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The Man in the Mirror

       As America entered the horse latitudes of summer, befogged in a muffling stillness on deceptively calm seas, we were distracted for a while by visions of a pale death angel moonwalking across the deck of collective consciousness.  Eerie parallels resound between the sordid demise of pop singer Michael Jackson and the fate of the nation. 
     Like the United States, Michael Jackson was spectacularly bankrupt, reportedly in the range of $800-million, which is rather a lot for an individual. Had he lived on a few more years, he might have qualified for his own TARP program — another piece of expensive dead-weight down in the economy’s bilges — since it is our established policy now to throw immense sums of so-called “money” at gigantic failing enterprises (while millions of ordinary citizens wash overboard, without so much as a life-preserver).  Anyway, Michael Jackson was on the receiving end of one huge bank loan after another long after his pattern of profligacy was set and obvious. They threw money at him for the same reason that the federal government throws money at entities like CitiBank: the desperate hope that some miracle will allow debt servicing to resume.  Michael could burn through $50-million in half a year. It didn’t seem to affect his credibility as a borrower.  When his heart stopped last week, he was living in a Hollywood mansion that rented for several hundred thousand dollars a month. You wonder how the landlord cashed those checks.
     Like the USA, Michael Jackson was a has-been. He hadn’t recorded a song worth listening to in over two decades. He had done almost nothing but spin his wheels, hop around the globe from one place to another at enormous expense, and make himself available for award ceremonies to stoke his ego (and give advertisers a reason to promote some televised award show). He existed strictly on image, an anorectic figure nourished by moonbeams of attention, famous for saying that he loved his worshippers when the truth was he merely sucked the life out of them.  In his last years, he even looked a bit like Nosferatu, the personification of the un-dead, and his fascination with ghouls was the basis for his biggest hit way back in the last century.  A zombie nation deserves a zombie mascot.
      He was a poseur, vamping in weird military outfits as though he were a five-star general in the Honduran army, or a character from a melodrama by the reprobate Jean Genet. He once materialized during halftime at the Superbowl in a shower of sparks, thrilling the multitudes while grabbing and stroking his sex organs, as though that was a heroic activity — and indeed the nation seemed to emulate him as its culture became dedicated more and more to acting out masturbation fantasies.  America was a fat man jerking off on the sofa watching a vampire of no particular sex vogue deliriously on the boob tube.
       More than once the authorities tried to pin charges of child molestation on him for suspicious activities at his boy-trap, Neverland Ranch, with its carnival rides, private zoo, video game galleries, and inexhaustible supplies of sugary treats. The first time he settled with the alleged victim’s family for $22-million.  They just walked away with the loot and happily shut up.  The second time, he moonwalked out of a court-of-law while weeks later jurors mysteriously went on TV to say, well, they did kind of think after-the-fact that he really did those things he was accused of, but, you know…. The defendant himself behaved as though his trial were a TV celebrity challenge show on another planet, arriving on one occasion twenty minutes late in pajamas with some lame excuse about a backache.  He spent the last years of his life wandering a few steps ahead of his creditors, gulling concert promoters into “comeback” schemes (with walking-around money up front), and with three bought-and-paid-for children, obviously not his own, for consolation.  
      When he dropped dead last week, the nation’s morbidly maudlin response suggested a cover story for the relief of being rid of him and all the embarrassment he provoked. One CNN reporter called him a genius the equal of Mozart.  That’s a little like calling Rachel Maddow the reincarnation of Eleanor Roosevelt.  A nation addicted to lying to itself tells itself fairy tales instead of facing a pathology report. Yet, like Michael Jackson, the undertone of horror story still pulses darkly in the background.  The little boy who grew up to be the simulation of a girl was really a werewolf.  The nation that defeated manifest evil in World War Two woke up one day years later to find itself stripped of its manhood, mentally enslaved to cheap entertainments, and hostage to its own grandiosity. Maybe in grieving so exorbitantly over this freak America is grieving for itself. All the loose talk about “love” from the media and the fans gives off the odor of self-love.  America is “the man in the mirror,” the gigantic, floundering Narcissus, sailing into the stormy seas of history.

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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.

491 Responses to “The Man in the Mirror” Subscribe

  1. asoka June 29, 2009 at 9:41 am #

    “America is … the gigantic, floundering Narcissus, sailing into the stormy seas of history.”
    But not necessarily doomed. America can yet right itself. And storms do subside.

  2. david mathews June 29, 2009 at 9:49 am #

    The analogy between Michael Jackson and the United States is pretty strong but I wouldn’t limit it to simply the USA (USA! USA! We’re the greatest! USA!) but apply it more widely and say that the Homo sapiens are the Michael Jackson of the animal kingdom. Not only is humankind living way beyond its means it has transformed in a grotesque manner just as Michael Jackson rejected his natural face and replaced it with a horrendous mask, a byproduct of science & technology against Nature.
    Just as Michael Jackson died before his time, the Homo sapiens are accelerating the life cycle of the species and headed to an inevitable and well-earned extinction.
    Incidentally, there is a two hour program about the disintegration of America’s infrastructure on the History Channel:
    http://www.history.com/shows.do?episodeId=452430&action=detail
    Which, incidentally, I am very much in favor of the crumbling of America. Our civilization was built to last between 50 – 100 years … which the vast majority of the infrastructure already over 50 years old.
    It can all crumble to dust.
    What I recommend is that everyone wait for the end of civilization on the beach:
    http://www.flickr.com/dmathew1
    If you don’t love Nature you might as well live on Mars.

  3. zerotsm June 29, 2009 at 9:51 am #

    All the coverage of Michael Jackson is a waste of spectrum space, but of course the MSM these days doesn’t want to report anything serious, like the commercial real estate market about to implode.

  4. spencer June 29, 2009 at 9:51 am #

    Jim: This is such brilliant writing it took my breath away. Thanks!
    Spencer
    TheNothingStore.com

  5. Essential Dissent June 29, 2009 at 9:55 am #

    A courageous (and all too accurate) post. I predict a record volume of hate mail in response.

  6. Riddick's Ego June 29, 2009 at 9:55 am #

    The passing of the celebrity creation that was Michael Jackson has only pointed out the weird “Alice in Wonderland” qualities of reality. Yes, he sang some good songs and made some cool spins and moves in his youth. Okay, great. But in the interest of the almighty buck and all that having lotsa of bucks can do for one; he was elevated, used, abused and allowed to live a satirical life before everyone; great fodder for the tabloids TV shows, press and blogs.
    That is what the West has degenerated into, a freaking side show. The masses pay n attention to the fleecing of the economy but dam if they miss and Idol or Dancing with the Stars. Yeah, we are as doomed as the idiots who never missed their spot on the bench to watch lions maul Christians.

  7. piltdownman June 29, 2009 at 9:59 am #

    Asoka –
    I respectfully disagree. If a near collapse of our entire economy can’t shake American’s to the core of their being, what can? I see no change in how people behave…and the MJ freak show is, as Jim suggests, a perfect metaphor for our pathetic “culture.”
    When you hear people comparing the death of Jackson to that of Jack and Bobby Kennedy, you know something is seriously fucked up!
    Pilt

  8. stevo_au June 29, 2009 at 9:59 am #

    Now that was a good post mate. Kiddie fiddlers like MJ should not be remembered as anything else.
    Our whole culture is screwed either USA, UK or AU.
    Thanks for really capturing what were my flighty thoughts. Distilling them into prose I could not argue with.
    Salute.

  9. Michael Welber June 29, 2009 at 10:00 am #

    Finally someone has nailed this “story.” I have been shocked by the amount of media attention Jackson’s death has generated. Thanks for telling like it really is.
    Michael

  10. stevo_au June 29, 2009 at 10:03 am #

    I retract what I said as it it is the ravings of someone who is not well themselves.

  11. steponbugs June 29, 2009 at 10:07 am #

    Well stated. I’ve wasted more than 15 minutes in the past four days watching over-the-top recitations of the man’s greatness, and all I can say is, “huh”? True, Jackson gave the world soome fun music to listen to, and some iconic dance moves, but would the world mourn any number of other pop stars the same way ? (George Michael and Ricky Martin immediately come to mind…) I’m going to continue not paying attention to the circus, because I already know the media script…live funeral coverage; wailing fans who drove (at only $3.00 a gallon) 1800 miles to line up at 1 am for a good spot to watch the funeral procession; Al Shaprton and Jesse Jackson elbowing each other out of the live shots…Kunstler nails it again, this debacle is no more than America grieving for its bankrupt, surgically distorted self, wishing for a few more days in the bright light of stardom.

  12. Uncle Al June 29, 2009 at 10:11 am #

    California flensed its productive citizens to gorge its unproductive and reproductive residents (with vigorish for Sacramento do-gooders). It achieved a “Great Society” triumph for the indigent, addicted, and imprisoned – also hemorrhaging green for the diseased elderly. It created the most expensive and second worst public education system in the nation (tested average IQ of the 60% who make it through high school, 91).
    01 July kickoff for State of California bankruptcy, Officially $21 billion in the crapper (but closer to $50 billion given debts pushed into the future). CA treasury is nothing but gas fill 01 August, even by optimistic projections. The Controller is eloquent,
    http://www.sco.ca.gov/eo_pressrel.html
    Grant funding assumes intellect is a scarce and valuable resource that demands rationing of financial support. Social activism assumes poverty is an abundant and valueless resource that demands unlimited financial support. Rather than foster brilliance we allocate for its suppression. Rather than discourage poverty we demand it.
    Michael Jackson is an archetype of of process without product. The universe exacts a terrible price from those who believe algae will power their future.

  13. TedC June 29, 2009 at 10:12 am #

    Just as the dinosaurs are now known to us as birds, we will change to fit into whatever the world becomes.
    Did the dinosaurs become extinct? What does change mean?
    6 billion is probably too many. Getting to a smaller number will undoubtedly be unpleasant.
    Good Luck!

  14. den111 June 29, 2009 at 10:16 am #

    My Monday JHK fix never disappoints:)
    Comment – “If you don’t love Nature you might as well live on Mars.”
    Great line. So true!

  15. asoka June 29, 2009 at 10:20 am #

    piltdownman said: “I see no change in how people behave…”
    Let me show you then. Look at the personal savings rate in America in first quarter 2008. It was zero percent.
    Look at the collective USA personal savings rate in 2009. It is six percent.
    Do you not see a change in behavior from one year to the next? Here is a graph if you want to see the change in how people behave visually.
    http://www.bea.gov/briefrm/saving.htm

  16. roberthildre June 29, 2009 at 10:24 am #

    To be sure MJ was a freak that is the buy-product of having far too much money and power in the hands of one man. But let’s admit that any one of us could have turned out the same way given the same circumstances. From the time that kid was 5 years old, every whim, desire, and fantasy he had was met. I would have surely killed myself by the age of 20! The biggest lesson here is that the only thing that tempers mans propensity to kill himself through self indulgence is the struggle. That is why I believe that while Jim is correct in his belief that America is on a crash course with disaster, it is in this struggle that we will work something out by necessity. ( I do however hope this is not the case with the Republican Party. They can just die!)
    So rest in peace sweet Prince! You have truly earned a place in all our hearts.

  17. asoka June 29, 2009 at 10:27 am #

    “In May 2009, the personal savings rate hit 6.9% just surpassing the 50-year average of 6.83%.”
    From 0% in 2008 to 6.83% in 2009.
    I would say that is evidence of behavior change.
    http://chartingtheeconomy.com/?p=1384

  18. Dave Eriqat June 29, 2009 at 10:31 am #

    So I’m guessing you are not a fan of MJ!
    Actually, neither was I. I expect MJ will assume a larger than life afterlife. How long before we start seeing MJ doppelgangers in mainstream American shopping malls? How long until we see the headline, “MJ Still Alive!”?
    I agree, however, that MJ is the absolutely perfect mascot/emblem for modern day America.
    Dave – Erstwhile Urban Wanderer

  19. postitnote June 29, 2009 at 10:31 am #

    Feh. This disappointing post shall be known as the “America is like Michael Jackson” post, and I haven’t seen such a far-fetched and overwrought analogy since the “America is like the Dark Knight” post. Stick to writing about you know, Jim, since your ear for culture is tin. I’m pretty indifferent toward Michael Jackson, BTW, which might be why this was so boring.

  20. piltdownman June 29, 2009 at 10:39 am #

    Asoka –
    The nominal savings rate has increased temporarily, simply because credit is not as available to most of them and people are ostensibly “scared.” If that stat holds for five years, I’ll retract my statement. Until then, I consider it a blip on the radar.
    Pilt

  21. bridges June 29, 2009 at 10:40 am #

    What postitnote said. Jean Claude Baudrillard wrote the definitive “Michael Jackson is America” essay years ago, and without the huffing and puffing.

  22. Riddick's Ego June 29, 2009 at 10:45 am #

    “In May 2009, the personal savings rate hit 6.9% just surpassing the 50-year average of 6.83%.’
    From 0% in 2008 to 6.83% in 2009.
    I would say that is evidence of behavior change.”
    Asoka – point taken, Amerikins finally started to wake-up and realize how screwed they were, how ridiculous thoughts of a retirement along the 13th hole in a grand villa are and that they need to save. Wow! It only took a freakin’ Depression to wake SOME of them up. The rest are wailing for MJ!
    It took decades for Rome to totally fall apart in fits and starts and so to for the devolution of the US Empire. Some people obviously are “getting it”…belatedly and putting cash in the bank rather than continue to stoke the Consumer machine. However, the act of saving rather than consuming is itself bad for economic recovery based on growth baby GROWTH! We have a long way down to go until we stabilize for awhile at whatever level that maybe; than Social Security and especially Medicare take out the rug again.

  23. Chinle June 29, 2009 at 10:46 am #

    As I struggle to understand what was so great about MJ, I only have to look to members of my own family, a niece who adored him at the age of 13.
    That seems about the right age to like MJ. She eventually outgrew it and now considers him a vapid poser and degenerate, a decadent and sorry excuse for a human with no moral or social conscience.
    I agree. A country that would idolize such a man is likewise in a state of moral and social ruin.

  24. bahmi June 29, 2009 at 10:51 am #

    WE are all so smart after the fact, aren’t we? So wise, so learned. Michael Jackson is but one sorry ass who did his gig then died. Lots of people worldwide regaled in his entertainment provided. We should be downcast and disappointed. Jackson is no proxy for anything, nothing, nobody. Zillions of people of huge accomplishment die with varying amounts of fanfare, varying amounts of residual detritus being left for our benefit, or just left. If anything, Jackson’s passing won’t stop people from attending concerts served up by show biz tripe. Casinos will continue, if not in Moscow. The message? Man is not perfect. Elevate man to absurd heights and this is what you get. If anything, concertgoers will rush to buy tickets to shows to assuage the loss of one of their heroes. Is this bad? Help is coming. Thanks to varied legislation in the present and future under the Kingfish, we’ll have less and less money to waste on the Jacksons of the world. Will we welcome King Obama with glee?, as it appears many worship the guy already. Spending emotion and money on Jackson is no better or worse than pissing away money on anything else in the world. Man is imperfect and will continue to be disposed to this end. This is news? I felt Jimbo’s writing was particularly downcast this week. Well crafted, but I see no reason to elevate Jackson to the level of anything but another person who will soon depart in body as mere carbon dioxide, subject to Waxman-Markey taxation. Jackson, ultimately, was only as big as those who chose to elevate him to superhuman status in their fantasies.

  25. J Lee June 29, 2009 at 10:54 am #

    No. No. NO! The reported deaths of Jackson are just part of the unreported conspiracy. Don’t believe everything you read. On good authority the National Enquirer will be publising an in depth investigative report along with the latest pics from an unnamed paparotzi that breaks the news that Jackson is living in Mississauga (yes Mississauga not Mississippi). The part that we may well doubt is that he is sharing a pad with Elvis. Can’t we all wait to see this spread!!!

  26. J Lee June 29, 2009 at 10:55 am #

    No. No. NO! The reported deaths of Jackson are just part of the unreported conspiracy. Don’t believe everything you read. On good authority the National Enquirer will be publising an in depth investigative report along with the latest pics from an unnamed paparotzi that breaks the news that Jackson is living in Mississauga (yes Mississauga not Mississippi). The part that we may well doubt is that he is sharing a pad with Elvis. Can’t we all wait to see this spread!!!

  27. Ed Nauseum June 29, 2009 at 10:55 am #

    Let’s all congratulate ourselves for being above paying any attention to Michael Jackson’s death. Then let’s talk about it all morning!
    Jim, maybe for next week’s column you can draw some parallels between the USA and recently deceased pitchman Billy Mays? You could title it, “From Mays to December”.

  28. Scott June 29, 2009 at 10:56 am #

    Ouch!! I felt nothing but loathing for MJ for most of his career; I can’t stand the sight of anyone trying make a spectacle of themselves, no matter how talented they may be. But, JHK, I think you may have gotten this wrong. The conclusions I had drawn about MJ turn out to be wrong. Yes, the man was unspeakably stupid and silly, but pedophilia was not his game. A great article with link posted below points to a gay drug abuser with numerous illnesses surrounded by handlers and enablers seeking personal ernrichment at MJ’s expense. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1196009/Im-better-dead-Im-How-Michael-Jackson-predicted-death-months-ago.html

  29. FARfetched June 29, 2009 at 11:04 am #

    Not watching TV, I’ve been somewhat insulated from the onslaught. Of course, it was all over Twitter and the other toobz this weekend, but not that difficult to filter out. There are many leftovers from the 80s, some good (dance music), some harmful (Reaganism), some just “meh” (MJ).
    But there are some good parallels here. Like MJ, we burned out a couple decades ago & have been coasting on our prior achievements since then. Like MJ (before Thursday), we can still command a lot of attention and (as JHK points out) throw other people’s money around like nerf balls. We could regain our dignity, if not our riches, by turning off the TV and thinking for ourselves for a change.
    As for the MSM, I think they’re more lazy than complicit in any kind of Evil Plot. Covering a celebrity croaking garners more ratings for less effort than, say, yet another CONservative Pharisee governor banging a bimbo in Buenos Aires. In a way, you can’t blame them, but at the same time, they wonder why more and more people consider them irrelevant.
    In the FAR Future, people are poorer, wiser… and maybe happier. Episode 94 begins the end of the story (but not the world).

  30. seb June 29, 2009 at 11:09 am #

    What’s the frequency Kenneth
    Is your benzedrine, uh huh.
    R.E.M.
    http://sbillinghurst.wordpress.com
    HOW TO MAKE METHAMPHETAMINE

  31. Neon Vincent June 29, 2009 at 11:22 am #

    I stayed away from the TV over the weekend, as it got to a point that a documentary about Farah Faucett’s losing struggle with cancer actually came as a relief–talk about methadone to get away from heroin! I decided to quit cold turkey instead.
    BTW, the patience of a lot of serious news junkies wasn’t the only thing tested. Many news and social networking sites went under on Friday evening as well. CNN and other news sites reported crashes and slowdowns all over the Internet because of people’s reaction to the death. In addition to CNN’s site itself, Google News, Twitter (30% of all tweets were about his death), LiveJournal, TMZ, Perez Hilton’s blog, the L.A. Times, MSNBC, and AOL instant messenger all crashed or slowed down. As CNN quipped, “Jackson dies, almost takes Internet with him.” Imagine what would happen if something really important happened. The worst part is, maybe nothing. :-7
    On another note, a friend of a friend shot some photos of an abandonded factory in Detroit and posted them to a community about urban decay.
    http://community.livejournal.com/urban_decay/2272076.html
    Scroll down to the fourth one. The graffitti reads, “The age of the car was cute, but can we grow some food now?” Thought you all would appreciate that one.

  32. bailey June 29, 2009 at 11:22 am #

    Fair enough James, great post, appreciated the apt metaphor but he was a dancer of great genius.
    For 8 yrs I sat front row center and watched PN Ballet in Seattle, in Paris, every year I watched the finest dancers in the world, I know many modern dancers, i’ve studies and enjoyed dance, and Michael was better than the greats, he didn’t dance to someone else’s choreography, he created his own. We see his style from bottom to the very top of fine dance art.
    Yes, he was a freak, one of the 6 genius types that live at any given in time on this planet, in the various art disciplines…but if dance is the most natural form of artistic expression, he was simply preternaturally gifted, he was beyond.
    People can project all day long about his weirdness but there’s a reason they didn’t need to explain Mj in the villages of Ethiopia like they did Elvis, etc, he truly touched every point of the earth, and that was no coincidence, people everywhere really, truly responded to his talent.
    Again, great metaphor, I couldn’t help but mourn this gorgeous angel, but i also couldn’t think much of what you wrote, in my own way. Great way to capture a seminal moment in American histroy

  33. BS01 June 29, 2009 at 11:23 am #

    It never fails to amaze how the Jackson affair is getting almost as much attention as the Kennedy and King assassinations, and how ignorant the general public is about what is going on within the Beltway and in the world in general….. Pseudoscience reigns over logic and reason, Oprah is the authority on everything, and stupidity and vanity are held in high regard.
    Do you not wonder why there are so many recent TV shows like Life after People, The Crumbling of America, and other shows about disasters? Have you been to your bookstore lately and looked around at all the gloom and doom? A mass extinction is a real possibility. The resources of this planet are getting used up and tapped out by a race too greedy and stupid to care. Resources that will take geological time to replenish, if ever. Whatever life comes after the human race will hopefully do a better job, after Mother Nature and Father Time hopefully have restored this planet to its primeval state. Or maybe, too much has been ruined, and destroyed, and maybe there is only one to a customer.
    Jim, you hit the nail on the head…A somewhat nasty sounding post, but said just like it is, no sugar or cream, like my coffee.
    BTW where is all the publicity about Farrah and Ed Mc Mahon? They were human lives that at least ended with some dignity and class. Why do people worship at the feet of so many losers and eight balls?

  34. Rich June 29, 2009 at 11:24 am #

    A brave post. Thanks for the read.

  35. Consultant June 29, 2009 at 11:27 am #

    There is a racial component to your comments Jim. More skewering of the deceased than necessary. But that’s understandable. We are a nation with a troubled racial history. Something we’ve yet to fully deal with (Obama’s election doesn’t count. The subject for a different post).
    I agree with some of the other comments in this sense. Michael as a symbol of our current pathetic culture may be less representative than someone like former Enron Chairman, Ken Lay; who may or may not be deceased, depending on which story you want to believe.
    I’d say Ken Lay, and an almost endless list of current players who are just like him, represent far more in full, contemporary American culture.
    Oh yes. We are screwed.

  36. Michael O'Connor June 29, 2009 at 11:29 am #

    Thanks Jim for the great essay. I wonder if his demise might of been caused by running out of air while inflating a blow up child doll. The world would have been better off if Michael Jackson had pursed a career as Avon or Mary Kay sales rep.

  37. gorditasmama June 29, 2009 at 11:32 am #

    NOT TO GET OFF SUBJECT BUT DOES ANYONE KNOW EXACTLY HOW MUCH MONEY HAS BEEN GIVEN OUT BY THE GOVERNMENT IN TARP AND TO GM ETC?
    I WAS CURIOUS AS TO HOW MUCH EACH ADULT AMERICAN CITIZEN COULD HAVE RECEIVED DIRECTLY IF IT WAS GIVEN TO THE PEOPLE INSTEAD?

  38. Steve M. June 29, 2009 at 11:36 am #

    It was fascinating to hear music critic Toure – who never heard a hip-hop record he didn’t like – go on about how Jackson integrated MTV. Yes, MTV played only white performers before Jackson came along, and that was intolerable. But Toure, himself black, went on about how Michael Jackson liberated popular music from racism because he was a black performer who gained a large white audience. News flash: Louis Armstrong did that in the twenties. And Toure made it sound like nothing of any artistic value was played on MTV before Michael Jackson came along – just staid performance videos from boring, white guitar bands. He didn’t say that, but he implied it. I’d be surprised if he even acknowledged the existence of white guitar rock.
    You can’t criticize Michael Jackson now, but you couldn’t even do so when he was alive – his fans wouldn’t tolerate it. Madonna fans are the same way. Ho ho, wait until she dies – I’ll make Jim’s comments on MJ look milquetoasty when I’m done burying (not praising) her!

  39. zsazsa June 29, 2009 at 11:42 am #

    “When you hear people comparing the death of Jackson to that of Jack and Bobby Kennedy, you know something is seriously fucked up!”
    Yeah. Jackson left behind some evidence of talent. Jack and Bob???

  40. highrpm June 29, 2009 at 11:43 am #

    For some reason, this week’s rant left me wanting. Comparing the state of the nation with MJ? Deep down, something does not fit.
    And all this crap about MJ’s self-indulgent lifestyle: gimeabreak. Folks who knew him well agree that he lived in torment; perhaps his demise shows one cannot spend his way out of hell.
    It is well known that Joe Jackson is and always has been a philandering asshole. (Did you see him answering questions about how the family is coping with his sons death? He plugged his next recording project!!!) If MJ’s mother had any self-respect and toughness, she would have dumped Joe and possibly spared MJ the intensity of his torment. And his mother preaching to him that sex is wrong outside of procreation, while, as a young child, he had to watch Joe and his older brothers doing young groupies after their shows. (When the statistics are that the couples average doing it 2x-3x weekly? When women ovulate once a month, of course it is more about pleasure than procreation.)
    JHK, master of metaphors–which is why I look forward to Monday mornings to read your weekly compositions–this time you are off the mark with using MJ to illustrate the sick state of the nation…On the other hand, maybe your methaphor is accurate: MJ, with all his money, could not buy healing; citizens, with all their taxes to construct governments and appoint kings to administer justice and beneficial public programs, cannot by security and peace.
    (I am beginning to wonder about the merits of the Mosaic approach to government: laws for each citizen to live responsibly, and to take responsibility for others; each family was given a plot of land to work to provide for themselves and widows, orphans and foreigners who could not because they had none. No, we “other” nations spend our money trying to buy security by appoint kings, with their constant administrative trials and errors, to provide and insure our care. And they fail to deliver while we watch, helplessly from the sidelines, them live in luxury and excess. (We bought Obama’s “change” line, but does he practice what he preached? The nation is bankrupt and still the leader takes up residence in subsided house, but his is not the usual housing project, no, it is an obese white house, with chefs, grounds keepers, limos, private airplanes, and an entourage of bodyguards to keep him safe? Why the hell did our leaders of long ago think they needed a white house anyway. And, oh, they need to live in a protected environments because of society “outliers” who might hurt them if the leader lives publically and unprotected. What a contradiction in terms: we, the commoners hire leaders to protect us when these same leaders hire guards to protect themselves from us.
    To take your MJ metaphor a line further, at least MJ had the inspiration to name his compound NEVERLAND.

  41. Steve M. June 29, 2009 at 11:43 am #

    Michael Jackson was not like other guys. I mean, he was different. He was nervous, and his socks were too loose. ;-)

  42. Socrates June 29, 2009 at 11:43 am #

    Bravo, James…..Bravo.
    Best damned editorial I’ve yet read regarding this freakish ass-clown.
    If I were dictator for a day, I’d force every media outlet in the country to publish today’s article and would force every drooling M.J. “fan” to read it or hear it read to them – over and over again – until they swore off the Kool-Aid forever.

  43. asoka June 29, 2009 at 11:45 am #

    Yeah! And when some of the banks returned the funds, WITH INTEREST, and the taxpayers made a profit, I want to know how much each taxpayer made.

  44. maineiac June 29, 2009 at 11:47 am #

    You have outdone yourself this week, Jim!
    The media’s obsession with this freak is a clear indication of how unserious we all are.

  45. shiko June 29, 2009 at 11:48 am #

    I do not see a point to criticize MJ. He had musical talent but otherwise he was just a mentally sick person.
    It says a lot about temporary US media and public if they idolize the one who should have been in mental institution in the first place.

  46. Nick June 29, 2009 at 11:58 am #

    Excellent article Jim. I think we are so afraid to say something true that is not ‘positive’ that we give ourselves over to fake sentimentality.
    Michael Jackson was a talented sicko, and his fanbase say a lot about who we are, and the sort of people we idolise, and how easily they pull the sheets over our eyes.
    I must admit to a private sense of sadness when I heard he had died. Because a lot of that life was tragedy, and as you say, horror.

  47. Jimini June 29, 2009 at 12:22 pm #

    Excellent post this week. I especially liked the parallels drawn between the myth of MJ and and the myth of modern America. Hyperbole and self-loathing masquerading as self-love seem to be our overriding attributes these days. Its as if the gig is up and everyone knows it, but of course no one can admit it for fear of unleashing the ensuing panic.
    Fortunately, these little “media escapes” that celebrity deaths/scandals/stunts provide help take our collective mind off the real troubles that beset us on all fronts. If this is any indication, things will only get more surreal as we spiral ever tighter around the worm hole.

  48. Socrates June 29, 2009 at 12:24 pm #

    Consultant writes:
    “There is a racial component to your comments Jim. More skewering of the deceased than necessary.”
    Poppycock!
    You simply choose to infer racial animosity because the target of the critique was black, (or used to be, anyway, before he turned ghoulish white….)
    My read on Kunstler is that he hails from a Left-of-Center worldview that is, inherently anti-racist in outlook. However, the reason I read Kunstler is that he appears to have become a more independent thinker as he has grown older – which generally happens to most of us over time.
    Most Lefties would not dare say anything critical of a recently deceased black celebrity, lest they offend the Gods of Political Correctness, but Kunstler fires away – as well he should – and proclaims the truth as he, and millions of other sane, civilized people saw it.
    He has, in my view anyway, just performed a much-needed public service.

  49. Francis Marion McSwan June 29, 2009 at 12:36 pm #

    Mr. Kunstler,
    Now that has got to be one of your best! I don’t know shit about Michael Jackson, and never followed his lifestory… but your depiction and comparison.. to America is very, very interesting; and I suspect accurate. It is amazing how far ‘magic’, or perception management of ‘image’ goes towards manipulating those who desperately want to believe it is true. Amazing.

  50. ozone June 29, 2009 at 12:36 pm #

    JHK sez:
    “The nation that defeated manifest evil in World War Two woke up one day years later to find itself stripped of its manhood, mentally enslaved to cheap entertainments, and hostage to its own grandiosity. Maybe in grieving so exorbitantly over this freak America is grieving for itself. All the loose talk about “love” from the media and the fans gives off the odor of self-love. America is “the man in the mirror,” the gigantic, floundering Narcissus, sailing into the stormy seas of history.”
    YEP! Sorry “folks”, the journey in Neverland has come to an end; time for Wendy (‘Mercan peep-holes and MJ fans)to grow-the-f***-up and stop living vicariously via the idiot-box.
    I tend to agree with Jim’s “maybe” posited in the second sentence [here], as it seems to be a glaring symptom the cognitive dissonance that’s been allowed to fester in this society for far to long. The great awakening [tm] will surely be a time of danger and much [easily predictable] madness.
    beware…prepare
    “…and when the politicians do their own killin’,
    then killin’ will truly become a sin;
    Maybe then I’ll awake from this haunted dream,
    of blood and adrenaline.”

  51. Anne June 29, 2009 at 12:41 pm #

    You nailed this one.

  52. Loveandlight June 29, 2009 at 1:01 pm #

    I remember when Michael’s sister Latoya went on the “Rolonda” talk show back in the 90’s and said she was certain that her hyper-famous brother was sexually abusing young boys and that he needed to held accountable for the harm he was causing. That such an extraordinary occurence passed by largely unremarked was a testament to both Michael’s turbo-charged celebrity status and also the extent to which Latoya is generally not taken very seriously at all. To extend Jim’s analogy, people who are aware of in just how much trouble we are as a society are regarded by the mainstream as a bunch Latoyas, a bunch of silly flakes to be largely ignored.

  53. seb June 29, 2009 at 1:03 pm #

    Dear Jim,
    I feel so horrible. It is early in the morning. I am fifty-seven. I had posted blog entries all day yesterday and the day before, and I was reactionary against people I know.
    reactionary, adj. Characterized by reaction, especially opposition to progress or liberalism; extremely conservative
    Was I? I just looked that word up. I do not wish to be saddled with adherence to that. I hate Republicans. I was hoping for a more eclectic word for people with a shitty disposition.
    I was laid off from my job in construction in Las Vegas last week. The job lasted twenty-five months. The out-of-work lists for all hiring halls in my union for my trade stand at around a hundred, which is very high. I want to thank you for the link to your position on Las Vegas, the one with “fricasee” in it. My standard is to lever confrontation, pity, contempt, and rage against real people face-to-face, as if you had sent me to Las Vegas. I had to enjoy your essay by myself. My employer, Perini Building Company, was the best I have ever had. Of course, six people were horribly killed on the job, so those workers’ next of kin would not sing the praises of Perini. If you wonder what ‘horribly killed’ is, it has to do with the number six. If you include the heatstroke victims and the heart attack victims, the number swells to something more embarrassing, and I do not have it. This is cut in half vertically and horizontally, falling seventy feet, having a wall fall on you guys, just one thing after another.
    The readers of your blog who comment are severely impaired with respect to their literacy, but you have had much improved proofreading. Thank you. You have boosted the quality of the work and still maintained your accessibility. You have gone through a slight rough patch with the anti-Semitism with flying colors and I am with you.
    Who am I to make comments? I am fifty-seven, like I said. Blow it out your ass.
    I do tend to find living people and, this is writing, I encourage my reader to ram it, ram it, ram it up your poop chute. I implore him or her to stick it where the sun don’t shine, and I am only telling you this. When I write, and I have written everyone, I put it in “fan letter” format.
    That is funny to consider that if technology cannot save us whether literature has ever saved us.
    Of course, a story goes with it. The “us” in there but who you read into it are the literati, not the factotums.
    The saving itself is tensioned to a shorter timescale than we observe, which is your right under Article XLII of the Superbowl. It is poetic license.
    Let’s have a look at your 2009 predictions for this month:
    I can’t even do it; it is too long. the first thing is that Obama did not do anything you said, and you should not have said he tells the truth.
    Just reading that makes me mad. There is no “outside” for you to dump on. You have NYC in your backyard; you are in a conspiracy yourself, rich Jews. Look at Madoff’s wife: $125,000 a year for life, and the local media anchor here in San Diego, Dan Plante, suggesting this is low because she is a billionaire, used to much more. I have started to throw books out (I had to move). Here you are writing about the dead. Do not write about the dead! Write about confronting the living, you lily-livered coward. That’s weak. They put one word, “Gotham” in a movie and you are writing about it. Oh, oh. I forgot. You are doing fine this year. I am washing overboard, an ordinary citizen, one of millions!
    You do not say anything about the planet Mars! I realize we have serviced Hubble; that was trick, but NASA is trying to get to the Space Station aboard Endeavor and we do not wish to become untethered and float off in our space suit! The last thing we need is Mars’ baleful gleam–that reminds me. I live in the places you visit. What kind of third-rate notebook do you use to make sketches of these streets? You can never get it right. How do you find the bathroom in your own house?

  54. labro June 29, 2009 at 1:08 pm #

    Like Elvis,like Sinatra,and Janis Joplin, Morrison,Hendrix…..MJ was a human whose massive Talent pushed him into a realm of fame beyond his ability to handle. Forcing extreme behaviors of Vanity and drawing to public view demons from his childhood .
    Artists are not Accountants.
    They make their living by exposing emotional interpetations of themselves into artforms.
    It is the naive fool who skims the obvious TV Network propaganda and makes total judgment on an individual based on the Trash News.
    MJ was genius. As Quincy Jones put it , he was pure expression who propelled his craft of lyric and dance beyond fashion.
    Yea ,he was weird and a flawed person. But then so am I.
    But , as an artist, I may have more insight into the consciousness of such a master. I can feel the positive of MJ as much as conforming to the politically correct negative.
    I like you James, and I like what you have to say about that which you have knowledge. But like MJ,
    you assume your boundaries of expertise traverse areas of which you have so little knowledge.
    Stay on point.

