      Anti-Semitic is a smear word which means nothing. Or from another point of view, it means whatever the Jews want it to mean. Shame on you for using it. It’s just a way for you to avoid thinking.

      Hive means Government.

  91. progress4what February 7, 2014 at 8:10 pm #

    “Who’s to say there should have been created a Jewish state after WW2. Jews certainly would say, but regardless, the State of Israel exists and that can’t be changed now.” – btb -

    All true enough, bill.

    Israel started with such high hopes. Some push-back, even hate, was to be expected from the Arabs. I will NEVER understand how and why the hate was allowed to fester. Seemingly, it’s gotten worse year over year.

    And – after kicking a** in the ’67 war – why didn’t Israel offer some settlement of land for apartheid – that left them with permanently defensible borders, and a homogeneous ethnic Jewish population. Arab population numbers were SO MUCH lower then!

    What they have in Israel now is an intractable mess, IMO.

    US hegemony and force projection won’t last forever.
    Knowing that-

    Would the Israeli’s have been better off – if the US had been giving them less aid and support all along?

  92. progress4what February 7, 2014 at 8:11 pm #

    Freak! New page starting up soon.

    • beantownbill. February 7, 2014 at 9:23 pm #

      Nope. The Arab world hated Israel from its beginning, so with no early US assistance it may have been destroyed eventually.

      • progress4what February 7, 2014 at 9:38 pm #

        So, has the hate of the Arabs gotten worse, gotten better, or remained the same?

        And – you’re saying that Israel could not have begun without the US, could not presently exist without the US, correct?

        So – as US ability to project force inevitably drops, what happens to Israel?

        • beantownbill. February 8, 2014 at 12:13 am #

          The hate of the Arabs (should also include many non-Arab Muslims. Arabs are a set of certain Middle Eastern Semitic tribes) has not changed since 1948. If anything it is stronger now.

          Most likely, Israel wouldn’t exist without the US, because we were the heroes of WW2 and had enormous influence in Europe. Plus the Europeans felt guilty about what happened to the Jews and the US, in back-door meetings made sure that enough UN countries voted Yea. As America loses power – assuming it does -but I don’t buy

        • beantownbill. February 8, 2014 at 12:16 am #

          The hate of the Arabs (should also include many non-Arab Muslims. Arabs are a set of certain Middle Eastern Semitic tribes) has not changed since 1948. If anything it is stronger now.

          Most likely, Israel wouldn’t exist without the US, because we were the heroes of WW2 and had enormous influence in Europe. Plus the Europeans felt guilty about what happened to the Jews and the US, in back-door meetings made sure that enough UN countries voted Yea. As America loses power – assuming it does, even though I don’t buy we are in decline any more than every other country, including Russia and China – Israel’s

        • beantownbill. February 8, 2014 at 12:18 am #

          The hate of the Arabs (should also include many non-Arab Muslims. Arabs are a set of certain Middle Eastern Semitic tribes) has not changed since 1948. If anything it is stronger now.

          Most likely, Israel wouldn’t exist without the US, because we were the heroes of WW2 and had enormous influence in Europe. Plus the Europeans felt guilty about what happened to the Jews and the US, in back-door meetings made sure that enough UN countries voted Yea. As America loses power – assuming it does, even though I don’t buy we are in decline any more than every other country, including Russia and China – Israel’s existence grows proportionately problematical.

          • beantownbill. February 8, 2014 at 12:35 am #

            Be danged if I know what happened, but I apologize for the multiple postings of the same comment.

          • Janos Skorenzy February 8, 2014 at 5:16 am #

            Oh the hate of the Arabs! Not a word about hatred Of the Arabs? Same old Jewish victim psychology. Prog falls for it – many of us don’t anymore though.

            Ben Gurion said get every one of them out. But the world was watching and you didn’t dare. Now they multiply!

          • BackRowHeckler February 8, 2014 at 10:11 am #

            Vlad is beginning to sound a little like Minister Farrakhan.

  93. progress4what February 7, 2014 at 8:41 pm #

    “I sense a quickening of events. The indicators are the crash is near.
    I can almost hear the rumble in the crumble.”
    - aj muste perpetuate sarcasm -

    You can be snarky about it, but we’re living through an inflection point of human history. It will be good to get these Olympics in the record books without a major incident.
    There is tension.

    Your link on atmospheric sequestration “machines?” was ridiculous. Best comment on that 2 year old article goes to K-dog, far and away!