  55. Mark Ancona June 29, 2009 at 1:09 pm #

    I was never a fan of the Jackson 5 or of Michael Jackson growing up. As an adult, I did not grow to like the music they produced, leaning towards classical and blues instead. Either way, I have read a number of tributes and testimonials on quite a few news networks and websites extolling the virtue, talent and tragedy that was Michael Jackson.
    I don’t get it folks……I really don’t. When all is said and done, M.J. did nothing more than any other rock group; he made and sold records. That is the sum of it. He did not produce a new medicine, he did not invent a better solar cell, he did not develop a hardier strain of wheat; he sang songs.
    Here is a strange caricature of a man, beset by a hatred for his own visage so powerful that he spent all of his adult life trying to transform himself from a black man into a white woman. Michael devoted his energies not toward the betterment of mankind, but to the construction of monuments to self. He lavished tens of millions on himself in well publicized shopping sprees, during which he purchased things of extraordinary cost not because he had any need for them, but simply because he could. His temple to himself, “Never Land”, stands as a testimonial to his self aggrandizement and his sustained fantasy of remaining a child forever. No one bothered to tell him that monkeys, giraffes, zebras and carnival rides cannot stop the ticking of the clock.
    His seeming inability to reconcile with becoming an adult, led him to pursue children in a voracious and un-healthy manner. These pursuits led to multiple accusations of molestation, accusations which ultimately destroyed his career and drove him into exile in the Middle East. While in Bahrain, he made promises to a Sheikh to write his memoirs, do a movie and perform. These promises were broken when he returned to the United States, conveniently forgetting about the millions of dollars the Sheikh loaned him during his stay.
    Whether he was unable or unwilling to produce children in the traditional manner I do not know. I do know that he paid women to bear children for him, stripped them of their parental rights using money and coercion and brought the children back to his ‘Temple to Self’, to be raised by a series of Nannies and Butlers. These children were forced to wear scarves over their heads, obscuring their faces from view. He was snapped while dangling one of them [as an infant] over a balcony rail at a hotel. They were given weird names, in true Michael Jackson tradition. Blanket and Prince Michael come to mind. How the hell do you go through life with the name Blanket?? His farcical marriage to the daughter of Elvis didn’t fool anyone. I believe it was an attempt to stave off rumors of homosexuality and/or paedophilia, but have no actual basis in fact.
    In the end, he died.
    After plowing through three quarters of a billion dollars he earned, and half a billion dollars he borrowed, he left this planet not better than he found it, but worse. The trail of lawsuits over the scraps will be legend. The children will suffer the most, because when you are as high profile as he was, the public will only remember the weird shit you did during your life, not the quirky songs that made him millions of dollars. The library of his music will most likely be granted to those who possess his debts, leaving his children to fend for themselves or to leech off of relatives. All of the faithful followers and nannies will disappear along with the money.
    There will be an autopsy, accusations and recriminations. There will be lawsuits and investigations. What we will find out is what we already knew, that Michael Jackson died as a result of his own profligacy.

  56. philski June 29, 2009 at 1:14 pm #

    …all necessities provided, all anxieties tranquilized, all boredoms amused…”
    Arthur Jensen

  57. highrpm June 29, 2009 at 1:17 pm #

    and one more thing:
    fuck the entitlements of the united states of neverland. i do not want my health care and SS; when i can no longer can, i will walk off into the wilderness [and die], like moses and other OT icons did.

  58. helleborine June 29, 2009 at 1:33 pm #

    I am amazed at the number of people willing to ignore the child abuse and berate the victims.
    Jackson is as innocent of child abuse as OJ Simpson of a double murder.

  59. lockjaw June 29, 2009 at 1:34 pm #

    one down , eight to go.

  60. Laura Louzader June 29, 2009 at 1:36 pm #

    The USA in modern times resembles no other culture so much as Weimer Germany.
    Whether it is in our financial malfeasance and our government’s determination to inflate our way out of the results, or our unspeakably degraded popular culture with its emphasis on violence and perversion, or the irrationality and lack of reasoning ability among even our most affluent and best-educated denizens as evidenced by the prevalence of belief in irrational religions as well as astrology,numerology and the occult- we are walking in the footsteps of the confused, terrified, and hapless people who collapsed their culture, pulled its underpinnings right out from beneath it, and gave us Hitler.
    I’ve had to listen to wailing about this freaking pervert and child molester all weekend. This loser should have died in prison.
    People with 8 years of higher education at elite schools know all the details of the lives of their pet entertainment celebs, but they’ve never heard of Hannah Arendt or Ludwig Van Mises, or Condorcet, or John Locke, or any of the other thinkers who, for better, or for worse, gave us the world we live in. There’s no experience like having to listen to the graduate of schools like Andover prep and Middlebury College blather about her Past Life experiences. Almost everybody I meet believes in astrology, and these people have attended schools like Yale and Brown University.
    We’re now confronting circumstances that are really novel, with nothing but our reasoning ability to guide us. How can we cope when our so-called elites can’t see through a belief system that any bright ten-year-old could stand on its head? I mean, when the grad of an elite Eastern “seven sisters” college really believes with all three of her brain cells that just because the stars form a pattern that to an Earthling might just look like a bull, your culture is in deep trouble.

  61. Bigus Dickus June 29, 2009 at 2:07 pm #

    The real tragedy is to have MJ’s lifetime earning power and die $400 to $800 million in debt. And not because he overextended himself in philanthropy. It really makes you appreciate the pledges given by high-tech billionaires. Computer geeks obviously suffering less from self-aggrandizement than entertainers.

  62. seb June 29, 2009 at 2:15 pm #

    Two words have been discarded. let us begin: I forgot to put in my lengthy comment today (above), that I was laid off on a day, and I know, Michael Jackson dies, but I am a child of the H-bomb era. People like me can lead you through this. If we can’t, enhh, who cares? I am a Flower Child and all this hoo-hah over a nigger does not do it for me. I needed more. When we had Haight-Ashbury, they had the Tenderloin, the Fillmore, something. You would not go down there on a bet. If your bus lets you off there, you are as good as gutted from sternum to pubis at age fourteen. They shoot heroin there. Kathy Frisee left the East Bay ghetto of Concord and became a prostitute in San Francisco, so you know that pussy had had blacks in it, and I had a chance before she went, and I DID NOT KNOW WHAT TO DO with it. She was redded out. I was eighteen. She fell down in the front doorway. I stepped over her to go see some friends I had not seen in a long time. She grabbed my ankle and said, “Steve, . .”; her tongue lolled out and she drooled. Her head tilted back, the eyes closed. I shook her loose. Damn!
    But-what was I talking about? I am trying the “REPLY” to that person. What was wrong with what you said? I do not have to type your name, huh? Pretty good.
    Okay. It is, “Weimar”, Laura. The word with the “e” there, perhaps you were thinking, is “wiener”.
    You are mentioning numerology? Lau-ra, I am a scientist and I work on numerology. Still there (probably never was)? Lenny Bruce’s last performance was June 25, 1966. He died in August. I was laid off forty-three years later. But, the deal is that 100,000 layoffs (I was one of four, just so you know: you can shit on your boss’s desk in Vegas, he won’t fire you). Uh, Laura, if I move this computer will you shit on my desk? I’ll pay you.-100,000 layoffs, that might mean that the ramifications of the layoff process left only the excellent employees. We have a lean and mean economy! Yay, us!

  63. HR FEHR June 29, 2009 at 2:18 pm #

    Great article. MJs life is an excellent parallel to much of current US culture.
    His demise portends our future I fear.
    I hope he finds peace in his after life, if he has one.

  64. maplepeg June 29, 2009 at 2:18 pm #

    You might have added, by way of analogy, that MJ (and the US) get to die a premature death with the most expensive health care money can buy; that MJ (and the US) get to die by excessive consumption of drugs while ostensibly fighting a never-ending, counter-productive “war on drugs”; and that MJ and his colleagues (and the US) really did think the world revolved around them (we are the world). And there is some irony in Kunstler’s commentary coming on the same day as Madoff’s sentencing – if MJ was a symbol of a debtor nation and that was far past its best-before date, then Madoff is the symbol of the vulture whose greatest talent was making money disappear through “financial services”. Quite the week-end for the USA.

  65. Donny-Don June 29, 2009 at 2:26 pm #

    “He had done almost nothing but spin his wheels, hop around the globe from one place to another at enormous expense, and make himself available for award ceremonies to stoke his ego.”
    Whoops. For a moment I though Kunstler was referring to himself.

  66. trippticket June 29, 2009 at 2:54 pm #

    Well said, Loveandlight. It does tend to get old when you try to help people, and they just treat you like a crank. Even when everything going on, every pattern in nature, supports your argument. Nope. Nothing but ridicule.
    Well, here’s to all the Latoyas and Cassandras out there who are slowly making the world a better place, whether anyone is listening or not!
    And one more time for good measure, even if no one’s listening, find out about PERMACULTURE! It’ll change your perspective…on everything.

  67. James Howard Kunstler June 29, 2009 at 2:57 pm #

    consultant wrote:
    There is a racial component to your comments Jim.
    JHK replies:
    That’s just plain untrue. You’re projecting.

  68. seb June 29, 2009 at 3:02 pm #

    Okay, yeah. “Maplepeg”. You are not maple the way I want it. You must be furniture. “Do not make fun of furn”, is my motto (I have scads of mottos). Maple the way I want it is actually mulberry, Googling, “diet of the silkworm”, although they do eat maple, but the leaf I am thinking of is mulberry, then.
    You have that right.
    You all have certain rights, signifying problematic solutions to correcting you spiritedly.
    “excessive use of drugs”? Do you realize that not only has the treatment of drug abuse not improved one whit since 1931 (“Narcotic”), but that this insidious word combination does two things: i. It allows advertisers to advertise lethal products, and: ii. It allows persons who are not yet incapacitated by using drugs to press for their greater availablity. I not only do not want to see beer, I do not want to see “beer”. While you are trying to establish an economy, we are going to be stopping you at every turn. This is revolution in the shadow of genocide. ETHANOL.

  69. James Howard Kunstler June 29, 2009 at 3:15 pm #

    Donny-Don–
    I’ve published four books since the year 2000 and received one award. Fuck you.
    –Jim Kunstler

  70. zsazsa June 29, 2009 at 3:17 pm #

    “Donny-Don–
    I’ve published four books since the year 2000 and received one award. Fuck you.
    –Jim Kunstler”
    Wow man. That makes you special. (Not!)

  71. skookumwawa June 29, 2009 at 3:20 pm #

    It’s too easy to hate on MJ. Yes, he hadn’t released any good new “product” in a long time. Yes, he was strange. But that’s just the thing. It’s almost as if he were custom crafted for others to either love or self-righteously judge, the ultimate idol and scapegoat. Would any of us (including you, JHK) have turned out any “better” if given the same childhood? I doubt it. Your vilification of him just seems like a facile dig that says more about your own cast of mind and heart than any objective truth about either MJ or America.
    In many ways both good and bad, his life was extraordinary and singular. But he doesn’t deserve to be judged and vilified and made into a metaphor by people who never actually knew him.

  72. skookumwawa June 29, 2009 at 3:22 pm #

    It’s too easy to hate on MJ. Yes, he hadn’t released any good new “product” in a long time. Yes, he was strange. But that’s just the thing. It’s almost as if he were custom crafted for others to either love or self-righteously judge, the ultimate idol and scapegoat. Would any of us (including you, JHK) have turned out any “better” if given the same childhood? I doubt it. Your vilification of him just seems like a facile dig that says more about your own cast of mind and heart than any objective truth about either MJ or America.
    In many ways both good and bad, his life was extraordinary and singular. But he doesn’t deserve to be judged and vilified and made into a metaphor by people who never actually knew him.

  73. Morpheous June 29, 2009 at 3:37 pm #

    The problem my fellow Americans, is bleach, and our obsession with whiteness. From Wonder bread, to Madonna’s hair, to Farrah’s Arse to MJs face. Bleach Kills! To all the blue/white toothed obsessed crest strip wearing masses: in short order, we will begin to see the results of direct ingestion of peroxide via the gums/mouth. In a ‘world made by hand’ future, carving wooden teeth may make a comeback! Wealth Recovery tip: Buy stock in denture fixating gels or go back to dentistry school. Tally ho!

  74. abbeysbooks June 29, 2009 at 4:26 pm #

    I suggest you read Toynbee. The condensed 2 volume will do nicely. His excruciatingly detailed analysis of civilizations in disintegration will set your associations to the present and show you the specific examples of doom.
    JHK has detailed some of them from his painter’s POV. For one deteriorating expertise in architecture (housing, public buildings etc)is one example.The falling into barbarism in terms of citizens, art, music etc. It always occurs. And empires do not fail due to outside causes (altho they often seem like they do)they fall from internal exhaustion. Integrity, work ethic, greed, etc.
    We have gone beyond Toynbee’s rout and rally phase into clear disintegration. The best we can hope from Obama is the establishment of the so called Universal State. We see Putin trying to re-establish the Soviet Union (second chances have occurred throughout history, not often, and short lived usually)and he may succeed. Obama may be our Augustus who established the Romabn Universal State and gave the Romans another 300 years of so called peace. The breakup of the Universal State is characterized by massive rebellion and internal wars. Again think the former Soviet Union when all its satellites began to secede and start mini wars. Also the middle east conflicts are a result of the balance of power in the cold war disintegrating.

  75. asoka June 29, 2009 at 4:42 pm #

    katnip kid said: “To Asoka: You say that you are in favor of the crumbling of America.”
    Whoa, there, partner. You got me confused with David Matthews. Read the first post of this week’s comments for my position.
    What I, Asoka, said was:
    “America is not necessarily doomed. America can yet right itself.”
    Get along now, cowboy…

  76. asoka June 29, 2009 at 4:46 pm #

    And then I offered objective, concrete evidence that Americans are capable of making behavioral changes on a national scale by showing the increased personal savings rates from 0% in 2008 to 6.9% in 2009… change is possible.
    We are not all just sleepwalking toward the abyss as so many on this blog prefer to believe. We are perfectly capable of stopping and changing direction.
    None of our problems were created by extraterrestrials. None are intractable.
    We created ‘em, and by golly, we can fix ‘em.

  77. abbeysbooks June 29, 2009 at 4:47 pm #

    Rather than condemn Michael Jackson one needs to understand him in terms of the work of Alice Miller. (She has a website.) I expect her to soon write extensively about him.
    His early life in performance echoes the early life of Buster Keaton. We know him but few know how he was shaped to be the type of performer he became. I will tell you but do read Alice Miller on him (Picasso et al and I think she has a long essay on Hitler but not sure.)Her compassionate and intellectual acumen on distorted childhood is awesome.
    Buster Keaton was in a performing family who traveled the vaudeville circuit. Mother, father and child. Often they would be one small town jump ahead of the child welfare authorities. Here’s how they worked. They beat and tortured Keaton onstage. He was ordered to take it all deadpan, no cries, no emotion, nada. If he let any emotion escape him in body language or voice or any other way, he was beaten unmercifully afterward. Through the threat of severe punishment this child learned to mask his every emotion and came to be the dead pan comic we all love. Famous and loved and always miserable in his personal life from his early childhood deprivation and beatings.
    I have heard MJ’s father told him to dance faster because members of the audience were going to shoot at him and he had to escape the bullets. I suspect that this was made in a sort of joking way and not the way the media has portrayed it. He was on tour, hid under the bed while his brothers balled their groupies, and just had no childhood. By 25 he was almost 2 decades into a successful career. It must have seemed like an endless one to him.
    I also think of the great filmmaker Fassbinder (German) who had really made his film mastery work by the age of 19 documenting German’s rise under Hitler and its beastly war and persecutions, and its aftermath. He so brilliantly portrayed his country that we have an historical account on film altho it is fiction. His TV series Alexanderplatz is a 6 hour wonder of the entire unfolding of that history in pseudo documentary for TV audiences. It is rarely shown but kill yourself if you deliberately and casually miss it in your area.
    His parents were disciples of Rudolph Steiner (bio-dynamic gardening, Waldorf Schools, etc)and he was making all his own decisions by the age of 4. A heavy drug user he OD’d at 19 I believe or not much older but had completed his life’s work by then which rivaled that of any major filmmaker in film history.

  78. Jimini June 29, 2009 at 4:48 pm #

    Matt Taibbi’s latest rant, The Great American Bubble Machine, an expose of Goldman Sachs and the carbon cap and trade charade as the next great bankster bubble. Same as it ever was. OEO had it right. Those of us naive enough to believe in Obama last fall are beginning to get a clue.

  79. abbeysbooks June 29, 2009 at 4:53 pm #

    You are ripe to read the incomparable Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace, recently suicided.
    the USA, the entertainment state is lovingly detailed. The only force of integrity is AA in the book and has 150 pages of footnotes.
    The defining novel of the end of the 20th century.
    And our H.P. Lovecraft the clairvoyant who predicted so much of what passes for reality now.
    If you like Kunstler you will love Ursula LeGuin.

  80. Andy Williams June 29, 2009 at 5:10 pm #

    So here I am again from Wales in the UK. The weather has been very good this week – we don’t normally get weather, just brief samples of different things for a few hours.
    So, our Prime Minister relaunched himself and his policies today. Closer examination showed it was actually a re-wording of the one he launced in April, which was identical to the previous 2 relaunches. He has yet to grasp the two fundementals of the peoples unhappiness with him namely that his policies are rubbish and secondly we don’t actually like him as a person. In the recent Euro elections his party polled less than 20% of the popular vote. We have a General Election in less than a year’s time and he and his ruling party are going to be slaughtered.
    On to the crisis. We keep being told that the crisis is bottomed and the only way is up from here. Trouble is, it’s rubbish. We’ve no money, the government is busy creating gilts which it then prints money to buy. I haven’t quite figured the mechanics of this out but somebody somewhere eventually has to pay and I have a feeling it’s us – the taxpayer. Our stockmarket continues to flounder – two steps forward, two steps back – unemployment is rising rapidly, the government has delayed publishing it’s spending report because the Bank Of England disputes the figures and suppositions it contains, small and medium buisnesses are falling like soldiers at the Somme and oil is starting to creep ever upwards threatening to suffocate any shoots of growth (should they actually exist in the first place). Oh, and Michael Jackson is apparently dead. He turned deathly pale and collapsed 20 years later.
    Interesting article for this week:-
    http://kunstler.com/clusterfucknation/mt-cp.cgi?__mode=new_pw&token=ac84d5476888de5ead59b07c4d4df99f466c6e77&email=adwilliams134%40aol.com
    So take care my trans-atlantic buddies and I’ll speak to you all next week.

  81. Andy Williams June 29, 2009 at 5:14 pm #

    reference the above – I put in the wrong link. Here’s the proper one !!! Doh!!
    http://www.gold-eagle.com/editorials_08/dorsch021709.html

  82. Stone June 29, 2009 at 5:23 pm #

    James, thanks for a very funny post.
    I consider it a gem of cultural criticism.
    I have been sending it to my friends. Everyone got great laughs out of it. Yeah, not all folks are mesmerized by the relentless media praise and eulogizing of our Moonwalking Genius.

  83. seb June 29, 2009 at 5:24 pm #

    I am posting a comment here. JHK is online. I thought I had “gone too far”, with my previous comments maybe, but he did not ban me. Whew! That was quite the attitude adjustment. Remember in “The Gift of he Magi” how an unfortunate misunderstanding led to a set of tortoise-shell combs, umm, a watch-fob, keck-mumbly umm, platinum, RoSEBud, . . .clunk.
    A leemay Ling has been sent to your email assword recovery.
    CHEMISTRY POST
    “Morpheous”. Oh, God, Jim. Could you imagine Edgar Poe trying to make a buck with compound vowels? For Christ’s sake, it has “fey” in it. It just shows how sterling it is to get free writing. Son, try, “Morpheus”, cf phosphorus.
    Bleach is an interesting facet of chemistry; I have always wanted to add things to things and just whiten them, not break them into fragments.
    Somehow I have come to identify bleach with chalk. The snap of a stick of chalk seems to have a high-pitched note to it, if the chalk is light, with an open cell structure; as if the chalk is under tension like glass. Perhaps I saw some bleach with a brown stain, and a piece of chalk with a brown stain like rust, and I confused the two. The smell of something will often give a clue about it being related to something else, and does bleach smell clean?
    I raised a spoon of fine white powdered methamphetamine to my nostril and insufflated it. It was some of the racemate. No cut was there to give it an ethyl ether, ethyl acetate, or mannite buff. My brain took off, zing!, and the pain extended up that nostril to the tops of my sinuses and seemed to go on into my brain. My ear tingled hot, itching. I worked my jaw, a single tear came out of that eye. “Smooth!”, said I.
    I felt the tissue in my nose undergoing such an intense burn that I was sure it must be necrotizing under the extremely caustic acid or base, or, yes-bleaching effect of that snort. I am sure that this is what Kurt Cobain refers to in his song, “Bleach”, by Nirvana.
    Oh, now we’re going to quote that piece of shit-not! I like that. Where’d you get that NOT! shit? I like that.
    So, Morph, your sarcasm, . . .is appreciated, appreciated. You do not really like the cosmetic superficiality of the bleacheroo, do oo? Okay.
    A peroxide is an unstable compound; it is an oxide, take water, hydrogen oxide, with another oxygen atom, to give hydrogen peroxide. H2O –> H2O2.
    Household H2O2 is 3% in water. The 35% is rocket fuel, the 98% is blue in color, not found in laboratories, just made, studied, neutralized.
    Boil ether dry and it makes peroxides famously, equivalent to adding water to acid to dilute it.
    Two scientists died in a rocket test facility being closed in Santa Susanna, Calif. when they attempted to destroy a half a paint can of an exotic peroxide.
    Household bleach and swimming-pool bleach are sodium hypochlorite 5%. That is the sodium salt of hypochlorous acid. Chlorous, chloric, perchloric, going up in oxidation. Chlorine has four valences. I have never liked valence. Even Wiki starts out, “Over the last century, . . .”, hey. Why not, “FOR a century, TWO CENTURIES AGO”? The word comes out of 1425.
    The use of chlorine gas to purify drinking water has been replaced by an unbelievably huge 5MW ozone facility I worked on at Lake Skinner, Calif.
    Ozone is a pollutant at ground level, rotting tires, and at altitude it forms a protective shell over the biosphere. Carl Sagan was one of the niggling scientists who complained that a nuclear war would do something which must happen like the ice caps melting, that is, anyway, which is the stripping away of the ozone layer, from volcanos maybe, and that all plants die, and you yourself would come outside and crawl back into the hole in fifteen minutes, from sunlight.
    Permanganate is used in cocaine processing and has been seized at Long Beach once when two ships from China on their way to Colombia stopped there. They thought they had a free pass, but there was a fluke, a retiring DEA chief.
    The ions, anions such as hypochlorite or permanganate, are counterions, and either one may be valuable. Cations are counterions to anions. An electrically neutral ionic compound is the only kind there is.
    Soap is titrated for NaO, sodium oxide, a theoretical species. The caustic lye, added to long-chain carboxylic (fatty) acids to make soap, is NaOH. NaO formally taking another oxygen, 2NaO + O, gives Na2O3, sodium peroxide, and now we are getting closer to Michael’s face bleach, because that is hair bleach. Benzoyl peroxide is zit bleach, but look: UV light, or just exposure to sunlight, is an acne treatment. Why? It is because a high-energy photon of UV light promotes an electron to a higher energy level. It just sits there unpaired, same as a free radical, and that is the mechanism of your bleaching action.
    I like numerology, so I took the number of electron rest masses in the proton rest mass, 1836.1524, and I made a date, in 1836. I looked up that year and two chemists are in there. One of them became very rich by developing a new bleaching powder for cotton. For a time, he had the largest chemical company in the world. The other one, Curtius, discovered iodine, but he did not patent it, and he died in poverty.

  84. asoka June 29, 2009 at 5:25 pm #

    jimini said: “OEO had it right. Those of us naive enough to believe in Obama last fall are beginning to get a clue.”
    You mean we should have elected McCain/Palin and our problems would be solved?
    McCain/Palin would have continued the Bush plan: lower taxes, get rid of regulation and have the government spend like there’s no tomorrow on war.
    Even today Cheney is still making noises about how Obama is wrong to want to stop the war in Iraq.
    The USA elected the right president. We would be in much deeper shit with the other guys, maybe nuclear shit. Bomb, bomb, bomb… bomb, bomb, Iran.

  85. Dr Doom June 29, 2009 at 5:40 pm #

    “If you don’t love Nature you might as well live on Mars.”
    Nature is a broad topic. There is plenty of Nature to love on Mars, in fact a whole planet load. Dave, you gotta get out with the Navahos and the Buddhists more often. You may not be human loving, but you are biotic loving, and are missing some cool aspects to Nature.
    I’m going home tonight and hugging my bags of N-P-K fertilizer.

  86. seb June 29, 2009 at 5:50 pm #

    I am going to eventually dip into this well one too many times.
    Courtois was the man’s name. I thought that post did not look right. He dicovers iodine in 1811, dies in 1838, so I did not lie; he was very sick in 1836. That would be analogous to Jacko 2007 (National Enquirer)
    If I would have just previewed before posting! Oh, well. This is the straight scoop: I looked up both the neutron and proton rest mass in the light of today’s internet options, but our numerology power is lagging. I do not feel comfortable doing parts of a year, not the way we write dates, eg, March 15, 27 B.C. The events above are for 1838. In 1836, Sam Colt patents his revolver, in 1971 Alice Cooper puts it into a song, “Desperado”, 1836 the Beagle sails with Darwin aboard. Can I have a collective groan? Thank you.

  87. cuddletuffy June 29, 2009 at 5:52 pm #

    Nice article this week. Thanks for having the balls to write it.
    Did someone really compare Michael Jackson to Mozart? HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!! Uh, let’s see, “Bad”, and the Jupiter Symphony. Um, hmmm, “Man In The Mirror” and the C Minor Mass. Um, hmmm, “Smooth Criminal”, and even the most trite of Mozart’s early piano sonatas.
    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!! HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!
    As a young boy, Michael Jackson had a remarkable gift – he had a great voice and sung with a tremendous passion, charisma and pathos. Same with Frankie Lyman and a lot of people. Trouble is, Michael Jackson never grew up and as a man he could never come close to singing with the genius of a Donny Hathaway, Marvin Gaye, Chris Cornell or any other truly great singer. One even has to wonder about his song-writing talent, given that he had the top session musicians to work with, guys who are amazing jazz musicians who probably improvised most of that stuff thinking, “when can i leave and go play some Monk.”
    As for the dancing, I just don’t get it. He could move his body to be certain, but his choreography of that leg twitch, to crotch grab to hat take-off and then put back on over the drippy curl, (which he did over and over and over again from 1986 – 2009), looked like it was stolen from a siezure back-stage of a Milan fashion show. It wasn’t interesting. The moon-walk. Go to the subway in New York any day and you can see more interesting choreography from cultures all over the world.
    I think this was a great article making a good analogy. There is such greatness and artistry in America – genuine genius and amazing musicianship that goes unnoticed. Michael Jackson and his genius, in my opinion, are a fiction. He was talented to be certain, but he was surrounded by a marketing machine and his celebrity took on a life of its own. Michael the persona and entertainer was great. Monkeys, our cousins, will fore-go their regular feedings just to sit and stare at a picture of celebrity or alpha males. Michael the musician is nothing to write home about.
    To be sure, he had some sort of charisma that could be sold to billions of adolescents around the world. That may ultimately be his epitaph. “Here lies a guy who was very talented and sold tons of records and was an iconic figure. Mature adults didn’t buy his records, or see his concerts.”
    His legacy may be the opposite of Mozart’s. He will be ceremoniously buried in a golden grave by his benefactors who will milk every last dollar out of his death and legacy. His musical and dance legacy however is another matter.
    Don’t expect his music to ever be studied in a conservatory. For that matter, as a musician who hangs with cats from all genres, most don’t ever listen to his music and say to themselves, ‘Wow! That is amazing. I wish I could do that.’ And then set out to spend years learning from his mastery. That kind of respect and reverie is reserved for true masters of music. (The western classical masters; the “ethnic” tradition masters; the jazz masters; the rock and soul masters …) He just wasn’t that good. His marketing machine was.
    How American. That is okay. The fascist marketing/media machine is losing credibility all the time. A music history professor of mine used the phrase, “the toilet of time”, to describe the art that gets flushed because it just doesn’t have the substance, (in terms of craftmanship, human expressive quality, pathos and depth), to be interesting, universal and worth investing time to learn by successive generations.
    My guess is that Michael Jackson’s substantive output is circling the bowl as we speak. It just
    may bump into a red, white and blue empire on the way down.

  88. abbeysbooks June 29, 2009 at 5:52 pm #

    Yes I agree with your take.
    Why he is representative of the US? Here’s why:
    He came from a dysfunctional family like most of the rest of us. Those lucky few who don’t get distorted are just that, the lucky few.
    The corruption of the dysfunctional family is leading to the demise of the US. All civilizations fail from within and the family or the way infants are treated metaphors the entire culture.
    Force a child to become a song and dance man. Or Tiger Woods father making a golfer altho that one seems to have worked.
    The Williams sister being programed to become tennis greats.
    And of course Mozart to become a great musician.
    At how much personal cost. children are not property to live out parents’ unfullfilled dreams.
    For every jackpot (no pun intended)winner child/adult, there are milions who fall thru the nets (again no pun intended).

  89. abbeysbooks June 29, 2009 at 5:54 pm #

    He became a freak through unbelievable childhood trauma. That he rose above that for awhile is his greatness because it was deadly. See my posts above on this and Alice Miller.

  90. abbeysbooks June 29, 2009 at 6:00 pm #

    No his parents should have been put somewhere for destroying his soul. We only saw it for a short time in his music and dancing before his dysfunctional past and childhood presented the bill.

  91. IVAN June 29, 2009 at 6:12 pm #

    Jim
    Poor choice in metaphor, you don’t know much about the music biz do you? Stick with what you know and do well.
    Ivan

  92. abbeysbooks June 29, 2009 at 6:13 pm #

    Laura in addition to your wonderful authors, which I have read, (see my ID name) you need to add that of Alice Miller.
    Only then will you truly understand Michael, his art and his life.

  93. turkle June 29, 2009 at 6:26 pm #

    SEB,
    Who in the what now?

  94. cuddletuffy June 29, 2009 at 6:27 pm #

    McCain Palin would’ve been terrible from a personality standpoint.
    From a policy standpoint, Obama has continued Bush’s policies. Frankly, he has carried Bush’s fiscal policies to a whole other level of insanity. Furthermore, he is bombing Pakistan. He also voted to give the telecoms retroactive immunity as one of his last acts in the Senate – after accepting the presidential nomination at the AT&T center, and tons of money from them and the other law-breaking, spy-assisting telecoms.
    Why? Because as a Senator he is complicit in the war crimes, and the financial larceny. He is further complicit by using Bush’s own states-secret arguments to prevent the release of torture information. It is likely that he knows that high level Democrats are as irrefutably guilty in the perpetration all the war crimes and violations of the constitution as Cheney and Bush themselves – Pelosi; Harmon; Frank … … All of them. It is time to wake up. Tell the Iraqi’s that the 50K soldiers who remain in their country are non-combat, muchless the ex-SEAL military contractors.
    Obama isn’t the answer. It is time to put on our big boy pants and recall how democracy works. You find someone who represents your views and get them elected to the legislature. Once there, you have to follow their voting record and punish them at the ballot box if they do not follow through on their campaign promises.
    Most of the things I hear people saying in support of Obama are childish and immured in a fantasy of having a nice daddy running the house now. (He’s handsome, he’s smart, his appointees are the best and brightest – uh, really? Geitner? Summers? Gates? Ironically, Obama promised more war and to further bankrupt our nation and he is delivering spectacularly. Obamania as a metaphor for America and our self-delusion should be the subject of another Kunstler piece similar to this Michael Jackson one.
    I know Bush and Cheney were highly unlikable villains. That is no reason to run to another fantasy and support a seemingly nicer head of our fascist dictatorship. Hope and Fear are two sides of the same hollow coin.
    The DLC strategy was to say, “We aren’t Bush.” The nation followed and said, yes, anyone but Bush and the banner he flew under. In tone Obama may be slightly better than the Liebermann/McCain/Palin mafia, but in substance it so far seems to be identical. The DLC and Obama wanted power. This may be one of those epic cases where they and their unwitting supporters find themselves saying, “Careful what you wish for.”
    Baaaaaa! Baaaaaa! Baaaaarack!
    Baaaaaa! Baaaaaa! Baaaaarack!
    Looking forward to the day when We The People bring about substantive change through our behavior and the legislative bodies, not through the administrative ones.

  95. pgf June 29, 2009 at 6:52 pm #

    A fine piece of writing. A finer piece of analysis.
    It’s also time for you to say, Jim, that Obama is a fraud. NOTHING will change.
    I don’t think he intends to run again. He was the first African American President, and now a rich man. Those are the changes he believed in.

  96. cuddletuffy June 29, 2009 at 6:58 pm #

    McCain Palin would’ve been terrible from a personality standpoint.
    From a policy standpoint, Obama has continued Bush’s policies. Frankly, he has carried Bush’s fiscal policies to a whole other level of insanity. Furthermore, he is bombing Pakistan. He also voted to give the telecoms retroactive immunity as one of his last acts in the Senate – after accepting the presidential nomination at the AT&T center, and tons of money from them and the other law-breaking, spy-assisting telecoms.
    Why? Because as a Senator he is complicit in the war crimes, and the financial larceny. He is further complicit by using Bush’s own states-secret arguments to prevent the release of torture information. It is likely that he knows that high level Democrats are as irrefutably guilty in the perpetration all the war crimes and violations of the constitution as Cheney and Bush themselves – Pelosi; Harmon; Frank … … All of them. It is time to wake up. Tell the Iraqi’s that the 50K soldiers who remain in their country are non-combat, muchless the ex-SEAL military contractors.
    Obama isn’t the answer. It is time to put on our big boy pants and recall how democracy works. You find someone who represents your views and get them elected to the legislature. Once there, you have to follow their voting record and punish them at the ballot box if they do not follow through on their campaign promises.
    Most of the things I hear people saying in support of Obama are childish and immured in a fantasy of having a nice daddy running the house now. (He’s handsome, he’s smart, his appointees are the best and brightest – uh, really? Geitner? Summers? Gates? Ironically, Obama promised more war and to further bankrupt our nation and he is delivering spectacularly. Obamania as a metaphor for America and our self-delusion should be the subject of another Kunstler piece similar to this Michael Jackson one.
    I know Bush and Cheney were highly unlikable villains. That is no reason to run to another fantasy and support a seemingly nicer head of our fascist dictatorship. Hope and Fear are two sides of the same hollow coin.
    The DLC strategy was to say, “We aren’t Bush.” The nation followed and said, yes, anyone but Bush and the banner he flew under. In tone Obama may be slightly better than the Liebermann/McCain/Palin mafia, but in substance it so far seems to be identical. The DLC and Obama wanted power. This may be one of those epic cases where they and their unwitting supporters find themselves saying, “Careful what you wish for.”
    Baaaaaa! Baaaaaa! Baaaaarack!
    Baaaaaa! Baaaaaa! Baaaaarack!
    Looking forward to the day when We The People bring about substantive change through our behavior and the legislative bodies, not through the administrative ones.

  97. asoka June 29, 2009 at 8:08 pm #

    cuddletuffy said: “Looking forward to the day when We The People bring about substantive change through our behavior and the legislative bodies…”
    Maybe you missed it but there was a national election and millions of We The People voted and Obama won the election. But then you have probably missed they substantive change that has happened since January 21, too.
    Also, there is a legislative body called Congress and Obama has signed quite a few laws already that the legislative body has passed. Little things like:
    Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act
    Signed: Monday, June 22, 2009
    Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility, and Disclosure (CARD) Act of 2009
    Signed: Friday, May 22, 2009
    Weapons Systems Acquisition Reform Act
    Signed: Friday, May 22, 2009
    Helping Families Save Their Homes Act
    Signed: Wednesday, May 20, 2009
    Fraud Enforcement and Recovery Act
    Signed: Wednesday, May 20, 2009
    Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act
    Signed: Wednesday, April 21, 2009
    Omnibus Public Lands Management Act
    Signed: Monday, March 30, 2009
    Small Business Act Temporary Extension
    Signed: Friday, March 20, 2009
    American Recovery and Reinvestment Act
    Signed: Tuesday, February 17, 2009
    Children’s Health Insurance Reauthorization Act
    Signed: Wednesday, February 4, 2009
    Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act
    Signed: Thursday, January 29, 2009

  98. anon. June 29, 2009 at 8:11 pm #

    You know, if Michael does represent America, is that really so bad? Sure, we don’t stand for anything, may have been a child molesting old man who lived beyond his means from Gary, Indiana, but we were one talented artist and we had the moves!!!
    Why focus on the over the hill dead guy? Why not focus on the good times? There was the 1982 television special where he revealed the white glove, the debut of Thriller on MTV… oh the dance moves I tried out on my parents’ beige carpet! And I was only 6 years old!!!
    I think the whole of human history is overwrought with the struggle for survival. Now that we have arrived here, there’s no way anyone wants to go back to the hard manual labor and endless drudgery of the past. Look in people’s eyes and instead of see fat, obese lotus eaters, see people living it up while they can!!
    If American existed to lift a few peasants out of feudal slavery, to release children from work in industrial factories, gave some douchebag in Atlanta with a marketing degree a bean counting job at Coca Cola and a downtown loft to house his cats in, is that really such a bad thing? Can we just say, yes, we got fat and dumb, but we populated the earth and we made cool music videos about zombies and we piped in MTV into every common man’s living room who in the Old World would have been a German geese herder…
    Michael Jackson was an amazing artist. And America did something amazing things! You can’t dismiss American in one he-was-a-child-molester comment! America was my childhood and so was Michael Jackson.