    7 BILLION humans are engaged in burning forests, plowing dirt, and burning fossil fuels on a global scale. No land-based CO2 sequestration scheme is going to make a dent in this.

    The only thing that COULD make a dent – will be ocean-based. Seeding lower-nutrient regions of the oceans with iron, to produce a algal bloom, to create a carbon sink – has been discussed.

    I haven’t seen it discussed in the literature, but a MORE efficient source of nutrients is to be found in the water of deep oceans, underneath these lower-nutrient surface waters. Some massive pumps, some massive pipes, powered by a couple of old nuclear subs holding station @ 5,000 feet – and they’d be good to go with a plan for doing just this.

    I don’t advocate this, mind you. Human interventions on global scales invoke the laws of unintended causes, with distressing frequencies.

    Gotta’ quit. Even though the Olympic opening ceremony was taped 10 hours ago. And even though a massive electronic
    Russian snowflake (hi, Q!) just failed to unfurl on schedule into an Olympic Ring – I must watch the Olympics.

    go figure.

  94. rube-i-con February 7, 2014 at 10:56 pm #

    I haven’t seen it discussed in the literature, but a MORE efficient source of nutrients is to be found in the water of deep oceans, underneath these lower-nutrient surface waters. Some massive pumps, some massive pipes, powered by a couple of old nuclear subs holding station @ 5,000 feet – and they’d be good to go with a plan for doing just this.

    have you alerted the global scientific community to this as yet novel approach?

    where do the pipes go in the ocean?

    yeah, crude is once again at the $100 barrel level. cue the apocalypse once again. how many times have we heard this spells the end of the economy?

    since 2005?

    people are much more resilient than any imagined end-of-times fantasies.

    world’s been around for a long tyme, and laughs at you typewriter buggy whip types as it careens into the future. its called progress, get used to it.

    peace peaceniks

  95. BackRowHeckler February 8, 2014 at 11:02 am #

    Does Snowden have any influence in Russia? Do you think he can intervene to stop the extensive spying and eves dropping the Russian Govt. is doing on the American Winter Olympic delegation? I know he is against that sort of thing.

    –BRH.

  96. ajmuste February 8, 2014 at 3:36 pm #

    “Does Snowden have any influence in Russia? Do you think he can intervene to stop the extensive spying and eves dropping the Russian Govt. is doing on the American Winter Olympic delegation? I know he is against that sort of thing.” — BRH

    First, does Russia have a constitution with something like the fourth amendment that guarantees against unlawful government spying?

    Second, is there proof Russia is engaging in spying to the extent that the NSA has been against USA citizens?

    Third, Snowden is a citizen of the USA and has been called a traitor for standing up for the Constitution.

    Fourth, Snowden is a guest in Russia, not a citizen. If he was a citizen had a position in the Russian intelligence agencies and found that the Russian constitution was being massively violated, only then would he have a duty to denounce Russian spying.

    Fifth, in the USA some have called for the death penalty for Snowden. Russia is protecting Snowden from American injustice.

    Sixth, Snowden should be given a medal of honor for being a whistle blower and protecting the Constitution. Instead he is attacked in the USA as being “unpatriotic” … What nonsense! The man is a hero.

    • BackRowHeckler February 8, 2014 at 5:42 pm #

      We’ll see how much of a hero he is when the Feds throw his ass in Leavenworth.

      Incidentally, how does Russia treat its own traitors? Ever heard of SMERSH?

      –BRH

  97. ajmuste February 8, 2014 at 8:12 pm #

    The hate of the Arabs (should also include many non-Arab Muslims. Arabs are a set of certain Middle Eastern Semitic tribes) has not changed since 1948. If anything it is stronger now. –BTB

    Beantown, are you referring to the Israeli hatred during the founding of Israel, when David Ben Gurion and Yitzhak Rabin ordered the expulsion of 35,000 Palestinian Arabs from the city of Lydda in 1948?

    This event is described in Ari Shavit’s new book, My Promised Land: The Triumph and Tragedy of Israel

    • beantownbill. February 8, 2014 at 9:00 pm #

      Do you mean the Lydda where Jews were expelled from the town in 1921 by Arab rioting? That Lydda? Or the Lydda where all its Jews were sold off into slavery by the Romans 1900 years earlier?

      • Janos Skorenzy February 8, 2014 at 11:38 pm #

        And what did the Jews do to the Philistines? Or did the God you don’t believe in give the Jews Palestine back then too?