  99. alex63 June 29, 2009 at 8:59 pm #

    The sad thing about all this is every day thousands of good people, who work quietly in the background, doing good things for their families and community, die from whatever, with very little, if any recognition from the media or politicians, and when a high profile “celebrity” checks out everyone goes stupid. I’ve never seen Jacko down at the local markets on a Sunday morning helping with the barbecue to raise money for the scouts or the bushfire brigade.(I won’t tarnish all celebrities with the same brush. PINK gave the Victorian bushfire victims a donation of $250,000. And she doesn’t even live here. Don’t like her music, but I like her attitude.) I’m sure Jacko probably did some charitable stuff, but he threw a lot of money away on monkeys and merry-go-rounds as well.

  100. asoka June 29, 2009 at 9:18 pm #

    To Tenth Jager, who not long ago swore we would not no way no how withdraw our troops from Iraqi cities by June 30. Well, it is July 29 and our troops are now out. Obama got that one right.
    (AP) Iraqi forces assumed formal control of Baghdad and other cities Tuesday after American troops handed over security in urban areas in a defining step toward ending the U.S. combat role in the country. A countdown clock broadcast on Iraqi TV ticked to zero as the midnight deadline passed for U.S. combat troops to finish their pullback to bases outside cities.
    “The withdrawal of American troops is completed now from all cities after everything they sacrificed for the sake of security,” said Sadiq al-Rikabi, a senior adviser to Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki. “We are now celebrating the restoration of sovereignty.”

  101. asoka June 29, 2009 at 9:23 pm #

    Not July 29. The troops are out today… in June… as General Odierno said they would be… as Obama said they would be. We should never have attacked Iraq and they sooner we leave completely the better. It is one giant THREE TRILLION dollar waste of taxpayers’ money.
    http://www.amazon.com/Three-Trillion-Dollar-War-Conflict/dp/0393067017
    THREE FUCKING TRILLION DOLLARS (AND THOUSANDS OF AMERICAN LIVES AND MILLIONS OF IRAQI LIVES) AND NO WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION AND NO TAKING OUT OF BIN LADEN. WHAT A WASTE, THANKS TO BUSH!

  102. Celsius 233 June 29, 2009 at 9:34 pm #

    Jim, as usual, your comments/editorial slash through the bullshit and strip away the sanctuary of denial we’re locked in. Some of us will wake up some day and gasp, “Holy shit, we’re fucked.” Most of us won’t because we’ll never survive that reality. A few of us already have awakened and got the hell out. Keep up the good fight.

  103. JD Moore June 29, 2009 at 9:44 pm #

    I never was much of a fan of Mikey. Maybe he was a perv. There were a few good songs in the “Thriller” days. That’s a generation back. He’s a has been, doin’ the Vegas thing. “Thriller” may have sold more albums than Pink Floyd’s “Dark Side of the Moon.” “Dark Side of the Moon” had way more staying power in the charts. It demolished the old record holder “Johnny’s Greatest Hits” by Johnny Mathis.
    The real good news and no one seemed to say anything today about it is that Bernard “I Made Off With All Your Money” is going to jail for a LONG time and no “country club,” either. The judge threw the book at him. Let it be an example to those who rob the people. I hear there are more conspirators who may be seeing the inside of a cell soon.
    I thank my lucky stars that I live in a walkable community where some people care about what’s happening. There’s some sensible developments in the infrastructure here. I only wish more locals would be as sociable as New Yorkers. Nothing holds a candle to The City.

  104. zsazsa June 29, 2009 at 10:12 pm #

    asoka-da-producers sez:
    “jimini said: “OEO had it right. Those of us naive enough to believe in Obama last fall are beginning to get a clue.”
    You mean we should have elected McCain/Palin and our problems would be solved?”
    All problems solved? No. We just wouldn’t be as fucked as we are now. But you ain’t seen nuttin’ yet. The Obamaniacles are just getting warmed up. Anyone with an IQ higher than asoka-da- producers (99.99% of the population) will soon have their veils of denial lifted. The reaction will not be pretty. The revolution will be televised.

  105. rocco June 29, 2009 at 11:15 pm #

    Excellent Post Laura. I work at a University medical center, and the nurses, docs are all looking for magical non evidenced based healing solutions, and all sorts of “alt” med has sneaked in, while the resistant strains grow, and spread they worry about alignment of the stars, and magical herbs. JHK: Thank you an excellent, and brave post. Thinking, rational thought, all require hard work. It is easier to get on stage, grab my groin, dress up, put on make up, and make millions, all easier than do a skilled trade, or studying, and reading, and those math, and chemistry symbols, man it’s hard. Locally as homes foreclose, and small business fades away, the county is trying to build a 100 million facility downtown that will have a theater, a bus station( NY state just cut funds for urban buses) and fill the rest with shops and restaurants. People will come downtown and it will make millions and provide thousands of jobs.

  106. asoka June 30, 2009 at 12:05 am #

    Rocco said: “I work at a University medical center, and the nurses, docs are all looking for magical non evidenced based healing solutions, and all sorts of “alt” med has sneaked in…”
    This surprises me. Even the alt medicine fields (massage, midwifery, etc.) are evidence based and have professional peer-reviewed journals and monographs that are evidence based.
    http://www.amazon.com/Outcome-Based-Massage-Evidence-Carla-Krystin-Andrade/dp/0781767601
    Grounding Midwifery Practice in Evidence of All Types
    Journal of Midwifery & Women’s Health, Volume 50, Issue 5, Pages 361-362
    P. Murphy
    Doing good evidence based practice is how you get academic credibility and the alt medicine people desperately want acceptance by the mainstream science community.

  107. Wil June 30, 2009 at 12:06 am #

    Usually I enjoy your gloomy pronostications, but the comments about Michael Jackson show you to be a dreary old man. I though that everyone knew that life, without art, is not worth living, and that often those that make the greatest art are our most eccentric citizens. I suggest that you re-think your condemnation of the greatest pop ARTIST of our time, or else run the risk of looking old, and tired, while appealing to a hateful,dying demographic.

  108. Neon Vincent June 30, 2009 at 12:14 am #

    His farcical marriage to the daughter of Elvis didn’t fool anyone. I believe it was an attempt to stave off rumors of homosexuality and/or paedophilia, but have no actual basis in fact.
    You forgot there may have been something in it for Lisa Marie and her friends, too. She’s a Scientologist, and the Church of Scientology might have been very interested in MJ’s money and fame.

  109. 10th Jager June 30, 2009 at 12:40 am #

    @asoka –
    Yes, that is what Odierno, Maliki, and even the New York Times are saying. They had a parade and celebrations in Baghdad today.
    Closer inspection of the news will show this is not the case.
    You may have had too much of the Obama Kool-Aid, but at least you aren’t talking about Michael Jackson.
    http://original.antiwar.com/vlahos/2009/06/10/us-troops-out-of-iraqi/

  110. asoka June 30, 2009 at 12:59 am #

    10th Jager,
    I don’t have a TV and I was living outside the USA for most of the 80’s and 90’s, so I don’t really know who Michael Jackson is. Nor do I care.
    When they stand up, we stand down… that is what Bush told us… and now it is happening, in spite of your predictions that it would not happen.
    The Obama Kool-Aid is so refreshing. He is bringing change in a methodical and cautious fashion.
    Yes we can!

  111. Jaego Scorzne June 30, 2009 at 1:13 am #

    How did Jackson get away with it? Same way
    OJ did-he’s Black. Whites have been primed by non-
    stop conditioning to worship Blacks. It’s been go-
    ing on for decades. Blacks are good.
    Michael Jackson is Black.
    Therefore, MJ is good.
    Simple? Yes, but it works as the advertising
    industry knows so well. It worked well eneough to
    get Barack Obama elected. He is the end result and
    crowning glory of their campaign to bring down the
    West. Since his Advent, the onslaught of Black
    glorification has increased tenfold. Beyonce has
    been crowned the Queen of Pop. Steele as head of
    the Republican Party. Holder as Attorney General.
    Another Black as head of Nasa. And it shows no
    sign of slowing down.
    By all means read Toynbee’s two volume study.
    He states that of the two dozen or so major civ-
    ilizations, not one has been Black. The only way
    they’re going to get one of their own is by taking
    over our’s and making us peasants, servants, and
    technical advisors-like they did in South Africa
    and Rhodesia.

  112. seb June 30, 2009 at 1:37 am #

    turkle said
    SEB who in the what now?
    I received a verbal challenge from someone on this site who calls himself “turkle”. The message consists of the following few words: Who in the what now?
    First of all, why do you not get a clue from Kunstler himself? He does not pick on me. He is savvy. If there exists the occasional ranting, rambling disjointed commentary from an obviously disturbed psychiatric patient who claims to manufacture methamphetamine and readily admits to counting among his cherished moments encounters with the likes of Tex Watson, Richard Ramirez, and Herbert Mullin (Wikipedia), you might consider leaving it alone.
    However, let us begin at the beginning: “Clusterfuck Nation” I am still tracking down. Recently, I saw “Bailout Nation”. CFN may come from “used-car nation” (light bulb in head turns on). It’s “pink carnation”.
    Now, on to Kunstler. He is a journalist. George Orwell, whom I worship, wrote an essay, “Why I Write”. I just read it. Orwell was a master of political writing. A writer to him was a serious writer or a journalist, and journalists were more interested in money. Why Kunstler is writing, I.U.D.
    Now, how is he writing? How is he driving? Call 1-800-EAT-SHIT. I meant Q.E.D. before. How was my driving? He is using metaphors, but not mixed metaphors, not even permissible ones. My son wishes he was a snake. I just looked them all up. Not snakes, metaphors. I wish I was on a ferry boat to the Isle of Wight.
    Messed that up. However, high academic positions are held by professors of literature, and vastly wealthy authors fill the best-seller lists. What you see here is a new internet political writing phenomenon administering a knockout blow to the traditional media like a cerebral hemorrhage.
    What I am considering just now is how the people take to the corporate desire to remake them as consumers. I just saw a comedy, “Land of the Lost”. Being lost is a transient condition on the land. It is not funny. Pretty soon it is going to be land of the land.
    Corps force the people into cookie-cutter sameness, and the people exhibit slavish obedience to it. I can’t shoehorn obeisance in here, but look at how the electronic gatekeepers are causing us to bow down to an authority not even present. I better not work you over to beehives and incense, but I want to so bad.
    This is the clusterfuck nation, and it is the fault of the corporations and at the same time the fault of the people for tolerating it. Note: I am not saying they’re from Brataslava. They’re slaves! They’re chattel! I feel like an insect pinned to a board. I cannot be nonnegative towards this. There is no positive normal society in this country.
    It’s not Irish or Swedish, it’s slavish. Is it Polish? Yeah, polish my German helmet, Turkle.

  113. 10th Jager June 30, 2009 at 1:54 am #

    @asoka –
    Jesus, I was really hoping I could avoid this, but the freak is dead and the media attention should subside within a week or so –
    I don’t understand… you are saying that if you had a TV or lived in the States, then you would care?
    Besides, what does living overseas have to do with anything? MJ is probably a bigger phenomenon outside of the US, showing quite clearly that Americans don’t have a monopoly on bad taste.
    On Iraq: We have not stood down, we have 130,000 troops there who will not start coming home until September. The Iraqis haven’t stood up.
    There is this little issue called the Sunni-Shiite problem. The Sunnis stopped being insurgents because we paid them not to be (that is the dirty little secret of the “surge”) and the Iraqi Army is basically the Maliki/Shiite Army.
    Unfortunately, for you and Obama, history shows what happens in these situations: the indigenous security forces fold. This happened with the South Vietnamese in 1972 (the South Vietnamese army was 500,000 strong and the South Vietnamese Air Force was the 4th largest in the world with all the latest technology). And it happened with the Afghan government forces in 1988 when the Soviets left.
    As things unravel, it will provide every opportunity for Obama to keep US forces and their “mission” fighting “violent extremists” intact.
    The only difference between Obama and Bush is that in January 2009, terrorism magically disappeared from the planet along with a bunch of photos showing US torture of “illegal enemy combatants.”
    But the world led by the Celebrity Imperial President must still be made safe for democracy. This will be achieved by targeting “violent extremists” with drone-fired Hellfire missiles in Pakistan.
    On Iran: Does your boy understand that by simply opening his mouth about a country that we have had no diplomatic relations with since 1979 and succumbing to Republican/Neoconservative pressure he gives the mullahs every excuse to crack down on the innocent protesters?
    On Guantanamo: Good luck with that. Even if he manages to shutter the place by January, he will simply have moved the prisoners to the SuperMax in Colorado and will continue to hold them without trial or charges. Some change.

  114. asoka June 30, 2009 at 2:16 am #

    10th Jager said: “Besides, what does living overseas have to do with anything? MJ is probably a bigger phenomenon outside of the US”
    I lived in a city of 2 million with seven FM radio stations and they all played 24 hour a day salsa. I lived among “salsomanos”, salsa addicts, and I only heard salsa music in the streets, on the buses, in taxis, in businesses and homes.
    So, MJ, whoever he is, was not on the radar where I was living. He only appeared in one salsa arrangement that I know of…
    http://www.imeem.com/salsadn-efr/music/dOHzi4eA/michael-jacson-you-rock-my-world-salsa-version/

  115. Wil June 30, 2009 at 2:28 am #

    See Kunstler, you have awakened the racists among us. The racial component in your essay inspires haters like this one.

  116. turkle June 30, 2009 at 2:59 am #

    SEB, that was weird. Feel like I’m on drugs now, even though I ain’t. Are you okay?
    Ok, kids. These were not safe for work so had to wait. Here goes.
    Did you hear McDonald’s is coming out with a new Michael Jackson burger?
    It is 50 year-old meat between 10 year-old buns.
    So Farah Fawcett goes to heaven and God says, “You have been such a great person that I will grant you one wish.”
    She says, “Please, God, could you save all the children of the world?”
    So God strikes Michael Jackson dead.
    Yeah, I’ll be here all week.
    10th Jager, your geopolitical analysis is so brilliant. It is a real wonder Obama didn’t tap you for his administration. Now we’re all doomed, I’m afraid, because no one asked 10th Jager WTF was up!

  117. Dr Doom June 30, 2009 at 3:17 am #

    Ya 10th, the troops moved out alright, from the Iraqi cities to the bases just outside the cities–change we can believe in, or at least asokas can believe in.
    We are there to serve and protect our “interests” and those can be counted in 32-gal. barrels. We will never willingly leave Iraq until our interests are safely transferred elsewhere.

  118. asoka June 30, 2009 at 3:21 am #

    Jaego Scorzne said: “By all means read Toynbee’s two volume study. He states that of the two dozen or so major civilizations, not one has been Black.”
    First, Toynbee’s was a twelve volume study of history.
    Second, it included ancient Black civilizations, such as the Egyptian civilization. Check out a map. Egypt is in Africa.
    Third, Toynbee included Indus and Asian civilizations (India). Black people built the oldest civilization in southeast Asia, leaving megalithic temples and statuary in south India.
    Fourth, Toynbee included the nappy-haired Arabic civilizations also. Arab myths agree that the Cushitic King Nimrod crossed from beyond the waters of Ethiopia in the earliest times with a fine crop of soldiers and established what was to become the world’s oldest civilization. Many existing sites in Iraq are still named after Nimrod. Nimrod ruled in Mesopotamia, in the area covering Iraq, Iran, and Turkey.
    All the ancient traditions agree that Nimrod was a black man, and that his soldiers were Ethiopians and Azanians, from what is now called East Africa.
    Fifth, the roots of “Western” civilization, culture, science, technology and religion are to be found not in Greece, but in Black Egypt and Nubia-Kush, Mesopotamia, Sabea and Black Naga India.
    We owe our civilization to Blacks since the Americas were discovered by Spain, and the Black Moors who introduced advanced learning to Spain when white Europe was in the throes of the Dark Ages (about 400 A.D. to 711 A.D.)
    We owe everything to Mother Africa. As you stated, Blacks are good.

  119. Flyover June 30, 2009 at 4:36 am #

    So, if an Egyptian moves to America, are they, and all of their descendants to be called African-Americans? I have the feeling that they might not like that designation. What say Asoka?

  120. Flyover June 30, 2009 at 4:38 am #

    So, if an Egyptian moves to America, are they, and all of their descendants to be called African-Americans? I have the feeling that they might not like that designation. What say Asoka?

  121. Whoopdy Do June 30, 2009 at 8:13 am #

    OK, I’ve been reading JHK since “the Long Emergency,” have been following this blog for about a year, and haven’t spoken out until now, but I think this must be said.
    In light of Asoka’s reply to Jaego above, we can all now safely ignore everything Asoka says.
    Asoka, your past comments could be excused as opinion, but to put forth that last statement as a collection of facts is just absolutely breathtaking in the magnitude of its idiocy. After that, how can anybody take anything you say seriously?

  122. FARfetched June 30, 2009 at 8:41 am #

    Just sayin’…
    Seb, don’t confuse surreal with stream-of-consciousness. The former resembles the latter, but its loops and branches all tie back to an overarching theme. ‘Course, if you’re going for SoC, you’re nailing it.
    Jaego, nobody’s buyin’ what you’re sellin’. Besides the Egyptian and Nubian civ’s, there’s some dispute whether Sheba (as in, the Queen of) was situated in modern-day Somalia or Yemen. But there’s no dispute about ancient Mali. The Romans traded with them, and were somewhat in awe of them. The name of their capital resonates through the ages as the stuff of legend: Timbuktu. Climate change did them in, as Roman overproduction of the northern African grain-belt created the vast desert we call the Sahara, which in turn swallowed the nation whole. Every so often, the shifting sands let archaeologists get a peep at their stonework.
    The ancient Europeans weren’t terribly concerned with skin color. Either you spoke Latin and/or Greek, or you were a barbarian. That was their line.

  123. Funzel June 30, 2009 at 8:43 am #

    While we are on the subject of racism,last night on NBC”news”it showed US soldiers trying to murder some of the local population in Afghanistan or Pakistan,wherever it was.
    It suddenly occurred to me everyone of those machine gun toting morons where white.
    My next thought,why with only 51% of US population being white are there only whites fighting and getting killed,give or take a few blacks and no jews?
    Is it the misguided,brainwashed parents fault of these unfortunate guys,fighting a so called enemy or is there a much more sinister reason,like genocide,run and operated by a certain group of racists?

  124. FARfetched June 30, 2009 at 8:52 am #

    Whatever else he was, MJ was an iconic figure, a marker, a measure. The hazy era before 1980 or so, for example, as “back before Michael Jackson’s voice *didn’t* channge.” Cellar-dwelling baseball teams were like Michael Jackson: they both wore one glove, for no apparent reason. Say “moonwalk,” and (unfortunately) more people will think of Michael Jackson than Neil Armstrong.

  125. Funzel June 30, 2009 at 9:09 am #

    One more thing,the movies we rent,no matter how good or bad,lately have scenes and remarks inserted coming from the Arschficker tribe,obviously to pervert you or your kids to accept this type of lifestyle.
    Next time you watch anything on TV coming out of the Hollywood cesspool,notice the blond guy is always portrayed as the Villain,and the blond bimbo always gets placed next to a black.
    Do you see a pattern of racism??

  126. Funzel June 30, 2009 at 9:14 am #

    One more thing,the movies we rent,no matter how good or bad,lately have scenes and remarks inserted coming from the Arschficker tribe,obviously to pervert you or your kids to accept this type of lifestyle.
    Next time you watch anything on TV coming out of the Hollywood cesspool,notice the blond guy is always portrayed as the Villain,and the blond bimbo always gets placed next to a black.
    Do you see a pattern of racism??

  127. FARfetched June 30, 2009 at 9:14 am #

    Speaking of washed-up icons, the Sony Walkman, celebrates its 30th anniversary this week. The BBC dug one of the originals out of some museum and talked a 13-year-old kid into carrying it around for a week and giving his impressions (and there’s the child abuse angle). LINK There’s one kid who now know how good he’s got it… grumble
    Gotta admit, those metal-case Walkmans were pretty sturdy. Too bad they eat disposable batteries like candy.

  128. skc June 30, 2009 at 10:14 am #

    While I agree with most of your articles, this one is a bit over the top. Michael Jackson was a sad figure. A celebrity at age 5, he never had a normal life, nor the chance to become a normal person. No one could live normally being in the global spotlight 7×24 through the most difficult years a human being experiences. Yes, he was a bit creepy – but I’ll reserve my vitriol for someone more deserving, like Dick Cheney, not some pathetic creature who lived in a glass cage.

  129. scarlet runner June 30, 2009 at 10:20 am #

    “…the Homo sapiens are accelerating the life cycle of the species and headed to an inevitable and well-earned extinction…”
    David, your fellow android Roy Batty from the movie Blade Runner couldn’t have said that any better.

  130. asoka June 30, 2009 at 11:30 am #

    Whoopdy Do,
    You mean the Toynbee set wasn’t 12 volumes?
    Thank you for your comment. Good to hear from you after a year. Your comment reminds me of a saying in Spanish: “No se puede tapar el sol con un dedo” (you can’t cover the sun with one finger)
    Sometimes I feel like giving up on the USA and then I realize that how could I give up when so many Americans have accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior and worship him… a black man.
    It is a saving grace that so many white people in America have such an intimate relationship with a black man.
    http://www.afromerica.com/knowledge/religion/doctrine/blkjesus.php
    What Was the Race of Jesus Christ the Messiah?

  131. asoka June 30, 2009 at 11:41 am #

    Though archaeologists have now confirmed it, the evidence was already there in the Bible that the principals of the early Christian Church were black people.
    Acts Chapter 13:1 reads, “Now there was in the church that was in Antioch certain prophets and teachers: as Barnabas and Simon that was called Niger…”
    The Greek word being used in this quote means Black-skinned. ‘Niger’ is from ancient Roman, which became Latin ‘Nagra’ used to this present day for Negroes as well as Moranos (Moors), meaning a Black person. So we find that Jesus’ prophets, teachers, his own disciples, relatives, his associates like Mary of Magdalene, were Negroes.

  132. Funzel June 30, 2009 at 12:14 pm #

    Meanwhile the wall street casino pump handle keeps going up and down,producing profits out of thin air for the criminal gang,still without oversight or regulation,while we are supposed to care what MJs second autopsy will reveal.
    Mr Kunstler got it right,America indeed is too stupid to survive.

  133. wagelaborer June 30, 2009 at 12:54 pm #

    I loved JHK’s piece, and I love your answer.
    Really. So what if we’re self involved, clueless, child molesting spendthrift?
    We put on some great shows.
    To asoka-
    check out Michael Hudson’s piece in Counterpunch for a different take of your rosy, “we’re so much in the black, we’re saving now” view
    http://www.counterpunch.org/

  134. georget June 30, 2009 at 1:30 pm #

    Speaking of pathological narcissism, let’s not forget the Narcissist in Chief,
    Here is what Wikipedia says about Cult of Personality:
    “A cult of personality or personality cult arises when a country’s leader uses mass media to create a heroic public image through unquestioning flattery and praise. Cults of personality are often found in dictatorships but can be found in some democracies.
    “A cult of personality is similar to general hero worship except that it is created specifically for political leaders. However, the term may be applied by analogy to refer to adulation of non-political leaders.”
    ………Obama is not seen by his admirers as a politician but as something holy. Klein (Ezra Klein, associate editor at The American Prospect) says “He is not the Word made flesh, but the triumph of word over flesh.” The truth is that Obama is nothing but words! What is scary is that so many smart people are willing to fall for his empty words……………….
    ………However, what narcissists preach and what they do are two different things………
    ………Obama’s speeches are unlike any political speech we have heard in American history. Never a politician in this land had such a quasi “religious” impact on so many people. The fact that Obama is a total incognito with zero accomplishment, makes this inexplicable infatuation alarming………
    ………When you fall for someone to the extent that Obama’s followers have fallen for him, you surrender your reason and individuality to him willingly. When millions of people surrender their hearts and their minds to one person the result can be catastrophic. This is what happened in Germany with Hitler, in China with Mao, in the Soviet Union with Stalin, in Cuba with Castro, in Iran with Khomeini, and so on and so forth. Today, we think these men were monsters, but that was not what millions of their worshipers thought. Those people loved them. Dictators can’t dictate, unless people are willing to be dictated.…….
    From Understanding Obama: The Making of a Fuehrer, by Ali Sina http://www.faithfreedom.org/obama.html Posted 9/22/2008

  135. georget June 30, 2009 at 1:31 pm #

    Speaking of pathological narcissism, let’s not forget the Narcissist in Chief,
    Here is what Wikipedia says about Cult of Personality:
    “A cult of personality or personality cult arises when a country’s leader uses mass media to create a heroic public image through unquestioning flattery and praise. Cults of personality are often found in dictatorships but can be found in some democracies.
    “A cult of personality is similar to general hero worship except that it is created specifically for political leaders. However, the term may be applied by analogy to refer to adulation of non-political leaders.”
    ………Obama is not seen by his admirers as a politician but as something holy. Klein (Ezra Klein, associate editor at The American Prospect) says “He is not the Word made flesh, but the triumph of word over flesh.” The truth is that Obama is nothing but words! What is scary is that so many smart people are willing to fall for his empty words……………….
    ………However, what narcissists preach and what they do are two different things………
    ………Obama’s speeches are unlike any political speech we have heard in American history. Never a politician in this land had such a quasi “religious” impact on so many people. The fact that Obama is a total incognito with zero accomplishment, makes this inexplicable infatuation alarming………
    ………When you fall for someone to the extent that Obama’s followers have fallen for him, you surrender your reason and individuality to him willingly. When millions of people surrender their hearts and their minds to one person the result can be catastrophic. This is what happened in Germany with Hitler, in China with Mao, in the Soviet Union with Stalin, in Cuba with Castro, in Iran with Khomeini, and so on and so forth. Today, we think these men were monsters, but that was not what millions of their worshipers thought. Those people loved them. Dictators can’t dictate, unless people are willing to be dictated.…….
    From Understanding Obama: The Making of a Fuehrer, by Ali Sina http://www.faithfreedom.org/obama.html Posted 9/22/2008

  136. k gleason June 30, 2009 at 1:44 pm #

    SO…as the state govt of california gets ready to ‘ go belly up’ the LA Times puts this fellow on the cover FOR THREE DAYS!!!
    Sunday may have been a 4th consecutive day but i didnt see sundays LAT!!
    as the stae gets ready to write iuo’s or whatever they are called…
    and someone who many of us considered an evil no talent in death gets more press then regan/ford!!!
    singer james taylor said it so well
    ‘ mj doesnt consume sugar…but hell take millions to shill Pepsi to the rest of us’..
    ahhh such a loverof children and bearer of moral standards Mj was!
    his dads uses mjs death much like he used him while living….to promote himself..and yes the other jackson…jessi is there along with ‘ rev’ al….but even the 3 of them arent as disgusting as MJ!

  137. k gleason June 30, 2009 at 2:03 pm #

    RE:
    Steve M. | JUNE 29, 2009 11:36 AM | REPLY
    “It was fascinating to hear music critic Toure – who never heard a hip-hop record he didn’t like – go on about how Jackson integrated MTV “
    O yes how Mj contributed to our ‘ culture’
    Or to see hilburns article on page 1 of La Times on fondly remembering MJ!
    Even ex presidents ford and reagan didn’t get quite that much TLC in death!
    As JHK notes all of this is going on as Obama adnaeusum bankrupt the usa and the state that the la times is published in is broke…how will it pay its workers?
    COMMENT TO OTHER READERS HERE…FORGET ABOUT ASHOK
    HIS BLOGS ARE ‘ CORNUCOPIAN NONSENSE ABOUT HOW IMMIGRANTS TO USA HELP IT AND ITS ECONOMY!

  138. turkle June 30, 2009 at 2:27 pm #

    “As JHK notes all of this is going on as Obama adnaeusum bankrupt the usa and the state that the la times is published in is broke…how will it pay its workers?”
    Say what?!

  139. frugalman June 30, 2009 at 2:58 pm #

    It’s only Tuesday and it sure took a while to browse through all the comments. Maybe I’m a slow reader. I must say that almost without exception all of you are good writers (and JHK is the BEST writer, of course), although there sure is a lot of political ax grinding going on.
    My wife and I have been disgusted at the Michael Jackson adoration that has been running nonstop on TV since news of his death. We’d rather watch Billy Mays pitch some oxyclean or whatever. Shamwow!
    I’ve read The Long Emergency, but am afraid to read World Made by Hand. I’m not handy, and would hate at my age (59) to have to survive like Little House on the Prairie. So I’m desperately trying to pay down the home equity credit line on my house to a reasonable level to regain “equity” and hope that with a low enough monthly “nut”, we’ll have enough to retire with full social security and some 401k earnings. We’ll see. I don’t need much, I’ve come to learn that simplicity is a good thing, less to go wrong and less to maintain.

  140. turkle June 30, 2009 at 3:05 pm #

    “almost without exception all of you are good writers”
    Seriously? You need to get out more! ;)

  141. turkle June 30, 2009 at 3:11 pm #

    Obama did not bankrupt the United States. There was an $18 trillion deficit (more?) when he took over, not to mention the however-many billion dollar yearly budget shortfall. Bush’s final act was a $750 billion love letter to his friends at Goldman Sachs.
    Get your facts straight instead of just blindly venting your anger.

  142. asoka June 30, 2009 at 3:14 pm #

    k gleason said: COMMENT TO OTHER READERS HERE…FORGET ABOUT ASHOK
    HIS BLOGS ARE ‘ CORNUCOPIAN NONSENSE ABOUT HOW IMMIGRANTS TO USA HELP IT AND ITS ECONOMY!
    You need to read some United States history to see what a positive role Chinese, Blacks, and other white immigrant groups have played.
    Immigrants have helped shape the United States since the beginning of time, they have been a major reason for the growth of the economy and they have allowed for the United States to be the diverse nation it is today.

  143. Whoopdy Do June 30, 2009 at 3:25 pm #

    I don’t believe frugalman was blindly venting anger. Compared to the rest of us on here, me included, he sounds like a downright nice guy.
    Frugal, I’ve read both. World Made by Hand is an excellent novel, well written and enjoyable on many levels, and will give you an idea of JHK’s view of the endgame. I think the novel actually ends on a positive note, so you have no need to fear it. It sort of comes off like the last sentence of your post.
    Though I have to admit I completely did not get the whole bit with Precious Mother and the locked-room mystery of Karp’s cell. Maybe JHK could enlighten me?

  144. asoka June 30, 2009 at 3:39 pm #

    Whoopdy Do said: “Asoka, I got your one finger right here.” ;-)
    And I can guess which finger it is! LOL!
    Whoopdy Do said: “Sorry it took so long to get back to you.”
    No need to apologize. I post out of my joy. It matters not if anyone reads or responds. There are no rules that say you must “engage” with me. It’s an anonymous blog after all with pseudonyms changing all the time.
    Whoopdy Do said: “I have to work for a living”
    So do I, and now it is my lunch time being consumed.
    Whoopdy Do said: “…on somebody whose mind is completely shut (as evidenced by your first defense of calling anyone who disagrees with you racist)…”
    I did not call you or anyone a racist. What I said last week, and I reproduce for you here is:
    “asoka | JUNE 27, 2009 8:36 PM | REPLY
    Regardless of what opinions people have, or what racist tendencies they have that cause them to believe immigrants are “a problem”, the facts are otherwise.”
    You completely stripped out the context of the discussion about immigration. Do you deny some people with racist tendencies are opposed to immigration?
    Whoopdy Do said: “…was convicted of over 100 counts of child molestation…”
    You do a lot of ad hominem that does not address the ideas being presented. History is full of people who contribute valid ideas but have rather sordid personal histories. Some of history’s finest have been convicted of crimes.
    Whoopdy Do said: “In search of some further insight into your character”
    This is a waste of time. You cannot determine the validity of arguments presented by researching a person’s pseudonym on a blog.
    Whoopdy Do said: 1. Toynbee’s original 12-volume set was later abridged & condensed to 2 volumes
    Point taken. You make a valid point here.
    Whoopdy Do said: 8. And before you go off calling me racist again….”
    I never have called you a racist. Or anyone else. What I said is that some people’s position on the immigration question is influenced by racist tendencies. Do you deny that? (see asoka | JUNE 27, 2009 8:36 PM)
    Whoopdy Do said: “Also, I apologize to everyone else here for even giving you the time of day.”
    I extend the same apology to CFN. Although this week’s column deals with a black entertainer, this exchange is a bit off topic… and long-winded.
    Whoopdy Do said: “I do really have to get back to work to help pay for your new government.”
    So do I. Lunch break is over.
    The brothers appreciate all the taxes you pay!

  145. budizwiser June 30, 2009 at 3:49 pm #

    There are probably a few aspects of each of our lives that are analogous to the “decline of America.” Writing some kind of comparative narrative between MJ and United States is a battle best left un-fought.
    Of some ironic note, is the growing mountain of media coverage and introspection into the “meaning” and influence of Michael Jackson’s doings on the music world and pop culture.
    How quaint it would be, if our kind handlers would see fit to amuse us with the same quantities of insights and minutia regarding the board members of Goldman Sachs, BOA, Citigroup et al. Yes, how about a little light shone for how these fine performers have reshaped American culture and the financial world?
    Now there’s some shows worth watching.

  146. asoka June 30, 2009 at 4:32 pm #

    Dr. Doom said: “We are there to serve and protect our “interests” and those can be counted in 32-gal. barrels. We will never willingly leave Iraq until our interests are safely transferred elsewhere.”
    Dr. Doom, how do you figure a $3 TRILLION dollar Iraq war ($7 TRILLION dollars if you include Afghanistan) was to protect our oil interests?
    Iraq’s oil production is not even reaching its prewar production level. Iraqi officials have estimated that based on crude oil at $50 per barrel, international companies (China, UK, etc. not just the USA)who license to extract Iraq’s oil could earn around $16 billion in total. Iraq, meanwhile, would get over $1.7 TRILLION.
    A $16 Billion return for $3 TRILLION the USA has invested? Do you still maintain we are in Iraq for oil?

  147. turkle June 30, 2009 at 4:45 pm #

    “Do you still maintain we are in Iraq for oil?”
    You can’t be serious…

  148. turkle June 30, 2009 at 4:49 pm #

    georget,
    Funny stuff. Obama as the next Hitler. You’re killing me!

  149. asoka June 30, 2009 at 4:54 pm #

    turkle said: “”Do you still maintain we are in Iraq for oil?”
    You can’t be serious…”
    Care to comment on the substance of the post?
    What is the ROI on a $3 Trillion investment to get back $16 Billion? Does that explain our being in Iraq? Are you serious?

  150. FARfetched June 30, 2009 at 5:01 pm #

    Asoka, if we’re not in Iraq for the oil, what you think we are there for?

  151. Whoopdy Do June 30, 2009 at 5:09 pm #

    Asoka, OK, in retrospect maybe I was a little too vehement. I expected you to go straight to Defcon 5 on the racism issue, & so launched a pre-emptive strike on your WMDs. Then it turned out you weren’t using any! Damn, haven’t I seen this scenario somewhere before?
    In fact, I was talking about Afrocentrism, and not about immigration at all. I actually agree with your later post about immigration. We’re all immigrants here if you go far enough back. And if you go even farther back, we’re all African, too. I’m pretty sure one of my forefathers carried a stone hand-axe out out Egypt a bajillion or so years ago.
    If I was living in Mexico these days I’d be doing my best to swim the river myself. I can’t fault anybody for trying to make a better life for themselves, and it takes more cojones than I’ve got to set up shop in a whole new country.
    Finally, I would concede that many of history’s finest have indeed been convicted of crimes, but that argument could be construed on behalf of anyone from Hitler to Jesus. So we’ll still have to agree to disagree on Rev. York and that whole Afrocentrism thing.

  152. asoka June 30, 2009 at 5:18 pm #

    Whoopdy Do said: “If I was living in Mexico these days I’d be doing my best to swim the river myself.”
    With global warming drying up the water supply, you’ll only need to wade across.
    Thank you for the amicable response.

  153. asoka June 30, 2009 at 5:22 pm #

    Farfetched said: “Asoka, if we’re not in Iraq for the oil, what you think we are there for?”
    I asked first. Do you think we are in Iraq for oil?
    Have we gotten any? How much in monetary terms, compared to a $3 TRILLION dollar investment? Does the ROI math make any sense to you?