        • beantownbill. February 9, 2014 at 12:48 am #

          Yup. Read the Old Testament books of Joshua,1 Samuel and 2 Samuel.

  98. ajmuste February 8, 2014 at 8:49 pm #

    “We’ll see how much of a hero he is when the Feds throw his ass in Leavenworth.” — BRH

    LOL!

    It would be a big help if the USA throws Snowden into jail. That is where heroes are made: Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King, Mahatma Gandhi, Henry David Thoreau, Václav Havel, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, etc. all did their time in prison and then went on to greatness.

    But I doubt Snowden will be coming back to the USA since he has it so cushy in Russia. Maybe if he was offered clemency, but I don’t see that happening largely because a few people share your opinion that he is a traitor.

  99. Pucker February 8, 2014 at 9:44 pm #

    What would President Lincoln think if he had lived to see a huge, gas-guzzling car named “Lincoln” being marketed to black people in the 1970′s? The logo of “The Lincoln” was a crucifix. I’m not joking….

  100. ajmuste February 9, 2014 at 1:09 am #

    Janos, you are being hoodwinked. BTB is pull a bait-and-switch. Don’t bother to read the Old Testament. The Israel to whom “God” gave Palestine is not the same nation that we call Israel today. “God” gave the land to a people united to him by a solemn covenant (Ex. 19-20). The present state of Israel is avowedly secular.

  101. ajmuste February 9, 2014 at 1:17 am #

    Prog said: “Freak! New page starting up soon.”

    Why do you believe that?

    We are now about 25 comments past your “Freak!” comment and still no new page.

    What made you cry wolf so soon? More distraction?

    The indicators paralleling 1928 and 2007 mean we are again at a point in 2014 to witness a BIG CRUMBLE, A CRASH, A COLLAPSE like in 1929 and 2008. No sarcasm in this claim. Ignore it at your own risk.

    • Neon Vincent February 9, 2014 at 12:07 pm #

      P4W already noted the irony of your comment causing the next page to pop up, so I won’t belabor that point other than to imitate Nelson from The Simpsons. “Ha ha!”

      On the other hand, I do have something that will bolster your positions about a Big Crumble happening and in favor of immigration reform. First, U.S. population growth is slowing down to the lowest levels since the Great Depression, 0.7% per year, which means it will take the country a full century to double at current rates (I’m pretty sure that won’t happen).

      http://crazyeddiethemotie.blogspot.com/2014/01/us-population-growth-slowing-down.html

      Second, we can’t even produce enough normal saline solution to meet the demand of flu season. I’ve never seen that before.

      http://crazyeddiethemotie.blogspot.com/2014/02/flu-causing-saline-shortage.html

      Finally, while there aren’t yet price spikes in natural gas and oil, that has happened with propane, which is in short supply in the Midwest. I’ll have to write about that.

  102. progress4what February 9, 2014 at 9:15 am #

    “We are now about 25 comments past your “Freak!” comment and still no new page.” – aj muste start a new page -

    Nice irony, aj. And I count only 8 comments, not 25 – as nested comments don’t contribute whatever algorithm forces new page formation.

    And – since you foresee a “BIG CRUMBLE, A CRASH, A COLLAPSE” in the near future – - then you have to agree that this is an excellent time to reduce legal US immigration to a sustainable replacement level. Good for you.

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

    Janos – If you’ll repost the Warren link, I’ll take a look. I think Warren would be good at reigning in some of the worst excesses of big business and big finance. I think she might favor bigger government, but I’m not sure. I don’t think she can win, anyway.

    • Neon Vincent February 9, 2014 at 12:13 pm #

      Since you write below that this may be your last post here, I want to thank you again for the links to The Great Change before your possible departure. I found an updated version of the chart of collapsniks that you linked to as well as another mental map of people thinking about the possible collapse of civilization. Those (and indirectly you) inspired me to post them at my blog.

      http://crazyeddiethemotie.blogspot.com/2014/02/perspectives-maps-of-territory.html

    • Janos Skorenzy February 9, 2014 at 4:19 pm #

      Did I say Elizabeth Warren? I probably did. I would never approve of that freak. I meant Elizabeth Wright – a Black White Nationalist. I kid you not. Can’t find the article but here’s moving eulogy by Jared Taylor to this brilliant but perhaps tormented woman.

      http://www.wvwnews.net/story.php?id=10353

      The South has the strongest White Tribe of all. You have but to open you eyes. And there are some very intellectual ones. Check out Kinism and of course the League of the South. The latter is not racial enough for me but it might appeal to you for that very reason.