  154. FARfetched June 30, 2009 at 5:38 pm #

    Yes, I think an oil-grab was Bush-league’s initial motive. They made up a pack of lies (WMDs, Al-Qaeda connections) to justify the invasion by other means, but the original code name gave the game away: Operation Iraqi Liberation (OIL), later amended to Operation Iraqi Freedom. You may remember that they were telling us that we wouldn’t be out of pocket at the end of the day, that oil revenues would pay the bill for the whole operation? They may have actually believed that one.
    Like everything else Bush-league touched, though, it went to hell in a handbasket pretty quick. It was a bad investment from the start, and Bush-league would rather torture himself than admit he was wrong about anything.
    OK, your turn. Why do you think we’re there?

  155. turkle June 30, 2009 at 5:44 pm #

    The United States didn’t want 300 billion barrels of reserves in the hands of someone who didn’t like us too much and wanted to start selling that oil in Euros instead of dollars. Iraq already had contracts with Russia and France, among other countries. Guess what happened to those contracts when Uncle Sam invaded?
    Conservative estimate of value of Iraqi oil reserves:
    300 billion barrels x $50 / barrel = $15 trillion.
    There is FAR more than $16 billion to be made by oil companies in Iraq. Where did you get these silly numbers?
    Ask yourself:
    Who will provide the Iraqis with technicians and equipment?
    Who will buy that oil and in what currencies?
    Who will transport and refine that oil?
    The amount of oil owned by the majors has declined to less than 5% of known reserves. The US government being a major front for these oil companies, Iraq was basically an operation to gain control of reserves for the international oil companies. It wouldn’t be the first time this has occurred.
    See Dick Cheney’s crayon circles around the gigantic Iraqi oil reserves during his energy policy meetings in 2000.
    If we were there for the stated reason of toppling Hussein and liberating the Iraqi people, why have we not invaded half the countries in Africa with dictators just as bad as Hussein?
    It is because Hussein was the excuse. America wanted access to that go juice, and Hussein provided a convenient excuse.

  156. Johnny Rico June 30, 2009 at 5:47 pm #

    Do the Math.
    This just in from the NYT:
    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/01/business/global/01iraqoil.html?hp
    This is a fascinating article, because the numbers are going into contracts involving the companies expecting to make some money. Don’t forget the risk involved – as in: the country breaks out in full-on civil war.
    According to reporters watching the auction, the first round of bidding for the Rumaila field stalled when Exxon Mobil and a consortium of BP and the China National Petroleum Corp. both wanted more than the government’s offer of $2 for each barrel above a guaranteed minimum production level. Exxon said it would produce 3.1 million barrels daily with each additional barrel at a fee of $4.80, news reports said.
    The BP consortium, which eventually won, said it would produce 2.85 million barrels a day and originally wanted $3.99 per additional barrel but settled for $2. Currently, the field is pumping around a million barrels a day.
    If I am reading this correctly, it means that the consortium expects to pump an additional 2mbpd from just the one field, raising Iraq production to 4.4mbpd.
    This is before they expect to turn a profit!
    Looks like Dick Cheney was right after all.
    And there are 42 gallons in a barrel, Doom. Unless you meant a 38-calibre one :)

  157. Whoopdy Do June 30, 2009 at 5:47 pm #

    Now that the work day’s done, I can make up for lost time. Let me weigh in on this one.
    I do think we went into Iraq for oil. Just because we didn’t make good on the investment yet, doesn’t mean it won’t pan out. That’s the reason we went to Kuwait the first time around.
    I also think we went into Iraq to get rid of WMDs. Bear with me here. I don’t know what Washington knew. I don’t think Washington knows what Washington knew. We know Saddam had some — he used them on the Kurds, and the Israelis bombed one of his reactors before he could go weapons-grade. Just because we didn’t find any, doesn’t mean we didn’t have to go in and look. Did you guys trust him when he said he didn’t?
    But basically I think we went to Iraq for the same reason we went to Afghanistan: to upset the Middle East apple cart. This whole Arab-Israeli thing was a sideshow to us, until 9/11. Now we have have our troops next to Pakistan, on both sides of Iran (three sides of you count our ships in the Persian Gulf, and maybe on all sides if we have troops in the “Stans” to the north). We’re also next door to Syria and Saudi Arabia. In short, there are no potential troublemakers over there who aren’t looking at our tanks just across the border. The argument even extends to North Korea. Whether or not you count Israel as a troublemaker is a different topic.
    Was it worth the cost? We could argue that all day. There haven’t been any more attacks on American soil. In historical terms the cost in lives has been light. I think our losses so far in this war are on a par with, say, the D-Day invasion alone in WWII.
    Does anybody want to fight them over here instead of over there? Isn’t that why we have a military?

  158. Whoopdy Do June 30, 2009 at 5:48 pm #

    Now that the work day’s done, I can make up for lost time. Let me weigh in on this one.
    I do think we went into Iraq for oil. Just because we didn’t make good on the investment yet, doesn’t mean it won’t pan out. That’s the reason we went to Kuwait the first time around.
    I also think we went into Iraq to get rid of WMDs. Bear with me here. I don’t know what Washington knew. I don’t think Washington knows what Washington knew. We know Saddam had some — he used them on the Kurds, and the Israelis bombed one of his reactors before he could go weapons-grade. Just because we didn’t find any, doesn’t mean we didn’t have to go in and look. Did you guys trust him when he said he didn’t?
    But basically I think we went to Iraq for the same reason we went to Afghanistan: to upset the Middle East apple cart. This whole Arab-Israeli thing was a sideshow to us, until 9/11. Now we have have our troops next to Pakistan, on both sides of Iran (three sides of you count our ships in the Persian Gulf, and maybe on all sides if we have troops in the “Stans” to the north). We’re also next door to Syria and Saudi Arabia. In short, there are no potential troublemakers over there who aren’t looking at our tanks just across the border. The argument even extends to North Korea. Whether or not you count Israel as a troublemaker is a different topic.
    Was it worth the cost? We could argue that all day. There haven’t been any more attacks on American soil. In historical terms the cost in lives has been light. I think our losses so far in this war are on a par with, say, the D-Day invasion alone in WWII.
    Does anybody want to fight them over here instead of over there? Isn’t that why we have a military?

  159. Dr Doom June 30, 2009 at 5:55 pm #

    Damn, I always get that gallons per barrel number goofed up.
    Listen asoka, what do you think access to that oil might be worth in 5, 10 or 20 years post global production peak? Today’s prices are meaningless relative to future worth. Get the picture?

  160. Johnny Rico June 30, 2009 at 6:14 pm #

    @Whoopdy Do –
    Yes, thank you for your analysis. Oh, by the way, Dick Cheney, Rush Limbaugh, and Paul Wolfowitz and his crazy band of neoconservatives called. They want their ideas back.

  161. Whoopdy Do June 30, 2009 at 6:59 pm #

    Wow. That was a well thought-out, insightful reply, Rico.
    Since those are the guys who got us in Iraq, I must have nailed it. Thanks!

  162. Johnny Rico June 30, 2009 at 7:24 pm #

    “We could argue that all day.”
    Umm. No. You could argue all day. Most people would probably just ignore you since it’s all been said countless times before. But thanks for sharing. We were all born yesterday.
    The current American foreign policy tactics/strategy are simply unsustainable. You forgot to include a monetary analysis or a look into how we are going to supply soldiers for this fight for the next 30 years.
    In case you hadn’t noticed, we just expanded into a third country (Pakistan).
    And not a single conflict or country we are currently engaged in is considered what was termed an MRC(Major Regional Conflict) in the 90s. The US Military is tasked with being able to fight two of these simultaneously. Now how did you think that was going to happen?
    And what exactly is it about our current deployments that are preventing terrorists from striking the US?
    9/11 was launched from Boston by people who had been living in Florida and trained at American flight schools.
    Go read a book, Jackass.

  163. Vladmir Krappeshack June 30, 2009 at 8:17 pm #

    ” don’t know what Washington knew. I don’t think Washington knows what Washington knew.”
    Looks like Rumsfeld wants his ideas back, too.

  164. donjo June 30, 2009 at 8:21 pm #

    Mj’s greatest contribution?
    Using his world superstar status to pimp Pepsi to an entire new generation.
    The Type Two Diabetic Generation owes much to Mr. Jackson and his benevolent influence. Why would they want to listen to an “Uncle Tom” like Dr. Satcher or waste their free time planting an organic garden like Mrs. Obama.
    The King of (soda)Pop, indeed.

  165. Jimini June 30, 2009 at 8:36 pm #

    Asoka,
    Iraq was about unfettered (now tell the truth, how many times do you get to work THAT word into conversation daily?) ACCESS to oil in the region, not just whatever we could steal from the Iraqis directly (although I’m sure that had Bush administration officials licking their chops as well).
    The ROI question goes out the window as well when you’re using Government resources (at the direction of recently converted private sector officials) to enable private sector profits (socialized risk vs privatized profits – A GREAT DEAL IF YOU CAN FIND IT!). Since the Government did almost all the “investment,” the “private sector” reaped almost 100% profits. Of course there WERE political payoffs involved, but rest assured those were off the books (many involving nothing more than future guaranteed employment/stock option offers), and likely passed onto paying customers as well anyway.
    Geez, haven’t you read the countless number of critiques/exposes of the Bush/Cheney regime over the past 8 years, nevermind the increasing number of press pieces documenting the fact that the Obama administration is just a kinder/gentler/slicker version of the same. These guys aren’t necessarily smarter than us (although many are), but they DEFINITELY ARE better connected than us, and have LONG SINCE lost whatever little compunction they ever had about leading the herd to the slaughter. Once again, GOOD WORK if you can find it!
    Wake up dude. Your naivete is showing.

  166. asoka June 30, 2009 at 8:47 pm #

    Dr. Doom,
    Future profits for Iraq, not for USA companies.
    This is from Bloomberg:
    “Iraq will earn 100 times more than the foreign companies it hires to develop the deposits, the minister told parliament in Baghdad on June 23. The deposits being offered in the first licensing round may yield $1.7 trillion in profit for the country, based on an oil price of $50 a barrel, while oil companies seeking service contracts will gain $16 billion over the 20-year life of the contracts, he said. ”
    That is $16Billion over a 20-year period! Profits? That is pig feed.
    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601085&sid=ahkCD3H9rrT4

  167. Jimini June 30, 2009 at 8:51 pm #

    Johnny Rico,
    Excellent! Couldn’t have put that better myself.

  168. asoka June 30, 2009 at 8:55 pm #

    jimini, dr. doom, etc.
    Where are the profits for USA companies? They will be under contract. Iraq will make 100 times as much as the private companies. The companies will only make $16 Billion over a 20-year period.
    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601085&sid=ahkCD3H9rrT4
    Until you can show me that the USA and/or private USA companies are actually making a profit, your theory that the USA invaded Iraq for oil is bankrupt.

  169. Jimini June 30, 2009 at 8:56 pm #

    Ahh… the young! So easily convinced to take up a cause. And your source is Bloomberg?

  170. Jimini June 30, 2009 at 9:02 pm #

    Do you actually read responses to your posts, or just regurgitate the same party fare on command?

  171. asoka June 30, 2009 at 9:10 pm #

    Farfetched said: “OK, your turn. Why do you think we’re there?”
    I think Iraq was invaded for psychological reasons and the occupation continued for religious reasons.
    Bush wanted to finish what daddy Bush didn’t do: get rid of Saddam Hussein.
    After that was accomplished the neo-cons had this “clash of civilizations” thing going and convinced people it was an Islamic jihad we were up against, instead of an isolated group of extremists who did not in any way shape or form represent Islam.
    I’m not seeing any economic payoff after six years and TRILLIONS of dollars spent. You cannot point to any profits made by private USA oil companies and say: “See, we invaded Iraq for oil”
    Iraq is running the show anyway, letting out licenses where they earn 100 times more than the private companies from China, UK and whereever else.
    The removal of Saddam (and the Sunnis) made it possible for Shia to become dominant, giving Iran more influence in the region. So Iran was to be the new enemy. But it’s not working out that way since Obama recognized that the Iranians are not monolithic, many Iranians are on our side, pro-democracy and against the mullahs.
    So, that is my basic answer: the invasion was for psychological reasons (father/son stuff) and the occupation continued for religious reasons (jihad/crusade stuff) and it was all a big mistake that has actually weakened our position since Saddam was what was holding Iran in check and Saddam is gone and Iran is ascendant.
    I have yet to see oil profits being made in Iraq as the reason for the invasion of Iraq. Iraq is not even back to the levels of production enjoyed pre-invasion after six years of occupation. And I don’t expect the situation will improve. I certainly hope we get out completely by 2012. Step one has been completed: we are no longer kicking down doors and terrorizing families in Iraq’s cities.

  172. FARfetched June 30, 2009 at 9:29 pm #

    «I’m not seeing any economic payoff after six years and TRILLIONS of dollars spent. You cannot point to any profits made by private USA oil companies and say: “See, we invaded Iraq for oil”»
    Personally, I think it was a bad investment. In the same way the Challenger had some trouble with an O-ring. They probably really believed it was going to pay off, as well as taking care of the psychological & religious components.

  173. Jimini June 30, 2009 at 9:35 pm #

    I have to go easy on you and reject your thesis out of hand. You can do better, and perhaps one day you will. Rest assured, this effort wasn’t it. And NO, I’m not even a professor.

  174. asoka June 30, 2009 at 9:50 pm #

    Jimimi said: “I have to go easy on you and reject your thesis out of hand”
    It is perfectly OK that you reject my thesis. I am open to hear other opinions.
    Thank you for allowing the possibility that someone might have a theory other than “we invaded Iraq for oil.” I did provide figures from Bloomberg so my opinion is backed up by some factual data. (Or is Bloomberg not reporting the Iraqi contracts accurately? Do you have any reason to doubt Bloomberg’s reporting?)

  175. asoka June 30, 2009 at 9:52 pm #

    Jimimi said: “I have to go easy on you and reject your thesis out of hand”
    It is perfectly OK that you reject my thesis. I am open to hear other opinions.
    Thank you for allowing the possibility that someone might have a theory other than “we invaded Iraq for oil.” I did provide figures from Bloomberg so my opinion is backed up by some factual data. (Or is Bloomberg not reporting the Iraqi contracts accurately? Do you have any reason to doubt Bloomberg’s reporting?)

  176. Jimini June 30, 2009 at 10:10 pm #

    Asoka,
    Very good, we’ll take this up another day. At least you’re in the game, and that in itself is remarkable.

  177. Vladmir Krappeshack June 30, 2009 at 10:23 pm #

    @Asoka,
    “I certainly hope we get out completely by 2012.”
    Yeah, I’m sure the US will turn its giant military bases into madrassers(sp?) by then.
    Change it to this and it might be more accurate:-
    “the invasion was for pathological reasons (father/son stuff)”

  178. Vladmir Krappeshack June 30, 2009 at 10:25 pm #

    @Asoka,
    “I certainly hope we get out completely by 2012.”
    Yeah, I’m sure the US will turn its giant military bases into madrassers(sp?) by then.
    Change it to this and it might be more accurate:-
    “the invasion was for pathological reasons (father/son stuff)”

  179. Jaego Scorzne June 30, 2009 at 10:38 pm #

    I agree with the Brother from another Plan-et, sort of anyway. We went to war at the behest
    of the Zionists (called NeoCons in this country.
    They have vowed to make the Middle East safe for
    Israel by destabilizing every Muslim Country.
    Google the “Project for a New American Century”
    and also “Securing the Realm” for the straight
    Israeli perspective. Direct access to the oil is
    a nice perk that is probable becoming more impor-
    tant now. But the original intent was purely pol-
    itical as far as I can fathom.
    The central core of the Armed Forces is
    Whites from the South and Midwest-always has been.
    America owes the despised the Scots-Irish more
    than they can ever imagine. Since the draft was
    dropped, standards have gone up, and few Blacks
    can make the grade. There is an IQ test, called
    by another name, and as anyone who has ever gone
    to school with Blacks or taught them knows, they
    just don’t have it. With the increased demand for
    troops, America is now turning to immigrants from
    Central America and even Africa-standards have
    been dropped again. They are offering an acceler-
    ated path to citizenship through enlistment. Yes,
    shades of the Roman Empire. Hopefully, Whites will
    see through the whole charade and stop enlisting
    entirely.
    Lastly, the North Africa of classical times
    was far more fertile and was full of White Men-
    Blonde Libyans, Moors, Arabs, Egypitians etc.
    Blacks were present as mercenaries and slaves.
    Blacks have encroached upon these lands for the
    last thousand years, especially as they embrace
    Islam. In these multiracial civilizations, founded
    by White Men, Blacks are at the bottom. Over them
    are the mulattoes and quadroons, and over them are
    any remaining Whites. No surprises-it’s like that
    in the Carribean. And it’s like that in America.
    When the Pure Blooded Negro Marcus Garvey walked
    into the New York NAACP, he was amazed to see not
    one Black person. It was all light skinned Obama
    and WB DuBois types. Historically, they don’t
    like the full bloods, and full bloods don’t like
    them. It’s a class thing based on biological fact: the more White Blood, the higher the IQ on
    average. Marcus Garvey was a fairly smart man and
    evidently, a great speaker.

  180. Jimini June 30, 2009 at 10:48 pm #

    Jaego Scorzne,
    If you’re serious, I feel sorry for you. If you’re not, the joke’s not funny.

  181. Ang June 30, 2009 at 11:46 pm #

    Don’t know about comparing the US to MJ, however, I do have to agree that the re-writing of MJ history has gotten to be a bit much.
    I just can’t put the alleged diddling of boys out of my mind long enough to care about his contributions to pop culture…
    Anyone see that the freaking House of Representatives had a moment of silence in honor of Michael Jackson?
    Unfuckingbelievable.
    Just curious…do they have a moment of silence to honor every soldier that dies in Iraq or Afghanistan?

  182. Qshtik July 1, 2009 at 12:10 am #

    When news of MJ’s death hit the news there was the inevitable flood of reaction … initially, all in a positive light. I wondered how long it would take for someone to publicly recognize that the King (of Pop) had no clothes. The answer turned out to be about 3 days. Thank you Mr Kunstler. This is one of your best essays ever.

  183. Johnny Rico July 1, 2009 at 12:24 am #

    “Just curious…do they have a moment of silence to honor every soldier that dies in Iraq or Afghanistan?”
    Um, no, not that I know of. But periodically congress votes to authorize $100 Billion or so in an Emergency War Spending Bill.
    This allows more soldiers to be properly equipped and fed before they die.

  184. Whoopdy Do July 1, 2009 at 7:39 am #

    “Jackass?” What are you, three?
    I should have known better than to try discussing strategy with a military genius of such magnitude that he gets his screen name from “Starship Troopers.”
    I think what I said went over your head. I wasn’t arguing that the current military strategy is right, or sustainable, because I don’t think it is, and anyway the government doesn’t care about any of that. I just said why we’re there. Going into Pakistan only bears me out, and I already explained why our current deployments help prevent attacks on our soil. We weren’t at war over there when those terrorists got their training here, remember, and there haven’t been any attacks here since then. Do you really want to argue that?
    The object of modern warfare isn’t to win. It’s just to keep the enemy busy over there rather than over here, and to maintain a crisis that can be heated up as necessary to help take the home front folks’ minds off their domestic problems. You recommended I should read a book. You should try “1984.”
    And don’t be calling everyone names again because it’s not polite and makes you sound like a child. Just run along back to your sci-fi and let the grown-ups talk. But first, go ahead and take the last word, because I know you have to have it. I’m out of here.

  185. Danm July 1, 2009 at 8:29 am #

    Immigrants have helped shape the United States since the beginning of time, they have been a major reason for the growth of the economy and they have allowed for the United States to be the diverse nation it is today
    ————–
    You’re barking up the wrong tree!
    Don’t you get it? Who cares about race or whether or not immigrants were positive for the US. Maybe they were, maybe they weren’t. It’s a NON-ISSUE.
    Most people here believe there are just TOO MANY PEOPLE on this planet, period. And we don’t care about their color. A person is a person!
    And if we care about our survival, it’s not by taking in more immigrants that we’re going save ourselves. Most here think that at 300M, there are already TOO MANY people in the US for sustainable living. So none of you arguments are going to convince them about the benefits of immigration.

  186. Danm July 1, 2009 at 8:48 am #

    Most people here believe there are just TOO MANY PEOPLE on this planet, period. And we don’t care about their color. A person is a person!
    ————
    Correction: Maybe I’m assuming too much. Anyway, I don’t care about race and I think there are too many people.

  187. asoka July 1, 2009 at 11:33 am #

    danm said: “Most people here believe there are just TOO MANY PEOPLE on this planet, period. And we don’t care about their color. A person is a person!”
    I’m with you that far. And a bit farther. At what age did you get a vasectomy? I got mine at age 19 after reading Ehrlich’s THE POPULATION BOMB.
    I would like to go one step further to your statement. In addition to “we don’t care about their color. A person is a person!” I would add “I don’t care about their legal status/nationality. A person is a person!”
    And support more funding for voluntary sterilization. I made many people happy when they found out there would be no little Asokas running around!
    :)

  188. Qshtik July 1, 2009 at 12:21 pm #

    To Ang re “Unfuckingbelievable.”
    Yeah ….. next thing you know they’ll be having a moment of silence for Billy Mays.

  189. Qshtik July 1, 2009 at 12:22 pm #

    To Ang re “Unfuckingbelievable.”
    Yeah ….. next thing you know they’ll be having a moment of silence for Billy Mays.

  190. k gleason July 1, 2009 at 1:19 pm #

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  191. k gleason July 1, 2009 at 1:21 pm #

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    I was listening to ‘ coast2coast’ and between updates on micheal jackson….with live commentary from deep pockets chopras son gotham!
    LO AND BEHOLD BOONE PICKENS !!!
    he thinks nuclear energy is green!
    hes also concerned with usa security but didnt mention our southern non border!
    he also didnt mention the HOT AIR MOTOR CARS that supposedly will be available soon in france..if they do come online they will be hard for the oil companies to supress worldwide…
    for more on boone see:
    PickensPlanThe Pickens Plan will utilize these tremendous resources to build a bridge to the future – a blueprint to reduce foreign oil dependence by harnessing …
    http://www.pickensplan.com

  192. k gleason July 1, 2009 at 1:26 pm #

    PICKENSPLAN.COM
    I was listening to ‘ coast2coast’ and between updates on micheal jackson….with live commentary from deep pockets chopras son gotham!
    LO AND BEHOLD BOONE PICKENS !!!
    he thinks nuclear energy is green!
    hes also concerned with usa security but didnt mention our southern non border!
    he also didnt mention the HOT AIR MOTOR CARS that supposedly will be available soon in france..if they do come online they will be hard for the oil companies to supress worldwide…
    for more on boone see:
    PickensPlanThe Pickens Plan will utilize these tremendous resources to build a bridge to the future – a blueprint to reduce foreign oil dependence by harnessing …
    http://www.pickensplan.com

  193. k gleason July 1, 2009 at 1:27 pm #

    PICKENSPLAN.COM
    I was listening to ‘ coast2coast’ and between updates on micheal jackson….with live commentary from deep pockets chopras son gotham!
    LO AND BEHOLD BOONE PICKENS !!!
    he thinks nuclear energy is green!
    hes also concerned with usa security but didnt mention our southern non border!
    he also didnt mention the HOT AIR MOTOR CARS that supposedly will be available soon in france..if they do come online they will be hard for the oil companies to supress worldwide…
    for more on boone see:
    PickensPlanThe Pickens Plan will utilize these tremendous resources to build a bridge to the future – a blueprint to reduce foreign oil dependence by harnessing …
    http://www.pickensplan.com

  194. asoka July 1, 2009 at 1:32 pm #

    Republican Michael Scheuer was interviewed by Glen Beck yesterday. Last chance the GOP has is bin Laden. Republican traitors to the USA.
    SCHEUER: …the only chance we have as a country right now is for Osama bin Laden to deploy and detonate a major weapon in the United States. Because it’s going to take a grassroots, bottom-up pressure, because these politicians prize their office, prize the praise of the media and the Europeans. Only — it’s an absurd situation. Again, only Osama can execute an attack which will force Americans to demand that their government protect them effectively, consistently, and with as much violence as necessary.

  195. FARfetched July 1, 2009 at 2:52 pm #

    That’s the goplets. Party Before Country, now and forever.

  196. labro July 1, 2009 at 3:09 pm #

    When its all said and done, after all the verbal masturbation about everything we are programed to be concerned about, we are fucked.
    If you live in an urban area I recommend you read Kunstlers book, The Last Emergency , a couple more times. Then rethink your plans for the next decade and stop wasting time worrying about Bullshit that has no resolution. Those that control our destiny couldn’t give a flying fuck what we worry about.
    Get real and start learning all you can about making yourself capable of self sufficiency. Enjoy the process. You might like it.
    I did, I do.
    Now Im here to help others.

  197. maplepeg July 1, 2009 at 4:53 pm #

    One last MJ & USA analogy. The US, like MJ, perfected some time ago the illusion of moving forward while walking backwards.

  198. zsazsa July 1, 2009 at 5:24 pm #

    asoka-the-producers sez:
    “I’m with you that far. And a bit farther. At what age did you get a vasectomy? I got mine at age 19 after reading Ehrlich’s THE POPULATION BOMB.”
    Why the hell didn’t your old man get one as well?

  199. zsazsa July 1, 2009 at 5:35 pm #

    “If we were there for the stated reason of toppling Hussein and liberating the Iraqi people, why have we not invaded half the countries in Africa with dictators just as bad as Hussein?”
    Duhhhhhhh? Maybe because none of them had already invaded Kuwait and violated 17 U.N. sanctions, FUCKTARD? But then thats just a guess.

  200. Vladmir Krappeshack July 1, 2009 at 6:46 pm #

    “We weren’t at war over there when those terrorists got their training here, remember, and there haven’t been any attacks here since then.”
    I think a few ‘heres’ ‘theres’ ‘thens’ and ‘whens’ need to be swapped around in that statement.

  201. Jimini July 1, 2009 at 6:58 pm #

    This article sums up nicely much of the mainstream feeling about Obama’s push for “change we can believe in.” Unfortunately, it’s the kind of stuff that people who are merely keeping count of how many bills get passed are missing.
    Obama is choosing to be weak by Clive Crook in the Financial Times.

  202. asoka July 1, 2009 at 7:52 pm #

    Commander-in-Chief Obama weak?
    Ask the Taliban how weak he is.
    From the Washington Post:
    U.S. Marines Launch Major Operation in Afghanistan
    “The operation will involve about 4,000 troops from the 2nd Marine Expeditionary Brigade, which was dispatched to Afghanistan earlier this year by President Obama to combat a growing Taliban insurgency in Helmand and other southern provinces. The Marines, along with an Army brigade that is scheduled to arrive later this summer, plan to push into pockets of the country where NATO forces have not had a presence. In many of those areas, the Taliban have evicted local police and government officials, and taken power.”

  203. k gleason July 1, 2009 at 8:24 pm #

    AS GOES CALIFORNIA
    the golden state is broke and issuing IOUs…
    many public 2 year colleges are closed for the summer…no $ to pay for summer session…
    as went california goes other states..or are they too broke as of today?
    michigan has 15% unemployment
    AND WHAT DO THOSE FOLKS DO WHEN THE UNEMPLOYMENT RUNS OUT?????? do they riot? run obama out of office?

  204. turkle July 1, 2009 at 9:22 pm #

    zsazsa,
    “Duh”, “fucktard”…are you 12 years old or just mentally retarded?
    Israel has violated more than 10 times as many UN resolutions as Iraq, and we give them billions of dollars a year and free weapons.
    Various parties in the Congo have violated god-knows-how many UN resolutions. And the US does nothing.
    So much for your shitty “guess”.

  205. asoka July 1, 2009 at 9:38 pm #

    Besides repeatedly invading its neighbors, Israel is not a democracy.
    How can a state that stifles dissent of its own Jewish citizens (like arresting people for peacefully passing out leaflets), imprisons 4 million Palestinians behind ghetto walls, bypass roads and a blockade, and treats another 1.5 million as second-class citizens, be democratic?

  206. Johnny Rico July 1, 2009 at 11:33 pm #

    @asoka –
    Please, please don’t embarrass yourself anymore on foreign policy. Scheuer was well respected by the left wing during the Bush years as a former CIA analyst who had broken with the party line about the war on terror.
    The Glenn Beck piece took his views out of context.
    Read This:
    http://www.amconmag.com/blog/exiting-afghanistan/
    As far as Obama being a tough C-in-C. Whatever. It wasn’t too long ago you were saying the campaign there and in Pakistan amounted to war crimes. I think you are a bit confused.
    Besides do you know how many times in the last two hundred years at least three different superpowers have tried to take and hold those valleys?
    On your insistence that American troops have left Iraqi cities. Well, you were wrong. My information comes from the same source you were using, but just a day later:
    http://news.antiwar.com/2009/06/30/gen-odierno-concedes-troops-remain-in-iraqi-cities-wont-say-how-many/

  207. asoka July 2, 2009 at 12:03 am #

    JR, I think you are missing the point about troops in the cities. It doesn’t matter how many troops, if any, remain in the cities.
    Even if there are some troops in the cities they are no longer operating autonomously. They are there at the pleasure of the Iraqi government.
    If Iraq needs them back in the cities, Iraq is free to call on them at any time… and the USA soldiers will come running when Iraqi whistles. When Iraq needs cannon fodder the USA soldiers will die instead of Iraqis dying. Iraq is in control.

  208. Cheemie July 2, 2009 at 12:45 am #

    Tavis Smiley and guests Cornel West and Michael Eric Dyson on MJ…
    http://www.pbs.org/kcet/tavissmiley/archive/200906/20090630.html

  209. DeeJones July 2, 2009 at 1:15 am #

    I just gotta laugh & cry, but not at the death of MJ. At the idea that Bernie Maddoff will spend one day in jail.
    Oh, come on, you know that he will be herded into prison in a big show for the huddled masses, but about an hour later he will be quietly slipped out and taken to a private jet and taken to some plastic surgeon in Switzerland, then after a few weeks of recovery, he will join Kenny Boy in So. America and spend the rest of his life enjoying drinks on the beach (while watching the local thong clad women) and some of the best beef in the world.
    Oh, what about the guy still in prison? He’ll get stuck and die and be quickly cremated so no one gets a close look at the look-alike.
    MJ’s sad waste of a life is pathetic. Ever heard of Winchester house in San Jose, CA? It was built by the widow of the man that made the Winchester rifle, used to kill millions of native Americans.
    What did she do with the guilt that wracked her all her life? Did she build homes on the fucking reservations for all the starving ‘indians’ without any real shelter? No, she kept adding rooms to her house to appease her hubbies ghost, and to assure her a long life. She COULD HAVE done so much to help the NA’S, but she didn’t.
    Just like Californication now, the Republicans have sworn to Grovel Norquist to never, ever even consider raising taxes. Instead they will let the whole state go into bankruptcy.
    The cuts in government services are already affecting the poor, elderly and handicapped, in other words those who can least afford the cuts, all so that taxes won’t be raised one cent on millionaires & billionaires.
    Oh, this country is screwed.
    Oh, Asoka, please take the rose colored glasses off, please.
    You say we didn’t go into Iraq because oil is (was) now only $50/bbl, but don’t you recall how much it went up to last year, and gee, it seems to be creeping up that away again. Someday it will be over $100 or even $200/bbl, perhaps they it may be profitable to lil’ ol’ ‘Emerican oil companies? After all, better tho have access to it by force now and in the future than to let someone we don’t know or like have control of it.
    (How many big bases have we with drawn into there?)
    I am getting disillusioned with the O-man.
    Seems like its just: Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.
    DanaJ

  210. Johnny Rico July 2, 2009 at 1:20 am #

    With all due respect, asoka, I think you are the one missing the point.
    It is not about this or that fact. It is about your tendency to tout Obama’s promises as fact and history.
    Obama said he was going to end the war in Iraq. You believed this. He didn’t.
    Obama said he was going to close Guantanamo. He didn’t. He ordered it closed by the end of the year. You took this as him having closed it. As we will see, at the end of the year the prisoners will simply be moved to SuperMax facilities on US soil where they will be kept in solitary confinement, without charges or trial after 8 years. Torture, in effect. No change, but a confirmation, in fact of Bush policies.
    The Bush administration signed the Status of Forces agreement in Iraq. Not Obama. You said Obama would implement it. He failed at the first checkpoint. The troops are in the cities.
    You say:
    “Even if there are some troops in the cities they are no longer operating autonomously. They are there at the pleasure of the Iraqi government.”
    Based on what? Because Odierno says so? Petreaus? Obama? You?
    Based on what track record do you think this is going to happen?
    And if it does happen, do you realize it will be completely counterproductive in relation to the COIN strategy that had been implemented in that country since early 2007?
    Remember McCain’s comment during the campaign about how the US might be in Iraq for 100 years as long as American troops weren’t being killed.
    Obama won the election mainly based on his position on the war and his supposed opposition to that stance.
    You and others ridiculed McCain’s statement as further evidence that the man would start World War III.
    I have no great love for McCain, but in retrospect it would seem that you have been a bit naive in your assessment of the future and of foreign policy.
    You champion Obama’s actions, but there is something that makes me think if it were Bush or McCain doing the same things, you would be accusing them of war crimes (in fact, you were, just 6 months ago).
    I say this because you seem to be spending a great deal of your time defending your views. The reason is that frequently a large portion of your positions lack credibility.
    This is also increasingly becoming a problem for Obama and why his approval ratings will drop significantly in the next year if something good doesn’t happen to the economy soon.
    The theme of politicians winning elections by promising everything to everyone and then finding different priorities once they became king is an old one.
    Sadly, we never seem to learn.

  211. asoka July 2, 2009 at 1:45 am #

    JR said: “Obama said he was going to end the war in Iraq.”
    Obama said he was going to redirect USA forces from Iraq to Afghanistan/Pakistan and if you look at what was promised and what is happening, Obama is keeping his promise. The current offensive underway by the Marines is not happening in Iraq.
    JR said: “Based on what? Because Odierno says so? Petreaus? Obama? You?”
    All of the above, plus Maliki and the SOFA that has changed the USA role in Iraq as of June 30, 2009.
    JR said: “The theme of politicians winning elections by promising everything to everyone and then finding different priorities once they became king is an old one.”
    So far, Obama is doing pretty much exactly what he said he would do during two years on the campaign trail.
    Much of what you are saying is not based on the present reality of what Obama has done. It is based on your speculation about the future:
    “his approval ratings will drop significantly in the next year”
    Look at the reality of now: “”From a numbers perspective, Obama’s track record (61 percent) so far is closest to Ronald Reagan’s. Reagan’s approval rating in mid-to-late June of his first year in office was 59 percent” (CNN)
    “at the end of the year the prisoners will simply be moved”
    JR, you have no idea what will happen at the end of the year or in the next year. What we do know is that Obama signed the executive orders, just as he said he would.

  212. Shane July 2, 2009 at 2:00 am #

    Labro posted:
    “When its all said and done, after all the verbal masturbation about everything we are programed to be concerned about, we are fucked…. stop wasting time worrying about Bullshit that has no resolution.”
    Well said. Reading all the stuff that’s been posted over the past few days, I’m struck by how little most of it is going to mean once the Collapse starts. Whether this country’s ever deepening dumth is being caused by cultural decay, old-fashioned anti-intellectualism, or just the spread of bad genetics is a interesting question but it’s also a distraction. Whatever is causing it, the condition cannot be changed in the constricted time frame before TSHTF. While I tend to agree more with Jaego than Asoka, I don’t think it matters in the context of catastrophe.
    Ditto for the ever fascinating question of who’s really in charge. WASP oilmen or Jewish bankers? The EU or the UN? Langley or Tel Aviv? Whoever “They” are, there’s nothing that can be done about them in the few years (or months) left before the house of cards they built comes tumbling down.

  213. Jaego Scorzne July 2, 2009 at 2:10 am #

    All people are the same, they’re all just
    people. Oh really? Just like all cars are the same, they’re all just cars. Or, all dogs are the
    same, they’re all just dogs. See the logical fal-
    lacy-assuming that all members of a class are
    identical simply by virtue of being in the same
    class. No one who knows dogs would say all breeds
    of dog are the same. Any person who said so would
    be seen as an idiot. No one who knows cars would
    say that all makes are the same. And no one who
    knows humans would say that all races are the same. There are differences in the size and shape of the brain as well as important hormonal differ-ences. As Brother Job intimates in a “World Made
    by Hand”, don’t be around Blacks when the shit hits the fan. They’re will go Katrina again and
    there will be no calvary coming over the hill this
    time.