      I hate Warren but when she tells the wealthy they didn’t attain all that by themselves, she’s right. It’s simple Buddhism – inter-dependence. Of course what she would DO with that is the real horror. Buddhism can be and has been misused. Zen became the religion of the Samurai after all.

  103. progress4what February 9, 2014 at 9:31 am #

    Bill -
    You had a short post stating that you’re “tribal.” You raised an argument from this – that you want your family and, then, country taken care of first. That led Janos, no less, to say that “we” should become more like “you,” meaning like the Jews. And I agree, although I leave “we” deliberately undefined.

    And there’s no question that a “tribe” of some sort, will become increasingly important for survival on the long slide down.

    Here’s my question. How does someone like myself go about finding a “tribe?”

    And aj-muste-speak – do NOT, repeat NOT, tell me that “humanity is my tribe,” or some similar piffle. That’s just stupid, in reference to this question.

  104. ajmuste February 9, 2014 at 10:48 am #

    And – since you foresee a “BIG CRUMBLE, A CRASH, A COLLAPSE” in the near future – – then you have to agree that this is an excellent time to reduce legal US immigration to a sustainable replacement level.

    Excellent time, Prog? LOL!

    That’s like a drunk on his deathbed asking for whiskey. You would tell him it is an “excellent time” to give up drinking. In the face of imminent death, taking a drink does not matter.

    It is too late. Your naiveté is touching, but you don’t seem to realize how serious the situation is. In the face of imminent collapse, allowing more immigrants into the country does not matter.

    Here’s my question. How does someone like myself go about finding a “tribe?”

    You are a member the the White, Anglo-Saxon, Protestant tribe that founded and ruled this nation for most of its existence. Again, your naiveté is touching … you don’t even recognize the establishment (the majority of whom are still WASP) is your tribe. Or do you reject your race (white)? Do you reject your anglo roots? Do you condemn your family/tribe for practicing its protestant religion?

    In any event, tribal membership is not going to save anyone. In fact, like the Krips and the Bloods, the more you are identified with a tribe, the more likely you become a target for another tribe. Tribal warfare is what glorifying tribes leads to.

    There is no escape from what is about to hit us.

  105. progress4what February 9, 2014 at 10:54 am #

    I begin to think civilization is doomed.

    George Will, on the Fox Sunday talk show just said, “We want to have an American with 500,000,000 people – all working in a dynamic economy.”

    He was parroting the WSJ and the National CoC line on immigration; that infinite growth is desirable and possible on a finite planet.

    No word at ALL, from any of the panel about what all those people will use for energy, for mineral resources, for food. No word at all about what all those people will be doing for employment, either.

    One panelist, Laura Ingraham (sp), did mention that it is both parties and “the elite,” that want all this immigration and population growth – to which George Will nodded sagely.

    I can almost guarantee, had anyone posed a question of limits to fuel/resources/water/food to a panel like this, they would reply as one voice – “Oh, ‘they’ will think of something.”

  106. ajmuste February 9, 2014 at 11:10 am #

    I begin to think civilization is doomed. — Prog

    Now you’re talking CFN lingo. Welcome to the CFN tribe.

    And just for your information: going from 340,000,000 to 500,000,000 does not even come close to “infinite growth” … in fact, half billion is entirely sustainable if we follow Budiswizer’s (sp?) sage advice and eliminate our excess discretionary energy consumption.

    The irony is that by simplifying, like TrippTicket has admirably demonstrated, we actually improve our quality of life with a larger immigrant influx.

  107. progress4what February 9, 2014 at 11:26 am #

    “….you don’t even recognize the establishment (the majority of whom are still WASP) is your tribe.” – aj soaka rides again -

    I know what you think, moron.

    I was interested in what Bill might have to say.

  108. progress4what February 9, 2014 at 11:28 am #

    “we actually improve our quality of life with a larger immigrant influx.”
    - asoka -

    Sure – they can all ride stationary bicycles to power the CO2 sequestration industry.

  109. ajmuste February 9, 2014 at 11:38 am #

    “Sure – they can all ride stationary bicycles to power the CO2 sequestration industry.” — Prog

    Yes. Especially the Scots-Irish immigrants. They are very quarrelsome and have a lot of angry energy to expend.

  110. ajmuste February 9, 2014 at 11:46 am #

    And there’s no question that a “tribe” of some sort, will become increasingly important for survival on the long slide down. — Prog

    On the contrary, tribal membership is not going to save anyone.