  214. jim e July 2, 2009 at 3:34 am #

    My leaned friends… I am the the dotted line southern dumbass…






    Woe to the Mega churches built on the Freeways of death.
    When he met her at the well what was she doing? American women know not how to fetch. The judgment falls on us men.
    Gen. 6:2-4: “That the sons of God saw the daughters of men that they were fair; and they took wives for themselves of all whom they chose….There were giants in the earth in those days; and also afterward, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown.”
    21) And Enoch lived sixty and five years, and begat Methuselah: (22) And Enoch walked with God after he begat Methuselah three hundred years, and begat sons and daughters: (23) And all the days of Enoch were three hundred sixty and five years: (24) And Enoch walked with God: and he [was] not; for God took him. (25) And Methuselah lived an hundred eighty and seven years, and begat Lamech: (26) And Methuselah lived after he begat Lamech seven hundred eighty and two years, and begat sons and daughters: (27) And all the days of Methuselah were nine hundred sixty and nine years: and he died.
    Things change!
    A man on a bicycle…

  215. jim e July 2, 2009 at 3:37 am #

    My leaned friends… I am the the dotted line southern dumbass…






    Woe to the Mega churches built on the Freeways of death.
    When he met her at the well what was she doing? American women know not how to fetch. The judgment falls on us men.
    Gen. 6:2-4: “That the sons of God saw the daughters of men that they were fair; and they took wives for themselves of all whom they chose….There were giants in the earth in those days; and also afterward, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown.”
    21) And Enoch lived sixty and five years, and begat Methuselah: (22) And Enoch walked with God after he begat Methuselah three hundred years, and begat sons and daughters: (23) And all the days of Enoch were three hundred sixty and five years: (24) And Enoch walked with God: and he [was] not; for God took him. (25) And Methuselah lived an hundred eighty and seven years, and begat Lamech: (26) And Methuselah lived after he begat Lamech seven hundred eighty and two years, and begat sons and daughters: (27) And all the days of Methuselah were nine hundred sixty and nine years: and he died.
    Things change!
    A man on a bicycle…

  216. jim e July 2, 2009 at 4:01 am #

    More efficient than a bird in flight

  217. jim e July 2, 2009 at 4:14 am #

    Why was Jim E Carter the worst?

  218. jim e July 2, 2009 at 4:16 am #

    Why was Jim E Carter the worst?

  219. jim e July 2, 2009 at 4:20 am #

    Truly the best!

  220. jim e July 2, 2009 at 4:26 am #

    There can be peace in the middle east.

  221. jim e July 2, 2009 at 4:30 am #

    I have a dream.

  222. jim e July 2, 2009 at 4:36 am #

    jhk- please lay on my southern dumbass- no fan of the tide- I pray for the demise…

  223. Funzel July 2, 2009 at 8:23 am #

    Well,now that our Tel Aviv bosses heard from the pope,that he’d like to see peace in the middle east,is it not about time we start attacking the Vatican?
    Or is there a problem getting enough sons and daughters from the middle west to implement the latest wars dreamt up by the jewish banksters and wall street scum?
    Through no fault of their own,the brainwashed American public really is too stupid to survive.

  224. Funzel July 2, 2009 at 8:23 am #

    Well,now that our Tel Aviv bosses heard from the pope,that he’d like to see peace in the middle east,is it not about time we start attacking the Vatican?
    Or is there a problem getting enough sons and daughters from the middle west to implement the latest wars dreamt up by the jewish banksters and wall street scum?
    Through no fault of their own,the brainwashed American public really is too stupid to survive.

  225. Funzel July 2, 2009 at 8:36 am #

    Well,now that our Tel Aviv bosses heard from the pope,that he’d like to see peace in the middle east,is it not about time we start attacking the Vatican?
    Or is there a problem getting enough sons and daughters from the middle west to implement future wars dreamt up by the jewish banksters and wall street scum?
    Through no fault of their own,the brainwashed American public really is too stupid to survive.

  226. Fatherland Knows Best July 2, 2009 at 12:41 pm #

    America
    Like a Rock
    But Dumber
    Rhymes with Hummer
    Rhymes with Bummer
    Duhmerica Da Beautiful
    Da Bigger Da Better

  227. Fatherland Knows Best July 2, 2009 at 12:41 pm #

    America
    Like a Rock
    But Dumber
    Rhymes with Hummer
    Rhymes with Bummer
    Duhmerica Da Beautiful
    Da Bigger Da Better

  228. FARfetched July 2, 2009 at 12:46 pm #

    This week, I have two questions:
    1) Which is the bigger credibility-hit, triple-posting or swallowing the Great Zionist Conspiracy?
    2) Is Movable Type just as horrible as TypoPad?

  229. patrick July 2, 2009 at 12:50 pm #

    Funzel: Nice try, troll. Take to your copy of Mein Kampf and your tin foil hat and go play somewhere else. The adults are having a serious conversation.

  230. Berd July 2, 2009 at 1:25 pm #

    I think MJ was a genius.
    Heal the World:

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

  231. shiko July 2, 2009 at 2:27 pm #

    What disgust me in MJ most of all. It is a man, who got everything in his life and he squandered it and ruined his life all by himself. it really reminds of what USA has done with its resources base and environment.
    When I hear people say his father abused him, I cannot believe what I hear.
    Ok, his dad is not the best in the world, but thanks to that “abuse” MJ became at least in music what he was.
    People say he had no childhood. Pussies. What did he do? worked at the factory at 5? He danced and sang.
    I wish those who say such crap just take and read a book by Russian writer Maxim Gorky about his life as a child which was typical in 19 century.
    Every Friday they got beaten according to so called House rules which had place in Russia then. Slept on the kitchen and worked 16-18 hours every day. Poor MJ, I really do feel sorry for him :)

  232. shiko July 2, 2009 at 2:28 pm #

    What disgust me in MJ most of all. It is a man, who got everything in his life and he squandered it and ruined his life all by himself. it really reminds of what USA has done with its resources base and environment.
    When I hear people say his father abused him, I cannot believe what I hear.
    Ok, his dad is not the best in the world, but thanks to that “abuse” MJ became at least in music what he was.
    People say he had no childhood. Pussies. What did he do? worked at the factory at 5? He danced and sang.
    I wish those who say such crap just take and read a book by Russian writer Maxim Gorky about his life as a child which was typical in 19 century.
    Every Friday they got beaten according to so called House rules which had place in Russia then. Slept on the kitchen and worked 16-18 hours every day. Poor MJ, I really do feel sorry for him :)

  233. Johnny Rico July 2, 2009 at 3:59 pm #

    @asoka-
    Interesting facts that are not discussed much:
    The only way the Maliki government managed to get the Iraqi Parliament’s narrow approval for the Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) that gave the US a legal basis to remain in the country beyond January 1 of this year was to promise a referendum, to be held no later than July 30 of this year.
    That date is rapidly approaching and parliament has set aside the money to fund the vote. Maliki’s cabinet has sought to delay the pact, but has been rebuffed by parliament. It seems then that by the end of the month, a vote could be held which would hand the legality of the continued US military presence over to the Iraqi voting public.
    The SOFA requires a year of advanced notice to cancel, so even if the vote fails the US would have until 2010 to complete its withdrawal of 131,000 troops from the nation. There has been no publicly released polling data on the likelihood of the referendum to pass, but a failure would at the very least seriously inconvenience President Obama’s desire to keep 50,000 troops in the nation “indefinitely.”
    Iraq Vote

  234. zsazsa July 2, 2009 at 5:03 pm #

    Turkle (the idiot) sez:
    “Israel has violated more than 10 times as many UN resolutions as Iraq, and we give them billions of dollars a year and free weapons.
    Various parties in the Congo have violated god-knows-how many UN resolutions. And the US does nothing.”
    Israel has not attacked neighbors unless provoked. Iraq invaded Kuwait,unproved, pure and simple. We kicked Iraq’a ass and told Saddam to be a good boy. He signed on the dotted line, saying he would be a good boy. He was a bad widdle boy. He now rests with the goat fuckers.
    “Various parties heve violated god-knows-how many UN resolutions…” Good thing God does, fucktard, because you certainly seem to be short on facts. Nice try but you remain a moron. Now shut the fuck up…chump!

  235. zsazsa July 2, 2009 at 5:08 pm #

    Rico,
    asoka-his-ass is not worthy of a dialog. He is a brainwashed, moron. Save your energy for someone capable of a rational argument.
    one-eyed zsa zsa

  236. turkle July 2, 2009 at 6:10 pm #

    OEO’s sock puppet,
    Calling other posters f***tards, and other silly middle school insults, simply undermines your arguments and is the definition of irrational. It makes you look like exactly what you call other people, a moron.
    I’m going to follow that line from Wargames, “The only winning strategy is not to play.”
    Because you just want to browbeat other people and call them names, I guess because it inflates your damaged, shriveled ego. I really don’t know. A competent psychologist could have a field day with you and your strange internet pathologies.
    Anyways, Mr. Rational, have fun crapping on everyone to feel better about yourself, at least until you get banned again.
    Bye bye, now.

  237. k gleason July 2, 2009 at 7:19 pm #

    Report from Lost Angeles…
    SHIKO……
    ‘When I hear people say his father abused him, I cannot believe what I hear.’
    Ok so im in tinsel town and have know several who were round MJ….
    one said ‘ id see him as a child at the studios, no kids round him, the limo driver and the tutor….THATS NOT A CHILDHOOD THATS BEIN A CASH COW FOR DADDY !
    that fellow said the same thing bout karen carpenter….SHE TOO DIED AN ANORECTIC!!!!
    The gov. here says calis debt is 27? Billion…grew by 3 billion overnite!
    and villaragosa..La mayors sworn in for term 2.
    he of mecha saying:
    of AN ACCUSED GANGSTER / MURDERER
    HES A FINE YOUNG MAN…IVE BEEN FRIENDS WITH THE FAMILY SINCE HE WAS A CHILD!
    my apologies for mulitple posts…i will now not repost when it says it didnt post because it does post despite what it tells me

  238. k gleason July 2, 2009 at 7:33 pm #

    I dont think most us citizens adore MJ
    …its the media having a ‘ field day’
    ….which is to get those watching the tube to…DONT PAY ATTENTION TO THE RUINATION OF THE COUNTRY/ WORLD’

  239. Dr Doom July 2, 2009 at 8:01 pm #

    ATTENTION double and triple, quadruple posters and Jim e: what are you folks doing, trying to make JHK’s stats look good?
    After you hit “submit” button, wait a few seconds for the Confirmation page to load. Then you can select “view your latest post” plus continue reading those of others on the blog.
    It’s supposed to be simple, moron CFN fucktards.

  240. george July 2, 2009 at 8:09 pm #

    If the late MJ best represents the American national character in the 21st century, then what does Celine Dion say Canadians? I’m guessing nothing because Canada’s national character in 2009 to me is best represented by King Stephen the Harper and all the intellectual midgets who do his bidding. Hell, if MJ was frightening in all his depravity, then the ideological pit bull up in Ottawa who apparently doesn’t believe in Global Warming, Peak Oil or Evolution must be truly terrifying when you consider the implications.

  241. zsazsa July 2, 2009 at 9:13 pm #

    turkle sez:
    “Calling other posters f***tards, and other silly middle school insults, simply undermines your arguments and is the definition of irrational.”
    Hey FUCKTARD, grow a pair. (Hint: Not tits.) Now suck it up and shut it up, wus.

  242. zsazsa July 2, 2009 at 9:21 pm #

    And by the way you little puss, you ended up whining about a few aptly applied names I chose for you. You did not address the fact that your post, criticizing my post was a vapid, poorly framed, irrational piece of dog fuck. What up wif dat nancy-boy? (Not that there is anything wrong with nancy-boys aside the fact that they tend to whine a bit much.)

  243. zsazsa July 2, 2009 at 9:22 pm #

    And by the way you little puss, you ended up whining about a few aptly applied names I chose for you. You did not address the fact that your post, criticizing my post was a vapid, poorly framed, irrational piece of dog fuck. What up wif dat nancy-boy? (Not that there is anything wrong with nancy-boys aside the fact that they tend to whine a bit much.)

  244. zsazsa July 2, 2009 at 9:22 pm #

    And by the way you little puss, you ended up whining about a few aptly applied names I chose for you. You did not address the fact that your post, criticizing my post was a vapid, poorly framed, irrational piece of dog fuck. What up wif dat nancy-boy? (Not that there is anything wrong with nancy-boys aside the fact that they tend to whine a bit much.)

  245. zsazsa July 2, 2009 at 9:26 pm #

    And by the way, wus-boy, you ended up whining about a few names aptly chosen to fit your affliction. You dodged my crit of your crit. Why? Because you had nothing to reply of my charge of your empty, vapid argument. What a fucking nancy-boy.

  246. zsazsa July 2, 2009 at 9:28 pm #

    Wow man! This leave a comment section works exceedingly well. (Fucking NOT.)

  247. zsazsa July 2, 2009 at 9:33 pm #

    Doom sez:
    “After you hit “submit” button, wait a few seconds for the Confirmation page to load.”
    Unfortunately, the confirmation page does not always load. You often end up in blank-page-purgatory with no option but the refresh button or the back button. Whatever, its all a pants load regardless.

  248. Gregg July 2, 2009 at 9:45 pm #

    I heard about MJ’s death just before setting out on a raft trip down the San Juan. It had no effect on the water level, geological column, wild life, plants, sedimentation rates, temperatures, river currents, length of the oars, visible stars, sunrise and set, phase of the moon, growth of my beard, etc. Must not have been that important.

  249. chance July 2, 2009 at 10:15 pm #

    First,
    I would like to thank the participants of this blog for providing extremely entertaining postings. There is enough turd flying around here to build new empire state building. Internet at its best!
    As to MJ story, judging by responces here,JK certainly touched a raw nerve in the populace. MJ was and is a representation of where our once great country is at this moment in history: flamboyant but poor, naive but perverted, creative but washed out, eagar but tired, diverse but racist, reaching but closed-minded, entertaining but bored.
    Our big ship is listing to port, water level is rising slowly but the band plays on, and people pretend nothing is amiss. And so far, we have time to post entertaing comments on various blogs and discuss things that we can not effect. But the manual labor of tending fields or ramaging through trash to find something to eat is not so far away. I still hope there is a dignified way out of this mess.

  250. chance July 2, 2009 at 10:16 pm #

    First,
    I would like to thank the participants of this blog for providing extremely entertaining postings. There is enough turd flying around here to build new empire state building. Internet at its best!
    As to MJ story, judging by responces here,JK certainly touched a raw nerve in the populace. MJ was and is a representation of where our once great country is at this moment in history: flamboyant but poor, naive but perverted, creative but washed out, eagar but tired, diverse but racist, reaching but closed-minded, entertaining but bored.
    Our big ship is listing to port, water level is rising slowly but the band plays on, and people pretend nothing is amiss. And so far, we have time to post entertaing comments on various blogs and discuss things that we can not effect. But the manual labor of tending fields or ramaging through trash to find something to eat is not so far away. I still hope there is a dignified way out of this mess.

  251. Steve M. July 2, 2009 at 10:32 pm #

    Will Toure ever shut up? He’s always on MSNBC, defending Michael Jackson’s “genius.” Seems he lives at MSNBC now. Toure – too special to go by a last name – thought Jackson could do no wrong, and insists Jackson integrated pop music (he did not),crowing smugly about how Jackson broke raical barriers on white radio. Ever notice that black radio doesn’t play white artists? Toure doesn’t even acknowledge white music’s existence, he must think Crosby, Stills and Nash are a law firm!

  252. Steve M. July 2, 2009 at 10:33 pm #

    Will Toure ever shut up? He’s always on MSNBC, defending Michael Jackson’s “genius.” Seems he lives at MSNBC now. Toure – too special to go by a last name – thought Jackson could do no wrong, and insists Jackson integrated pop music (he did not),crowing smugly about how Jackson broke raical barriers on white radio. Ever notice that black radio doesn’t play white artists? Toure doesn’t even acknowledge white music’s existence, he must think Crosby, Stills and Nash are a law firm!

  253. Steve M. July 2, 2009 at 10:35 pm #

    Will Toure ever shut up? He’s always on MSNBC, defending Michael Jackson’s “genius.” Seems he lives at MSNBC now. Toure – too special to go by a last name – thought Jackson could do no wrong, and insists Jackson integrated pop music (he did not),crowing smugly about how Jackson broke raical barriers on white radio. Ever notice that black radio doesn’t play white artists? Toure doesn’t even acknowledge white music’s existence, he must think Crosby, Stills and Nash are a law firm!

  254. Dr Doom July 3, 2009 at 12:55 am #

    Someone needs to tell Jim is new blog site is fucked up.
    Someone needs to tell Jim is new blog site is fucked up.
    Someone needs to tell Jim is new blog site is fucked up.
    Someone needs to tell Jim is new blog site is fucked up.
    But wow, check out those stats!!!!

  255. Dr Doom July 3, 2009 at 12:56 am #

    Someone needs to tell Jim is new blog site is fucked up.
    Someone needs to tell Jim is new blog site is fucked up.
    Someone needs to tell Jim is new blog site is fucked up.
    Someone needs to tell Jim is new blog site is fucked up.
    But wow, check out those stats!!!!

  256. Dr Doom July 3, 2009 at 12:57 am #

    Someone needs to tell Jim is new blog site is fucked up.
    Someone needs to tell Jim is new blog site is fucked up.
    Someone needs to tell Jim is new blog site is fucked up.
    Someone needs to tell Jim is new blog site is fucked up.
    But wow, check out those stats!!!!

  257. Johnny Rico July 3, 2009 at 1:51 am #

    I just signed in at about 1:40 EST didn’t read all the commenst since my last one, just saw Doom’s at 12:57.
    What’s the deal?
    I pay pretty close attention to the “number of comments” number so I don’t have to bother clicking if nothing changes.
    I’m pretty sure it said 234 before I went out tonight, 6 hours ago. It says 234 now. So my first thought was that all my comments and OEO’s would be gone.
    But this is not the case.
    My next thought(hope) was that all the new douchebags who have been poisoning this site for the last few weeks had been removed. I’ll have to investigate.
    [note to Jim: spellcheck is flagging "douchebag" - you're gonna need to fix that, it's a word, dude, just like dude is a word, spellcheck doesn't flag dude, how about shit, nope, shit is a word, too]

  258. Johnny Rico July 3, 2009 at 2:09 am #

    Still 234.
    OEO, I gotta be on my best behavior, or I’m gonna get my ass banned again.
    Asoka is not a bad guy, he’s just slightly confused politically and intellectually in my humble opinion. In his favor – he takes us on. Even if he constantly loses. That’s hard work.
    I’m gonna play good cop for a while.
    Always got your six,
    JR
    PS – Super Happy Bob Tunamelt is no longer with us.

  259. Johnny Rico July 3, 2009 at 2:58 am #

    “Will Toure ever shut up?”
    I have no idea who “Toure” is. Will you shutup? Are you fucking retarded? Who watches MSNBC all day?
    Ever heard of Oprah? Jerry Springer? Get a life, jackass.
    “he must think Crosby, Stills and Nash are a law firm” Was that supposed to be funny? I almost pissed my pants. You should do standup.
    Triple Post. The only thing that could have saved you was a quadruple post.
    Doom obviously gets a pass, he was begging JHK’s webmonkey to intervene by example. Doom understands and never even double posts.
    .
    .
    .
    Okay. People! Over here!
    Listen up.
    Blogging 101.
    After you hit the submit buttom.
    Chill out.
    DO NOT hit submit again when you do not immediately see your brilliant comment.
    STOP thinking your worthless, stupid comments are important.
    In this way, we can all avoid seeing your stupid, boring writing and thoughts 3 times in a row.
    Now go back to your pathetic lives.
    -Ari Gold

  260. asoka July 3, 2009 at 3:14 am #

    jr said: “Asoka is not a bad guy, he’s just slightly confused politically and intellectually in my humble opinion. In his favor – he takes us on. Even if he constantly loses. That’s hard work.”
    JR, thank you for those kind words.
    It is not hard work. Change comes quite naturally. I am not so concerned about being “consistent” so I write whatever I please, which may very well be different from what I wrote in the past. For some this will appear as intellectual dishonesty, for others as evolution and willingness to change positions given new facts, for others, like you, it just looks like confusion.
    In any event nothing I write here is of any importance.

  261. Johnny Rico July 3, 2009 at 3:28 am #

    @asoka –
    I was going to write a long piece responding individually to each of your responses to my last piece (about you), but I just don’t have the energy tonight.
    I appreciate your good humor.
    It is hard work. Some of the hardest. Don’t sell yourself short. You are going up against Rico, OEO, sometimes Yarra, and others.
    I don’t know about those other guys, but I’ve got an agenda, and I’m not gonna quit until my mission (as Tom Cruise laid it out to me)is accomplished.
    “Brainwash asoka back the other way.” That’s what Tom said to me.
    So I’m gonna convince you, one way or another.
    We can do this the easy way, or we can …

  262. asoka July 3, 2009 at 4:08 am #

    “Brainwash asoka back the other way.” That’s what Tom said to me.
    Tom Cruise, the Scientologist, said that? Are you a Scientologist, too?
    Do you have expertise in brainwashing? I deserve the very best professional brainwashing… and dry cleaning, too.

  263. eightm July 3, 2009 at 4:21 am #

    Worldwide Real Esate Mafia
    At what point did minimum rents become greater than minimum wages ? Why didn’t anyone notice ? when did rents become more than 700 to 800 dollars a month while wages stagnated at exactly the same price as minimum rent ? who designed this ? And you can notice that it was designed from an international mafia – thugs – criminals who decided to rob most avergage to poor workers in the name of a home. When was it decided that having shelter was no longer a basic right ? when was it considerd a luxury ? Is water or food a luxury ?
    This system of creating high rents to force people to buy and brainwashing people that the more their homes go up in price the “richer” they are is the biggest international scam ever. It is incredible that in so many countries and economies you see the same scam over and over again. In JAPAN they are not allowed to make multilevel apartments in the middle of Tokyo to keep prices up and houses of limited availabilty, they tear them down every 30 years, they have insane prices, and yet the japanese, with all their scientists and great “research” can’t see this monopolistic robbing of their people right in fron of their eyes ? They don’t notice ?
    The same systems apply to the USA and EU, the details may change somewhat but the goal is to keep prices of buying or renting as high as possible, to give money to a bunch of parasites that don’t work or do anything “productive”, but simply rob the money from average workers in the form of huge rents/mortgages.
    Prices in the USA, the EU and JAPAN have to get down to no more than 20% of minimum wage, that is no more than 200 to 300 dollars a month rent for an average home in all markets. That is what is needed to keep the economy going and “growing”! The only thing that grows is the price of rents and mortgages, this robbing has to end!
    Now the G8 international economy forum starts, and they will continue with the old crap of the need to downsize companies, offshore, outshore, cut costs which always means cutting the wages of workers, always, etc. It is always the workers fault, they have to always learn “new” skills, always “training” for “new activities”, always downsize, always layoff, etc. etc. This then is supposed to give the workers and their “families” the confidence to keep running the “consumer” economy. Are they nuts ? With all these cuts and all these “optimizations” which means less and less money for workers, no one in their right mind would do anything but save.
    By the way, peak oil is not the real problem facing western society (the 3 macro regions of USA, EU and JAPAN, and some others Canada, South Korea). But PEAK WORK – LABOR. There is not enough justifiable work available anymore, there is not any kind of work – profession that justifies the pay levels and amount of employment needed. There is no real financial or technical imperative that forces societies to have so many people at work 8 hours a day. The real mega problem is that work is disappearing, becoming obsolete. The real problem is not the end of energy, but the end of any kind of work, and especially any kind of high paying work. This is because our technological society has created huge EXCESS CAPACITY in all productive endeavors. Most work has been automated by computers or outsourced to India or Indonesia at 100 dollar a month wages. Therefore we need free salaries, cheap rents and mass transit.

  264. Dr Doom July 3, 2009 at 4:54 am #

    “PS – Super Happy Bob Tunamelt is no longer with us.”-JR
    So who was Bob Tunamelt? Did I miss the memo?

  265. Dr Doom July 3, 2009 at 4:57 am #

    “PS – Super Happy Bob Tunamelt is no longer with us.”–JR
    So who was Bob Tunamelt and why is he no longer with us?

  266. Nudge July 3, 2009 at 6:35 am #

    Doom wrote:
    “Someone needs to tell Jim is new blog site is fucked up.”
    Shhh. Somebody got sold on the idea of “change = good”. Even the old one was not quite this buggy. Tutto bene and all that.
    Jim E, your posts take the cake for “things that make us wonder what meds people stopped taking”. Alex, for $400 how about Abilify, Biston, Cogentin, and Thorazine plus 6-point restraints in a rubber room?

  267. Nudge July 3, 2009 at 6:50 am #

    8M wrote: “When did rents become more than 700 to 800 dollars a month while wages stagnated at exactly the same price as minimum rent ? who designed this?”
    This process happens everywhere whenever wealth & population are increasing in an expansionary system. The same process happens in Boston, San Diego, Paris, and Rome both now and thousands of years ago. Rising housing values force the lowest-paid workers out to the periphery of the map, to enjoy both long commutes and marginal earning power.
    Nowhere in the bill of rights or the constitution does the word “affordability” appear.
    Just because this thing looks like a tail doesn’t mean it should get pinned on some poor donkey.

  268. Johnny Rico July 3, 2009 at 6:58 am #

    “So who was Bob Tunamelt and why is he no longer with us?”
    Sorry. I thought you monkeys could figure shit out. I miss Holmes.
    Bob Tunamelt was my clever (so I thought) name for Bob Snowjob. He is gone. And he was a douche.
    It is obvious I still require OEO for my most clandestine missions.

  269. Johnny Rico July 3, 2009 at 7:05 am #

    Sorry, Sorry.
    My bad. I apologize. I simply. I’m sorry. I messed that up. I’m sorry. I simply did not calculate how important dale might be. Him plus Snowmelt must be like at least two seconds. Thatz thum importan shit.

  270. Nudge July 3, 2009 at 7:10 am #

    Morning JR. Where is our good strawman Dale anyway? The last I heard, he had somehow morphed from “we’ll muddle through” and “PO is 20 years away, not to worry, just keep shopping” to “uh-oh, maybe this PO thing might happen earlier than that”.
    Or maybe Dale was just keeping part of my chair warm for a bit. I couldn’t tell which.

  271. Johnny Rico July 3, 2009 at 7:35 am #

    “Tom Cruise, the Scientologist, said that? Are you a Scientologist, too?”
    Asoka, c’mon dude. Are you crazy? Why do you think I’m Johnny Rico?
    I keep my mouth shut.
    The only people I talk to are Holmes, Bif, OEO, zsa zsa, Nudge, Petreaus, Dave, The Lizard King, Haile Selassie.
    No. Serious. Cruise isn’t into that. He’s just lookin for publicity.
    And also, oeo and zsa zsa are different people.
    OEO is probably the most loved commenter on CFN. zsazsa is most likely his cousin while he gets his shit together. I’ll flank zsa zsa. But nigga need to get his name back on. I’m jus sayin.

  272. Johnny Rico July 3, 2009 at 7:37 am #

    “So who was Bob Tunamelt and why is he no longer with us?”
    Sorry. I thought you monkeys could figure shit out. I miss Holmes.
    Bob Tunamelt was my clever (so I thought) name for Bob Snowjob. He is gone. And he was a douche.
    It is obvious I still require OEO for my most clandestine missions.

  273. Johnny Rico July 3, 2009 at 7:46 am #

    Morning, Nudge.
    No way. I know a fractured community when I see one.
    Kiss, and make up, and I’ll verify.
    Dale is not part. he can rot for all I care.
    I want you and OEO. You and OEO. Dale means nothing.
    Am I right?
    If I went on CFN right now and said “dale”, nobody would know what I was saying. Am I right?
    I don’t care. You can use me as a proxy. I’m the runner. Everybody like Johnny Rico.

  274. eightm July 3, 2009 at 7:54 am #

    “Rising housing values force the lowest-paid workers out to the periphery of the map, to enjoy both long commutes and marginal earning power”
    It is also called ROBBING THE POOR. It is also called speculation, it is also called setting people against each other, a kind of hidden warfare, also a warfare amongst the poor, it is also called beating up the weaker class. This is also known as that old fashioned MARXIST IDEA of CLASS WARFARE.
    So where is the so called “common good” ? What good does a society have in common ?
    It is also called a monopoly by the powers that be that crush out those that can’t pay the amount of money required to simply rent. It is also known as violence, essentially HATE, as in HATE another person by not letting them live in at least basic shelter. I could go on, but this has to change. We need cheap rents, not some worldwide thugs that buy up properties and force people to buy homes and constantly jack up the prices. Thanks for protecting THUGS …
    We also need free salaries, like 800 dollars a month worldwide, rents at 200 dollars a month for 80 square meters, and mass transit. This is what must be imposed by force, by revolution, by all means, by WAR.

  275. Nudge July 3, 2009 at 8:02 am #

    8M wrote: “We also need free salaries, like 800 dollars a month worldwide, rents at 200 dollars a month for 80 square meters, and mass transit. This is what must be imposed by force, by revolution, by all means ..”
    Again, please show me where in the constitution or bill of rights or in any federal, state, or local laws (here in the United Parking Lot of America) affordability is mandated.
    You post the same schtik every week, right? I remember that assturd RCJ and his badly-spelled barely-English rants about greed, stuff he obviously spent many hours sweating over in Notepad, pecking it out one key at a time, probably with his tongue stuck out sideways.
    Again, this is an effect in search of a cause. Just because some people got rich off the bubble doesn’t mean those same people orchestrated the bubble. Causality, please?
    JR, this place has gone to the socks.

  276. Danm July 3, 2009 at 8:04 am #

    It is also called ROBBING THE POOR. It is also called speculation, it is also called setting people against each other, a kind of hidden warfare, also a warfare amongst the poor, it is also called beating up the weaker class. This is also known as that old fashioned MARXIST IDEA of CLASS WARFARE
    —————–
    It is also called population growth.
    Sorry to burst your bubble, but have you ever thought that not everyone can live in exactly the same spot?
    And if that’s the case, how do you redistribute the land in a fair manner?
    If you’ve lived in your house for 30 years and paid it off, I’d love to see your reaction if some government agent just came in and told you to share because it’s not fair for all the new citizens.

  277. Johnny Rico July 3, 2009 at 8:09 am #

    Yeah, I know.
    I’m meeting Nudge for Lunch, Asoka on Tuesday.
    I got it.

  278. Nudge July 3, 2009 at 8:12 am #

    Danm, didn’t they already try that communism thing over in Russia? Didn’t work too well AFAIK. 8M’s position on government seizure of private wealth would probably be 180° different if s/he had a few million dollars in patiently-earned and -saved money, or expensive property.
    Should 8M choose to do so, s/he can always emigrate to Cuba to live under that kind of system. Didn’t they recently relax the travel restrictions?

  279. FARfetched July 3, 2009 at 8:17 am #

    «the confirmation page does not always load. You often end up in blank-page-purgatory with no option but the refresh button or the back button.»
    When you see the blank page, hit the back button then END to skip to the bottom of the page. If your comment isn’t there, hit Refresh. Works for me. I usually see both my comment posted & in the text box.
    «I’m meeting Nudge for Lunch, Asoka on Tuesday»
    JR, you’re not bullshittin’ us this time, are you? We want to hear all about it!

  280. Katherine July 3, 2009 at 8:33 am #

    Jim – don’t dis Michael Jackson. You know nothing about him. He sang with maturity at age five. He never went to music school, but he has the kind of musical mind that can hear all voices in harmonies with, let’s say, six parts. He never studied classical music, but he began writing it before he died. How did he learn to – by listening to it, of course. He had perfect pitch. You don’t have to wear a coat and tails and sit at a Steinway in Carnegie Hall to be a genius. I don’t know of a classical pianist alive today who can do with his body in relation to the keyboard when Michael Jackson could do with it in relation to a dance floor. His invented new ways of singing, dancing, and songwriting. And besides all that, he was a beautiful human being. And, puh-LEASE,leave off with the pedophilia stuff already. He was set up. He didn’t do it. It’s old already.

  281. Nudge July 3, 2009 at 8:34 am #

    8M, in my experience, the poor do a pretty good job robbing themselves. No, seriously, I’m not joking. Just go into any peckerwood section 8 hovel, trailer park redneck riviera, etc, and what do you see? Everyone’s got color televisions & cable/satellite, plenty of beer, plenty of cigs, plenty of motorized toyz, and lots of kids. Oh, and they all whine about not having enough money. LOL. Bwahahaha. Cause, meet effect.
    Tell me please when you find some poor people who’ve managed to scale their living costs to what they can actually afford.
    Hi Far :)
    JR claims he’ll meet up someday, but he’ll probably fall off the wagon again before it comes to pass. God, I’ll be fricking ancient by the time he gets around to it. You’d think he’d want to meet while I’m still skinny.

  282. eightm July 3, 2009 at 8:40 am #

    So you believe in the trickle down effect ? that innovation, new technologies will create millions of new high paying jobs for engineers, researchers, designers, the service economy ? That there will be all these high paying jobs in the USA, EU and JAPAN ? That there will be all these new inventions waiting to be discovered out there ? All these new applications requiring programmers, computers etc. ? (All these “square wheels”)
    So you don’t think there is any EXCESS CAPACITY worldwide in all productive endeavors ? Do you know that we have a few million redundant workers worldwide, that we could potentially build millions of more cars and homes without hiring new workers, but can’t because of the economy ?
    Did you know that automation and computers have automated millions of jobs ? and the rest of low class labor can be done in Indonesia for 100 dollars a month ?
    As far as there being too many people for home prices to get down, this is BS. only 10 % of USA territory could host 50 billion people in 5 or 6 level concrete apartments, like those in PARIS, and you would still have alot of extra space. The reason why homes cost both to buy and rent is because a dominating social class wants it that way, a silent majority of homeowners in the USA, EU and JAPAN (about 60%) vote governments that have all the interest in jacking up the values of homes and rents. A majority represses a poor minority, so this is why governments want everyone to buy homes, to be part of the majority that squeezes the weaker minorities.
    Get a clue, NUDGE, and by the way, how will Peak Oil play out with the “long commutes” ? Enjoy the value of your home, NUDGE, I can tell you own and probably rent out homes and make alot of cash. Good for you…

  283. zsazsa July 3, 2009 at 8:41 am #

    “Just go into any peckerwood section 8 hovel, trailer park redneck riviera, etc, and what do you see? ”
    Umm, Fudge in her pants? Staring in windows, longing for acceptance?

  284. Nudge July 3, 2009 at 8:51 am #

    8M, I believe in precious little beyond what I see. Trickle-down hasn’t worked. Communism hasn’t worked. Globalism hasn’t worked. The bailouts haven’t worked.
    Just observing things. Pointing out observations does not imply the presence of any workable system with which to replace the things that caused such messes. Just sayin’
    Even the most desperately-poor, scraping-by people I know personally still have Netflix subscriptions, cellphones, multiple nice vehicles, credit cards, plenty of cigs, more televisions than I have (0), etc, and still purchase $200+ electronic geegaws for their kids.
    Groceries & rent are much easier to keep up with when you don’t spend on much else.
    Hi Zsazsa. Seen Dale anywhere?

  285. zsazsa July 3, 2009 at 8:57 am #

    “Just observing things.”
    Water. Sky. Pink. Dog. Turbo-charged cat. Idiot. (Wow, this really is fun!) Yawn. Yawn with spittle tracks. Zzzzzz…

  286. FARfetched July 3, 2009 at 9:08 am #

    «Enjoy the value of your home, NUDGE, I can tell you own and probably rent out homes and make alot of cash. Good for you…»
    Wow, that truly got a LOL out of me! I thought you’d been around a lot longer than that; you would have known better. Nudge is one of those few non-wealthy people who live well inside their means, and I mean well inside their means. Think stereotypical penny-pinching New Englander. (Oh, and she rents.)
    Nudge is right; the poor (and hell, the middle class for that matter) doesn’t know how to manage their wealth. ‘Course, they’re aided and abetted by marketroids who want them to buy their shit, and by an educational system that doesn’t even try in most cases to teach money management.

  287. Danm July 3, 2009 at 9:12 am #

    Nudge:
    What I find the most amusing is the sheer number of people who don’t see that life has always been about access to resources and the fight for them. I guess it’s because up to now, we’ve always had more more land to absorb our population overflows.
    It does not seem to have occured to them that America got populated because of increasingly limited resources in Europe.
    Many will argue that there are plenty of resources and we only need to share. But the reality is that by making life better for everyone, we will only get even more population growth, further exarcebating the problem. Malthus was essentially right. What he did not realize was that there were still vast expanses of land that could still be exploited. We’re now reaching the limit as East and West are now starting to meet.
    The other point that many people seem to miss is that there is no easy way to fairly distribute our resources. Everybody complains about how inefficent our system is but as the population gets bigger and stretches out over more area, often zones that should not even be ihnabited the level of complexity can only rise and make justice even harder to attain.
    Sorry but IMO, we’ve reached the point of no return. Mother nature will decide when and how to redistribute. In the meantime, the aggressive ones will lose patience and attack to get their perceived fair share and even more.
    Anyone expecting some kind of justice out of the system is just a patsy.

  288. eightm July 3, 2009 at 9:21 am #

    Blame the victim. They are doing good to the economy by buying consumer items, since they can’t do much else, with the money they make. This is not a discussion on the merits of the poor or how they behave: everyone sucks and behaves badly, so this is not really the point.
    The point is the way the system is set up: it is intentionally set up so as to force people to buy homes, in all the Western economy markets. Rents become higher than mrtgages, people buy, and you have a dominating clas of home owners, that will do anything to increase the values of the homes, and jack up the rents. Anyone who can’t afford or compete is locked out, and must pay high rents/mortgages to this silent majority of parasites, of worthless crap, just like those worthless crap of poor you talk about, since all people suck equally.
    JAPAN is an excellent example: they have been trying to prop up their consumer economy for decades since they have been in a depression for at least 20 years, but they dare not touch anything regarding housing and home prices and real estate. They don’t allow to build multilevel apratments in tokyo, they have huge prices, they tear down their homes every 20 years to rebuild them and help the local monopolies, etc. And all their public stimulus money goes to “other things”, when they could have buitl millins of homes – apartments and drastically reduced the prices of rents or homes. But they dare not touch this sacred cow. What fools. The UK is not much better, look at the insane prices in London, a 50 square meter house costs 500,000 dollars, in Tecas you can buy a McMansion with that money. Actually the US is a bit better off, but the US constructs restrictions by laying off workers and forcing them to move into the cities or urban areas where all the “new hot jobs” are, hence the prices go up again even there.
    It is a worldwide Mafia, a worldwide plan to use real estate, homes, and rents to make as much money as possible off the weaker minorities. And those minorities are for the most part honest workers, not trailer park trash like you believe all the USA who rents or does not own a home is.

  289. Danm July 3, 2009 at 9:32 am #

    8M:
    Yes the world is screwed up. But what is your magical solution? Tell me how you get to take away from Dick and give to Harry without creating WW3?

  290. zsazsa July 3, 2009 at 9:32 am #

    “It is a worldwide Mafia, a worldwide plan to use real estate, homes, and rents to make as much money as possible off the weaker minorities.”
    So, you’re upset because the global mafia has conspired against you? OK. Hey, while we’re on conspiracy theories, was 9/11 an inside job?

  291. eightm July 3, 2009 at 9:51 am #

    1) In JAPAN allow building 5 or 6 story apartments (like in PARIS), in most of tokyo that is occupied by small crappy single family homes. The governmet can build a few millioon homes, that would be enough to drastically reduce demand, hence prices both for rent and to buy.
    2) London can use the same system as tokyo, since even in london most of the city is occupied by suinlr family homes. The government or PRIVATE BUILDERS can build a few million homes in apratments, creating more supply than demand.
    3) In the USA, PRIVATE COMPANIES can by all forclosed homes and rent them out at a decent price, say 300 to 600 dollars a month even in the expensive LA, or NY areas.
    It can be done, it would cost only a trillion dollars to build them in all the Western markets USA, EU and JAPAN.
    But they won’t do it, they preferred to throw away a few trillion in “bailouts”.
    This is the solution, cheap rents, but all those western governments are threading carefully to protect and hope home prices keep going up. And these governments are voted by and protect the interests of a silent CONSERVATIVE majority that wants rents and home prices going ever higher. The weaker minority can go to hell.
    Also all of these areas have almost no population growth, so the excuse that there are too many people is BS. It is pure and simple greed, pure HATE on behalf of these governments. The USA, EU and JAPAN, the three stooges.

  292. Nudge July 3, 2009 at 10:00 am #

    Hi Far :)
    It’s a sincere regret of mine that more people do not assume moron active roles in their own financial situations. Take for example the poor people I know personally, mentioned in the previous post. If they were to cut back on /luxuries/, they would have more money for /necessities/.
    There is no magic to what I do. Pay cash, avoid the hidden debit card charges. Do the laundry by hand and hang it to dry .. no energy consumed other than to pump the water, and no money dropped into machines at the laundrymat. No smoking or alcohol. No television. Sew clothing instead of buying it. No AC. No restaurant visits. Work to constrain the consumption rates of gasoline and electricity.
    Sadly, most residents of the UPL have simply got their spending priorities askew .. they put the same amount of energy into getting luxuries that hungry third worlders put into just getting enough food to scrape by. Thus I have little/no sympathy for the “poor” who nonetheless have a passel of kids, multiple televisions, multiple vehicles, cigarette & alcohol habits, cable/satellite service, plenty of electronic geegaws, nice store-bought clothing, restaurant habits, and so on.
    Again, they’ve already tried this “seize from the rich by force” thing many times in world history. Always ends the same way. Huh, isn’t the classic definition of insanity something like “doing the same thing again and again but expecting a different outcome next time”? Yup, that’s us alright. To quote the famous demotivational poster, all of us is dumber than some of us.

  293. Nudge July 3, 2009 at 10:16 am #

    Hi Far :)
    It’s a sincere regret of mine that more people do not assume moron active roles in their own financial situations. Take for example the poor people I know personally, mentioned in the previous post. If they were to cut back on /luxuries/, they would have more money for /necessities/.
    There is no magic to what I do. Pay cash, avoid the hidden debit card charges. Do the laundry by hand and hang it to dry .. no energy consumed other than to pump the water, and no money dropped into machines at the laundrymat. No smoking or alcohol. No television. Sew clothing instead of buying it. No AC. No restaurant visits. Work to constrain the consumption rates of gasoline and electricity.
    Sadly, most residents of the UPL have simply got their spending priorities askew .. they put the same amount of energy into getting luxuries that hungry third worlders put into just getting enough food to scrape by. Thus I have little/no sympathy for the “poor” who nonetheless have a passel of kids, multiple televisions, multiple vehicles, cigarette & alcohol habits, cable/satellite service, plenty of electronic geegaws, nice store-bought clothing, restaurant habits, and so on.
    Again, they’ve already tried this “seize from the rich by force” thing many times in world history. Always ends the same way. Huh, isn’t the classic definition of insanity something like “doing the same thing again and again but expecting a different outcome next time”? Yup, that’s us alright. To quote the famous demotivational poster, all of us is dumber than some of us.
    Huh, the three stooges were a bunch of slapstick clowns that couldn’t find their way out of a wet gunnysack even with sharp scissors. Wouldn’t running a secret, global-sized conspiracy (the veil of which is only rarely pierced by sharp & observant bloggers like 8M) require a little smarts?
    (apologies if parts of this are a dup .. waited 10 minutes for the original comment to appear)

  294. Mark Ancona July 3, 2009 at 10:29 am #

    It is always absolutely hilarious to return to the comment thread at Kunstler’s site and watch the subject segues.
    This topic went from Michael Jackson and his pathetic existence to george bush, to Tom Cruise, to the Three Stooges.
    Absolutely the cheapest entertainment I get each week.
    Thanks folks!

  295. Mark Ancona July 3, 2009 at 10:36 am #

    It is always absolutely hilarious to return to the comment thread at Kunstler’s site and watch the subject segues.
    This topic went from Michael Jackson and his pathetic existence to george bush, to Tom Cruise, to the Three Stooges.
    Absolutely the cheapest entertainment I get each week.
    Thanks folks!

  296. Nudge July 3, 2009 at 10:39 am #

    Jimbo, this blog software is even more buggy than TypoKey, which was legendary.
    8M, to add something to the above post .. none of this is new stuff. Here is a lovely quote from Charles Dickens that sums it up quite well:
    “Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery.”
    What’s oh-so-interesting about the current times is that so many people whooped it up in so many ways during the bubble’s expansion phase. The numbers tell us that the average household accumulated $10K in debt annually during the bubble years. That was from back when our savings rate was negative, if you remember that time. That extra money (whether it be consumer debt, McMansions, vehicles) enabled more than just the obvious excesses: it also enabled whole sectors of the economy (like the manufacture of egregiously-large SUVs, Hardly-Ablesons, flatscreen TVs, etc, as well as the restaurant & entertainment industries) to expand way out of whack relative to the fundamentals.
    We are now in the contraction phase of the bubble. Given that so many Americans have so little understanding of what parts of the economy are stable vs unstable during a bubble run-up, we can expect as many people to suffer from the return-to-normalcy as did well during the expansion phase.

  297. Nudge July 3, 2009 at 10:54 am #

    Is this how to make this thing work? You send in a post, wait 10+ minutes for it not to appear, then post something else, and only then does the b0rked software nudge itself and realize it fell asleep on the job?
    This page should always have a live link to the following Internet Butthurt Report Form for the benefit of anyone who feels hurt by what’s said here:
    http://roadriverrail.livejournal.com/391030.html

  298. zsazsa July 3, 2009 at 12:03 pm #

    “In the USA, PRIVATE COMPANIES can by all forclosed homes and rent them out at a decent price, say 300 to 600 dollars a month even in the expensive LA, or NY areas.”
    STFU, moron. “Say 300 to 600 dollars a month”? Based on fucking what? Try and educate yourself a bit and do a little math. I quickly looked up average home prices in LA and the cheapest areas are averaging a quarter million dollars. If I put 25% down and get a 30 year mortgage at 5.197% my monthly payment (includes taxes and insurance) will be $1249.00. And you want me to rent it out for between 300 and 600 dollars per month. Sounds like a good plan for a M-O-R-O-N.
    Of course you and your spawn won’t be banging on my walls and destroying the plumbing will you? So, when I add in upkeep and repair to my monthly $1249.00 (along with utility bills) it is probably going to cost me more like $1749.00 to “own” the building that you want to rent for 3 to 600 dollars a month.
    Please go back to school and try and pay just a little bit of attention in your remedial math class, ok?

  299. zsazsa July 3, 2009 at 12:07 pm #

    The best way (for now) to NOT make multiple posts is to post and then re-enter the site.

  300. Nudge July 3, 2009 at 1:04 pm #

    Z, I tried it that way before and it still glitched.
    One solution to the cash-flow problem mentioned above would be to charge 8M and his spawn/litter/fambly $300~$600 per person to live in the house. That would get you closer to the $1750 monthly nut on the place. Of course, if they don’t like the high cost of renting in LA, the 8M’s can continue their residence in Oklahoma or Arkansas or Idaho at a lower monthly cost.
    It is so depressingly normal for folks to expect champagne on a beer budget. Yawn, yawn, yawn.

  301. k gleason July 3, 2009 at 2:27 pm #

    LA Times HEADLINES TODAY DONT MENTION JACKSON
    …after so many days of his being front page news:
    CALIFORNIA STATE TO ISSUE I.O.U.S
    as goes califonia goes the USA???
    Obama may create a Million GREEN Jobs but the usa is losing that many every 6 weeks while we take in 3? million immigrants each year
    A REAL FORMULA FOR DISASTER

  302. seawolf77 July 3, 2009 at 2:31 pm #

    Ahhh the ghastly poigancy of life. The ghoul turned ghoul. To see this effeminate little man yell he’s bad into a camera with a fierce scowl on his face requires you suspend disbelief and react with strained incredulity. While I will give you that Billie Jean performance on MTV was a trascendent moment I would hardly put it up there with Jimi Hendrix at the Monterey Pop Festival. Let’s face it the guy was kinda creepy in a Sammy Davis Jr kind of way. Would you leave your kids alone with either of those 2. I think not. In that interview when they asked him if it was strange for a grown man to have a sleep in with little kids, I nearly cried watching him answer. 800 million in the hole. Even Elvis would have had a hard time crawling out of that hole and he’s had a good gig since he died. Poor Micheal had everything except a life.

  303. Laura Louzader July 3, 2009 at 2:55 pm #

    The way to allocate the housing and money so that poor people can live in basic housing they can afford is called FREE MARKET CAPITALISM.
    That is something almost unknown in this country for at least 95 years.
    The speculative rampage that put a decent condo out of my price range and put decent rentals out the range of the poor, was no accident of the “free market”.
    Rather, it was the creation of government agencies and GSEs like FHA, FNMA, GNMA, HUD, and all the other agencies and programs ostensibly created to make housing “affordable” but in reality created to guarantee home builders and home lenders against normal business risk. Combine these with an administration dedicated to creating the fiction of “growth” by means of debt creation, asset inflation, and monetary manipulation, and you have ridiculous property values and rapidly escalating rents and prices that are spiraling out of everyone’s reach.
    Add still more government meddling such as rent control, and you have instant housing shortages and stratospheric rents. The rent controls in NYC and San Fran have directly driven the severe shortage of rental units, because landlords will not work for free anymore than you or me. If they can only operate their properties at a loss, they will convert to co-op or condo, or, if the property is a dump, just rent-mine it while putting nothing into it until it is so used up and rundown that there’s nothing left to do but let it go back to the city for taxes. This is what happened to the Bronx in NYC, where you can see hundreds of formerly beautiful buildings let to literally collapse, while people search the obits for rent-stabilized apartments.
    Section 8 has also helped drive up rents to the point where only the subsidized can afford housing. The voucher tenant pays no more than one third of his income in rent, while the government picks up the rest. The landlord can base the rent on the area average, which is usually nowhere near reflecting the true value of his slummy apt. The result is that the “market” rent for apts rented out to voucher tenants is twice what the same apt could hope to get on the open market, to unsubsidized tenants.
    Banks don’t take risks they don’t want to have to eat, that simple, and they would never have written so much risky debt with such absurd debt:income ratios- whether you’re talking about a $400K house for someone who makes $50K a year, or a $50MM shopping center across the street from 3 others that are half-rented- if these institutions had not been guaranteed to be bailed out.
    Pull the Section 8, FHA, GNMA & GNMA and Hope Now and all the other home affordability programs, and I can damn near guarantee that property values will take a 50% drop from their current levels, and there well be millions of really affordable rentals available.
    But as long as the TARP funds enable banks to sit on top of millions of homes and apts that comprise the “shadow” inventory that is foreclosed and sitting empty, or just plain not selling, and also enables people to pay inflated prices via the new wave of FHA loans now being written for shaky borrowers with 3% downpayments, prices will remain too high, and so will rents.

  304. Danm July 3, 2009 at 4:40 pm #

    FREE MARKET CAPITALISM
    ————-
    Nice concept… in theory.
    Ever notice that none of the economic systems ever got their chance to run according to theory very long?
    Maybe because every single one of them of them is based on utopia.
    We’ll never get to enjoy free market capitalism for very long. Why? Because while everyone is doing their little thing, there are always a few egomaniacs/psychopaths, working the system in their favor in order to wield more and more power, ruining it for everyone.
    There is no holy grail. Every system has a few decades of glory and then hits a wall.

  305. Dr Doom July 3, 2009 at 6:46 pm #

    Rico, why don’t you post comments on your own blog once and awhile? We miss you at your old residence.
    Thanks Nudge, JR, zsa zsa, and the newbies for all the entertaining posts. Lately I’ve been keeping a spray can of glass cleaner handy to remove all the spittle from the screen and keyboard.

  306. Laura Louzader July 3, 2009 at 8:41 pm #

    We’ll never have free markets because our authorities just cannot keep their mitts off our economic, social, and personal lives.
    There isn’t a single major economic trend in this country that doesn’t have the stamp of politics and government involvement on it. The whole notion of “private/public partnerships”, or Crony Capitalism, is the opposite of free markets.
    Our markets were rigged to favor auto ownership and make it “affordable” to the non-rich by the power to tax the highway system to existence, for example. Do people think that 10-lane interstate highways are natural formations or something? No? Yet try to impose tolls that reflect the cost of building these roads, that can run as much as $50 Million a running mile.
    The suburbs were the result of government force, in the form the FHA and HUD, which red-lined perfectly intact and solid city neighborhoods in the 50s. You could get a conventional loan with 20% down in the cities that most people STILL preferred in the 50s, but the FHA/VA no-down and 3% down loans were strictly for houses in the auto suburbs that the big production builders were squeezing out of cookie presses in places like Lakewood CA, and on a smaller scale, everywhere else.
    Our authorities forced monopolies upon transit and utilities, and then deliberately put into place policies designed to drive railroads and city transit companies out of business.
    The result is that 90% of our population is living in a manner and in locations most people hate. People may love the older, traditional burbs close to the city, with their fine older homes and tree-lined streets, but most people move to the outer suburbs only to have a cheap place to live and to park the cars they have to have to get to most jobs. I was interviewing for a job last year that would have been a big improvement in salary, but it would have been more than offset by the requirement that I move to a suburb inaccessible by transit and acquire an auto. Two-thirds of the jobs in Chicagoland are in the suburbs, in this city that is still so vibrant and intact, thanks to tax incentives offered by municipal authorities that amount to being massive subsidies of private business, which is very anti-free-market.
    My tax money and yours are used to create high-pressure incentives to abandon the low-waste urban or town centered lifestyles that we love, and permit us to live economically and in comfort, to move to places we hate, and buy cars we can’t afford to drive 50 miles a day to jobs that used to be downtown. They’re used to prop up housing at levels that most people can’t afford and to assure that our transit systems and railroads can’t profitably compete against heavily subsidized auto and air transit. Our taxes were used to deliberately destroy our smaller cities, and make the mega-cities like mine sprawl 5X as much as they need to.
    Can we really believe that our authorities are going to manage health care and rebuilding our railroads any better than they have everything else put their ham-fisted mitts on?

  307. asoka July 3, 2009 at 8:49 pm #

    Hi Nudge,
    Thanks for sharing you tips on living within your means. I admire your frugal habits and share some of them, but not not going for restaurant visits.
    I do restaurant visits once a week at the local CostCo where I have a slice of cheese pizza for $1.99. So, with tax for the governor, my monthly restaurant budget comes out to about ten dollars ($1.99 x 4 plus tax). I know it is a wasted ten dollars, but I do enjoy that pizza!

  308. SNAFU July 3, 2009 at 8:56 pm #

    The Illuminati, the Bilderbergers, The Trilateral Commission, the Council of Foreign Relations, Skull and Bones, the US Congress; 5 out of six are real organizations by my reckoning. Do I think that they are bastions of conspirists out to enrich themselves and their buddies? Perhaps; if we consider the mechanisms through which gommerment officials parlay their political clout at the behest of their wealthy patrons we might glimpse something of that which Nudge, Danm, Far, Laura, eightm and even Zsa have danced about. As David Chandler creator of the L curve http://www.lcurve.org/ a football field analogy of the income distribution in the US describes it in 2005 dollars:
    “The US population is represented along the length of the football field, arranged in order of income.
    Median US family income (the family at the 50 yard line) is ~$40,000 (a stack of $100 bills 1.6 inches high.)
    –The family on the 95 yard line earns about $100,000 per year, a stack of $100 bills about 4 inches high.
    –At the 99 yard line the income is about $300,000, a stack of $100 bills about a foot high.
    –The curve reaches $1 million (a 40 inch high stack of $100 bills) one foot from the goal line.
    –From there it keeps going up…it goes up 50 km (~30 miles) on this scale!”
    David identifies the political ramifications of this income distribution thusly:
    “People on the vertical spike can use their influence single-mindedly and very effectively. A single billionaire can get the undivided attention of any politician he wants, any time he wants. If he doesn’t get what he wants he can, in fact, “fight city hall,” the statehouse, and even the federal government. People on the horizontal spike must pool their limited individual power and organize to have any effect at all. This is a very difficult thing to manage, in practice.”
    Also from David Chandlers blog:
    Quoting from a recently-published book by political philosopher David Schweickart,
    If we divided the income of the US into thirds, we find that the top ten percent of the population gets a third, the next thirty percent gets another third, and the bottom sixty percent get the last third. If we divide the wealth of the US into thirds, we find that the top one percent own a third, the next nine percent own another third, and the bottom ninety percent claim the rest. (Actually, these percentages, true a decade ago, are now out of date. The top one percent are now estimated to own between forty and fifty percent of the nation’s wealth, more than the combined wealth of the bottom 95%.)
    As pointed out above, the data David Chandler used was gleaned from the his sources prior to the big crunch. Anyone think the regular folks are better off now than they were then? Yea me too. I am still waiting for my tractor trailer load of $100 bills in TARP funds and another from the FED. How many think Madoff and Stanford are the only billionaires and/or multi-millionaires who were running ponsi schemes? Yea me too. How many think it was just coincidental that the regulators were hog tied by the US gommerment back in the late 90’s so the con-artists known as Wall Street movers and shakers could increase their net worth and fuck the world’s economy at the same time? Yea me too; I’m sure it was. How many think the FED should keep those electronic tractor trailer loads of 100’s moving on down the line to keep those cry baby cock suckers on Wall Street in the chips while the rest of the country goes down the shitter? Yea me too. How many of you think the top one percent do not have heavy political assistance to maintain and increase their net worth? Yea me too; who would think such a thing? How many of you think the bottom 10% of low life welfare cheating scum of the earth sons of bitches should be drop kicked into the nearest active volcano? Yea me too; after all I’m not like them, my $40K in pensions keeps me in the tall clover right along side Warren Buffett.

  309. Nudge July 3, 2009 at 9:21 pm #

    Doom, I am being totally subversive with my Sloburban-driving boss. He’s currently reading Guns, Germs, and Steel. Just buttering him up for Collapse.
    8M, I totally missed your little gem from earlier. You wrote: “.. trailer park trash like you believe all the USA who rents or does not own a home is ..”
    Hey, careful with that particular paintbrush please. I’ve been renting since the early 80s, have never owned or bought property. Doesn’t make much sense when you’re single, not tied to any school system, and may need to move to get closer to jobs that pay anything .. so I’ve rented in upstate NY, CA, Boston, and now west of Boston. Also doesn’t make sense to buy anything if you haven’t got much money, which is where I’ve always been. The current apartment is quite small and thus reasonably affordable.
    What makes someone trailer trash is not where they live or how much they earn, but what they do (or, more often, fail to do) with the money they’ve got. Heck, most of the people I know who live in trailer parks (yes, we’ve got them in Mass) are richer than me in both household income and luxuries enjoyed. (I can’t even afford a mobile home myself) Of course, most of those same people are chronically cash-poor, but that’s because they spend too much of what they make. Recall the Charles Dickens quote above.
    So are you gonna surprise us all next week with more of the same exact schtik about that vast international conspiracy to force everyone into poverty?
    Ironically, if you do those cost-saving luxury-sacrificing things mentioned above, you will hurt the international greed-meisters right where they most feel it: the wallet. Seriously, nobody is getting rich off what I consume in food, gasoline, or electricity. Just go down to the bare necessities, don’t buy anything you don’t absolutely need, and voila! the bloodsuckers have lost another victim.

  310. asoka July 4, 2009 at 3:53 am #

    TECHNOFIX IN OFFGRID SOLAR ENERGY…
    EFFICIENCY INCREASE FROM 10% TO 58%
    The Chinese have been experimenting with small scale hybrid solar heating, chilling and power generation systems, including parabolic trough solar collectors with cavity receivers, a helical screw expander, a silica gel–water adsorption chiller, etc.
    The system they have been working with has the merits of effecting the power generation cycle at lower temperature levels with solar energy more efficiently and can provide both thermal energy and power for remote off-grid regions.
    The Chinese scientists evaluated the annual energy and exergy efficiency of the system under the climate of northwestern region of China. They found that the studied hybrid system has a higher solar energy conversion efficiency than a conventional solar thermal power generation system alone.
    The energy efficiency can be increased to 58.0% from 10.2%, and the exergy efficiency can be increased to 15.2% from 12.5%.
    The Chinese also did an economical analysis in terms of cost and payback period (PP) and found that the PP is about 18 years under present energy price conditions. The economic sensitivity analysis shows that if the interest rate decreases to 3% or energy price increase by 50%, PP will be less than 10 years.
    In practical terms, for example, the efficiency of the 1MWe solar thermal power plant now under construction at the foot of The Great Wall near Beijing can increase its efficiency according the the new findings.
    Nudge criticizes these kind of investigations by saying they are simulations or they are not yet scalable. But the Chinese are laying the foundation for a Great Leap Forward in solar power generation. I wouldn’t be surprised if they manage to use energy from solar power to build future solar power plants, creating an ever increasing supply of zero emission energy.
    Techno fix applications resulting from basic science research is part of the solution.
    SOURCE: “Modeling and simulation of the pioneer 1MW solar thermal central receiver system in China.” Renewable Energy: An International Journal 34, no. 11: 2437-2446

  311. eightm July 4, 2009 at 4:57 am #

    The “Free market” can be forced to create more supply than demand therefore decreasing home prices either to rent or buy. If the government or any private companies decided to build 10 million homes all across the USA in the most important urban areas where the jobs are, there would be more supply than demand for houses so the prices would go down. They could ask your 300 to 600 dollar a month rent for all these houses, for houses that go from 80 sq meters to 120 (from 1,000 sq feet to 2,000).
    It would cost about a trillion dollars to build them, at 100,000 dollars a pop. What is a trillion when governments and companies throw away many more trillions for bailouts, crazy wars in Afganistan and Irak, for crazy disfunctional health care where doctors and ponzi scheme insurance companies make loads of money, etc.. etc. ?
    It can be done, also in JAPAN (crazy country that throws away incredible money just to pay themselves interests), in the EU (another crazy area where a room in London costs half a million dollars), etc. It can be done, YES WE CAN.
    But all those people out there are full of HATE, they all suck, they find all kinds of excuses to beat up the weaker. What incredible thugs they all are, how they suck so much, they don’t want to build them to punish others.

  312. eightm July 4, 2009 at 4:58 am #

    The “Free market” can be forced to create more supply than demand therefore decreasing home prices either to rent or buy. If the government or any private companies decided to build 10 million homes all across the USA in the most important urban areas where the jobs are, there would be more supply than demand for houses so the prices would go down. They could ask your 300 to 600 dollar a month rent for all these houses, for houses that go from 80 sq meters to 120 (from 1,000 sq feet to 2,000).
    It would cost about a trillion dollars to build them, at 100,000 dollars a pop. What is a trillion when governments and companies throw away many more trillions for bailouts, crazy wars in Afganistan and Irak, for crazy disfunctional health care where doctors and ponzi scheme insurance companies make loads of money, etc.. etc. ?
    It can be done, also in JAPAN (crazy country that throws away incredible money just to pay themselves interests), in the EU (another crazy area where a room in London costs half a million dollars), etc. It can be done, YES WE CAN.
    But all those people out there are full of HATE, they all suck, they find all kinds of excuses to beat up the weaker. What incredible thugs they all are, how they suck so much, they don’t want to build them to punish others.

  313. Nudge July 4, 2009 at 6:18 am #

    8M, I’d happily believe what you wrote, but A) I’ve never seen the proof of it (a copy of the Greedy International Bankers Worldwide Takeover Plan will suffice), and B) why explain with greed that which is explainable by disconnected mass stupidity in many places?
    You’ve got an effect in search of a cause. Can you in fact connect the two?
    The one country that I know for sure tried the cheap-apartments-welfare-for-everyone approach was the former USSR. Rents were kept at ultra-low levels so that no one could be made homeless as happens in the west. Guess what? When the USSR collapsed, this low-rent public-ownership thing did in fact keep most people from being thrown out onto the street, as Dmitri Orlov notes in “Post-Soviet lessons for a Post-American century”, link below. However, this guaranteed-housing thing was no shield against the effects of the remaining aspects of the collapse. Link:
    http://www.altruists.org/f705
    8M .. if you would like to give up some of your creature comforts and go live under the sort of communism you espouse here, no one will stop you from traveling to Cuba these days and simply neglecting to return. Seriously, go for it if you really do believe in it. Personally, I think you’ll have a cushier time (for now anyway) if you remain in the United Parking Lot of America. Over in Cuba, the employment rate is much higher than it is here. You’d probably get put to work over there. Over here, it is very easy to get onto permanent unemployment / disability / SSI / whatever. Some 40% of the healthy 18-to-65yo set here does not participate in the work force:
    http://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.t01.htm
    (in the top block of numbers (total population) see the second column (May 2009) and the fifth line down for the employment-population ratio of 59.6%)
    (Asoka .. did you relocate yet? You can find my email addy at the other blog. Let’s meet sometime if you’re out this way.)

  314. Nudge July 4, 2009 at 7:20 am #

    (dummy post to dislodge the post left earlier, since this blog platform is totally fricking buggy)

  315. Nudge July 4, 2009 at 7:24 am #

    LOLz, note the time difference in those last two posts. The 6:18 one was still AWOL as of 7:20, but then a brief post to the system got them both to go through.
    JR, this site is pure bugware!! :(
    Did you write this code? ;)

  316. Danm July 4, 2009 at 7:25 am #

    8M:
    Honestly, using your logic all roads lead to Rome, don’t they? As in you just wanting a freebie.
    In one argument, you complain about the world’s injustices and on the other you say that government should force the markets to produce more supply than demand.
    Did you ever think that this market imbalance that you wish for is totally incompatible with world peace?

  317. eightm July 4, 2009 at 7:47 am #

    In the USA during the 1960s, a “capitalist country”, rents and also buying where often not more than 20 to 30 percent minimum pay. Minimum wage was from 600 to 800 dollars a month, rents often not more than 150 to 250 dollars a month, not even considering how cheap it was to buy. Well, what happened ? Same in crappy EU.
    So what gives ? Why is it so hard to build affordable homes either to rent or buy ? why do people hate this idea ? why are people so idiotic and sick that they just can’t accept the price of housing being appropriate to wages ? You are all really sick in your heads, all hateful, egotists, you all love to see millions of homeless, and call them white trash, trailer park trash, they are all turds, right ?
    What a trully sick civilization we have here…

  318. zsazsa July 4, 2009 at 9:11 am #

    “…they are all turds, right ?
    Wrong. You are. Only you. Not shut up and go away.

  319. Nudge July 4, 2009 at 10:33 am #

    8M, it is heartily amusing to witness the folly of you groping for explanations when in fact there are none, and none are necessary. Pay attention, please, just as you did not in school.
    A business transaction occurs when there is opportunity, means, motive, etc, and when the buyer and seller have in effect reached an agreement on the goods/services on the one hand and on the other hand the amount and form of the payment.
    There are of course times when a seller is “forced” to sell at below his wishing price because the market won’t bear it (ie, no one is willing to pay that particular wishing price) but he must absolutely earn some bread this week, and when the buyer is “forced” to buy at above his wishing price because the market doesn’t bear it (ie, no one is willing to sell at that particular wishing price) but he absolutely must buy whatever-it-is.
    The fact that rents do not exist anywhere in the UPL at your wishing prices tells you that your wishing prices are out of whack with the real economy. This fact most certainly does NOT tell you that the markets are run by greedy stupid egotists, hell-bent on making life a living torture for anyone not rich enough or white enough to meet their standards of whateverness.
    Huh, I see you still have a computer and internet access. Would it get you any closer to affording the apartment you /want/ if you were to sell the computer and cancel the net access?
    Somebody needs a little CFN love :)

  320. Nudge July 4, 2009 at 11:03 am #

    Ken, thank you for pointing out in your 7/3 2056 post that in fact rich people try to get even richer, and that everyone along the whole economic spectrum does the most to maximize his gain while minimizing his costs of doing so. Bravo. We’d have never figured that out without your excellent post on the subject.
    Not sure what else to say to 8M. I too wish I could pay $200/month for my 26-square-meter rental apartment, but I know from speaking with her (she lives nearby) that the lady who owns the building could not afford the mortgage on the building, or the oil for the building (heat and hot ware are included) at those rates. If she were to try to, it would rapidly deplete her savings just to offer these $750 apartments at a shade above one-quarter of their actual market value. All that would happen is that she’d lose the place, someone else would buy it, and then the new owner would raise rents back up to proper market level so as not to repeat the previous owner’s mistake.
    This is a perpetrator-less crime: nowhere in this scheme is anyone forcing anyone to do anything. For that matter, I am a tenant-at-will here; if I don’t like the apartment or the monthly rent, no one is forcing me from moving elsewhere. Likewise, no one is forcing the landlady to keep the rents at the level she does; these things merely cover her expenses and a tiny bit more. Likewise, no one is holding a gun to her head to force her to lower the rents to $200/month per apartment; no one would force the rest of that chain of events, even though it would probably happen as described.
    Show me the evil greedy world-takeover thugs in this picture, please.

  321. Laura Louzader July 4, 2009 at 1:11 pm #

    If the free market is “forced” or incentivized or otherwise skewed by government interventions, then it is no longer a free market, which is exactly my point.
    It is because of such interventions that the housing and credit rampage happened, and it created millions of surplus housing units.
    So why aren’t these millions of surplus condos and houses finding their true level? There is truly enough surplus here for rents to drop down to a third their current levels.
    That is not happening because our government is intervening to prop the rents and prices up, to prevent more defaults and somehow arrest the continued unraveling of the credit bubble, which would never have bloated to the insane proportions it did, were it not for government interventions. Interventions create the need for more interventions.
    I see concrete examples of the distortions created by gov’t policy around me every day. For example, Section 8 housing subsidies have helped levitate rents in deteriorating areas for 30 years, while serving only to aggravate the conditions that made the neighborhoods in question deteriorate to begin with. An acquaintance of mine is bagged in a number of SF homes in very poor Chicago neighborhoods that he grossly overpaid for at the bubble peak. He can’t collect rent on these dumps on a regular basis- had one tenant who didn’t pay rent for a year, has a constant turnover of really bad tenants in the others. Why? Because, in order to service his oversized mortgages, he must collect much more rent than the local traffic can bear- he needs to collect $800 to $1100 a month to cover the mortgages, taxes, and repairs on these ratholes, which prices are about 3X the rent the local residents can afford. So, what to do? SECTION 8 to the rescue!! With a voucher tenant, you know the rent will be paid.. by Uncle Sam. And you can collect a rent steeply over the local market, for HUD uses the area average for that size of dwelling, a figure arrived at by averaging rents for luxury neighborhoods in with middling and poor neighborhoods. That means he can collect $1300 a month on a Section 8 voucher for a place he’d be lucky to rent for $400 otherwise.
    Section 8 has done incredible damage, by skewing rents steeply northwards. Why rent to a picky tenant like me, who wants a well-serviced, attractive apartment in a well-kept building with nice neighbors, for $900 a month with utilities included, when you can make this apt into a 2-bed and rent it out to a Section 8 voucher tenant for $1200 a month without heat, based on area averages? It makes a slummy rental property much more valuable than it would be in a free market, for the price of the place is based on the rents it can collect. It also removes all incentive to maintain an attractive property with any level of amenity. The place has to meet certain standards to be eligible for voucher tenants, but good looking and well-landscaped are not among them.
    Other government programs and incentives are keeping the housing market elevated at levels far above what it would be at if these programs were sunset tomorrow. TARP is obviously preventing all the foreclosed inventory from being dumped on the market. If all the “market overhang” of empty houses and condos were put on the market, prices would drop another 60% from current levels at least. Get rid of the FHA financing at 3% down, and the tax deduction for mortgage interest, and the $8000 tax credit for first-time buyers, and all the GSEs and government agencies like Fannie, Freddie, and Ginnie that are there just to buy mortgages no one else would touch and that wouldn’t be written if they weren’t there to buy them, and housing will quickly become ultra-affordable, like about 35% of current prices.