    In fact, like the Krips and the Bloods, the more you are identified with a tribe, the more likely you become a target for another tribe.

    Tribal warfare is what glorifying tribes leads to. Look at history.

    There is no escape from what is about to hit us.

  111. progress4what February 9, 2014 at 11:56 am #

    This may be my last post to CFN.

    It’s been real.

  112. ajmuste February 9, 2014 at 12:14 pm #

    Prog,

    May love and laughter light your days,
    and warm your heart and home.

    May good and faithful immigrant friends
    be yours, wherever you may roam.

    May peace and plenty bless your
    immigrant-filled world with joy that long endures.

    May all life’s passing seasons
    bring the best to you and to the inevitable
    coming waves of immigrants!

    ~ajmuste

  113. ajmuste February 9, 2014 at 12:30 pm #

    JHK?

    Correct. Just as you guessed. From a family of Jewish immigrants.

  114. beantownbill. February 9, 2014 at 12:57 pm #

    Procon, to find a tribe you have to think small, not think big, kind of like zooming in out in a Google Earth image. First comes your immediate family, then your extended family, then the immediate area you live in, then Georgia ( you are a member of the tribe of Georgia). You also think of yourself as a Southerner, so you are a Gergian member of the Southern tribe of the USA. Oh, and another tribe is your religion. If you are a Baptist (for example), that’s definitely a tribe, as is your local church.

    Trust me, you don’t want to be identified with a tribe that’s extremely sharply defined, as I am with the Jews. It is very painful. But since I was born into it, I choose to remain a member. And genetics have nothing to do with membership in a tribe. I’m light skinned, blonde (regrettably now gray), with blue eyes, so who knows the history of my own gene pool.

    Now, about this withdrawing from CFN. I know it is very frustrating to have to deal with the sock puppets and the assholes. The sock puppets’ purpose is to mess up the blog, and the assholes get a perverse thrill in annoying people, often resorting to name calling and other anti-people actions. Both groups are everywhere on the Internet and in the real world. Never forget, out of 2 billion years of evolution, modern humans are only a few million years removed from swinging through the trees and hanging by their tails. And flinging their feces at those they don’t like.

    I notice you seem to take most everyone’s comments personally. I guess that’s how you were drawn. Immigration issues really concern you, so you get frustrated when some people continually argue with you and won’t see the light. Staying frustrated long enough leads to depression. I think that’s where you’re at now. Welcome to the club. I get crazy sometimes when people just don’t see what’s before their eyes. But that’s life. My method of dealing with it is to realize that it is enough for me to just state what I believe. Every time I post a comment on what is important to me, I validate myself. Except for your wife, and possibly, just possibly your children, you can’t expect someone else to validate your beliefs.

    So, I guess what I’m saying is, keep posting here. It is important to you.

  115. progress4what February 9, 2014 at 1:49 pm #

    Thanks for the response, Bill. It’s good to hear clarity through the static.

    “Now, about this withdrawing from CFN. I know it is very frustrating to have to deal with the sock puppets and the assholes. The sock puppets’ purpose is to mess up the blog, and the assholes get a perverse thrill in annoying people, often resorting to name calling and other anti-people actions.” – btb -

    Also well said. I now un-withdraw. (you have magic fingers?)

    No, that magic fingers part was a joke. I had just checked my non-business email box and found an email from JHK that was a couple of days old. As I read it, it implied that he had a special relationship with one of our posters (guess!) and was enjoining all disagreements with that person.

    We (JHK and I) just finished an email exchange that cleared that up in the negative. So I’m back until further notice.

  116. ajmuste February 9, 2014 at 3:40 pm #

    So I’m back until further notice.

    Welcome back, Prog!

    I read and enjoy all your posts. Please keep posting.

  117. johnlocke February 15, 2014 at 12:31 pm #

    I don’t think anyone here has realized what this really means. This is very positive news for the empire. (and the dollar)

    The main issue in the background is China, not the countries you mentioned. If the Chinese drown in their own liquidity(which they are) they are done. That battle has already been won. There is no reason saying there is fear of a dollar crash or reserve status lost in the near future.

    Everyone hated on the Bernanke his entire in office. It is only now we see what he was really after. Economic warfare.

    With no second alternative to the dollar, we don’t loose our reserve status.

    Instead of blabbering ignorance and using fear, try and educate your readers a little better…

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