  322. eightm July 4, 2009 at 2:53 pm #

    This is always the same confrontational responses the right wing gives when discussing these things: so you can’t find a job ? then it is your fault, you didn’t try hard enough, study hard enough, you don’t have the skills, you want too much money or you don’t want to work 12 hours a day, etc. You want cheap rents ? who is forcing you, go to another place, etc.
    Well guess what ? The table can be turned on all the white “rich” trash of landlords and doctors and lawyers, etc. A doctor in Indonesia makes 200 dollars a month, so why should I pay one in the USA 10,000 dollars a month ? What does the white trash have that is so special ? I can hire 50 in Indonesia for that price and they are damn good. So you don’t like it ? go work for another hospital, but wait maybe all hospitals will do the same. Just like all landlords and home owners can jack up the prices as much as they want, so can companies pull down wages as much as they want. Why not ? you don’t like it ? go work somewhere else, etc.
    The fact is that even the weak minorities that are disadvantaged have been brainwashed that all of this is OK, it is the “free market”. But what has been achieved is a very clever system where as soon as the majority of the population in the Western nations, USA, EU and JAPAN became homeowners, as soon as more than 55% became homeowners, all of a sudden cheap rents were no longer available. That is because the governments who went to power, “democratically”, voted by the homeowning majority found it very nice to squeeze the minority belonging to the weaker classes. The same can be done with labor, in fact the labor conditions, the wages and all will increasingly become worst and worst, there is this ethical justification that it is Ok to pay less and less workers, make them work 12 hours a day, why not ? if they don’t like it, they can change jobs, they can “choose”, only that all the jobs will have similar conditions.
    What any decent government would do is build homes, modest but livable in decent areas, maybe walking communities, etc. at 300 to 600 dollars a month rent, for the weaker classes. The rest of the markets are free to build any kind of homes to the richer, all the McMansions they want but give the weaker classes at least the basics. The same with health care, give at least the basics. But since the right wing hates the idea of giving the basics, then squeeze the weak out of homes and health care. And by the way, aren’t all those landlords that are making 10,000 dollars a year by simply renting out their homes freebies ? aren’t they getting free money for not doing anything ? And all the banks and all the thieves at wall street ? aren’t they trash getting money for free “not working” ? and doctors ? why should they make even more than 2,000 dollars a month ? isn’t that enough ? oh, I see they want free money, they are freebies, just like the white trailer trash. GET A CLUE, IDIOTS!

  323. eightm July 4, 2009 at 2:56 pm #

    This is always the same confrontational responses the right wing gives when discussing these things: so you can’t find a job ? then it is your fault, you didn’t try hard enough, study hard enough, you don’t have the skills, you want too much money or you don’t want to work 12 hours a day, etc. You want cheap rents ? who is forcing you, go to another place, etc.
    Well guess what ? The table can be turned on all the white “rich” trash of landlords and doctors and lawyers, etc. A doctor in Indonesia makes 200 dollars a month, so why should I pay one in the USA 10,000 dollars a month ? What does the white trash have that is so special ? I can hire 50 in Indonesia for that price and they are damn good. So you don’t like it ? go work for another hospital, but wait maybe all hospitals will do the same. Just like all landlords and home owners can jack up the prices as much as they want, so can companies pull down wages as much as they want. Why not ? you don’t like it ? go work somewhere else, etc.
    The fact is that even the weak minorities that are disadvantaged have been brainwashed that all of this is OK, it is the “free market”. But what has been achieved is a very clever system where as soon as the majority of the population in the Western nations, USA, EU and JAPAN became homeowners, as soon as more than 55% became homeowners, all of a sudden cheap rents were no longer available. That is because the governments who went to power, “democratically”, voted by the homeowning majority found it very nice to squeeze the minority belonging to the weaker classes. The same can be done with labor, in fact the labor conditions, the wages and all will increasingly become worst and worst, there is this ethical justification that it is Ok to pay less and less workers, make them work 12 hours a day, why not ? if they don’t like it, they can change jobs, they can “choose”, only that all the jobs will have similar conditions.
    What any decent government would do is build homes, modest but livable in decent areas, maybe walking communities, etc. at 300 to 600 dollars a month rent, for the weaker classes. The rest of the markets are free to build any kind of homes to the richer, all the McMansions they want but give the weaker classes at least the basics. The same with health care, give at least the basics. But since the right wing hates the idea of giving the basics, then squeeze the weak out of homes and health care. And by the way, aren’t all those landlords that are making 10,000 dollars a year by simply renting out their homes freebies ? aren’t they getting free money for not doing anything ? And all the banks and all the thieves at wall street ? aren’t they trash getting money for free “not working” ? and doctors ? why should they make even more than 2,000 dollars a month ? isn’t that enough ? oh, I see they want free money, they are freebies, just like the white trailer trash. GET A CLUE, IDIOTS!

  324. eightm July 4, 2009 at 2:58 pm #

    This is always the same confrontational responses the right wing gives when discussing these things: so you can’t find a job ? then it is your fault, you didn’t try hard enough, study hard enough, you don’t have the skills, you want too much money or you don’t want to work 12 hours a day, etc. You want cheap rents ? who is forcing you, go to another place, etc.
    Well guess what ? The table can be turned on all the white “rich” trash of landlords and doctors and lawyers, etc. A doctor in Indonesia makes 200 dollars a month, so why should I pay one in the USA 10,000 dollars a month ? What does the white trash have that is so special ? I can hire 50 in Indonesia for that price and they are damn good. So you don’t like it ? go work for another hospital, but wait maybe all hospitals will do the same. Just like all landlords and home owners can jack up the prices as much as they want, so can companies pull down wages as much as they want. Why not ? you don’t like it ? go work somewhere else, etc.
    The fact is that even the weak minorities that are disadvantaged have been brainwashed that all of this is OK, it is the “free market”. But what has been achieved is a very clever system where as soon as the majority of the population in the Western nations, USA, EU and JAPAN became homeowners, as soon as more than 55% became homeowners, all of a sudden cheap rents were no longer available. That is because the governments who went to power, “democratically”, voted by the homeowning majority found it very nice to squeeze the minority belonging to the weaker classes. The same can be done with labor, in fact the labor conditions, the wages and all will increasingly become worst and worst, there is this ethical justification that it is Ok to pay less and less workers, make them work 12 hours a day, why not ? if they don’t like it, they can change jobs, they can “choose”, only that all the jobs will have similar conditions.
    What any decent government would do is build homes, modest but livable in decent areas, maybe walking communities, etc. at 300 to 600 dollars a month rent, for the weaker classes. The rest of the markets are free to build any kind of homes to the richer, all the McMansions they want but give the weaker classes at least the basics. The same with health care, give at least the basics. But since the right wing hates the idea of giving the basics, then squeeze the weak out of homes and health care. And by the way, aren’t all those landlords that are making 10,000 dollars a year by simply renting out their homes freebies ? aren’t they getting free money for not doing anything ? And all the banks and all the thieves at wall street ? aren’t they trash getting money for free “not working” ? and doctors ? why should they make even more than 2,000 dollars a month ? isn’t that enough ? oh, I see they want free money, they are freebies, just like the white trailer trash. GET A CLUE, IDIOTS!

  325. Murphy July 4, 2009 at 4:45 pm #

    Great post Jim, the same spectacle for Jacko is going on up here in Canada, our culture is as degenerate as yours and our economy is headed off the same cliff, albeit with less attempt to re-animate and stimulate the dying corpse (Canadians are sometimes slow to catch on but eventually they figure it out).
    A very sad spectacle indeed.

  326. Murphy July 4, 2009 at 4:46 pm #

    Great post Jim, the same spectacle for Jacko is going on up here in Canada, our culture is as degenerate as yours and our economy is headed off the same cliff, albeit with less attempt to re-animate and stimulate the dying corpse (Canadians are sometimes slow to catch on but eventually they figure it out).
    A very sad spectacle indeed.

  327. abbeysbooks July 4, 2009 at 5:27 pm #

    Please stop griping and understand. It is imperative for the masses of people to feel insecure: poor health; changing homes; no money etc. A strong safety net leads to assertive citizens who do not fear their government. People who are not afraid are not easy to control.
    If you are insecure about anything at all it leaks into other areas of your life. And it becomes a chronic anxiety feeling. That’s what they want. How else would they sell change and hope on the cum.

  328. abbeysbooks July 4, 2009 at 6:05 pm #

    Laura it sounds fine the way you present it. But the entire economy has to be free for your argument to work, and it isn’t and is not going to be. Everything is connected to everything else in this system, so while your faulty reasoning seems logical, it is not. But that’s what is counted on.
    It’s like putting someone on Lipitor who eats greasy sausage in the morning, hamburgers (fried) in the afternoon and pie at night. What’s the point in medicare paying for the Lipitor when the food eaten counteracts it. Just so the person can keep eating the food that is killing them. But they are free to choose, right?
    And if you think about those first derivatives they really sound good. Turn each mortgage into confetti and mix it in with thousands (millions?) of other confetti turned mortgages. One mortgage default and the loss is so infintesimal(sp?) that the holder will never lose anything substantial. Wow is that great or what? But it’s as Marcuse says: The unregulated free market is going to see how they can exploit this new thing. They did and they did.
    For example: I had a recently bought a house at 25K and I started getting multiple emails in my box every day because I had once checked out one of the refinancing sites. I no longer wanted to live where I was living (neighbor killed my beloved dog)so I immediately thought of refinancing and walking (dumping the house) with the cash after my mortgage was paid off. My new appraisal said 45K so I was happy with what I could walk away with in two years or so. But my house was zoned agricultural and it was a no go.
    Now what I am getting at was I was not the only one who saw this opportunity. I know hundreds of thousands did just what I wanted to do. Of course many saw it as an opportunity to live in a very high priced house for very affordable no interest payments for 3 years or so until the the trap snapped shut. But there were thousands just interested in living in a really nice place until the bomb fell. They knew it all the time. And then there are those who just wanted a home and didn’t get the math since almost all americans are math illiterate as well as poor readers, and these are the ones who got caught holding the long straw, the not empty chair in the game, etc.
    The banks won’t negotiate the mortgage down, the equity is not equal to the mortgage, and when it is sold at auction It usually goes for much less than the owner tried to negotiate for. Dumb, stupid and typical.
    The expectations are going to have to be wrung out of everyone’s hide before a new paradigm can begin. This will not be fast as JHK thinks but will be a long endless fall first. And people will begin adjusting along the way if they want to survive.

  329. asoka July 4, 2009 at 8:14 pm #

    All this whining about high rents, $1200 a month rents, is just white nuclear family complaint, the complaint of individualists brainwashed in WASP rugged individualist, Yankee independence culture.
    The Mexican brothers don’t have that problem, living 12 in a house, paying $100 a month each, working hard in construction, agriculture, etc., sending $1,000 a month back to Mexico (God bless Western Union), and waiting for the day when the land and “casita” in Mexico is paid for to get the hell out of this land of complainers and live happily ever after in Mexico.
    Never wanted to come here illegally in the first place only economic necessity made it necessary to live among the racists and suffer the discrimination just long enough to leave… the sooner the better… and don’t mind if the door does or does not hit me on the way out. Adios pinches gringos.
    “So long, it’s been good to exploit yuh.
    So long, it’s been good to exploit yuh,
    And I got to be driftin’ along.”

  330. asoka July 4, 2009 at 8:47 pm #

    dummy post for buggy software

  331. Jimini July 4, 2009 at 8:49 pm #

    Eightm,
    Agreed. Perhaps a little more “truth” than can be digested in one bite.
    Jimini

  332. asoka July 4, 2009 at 8:56 pm #

    testing

  333. Jimini July 4, 2009 at 9:07 pm #

    Eightm,
    Agreed. Perhaps a little more “truth” than can be digested in one bite.
    Jimini

  334. Laura Louzader July 4, 2009 at 9:41 pm #

    Asoka,your Mexican bros are playing right into the hands of our exploiter crony capitalists.
    I could live really cheaply if I were willing to sacrifice every basic decency. Hell, why not move into a 3 room apt. with 19 other women? That would break down to about $60 a month, plus $2 each for the electric bill. Hell, we could share CLOTHES and save still more money.
    Our ownership class would LOVE for all Americans to be so pliable. Just pack as many bunkbeds into a cramped apt as possible, eat whatever will make you feel filled, and pump out lots and lots of babies, the next slave-labor working-class. They will live still more cheaply, like in tents under overpasses.
    But failing the above, our ownership class will happily grab all the subsidies it can get, like Section 8 subsides for a building full of empty slum apartments, HUD loans to build more empty condo towers, and all the junk mortgages the FHA can write to fill their overpriced, trash subdivision houses and rehab condos.
    Socialism and communism have been tried, and have failed. The only thing that can be said for them is that populations in countries with these types of regimes learn to be very flexible and to cope with horrible living conditions, and shortages of almost every essential commodity.
    But the poster who commented that for free enterprise to work, the country has to be completely free, is correct, and it’s my point exactly. For the past 90 years, or even longer, this country has been semi-statist, and the degree of our socialism is the degree of our failure. It started with land grants back in the late 19th century so that Union Pacific could build a transcontinental railroad that otherwise would never have been feasible, let alone justified, just to move goods and settlers out to places that should have remained unsettled. The Feds induced, by same, hundreds of thousands of settlers to move from comfortable Eastern towns and cities out to areas that are almost uninhabitable, and which their descendants, reduced to poverty and ignorance by the multiple hardships of trying to scratch out a living in the wastes of Nebraska and Oklahoma, had to leave in the dust bowl 30s.
    The Fed then created the credit bubble of the twenties, with results we all know, then “corrected” the situation produced by an array of programs, including welfare for dependent mothers and children (to get women out of the workforce), socialized housing programs, and a government push to build highways and steer the population out to the suburbs, with unforeseen consequences we are dealing with now, and failing.
    It was government policy to destroy the cities in favor of the suburbs, so that ten years later policy makers could be wringing their hands over the condition of the cities and the further impoverishment and degradation of minorities left stranded in deteriorating neighborhoods cut off from all opportunity by the exodus of commerce and industry along with the better-off population. So, along come all the costly, badly conceived “urban renewal” programs that only foisted more really atrocious development on us
    Now, our leaders are stripping what remains of the middle class of its last wealth to bail out the financial concerns who their policies enabled and encouraged in the rampage of debt creation and asset inflation that drove us to this point, and I only hope I and my friends are not soon reduced to living 20 to a substandard, overpriced apt. Or under a bridge somewhere.

  335. mayibefrank July 4, 2009 at 9:45 pm #

    Simple wealth redistribution.
    It seems there is a trend in the U.S. for heavily populated areas (N.Y./N.E. – California/S.W.) to utilize derivative-backed ponzi style financial vehicles to create bubble wealth and then call upon the rest of the taxpayers to “bail them out”. This is prima facie evidence of forced wealth redistribution via heavy lobbying efforts and taxpayer funded “bailouts”.
    Everyone, keep a very close eye on the next derivative vehicle coming out of California/N.Y./etc. – the CMO or collateralized mortgage obligation. Folks are jumping on this bandwagon at an alarming rate to secure capital with a promise to pay “next year”. Large sums of money are being borrowed against via this instrument … and it is gaining a tremendous amount of momentum.

  336. mayibefrank July 4, 2009 at 10:14 pm #

    Simple wealth redistribution.
    It seems there is a trend in the U.S. for heavily populated areas (N.Y./N.E. – California/S.W.) to utilize derivative-backed ponzi style financial vehicles to create bubble wealth and then call upon the rest of the taxpayers to “bail them out”. This is prima facie evidence of forced wealth redistribution via heavy lobbying efforts and taxpayer funded “bailouts”.
    Everyone, keep a very close eye on the next derivative vehicle coming out of California/N.Y./etc. – the CMO or collateralized mortgage obligation. Folks are jumping on this bandwagon at an alarming rate to secure capital with a promise to pay “next year”. Large sums of money are being borrowed against via this instrument … and it is gaining a tremendous amount of momentum.

  337. mayibefrank July 4, 2009 at 10:15 pm #

    Simple wealth redistribution.
    It seems there is a trend in the U.S. for heavily populated areas (N.Y./N.E. – California/S.W.) to utilize derivative-backed ponzi style financial vehicles to create bubble wealth and then call upon the rest of the taxpayers to “bail them out”. This is prima facie evidence of forced wealth redistribution via heavy lobbying efforts and taxpayer funded “bailouts”.
    Everyone, keep a very close eye on the next derivative vehicle coming out of California/N.Y./etc. – the CMO or collateralized mortgage obligation. Folks are jumping on this bandwagon at an alarming rate to secure capital with a promise to pay “next year”. Large sums of money are being borrowed against via this instrument … and it is gaining a tremendous amount of momentum.

  338. FARfetched July 4, 2009 at 10:44 pm #

    I don’t get what the big deal is. Yeah, MT seems to be as bad as TypoPad (or as bad as it was before they actually got around to fixing the worst problems) — and it doesn’t paginate — but even with TypoPad it was possible to work around the problems. This works for me:
    1) Write your comment, copy the whole thing to be sure, and hit Submit.
    2a) If you get the confirmation page, click the link to get back to this page. Chances are you’ll see your comment.
    2b) If you get the blank page, hit the Back button. Quite often, your comment will show up.
    3) If you don’t see your comment, scroll up a little to make sure someone else didn’t simul-post with you, then hit Refresh.
    4) If you’re sure it’s not there, paste your comment (you copied it in Step 1 like I said, right?) into a text editor, wait a few minutes, then hit Refresh again. (I’ve never had to go this far.)
    5) Try clearing your cache & deleting cookies associated with kunstler.com.
    Good luck, y’all, and hope you had a happy Fourth!

  339. asoka July 5, 2009 at 4:24 am #

    Whiner, quitter Palin couldn’t take the heat in Alaska… thank God McCain’s error never got close to the Presidency.
    Palin is irresponsible, ignorant, a traitor to Alaska who did not fulfill the oath she took, and incapable of governing Wasilla, let alone Alaska.
    “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of Alaska, and that I will faithfully discharge my duties as Governor to the best of my ability.”
    It doesn’t say “to the best of my ability, unless I decide to quit.”
    I guess a multi-million dollar book contract and traveling around the country making speeches is more appealing than fulfilling one’s duty that one has taken an oath swearing to “faithfully discharge”

  340. asoka July 5, 2009 at 4:33 am #

  341. asoka July 5, 2009 at 5:11 am #

    Laura, even though it goes against your ideology you are going to have to stop saying things like this:
    “Socialism and communism have been tried, and have failed. The only thing that can be said for them is that populations in countries with these types of regimes learn to be very flexible and to cope with horrible living conditions, and shortages of almost every essential commodity.”
    This is pure rubbish and several countries which have socialist governments and higher standards of living than the United States would take issue with you.
    The democratic socialist governments of Sweden, Finland, Norway, Denmark, etc. do not have populations with “horrible living conditions” and you should stop saying socialism has been tried and has failed.
    Democratic socialism (what Sweden calls “the middle way” to socialism) has not failed. It has created a country with a standard of living superior to the United States.
    People pay more taxes to the government than in the United States. Bigger government means more security for people in terms of health, housing, employment, and education.
    For example, in Denmark you can study up to and including a doctorate and not pay tuition.
    These socialist governments believe in taking a huge chunk of people’s earnings (I know you hate that idea) and then investing the money in people’s education, health, and well being.
    The USA believes in smaller government, less taxation, and let people fend for themselves in a dog-eat-dog capitalist system.
    Which is the more humane system?
    Please stop saying socialism has been tried and failed when it is indisputable that it has been tried and has created societies more civilized and with a higher standard of living, better educational levels, better health care, etc. than the United States.
    Big socialist government even turns out to be more efficient than the USA capitalist system. For example, see the article in this week’s The Economist (June 27-July 3, 2009) on health reform (pp. 75-78).
    The USA has the most expensive health care (with the largetst private sector providers) yet the quality of care does not come close to Switzerland, Canada, Netherlands, France, Germany, Sweden, etc.
    Even the OECD countries come out ahead of the USA. Countries like Mexico and Turkey have superior health care. The USA falls behind the OECD (developing countries) in important measures like infant mortality rate or death rate from haemorrhagic strokes. The USA is paying much more but the private health insurance system is inefficient. The public/socialized health care systems come out better. Big government systems are more efficient.
    So don’t keep insisting that the (nonexistent) free capitalist market is the answer.
    Bigger government and higher tax rates are the answer. Obama is falling way short on both counts. And the USA will suffer for it, falling further and further behind the democratic socialist countries and even the OECD countries.

  342. asoka July 5, 2009 at 5:14 am #

  343. asoka July 5, 2009 at 5:25 am #

  344. asoka July 5, 2009 at 5:26 am #

  345. Nudge July 5, 2009 at 9:02 am #

    Actually, Asoka, I would label Palin the ultimate guarantee of Democratic election success in the post-Bush43 era. While she gets the highest approval ratings out of the Republican candidates among the party base, she also appeals best only to the stereotypical bigoted angry white bible-thumping gun owners. The rest of us (including the centrist Republicans) find her to be a gaudy political circus show and little else.
    Possibly the only things that could enhance her guaranteed-Democratic-win effect, while still egging on the whack job minority that loves her dearly, would be Palin support testimonial videos from Ted Kaczinski, Timothy McVeigh, Scott Roeder, and of course the raspy, Darth-Vader-voiced wheelchair-bound Dick Cheney, still convulsively clutching a predator drone joystick given to him as a souvenir.
    Heck, I may switch to Republican just to vote for her in the primaries.

  346. Nudge July 5, 2009 at 9:34 am #

    (obligatory short post to dislodge the one left 20+ minutes ago that still hasn’t appeared, thanks to the bugware running this site)

  347. Danm July 5, 2009 at 9:52 am #

    Simple wealth redistribution.
    ———–
    To the contrary. It’s accelerated wealth concentration.
    The elite creates businesses with no long term prospects. It leverages leverage them to maximize short term cash flow in order to boost the market valuation. These go under and the government bails out the bonds.
    So in the end, we have no business and the elite ends up with a nice wad of cash in their investment portfolios.

  348. Danm July 5, 2009 at 9:55 am #

    Simple wealth redistribution
    ————-
    Quite the contrary. It’s accelerated wealth concentration.
    The elite start up businesses with no long term prospects. Leverage them up in order to boost short term cash flow, thus valuations.
    When these go under, governement bails them out so we end up with no firm but the elite have a wad of cash in their investment portfolios.

  349. Danm July 5, 2009 at 9:56 am #

    Simple wealth redistribution
    ————-
    Quite the contrary. It’s accelerated wealth concentration.
    The elite start up businesses with no long term prospects. Leverage them up in order to boost short term cash flow, thus valuations.
    When these go under, governement bails them out so we end up with no firm but the elite have a wad of cash in their investment portfolios.

  350. Nudge July 5, 2009 at 9:57 am #

    (second reminder post to dislodge the post left nearly an hour ago, which is still AWOL)

  351. Danm July 5, 2009 at 9:59 am #

    Simple wealth redistribution
    ————-
    Quite the contrary. It’s accelerated wealth concentration.
    The elite start up businesses with no long term prospects. Leverage them up in order to boost short term cash flow, thus valuations.
    When these go under, governement bails them out so we end up with no firm but the elite have a wad of cash in their investment portfolios.

  352. The Bono July 5, 2009 at 10:25 am #

    To paraphrase: “Michael was black. What do you expect from blacks, anyway, James?”
    Lessee, what else – when I fart it smells like a McDonald’s fastfood kitchen.
    As I watched the illegal immigrant forced to
    spray insectides for $1/hour at one of the countless capitalist pig banks despoiling my town, I was reminded of Americans murdering innocent Native American oprhans and widows here long ago.
    The booger I pulled from my nose looks just like Florida that banker Joos stole from Castro.
    It rained here on the 4th of July. Haha. America’s own global warming doused the globally warming fireworks celebration of its murdering innocent Native American oprhans and widows long ago.
    Boogers are caused by airborne chemicals made in USA.
    Michael Jackson, typical American tragedy. James Kunslter, one-note non-wonder. Hey, another typical American, he.
    (And “Kunstler” is a Joo name… you know how they are…)

  353. The Bono July 5, 2009 at 10:26 am #

    To paraphrase: “Michael was black. What do you expect from blacks, anyway, James?”
    Lessee, what else – when I fart it smells like a McDonald’s fastfood kitchen.
    As I watched the illegal immigrant forced to
    spray insectides for $1/hour at one of the countless capitalist pig banks despoiling my town, I was reminded of Americans murdering innocent Native American oprhans and widows here long ago.
    The booger I pulled from my nose looks just like Florida that banker Joos stole from Castro.
    It rained here on the 4th of July. Haha. America’s own global warming doused the globally warming fireworks celebration of its murdering innocent Native American oprhans and widows long ago.
    Boogers are caused by airborne chemicals made in USA.
    Michael Jackson, typical American tragedy. James Kunslter, one-note non-wonder. Hey, another typical American, he.
    (And “Kunstler” is a Joo name… you know how they are…)

  354. asoka July 5, 2009 at 10:27 am #

    POSTING NOTE: I WAITED FIVE HOURS FOR THIS TO APPEAR BEFORE REPOSTING. I REFRESHED, I CLEARED THE CACHE, COOKIES, ETC. AND STILL NO POST.
    Laura, even though it goes against your ideology you are going to have to stop saying things like this:
    “Socialism and communism have been tried, and have failed. The only thing that can be said for them is that populations in countries with these types of regimes learn to be very flexible and to cope with horrible living conditions, and shortages of almost every essential commodity.”
    This is pure rubbish and several countries which have socialist governments and higher standards of living than the United States would take issue with you.
    The democratic socialist governments of Sweden, Finland, Norway, Denmark, etc. do not have populations with “horrible living conditions” and you should stop saying socialism has been tried and has failed.
    Democratic socialism (what Sweden calls “the middle way” to socialism) has not failed. It has created a country with a standard of living superior to the United States.
    People pay more taxes to the government than in the United States. Bigger government means more security for people in terms of health, housing, employment, and education.
    For example, in Denmark you can study up to and including a doctorate and not pay tuition.
    These socialist governments believe in taking a huge chunk of people’s earnings (I know you hate that idea) and then investing the money in people’s education, health, and well being.
    The USA believes in smaller government, less taxation, and let people fend for themselves in a dog-eat-dog capitalist system.
    Which is the more humane system?
    Please stop saying socialism has been tried and failed when it is indisputable that it has been tried and has created societies more civilized and with a higher standard of living, better educational levels, better health care, etc. than the United States.
    Big socialist government even turns out to be more efficient than the USA capitalist system. For example, see the article in this week’s The Economist (June 27-July 3, 2009) on health reform (pp. 75-78).
    The USA has the most expensive health care (with the largetst private sector providers) yet the quality of care does not come close to Switzerland, Canada, Netherlands, France, Germany, Sweden, etc.
    Even the OECD countries come out ahead of the USA. Countries like Mexico and Turkey have superior health care. The USA falls behind the OECD (developing countries) in important measures like infant mortality rate or death rate from haemorrhagic strokes. The USA is paying much more but the private health insurance system is inefficient. The public/socialized health care systems come out better. Big government systems are more efficient.
    So don’t keep insisting that the (nonexistent) free capitalist market is the answer.
    Bigger government and higher tax rates are the answer. Obama is falling way short on both counts. And the USA will suffer for it, falling further and further behind the democratic socialist countries and even the OECD countries.

  355. The Bono July 5, 2009 at 10:28 am #

    To paraphrase: “Michael was black. What do you expect from blacks, anyway, James?”
    Lessee, what else – when I fart it smells like a McDonald’s fastfood kitchen.
    As I watched the illegal immigrant forced to
    spray insectides for $1/hour at one of the countless capitalist pig banks despoiling my town, I was reminded of Americans murdering innocent Native American oprhans and widows here long ago.
    The booger I pulled from my nose looks just like Florida that banker Joos stole from Castro.
    It rained here on the 4th of July. Haha. America’s own global warming doused the globally warming fireworks celebration of its murdering innocent Native American oprhans and widows long ago.
    Boogers are caused by airborne chemicals made in USA.
    Michael Jackson, typical American tragedy. James Kunslter, one-note non-wonder. Hey, another typical American, he.
    (And “Kunstler” is a Joo name… you know how they are…)
    Buy my books, buy my books.

  356. The Bono July 5, 2009 at 10:29 am #

    To paraphrase: Michael was black. What do you expect from blacks, anyway?
    Lessee, what else – when I fart it smells like a McDonald’s fastfood kitchen.
    And as I watched the illegal immigrant forced to
    spray insectides for $1/hour at one of the countless capitalist pig banks despoiling my town, I was reminded of Americans murdering innocent Native American oprhans and widows here long ago.
    The booger I pulled from my nose looks just like Florida that banker Joos stole from Castro.
    It rained here on the 4th of July. Haha. America’s own global warming doused the globally warming fireworks celebration of its murdering innocent Native American oprhans and widows long ago.
    Boogers are caused by airborne chemicals made in USA.
    Michael Jackson, typical American tragedy. James Kunslter, one-note non-wonder. Hey, another typical American, he.
    (And “Kunstler” is a Joo name… you know how they are…)
    Buy my books, buy my books.

  357. The Bono July 5, 2009 at 10:31 am #

    To paraphrase: Michael was black. What do you expect from blacks, anyway?
    What else – when I fart it smells like a McDonald’s fastfood kitchen.
    And as I watched the illegal immigrant forced to
    spray insectides for $1/hour at one of the countless capitalist pig banks despoiling my town, I was reminded of Americans murdering innocent Native American oprhans and widows here long ago.
    The booger I pulled from my nose looks just like Florida that banker Joos stole from Castro.
    It rained here on the 4th of July. America’s own global warming doused the globally warming fireworks celebration of its murdering innocent Native American oprhans and widows.
    Boogers are caused by airborne chemicals made in USA.
    Michael Jackson, typical American tragedy. James Kunslter, one-note non-wonder. Hey, another typical American, he.
    (And “Kunstler” is a Joo name… you know how they are…)
    Buy my books, buy my books.

  358. The Bono July 5, 2009 at 10:33 am #

    To paraphrase: Michael was black. What do you expect from blacks, anyway?
    Michael Jackson, typical American tragedy. James Kunslter, one-note non-wonder. Hey, another typical American, he.
    (And “Kunstler” is a Joo name… you know how they are…)
    Buy my books, buy my books.

  359. The Bono July 5, 2009 at 10:34 am #

    To paraphrase: Michael was black. What do you expect from blacks, anyway?
    What else – when I fart it smells like a McDonald’s fastfood kitchen.
    And as I watched the illegal immigrant forced to
    spray insectides for $1/hour at one of the countless capitalist pig banks despoiling my town, I was reminded of Americans murdering innocent Native American oprhans and widows here long ago.
    The booger I pulled from my nose looks just like Florida that banker Joos stole from Castro.
    It rained here on the 4th of July. America’s own global warming doused the globally warming fireworks celebration of its murdering innocent Native American oprhans and widows.
    Boogers are caused by airborne chemicals made in USA.
    Michael Jackson, typical American tragedy. James Kunslter, one-note non-wonder. Hey, another typical American, he.
    (And “Kunstler” is a Joo name… you know how they are…)
    Buy my books, buy my books.

  360. The Bono July 5, 2009 at 11:10 am #

    To paraphrase: Michael was black. What do you expect from blacks, anyway?
    What else – when I fart it smells like a McDonald’s fastfood kitchen.
    And as I watched the illegal immigrant forced to
    spray insectides for $1/hour at one of the countless capitalist pig banks despoiling my town, I was
    reminded of Americans murdering innocent Native American oprhans and widows here long ago.
    The booger I pulled from my nose looks just like Florida that banker Joos stole from Castro.
    It rained here on the 4th of July. America’s own global warming doused the globally warming
    fireworks celebration of its murdering innocent Native American oprhans and widows.
    Boogers are caused by airborne chemicals made in USA.
    Michael Jackson, typical American tragedy. James Kunslter, one-note non-wonder. Hey, another
    typical American, he.
    (And “Kunstler” is a Joo name… you know how they are…)
    Buy my books, buy my books.

  361. The Bono July 5, 2009 at 11:11 am #

    To paraphrase: Michael was black. What do you expect from blacks, anyway?
    What else – when I fart it smells like a McDonald’s fastfood kitchen.
    And as I watched the illegal immigrant forced to
    spray insectides for $1/hour at one of the countless capitalist pig banks despoiling my town, I was
    reminded of Americans murdering innocent Native American oprhans and widows here long ago.
    The booger I pulled from my nose looks just like Florida that banker Joos stole from Castro.
    It rained here on the 4th of July. America’s own global warming doused the globally warming
    fireworks celebration of its murdering innocent Native American oprhans and widows.
    Boogers are caused by airborne chemicals made in USA.
    Michael Jackson, typical American tragedy. James Kunslter, one-note non-wonder. Hey, another
    typical American, he.
    (And “Kunstler” is a Joo name… you know how they are…)
    Buy my books, buy my books.

  362. budizwiser July 5, 2009 at 11:21 am #

    One important point about this Independence Day weekend is that it represents one of the few times in history that self-interested parties continue to successfully rule in the face of an ever downward spiral for most Americans.
    Although we can’t aren’t to the point of the austerities caused by the Great Depression – give this mess a little more time.
    As JK, so correctly pointed out last week – we can’t even get any “patriotic talk” about fraud and corruption on the radar screen. To hear our President talk, you’d think we’ve reached a new “business as usual” plateau.
    And again, as JK points out this week, with the turn of a calender page, two-dozen States become bankrupt over night.
    I guess we’ll make it through July and August, and maybe September, but by October, the idiots on the idiot-box ought to start noticing something’s wrong.
    What’s next? India’s bailing on dollars, when do we go to the IOU currency standard?

  363. budizwiser July 5, 2009 at 11:23 am #

    One important point about this Independence Day weekend is that it represents one of the few times in history that self-interested parties continue to successfully rule in the face of an ever downward spiral for most Americans.
    Although we can’t aren’t to the point of the austerities caused by the Great Depression – give this mess a little more time.
    As JK, so correctly pointed out last week – we can’t even get any “patriotic talk” about fraud and corruption on the radar screen. To hear our President talk, you’d think we’ve reached a new “business as usual” plateau.
    And again, as JK points out this week, with the turn of a calender page, two-dozen States become bankrupt over night.
    I guess we’ll make it through July and August, and maybe September, but by October, the idiots on the idiot-box ought to start noticing something’s wrong.
    What’s next? India’s bailing on dollars, when do we go to the IOU currency standard?

  364. The Bono July 5, 2009 at 11:59 am #

    To paraphrase: Michael was black. What do you expect from blacks, anyway?
    What else – when I fart it smells like a McDonald’s fastfood kitchen.
    And as I watched the illegal immigrant forced to
    spray insectides for $1/hour at one of the countless capitalist pig banks despoiling my town, I was reminded of Americans murdering innocent Native American oprhans and widows here long ago.
    The booger I pulled from my nose looks just like Florida that banker Joos stole from Castro.
    It rained here on the 4th of July. America’s own global warming doused the globally warming fireworks celebration of its murdering innocent Native American oprhans and widows.
    Boogers are caused by airborne chemicals made in USA.
    Michael Jackson, typical American tragedy. James Kunslter, one-note non-wonder. Hey, another typical American, he.
    (And “Kunstler” is a Joo name… you know how they are…)
    Buy my books, buy my books.

  365. The Bono July 5, 2009 at 12:00 pm #

    To paraphrase: Michael was black. What do you expect from blacks, anyway?
    Michael Jackson, typical American tragedy. James Kunslter, one-note non-wonder. Hey, another typical American, he.
    (And “Kunstler” is a Joo name… you know how they are…)
    Buy my books, buy my books.

  366. The Bono July 5, 2009 at 12:01 pm #

    To paraphrase: Michael was black. What do you expect from blacks, anyway?
    What else – when I fart it smells like a McDonald’s fastfood kitchen.
    And as I watched the illegal immigrant forced to
    spray insectides for $1/hour at one of the countless capitalist pig banks despoiling my town, I was reminded of Americans murdering innocent Native American oprhans and widows here long ago.
    The booger I pulled from my nose looks just like Florida that banker Joos stole from Castro.
    It rained here on the 4th of July. America’s own global warming doused the globally warming fireworks celebration of its murdering innocent Native American oprhans and widows.
    Boogers are caused by airborne chemicals made in USA.
    Michael Jackson, typical American tragedy. James Kunslter, one-note non-wonder. Hey, another typical American, he.
    (And “Kunstler” is a Joo name… you know how they are…)
    Buy my books, buy my books.

  367. The Bono July 5, 2009 at 1:08 pm #

    Kunstler is “the man in the mirror,” the gigantic, floundering Narcissus, sailing into the stormy seas of history.
    Buy my books, buy my books….

  368. The Bono July 5, 2009 at 2:05 pm #

    Buy my books, buy my books

  369. Janie Jones July 5, 2009 at 2:34 pm #

    Excellent commentary!
    Some other from Whistler’s Pique Newsmagazine:
    Lessons from Michael:
    “There are even less than six degrees of separation between many in the valley and the late Michael Jackson.
    Michael was well known for his prolific frivolous spending habits of $30 to $40 million a year and as a consequence had run up debts of $270 million by 2005 with Bank of America. Jackson’s main assets were his Neverland Ranch and a 50 per cent ownership in his music publishing company, which owns valuable rights to over 200 songs of the Beatles.
    But during this period his trial on child sexual abuse charges severely curtailed his own earning power and his loans were looking less than wholesome – in stepped our old friend Fortress and bought the loans from the bank, likely at a steep discount. Fortress refinanced the loans, upping the principal to $300 million and reducing the interest payments, but by 2008 with cash requirements not being met, they moved to take possession of Neverland and conduct a foreclosure auction.
    Fortunately for Fortress another hedge fund, Colony Capital, stepped up to the plate and took over Fortress’s problem. Colony became the major shareholder of Neverland, with Jackson maintaining a 35 per cent interest.
    Colony also owns the Las Vegas Hilton and plans were afoot for Michael to do a Celine Dion-type of show at the hotel over an extended period of time.
    Then before this took place the 50 London performances were announced, and this was to be an even better way for Michael’s debt to stave off the hedge fund’s cash requirements.
    Even in death Michael may not be out of the grasp of Colony Capital, with rumours circulating that Colony is promoting burying Jackson in Neverland and turning it into a Graceland type memorial site. However, this may be easier said than done as there are laws about being buried in one’s own backyard.
    So if you work for the mountain and curse the day when Fortress took control of Intrawest, loading it up with debt, making work tougher, almost working you to death, then you are not alone. Poor Michael had been in the clutches of the hedge funds for five years before his body could not take it any more.
    Is there a lesson to be learned by our mayor and the muni council in all this? I believe so, as they should take much greater care in accumulating debts from spending on frivolous items such as fancy jackets, medallions for “special VIPS,” new fire trucks and final Olympic Hockey tickets for “the chosen few.” As with Michael, we are setting ourselves up to be on the debt treadmill which could threaten to kill the goose that laid the golden eggs that created this great community in the first place.”
    Lennox McNeely
    Whistler B.C.
    http://www.piquenewsmagazine.com/pique/index.php?cat=C_LTE&content=Letters+1627

  370. Laura Louzader July 5, 2009 at 3:15 pm #

    I agree with you absolutely on Palin, Asoka. The talk show circuit is the proper place for this fool woman. She can forget about the presidency. People aren’t THAT dumb out here.
    It sickens me to hear RePugnants like Palin pontificating on “Free Enterprise” and posture as libertarians, while supporting socially regressive legislation and initiatives. Like, since when has Alaska been dependent on its own efforts and only on its own productivity? This little state has been the beneficiary of an excessive amount of pork relative to NY and other states that pay way more in federal income taxes.
    It amuses me when some politician from one of the Pork Welfare States talk about free enterprise, usually in the same breath with “god fearin” and other buzz phrases alluding to their excessive religiosity. It usually turns out that such places are more dependent upon the federal dole that anyone else.

  371. scott July 5, 2009 at 4:06 pm #

    India Joins Russia, China in Questioning U.S. Dollar Dominance
    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601091&sid=aR7yfqUwTb4M
    Just another one of those “dollar hegemony” stories that catches my eye. U.S. high consumption rates are subsidized from the dollar being used as the “hard currency” for settling international debts. Major commodities including oil are bought and sold in U.S. dollars. I have always had the expectation that once global capacity for growth had been reached due to PO, that U.S. dollar hegemony would be challenged.
    As long as the charade of “infinite growth” can be sustained, everyone is happy because more and more of everything can be produced and distributed. Put hard limits on production and distribution rates and suddenly we are back to a “zero sum game”. I imagine those central bankers from China, Russia and India know whats up with oil and know that if they want to stay in power, subsidizing U.S. consumption has to go if they have any chance at equitable distribution of finite resources.
    Don’t know of any examples of global hegemonic currencies being replaced without a war and this one will probably be no different. Not enen sure there is even a comparable precedent but not likely to be different from regional examples throughout history.

  372. scott July 5, 2009 at 4:07 pm #

    India Joins Russia, China in Questioning U.S. Dollar Dominance
    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601091&sid=aR7yfqUwTb4M
    Just another one of those “dollar hegemony” stories that catches my eye. U.S. high consumption rates are subsidized from the dollar being used as the “hard currency” for settling international debts. Major commodities including oil are bought and sold in U.S. dollars. I have always had the expectation that once global capacity for growth had been reached due to PO, that U.S. dollar hegemony would be challenged.
    As long as the charade of “infinite growth” can be sustained, everyone is happy because more and more of everything can be produced and distributed. Put hard limits on production and distribution rates and suddenly we are back to a “zero sum game”. I imagine those central bankers from China, Russia and India know whats up with oil and know that if they want to stay in power, subsidizing U.S. consumption has to go if they have any chance at equitable distribution of finite resources.
    Don’t know of any examples of global hegemonic currencies being replaced without a war and this one will probably be no different. Not enen sure there is even a comparable precedent but not likely to be different from regional examples throughout history.

  373. k gleason July 5, 2009 at 4:10 pm #

    Happy July 4th weekend to all!!!!!!
    while the Pope ehorts the USA to ‘ accept the stranger’….the strangers we accept get stranger and stranger….or as in the case of the korean and now chinese at Virginia Tech more and more violent..
    and in this case an evil genius…how bout this
    Criminals earned $3.5 million kidnapping and murdering Soviet immigrants
    Public prosecutors of California seek the death penalty for three leaders of the group, which conducted criminal activities in the USA. The hearings on the case of immigrants from the former Soviet Union started in the beginning of August at Los Angeles district court, Itar-Tass reports.
    The gang kidnapped and murdered rich emigrants from Russia. The criminals were arrested in the spring of 2002, when several murder cases were being investigated. The case captured numerous headlines in California.
    There are five group leaders on the bar: Kadamovas, Mikhel, Krylov and their associates Natalia Solovyova (29) and Aleksius Markovskis. Investigators do not insist on death sentences for the two associates, as they did minor work in the group.
    Thirty-seven-year-old director of the movie production company Matador Communications, Georgy Safiyev, was one of the criminal group’s victims. His body and the body of his colleague, a Georgian immigrant Nikolay Kharabadze, were pulled from a holding pond. The police also identified the bodies of Alexander Umansky (35), who ran the Advanced Mobile Technologies car electronics shop, notary Margarita Pekler (39) and the director of a large building company Meyer Muskatel (58).
    All the victims emigrated from the USSR. They were rich people residing in Beverley Hills private villas. No other common features were detected for them. It turned out later that Margarita Pekler, the director of the accounting company Pekler Group was the central link in the criminal chain. She was well known in the Russian diaspora: Pekler helped beginners open firms, purchase houses, render financial services, etc. She was well informed about the affairs of her clients, about their financial well-being, first and foremost.
    Margarita Pekler would call her friends and invite them to visit her country mansion to discuss important business matters there. Criminals would attack and tie victims up there, making them call their relatives and business partners for ransom money. Law-enforcement bodies investigated that Pekler frequently rendered auditing services to Safiyev.
    Criminals promised to free Umansky and Kharabadze for $234,000, but they asked $5 million for Georgy Safiyev. The latter managed to pay only $1.2 million. When the money would be wired to the Bank of New York, criminals would suffocate victims and throw bodies in holding ponds. Kidnappings and murders continued before January 2002.
    The police arrested four members of the gang in February 2002 – Yurius Kadamovas, Yury Mikhel, Pyotr Krylov and Ainar Altmanis. Aleksium Markovskis and Natalia Solovyova were arrested later. When the investigation was almost over in March 2003, Krylov, Mikhel and Kadamovas planned to escape prison. With the help of their friends – Tomas Tinan, his wife Sabrina and brother Michael, criminal group members smuggled tools to prison and dug a passage. However, prison guards found the passage and staved off the escape. Tomas Tinan and members of his family have already been sentenced up to 3.5 years in prison.

  374. scott July 5, 2009 at 5:18 pm #

    what happened

  375. abbeysbooks July 5, 2009 at 5:36 pm #

    Laura it is now time for you to read seriously Lovecraft and Houellebecq.

  376. abbeysbooks July 5, 2009 at 5:37 pm #

    Laura it is now time for you to read seriously Lovecraft and Houellebecq.
    JHK you must get a new site manager. You are throwing your money away on the one you have.

  377. abbeysbooks July 5, 2009 at 5:41 pm #

    Laura it is now time for you to read seriously Lovecraft and Houellebecq.
    JHK you must get a new site manager. You are throwing your money away on the one you have.

  378. Johnny Rico July 6, 2009 at 4:09 am #

    “JR, you’re not bullshittin’ us this time, are you? We want to hear all about it!”
    I’m sending bomb-sniffing dogs in first. I did three tours in Nam, and two in Iraq and three in the Astan as a consultant.
    You fuckers are out to get me.
    Farfetched – if you start reading Zulukilo and commenting again for a week, I’ll go to lunch with Nudge. I’ll pick her up, and I’ll pay.
    But while I’m wining and dining (If she can’t shut me up) I’ll be expounding on the philosophy of OEO (who JHK banned for too long).
    Addendum. For half the time. Nudge can say anything she wants the other half. And I will listen. Carefully. Because I am fair.

  379. Johnny Rico July 6, 2009 at 4:54 am #

    So no July 6th?
    Jim, what are you paying your webmaster?
    I’ll do it for $100 a week and I guarantee I won’t tell anybody I’m doing it for you.
    It’s a $10 job. You just gotta erase double posts. Ask Nudge or Farfetched. We all have our own highly successful blogs. We police them ourselves.
    The html is easy.
    Nudge?
    FarFetched?
    Tell JHK what I say is the truth.

  380. scott July 6, 2009 at 6:33 am #

    Michael Jackson’s memorial service at the Staples center is being “paid for” by the State of California.
    “The city of Los Angeles is a half-billion dollars in the hole. Layoffs. Furloughs. Potholes unfilled, trees untrimmed. Animal services, the ethics commission, whack whack whack.”
    http://opinion.latimes.com/opinionla/2009/07/michael-jacksons-memorial-what-would-la-taxpayers-get-for-their-money.html

  381. eightm July 6, 2009 at 6:46 am #

    By the way, peak oil is not the real problem facing western society (the 3 macro regions of USA, EU and JAPAN, and some others Canada, South Korea). But PEAK WORK – LABOR. There is not enough justifiable work available anymore, there is not any kind of work – profession that justifies the pay levels and amount of employment needed. There is no real financial or technical imperative that forces societies to have so many people at work 8 hours a day. The real mega problem is that work is disappearing, becoming obsolete. The real problem is not the end of energy, but the end of any kind of work, and especially any kind of high paying work. This is because our technological society has created huge EXCESS CAPACITY in all productive endeavors. Most work has been automated by computers or outsourced to India or Indonesia at 100 dollar a month wages. Therefore we need free salaries, cheap rents and mass transit.

  382. eightm July 6, 2009 at 6:47 am #

    By the way, peak oil is not the real problem facing western society (the 3 macro regions of USA, EU and JAPAN, and some others Canada, South Korea). But PEAK WORK – LABOR. There is not enough justifiable work available anymore, there is not any kind of work – profession that justifies the pay levels and amount of employment needed. There is no real financial or technical imperative that forces societies to have so many people at work 8 hours a day. The real mega problem is that work is disappearing, becoming obsolete. The real problem is not the end of energy, but the end of any kind of work, and especially any kind of high paying work. This is because our technological society has created huge EXCESS CAPACITY in all productive endeavors. Most work has been automated by computers or outsourced to India or Indonesia at 100 dollar a month wages. Therefore we need free salaries, cheap rents and mass transit.

  383. eightm July 6, 2009 at 7:25 am #

    By the way, peak oil is not the real problem facing western society (the 3 macro regions of USA, EU and JAPAN, and some others Canada, South Korea). But PEAK WORK – LABOR. There is not enough justifiable work available anymore, there is not any kind of work – profession that justifies the pay levels and amount of employment needed. There is no real financial or technical imperative that forces societies to have so many people at work 8 hours a day. The real mega problem is that work is disappearing, becoming obsolete. The real problem is not the end of energy, but the end of any kind of work, and especially any kind of high paying work. This is because our technological society has created huge EXCESS CAPACITY in all productive endeavors. Most work has been automated by computers or outsourced to India or Indonesia at 100 dollar a month wages. Therefore we need free salaries, cheap rents and mass transit.

  384. eightm July 6, 2009 at 7:27 am #

    By the way, peak oil is not the real problem facing western society (the 3 macro regions of USA, EU and JAPAN, and some others Canada, South Korea). But PEAK WORK – LABOR. There is not enough justifiable work available anymore, there is not any kind of work – profession that justifies the pay levels and amount of employment needed. There is no real financial or technical imperative that forces societies to have so many people at work 8 hours a day. The real mega problem is that work is disappearing, becoming obsolete. The real problem is not the end of energy, but the end of any kind of work, and especially any kind of high paying work. This is because our technological society has created huge EXCESS CAPACITY in all productive endeavors. Most work has been automated by computers or outsourced to India or Indonesia at 100 dollar a month wages. Therefore we need free salaries, cheap rents and mass transit.

  385. eightm July 6, 2009 at 7:29 am #

    By the way, peak oil is not the real problem facing western society (the 3 macro regions of USA, EU and JAPAN, and some others Canada, South Korea). But PEAK WORK – LABOR. There is not enough justifiable work available anymore, there is not any kind of work – profession that justifies the pay levels and amount of employment needed. There is no real financial or technical imperative that forces societies to have so many people at work 8 hours a day. The real mega problem is that work is disappearing, becoming obsolete. The real problem is not the end of energy, but the end of any kind of work, and especially any kind of high paying work. This is because our technological society has created huge EXCESS CAPACITY in all productive endeavors. Most work has been automated by computers or outsourced to India or Indonesia at 100 dollar a month wages. Therefore we need free salaries, cheap rents and mass transit.

  386. The Bono July 6, 2009 at 8:12 am #

    Michael was black. What do you expect from blacks, anyway?
    What else – when I fart it smells like a McDonald’s fastfood kitchen.
    And as I watched the illegal immigrant forced to
    spray insectides for $1/hour at one of the countless capitalist pig banks despoiling my town, I was reminded of Americans murdering innocent Native American oprhans and widows here long ago.
    The booger I pulled from my nose looks just like Florida that banker Joos stole from pardise Cuba.
    It rained here on the 4th of July. America’s own global warming doused the globally warming fireworks celebration of its murdering innocent Native American oprhans and widows.
    Boogers are caused by airborne chemicals made in USA.
    Michael Jackson, typical American tragedy. James Kunslter, one-note non-wonder. Hey, another typical American, he.
    (And “Kunstler” is a Joo name… you know how they are…)
    Buy my books, buy my books.

  387. eightm July 6, 2009 at 8:12 am #

    By the way, peak oil is not the real problem facing western society (the 3 macro regions of USA, EU and JAPAN, and some others Canada, South Korea). But PEAK WORK – LABOR. There is not enough justifiable work available anymore, there is not any kind of work – profession that justifies the pay levels and amount of employment needed. There is no real financial or technical imperative that forces societies to have so many people at work 8 hours a day. The real mega problem is that work is disappearing, becoming obsolete. The real problem is not the end of energy, but the end of any kind of work, and especially any kind of high paying work. This is because our technological society has created huge EXCESS CAPACITY in all productive endeavors. Most work has been automated by computers or outsourced to India or Indonesia at 100 dollar a month wages. Therefore we need free salaries, cheap rents and mass transit.

  388. The Bono July 6, 2009 at 8:14 am #

    This site fits Kunstler’s very defintion of clusterfuck. What garbage.

  389. Mari July 6, 2009 at 12:23 pm #

    I love Your blog, Mr.Kunstler. But frankly, reaction to Your post sometimes is more interesting and touching than the post itself. Like this one. Not surprisingly, people are so concerned that someone (fortunately, not they) is a freak, who squandered to much and molested as well.
    I grew up in a country, where every real and surreal freak was erased from the surface of earth by Hitler, Stalin and communist regime. Now we have live-buried history and still-born show-biz. Every next doll with fake hair, eyelashes, lips, nails and breasts is similar to the previous one. None of them is singing, none of them is dancing. They are doing nothing on the stage, except “grabbing ad stroking their sex organs, as though it is a heroic activity”. Also they are drowning in the saliva of envy while watching how the tickets for Michael Jackson’s concerts are sold out. Only National Symphony Orchestra is worth of listening to. Simply because they are playing music, written by gorgeous freaks, i.e. geniuses. Mozart, Beethoven, Horowitz, Van Gough, Dali, etc – all of them are sophisticated freaks. Even one of the brightest thinkers of nowadays Nassim Taleb is often perceived as…you’ve got me.
    Now there’s a problem, when genius squanders a lot of money. The majority of us has two arms, two legs, a bit of brains…Who the hell prevents you to earn and save twice more than Jackson did? Who the hell prevents me? Nobody. By the way, I saw those smart money-savers from the USA in the South-Eastern Asia. They were looking for cheap food, cheap girlfriends/wives, cheap life. That was one of the saddest thing I’ve ever seen.In addition, of course, to the fact that parents may forgive their child’s alleged abuser for only 22$-million. For me this miserable sum is nothing but sparrow crap in comparison with ruined dignity and life of a child. How could any normal parents accept it, not fight for the punishment and “happily shut up”?
    There’s nothing wrong with extraordinary Michael Jackson; there’s something wrong with mediocre collective ?onsciousness.

  390. k gleason July 6, 2009 at 1:31 pm #

    indias bailing while there are or have been serious riots in
    china
    greece
    and several other countries…unemployed people…that old saw about idleness is the devils workshop!

  391. Sammie1eye July 7, 2009 at 11:52 am #

    Saw this as a link off of Yahoo Finance’s message board for their article “America’s Love Affair with Michael Jackson: The Mainstream Media Gets It Wrong (Again)” where the guest claimed all America loved Michael Jackson, regardless of what the mainstream media said. Thanks James for getting it right! Michael Jackson was a has-been, freakish entertainer whose untimely death was probably the best career move he had made in decades. This media crap aka “hype” is a grotesque reflection on our nation as a whole.
    Surprisingly enough, my hometown newspaper (I live in NW Indiana just 30 miles from Gary) has now relegated stories about Michael Jackson, if you can find them, to interior and op-ed pages. Fortunately, they are smart enough to know that there are far more important things to report.

  392. Sammie1eye July 7, 2009 at 11:53 am #

    Saw this as a link off of Yahoo Finance’s message board for their article “America’s Love Affair with Michael Jackson: The Mainstream Media Gets It Wrong (Again)” where the guest claimed all America loved Michael Jackson, regardless of what the mainstream media said. Thanks James for getting it right! Michael Jackson was a has-been, freakish entertainer whose untimely death was probably the best career move he had made in decades. This media crap aka “hype” is a grotesque reflection on our nation as a whole.
    Surprisingly enough, my hometown newspaper (I live in NW Indiana just 30 miles from Gary) has now relegated stories about Michael Jackson, if you can find them, to interior and op-ed pages. Fortunately, they are smart enough to know that there are far more important things to report.

  393. Henry88 July 7, 2009 at 2:07 pm #

    A friend of mine sent me an email directing me to this article. The question I have is this: How do I get the last 5 minutes of my life back? This was a complete waste of my time. At least the readers after me get to read my comments regarding this joke of a writer. Instead of only on the photo at the top of the page, I wish his head was really on the road. Then it would not take long for some car or truck to run over it and smash it to shreds. At least we can all be saved from any more useless junk posted by this clown.

  394. Henry88 July 7, 2009 at 2:08 pm #

    A friend of mine sent me an email directing me to this article. The question I have is this: How do I get the last 5 minutes of my life back? This was a complete waste of my time. At least the readers after me get to read my comments regarding this joke of a writer. Instead of only on the photo at the top of the page, I wish his head was really on the road. Then it would not take long for some car or truck to run over it and smash it to shreds. At least we can all be saved from any more useless junk posted by this clown.

  395. Xervix Zhangsun July 8, 2009 at 10:25 am #

    EightM, I agree with your comments re: work. I think this has been a problem in the USA since…hhhmmm at least early 1990’s! The problem occurred when these “Temp” agencies converted REAL JOBS to categories and contracts to be filled by temp employees, post-fordism at its finest! Also Taylorism too! I argue that America really lost REAL jobs a long time ago. Any basic job that used to be used as a stepping stone to a more professional career, soon got its own “certification requirement” and soon needed two year associates-level degree to fill it. Example paralegal. What the hell is a Paralegal? Really? Technically its nothing more than an assistant in a law firm, but in reality they do most of the work and the lawyer signs off on it. But to have a two year degree to become a paralegal is a joke! Also to require it and close the door on actual experience is also a joke.
    THE ONLY true model of work is the farm:
    You wake up at work!
    No commute, you are at work when your feet hit the wooden floor of the farm house.
    No need for Starbucks or Quiznos or Subway lunches.
    No need for Applebee’s Dinners!
    No need for dry-cleaning of suits, gas for car, for a resume, for a computer etc.
    Literally you wake up at work, farm the land prepare for the cold winter and store food and seeds.
    I remember an American Veterinary student studying in the UK in the early 1990’s. He had been partially raised in an American Indian tribe. The suitcase he brought over (pre-911 !!!!) contained an assortment of weird herbs, medicines, spear heads etc. I remember this American guy saying, “You know the west fucked it all up, the Indians never had divorce like us, or took more from the land than they gave back, they were at one with the land”. I ask everyone, why the American Indian traditions do nt make it into the Peak Oil discussion. Really, if they were left alone I think America would still be an amazing place. The American Indians and the Amish should be studied a little bit more in the Peak Oil realm. I know of an American journalist in Ireland that does a lot of youtube videos about the Peak Oil and he mentions the Amish.

  396. Xervix Zhangsun July 8, 2009 at 10:26 am #

    EightM, I agree with your comments re: work. I think this has been a problem in the USA since…hhhmmm at least early 1990’s! The problem occurred when these “Temp” agencies converted REAL JOBS to categories and contracts to be filled by temp employees, post-fordism at its finest! Also Taylorism too! I argue that America really lost REAL jobs a long time ago. Any basic job that used to be used as a stepping stone to a more professional career, soon got its own “certification requirement” and soon needed two year associates-level degree to fill it. Example paralegal. What the hell is a Paralegal? Really? Technically its nothing more than an assistant in a law firm, but in reality they do most of the work and the lawyer signs off on it. But to have a two year degree to become a paralegal is a joke! Also to require it and close the door on actual experience is also a joke.
    THE ONLY true model of work is the farm:
    You wake up at work!
    No commute, you are at work when your feet hit the wooden floor of the farm house.
    No need for Starbucks or Quiznos or Subway lunches.
    No need for Applebee’s Dinners!
    No need for dry-cleaning of suits, gas for car, for a resume, for a computer etc.
    Literally you wake up at work, farm the land prepare for the cold winter and store food and seeds.
    I remember an American Veterinary student studying in the UK in the early 1990’s. He had been partially raised in an American Indian tribe. The suitcase he brought over (pre-911 !!!!) contained an assortment of weird herbs, medicines, spear heads etc. I remember this American guy saying, “You know the west fucked it all up, the Indians never had divorce like us, or took more from the land than they gave back, they were at one with the land”. I ask everyone, why the American Indian traditions do nt make it into the Peak Oil discussion. Really, if they were left alone I think America would still be an amazing place. The American Indians and the Amish should be studied a little bit more in the Peak Oil realm. I know of an American journalist in Ireland that does a lot of youtube videos about the Peak Oil and he mentions the Amish.

  397. Henry88 July 8, 2009 at 3:10 pm #

    A friend of mine sent me an email directing me to this article. The question I have is this: How do I get the last 5 minutes of my life back? This was a complete waste of my time. At least the readers after me get to read my comments regarding this joke of a writer. Instead of only on the photo at the top of the page, I wish his head was really on the road. Then it would not take long for some car or truck to run over it and smash it to shreds. At least we can all be saved from any more useless junk posted by this clown.

  398. The Bono July 10, 2009 at 10:21 am #

    “Michael was black. What do you expect from blacks, anyway?”
    What else – when I fart it smells like a US McDonald’s fastfood kitchen, made in USA. And as I watched the illegal immigrant forced to spray insectides for $1/hour at one of the countless capitalist US pig banks despoiling my town, I was reminded of Americans murdering innocent Native American oprhans and widows here long ago.
    The booger I pulled from my nose looks just like Florida, that US banker Joos stole from proto-hippie Fidel Castro.
    It rained here on the 4th of July. America’s own global warming doused the globally warming fireworks celebration of its murdering of innocent Native American oprhans and widows.
    Boogers are caused by US airborne chemicals made in USA. Etc, etc, etc, pp.
    Michael Jackson, typical American tragedy. James Kunslter, one-note non-wonder. Hey, another typical American, he.
    (And “Kunstler” is a Joo name… you know how they are…)
    Buy my books, buy my books.

  399. jeannieology July 10, 2009 at 10:34 pm #

    JackO-bama…
    http://jeannie-ology.com/?p=2445

  400. JMNYC July 11, 2009 at 9:02 pm #

    Have they buried the creature yet? Seems like the longer they keep it on ice the more the Jackson family can suck money out of it. Surprised that people have not called CNN et al en masse and screamed “stop telling us about this creature, tell us why we are stuck behind a house-sized RV with a SUV hitched to it’s rear going 40 mph…” or some such othern.

  401. politicky July 12, 2009 at 7:24 pm #

    I usually think your venom is deserved. This time I don’t.

  402. Muhammed Atta July 13, 2009 at 2:25 am #

    Hmmmm, some hyperbole in the article… which first to say, did have overall entertainment value in its prose. However, writing off the species is a clear indicator for the author to seek the invaluable council of Chris Korda over at http://www.churchofeuthanasia.org. One of those pillars should suit.

  403. Muhammed Atta July 13, 2009 at 2:26 am #

    Hmmmm, some hyperbole in the article… which first to say, did have overall entertainment value in its prose. However, writing off the species is a clear indicator for the author to seek the invaluable council of Chris Korda over at http://www.churchofeuthanasia.org. One of those pillars should suit.

  404. tvwillie July 13, 2009 at 8:52 am #

    I loved this one.The posts that concentrate on one singular topic turn me on the most.

  405. k gleason July 14, 2009 at 1:05 pm #

    ‘The democratic socialist governments of Sweden, Finland, Norway, Denmark, etc. do not have populations with “horrible living conditions”
    THEY WILL AS THEIR FOOLISH TOLERANCE ALLOWS MORE MUSLIMS TO MOVE THERE AND NOT WORK BUT LIVE OFF WELFARE AS THE MUSLIMS HAVE 7 OR 8 KIDS PER WOMAN AND REFUSE TO ASSIMILATE
    if you doubt me ask the van goghs or any white / christian person in rotterdam
    and they have hate crime laws to arrest/ censure/jail the bridget bardots who speak out against muslim barbarism

  406. J.Leone August 15, 2010 at 5:31 pm #

    Mr. Kunstler: You are the kind of journalist who harrassed, libeled and dinigrated Mr.Jackson into an early grave. Never has a human being been so methodically and systematically destroyed by the constant barrage of this type of ranting you exhibited on this page. Here is a list of what Michael Jackson did, his whole life, to make a difference in our world. I’d like to know what you have contributed other than hate for another human being.
    http://www.scribd.com/doc/14283749/Michael-Jacksons-Humanitarian-Efforts-19792003

  407. kurt47diaz November 2, 2010 at 3:13 am #

    I do not see a level to criticize MJ. It says a good deal about short-term US media and public if they idolize the one particular who really should have been in psychological institution in the 1st area.

  408. MovingLondon December 11, 2010 at 4:41 am #

    One behavioral change America can do — is “couting
    pennies”. The country has been a disposable/wasteful society for to long. Sometimes the best course to take — is the simplest — good old-fashioned begetting.

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  410. gjpyccpppg August 4, 2012 at 6:02 am #

    , At the age of 16 she had just graduated from junior high school that night . I love story I cry Shuaige ,very handsome that summer, she ,love ,aged 16 ,just graduated from junior high school ,senior high school entrance examination because of loss ,plus the parents do not understand, she started to despair ,to start the game life ,tired of life ,start decadence ,all day, and on the outside of the child want to stay together with them ,he learned to smoke ,drink ,learn to learn ,learn to fight drugs ,learned all bad habits ,even the original black hair with her face became full fly ,become the uneven ,be riotous with colour ;nose ,mouth has a hole, in his view this world has nothing is worthy of her love ,there will be no more people will go to miss her, so he more become aggravated the continue to decadence .
    &nbsp ;&nbsp ;&nbsp ;&nbsp ;a July night ,she and some of her so-called good friends get drunk from a bar out, met in their class monitor Luna, the person she loves ,Luna far recognized the hand holding a wine bottle ,dressed in a strange way ,rickety, also the station unstable girl is her ,see her and a group of punks together I worry about her very much ,feel very sad ,very guilty ,he tried to take her back right ,let her have her original life ,he quickly go to think beside him, and said to her :love ,you drink too much ,need me to take you home .
    Happy smile very unfeeling answer : ?What qualifications do you have your sister !Little brother ,you still get out of my way !Later ,her those punks booing followed ,and dare he go ,not close to his love ,but he still insists to say: happy ,you say you are afraid of the dark ,or I send you home !Hear this word, these do not know why I promised him .
    &nbsp ;&nbsp ;&nbsp ;&nbsp ;their one before and one after the walking on a quiet road, roadside one nor the darkness of the night ,only a few filaments from the other room shot out of the dim light ,also very quiet ,very quiet ,along the way, they each other a straight silent ,who have no active and who speaks ,the boy just silently walk behind the girl ,looking at her haggard ,tired figure, very distressed ,the road is not long ,but they took a long time ,the girl got home, when she is ready to come in, the boy finally talk ,he said to the girl :love ,you can not go on like this ,even if it is for me, don go early so good ?The girl was silent for a moment ,smiled and replied :who do you think you are !For you ?Ridiculous !Who for me ?We have no relationship ,not what you say ?&nbsp ;&nbsp ;&nbsp ;&nbsp ;it was a month ago ,in June 1st, that was the birthday girl ,the little girl is very happy ,she received a lot of gifts ,so she felt very satisfied, felt that the 16 year old birthdayit is meaningful, but she felt that China and have some deficiencies ,because she likes on the monitor of their class ,luna .
    But ,I seem to be all the girls are the same ,he is not sure, Luna on how she feels ,he hopes I also like her .He wants very much to know what he is feeling on the moon ,and then when the school took a note to Luna, reads :Luna, next to the playground after a night out ,I have something to say to you ,be there or be square !In accordance with the contract, I came to the playground ,when happy to tell the truth ,I refused her ,also said a very unfeeling words :you said you love me, say that you love me ,between us just what relation? These words are these contrary to expectation answer ,she asked silly, do not know how to answer her ,chose to remain silent, I then said : ,you don is !I know ,we in addition to classmates ,there is nothing between us ,nothing to do .
    This word makes love heart completely broke ,she cried a man quietly leave the playground ,her walking away in the dark to be so lonely ,so sad ,she did not know that after he left ,I cried .
    Cry after I go home ,ready to leave ,but she in the corner of the playground the darkness of the night and heard a girl crying ,she knew ,that hide in a corner bitter girl is happy ,walking past him ,said to her :are you okay ?A girl home so late is not safe ,go ,I take you home !These did not speak ,but that night ,he managed to send her home ,the late night scenes and tonight ,as there was a silence ,a way of love just said one sentence : I was afraid of the dark ,really want to always can .
    .. … …. … .When he said that love and cry, I understand her ,she thought he would never take her home .I regret to tell her so unfeeling words ,regret uttered those honest, in fact ,he has been also love love ,always love ,never change ,he said the unfeeling words ,only he wants happy to concentrate fully on learning, fast test, he hopes that these can be admitted to a good school .
    Can not think of ,get the opposite of what one wants ,from that day on ,love is not a day of focusing on learning ,class time is always in a daze, absent-minded ,during which the moon is the want to go and love ,can be happy see a miscarriage as the mouse saw the cat sneaks away ,do not give him the explanation opportunity ,even a chance to speak ,and later appeared at the beginning of the story scene ,these senior high school entrance examination failure ,started her decadent life .
    &nbsp ;&nbsp ;&nbsp ;&nbsp ;that night, he suffered from insomnia ,night can not sleep, he thought for a long time ,also think a lot ,he loves her ,he does not want to see his beloved people always think of the life ,he wanted to be a can let these go back, back to her original life ,.
    He is a man looking at the dark night of the meniscus ,did not see its light ,only to feel its cold ,&nbsp ;&nbsp ;&nbsp ;&nbsp ;the very next day ,early in the morning, I have carried this rose to love every day after the crossroads waiting for her ,waiting for a long time ,he loved the people he is coming ,my red face toward her ,walked up to her ,her roses for her ,and to her confession ,these do not believe in front of what he said is true ,in her opinion ,he said that he loves her just because she is now with a group they were to stay with the decadent ,he is sympathetic to her ,but she .
    She is not the sympathy of others ,the fresh rose to swing on the ground, raised his head off ,the crossing in addition to flow car ,just left him alone standing on the side of the road .
    He also tried to be rejected taste ,the taste is really very sad ,painful ,not the pain .He began to understand her mind ,so he did not want to give up ,just silently to himself ;even harder .
    &nbsp ;&nbsp ;&nbsp ;&nbsp ;come back every day, he would send her roses ,every day of every day he always followed him ,she went to the bar, he helped her to drink, she smokes ,he will be out of her hand smoke robbed in the past away, she fights ,he would stand quietly watched ,because he knew he couldn him, but if someone hit her ,he immediately rushed to protect her ,using his body to protect her ,or she was a bit hurt .
    As long as she is done ,she will be in place by his shadow .Day is so so slowly too ,did not change too .&nbsp ;&nbsp ;&nbsp ;&nbsp ;one day in August ,girls are out to fight ,the boy is still always behind her ,the fight had different ,previously ,they went out to fight it only a few people take a knife ,and this one ,each man ,even he to a ,the blade was sharp ,very heavy ,but his heart is more important ,he has the right not to be a girl ,the girl refused to listen to hi
    s .
    The fight started ,he a person standing in the corner, was very afraid, because this time is really different ,this time they only to bet on ,one by one the real thing in the battle, then the ground began with blood ,there are a lot of people were injured, he see a lot of people of the wrist ,face ,forehead ,arms ,abdomen ,legs and then stay in the blood ,but they are unwilling to stop the war ,still not you die I live together with ,bucket ,hitting ,kill, the girl was injured ,the wrist drop of bright red blood ,but still and they were fighting together ,he could not go on ,never fight him, raised his hand the heavy knife rushed to the girl helping girls to play ,he later found behind the girl ,a man is getting ready for her to start, the knife hair shining white ,he tried shouted the girl told her to look back ,but the girl did not, he did not have the means ,the sword is close to her side ,said that at the time was fast ,the boy rushed to push away the girl ,the girl fell on the ground ,his arm hurt ,oozed blood ,but when she wake up and head Ready to blame the boy, she said anything ,she was in front of a scene scared silly, boy lying in a pool of blood on his chest ,inserting a red sword ,with nose still bleeding ,girl hysterical shout but all people see in front of the form are run the .
    The girl cried again ,cry very sad ,the boy to his right hand to wipe her tears ,and said to the girl ;love don ,okay? I really love you ,always love ,my love for you never change, if I am not, you should take good care of yourself, pay attention to every day of every day ,everyone is loving you, don ,I love you smile .
    .. … ….&nbsp ;&nbsp ;&nbsp ;&nbsp ;if not finished ,I was gone .Girl don ,she always laughed at ,are always laughing .Because the boy said he loved her .&nbsp ;&nbsp ;&nbsp ;&nbsp ;in the boy that one day a girl not to ,she dressed himself ,came to his first sent her flowers at the crossroads ,the flow of said vehicle made a long statement :dear ,I come ,I used to be you always walk in front of me, without you, I was not happy ,I this time I let you go in my God behind ,because of this, we have to go hand in hand and shoulder together ,me ,wait for me &nbsp ;& nbsp ;&nbsp ;&nbsp ;when people go to girl, girl is lying in the crossroads ,and the boy died.
    All the blood ,but the girl is always on ,she always laughing ,she is left with a smile ,because the boy said like her smile ,so she wants to smile to him &nbsp ;&nbsp ;&nbsp ;&nbsp ;why the end of love is always so much hurt ,why love always respectively ,it is because we love you don ,love will let him know ,love him ( her ) to the good point ,I love him don you , not to say that every story will have a happy ending ,but every story ,we can let him become beautiful, love you ,love you ,love you just tell her to let her know ,cherish it, let your love more beauty .
    Mr. lorry Tencent blog welcome reproduced ,reprinted please keep source read more classic comedy emotional terrorist entertainment articles please Garry QQ:461379619 .Subscribe to the reading

  411. gjpyccpppg August 4, 2012 at 6:05 am #

                                                             
                                                             
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                              nbsp;                       &nbSp;